Friday, May 06, 2011


Why is proximity important? More so, why is human proximity important for pods, tribes and long term social cohesion? In my mind nothing can yet replace the smörgåsbord of signals seen and unseen, felt and unfelt that are transmitted between entities when they are physically close especially when they directly and voluntarily interact with one another. From the primary sense gates there is an influx of information via sight, smell, sound, taste and touch. These primary inputs reach us and are perceived as energy vibrations, particles bumping up against us or even passing through us. I breathe your stardust when I am close. Your mass attracts me and your energy can do the same too. There are other senses but we’ll save them for later or subsequent debate.

For any form of information exchange to take place there must be a medium (even a vacuum or the quantum foam) and some energy. Energy moves. Proximity is important because of attenuation (signal degradation) in most mediums. Proximity is important because it allows one to observe and learn about another with less attenuation. Proximity is important because more signals can generally be sent in a shorter space of time between two entities. This promotes understanding, empathy and entrainment between two or more beings.

There are vibrations made by each entity in the act of thinking, breathing, moving or just being. Air is exchanged. Energy is given, drawn or shared. Gravity exists between any two things with mass. With proximity to another there is no substitute for full spectrum engagement enhanced further by presence and awareness.

Technology is a wonderful bridge however... the smell of your hair in the morning, the taste of your skin, the specific momentary look of insecurity followed by a rush of endorphins that cause your nostrils to flare and the hair to stand up on your neck and arms, the timbre of your voice in the quiet of the night and the oneness of form when interlocked in the throes of passion... this all degrades with distance and the co-evolution fades further away irrespective of the initial strength of the connection. Proximity is mindshare and heartshare whether you like it or not. Trajectories must converge regularly enough to enable long term cohesion. From the smallest cluster of two to the largest cohesive tribes, we share signals and synchronise... the strongest signals literally come from the closest.

If one was to introduce quantum holism/non-separability and the spiritual realm in to the debate I would not disagree but would point out that the cultivation of personal depth and the subtlety required to access these mediums are not readily accessible to everyone though we may feel the effects or notice them at different times in our lives.

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Soul Islands

The mundane motel served its purpose well, too well perhaps... it was nothing like the cabin.

The cabin was surrounded by dense forest and nestled on the edge of a huge canyon. That night there was a new moon and between bouts of deep sleep I had awoken repeatedly from dreams of past, present and future. There was fresh water, a fire, logs, fresh herbs and comfortable furnishings. The dappled sunlight drew many contrasts and the latent energies and stories left by visitors formed part of the fabric of the space and time.

How I arrived there was not by chance, there was karma in it, there was intent in it and there was peace in it. The peace was as much cultivated and brought as it was a reflection and enhancement of the environment.

It’s more apparent to me each day that the energy, focus and attention I bring to my body, heart and mind, the better things become for those I interact with and also for myself. As I dropped one of my Dharma brothers off at the Blackheath Vipassana centre to serve again, I was reminded of the reticence by many in their daily lives to stop and investigate deeply that which they are. It is perhaps a luxury, though some would say a necessity to take time to be fully present within oneself. Presence may be cultivated through direct experience and investigation of oneself. This process benefits from a reduction and preferably a temporary cessation of external stimuli. Many of us numb reality and gravitate towards information rich and stimulating environments all the while ignorant of the subtle and even gross effects on our bodies, hearts and minds. As we stream experience in to our consciousness we also ingest air, water and food which constitute our being. It is not until we fast or shift large portions of these many diets that we have the ability to experientially compare and contrast different states of being.

There is indeed a certain dualism and test driven mentality that leads to a more holistic physical, mental and spiritual approach to life - but unfortunately not many have the awareness, will, time nor resources to indulge in such experimentation. Some continue seeking elsewhere or get trapped in the seeking itself (all the while believing something better is just around the next corner). Some never realise that a process of 'selective watering' is available to them internally at any moment. A process which does not require external journeying to elicit calmness, contentedness, tranquility, empathy or compassion. Once the choice is made to explore the inner world and not exclusively the outer world, a profound shift entails. The inward journey has no destination and is founded upon a constant arriving in the present e.g. the here and now. A new awareness is born and the life stream is never the same again.

Our relationships with people and things are predicated upon and evolve based upon our perceptions, emotions, consciousness and form. We find ourselves in certain environments, clusters of people or events due to complex yet simple connections and the conscious or unconscious choices we make every second. For the most part, that which we sow we reap. On each persons journey there may be fear of loss or that of a void, however the void is not empty, it is full of potential and there are many islands if required. These islands are those of other people and communities also on the path (sometimes encountered in the most unexpected of spaces).

As a liquid lifeform some of the most important things beyond basic survival may be:
- realising the control and potential you have to shape your own substance and that of others
- how you relate to, interact with and affect other entities and your environment
- which environments and entities to share and grow your energies with

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