Via Cake Wrecks
Animation writer Brandon Aumon provides a detailed account of his response to prolonged fasting:
It was as if the world was a magical picture book, and each object was a different aspect or quality of the All. This seemed perfectly clear to me, first on an intuitive level, and then later on an experiential level. Slowly I could see the world break down into their pristine, shimmering archetypes. . . .
Recently I've been writing superhero stories for Marvel Entertainment. Many of these archetypal tales are of regular humans going through tremendous trials, gaining super powers, encountering aliens and monsters, and learning from wise elders. I never planned this profession, but I suppose art really does imitate life in so many impossible ways.
Above: "Angel or Winged Alien Pendant"
In New York City at 8 a.m., New Yorkers will be gathering at Bryant Park to send good vibes to Obama through yoga. The event is called Ombama, and yes, it's in New York, not California:
On Tuesday, January 20th, the day of the Presidential Inauguration, lululemon athletica invites all New Yorkers to The Pond @ Bryant Park at 8am to send a wave of good karma and positive vibrations to our President Elect in Washington.
The plan is to “ommmm” as strongly and as unified as possible so that the sound vibration can be heard all the way down in DC!
Meeting at the ice skating rink The Pond @ Bryant Park, participants will be asked to open the day with an Om, complete yogic sun salutations followed by a closing Om. Mats will be provided and placed directly on the ice rink.
The event will take place rain, snow or shine and all levels of experience with yoga are welcome. The complete ceremony will take no longer than 30 minutes.
For more information, visit our event page on Facebook: www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=45647458671
Last night I went to a panel on Harvey Comics at New York's Museum of Comic & Cartoon Art. One interesting fact: one of the most common requests received by an expert on the company was for pictures of Hot Stuff, The Little Devil, to use as references for tattoos.
Equally interesting: objections from religious folk put the kibosh on a proposed Hot Stuff TV cartoon.
(Speaking of which, if you're in NYC, check out the new Harvey Comics exhibit--it's fantastic.)
Kiva.org is one of the leading microlender sites in the U.S.--it was even featured on Oprah!--but the word "Kiva" was significant long before the site existed. This new exhibit on religious imagery in Hopi basketry explains that kiva refers to a sacred space where rituals were performed to seek the favor of the Katsina, which were either spiritual beings or space aliens depending on whom you believe.
Bad Astronomy highlights this example of religious pareidolia, or pattern-seeing--a website selling the "crucifish," a catfish skull that miraculously takes the form of Christ on the cross. Another feature of the sight: an old optical illusion in which you stare at a certain pattern for a while & turn away to see what an expectant viewer could interpret as an image of Christ in the air.
Buy six and a portion of the proceeds goes to charity. But this skull is also magic for you:
This icon is said to Bring Good Luck and Protection to those who posses one
All I can say is that it has worked for me
I have won the lottery for $2700.00
Win at Bingo consistently
Have survived 4 Major Hurricanes
I'm sure some of you are skeptics, but really, you can't argue with the bingo.
From the original photographer:
On Aug.9, 1945, an atomic bomb exploded above the city of Nagasaki to kill over 70,000 people. The Uragami Catholic Church was then collapsed to decay. After the war, they dug out the head of Virgin Maria, which used to be at the front gate of the church. On the day I visited her, I saw a bird flying up into the blue sky, twittering 'peace'.
Next to me at Starbucks as I write this: a group discussing Cat Yoga Postcards and strategies to promote spiritual enlightenment. DJs and celebrities are, apparently, a must!
An ongoing exhibit at PS1:
In the late 1960s poet Ishmael Reed adopted the 19th-century term “HooDoo,” referring to forms of religion and their practice in the New World to explore the idea of spiritual practice outside easily definable faiths or creeds and ritualism on contemporary works of literature and art. “Neo-HooDoo,” he writes in his 1972 collection of poetry, Conjure, “believes that every man is an artist and every artist a priest.” His seminal poems, “The Neo-HooDoo Manifesto” and “The Neo-HooDoo Aesthetic,” delve even deeper into this artistic practice to demonstrate its vitality as an international, multicultural aesthetic that embraces spiritual creativity and innovation.
From Vancouver to Havana, Guatemala City, and Bahia, the artists in NeoHooDoo began using ritualistic practice as a means to recover “lost” spirituality and to reexamine and reinterpret aspects of cultural heritage throughout the late 1970s and early 1980s.
That's the cover story of this week's Christianity Today. The article itself is a trenchant counterblast to the marketing of faith--and an instructive example of the culture clash that can result from remaking a social mission as a product to be sold.
Marketing has problems if it makes the consumer pant for the dead opposite of what you are trying to sell. . . .
The difficulty with the pro-marketing arguments, however, is the failure to recognize that marketing is not a values-neutral language. Marketing unavoidably changes the message—as all media do. Why? Because marketing is the particular vernacular of a consumerist society in which everything has a price tag. To market something is therefore to effectively make it into a branded product to be consumed.
What I love about Islamic design, in clothes as in textiles, is the combination of sumptuousness and restraint. The best of it seems to hold the two opposing impulses in perfect equilibrium, so that even as we feel seduced by extravagant materials or rhapsodic ornamentation, we feel conscious of a withholding impulse, or a concern for harmony that suggests a kind of spiritual restraint.