We have all we need for everyone to live well.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Seeing the Unseen

Knowing comes to us in many ways. Not all are rational. Not all can be articulated in words. Some of our knowing is knowing that mystery abides, that we will never have better than a fleeting, sidelong glance, or a brief glimpse beyond the veil.

Paul Laffoley

Paintings that function as metaphysical machinery. Article here. Slideshow here.

Alchemy: The Telnomic Process of the Universe, 1973. Source: http://paullaffoley.net/paintings/

Luigi Serafini's Codex Seraphinianus

Hypnogogic imagery brought into the waking world. Articles here and here, and here.

Composer Alexander Belau was inspired by the Codex to write a symphony:

The Voynich Manuscript

A mysterious book from Central Europe in the 15th or 16th century, by an unknown author, in a language found nowhere beyond its pages, of unknown import. Article here. You can page through the entire volume here.

Alex Grey

Access galleries of work by this visionary artist of physical and metaphysical anatomy here. Article here.

Source: http://alexgrey.com/art/paintings/soul/bond/

Carl Jung's Red Book

Carl Jung, Freud's contemporary and early colleague, was one of the greatest explorers of the human unconscious. Article here.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Those Darn Robots

Boston Dynamics’ Atlas Robot Walks Like a Human Over Field of Rubble (Singularity Hub)  

Surprisingly simple scheme for self-assembling robots  (MIT)

Ford car takes control of steering to avoid collisions (BBC)


Survival Research Labs' An Explosion of Ungovernable Rage:


Sunrise Walk – October 10

 "Whatever it was I lost, whatever I wept for
Was a wild, gentle thing, the small dark eyes
Loving me in secret.
It is here. At a touch of my hand,
The air fills with delicate creatures
From the other world."
– James Wright

 "Sylvia's hair is like the night,

Touched with glancing starry beams;

Such a face as drifts thro' dreams,

This is Sylvia to the sight.

And the touch of Sylvia's hand

Is as light as milkweed down,

When the meads are golden brown,

And the autumn fills the land..."
– Clinton Scollard

 "ragged wool hanging

the wet milkweed seeds

tethered, connected

moored in their pods

tied still to the ground

hovering limp, heavy

above the earth

waiting for drying

to give them flight, new birth"
– Raymond A. Foss

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Links and Miscellany – October 2

Greek financial crisis has biological health effects; Young adults in Greece suffer more from stress and mental health problems and are less optimistic about the future than Swedes of the same age The horrible psychological and social costs of high youth unemployment (and long-term unemployment generally) are compounded by the fact that the problem could be solved in a day, at the stroke of a pen. There is no shortage of meaningful work to do, no shortage among the unemployed of the skills required to do that work, no shortage of money to pay for the work, and no shortage of real resources for the newly employed to spend their income on: housing, food, clothing, health care, transportation... New money to end unemployment or for any other purpose is simply an accountable measure of public initiative, upon which there are no constraints beyond a citizenry's imagination. Our only real constraints are real resources, of which we have enough for all to live well. That we fail to do this is a stupendous failure of imagination and an enormity.

Bad luck? Knocking on wood can undo jinx: study Much of the fury displayed by self-appointed defenders of science against "pseudo" science and metaphysics is misdirected. We should rather be much more seriously studying and exploiting the placebo effect in all its manifestations, and in general the connections between one's thoughts, one's health and well-being, and the creation of one's external reality.

How to stay sharp in retirement; Motivation key factor in preserving brainpower later in life, Concordia University researchers show

People who exercised more than four hours per week in their leisure time had a 19 percent lower risk of high blood pressure than people who didn’t exercise much; Physical activity at work was not linked to a lower risk of high blood pressure

More corollary and direct evidence for the hygiene theory of disease:
Vacuum Dust: A Previously Unknown Disease Vector Striving to be extra-clean doesn't necessarily make us healthier.

Adults who move to farming areas where they experience a wider range of environmental exposures than in cities may reduce the symptoms of their hypersensitivities and allergies considerably 
Scientists who share data publicly receive more citations Science v. practice of science, episode n+1.

Survival after cancer diagnosis in Europe is strongly associated with how much governments spend on health care In the U.S. we prefer the "Breaking Bad" model.

"The Writer" is a 240-year old programmable handwriting automaton built by clockmaker Pierre Jaquet-Droz (h/t BCP).

Take a tour in 1950 of the Wurlitzer jukebox factory, a remarkable film on many levels.

Your daily dose of beauty.
Blaze of Glory

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Walking Music – A Disquiet Junto Project

About seven months ago I began participating in the Disquiet Junto, "a series of weekly communal music projects [that] explore constraints as a springboard for creativity and productivity." Weekly assignments are made on Thursday night and are due by the following Monday night. The word "junto" is taken from "a club for mutual improvement established in 1727 by Benjamin Franklin in Philadelphia. Also known as the Leather Apron Club, its purpose was to debate questions of morals, politics, and natural philosophy, and to exchange knowledge of business affairs." The Disquiet Junto is primarily a Soundcloud group found here; there is more about the project on moderator Marc Weidenbaum's Disquiet website.

There is no expectation that contributors complete each assignment – you can come and go as you please. I appreciate the challenge of responding to such widely varying assignments under short deadlines, and the very different responses made by a diverse collection of musicians and sound artists from all over the world. It is a supportive and enthusiastic group.

These are the instructions for the latest project:
Disquiet Junto Project 0091: Walking Music

This week's project takes as its source material that most natural and quotidian of rhythms: the sound of walking.

The instructions are simple. You will make four recordings of yourself walking. You will then combine those recordings as you see fit into a single original piece of music. You will add nothing to the four recordings. You can cut up and otherwise transform the source audio as you see fit, but it should always be recognizable as the sound of walking. The resulting track will explore various themes, including texture, rhythm, percussion, momentum, and the inherent musical qualities of field recordings.

Deadline: Monday, September 30, 2013, at 11:59pm wherever you are.

Length: Your track should have a duration of between one and five minutes.

Information: Please when posting your track on SoundCloud, include a description of your process in planning, composing, and recording it. This description is an essential element of the communicative process inherent in the Disquiet Junto.

Title/Tag: Include the term “disquiet0091-walkingmusic” in the title of your track, and as a tag for your track.

Download: Please consider employing a license that allows for attributed, commerce-free remixing (i.e., a Creative Commons license permitting non-commercial sharing with attribution).

Linking: When posting the track, be sure to include this information:

More on this 91st Disquiet Junto project, which explores the musical qualities of footsteps, at:


More details on the Disquiet Junto at:


Associated image found via Flickr:


- end -
I made a field recording as I walked through the rural property where I reside, along lanes and trails and through meadows, over a variety of surfaces that included gravel, grass, leaves, snapping twigs, and a creek crossing with chunks of concrete as stepping stones. Throughout the walk I kept a rhythmic pace to facilitate combination of different segments of the recording. I selected four excerpts of the recording that had distinctive sonic qualities, including a graveled portion of a lane, tall grass in a meadow, a creek crossing, and a squirrel’s chatter.

In the project recording, the four excerpts are first heard unaltered and in sequence; the excerpts are then combined and processed in various ways to complete the piece. Here is the result:

This is a section of the path I walked to make the initial field recording.