Archive for the ‘art’ Category

Happy Birthday, George!

February 24, 2007

It’s being here now that’s important. There’s no past and there’s no future. Time is a very misleading thing. All there is ever, is the now. We can gain experience from the past, but we can’t relive it; and we can hope for the future, but we don’t know if there is one.

George Harrison
(1943-2001)

I heard The Beatles’ music for the first time in my life when I was 15 (too late, I guess), it was my neighbour who borrowed me the cassette, and I liked music so much that I did not return it for months. There are people who love Stones more, but I am not among them. Beatles will always remain my favourites; and though Paul and John are much more famous, still by far my favourite is the youngest among them, mr. George Harrison (1943-2001) – the “silent beatle” as he was called, due to being very introspective person.

Some people say that his birthday is on 25th February, but in Wikipedia article we can read that he was actually born on 24th February at 11:40pm. So, today is the day – Happy Birthday, George!

If my destiny was to become so famous I would want to have similar attitude as him. He always said that he wanted to be successful, not famous, and I feel that music was his instrument to search for deeper meaning in his life. Many other musicians unfortunately find drugs when they become famous, and when that fame is over, they take the needle, and they are finished. But George was not interested in fame, but he was all the time seeker for the true joy and fulness of life. I found this clip, it is interview with him and famous sitar player Ravi Shankar. There he speaks how he does not want to produce meaningless songs, but is interested in writing songs that have deep values and that can last through years. Such is for example his song All things must pass.

And I wrote before how much I like reading books. but I have to admit now, I especially like to read book written by people who were searching for the deeper meaning of their own life. I enjoy in diversity, I do not believe in uniformity. I even enjoyed reading Ayn Rand’s books very much, though I am completely of different temperament, and my life philosophy values are generally totally different. But you know what, when someone believes in what he or she writes, such books become very attractive to read. Complete sincerity in one’s deeds is always very attractive (do what you preach) in every philosophy, and in every religion.

Over the years I have read many books about different world religions and spiritual paths and systems of values, in Christianity, Buddhism, Sufism, Hinduism etc. and though some of such books sometimes can be dry and preachy, I very often found very nice ones from different cultures and backgrounds that literally lit my heart with divine love, while I was reading them. And one day, God willing, if I have enough money I will invest it in printing books that brought me so much joy. Books are not transitory as other world pleasures, and if they contain intense sincere inner cry in them, they are really something.

George was so selfless in that aspect, he gave much money for printing books, he even donated a temple in London. He could do drugs, or spend money on fancy cars or something, but he was so unlike many other music stars, and therefore I appreciate him so much. If some book brought me much joy (there are many like that, starting with Quo Vadis by Sienkiewicz, which was my introduction to deeper meaning of Christianity) I would like to print many of them in nice covers, so perhaps other people will also feel joy. That attitude gives me so much inspiration and hope for the future. I hope my dreams one day will come true, but that depends on me too! :)

In previous clip George explained why he likes to compose on Sanskrit verses, and I guess it was actually him who composed the music for Govindam Adi Purusham chant (although I am not sure, to be frank). Nevertheless, it is very nice chant, and I managed to find nice clip of it to post here.

George, thanks for everything, and thank you for being sincere seeker in your music art. It means much. It gives hope.

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envoys of beauty

February 22, 2007

To go into solitude, a man needs to retire as much from his chamber as from society. I am not solitary whilst I read and write, though nobody is with me. But if a man would be alone, let him look at the stars. The rays that come from those heavenly worlds, will separate between him and what he touches. One might think the atmosphere was made transparent with this design, to give man, in the heavenly bodies, the perpetual presence of the sublime. Seen in the streets of cities, how great they are! If the stars should appear one night in a thousand years, how would men believe and adore; and preserve for many generations the remembrance of the city of God which had been shown! But every night come out these envoys of beauty, and light the universe with their admonishing smile.

Ralph Waldo Emerson – Nature

I am into astronomy these days. Downloaded and installed free Astro Planner on my PC, and also installed Planetarium on my handheld. But nights are cloudy in Belgrade, I have no luck. As soon as stars become visible again I am determined to find Orion Nebula on the sky. Approximately I know where it should be located.

For those who are not accustomed with using telescopes, good start is to observe the sky with binoculars. And if you watch through telescope, first thing you should see is the surface of the Moon (it always takes my breath away), then you can try to find Jupiter and see its 4 bigger satelites (if you draw down their positions over time axis you will get sinusoidal waves). Of course, never ever watch directly to the Sun, do not try that even with special filters either. If you want to see spots on Sun surface, project the image from telescope to paper, and there you will see it very well. And you can try to see Saturn rings too.

I have at home some older russian telescope, I think that diameter of mirror is about 6 cm. But let me tell you these modern computerised telescopes are really something. They have so called GoTo option, which means that there are memorized coordinates of stellar objects and computer controlls moving mechanism which directs the telescope right to the desired object. All you have to do is just look and enjoy.

Problem with using telescopes in cities is light pollution. I wonder if Suburbia likes to watch the stars since she lives in the suburban area of the big city, and I guess the night sky is much more clear there. Nowdays there are many telescopes on the market, I saw even those with 10 inches diameter (I think that with them you can see even that red spot on Jupiter’s surface). Actually I found very nice booklet from Meade telescopes and you can download it here. There are interesting stories in it, like one when a man found new supernova (exploded star) with his home telescope.

I remember I liked to read in my primary school about comet hunters. That is so cool to try to find new comet.

Astrophotography is also something breathtaking. That art combines calculation and photography. You have to be very precise if you want to catch the photo of “diamond ring” in total solar eclipse.

We always stand in awe under the starry sky. I hope tonight there will be no clouds in Belgrade. I am already browsing the catalogs in software to choose what I will (and can) observe. Wish me good luck with the weather. And you can join me with exploring the space.

Happy St. Valentine’s Day Everybody!!!

February 14, 2007

I gotta a girl who’s always late
Anytime we have a date
But I love her
Yes I love her

I’m gonna walk up to her gate
And see if I can get it straight
‘Cause I want her
I’m gonna ask her
Is you is, or is you ain’t, my baby
The way you’re acting lately makes me doubt
You is still my baby, baby
Seems my flame in your heart’s done gone out

A woman is a creature
That has always been strange
Just when you’re sure of one you find
She’s gone and made a change

Is you is, or is you ain’t my baby
Maybe baby’s found somebody new
Or is my baby still my baby true

Love knows no fear. Tom is not afraid of a big dog (with various dental prostheses :) when he is in love. I wish you all, dear friends, lots of love in following year (and in all those years after that, too!)

Love is a greatest power in Universe. We are beings of habit, but love does not let us form a habit – it is ever new opening of visions and unexpected horizons. Love is showing us our cosmic dimension, for true love is always selfless.

Love is not success, and it is not failure (Tom doesn’t have to worry because of the end of the cartoon) – it is far above both. Love has nothing to do with mathematics and combinatorics. Love does not count with numbers but with fulness. Love is beyond intellect.

Love is unspeakable, it is often beyond words, but it is not beyond deeds. I know you cannot always tell people who you love what you feel, but you can show them your love, and you can pray for their happiness.

Even if your love is not returned, do not expect anything. Love dresses us in garments of emperors of the universe. So we must act generously like true princes or princesses, and leave expectation to those who want to act like beggars.

I heartily recommend all of you to read Quo Vadis (by Henryk Sienkiewicz) which is in my humble opinion the greatest love story ever written (and it won Nobel prize in 1905). Dear friends, please find time to read that book – only a deeply inspired person can write like that.

Happy holiday dear friends! Let us offer our gratitude for Love that transforms our human hearts, and shows us Infinite in our finiteness, and Eternal in our transitoriness. Let us always be grateful for that cosmic dimension. Let us sing and dance with planets and the stars!

Let us write poetry (with our paintbrushes and musical instruments too!). If Angels have their language, I believe it is spoken in verses.

Muppets – 50 Ways To Leave Your Lover

February 10, 2007

In my opinion Janice (band’s hippie lead guitar player and Sgt. Floyd Pepper (band’s bass guitar player) performed this even better than Simon&Garfunkel :) Even Animal was unexpectedly peaceful in front of such nice ballad.

Lyrics of the song 50 ways to leave your lover you can find here. But I heard someone actually wrote a parody 50 ways to love your liver. Lyrics of that parody you can find here.

I see that there are many muppet fans out there (yay!:), so from time to time I will post some video about them on the blog. I still hope someone gets them back on TV.

rediscovering autobiographies

February 8, 2007

palm IIIxe

“There is properly no history; only biography”

Ralph Waldo Emerson

These days I have intense wish to read biographies and autobiographies. And I really wish to read about that golden period of history – XIX century. Impressionists were painting in France, and Henry David Thoreau went to the woods to write his diary there. Serbian inventor Michael Pupin went to USA and wrote to me very dear Pulitzer winning autobiography From Immigrant to Inventor, in which he portrays the true american spirit, and when you read that book you see how America was great country comparing to Europe then. Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote his immortal Essays, and believe me I am spending nights in reading his collected works, and I stand in awe in front of his language (I still don’t get it how could he wrote like that!) Who can write in such fiery words if not that philosopher poet from Boston, who wrote Self-Reliance – essay that became solid inspiration and foundation of my system of values. And there are poems of Emily Dickinson. And of course, we cannot avoid Nikola Tesla serbian poet-scientist who gave the world alternating currents. Many many interesting people were born in XIX century.

Now I know that books are expensive, and one is not always in mood to go to the library too. But that is why project Gutenberg is there. You can find ove 20000 free e-books there, and there is always top list of 100 books and authors if you are not sure what to read (I never paid too much attention to that top list so far, but it is nice to know it exists). Good thing is that Gutenberg library offers books in Plucker format, which is suitable for reading on your Palm device. I have prehistoric model, Palm IIIxe, with grey display and 8 MB of memory, but truth to be told, I like to read books on it. And I don’t like to read books on the computer screen (I do it only when I have to). Now I entered word biography in searchbox on Gutenberg site, and it gives me 90 results back (you can try to type memoirs too). So there will be a lot of good (and free reading) for me in next period.

If you have Palm but do not have Plucker, you can download it from here. From the list I chose autobiography of actress Sarah Bernhardt. I was reading first few chapters this morning, and I was very immersed in the story. And so far, I really enjoy reading it a lot. So I will provide link for it here:

My Double Life – The Memoirs of Sarah Bernhardt

If you know some good biography or autobiography that you have read and enjoyed it, kindly recommend it in comments please.

Rita Moreno & Animal – “Fever”

February 7, 2007

I remember last year on Belgrade Marathon while I was waiting for my friends at the finish line, one jazz band was playing, among all other stuff, opening theme from Muppet Show. You know the song; It’s time to put on makeup..It’s time to dress up right..It’s time to raise the curtain on the Muppet Show tonight :) Oh well, at the middle of the song, one man from that band said to the microphone -People, Animal couldn’t stand it anymore- and then all instruments went silent, so the drummer was drumming like crazy I am sure not less than 10 minutes! Then they continued with the song. I was laughing and laughing, that really brightened my day :)

Rita Moreno won Emmy award for appearance in this episode of Muppet Show. The above clip was filmed in 1977. I loved Muppets so much, and this is my appeal to all TV people in charge – please give us Muppets back! They were the most sensational inspirational celebrational Muppetational – this is what we call the Muppet Show!

compassion and love to animals

February 5, 2007

lion_hug.jpg
Who says that animals do not feel sublime emotions? We sometimes think that humans are superior beings, but in what plane are we concretely superior now? It is because we have mind, but mind is also responsible for some of the worst atrocities and oppressive social systems. Animals kill because such is their animal nature, but look what so called humans can sometimes do. I am not saying that in the future human beings will not be better than now, I wish that we all manage to discover more and more hidden treasures that everyone of us carries deep in one’s own heart (I am assured that then we will be more caring about animals). But now we must not think that we are so superior to animals, so that we think they have no rights. Sir Paul McCartney decided to become vegetarian when he and Lady Linda were eating lamb meal and at that moment they saw lambs outside in fields. I am not preaching to anyone to become vegetarian, such kind of decision everyone needs to take very consciously. In my case, I am vegetarian but I do eat milk, eggs and honey. Also my opinion is that you should let your children eat meat until they grow up to certain age. But to speak whole truth, once I was chatting with one programmer from India. He is follower of Sri Vaishnava spiritual path, and he told me that in his family nobody tasted meat for centuries ago!!! I was delighted to hear that such people actually exist and can live without meat – it is not true that meat is absolutely indispensable. But if we do not wish to give up on meat, at least we can do for our little animal brothers and sisters is to stop wearing fur and leather. My friends often tell me that we should not think so much of animal rights, when in today’s world nobody cares so much for human rights. But for me this does not follow. Are we civilised or not? Are we still going to fool ourselves that animals do not have such sublime feelings as we do? Next time when you see a cow, look in her eyes, look very carefully in her eyes please. In India they say: cow is giving us milk, therefore we regard her as our mother. What enlightened opinion! Browsing on the internet I managed to find a painting in oil where Krishna and Balarama are milking cows. Cow is considered in India to be holy animal. I applaude for that level of civilized atitude! (Painting is taken from collection on Vrindavan Art gallery) milking_cows.jpg

Paris Street; Rainy Day, 1877

February 4, 2007

Paris Street; Rainy Day, 1877
Impressionist painter Gustave Caillebotte painted this in 1877. No, it is not a photography. How did he manage to paint this rain water on cobblestone? I have no idea, I presume he watched very carefully all the colours. The painting is now located in the Art Institute of Chicago.

is that so?

February 3, 2007

The Zen master Hakuin was praised by his neighbors as one living a pure life.

A beautiful Japanese girl whose parents owned a food store lived near him. Suddenly, without any warning, her parents discovered she was with child.

This made her parents very angry. She would not confess who the man was, but after much harassment at last named Hakuin.

In great anger the parents went to the master. “Is that so?” was all he would say.

After the child was born it was brought to Hakuin. By this time he had lost his reputation, which did not trouble him, but he took very good care of the child. He obtained milk from his neighbors and everything else the little one needed.

A year later the girl-mother could stand it no longer. She told her parents the truth – that the real father of the child was a young man who worked in the fishmarket.

The mother and father of the girl at once went to Hakuin to ask his forgiveness, to apologize at length, and to get the child back again.

Hakuin was willing. In yielding the child, all he said was: “Is that so?”

story taken from 101 Zen Stories

O Captain! My Captain!

February 2, 2007


Where are now teachers like Mr. Keating? Rise poets, rise, your destiny is freedom! Mr. Peter Weir, my infinite gratitude for this movie!