marți, 22 iulie 2014

"Original Wisdom" de Robert Wolff

"Original Wisdom" de Robert Wolff

"They shoot a giraffe, but the poison works slowly in an animal that size, so the giraffe runs away, the hunters run after, Van der Post follows them in a Land Rover. He mentions his astonishment at the ability of the hunters to follow the spoor of one hurt giraffe from among many other tracks in desert sand. Finally, after three days, the giraffe dies. The hunters skin the animal, cut up the meat that they now will have to carry back on their shoulders to where their families are camped. Van der Post writes that it must be at least 50 km (30 miles) from where the giraffe died. He offers the hunters a ride in his car. Three hunters and all the meat and some bones from a giraffe are loaded into and on the roof of the car. As they start out, van der Post says to them, “the women will be surprised when you come back so quickly.” Oh no, the hunters assure them, they know. When they get back to camp the women have large fires going, ready to cook the meat. They knew. "

"There is no word for “When” in the Moken language. They do not time events, measure time passing or focus on timing. Day to day they live in a flowing timelessness. Things happen in the now which is all that exists for them. This can be liberating in many ways. Because the Moken do not constantly measure time, neither do they keep track of their age. They do not know how old they are and, in a sense, are ageless.

Other words missing from the Moken language are, “Goodbye” and “Hello." There are no real endings or beginnings in social interactions. Visitors show up and when they leave they are gone and that is it. Without the notion of time, it matters little when – no word for when - the last visit was or when – see how important that word can be? - the next one will be. There is a constant inflow and outflow of people and experiences that happen with spontaneity and synchronicity. They have no schedules or appointment books and yet they always seem to be where they need to be"

duminică, 6 iulie 2014

“All crimes, all hatreds, all wars can be reduced to unhappiness” wrote A. S. Neill, founder of Summerhill School

Today, all over the world, education is moving towards more and more testing, more examinations and more qualifications. It seems to be a modern trend that assessment and qualification define education.

If society were to treat any other group of people the way it treats its children, it would be considered a violation of human rights. But for most of the world's children this is the normal expectation from parents, school and the society in which we live.

Today many educationalists and families are becoming uneasy with this restrictive environment. They are beginning to look for alternative answers to mainstream schooling.

One of these answers is democratic or 'free' schooling. There are many models of democratic schools in all corners of the globe, from Israel to Japan, from New Zealand and Thailand to the United States.
The oldest and most famous of these schools is Summerhill, on the east coast of England.

The strangest and most unrealistic part of our child rearing beliefs is that our antisocial and asocial behavior toward them is supposed to make them into loving social beings. 

vineri, 27 iunie 2014

Walter Russel
This physical theory, laid out primarily in his books The Secret of Light (1947) and The Message of the Divine Iliad (1948–49), has not been accepted by mainstream scientists.[4] Russell asserted that this was mainly due to a difference in the assumptions made about the existence of mind and matter; Russell assumes the existence of mind as cause while he believes that scientists in general assume the existence of mind as effect .

sâmbătă, 21 iunie 2014

The Island Where People Forget to Die

One day in 1976, Moraitis felt short of breath. Climbing stairs was a chore; he had to quit working midday. After X-rays, his doctor concluded that Moraitis had lung cancer. As he recalls, nine other doctors confirmed the diagnosis. They gave him nine months to live. He was in his mid-60s. 

Moraitis considered staying in America and seeking aggressive cancer treatment at a local hospital. That way, he could also be close to his adult children. But he decided instead to return to Ikaria, where he could be buried with his ancestors in a cemetery shaded by oak trees that overlooked the Aegean Sea. He figured a funeral in the United States would cost thousands, a traditional Ikarian one only $200, leaving more of his retirement savings for his wife, Elpiniki. Moraitis and Elpiniki moved in with his elderly parents, into a tiny, whitewashed house on two acres of stepped vineyards near Evdilos, on the north side of Ikaria. At first, he spent his days in bed, as his mother and wife tended to him. He reconnected with his faith. On Sunday mornings, he hobbled up the hill to a tiny Greek Orthodox chapel where his grandfather once served as a priest. When his childhood friends discovered that he had moved back, they started showing up every afternoon. They’d talk for hours, an activity that invariably involved a bottle or two of locally produced wine. I might as well die happy, he thought. 

In the ensuing months, something strange happened. He says he started to feel stronger. One day, feeling ambitious, he planted some vegetables in the garden. He didn’t expect to live to harvest them, but he enjoyed being in the sunshine, breathing the ocean air. Elpiniki could enjoy the fresh vegetables after he was gone.
Six months came and went. Moraitis didn’t die. Instead, he reaped his garden and, feeling emboldened, cleaned up the family vineyard as well. Easing himself into the island routine, he woke up when he felt like it, worked in the vineyards until midafternoon, made himself lunch and then took a long nap. In the evenings, he often walked to the local tavern, where he played dominoes past midnight. The years passed. His health continued to improve. He added a couple of rooms to his parents’ home so his children could visit. He built up the vineyard until it produced 400 gallons of wine a year. Today, three and a half decades later, he’s 97 years old — according to an official document he disputes; he says he’s 102 — and cancer-free. He never went through chemotherapy, took drugs or sought therapy of any sort. All he did was move home to Ikaria.