Tuesday, January 03, 2023

Borgesian Batesonian Patterns II

"These similarities would seem
to suggest, among other things,
that there are spiritual patterns
at work in the universe,
at least as far as we can tell,
and these spiritual patterns announce
themselves with impressive regularity
wherever human hearts and minds
attempt to attune themselves to
the cosmos in all its radiant dimensions.

Ken Wilber (1949 - )

Monday, January 02, 2023


"If you want to live your life in a creative way, as an artist, you have to not look back too much. You have to be willing to take whatever you’ve done and whoever you were and throw them away. The more the outside world tries to reinforce an image of you, the harder it is to continue to be an artist, which is why a lot of times, artists have to say, 'Bye. I have to go. I’m going crazy and I’m getting out of here.' And they go and hibernate somewhere. Maybe later they re-emerge a little differently."

- Steve Jobs (1955 - 2011)
Quoted by Walter Isaacson

Sunday, January 01, 2023

Borgesian Batesonian Patterns

"It turns out that
an eerie type of chaos
can lurk just behind
a facade of order;
and yet, deep inside the chaos
lurks an even eerier type of order."

 -  Douglas R. Hofstadter (1945 - )

Postscript. Clicking on the image at the top will take you to a new "Ice Forms" portfolio I've posted on my web gallery. On the other hand, the image below - which shows an amalgam of the 16 photographs in this gallery - has a curious aesthetic all its own.


Apart from my lifelong attraction to "order within chaos within order within..." (both as photographer and physicist), the Borgesian Batesonian in me is drawn to the all-but-invisible emergent patterns that connect the patterns we (only partly consciously) weave. While the individual images hold no more relation to one another than the fact that they were all captured along the same 10-foot-long shoreline of a local lake during a single happy hour of searching for "ice forms" a few days ago when the temperature dipped into the single digits, the "amalgam" is at once both strangely familiar (as though I had "seen" it lurking somewhere within the frozen water) and alluringly alien (since, though it is undeniably something my camera "captured," it is also something I could not have possibly observed). It's random-yet-not-random frozen forms and eddies hint at some mysterious (creative - living?) froth that periodically dispenses with aesthetically pleasing patterns that photographers "catch" glimpses of and then call their own.

Friday, December 30, 2022

Winds of the Heavens

"Let there be spaces in your togetherness, And let the winds of the heavens dance between you. Love one another but make not a bond of love: Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls. Fill each other's cup but drink not from one cup. Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf. Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone, Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music. Give your hearts, but not into each other's keeping. For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts. And stand together, yet not too near together: For the pillars of the temple stand apart, And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other's shadow."

Kahlil Gibran (1883 - 1931)

Thursday, December 29, 2022

Liminal State of Awareness

"There is another place that can be summoned through practice that is not the imagination, but more a secondary positioning of your mind with regard to spiritual matters… It is a kind of liminal state of awareness, before dreaming, before imagining, that is connected to the spirit itself. It is an “impossible realm” where glimpses of the preternatural essence of things find their voice. Arthur lives there. Inside that space, it feels a relief to trust in certain glimpses of something else, something other, something beyond."

- Nick Cave (1957 - )
Faith, Hope and Carnage

Wednesday, December 28, 2022


 "The nitrogen in our DNA,
the calcium in our teeth,
the iron in our blood,
the carbon in our apple pies
were made in the interiors
of collapsing stars.
We are made of starstuff.
Science is not only compatible with spirituality;
it is a profound source of spirituality."

Carl Sagan (1934 - 1996)

Tuesday, December 27, 2022

Beyond Mere Doctrine

"All beings by nature are Buddha,
As ice by nature is water.
Apart from water there is no ice;
Apart from beings, no Buddha.
How sad that people ignore the near
And search for truth afar:
Like someone in the midst of water
Crying out in thirst,
Like a child of a wealthy home
Wandering among the poor.
Go far beyond mere doctrine.
Here effect and cause are the same,
The Way is neither two nor three.
With form that is no-form,
Going and coming, we are never astray,
With thought that is no-thought,
Singing and dancing are the voice of the Law.
Boundless and free is the sky of Samádhi!
Bright the full moon of wisdom!
Truly, is anything missing now?
Nirvana is right here, before our eyes,
This very place is the Lotus Land,
This very body, the Buddha"

- Hakuin Ekaku (c.1686 - c.1769)
 The Essential Teachings of Zen Master Hakuin