100215 Feeling the fear and doing it anyway

It’s all caught up with me today, almost exhausted after the moving, decorating, the underlying emotions of C moving, the work on the flat here and this evening, the yoga teaching. I didn’t have much ooomph for the class but I enjoyed teaching it once I was there. Beforehand, as each week, the flight response so strong, the wanting to cancel, to walk away, to not bother, to find any excuse. But each week I go through with it and despite the nerves it does ease something deep inside that has long been fearful. I was very much in touch with this shameful fear on the yoga teacher course, often listening to a small voice asking why are we doing this, not wanting to it, wanting to stay with mother, stay safe, and not mix with these outsiders. To this I listened, I accepted, I loved. And now I am doing something I never thought I would be able to, something I have run from my entire adult life and most of my childhood. It’s hard but there is nothing else for it. And I get to share the thing I love, the thing I have stuck with longest in this life: yoga. I have total respect for this ancient art.

Steps stepped: 6044


Notices (29 July 2010)

– I listen to the seconds tick and they seem to be somewhat in a hurry. Or maybe it’s me, because sometimes they seem incredibly leisurely

– When I breathe it originates from the back of the nose. When the body breathes it’s from the diaphram

– I used to wake up in the morning and want to go back to sleep. Now I want to get up

– Having filled my head with trivia and crappage, I can’t expect the brain to be quiet just like that

– When I lie still and make no effort, blisses are returning

– All action has consequence

– Get the balance right. Headstands are becoming steadier

– Because I made a decision last week, year, yesterday, it doesn’t mean I have to stick with it

– Yoga has nothing to do with pride

– Take full, effortless breathes whenever you remember. This may not be often

– Where does the time go? Was it ever here?

– I find myself funny

– Time for myself, else bitterness and regret

– Let’s twist again, like we did last practice

– The Sivananda Rishikesh Sequence has allowed me to practice in silence, alone, steadily, without an instructor, audio or book


It is entirely unclear if such thing as an entity as me exists.
It seems like there is, in an everyday way.
Everyone, mostly everyone, thinks there is.
But when I look into it, it seems very uncertain, slippery, shady.
It’s easy to make people, ourselves, into entities, into a who.
Even animals I can make into a who.
Even objects.
We make everyone into a who.
Even ourselves.
But there does seems to be a who,
in the sense of a doer,
a willer,
an observer,
a watcher.
The one making an effort.
Continue reading

Where are we?

Driving along the road. How come this is even happening? Sure, I understand evolution, of us and of technology. So me driving a car is happening. But what’s it happening in? What is this world? I know what it is made of, but what is it inside of; where is it? What is this universe? Inquiry into time, space, matter is the only answer. But to do that in science you have to become a specialist and because it is so advanced, become esoteric. What about us, the non-specialists? Can we find out what is going on? The answers must be wider than those the specialists give – the philosopher, the scientist, the man of religion. I start with the fact that this mind, this brain within this skull, is of this universe, is of this mystery, is these things. Time and space are within us as matter and we are of it. So we can touch it, or are being touched. I feel this is the only way into the mystery of existence.

There is evil in the world to which we are contributing, as we contribute to the good. Man seems to unite more in hate than in good. A wise man realises the cause of evil and good, and through understanding frees thought-feeling from it.

– Krishnamurti

The joys of solitude

As someone who relishes solitude, I enjoyed this article today. An extract:

I asked a few friends when they had last spent 24 hours without human company. “That’s a tough one,” one 40-year-old woman said. “A whole day, you mean?” No, a whole day, evening and night. “I simply couldn’t!” She has a young son, which would make things difficult right now, but what about before he came along? “Twenty-four hours, without seeing anyone at all? It's never happened to me.” Elsewhere, a few people suggested that, they guessed, it might possibly, perhaps have occurred a decade or two ago, when they were living on their own, or sharing with friends who had pushed off for the weekend. They were definitely ill, or they’d have invited someone over, or gone a-visiting.

Are people uncomfortable with solitude because they so rarely experience it, or do they so rarely experience it because they are uncomfortable with it? What is clear is that most of us persist in equating aloneness with loneliness, and company with companionship, despite a lifetime of evidence to the contrary. “We are for the most part more lonely when we go abroad among men than when we stay in our chambers,” is how Henry David Thoreau put it after two years as the sole inhabitant of a house he had built in the Massachusetts woods. You’re never more alone than when you're in a crowd. A cliche, perhaps, but most of us recognise the truth in it.

Before moving to the back of beyond, I spent almost 40 years ­surrounded by people, first as one of five children, then in shared houses, and finally in a succession of London flats. I had girlfriends, a daughter, flatmates, people to the left of me, people to the right of me, people in front, behind and, in the more pleasant moments, under or on top of me. I sometimes feel unloved now, but I sometimes felt unloved then. Doesn’t everyone?

via The joys of solitude | Life and style | The Guardian.

Strive and strife are one

If there is becoming, there is pain. It’s a law. But I pretend it isn’t. The subtle levels of changing, of striving, of becoming. I pretend I don’t know what I am becoming, so pretend that I am not doing that. And yet this law seems in the face of the world, society, which is based on becoming something you are not now, or ridding yourself of the things you don’t want in your life. Get richer, get fitter, get more popular, be a better person – it’s normal, right? It seems natural. Society is based on progress, achievement, changing. And yet it is clear that if there is this desire, urge, striving, goal there is inherent pain. No wonder no one seems very happy. And those involved in teaching ‘change’ seem very stern. It’s not that we shouldn’t look after ourselves. It’s that the pushing causes pain (which causes more pushing). Strive and strife are one.


Life as we know it, our daily life, is a process of becoming. I am poor and I act with an end in view, which is to become rich. I am ugly and I want to become beautiful. Therefore my life is a process of becoming something. The will to be is the will to become, at different levels of consciousness, in different states, in which there is challenge, response, naming and recording. Now, this becoming is strife, this becoming is pain, it is not? It is a constant struggle: I am this, and I want to become that.

Giving myself some time

One week of the year gone already. No wonder a month, a year, a decade, a life can go by so fast. In the words of John Hughes (as spoken by Ferris Bueller): Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.

Even early in the morning it’s easy to get caught in the forward momentum of the day. When this happens I tend to rush through my practice, or else feel rushed as I do it. There’s the feeling that I need to get on to the next activity. I found today that allowing myself some time really helped, to make this time yoga time and nothing else needs doing for a while. No, you don’t have to check your emails. Yes, the cleaning of the coop can wait a while. This allowed attention on what I was doing: the review day of all 14 postures learnt so far on the 28-day plan, and to breathe more fully. Yoga equals awareness and there’s no yoga without it. We don’t need to slow down, just see why we are speeded up.

Hittleman (selecting a short segment of his Thoughts for the Day):

The histories and conditions of no two bodies are alike and consequently there is to be no competition in the practice of yoga. You will receive the full benefit of each of the movements according to your particular structure.

Krishnamurti, Book of Life, 8th of January:

After all, you only learn when you give your whole being to something. … When you do not want to learn but are forced to learn, then it becomes merely a process of accumulation.

No conspiracy is needed

Back to work after having Friday off and fewer hours worked the rest of last week.

Vish rang to say he has a new technician lined up for the video project, which is great news after months of delays. He just needs to get the visa sorted and the rest of the equipment ready, and then we can start.

Wendy’s mum died today. We were all in shock from her shock of the news. Death moved a step closer and could be felt in all of us as we continued the morning, Wendy having gone home. Caroline and I talked about it this evening, of course it made me think of the time Mum called to tell me Dad had died.

Working on a direct recording this afternoon about a new kind of education; this recorded around the time of the start of Brockwood Park School. The short direct recordings making a change after the 35-page school discussions; been selecting ones for the reunion MP3 disc.

Emailing this evening after a clearup after the weekend after Carl Fredrick leaving on Friday.

Watching Zeitgeist: Addendum yesterday evening and will continue now. Money from nothing. Then 90% on top of that. And built in horrors of inflation and interest. Hardly anyone understands the whole system and as long as we are under the spell of growth and increased profit, we are basically slaves to debt. No conspiracy is needed.

No yoga these days but took up month two of EA Sports Active, and actually went for a walk after lunch.

Overwork, stress, modern life, out of the now.

We live in a world, she tells me, where “nothing is enough”. Driven by debt, we need to work harder all the time. Crushed by overwork, our relationships begin to break down. Robbed of the healing balm of relationships, we become more and more insecure and exhausted. More and more exhausted, we become less efficient at our jobs, which makes us more insecure, and so on. In our heads, we are always thinking about what’s just ahead rather than what’s happening now. “We are out of the now,” Bunting tells me, “which is an exhausting place to be.”

via William Leith discovers the hidden problems with living in a 24-hour world | Life and style | The Observer.

Facebook Questionnaire (Yes or No)

I quite like answering questions. And these are really easy.

Kissed more than one of your Facebook friends?
Been arrested?
Kissed someone you didn’t like?
Slept all day long?
Fallen asleep at work/school?
Held a snake?
Ran a red light?
Been given detention in school?
Totalled your car/motorbike in an accident?
Been fired from a job?
Sang karaoke?
Done something you told yourself you wouldn’t?
Laughed until something you were drinking came out your nose?
Caught a snowflake on your tongue?
Kissed in the rain?
Sang in the shower?
Sat on a rooftop?
Been pushed into a pool with all your clothes?
Broken a bone?
Shaved your head?
Played a prank on someone?
Felt like killing someone?
Made your girlfriend/boyfriend cry?
Had Mexican jumping beans for pets?
Been in a band?
Shot a gun?
Donated Blood?
Eaten alligator meat?
Eaten cheesecake?
Still love someone you shouldn’t?
Worry about the future?
Believe in love?
Like to cuddle?
Sleep on a certain side of the bed?
Talk in your sleep?
Laughed until you peed your pants?
Spend too much time on Facebook?
Play a musical instrument?
Been to Canada?
Been to Mexico?
Been to Europe?
Been to China?
Been skinny dipping?
Gone sky diving?
Gone snowmobiling?
Dated someone longer than you should have?
Given the wrong person a second chance?
Adopted a stray animal?
Climbed a mountain?
Miss someone every day?
Speak another language?

EA Sports Active; Wise Blood

Second day using EA Sports Active after work. I’m doing the 30 day challenge, on easy setting. It’s good. Today I was sweating, and yet it doesn’t feel too challenging. I took the rock music out which was annoying me.. Maybe tomorrow I change the woman trainer for the man. This combined with an hour’s yoga in the morning and my body is really appreciating it and energy levels are back up.

So, I’ve been doing some boxing training yesterday and tennis today along with the standard lunges and track training. We hadn’t tied the resistance band on tightly enough and it pinged off during a curl.

K talking about the importance of having time alone, away from the influence of other people. I have always felt this strongly and it motivates many of my choices. Glad to be backed up. So many people following each other we’ve kind of lost our way.

Reading Wise Blood still. Very interesting. Main feeling is the rawness of life in post war era and how little we have travelled, below this sheen of relative wealth and abundance. The story is getting interesting with Haze after the girl and the girl after Haze, and Enoch finding his (probably twisted) purpose.

Discovered today that there’s a Vue cinema in Eastleigh, making it our nearest big screen. But since when did it cost £9 for a ticket?

Homemade wheat free pizza for supper, with Freaks and Geeks on.

What is it one feels like doing?

Here’s a video I put together from images online to accompany a recording of Krishnamurti at Brockwood in 1969. Of course it’s an unofficial video, not part of my work to preserve the archive authentic works. But I wanted to experiment with a new format, and use audio that probably hasn’t been heard as often as the public talks.

The dead-end street – 1998

Change is on my mind. It is happening inside me and I feel it cruising through my head. Tingles. An incredible awareness that will guide me into… what? I just don’t know. It doesn’t matter. There is no need to suffer. Absolutely no reason at all. I have realized that one must confront, embrace and go through the sorrow in order to understand something. How can you learn about yourself if you are forever backing away or running? Go down that dead-end street. Look for ways out but do not accept them. You will reach the end of the street. It may be horrific. It may seem too much. Stay there. Do not escape. Do not do anything. After the pain, after the intensity and the overwhelming horror that you will encounter, you will begin to see a way. You will catch clues as to a way through, out beyond. You will understand. You will realize that the dead-end street was nothing but an illusion, nothing but an obstacle fear has created to protect itself.  This fear is an integral part of you. This you is full of such blockages, obstructions. If you sense a block, latch on to it and it will disolve. Don’t ask how or why. Trust that it will. Let that trust be your strength. You cannot aim to overcome, you cannot run away, you cannot fight it. You can hold the ground and see what happens. It may seem like you cannot hold on, that you will be washed away, as a weed tugged by the overwhelming ocean. But realize this: you are not a weed. You are strong and you can hold your ground. If you don’t then you will continue to live in sorrow, forced this way and that by the flux of life, directed by fear, never achieving, never at peace, never satisfied.

The End of Zurich Insurance – 1998

Oh my god, this is so outrageously boring I think I might die. It has been a long day and I have to stay for yet another hour. I do not want to be here. Why have I been here for 20 months? It don’t make no sense and I must stop acting out of fear before too much more of my life slips by. Fear to delve into the other stuff and fear to find out what I really want.

Such a contrast between today and the conversation last night, when I stated it would seem ludicrous to come to work today after the insights and realizations. The two just don’t seem compatible. So, in six weeks I’m outta here. Maybe not from Portsmouth but from Zurich. It is too much, working with a group girls whose major topics of conversation are television and shopping. A mundane, bland, straight, square environment. Portsmouth is the same and Zurich is the epitome of it all. Too much. Off into the world to see what’s going on. I might run back with my tail between my legs, but so be it. I wish I’d never come back to shirts, ties, ironing. I wish I’d never come back to shitty old machines they call a computer system, with their ancient green fonts.

A couple of calls interrupt my moan. Bullshit of course – where is the cheque for a return premium? A credit card payment with no expiry date. So incredibly tedious. That’s the start. The problems escalate to horrendous commerical direct debits with large possibility for error, and complex queries that take hours to solve. And what is all this for? To make some shareholders wealthier, or at least to keep them secure in the knowledge that their shares are still worth something.

Janet Street-Porter kept her first husband’s surname. England beat Wales at rugby over the weekend. Some people can see colours with their fingertips. The dispay is the most power-hungry part of a laptop. There will be a multinational space station by 2003. A new Gulf War has probably been averted.

At Durley – 1996

I have now moved to Durley. It is quite a change already. I am alone in the house now, apart from two cats. One pays more attention and is one the chest of drawers licking its rear left leg. Jennifer is kind and pleasant and easy to talk to. She said like-minded people are somehow drawn together. On the first day here, we have touched on writing, K, environment, health, diet, chess. I am to bring my stereo for the front room. It is so different here. I am not now off to the video shop to get some films, to sit and smoke dope and eat crisps & chocolate. I am going to look at the books. There are many interesting ones here. But the answer isn’t there. It’s raining and dark outside. No TV. I like it here.

The End of Chelsea Road – 1996

Chris. Letter. Things. House. Wrong. Mess. Broken table. No lounge. Moods. Negativity. New place. New people. Scary. Why? Do it. Give notice. Sell stereo. Sell speakers. Tough. No money. Sell CDs. Miss them? One or two. Keep them. Which? No, sell them all. Start afresh. Move? Yes! Why not? Not good here. Shitty house now. Mess on carpet. Never clean. No freezer. Broken fridges. Bored of video watching. Camper van coming. 8 days. Orange. Moving = running. No. Do it. Odd year. Odd life. Learning. Learning. Good. Don’t worry. Do. No problems. The letter. It is done and it is true.

Things get broken, people get rude – 1996

I have decided to stop drinking alcohol. Reasons? None that really can be argued. Mainly, it throws me off centre for a few days and I don’t like it. Also health reasons, also money reasons, also I don’t particularly like the atmosphere on a Friday night. Things get broken and people get rude. I have beeen at No. 11 for over a year and have changed a lot (in some ways). I am more healthy mentally and physically. Been going to bed earlier, and stopped taking dope in any form. Two nights ago I am sure I had my last cigarette, after stopping and starting many times. My mind had been very unsettled, with constant worry and nagging. Now, sometimes, bliss arrives. I don’t spend much time with people, mainly just at work. Things are calmer and easier when I’m alone.

Taking care – 1997

It’s 01:53 and I feel quite sorted. I know what makes me happy now. And that, generally speaking, is taking care over things. I’d rather be ‘square’ and happy than trying to be something else. This care extends to clothes and body. I’m already taking care over what I eat. Feel more confident. I am not denying things and it makes it better. Let feelings flow about inadequacies – not good enough, not cool enough. All in the mind. I hope these words don’t cheapen the act, as my mind is always ready to judge. But I’ve done enough of that and it’s changing. I am no longer going to try to distance myself from the world I live in. Yes I am different, but isn’t everyone? Have fun, look after myself and those I meet. Little things. Important things. Positivity. Or else what’s the point? Duty to others?

Applying for a job tomorrow, then come summer I can do something else, like travel maybe. Should I just up and leave here? Where to? I can’t run away and try to be happy. I’ve got to learn from myself, first. Knowledge of self. What makes me happy, not what should I be doing. Becoming something I am not has led to frustration. Discipline can be a very good thing. Good night. Maintain.

What is perfect, anyway? – 1995

Pretty messed up today. Smoked loads of hash last night and too many beers. Felt like shit, mentally and physically.

I have been trying to reach a kind of perfect mental state and it has been driving me crazy. That isn’t the way. What is ‘perfect’ anyway? So this ideal I have, part of me wants, and so everything I lay eyes on or think about, this part criticizes. I want it to stop but wanting it to stop won’t help either. Fucked up. No. This week was real good.

Have I ever been happy? What is it? I feel so detached from this world and even when people (rarely) talk about ‘important’ things things, I’m still not interested. I want to put all words I write in quotes. I think I’m something I’m not. It’s all right, man! Please. Stop.