Sunday, August 28, 2011

Quantum Physics and Buddhism

Before going into retreat I began studying a quantum physic tool of consciousness called Matrix Energetics. I found it very inspiring and easy (just make measurements and collapse waves of information, while noticing). Before retreat I tried it out on my friend who found out she had a cyst in her eye. Several cysts, in fact. I called her from Miami and asked which eye and we played with some 'two-point' work. We then collapsed the waves of consciousness, stepped back, don't place judgment, and let go. I asked her a week later how she felt and she said the cysts were gone. Okay, I thought, maybe this is a new tool kit in my spirituality. Then I went to my friend who just badly broke her ankle. Once again. We noticed, collapsed and stepped back. She said her ankle felt shifted. By the way, I wasn't in the room. Both situations we talked over the phone, got a visual, drew it up, and played with it. For the ankle I was, in fact, laying on Haulover Beach with the Matrix Energetics book on my blanket and collapsing measurement over the phone. After all, it's quantum physics and time and space are 100% malleable. Perfect for Buddhist, where all is empty.
Well while in retreat I fell down the stairs. Badly. Really badly. I was laying on the ground and it's a silent retreat so it's not like I can scream or even call for help. Searing pain stifled into deep gasps. I drew up the matrix energetics and created portal back to when I first woke up. Then I kept stepping through to that time when my back wasn't screaming. I managed to get up. Felt a bit better. Kept stepping through that door, making 2-pt measurements on my back, collapsing measurement. Things shifted, an hour later I was back on meditation cushion for another 3-hr session. Meditating for 12-16 hrs a day and things just flew. True, I had an enormous lump on my back, but it didn't hurt. It was just fluid. This sounds crazy but falling down stairs was one of the best things that ever happened to me. My meditations became intense, focused, my purpose clarified, and things just flowed. Everything shifted. I also played with my Dad who had a lot of blood clots in his legs that caused him pain. I played with it, drew up some holograms, and sat back. When I got back to Miami my mom said 'what bloodclots? Doctor says he doesn't have any blood clots.' I asked my Dad and he looked at me confused, no, not hurting.
After retreat I taught some meditation and dharma at Aqua Nicaragua, resort my friend works at, and toured around the country for a few weeks. Another matrix energetics thing was that were in the jungle. Constant insects and animals. Everyone getting bit, stung. Nothing is happening to me. Well, the insects would fly on me and I would politely remove them or wag my finger like at a mischevious child. One day a guy asked me as he swatted away mosquitoes and batting a pesky wasp, 'how come you're not getting stung?' I shrugged. I have no idea. Glorious thing about Buddhism and this quantum physics stuff is that both state explicitly: you don't have to know how it work for it to work. I have no idea why people are getting stung, putting on repellant, and I'm just sitting there. Ironically, you know when I did start getting annoyed at mosquitoes? The few times I put on insect repellant offered at the resort. You can guess what I did? Stopped putting on insect repellant and then returned to the state of being unharmed.
We then went to the Poconos for some fire purification and closing ceremonies. My asthma would kick up again at night. Pollen, hot summer, dust in cabin. I two-pointed my chest and fell asleep. Next night, my chest was a little bit looser. Still I two-pointed it and dropped off to sleep. By the end I wouldn't even have to physically two-point. I would just draw it up in my mind and fall asleep. I'm beginning to think that this 'healing stuff' and shammanistic stuff and Buddhist stuff and Quantum physics stuff is all related. If we're all just patterns of light and information, then things can shift by measurements and creatvity. Of course, the karma is needed to shift but karma is also just patterns of light and information. If the karma is there, then the world is amenable to suggestions. Note, not my control. But things can be amenable to commands and suggestions, followed by getting out of the way and letting it go.
And just a few weeks before all of this started I was laying on Haulover Beach and asking open ended questions aloud (they say if you ask aloud open ended questions, answers will begin appearing). Suddenly, it was Nicaragua, teaching, meditation, Poconos, purification, matrix energetics. Like a tidal wave of answers to one question I asked aloud and let go of like a balloon.
Now I ask the question: what next? What next can I do to help, expand knowledge, and teach? Of course, I also say thank you. Enormous thanks for what was given. My Dad appears to have been stricken by several strokes over the last few years. I begin asking open ended questions: what if it were different? Hell, what if it wasn't even a stroke? What if this was some great big cosmic joke and what he really had was something entirely different. Just 'what if.' Not saying he can be 'cured' or that I will do it, or that praying will do it. But what if things aren't what they seem? After all a stroke is just an electrical disturbance of the mind caused by blockage. So what if things were to unblock? What if the electrical disturbance shifted? I take the measurement and let go.
I came out of the Poconos and had a 1 1/2 day stopover in NYC. Coincidentally it was the one day of the so-called earthquake. I taught mandala creation in the morning and went to lunch in midtown while the shockwaves were flowing. I didn't feel a thing. And then I left. Now I'm back in Miami for a few weeks and see a Hurricane about to hit NYC. Very surreal.
When I arrived back I went to my spot on Haulover Beach, which has become this free, tranquil spot. I laid there and asked what's next. I waited for my signals and then got in the water. I feltt the enormous charge of the ocean. I walked through the water. Little fishes began darting through my legs, following me as I walked  through the crystal clear. This is different I thought. I kept walking and meditating. Things were bumping against me. Soon I realize, they are jellyfish. No stinging, no pain, just bumping against me. Well, this is very different. Still I politely move away from jellyfish (don't want to be a daredevil about this). No one is in the water. Just me. Then a guy comes up and screams 'don't move!' He takes out a camera and begins filming. There's a manatee swimming alongside me. And I'm very near the shore. Now this is just surreally different, crazy! Fishes, jellyfish, and manatees. Oh my! I get out and see the purple flag. I go to the lifeguard station and see that the purple flag means 'dangerous wildlife in water.' Ohhh, so that's why I was the only one swimming.
This sounds crazy but these and many more experiences have been happening. Like kind, halo energy that attracts nice beings and protects. I am swimming in an ocean of jellyfish! A week later there's a guy next to me in ocean. He puts on his goggles. I warn him 'watch out for that jellyfish' and he dives in. Five second later he's badly stung and jumps up. He looks over at me with the question in his eyes: why aren't they stinging you? I shrug: I have no idea!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Drunken Hurricane

New York City is supposed to get grazed or splattered by the remnants of Hurricane Irene. The biggest threat is flooding, although there is a slight chance Irene will still have Hurricane-force winds. I grew up in Hurricanes. I still remember going sneaker shopping in the midst of Hurricane Floyd because my Dad thought the stores would be empty. Hurricane Andrew was terrifying but our home was spared.

Now this spinning drunken storm is set to bump up against the East Coast. I find it hard to fathom massive destruction or even epic inconvenience. Storms heading north diminish in power and often break up over rockier and more moutainous landscapes.

Still, I'm glad to be in Miami. I went to the beach and laid there on white sands thinking about Hurricane Irene. The water was a placid sheer green, mocking Irene's potential destruction with beauty and peace.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Nicaraguan Sonnet 11: From San Juan del Sur to Managua

The ox cart clumps by my tinted window.
Horsemen trot home heaving sacks of flour.
Families of white sheep munch pasteur and mow.
Nicaragua notes of few last hours.

A Mom scrubs child  in a metal basin
swollen brown rivers gush across our path
Smoldering volcanoe hypnotized gazing,
belching red hell of Gods´bottomless wrath

Pushing past sentimental snapshots retrieved
and leaving my hypochondriac fear.
The unwritten amongst the notes conceived
is deep in my heart, there is a love here.

Waiting in hotel for my Managua flight,
into the air and Nicaragua  night.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Nicaraguan Sonnet 10: Venerable Lobsang Chunzom

Wearing the curved yellow hat of wisdom
ultimate and deceptive reality
sandalwood fires the swirling red chunzom
characteristics of the quality.

Rik chi radiates shimmering light 
Ineffable and indivisible
paradise bodies suspended in flight  
withdraw rainbow prisms invisible.

Untouched by ticked time and fenced space,
Lobsang in quiet crucible beyond. 
Wandering amidst the burial place
 Eyes gazed on Those Already Thus Gone.

Enter through the heart strings strung tight
joining our hands, we dance through the night.







Nicaraguan Sonnet 9: 3am, Upstairs

Arising was harder than usual today.
Wasp clips my head in warning.
No more fussing and stop the delay.
Upstair I stagger meditation morning.

The sleep was ocean deep and mountain calm
as I meditated on goodness alone.
Shaking off the bird coo and hissing wave balm,
as cold shower streams pierce my waking bones.

The Nica forest quiet and asleep
fill my offering bowls overflowing.
Incense, prostration, posturing my heaps.
Enfolded anchors against winds blowing.

Embouchuring my cracked lips with great saints.
Worlds born from colors, these prayers are my paint.



Friday, August 5, 2011

Nicaraguan Sonnet 8: Jesus on the Beach

We are in a beach conversation when he informs
he is Jesus. There are 144.
Walking the earth as Jesus in shapeshift form.
An everyday Jesus walked through my door.

That's a lot of Jesus variation
but then again, maybe too few.
Why not a million or a nation?
Is 144 a small crew?

I didn't ask him to walk on waves
just talk to me more about the Jesus
The Dalai Lama is one and quite brave
a man in Delaware is among us.

I asked Jesus to recommend me a book
A Course on Miracles is one he took.

Nicaraguan Sonnet 7: August Tola

Tropical languor on a breezy day
Even jungle creatures resist instinct.
sulking in trees, the damp underbrush lay
too humid to growl, two dazed eyes unblink.

low tide in the rock pools, tea cups unstirred
high noon in the coast mountains, bleached rocks burn
liquid clear heat waves ripple the horizon blurred.
leaning sideways into August downturns.

Thoughts smear and stick to the hollow gray skull
'I love you's become a shrug and limp smile
brown bodies hammock'ed into rusted hulls
summer days test our reptilian wiles.

Steam tingles the neck, emotions uncorked
our mouths blossom serpentine red tongues forked.








Thursday, August 4, 2011

Understanding Wealth Abroad

For the past several weeks I have been in Nicaragua. The people are nice and friendly. The country is somewhat open in that as a foreigner I'm not secluded off to the resort section. I can wander freely and often see Americans and Europeans in the mix with Nicaraguans in the markets, living alongside them in the slums, and jogging in the jungle with their iPod as if it was Central Park.

Ironically this freedom of movement has made me more aware of the creeping realities of wealth and privilege. In most 3rd world and even many 2nd world countries, there is that buffer between tourist and reality. As an American sitting here writing on a thousand dollar laptop, worth probably 20,000-40,000 cordobas (someone's salary in these parts) there is this invisible internet of wealth. It's there all the time, 24 hours, I just have to turn on and plug in. It's clear and as real as gravity. In this internet of wealth there are several dozen people whose job is, in some way, to take care of your immediate needs. And most of these helpers don't look anything like me, nor do they speak the language. This is not the life of a rich American. This is middle-class to lower-class Americans. The wealth that is indivisible from my passport isn't related to money. It's a cultural and social wealth.

America is still the nation that dominates people's imagination, TV, and internet. It is still the place of education In the general world, America sits at the top but in the Western hemisphere it's even more dominant. There is a trickle down effect with being associated with the country known for fun, dreams, hedonism, and generous tipping.

The dollar is accepted everywhere as was expected. It's worth about 18 times the cordoba roughly. Merchants sell bootleg copies of all the latest movies and TV shows on the streets. Americans wander around here with almost no fear, wrapped in a shield. And yet all the Americans I've met are nice, young, energetic, and appear to be doing creative things out here. They take the time to know some words in Spanish, are generous, and well-liked. Many are artist and philanthropist who have found working abroad easier. Perhaps these are the flocks of people who would have lived in Greenwich Village 30 years ago or Haight and Ashbury.These are also the people who might have been in Costa Rica 10 years ago when Americans started flooding in. Now Costa Rica is high-end. Honduras and Nicaragua are next on the list.




Nicaraguan Sonnet 6: How I Got Here

First met Lama for Ganden Hlagyama
1,000 Angels in Heaven of Bliss.
Over my birthday, learning a mantra
attended all class, not one did I miss.

While reciting prayers for a rain to bless
spring storms thundered and shook around us
began pouring down the walls of address
3 Jewels dripping in reverential hush.

Five years now passing, awaking at 3
in my wild and surreal Elysium
Meditate with waves and rustling trees
blessed by Her prayers ad infinitum.

Nothing higher than finding a teacher
14 lines on why we never leave Her.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Nicaraguan Sonnet 5: Vulture and Fishermen

Vultures guard boats hauled from sand to surf
as fishermen roll logs beneath the hull
unspool nets cross Gigante sloping turfs
Standing between the grooved lull

A strange marriage between man and bird
Circling above and walking embankments
swinging bent necks in a morose herd
Hunchbacked witches in black dress flap garments

Their perfumed bodies lure hungry lovers
drenched in the salt and blood bill
flecks of flesh tangled in hair of others
dancing in the sky, eyes on the kill.

They call, they come, then sit, and so wait.
praying on red flotsam and grizzled bait.

Nicaraguan Sonnet 4: Gigante Beach

A fallen tree trunk belts the entrance,
bleached by the sun, salt and sand.
Long beach dunes, not a single footprint
Gigante begins where the fishermen land.

American surfers roam through the inns.
parking their boards outside the shops
Drunken Marine slurs Tona with sly grin
to the plump brown matron un-bottling hops.

Hungry black dogs saddle up to your knees
Locals eye newcomers with a quiet suspicion
who suddenly appear like forest breeze
a bloodless and dark apparition.

Maybe you turned a ghost in translation 
No dune footprints marked, no human relations.



Dream: Socks in the Trees

In this dream I was driving through a network of highways with others, who I can't remember. We're driving down a ramped road and pass by a tree. They're white socks hanging on the branches. I'm aware that they're my white socks and I panic. I pull the car over and very agitated. This is my missing stuff. They're socks and  underwear and shorts hanging up on this wall of tree branches. There are several more trees in a line underneath the ramp. In particular there are my pink shorts that I brought here to Nicaragua, my checkered shorts and some t-shirts. Also hanging up on this wall of branches are several beautiful oil paintings of jazz musicians. I begin snatching my clothes and paintings I find particularly attractive. I feel more at ease now as I gather all of my clothes back together in a pile. I don't remember how this dream ends by I walked away with some beautiful artwork.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Nicaraguan Sonnet 3: People on Roads

Native hitchhikers thumb orange dirt roads
Piling in back of trucks, vans, and 4 X4s
public transport is a simple code
a smiling gesture, a knock on the door.

Red eyed kids drink Tona on crouched toes.
chucking the glass into lush canopy
rocking and reeling from jarring blows
as dented dirt roads flow to the sea.

Toothless frail wisps and jelly round women
wave rides to Rivas, Tola, and San Juan.
Stuffed with babies, cabbage, and liters of gin
Holding their carriage with breath held and drawn.

Rolling waves of masses run to the city
carrying cargo of hope, hunger, and felicity.









Monday, August 1, 2011

Nicaraguan Sonnet 2: Growling Monkey Questions

Are the monkeys called howling or growling?
Cant remember but theyre getting closer to the kitchen.
They dont eat people or pets out prowling?
Probably best to keep all trash in sealed bins.

Was that a scorpion in my shower this morning?
Theyre more scared of you than you are of them.
That one behind microwave is giving me warning.
Morning coffee never seemed so dangerous and grim.

I heard there were black bats in this forest.
that have rabies, syphilis, and the clap.
Theyĺl nick the wallet of American tourist.
Dont smile at that bird, its all a clever trap.

Such a relaxing time on vacation reprieve.
From bolted up bedrooms we never did leave.

Nicaraguan Sonnet 1: Rain Season

White foam skiffs dock cliffs moss green
rolling fingers arise, recede, and release,
snatching stragglers to the dark blue sheen
down to the bottomless cold surcease.

Red Villas dangle over cresting booms
rocky crags echo the quaking earth
rainbow crabs scuttle into cupola rooms
plummage mists into dawn birth.

Vermillion flames fan up empty sky
Spilling down crushed emerald mountains
suffusing the salt air in a crimson dye
horizon melt into whirling jeweled fountains

A royal seat of water and fire,
 Lost Mayan kingdoms and ivory husked pyres.

Two Dreams

I actually had 3 dreams last night that I can remember. But the first dream consisted of me roaming through a bunch of different rooms in this run-down motel, sort of a Hotel California situation. The details have gotten lost in the transition from sleep to waking. The other two dreams I do remember somewhat better.

In the first dream, I'm in a city that has skyscrapers with clipper ships levitating at the top of them. Some of the ships are aligned in the upright position, but many of the ships are sideways or upside down. Each of the ships has a different color aura around it: red, blue, green, etc. There is also a marina with actual yachting ships pointed up, down, sideways, in many different directions. In general all the ships have the same white sails and white body with different color auras.

My Lama has just gotten out of retreat. I'm looking for a building for Holy Lama to do a teaching in. The building has to have a yacht on top that is facing upside down. I walk through the town and there are some good candidates. The one that feels most likely is, in fact, a very small building in the harbor with a nice little upside down yacht with a red aura. I talk to what I believe is the owner and/or manager of the building. Then I make my way to the teaching.

The teaching has the usual students and some unusual students I've never seen before. There are two older females, twins in fact. Both are dressed in brown colors with chopped brown hair. They look masculine and sitting on both sides of me. There are many many plates of offering, mostly cookies and cakes. I am sitting there listening to the teaching. She has an aura, either clear or rainbow.

Holy Lama goes into the other room to begin seeing students privately. People are eating the offerings which I find too sweet to even grab a plate. There is a camera sitting on a chair next to me. I pick it up and begin browsing through the digital pictures on the screen of my Holy Lama in retreat or on vacation. One of the twins tells me, quite harshly, that it's not my camera. I put the camera down for a second and then a few moments later pick it up again. Then the other twin roars at me "PUT THE CAMERA DOWN." Stunned and scolded I put the camera down. I start a mini-argument in my head of what clever and cutting things I could have said in response. But there's nothing to be done. I realize I was wrong and feel even more embarrassed. I go to the table of food and feel sickened by all the cakes and cookies.

An urge rises up in me: I need to leave so I need to see the Lama immeditately. I'm aware that I'm usually the last one to see Lama but now I want to be first or nearly first. I then see a bunch of students arguing about who can go first because others have to leave early too. I get upset because it's the same lackadaiscal, late-comers, early-leavers who are in line first and fighting with each other. Then I feel hopeless. I'm not going to get to see her first. I decide to leave and convince myself that I'll see her tomorrow to report on the different building options for the teaching. My Lama comes out and asks 'where are you going?' I give the excuse that I have to do work, look for buildings, and that I can come back tomorrow with a report. Surprisingly, she seems satisfied with this and I quickly exit. I'm walking down the street at night with all these building auras lit up. The clipper yachts are levitating and turning slowly at the crowns of all the buildings. I feel alone and strange. There is no grand ending to this dream. I am just walking down a quiet city street feeling 'out of sorts.'

In the second dream I'm in a church. The pews are angled in criss-cross directions with different sizes so that there is actual floor space in the middle of the pew maze. I am on the middle left section of pews that is parallel to the stage. Further in are 3 guys in red (at least 2 of them were wearing red shirts I'm sure); all of them I perceive as being gay. I am trying to pray but also eavesdrop on their conversation. They're talking about relationships. One of the men is looking directly at me while talking, while the other is facing away. In fact the latter never turns around. The third guy has his back to the stage so we can see each other but don't make eye contact. 

The man with his back turned to me is talking about his marriage. I become sort of uncomfortably aware that he's talking about his marriage to a woman. The other two seem nonplussed. There is a service which makes me feel very strange and then a woman with reddish blonde hair comes out on stage and motions to me. I stand up and go to her. She holds what looks like a Bible and points to particular sections while whispering to me to introduce the next preacher. I'm completely confused why I'm introducing the next speaker and who is speaking, why is she pointing to particular passages in the Bible. The conversation is jumbled. I keep asking for clarification: now WHO is speaking? Okay, who are they? I'm starting to get annoyed with myself for not being able to understand her. She is calm and continues to whisper and point at the passages. I become worried that the guy with his back facing away from me is the next speaker or the son of the next speaker. Then I understand quite suddenly.

My job is to introduce the next preacher who is waiting in the wings. He has reddish blonde hair and a ruddy complexion. He is, in fact, the father of one of my friends (who I won't name here). There is a window next to the pulpit and I can see my friend -who has very dark hair, glasses, and looks nothing like his father- outside smoking a cigarette while it rains. He's facing me sideways and leaning up against a yellow island wall outside the window.

I give perhaps one of the shortest introductions ever. I simply say "the father of so and so.' There are some applause and then I go back to my seat. The pew behind my seat is very close and there's an Asian woman who is annoyed that I'm sitting there. But I was sitting here first, I think to myself.

There is strong awareness that this is a Protestant church and that this unassuming man in a brown suit with ruddy features is Roman Catholic. He comes up to the lectern and starts with an incantation. He starts chanting. I just assume it's Latin, but when I listen it sounds very strongly like Tibetan. He's chanting and chanting. I start chanting with him and I'm following him while being aware that I know what he's going to say next. We are, in fact, doing some Tantric Buddhist mantras because I can pick out a few words which aren't in the open teachings. There is one chant in particular that keeps getting repeated.

At some point either here, or when I stand up, I am removed of all clothes except for my underwear. I'm aware that I am without clothes and feel ambivalent. On one hand, I know that I should sort of have clothes on, but on the other hand I look kind of good without them. I'm in the church hallway chanting bent over a table. My friend are coming and going in the hallway. They're talking about where they're going to eat after the service, gossip, and I become really sad. I start sobbing. It's a dry sob and tears come a bit later. Everyone becomes quiet and aware that we're in a church. They're apologizing to me but I don't want their apologies or silence. I keep saying again and again 'it's just so sad.' Someone brings up Amy Winehouse and I keep sobbing while saying 'It's so sad.' Amy Winehouse, the gossip, the ridiculous conversation about what songs they want played on their wedding. It's all just so sad. I cry and wander up and down the hallway saying 'it's just so sad.' And that was the end of that dream.

Recalling these two dreams makes me remember the vague fossils of several other dreams I failed to write down the past week. Many of them involved rooms and going through chambers.

Before falling asleep last night I was reviewing rik chi and dun chi's in Buddhist logic. The car'ness vs. 'a car.'