Thursday, January 31, 2019

Tuesday, January 29, 2019



The first gulp from the glass of natural sciences will turn you into an atheist,
but at the bottom of the glass God is waiting for you.

–Werner Heisenberg, 1901-1976
Pioneer of Quantum Mechanics,


Monday, January 28, 2019

The Stable Song


Remember when our songs were just like prayers.

Like gospel hymns that you called in the air.
Come down come down sweet reverence,
Unto my simple house and ring...
And ring

Ring like silver, ring like gold
Ring out those ghosts on the Ohio
Ring like clear day wedding bells
Were we the belly of the beast or the sword that fell...
We’ll never tell

Come to me clear and cold on some sea
Watch the world spinning waves, like that machine

Now I’ve been crazy couldn’t you tell
I threw stones at the stars, but the whole sky fell
Now I’m covered up in straw, belly up on the table
Well I drank and sang, and passed in the stable.

That tall grass grows high and brown,
Well I dragged you straight in the muddy ground
And you sent me back to where I roam
Well I cursed and I cried, but now i know...
now I know

And I ran back to that hollow again
The moon was just a sliver back then
And I ached for my heart like some tin man
When it came oh it beat and it boiled and it rang...
oh it's ringing

Ring like crazy, ring like hell
Turn me back into that wild haired gale
Ring like silver, ring like gold
Turn these diamonds straight back into coal



Say you have seen something. You have seen an ordinary bit of what is real, the infinite fabric of time that eternity shoots through, and time’s soft-skinned people working and dying under slowly shifting stars. Then what?

—Annie Dillard

Saturday, January 26, 2019

sister, i am coming to you




The premise of Digital Physics is that at the fundamental level, matter is made up of information.

Recent advances in the physics of information suggest that the universe is more fundamentally made up of bits or qubits: everything in the cosmos, from black holes to galaxies and planets registers these bits of information. 
In addition, the holographic property of the universe suggests that information is the basis for understanding reality. It appears that humans, animals, plants and particles, in fact everything in the universe, communicates, computes and transmits information non-locally and holographically.

—Ediho Lokanga

Digital Physics

if you love me


Love, if you love me,
lie next to me.
Be for me, like rain,
the getting out

of the tiredness, the fatuousness, the semi-
lust of intentional indifference.
Be wet
with a decent happiness.

—Robert Creeley
The Rain, excerpt


Friday, January 25, 2019



Explain quantum mechanics in 5 words or less.

"Don’t look : waves.
Look : particles."

(an answer to a challenge asked by Sean Carroll on Twitter,
originally posed by physicist John Wheeler) 


There is a lot to say about quantum mechanics, perhaps the most mysterious idea ever to be contemplated by human beings, but all we need is one simple (but hard to accept) fact: 

How the world appears when we look at it is very different from how it really is.

–Sean Carroll
The Particle at the End of the Universe - 
The Hunt for the Higgs and the Discovery of a New World


romanesque arches


Inside the huge Romanesque church the tourists jostled in the half darkness. 
Vault gaped behind vault, no complete view.
A few candle flames flickered. 
An angel with no face embraced me
and whispered through my whole body:
"Don't be ashamed of being human, be proud!
Inside you vault opens behind vault endlessly.
You will never be complete, that's how it's meant to be."
Blind with tears
I was pushed out on the sun-seething piazza
together with Mr and Mrs Jones, Mr Tanaka, and Signora Sabatini,
and inside them all vault opened behind vault endlessly.

–Tomas Tranströmer 
Robin Fulton tranlation


Wednesday, January 23, 2019

A Ritual To Read To Each Other


If you don't know the kind of person I am
and I don't know the kind of person you are
a pattern that others made may prevail in the world
and following the wrong god home we may miss our star. 
For there is many a small betrayal in the mind,
a shrug that lets the fragile sequence break
sending with shouts the horrible errors of childhood
storming out to play through the broken dyke. 

And as elephants parade holding each elephant's tail,
but if one wanders the circus won't find the park,
I call it cruel and maybe the root of all cruelty
to know what occurs but not recognize the fact. 

And so I appeal to a voice, to something shadowy,
a remote important region in all who talk:
though we could fool each other, we should consider--
lest the parade of our mutual life get lost in the dark. 
For it is important that awake people be awake,
or a breaking line may discourage them back to sleep;
the signals we give--yes, no, or maybe-- should be clear:
the darkness around us is deep.

–William Stafford


Tuesday, January 22, 2019

if you want


Those who don't feel this Love
pulling them like a river,
those who don't drink dawn
like a cup of spring water
or take in sunset like supper,
those who don`t want to change,

let them sleep

This Love is beyond the study of theology,
that old trickery and hypocrisy.
If you want to improve your mind that way,

sleep on

I've given up on my brain.
I've torn the cloth to shreds
and thrown it away.

If you're not completely naked,
wrap your beautiful robe of words
around you,

and sleep.



you are that


You are the soul of the soul of the universe,
and your name is Love.



Sunday, January 20, 2019

ask me, excerpt



Some time when the river is ice
ask me mistakes I have made.
Ask me whether what I have done is my life.
Others have come
in their slow way
into my thought,
and some have tried to help or to hurt:
ask me what difference
their strongest love or hate has made.
I will listen to what you say.
You and I can turn and look
at the silent river and wait.
We know the current is there, hidden;
and there are comings and goings from miles
that hold the stillness exactly before us.
What the river says, that is what I say.

–William Stafford


y(our body is a divine stream


Your body is a divine stream,
as is your spirit.

When your two great rivers merge, one voice is found
and the earth applauds
in excitement.

Shrines are erected to those songs
the hand and heart have sung
as they serve
the world
with a love, a love
we cherish.

—St. John of the Cross


Saturday, January 19, 2019

listen ye children of immortal bliss


Discriminate between that which is ever-changing and that which is changeless. 
The world comprises both
Know this.

—Tripura Rahasya


tightrope image

Nik Wallenda nears the middle of his tightrope walk ... 1,800 feet across the mist-fogged brink of roaring Niagara Falls.


Thursday, January 17, 2019

is it true?


is it true
that your mind is sometimes like
a battering ram
running all through the city,
shouting so madly inside and out
about the ten thousand things
that do not matter?





And a poet said, Speak to us of Beauty.
And he answered:
Where shall you seek beauty, and how 
shall you find her unless she herself be your
way and your guide?

And how shall you speak of her except 
she be the weaver of your speech?

The aggrieved and injured say, 
"Beauty is kind and gentle."

The tired and weary say,
"Beauty is of soft whisperings
She speaks in our spirit."

In winter say the snow-bound,
"She shall come with the spring leaping upon the hills."

All these things have you said of beauty,
Yet in truth you spoke not of her but of needs unsatisfied,
And beauty is not a need but an ecstasy. 
It is not a mouth thirsting nor an empty hand stretched forth,
But rather a heart enflamed and a soul enchanted.

It is not the image you would see nor the song you would hear,
But rather an image you see, though you
close your eyes and a song you hear, though
you shut your ears.

People of Orphalese, 
beauty is life when life unveils her holy face.
But you are life and you are the veil.
Beauty is eternity gazing at itself in a mirror.
But you are eternity and you are the mirror.

–Kahlil Gibran
from The Prophet


Wednesday, January 16, 2019

cosmic gall


Every second, hundreds of billions of these neutrinos pass through each square inch of our bodies, coming from above during the day and from below at night, when the sun is shining on the other side of the earth!

—M.A. Ruderman and A.H. Rosenfeld
An Explanatory Statement on Elementary Particle Physics,
American Scientist


Neutrinos they are very small.
    They have no charge and have no mass
And do not interact at all.
The earth is just a silly ball
    To them, through which they simply pass,
Like dustmaids down a drafty hall
    Or photons through a sheet of glass.
    They snub the most exquisite gas,
Ignore the most substantial wall,
    Cold-shoulder steel and sounding brass,
Insult the stallion in his stall,
    And, scorning barriers of class,
Infiltrate you and me! Like tall
And painless guillotines, they fall
    Down through our heads into the grass.
At night, they enter at Nepal
    And pierce the lover and his lass
From underneath the bed — you call
    It wonderful; I call it crass.
–John Updike

Friday, January 4, 2019


Gordon Hempton, acoustic ecologist


Thursday, January 3, 2019

Initiation Song from the Finders' Lodge


Please bring strange things.
Please come bringing new things.
Let very old things come into your hands.
Let what you do not know come into your eyes.
Let desert sand harden your feet.
Let the arch of your feet be the mountains.
Let the paths of your fingertips be your maps
and the ways you go be the lines on your palms.
Let there be deep snow in your inbreathing
and your outbreath be the shining of ice.
May your mouth contain the shapes of strange words.
May you smell food cooking you have not eaten.
May the spring of a foreign river be your navel.
May your soul be at home where there are no houses.
Walk carefully, well loved one,
walk mindfully, well loved one,
walk fearlessly, well loved one.
Return with us, return to us,
be always coming home.

–Ursula Le Guin
Always Coming Home