Thursday, June 29, 2017

Bottom

Ok. I've hit bottom again, and this time, rather than make the usual mistakes of 'looking up' and 'bouncing back' and all that BS, I'm gonna stay here for awhile, let the dust settle, and get real clear on what exactly this is, because THIS is where I'm really at and what I actually have to accept. 'Bottom' is what turns into the foundation for whatever can be from here.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

My 6/25/2017 Health Update

(Warning: NONE of this is even remotely sexy. I'm truly sorry. Really. You have no idea how sorry I am lol): The last couple of times I've checked my Blood Pressure at CVS it's been 107/75 and then 115/73, which is fine. In both cases my Pulse was 80 due to too much coffee. As of tomorrow morning, I will be drinking a simple chamomile tisane instead of coffee. I don't even have any coffee left to drink tomorrow so this plan will definitely go into effect. Coffee has given me a lot of trouble like this before. I quite cold turkey last time for two and a half years. I just might quit forever this time. Chamomile helps balance digestion, respiratory (inc. sinus), hormone, inflammation, nerve, and anxiety issues in a soothing, even slightly sedating way to at least some degree, in direct contrast to coffee, being a stimulant, which can end up making all these things much worse like it has been for me again recently. I think the only reason I've continued to enjoy coffee here as long as I have is because chicory is awesome. In general I have been eating a fairly healthy balanced diet, steadily including more vegetables, reducing grains and dairy while ingesting only whole versions thereof, and minimizing meats (including 95% elimination of red meats altogether), which has been showing semi - better results. This is essentially a selective carbohydrate diet, which is best for someone with perpetual inflammation issues. I still have a senna + infusion to help with digestion as needed, but am now keeping milk of magnesia (MoM) on hand too because it's the only medicine that treats both heart burn and constipation at the same time, which is awful when it happens. With my Blood Pressure being good again (in contrast to last year when it was high-ish normal regularly for the first time in my life instead of low-ish to bottom normal like it's always been previously and is again now fortunately), I can handle the sodium content in MoM when I occasionally need to take it. I am, of course, not drinking any alcohol anymore either, which is no big deal because I hardly ever drink alcohol anyway. Over the past few days I have managed to successfully back off from taking ibuprofen significantly despite having been on my menstrual period so that's really good! I had been taking a lot of ibuprofen again in recent weeks and it's better to take less or none as much as reasonable because it can be a bit hard on the kidneys to take a lot on a regular basis which is what I have to resort to in order to function at all. Despite experiencing a couple of days of ovarian cyst resolution symptoms and getting all hopeful last cycle, my evermore perpetual ovarian cyst issues have continued off and on since then which is typical of someone prone to frequent recurrence like I am. However, my weight has remained stable at 135 lbs for the past few weeks. The stability is good even though I would rather be 10 lbs lighter. Being 5'5” tall, 135 lbs puts me at a BMI of 22.5 which is still well within healthy range. I think I'd feel less crappy about this extra 10 lbs if it was fat to muscle conversion at least, but it's not. Because I've been struggling so much over the past few weeks with intense but fortunately brief episodes of chronic pain on top of feeling almost perpetually sick with sinus stuff, etc in addition to a lot of very wet and/or very hot weather, I have not been getting out for walks hardly at all of course, which has always been my main form of exercise. I have not been good about enjoying yoga and dance at home. I still haven't used the little gym or swimming pool available to tenants where I live now. I think it's actually the lack of activity rather than the 10 lbs itself that is making me feel intolerably corpulent, so I need to get over myself and stop being ridiculously neurotic about it. The stability is a good sign. I need to be grateful for that. I may even need to accept the possibility that this extra 10 lbs might not be extra anymore, but before resorting to anything that drastic I am first hoping to at least get better about enjoying some regular physical activity again regardless and just see how that shapes up. As far as more techniques for dealing with my weird sensory disorder stuff, I have been using hand sensing / guiding (but not the full on blind person's feel along everything) to successfully reduce injuries when I have been walking around. Mentally I've been enjoying my current project, as well as studying my Audubon Field Guide to the Southeastern States. I tend to be able to focus well enough as long as I don't try to multitask. Psychologically I've been a mess and still need to work a lot more on self-acceptance specifically. Overall this health update implies small bits of improvement in some areas with hope for more, while managing to hold some ground in other areas despite increased challenges, which is better than bad.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Inori, Rokkaku-Sangaku, Sento no sain, & Shuto, etc.

Here's my Portable Shinto Kamidana that I posted about yesterday integrated onto my Altar,
a page from my journal regarding Inori, Rokkaku-Sangaku, Sento no sain, & Shuto,
and the wooden board I made for Neri and my Alchemical Hex Geometry recently.


Friday, June 23, 2017

My Portable Shinto Kamidana

As part of my Geshi > Midsummer Celebration,
this afternoon I converted a small wooden box, mirror, and three ceramic tea cups
(all things I have had on hand for a few years now) into my portable Shinto Kamidana
('God Shelf' for offerings and prayer).

Midsummer's Eve

Tonight is Midsummer's Eve, and tomorrow is the Feast of Saint John (Le Fête de Saint-Jean), which traditionally begins when the sun sets this evening. The Summer Solstice occurred on June 20th this year. The Dark > New Moon will occur just as it enters Cancer tonight at 2:31am UTC Sat., June 24th, which is 8:31 pm Fri. June 23rd our time here. The Sun entered Cancer yesterday, joining Mercury (early in transit) and Mars (nearly midway through transit) there. Traditionally this is the Big Night of the Year for European Pagan / Heathen Festivities, though this has not held true in contemporary American Neo-Paganism, Wicca, etc., which favors Samhain / Halloween. However, in New Orleans Voodoo (derivative but distinct from Haitian Vodou), this festival has retained its top status. It is a night of bonfires, called 'chavandes' in French, that were originally provided as offerings to Dragons and to ward off evil spirits. In many versions of this festival it is traditional to also dance around, burn, and/or drown crosses (various types) and/or wreaths (either circular or heart-shaped) as symbolic offerings for fertility. Ceremonies still include bathing in the sacred waters of certain streams and ponds, etc. (hence the association with John the Baptist), drumming and rond dances, spirit marriages, mead drinking and summer feasting [hunted male game (avoidance of mothers and babies just come in the spring), fish, herbs and greens, etc. (think paleo diet associated with the Lunar Goddess of the Hunt in the Forest such as Artemis > Diana and Bendis > Dziewona, in contrast to the grain harvest feasting celebrated in late summer and through the autumn associated with Agrarian Goddesses)], and more. This marks the beginning of an excellent time to wild gather and dry herbs for both medicinal and culinary purposes, especially in the mornings so long as it's been at least three days since heavy rain has fallen. The celebration of the Summer Solstice > Midsummer predates Celtic Culture in Europe, dating back through the Megalithic Period and probably even before that, making this one of the oldest festivals still celebrated in the world.

The Natural State

One month ago today, I suddenly developed a huge crush on the Gorgeous State of Arkansas! Just a few examples of places I'd LOVE to visit in Arkansas (a.k.a. the Natural State due to its magnificent protected wilderness areas and 'Bark'nsas due to its dog / pet friendliness) at some point ...
The phenomenally Beautiful and generously accommodating Petit Jean State Park near Little Rock
http://www.petitjeanstatepark.com/
The State Capital of Little Rock, which hosts numerous progressive endeavors in and around town (Note: Arkansas had been a Purple State for a long time before recently going Red, and like so many currently Red States, there are Blue Cities standing up within them. This one happens to be the State Capital, which certainly helps during a time of preemptive upsurge.)
https://www.littlerock.gov/
http://www.littlerock.com/
Then, continuing on into the Ozark Mountains and Forest of N and NW Arkansas ...
Blanchard Springs Caverns http://www.blanchardsprings.org/
Ozark Folk Canter http://www.ozarkfolkcenter.com/
Buffalo National River going Wild Bill's Style http://www.wildbillsoutfitter.com/
Bull Shoals Lake http://www.bullshoals.com/

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Louisiana Hurricane Center

Here is the link for the website Track the Tropics for Louisiana Hurricane Center resources. http://trackthetropics.com/  We currently have a tropical storm approaching SoLA on top of already having had plenty of rain recently. The downpour this morning is lovely. However, it's smart to stay aware of what is and is not actually going on in a bigger picture sense.

Saving Children

I thank my Daughter for sharing this article:
https://www.globalcitizen.org/en/content/college-student-rescues-111-child-labourers-in-ind/?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=share
The oppressors always have the upper hand by definition. What's extra horrifying is how little support there is to directly oppose any of this. Directly removing children from those conditions and shutting down the operators is the ONLY way to resolve child slavery of any kind. It requires resources, of course. Taking direct action also requires taking the risk of dealing with violence though, and that's a huge part of where so many people back out. Many are comfortable throwing a bit of money at issues, but almost no one ever wants to go in and do the dirty work. Money does nothing until people are willing to efficiently organize and effectively go in and actually get the kids out. There is no other type of 'win' and it is dangerous both during and after. I want people to understand that this risk is the penalty due for not protecting and providing for all of our children properly everywhere in the first place.

Sushi Village

Yesterday my Daughter and I decided to go ahead and try Sushi Village for the first time simply because it's very close to our new home: We were delighted! The food was delicious, the service was friendly, the interior decor is both stylish and comfortable, and the menu provides for both a variety of tastes and a very reasonable range of prices. Highly Recommended! ^_^
http://www.metairiesushivillage.com/

Monday, June 19, 2017

Geshi

Geshi (Japanese) / Xiazhi (Chinese) is the annual celebration of the Summer Solstice, which is occuring on June 20th this year. Japan is 15 hours ahead of us here, so I see no problem with posting this in advance. However you celebrate summer, I hope you have a great time! It continues to be hot and storm a bit daily here. I got to experience lightning streaking across the dark sky directly above me yesterday (which was awesome!!!), so I'm feeling a lot of lightning - serpent energy this time around. I love this masterpiece by the brilliant artist Yoshitaka Amano.


Sunday, June 18, 2017

Taking Legal Action

My Daughter and I have begun taking steps toward legal action against our previous landlords. They are attempting to illegally charge us to cover up their own gross errors and lease violations. Sadly in contrast we have exclusively accumulated a pile of indisputable evidence against them regarding these matters (e.g. bank records, phone logs, e-mail archives, maintenance records involving third parties outside of our landlords' control, EVERYTHING). We will NOT be paying them a dime of the false charges on the incorrectly prepared and invalid document that they have mailed us. My Daughter has already reported them, and now we're addressing our dispute directly. They will either acknowledge and comply with our dispute against their false claims once submitted or they will acknowledge and comply with legal mediation in our favor. They really shouldn't have wasted anyone's time by trying to go this far with their ongoing scams.

Friday, June 16, 2017

National Audubon Society Regional Guide to the Southeastern States (National Audubon Society Field Guide)

Oh my goodness I would LOVE to get a used (good condition) or new copy this awesome must - have (for all of us down here) book asap!!! National Audubon Society Regional Guide to the Southeastern States: Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, ... (National Audubon Society Field Guide) ...
Filled with concise descriptions and stunning photographs, the National Audubon Society Field Guide to the Southeastern States belongs in the home of every resident of the Southeast and in the suitcase or backpack of every visitor. This compact volume contains:
An easy-to-use field guide for identifying 1,000 of the state's wildflowers, trees, mushrooms, mosses, fishes, amphibians, reptiles, birds, butterflies, mammals, and much more;
A complete overview of the southeastern region's natural history, covering geology, wildlife habitats, ecology, fossils, rocks and minerals, clouds and weather patterns, and the night sky;
An extensive sampling of the area's best parks, preserves, hiking trails, forests, and wildlife sanctuaries, with detailed descriptions and visitor information for 50 sites and notes on dozens of others.
The guide is packed with visual information -- the 1,500 full-color images include more than 1,300 photographs, 13 maps, and 16 night-sky charts, as well as more than 100 drawings explaining everything from geological processes to the basic features of different plants and animals.
For everyone who lives or spends time in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, or Tennessee, there can be no finer guide to the area's natural surroundings than the National Audubon Society Field Guide to the Southeastern States.

Kintsugi / Kintsukuroi

Today I am resharing this image that I produced and shared at the end of October / beginning of November last year as part of my Kintsugi / Kintsukuroi ( for the Wiki Quickie about this https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kintsugi ) theme this morning.  I have a print of this inside the front cover of my current journal. I have felt like I'm falling a part again, especially yesterday both physically and mentally, but this morning, after a good night's sleep that has helped me feel a lot better, I have woken to remembering this important perspective.

The original photograph is not mine and can be found in its proper place through this link https://www.flickr.com/photos/searchingformatt/3259678392 

The opal in this petrified wood
 is a naturally occurring reminder of the principles of Kintsugi / Kintsukuroi.
More Kintsugi / Kintsukuroi Wisdom

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Contemporary Jomonism

For more information regarding Contemporary Jomonism, please visit http://jomonism.org/

Genya Murakami

This amazing artist is producing his own original ceramics inspired by the ancient Jomon Period style. Check out Genya Murakami https://www.facebook.com/genya.murakami

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Yama-no-kami

Because there was a second Dark > New Moon occurrence in Taurus this year (on the evening of May 25th), I got a second shot at celebrating Bendidia in my own way yesterday and today, during which Yama-no-kami has finally come into my awareness. Yama-no-kami 山の神 is the Japanese Shinto Goddess of the Mountain Forest Hunt, as well as Sex and Fertility (including Lunar influences), comparable with Bendis (Dacian), Dziewona (Carpathian), Artemis (Greek), and Diana (Roman). She inevitably has ties with Okami (Wolf), Mizuchi (Water Dragon Spirit), and Mazoku (Tribal Shapeshifting Elf) lore. Her Sacred Sites typically feature a Sacred Tree, as well as stones, a Torii, etc. For more information, I hope you enjoy this article about Her and other Mountain Deities at Green Shinto http://www.greenshinto.com/wp/2014/08/20/mountain-kami-yama-no-kami/ My Special Name for Her is Kariudō 狩人 , meaning Huntress.

Neridō

I have decided to call my current conceptual project Neridō 音里道 (e.g. Neri vevre, Alchemical Hex Geometry, including sigil work and health correspondences, etc.), which means Way of the Beneficial Sound / Vibration ('Vibe').

Here's what wooden tongue drums can sound like ...

The Neri 'Drum' I Want to Craft

I want to use this 7 slit / 6 tongue = 6 tones (imagine as Roots) wooden 'drum' (idiophone) design and replace his sun-moon and 3 star crosses with my heart-shaped head and 1 star cross centered above it to craft a Shamanic 'drum' for Neri. Go here http://lumberjocks.com/projects/15495

My Table of Holistic Health Correspondences

For those of you who are familiar with fundamentals of Shiatsu, Chi Kung, and Ayurveda, my Table of Holistic Health Correspondences Reconciling Traditional Gogyo (Wu Xing), Godai (Tattva), and Ayurveda Attributes is now available as 1 page in .pdf format here
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B2kofYzfPg-ybG9GWDI1Z1hiemM/view?usp=sharing

Monday, June 12, 2017

My Deflective Shield and a Proj/tective Array Sigil

Continuing with my current conceptual project: Shown in Orange on this diagram is the 'Sigil' or Energy path of simultaneously working a Deflective Shield and a Proj/tective Array using my Alchemical Hex Geometry. This applies to vertical, diagonal, and horizontal planes, so visualize the Shield as a Circle when stationary and then a Sphere when in motion, and the Array as a Splay when stationary then shifting like a kaleidoscope when in motion. In this way, this sigil provides a pool of sequences for combat based on this map of energy flow, always rooted in Earth, which maintains balance and core strength.


Saturday, June 10, 2017

Ethiopian Dignity

As I have been looking up Ethiopian images and info online, this photo is one of my favorites.
The beautiful woman is wearing an elegant netela veil and holding a big red negarit drum at an event promoting peace and hope between different peoples. So far I have collected 50 photos showing the sophistication and dignity of Ethiopians that completely counters the image of degradation and helplessness that has been used by scamming vultures for decades in my own country to profit through fake charities off of the very real problems that Ethiopians have been working to overcome on their own with almost no valid foreign assistance at all the entire time. I feel the photo of this woman commands Respect for Truth beyond differences, personal comfort, and dismissively hypocritical convenience.


Friday, June 9, 2017

My Neri Hex Board

This evening I have crafted a Hex Board for Neri using
the Alchemical Geometry I have posted about.
Reading Shown in First Photo Below:
kyo / yin shell on Air, jitsu / yang shell on Metal,
and energy current shell on Heaven (Cosmos)
~ strong focused conceptualization flowing directly from the Source

Sangaku

For those who are not familiar with Sangaku or are new to Sangaku like I am,
here is an excellent image of an antique example
 For in depth understanding, I recommend
Sacred Mathematics: Japanese Temple Geometry,
Fukagawa Hidetoshi and Tony Rothman,
Princeton University Press, Princeton, NJ 2008
(377 pages in .pdf format for free online)

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Gogyo and Godai

For those who are not familiar with the Gogyo (based on the Chinese Wu Xing) and the Godai (based on the Hindi Tattvas) of Japanese tradition, here are the Wiki Quickies for each ...

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Neri and Alchemical Hex Geometry

This system of Alchemical Hex Geometry has been inspired by dreams I had on
11/15>16/2016, 5/27/2017, and 6/5/2017,
as well as my related Carpathian, Ethiopian, and Japanese research.
© 2017 Irina-Sofia Albamare All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

My Rotini Alfredo Pistou


a couple more good Jomon websites

I am also enjoying a couple of websites that focus on specific aspects of Jomon Culture in summary that are visually easy to access ...
Jomon Japan: Jomon Archaeological Sites in Hokkaido and Northern Honshu
http://jomon-japan.jp/en/
AND Special Historical Site Sannai - Maruyama Site
http://sannaimaruyama.pref.aomori.jp/english/index.html

Heritage of Japan Website

I am thoroughly enjoying immersion in Heritage of Japan: Discovering the Historical Context and Culture of the People of Japan. At the top of the website, place you cursor over the section title and multilayered menu widgets drop down to provide easy access to numerous articles and related resources for you to choose from. My favorite sections to explore right now are ...
Many recent discoveries revealing the Pre-Jomon Legacy of Most Ancient Japan can be found here
https://heritageofjapan.wordpress.com/pacing-the-paleolithic-path/
AND the Jomon Legacy itself is well-covered here
https://heritageofjapan.wordpress.com/just-what-was-so-amazing-about-jomon-japan/

Local Contraflow Info

State Police Phased Evacuation according to Jefferson Parish
During a threat of a hurricane, a phased evacuation will be based on geographic location and time in which tropical storm winds are forecasted to reach the affected areas.
Phase I - 50 Hours before onset of tropical storm winds. Includes areas south of the Intracoastal Waterway. These areas are outside any levee protection system and are vulnerable to Category 1 and 2 storms. During Phase 1, there are no route restrictions.
Phase II - 40 Hours before onset of tropical storm winds. Includes areas south of the Mississippi River which are levee protected but remain vulnerable to Category 2 or higher storms. During Phase II, there are no route restrictions.
Phase III - 30 Hours before onset of tropical storm winds. Includes areas on the East Bank of the Mississippi in the New Orleans Metropolitan Area which are within the levee protection system but remain vulnerable to a slow-moving Category 3 or any Category 4 or 5 storm. During Phase III, certain routes will be directed and the Contraflow Plan implemented.
The Link to the Local Contraflow Routes Map inc. the Metairie Split
http://media.nola.com/news_impact/photo/contraflow052910jpg-f67ff2c84bdc538e.jpg
The Link to the Louisiana State Police Phase III Contraflow Instructions for our area (no map)
http://www.lsp.org/pdf/Phase_III_Contraflow_Instructions.pdf
The Link to the NOLA City Southeast Louisiana Contraflow Routes Map of the whole region
https://www.nola.gov/getattachment/Ready/Hurricane/Leaving/Southeast-EvacuationContraFlow-Map.jpg/

Monday, June 5, 2017

Sakaki

This morning I woke from a dream in which I was about to successfully excavate an important layer of Japanese Prehistory, including revelations about Koshinto, from beneath a rainy swamp and marshland area. This is not surprising being that yesterday evening I was immersed in my Jōmon Period (14,000 to 300 BCE) studies again. Part of what I was contemplating during my studies yesterday was the Sakaki ('Sacred Tree') of Shinto. The Sakaki is traditionally thought to be the evergreen shrub Cleyera japonica, native to Japan and common in the second layer of 'Live' / Evergreen Oak Forests. It is an ornamental shrub well – suited to bonsai and gardening purposes, producing blossoms and NOT edible berries. However, Sakaki, meaning Sacred Tree, seems like a title that would be better suited to a plant of much greater cultural significance. During the Jōmon Period, the Evergreen Oak provided the staple food of Acorns, prperared in the same sorts of ways that Native Americans have traditionally. Rice Culture was not introduced to Japan until during the Yayoi Period (300 BCE to 300 CE). Furthermore, the Evergreen Oak provided the Jōmon People with an excellent wood for building and everything else that was relied on pervasively. It stands to reason that in Koshinto the Sakaki / Sacred Tree had almost certainly been the all – sustaining Evergreen Oak itself, rather than a lovely little flowering shrub under its protection. The shift of the Sakaki title probably occurred when Buddhism took root in Japan even later during the Asuka Period (538 to 710 CE), which resulted in a flurry of Classical Shinto texts during the following centuries that were supposedly intended to preserve components of Koshinto within an evermore Buddhist context, but simultaneously served as a means for adjusting those components away from Koshinto into what was more politically correct at that time as a thoroughly revised 'foundation' for Classical Shinto. Rather than preserve the inevitably Sacred Status of the Evergreen Oak that had provided for the Jōmon in all ways, the title shifted to the lovely little flowering Cleyera japonica shrub, extracted from those ancient Evergreen Oak Forests, that is so much better suited to Buddhist gardening aesthetics, while still alluding to the original Evergreen Oak. Unfortunately the source of that very likely logical allusion seems to have been forgotten. It stands to reason that the Sakaki / Sacred Tree title can now be restored to the Evergreen Oak for Koshinto purposes. As for what I was about to excavate in the dream I woke from this morning, I have yet to find out.

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Daiitoku-myoo

Daiitoku-myoo is the 'wrathful' aspect of Monju Bosatsu who rides a water buffalo.
He is perhaps Monju and Shishi (Guardian Lion-Dog) combined, such as through Therianthropy.
He is thought to be the Lord and/or Conquerer of Death, which in the Buddhist perspective means that He overcomes the Cycle of Samsara (Death and ReBirth, and all other forms of primal duality)
so that Oneness is fully Realized. In this sense, He is a Liberator.


Thursday, June 1, 2017

Monju Bosatsu and Shishi

Following up on my dream from yesterday (ref. prev. post),
here is a gorgeous figure of Monju Bosatsu
at the Tokyo National Museum
  
Monju Bosatsu is frequently accompanied by a
Shishi / Guardian Lion - Dog. Here is an exquisite antique Japanese
Shishi Mai Mask (such as for 'Lion Dance' processions)