Alice Munro Nobel Prize: Appreciation for the Short Story

I was so glad when I heard that Alice Munro won the Nobel Prize. 1st Canadian to win it, but also (still only) 13th woman. I’ve noticed that some of my favorite authors are Canadian women, like the late Carol Shields and Margaret Atwood, who also write fine short stories . I’ve only discovered them in the last 4 years and I can trace my becoming more conscious of the (female) fool’s journey reading these female Canadian authors. Continue reading

The Grand Perhaps

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Be aware, the La-

conic Sage in-

structs:

The Path.

Is that all it takes?

Fair and square.

Continue reading

Visualization: An Art of Conjuration

A Little Methodology on Heuristics

I’m not the type, it’s not my style, to give motivational or inspirational quotes or videos. It’s a pity, because I would get more readers. If I do concede (not condescend) to do so, though, it shall mostly be along another quote, pic or video (minimally, burgeoning and bifurcating tags), the two somewhat clashing with each other: in seeming dialectic. The initial objective is not so much to ponder or mull over, than get a flash of insight from the juxtaposition of “documents”, as if out of the blue, from the first reading, like a koan or other paradox may conjure up: one heuristic methodology to get some insight, some experience of synchronicity or to discover our strange attractors and learn from them (post on strange attractors coming soon). It is only after the initial encounter, the occasion to refresh some old pearls of wisdom and give them back all their sheen and patina through a heuristic inquiry. However, this time, I am going to make a little exception (or am I, really?). Continue reading

What’s in a Birthday: Reflections

human protect and give loveGive Your Birthday a Chance

This morning my husband told me that my birthday is 10 days overdue, my Hebrew birthday, that is. Continue reading

Enlightenment glimpse by glimpse : a Quote and a Poem

Zen enlightenment, which carries with it a deep and lasting comprehension of one’s place in the totality of the universe, is not easily gained — contrary to the impression of “immediacy” that many people have taken away from their cursory reading of Zen literature. Continue reading

Notes on Saving Icarus: Lin Yutang’s Pseudo-Scientific Formula for Wisdom

Self-Realization vs Self-Help

Our century is filled with formulas for living, statistical  empirical studies, tests and proofs of what brings happiness, what constitutes the good life that, you may notice, provided you don’t get caught in the hype, only corroborate age old wisdom for happy happening, found in every cultures and especially religious traditions/institutions, like marriage, going to church/synagogue and other rituals, respect of the elders etc…   The promise of Seligman’s learned optimism against learned helplessness, started with humanistic psychology, has degenerated into the overly statistical science of happiness, known as positive psychology. Continue reading

Wabi-Sabi ( Léonard Koren): Voir la vie en Wabi-Sabi

Sauvegarder le Wabi-Sabi

Je ne saurais dire si Léonard Koren, un occidental, a saisit les nuances de l’esthétique japonnaise Wabi-Sabi, étant moi-même de culture occidentale. Cependant l’autorité et la passion qu’il met à en traiter, si elles ne sont pas gages de fidélité, en tous cas me parlent. Il semble tout de même y avoir un paradoxe à écrire un tel livre, quand on sait que le Zen est au coeur du Wabi-Sabi (ou est-ce le contraire?): un système de pensée, (une mystique?), un art de vivre plutôt réservé aux seuls initiés, mais surtout qui se défie de tout intellectualisme, donc de la mise par écrit de son enseignement. L’auteur qui n’ignore pas ce fait, néanmoins, justifie sa démarche par la sauvegarde écrite du patrimoine culturel, comme c’est souvent le cas lorsqu’une tradition ancienne est menacée. En effet, Koren veut préserver le Wabi-Sabi de l’exploitation erronée de ses concepts, qu’en font les occidentaux. D’autre part, Koren nous informe de l’ exploitation commerciale courante des produits Wabi-Sabi par le système Iemoto japonnais (p.16), système qui a tout à y gagner, en conservant au Wabi-Sabi son aura mystérieuse. Continue reading