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Archive for August, 2011

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I took this photo from my iPhone while wandering around Harvard Square.  It’s a Sherpard Fiery piece located on a random wall near a hospital and a frozen yogurt shop. What I love about the work is how others have added to it. It’s the aging from the street, combined with the local graffiti, that makes this so beautiful.

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O velho no caminho, originally uploaded by jaci XIII.

I have a ritual, a small one but an important one. It’s listening to the On Being podcast during evening work outs, very late, when no one is around. The subject matter is compelling and complex, and it’s exhilarating to exercise the mind and the body at the same time.
Yesterday, I listened to the On Being podcast on “The History of Doubt,” recorded in 2007. Two anecdotes about Alexander the Great were discussed, which I want to share with you. I’ll share one today and the other soon.

Here is an excerpt from a conversation between Alexander the Great and the cynic and philosopher Diogenes:

“One day, Alexander the Great visited Diogenes. Alexander was Diogenes’s biggest fan and had dropped by to pay his respects. At the end of the visit, Diogenes asked Alexander what his plans were. Alexander answered that he planned to conquer and subjugate Greece. Then what? Diogenes asked. Alexander said that he planned to conquer and subjugate Asia Minor. And then? Alexander said that he planned to conquer and subjugate the world.

Diogenes, who was not easily dissuaded from a line of inquiry, posed the question again: What next? Alexander the Great told Diogenes that after all that conquering and subjugating, he planned to relax and enjoy himself. Diogenes responded: Why not save yourself a lot of trouble by relaxing and enjoying yourself now?”

This theme is timeless and reoccurs in different cultures. I know you’re familiar with the Carpe Diem concept. It’s also something I struggle with, this tension between building for a great future and living fully in the present. They do not have to be mutually exclusive.

At least I hope not.

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the poetry voice



Coming down the hill, originally uploaded by Steve-h.

Why do people read poems like they are yawning, or trying to awaken some great fog in their throat. Whose voice is that they use, whose voice that says those words as if using that voice – that poetry voice – makes the world more holy. That’s why I love images more than these words, spoken in this way, because no voice is needed for an image.

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