Wednesday, May 16, 2007

A Test

This blurry, hastily snapped view from my study window (nice, eh?) is posted simply as a test of the little Vaio's ability to down- and upload images with ease. Seems to work, no?


Eli said...

I think your link may be broken. I see a frame for a image, but the image itself is gone.

carly said...

No image here either. Damned contraptions!

P: How's this for a nice spin? All kinds of people are into spin. One Chi Kung exercise is Drawing the Bow and Letting the Arrow Fly. The instructor, an enlightened man, attempts to make it politically correct by explaining:

Although most references for this exercise are to the act of shooting eagles, hawks, or other types of birds, this is not required.  One could imagine aiming at and letting an arrow fly to many types of targets.  A Buddhist might imagine targeting and striking at one's individual faults, shortcomings, and evil behaviors; or hitting the targets of wisdom or enlightenment. A Taoist  might imagine targeting and striking at tension, interfering behaviors, and gluttony; or hitting  the targets of health, energy, vitality, and longevity.  A Confucian might imagine targeting and striking at selfishness, sloth, disrespect, greed and ignorance; or hitting the targets of  social harmony, cooperation, civility, and propriety.  In a similar manner, a Christian might want to aim at love and forgiveness, or a Moslem aim at universal brotherhood and charity. A hunter might imagine shooting all types of game animals; or, a soldier imagine shooting  at an enemy in battle.  What are the negative behaviors, attitudes, and ideas that you wish to  eliminate?  What are the positive goals, aims, or objectives that you wish to target and hit  on the bull's-eye?

carly said...

another word verification:

"enkws" a crow's in-laws

carly said...

Oh, here's a good one:

"fipzqu" phip-zee-que the foam on the top of an ice cream soda

and: "pkgvk" German people who love wrapping boxes and gifts

I think I'll save these for a book! That would be a good use of paper.

PeterAtLarge said...

Second time lucky. Thanks to both, PaL

PeterAtLarge said...

Oh, and Carly... re the spin: that does seem to cover most bases!

carly said...

Definitions can be troublesome. Me saying man is an anomaly in nature, of course, gives rise to its contradiction. When someone purports that man was, is, and always will be "natural", I, too, can contradict that as well. I could argue that some men are "unnatural", wild cards, a fluke, a factor of chaos, like Bush, for instance, outside the laws of nature though techincally a biological being. The Changes says of this kind of man, "he is not as he should be". For the word 'should' is not a dirty word in Taoism, since other criteria define the worth of the word and concept. Therefore we seem to be in stasis or equilibrium in the abstract sense.

However, as I tried to point out, there is this little matter of blame, as the original thinker of the Tao pointed out.

Lao Tzu was very comfortable with making distinctions, as is the Book of Changes, which states that by making distinctions, superior men can create order and further the work of nature to benefit him and all others (as man has done to a great degree). Top Buddhists also see the importance of science in the life of man. Lao Tzu and The Changes also have no good things to say about erudition and sophistry. I think the distinction to be made here is, in argument there is stasis: yes, we cannot escape our and the surrounding nature, BUT, there has been a shift. The facts of experience, "reality", are clear, most men's activities (arrogance, greed, wastefulness) have swung the balance of nature to the side of degeneration. Man is to blame for putting nature out of balance. It is only a matter of argument that he either change and correct it, from his position within nature, or the rest of nature will force him to (in disastrous ways).

So perhaps it could be argued within cause and effect. "man left nature, but nature did not leave man." is not a Taoist quote, but it's an understandable idea. I see it as, we change in order to avert disaster and suffering, and we do it best, for, by, and with the great laws of the plant world. Taoism is concerned with keeping the world in fruitful balance, by going green.

Another Book of Changes teaching:
Questioning is good. But undue questioning can bring a man to irresoluteness and even standstill. Since Taoists are attempting to reach equilibrium and not standstill (to us it is regression and can lead to suffering), determining the "right" moment for action is a valid, most desirable position.

However, in a certain connection to Buddhism, a man must reach stillness within himself, through contemplation and meditation of the great laws, to perceive what is "right" and "good" and to act on the world through "non-action", another term which needs explaining. This is the exceptional man, the sage.