A great Koan in Zen Buddhism: “Who is the great master, the magician that makes the grass green?”

Corn fields in Denmark

Fantastic insight from Robert Anton Wilson repeated here:

Who creates reality and our experience?

The word Yoga means “union”. Yoga comes from the same English root as the word “Yoke” or to bring two things hitched together. You need a human brain and the grass hitched together to make the Yoga, the greenness of the grass.

Many believe it is very hard to be a mystic, that you have to go through a lot of effort to realize your union with everything. But actually you are experience your union with everything all the time. Otherwise you would not be experiencing anything at all.

A group of photons leave the Sun, travel just short of a million miles to reach Earth where they fall onto a blade of grass. The grass absorbs some wavelengths and reflects others. Some of the reflected ones travel in your direction and enter the tiny hole that is your iris which acts as a filter only allowing some wavelengths (you can see) in. The photons finally end their epic journey as they are absorbed by your retina. Your retina gathers these signals (not unlike a digital camera chip) and converts them into an electric signal that travels to the vision center of your brain. Your brain then interprets the upside-down image and ads your own judgement as a final last step and then magically, you “see” the green grass. Insects and other animals don’t have the same shape and size iris so they can see different colors, or wavelengths of light we can’t and visa-versa. The greenness of the grass is more to do with how our eyes work, our nervous system than the grass alone.

YOU make the grass green. You make your highs and you make your lows. But you don’t do it alone. You are making it out of the union with the universe. So everything is a coincidence of contraries, a coincidence of you being there and the universe being there and everything is “one” at the same moment, because there is no green without the grass and there is no green without you.

The greenness is a transaction that ties you and the grass together. The world, in a way, is touching you by your eyes and retina. But what we see is as good as our equipment. If there are wavelengths of light we cannot perceive because of the shape of our eyes, are we seeing real reality?

Because of this, every perception is a gamble.

There is an infinite expanse of signals that are coming into our nervous system and being processed by our higher neural centers in the brain. We are all organizing and orchestrating this information according to our own particular life history, our genetic background, our early imprints, conditioning and learning, so we are all living in different worlds and on a fundamental level, it is amazing we can communicate at all.

You are the co-creator of the sights you see, the sounds you hear with your own impression of the universe. Our experiences are generated by us, we are not generating it out of nothing. Who we are generates it.

We are creating a reality tunnel we are experiencing from moment to moment, so there is a total unity between you and the universe whether you are aware of it or not.

The universe you live in is your creation. But we are not doing it consciously.

When you have seen the one that who makes the grass green it is like meeting your own father in a crowd, you have no doubt whatsoever.

Everything that gets into your brain affects your reality tunnel, your world view or your belief system (BS).

“The universe consists of a series of non-simultaneously apprehended events” – Buckminster Fuller

Any belief system or reality tunnel you have right is going to have to be revised and updated as you continue to apprehend new events later in time (not simultaneously)

You can’t apprehend, you can’t comprehend, you can’t perceive, you can’t understand the whole universe at once.

The universe is non-simultaneously apprehended.

We go through life minute by minute, second by second, day by day, we are never perceiving the same universe, if we are it is because we stopped paying attention. That’s why you get bored, you’re not paying attention.

We can’t apprehend the whole universe right now, past present, future, all spacetime. It takes nine years for signals to get here from Sirus even. Think how long it would take to get here from the other end of the universe, from the farthest galaxy.

So in terms of the theory of special relativity, it is not the same time everywhere so the universe is non-simultaneously apprehended. That means our knowledge at any particular time is part of the universe and tomorrow we will know more, maybe not much more, maybe a lot more who knows?

The truth is a lion, don’t defend it, set it free and it will defend itself. To be truly noble, is not to be better than your fellow man, it is to be better than your former self.

Man on donkey searching all over a town, north south east and west. Someone cries out, “What are you looking for?”. The man replies “My donkey!”

The donkey represents what everyone is looking for when they enter a mystic school, it is the answer to all the riddles of the universe, and you hunt for it North South East and West, and all the time it is carrying you around.

It is the human nervous system which takes out of the infinities of the universe, a reality tunnel that you create, that you consider reality, which is your own create that you think is the whole of the universe. Unless you went to a Sufi School or studied Zen Meditation or dropped LSD, then you realize the universe is more complicated than any map we can make of it.

Put the donkey on your back so you never forget that the master, the great magician that makes the grass green, who creates the whole of the universe you live in.

Mindfulness, a path to control

The past is gone and the future is fantasy. The only thing real is right now. Most people dwell in the past or worry about the future. These are critical for planning and survival, but quickly turn into misery if not checked and “Thinker obsession” takes over.

Given the state of the World, I can’t stop excessive thinking, I worry all the time, how do you make it stop?

 

 

 

 

Tweets vs bombs, how Trump can actually help N.K. negotiations

 

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I can see it now..

United States Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and N.K. Official “X” are having a back channel meeting, in a nondescript building.. 

X is high energy, sitting with impeccable posture…he speaks with a tone of a school teacher to a student..


“Mr Tillerson, my country has been at this a long time. You are not the first American administration bringing empty threats to force us into talks. We don’t fear America as today we have more nuclear bombs than most countries in Europe. It is only a matter of time before we perfect our delivery and reentry systems. America dare not to attack otherwise millions of poor in South Korean will die, and maybe even a few hundred thousand Japanese for good measure. (leans in) Our Dear Leader has given me permission to relay the fact, his secret plans… We are only using SK as a hostage, instead of killing them, we will make them watch us destroy Japan and America, they will have the burden of being left alive, and doing very well.. while the world that came to protect them suffer and die.. many South Korean will commit suicide than live with this shame. We want steel, plans and engineers required to build a US Class Aircraft Carrier. This is what Hillary promised us through back channels during the election. Has your dotard not learned this fact? maybe you can use this persuasion on him.. ” – X


…. A long pause of just staring intensely at X in total silence and stillness..


(clears throat) “Let me be as forward as I can be.. I really don’t think you have a choice here.. look, listen.. you guys had a good run with the last administrations, that time is over. If you want to be seen as a nuclear power on the world stage, you got that.. now you can be rest assured we will treat you like one. Unfortunately, my President is convinced niceties, gifts and “assurances” have failed every leader before him, and in fact have only embolden, enabled and accelerated your nuclear program. I can’t tell you want to do, but I can tell you your time is running out. China has cut access to banks, and material. As you already know my President has signed and sealed orders of engagement. We’re ready. You don’t know what our capabilities are today. What you see on TV.. “Hollywood” that shit is 100 years behind what we actually have, and I am not talking stealth bombers, there are some weapon systems so advanced, so lethal other administrations would not even consider them as options… I think Sun Tzu said it best…

Keep your plans as dark and impenetrable as night.. when you strike, fall like a thunder bolt!”

(Tillerson leaves those last words on the air as he squints his eyes at X, after a pause he leans in)

..This President will not hesitate where others have. I am pleading with you.. If there is any room for peace and agreement, bring your concessions forward now or face ..  “Fire and Fury”…. (leans back against his chair)

Then, as if on queue…


X’s phone vibrates and plays a sound as a new tweet arrives

<it’s from President Trump!>… X starts to read it..

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… X’s phone vibrates again and plays a sound as another tweet arrives…

<it is again from the President…>

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Without having to say a word, Tillerson gives X a serious curl of his mouth, and jab nod.. “See.. I told you so”.

X looks down then up from his phone.. stands, bows in silent acceptance and runs off..

Tillerson noticed X was really freaked out after reading the tweets. Let’s hope they get the message..

We didn’t survive the Cold War with the U.S.S.R. to be destroyed by a punk dictator in a 1950s snow-globe.

 

 

Orbit the mind, a path to mindfulness

Life is full of stuff. Responsibilities, problems even entertainment of modern life can feel like a fire hose sometimes. It is easy to get swept up by it all.  Relationships, bills, school, work.. we have all been there and know what stretching yourself thin to make ends meet feels like. Stress can kill. We only get one ticket on this ride of life so any tools to help avoid stress can be life savers.

[Optimism is overrated]

The half-filled glass is an old, tired cliche and yet can be a useful prop if we start over. Instead of considering the amount of water in the glass and its relation to your attitude, there is a better lesson about stress that is so obvious and yet so easily hidden.

Using a raised and stretched arm, hold the half-filled glass up and ask how much does it weigh? The absolute value doesn’t actually matter here, instead the weight is relative to how long one holds it up. A few moments is effortless. A few minutes and your arm may start to stress and muscles burn. After a few hours and you would have muscle tremors and serious cramps.

This experience is not unlike how we deal with life and stress. A thought weighs nothing but hold it long enough and it will gain mass and become too much to bare. Think about some responsibility, problem or worry for a short time and it isn’t so bad. Obsess over it at three in the morning instead of sleeping and it will fill your life with pain and misery.

The obvious answer which you may have already thought of is “put the glass down”, but that is easier said than done. Instead a more realistic approach is to develop a way to lessen the impact of the weight. Make a thought weightless again. Intrusive, repetitive thoughts and worry is the bane of the modern world. Sometimes it is extremely hard to control and in some of the worst cases, cause one to become paralyzed.

[Blast off]

The first astronauts who made it to orbit in the 1960s reported the sight of Earth from orbit and then later during the missions to the Moon, seeing the entire Earth in a single window was mind shattering. The impact was so profound, the change in perspective threw them out of their normal mind streams and thoughts, and allowed them to reevaluate the scope of their lives, how they saw themselves, relation to others, and the Earth as a whole Mother.

Their worries and worldly possessions all melted away. They seemed almost ridiculous from this height, like meeting God. Billions of people were now bacteria. Everything you ever came in contact with your whole life was smaller than a postage stamp and not more than a tiny dark spot to the eye, if at all.  Continents fly past under them like painted lines on a road, the black ink and rest of known existence to their backs. The deep and light blue hues of the oceans, the green, brown and grays of the land. All of it held together under a thin wrapper of air. They all could not believe how thin our atmosphere is when seen from space. How unbelievably vulnerable we all are, flying through space together on this floating rock with no way to steer or avoid anything in our path. Spaceship Earth was coined during that time for just this reason.

Can you imagine yourself there? Traveling at 30,000 miles per hour. A Sunset and rise every 90 mins. What that must of felt like to be that far from all of humanity, to see ourselves in such a new scale. It is as if a single cell blasting off of your arm and floating in front of you to see the whole body it is part of. They must of felt like they were looking through God’s eyes.

Indeed, the first published photograph of Earth from orbit kicked off the environmental movement en masse. You didn’t have to visit space to impart some of the same emotions and change in perspective.

Could something like this experience exist elsewhere? A change in perspective be found without reaching space? Yes, in fact it can be with you all the time. Much like how we know less about the oceans than we do space, we know less about our true selves than we do each other.

In fact, you can have this spiritual experience at any time by becoming an internal astronaut and creating some space between the thinker and the know-er. You are the know-er, your mind is the thinker. This fact and insight lies at the heart of Far Eastern religion. Humans have known for thousands of years that there is a way to watch your mind tumble under you.

[The Know-er and the Thinker]

When you hear a noise, who is listening? You are not your thoughts just like you are not the sound that enters your ears. You are the life force behind them, the deeper still self listening that hears them and is timeless. Your thoughts, ideologies, loves and hates are all transient, they change over time, but under all this is the light of of a deeper self that is connected to God and the entirety of the universe.

This idea has been studied for thousands of years that goes back to the dawn of culture. In modern days we have now found simple distilled ways to approach these same insights. One of them that has entered the popular media is Mindfulness. A simple way to find yourself is by watching the mind as it works, thinking for you, notice how after each thought, an emotion follows.  Much like Egyptian mythology, every god has a dual nature, a two sided coin. The other side of the dreamer is the thinker. When you are asleep, the dreamer is in control, when you are awake, the thinker is running. Daydream? Thinker! 

An even better analogy is the breather. The breather is just like the thinker. Think about breathing, and the breather hands it over to you. You breathe. Trail off in thought and the breather happily takes over for you without missing a beat. Seamless. The same goes for the thinker. Notice to work on a math problem takes a lot of energy? That is you taking over the thinker! You don’t have to do math, but it is a sharp example. There are two states we can be in, input or output. Any form of creation, is output, any form of information (movies, internet, study, etc..) is input. Are you thinking when you are watching a movie? input or output? Ha, input.. you are not really thinking, you are in “input mode”.

The normal moment to moment process of the mind is one where we perceive, deduce and then internalize the outside world. Our emotions cement the result of our senses and thinking using our understanding of the world and history as we know it. Two people seeing the same scene may have completely different reactions and resulting emotions given their perceptions based on their personal history. The key here is after each thought, it is emotions that make a lasting impression of our perception into our bodies. The body believes what the mind thinks, feelings are that communication between the two and with enough emotion you can be scarred for life.

You think in your mind and feel the emotions in your body. The mind and body connection is one of two speeds. The mind is real-time, it is taking in raw data and providing neurotransmitter signals to produce certain chemicals that then flood into the body which produce emotions we then feel everywhere at once. The body stores these emotions day to day as a long term memory. How you feel when you wake up can color your whole day.

After being flooded with a particular emotion for long periods of time, your body will remember this and kinda get stuck.  Watch a horror movie alone late at night. Even though you know it is not real your body still believes what you have been thinking about for the last two hours. Lying alone in the dark trying to fall asleep after, you body is still filled with fear, you find it hard to fall asleep. This is just a movie but still has a large impact. This is why it can be very hard to break out of depression. Even though your real time thoughts may have shifted to better happier things (a birthday party, found money, love) you may still feel bad in your body. You still feel heavy.

Under the wrong control  you can be flooding the body with bad emotions causing great pain, stress and ultimately sickness, even if most of what you are thinking about is in the future or past (doesn’t really exist).  Worrying about past events or future ones is not unlike the movie. These things although may have really happened or will, are not at the present moment. We are creating them by thinking about them, we make them real and the body feels them just the same.

[The Journey into you]

Most who attempt any path to enlightenment will start with meditation. In reality, it is a fools errand as it is widely known and taught in the West. Instead of trying the impossible: sitting alone in a room, trying desperately to stop thinking. Most will fall asleep or just go through cycles of concentration and varying off into some though, then back to concentration. This is the way of brute force and even the masters of 20 years still compete this cycle over and over. It works for some but I found it tedious and the exact opposite of “relaxing”..

Hold the image of an astronaut floating in orbit outside the Space Shuttle with the world under him. Here you are the astronaut, and the world below you is your mind, cataloging and thinking away like a tireless worker. It is there for you, it is filled with everything you have come in contact with and learned. Even the questions you don’t have answers to, it is all there waiting for you to use it. All the bad that is in the world is in there too. You need this so you can avoid murder, death and harm.

This is the problem, if we don’t realize that our minds have a job to do, that is always collecting everything around us, forming opinions, judgments, predictions.. these are critical for survival, but we get caught up in all this stuff. We think we are all these things, we form attachments and identify with our material objects, social constructs and jobs. When any of these things change, we find great pain. We must shift our identity back to what we really are, our true nature before we were born and had names for things, a timeless presence. The Human mind is the greatest achievement of God and the natural world. The pinnacle of adaptation and evolution. But we must see it for what it is and avoid being swept up by everything it tells us. It can lie to us and hurt us with bad thoughts about ourselves. I can’t count how many times I knew something to be true that just wasn’t so. All the wasted time and emotion, tricked again.

[Inner truth]

Instead of meditation, mindfulness is the opposite approach to the same path. Instead of fighting the mind, become the know-er, step back and watch and listen to your mind under you. Create some space between you and your mind. The mind is a wonderful tool but as it collects everything it comes in contact with, it becomes a garbage bin. Not in  he bad sense of the word, without a garbage bin in your kitchen, your home would become unclean quickly. No a garbage bin is very useful, but here you want to sleep in it, that is the problem. You can’t live there.

Instead, by realizing the deeper truth that your true self lies under your thoughts and emotions, a timeless soul that is part of the one great consciousness of God and the universe. By connecting to this power and depth, your mind can go along being very helpful collecting everything about the world, but by allowing your thoughts, and emotions come and go without having to take every one of them seriously, you can live a life with less stress.

Before your parents had you, what was your true nature? Who are you? the things your parents gave you? the house you lived in? the school and lessons you learned? The job you work? The spouse, marriage and children of your family?

You are a wet robot machine created over millions of years of evolution that uses trillions of parts to function. The universe has fucked itself senseless to make you. YOU are the deep presence, down under the emotions and thoughts. You are the one that feels, hears and acts. You can steer your thoughts like a river when you have the strength, but they will always be there coming like an endless flow as the mind is very helpful and ready to serve you for survival.

Become the know-er within. Realize you are the commander of this great robot wet machine the universe through your parents has given you. Can you peek out from within, look through your eyes by sitting inside the master control room like a captain in a master commander chair in the bridge of a great ship? That’s you!

Your mind is your faithful servant that is constantly absorbing everything it hears, sees, touches and smells. Your emotions are fired after these experiences as an instant way to distill the exact effect these things are having to you.   

“Spacetime Stretcher,” a new demonstration of gravity

This is one of the best descriptions of gravity I have seen. Here are the main points from the video provided by the author, EdwardCurrent:

1. As a falling object’s path goes increasingly in the space (down) direction, it goes a little bit less in the time direction. Gravity is effectively converting some of its travel through time into travel through space. How much time converts into how much space? It works out to be 186,000 miles of space for every second of time — that’s the speed of light! The equivalence between a little time and a lot of space has a parallel with Einstein’s famous equation E = mc^2, where a little mass is equivalent to a lot of energy — also with the speed of light c as the conversion factor, only squared. It’s amazing how all these physics concepts fit together.

2. An object moving up or down at the speed of light, such as a photon, follows a vertical path on our graph. If we could warp the Spacetime Stretcher as much as we wanted, we could make the time axis curve around and re-intersect with this vertical line. That would be a black hole: Even a photon moving straight up would get “warped back” to the place where it started.

3. Spacetime warping is usually depicted as going into a higher dimension — in this case, bending toward or away from the camera. But such a device would have been much harder to build. You can think of this model as a two-dimensional “projection” or “shadow” of three-dimensional curvature, i.e. the flattening of a flared-out surface that curls away from the plane of the graph.

4. In addition to mechanically calculating trajectories of objects falling on the Earth, Mars, or Moon, the Spacetime Stretcher (at a zoomed-out calibration scale) can also calculate the length-contraction and time-dilation observed with a rocket traveling close to the speed of light.

Facebook’s Newest “Feature” is Ease-dropping

 

Facebook wants access to your mobile phone’s microphone.

Why would this ever be a good idea? Well it seems so they can extract the titles of songs and TV content playing around you, then automatically add it to your status updates. How nice of them!

The new second-hand smoke

Even if you don’t have a FB enabled listening device, someone around you might. This starts reaching levels of taking photos of people in public spaces without their permission. Move over Photo Facial Recognition, someday soon, FB will use artificial intelligence algorithms to match your voice using sampled audio. FB already knows everything you tell them, what you look like and now will know what you sound like too.

Outside of these already obvious privacy issues, what if the software is buggy and listens more than it should, or ignores the user’s selection to turn it off. Looking forward, like other past new services, they start as opt-in then quietly turn to opt-out with the next TOS update.

Why take such risks as a company in a time when privacy is a premium?

Maybe it is just my speculation, but it sounds to my ears more like a silly excuse they came up with to launch a powerful feature they couldn’t otherwise. In all sincerity, the NSA and Anti-piracy movement are both future growth markets to build for. The press is ripe with stories of the NSA strong-arming corporations for private data. As well as corporations litigating end-users over copyright infringement. If the NSA are willing to pay FB, or force them with the threat of jail-time, which option would Mark chose? It seems they will get the data one way or another. A system like this can serve both markets nicely. Targeted Ads are the lowest value on the list in my opinion. FB is famous for having low click-through and purchase conversion rates. Most don’t go on FB to buy things, they go there to spy on people.

I could imagine the NSA wanting to partner with social media giants instead of fight them in open court. Why fight for something you can pay handsomely for? Open search access to previously recorded audio, as well as the ability to flag individuals that FB should monitor more closely moving forward. It is win-win for FB. The value to have access to audio, is much greater than access to what content titles end users like, a direct site survey is more effective and accurate for that. This is why I don’t trust FB here, no matter what they say, unless the code is published no one knows the truth.

Here is Facebook’s statement they recently released on the subject of privacy and this new feature:

“No matter how interesting your conversation, this feature does not store sound or recordings. Facebook isn’t listening to or storing your conversations.  Here’s how it works: if you choose to turn the feature on, when you write a status update, the app converts any sound into an audio fingerprint on your phone. This fingerprint is sent to our servers to try to match it against our database of audio and TV fingerprints. By design, we do not store fingerprints from your device for any amount of time. And in any event, the fingerprints can’t be reversed into the original audio because they don’t contain enough information.”

Like many past statements, I think this is mostly hand-waving. It sounds like one way hashing but even if this is the case, who is anyone to say FB can’t update this feature in the future and provide streaming or other forms of recording “fingerprints”. With so little return for the end-user, I can’t see how FB could be risking this much brand loyalty for such an easily misunderstood feature. One that will only add to the negative stigma their brand already has to fight against.

No matter the actual technology used here, once the story is old and out of the press cycle, new users to Facebook will have little clue this app is even part of Facebook and the whole world will have moved another tick on the measure away from privacy. Most will have it running and not realize it, just like all the other past intrusions FB has added. Why stop at phones?  If this takes off, PCs and Tablets and Smart TVs will be next, soon FB will have digital ears and access across the globe in every form-factor imaginable.

Even if we give FB the benefit of the doubt, and all this tech is 100% as they claim and not targeting NSA markets, you can bet the NSA will be calling them very soon if not hacking them already.

 

Magnetically Actuated Micro-Robots for Advanced Manipulation Applications

SRI is developing new technology to reliably control thousands of micro-robots for smart manufacturing of macro-scale products in compact, integrated systems.

I find this very interesting. The possibilities are amazing, including shrinking the factory for delicate fabrication. Perfect for new meta materials like Graphene. Integrate this with a series of small 3D printers and you could have a custom table-top factory to assemble complex systems will minimal infrastructure at a fraction of the cost.

I am the CEO of me, and so are you

I am a marvel.

The universe has incessantly mated itself senseless to give me life.

My body is the most complex robot wet machine ever conceived. It was created by millions of years of evolution, and uses trillions of parts to function. My body and mind are the tip of the spear, the greatest achievement of the entire natural world, and I am the sole commander within it. 

My mind is the central control center where I sit in my Star Trek commander chair. Here I control and see everything in the outside world the rest of my machine can not. Using my keen senses, observations and reasoning, I can bring to bareuniverse-me all my amazing capabilities and powers to the outside world.

When I find passion and purpose, I am unstoppable. I can focus like a laser to accomplish things the world has never seen.

I can cross the biggest ocean and reach the highest peak. I can create the finest art and music, heal sickness and end suffering. I can turn dry land into bountiful farms and move rivers or tunnel under them at will. I can build tall castles of metal and glass to the sky or fly and land on the moon. I can even send my presence using technology to reach the edge of the known solar system.

As omnipotent as I am, the commander can not avoid the results of mistakes or bad choices. Fail often enough, and my trillions of worker cells want mutiny. Depression, malnutrition, even a broken heart can kill me.

It is my responsibility as leader, to ensure I plot a course for success. I stay focused on good nutritional health and exercise, while using virtue and fairness as main guides.

Keep the fire of love and acceptance bright. Burn the daily oil of gratitude for being so lucky to have the command of such a fine marvel, this body and life.

Love yourself and everyone you meet. We are more the same than different.

I think Allan Lokos said it best: “Your actions are your only true belongings.”