Friday, April 16, 2010

Energy Burn

The following excerpt is from Being Human: An Entheological Guide to God Evolution and the Fractal Energetic Nature of Reality by Martin Ball where he discusses energy flowing through the body:

"When working with medicines in a seated position, your main
concern is to keep the above issue of uncrossed appendages in mind in
order to maximize your smooth energy flow. This means if you are
seated in a chair, keep both feet planted firmly on the floor, ideally
keeping your feet flat. Energy grounds out through your feet and
keeping your feet flat allows for a smoother transfer of energy, as
opposed to being on tip toes, for example. Keep in mind that large
energy discharges can create “energy burns” on your toenails. It
doesn’t hurt (though it might prick and tingle), but it can make toenails
look pretty ugly. Keeping your feet flat can help minimize the
possibility of this happening. If it does, don’t worry – your toenails
will eventually grow out and look pretty again!"

When I first read this, I was skeptical. When I hear people talk about energy flowing through the body, I assume they don't mean it literally. However, almost 3 months ago, soon after I read this, I was throwing a party at my apartment and I had quite a bit to drink - too much to drink, in fact - and I began to feel as though energy was running through my body at an uncomfortably fast pace. This normally would have been the point where I panic slightly and hang out in the bathroom until the discomfort subsides. However, having read Being Human, I decided not to panic and just let the energy flow freely through my body. So I went to my bedroom and sat in a comfortable position, letting the energy flow. I did this for a few minutes and the discomfort subsided to a small degree. Though I was still not feeling great, I decided to return to the party. When I returned, some people were playing one of my favorite video games Geometry Wars: Pacifism. The game is a very simple retro-style game; it uses one joystick and the only goal is to avoid a mass of predictable blue shapes and stay alive as long as possible. I'm really quite good at it-- it's one of those games where I can 'flow' as Csikszentmihalyi would say (according to him Flow happens when a person is totally immersed in a task that is challenging yet closely matched to their abilities). I decided I wanted to play; I thought it would allow me to focus the still highly volatile energy I could feel inside me. So I was sitting cross-legged in front of the television and as I played I started feeling the energy flowing more furiously through my body, which was not a pleasurable feeling. As the game increased in intensity, so too did the discomfort. It felt as though there was loud music blaring inside me and somebody kept turning the volume louder & louder. I tried staying calm and to just let things flow, but it just kept getting more intense until finally I felt the energy shoot through my leg and out of my foot- it pushed me up out of my seated position in a flash. I decided to retire to my bedroom for the remainder of the night.

A few days later I noticed what I thought was a dirt on the toenail of my big toe, after trying to clean it I realized it wasn't dirt, but appeared to be a small ruptured blood-vessel under my toenail; the toenail on the same foot where I felt the shock. Here's a picture 3 months later:

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Closing thoughts from the movie Food, inc.

  • When you go to the supermarket, choose foods that are in season.
  • Buy foods that are organic.
  • Know what’s in your food. Read labels.
  • The average meal travels 1500 miles from the farm to the supermarket. Buy foods that are grown locally.
  • Shop at farmer’s markets.
  • Plant a garden (even a small one).
  • Cook a meal with your family and eat together.
  • Everyone has a right to healthy food. Make sure your farmer’s market takes food stamps.
  • Ask your school board to provide healthy school lunches.
  • The FDA and USDA are supposed to protect you and your family. Tell Congress to enforce food safety standards and re-introduce Kevin’s Law.
  • If you say grace, ask for food that will keep us, and the planet healthy.

Monday, April 12, 2010

The "Big Three" -- I, WE & IT

Below is a table showing ways in which various thinkers touched on the "Big Three" -- I, WE & IT -- that make up Ken Wilber's Four Quandrants.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Bottom-up & Top-down: Two sides of a coin

I came across an old conversation with my friend Elliott where he linked me to an article titled "The Dialectic of Bottom-up and Top-down Emergence in Social Systems" by Christian Fuchs & Wolfgang Hofkirchner. It provides a more integral approach to understanding evolutionary systems and social systems, and provides answers to the questions -- Do evolutionary systems dominate the elements and thus create the way the elements are currently organized? or do evolutionary systems emerge out of the way the elements are currently organized? --and similarly -- Do social systems constrain and enable us, and thus create us as we are? or do our actions create social systems as they are? The answer is both to both sets of questions.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Dave Ramsey's 7 Baby Steps to Financial Freedom

After being turned on to Dave Ramsey by a friend of mine, I read through his Money Answer Book and I read through this site which has fairly in-depth looks at each of his 7 steps. I'm sold on his advice.

The steps are:

Friday, April 9, 2010

Tips on Decision Making

I read a great series of posts by Laird Schaub on the following four questions (he devoted a post to each question):

1. How to choose a decision-making process (in what contexts should groups adopt consensus, and in which contexts shouldn't they)

2. So you want to make decisions by consensus? (basic definitions of what this means and choices the group has in how to go about it)

3. Consensus decision-making from soup to nuts (highlights of the key steps—agenda setting, initial discussion, delegation/committee work, proposal generation, conflict resolution, decision-making)

4. But who seconded the motion? (recommendations for how minutes should be structured for consensus process meetings)