Updates from May, 2016 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • hardie karges 8:30 am on May 29, 2016 Permalink | Reply
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    Turning 62: Exhilaration, Frustration, Reconciliation and (Buddhist) Renunciation… 

    IMG_1559Goodbye cruel world! It’s been good to know you, sorta’ kinda’ maybe you know, all your skyscrapers and automobiles and dark satanic factories and epidemics to boot, competing in the World’s Cup of Cruelty and the World Series of Savagery. Have we really learned anything in our five thousand years of civility, our ten thousand years of settlement? Not much, I reckon; the only things that change are that the weapons get bigger: the guns get longer and the fuses get shorter….

    You can have it, since there’s nothing here that I want, really, not much, anyway, just art culture religion and science. You can have the comforts, the comfort foods and the contrived conveniences (convenient contrivances?), be it hamburgers or highways—especially highways! Especially hamburgers ON highways—McD’s, Burger K’s, Dairy Q and Wendy’s! And you can have all the automobiles on them, too—self-mobile, indeed!

    I can walk faster than the traffic moves through downtown LA at rush hour, whether it’s the 101, the 110, the 5 or the 10.  But what I mostly want is a more peaceful time and more polite space, the likes of which have never really existed, but which is the ultimate function of religion and culture to produce. Why else would religion exist: to create tribal gods to lead warring groups into battle, or something silly like that? Don’t answer. (More …)

    • peaceof8 7:44 pm on May 29, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I absolutely love this. Me who yesterday and many days before that felt that not one thing was interesting has found just that today! Serendipity for me on this beautiful Sunday.

    • davekingsbury 12:44 pm on May 30, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Great post, Hardie, as fine as anything you’ve published! I love the sweep of your writing and its lofty perspective … echoes of Kerouac or Ginsberg’s ‘Wichita Vortex Sutra’ …

      • hardie karges 1:41 pm on May 30, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks, Dave. That’s maybe the finest compliment I’ve ever received. Actually, in 1980-81 at Naropa Institute I had the pleasure of taking a course with Ginsberg, a seminar with W.S. Burroughs, room next to Gregory Corso, assorted readings by Anne Waldman, Robert Duncan and others; heady stuff, like SF North Beach 1955…

  • hardie karges 8:58 am on May 22, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , prayer,   

    Religion 313: Simple Prayer for a Tortured Earth 


    Buddhism in Sri Lanka

    I’m not here to diss or dismiss anyone’s faith nor fantasy—quite the contrary, in fact: I hope to be part of a conversation in which all viewpoints are reconciled, and the human league is improved in its capacity for survival upon an earth grown weary from wars and wickedness, tired of mayhem and mudslinging…

    This is in fact the prime role of religion—to make you feel better in situations beyond your control, to make things feel better without taking up arms in dispute.  That religions are sometimes used as battle flags is unfortunate, of course, but hopefully only a paradigm shift away from the pages of history…

    Rome was only ultimately saved by church and religion, and I doubt that Washington will fare any better, and this is as it should be, faith in something bigger something better assuming its rightful place in the pantheon of our thoughts and highest common denominators, rather than recourse to rifles as we sink to our lowest…

    Like religion, the function of prayer is to make you feel better about whatever outcome should arise, since there is no greater truth than that we really know little or nothing about anything and control even less.  To recognize that no matter how hard you pray, the outcome is reliant mostly upon other factors is so obvious that it should be self-evident—but it’s not… (More …)

  • hardie karges 8:47 am on May 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply
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    Religion 202, Physics 101: Spirituality and Light… 


    Buddhist shrine in Sri Lanka

    Many religions, especially the New Age-y kind, use light as a prime metaphor, imagining this light and imagining that light as it assumes shape and form in your mind’s eye.  My ‘white light of spirit’ is not imaginary, though, even if still a bit metaphorical. That light for me is exactly the same light that any good physicist refers to, the equivalent of electricity and magnetism and one of physics’ four prime forces, together with gravity, the strong (nuclear) force and the weak (interactive) force.

    For the uninitiated, that weak force is: the fundamental force that acts between leptons and is involved in the decay of hadrons. The weak nuclear force is responsible for nuclear beta decay (by changing the flavor of quarks) and for neutrino absorption and emission…

    Got it?  And the strong force is: the force that holds particles together in the atomic nucleus and the force that holds quarks together in elementary particles.

    Simple, right?  These last and latest forces derive from quantum mechanics, and the study of smaller-than-microscopic realities that are probably best described as mathematical, i.e. the theory works, even if it doesn’t make (common) sense.  But then, neither do gravity and electromagnetism (light).  We’re just more accustomed to them, and they are available to us on a macroscopic level.  (More …)

    • peaceof8 10:15 am on May 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      That was very thought provoking. I will for sure be noodling around in my mind DNA vs souls/ancestors/inner child. It makes me want to give reincarnation a second look, based on science and maybe a little whoop-t-do in the family tree. Interesting! I like your pragmatic approach to spirituality.

  • hardie karges 7:35 am on May 8, 2016 Permalink | Reply
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    Getting Religion, Losing Depression—Motivational Mix and Match… 


    Buddhist Temple in Laos

    Depression is very over-rated, in my opinion, which means that I don’t much believe in it, and not for lack of trying—and crying.  It’s too easy.  It’s a cop-out, unless you ARE truly depressed, of course, in some clinically measurable way, i.e. most likely chemical (but that’s never been proven).  Unhappiness, while not simple, is simply not depression, even when one is ‘minor’ and the other ‘major’.  There’s a qualitative difference IMHO.

    ‘Unhappiness’ means you need to make some changes in your life, not in your prescription—motivational therapy optional.  That is not always easy, of course, and may involve some compromises you never imagined making.  Fortunately, in this transient age, impermanence is currency, and you can always go back to from where you came.  Keep that bizniz card in your pocket and an open door to your back.  (More …)

  • hardie karges 11:14 am on May 1, 2016 Permalink | Reply
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    Losing Religion, Learning Language: Contagion of Kindness Needed ASAP, pls… 

    IMG_0387We become so inured to modern violence that we assume it’s natural, the general air of belligerence and the general lack of politeness.  And that’s right I reckon—it IS natural, or WAS, anyway—in the beginning.  Imagine what it would be like it we hadn’t been inoculated by religion at birth, that vaccination by cultural collusion and linguistic license, immigrant immersion and religious righteousness.

    We need a booster shot now, more than ever, we so far from God, and so close to Mexico, conveniently close to sacrificial lambs, artificial limbs and easy scapegoats for our worst trespasses and most hideous transgressions, things we should’ve said and things we should’ve done, too late now to start over, so must settle for walls and bridges, duct-tape solutions and anti-retroviral cocktails…

    If you’re American, then the degree to which you’re awash in violence is a serious impediment to (y)our spiritual well-being. I don’t mean that you yourself have done anything necessarily wrong, except maybe being born in the wrong place.  Jesus Christ once said that a camel could go through the eye of a needle easier than a rich man could find his way to Heaven. And he was right, I’d say, though modern-era capitalists try to quickly change the narrative, something about ‘trespasses’… (More …)

    • k 11:27 am on May 1, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      interesting. my ideas may be simpler, may be more difficult, to get back to the garden. until then i will not let the city discourage me or anyone else from a community garden and am starting work on the third guerrilla garden, that’s all i know to do that is right, grow peace, grow flowers, grow herbs, maybe give someone besides myself happiness. enjoy the temple.

      • hardie karges 12:30 pm on May 1, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        I strongly believe in community gardens, hope to see one hanging off every skyscraper within my lifetime…

    • davekingsbury 1:22 pm on May 2, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Terrific, Hardie, spot on with the language analysis – we’re much deeper enmeshed than we like to think in our free societies. Stephen Pinker reckons humanity is less violent than it was but I suspect the violence is still there though mutated into political and economic aggression. Your antidotes drawn from Buddhist philosophy are perfect and shot through with nice touches of self-deprecation. I’m going to reblog this because I’d like it to be read. Only ever done that once before and that was yours too!

      • hardie karges 1:52 pm on May 2, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Thank you thank you thank you, I’ve read ‘Language Instinct’ by Pinker, liked it, even if I don’t always agree with it…

    • davekingsbury 1:33 pm on May 2, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Reblogged this on a nomad in cyberspace and commented:
      This is the second post by this guy I’ve reblogged and I’ve only ever reblogged two posts! I love his directness and honesty and, well, I’m jealous because I didn’t write it. I couldn’t, of course, because I’m not American. What he says has resonance in the UK too. And as they say, what happens in the USA today happens here tomorrow!

    • hardie karges 7:52 pm on May 2, 2016 Permalink | Reply


    • davekingsbury 3:25 am on May 5, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Hardie, the link on my reblog of this post leads to the title but not the full post. Wondered why this was. Regards, Dave.

    • hardie karges 6:31 am on May 5, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Had a problem yesterday, still don’t know why, especially since it’s both my blogs, but not on others, i.e. yours. Seems okay now. THX!

    • peaceof8 8:34 am on May 8, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Wow. I really like this. I will be coming back to this one…there are some phrases you use “another day and in another way, with cooler heads and makeshift beds” that are fantastic and filled with visuals. Really meaty. Thank you! I also like that you make a valid point without making it feel preachy. Following you!

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