It’s less than a week until Costa Rica!

5 days to be exact, but who’s counting?

And (more importantly), why does she insist in doing it in my head?

Hopefully, I’ll be a doll soon, post an itinerary for the trip (and maybe some short quip on the preconditions that inspired its materialization). I have plenty of traveling/visits (friends and family in Jacksonville and Daytona Beach), events (including 4th of July celebration), and errands (travel, school, personal, and otherwise) especially designed (intentionally and sequentially) to busy my mind every day (and tire myself out to point of exhaustion every night–so I sleep good and hard), encompassing all interim hours between now and my departure for San Jose (y’know, so I’m not subsumed by the fever pitch that is my own anticipatory excitement).

See the lengths of planning involved in troubleshooting my own personal proclivities?  Taxing.

After all, there’s more to life than countdowns.

I plan to take one book (final selection pending, but strongly swayed in favor of a Thomas Merton book lent to me by a very good friend, whose wisdom I esteem to the nth degree)..and one pad for jotting notes and journal writing.

Trip updates may have to come on the actual heels of the trip,

desafortunadamente.  Que triste!

(That’s spanish for: ‘unfortunately.  How sad!)

As you may have guessed, I’m (recklessly and faithfully) relying entirely on the four years of Spanish bestowed upon me by the legendary linguist master (my amazing high school Spanish teacher), Senora Cabrera. In fact, I’m so confident of my ability to naturally and organically fall back into the tongue of my fore-mothers  that I’m bringing along a mini Webster’s Spanish-English dictionary, just to provide a complimentary proof read and fact check of their material for them. These are the kind of good karma moves that *for sure* get me noticed by the cosmic powers that be…that be..watching me make my moves? There just kind of passing the Time they made, I guess…dunno, who cares– it’s Metaphysics! We don’t have to worry about it!

In only semi-related news, I think I’m actually going to be able to fit all my essentials in my Polly-Pocket-sized travel backpack.  Sweet, sweet succulent taste of success–and its mine!

Ahem. It is a *super-small* backpack though…seams are already stressing out a little bit. My travel buddy Dan (hereafter, I’ll just refer to him as Dan…or Dan the Man, depending on my mood…and/or when he politely makes the request I quit calling him that) voiced his reservations about my small backpack move– BUT what he needs to understand….Nay! What the world needs to understand is that I bought this bad boy at a thrift store for $3.

$3!

I’ll give you a second, let that sink in.

Needless to say, in exchange for my 300 pennies, I expect this backpack to (not only) successfully facilitate my travel abroad experience to Costa Rica, but I fully intend for it to carry my books, every day, for the next 5-6 years worth of graduate study I’ve committed myself to—-up and until there’s a photograph with me holding my doctoral degree in one hand, waving a ‘told-ya-so’ pointer finger at the camera with my other hand, and adorning my faithful backpack upon my back, magnificently displayed, as it basks in the glory and triumph of the moment that will symbolize to itself, and to the world, its final curtain call.

Then...and only then  dear friends, will I be solidly and unequivocally convinced  that I have gotten my 300 pennies’ worth.

June 28, 2011

when in doubt shake your head really hard and leaf blowers counter tops irons burning through finger tips bring it back and go it was well and settling down brushing up on barrier transgressions dialogue in epilogue in anticipation of  story telling dusting off little known kernels creeping through and emergent beams of light driving out the last dark little seeds from the pours of skin and making sense not to resist or insist or detest or contest or conspire or require and just admire the fire in now allow the ways to endeavor in faith less loosely based on the sparks the fireworks consuming attention bursting belligerently hasting magnificently time and Time here again greeting and seating and paying out debts for wagers made ages ago in hand-made booklets with short and simple poems by shy little girls quietly living in their minds deferring their thoughts to a boisterous and overpowering cacophony of squatters who had settled themselves there long ago without permission but with the provision that they would leave only when all eternity had imploded outward in a glorious spectacle of lies from their new home and they had determined those shy little girls were clearly and unmistakably dead and gone

Aldous Huxley Quotes

June 27, 2011

“Proverbs are always platitudes until you have personally experienced the truth of them.”

___________

“Science has explained nothing; the more we know the more fantastic the world becomes and the profounder the surrounding darkness.”

___________

“Words, words, words! They shut one off from the universe. Three quarters of the time one’s never in contact with things, only with the beastly words that stand for them.”

___________

“Writers write to influence their readers, their preachers, their auditors, but always, at bottom, to be more themselves.”


As may have been guessed by my posting of inspirational, outside resources on the health benefits of fasting, I was becoming a little lazy and lax on documenting my unfolding experiences.

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In many ways, I thought and felt the health benefits of fasting in a  primary way during my first fasting period. For example, I felt that the condition of my skin improved ( it seemed to assist with the alleviation and reduction of my psoriasis) and (most significantly, and as I mentioned previously) it seemed to be very helpful in improving overall mental well being (decreasing anxiety due to ego-related insecurities, increasing patience and equanimity, and facilitating a sense of continuity in personal identity through time). Not to mention, I did have the sense that my body was being detoxified (all claims that are hard to quantify or qualify and maybe can only be justified through first-person experience).

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This second fasting period (which I am currently on the 8th day of) has not only been much easier to start and smoother to transition to- in fact, I looked forward to starting in a way I hadn’t with the first (I had wanted to will to fast the first time around, but not out of any sense I’d feel super-awesome doing it and obviously not because I missed something about it–since I hadn’t experienced a water fast prior to then). The second time around, I wanted to fast because I missed the sense of calmness, stillness, and adventure that comes with it (I know the latter description may seem like an odd concept to place here, but I’ll qualify). Fasting is an adventure (maybe more properly referred to as an  ‘inner-adventure’) wherein you’re required to challenge yourself constantly (in physical and metaphysical planes) and in the process you begin learning about yourself: your own limitations, your relation to the construction (fabrication) of those limitations (becoming aware of the fears and insecurities that you harbor and how they constrain your day-to-day interactions and compromise your potential for freedom and spiritual growth), what it feels like to access deeper levels of subjective (spiritual) self, and (subsequently) what it feels like to open yourself up (in a very powerful sense) to new opportunities and experiences for spiritual growth and understanding through your interactions with others and the outside world. In fact, I think fasting may be one of the most adventurous and insightful experiences one can endeavor upon.

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Yes, this second fasting period has certainly felt like it has been much more of an opportunity to positively experience the spiritual benefits of fasting. Maybe the overcoming and quieting of the physical discomforts (that perhaps, could only have resulted from more consistently practicing the act of fasting itself) helped allow my mind to focus more continuously and intentionally on the spiritual experiences that are facilitated by the practice.

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One thing I realized is that, until only very recently, when someone asked me why I was fasting (what was the point? what do you get out of it? You’re already healthy- so why such ‘extreme’ behavior? Or, any other variant of these concerns that had been voiced) I would be super-cautious in giving a response that cited empirical evidence of the health benefits associated with it (citing some of the clinical studies I had researched) and the personal health benefits I had experienced to that point. In other words, I was making a deliberate effort to try to keep it sounding like a normal, practical endeavor, with beneficial real-world implications (and in other other words, trying to avoid any judgments of mysticism or irrationality or warped religious fervor or obsession over physical appearance).

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June 27, 2011

 

Never Say Never

June 27, 2011

I don't know how or where or when to start.
 I don't even know if I should (or could) start.
I do take some solace (coupled with a a slight tinge of excitement)
to know that
(at the very least)
I did start
to think about it (and the possibility of it)
and thinking about how to think about it
and believing it makes sense for me to think about it
because maybe
 (maybe)
I deserve it.

June 26, 2011

“People could rationally decide that prolonged relationships take up too much time and effort and that they’d much rather do other kinds of things. But most people are afraid of rejection.”

-Albert Ellis

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Albert, you ole’ S.O.B!

Just calling people out like they don’t have enough ego-concerns and insecurities to indulge themselves needlessly in (and resign themselves indefinitely to).

Thanks, by the way.

June 26, 2011

“One of the very basic ideas of Post-Modernism is rejection of arbitrary power structures. Different people are sensitive to different kinds of power structures. ”

-Larry Wall

 


2nd- ‘Don’t take any negativity others do or say personally.’

3rd- ‘Don’t make assumptions about anything or anyone (avoid expectations).’

(Source: Miguel Ruiz The Four Agreements)

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I would like to have an open heart, be patient, be kind, always. I would like to greet every encounter with a spirit of generosity, open-mindedness, equanimity, patience, and understanding. I would like like to have faith that whatever I feel my needs or desires are, they are properly examined to ensure they are aligned with a pure intent, and that they will be met at the appropriate time. I would like to accept others exactly as they are, never judge them for being who they are, take nothing others may do or say personally, and make myself available to receive new thoughts and ideas that will facilitate my spiritual growth, and the spiritual growth of others.

Mary fun-fact: I have always had a super-soft spot for Dolly Parton (judge away, world!) I think she has a beautiful voice. I also think she’s smart and has a great attitude towards life.

Dolly Parton Quotes:

“Find out who you are, and do it on purpose.”

“I will shed the sins and struggles I have carried all these years. And I’ll leave my heart wide open, I will love and have no fear.”

“I have always been a freak and different, oddball even in my childhood and to my own family, so I can relate to people who are struggling and trying to find their own identity. I do not sit in the seat of judgment. I love people for who they are. We are all God’s children.”

“I’m not offended by all the dumb-blonde jokes, because I know I am not dumb…and I also know that I am not blonde.”

“Love is something sent from Heaven to worry the hell out of you.”