Primordial Source

of My Experience

France is alright…

I’m really loving my time in France so far.  Chloe lives in the most gorgeous part of Dijon, right outside the “Palais du Ducs,” which you should check out *click the link.  Today I got four different kinds of mushrooms, bee pollen, and some raw goat’s cheese at the market.  Chloe got a pumpkin.  She’s carving it right now.

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And I’m doing this:

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We’re having a grand time!  Plus, writing this blog is giving me the most mysterious case of deja vu!  The Night Before Christmas is a great movie for getting into the spooky spirit.  We went to a lake today and did a little exercising.  I drank a glass of wine at 10 AM!!!  Life in France seems simple at the moment.  The pace of life here suits my current academic pursuit, and everything is going really well.  The icing on the cake is that I’ll be back just in time for Thanksgiving and late season football.  Can’t wait to see everyone!

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Nothing is Important

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If you know me well I bet you know I like nothing.  The idea tantalizes me.  Nothing has never really been formally studied and the definition is always fleeting.  Is empty space nothing?  No, it’s empty space.  What is nothing really?  I really can’t say, but I do understand some important aspects of nothing that I would like to share with you today.

Doing nothing is impossible.  We have to breath, circulate our blood, digest our food, grow our hair, etc.  Becoming close to nothing is what the Western world calls meditation.  When I need to recharge my body after a long trip, after a long day or an intense experience, I try to become as close to nothing as possible.  The breath slows, the bones rest upon what’s below them, and the pulse becomes light.  The benefits of this (transcendental meditation) have been well-studied and more interestingly utilized by popular artists such as the Beatles, Zion I, and others to increase creativity and reduce stress.

Some argue that meditation sets the mind up for constant escapism.  I highly disagree.  When I’m doing nothing, I’m getting as close to doing nothing as possible.  When I’m physically, socially, creatively, academically, or intellectually  active I’m striving to be as far from nothing as possible.  This philosophy has taken me five years of trial and error to really sort out, but the implications of this are intense yo!

There is a saying out there that, “you can’t meditate away world hunger.”  No doubt this is true.  Regardless of what new-age gurus proclaim there is no spiritual matrix in which thoughts manifest physical objects spontaneously.  The concept of manifestation works through intentional action alone.  The hindi word karma translates very closely to our concept of doing.  The idea is that doing things impacts the reality in which we live.  Doing nothing is a tool that we utilize to recharge the body, become enveloped in peace, escape into a realm of eternal sunshine, or simply to reflect on our experience.

What do you think?  Have you ever tried meditating?  If you haven’t, I don’t suggest you sit cross-legged on the ground, hold your thumb to your finger and hum.  In my experience, recreating the image of “guru” is goofy and distracting.  If you want to try meditation with some degree of sincerity, sit in the place where you feel most comfortable or lay face-up somewhere you feel very safe.  Definitely let gravity do what gravity does.  Allow gravity to press on every cell without resisting….  Now you listen.  You have a lot going on in your mind.  Meditation is simply listening to your self for as long as it takes for your thoughts to become still.  Meditation is the cultivation of nothing.

I’m becoming more certain that nothing is the essence of existence.  They arise mutually.  Cultivating nothing is like growing a tree that will nourish your life, dreams, and love, because it is out of nothing that these somethings have become.

Peace

Passion and Sport

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Here is a picture of my cousin Allan O’Connor hanging in The Brown Pub.  Allan is a local legendary Cork County Senior footballer.  “It’s as high as you can get really,” among the ranks of Irish footballers.  Gaelic football is a treasure of the Irish people.  The game hosts twenty per side giving the game a battlefield like appearance.  The men are allowed five steps while carrying the ball and then must either bounce, kick, or shove the ball off.  Bouncing the ball gives the player the most creative maneuverability, but is only allowed either as the first bounce or after the player kicks the ball to himself.  The point system is one point for a ball kicked over the bar (field-goal like dimensions) and three points for the back of the net.  With a pace much faster than soccer and skills in the arena of American football, rugby, and soccer, watching the match is highly anticipated each week.

The level of play of the match we attended yesterday was inter-county league play.  That means spectators are family members, friends, and co-workers of the players.  This relationship between the players and fans is nothing like American sports offer.  I have never heard people talk about a sporting even for so long after a game, with so many intricate details, and so many stories about a player’s past games, plays, and non-sporting history than I have experienced here in Cork.  Sunday is match-day, and conversation unfolds continuously afterwards during night at the pub, early morning at the grocery, in the house throughout the day, on the phone with an unfaltering vigor and passion that only such a tightly knit community could participate in.

American sports get far more national media coverage but Irish sports are more vigorously discussed by the fans.

Dubliner

New photos!

Chloë and I are now official Dubliners.  Although we didn’t see the Guinness Brewery, have a wild night out drinking, or get mugged, we had just about as good of a time as you could expect us to.  The Irish people gave Chloë a much needed break from the French, now confirmed for their arrogant and generally unfriendly attitude towards foreigners.  Besides that, it was nice for her to be in an English speaking country again, and of course within the comfort of my arms.  The French staff of RyanAir had to go on strike right before Chloë’s flight, leaving me awake at the Dublin airport overnight.  I stayed up for something like 38 hours straight.  When she landed I was almost delirious enough to take her to lunch at the one restaurant I had not yet become familiar with!

We dropped he bags off at my cousin Ros Portier’s house, and turned right around to find what we were looking for.  Two burgers, a basket of “chips” and a bottle of wine later, late night Dublin was looking pretty epic.  There is a surreal aspect to Dublin; the city is crawling with life in every little corner, making each little corner feel like the only part of the city.  A crowd for every “busker” (street performer), a bum on every block, and thousands of bars hosting live music of every genre.  We were pretty impressed.

After grabbing some sweets and what the Irish call a “fry”, we evacuated the city and returned to my cousin’s beautiful house and the most over-appreciated bed in Dublin.  A fry is a breakfast consisting of blood pudding (cows blood and barley sausage), rashers (thick cuts of bacon), and bangers (delicious, light, spiced sausage).  Served with eggs, fried tomato and mushrooms.  Worth every penny every time.

With ambitious plans to wake up at 7:30 and crush breakfast, we slept until 9:30.  Good thing, too, because I was completely wiped out after our long day out.  We hit up the National Gallery, Trinity College, Book of Kells, Steven’s Green, and got home for dinner an hour late.

Another good night of sleep and another late start got us out of the house by 9:30 this time.  Everyone told me to see Phoenix Park (the largest park of any European city).  Phoenix park sucked.  It was just a large park with roads all through it (not exactly Yellowstone) but we dipped out and hit up:

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for some Irish coffee and post card writing.  After a bus ride back into the city, we made our way to the Dublin Castle, which was by far my favorite sight.  The gardens were beautiful, the architecture intriguing and best of all, the castle hosts the Chester Beatty Library.  The library is more of a museum of fashion, religion and literature.  I left here with far more energy than I came with!

We set out to find a good place to eat and listen to traditional Irish music.  We found it.  Chloë bought me my first European steak and we had a few pints.  What a mistake!  Regardless if you are gluten intolerant or not, if you restrict gluten from your diet and then have three pints of Guinness, get ready for an interesting night!!!  We called it quits early so we could rise early for Chloë’s flight.

Dublin was great and I would definitely visit again, minus the pints of Guinness.

Get you vitamin C…

This morning I woke up with a pretty stuffy attitude.  I’m definitely clearing something leftover from the weekend in Dublin.  Julie said, “Get you some vitamin C then today….”  Mission accomplished:

 

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And I’m happy to report that I have mastered the coconut flour pancake.  From memory with ghee and love I cooked up this plate-sized blueberry pancake for one.  I made the guacamole last night, consequently addicting another family to my “stuff your face guacamole.”  The tomato and egg belong on every Irish breakfast plate and to top it off, we aren’t even a quarter way through the NH maple syrup.  This was something special, I’ll tell you right now I think I could work an entire day barefoot and shirtless in this dreary Irish weather.  More on Dublin later!

 

Wow-Warm Organs

Yesterday was an incredible day.  I fulfilled each priority with precision.  John and I went up to the slaughter house, which is literally three houses up the street.  I watched the murder of four sheep followed by their preparation.  The “animal technicians” so skillfully stripped the bodies of their skin.  I definitely developed a new respect for butchers and anyone who can stomach the daily task of skinning animals.  Thanks to the kind butchers I returned home with a warm liver in hands.  Julie was excited to cook me up fresh lamb liver and onions.  Eating four slices of the liver put me in a state of rapturous delight.  Warmth surrounded every inch of my skin, wrapped me in an ethereal blanket of bliss, and submerged me deep into a hot spring of silence.  Better than beer, better than sleep, better than pancakes.

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So primal!  After I went to do some gardening with Con Connelly.  I stayed for dinner and Sheila (Con’s wife, my cousin) thought it would be a good idea if I stayed with her sister-my cousin-Rose during my trip to Dublin.  I think it’s a great idea and can’t wait for this weekend.  I’ll meet Chloë at the Dublin airport tomorrow, midnight, and stay one night at a hostel close by.  We’ll wake up to a continental breakfast (hoping to fulfill my primal desire with all you can eat bacon!) and see where the day takes us.

Guinness Brewery, Phoenix Park, Steven’s Green, Book of Kells, Church of Christ, Bus tour…all on the agenda.  What else is there to do in Dublin?  Any suggestions or must sees?

The moon rose where the sun set last night, together, and Venus was overseeing the whole thing.  I have a good feeling.

Aspartame Toxicity Update

Please check the aspartame link below.

Food is like technology for health.  The body literally downloads the food and process the nutrients.  Meals are like software that affect your body’s performance, and downloading the proper food allows access to more interesting experiences in reality, quicker response time, and a smoother user interface.  I love this life and I love upgrading my technological interactions with the world.

“a little bit of power washing” was a huge understatement.  I power washed the entire day barefoot in the rain.  Almost got the whole job done!

 

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Beet root, Broccoli, Mushroom, Black Olives, Garlic Stuffed Green Olives, Raw Milk Blue Cheese A little bit of power washing and that’s my day folks.

Kealkill’s Premiere Dog Whisperer

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This morning John, Julie, Kate and I went to breakfast at Kathy Mullen’s house.  Kathy is quite the fire-cracker, ripping shots at all who stand before her.  I really like that she speaks her mind and sticks to her guns on everything.  Kathy has taken a liking to me for my cool demeanor and insightful approaches to health and food.  I think I turned her into Kombucha’s number one saleswoman in all of Ireland!  Stock prices will fly!  

Her house is incredibly charming and her company twice as much so.  I experienced “potato waffles” for the first time, because Kathy knows I don’t eat grains, and these may be something I look into making myself.  Maybe some variation like a potato pancake?  Breakfast was incredibly filling and extremely energizing.  I went with the family into Bantry, where Julie visits her sick father on the daily.  I grabbed a cappuccino proper at The Breakfast House (the only open restaurant in Bantry) and gathered materials for my coconut banana bread that bakes behind me as I write.  

I’m finding more and more reason to try and stay in Ireland.  The people here are so different than Americans.  Of course, each sect has pros and cons, but the easy-going charm of the Irish is luring me in.  The rain is close to unbearable though and I have a lot of respect to all those hardworking souls getting what needs to be done everyday in the grey.

A Promise Kept, A Promise Broken

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I’d make myself a martyr for this cause.

Aspartame was discovered in 1965 during by a pharmaceutical company as the failed attempt to create a stomach ulcer treatment.  The company decided to put the chemical through the FDA testing.  They performed the tests poorly themselves, and had the chemical sweetener on the market the same year under the name NutriSweet.  By 1980 many independant tests showed the adverse health effects of the chemical and the FDA  banned the sale of aspartame nationwide.  The number one concern was that aspartame has a high chance of causing brain tumors.  In 1981 under the new Reagan administration aspartame was re-approved after a very controversial vote by a freshly elected FDA panel.

Recent research has shown that it would take over 50 cans of artificially sweetened diet soda per day to consume a dangerous amount of aspartame; however, non-deadly symptoms of consuming even one can per week include:

  • headaches, migraines
  • fatigue
  • sleep problems
  • depression
  • anxiety

And an onslaught of other symptoms like nausea, asthma, abdominal pains, vision problems, and memory loss.  Aspartame also volatilizes the symptoms of pre-existing  conditions including diabetes, MS, lymphoma, alzheimer’s, epilepsy, brain tumors, mental retardation and chronic fatigue syndrome.  If you know anyone with these diseases, and you love them, make sure they know that aspartame is going to make their life a whole lot harder than it already is.

Here is a medical article that cites all the right sources.  Poke around http://www.mercola.com and tell me what you think!