“I start from one point and go as far as possible. But unfortunately, I never lose my way. I say unfortunately, because what would interest me greatly is to discover paths that I'm perhaps not aware of ... The harmonies have become for me a kind of obsession, which gives me the feeling of looking at music from the wrong end of a telescope.”
John Coltrane

Coltrane: The Story of a Sound

Mandate of Infinite Variety

n

I’ve been re-reading a book I’ve had for many years Chaos: Making a New Science (which is now offered in a newer edition). It’s a different read this time – I am seeing Yoga & Samkhya and spiritualism all over it. The book tells the story of a young branch of science & mathematics that was developed in the 20th century

Anecdote1: Insolvable Equations – Mathematicians didn’t take to Chaos because it dealt with equations that can’t be solved. My education included a heavy dose of mathematics and I can confirm, as the book suggests, that everything I was taught was ultimately about solving equations. The thing is that equations that can be solved represent a very small part of the field of mathematics – most of it is made up of equations that cannot be solved. That’s where the magic of Chaos was hidden.

Anecdote2: It’s Just Mathematics – Meanwhile physicists didn’t really take an interest in it because it had no real-world applications – it was “just mathematics”. It took a dedicated mathematician to create and experiment for 2 years with a 1 millimeter sized capsule as a testing apparatus to unknowingly provide a real-world example of chaos at work. So, the field of chaos was dormant for many years until eventually some scientists and mathematicians begun stumbling on to strange discoveries … and eventually on to each other.

Anecdote3: Exploring instead of Solving – The mathematics of Chaos is founded on processing equations rather then solving them. Any equation, no matter how complex or unsolvable can be plugged with numbers to see what happens (sometimes using fairly basic math skills). In Chaos such a process of calculation is executed over and over until beautiful images appear carrying illusive and inspiring messages.

Anecdote4: Simplicity describes Infinity – A wondrous quality of these images-of-chaos is that they can be described and precisely defined with very little information (less then half a page’s worth of text) – yet when they are processed they lead to patterns of infinite complexity. Following is one such image image created from one of the most famous mathematic mechanisms called the Mandelbrot Set (<- checkout this link for more cool images or search google images) named after another dedicated mathematician that was ignored for many years:

But what prompted me to write this post was the following quote from the book:

… used a brilliant chain of new mathematics to prove that every floating molecule does indeed hang on a filigree that binds it to all the rest, a delicate web springing from tiny outcroppings on the main set … The mathematicians proved that any segment – no  matter where and no matter how small – would, when blown up by the computer microscope, reveal new molecules, each resembling the main set and yet not quite the same. Every new molecule would be surrounded by it’s own spirals and flame-like projections, and those inevitably, would reveal molecules tinier still, always similar, never identical, fulfilling some mandate of infinite variety, a miracle of miniaturization in which every new details was sure to be a universe of its own, diverse and entire.

Doesn’t that sound like mathematicians dancing around Brahman?

Posted in Books, Enjoy, Expanding, inside, Yoga & Life | You are welcome to add your comment

What to do when Firefox Crashes and DOES NOT Restore Properly

n

It happens, Firefox crashes. Fortunately most of the time it will automatically restore all of your open tabs for you. Unfortunately, sometimes it comes up after a crash without restoring your open tabs or offering you an option to do so. If you’ve numerous windows with many tabs open this can hurt.

Fortunately there is an easy fix. In the address bar simply type in this address:

about:sessionrestore

This should cause the restore session dialogue to appear and you are good to go.

WARNING: If, before doing this, you’ve already opened new tabs, whatever you do, DO NOT close Firefox. Firefox keeps the information on your open tabs in a file. When you close Firefox it updates that file with the windows and tabs that are currently open – and doing that will overwrite the information you are trying to restore. Leave the windows and tabs you have open as they are. Complete the restoration of your previously opened tabs and then close what you don’t need.

Posted in outside, Tech Stuff | You are welcome to add your comment

Yoga For Everybody

n

I’ve been meaning to write about this book for sometime, but I keep putting off (for some good reasons and for some lesser reasons). But Marianne asked today about a book recommendation and this is what I wanted to recommend … so thank you Marianne for the final push. I can either write a lot about this book or a little … I’m going to go with the short version for now (the intensity of a long version is one of the reasons it hasn’t been written yet).

There are many books that have the same name or carry a similar message “Yoga for Everybody” – so why this one? I haven’t read all the books so I can’t really offer an objective opinion … so I am to do something we are often told not to do: “judging books by their covers”.

This book doesn’t have on its cover:

  • An image of a posture that “everybody” most certainly CAN NOT do.
  • An image of a sexy blond in tight-fitting clothes performing a posture that very few people can actually do.
  • Superficial symbolism that has nothing to do with Yoga.
  • Cliche’s and promises of easy or immediate physical or spiritual salvation.

This book does have on it’s cover:

  • Images of day-to-day people in unimpressive (almost ridiculous looking :+) postures.
  • An honest and informative description of what’s inside – routine practice!
  • My teachers name.
  • … and though you can’t see it “on the cover”, it comes in spiral-binding and an extended folded cover so you can easily place it in a standing position beside your yoga mat when you actually want to practice what’s inside.

The book is wonderfully aligned with the teachings I have received in person. It describes in sensible and accessible language basic principles of practice. It introduces, from the start, breathing with movement. Postures are described with emphasis on how to make them effective & safe and with variations that everybody can do! The postures are also integrated into sequence practices that are gradually developed throughout the book. The book is filled with excellent images of real people doing real postures that everybody can really do!

You can get Yoga for Every Body on Amazon 🙂

Posted in Yoga, Yoga Books | You are welcome to read 1 comment and to add yours

Twitter Weekly Updates for 2010-12-19

n
  • @lifeinromania thank you 🙂 #
  • a post from the past for the #omcru folks – a little movement after meditation to compensate for sitting http://bit.ly/fBiIZA #
  • going out to walk a snow covered and Christmas decorated Cluj-Napoca (that's in Romania if you haven't been paying attention :+) #
  • observing food-markets in Romania and seeing them as systems of energy – mayB a strange post mayB not – u decide 🙂 http://bit.ly/f2YRKR #
  • with a specific person in heart, the Shakuhachi was generous with me this morning: http://bit.ly/eXK5P9 #
  • @ronenk ממשיך להתאמן http://bit.ly/eXK5P9 #
  • How to add a reverb effect to sound files with Audacity on Ubuntu: http://bit.ly/hAF7ZD #
  • listening for the 1st time to Branford Marsalis' album "A Love Supreme" … brilliant!!! http://bit.ly/fbyxiF #
  • my first real Christmas tree http://bit.ly/i2cMfO #morefirstsinromania #
  • 2experience the benefits of Pranayama, take up a practice http://bit.ly/ee3CBi … reading about hypothetical promises will not get u far! #
  • not a fan of philharmonic music or of remakes … but Sting Live in Berlin is a wonderful musical performance … just saw it on DVD #
  • highlight1: 1st star of show never physically appears on stage: whoever created the musical arrangements … brilliant, refined, sensitive #
  • highlight2: 2nd star of show is the sound people who beautifully captured and delivered a rich, complex and diverse sound #
  • highlight3: Branford Marsalis and Sting playing together again … just like when I first came across Sting over 20 years ago #
  • highlight4: line dancing in a Sting concert … hilarious and fun … never though I'd see that #
  • highlight5: @DominicMiller1 delicately finding spaces and delivering single living sounds that gracefully rise out of a sea of music #
  • highlight6: Sting's exploding, moving and powerfully resonating voice at the end … outstanding … took me by surprise #
  • fortherecord7: I still think conductors (both in music and trains) are ridiculously odd and redundant people … not musicians, not dancers #
  • 20 years ago String introduced me to Jazz & I followed, I don't think it's going to happen again with philharmonic music #
  • a new post on Bhudeva – some information and resources on harvesting hemp http://bit.ly/gTkvCl – still looking for non-industrial knowledge #
  • over the last 3+ months I've experienced a full cycle of moving away from and back towards Yoga practices http://bit.ly/gCQ6Wv #

Powered by Twitter Tools

Posted in Twitter Updates | You are welcome to add your comment

Getting Back to Practice

n

It’s been almost two weeks now that I’ve been enjoying a fairly regular practice routine – it’s still building, still taking shape but it’s presence is stabilizing. It was interesting for me to observe a cycle over 3+ months as I moved away from and back towards a practice.

Practice >> Wanting to Practice >> Wanting Food

The journey started with an abrupt break in practice. It happened when we first acted on our decision to move to Romania. I remember that on the first day that we started taking things apart and packing, something about the energy changed from a home into a house – it was no longer our place. For a couple of weeks we managed to keep the Yoga room clean and quiet – but I didn’t visit it anymore. I  wanted to practice but couldn’t find it – I was preoccupied and the rest of the house was degenerating into an inevitable mess. I couldn’t settle into practice.

The days flew by and the movement intensified, things began to leave us and some of the obvious day-to-day patterns became more challenging – some had to be completely surrendered. The new challenge was maintaining a correct effort in the face of change. There were many things to do and many attachments to undo. Some days were physically tiring and some days were emotionally draining. We had to stay tuned to ourselves and to each other – we had to make a conscious decision to stop and rest or call it a day. When we didn’t we became unpleasant inside and towards each other. Practice was not really on my mind – life was enough of a practice.

Towards the end of the leaving-phase of the journey we were guests at my parents home, tending to final arrangements and all I really wanted was to pad my days with peace and quiet and nourishing food.

Wanting Food >> Wanting to Practice >> Practice

When the actual journey began, getting nourishing food on time was a practice. Food was a first priority and a backdrop for everything else. When we first arrived at our hostel in Romania we purchased basic groceries for at least a decent breakfast. The rest of the meals were usually ad-hoc and on the move as we were again making arrangements and looking for an apartment.

When we moved into the apartment most of our expenses were (as planned) kitchen related – we got everything we needed to quickly get back to home cooked food. We quickly transitioned to shopping for naturally grown food in the markets instead of industrialized food in supermarkets (there is plenty of both). The markets are a vegetarian heaven and we are really enjoying the food (though we consume much less fresh vegetables then we used to). Good rice and lentils are surprisingly hard to find (or ridiculously expensive). But I digress … my point is that food was the main issue.

Only after there was good food did I started having thoughts about resuming practice – though practice didn’t come immediately. It took some time. The first semblance of practice was when I began sitting down for short Shakuhachi sessions – sound was the first element I could access as a meditation. I don’t know if it’s directly related – but I first got on the mat for some asana practice the day after our boxes arrived from Israel and in them I found the Yoga-blocks I needed for sitting.

Since then practice has been calling to me more often. Pranayama is the practice that calls out to me most and has been my most regular practice. Asana practice is also present, fairly regularly but not as much as Pranayama and not yet in full capacity. Most of my Pranayama practices are followed by 10-15 minutes of Dharana. I am looking forward to more regulated days as an extension of my (mostly) morning practices. I am looking forward to more regulated hunger, which I hope will lead to additional practice spaces during the day.



Posted in inside, Pranayama, Pranayama Journal, Romania, Yoga, Yoga & I, Yoga & Life | You are welcome to read 1 comment and to add yours