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  • hardie karges 3:32 pm on July 1, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Agonistes, , , fashion, , Ginza, Giza, John Milton, , samsara, Samson, superman   

    Eyeless in Ginza, Superman Agonistes… 

    IMG_0258Would that this were but the latest manifestation of many cycles of rebirth, each if only slightly better than the last, so that I could know that things were improving, if only gradually, if only incrementally, but in the right direction, something to indicate the ascent of man, not the descent, and maybe more in the manner of smiling Teilhard than grumpy Darwin, for then I could take solace in that fact and be happy…

    But I can see nothing of the sort, I limited to these eyes, and this life, in this world, the only one I know, though there may be others out there somewhere, but I know them not. I only know that this is not the pure land of prophecy, we sentenced here to gravity, and suffering, because the pure land of prophecy is surely one of the purest white light, these spectral colors of the most seductive hues begging me to come down to their world of solidity, to get down and dirty with sounds, phenomena, percussion and repercussions… (More …)

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    • Dave Kingsbury 3:32 pm on July 2, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      This seeks to burst the limitations with a very effective experimental edge, Hardie. At the same time, down to earth …

    • hardie karges 4:52 am on July 3, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      Thanx for the vote of confidence, Dave. Experiment is risky but necessary, for me at least, to clear out the cobwebs that clog consciousness. Sometimes I feel I’ve sacrificed my life to it, though, not sure if it’s for better or worse, haha…

  • hardie karges 7:38 am on May 13, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Buddhist Studies, catuskoti, , , emptiness, , , , samsara, , , , tetralemma,   

    Buddhist Studies: lists of lists, definitions defined and translations translated… 

    img_2116If there’s anything more annoying, as a Buddhist Studies MA student, than having to memorize lists of lists after lists full of lists from the annals of the ancients, it’s having to plow through the re-definitions of all those terms from the mouths of the moderns (is ‘anals’ a word?). This is not high scholarship. This is the business of busy-work, the intellectual equivalent of keeping that shovel moving to justify your union job, or to keep your position as the arbiter of privilege in the fan-boy chat-pages of Facebook…

    Yet that’s what they all do, in the Western Lands, at least, and even in the temples, too, as if only one new definition ‘changes everything’, so that the Pali/Sanskrit word ‘dukkha‘ is no longer merely ‘suffering’ but ‘stress’, ‘anguish, ‘dissatisfaction’, or maybe even just ‘a spot of unpleasantness’ so easily resolved by following that Yellow Brick Road known as the 8FP, Eight-fold Path, when the reality is not so easy at all… (More …)

     
  • hardie karges 7:51 am on March 10, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Bible, , homelessness, , , samsara   

    Buddhism and Christianity: Homelessness as Renunciation? 

    IMG_2234Despite the quick conclusions of some Western sympathizers, there is nothing more opposed in this world than the modern doctrines of Buddhism and Christianity. Sure they both want you to be good and do good, but beyond that the ways and means are almost exactly the opposite. Christianity plays offense. Buddhism plays defense. Christianity is a religion of action. Buddhism is a religion of renunciation. Christianity is a religion of passion. Buddhism is a religion of dis-passion…

    Originally, though, that word ‘passion’, in Latin, meant ‘suffering’, and so at that point, they indeed did have something in common, the bond of suffering, and the bond of enlightened transcendence, through the experience, and hopefully release, from suffering. Since then, they’ve largely gone separate ways, through the vagaries of circumstance, cultural and otherwise. So that today, the Western Christian ideal would be to achieve eternal life, this life. The Buddhist ideal is to escape ‘the wheel’ entirely… (More …)

     
  • hardie karges 7:25 am on February 25, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , Gary Snyder, Jack Kerouac, , samsara, , , Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, Zen in the Art of Archery   

    Zen and the Art of Non-Cyclic Existence… 

    There have been a plethora of ‘Zen-and-the-Art-of’ books, since the original was published, some seventy years ago now, e.g. ‘Zen-and-the-Art-of Faking It’, ‘Zen-and-the-Art-of Happiness”, ‘Zen-and-the-Art-of Housekeeping’, ‘Zen-and-the-Art-of Living’, and more, but did you know that the original was published in 1948, in German, and with a slight but important difference in the title, so ‘Zen IN the Art of Archery’ (CAPS mine), which seems to actually be a serious discussion of Zen Buddhism, unlike the best-known ‘Zen-and-the-Art-of’ book…

    Which was ‘Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance’, of course, which sold a cool 5 Mil, published almost fifty years ago, and apparently has changed many people’s lives, hopefully for the better. I thought it all sounded very interesting way back then, as much for the motorcycles, my early passion, as for the Zen, but my own personal tastes at the time ran more to the Beats and the Existentialists than something that sounded like a slightly sullied Jonathan Livingston Seagull. But I finally got around to it, a year or two ago now (any book I’m seriously interested in, I try to read within 50 years of publication)… (More …)

     
  • hardie karges 8:47 am on November 27, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Jim Morrison, Lupron, samsara   

    Buddhism 212: Transcending Samsara–Brilliant Mistakes and Pure Dumb Luck 

    img_1111I don’t know who said it first, much less best, whether Nietzsche, Darwin, Elvis Costello or myself (?!), but the fact remains: we proceed by brilliant mistakes, errors in code providing some of the best clues to advancement, thus spectacular screw-ups are the order of the day, if we’re lucky, stumbling ahead on all twos, trying to remember to fall forward, when we inevitably fall…

    It should go without saying by now, somehow, but still it’s worth remembering: no matter how strategically you plot your life and your plans, the biggest mistake could be the best thing that ever happened to you, and the most brilliant success could be the worst. You could have a motorcycle wreck the night of your book’s release party, or, on the other hand, a failed bizniz could start you on a path as spiritual teacher; go figure… (More …)

     
    • davekingsbury 5:19 pm on November 28, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Great freewheeling post that covers acres of ground … and demonstrates the light touch we all need in life. Don’t know if you’ve seen my post on Plato with a few amateur comments on Buddhism, would be interested in your thoughts … https://davekingsbury.wordpress.com/2016/11/27/platos-cave/

      • hardie karges 5:46 am on November 29, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        I did read your piece on Plato, but only briefly, since I’ve been on Internet rations. Also, I’ve been a long-time admirer of Plato, especially the allegory of the cave, so I didn’t want to came off challenging and contentious. The difference, I think, is that you want an elaborate exposition of Plato’s reality, and it just isn’t there. I don’t want that, so I’m quite happy with it, which is for me an inspiration to other-worldliness, similar to Jesus’s parables, or Einstein’s thought experiments, all of whom I consider his equals, along with the Buddha.
        Aristotle apparently thought the same, hence his exhaustive expositions on form and content, small ‘f’, limited to this, the material world. So it’s no accident that Plato’s work became the inspiration for much of early other-worldly Christianity, and Aristotle provided much of the philosophical basis for the later Renaissance and Science.
        If Plato is examined too closely, it doesn’t hold up, true, any more than Descartes’ innate ideas or Chomsky’s language intuitions. Still a dog recognizes ‘dogness’ when he sees it and immediately distinguishes it from ‘catness’. And I suspect a dog could even recognize its sameness with a bear, with which it is a close relative. So Forms are not total BS, as long as you don’t expect too much. Jesus’s parables don’t hold up as Science, either, and even Einstein had a blind spot for quantum mechanics, which he helped establish…
        My modern update on the Forms would be more like the world of Light, which I consider a dimension one notch higher than us, but easily seen in its common forms, not only as light from the Sun, fires, or elsewhere, but also electricity and magnetism, with which it is physically equivalent.
        And that world for me is more real than our lesser world of stuff and solidity, probably best represented symbolically, and literally, by sound, or shock waves, physicality, or percussion, the speed of sound defining us the way the speed of light defines the higher dimension.
        In modern physics, Light is one of the Four Forces, of course, so sacrosanct in Science, and to me symbolically representative of Heaven, as intuited by millennia of humans and human-like ancestors. And then there’s Gravity, the dimension below, too heavy, and best saved for later. Thanks for your comments, Dave, always a pleasure…

        • davekingsbury 8:27 am on November 29, 2016 Permalink

          Wow, thanks for this response, Hardie! You really take me inside a whole cosmology and I can see that Plato’s analogy can be read different ways – in particular as a caution against taking things at face value. I think recent political events on both sides of the Atlantic have got to me and poor old Plato was my punch bag on this occasion … reckon I should set my sights on a few more modern targets! Thanks again for this detailed reply. I shall certainly remember your striking animal analogy …

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