“I wonder how much deeper the ocean would be without sponges”

This quote pretty much sums up how I think about the whole universe. I like it. 🙂

A new word…

…opening doors to new places.

theosophy

Strangest thing today. I was talking to Roan, the wildlife guy, and he mentioned a few of his thoughts on reincarnation, I think they came from this group he’s part off. Funny thing was what he said was pretty much identical to what my friend Helen has said for many years. Funny that.

You know that it’s not a cult when they say “well, I didn’t really want to bombard you with information, there’s a lot there. And we can only really point things out anyway, the progress has to be made by the individual”. Roan is an interesting guy, but for once I’m happy to now know everything all at once. I don’t think I’d understand it (properly) anyway.

Kudos to my subconscious, chi explorations, water meditation

Last night my dream involved lots of friends, adventure, pirates and shapeshifting. I knew watching pirates of the carribean twice might help 🙂

Interestling, the shapeshifting in this dream involved consciously shifting your mental pattern into the animal (the first time I used some kind of mushroom to get into wolf-pattern) and then the physical shape may follow. It was also a bit ‘wolf’s rain’ in that you had to be in a certain state to see the other as the animal they were. (I saw Chikki as a white tiger with bright green eyes)

As well as the predictable wolf, I also briefly shifted my mental pattern into a squirrel, a ferret, and a bat amongst others – all of these had a distinctive ‘feel’ to them. (squirrel was very busy and skittish to say the least)

——————

back in the real world, I spent a nice evening with whitepaw/ben. I’ve seperated out my bit of tenerife prickly-pear cactus from my pot plant and given him his own pot. This is good because its grown -a lot- recently. The problem is the cactus I pulled the pad off was the size of a small tree…I’m not sure how big he will grow.

My room is essentially complete, I have a nice place to meditate now and a little ‘shrine’ dedictated to nothing in particular but instead somwhere to focus. For some reason I can feel ‘chi’ (I need a new word) really well lately, I wonder if its partly due to the ‘cleaner’ diet I’ve been on or something else. I can feel ‘chi’ between my hands when they are well over 12 inches apart; also as I relax into it and do a few semi tai chi movements it crackles down my arms like some kind of static electricity. Fascinating stuff.

Following the book I’ve borrowed from Chris, I hope to begin what is know as ‘water’ taoist meditation. It seems to be about dissolving away tensions from the inside and generally ‘relaxing into being’, in contrast to kundaline/fire meditations and other things which energise you on more outer levels, forcing open things and breaking through stuff? We shall see. But after looking around all over the place and drawing ideas together, it is time to start following through and moving forwards.

No wonder I’m not motivated : where’s my company song?

I don’t believe this.

“For thirty-one years, the gatherings and conventions of our IBM workers have expressed in happy songs the fine spirit of loyal cooperation and good fellowship which has promoted the signal success of our great IBM Corporation in its truly International Service for the betterment of business and benefit to mankind. ”

IBM used to have a company song book.

The IBM Song book
This was back in the early days, as it were.
You have to see them to believe them.

Here’s an example:

TO OUR I. B. M. BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Tune: “Glory, Glory, Hallelujah”

1. Our I. B. M. Directors are all great commercial men;
They’re U. S. A.’s financial kings of learned acumen.
They give us their experience and untiring efforts when
They’re serving the I. B. M.

2. Their wisdom in directing this world service Company
Is yielding benefits to all and our prosperity.
Our I. B. M. promotes good-will and sterling honesty
For all Humanity.

Chorus
Here’s to I. B. M.’s Directors,
And our many fine Stockholders.
International Peace Promoters,
Now known as I. B. M.
___________________________

Stormrider, take note! I think you need some inspiring company songs. Make your employees sing them heartily every morning. That will boost the moral.

“Noam Chomsky on Capitalism “;People behind names

Having dabbled around in some linguistics during my degree, the name Noam Chomsky rings a rather large bell. It is connected to various lectures, diagrams and psychology books. The strange thing I noticed with academia is how you tend to associate a name with a theory, or a series of theories, or even an adjective (“Chomskian”)- but never really stop to associate a *person* with the name. Not only does this result in a tendency to assume everyone is male, but it makes the literature quite divorced from anybody or indeed any particular time, unless you remember to check the publishing date.

More than that I think you end up pigeon-holing intelligent minds into one particular box.

So, I was quite surprised to stumble across a rather good interview of Noam Chomsky’s views and thoughts on capitalism. While its a little dated (1991) I think he’s got some good things to say. And it really made me realise the blinding obvious (sometimes the hardest things to see) – that these people didn’t actually spend all their time writing papers on syntax, in fact they most likely sat around sharing a pint with their friends and musing on the society or the universe just like everyone else.

I guess the lesson from this is not to judge people by what they have written, and also to remember that they have probably written on totally different subjects to the particular ones your exposed to in the course of a degree.

For the first time I’ve wondered what it would be like, rather than to read everything you can about topic X, to instead track the thoughts of one person, read up on all their variety stuff, try and understand them and wonder what they might have been thinking that =wasn’t= written down.

I wonder what the cognitive scientists who marked my A.I project would have thought about my dissertation on feminine imagery of god? Or indeed what any of them would have thought to see me run around singing to myself, or my interest in tai chi? It is good to remember – I am more than just those academic records, despite how proud I am of those acheivements, they are now locked away in a filling cabinet; if anyone ever looks at them all they will see is a name.

I do not care whether my name is remembered when I’m gone, because it is an empty shadow of a person. I would rather affect others directly as an anoymous person, and see those effects ripple outwards, than have students 50 years from now assume I’m male and think no more than making sure they reference my name correctly.

—————————
Noam Chomsky’s bit:
“To begin with, I think terms like “capitalism” and “socialism” have been so evacuated of any substantive meaning that I don’t even like to use them…” – courtesy of everything2.com

Alive!

What a good bank holiday weekend. I spent lots of time outside enjoying things, meeting new people and being a bit naughty as well.

I have a problem whereby I’ve come to relish anything that brings me into my body and makes me feel real again, especially after weeks of office-monkey-mind.

So, I went swimming in the rather cold sea at paignton, marvelling at the sheer beauty of the sunsetting colours of the rippled waves. And shivvering with intense cold, but that’s beside the point. Although I did manage to centre myself and just stop shivvering; this is either indictative of meditative practice or simply the fact that I’d gone totally numb. (time to get out of the water..)

I wandered over warm rocks bare foot, breathing in the sea breeze and listening to the sharp cry of herring gulls (-proper- seagulls, not like the minature terns you get round portsmouth).

I lay on the sand of a small cove as the sun faded, looking up at ivy covered red cliffs and watching bats chase each other as well as the twilight insects.

I gorged on some of the best chinese take away sitting on said beach with Chris, and afterwards we had a small fire and lay in the warmth looking up at the stars. (and how clear it is with no orange glare from street lights) He showed me phospherescence in the rock pools…my god is the world just incredible, every day I see something which takes my breath away. There’s so much more to find.

Sunday I went in the sea again, this time warmer with sunlight and fresh with morning. Once we were a fair distance out I slipped out of my bikini (you know, I really don’t care about people seeing me naked any more) and just twisted through the ocean underwater like an otter or something. It felt unbelievably free and good.

As well as all this, I got to spend some good time with Marc and Kay, we had saturday brunch in my favourite Exeter cafe and watched a bit of anime. We went to see Pirates of the Carribean again on sunday, this time with Zak and Jess.

Jess is a really cool lady, a bit ‘fey’ but in a good way. She’s very pretty and fun to talk to, also the first pre-op transexual (male->female) that I’ve ever talked to; and she was quite happy to talk about it which I found both interesting & fascinating. But my thoughts on male/female brains and other gender issues could make for an essay in themselves.

Sunday night I stayed in a rather tasteful ensuite double room at st.Luke’s campus with Zak. There was something wonderfully adult and deeply satisfying about the fact we’d booked and paid for the thing with our own money, not from my student loan or parental support. It is wonderous sleeping in a -double- bed with someone when you’ve become used to tiny squeaky single student-beds.

Along with the social fun (I also met Kiroo briefly, good guy, hopefully see him again on my uk-roadtrip), I had time on the train journeys to immerse myself in books, namely egyptian symbology and art (and there WILL be an essay on that, fascinating and incredible stuff) and “The second law” (thermodynamics. Seems to be an important part of the universe…) I also did some interesting breathing meditation on the train, the rhythmn and sensation of movement only adding to the experience. Once again, I’m starting to really feel ‘chi’; in fact I am beginning to be able to spin it about and somehow ‘focus’ it in places..generally playing about with it. I don’t know how I got into this meditative state, but I was consciously drawing something up through my body giving me quite a head rush. I’m not trying that again till I understand what I’m doing. For those who might scorn this exploration as a waste of time, they obviously haven’t seen what happens when you apply it to intimate activity 😉 ; otoh I suspect people manipulate their own/a partners ‘chi’ when engaging in such things without even realising it. (again, another essay’s worth here)

The weekend was made complete with a relaxing evening at home monday night, my parents were in good form for a change, Andrew looked sunburnt and worn out from the Reading festival, and I had a chance for a bath and some quiet meditation, dancing, and general cleansing rituals of my self and my new room. Reflection on the changing situations with the I-Ching gave me some food for thought, and some warnings to stop seeing the people at work as “dirty pigs or ghosts” (!) and not get stuck in hostilities. I am also now reassured that my progress is not neccesarily hampered here, but I have to be careful not to rush ahead too quickly into some of the new oppurtunities that are opening up. I’m so bad at patience, but there’s no reason why I can’t learn it now.

I’m feeling calmly positive, refreshed, and determined to keep going with my convictions.

I would like to say thank you to all my friends and all the people I love (usually -not- mutually exclusive). It is thanks to you, your kindness and hospitality that I can have such a wonderful time; more than I can write down here. I am incredibly greatful to have you in my life. It may sound cheesey, but it just struck me how really true it is that the -people- in your life, not the things, are what turns a repitive or lonely weekend into an adventure and a place of solace. Thank you.

Message for Lizzie

If you’re reading this, I AM still interested in that “chi kung”(sp?) book. I’d like to call at some point, but my feet haven’t touched the ground for quite some time. In fact if anyone else knows anything about that I’d be interested to hear!

Fox and Wolves and concrete-boxes

If I thought yesterday’s puppy was good, before rushing off to work I spent 5 minutes watching a young fox bimble about our garden. He looked wonderful in the golden-morning light.

I need to get more sleep. Last night I was so tired I could hardly move my body, but more than that I hate getting so grumpy and generally frustrated when I’m operating on negative energy levels.

I had another dream with someone dying in it, my mother this time. I think it’s something I’m getting out of my system at the moment, one of my child-fears that I’m turning round and round until they become insubstantial and I can let them go. In fact I spoke to my mother about it this morning, and she did one of her ‘calm & wise’ moments.

((Do you know, the horrible thing is that I’ve dreamt of both Zak and my mother dying, and mingled in with the overpowering sense of loss and emotion there was a slight hint, the barest thread of relief and freedom? Dreams are funny things))

The strange thing is that both dreams caused me to wake up at 3am in the morning.

The dream also involved a pack of wolves, this time constrained inside a concrete enclosure – I went in to hoover up their poo for some reason. There were all kinds of strange subtexts and messages going on, the creatures themselves were a mixture of adorable cubs and fiercesome dire-wolves with fire-eyes. There was a ‘will they accept me or will they tear me apart’ moment; luckily the accepted me which was perhaps due to the introduction by the old-french/russian-lady who looked after them. Lots of growling, snarling, cuteness, warmth – life basically. The alpha-male was being rather..dubious..towards me, and in fact communicating with a snide-lust-seductive telepathy.

The whole thing was set against a backdrop of apocalypse and huge social changes, russia no longer existed -ie it wasn’t even on the map, just sea; the american empire was crumbling, revolutions everywhere, and I got play with a jetpack and go on a ‘historical rollercoaster'(literally. and no, I really can’t explain that one).

In general, then, it’s one of those times where I feel intensely more alive when I’m asleep than I do sitting here. If I ever stop having vivid dreams, or when I start dreaming about being at work, at that point I don’t care anymore – I’m just walking away from all this. You can’t get much more obvious a message from your subconscious than a pack of angry, lustfull wolves contained inside a concrete box, in a world that’s crumbling around them.

Dilbert-land

I need your help!

If I handle things right, work may pick up. I now have my first ‘real’ bit of work. I will be writing a little program that essentially picks up a line from a spreadsheet and reformats it into a column to be fed into the database automatically. They need this to deal with mass-inputs of peoples details, ie when they take over a new company. But thats a long way down the line. First, I need project requirements, meetings, ‘workshops’ …this really is like Dilbert-land.

And so, first I need a PROJECT NAME. (!) Preferably an acronym.

This is where I would like suggestions. Last time I used “IDRIS-bot” – the name of one of my imaginary characters – which stands for “Inputs Data Really Is Speedy” (but I don’t tell them that unless they ask)

This is what my dad has recommended so far, good advice since he’s been at IBM for some time:

peter: it needs to include lots of good buzz words in a short space.
peter: productivity is good
peter: so is automation
peter: so is tool
peter: but not program
peter: program = ADM = very expensive
peter: utility ?
me : solution?
peter: Data Outsourcng Load Tool ?
peter: DOLT ?
peter: Data Utility Housekeeping
peter: DUH ?

seriously though(!) what this actually is is a “Mass Data Load Utility for use by Outsourcing dept, but also as a more general utility by payroll”

Try and stick these letters into a word “Ma, Da, Lo, Ut, Pa,” and “O” and also “HRA”. Possibly include ‘paradigm’ or ‘solution’ in there. If you come up with anything let me know..I’m not very good at word games. And if its good then I will actually use it, the more tongue in cheek the better.