Liberating Catastrophe(?)

“Brick by brick, a tower falls
from lightning strike: the gaze of God
Stories smash toward distant rocks,
any cries or crashes drowned
by thunder that breaks stone.

The king who ruled near heaven
flails for safety but finds none.
His queen calls on her powers
yet her hands catch only clouds.
Their priest, for all his praying,
plunges with them toward hard ground.

All fall down, a mortal rain
through fired air, and none are saved.
Storm winds whip through ashy smoke;
leaden hail hits shattered thrones
and newly leveled earth.”
– from a Fool’s walk

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SHIIIIIIIIITTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

A day on from handing over my application, Mr Wills is writing back to shortlist me and ask if I can come by monday lunch for an interview. The situation here is, for some reason, he basically wants to give me this job. I can attribute dastardly or compassionate motives to this depending on my state of mind. My guess now is that if the interview goes ok, they will offer me the job and then not bother shortlisting or interviewing anyone else.

I was trying to keep this situation at a distance, but now it overwhelms me with the potential to destroy everything. My fear is off approaching my current employer and trying to sort out a shift to part time work, because I don’t know what they’ll think of that. There’s not enough to keep me occupied in this job but it IS safe and easy. I’m not sure if I could manage 2x part time jobs especially when one is a research position that could be rather challegning. I have my course to do as well. ARRRRRRRRRGHHHHHHHH I don’t know what to do, unlike the other jobs I applied for everything about this one just feels imposed from the outside, and oppurtunity not just presented but shoved down my throat. And it feels like I’ve gone too far now to stop it all – the tower has been hit and things might get messy.

cry. I bring these things upon myself….and the thing is. the thing IS. I feel drawn to walking into the risky situations, the stupid situations, the potential destructive or downright pointless. There is a danger here for transformation, it’s going against a gut feeling for safety, if not almost feeling like it goes against the comfort and against the FLOW and, almost as a bizzare matter of principle, I have to walk into the fire. Push the red button. see what happens. >_< It is like the Tower tarot card imagery - yes it is destructive but there is something strangely compelling about it..

Job application ommisions

“Who am I?

I am one of the top Cognitive Science graduates of Exeter University in 2003, receiving both a first class degree and a British Association Scholarship over the course of my study.

A Cognitive Science degree is naturally interdisciplinary, and highly relevant to this position. While at University, I took modules primarily from psychology and computer science schools, along with those focused on my core subject, such as philosophy of mind. Effectively, I am a psychology graduate with extra computer skills – who also has experience at connecting ideas from diverse disciplines together.

Over the course of my degree, I developed an interest in animal cognition and in particular the possibilities of modeling or emulating animal behavior using computer software. (along with devleoping a deep distrust and annoyance of the fucking reductionist bollocks of it all, )I explored this in my third year project, where I developed a framework for a simple “artificial creature” which incorporated a motivation system, basic associative learning structures and emotional response. A key part of this project was to ground the design in psychological theory and the results of animal behavior experiments.(because by this stage I figured the only possible useful thing to do with all that was make computer games out of it) At this stage I am seeking to gain further research experience in animal cognition,(LIES!! I don’t give a damn about your fucking research but I figure it might be slightly more interesting than my current job and I wasn’t able to get any other research jobs, and you for some reason are desperate to give this job to me maybe because you want to STEAL MY IDEAS AGAIN ARGH) with the intention of pursuing my own research in the future.(but almost certainly not research in THIS field. Unless I can get into something that goes OUTDOORS to look at animals rather than get them to peck at a computer screen!!)

I am applying for this position because I believe I have the skills you need, combined with a genuine interest in your work.” (hahahahahahaaaaa)

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…ok just needed to get that out somewhere… 🙂 will get on with the rest of the application now…

Uses up some time..

LJ Interests meme results

  1. black comedy:
    The best comedy for me is the kind that is also rather twisted. Plus I do enjoy humour that is prepared to tackle some of the more ‘disturbing’ aspects of life, like death, horror, and even..terrorism. Humour is a great human defense/coping mechanism for these things. I also like a dose of irony occasionally.

    It’s been a long time since I saw any decent black comedy – any suggestions??

  2. contradictions:
    because life is full of them, especially human life. Perhaps apparent in some people more than others… 🙂
  3. egyptian beliefs:
    I’ve been interested in eqyptians as long as I can remember, so I’m not sure where this came from. I certainly like their mythology, the unashamedly sexual/sensual nature of it, the incorporation of animals, the mummification and pyramids. I did start learning hieroglyphics which was fascinating, and have a copy of the the Scroll of Ani to study. More recently I’ve found out that the egyptians were perhaps the origin of our western alchemy concepts which gives me another reason to go back and study them..
  4. george orwell:
    1984. Animal farm. Both of these had been read and absorbed by the age of 14 or 15 and certainly had some major influence on opening up my world view
  5. liberty in reality:
    one of my favourite Sam Brown songs:
    “Liberty in reality… isn’t all it’s made out to be
    Liberty… is a wonderful thing but it doesn’t mean you’re free
    Liberty in reality… can’t take the moon out of the sky
    Liberty…can’t take the stars out of your eyes

    You should never have to let go
    Of what’s inside and what you know
    Let your heart swing next to your soul
    Keep what’s inside and hold it close

    Liberty in reality…they’ll hound you hard all through your life
    Liberty…but no-one can stop you asking why”

  6. music:
    like anyone DOESN’T have this as an interest!
  7. paradoxes:
    similar to contradictions. I do reckon paradox is a big part of being human, we contain a lot of crazy paradoxes and I suspect some part of the journey is to figure out how to reconcile them. which somehow involves giving yourself space to BE contradictory and paradoxical, and perhaps aim for a shifting balance rather than elimate half your soul.
  8. schizotypy:
    Shizotypy is a collection of characteristics that fall somewhere between “normality” and the psychosis of schizophrenia. They include “abnormal experiences/magical thinking, cognitive disorganisation, and impulsive non-conformity” amongst others. It is unusal for clinical psychology to look into grey areas, usually its either a disorder or you’re fine (depending on how well you fit into society). The other reason I’m interested in this area is that looks into the “thin line” between madness and genius. I do reckon humans are mad, to greater and lesser extents, but its the madness that led to breakthroughs and creativity. I’m less into psychological labelling now than I used to be though.
  9. symbiogenesis:
    “Life did not take over the globe by combat, but by networking. Life forms multiplied and grew more complex by co-opting others, not just by killing them.”
    may well be a major missing piece in our concept of evolution.. It makes intuitive sense to me, that evolution of life has NOT just come from a whole pile of “selfish genes” battleing it out, in fact I’m suspicious of this idea because of it’s ties with classic western religion/philosophy. I do think there are some dogmas in evolutionary theory that need questioning. Something to do more research in.
  10. twilight:
    My favourite time of the day is twilight, everything feels magical and fresh. It is the best time to be out walking, and when I feel most alive.

Enter your LJ user name, and 10 interests will be selected from your interest list.

Steak Ritual !!!

I spent most of yesterday afternoon lusting after red meat; this after a week of pretty much fish and veg. (for a combination of economic and experiemental reasons). While I have about £5 in the world until I get paid, I splashed out and bought some steak on the way home. But this is no ordinary steak, because I decided to make it into.. RITUAL STEAK! 😀

This follows on from several tangents — wanting to connect more to my body and sensation. Wanting to feed my soul (which I see as earthly and fundamentally tied up with body and daily life), basically by sanctifying daily events i.e make up some rituals round it. Doing a ritual meal is a new one, although I’ve always seen cooking as a ritual on some level, I enjoy preparing nice meals for myself and others. The difference this time was the extra intent. Also, the main part of my body that I’ve “sanctified” to very positive effect is my menstrual cycle, and since yesterday was also the first day of my bleeding I thought I’d combine the two. There’s a practical side to this too, since I reckoned a big slab of juicy steak to be a great way to boost any flagging iron levels.

The meal itself was, organic steak,(I added lots of black pepper and some red wine) mushrooms, and then local new potatoes and broccoli (first of the season!) out of my organic vegetable box. As I prepared the meal, I reflected on and thanked all the life that had gone into the food itself and getting it to the kitchen. And I actively enjoyed the aromas and sounds and everything to do with it. I offered thanks of the most genuine kind, since I really am amazed and greatful for the feast of food available to us.

I had a candle, music, and a bottle of red wine (which sparked an impromptu prayer to Dionysis). I actively savoured and chewed and explored the flavours of already succulent food (potatoes taste of EARTH mmm). And then I found myself making toasts, which became prayers or affirmations of sorts, since I said them out loud to the universe in general. The ritual, then, kind of developed itself, and I found a pattern of, making a toast, glass raised to the ceiling, taking a sip, then enjoying some food, during which time the idea for the next toast “appeared” in my mind, to be spoken out loud with certainty. I went through almost everyone I know, at least close friends and family, which meant quite a few glasses of wine 😉

I got me some serious “numinosity” going out of all this. I found that after every toast/prayer the food tasted even better (yes the wine helped), whereas the wine itself I connected up to my own blood and life, and in drinking and eating it I was taking on board the emotion, and feeding my soul as well. By expressing heartfelt wishes and good intentions for my friends, I felt some of my pettier envy’s transforming or just releasing. I could feel that static-cy “chi” energy running down my arms and body, and I just generally got as into it as I could, which was quite a lot! The penultimate toast was to Mike(Zak) and my love, the final one was to myself and hence became the most powerful self-affirmation I’ve done for ages if not for ever. I’d left a final bit of steak for the Wolf, which I gave myself space to Be, and in that moment when I picked the meat up in my mouth and licked the plate the flavour of it all totally overwhelmed me with sensation and I was literally writhing in my chair over it.

The whole thing was done in that child-spirit of exploration and FUN, but I am happily surprised to find how much I got out of my “steak ritual”. Imagination and expression seem key, and I think it would take a while till I could take part in something so fully with other people around.

It encourages me to try some more, actually the next thing I want to do is develop my own tea ritual, save up for some of those japanese teapots with the long handles, cups, really expensive “white tea”, and a nice box to put it all in. Once again, “putting the kettle on for a cuppa” IS a daily ritual for many people, as is going out drinking, and actually many every day activities – just without the “sanctifying” or “soul” aspects. And I suspect part of that comes from having it trained out of you…hmm lots more thoughts on this area.

I reckon if the catholic church gave out proper food rather than those damn wafers, they wouldn’t get so many people leaving. 🙂

But definitely give it a go! And I’d love to hear about any ways which you “ritualised”/”sanctified” some activity in your daily life 🙂

werewolf-itch

This is when I should be in “pmt” mode. But the last week or so I felt fairly calm, and actually there’s not much stressing me out at the moment. I’ve been sitting in patches of sunlight feeling warm, mind going pleasantly blank; or lying curled up in warmness with wolf-howl CD’s in the background stirring something in my soul.

And now, the tension is still mounting but it’s gone all wolf-shaped. Like a kind of werewolf-itch. I don’t quite understand why I’m sitting in front of this machine rather than outside under trees. Throughout the day I’ve been followed by a shadow-wolf, whose ear-pricks and teeth-snarls are much more honest expression than my blithe word-masks. I’m so restless! I need to move, to breathe, to touch and smell and taste.

The tension is mounting but I’m not attributing it to the outside world, to friends who have suddenly become unreasonable or ideas that have turned grey and hopeless. Instead I can feel the tension building *inside* me, in my bones and in my blood. I am reminded of the teenage-urge to shift into a physical expression of my soul and release it from the walls and confinement. I look out through the open window, feeling the breeze and inhaling the green-ness of the leaves outside.

I’ve not been able to focus on anything else today, my spreadsheets and tables and graphs look superfluous and downright silly. It’s too intangible, I want something solid I can get teeth and claws into. I don’t quite understand why I am still here or what we’ve done to make this place. And with all this life comes the loneliness, perhaps an inevitable hallmark of wolves in the city. Where are the other wolves? Why has my mate left me and why can’t I just follow? Everything seems so clear but the confusion of human complexity just seems to get in the way.

still, I can feel the wolf, and this makes me glad.

Kelpie art

Feeling quite fae at the moment. Partly inspired by reading “Tithe” by Holly Black..kelpies are shape shifting water horses, who kill the people who ride them by dragging them out into the water and drowning… faery isn’t nice! (I’m actually collecting little bits of inspiration here and there to do with faery, maybe weave it into a story in the future)

my watercolour sketch/painting of a kelpie

quote from the book
“The kelpie strode onto the shore and shook its great mane, spraying her and Corny with glittering droplets of swamp water. Kaye held up her hands, but it hardly helped.
‘what do you seek?’ the horse spoke, its voice soft but deep.
Kaye took a deep breath. ‘I need to know how to glamour myself and I need to know how to control my magic. Can you teach me?’
‘What will you give me, girl-child?’
‘what do you want?’
‘Perhaps that one would like to ride on my back. I would teach you if you let him ride with me.’
‘so that you can kill him? No way.’
‘I wonder about death, I who may never know it. It looks much like ecstasy, the way they open their mouths when they drown, the way their fingers dig into your skin. Their eyes are wide and startled and they thrash in your hands as though with an excess of passion.”
Kaye shook her head, horrified.
“You can hardly blame me. It is my nature. And it has been a very long time.”

Reboot

Since my last summer was spent in Japan, I’ve particularly enjoyed the longer, cooler days we’ve had in the UK. As the months have progressed I’ve also recalled where and what I was doing last year. It seems like a dream, now, but still vivid in my mind and soul. And even though it ruined him finacially (he lost his job 3 days before leaving..) I am still glad that Zak made it out there. Just for the lazy mornings when one or other of us mutter something about missing the place, the food, wanting to go
back there.

Of course, “there” is not just a place, but a lifestyle – to be a free explorer, to only have to
think about expenditure and not income, the attitude of interest and discovery about the world, the challenges and strange pride that comes from being blatantly different to the crowd, satisfaction from ordering food in a foreign language and getting roughly what you wanted. Perhaps it was having a sense of purpose and direction, albeit a fluid one. Explore. Eat. Sleep. And in terms of my relationship with Zak, it was truly the first period of time we’ve been simply together, without parental-anger, job-worries, university-exams, my perpetual ‘stressing’. I liked who I was out there.

On the plane returning ‘home’ I must have cried for about half an hour, because the closer we got to the UK the closer we got to all the old problems I’d so gleefully left behind. Daylight hours work differently in the two places, and I returned to unexpected early darkness.

reflection

loving the imperfect

“Then one day it came down on me – oh my God, he’s right!

At the time I was teaching courses on love at a seminary; I was supposed to know about this stuff! And to find out that I didn’t – to find out that a lot of what I called love was fear, and a lot of what I called caring was just trying to control somebody, and what I called play was sarcasm and cruelty.”-from Interview with Sam Keen

This also makes some interesting points on touch, the tension between solitude and being with someone, sex and spirituality, love and suffering. And short enough to read in a coffee break!