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Stream of Consciousness Reflections…

15 Jul

Aloha.

I have been wanting to do these stream of consciousness posts for quite some time. I had the idea to do them months ago but they have only manifested now. I have a sneaking suspicion that I am going to write them mostly at night because my mind is more lucid. Aside from this, I just adore the night. {I also equally adore the day, the sun and the sunlight}. The moonlight illuminates my soul and all that is hidden in the day is revealed- my heart’s desires. I feel so inspired to write at night. After all, I am of the nocturnal persuasion.

{I simply adore DJ Shadow’s music. This song/the whole entroducing album is a masterpiece}.

I am going to just write what is on my mind at the time without over-thinking or over-analyzing. It is going to be chaos, anarchy and complete freedom. Having a blog means having complete creative license to create the type of blog that you want. This carte blanche enables me to write when the mood strikes since there are no deadlines. I think it will be a fun experiment of sorts. I only hope that you enjoy it.

Peace & Love…

charlize-queen.jpg

I adore this picture of Charlize Theron praying. She is also one of my favourite actresses/people.

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For more information…

Charlize Theron..http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000234/?ref_=nv_sr_1

DJ Shadow…http://djshadow.com/ 

Reflection for today…The Ocean of Consciousness -Rumi…

18 Oct

Rumi You Are The Ocean In An Entire Drop

I remember reading some Buddhist teachings many moons ago that spoke about the ocean of consciousness.

It spoke about each of us being a wave in the ocean.

We think that we are completely independent; that we are a single wave because of the illusion of our ego.

Our ego clouds and distorts our perception creating a false sense of self.

It is complicated as in Western society there is so much focus on the self: self-improvement, self-esteem, self-confidence, self-doubt, etc.

The truth is that while it may seem that we are individual waves,

we are actually part of the ocean; the ocean of humanity.

*

I really cannot understand how some people can have no compassion for each other.

At the root of this poverty of the spirit is a lack of compassion for the self, selfishness and an overindulgence of the ego.

{One cannot offer compassion if you have no compassion for yourself}.

As I said to my friend, if we don’t help each other then we will all sink.

I know that we all have our individual problems but if we just focus on them, then we cannot get out of our heads and the prison of selfishness.

There is a delicate balance between having compassion and helping others with helping yourself and protecting yourself from harm. Boundaries are necessary.

I always struggle with how to have compassion while not losing myself.

The sad truth is that many people mistake kindness for weakness.

The truth is that it takes great strength to be compassionate in this world.

It takes great spiritual strength to open your heart and mind to offer your compassion. 

*

 When the triple disasters were taking place in Japan in 2011, I was horrified. I was watching the news on the internet. I constantly watched BBC, CBC and Al Jazeera with tears in my eyes.

I could not help crying as I watched the news.

It hurt my heart and soul to witness such suffering.

I could not believe that on top of the tsunami and the earthquake there was a nuclear situation as well. As I thought of Fukushima, I was reminded of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. I was very concerned and afraid for Japan. I still am.

While I had no family, friends or loved ones in Japan, I felt deep compassion for the Japanese.

It didn’t matter in the least if I didn’t know a single soul in Japan.

We are all interconnected and if Japan was suffering and grieving then we all were.

I still think of Japan and how the triple disasters affected and affect people today- especially the effects of nuclear contamination/radiation.

The reason that I share this is because I had an epiphany then.

My good friend and I were having coffee one day {during the disasters in 2011}.

I was telling him about what was happening in Japan.

He stopped me in the middle of my sentence and said very coldly, “you know what…I just don’t care.”

That is when I realized that something inside of him died.

To be honest, I was very disturbed by his comment and his attitude.

Upon deep reflection, I felt sadness and compassion for him.

He had just gone through a very painful and dark time with the illness of his mother. I know that this experience had a very damaging effect on him.

I think he was most likely spiritually disconnected and emotionally numb at that point.

He probably had nothing left to give as he was in desperate need of healing.

*

Compassion is the greatest gift you can offer someone.

Compassion is what makes us truly human.

Our humanity is rooted in compassion.

*Remember that we are all in this life together.

We all depend on each other.

We are all interdependent as waves in the ocean of humanity.

*

Please enjoy Ocean by Azam Ali and Loga Ramin Torkian as I felt it complimented this post.

It is from Azam Ali’s album: “Lamentation of Swans: A Journey Towards Silence.”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3558lJuA8Y8

*

To learn more about Azam Ali, Loga Ramin Torkian and Niyaz…

http://www.niyazmusic.com/

Here is a brief description that I copied and pasted from their biography.

From this link: http://www.niyazmusic.com/#!/biography/

Niyaz, which means ‘yearning’ in Persian and Urdu, was formed in 2005 by Azam Ali, multi-instrumentalist Loga Ramin Torkian and two-time Grammy nominated producer and electronic musician Carmen Rizzo.

The band borrows from an historic lineage of Middle Eastern poets setting verse to music, perhaps most famously known today through the work of the 13th century Persian poet Rumi and the endless barrage of quotes attributed to him on Twitter and Facebook.

While the immediate goal of Niyaz was to explore the music and identity of Iranians living in exile and struggling to maintain their cultural identity in the modern world on their first two acclaimed records, Niyaz and Nine Heavens, the band has expanded that theme with Sumud.”

*

Azam Ali is the singer with the heavenly voice in Niyaz.

Azam AliHer voice is truly “otherworldly” and hauntingly beautiful.

Azim Ali Otherworldly

She has also been a part of another band named VAS. Their albums include: Sunyata (1997), Offerings (1998), In the Garden of Souls (2000) and Feast of Silence (2004).

Azam has released seven albums between Niyaz and VAS.

Niyaz’s albums include: Niyaz (2005), Nine Heavens (2008) and Sumud (2012).

She has also released four solo albums: Portals of Grace (2002), Elysium for the Brave (2006), From Night to the Edge of Day (2011) and Lamentation of Swans- A Journey Towards Silence (2013).

Azam has also been involved in movie soundtracks (the movie 300) and video game soundtracks.

For more information, please visit her official website…

http://www.azamalimusic.com/main.php

*Much Love to Japan and the rest of the world.

My prayers are with Japan as they are facing another natural disaster in the form of a typhoon.

*

Peace & Namaste Friends…

Reflection for today…The Manifesto of Encouragement -Danielle LaPorte

20 Oct

The Manifesto of Encouragement

“Right now:

There are Tibetan Buddhist monks in a temple in the Himalayas endlessly reciting mantras for the cessation of your suffering and for the flourishing of your happiness.

Someone you haven’t met yet is already dreaming of adoring you.

Someone is writing a book that you will read in the next two years that will change how you look at life.

Nuns in the Alps are in endless vigil, praying for the Holy Spirit to alight the hearts of all of God’s children.

A farmer is looking at his organic crops and whispering, “nourish them.”

Someone wants to kiss you, to hold you, to make tea for you.

Someone is willing to lend you money, wants to know what your favourite food is, and treat you to a movie.

Someone in your orbit has something immensely valuable to give you — for free.

Something is being invented this year that will change how your generation lives, communicates, heals and passes on.

The next great song is being rehearsed.

Thousands of people are in yoga classes right now intentionally sending light out from their heart chakras and wrapping it around the earth.

Millions of children are assuming that everything is amazing and will always be that way.

Someone is in profound pain, and a few months from now, they’ll be thriving like never before. They just can’t see it from where they’re at.

Someone who is craving to be partnered, to be acknowledged, to ARRIVE, will get precisely what they want — and even more. And because that gift will be so fantastical in it’s reach and sweetness, it will quite magically alter their memory of angsty longing and render it all “So worth the wait.

Someone has recently cracked open their joyous, genuine nature because they did the hard work of hauling years of oppression off of their psyche — this luminous juju is floating in the ether, and is accessible to you.

Someone just this second wished for world peace, in earnest.

Someone is fighting the fight so that you don’t have to.

Some civil servant is making sure that you get your mail, and your garbage is picked up, that the trains are running on time, and that you are generally safe. Someone is dedicating their days to protecting your civil liberties and clean drinking water.

Someone is regaining their sanity. Someone is coming back from the dead. Someone is genuinely forgiving the seemingly unforgivable. Someone is curing the incurable.

You. Me. Some. One. Now.”

Danielle LaPorte

Copied & Pasted from: http://www.daniellelaporte.com/inspiration-spirituality-articles/the-manifesto-of-encouragement/

“Danielle LaPorte is the creator of WhiteHotTruth.com, which has been called the best place on-line for kick-ass spirituality.”

Please visit her website for some inspiration and wisdom…She is so brilliant. I just “discovered” her and will most likely be doing more blog posts about her and her writing.

If you want more inspiration and wisdom from Danielle, please go to her website: http://www.daniellelaporte.com/ to sign up for her newsletters.
You can choose to receive via email a “daily truthbomb”, a “somewhat weekly” newsletter and a “monthly digest” newsletter.
I am signed up for all of them and highly recommend them.

Her book The Fire Starter Sessions is at the top of my reading list.

Danielle has generously provided the first chapter of her book for free on her website. You can read it on Scribd or download it in pdf format. Please click on this link: The Fire Starter Sessions Chapter One.

Peace & Namaste Friends…

Photo Courtesy of Anastasia Photography
From their blog at: http://anastasiachomlack.typepad.com/laughter/2009/11/inspired.html

Reflection for today…True Alchemists Control Imagination -William H. Glass

25 Sep

“The true alchemists do not change lead into gold;

they change the world into words.”

William H. Gass

Alchemical symbolism fonts
Created by Adam McLean from the comprehensive list in Medicinisch-Chymisch- und Alchemistisches Oraculum, Ulm, 1755.

Does that mean that writers are alchemists???

Reflection for today…The Enlightenment of Reading -Ezra Pound

25 Aug

“Man reading should be man intensely alive.

The book should be a ball of light in one’s hand.”

– Ezra Pound

Designed by Dutch firm Studiomeiboom, The Enlightenment illuminates your shelf rather your soul.
Made from plexiglass and lit by an energy-saving bulb, the lamp plugs into an outlet with a standard cord.

*

During my hunt for pictures in the universe of the internet, I came across a brilliant idea from a WordPress blog called: Words&Words.

He has an inventory of all the books he has read.

Recently, he has even added dates. Eventually he says that he will even organize it in alphabetical order.

What a clever idea.

Would you ever keep a reading inventory?

{Most people only keep reading lists}.

Here is the link if you are interested: Words&Words Reading Inventory

*

Goodreads is an excellent place to create readings lists and your reading inventory.

It really is a dream website for lovers of books.

Peace & Namaste.

Reflection for today…Challenge Yourself -Charles Bukowski

20 Aug

“If you’re going to try, go all the way. Otherwise, don’t even start.

This could mean losing girlfriends, wives, relatives and maybe even your mind.

It could mean not eating for three or four days.

It could mean freezing on a park bench.

It could mean jail.

It could mean derision.

It could mean mockery — isolation.

Isolation is the gift. 

All the others are a test of your endurance, of how much you really want to do it.

And, you’ll do it, despite rejection and the worst odds.

And it will be better than anything else you can imagine.

If you’re going to try, go all the way. There is no other feeling like that.

You will be alone with the gods, and the nights will flame with fire.

You will ride life straight to perfect laughter.

It’s the only good fight there is.

Charles Bukowski {Factotum}

I love this Bukowski quote.

It really begs the question of how far any of us are willing to go in order to live our potential.

It is all about sacrifice and isolation according to Bukowski.

Peace & Namaste…

Reflection for today…Life-transforming Ideas- Bell Hooks

22 Jul

“Life-transforming ideas have always come to me through books.”

-Bell Hooks

Reflection for today…Write From Your Passion & Truth -Marianne Williamson

21 Jul

“Only write from your own passion, your own truth.

That’s the only thing you really know about,

and anything else leads you away from the pulse.”

―Marianne Williamson

To learn more about Marianne Wiliamson and her writing,

please click on this link: http://www.marianne.com/

Peace & Namaste…

Reflection for today…A Book Is Like A Key -Franz Kafka

11 Jul

“Many a book is like a key to unknown chambers

within the castle of one’s own self.”

-Franz Kafka

Reflection for today..Behind The Mask -Paulo Coelho

4 Jul

“Behind the mask of ice that people wear,

there beats a heart of fire.”  

-Paulo Coelho

From: Warrior of The Light

*

I love Warrior of The Light and Paulo Coelho’s writing so much.
It really is a reference book for me because I always come back to it.
Paulo Coelho has such a beautiful and simplistic way to distill so much wisdom.

*
I really love the warrior narrative/archetype.

*

Check out Paulo Coelho’s Blog:

http://paulocoelhoblog.com/

Reflection for today…Great Writers -Charles Bukowski

27 Jun

“Great writers are indecent people
they live unfairly
saving the best part for paper.

Good human beings save the world
so that bastards like me can keep creating art,
become immortal.
If you read this after I am dead
it means I made it.

-Charles Bukowski From The People Look Like Flowers At Last

Reflection for today…Live Your Passion -Rumi

23 Mar

 

“Let yourself be silently drawn by the stronger pull of what you really love.”
– Rumi

David  Lynch Directing

Surrealist Director David Lynch living his passion…

Find Your PassionDo What You Love

 

Interview with Steven Pressfield: Author of the War of Art | Goins, Writer

24 Jan

Interview with Steven Pressfield: Author of the War of Art |By: Jeff Goins.


The War of Art Book
*Here is an interview by a writer named Jeff Goins with the author of The War of Art: Steven Pressfield.

“10 Questions with Steven Pressfield, Author of The War of Art
by Jeff Goins | 43 Comments

If you’re new here, you may want to sign up for free updates. You can also get a copy of my eBook The Writer’s Manifesto.
http://goinswriter.com/steven-pressfield-interview/

Steven Pressfield: Author, Screenwriter, Novelist
Today, I have the privilege of interviewing one of my favorite writers on the creative process.

Steven Pressfield is an author, novelist, and screenwriter. His books include The Legend of Bagger Vance, The War of Art (a must-read for any writer), and most recently, Do the Work.

Steve’s thoughts on the Resistance have been instrumental in my working through and overcoming creative blocks.

The interview is rather lengthy, so we’re going to jump right in. Here goes:

Jeff Goins (JG): Steve, your new book Do the Work just came out through The Domino Project — how does this complement The War of Art?

Should the two be read together, or are they both standalone pieces?

Steven Pressfield (SP): Jeff, the books should probably be read in sequence — War of Art first, just because it’s “the basics” of this particular view of the creative process; then Do The Work, which is much more specific. But both are standalone pieces, as well. At least, I hope so.

The War of Art by Steven Pressfield
JG: If you don’t mind backtracking a little, what led you to originally write The War of Art? Did you anticipate that it would become such a powerful manifesto for so many writers?

SP: When you’re a working writer, as you know, sooner or later friends and acquaintances will get you alone and confide that they, too, have a book in them.

I always want to help, so I’ve wound up staying up many nights till two in the morning with friends, trying to psych them up to write their book or finish their dissertation.

In these discussions, the concept of Resistance came up, of course, and pretty soon I had the whole idea for the book.

Finally I just said to myself, I’m tired of staying up till two in the morning telling my friends this stuff, I’m just gonna write it all down and then when people ask me, I’ll be able to say, “Here, read this.”

JG: Similarly, was there an inciting incident that led to writing Do the Work?

Do the Work by Steven Pressfield
SP: The short answer is Seth Godin asked me. The long version is that I’ve been wanting to do a follow-up to The War of Art for a long time; then one day, I got a “Help!” e-mail from a young screenwriter who had to deliver a draft for school in two weeks and was totally stuck.

Normally I wouldn’t get involved in something like that, but for some reason I decided to try to help. So I wrote back, giving the young writer a few drills and “assignments.” Sure enough, it worked!

He wrote back that he’d got the piece in on time and everybody loved it. So, when Seth asked for a manifesto that was related to The War of Art, I thought, “Ah, here’s a way to do it.”

JG: What are some of your current daily writing disciplines? Do you do anything quirky?

SP: I’m a believer in what my friend Randall Wallace calls “little successes.” I always go to the gym first thing, or run, or do something act that faces Resistance and wins. That psychs me up for actually hitting the page.

I work every day without fail, even if it’s only an hour or two. And I’m superstitious as hell. I have a huge bowl full of pennies that I’ve found on the sidewalk and picked up for luck.

JG: At what point can someone who writes call himself a writer?

SP: When he turns pro in his head. You are a writer when you tell yourself you are. No one else’s opinion matters. Screw them. You are when you say you are.

JG: There seems to be “warrior” language to a lot of your writing. Why is this?

SP: Because I see the internal struggle as a war. Which it is. There’s a quote at the start of Do The Work:

On the field of the Self stand a knight and a dragon.
You are the knight. Resistance is the dragon.

Art is a war — between ourselves and the forces of self-sabotage that would stop us from doing our work. The artist is a warrior.

JG: What led you to get involved with the Domino Project? What has that been like? What kind of pizza did you order for them?

SP: I got ‘em six different kinds: plain, peperoni, veggie, sausage, Hawaiian and one kind I forgot.

I’m a huge fan of Seth’s and a friend, too. I would work with him on anything. When he started describing the Domino project, he got about eight words out before I said, “I’m in.”

And the people Seth works with are as smart and as much fun as he is — Ishita Gupta, Amy, Willie, Michael, it’s an absolute pleasure to work with them. They are total pros, but they also have fun. And they are so far ahead of traditional publishers it’s ridiculous. I want to work with them, just to see how they do it and to learn.

JG: What do you think will be the future of publishing, and how does that affect writers?

SP: I think traditional publishers will still be dominant, and they should be because they really do assure quality. But eBooks, which are huge already, are going to eclipse everything. They will save traditional publishing the way DVDs saved movie studios (for a while) and they’ll greatly expand the number of readers.

Reading is alive and well and will get more alive and more well. Reading on tablets (or whatever the next tech device will be) is the future — and the future is now. Entities like the Domino Project will proliferate.

Amazon will become a serious force. Partly because it has the database of readers (Amazon.com’s computers know who buys my books or your books or John Irving’s books; I don’t know and you don’t know and John Irving doesn’t know.) That’s enormous.

The other thing is that writers themselves will take much greater charge of their own careers. They’re doing it already. There are still a few missing pieces to facilitating this transition on a grand scale (like an independent entity that will print, market and distribute books for writers without taking the giant cut that publishers do and without being so slow), but within five years, I suspect those companies will be in place.

JG: What advice do you have for aspiring authors?

SP: Be great. Malcolm Gladwell’s maxim that it takes 10,000 hours of purposeful practice to master any art or craft is understated, in my opinion. Right now with blogs and the flood of internet access, a multitude of aspiring writers think they’re ready for prime time. They’re not.

Be great. Read. Write. Bust your ass. Learn and find your voice. As hard as you think it is, it’s a hundred times harder. Good luck.

JG: To paraphrase (and steal) a line from a popular show: When you die, what do you want to hear God say to you?

SP: “Your tee time is ready, Mister P.”

* * *

You can buy Steven Pressfield’s latest book Do the Work on Amazon as well as the classic The War of Art (affiliate links). For more about this book, read this interview: “How do you really Do the Work?”

If you liked this interview, please feel free to tweet it, share it, etc.

What does it mean for you that the artist is a warrior?

The War of Art by Steven Pressfield

23 Jan

This is a book I came across years ago. The War of Art book by Steven Pressfield
Its been on my reading list for years- although I have yet to track it get it.

It is really ironic that I have been sort of procrastinating reading this book because it is about battling procrastination.
Well, I haven’t exactly been procrastinating reading it but I have not made it a priority- even though I really want to read it.

I have been battling the demons of procrastination and self-sabotage all of my life. I am now working on transcending the resistance, procrastination and self-sabotage.

***The only cure is discipline regardless of the creative endeavor.***

This book is a guide for overcoming resistance and tapping into creative potential.
It is a creative manifesto.
Just what I need.

Here is an excerpt from Steven Pressfield himself about what The War Of Art is about from his website:
http://www.stevenpressfield.com/the-war-of-art/#book-top/

The War of Art
A vital gem . . . a kick in the ass.

—Esquire

I’ve never read a self help book that wasn’t fatuous, obvious and unhelpful. Until The War of Art. It’s amazingly cogent and smart on the psychology of creation. If I ever teach a writing course this would be one of the first books I’d assign, along with the letters of Flannery O’Connor.
—Jay McInerney, author of Bright Lights, Big City and Brightness Falls

BUY: Hardcover | Paperback | MP3 | eBookBOOKS

[This excerpt starts at the book’s very beginning and continues through the opening few chapters.]

“1. WHAT I DO

I get up, take a shower, have breakfast. I read the paper, brush my teeth. If I have phone calls to make, I make them. I’ve got my coffee now. I put on my lucky work boots and stitch up the lucky laces that my niece Meredith gave me. I head back to my office, crank up the computer. My lucky hooded sweatshirt is draped over the chair, with the lucky charm I got from a gypsy in Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer for only eight bucks in francs, and my lucky LARGO name tag that came from a dream I once had. I put it on. On my thesaurus is my lucky cannon that my friend Bob Versandi gave me from Morro Castle, Cuba. I point it toward my chair, so it can fire inspiration into me. I say my prayer, which is the Invocation of the Muse from Homer’s Odyssey, translation by T.E. Lawrence, Lawrence of Arabia, that my dear mate Paul Rink gave me and which sits near my shelf with the cuff links that belonged to my father and my lucky acorn from the battlefield at Thermopylae. It’s about ten-thirty now. I sit down and plunge in. When I start making typos, I know I’m getting tired. That’s four hours or so. I’ve hit the point of diminishing returns. I wrap for the day. Copy whatever I’ve done to disk and stash the disk in the glove compartment of my truck in case there’s a fire and I have to run for it. I power down. It’s three, three-thirty. The office is closed. How many pages have I produced? I don’t care. Are they any good? I don’t even think about it. All that matters is I’ve put in my time and hit it with all I’ve got. All that counts is that, for this day, for this session, I have overcome Resistance.

2. WHAT I KNOW

There’s a secret that real writers know that wannabe writers don’t and the secret is this: it’s not the writing part that’s hard. What’s hard is sitting down to write.

What keeps us from sitting down is Resistance.

3. THE UNLIVED LIFE

Most of us have two lives. The life we live, and the unlived life within us. Between the two stands Resistance.

Have you ever brought home a treadmill and let it gather dust in the attic? Ever resolved on a diet, a course of yoga, a meditation practice? Have you ever felt a call to embark upon a spiritual practice, dedicate yourself to a humanitarian calling, commit your life to the service of others? Have you ever wanted to be a mother, a doctor, an advocate for the weak and helpless; to run for office, crusade for the planet, campaign for world peace or to preserve the environment? Late at night have you experienced a vision of the person you might become, the work you could accomplish, the realized being you were meant to be? Are you a writer who doesn’t write, a painter who doesn’t paint, an entrepreneur who never starts a venture? Then you know what Resistance is.

One night I was layin’ down,
I heard Papa talkin’ to Mama.
I heard Papa say, to let that boy
boogie-woogie. ‘Cause it’s in him
and it’s got to come out.
—John Lee Hooker,
Boogie Chillen’

Resistance is the most toxic force on the planet. It is the root of more unhappiness than poverty, disease and erectile dysfunction. To yield to Resistance deforms our spirit. It stunts us and makes us less than we are and were born to be. If you believe in God (and I do) you must declare Resistance evil, for it prevents us from achieving the life God intended when He endowed each of us with our own unique genius. Genius is a Latin word; the Romans used it to denote an inner spirit, holy and inviolable, which watches over us, guiding us to our calling.. A writer writes with his genius; an artist paints with hers; everyone who creates operates from this sacramental center. It is our soul’s seat, the vessel that holds our being-in-potential, our star’s beacon and Polaris.

Every sun casts a shadow, and genius’ shadow is Resistance. As powerful as is our soul’s call to realization, so potent are the forces of Resistance arrayed against it. Resistance is faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, harder to kick than crack cocaine. We’re not alone if we’ve been mown down by Resistance; millions of good men and women have bitten the dust before us. And here’s the biggest bitch: we don’t even know what hit us. I never did. From age twenty-four to thirty-two, Resistance kicked my ass from East Coast to West and back again thirteen times and I never even knew it existed. I looked everywhere for the enemy and failed to see it right in front of my face.

Have you heard this story: woman learns she has cancer, six months to live. Within days she quits her job, resumes the dream of writing Tex-Mex songs she gave up to raise a family (or starts studying Classical Greek, or moves to the inner city and devotes herself to tending babies with AIDS.) Woman’s friends think she’s crazy; she herself has never been happier. There’s a postscript. Woman’s cancer goes into remission.

Is that what it takes? Do we have to stare death in the face to make us stand up and confront Resistance? Does Resistance have to cripple and disfigure our lives before we awake to its existence? How many of us have become drunks and drug addicts, developed tumors and neuroses, succumbed to painkillers, gossip and compulsive cell-phone use, simply because we don’t do that thing that our hearts, our inner genius, is telling us to? Resistance defeats us. If tomorrow morning by some stroke of magic every dazed and benighted soul woke up with the power to take the first step toward pursuing his or her dreams, overnight every shrink in the directory would be out of business. Prisons would stand empty. The alcohol and tobacco industries would collapse, along with the junk food, cosmetic surgery, and infotainment businesses, not to mention pharmaceutical companies, hospitals and the medical profession from top to bottom. Domestic abuse would become extinct, as would addiction, obesity, migraine headaches, road rage and dandruff.

Look in your own heart. Unless I’m crazy, right now a still small voice is piping up, telling you as it has ten thousand times, the calling that is yours and yours alone. You know it. No one has to tell you. And unless I’m crazy, you’re no closer to taking action on it than you were yesterday or will be tomorrow. You think Resistance isn’t real? Resistance will bury you.

You know, Hitler wanted to be an artist. At eighteen he took his inheritance, seven hundred kronen, and moved to Vienna to live and study. He applied to the Academy of Fine Arts and later to the School of Architecture. Ever see one of his paintings? Neither have I. Resistance beat him. Call it overstatement but I’ll say it anyway: it was easier for Hitler to start World War II than it was for him to face a blank square of canvas.

4. RESISTANCE’S GREATEST HITS

The following is a list, in no particular order, of those activities, which most commonly elicit Resistance:

1) The pursuit of any calling in writing, painting, music, film, dance, or any creative art, however marginal or unconventional.

2) The launching of any entrepreneurial venture or enterprise, for profit or otherwise.

3) Any diet or health regimen.

4) Any program of spiritual advancement.

5) Any activity whose aim is tighter abdominals.

6) Any course or program designed to overcome an unwholesome habit or addiction.

7) Education of every kind.

8) Any act of political, moral or ethical courage, including the decision to change for the better some unworthy pattern of thought or conduct in ourselves.

9) The undertaking of any enterprise or endeavor whose aim is to help others.

10) Any act which entails commitment of the heart. The decision to get married, to have a child, to weather a rocky patch in a relationship.

11) The taking of any principled stand in the face of potential reprisal.

In other words, any act which disdains short-term gratification in favor of long-term growth, health or integrity. Or, expressed another way, any act that derives from our higher nature instead of our lower. Any act of these types will elicit Resistance.

Now: what are the characteristics of Resistance?

5. RESISTANCE IS INVISIBLE

Resistance cannot be seen, touched, heard or smelled. But it can be felt. It is experienced as a force field emanating from a work-in-potential. It’s a repelling force. It’s negative. Its intention is to shove the creator away, distract him, sap his energy, incapacitate him.

If Resistance wins, the work doesn’t get written.

6. RESISTANCE IS INTERNAL

Resistance seems to come from outside ourselves. We locate it in spouses, jobs, bosses, kids, distractions. “Peripheral opponents,” as Pat Riley used to say when he coached the Los Angeles Lakers.

Resistance is not a peripheral opponent. Resistance arises from within. It is self-generated and self-perpetuated. Resistance is the enemy within.

7. RESISTANCE IS INSIDIOUS

Resistance will tell you anything to keep you from doing your work. It will perjure, fabricate, falsify; seduce, bully, cajole. Resistance is protean. It will assume any form, if that’s what it takes to deceive you. It will reason with you like a lawyer or jam a nine-millimeter in your face like a stick-up man. Resistance has no conscience. It understands nothing but power. Resistance cannot be negotiated with. It will pledge anything to get a deal, then double-cross you as soon as your back is turned. If you take Resistance at its word, you deserve everything you get. Resistance is always lying and always full of shit.

8. RESISTANCE IS IMPLACABLE

Resistance is like the Alien or the Terminator or the shark in “Jaws.” It cannot be reasoned with. It is an engine of destruction, programmed from the factory with one object only: to prevent us from doing our work. Resistance is implacable, intractable, indefatigable. Reduce it to a single cell and that cell will continue to attack.

This is Resistance’s nature. It’s all it knows.

9. RESISTANCE IS IMPERSONAL

Resistance is not out to get you personally. It doesn’t know who you are and doesn’t care. Resistance is a force of nature. It acts objectively.

Though it feels malevolent, Resistance in fact operates with the indifference of rain and transits the heavens by the same laws as the stars. When we marshal our forces to combat Resistance, we must remember this.”

MORE: Summary | Excerpt | Review Quotes

Soul On Ice…The Genesis

20 Jan

Soul on Ice was the beginning- the genesis.

I was in high school when I read

Soul On Ice by Eldridge Cleaver.

I was so intrigued and impassioned by the civil rights movement after I read

Malcolm X’s autobiography.

I didn’t just see it as a civil rights movement but as a human rights movement.

Reading Soul On Ice left such an impression on me.

I had no idea the seeds that were planted in my mind as a result of reading this book.

Really, I can say that it is the book that has had the most impact on me as a creative person.

Intellectually and creatively, Soul On Ice gave me breath.

Eldridge Cleaver  received no formal training to be a writer.

He just had the gift- the gift to write truth beautifully even when the truth was so ugly.

The whole book is so REVOLUTIONARY and contentious.
It definitely challenges the status quo and subverts the dominant paradigm!

Aside from its political nucleus, it is full of intellectual orgasms and acidic social commentary.

Eldridge was a Black Panther

 and I believe this to be the real reason for locking him up.

Here is a clip of him speaking:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XnCaO2ErCFQ&list=PL628AADF36720D0D8&index=2&feature=plpp_video

He was just too “dangerous” according to “the powers that ruled.” 

The most inspiring thing about Eldridge is that he did not allow “the man” any access to his head.

His mind was all his own.

I shall be re-reading Soul On Ice for the undisclosed time and writing about it again.
There is so much to say!!!

I feel I need to revisit it every so often as each time it offers new insights and creative gems.

It is such a shame that in the university that I went to this book would never be studied- let alone read.

There is so much to learn from it…

*

It is as the poet and writer Henry David Thoreau said,
“For a companion, I require one who will make an equal demand on me with my own genius.”
Soul On Ice is this companion for me.
It demands me to look inside and to awaken my potential just as Eldridge did in writing his Magnum Opus/ his great work.

To honour Eldridge Cleaver, Soul On Ice & Revolution, I offer the song Revolution Solution by a favourite artist of mine named Thievery Corporation {featuring Perry Farrell}.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oFn5E2PJPh4

*

Ever since reading Soul On Ice, I have been using the nick name “MYSOULSONICE” as in “MY SOUL IS ON ICE.”

The Love Affair Continues…
and so does the Revolution…