The Circle of Life – A Lion’s Point of View

THE SERENGETI—According to a male lion currently dying on the Serengeti Plain, his agonizing demise certainly doesn’t seem as though it’s part of some transcendent cosmic circle of life, but rather as if he’s slowly and painfully bleeding to death.

The expiring lion, who dragged his weakened body onto an isolated patch of grassland Monday after being mortally wounded by a poacher, confirmed to reporters that he is not experiencing a tranquil, satisfying sense of harmony with the universe, but is instead mainly feeling intense physical torment brought on by a fatal wound to the abdomen.

“I could be wrong, and maybe this is all an enchanting and noble chapter in life’s great cosmic narrative, but right now it pretty much just feels like I’m dying alone on the ground in a puddle of my own blood,” said the 500-pound big cat, releasing a deep moan as violent spasms seized his body. “Shouldn’t I be feeling a stirring sensation of kinship with all living creatures or something? Yeah, I’m not getting any of that.”

“Plus, I was illegally shot by a poacher. How does that fit into this ancient, majestic cycle in which all of nature is connected as a unified being?” the lion added.

Observing his surroundings, the moribund lion reported that he has seen no brilliant gleaming light shining down from the heavens that makes him realize he’s part of a sacred tradition as old as life itself, nor has a hush seemed to fall over the land in a reverent acknowledgment of his passing.

In addition, the large African mammal noted that succumbing to a gunshot wound hasn’t resulted in a spiritual awakening in which he suddenly feels at one with the universe, so much as it has made him feel terrified, alone, and utterly insignificant.

The lion also reported that he has heard no triumphant string music backed by thundering tribal drums swelling all around him, but rather only the sound of flies buzzing around his soon-to-be lifeless body.

“I guess I thought there’d be a choir of chanting, melodic voices, and that all the animals of the African valley would gather on a distant ridge to respectfully view my last moments and recognize our essential interconnectedness,” said the lion, drawing his last labored breaths. “But there’s nobody else around at all, except those vultures.”

Added the lion, “Am I supposed to feel pride and great dignity knowing that my body will decay and a bunch of birds will eagerly tear into my rotting flesh with their beaks?”

As he closes his eyes for the final time before yielding to one last series of convulsions, the lion is reportedly pondering whether shitting all over himself really played any role at all in some vast, beautiful, and endless saga of life, death, and rebirth.

Source

Russell Brand and Daniel Pinchbeck have a chat under a neon fish in front a pagan altar

In this video, Russell and Daniel talk about consciousness, media, conditioning, drugs, physics, capitalism. Some quotes:

RB: “People have been – beyond trained – coded to not anticipate change, to think that change is implausible, like we’ve had revolution bred out of us.”

RB: “How do we alter the consciousness, the fundamental unifying field? How do we influence change on that level to alter the world?”

DP: “A lot of people who were addicts are people with a strong, innate need to experience non-linear states of consciousness.”

RB: “Consciousness does affect matter. Meditation can affect crime rates.”

“Q: What comes after time?

RB: … We don’t need to know. … We need to align our consciousness with the fundamental frequency from which all life comes and to generate love and unity between us.

Q: But I want to understand.

RB: Then feed and clothe the poor”

DP: “Most people are trapped in only one form of consciousness.”

DP: Capitalism requires more and more things to being turned into money and profit but this has now reached an absurd limit, so the capital system is breaking down. Capitalism is an immature system.”

RB: “The entertainment industry keeps us spellbound, as passive consumers, to negate and castrate our civic duties, to keep us as citizens who don’t participate in our culture but are just independent cells of consumption glutting on life like larve, until we pop.”

RB: “Advertising could be used, instead of telling you if you drink Coke you will feel sexy, telling people that if you meditate you will feel connected to your ultimate destiny as a spiritual being that is only distinguished from the earth by subjectivity incessantly imposed.”

The video includes a very funny segment of Russell crossing Tower Bridge on acid: “There Be Dragons!” Good to see such a mainstream figure involved in these subjects and questions. I hope with the divorce and his further disillusion with ‘fame for the sake of it’ and focussing on comedy roles, he is able to explore and communicate further along these lines.

I couldn’t embed the video on WordPress but here is the link

110216 Hackintosh

Prefer Bing to Google? Not sure why anyone uses Bing, but here’s an interesting article. Basically it seems that Microsoft are copying Google’s search results. To prove it, Google fixed a couple of fake search returns for a search like ‘djksijljeejjw’ or something, so it would return one page that had nothing to do with this search string. The very same nonsense search on Bing returns the same page! It’s not against the law, but someone from Google, who put a lot of resources into refining their search algorithms, said it’s like looking over someone’s shoulder in an exam. Microsoft; never original.

Back to Google, here’s a You Tube internal error message I saw today:

500 Internal Server Error

Sorry, something went wrong.

A team of highly trained monkeys has been dispatched to deal with this situation.
If you see them, show them this information:

ZIf_ar2jfRmr7JcVVsJWAfNznnucO5iItQlLBks_BSQihlIGVHaznxT_v8rs
pZGSETqkFWoOaNU2TF9ZEDDvQmqxhDQqgMnTU_WKVBLhdxqapoyWEOsBOfWR
Z6E2HtctdG5w-tFRDo7zS4JDeggKFH3Go-FRApMF0J6DOhHKwBsg9L6mg5ws
E7GJpqJg3MfxVGLVy7iOyHrwXviXqnoLkgBnUTJdHvP3BX-20RH6lU8z-glS
SULOhWrecoVhLPCxP0P5iDMzHq-zMjgmFpRT_KVQPsVSJsFOsrUhWEQY2… etc

– while uploading this:

Vic and Noel, different generations, same humour.

I’ve been looking into building a PC for a Hackintosh experiment. Thanks to Kakewalk and iBoot/Multibeast it’s apparently easier than ever to run OSX on PC hardware. You have to make sure the hardware is compatible to what Apple uses. So far it’s looking like I can build a brand new high end i7 silent PC for around £640. (i.e. near Mac Pro performance for the cost of a Mac Mini)

Steps stepped: Not very many. I’ve been at home sick most of the day.

22 Jan 2011

An indoors day. Watching several episodes of Everest: Beyond The Limits. Why is it the only thing climbers think to say is: “There’s no one higher than me in the world!” “Top of the world, baby!” Such long queues going up and down, with gridlock at the Hilary Step, the last technical climb before the summit. People are leaving earlier and earlier to get ahead of the crowds. In Into Thin Air, they were leaving around midnight, and now some climbers leave around 21:00, meaning its still dark when they summit. Ummmm, a bit daft really.

The afternoon, researching tents with Caroline. I have a The North Face tadpole, a little green 1-2 man which isn’t so comfortable for two-man car-camping. On other trips we’ve borrowed one of the school’s, but we wanted one of our own. After looking around, fixing a price and checking reviews, we went for an Outwell Nevada M. This is a family tent, so loads of space. We got a deal that included a footprint groundsheet, floor blanket and front extension. As soon as it gets a bit warmer we’ll try it out, maybe on the Isle of Wight. It’s kind of both our birthday presents.

Otherwise, apart from the daily yoga, some browsing of the horror and the humour…

How not to streak:

The possible use of synthetic biology to clean up the Gulf oil disaster:

SYNTHETIC GENOME BIOREMEDIATION

Toxic crude oil and gas can be changed, altered, or eliminated by microbes. Natural microorganisms in all the oceans, such as bacteria, have been known to do this over time, usually lasting decades and beyond. It’s a slow natural process. Yes, natural biology can do the job, but under continual flow conditions there is no possible way all the hydrocarbon-hungry microbes in the entire world can eliminate that much oil and gas fast enough. Time is the critical factor.

For the past decade, synthetic biology has been the new science realm. We now have engineered genetic biology that synthetically creates RNA and DNA sequences for both viruses and bacteria.

In the 1980’s, the fad was designer jeans. Now, we have designer genes.

Soon after the Deepwater Horizon inferno, U.S. government scientists – with grant funds supplied by British Petroleum – started giving us solid clues as to what they were doing with all that crude oil and gas. In May 2010, National Geographic quoted Dr. Terry Hazen from the U.S. government’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory who said,

“…we could introduce a genetic material into indigenous bugs via a bacteriophage – a virus that infects bacteria – to give local microbes DNA that would allow them to break down oil. Either that, he said, or a lab could create a completely new organism that thrives in the ocean, eats oil, and needs a certain stimulant to live…”

The robots to replace you:

Between the global economic downturn and stubborn unemployment, the last few years have not been kind to the workforce. Now a new menace looms. At just five feet tall and 86 pounds, the HRP-4 may be the office grunt of tomorrow. The humanoid robot, developed by Tokyo-based Kawada Industries and Japan’s National Institute of Advanced Industrial Sciences and Technology, is programmed to deliver mail, pour coffee, and recognize its co-workers’ faces. On Jan. 28, Kawada will begin selling it to research institutions and universities around the world for about $350,000. While that price may seem steep, consider that the HRP-4 doesn’t goof around on Facebook, spend hours tweaking its fantasy football roster, or require a lunch break. Noriyuki Kanehira, the robotic systems manager at Kawada, believes the HRP-4 could easily take on a “secretarial role…in the near future.” Sooner or later, he says, “humanoid robots can move [into] the office field.”

Incredible night time LED-lit surfing:

Mark Visser Rides JAWS at Night! from Fortrus Sports on Vimeo.

Chase No Face the mutant kitteh.

And, the funniest expression as this Weimaraner sniffs a fart:

4 Jan 2011

Last night I began packing for the Lake District staff week. So far: ice skates. Then lay down and listened to music until sleepy, again lots of energy coursing through my body. It doesn’t make me jump and twitch and shake like it used to; the channels are clearer. Following a beat, a refrain, a melody took me on many journeys. Just stay with it and music can be magical, not just a distraction or entertainment.

Yoga this morning, a review day of the eight postures learnt so far in the course. The first four days of sustained practice are very familiar to me – the loosening up of the body, unwinding tensions, increased energy, greater awareness. It’s now that things get interesting and less predictable as these trends continue. While sitting I searched for the sick feeling of the last few days but only sensed traces of it. Often as thoughts ceased there was an immense presence of now, a pervasive energy tangible yet non-personal.

Back at work my lower back feels much stronger and I am sitting straighter. I feel it loosening up, too. I firmly believe yoga is the best prevention for back troubles. After all, most back pain is initially caused by weak back muscles. Look after your back – stretch. Gently.

WordPress are promoting postaday2011 (or postaweek2011). Today’s theme is: Share something that makes you smile. This works for me every time (although I do feel a little sorry for him, poor little blighter):

Perhaps even better, the remix:

Right, on with the packing, and laundry. Hoping for more anti-zap.

Lyric of the Day – A Sardine in a Hair Net, by Reeves & Mortimer

Like a shrimp in a suitcase laying on a window ledge,
like a pair of tartan slippers and they’re underneath a hedge,
like a scout master at daybreak putting peanuts in his glove,
like a specially formed ice arch for climbing over doves,
like a sardine in a hair net and he’s staring at a priest.

These things you’ll find constantly irritate our minds.

Like a sugar unicycle that’s being ridden by a fork,
like a batten berg owned by Jesus that can miraculously talk,
like a lemon pip with sideboards fighting a bearded crab,
or Bono in a boob tube on the choir master’s lap,
like a elaborate heating system apparently in Kent.

These things you’ll find constantly irritate our minds.

Like a badger with an afro throwing sparklers at the Pope,
like a family of foxes and they’re glowering at some soap,
like a lump of Nazi nougat walking down an avenue,
like a Tudor vacuum cleaner saying “How do you do?”
like a kestrel having sex above a television set.

These things you’ll find constantly irritate our minds.