Fear of Heights

The fear of heights is completely paralyzing and comes over you like a warm blanket, covering you with an overwhelming sensation you can do little about. What are you supposed to be thinking or telling yourself to convince yourself you are not going to perish in a frightening and uncontrollable way? How do you deal with the fact that it is your shaky, frightened attitude and fear that is actually putting you in the face of the danger you are trying to avoid? 

I'm not talking about the fear of being in high places either -- this is the same fear that makes you lock your bike's brakes before a steep section of a trail in the forest where you just have to do nothing but roll, or makes your palms sweaty on the yoke and your voice shake on the radio when you're coming in to land at an unfamiliar airport.

There is a new rig worker at the flying trapeze class I'm taking on Wednesdays. He is a burning-man type with crazy tights and long hair and we chatted on the platform between swings. I asked how he got into trapeze and he said he is a rock climber and had set up rigs for his friends doing circus arts at festivals. 

"So you're not afraid of heights at all then?" I asked. "I am!" he answered, "I just trust my equipment. And I trust myself"

I thought about that as I was swinging, and also on my way back home, and then again this morning. I think he found the mantra to the fear of heights. 

The emperor's cabbages

There once was a Roman emperor named Diocletian. A pretty good emperor by the way. At the very height of his success and empire, he gave up the crown and retreated to a little house with a vegetable garden. When people begged him to return to the throne to resolve conflicts that had arisen from the new emperor’s rise to power, Diocletian replied:  "If you could show the cabbage that I planted with my own hands to your emperor, he definitely wouldn't dare suggest that I replace the peace and happiness of this place with the storms of a never-satisfied greed."

West German pilot lands in Moscow's Red Square in the 80's and survives

How Mikhail Gorbachev brought a new age of openness to the USSR in the mid to late 80's and changed Russia

It's nice to be important, but it's more important to be nice

What You Say About Others Says a Lot About You, Research Shows

 ScienceDaily (Aug. 3, 2010) — How positively you see others is linked to how happy, kind-hearted and emotionally stable you are, according to new research by a Wake Forest University psychology professor.

"Your perceptions of others reveal so much about your own personality," says Dustin Wood, assistant professor of psychology at Wake Forest and lead author of the study, about his findings. By asking study participants to each rate positive and negative characteristics of just three people, the researchers were able to find out important information about the rater's well-being, mental health, social attitudes and how they were judged by others.

Link to Research Article

Voynich Manuscript

 The Voynich Manuscript, described as "the world's most mysterious manuscript", is a work which dates to the early 15th century, possibly from northern Italy. It is named after the book dealer who purchased it in 1912. The author and language it is written in are unknown.

Some pages are missing, but the current version comprises about 240 vellum pages, most with illustrations. Much of the manuscript resembles herbal manuscripts of the time period, seeming to present illustrations and information about plants and their possible uses for medical purposes.

However, most of the plants do not match known species, and the manuscript's script and language remain unknown and unreadable. Possibly some form of encrypted cyphertext, the Voynich manuscript has been studied by many professional and amateur cryptographers, including American and British codebreakers from both WWI and WWII. As yet, it has defied all decipherment attempts, becoming a cause celebre of historical cryptology.

None of the many speculative solutions proposed over the last hundred years has yet been independently verified.

The American Message

Freedom Birds

"At night, on guard, staring into the dark, they were carried away by jumbo jets.
They felt the rush of takeoff Gone! they yelled. And then velocity, wings and engines, a smiling stewardess-but it was more than a plane, it was a real bird, a big sleek silver bird with feathers and talons and high screeching. They were flying. The weights fell off; there was nothing to bear. They laughed and held on tight, feeling the cold slap of wind and altitude, soaring, thinking It's over, I'm gone! - they were naked. They were light and free-it was all lightness, bright and fast and buoyant, light as light, a helium buzz in the brain, a giddy bubbling in the lungs as they were taken up over the Clouds and the war, beyond duty, beyond gravity and mortification anti global entanglements -Sin loi! They yelled, I'm sorry, motherfuckers, but I'm out of it, I'm goofed, I'm on a space cruise, I'm gone! -and it was a restful, disencumbered sensation, just riding the light waves, sailing; that big silver freedom bird over the mountains and oceans, over America, over the farms and great sleeping cities and cemeteries and highways and the Golden Arches of McDonald's. It was flight, a kind of fleeing, a kind of falling, falling higher and higher, spinning off the edge of the earth and beyond the sun and through the vast, silent vacuum where there were no burdens and where everything weighed exactly nothing. Gone! they screamed, I'm sorry but I'm gone! And so at night, not quite dreaming, they gave themselves over to lightness, they were carried, they were purely borne."

Tim O'Brien The Things They Carried

Philip Roth: "Nobody will read novels in 25 years"

Bukowski discusses his feelings for others

Sometimes I sits and thinks and sometimes I just sits

Further On The Road

“There’s always more, a little further – it never ends,” wrote Jack Kerouac in his classic 1957 novel On The Road, an account of his cross-country adventures with fellow Beats such as Allen Ginsberg, William S. Burroughs and Neal Cassady. As “Dean Moriarty” (Kerouac’s publisher insisted he fictionalize the names of his friends), Cassady is one of the central figures of this book – a blur of motion and a speed demon behind the wheel – and the main connection between it and The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. Tom Wolfe’s 1968 book tracks the early history of Ken Kesey and his Merry Pranksters, one of whom happened to be Neal Cassady, driver of their psychedelic day-glo bus Further. The Beat scene (fueled by speed, booze and jazz) was very different from the psychedelic scene (LSD, marijuana, folk-rock), but Cassady jitters from the pages of one book and into the next without missing a beat.


True Love

New York Times(1/4/05) ran a series in which they asked scientists, "What do you believe is true even though you cannot prove it?"

David Buss
Psychologist, University of Texas; author, "The Evolution of Desire"
True love.
"I've spent two decades of my professional life studying human mating. In that time, I've documented phenomena ranging from what men and women desire in a mate to the most diabolical forms of sexual treachery. I've discovered the astonishingly creative ways in which men and women deceive and manipulate each other. I've studied mate poachers, obsessed stalkers, sexual predators and spouse murderers. But throughout this exploration of the dark dimensions of human mating, I've remained unwavering in my belief in true love.
While love is common, true love is rare, and I believe that few people are fortunate enough to experience it. The roads of regular love are well traveled and their markers are well understood by many - the mesmerizing attraction, the ideational obsession, the sexual afterglow, profound self-sacrifice and the desire to combine DNA. But true love takes its own course through uncharted territory. It knows no fences, has no barriers or boundaries. It's difficult to define, eludes modern measurement and seems scientifically woolly. But I know true love exists. I just can't prove it."

Andrei Tarkovsky's "Stalker"

 "May everything come true. May they believe. May they laugh at their passions. For that which they call passion is not really the energy of the soul, but merely friction between the soul and the outer world. But mostly may they have hope and may they become as helpless as children. For weakness is great and strength is worthless."

Full movie: Part 1 Part 2

“He said the world could only be known as it existed in men’s hearts. For while it seemed a place which contained men it was in reality a place contained within them and therefore to know it one must look there and come to know those hearts and to do this one must live with men and not simply pass among them."

Telonius - Out

After our long hermitage to the mountain of wisdom, the Authentic Bohemian is back!

Gelett Burgess

To take the world as one finds it, the bad with the good, making the best of the present moment—to laugh at Fortune alike whether she be generous or unkind—to spend freely when one has money, and to hope gaily when one has none—to fleet the time carelessly, living for love and art—this is the temper and spirit of the modern Bohemian in his outward and visible aspect. It is a light and graceful philosophy, but it is the Gospel of the Moment, this exoteric phase of the Bohemian religion; and if, in some noble natures, it rises to a bold simplicity and naturalness, it may also lend its butterfly precepts to some very pretty vices and lovable faults, for in Bohemia one may find almost every sin save that of Hypocrisy. ...
His faults are more commonly those of self-indulgence, thoughtlessness, vanity and procrastination, and these usually go hand-in-hand with generosity, love and charity; for it is not enough to be one’s self in Bohemia, one must allow others to be themselves, as well. ...
What, then, is it that makes this mystical empire of Bohemia unique, and what is the charm of its mental fairyland? It is this: there are no roads in all Bohemia! One must choose and find one’s own path, be one’s own self, live one’s own life.

Here Comes The Sun

Hi all. It's James visiting from daylight proper here to bestow upon you a few solid edits from InnerWestSoul. This fine gentleman is a true ambassador for all things soulful and funky and has graciously made all of his edits available to download for free. Check out his soundcloud here.

Mellow Man Ace - Welcome To My Groove (InnerWestSoul Back289 Edit) by InnerWestSoul

Tina Turner - Ball Of Confusion (InnerWestSoul All Time High Edit) by InnerWestSoul

If you can get down with that, then I invite you to come and get down with this. Have a nice day.

Air - La Femme D'Argent

A hundred and five years ago, on Market Street...


Kundalini by Michæl Paukner.

This illustration shows how everyone's energy circulation is in an artificial electromagnetic flow.

Kundalini is a Sanskrit word meaning either "coiled up" or "coiling like a snake." There are a number of other translations of the term usually emphasizing a more serpent nature to the word - e.g. 'serpent power'.

The caduceus symbol of coiling snakes is thought to be an ancient symbolic representation of Kundalini physiology. Hermes’ staff of life, called the “Caduceus” is an external representation of the internal energy pathways and their intersections at certain centers called “chakras”. Chakra means “wheels of energy”. These energy centers are symbolized on the caduceus by the crisscrossing of the serpents along Hermes’ staff. The Caduceus is a Hermetic symbol that can now be seen in most medical facilities and physician offices. It has become the symbol of the medical profession, which interestingly enough is a profession with an emphasis on healing or making one whole. It is also interesting that not many physicians are aware of the ancient Hermetic practice from whence this symbol has its’ origin.

Looking closely at the Caduceus, we see two intertwining serpents crisscrossing each other at certain points called the “chakras”. The serpents themselves represent the two major energy channels along the spine called the “ida” and “pingala”. When the ida and pingala energy flow is balanced, then the internal energy flows through the central channel called the “sushumna”. When the energy flow is balanced, the sushumna channel becomes active and there is a sense of tranquility and peace. It is through the sushmuna channel that one practices the mantra meditations to experience higher levels of consciousness.

read more: wwwtheastralyoga.blogspot.com/2009/09/chakras-and-caduceu...
also see: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kundalini
and this: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caduceus

from: Michael Paulkner

As Above, So Below

...as when an artist envisions a teapot and then sculpts it — a concept sometimes known as “downward causation.”Generative sculptures by Tom Beddard
Title: Dennis Overbye

via @MrPrudence


Vitruvian Man
For as long as time can tell, it has been a universally accepted belief that when you mix two ugly things, they will create something even worse (eg. Aliens vs Predator). The Law of the Conservation of Shit clearly states that combining one kilogram of pure honey with one kilogram of crap will yield two kilograms of crap. A recent study, however, suggest that this law does not apply to human faces. By layering many portraits of unattractive people together, the resulting image will actually be very beautiful. This evidence strongly supports Plato's belief of the ideal human form. He carried out similar experiments on human and animal proportions, and concluded that life seeks to be a perfect form, with each proportion approaching the Golden Mean as the number of samples increases.

I wonder, once the genome is more clearly understood, could we gather and average all deviations of human DNA, combining them to make the perfect man? Click on the pics to see a demo of this research on the pheomenon of the facial mean.

Daimonds in the rough.

The Composite Average.