Thursday, March 31, 2011

Startled

Thin walls
separate
our worlds

Just a glance,
we fantasize
piercing the wall!

And then,
lost, frozen,
amid unknown

**************************

" .... That is the nature of power. As I told you before, it commands you and yet it is at your command. ..."

"Power is a very weird affair. In order to have it and command it one must have power to begin with. It's possible, however, to store it, little by little, until one has enough to sustain oneself in a battle of power."

"What happens if one does not have enough power?"
"Death is waiting, and when the warrior's power wanes death simply taps him. Thus, to venture into the unknown without any power is stupid. One will only find death."  --- Journey to Ixtlan, pp. 133-135

*****

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

On Relationships

Our relationships are a main source of our vital energy. Practicing good relationships induces an amazing level of satisfaction.Therefore, it is important to study them.

Part I: Moderation
Last evening, in a sequence of events three (male) colleagues completely ignored me.  Unfortunately, I considered one of them a good friend. This is the second time in the last couple of months that I have realized a (supposed) friend is not really a friend as I had thought. Depending on the level of your emotional investment in the relationship, such realizations can result in mild sadness or a very deep sense of loss and sorrow.
The lesson to be learned is to avoid making friends in the work place, or more generally in situations that you "have" to meet a group of people frequently, for the following reasons:
  1. In such situations, people "need" to be polite and the politeness can be easily confused with friendship.
  2. Once you realize your mistake, you cannot avoid painful contacts with your (supposed) friend.
  3. It is more difficult to be moderate in such situations because of frequent contacts. Excessive contact, especially in the initial phases of a friendship, easily ruins the whole thing!
My best friendships nowadays are forming with people that I see once in few weeks or even months. When you see a friend after a couple of months, you can easily feel emotions like happiness and love in the air. In contrast, if you see a friend after a long time and all you see on his/her face is a polite smile then suspect that the friendship is unilateral.

Part II: Taking Responsibility
In a bad relationship, every party that can make decisions is an abuser (not just a victim). The clear example is in "addictive" relationships with nonhuman parties such as drugs, alcohol, food, TV, internet, games, and porn. With moderation, all these relationships remain healthy, but the problem starts when we try to over-indulge in a relationship to cover our pains. Even though addicts typically picture themselves as victims, but to an outside observer it is evident that they are abusers!
Similar idea extends to human relationships. Even when one party is over-indulging in the relationship and clearly is abuser, the other side is also empowering the abusive relationship (out of many possible reasons), and becomes an abuser in a certain way.

This insight becomes important because in abusive relationships one has the tendency to swing between two extremes: I am the sole abuser and everything is my fault, and I am the victim and everything is the other person's fault. The truth is that both sides are abusers as well as victims, and in many situations, the best approach is simply ending an abusive relationship without feeling pity for ourselves or for our (supposed) friends!

Part III: Letting Go
What is the best way to end a destructive relationships? I think communication is an essential part of a relationship and this may apply to ending a relationship too. On the other hand, we may think of terminating a relationship as an act of "letting go". I am not good with letting go in general, but my experiences have shown me that "letting go" requires a clear decision followed by a clean implementation. Most people (including me), pain themselves by going through memories of failed relationships. This is a form of self-indulgence and self-pity.

Any comment or sharing experiences is well appreciated!

***********************************

Self-importance is probably the most destructive factor for relationships:

"You take yourself too seriously, ... You are so goddamn important that you feel justified to be annoyed with everything. You are so damn important that you can afford to leave if things don't go your way. I suppose you think that shows your character. That's nonsense! You're weak, and conceited!"
"As long as you feel that you are the most important thing in the world you cannot really appreciate the world around you. You are like a horse with blinders, all you see is yourself apart from everything else."
"From now on talk to little plants," he said. "Talk until you lose all sense of importance. Talk to them until you can do it in front of others."
"It doesn't matter what you say to a plant," he said. You can just as well make up words; what's important is the feeling of liking it, and treating it as an equal." --- Journey to Ixtlan, pp. 21-23

*****************************************
SeGah is one of the saddest tunes in Iranian music. Here is a piece in SeGah, Voice: Shajarian, Tar: Shahnaz, Poem: Hafez


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fUqHAWQGX8k

Monday, March 28, 2011

Violent Dream

Part of my last night dreams that particularly influenced me. (Be advised, it is a little graphic.)

We were playing in a village, similar to those around my birthplace (Kerman) that we frequented with my dad in summers. An Afghani immigrant worker was watering plants nearby and suddenly he made us wet. We started screaming and I made some funny gestures to attract his attention. Even though the gestures were not offensive, but he followed me with a small sword (machete?) and we finally stopped above a ditch or a grave. He put the sword in the grave and covered it with some ornamental objects and then covered everything with a thin layer of soil. Everything was done meditatively and like a ceremony. I was terrorized because my interpretation of the ceremony was that he will kill me with the machete and bury me in that ditch. However, I was not sure and looked for my father to ask his opinion, when suddenly I saw a man and he gave me a very sharp knife and said, 'this is for protection'.
In the next scene, I was playing with a small boy on the top of a tree and keeping him busy. Suddenly, two of his friends, one his age and a teenager appeared and started climbing the tree. They were angry and the teenager had a sword in his hand. I somehow was able to throw them down the tree. I went down to check on them and I saw the teenager still alive and fighting. I picked up a sword and cut him in half.
Then, I sat next to him and for the first time watched his face and eyes, and realized he had a kind, beautiful face. And, he was telling me something in a very low voice that I could not hear. When he was about to die, he pinched my left nipple so hard that it burst in blood and stained my shirt. I though that was his way I showing that I was his killer. As the police arrived at the scene, I stood up indifferently and left.

In the morning, when I remembered the dream, I also remember a short Japanese story that I read yesterday. It is a famous story about a girl being followed by a tiger and jumping off a cliff, hanging to a small plant. As the plant started to get loose, she sees a strawberry, picks it, and take a bite and finds it sweet and delicious!

****************************************

Two Songs from "Shahram Nazeri", especial order of Aftab banoo, LOL


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hE3-JR-PPWU






http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6xLeBCv5V1Y

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Walking Practice

A simple walking practice that is motivated by my Kyudo practice. I invented it today when I was walking in Piedmont park and did it for about half an hour.

Preparation: Relax your body, maybe by doing a short meditation, and try to feel your center/hara/tanden as a source of energy.

Practice: Start walking with your gaze directed at a point about 10 feet (3 meters) in front of you. Stay relaxed. The main idea is to induce inner calmness by gently slowing eye movements (your gaze). Initially, it may help to imagine someone walking about 10 feet in front of you and your gaze is connected to his heels.

I learned many different things from this practice today, but  I do not want to bias you in terms of what you should expect from it. I just say that I think this can be a good practice for "letting go", something I have been eagerly looking for the past few months :)

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Casual Conversation

As you bring time to a halt
those clouds appear
that will carry you above moments

My clouds are wise
and sweet, today
they whispered in my dream:

No worries dear friend
is not the time near
that you were living amongst us

**
Original Version:

When you stop the time
you need to ride clouds
to fly over the moments

My clouds are wise
and kind
They told me today:

Don't worry dear friend
time is near
that you live among us
*****************************

Voice: Shahram Nazeri  ,   Song: Journey to Ixtlan (Journey to the other side)


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iA9GdURetz8



* "Jounrey to Ixtalan" was translated to Farsi under the title "Journey to the other side".

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Meditative Power of Traditional Iranian Music

I am beginning to understand how amazing "traditional Iranian music" is, not just in its artistic aspects, but also in its meditative power. It moves at a very slow, deliberate pace, according to the feelings of the musician. Consider that this music, and the accompanying poems, were created and developed during extremely hard times (a few hundred years ago)! When Iran was invaded over and over by different powers, and people were constantly living under uncertainty about their future. Then, you may get a grasp of the magic hidden inside these poems and tunes.

To really appreciate this music, you need to be struggling with love, rejection, uncertainty about future, fear, hope, and at the same time, you need to stop the time, or be with its flow, in the now, without anticipation ... I cannot describe my feelings now as I am listening to the following masterpiece of meditative music:

Voice: Shajarian, SeTar: Meshkatian, Ney: Mousavi, Poem: Sa'di


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lbbCDrr8TcI





http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FxpaLnEMjv4

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

How do you know ... ?

Wish him/her something good from the bottom of your heart, and watch the reaction. If you feel no "genuine" reaction, then s/he is not probably your friend. If you see a belittling smirk of indifference then s/he may be a sociopath ... LOL

I am/have been a sociopath with the  above test, but I made an interesting observation very recently. I will write about it soon ;)

***************************

Jalil Shahnaz Tar in Bayat'e Esfahan:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5rkUbp9bvdo




http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ysIHu0AtuRs

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Happy Persian New Year

Today (Sunday) at 7:20 p.m. the new Persian year, 1390, starts. This coincides with the start of Spring and Spring equinox. Sima and I are making "samanoo" for the "haft seen". We started half an hour ago (9:45 a.m.) and making "Samanoo" takes 8-12 hours, so hopefully it will be ready for the "tahvile saal" :)

****************************

A few days ago (the day of previous post) Sima told me about her yoga class, and that their teacher talked about "detachment" (of body parts, especially around a joint) that is necessary for achieving some yoga poses, and that the idea also extend to life. The, Sima suggested that I have to attain a degree of detachment from my thoughts. Later on, a few experiences and incidents convinced me that she is right, and I have started practicing "detachment from thoughts". I do not know exactly what it means, but I simply try not to pay attention to my thoughts. I decide on a course of actions, and no matter how I feel or think, I do them.

***************************

The more fascinating and engaging my "thoughts" are, the more damaging and disappointing they become later on!

***************************

Here is a summary of what I have learned this past year. I write them here, and hopefully, I forget about them :)

***

At the center of what drives our lives is an "essence" that has different names in different cultures: Inner peace, belief in God, inner harmony, personal power, divine wisdom, good luck, etc. This essence manifests itself in virtues that are common across most cultures: Patience, balance, harmony, moderation, acceptance of imperfections and vulnerability, beauty, letting go of attachments, love, passion, being present, etc.

***

The questions is, "How can we find, polish, and empower this "essence"?"

Here is my conjecture, which is common sense :) Practice these virtues in small, everyday tasks of life. The "essence" is self-enforcing. That is the beauty of it. You plant its seed, and attend to it, and over time it will develop into a strong tree that will enrich all aspects of your life.

***

There are, probably, many ways to achieve the goal. Here is a suggestion:
Acceptance: We accept imperfections in our life and do not aim at changing everything at once.
Moderation: We adopt a moderate approach to change by choosing a small doable task.
Focus: We put one of the virtues (beauty, balance, presence, detachment, ...) as the focus of our practice (doing the simple task) for a while.
Patience: We let our practice develop and add new virtues and new task over time with moderation and patience.
Detachment: We do not over think the task (and forget about the philosophy behind it). We pay more attention to the process of doing the task rather than the result.

***

When I tried to implement this, I realized that for me it is difficult to choose one task and focus on individual virtues for a while. I have tried to do "every task" this way and keep "many virtues" in mind! So my life has lacked the focus :)


*********************

I wish the new year brings us closer to the essence of our life.

زکوی یار می آید نسیم باد نوروزی . . . از این باد ار مدد خواهی ، چراغ دل برافروزی
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dRHGsi2ELYQ 

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Spiral

Have started a downward spiral since Saturday night. Yesterday evening, I was extremely sad. Last night, I lost my concentration and focus and a feeling that something bad is going to happen developed and continued throughout the night even when I was sleeping. This morning, while smoking outside, I had a feeling that my soul is dissolving into the space around me.

*************************

Noon: After writing the above, and finishing one of my classes today--the hard one, I am feeling better now. Just have to get prepared for the next one!

**************************

Night: I missed (slept) the Kyudo practice so I worked at home for a while. A few minutes ago, I was considering whether to go for swimming. Thought for a few minutes and then realized that "could not make such a simple decision", and started to get angry at myself for my indecisiveness. This is quite normal for me.
Then, I clearly saw that I will feel much better if I go to swim. But as soon as I started preparing to leave, something inside me got really upset and decided that I cannot go. It was clear to me that this part wanted me to feel bad and become depressed. Yet, I feel that I have to follow what she tells me.
The point of this silly example: Who is this voice? [Maybe my parents' voice?!] Why is she wanting me to suffer? Why to I listen to her at all?

*************************

Finally, I stayed home and read a few pages from a random point of the "Journey to Ixtlan". Here is a passage that I found very interesting in light of my current experiences:

... I told Don Juan that my insistence on finding explanations was not something that I had arbitrarily devised myself, just to be difficult, but was something so deeply ingrained in me that it overruled every other consideration.
"It is like a disease," I said.
"There are no diseases," Don Juan replied calmly. "There is only indulging. And you indulge yourself in trying to explain everything. Explanations are no longer necessary in your case."
.....
"You are very clever," he finally said. "You go back to where you have always been. This time you are finished though. ... I will not explain anything to you any more. Whatever Genaro did to you yesterday he did it to your body, so let your body decide what's what."
Don Juan's tone was friendly but unusually detached and that made me feel an overwhelming loneliness. I expressed my feelings of sadness. He smiled. His fingers gently clasped the top of my hand.
"We both are beings who are going to die." he said softly. "There is no more time for what you used to do. Now you must employ all the non-doing I have taught you and stop the world." Journey to Ixtlan, pp. 246-247

For the first time in a long time, I felt that I have a faint understanding of detachment and letting go, and that I must let go of friends I have lost, because we all have limited time, and we ultimately have to fight our own battles, alone.

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Loneliness, Love, Niceness, and Guilt

Last night, I had a difficult time sleeping, hours of anger, and frustration. I felt that I had run out of options.  Suddenly,  I decided:
I have to fight the fight, alone. I have to trust and love myself and keep fighting. There is no one to rely on, because ultimately we are alone in our struggles. I should not hate anyone for this situation, specially myself. Because I am my last and only refuge. 
This evolved into a deeper "knowledge" of our loneliness. It seems that at some level, in making decisions and facing consequences, we are totally alone. We have to fight our main fights in life alone.

During the last few weeks, I have gained a much deeper understanding of love and connectedness. Love is an important source of our vital energy in life. It is the opposite side of loneliness. The two of them make each other meaningful. When you love someone, and you cannot be with him/her, then the mere presence makes your life meaningful, make you want to dance in euphoria. It is amazing!

Yet, love is a dangerous affair. Developing true love, reciprocal love, requires trust, and hence, time and patience. One danger is in jumping into love out of desperation. We cannot force our love on others, through niceness, caring, or sacrifices for example. This threatens the other side and make him/her pull back. Here, "being nice and caring" or "doing sacrifices" would become strategies to win the other side. "Love" turns into a desire to "control". We forget about the "loneliness" aspect and try to cure difficulties of our lives by immersing our selves into our beloved ones. We forget that we have to fight alone!
An ultimate case of forcing "love" is when it is unilateral, the unrequited love. It inflicts amazing pain on our selves: It is said that the pain is comparable to losing a child!

Finally, extreme niceness, caring, and sacrifice often evoke feeling of guilt in the object. When we try to use niceness, consciously or else, to control someone, we force that someone to react fiercely in order to protect his/her identity. Yet, typically that someone also understands the pain that his/her actions causes us, a potential source for feeling guilty. "Guilt" is an amazing force in us, it is a tool to correct our behavior. But many times it becomes a major source of psychological disorders.

****
Very simply, I have realized that there must be a balance between "individuality" (loneliness) and "connection" (love), good job   :P

*************************************

``Chance, good luck, personal power, or whatever you may call it, is a peculiar state of affairs, It is like a very small stick that comes out in front of us and invites us to plunk it. Usually we are too busy, or too preoccupied, or just too stupid and lazy to realize that that is our cubic centimeter of luck. A warrior, on the other hand, is always alert and tight and has the spring, the gumption necessary to grab it." Journey to Ixtlan, p. 234

*************************************

These two, especially the dad, have very beautiful and powerful voices. On top of that, they are full of energy. This is a more traditional Azarbaijani song:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uPexmvd1NMs


************************************************************

Hotei Finger- From http://108zenbooks.com/2010/01/25/hoteis-finger/

http://www.awakeblogger.com/2008/11/the-meaning-of-the-finger-pointing-to-the-moon/

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Women's Day

Challenges of Iranian women 90 years ago. Interesting and informative + good music :)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h_BwfM4Sn2c




****************************
``You always feel compelled to explain your acts, as if you were the only man on earth who's wrong ... It's your old feeling of importance." Journey to Ixtlan, p. 80

Monday, March 07, 2011

The Voice

Woke up angry and frustrated. After breakfast, while smoking outside, I studied what I was feeling and realized that I felt nothing inside, no anger or frustrations. Very interesting!? So were did those emotions came from, my mind and internal conversation? The voice that criticizes me continuously? this time for watching TV until late last night and getting up late in the morning, and wasting time, and ...

Work is OK, I know what I need to do today. I will finish it and then will go swimming.

Today, I saw a peregrine falcon attacked a hawk right in front of my office window, the whole thing took a fraction of a second. Cool! :)

Today, a few times I got some news, or was in situations, that would normally made me nervous or depressed. But I asked myself a simple question: What do I feel now? As I focused inside and observed my feelings, I realized that I felt no emotions! I decided that those typical reactions (nervousness, depression, ...) are the results of my thinking, and not feeling. That observation ended the problem almost immediately.

Once during the day, I remembered a memory from a friend, a friendship that I have lost, and had a clear feeling of sharp pain in my chest, like an arrow piecing my chest and then an emptiness in my chest and a pressure.

After work went to swim and on way back home, I was watching the scenes while driving and a few times I felt something indescribable, a sense of awe and amazement, as if the scenes had something magnificent hidden in them.

Sunday, March 06, 2011

Puzzled

A cold windy day, but I convinced Sima to go to Piedmont park. During the walk, I started to feel confident and clear minded and joyful. That sense of calm stayed during the day.

That is, until evening when I started watching TV, switching between sitcoms and the movie "Forces of Nature" (a B movie that I like :) A half an hour relaxing time extended to three and half hours of anxiety and feelings of guilt and desperation. What made me to go through the painful TV watching? In the beginning I was calm and happy. Why could not I stop when I knew that it was getting out of hand?

In the afternoon, I wrote a post about trust and friendship and love, but I could not publish it. Maybe later.

************************************
A short piece in "Nava" tune by Jalil Shahnaz. I am starting to appreciate the beauty and depth of "Nava":

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j9-H7MsYaNo

Saturday, March 05, 2011

Numbness

Morning was ok. Breakfast. Haircut. Talk to parents. While talking with them I realized that I was not "there", an empty box was talking to them, and I sensed how their happiness disappeared into sadness. I knew how they felt, they have done it to me many times, when I called them happy and full of energy, but they were so distant that I became frustrated and angry from the disconnect.
What do I feel now? I have a few hours before our plans for the afternoon, evening and night starts. I do not know what I would like to do with these hours. I sense how fast time, my life, is passing by and I feel that I do not enjoy the moments at all. I almost feel a sickness in my stomach, just want to throw up my life, and get done with this stupid game of nothing interweave with nothing. I am jealous of everyone who feels simple happiness and joy in living. Those who feel the wonderfulness of moments.

Sima convinced me to leave home and run a few errands. On our way, I found a new coffee house and we tried the place. There I was able to focus on what Sima were saying and came back to present. I realized then that I did not "feel" anything: I was, and am, emotionally numb! I have not cried in the past week or two. Why?
Two things happened in the past few weeks that coincided with this emotional numbness and disconnect. First, two weeks ago in a strange sequence of events, I stopped taking depression medications for 24 hours. During the days, I felt pure emotions, was happy and energetic, and had very fast mood swings. The second nights, thing got scary. I felt something coming out of my hands and feet and I became paranoid: could see myself in a mental institute! So I started medications again, but things have been very rough since then.
Second, I distanced myself from a female friend because for a while I had felt that I was hurt in that relationship. In order to do that, however, I had to suppress my feelings for her and make myself numb to them. Could it be that the numbness has spread to all my emotions and feelings? Sima has been telling me that what I am doing is wrong because I am hurting myself much more than before. Yet, she also sees my point in distancing myself. Moreover, Sima believes that my general condition is generally caused by the surge in my depression and the relationship is not a main factor.

Went to see a friend for body work/massage therapy. He thinks that I have a case of "unrequited love" + "grievance"  (in the above relationship) and I can simply acknowledge them and the pain they cause and let my self heal over time.

We did not go to a talk by an Indian guru/yogi. Another case of mu inside conflicts. But now I feel OK. Next item is Persian dinner party at a friend's :)

We had a good time at the party. Dancing for 3-4 hours. Some drinking. And, I learned something new about myself, but I need time to articulate it.

****************************************
Azarbayjani music, father has a heavenly voice, especially the part in the beginning (Avaz):


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qpb_trigPM4

Friday, March 04, 2011

Time

Yesterday, Sima told me that to make the tenure deadline I need to work faster and harder. On top of that, the spring break is over and I have to prepare for courses next week. Deadlines make me nervous and increase my anxiety.

Morning was anxious and nervous. Worked with a co-author at a coffee shop and then with another in my office. Things were alright while working, but then situation got worse When I left office, however, I was feeling free and happy :)

On my way back home, I decided to buy cigarettes, but at the last moment, I changed my mind. I feel that there are more than one individuals inside me and they have serious issues between themselves :P

At home, we were discussing plans for tonight (King's speech, Fernbank Martini night, or Japanese film festival?)  when my nervousness and anxiety grew into frustration and anger. I do not know what happened, but for a while I could not do anything, could not make any decisions. It feels hopeless when I see that, so easily and without a clear reason, I can reach such extreme states-- it is absurd and sad. I feel that I want to leave everything and go somewhere that no one knows me.

Finally, I left home to do some errands and buy cigarettes too. After a few minutes I was feeling better and I ended up at the coffee shop talking to a friend after a few weeks of not seeing her.

Back home, my mood started to get worse. I finally decided to stay home and we watched TV, a comedy. I laughed a lot watching the movie and felt much better. While watching movie, for a while I completely forgot time and location, and even during commercials as I talked to Sima I felt as if I am still in the movie and our conversations are taking place there! a bit scary.

Once the movie was over, I kept changing channels and watched a couple of other movies simultaneously. Now, after midnight, I feel disgusted. A voice inside me telling, "You are irresponsible and cannot control yourself in simplest situations! How can you talk about "walking the path" when you cannot resist temptations to sit in front of TV? You are pathetic."

What a bumpy ride was today. Let's see what tomorrow will bring :)

2012-12-19, Wednesday, 4:00 p.m. It is very interesting to read these old posts. Not too long ago, in fact less than two years ago, I would go through such difficult days without having any idea about what was happening to me. Now, however, I feel a change. Such mood changes happen less frequently, even though I am not on medication for more than one year and have not smoked in more than 3 months, and when they happen I feel more in control because I have an idea of how/why they happen. 

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Acceptance: Relationships

I wrote last night's post after playing tennis for an hour. After I wrote the post, I read a quote from "John Steinbeck" on Shadi's Google Reader [Link]. Here is a sentence I liked, "Knowing a man well never leads to hate and nearly always leads to love." Then, I thought I need to know myself. How? I guess by careful observation?

Then I went for last smoke of the day. I first started thinking about my career and what I should do, etc. But somehow, somewhere in the process, my mind became very calm and I started seeing things better. I looked back at what I have accomplished the past few years, in terms of improving my relationships. I have been able to initiate new meaningful relationships, and deepen my old friendships, with men. I had not had meaningful relationships with females, and I found out that I needed that too. I was not quite as successful on that front. I increased my female acquaintances in number, but most of the time not in depth. Moreover, in some cases, I ended up getting hurt: The more trust you put in any relationship, the more vulnerable you are to misunderstandings and other sources of conflict.
Fortunately, I had the courage to share all this with Sima, and she is an amazingly patient and wise person. With her abundant help, I am getting through these bumps.
There are two reasons for problems in my relationships with females. First, I am not clear about what I want from the relationship, simply because I have not had many of them before. Is this mostly sexual? or romantic? or a simple friendship? Is this a midlife crisis and a try to change things and add excitement? or is it something deeper, more meaningful? I suspect that women sense this confusion and respond to it by not trusting.
Second, in a couple of cases that the relationship evolved rather naturally, my depression and constant worrying made me cling to the relationship [see "Inaccessible" post too] and show obsessive behavior. Well, this is a sad and embarrassing story, I was hurt bad, and thanks to Sima I am finding my way and hopefully able to move on.

This morning I woke up really energized, because I was planning to write this post and then start working. First good morning in a while :)

I have a forehead which declines forward. I still remember that in the middle school, once a teacher told us that people with froward declining foreheads are like chimps, low in intelligence or even retarded!

At lunch, Sima said that she likes what I wrote above-- she thinks it is honest and courageous :) After lunch, we slept for half an hour in the backyard under the sun ... delicious weather :) I told Sima let's pretend we are lying on sands at a beach. It is almost three years since we went to Northern beaches of Khazar in Iran! I could evoked that feeling of deep relaxation that you get in a good vacation.

A random quote from Journey to Ixtlan that I found today:
"For you the world is weird because if you're not bored with it you're at odds with it. For me the world is weird because it is stupendous, awesome, mysterious, unfathomable. ... you must learn to make every act count, since you are going to be here for a short while ...
There are some people who are very careful about nature of their acts. Their happiness is to act with the full knowledge that they don't have time; therefore, their acts have a peculiar power." pp. 81, 83

Kyudo was fun. I worked on keeping the rhythm of breathing and hence the shooting. Good challenge keeps me focused and happy :)

Today was very good overall. Yesterday, I decided to stay home and despite many events that enticed me to go to office, I did not change my decision. I am very happy for that.

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Absorbed

An angry and frustrated morning. Went to office. After a while of working, got back on trail. Felt beautiful when I left office after lunch to work at a coffee shop. Afternoon was quite good. Apparently, what I need, when I am angry and frustrated, is to engage my mind in something that absorb it completely. In old days, I used to do this all the time. Left home early morning, worked continuously, only stopped for smoking, until late evening. I do not want to go back to that routine for sure. Have to find a moderate way. Will see.

****************************
Jalil Shahnaz, Tar (with Hossein Tehrani, Tombak), Shiraz:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M6Yyfy1U0Us


k

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Inaccessible

Morning started dull and uninspiring, but not nearly as awful as yesterday, good. Worked at the coffee shop, bright sun and pleasant weather. Had my lunch at home, alone, listening to Jalil Shahnaz and I realized that every time that I stop eating and look out of the window, I suddenly start to cry, a bit strange.

After the lunch, suddenly, decided to look at a random page of the following book: "Journey to Ixtlan: The Lessons of Don Juan," by Carlos Castaneda. The topic was "being inaccessible" and the story of Carlos's blond girlfriend. Here is a quote from the end:
"A hunter knows he will lure game into his traps over and over again, so he doesn't worry. To worry is to become accessible, unwittingly accessible. And once you worry you cling to anything out of desperation; and once you cling you are bound to get exhausted or to exhaust whoever or whatever you are clinging to." p. 70
Then I thought these are all beautiful ideas but how can I make them operational? Sure by practice!
Practice: Stop tasks and pleasures early, at the peak of comfort and satisfaction, trusting that you will return to them any time you need to. 

On my way to Kyudo, I suddenly felt uplifted and happy, really amazing. During the Kyudo practice, for the first time, I felt something when I watched others shooting. Almost as if I could see their energy. It was cool :)

Clear Shallow Water

I started reading this novel, `` The Driver ,'' by Hart Hanson , and I did not like it much and decided to stop. But then I came ba...