Monthly Archives January 2015

A Winter Morning’s Hike With My Friends Henry and Kevin

I managed to invite two friends to tag along with me yesterday morning on a hike in my beloved Annadel State Park. The  unusual thing is they came along in shifts.

My longtime running-biking-hiking-drinking-yakking-deconstructing-the-world buddy Kevin accompanied me on the first and most arduous phase, keeping a pretty serious pace as we hoofed it up Rough Go Trail and around Lake Ilsanjo on a crisp winter morning when fog lay heavily across the distant valleys.

When I got home, my friend Henry was waiting for me in the easy chair in the corner of my bedroom, paying me a surprise visit from his home in Massachusetts, his walking stick by his side...

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Exercising the Spirit: Yoga and the Mind-Body Conundrum

 “With its emphasis on strength and flexibility, power yoga brought yoga into the gyms of America, as people began to see yoga as a way to work out.”

So says a response to an inquiry about “power yoga”—a form of vigorous, extreme effort hatha yoga—on

“A way to work out.”

As indeed it is.

Get that body to the studio.

Work it out.

Feel good.

Look toned.

Pat your yoga butt as you walk into the cafe to pick up a protein shake.

I don’t know exactly when yoga began to suffer the first fissures from those who would separate it from its profound spiritual roots. It’s a 5,000-year-old discipline, after all, and it was probably 4,999+ years ago that an enterprising Indian merchant wove together some special yoga garment or drew a posture or two on parchment that he traded for a persimmon or a bowl of soup at his friend’s stand down a dusty road.

Eventually, everything worth a whit attract...

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God and the gods: From Colton Burpo to Roberto Calasso

There may yet come a time when human beings inhabit distant planets in colossal, antiseptic spaceships, going about their days with antiseptic, computer-controlled minds, from which all notions and needs for God-talk will have been expunged. But until that day comes (not in my lifetime, thankfully), I’m casting the time and attention I have left to give on this earth with the poet Ezra Pound: “No apter metaphor having been found for certain emotional colours, I assert that the Gods exist.”

And so they do, in such an astonishing array of forms, depths, beliefs and disbeliefs as to challenge the very notion of human beings even resembling a coherent, more-similar-than-not species.

Exhibits A and B in that challenge: Colton Burpo and Roberto Calasso.

Burpo is the now teen-aged youth who purportedly went to heaven during an emergency appendectomy when he was four years old...

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