Sorry this entry has been so long in coming. Suffice it to say I’ve been overwhelmed, really, since June. I had enough time to compose it way back in August to sent it out to the e-mail list I usually filter it through first, hence the date of posting I’ve used above. But for those who get updates when I actually post, it’s been a long time. The next one should follow closely, as composing it is what prompted this blog update. Mea Culpa.
Also, my apologies if any of you have been to my web page and discovered the piggy back porno someone posted to the forum section. It’s been stopped/removed, but if you saw it I wish you’d have let me known, as it’s apparently been a problem for some time. Anyone want to help me keep track, if not actually produce and control some of the many cats I’m trying to herd? Please?! E-mail me. Thanks.
Found a great website yesterday I wanted to share (re world population); http://opr.princeton.edu/popclock/
I saw my first sunrise in a long time this morning. That’s something I have to do much more regularly. It is, after all, a religious experience for me. So far, however, I’ve never been able to do it justice except when I’m, at least psychologically, alone (i.e., only amongst total strangers). What I like to do is Trumpet sunrise in and sunset out. Today I did both.
What “Trumpeting in or out” means is that I arrive at a good observation point, like an overlook or a beach, before it’s moved very far into the terminator, that narrow line on any planet/moon/asteroid that is the boundary between light and dark, and stay until I’m firmly on the other side. At dawn I’m there at first light and leave after sunrise. At dusk its from before the first color until dark. At this time of year, any spot on Earth’s surface at nearly my latitude will move through the terminator in the span of approximately two hours. Repeated experience is especially good at firmly convincing one that it is, indeed, we who are moving.
The mornings are my favorite time, because fewer people are around and the effects of their not having been active overnight are usually pronounced. So, for example, Lake Tahoe, as large as it is, is normally as smooth and calm as a mirror at sunrise, but rarely so at sunset, and one almost never sees another person’s face at dawn. I have Tibetan bells with which I start and end the transit through the terminator: a large singing bowl I strike with a padded mallet once in all four directions to begin and a pair of small tsingsha bells for the end. In the interim I only Trumpet, but I do it with each and every breath.
It’s great meditation. Two hours of true peace.
This morning while Trumpeting I got to thinking about how, before houses, our ancestors saw every transit. (My meditation makes no attempt to stop thinking, but that’s a whole different topic, anyway.) And then I thought about how almost no city dweller today even has a good place within walking distance to go to witness it. And most people usually miss both events altogether because of either eating or sleeping habits, both artificially influenced by Thomas Edison. What a loss that has been for civilization. It doesn’t really seem civilized at all.
Particularly striking to me, as a year-round resident of one of the most beautiful places on Earth, is that almost no one ever sees or–even more importantly–hears the Lake without the obnoxious sound of motors. That, even more than the absence of people, is the greatest advantage the morning has over sunset. The sound of nature is the most soothing elixir there is. People, on the other hand, are an incredibly noisy species. If they’re up and about, you can hear them for miles.
So, what dear citizen, do I propose doing about it? How about two campaigns, one called “Reclaim the sunrise/set!” the other “Quiet Tuesday!”
The first would be a declaration that the transit through the terminator is a public resource and cannot be co-oped. In cities where skyscrapers dominate, the tallest building (in terms of elevation at the top) within any four block radius would automatically come with an easement for public access to the roof, which would have to be safe, maintained, available to, and easily accessible by everyone who wants to come two hours before and after every sunrise and sunset. At the very least, it should be a covenant on all new buildings higher than their neighbors. There’d be some bureaucracy required, for sure, and probably some anti-jumper hardware, but fees on all tall buildings (for they all contribute to the problem) should easily cover any cost. Sure, there’s going to be some serious resistance from the penthouse set, but, boy, do we have numbers on our side. Especially for sunsets.
I suppose other means might do the trick almost as well, but what needs to get started is a movement to identify certain natural events, such as sunrise and sunset, as part of the natural resources of the planet all people are entitled to enjoy, just like clean water and safe neighborhoods, both of which government needs to pay more attention to as well.
The Second would be a campaign for a motor free day (Tuesday sounds good to me only because one midweek day seems like a start that might have a reasonable chance of being adopted) On that day, no one would be allowed to use a motor on any lake in the country (or State, if the oil lobby retains control of Congress and the White House).
Am I serious? You bet! Kids will never learn to love Gaia so long as we drown her out and hide her. Dream Big. Call (530.542.2368) or e-mail me if you’d like to work on either of these projects, wherever you live.
You can’t always get what you want. But if you do sometimes, you just might find, you needed what you get.