I am the tiger that eats me

“Time is the substance I am made of. Time is a river which sweeps me along, but I am the river; it is a tiger which destroys me, but I am the tiger; it is a fire which consumes me, but I am the fire.”

We are made for art, we are made for memory, we are made for poetry, or perhaps we are made for oblivion. But something remains, and that something is history or poetry, which are not essentially different.

— Jorge Luis Borges

Quotes About Death

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Controlling Computers with our Thoughts

Keyboards and mice are convenient and precise, but slow and especially difficult for people with some kinds of disabilities.  Voice control of computers has advanced greatly in the last decade, but we’re still nowhere near the place where we can talk to Hal the way Dave did.

Most convenient of all would be if we can control computers with our thoughts, the same way we decide to reach out a hand or a foot and our bodies comply with our wishes.  Control of our bodies is mediated by a network of nerves that connect our brains to the extremities and everywhere in between.  Computers don’t have that kind of access to details of the neural activity in our brains.  Most of us would rather not have electrodes implanted in our skulls.  So work has proceeded on how to decode voltage signals on the scalp.

This has been surprisingly effective.  The key to success has been that the brain is wired in a flexible way that facilitates learning.  With feedback from the computer, people learn to create just the electric patterns that the computer is programmed to look for, and to control the computer with their thoughts.

This week there is a report of a more efficient control system that requires no training.  A multinational team based in Japan has been working to get the computer trained how to read the human brain rather than having the human learn how to control the computer.  Preliminary success is encouraging.  The first applications will involve wheelchair control by quadriplegics.

Univ of S Calif Press Release                                             Article in Science Advances

Volcanos

I measure satisfaction and self-worth by a particular look on a face in not so many words expressed by the opening of the fused inclines of the beautifully crafted volcano humans like to call ‘the mouth.’ Just the intonation of the word ‘mouth’ sounds like an eruption of hot, molten lava spewing out of a vibrantly decorated, volcanic mountain God sprinkled with His fingertips as a never-ceasing awe and wonder designed to destroy the gruesome, vile environment when necessary to paint a much more vividly fruitful Earth with the absence or limitation of words to inflame the volcano a 2nd time to erupt the powerful substance killing everything it touches. As long as the volcano remains contained, pleased, and most times inactive it will grow to be the most beautiful art exhibit God originally hoped and dreamed it would be for the other volcanos to admire the immense beauty and inspiration of God’s painting of this volcano of no particular size and pride in its final achievement in becoming inactive in the expression of words altogether and the activation God molded in the thoughts and emotions penetrating the soul while palpitating the heart in the internal love eruptions that pour out of the heart red as lava through the entire body, out of the beautifully created mouth, and into the heart of the one these life-giving, selfless words of irreplaceable seeds of love are spoken to. However, sometimes words are not enough. Like the volcano of the mouth, the volcano of the heart bleeds with burning lava when words have little or no feeling attached to it. The heart will also bleed when words of hatred and bitterness abuse the receiving heart, thus causing the heart to be fused together in an ever hardening cocoon that refuses to be opened protecting the heart from further damage either expressed or received. With this hardened heart the person is protected, but the damage that entered the heart is permanently sealed within the heart’s chambers parasitizing the love that once filled up the heart as well as the hearts of those people closest to this person. This parasitic cocoon now prevents the heart from being softened unless the person is willing and inspired to sacrifice the protection and confinement of the hurt feelings to allow the hardened cocoon to heat up the broken lava rocks of the cocoon lighting the rocks of fire allowing the heart to melt and soften into the heated lava of love which will be used to forgive all the damage foolishly inflicted upon this heart which is now free to love and be loved by others as the person’s lava flows and melts other hardened, cocooned hearts in a bubbly pool of warmth for all hearts aglow with the love that should always be there.
Bill Darrah
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There’s a Troll in My Coffee

One’s prodigious capacity for instant story-telling, or rapid inflation, upstages the innocent simplicity of present being, thus we subscribe to mind by default as an accurate compendium of who and what and where and why we are now.

We become hyper-inflated with self and come to embrace a steady preoccupation with everywhere else but here, so sure of our imaginations and will to guide us toward future fulfillment.

This generally accepted habit, an insidious parasite of fantasy, presumes agency and dominion as it takes all the credit for whatever we think has, is, and will happen.

We are entranced with what we think as the oracle and high priest of what’s real, while having no actual contact with the ever effervescing surprise of empty experience.

Mind, a self-conditioning reference accusation and projection system, is a symptom of empty experience, but if we clutch too tight it can appear to be exempt from suspicion. The reflex to believe in mind is the seed of individuated coherence, the source of self and other, and the genesis of existential malnourishment that leads to conflict and violence.

Experience, the sole infinity, is concomitantly empty of objects, empty of implication, and full to spilling over with stuff to believe in. If we fail to see the Dao of radiant inclusivity we end up one-sided, tethered to belief. If we are invited and inspired to behold the entirety, we become nourished by the intoxicating presence of emptiness as ourselves.

Wouldn’t you know it, there’s a Troll in my coffee.

Night Sky Sangha

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Listen

We know right away if someone’s inspired or merely devout—
Nor Moonies nor Marxists nor Tupperware salesmen can fool us.  
But within, institutional din, social message has power to rule us,   
And God’s whisper is drowned by the roar of their collective shout.

All wisdom and all certainty depend on this foundation
Inner light is not a luxury for rare, inspired moments—
Sanity itself is Phoenix, rising from turmoil it foments,
This collective, primal sanity may prove mankind’s salvation.

Death and Sleep are timeless portals for the music of nature’s choir;
The lost art of dreaming, our connection to the source of creation.            
Without sleep, we sink in desperate selfishness and isolation;
Without death, our souls are stalled, suspended, and can climb no higher.

Less doing, more listening—in the end we know it comes to this.
Lurking fears, the lonely quest for power—these are not things we will miss.

— Josh Mitteldorf

Citizen-funded Ocean Cleanup

Scientists are preparing to launch the world’s first machine to clean up the planet’s largest mass of ocean plastic.

The system, originally dreamed up by a teenager, will be shipped out this summer to the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, between Hawaii and California, and which contains an estimated 1.8 trillion pieces of plastic.

It will be the first ever attempt to tackle the patch since it was discovered in 1997.

The experts believe the machine should be able to collect half of the detritus in the patch – about 40,000 metric tons – within five years.

Read more at The Independent

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