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Michael C. (M, 47)
Hawaii, US
Immortal since Mar 20, 2007
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www.michaelchichi.com
Psychedelic Society
Synaptic Stimuli
micro/macro levels of understanding, direct experience, floatation, silence, yoga, micro-biology, emergent systems, quantum mechanics, great attractor, mindfulness, playfulness, patterns in nature, collective consciousness, beauty, cognitive liberty, openness, cymatics, creative process, equipoise w/ spiritualism & materialism, modality/modularity, noosphere, ambient music/film, jazz, psychedelic experiences, research & entheogens, sensuality, big sur, san francisco, kyoto, ams, greece, & love
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    Polytopia
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    Where forward thinking terrestrials share ideas and information about the state of the species, their planet and the universe, living the lives of science fiction. Introduction
    Featuring Powers of Ten by Charles and Ray Eames, based on an idea by Kees Boeke.
    A Semiconductor Film by Ruth Jarman and Joe Gerhardt shot at the NASA Space Sciences Laboratory, UC Berkeley, California.

    By asking a group of space physicists the unanswerable Semiconductor reveal the hidden motivations driving scientists to the outer limits of human knowledge. In an attempt to find meaning within the question, they open a Pandora's Box of limitations within science itself, revealing their own philosophical confines. Issues of faith, medicine and the laws of matter are raised to illustrate the infinitely complex universe we live in.




    The following quotes from the Scientists in particular stood out for me. Very interesting to note as well, how the words "belief" and "faith" are expressed in relation to the scientific method.

    "We have to have faith in Science, to order to do Science"

    "We shouldn't expect to know everything in the long run"

    "There is a quasi-religious belief that the universe makes sense."

    "What does understand mean? That is the tricky part".

    "By saying.... everything means everything? Then the answer is no"

    "Maybe that's not the goal of science, to understand everything. I think the goal of science is to understand the natural world"

    "It's one of those things I believe but can't prove"

    "Science limits itself in understanding phenomenon that repeat."

    "The more you learn about something, the more you learn what you don't know about that something"




    More at SemiConductor
    Sat, Mar 14, 2009  Permanent link
    Categories: science. thought, inquiry
    Sent to project: Polytopia
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    The Psychedelic Society is established to aide in the evolution of communication and media strategies around psychedelics in order to have them socially reconsidered and legalized. To revitalize and engage new audiences of the 21st century – the scientific community, cultural creatives, spiritual seekers and beyond.

    http://psychedelicsociety.org/

    If this initiative interests you, please drop us a line, or join our Facebook group.

    peace,
    m








    Terence McKenna's vision of a Psychedelic Society

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    One of the most important aspects of the Burning Man experience & experiment, is not just the event itself, but more importantly, what your bring back and integrate into your life the rest of the year, into your personal sphere & communities.

    Today I recieved an email newsletter from Burning Man, which listed it's 10 core principals of the event, city & civic community.

    I have always felt that these same principals could be applied liberally (& joyfully) to the planet at large. So I thought I would share them with you below, (replacing 'Burning Man' with 'Planet Earth')

    "Be the change you want to see in the world" – Gandhi

    peace/love,
    mc



    Radical Inclusion
    Anyone may be a part of planet Earth. We welcome and respect the stranger. No prerequisites exist for participation in our community.

    Gifting
    Planet Earth is devoted to acts of gift giving. The value of a gift is unconditional. Gifting does not contemplate a return or an exchange for something of equal value.

    Decommodification
    In order to preserve the spirit of gifting, planet Earth seeks to create social environments that are unmediated by commercial sponsorships, transactions, or advertising. We stand ready to protect our culture from such exploitation. We resist the substitution of consumption for participatory experience.

    Radical Self-reliance
    Planet Earth encourages the individual to discover, exercise and rely on his or her inner resources.

    Radical Self-expression
    Radical self-expression arises from the unique gifts of the individual. No one other than the individual or a collaborating group can determine its content. It is offered as a gift to others. In this spirit, the giver should respect the rights and liberties of the recipient.

    Communal Effort
    Planet Earth values creative cooperation and collaboration. We strive to produce, promote and protect social networks, public spaces, works of art, and methods of communication that support such interaction.

    Civic Responsibility
    We value civil society. Community members who organize events should assume responsibility for public welfare and endeavor to communicate civic responsibilities to participants.

    Leaving No Trace
    Our community respects the environment. We are committed to leaving no physical trace of our activities wherever we gather. We clean up after ourselves and endeavor, whenever possible, to leave such places in a better state than when we found them.

    Participation
    Our community is committed to a radically participatory ethic. We believe that transformative change, whether in the individual or in society, can occur only through the medium of deeply personal participation. We achieve being through doing. Everyone is invited to work. Everyone is invited to play. We make the world real through actions that open the heart.

    Immediacy
    Immediate experience is, in many ways, the most important touchstone of value in our culture. We seek to overcome barriers that stand between us and a recognition of our inner selves, the reality of those around us, participation in society, and contact with a natural world exceeding human powers. No idea can substitute for this experience.
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    A brilliant new piece of motion-visualization by Semi-Conductor Films. The secret lives of invisible magnetic fields are revealed as chaotic ever-changing geometries . All action takes place around NASA's Space Sciences Laboratories, UC Berkeley, to recordings of space scientists describing their discoveries . Actual VLF audio recordings control the evolution of the fields as they delve into our inaudible surroundings, revealing recurrent ‘whistlers' produced by fleeting electrons . Are we observing a series of scientific experiments, the universe in flux, or a documentary of a fictional world?


    menu="true" quality="high" flashvars="file=http://www.semiconductorfilms.com/root/Magnetic_Movie/magneticmovieExcerpt.flv&displayheight=304&lightcolor=0x557722&backcolor=0x000000&frontcolor=0xCCCCCC&autostart=true&shuffle=false"
    type="application/x-shockwave-flash" pluginspage= "http://www.macromedia.com/go/getflashplayer" />


    Semiconductor's Magnetic Movie: by Douglas Kahn
    With Magnetic Movie, Semiconductor have tapped into a new and ancient aesthetic of turbulence. We can hear it in the sounds of natural radio-naturally-occurring electromagnetic signals from the earth's ionosphere and magnetosphere-that course through Magnetic Movie, at times animating the animation, a quick nervous response condensed into static. The sound itself is the product of the combined turbulences of the earth's molten core, weather systems and electrical storms, ephemeral ionization in the upper atmosphere, and the solar winds. What we hear is underscored with complex and supple orders, in fact, too complex and supple to be ordered. We already have experience of them in the tangible turbulence of water and the crazy convection of fluids combining, tongues of fire and the thermal afterthought of smoke, the ribbons of clouds stiffly blown twisted up a hill. The flux championed by Hericlitus that has awed audiences since antiquity.



    Magnetic Movie is the aquavit, something not precisely scientific but grants us an uncanny experience of geophysical and cosmological forces.

    Also, another exquisite film to check out is :
    Nanowebbers: Nano environments that are created via a special script that adjust the images based upon the audio, creating subsctructures that resemble crystalline substances.



    Fri, Jun 13, 2008  Permanent link

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    One of my favorites living artists, Olafur Elliason, has a new exhibition of work at the MoMA. His studio in Berlin is more laboratory than classical atelier, with designers, artists, fabricators, mathematicians, and engineers working together to forge new notions of spectral ambient realities, via mathematical elegance, light, color, new materials, and technology.

    Take Your Time @ the MoMA


    Studio as Reality


    Space as a model

















    Studio Models


    Olafur


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    presenting the creamy dreamy and taffy world of San Francisco artist MARS 1







    Wed, May 14, 2008  Permanent link

    Sent to project: Psychedelic Society
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    I've been out of rhythm for awhile w/ serious photography, usually only taking snaps, flickr, etc. Though lately, I've re-engaged the medium, and started shooting again, using the camera as more a tool for observation, study, and awareness. With conscious efforts to slow down, pause & inhale the energy of forms.

    I go through different phases, when lugging a camera around can feel like a total burden, buffering me from genuine experience. Whereas other times, it's has quite the opposite effect. Bringing one in closer contact with the now moment, framing presence. The photo experience becomes a means of establishing contact – with a tree, a person, a vibrational frequency, a feeling, or a certain lightness of being.

    This is the first series, I hope of many, I'd like to share with you.


    After having eggs one morning, the residue left in the mixing cup hardened, leaving a fractal like history of energy dispersion. The simple everyday artifacts of a morning breakfast, transform into a muse.










    We brought these pieces back with us from Mykonos, Greece. They possess such a radiance of form, texture and patterning, of which my eyes never tire of.








    We bought this from someone on Queen's Day in Amsterdam for 50 cents. Score!








    A casual walk in the park can reveal the secrets of the universe. Though often in hushed tones. Yet if one listens/looks attentively, the subtle & complex come forth.





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    I've been greatly anticipating the Design and the Elastic Mind exhibition to open for the past month now.... and even though I'm not in NYC to able to experience it first-hand, I spent hours deeply immersed & captivated by it's on-line component, (via a sharp treatment from no other than Yugo Nakamura). I highly recommend you explore the website, which offers over 300 works to get your neurons firing and warm your heart. And if you are in NYC, please do us a favor, and go go go!

    Online Exhibit >>



    Over the past twenty-five years, people have weathered dramatic changes in their experience of time, space, matter, and identity. Individuals cope daily with a multitude of changes in scale and pace—working across several time zones, traveling with relative ease between satellite maps and nanoscale images, and being inundated with information. Adaptability is an ancestral distinction of intelligence, but today’s instant variations in rhythm call for something stronger: elasticity, the product of adaptability plus acceleration. Design and the Elastic Mind explores the reciprocal relationship between science and design in the contemporary world by bringing together design objects and concepts that marry the most advanced scientific research with attentive consideration of human limitations, habits, and aspirations. The exhibition highlights designers’ ability to grasp momentous changes in technology, science, and history—changes that demand or reflect major adjustments in human behavior—and translate them into objects that people can actually understand and use. This Web site presents over three hundred of these works, including fifty projects that are not featured in the gallery exhibition.




    Thinkering
    Many designers, scientists, and artists have turned to design to give method to their productive tinkering, or what John Seely Brown has called "thinkering." They all belong to a new culture in which experimentation is guided by engagement with the world and open, constructive collaboration with colleagues and other specialists. Whether in the form of origami, nanofacture, or growth and aggregation, thinkering gives shape to the embryonic dialogue between design and science.





    Super Nature
    Contemporary designers view nature not only as a repository of harmonious forms, but also as a collection of sensible and sustainable structures that use less matter and energy and are more efficient than traditional man-made systems. Super Nature includes a collection of projects that explore technologies based on biological systems and adapt specific advantages observed in natural organisms into human technology.



    People and Objects
    Design has expanded into new fields, including the interactions between people and objects. Responsive design features objects that respond to our needs rather than awaiting our instructions. The tagging of information in our environment makes the world into a live information platform. New interfaces incorporate instinctive human traits, expanding our relationships with the objects they enable us to access.







    Design for Debate
    Design for Debate is a new type of practice that devises ways to discuss the social, cultural, and ethical implications of emerging technologies by presenting not only artifacts, but also the quizzical scenarios that go with them. These projects shamelessly place the human being at the center of the universe and seek to take into account scientific and technological progress while respecting and preserving our essence as individuals.







    Visualization
    We live in an age when information is more prolific and widely available than ever before, and to visualize it is to understand it. The projects in this category demonstrate the ways in which designers and scientists tackle the extremely small and the extremely large in order to bring them to a human scale, facilitating our ability to comprehend great amounts of data.







    Thought to Action
    Designers have been working to envision not just objects, but also new methods of manufacture and behavioral rules that establish the future of design forms and capabilities. 3-D printing enables digital images to be directly printed into objects. Processing is a new design tool that, despite its simplicity, is valuable in high-level design projects. And algorithms define how objects will evolve and respond to their circumstances, which, in a way, gives them lives of their own.







    All Together Now!
    All Together Now! explores the modulation of the relationship between individuals and the collective sphere. This collection of objects introduces the concept of Existenzmaximum, examines the impact that the open-source movement and ubiquitous connection are having on design and on the world, and identifies designers engaged with local energy harvesting to alleviate our burden on the shared environment.





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    Artist & photographer, Kate Raudenbush's work has been a fixture on the deep playa canvas of Burning Man for some years now, and I have personally experienced a few of her pieces out there, always feeling her work speaks on multiple levels, forms and themes... many of which have resonated with me at a sub-conscious level.

    But what is doubly interesting, is hearing her articulate the intention & consciousness which informs & drives her work. And beautifully so. This has now confirmed my more intuitive, and experiential reading of her work.

    What really struck me, is her emphasis on 'intent'. This is of paramount importance. When an artist creates a work, they are not only materializing an idea or a concept, but imparting a mode of consciousness with that materialization. This is something more artists should be more conscious of. (literally!) In this way, art is the metamorphosis of the spiritual to the material.

    "Art is the transmission of states of Being." - Alex Grey

    The following is a recent interview from Reality Sandwich with Katie.

    Enjoy!


    What is your personal mantra?

    Create with intention. Remain open. Breathe.

    What does the role of the Artist mean to you?

    Artists are the conscience of our age reflected in physical form. The act of creation is enormously powerful; it is the ability to bring into being something that existed only in the mind, in potential energy, in the space between the atoms. What is created is the artists' conscious thought manifested in physical form. This brings with it enormous responsibility.

    Artists are the mirrors of our society. In a way they are also portals to the future. This sounds absurd at first. However, imagine our current civilization being unearthed in the future: it would be the art that would give archeologists the clues about what we revered, what we valued and what reflected our identity.

    Unfortunately, now is a time when the "art market" is being perverted by commercialism. What is seen as remarkable is the ridiculous amounts of cash being spent on works of art and the vapid consuming spectacle around it – not the art itself. The archeologists of the future would say that this civilization puts money on a pedestal more than art – that culture is merely an object that can be bought. Thankfully this is a delusional virus, akin to the one the townspeople had in the fairytale The Emperors New Clothes and one that will eventually be shattered by reality – making room for art that has integrity and truth.

    Meanwhile, the artists that are not part of the circus are producing amazing work for those of us with enough awareness to understand that art is not valued for its auction price. Its real value is discovered in the immediacy, by the experience and insight art creates. These visceral artists are the antidotes to what ails this society. They create art that feels alive because they are not merely creating an object – they are creating a living experience. They are creating a reflection of us. Witness the work created at Burning Man. Imagine unearthing that in the future!



    What is the driving force behind your creativity?

    To communicate as best I can humanity's place in our world and to reflect us with all our potential back to ourselves. I am driven by the desire to create an interactive gathering space for community to connect with each other and together be inspired by their collective and individual experience. I seek to distill an idea down to its essential form, its essential truth, its essential metaphor, and to build unity from opposites in the most harmonious and elegant way possible. My intention is to create a sculpture that you can feel, that possesses it's own energy, that is transporting.



    What transformative experiences have influenced your life and how has that manifested in your work?

    When I was a kid, I grew up moving every two to three years to a new place overseas, and then back to the States. Change was constant and I loved it from the start: the sense of discovery, the newness, the culture. The opportunity to start over and reinvent yourself was ingrained. At the same time, my mom was an actress in the theater and I loved watching her perform, completely at home in this imaginary world come to life on stage.

    When I was nine, the costume and set designer Desmond Heely invited me backstage at the Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford, Canada, and showed me how this whole world was created. He was very intense and took the whole thing very seriously; he put me to work immediately. I loved it. He and the crew were building the set onstage for Arms and the Man and he told me that there was a pivotal moment in the play when a soldier arrives at the front door and I was to be the person to paint the doorbell. I was, of course, beside myself. I think I spent an hour painting the doorbell with a tiny brush. During the first invited dress performance, I was in the audience. The "moment" came and the doorbell rang and in my proudest little voice I yelled out "I painted that!" to the whole theatre. Little did I know that it was a portal that would lead to a life-long pursuit of creating imaginary worlds.

    Nine years ago, I first set foot on the playa at Burning Man and discovered the greatest stage on the face of earth and I have been making my pilgrimage to the desert every year since. If that's not a portal to imaginary worlds, I don't know what is.



    How long does it take you on average to complete a piece of work, and do you ever do several pieces simultaneously?

    It really depends on the scope of the project. The Gear Chandeliers took about two months and I made them at the same time I built Duel Nature. From conception to reality, creating one of my Burning Man sculptures takes about nine months. It feels like you are creating a child. I simultaneously do photography work. I sell my prints and I work on smaller long-term projects like building prototypes of my experimental furniture. I always have to be creating something. That is when I feel most alive.



    Why should people check out your work?

    My sculptures are made with intention yet open enough to be a set piece for your own experience. In my photographic work there is often a playful seriousness or formal dignity even in the most saturated image. I put enormous energy into imagining how people can connect through my creations.



    When I conceived Guardian of Eden (the lotus flower) I thought about the different ways people would gather inside and underneath the sculpture and what allegorical experience it would create by our interaction with it. In Hindu creation myth, when a lotus flower opens it reveals the seat of the Creator, Brahman, who sets into motion the birth of the next cycle of existence. I wanted to build a sculpture that would give us the opportunity to sit in that place of creation and contemplate the nature of our current world and imagine, if we were the Creator God, what kind of world would we invent if we had that kind of creative power. I wanted to create a surreal gathering space for perfect strangers to meet and cross-pollinate their energy and ideas inside a symbol for enlightenment. Simultaneously, underneath the sculpture at night, was another world, a star-shaped pool of lagoon-blue light. At its center was a white projection of the Flower of Life, an ancient sacred geometric symbol that represented the interconnectedness of all life. I envisioned it appearing as if the lotus flower were projecting a secret or the very essence of its soul onto the desert floor. I imagined people meditating, drumming and singing underneath it. I discovered that that was exactly what people did when they encountered it and they would sit for hours up above the playa, reclining languorously in the air in the curve of the giant lotus petals lit by the amber glow of the mirrored seed-pod. People even chose to get married beneath the lotus flower. It was the most intense and overwhelming feeling to create art with a specific intention and then discover that people intuitively resonated with it on that same frequency.



    How does your work affect consciousness, and what are your views on the evolution of consciousness?

    Essentially, I create to communicate an idea. Distilling it into a few rough themes, I have attempted to communicate ideas that reflect humanity and our interconnected relation to creation (Guardian of Eden), our own destructive nature (Duel Nature), our perceptions of ourselves (Stadium of the Self), our conception of linear time (Gear Chandelier) and our illusion of subjective observation (Observer/Observed). I can't speak for others, but if they are open to the intention of my work, then I feel there is definitely a real form of unspoken communication happening in each of the environments that I have created. It is a great honor to be understood and to have the opportunity create an environment that opens another window from which to view the world and to see ourselves.



    I think the world is heading toward greater consciousness, although when you read the newspapers it's hard to believe. There is an increasing amount of fanaticism because of clashing ideologies, nationalism and our struggle for domination of natural resources for an overpopulated and over-consuming world. I feel that we are experiencing the push and pull of simultaneously connecting and disconnecting. And in many ways this chaos is because of the loss of our natural habitat and therefore our humanity. Perhaps part of this expanding consciousness is born out of this crisis. There is nothing that will awaken you more to the fragility and the interconnectedness of life than to realize it's all disappearing. It's like a big game of musical chairs and there are fewer and fewer seats because we are paving and mining and chopping down all the wood in our living room. We are resourceful living beings, but there is no technological substitute for a tree. Nor is there a replacement for visceral human connection, or a proxy for real experience; we are losing our connection to the earth and therefore to each other. This is the greatest challenge of our time. Our evolution and our hopes lie in the fact that many people are realizing this: more and more are growing conscious of this interconnectivity. But let's get real. Unless we act with this evolved consciousness and apply it globally in our daily lives – unless this consciousness gets catalyzed – our evolution will remain in the imagination. It's up to us to create our own reality.




    Thu, Feb 28, 2008  Permanent link
    Categories: consciousness, art, burning man, intent, sculpture
    Sent to project: Psychedelic Society
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    At TED this year, which just commenced this week, Jill Bolte Tayolor spoke yesterday, and I found this recap of her presentation from the TED blog to be full of very beautiful & rich insights. And I couldn't help but thinking (led by my right brained self!), that her experiences had many parallels, with those other ecstatic experiences found through meditation, entheogens, yoga & other spiritual experiences.

    Jill Bolte Taylor is incredible: she's a neuroanatomist (brain scientist) who has suffered a stroke and studied it "from inside", as it happened, while her brain functions shut down one by one: motion, speech, memory, self-awareness. It took her eight years to recover, and to become a spokesperson for the possibility to come back.

    "I studied the brain because I have a brother who's been diagnosed with a brain disorder, schizophrenia. What are the biological differences between the brains of individuals diagnosed as "normal" and those diagnosed with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder? On the morning of December 10 1996, I got my own mental illness: in the course of four hours I watched by brain completely deteriorate in its ability to process information. I could not walk, talk, think.



    If you've ever seen a human brain: it has two hemispheres. The right hemisphere functions like a parallel processor, while the left hemisphere functions like a serial processor. So they process information differently, they think about different things, they care about different things, and I would say that they have very different personalities. Our right hemisphere is all about this very moment, right here right now. It thinks in pictures, Information in the form of energy sterams in simultaneously through all of our sensory system and then it explodes into what this present moment feels like. I'm an energy being connected to the energy all around me through the consciousness of my right hemisphere. And through that we are all connected. And in this moment we are perfect, whole, and beautiful.

    Our left hemisphere is a very different place. It thinks linearly and methodically. It's all about the past and about the future. It's designed to take that collage of the present moment, and pick out details after details, categorize them, associate them with all of what we have learned in the past, and project into our future possibilities. It thinks in languages. It's the internal chatter that connects us to the external world. It's the calculating intelligence that reminds me when I have to do my laundry. And most important it's the voice that tells me "I am". And as soon it says that, I become separate from you. That's the portion of my brain that I lost on the morning of my stroke.

    On that morning I woke up to a pounding pain on the back of my eye. It just gripped me, then released me, then gripped me, then released me. I got up trying to perform my usual routine, jumping on my exercise machine, and I realize that my hands look like claws. It's like as if my consciousness had shifted away. I got off the machine and walked and realized that my body had slowed down, every step was very rigid. I stood in my bathroom ready to go into the shower and looked down at my arm and realized I could no longer define the boundaries of my body, of where I begin and where I end, the molecules of my arm were like blended with those of the wall, am all I could detect was energy flowing. Then the chatter in my brain went silent. For a moment I was shocked to be in the total silent. Then in an instant my left hemisphere came back online, and I realized that I needed help; then I drifted out again, into "la-la-land"; then in again. I was walking around my apartment, telling to myself: I have to get to work. Then I realize: I'm having a stroke. And my left hemisphere tells me: wow, this is so cool, how many brain scientists have the chance to study that from the inside? But I need to get help. I get to my office, I pick up a card, I can't figure out what's on it, my brain is back in la-la-land. Then I have a wave of clarity. Drifting in and out. (She goes on describing the difficulties of dialing a phone number and communicating to get help, unable to read the number, "because the pixels of the words blended with the pixels of the background"), and then I would wait for a wave of clarity. It took me 45 minutes to find the right number.
    I'm in an ambulance towards the hospital and I realize that I'm no longer the choreographer of my life. Maybe the doctors will give me a second chance, maybe not. And right there, I just feel my spirit surrender — I say goodbye to my life.

    When I awoke, I was shocked to discover that I was still alive. My life was now suspended between two strains of reality: information streaming in but I could not pick voices out from the background noise. Sounds were so loud and chaotic. I just wanted to escape because I could not identify the position of my body in space. I felt enormous and expansive, and my spirit soaring. I found nirvana. I remember thinking: there is no way that I can squeeze the enormousness of myself back inside my tiny body. But then I realized: I am still alive. And if I found nirvana, then anyone who's alive can find nirvana. And I pictured a world full with beautiful, peaceful, compassionate people who knew that they can come to this space at any time. What a gift a stroke can be to the way we live our lives. That motivated me to try to recover.

    Two and a half weeks after the hemorrhage, the surgeons went in and removed a blood clot the size of a tennis ball. It took me eight years to completely recover. So who are we? We are the life horsepower of the universe, and we have the power to choose moment by moment who we want to be in the world, we can choose the consciousnesses of our right hemisphere or that of our left hemisphere. These are the "we" inside of me. Which would you choose? Which do you choose? And when? I believe the more time we spend choosing the peace of our right hemisphere, the most peace we will project into the world and more peaceful our planet will be."

    Thu, Feb 28, 2008  Permanent link

    Sent to project: Psychedelic Society
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