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Love


I wasn’t necessary prepared for this topic. But I’m reading a book: Hector and the secrets of love by F. Lelord.

As I was mentioning in the other post, I am on the search of the brimbrick: that something which once found would make me (and everybody else) happy ever after.

I don’t know if the brimbrick exists. But what better life purpose would there be other than search for it?

By chance or not, the book I’m reading and which is about a very charming psychologist on a quest to finding the secrets of love, offered to me my first step on the journey towards the brimbrick: Love.

Love is supposed to make us happy. It is the brimbrick for many of us.

Simply put: one molecule in our brain (dopamine) is at the root of desire, activates the adventurer in us who want to dive deep in the Unknown of the other. Another molecule (oxytocin) is like the fluffy cat you would like to feel and hear pourring next to you for the rest of your life (if you love cats); it creates the yummy familiar feeling of belonging. The two molecules together (plus some secondary ones) create the feeling of love. And this is what I have just recently learned from my book.

Now, I feel like saying that to feel love one needs to properly and carefully mix the right dosage of spirit of adventure and fluffiness. Get too much spirit of adventure and after some encounters you are ready to move to the next Unknown. Get too much fluffiness and that extra fluff will soonly push you in the un-attractive territory of neediness.

Where am I in all this?

-to be continued.

What about you? Does the molecules story makes sense for you? In which way?

 

 

 


Take one year, split it into… surprise-surprise… twelve (months), attach a “resolution” for each month, journal the way you are following through with that resolution and … TA- DA you have the recipe for the book I’ve just read.

The book is: The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin. And it wasn’t an easy read. Because of a mix of: oh, that’s so vain, I really know better than that, I could have written it (much better, of course) and I-am-actually-interested-in-what-she’s-saying-and-slightly-embarrassed-to-recognise-that.

But as one of the author’s commandments is: “Be Gretchen”, maybe I will give it a go at “being Denisa” and admit that I am (still) a sucker for recipes for living. I still kind of flirt with the idea that maybe there is indeed a brimbrick and once I discovered what the brimbrick was and how I could reach it (ideally in 5 steps), well, then … hocus-pocus, I will live happily ever after.

And here I am facing such a all-important choice:

  1. stay cool, know that there is no brimbrick and, in any event, not a brimbrick in the form I would like it to be and that would need 5 steps to reach it. In which case, I would still entertain a kind of  doubt:  “what if”
  2. give it a go at finding the brimbrick. And know that this is so … unspiritual. Ok: I am very happy I really wrote that.

And today, the clear option is to start the search of the brimbrick.

Keep close if you want to know how:)


Fear is itself afraid. It won’t just come out and say: “Here I am, I’m Ms Fear and I’m paying you a visit. I’m only around for as long as you try to avoid me. But if you pay attention to me, look me in the eyes, see me properly, Im gone (at least for a while).”
No, she won’t say that. She would generally say: “Im not afraid, I’ve got this. I’m OK, yes, I’m OK”.
But then it would come up in different ways, wearing different make-up, different masks.
I’ve been noticing some of the masks these days. I’ll call them “homo” – Latin for man.
It works quite simple: you put the homo- mask on and it starts talking/thinking for you. Check it out!

1. homo spoiled-child-icus: “It’s enough! I want it to end; and it should end Now. Because I say so. And if it takes longer, Im going to put up a tantrum. You wait and see!”

2. homo doomed-icus: “Oh my God, we are all doomed. We are all going to die!” or “Oh, my God, I am going to die. Oh noooo!”

3. homo masochist-icus: “It is not bad enough. It should be worst, we deserve worst for what we did to the Planet and to the other fellow animals”. Which is kind of true. Luckily Nature’s mind is wiser and Kind. And maybe invites us to discover these qualities in ourselves too.

4. homo conspiracist-icus: “I know the Truth (thunder noise for special effects). There is no such think as COVID 19. There is no such thing as a crisis- the hospitals are actually empty.” Or: “there is such a thing as COVID 19 and it’s the Chinese, or maybe the Americans that manufactured it in the … Lab (evil look). You are being brain-washed to believe what the establishment wants you to believe but I have … my Sources (Crash Clang- Cymbal noise). Oh, my Sources are different than the Sources of my fellow homo conspiracist-icus but these are details.”

5. homo give-it-to-me-hardus: “Look how China built hospitals in days and did the testing in no time and eradicated the disease. I won’t mention that China took about 2 months to recognise that there is problem and that during that time people identifying the problem were treated themselves as problems. Many of them died. But these are details. No, China is a strong country. It behaved … manly; it did not waisted time discussing, analysing (brrr, horrible words). It’s not a p ussy like the EU. It acted maaan, it acted.”

6. homo racist-icus: “Yet another wonderful opportunity to be narrow-minded, racist and hateful. It’s the Chinese, or the Gypsy: it’s their fault for spreading the disease. It’s obvious”.

Homo racist-icus and homo give-it-to-me-hardus enjoy very much being together. They have wonderful fantasies where their borders will be closed and all the “aliens” sent back home (although aliens’ home may very well be the very country also hosting the 2 specimen. But, these are details). Once the borders will be closed, they will live in peace and harmony. They will be free-maaaan-free. No disease will ever enter their pure country. “Like North Korea? Noooo, way better.”

7. homo spiritual-icus: “I have already sorted out all my fears, traumas and wounds. I’ve also cleaned my chakras- all of them, meditated for the last 10 years. I’m all zen and actually been living in a kind of isolation for the last 5 years anyway. And that’s not because I became really annoying for most of my friends. No, it’s because, being more on my own came to me, I deeply felt in my heart to do so. So now, I am soooo zen, have I mentioned that already? And I can help you. Yes, just breathe: take a deep breath iiiiinnnnn and a deeeeeeep breaaaath ooooout. Breath through the fear. Yeeeees”.
“It’s actually a good advice but Im going to serve it to you mostly in the moments that you cannot hear it. That would make me feel even more zen and in control. And so much cooler.”

 


Just found a super nice word I thought I’ll share with you. It’s in one of the oldest language in the world, in Sanskrit. And there is something in the melody of this word I simply love. The word is: sukumara.

And it means “beginner’s mind”, or “childlike mind” in the sense of feeling wonder and an inexhaustible interest and capacity to take in new ideas and experiences.

su ku ma ra

Take a deep breath and have a sukumara moment, dear one.

 

 


I was noticing a pattern. In my own country, Romania, and some of the neighbours, Poland and Hungary. Turkey even more extreme. United States started to smell like it as well.

I didn’t know it has a name. And I would have not linked it to Mussolini and Hitler. Given the Cambridge Analytica scandal and some (reliable) press reports of Russia supporting right-wing extremists, I was more thinking of Putin. 

What’s the pattern? 

Feather by feather, the chicken is plucked. Or Fascism- which “tends to take hold in a step-by-step manner than by making one giant leap”.

Practically, the feather by feather approach can be the following:

  • take power (democratically or not);
  • invest in some good governance so that you have popular support (Mussolini started by cutting bureaucracy, building bridges and roads, taking care of the poor);
  • strike a chord (in Poland, Kaczynski claims to speak for “true Poles”, Hitler had his “pure race” ideas, Orban also considers that “a person of Magyar ancestry living in Serbia or Romania is more authentically Hungarian than a Roma or Turk born and raised on Hungarian soil”);
  • undermine justice (preferably be the one to appoint the judges);
  • undermine press (preferably, slowly slowly start to control it all. In Turkey 2.500 journalists were sacked, some of them are in jail);
  • undermine political system (in Hungary, Orban re-wrote the constitution and gave more power to the prim-minister at the expense of the parliament);
  • find a scapegoat for all the badness in the country (Orban started a strong campaign against Soros. “Late in 2017, the government sent a questionnaire to every household asking whether it supported the “Soros Plan” to force Hungary to accept migrants, pay them welfare, and assure them lenient sentences for any crimes the might commit”. The whole thing was, of course, a lie. But, “by asking questions based on a lie, it makes the lie a central art of the conversation.” Plus it makes people fearful. Plus, they know who is guilty for the badness: Mr Soros. Funnily enough, the same scapegoat, Mr Soros, was also found in Romania. Now, at least Soros is Hungarian- his connection to Romania(ns) is not so clear. But when the fake news are repeated often enough, such details become unimportant);
  • hit in minorities (as they have difficulties to defend themselves anyways. A friend was telling me that in Poland, there are “LGBT free zones”. This is so outrageously inhuman that I really hope that’s not true);
  • and the list can go on on on, lower and lower the more “the bad people” are in power, and the longer the “good people” pretend not to see what is happening.

Well, I have to say that I find writing this quite sad.Fascism.jpg

Madeleine Albright writes about this with a lot of context, nuanced, and brightly. I took most of the example above from her book, “Fascism: a warning”. The parts between inverted comas are copied from it. The book makes for an exciting read and I can only recommend it.

I would like to end with a little paragraph from the book:

“In times of relative tranquility, we feel we can afford to be patient. We understand that policy questions are complicated and merit careful thought. We want our leaders to consult experts, gather as much information as possible, test assumptions, and give us a chance to voice our opinions on available options. We see long term planning as necessary and deliberation as a virtue, but when we decide that action is urgently needed, our tolerance for delay disappears. In those moments, many of us no longer want to be asked “What do you think”. We want to be told where to march. That is when Fascism gets its start (…)”


“People, my people need food in their bellies. They cannot chew ideas. Ideas, great ideas, wonderful ideas, about mother earth, climate justice, ethics and blabla, these all make me wanna puke”. He grinned and stroke his belly, rather full of himself, feeling great about what he has just said. His name was El Capitan. People started to call him more recently Nero. You know, like the guy who set Rome on fire just to make more space for his palace. 

Tim was a bit scared of these kind of people. In his world people were good and they were helping each other. Only two weeks ago Tim received a slice of cake, specially made for him. Just like that. While he was sitting at a table, slightly lost in thoughts while he was bravely eating his veggies. That lady, the cook of the hostel came, said that she was searching for him, put on the table the slice of cake (gluten-free, real yumm) and left. It is true. Tim felt so overly happy and grateful about that. And like this he had many examples. Of good people doing good things. So El Capitan type of people were troubling him.

What could have happened to these people to be like that? Tim was imagining them as kind of weird creatures. Very very hungry who wanted more and more, never feeling completely satisfied. With their huge bellies that swelled and grew and bloated and took more and more space. Their bellies took over their humanity.

Creatures to keep distance from.

Only that these kind of people started to show up more and more often lately.  They were even considered in some circles as strong, outspoken, no-non-sense leaders. True Leaders.

“Brrr.” Tim thought. El Capitan, in his leadership allowed the Forest to burn. When temperatures rise, glaciers melt, sea level rise, and hurricanes become more furious.

Hum. Funny times. Maybe good people need to show goodness a bit more so that El Capitans and their huge bellies don’t have that much space anymore.

That may be a good idea.

 

some context:

Amazon forests have been on fire for weeks now.

“What is causing all these fires? In recent decades, human activity has lead to significant deforestation in the Amazon. Over the past 50 years, 17 percent of the Amazon rainforest has been cut down and destroyed by humans, 80 percent of which is for cattle ranching (to produce beef and dairy), according to the WWF. Most of the rest of the deforestation in the Amazon is due to illegal logging, harvesting palm oil, and growing soy to feed livestock (about 67 percent of the world’s soy is grown to feed livestock).” –  see https://www.greenmatters.com/p/amazon-rainforest-fire

Quotation-Jane-Goodall-What-you-do-makes-a-difference-and-you-have-to-38-48-43

what can I do?

  • for the moment I am not eating meat and dairy. I try avoiding eating products containing palm oil and soy. 
  • keep cool and stay more in the heart. Heart feels nice and warm, and compassionate. It’s really nice company. Try it.

How are you?


“Where have you been?”
“I have been hiding. Initially it felt like the honest thing to do. I felt I didn’t really have something to share anymore, you know? Then I started a mad and often frustrating search for… myself: self enquiry, meditation, who am I, focusing on the breath, attending to satsangs, meeting non-dual teachers, getting tired, starting to feel that all this in (finally) going somewhere, feeling more and more a sense of gratitude, and then moments of lack of meaning, feeling tired again, feeling grateful again. Like this.”

dsc_0316-e1565789526666.jpg

“And now?”

“Now silence is here. But, shhuush. I’m a bit afraid to speak about her. What if she’s veiling herself again? It does this, you know: she simply pulls her blanket up and I feel left out, all on my own.”

“Oh, no. We don’t want you to have the blanket slammed in your face. We can keep quite. Welcome back.”

 

And you, my friends, how have you been all this time?

 


quiet

Illusion


we all need a bit of illusion. sometimes.illusion 2


– why aren’t you a real egg (like he is)?

be an egg

be an egg- 1st attempt

the mask


do you think that if I removed my mask, would there be anything left? He asked.

untitled-36

untitled-35-2


I once thought of a project about “one emotion a day” expressed in photographs. Don’t worry that would not happen- too lazy for it:)

untitled-5


I thought I’ll restart writing a bit on this blog. meanwhile however a friend of mine asked me if I could take part in her project: untitled-73-21000 faces of happyness and I was happy to say yes. I’m writing quite a bit there. But in Romanian (here you have a good reason to learn this melodious language, isn’t it?).

But today I just wanted to share with you my drawing in the making. It’s magic what charcoal can do to a sheet of paper,  would’t you (generally) agree?

 

new drawing


I haven’t been drawing for too long. In fact, until 3-4 years ago I was convinced I cannot draw a proper straight line- it still SONY DSCamazes me at times that I can do it. So I better not think about it too much.

Being such a new hobby it fascinates me how you can “do something out of nothing”. I don’t have any memories of me as a child discovering the world. But I imagine it’s pretty much a similar feeling. Of wonder and enthusiasm- I draw a circle, draw some lines and some shades and the brain is recomposing the rest- giving you the feeling that you are seeing actually a person in that mix of lines and shades.

So this is my last drawing after a photo by Raymond Patrick. Hope you’ll like it and share with me your own little awe moments. Have a lovely week-end.

back to life


It’s been a while. And I’ve missed you.

Detail from a Ruben's painting displayed at Brussels' art museum (Bozar). I was tempted to get in by the expo's name: "sensation and sensuality: Rubens and his legacy". Honestly it didn't produce me such great sensations. As to the sensuality- Roubenesque indeed.

Detail from a Ruben’s painting displayed at Brussels’ art museum (Bozar). I was tempted to get in by the expo’s name: “sensation and sensuality: Rubens and his legacy”. Honestly it didn’t produce me such great sensations. As to the sensuality- Roubenesque indeed.

Hope you’ve missed me too. As badly as to still follow me now that I’m changing a little bit the profile of this blog.

No worries, I’ll still bluesky. But, at least for the time being (today) I am quite interested in art. And I thought we could explore it together. Exploring is a big word. I’m actually just curious about fun things about artists, things that make them “human”. So that, looking at them as human beings, I could allow myself to get inspired and who knows, to also make “art”. Or at least to experiment with being creative without bothering too much if what I’m doing is any good. What the humanity of an artist has to do with me getting courage to do my creative things?

Well, I don’t know which coutry are you coming from and how is it there, but in my country there is a general “feeling” that artists are geniuses. That art or creativity hit them one good day and they made art happily ever after. Therefore, me- a simple mortal- I should rather continue doing my mortal things and leave artists be the creative ones.

How is it in your case? Also got the impression that “I’ve got no talent, so what can I do? Better leave it to the gifted ones”?


give the inner artist a chance

inspiring article about drawing.

drawing is not about having talent. it’s about seeing or learning how to see again. about discovering the beauty of the moment. about taking the time to see where the beauty is coming from, what is it really about, breaking it into pieces, filtering it through your own being, extracting its juice. yummmm

metro time


metro timeI like metro stations.

I used to like airports. I once spent 2 days in an airport. With an ex-boyfriend who forgot he needed a visa for Germany and got stranded at Frankfurt airport. I “sacrificed” and spent 2 days with him wandering on terminal 1. We slept on a bench covered with his sleeping bag. That was when our relationship was at its best.

But getting back to my current love for the metro and metro stations. I like it because it all happens very quickly. One metro comes, other is leaving. Little pieces of stories are going on. Replaced by others.

it can be lonely downthere

it can be lonely downthere

When I very much like a movie I prefer jumping to the end to see how it finishes. Afterwards I can get back and truly enjoy it. I’m relaxed. It’s nice. In metro stations I don’t have time to think that I want to see how it ends. So I pay attention.

I’m relaxed. I am present. That’s nice.

flower-power

flower-power


I’ve spent today about four hours in a psychiatric hospital.

An abandoned one. So don’t worry: I’m fine.

Or relatively fine. Because I still feel weird 6 hours after my “photo-shooting”

the ballroom. probably

the ballroom.

It was something like a 19 century-type psychiatric hospital. With beautiful pink flowery tapet on the walls, little, “cozy” rooms with light plastic curtains “protecting” the corners where the private sinks (and possibly toilets) were.”Hi, I’m here” little scribblings on the walls.  2001 magazines with happy Belgian princess announcing the birth of the throne heir.

Oh and some syringes forgotten on some tables. Some photographers before me had the great sense of humor to fill them with some red stuff ( hopefully it was the photographers who did that…brrr if not).

The howling wind inside and happy birds singing outside…

Well pretty much everything was screaming: “get the f…uck out of there”.

Which I did. Perhaps a bit later than I wanted to.

Now … well I’m happy with the pics. Abandoned buildings with stories to tell are more than photogenic. Still, on top of the weird feelings I had while being there, I also felt a bit like an intruder. Some very “personal” lives happened there. While me I went there to take cool pics.  Which might show that I’m a cool person. The redder the stuff in the syringe the better.

So, more generally I’m wondering a bit about “the responsibility of art”. I Know “responsibility” sounds like s…hit.

Still, little question for you too: to what extend should we actually be more sensitive about what we’re  “expressing”? Is the following question a “meaningful” question when we talk about art?: “does what I express make this word a better place?”


before

before

The most common excuse for not being creative is probably: ” I don’t have time” (and if you’re the

after

after

rational type… you’d also add: “for such non-sense”).

This little post is just to show that sometimes you only need 5 minutes to transform something ( for better or for worse): a tea-box into a pencil-holder, for example.

 


The title should actually read, drawing a horse (only). And not quite on the right side (of the brain). Certainly upside-down (not of the brain).

Yes again.

I’m continuing with the tasks from Betty Edwards‘ book “Drawing on the right side of the brain“.upside down horse

The technique I’ve first started with is copying an up-side-down drawing (see here for more). It is supposed to “cheat” your brain. So instead of drawing what you think you see you’re drawing what you’re actually seeing.

In other words, using this technique, you should be able to draw more accurate, closer to reality, more precise, more visual, like an artist… Ok, I’ll stop. I know you’ve got it: applying this technique you should be able to draw better. It’s starting to sound like a shampoo ad:” turn the drawing you want to copy up-side-down, draw it and go”.

However, as you’ve probably guessed it, theory is neater than the practice.

Cause what I’ve surprised myself doing after a while was sort of turning the respective drawing up side right… in my head…

Miss Edwards will probably argue that that is precisely the idea… that in time your visual abilities will get so developed that no cheating of the brain would be needed anymore… your visual abilities would be great anyways…

Well well.

Let’s get to the subject:

upside down horse

What was this week drawing?

A horse. You’ve guessed it yet again.

See the original above (photographed from Miss Edwards’ book)

And below my upside-down, right brained (i.e. visual) copy of it.

You’d notice that my horse is rather bulky.

It’s actually balky. With more personality.

Hug you all and have a great week!

 

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