No tengo idea

Hola, me llamo Maya y voy a un congreso científicos junto con unos compañeros de trabajo que están sentados en las primeras filas del avión.   ¿De vacaciones sola? Viajar sin compañía es muy  aburrido.   A mí también me gusta mucho viajar. El año pasado fui de vacaciones a las Vegas con mi esposo. Durante toda la semana me la pasé sentada a su lado viendo como perdía poco…Read more

I’ve Never Been to Paris, Thoughts on Death and the Afterlife

When I saw my mother, I didn’t know it was going to be for the last time.  Cancer had whittled away her vital persona to a limp, lifeless, form on the bed, bones pushing against flaccid skin.   I walked into my parents’ bedroom, something I had done hundreds, thousands, of times before. Not like this, though. Not dreading to see what cancer had taken from my mother this time….Read more

The Lure of Decadence

The month of August which has dawned at the time of writing, has remained one of my favorite months.  The heat of the carefree days of summer has deepened and a certain pre-autumnal richness lends an exotic tropical cast to the weather.  Once I cut the hair of a camera-man who was in Houston in August filming a movie (Texas has appealed to many filmmakers, being a non-union state), he…Read more

The Dubai-zation of Society: Can’t fight the power; just swipe your credit card instead

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  “We live in the best democracy ever,” said a 19 year old from Dubai, where citizens never vote. In the same BBC series a 27-year UAE national said, “Everybody is happy, everything is going smoothly, and I don’t think we should jeopardize that to be a democratic country.”   “Dubaization” that’s what Ece Temelkuran, Turkish writer and political commentator, calls it: “As the streets get more conservative and less…Read more

Examining and fact-checking one’s own self in the Age of Information

Cup of coffee in hand, Chuck was reading a piece from the Washington Post which lamented the death of “fact” and how we live in a fact-free world. Chuck was an internet entrepreneur who had continued to live in DC after graduating with a degree in public policy and international relations. Even in college, he dabbled in and made money out of internet and social-media related projects. It seemed natural…Read more

The struggle against downward mobility: Looking for a “re-evolution” in the Caesar Chavez housing projects (ESSAY)

“You are never strong enough that you don’t need help.” xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx xxCesar Chavez xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx US labor leader & civil rights activist, co-founded  xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxNational Farm Workers Association, 1962   Today isn’t an ordinary day!   In fact, one could call it a major life changing day. And even though the change is bitter-sweet, the stress score for the chain of events that would be triggered by what transpired today would rate quite…Read more

I have no clue

Hello, my name is Maya and I am traveling to attend a scientific conference together with some colleagues, who are sitting in the front rows of this aircraft.   On a holiday alone? Traveling solo is very boring.   I too love to travel. Last year my husband and I went on a holiday to Las Vegas. Throughout the week I spent my time by his side, watching how he…Read more

“My body, Your business?” Decisions about a woman’s body in the 21st century

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    “My body, my business” screamed the banners as thousands of women left their workplace and homes and took to the streets in 60 cities and towns across Poland in October this year. The country came to a halt by a nationwide protest against further tightening of the country’s already restrictive laws on abortion. Without half their workforce, government offices, universities and schools across Poland had to stay closed….Read more

Fatalistic Optimism, Bodily Asceticism and the new, refurbished ‘Human B(e)uying’ (50% off)

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“We are living the period of the objects (products): that is, we live by their rhythm, according to their incessant cycles. Today, it is we who are observing their birth, fulfillment, and death; whereas in previous civilizations, it was the object, instrument, and perennial monument that survived the generations of men. …Today, we are everywhere surrounded by the remarkable conspicuousness of consumption and affluence, established by the multiplication of objects,…Read more

Trump Tarahumara: Grand Opening Speech

  Renowned for their long-distance running ability, the Tarahumara, also known as the Rarámuri, are a Native American people who live in and above the canyons of Sierra Madre Occidental in north-western Mexico. This is where they retreated five centuries ago from invading Spaniards.   Now that Trump has invaded their mountainous habitat with the Trump-Taruhumara (pictured above), this remote group asked our visiting Essayist author: Where do we run…Read more

A Riddle for Trumpeteers: Humberto Duerte sat by the Wall

It’s January 2019. Trump won the Presidential election of November 2016 and is now getting ready to run for a second term in the 2020 election. Back in 2016, he had promised to build a wall, but there is no money. The American coffers are empty. Wanting to be as smart as Trump, none of his followers have paid taxes. And Trump can’t do much about it. All of Hilary…Read more

Doze Again!

Sanyasi (S): Good morning, Master.   Doze (D): Good morning, Slave.   S: Why do call me Slave? My name’s Edwin.   D: No, your name is Slave. I call you what you are.   S: Please explain, Master.   D: As soon as you leave this Satsang session, you’ll check your iPhone. How do I know this?  Because you do it every time we meet. Our session ends, you…Read more

Pleasing Two Mistresses and the Paris Climate Change Agreement

STORY 1: Circa 575 BC, Greece (Aesop’s fable) Pleasing Two Mistresses makes the Man Bald   Once upon a time there was a middle-aged man who on reaching his fortieth birthday found that some of his hair had begun to turn gray. On looking into the mirror he felt the panic of a mid-life crisis. He wondered what he could do – buy a new sports-car, start riding a motorcycle or…Read more

The Dilemmas of Being Doze Yildaz

May I approach you, Sir?   You may, Clayton. What’s on your mind?   Is your name really Doze Yildaz?   I don’t know how to answer you, Clay. I might know by tomorrow. Or maybe not.   Your name sounds Turkish. I just wondered—   The name was given to me in a dream, so I had no choice but to use it. I remember that in the dream…Read more

Doze on Trump

Doze?   Yildaz to you.   Sorry. Mr Yildaz.   Yes, Rudy?   Both candidates for the, uh, the US Presidency … uh … people say they’re, uh, bad people. Both of ‘em, actually, and … And I, well, uh, wanted to know what you think about Clinton and Trump.   I cannot comment on those people. But I can tell you for sure that I’m a bad person.  …Read more

THERE IS NO RESOLUTION…So Don’t Look For One

You’re in a relationship. It’s been going well for a few months. Then, a major misunderstanding occurs: you think one way, he/she thinks the other. A stand-off occurs. What needs to happen is to resolve the issue so the two of you can go forward, right? Not necessarily.   Resolution is a construct of the ego, not of our higher nature or divine self. In times of conflict, we are…Read more

The CONscience of a conservative: Would you bet on it?

“GOP lawmakers want delegate voting as per their conscience!” screamed the headlines.   “Isn’t that wonderful? Elected Republicans in the US Congress were asking delegates from the Republican primary election to vote according to their conscience,” I turned to my friend.   “Quite an oxymoron,” he said. My friend thought lawmakers did not have a conscience in the first place, just as lawyers and hearts do not go together so…Read more

Give me the strength to look Death in the eye and smile…

God, give me the strength to look Death in the eye and smile!   That’s my new prayer in the mornings nowadays. I am not a religious man, but I pray. And I really do not know if there is a God out there. A scientifically trained man, I do not think the sound waves emanating from the words uttered during my prayer are strong enough to breach the walls…Read more

Brexit? Grexit? What — me worry? Voters of the world beware. You have everything to lose!

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Everyone’s talking about Brexit. Everyone’s forgotten about Grexit. First the media drummed up the consequences of Brexit, then the ways of Theresa May, and finally appointment of  Boris Johnson – leader of the leave pack – as UK’s Euro-connect.   Why so much worry about Brexit (UK’s exit from the EEC)? [Yianiris looks at the media hoopla over Brexit from the front-lines of the protracted war of attrition in Greece…Read more

It’s the education, stupid: Has the formal education system failed America and the world?

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Two images caught our attention in the past few weeks. How are these two images connected? The first was that of children in rural China climbing a kilometer-long bamboo ladder on a sheer rock face on their way to and from school. The other was from 24/7 television news channels of the 2016 US Presidential election campaign. Hilary Clinton, Democratic candidate speaking about her version of inclusive capitalism at a rally;…Read more

Is technology making us murderously selfie-sh?

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The obsession with mobile phones clearly demonstrates the mental pathology of our generation; people would much rather speak on a mobile than to another human. First, the craziness to click selfies was simply annoying; but now it has led to senseless killing of animals; just for a selfie!   Technology, the application of scientific knowledge for practical purposes, supposedly makes human lives better; but, does having this ability in our…Read more

BOTTOM TEN: RADIO SHOW (a letter from Pensacola)

Esteem’d Reader,   BD is still on safari (in Vescovana, Italy). We know his readers miss him terribly. His fan mail’s piling up and it’s grotesque … the love, love, love, hate, love, love for this excellent gentleman.   Without asking his permission, I opened all his mail. One reader requested summer reading list suggestions, so last week I called BD.   “Pronto,” he said … that’s how they answer…Read more

A Writer’s Genealogy

Like many Americans, I recently succumbed to the promise of DNA testing to scientifically resolve questions about my own genealogical origins which were delivered in precise numerical percentages in  hierarchical order that were translated into loose clouds of overlapping boundaries, borders and territories of identities associated with place: a slippage of precision or a deference, a nebulous obfuscation of relation, transgressing definitions, like language endlessly eluding its own origins with…Read more

Mala Inversión

Que desperdicio de tiempo, esfuerzo y dinero. Esos chico que  has conocido en la famosa aplicación esa para conseguir pareja solamente quieren pasarla muy bien y sin ningún compromiso.   Así que mientras tú te diviertes en el restaurante de moda conociendo gente, yo estoy disfrutando de una agradable velada con mi familia, después de haber cocinado la cena, pulido la vajilla y limpiado el comedor.   Debe ser terriblemente…Read more

Bad investment

What a waste of time, effort and money? These guys that you meet through that popular online dating app – they just want to have a good time without ever wanting to commit to you.   So while you are having fun in a trendy restaurant meeting people from that dating app, I am enjoying a nice evening with my family, after I have cooked dinner, polished the china and…Read more

Why do you sit on an elevated golden throne, Master?

Sanya-sin (Ssin): Why do you sit on an elevated golden throne, Master? Why not sit down here on the floor with the rest of us?   Guru-ji (G-ji):  Surely you can guess the answer for yourself.   Ssin:  Is it because you want to feel superior to the rest of us?   G-ji:  No … I don’t want to feel superior, and yet I am compelled to pretend, for  …Read more

Soul Attraction— Destiny or Free Will?

You meet someone, a total stranger. Immediately there is attraction on many different levels. You discover there are plenty of commonalities and similarities. There is ease between the two of you. It feels like you’ve known this person for years, if not lifetimes.   Your mind races with different thoughts— Is this person a soul mate? A twin flame perhaps? Were you supposed to meet at this predetermined time in…Read more

And the world moves on …….

Thank you, she said… with her eyes expressing it so clearly that I did not even need to hear the sound of the words.   ***** x It had been a pretty good trip to Nepal.  Living in Colorado, I am used to 14000 feet peaks, but then my apartment complex and the entire city is at 10000 feet itself when I view these.  In Nepal, I was viewing 21000…Read more

Make America Silent Again (THE ESSAY)

No one can hear me. Over the noise and dust of all the hard electioneering for the post of Presidential nominee. The Presidential campaign is exactly like that for any consumer item. Pick one Presidential nominee from among many. You choose.   Choose me – screams a presidential hopeful to a young, gun-carrying, evangelist Christian. I promise to give you what you want, says the presidential nominee from the podium….Read more

Johan Cruyff: Total Player of The Beautiful Game

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Johan Cruyff, guru of total football, died on March 24, 2016 at the age of 68. He scored 33 goals in 48 appearances for his country, Netherlands. He won the European Cup multiple times as a player and then as a coach. He thrice won the Ballon D’Or, an award given to the best footballer of his generation. A select set of players has won it thrice: Zinedine Zidane, Lionel…Read more

Have elections become the poison of today’s democracy?

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Free and fair competitive elections, that represent the will of the people, are a fundamental requirement for a modern democracy. Since the 17th century, representative democracy has been characterized by the conduct of elections among the public to choose a person for public office. And slowly but surely more and more excluded groups have become members of the voting public thanks to progressive movements of universal suffrage. However, the case of…Read more

Oedipal Loverbirds

March 16, morning-time … ghosts of  New York slipping and gliding in and out of cerebral cortex tissues before the Ultimate Sun appears retinal and gleaming in Tower Shinery of World Trade and Wall St. Environs. Out on sidewalk (9:00 a.m.) the sun smells like September Sea.   7:00 p.m., 10 hours later, in Julliard School at 60 Lincoln Center Plaza … scraggle-scraggle hard-scrabble Depression Dustbowl white woman harpy convulsed…Read more

From Beirut to Bombay: Big cities struggle to manage their own waste

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You Stink!   In July 2015, thousands of Lebanese citizens rallied on the streets of Beirut protesting against the government’s inaction over enormous heaps of garbage lying all over the city. Barely a week ago, the government had shut the Naameh landfill, that served most of Beirut, because it had outrun its capacity.  The city’s garbage collection company just stopped collecting trash two days after Naameh’s closure, saying its own…Read more

Cuánto lo siento

Qué maravilla es el internet. Gracias a esta herramienta hemos podido volver a encontrarnos después de haber perdido contacto por 25 años. Cómo pasa el tiempo. Parece que fue ayer cuando nos conocimos en la universidad y fuimos juntas a buscar nuestro primer departamento de estudiantes. Recuerdo muy bien las fiestas fabulosas que organizabas y cuanto te gustaba salir a caminar después de las tormentas de nieve.   En estos…Read more

I am so sorry

The internet is just great. Thanks to this tool we have been able to meet again after having lost touch for 25 years. Time does fly. It seems like yesterday when we met in college and went together to look for our very first apartment. I remember very well the fabulous parties you hosted and how much you liked going for a walk after snowstorms.   In the last 25…Read more

The Hermetic Path of Meditation

The season of Winter must be the most under-appreciated season of the year, yet its harsh conditions and general starkness contains unexpected beauty and lessons of the profundity of “letting go and letting be” and of the value of emptying, of the natural retreat of color, of silence and inwardness.  Like the natural seasonal references and myths of the abduction of Persephone into the underworld in the Classical Eleusinian Mystery…Read more

I will exercise my brain this year: Resolutions to be made by Trump, ISIS and others for the sake of World Quiet

  Pharriages and more as we decide to make the world a peaceful place this New Year. Actually, what we need is simply some World Quiet. We are willing to give up our hope for World Peace in exchange for some quiet. Stop the loudness, the hyperbole, the marketing, the constant spin. Let  the world spin at its own pace, not any faster  or slower. Give me back my slow days…Read more

Principe Azul

ADOLECENTE ALGUIEN CON QUIEN DIVERTIRSE 20’s ALGUIEN CON QUIEN DIVERTIRSE Y PROBABLEMENTE CASARSE Y TENER HIJOS 30`s ALGUIEN CON QUIEN DIVERTIRSE, CASARSE Y TENER HIJOS 40`s ALGUIEN CON QUIEN DIVERTIRSE, CASARSE Y PROBABLEMENTE TENER HIJOS 50`s y EN ADELANTE ALGUIEN CON QUIEN DIVERTIRSE