Ten, fifteen, twenty-twenty-two, hike

“If you do not know what writing is, you may think it is not especially difficult . . . Let me tell you that it is an arduous task: it destroys your eyesight, bends your spine, squeezes your stomach and your sides, pinches your lower back , and makes your whole body ache . . . Like the sailor arriving at the port, so the writer rejoices on arriving at the last line.”

Colophon of a 12th century Beautus manuscript from Silox….. from Writing, The Story of Alaphabets and Scripts

What is thinking? We use the words “I am thinking about it” to generally mean, ”I have not decided yet.” Does your mind do thinking?

De people think in words? Make a list of “pros and cons” How did humans think before there were no words, in images perhaps, but how did they know how to differentiate one thing from another thing, which has to be done to give it a name so you can think—simple to do: night sky,; tall buildings,; neon signs; people in the streets, and what is their relationship to each other? A city scene.

Or is the process of thinking , differentiating and defining a part of out biological hardwire?

Early evening at Nakamise Street, Sensoji

We use the experiences of our five senses; the mind defines the things and the relationship(s) between the things and then we know what ’s happening.

Alameda Creek

I might make references to the subject of religion, often a controversial subject which through hjstory has been responsible for lives lost unnecessarily, as well as benchmarks for behavior. outside of human capabilities.

Religion is knowing by True Faith. A True Believer, regardless of any contradictory information knows their faith to be True. We learn by true faith from culture that a photograph is a visual “record of reality.” Or perhaps its just another graphic print technique .Every computer screen is not calibrated to one standard display of color and the artist has no control over that like th eoffset printer or the wood block printer.

Science is knowing by the scientific method, which includes restricting input information to what can be experienced by common human empirical senses—see, hear, taste, smell and touch; an accurate description of the methods and procedures used; a conclusion clearly stated in a common and correct form of communication, such as grammatically correct writing, appropriate for the community of scientists, and peer review of findings.

Science is a democratic approach to knowing. Scientists agree to the standard for knowing, they use the scientific method to conduct experiments and present both the findings and methodology so peers can judge for themselves on the basis of a common scientific standard. Faith is autocratic in nature, people can never know as specifically as tp what words describe about what another thinks or feels

Scientists are human, Its not that they do not do things perfectly, rather they do things, when there are problems they work to resolve them and then redo until they get it right, a process which some times includes multiple scientists over decades. .

This does not mean that scientists might not disagree with the finding(s), it does mean that they will accept it as “scientific knowledge” even when they disagree. They may also conduct future experiments to disprove a previous experiment. This may often happen after new information, not previously known, becomes accepted—this is one way science both checks itself and advances. Science has a a common agreed upon, independent standard for what it accepts as knowledge and there are no rules about what you can choose to investigate, just rules about how you do investigate.it.

Political democracies using voting may have a common and specified procedure for voting, but often the quality of the information and quantity of mis-information individuals use to make voting decisions may be very desparate or perhaps desperate.

Religion knows by Faith, every person determines their own faith, inside of themselves, to their own standard. Even when you talk with “members,” of a “same faith,” they often have different opinions about matters of faith, generally considered “acceptable minor differences” among like minded peoples. Science defines what is a “fact” and then accepts as knowledge that what meets the definition which is independent of personal opinions.

If the human set of knowledge included all the facts—if each of us knew every “thing” in the Universe — it would be easy to find a common definition of knowledge, but humans have no answers for many things, often we disagree on the very words used to describe things and meanwhile science works at finding more new “things.”

Still, sometimes we have to make important decisions about things which we know little or nothing. Faith provides a basis for such decision making. It seems to me a person’s faith should be about how that person behaves, and not about using political power to force the behavior of your faith on others. separate and independent from political matters—Politics and religion need to be completely separated. Joining them always results in violence. One’s faith is not about using the violence of law, police & order, to force your religious beliefs on others.

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趙州和尚、因僧問、狗子還有佛性也無。州云、無。

A monk asked Jõshû, “Has a dog the Buddha Nature?”
Jõshû answered, “Mu.”

This is a famous Zen story (koan) from the 12th century, .Each person has their own Buddha-Nature inside of them, except when there is no inside or outside.

Mumon’s Verse 頌曰
(Mumon was the author/collector of Mumonkan around the 12th century and he wrote this about the koan)

狗子佛性      The dog, the Buddha Nature,
全提正令      The pronouncement, perfect and final.
纔渉有無      Before you say it has or has not,
喪身失命      You are a dead man on the spot.

Downtown Boston 1971: In the background looking across Tremont Street you can see the trees of The Commons.. He has an old D-28 Martin his tight hand fingers are stubs and he uses a flat pick held between thumb and finger stubbs while singing old hymns. Would dog know if someone put in a $1 and took out a $5?

1

) Dogen is said to have traveled to China during the 13th century and brought Chan Buddhism (Zen) to Japan, 2) Dog is rumored to be “man”s best friend.” Perhaps the problem is believing if there is a question there must be an answer when having the question makes the problem of having an answer in the first place.
On his return to Japan, Dogen founded Eiheji, (Eihei Temple). its a beautiful old temple on the west side of th e country

There was a series of Japanese films around the title character Tora-san, it was very popular, there were 48 films with the same actor as Tora-san, 1969-1995, and with . . .

the same story.: Tora retuning “home” from the last time he left, Tora creating a problem and Tora leaving again, until the next film, with an unrequited romance usually thrown in. It was based along a street in Shibamata where Tora’s aunt and uncle lived at and ran a sit-down-and-eat or take-out dumpling shop.
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I remember the 1950s when we looked forward to a big box of pop corn and a new “Francis the Talking Mule.” movie.

Walk up the street to the temple, which has a presence in every film, and walking along the outside of the inside walls of the temple— on a wood floor with your shoes off— are these beautiful old carvings scenes of buddha’s life—Why are scenes from Gautama’s life important when his mission was to teach Dharma of ending the cycle of life & death or is his image proof of ending the cycle.

Question your Faith when ever you can, so when you need your faith, all your questions are answered and your faith is strong. Its a long way to the recycle redemption place with a bike and two shopping carts.

Gate, gate ,paragate, parasamgate, Bodhi Svaha

Who’s peak hear, there, or wear?

Confucian scholars often specialized in a single classic, passing on to their disciples their understanding of each sentence in the work. Two separate sets of texts of the classics gained currency—the “new texts”, recorded in Han period script from the oral recitation of elderly scholars who had memorized the classic before the Qin destroyed all copies, and the “old texts”, based on books in the Zhou-period script discovered hidden in a wall in the home of descendants of Confucius.

China  Cambridge Illustrated History      by Patricia Buckley Ebrey

Get in the car, leave home, drive to a restaurant, park the car, enter, get a table and order food, eat and go home.

We don’t use the dining room room much any more . . . A bizen container with rose arrangement, Noguchi style lamp and “corn candles” from Old Town in Albuquerque. I was just passing by and saw the shadow of the flower. I should set it up and redo it, but for now . . .

UFOs

Often people say Art is supposed to say something, Perhaps even say something about the meaning of life? What is it that you would hang on your wall to see every day? Might there be a different piece for different rooms? or maybe rooms have different themes, like a “trophy room.

Alameda Creek

A “thing ,” or the “concept ” of a thing is about as close as we get to the infinite flexibility of the human mind—I guess one would not see if looking at the political interaction here, but those “disagreements” only represent a small portion of all “things” we share in common with no questioning, no wondering, just blank acceptance as we go on with our lives. That is what keeps us, human beings, surviving.

Having the capability of language qualitatively differentiates human beings from other life forms. Its not a matter of if only some species had a little more of “this or that” they could also do it .

Are we the them who evolved to us?

The contemporary knowledge of science is that life evolved. Somewhere in this evolution process a qualitative step happened or as perhaps as previously thought, there is a “missing link.” Do quantitative changes become qualitative changes. And . . . how do you measure qualities as opposed to quantities and compare them?

Other life forms have various kinds of communication, most of which we may not (yet?) understand, but it is the difference in the quality, not the quantity, of this language biological capability which separates human beings from other life forms.

Theoretically all human beings can talk to each other. Even when people do not speak the same language, history shows that people can learn other languages as an adult than the one they learned as a child, and talk to each other.

And most of the words we use, we agree on their meaning. Words represent things, when people grow up they learn the words they hear in many different social situations, and find a place in society.

The language with the largest vocabulary in the world is English with 1,025,109.8 words.(www.lexilab.it—not quite sure what to do with a 0.8 of a word, I guess that’s the difference between language and math.

In theory, if there is a finite number of “things” in Universe , a language would be complete when it had a word for each thing, if a language had more words than another it would mean the former had discovered more things about Universe before the latter.

Different peoples may experience same things as different, different things as same. How can words be translated—Literal or meaning? As Earth becomes one culture, just in ordinary everyday human interaction words be will spoken. increasingly people will be speaking a more common body of words which is increasingly being effected by different languages.

A global culture will emerge seeking a global sense of order, perhaps through violence, perhaps diplomacy, more likely some of this and some of that, but if anything like periods of historical cultural growth, there will be a lot of violence, deaths and property destruction.

Whatever that means? Cannot tell from here! Putin attacking Ukraine is being watched in real time news videos all over a world which sees the West calling out “War Crimes, ” but there is no police force to enforce the “breaking of the International Law.” What is a law without the ability to enforce it?

For 300,000 years homo sapiens when confronted with survival problems have packed up and immigrated. Geopolitical sovereign nation states have been around for about 600 years (Thirty Years War?)? compared to 300,00 years—which is the “normal behavour?” Which is the “abnormal behavour?”

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Personal visual moments

Decades ago I used to visit the Fogg Museum, once they were showing three head portraits by Rembrandt, all about the same size, small, same layout , images of Christ, Rembrandt, and his father.

Here and there I see hint of myself for a moment and wonder— At 76 years old its more about what has passed than what is to come, this moment will never again be, these particles in the Universe will never again be in this relationship to each other . I guess it all just mirrors and reflections. Maybe this image is latently zapping around the Universe at the speed of light until it finally meets a medium on which to reflect.

Just the everyday instability of being a part of an constantly changing Universe.

Gate gate parapgate, parasamgate, Bodhi svaha

Seens of four got; ten memories

Fremont

Fremont has changed since I moved to California in 1979, actually everywhere has changed Even before, while living in San Jose I had heard talk about Fremont, nothing of any real interest—perhaps an apt description.

My wife and I go out for pizza on Sunday. Before covid we used to go to Whole Foods for a `slice of margherita pizza, then after the change in the crust and no more margherita pizzas, we moved to soups and then down the glass counter to chicken burritto. Later came covid.

Lately we go to Pieology which has a big eating room and on-the-wall TV sets and split one pie.

Have only seen it full once. Not so many people at any one time but people keep coming and going. .It has no silverware, dishes, glasses or anything that needs to washed for customer use. Just throw it away..

This past month , at a very slow pace I have been trying to put a couple of coats of paint on the trim ,which I can reach using the 8 foot ladder —clean off the surface , primer and exterior coats.

Maybe its just the colors, the lines, and the gesture.

Alameda Creek

I wouldn’t make any claim that the whole world passes by me as I walk along Alameda Creek. But it seems to me that one piece of human nature is the human natural ability/inclination to differentiate our sensually experiences into things, then define them —give them an identity.— seemingly a somewhat reductionary process. We get words like tree and mountain, we can see them, they are clearly different from each other . . .

because there is “nothing” between them. Air , the one thing that for most of human existence was a “no thing” used to differentiate things we discovered/created. The air which we had for thens of thousands of years believed to be nothing was really a bunch of little things so small or so transparent we cannot see them . . .

What is a “no-thing?” For so many years air was a nothing that was between “things” and then came science to show us it was bunch of small things —oxygen and nitrogen and tiny bits of other molecules.

When people acquire a bunch of things, i.e. define the things in their environment—which they have to do to survive— then they can isolate things and discover the relationships between the things, and create combinations making new things.

Language is a tool that enables people to understand that ideas, concepts and theories are things, imaginary as they may be. Language enables us to separate things by giving each a a different name so they can be identified, counted and used to communicate with other people;

Define a bunch of things, give them names, relate them to each other. and on and on, constantly increasing e a mind- database. of knowledg.e

There are different ways that humans “know things.” Science has a specific method to this on going human madness of differentiation and definition...

The scientific method includes the basic guideline, what you know and how you know it are equal parts of “knowledge”. A professional scientific methodology of an experiment includes an accurate professional record of what was done in the experiment, a record which is understandable to any professional scientist such that he or she can redo the experiment..Anyone who is willing to duplicate it may do so, perhaps there should be more of this funded.

Data collection is based on the human senses and statements and summaries are written according to commonly accepted rules of grammar and logic. This makes Science a method of knowing based on common human capabilities.

Human knowledge is the ongoing process of differentiating things, giving them a name and identifying relationships between them. A constantly changing and never ending, dance of life.

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My mother suffered a stroke and memory loss. It came unexpected, there was no preparation and she lived about 3 hour drive. Because there were beneficiaries involved as POA I took care of her things, to pack them, up and place them in indefinite storage.

She lived near me, first in memory care residence, eight weeks in a nursing home rehab and the second half in a different memory care residence,

After 3 1/2 years she passed away, I brought her things in storage to my house, and over the years have moved them a few times, thrown stuff out, gave stuff away, some got broken and some still sits in my garage..

A few times a year I look at some of her personal stuff—Its an interesting connection. collection Its not stuff siblings would fight over, most of it is no $ value, just for the emotional value, some letters,, high school autograph books, records of accomplishments, a few letters never sent, memories of relatives who died before I was born. I reflect on how little I knew about my parents, or more, about how little I knew, and know, about people.

At the rehab residence, a faster paced place, laundry could have a life of its own.— pick up, at your door, wash, dry, sort and return delivery, right to your door —Operations were done in bulk and sometimes patients stuff was liable to be sorted with someone else’s, and the reverse was also true—you might find a little surprise you don’t recognize..

In previous years I made family shirts with the new year art on it . What a surprise to walk in the residence and see a stranger walking around in our family T-shirt.

Gaste gate paragate parsamgate Bohdi Svaha