1. Athena had someone else stand in for her at this morning’s service.
Shanti– “Sean, but I go by Shanti”– was the twenty-something who usually contributes the soundbath portion of the Sunday sessions. His work with the singing bowls is beautiful but I’d never heard him speak.
Sean– Shanti– stumbled through a rambling service. I did my best to follow along but eventually gave up and just dropped into meditation. His language wasn’t connecting to anything and it was easier to use the hour to experience the words.
Toward the end someone asked him how he had gotten into singing bowls.
“I grew up in Los Angeles? When I was eighteen I was hanging out with some of my friends and this car comes by and I hear this noise and see this explosion of light and I think maybe someone’s thrown a firecracker at me. But then in the background I hear someone saying my name in slow motion, and everything was in slow motion, and I realize I am on the ground and covered in my own blood. It was a drive-by shooting.
I got shot in the head– just simple stupid violence I guess– and afterwards I felt a lot a guilt that my friend died and I didn’t. Nothing really made sense after that until I found the singing bowls.”
2. I have been reworking the 5-HT2A docs and keep wanting to punch my fist through the ‘why.’ Why does this company exist? Why another production company? Why add more movies to the deluge pumped into the world each year?
3. The Boddhisatva vow is a vow taken by Mahayana Buddhists to liberate all sentient beings, such that until all beings are liberated from suffering a Boddhisatva will continue reincarnating. I do not identify as Buddhist, mostly because Buddhism is about as charmingly patriarchal as Christianity– “With the exception of the Lotus Sutra, women’s attainment of Buddhahood is not regarded as a possibility. Nowhere outside of this one sutra is there any indication that women can attain Buddhahood. In fact, in the sutras preached prior to the Lotus Sutra, women are looked on with great distaste.”
Were I a Buddhist, my reason for 5-H would relate to the Boddhisatva vow. I am not. Because I seem to lack a certain native register for danger I have been through multiple deaths (age 7; age 10; age 22; age 31); each time I have stuttered up into the same female body.
4. Waking up is exhausting.