Sunday, May 31, 2009

Snow Goose: Canoeing On The Charles River, Practicing A Musical Instrument, If World University, Then ...

Canoeing on the Charles River in Wellesley, Massachusetts, with old friends was lovely today. There was a Unitarian Universalist church near the place where we put into the river, and I wondered with my friends whether the Transcendentalism of the first part of the 19th century, which I associate with Unitarians (Thoreau, Emerson, Channing, et al.) and other liberal, and related, groups around Concord, Massachusetts, was 'in the air' at that time around here, possibly 25 miles away, as the crow flies, in days when there was only foot, horse, and water travel. {There are often people who are gems in the 'woodwork,' as it is, of such institutions, whom I'm generally interested in meeting}. For example, what Hindu texts - I think these were key influences at this time for Transcendentalism ( - were they reading, and from where, in general, did they get these texts? Harvard and related universities? England? Universities there? How many Hindus from India were living in the area then? Were there seances, which I know were taking place at the time around here (visit Sturbridge Village, for example)? Were the Taoist writers Laozi and Chuangzi's books in circulation? When did the "Tao te Ching" and "Inner Chapters" first come to America?

The weather was perfect, as we paddled up the river, and then paddled, floated and drifted back. The variety of richly green, deciduous trees, with some conifers, along the banks of the river are wondrous, and very familiar (since I was born in the Boston area). And we saw turtles, Canadian geese, and dragonflies, and a beautiful bridge, which looked Japanese to me.


One of my friends, who is around 70 - both a medical doctor and a professor - practices a musical instrument, a horn, daily. I delight in both my friend's settledness, the music I heard him play, as well as his focus. He plays regularly, plays in a group - so his music is social, and harmony is possible - and he has a horn teacher. There's an orderliness to his life, as well, which complements his musical, and other, focuses. He practices ( around 45-60 minutes a day. He's also a kind person.


If World University and School became a degree-granting institution in 10 years, would it be possible to then ... ?

Snow Goose

Landing on water? :)

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Horseshoe Crabs: Further Recollections of Cuttyhunk, Very Ancient Sea Creatures

Further Recollections of Cuttyhunk

Occasionally I'd see horseshoe crabs at the far end of the Cuttyhunk pond.

Very ancient, beautiful creatures ... Merisomata -

We'd also go fishing for crabs


and ink squid


off the fishing dock


with periwinkle's {snails} -


which we'd have to crack with rocks, for bait.

And we'd go hunting for mussels

while avoiding the barnacles with our bare feet.

Wild Mouse: Human Language Gene Changes How Mice Squeak

More research needed:

Human Language Gene Changes How Mice Squeak
from Slashdot by Soulskill

archatheist writes "Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany have engineered a mouse whose FOXP2 gene has been swapped out for a different (human) version. This is interesting because the gene is implicated in human language, and this has changed how mice squeak. 'In a region of the brain called the basal ganglia, known in people to be involved in language, the humanized mice grew nerve cells that had a more complex structure. Baby mice utter ultrasonic whistles when removed from their mothers. The humanized baby mice, when isolated, made whistles that had a slightly lower pitch, among other differences, Dr. Enard says. Dr. Enard argues that putting significant human genes into mice is the only feasible way of exploring the essential differences between people and chimps, our closest living relatives.' The academic paper was published in Cell."


A question I have about this research has to do with whether meaning-production might be altered through gene-swapping in humans?


And loving bliss vis-a-vis genes? :)

Friday, May 29, 2009

Cuttyhunk Island: Where I Know The Culture A Little, Love Is Possible, Leaving the Land

Here on this island where I know the culture a little, the possibility for generating love is present, a growing garden, building on our familiar, common histories of this. But culture is complicated, as are places ... so the relaxation response {} - is a sweet complement too, as well as returning soon ... MMmmm

... in a real way

"Leaving the {Is}Land" {Jean Redpath ~} ...

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Blue Fish: Gone Fishin', To the Harbin Pools, MMmmm

Gone fishin' ... which is what a lot of folks come to Cuttyhunk to do ...

{It's kind of a hippie thing ... go off to the beach or out on the water, and commune ...}

Sailing, too ...

Cuttyhunk has always been off the map, a kind of quiet place to get away to, because it's pretty hard to get to logistically.


Going to the Harbin pools, soon ...


MMmmmm :)

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Jungle: People Went to Canada a Lot in the 1960s, Counterculture, Communities

People went to Canada a lot in the 1960s and the early 70s, to escape the draft, and avoid going to Vietnam. These young people, a lot of whom were students, saw the system as out of control, with no redress. And not only was the American war in Vietnam unjust, and perpetrated by America, it also seemed out of control in the U.S., and a lot of people were coming home in body bags.

So Canada, as a haven for political exiles from an unjust country and system, took on a new role.

Canada received many of these draft resisters, and conscientious objectors, some of whom were Quakers, found a haven.


Maintaining contacts with Canada - networking - has merit.


What happens when a system (i.e. the U.S. military-industrial complex - a government, its agencies, and a set of corporations - as a culture, as a 'register,') goes out of control? (About 59,000 Americans died in Vietnam, and Vietnam veterans were treated awfully by the U.S. government. And about 2-3 million Vietnamese died, some atrociously).

Counterculture emerged ... and the 1960s swept the country and transformed minds in very far-reaching ways, significantly due to the Vietnam War, {as well as protesting against, and redressing, racial injustice which also focused the 1960s).

See, for example,


When a system goes out of control, one resorts to local contacts and networks ... and now the internet makes new networks possible, remarkably. New registers ...


Lilac: Sitting on the Ramp on Cuttyhunk

Sitting on the ramp
by a boat house
on Cuttyhunk,
where I came so often
as a teenager
with friends,
to hang out ...

Still coming here now
because it's quiet,
and now to write ...



Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Clam: Fond Memories of Cuttyhunk Island

Fond Memories of Cuttyhunk Island, Massachusetts, in the 1960s and 1970s.


The Potters used to have a bakery in the house in front of the Coast Guard house (a little to the right facing out from the C.G.), right on the pond. It was fun to go there for bakery treats.


How great Potter (Allan Potter) was. He would pick up the freight at the Alert (the ferry), and could fix anything. He delivered the bottled gas and picked up the trash. He wore overalls, drove a very comfortable, old, pick up truck, and smoked a lot of cigarettes. He had a merry twinkle in his eye. He and his wife, Mildred, were honored at a picnic at the Moore's Cuttyhunk Fishing Flub in the mid-1980s, I think. Potter wore a golden, paper crown, and he and Mildred sat in aluminum folding chairs. Alec Brown inflated helium balloons for everyone, as he had done for years for Cuttyhunk gatherings. Martin Libero's unpublished novel lionizes Potter as its main character, as an example of a Billy Budd type workman (from a Marxian perspective).

Many of the kids working on Cuttyhunk wanted to work with Potter. Doing so was one of the most desirable jobs. Going to the dump on the garbage run at the west end, when working with him, brought a kind of closure to the day. And a lot of us did, including myself, worked for him for part of one summer.


Sunrise breakfast and evening cookouts at Barges' beach with the Rectors (a professor of speech, at a good institution), with a lot of singing, campfire food (sometimes quite innovative, like 'egg on a rock'), and good cheer around the fire.


My brother and I sleeping in two, different tents (in which we could stand upright) over multiple (1968 - possibly 1987) summer's behind our Walpole cottage, because the house was too small. The smell of the grasses on Cuttyhunk are very sweet in the summer.


The charm of the house we rented for years. The pine (it was called Piney's house) in it, the books, particularly new plays at the time (Piney Wheeler was an English teacher, and the dean of Pine Manor school for Girls, in Wellesley, for years), the mulitiple penguin dishes, glasses, plates, the tiny kitchen like a ship's galley, the antiques, the hedgerow path which everyone walked through to get from the road below our house to the tennis court, and through to the road, again, skipping a steep part of the hill, liverwurst and tomato sandwiches on good, local bread with mayonnaise, our two dogs' enjoyment (Penny, a small, standard black poodle, and Angie, a yellow lab) of Cuttyhunk (they enjoyed Cuttyhunk a lot, - it's a very alive world for a dog), the brown and green paint of our house, the porch where we ate so many lunches, and so much more.


The delight of coming to Cuttyhunk from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on my own, on the Greyhound bus as a teenager from around 1974 to 1979, of teaching sailing as well as working on Cuttyhunk in those years, of knowing everyone - in pretty open, very friendly, ways - in the context of the openness and creativity which was in the air vis-a-vis the 1970s, the social changes 'in the air,' and the friendliness of summers on Cuttyhunk. It was also fun to wake up really early in the morning while living in Hamden (near New Haven), Connecticut, to get to the old, wooden, orange and white MV Alert ferry, with lovely lines. And it was fun to drive from Bethesda, Maryland (near Washington DC), when my father worked for the department of Health, Education and Welfare, for 2 years.


Going for camp outs with yacht club at Cuttyhunk's deserted west end, and on Penikese Island, and playing games, doing cook outs, eating somemores, knowing the feel of the land of these islands.

Feeling free and able to go anywhere on Cuttyhunk - on the rock or on the water - and on and around the last few of the Elizabeth Islands (Penikese, Nashawena, Pasque), because I knew them, and everybody.


Working in Mugsy Thompson's store. Mugsy was entertaining and had a friendly way with people, hiring many kids on Cuttyhunk in at least the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s. Serving ice cream, doing freight, or working at the counter in a friendly small town were all part of it. He had been in the Navy and smoked a lot of cigarettes. Flo, his wife, was very loving. When the store moved down the hill one house, Steve Baldwin, a skillful sign maker, who visited in the summers, made a perfect sign for the new store which was at the back of the home. It said: "Abaft the Store."


Engaging the radical, and literary, thinking of the Liberos, while living in their basement for a few summers, as well as their generosity and compassion, in the context of the 1970s, and as a teenager. They thought of me for awhile as an example of the 'new man,' (in a Marxian reconceiving of masculine subjectivity, I think) in my early twenties, because I was thoughtful, caring, and independent-minded, and was open to engaging feminist thought, for example.


The radiance, warmth, fun and engagement with people, especially in the summer of 1979, (but all through the 70s and beyond), when I was the head yacht club instructor at the Cuttyhunk Yacht Club, and I also organized a talent show that summer in the evenings, which was very, very fun, bringing the island together, summer and winter folks, rich and poor, to create a kind of communitas (that is, a kind of warm, creative togetherness).

And since I knew all of the kids in yacht club, and was 19 years old, I felt a kind of rose of youth and creativity much of the time, I think. I also initiated building a little dinghy for the Cuttyhunk Yacht Club, as an afternoon class that summer, and Eb Wincott (who named it 'Watermelon,' painting it green outside and pink inside) did much of the building, and the Liberos and other adults and some kids in yacht club, attended it. The yacht club had needed a dinghy for years. And it was an interesting teaching and learning opportunity, which I could initiate as the head instructor of the yacht club. Besides eliciting creativity in others via the Talent Show that summer, this is another instance of how the milieu of Cuttyhunk brings out creativity in me; I'm not sure why.

I experienced a kind of loving bliss 'in the air' that summer.


Playing tennis with a long-time friend simply to keep the ball going, as a kind of 'flow' experience, instead of to 'win,' - on one of the two clay, slightly weathered, summer only, courts on Cuttyhunk.


Visiting one particular family who had 3 girls and a boy, very often in the evenings to play Yachtzee (a spelling game with letter dice) and tea ... early crushes


Freedom of being on dinghies (small boats), and sailboats, as well as an ease on the water, thanks to the Cuttyhunk Yacht Club from 1966 through 1979 (when I was the head instructor), and well beyond ....


An island where radical, loving and creative thinking, and idea-exchange were possible ...


'Games' in the evenings ("Red rover, red rover, send Phillip over ..." "Simon says ..." and "Capture the Flag"), in a yard at the end of one road, and on other islands around ...


The freedom (and cleanness) to walk barefoot all over this little island, and also living close to natural world in the summers, - produced a lot of happiness.

So many people went barefoot. My father, a physician, didn't want us to, because of the risks. This was frustrating because everyone else did.


Staying in the Bosworth House in 1966 or 1967, or both. It's now a private residence. And staying in the Allen House in 1968 (with its guest cottages 'Fair play,' 'Foul play,' and 'Horse play'), - also now a private residence.


The warmth and generosity of Granny Moore, who introduced us to the former owner of the house we stayed in, and the openness of her home - its blue room with the long, shell-identifying tables, its kitchen, pantry, and the New Englandy front rooms, - for decades - at the "Cuttyhunk Fishing Club."


Knowing Wilfred Tilton, who had grown up on Cuttyhunk, gone to the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), had a really nice aesthetic, and loved to joke around, and dance, had served in the navy, loved flowers, and although he never went to Church, and always arranged the flowers for the Church. He put the sign "Hermit" on his garden gate for the last few decades of his life (perhaps to avoid the latent fractiousness that can exist on Cuttyhunk). He had set up a pottery near three corners, in a large garden, after returning from RISD, and worked a little with Cuttyhunk clay, but I don't think the pottery ever went anywhere.


The kind of creativity and art that Wilfred's working with Cuttyhunk clay is an example of ... there was a lot of this, especially in the milieu of the 1960s and 70s.


First summer loves ... :)


Going up the hill to smoke near the schoolhouse and in the grove.


Hanging out on the wall near the store in the evenings during the second half of the 70s, with all the other kids. Blue jean jacket's were cool then. (And you needed to wear two or three layers in the 1970s in the evening. In the past 2 decades, I've only needed to wear one layer. Global climate change?)


The presence of my folks when they were on the island. They were great, - my father a smart and skillful interlocutor with ideas, with a quick mind, and helpful as a doctor to many people. {My father loved this island a lot}.


A wedding in the back of the garbage truck ...

A wedding part way in the water at Church's beach ...

{reflecting a kind of hippie (kind of cultural reversal) or Cuttyhunk way of thinking ... }


singing, and harmonizing, in the summer - at the beach, hymns ....


Face painting on the steps of the Town Hall to start the Talent Show in 1979. I was very engaged that summer ~ lots of 'flow' experiences of very enjoyable kinds, coming together as a whole in the summer.

Common Atlantic Slippersnail: Friendliness & Troopbonding, Cuttyhunk, Loving Bliss, & Culture

Is friendliness a form of troopbonding?

~ John Money's (Oxford 1988) "Conccepts of Determinism" suggests that all humans share these exigencies of existence - pairbondage, troopbondage, abidance, ycleptance, and foredoomance, and that we use these strategies to cope with the exigencies above - engaging, avoiding, and explaining (adhibition, inhibition, explication). ~

So is friendliness an engagement with each other vis-a-vis troopbonding (bonding together in groups, which humans have always done), in culturally familiar ways vis-a-vis the word 'friend,' which can be extended and amplified, and even cultivated? So, to explain friendliness, it may involve engaging others warmly and avoiding unfriendliness. {Friends ~}.

Life is all troopbonding, and the other four exigencies. The bonding word is interesting, though. For Money, pairbonding includes ... {}.

Here's one example of troopbonding ~

People just seem to like to mingle on the dock at the ferry arrival and departure on Cuttyhunk, even as they do the business of freight, and meet and say farewell to people. Does this mingling aspect reflect being together in ancestral environments over millions of years?

A pairbond with loving bliss?

There's a couple on Cuttyhunk whom I've known since they were babies (but I don't often think of them this way). The woman, and her twin sisters, used to live next door when they were four or five, and we had so much fun over a number of summers. I was teaching sailing during these summers. And as a couple now, they really love each other, and seem to kind of generate loving bliss between them. It's impressive. They now have something like a 5 and 3 year old. (Is it their time of life for this as parents of young children?) She, in particular, seems to generate a lot of this loving bliss for them, and he's very receptive, and mutually warm. It's quite an interesting phenomenon on this island which is a little like a village in the winter, and not without its fractiousnesses and feuds.

Is this natural, mutual, loving bliss?


When I got on the ferry to come to Cuttyhunk Island, Massachusetts, on Friday, I saw many old friends. One of whom I had known from birth, also, and I was her first yacht club instructor, when she was about five. We were talking with other friends, and she recalled how her first memory of me is of my balancing an oar (for rowing) on my chin. This woman is very good friends with the couple above, and they've all known each other since childhood. This woman is also quite content. {I think they all have good love lives}.

I was very playful, and fun, during my teen years and in my twenties on Cuttyhunk. It was a fun time. Lots of sitting in laps and playing with the above folks, and engaging life fully on this island.


Culture as register (for example, like music is a code in a different register than language)

Sometimes I think of 'culture' as a kind of register, a shared code with its own internal (neurophysiological?), unique understandings among people. Cuttyhunk Island, Massachusetts, and Harbin Hot Springs in northern California, each have their own versions of this, which includes language, history, understandings of how individuals in the communities think, what they like, and how they work. In and out - insiderness or inclusivity and outsiderness or exclusivity vis-a-vis the group - play roles in these 'subcultures' (Hebdige), but each 'register' is unique to their respective 'places,' in these 2 instances. This 'register' way of conceiving of 'culture' can, and has been problematic historically, as groups come into conflict (over misunderstandings of the other's 'register', - since we started traveling a lot (in modernity, for example)? And in overcoming problematic aspects of human life like racism, I see 'registers' change and develop.


Common Atlantic slippersnail ~ ~ Crepidula fornicata (Linnaeus, 1758)

It's a nice shell found on Cuttyhunk ...

Monday, May 25, 2009

Hermit Crab: Kids and Their Parents Can Link-Suggest Learning Material

Kids, and their parents, will be able to link-suggest a lot of great software they like at World University & School -

And this wiki school and university will become really interesting when people engage it, like Wikipedia is.

I hear kids really like Google's Sketch Up, for example, which I've posted here on the educational software page:

Cool, learning video games to come ...

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Bayberry: Cuttyhunk Island and Social Change in the 1970s

Cuttyhunk Island in the 1960s and 70s?

It was a different world than it is now. Old Mrs. Haskell, the school teacher, who wrote a history of Cuttyhunk (The Story of Cuttyhunk, by Louise T. Haskell [New Bedford, MA: Bradbury-Waring, 1953]), lived on the main street. She wore dark, cloudy-rimmed, glasses, and long, old print dresses to below her knees, and also wore big, black, supportive shoes. She was overweight and wrapped her legs because of this, and also had short, curly, white hair. I think she had lived in New England much of life, and worked as the Cuttyhunk school teacher for decades. New Englanders are fascinating.

The Cuttyhunk store's entrance, where we got candy before the Saturday night movies, faced what is now the Museum of the Elizabeth Islands and the Cuttyhunk Historical Society, next to the Town Hall (town of Gosnold). Mrs Haskell lived in the front of this building.

Cuttyhunk was a fun place for kids, because there's a lot of freedom, and I learned to sail here, and taught sailing here, as well.


While the social changes of the 60s and 70s were in the air in the U.S., the western world in particular, and around the world {e.g. the hippie trail, and all those hippies who journeyed to the east, and all over}, Cuttyhunk experienced its own social innovations and experimentation. Alan Westin, Jr. built a windmill with his own money on his own land, so the Town of Gosnold could have wind power, but the town wouldn't buy the hook up, so it stood over Cuttyhunk for decades, a Don Quixote-like structure of unrealized potential, and beauty. The Liberos, two professors (Linguistics and Sociology) at small Massachusetts' colleges, explored radical left politics, were very generous with their home, and friends, and often went quahogging at the west end of the island, and sailing in their little (Herreshoff designed) Bullseye named after a Meville novella. Martin wrote a novel which he never published, and Bella is working on the 5th edition of an progressive sociology text book.

They partly self-funded, wrote and co-edited (with compassionate, left-leaning friends) a little newspaper, "Survival News," which homeless people could sell on the street to make money. They also continue to be editors, to this day, of the journal "New Politics" (


Kids experimented a lot here on Cuttyhunk, and found freedom, as well as summer jobs.

And friendships, over generations, emerged. Cuttyhunk can be a very supportive and friendly place, and a place of continuity amid all of the changes in the modern world, and is a place people return to again and again. It's kind of a 'spiritual' place, a community, for some, because in returning here, old friends reconnect, and people, in general, come to feel connected again.


Bayberry (Myrica cerifera) - - is a very common, and good smelling shrub here - . More soon ...

(On March 1, 2011, I replied to an email inquiry about this blog post which mentions Mrs. Haskell, Richard Taylor's grand aunt:

( - May 24, 2009)

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Morone saxatilis: A Very Connected World, Serene Places, Changing Limiting Language

From Boston to remote Massachusetts, an island ...

And the internet is available in both places, - in a very connected world. Yet place still sets pace, and defines life ...


Boston was busy, and warm temperature-wise, and this place is quiet, lovely and very serene.


How does one change societal language which is limiting?

And develop language which opens new possibilities, like musical scores?

The language of loving bliss?


Striped Bass:

Encyclopedia of Life:

~ Morone saxatilis


Friday, May 22, 2009

Baloskion tetraphyllum: Modernity and Cities, Liberal Boston, Alternative Ways of Living?

Baloskion tetraphyllum ~ :)


Modernity and cities continue, develop, and affect our lives profoundly. What a change for bodyminds that emerged in ancestral environments over millions of generations. ... Cities offer so much, besides jobs, but particularly vis-a-vis idea-exchange. But the internet and information technology have and are re-writing possibilities in this respect.


Traveling again, the liberalism of Boston - those compassionate eyes in wire-rimmed glasses - which I know from the 1970s, particularly, carries on, even as the city grows and grows, and gets older and older. I re-visit the city of my birth time and again, and, seeing it with new eyes this time, I see more business as usual, and less colorfulness on the street, or compassionate political activity 'in the air.' The Big Dig (major construction on multiple roads) is done ("I think it's done"), and the systems of modernity go around and around - commerce, education - and a seemingly easy kind of social life.


Thinking way outside the box, where are alternatives (sic) to modernity, which offers so much, flourishing? Post-modernity? The U.S. has a rich tradition of Utopian thinking and communities in the 19th and 20th centuries, for example, and especially after the 1960s, as does Massachusetts, and yet these aren't very visible to me these days. What happened?


Harbin Hot Springs in northern California?

A virtual Harbin?

Harbin engages visionary thinking ...


And how might we generate loving bliss neurophysiology (with ecstasy (MDMA) as a reference experience, naturally}, freely and with choice, in this milieu of modernity, post-modernity and internetity?

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Manatees: Traveling, Nonharming, Enjoying Learning and World University

Traveling time ... is sweet


Nonharming is fascinating from an evolutionary perspective .... Bonobo, Manatees, and many species ... A list? {Is Harbin Hot Springs a Manatee world}?


World University & School
will open creative opportunities for learning and teaching in unlimited ways - because it's a wiki (editable web pages), and the web is free ... and it makes possible people-to-people teaching and learning.

Is this 'taste' and subject-matter related? The web allows for choice ...

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Caddisfly Egg Mass: Creating Opportunities, World University & School, Friends' Organizations, Loving Bliss

I'd like to create opportunities for creativity and innovation in teaching and learning through World University and School, a wiki with MIT Open Course Ware, - in all languages, nation states, subjects, and at all levels. It's doable - 'edit this page' {for example, or another:} - but how to grow a community isn't obvious to me. Wikipedia has something like 10 million articles in 70 languages, beginning in 2002, with innumerable volunteer contributors, as well as editors, stewards, aggregators, and curators.


Perhaps Friends' organizations (like Friends' World Committee for Consultation, American Friends' Service Committee, Friends' Committee on National Legislation, and Quaker Meetings themselves) have a lot to offer as models (along with Wikipedia). Many of these are global, endowment-based, and service oriented. Quakers also have been long involved in education, and these schools, colleges and universities are models in this sense, as well.


But loving bliss continues to fascinate me, as well, and I'd like to complement the above endeavors with ongoing explorations of eliciting loving bliss.


Caddisfly ~

~ from the amazing "Encyclopedia of Life."

Kapok Tree Roots: Networking Existing California Educational System?

How to network all 110 California Community College campuses, 23 California State University campuses, and 10 University of California campuses vis-a-vis tolerance and love, to create a new society?

How might World University and School - - do this in new ways?

Free, Open, Teach, Learn, Share Ideas ... A Wikipedia with MIT Open Course Ware and One Laptop per Child model

Wild Mussels: We Moderns, Seculars, and Liberals, Strategy for a Great World, World University

We moderns, we seculars, and we liberals, in envisioning U.S. and world society ahead, may benefit from a World University and School, for developing strategies about how we may improve society for all.

Teach, Learn, Share Ideas ...

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Bonobo Troop: To Harbin, Humans As Non-Bonobo Primates, Bonobo-Quaker World

To Harbin Hot Springs ... in minutes ... and a dance on Tuesdays (and Thursdays), and the pools, then sleeping outside, probably on the sleeping deck, under the stars, in beautiful, California weather.


As non-Bonobo primates, humans have been and are violent, although Quakers seem to have experienced, and perpetrated, very little violence among Friends, in their 350 year history. While Bonobos' minimal violence, over apparently millions of years and tens of thousands of generations, seems shaped by Darwinian natural selection, Quaker's very little violence, among Friends, seems 'shaped' by culture, language and discourse. {See, for example, "The Epistle from the Elders at Balby, 1656" ~, and American Friends' Service Committee ~}.


As an envisioning process, how might people give rise to a kind of Bonobo-Quaker world or culture, - and vis-à-vis Harbin Hot Springs? {Unique and apart from modernity ... } All three are 'real.' World University and School?


The Harbin pools ... MMmmmm ...

Monday, May 18, 2009

Tree Kangaroo: Writing Contentment?, Practicing It, Contact Improv, Jamming Music

Writing time ...

Contentment ...

Writing contentment? Yes.

Practicing contentment ... yes ... with the relaxation response, as well. {It's neurophysiology, which words and practice or practices can affect, as well as flax seed oil omega-3 fatty acids, with food, and a daily multivitamin, in my experience:}.


Contact improv jams make people really happy ... last evening ... in a nice room, not enormous, with a wooden ceiling, nice windows, in a quiet town in Marin ...

Everybody in the room seemed very happy.

I asked a friend,

"What if I float the word 'bliss' over the room, - to crescendo, to amplify the happiness which I see many people experiencing?" ... {People were in the middle of jamming ~}.

My friend said, it might make people feel self-conscious, (possibly referring to herself?)

I didn't float, or speak, the word 'bliss' out loud ... but this word, as a technology (?), has potential in such a milieu ...


The music last night was played on a MacBook on the website, and the screen saver was pretty psychedelic, and beautiful.

The group, or 'radio station' (in, was Morcheeba ... good, almost trance-enhancing music, to jam with ...

Create a 'radio station' with Morcheeba, or 'Sweet Honey in the Rock,' for example, on {or an artist (Mozart, Fairfield Four, Psychograss, Dvorak) or a piece of music (Layla, Eroica) you love } ...

You'll enjoy it ...

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Crabapple Elm: Online Quaker Meetings and World University & School

I just sent this to a nontheist friends', or an atheist Quakers', e-mail list, of which I'm a part:

Dear Nontheist Friends,

Here's an update about online silent meetings, as well as World University & School, vis-a-vis College Park Quarterly Meeting (which is part of Pacific Yearly Meeting - Quaker) with some focus on nontheist friends.

Please feel free to explore teaching or learning about nontheist friends at World University and School - like Wikipedia with MIT Open Course Ware.


Dear Friends,

It was nice to see you at Quarterly Meeting.

(George), I added an Esperanto language learning link (from Stanford University) to World University & School after you mentioned this idea. I'm still shaping the "Languages"' page, so I thought it better for me to add this Esperanto link, since I had asked if you might add it. It's not as easy to add links to (the 'edit this page' tab at WUaS) this page, as it is to add to many of the other pages at WUaS.

But please add many great teaching and learning links as you find them to the other pages, or teach, for example, a course on Quaker history to your web camera, post it to a video-hosting site, and link it to this WUaS wiki (editable web pages). Second Life makes interactive idea-exchange possible. WUaS is a teaching and learning opportunity for all of us and I hope WUaS will make access to ideas, teaching, and learning, simple and easy for all.

I'd love to involve Quakers, particularly, and even find ways possibly to employ young (nontheist?) Friends, for example, as it grows. (This may be some distance in the future). World University & School may help a lot of people by making high quality teaching and learning accessible (viz. MIT Open Course Ware and International Baccalaureates, as kinds of standards). And young Friends, for example, may enjoy posting classes they find or teach to World University and School, learn something, or request classes they'd like to learn about.

(Margaret), here's an online Quaker, silent meeting website originating in Britain, where people can request and schedule silent meeting when they're so moved:

And here's information about an unprogrammed meeting in Second Life, which meets at on Saturdays at 10 am Second Life Time / Pacific Time (1800 GMT), and Wednesdays at 1100 SLT / PT (1900 GMT) ~ see I've also posted information about this in my "Loving Bliss and Friends" letter here: (in the 6th paragraph). (It takes about 30 minutes to get an avatar in the free 3-D virtual world of Second Life, and you need at least a gigabyte of RAM for Second Life to work well).

Ben Lomond Quaker Center is a very beautiful location and redwood forest, - it's my first time there. I think the teens had a great time, - it was fun to go to the beach with everyone. And I enjoyed meeting CPQM Friends, as well. Very nice to see you.

With friendly greetings,

World University & School
A Global, Virtual, Open, Free-to-Students,
(Potentially Credit- & Degree-Granting),
Multilingual University & School,
with Great Universities as Key Players,
using a Wikipedia with MIT OCW model,
for the Developing World and Everyone

Add your lesson, course or class here now
(with your webcam, record what you'd like to teach and
post it to, -
or you can start taking Open MIT Classes Today)

Here's the open Facebook group:


(This Quaker Quarterly Meeting seemed like a form of troopbonding to me, in John Money's (1988) sense - bonding together in groups, which our ancestors did. I also enjoyed being away from the computer all day).


World University and School is a far-reaching opportunity for creative teaching and learning, - like Wikipedia with MIT Open Course Ware - where we may shape learning and teaching the way we want it to be.

Bristlecone Pine: Cells that Live a Long Time

Cells that live a long time ... how do they work? Elephants, sea turtles, Bristlecone pines (in very adverse habitats) are all species which live far longer than homo sapiens ... How do their cells do this, and what might we learn from this about human longevity?


Bristlecone pine forest:

Rae Lake and Bristlecone pines:

Rose-colored Bristlecone pine:


This longevity in these species was selected for by natural selection.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Evolution Basin Illuminated: Anthropological Poetry, Phil Zimbardo, World University and School's Culture

I'd like to call "Winding Road," the poem below on May 9 {}, 'anthropological poetry' because it brings together, in a new form, disparate aspects of experience and social life which an anthropologist might have interest in and want to learn about, on-the-ground. Is this a new form of anthropology?


Here's the third video (Shyness/Heroism/Insight) of Professor Phil Zimbardo's Stanford Open Office Hours in Facebook:

Here's the second video (Evil/Time/Insight) of Professor Phil Zimbardo's Stanford Open Office Hours in Facebook: Sound advice and thinking?

Here's his first video (Heroic Imagination/Insight) -
Stanford Open Office Hours: Philip Zimbardo, Part 1


What culture do I see ahead for World University and School? A synthesis of cultures which inform Wikipedia, MIT Open Course Ware, One Laptop per Child, the American Friends' Service Committee vis-a-vis nontheist Friends, great research universities, Harbin Hot Springs, counterculture and hippy-mindedness, as well as a focus on peace and ways to elicit loving bliss :)




( - May 16, 2009)

Friday, May 15, 2009

Asarum Canadense: Softness You Can Shape, Qualities of Relaxation Response

That softness you can shape out of an active mind is wondrous.

And the relaxation response - - has so many potential qualities, as well.

Think art ~ music & poetry ... explore the relaxation response richly, then begun to fathom and revel in potential qualities of experience and bodymind, which you might begin to give form to ... {with words, too?}

Be creative and exploratory ... and return to the relaxation response, whenever, and while resting on your back, as well ... MMMmmmm ...

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Evening Primrose: Blooming your Mind with Loving Bliss Chemistry?

Can you bloom your mind with loving bliss chemistry, like evening primroses bloom with great regularity because of their biology?

How might we do this?

Envisioning may help ... {and MDMA is a reference experience}.

{Familiarity with eliciting the relaxation response ~ ~ helps, in my experience, too}.


Guidelines for Practicing Loving Bliss like Practicing a Musical Instrument


- MMmmm ...

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Bright Morning Sun: Virtual Harbin, Building as Ethnographic Representation

Bright morning sun ...


... Started to build virtual Harbin further in Open Simulator. I've had four regions, or sims, working for about a year now.

A friend and I are doing this together. He's a systems' engineer who knows networking, but doesn't know this OpenSim software, which is like Second Life and draws from the same library of assets, or virtual worlds, so we're hacking this together.

{Hacking, in many ways, is what brought the internet into existence. See Pekka Himanen's "The Hacker Ethic and Spirit of the Information Age," Prologue by Linus Torvalds; Epilogue by Manuel Castells, for example}.

I have four regions on my hard drive, as the beginning of virtual Harbin. Each region corresponds to 256 square meters. The code for one region in a .xml file, which you can write in textedit or notepad, for example, looks like this at present:


Config sim_UUID="2109c6e0-2516-11dd-bd0b-0800200c9a66"
sim_name="Cyclamen" sim_location_x="1000"
external_host_name="" master_avatar_uuid="00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000" estate_covanant_uuid="00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000" master_avatar_first="Lotus" master_avatar_last="Flower" master_avatar_pass="test" />


(To display this code above, I removed the opening < before 'Root' and 'Config,' and the < > after the last 'Root').

The a) OpenSim software - - reads this file, and we view this island then through an older version (so we can see Second Life in the current version) of the b) Second Life client - - (like a browser window which displays the interactive virtual world which we build). Adam Frisby is currently actively blogging about OpenSim, with a lot of helpful, 'how to' information - And here are some helpful instructions.

On my four, linked virtual Harbin regions in OpenSim, each 256 square meters, I've begun to use the bulldozer tool to raise land. With Google Earth - - as a reference, I've found that the on-the-ground Harbin area I'm particularly interested in fits almost perfectly into this 512 meter by 512 meter area which make up my four regions combined. The greatest elevation difference according to Google Earth is about 75 meters. So I'm first approximating the contours of the actual Harbin Hot Springs valley in northern California in OpenSim by raising land in-world using Google Earth.


Here's my "The Making of virtual Harbin Hot Springs as Ethnographic Field Site in Second Life and Open Simulator" (14 mins.). I'll shape something like this in OpenSim:


As an argument in my Harbin ethnography, I'm suggesting that raising land with the bulldozer tool, using computer commands to do things on these sims, as well as making this particular virtual world, is ethnographic representation of place, akin to writing ethnography vis-a-vis conceptions of the field.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Frangipani Flowers: 1960's Innovative Approaches to Psychotherapy, Harbin, Esalen

All kinds of very innovative approaches to therapy and psychotherapy took place in the 1960s, especially in California {in the context of far-reaching social changes and experimentation}. Often these departed from norms, engaged and incorporated practices from other countries, like India, and could become spiritual practices. Innovations in therapy and psychotherapy could take place in workshops, or one-on-one.

In California, there was a lot of travel back and forth between Harbin Hot Springs in northern California and Esalen on the Big Sur coast (and all over California, and the west coast), for example, for workshops and gatherings, ~ often therapeutic. Harbin was bought in 1972 with the intention to create a Gestalt therapy center with hot springs, and is now a hot springs' retreat center and Heart Consciousness Church (and sort of a hippie commune). Ellen Klages' book "Harbin Hot Springs: Healing Waters, Sacred Land" is a history of Harbin. And Jeffrey Kripal's book "Esalen: America and the Religion of No Religion" characterizes a lot of what happened at Esalen from the 1950s forward.

People were very creative in the 1960s and early 70s, especially, and there was a kind of directness and wide exploration, (counter~) culturally mediated, in engaging in therapies.


See a therapist, if you want, if you like, if you're feeling bad or troubled. Life can be great, and talking about how this might work, with some insights based on reason, or a modality of your choice, can be enormously helpful.

Talk, talk, talk ... this can generate complementary, beneficial language, 'codes,' and understandings to the way you presently understand the world. {Good listeners are wonderful, as are great interlocutors:}.

Check out Re-evaluation Counseling as a fascinating approach - Beginning in the late 50s and early 1960s, originator Harvey Jackins wrote a number of books about Re-evaluation Counseling in the early 1970s.

Consider starting your own innovative form of therapy ...

{Here's Stanford Psychology Professor Phil Zimbardo again:}.


Both Harbin and Esalen have hot springs, and both were/are clothing-optional. Both are also open and freedom-oriented places, which explore and innovate therapeutically and 'culturally' {another meaning of counterculture?}. Most people are naked in the pools at Harbin these days. I think most people are at Esalen, too.


Why not explore this virtually? ... In a virtual Harbin, for example?

Monday, May 11, 2009

Krill: Second Life Educational Events, World University and School Courses, Language Learning Opportunities

Added Second Life educational events to World University and School courses:


Added a lot of new languages - One Laptop per Child languages - from Rwanda, Ethiopia, Colombia, Haiti, Mexico, Peru, USA (Birmingham, Alabama), Uruguay, Afghanistan, Mongolia, Cambodia, & Papua New Guinea ... . I'm especially interested in the languages in these countries with small populations ... (Papua New Guineau has around 860 languages; Indonesia, Nigeria, India, Vanatu and the Democratic Republic of Congo also have a lot of languages! -

Here's OLPC news -

To have a university and school as an open, editable wiki, in all languages on the web is a wild idea. And to have it done with skill and excellence will benefit a lot of people.

World University and School will focus on this.


Here's a weekly German language class (Tuesdays at 7 am Pacific time / Second Life time) and the Language Get-Together (Sprachstunde) at the Goethe Institut in Second Life on weekday mornings at 8 am Pacific time / Second Life time - (You'll need to get a free avatar to visit Second Life).


There are so many teaching and learning opportunities, thanks to the Internet, as well as the potential for both openness and to make these processes very fun.


But about loving bliss ...

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Bioluminescent Squid: Quaker-informed By-laws, Non-theist Friends

Here are some Quaker-informed by-laws with which I'd like to inform World University and School. Quaker language fascinates me in its clarity and good-will. The unity idea is also unique vis-a-vis by-laws.

QEW Structure

Quaker Earthcare Witness By-laws

[By-laws approved September 30, 1989 at the FCUN Annual Meeting held at Chelsea, Michigan, amended October 10, 1998 at the FCUN Annual Meeting held at Temescal Canyon, California, amended October, 2001 at the FCUN Annual Meeting held at Hesperus, Colorado, amended October, 2003 at the Quaker Earthcare Witness Annual Meeting held at Nevada City, California, 2004 at the Quaker Earthcare Witness Annual Meeting held at Burlington, New Jersey, and amended October, 2007 at the Quaker Earthcare Witness Annual Meeting held at Burlington, Vermont.]


The name of the organization is "Quaker Earthcare Witness" (formerly known as Friends Committee on Unity with Nature—FCUN)

Article I Statement of Purpose

A. We are called to live in right relationship with all Creation, recognizing that the entire world is interconnected and is a manifestation of God.

B. We work to integrate into the beliefs and practices of the Religious Society of Friends the Truth that God’s Creation is to be respected, protected, and held in reverence in its own right and the Truth that human aspirations for peace and justice depend upon restoring the Earth’s ecological integrity.

C. We promote these Truths by being patterns and examples, by communicating our message, and by providing spiritual and material support to those engaged in the compelling task of transforming our relationship with the Earth.

Article II Steering Committee

Section 1. Composition


1) The Steering Committee shall have a maximum size of 50 members. There shall be two classes of members: representative members and members-at-large.

Representative Members

1) Each Yearly Meeting or similar regional association of the Religious Society of Friends within North and Central America and the Caribbean is invited to appoint not more than two representatives [or one representative and one alternate] to serve on the Steering Committee.


1) Individuals may serve on the Steering Committee as members-at-large when nominated by the Nominating Committee and approved by the Steering Committee (or Continuing Counsel Committee acting on behalf of the Steering Committee).

2) Qualifications to serve as member-at-large are:

He or she can be a recorded member or recognized participant in a Friends Meeting or other Friends organization who:

* expresses or demonstrates a commitment to Quaker Earthcare Witness’s Statement of Purpose,

* supports Quaker Earthcare Witness activities through participation, communication, and/or financial contribution, and

* relates Quaker Earthcare Witness’s goals and activities to Friends and to other religious and/or environmental organizations.

Section 2. Functions

a) The Steering Committee meets semi-annually to:

1) Attend to the activities and affairs of the organization,

2) Receive reports,

3) Approve policies and priorities,

4) Appoint a nominating committee and approve nominations,

5) Adopt a budget.

Section 3. Terms of Office

a) Members-at-large serve three-year terms with renewal of one three-year term (maximum six years, though the Steering Committee may make exceptions), beginning at the close of the Annual Meeting. Representative members serve at the pleasure of the organizations appointing them.

Section 4. Vacancies

a) Vacancies of at-large members that occur between annual meetings may be filled by the next Nominating Committee with approval of the Continuing Counsel Committee. Yearly Meetings may replace vacancies at their convenience.

Article III Meetings

Section 1. Site location and dates

a) The dates and locations of Steering Committee meetings will be announced at the Annual Meeting with details approved by the Continuing Counsel Committee. Attention shall be made to rotate the meetings across North America.

Section 2. Annual Meeting

a) The Annual Meeting of the Steering Committee shall take place in autumn, the date and place to be determined by the Steering Committee.

b) One purpose of this meeting, in addition to regular Steering Committee business, is to comply with national and state regulations requiring organizations to have at least one organizational meeting each year.

c) A second purpose is to hold an annual gathering of all interested individuals to meet with the Steering Committee to address those items listed in Article I.

d) Notice of this meeting shall be mailed to the Steering Committee members at least 60 days in advance, with the agenda made available at least 20 days in advance of the meeting.

e) The agenda shall include those items listed in Article II, Section 2. To choose a Nominating Committee, a Naming Committee shall be designated from the floor early in the Annual Meeting. The Naming Committee shall bring forward nominations for the Nominating Committee before the close of the Annual Meeting. The new Nominating Committee is charged with bringing forward nominations at the next Annual Meeting.

f) The business conducted at the Annual Meeting shall be limited to that specified in the announced agenda

Section 3. Spring meeting

a) The Steering Committee shall appoint one more meeting in the spring of each year. Notices shall be mailed to each member of the committee at least 60 days in advance.

Section 4: Special meetings

a) Special meetings of the Steering Committee may be called by the clerk or by written petition of at least 5 members of the Steering Committee. Notice of the agenda of such meetings shall be mailed to the Steering Committee at least 20 days in advance of the meeting.

Section 5. Decisions in Meetings

a) Decisions in meetings shall be made in unity after the manner of the Religious Society of Friends. Minutes of all meetings shall be recorded and kept on file. Copies shall be distributed to the members of the Steering Committee in a reasonable period of time following the meeting.

b) The business conducted at Steering Committee meetings shall be limited to that specified in the announced agenda.

Article IV. Officers

Section 1. Selection

a) The officers of the organization shall be the clerk, alternate or mentoring clerk, recording clerk, and treasurer. They shall be proposed by the Nominating Committee and approved by the Steering Committee at the Annual Meeting. The year prior to their first year as clerk, the member will serve as alternate clerk. The year following their final year as clerk, the member will serve as mentoring clerk.

Section 2. Term of Office

a) Officers are to serve one year terms beginning at the close of the Annual Meeting. The individuals serving as clerk and alternate clerk shall serve no more than two successive terms, unless it is determined by the Steering Committee that it is in the best interests of the organization to have an officer continue in their role. No individuals shall serve as recording clerk or treasurer in the same office for more than three successive terms, unless it is determined by the Steering Committee that it is in the best interests of the organization to have an officer continue in their role.

Section 3. Duties

a) The duties of the officers shall be those generally performed by such officers.

Section 4. Compensation

a) Persons shall not receive compensation for serving as officers.

Article V. Committees

Section 1. Standing Committees

a) Standing committees include the Continuing Counsel, Spiritual Nurturance, Publications, Financial, Nominating, Outreach and Personnel Committees. Standing committees are permanent committees responsible for the administrative operations and the spiritual life of Quaker Earthcare Witness.

Section 2. Function

Continuing Counsel Committee

The Continuing Counsel Committee is made up of the clerk, alternate or mentoring clerk, recording clerk, clerks or other representatives of the Spiritual Nurturance, Finance, Outreach and Nominating Committees, and the General Secretary (ex officio). The Continuing Counsel Committee will have at least one face to face meeting per year between the Annual Meeting and the Spring Meeting. It is empowered to act on behalf of the Steering Committee when the latter is not in session. The Continuing Counsel Committee shall report its actions to the next meeting of the Steering Committee.

Duties include:

* Monitor the organization’s performance and ensure the organization’s focus (and that of its staff and committees) on its Vision and Witness and its mission of outreach and connection.

* Provide oversight for committees and consult with clerks of those committees as needed.

* Provide consultative support to the clerk in planning for upcoming meetings as requested.

* Provide consultative support to the staff as requested.

* Provide to the Steering Committee a copy of the minutes of the annual face to face meeting at the Spring Meeting.

* Develop and/or review and refine proposals before presentation to the Steering Committee.

Spiritual Nurturance Committee

The Spiritual Nurturance Committee shall give continuing attention to the need for all Quaker Earthcare Witness activities to be spiritually grounded and consistent with its statement of purpose.

Publications Committee

The Publications Committee shall be responsible for implementing a policy of publications and official communications. It has oversight of the Publications Coordinator and develops and updates the job description.

Finance Committee

The Finance Committee shall consist of the Treasurer and at least two other persons from the Steering Committee. It shall recommend fiscal and accounting policy and contract terms for any salaried employee (in consultation with the Personnel Committee) and consult with the Treasurer on the preparation of the budget. The Treasurer may not serve as clerk of the committee.

Nominating Committee

The Nominating Committee shall consist of three persons each serving three-year rotating terms. Openings on the Nominating Committee shall be filled by the Steering Committee after consideration of names brought forward by the Naming Committee (see Article III, Section 2, e). The committee shall select its own clerk. The committee's function is to bring forward nominations for officers, clerks of standing committees, members-at-large of the Steering Committee, and any other positions referred to it. An annual slate of nominations is to be presented for approval at the Annual Meeting. Interim nominations may be presented for approval of the Steering Committee or Continuing Counsel Committee as needed. Members of the Nominating Committee will assist the clerks of the Standing Committees in filling their committee membership.

Outreach Committee

The Outreach Committee shall encourage individuals and groups to support Quaker Earthcare Witness through participation, communication, and/or financial contributions; maintain records of known supporters; and assist Quaker Earthcare Witness committees and staff to stay in communication with them. The Outreach Committee shall have responsibility for the programmatic activities of the organization.

Personnel Committee

The Personnel Committee has oversight of the General Secretary and other office personnel. (The Publications Coordinator is under the oversight of the Publications Committee.) It develops and updates personnel policies, reviews all the staff and recommends salary and benefits to the Finance Committee.

h) Other Committees

Other committees may be established as needed.

Section 2. Clerks of Standing Committees

a) Clerk's Term of Office—Committee clerks shall be Steering Committee members nominated by the Nominating Committee and approved by the Steering Committee. Clerks will be appointed for two year terms, not normally to exceed three successive terms.

b) Establishment of Committee Memberships—Clerks of the standing committees will appoint the members of their committees with the assistance of the members of the committees and the Nominating Committee as needed.

Section 3. Working Groups, Projects or Concern Committees

a) Working Group, Projects or Concern Committees are committees that have concrete, ongoing programs but do not directly support the administrative operations or the spiritual life of Quaker Earthcare Witness. At the 2007 Annual Session, existing working groups included the Ann Kriebel/San Luis Project and Sustainability: Faith & Action.

b) An individual or group of Steering Committee member(s) with a leading or concern may submit a written proposal with a budget request and recommended term to the Steering Committee, or the Continuing Counsel Committee when the Steering Committee is not in session, to establish a new Working Group, Project, or Concern Committee. The Steering Committee shall approve the proposal.

c) Members of the Working Group, Project, or Concern Committee and a convener will be named by the Nominating Committee and approved by the Steering Committee, or the Continuing Counsel Committee if the Steering Committee is not in session. The Clerk shall be a Steering Committee member nominated by the Nominating Committee and approved by the Steering Committee.

d) A Working Group, Project or Concern Committee may request Steering Committee approval to raise its own funds instead of drawing funds from the general operating budget.

e) At the end of the initial term (and each subsequent term) the Working Group, Project or Concern Committee shall ask the Steering Committee for approval of a term extension or to be laid down.

Section 4. Ad Hoc Committees

a) Ad Hoc Committees shall be those committees that are established for specific, short term purposes.

b) An ad hoc committee shall be created by the Steering Committee or the Continuing Counsel Committee when the Steering Committee is not in session, with budget requirements and term length.

c) Members of the ad hoc committee and a convener will be named by the Nominating Committee and approved by the Steering Committee, or the Continuing Counsel Committee if the Steering Committee is not in session. At least one member of the ad hoc committee shall be a member of the Steering Committee.

d) During its first meeting the ad hoc committee shall name its own clerk. The clerk is not required to be a Steering Committee member.

e) At the end of the initial term (and each subsequent term) the ad hoc committee shall ask the Steering Committee for approval of a term extension or to be laid down.

Article VI Representatives to Friends Committee on National Legislation

Section 1. Function

a) Up to three members of the Steering Committee shall serve as representatives to Friends Committee on National Legislation.

Section 2. Selection

a) Each year at the Spring Session, the Nominating Committee shall name and the Steering Committee shall approve a representative to the Friends Committee on National Legislation. Each representative shall serve a three year term and shall serve no more than two successive terms, unless it is determined by the Steering Committee that it is in the best interests of the organization to have the representative continue in that role.

Article VII Fiscal Matters

Section 1. Assets

a) The assets of this organization are irrevocably dedicated to educational and religious purposes. On the termination of this organization, its assets after payment of all debts and liabilities shall be transferred to a non-profit educational or religious organization of similar concern or intent.

Section 2. Expenditures

a) All checks, drafts, demands for money and notes of the organization shall be signed in the name of the organization by the treasurer and/or such officer, officers, agent or agents as the Steering Committee may designate. Unbudgeted expenditures up to $300 may be paid by the treasurer with approval of the clerk. All other unbudgeted expenditures must be approved by the Continuing Counsel Committee.

Section 3. Fiscal Year

a) The fiscal year shall begin on the first day of November (beginning in 2005).

Article VIII Amendments to the By-laws

Section 1. Amendments

a) These by-laws may be amended at the Annual Meeting of the Steering Committee. Details of any proposed changes to the by-laws shall have been mailed to the members of the Steering Committee thirty days prior to the Annual Meeting.


I'm most interested in Harbin and nontheistically Friendly {} processes, emerging in a way out of the Friend's ways which inform the above by-laws:

A nontheist Friend or an atheist Quaker is someone who affiliates with, identifies with, engages in and/or affirms Quaker practices and processes, but who does not accept a belief in a theistic understanding of God, a Supreme Being, the divine, the soul or the supernatural. Like theistic Friends, nontheist Friends are actively interested in realizing centered peace, simplicity, integrity, community, equality, love, happiness and justice in the Society of Friends and beyond.

Friends have recently begun to examine actively the significance of nontheistic beliefs in the Society of Friends, in the tradition of seeking truth among friends. Non-theism among Quakers probably dates to the 1930s, when some Quakers in California branched off to form the Humanist Society of Friends (today part of the American Humanist Association), and when Henry Cadbury professed agnosticism in a 1936 lecture to Harvard Divinity School students [1]. The term "non-theistic" was first written in a Quaker publication in 1952 on conscientious objection [2]. As early as 1976, Friends General Conference Gathering hosted a well-attended Workshop for Nontheistic Friends (Quakers). [3]

The main nontheist Friends' website [1] is one significant site for this conversation, as are nontheist Quaker study groups. Os Cresson began a recent consideration of this issue from behaviorist, natural history, materialist and environmentalist perspectives. See Roots and Flowers of Quaker Nontheism [2] for one history. Friendly nontheism also draws on Quaker humanist and universalist traditions. The book Godless for God's Sake: Nontheism in Contemporary Quakerism [4] offers recent, critical contributions by Quakers. Some Friends are not only actively engaging the implications of human evolution, cognitive anthropology, evolutionary psychology, bodymind questions (esp. the 'relaxation response' [5][6]), primatology, evolutionary history, evolutionary biology and biology in terms of Quaker nontheism, but also consensus decision-making.

Nontheist Friends are a group of individuals, many of whom are affiliated or actively involved in the unprogrammed tradition in Quakerism. Friendly nontheists are attempting sympathetically to generate conversation with others who are more comfortable with the traditional and often reiterated language of Quakerism. Questioning theism, they wish to examine whether the experience of the reality of direct and ongoing inspiration from God ("waiting in the Light") - "So wait upon God in that which is pure. ..." [7] - which some Quaker traditions see as informing Silent Meeting and Meeting for Business, for example, might be understood and embraced with different metaphors, language and discourse.

Wild Otters: Lots of Vibes at Harbin, "Nature, Man and Woman," Feminine Beauty

There are lots of vibes at Harbin ... it's wild that way. I tune in to some, but not all ...

and there more shared, fascinating vibes here than in most places I've been ...


An attractive, young woman was reading Alan Watts' "Nature, Man and Woman" in the pools yesterday. She looked like the book had touched her. {It may have been the poos}. I think book this informs a kind of code at Harbin ...


and there are so many beautiful people at Harbin, all nude around the pools ... re-articulating familiar patterns of the feminine, especially, and very softly ...

Harbin is pretty wondrous ....

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Winding Road

Winding Road

I walked down the dark,
winding road at dusk in twilight,

and something like poetry came to me.

In the distance children
talk with each other,
and Canyon, California,
is all around, -
quiet, apart, a forest
of redwoods.

That old man who stands
on the road here,
that sometimes shirtless Canyon critter,
maybe 70 years old with long white hair,
smiling with a big belly,
a little aimless, a village presence,
an independent character,
who may sometimes catch a ride
into town for groceries,
seems at home in himself.

He may have found his way
to Canyon years ago - in the '60s
and just stayed? - because
it's nice here in Canyon.
His parents were both
professors, I'm told.

I wander farther down,
and pick up my mail
- a letter from my mother is in my box -
at the post office by the creek,
which is running at this time of year,
and begin to make my way back up the hill.

A vehicle comes toward me and
I move indirectly away,
to the benches to my left - it's dark now -
and sit on one hewn from
two large, soft, rounded boards.

I sit in the dark silence.

Next to this bench is another,
which looks like Victorian iron work,
painted white, almost like a bed frame. It is.
There's another bench, too, from a park,
all of them circled next to the funky garden.

And there's also a small wooden table,
a wheelbarrow with soil in it,
some sawn wooden tree stumps for seats,
a sundial, and two planters,
one with fragrant sage growing,
which I touch and scent-savor.

I don't go in through
the inviting garden gate.

As I sit on the bench
under the trees near the garden,
I begin to explore eliciting bliss,
neurophysiologically and naturally,
~ is this due to flax seed oil's
omega fatty acids,
and a daily multivitamin,
taken with food? ~
in relation to the trees, the plants,
and the road that I see around me, ~
in the deepening twilight.

How deeply? With what qualities?
MMmmm ... bliss comes lightly,
but fulsomely.
Can our brains be musical instruments,
each with their own timbre?
Can we play our bodyminds?
I see the tree there,
and dance, sing and improvise
with it in my mind.

I've seen the kids
from the Canyon school, close by,
sitting in this circle, and I've heard
that they tend the garden, too.

In the dark, oh so temperate air,
- it's so nice this evening -
I stand to walk back up
the winding road, homeward.

Vines are straddling and hanging
~ a big rose bush is in bloom,
and another broadleaf spreads -
from the garden fence, as I walk by.

I think about hopping
in the hot tub a little farther along,
but I haven't been in before here,
and don't know these folks yet.

Earlier, Fiona and her best friend,
for whom she is planning a wedding,
at the place where I live,
gather with another friend
to talk about it.

I come high up the road and
the wide sky opens above to my eyes.

The moon, the moon,
is large,
an illuminated eye
in that tree's canopy.

I'm sweating a little;
I came walking for the walk,
and this health-generating effort.

Can I become like that old guy,
as I pass his place - content in himself,
and with being in Canyon?
I don't know that old hippie,

but this winding road is a beautiful way.

I pass the old Volkswagen
VW bug - so old
and rusty that it's just
fading, rounded metal, and
a memory covered with plants -
before turning toward my home.

The ridge top is here,
and my wooden house
to my left
calls me
to bed in the moonlight.



( - May 9, 2009)

Friday, May 8, 2009

Silkworm: To Friends, World University & School, Teaching, Virtual Harbin Machinima

To friends in a linguistic's class at the end of the semester at Berkeley,

Greetings. I'm sad to say farewell to all of you, and thanks very much, Guillaume, for a fascinating and far-reaching course! I'm attaching a slightly blurry class photo. Please email around the other photos.

As an aside about a project I'm working on, people continue to update
many of the pages at World University & School - As an open and free multilingual university and school - like Wikipedia with MIT Open Course Ware - there are a lot of possibilities here.

If you know another language, you might add online teaching and learning content in that language to WUaS, and begin, at this stage in many ways, your own university and school in that language, - very gradually at first, by just posting links, perhaps. Languages with very small numbers of speakers may greatly appreciate finding online content when they begin to come online, and are able to post to a teaching and learning wiki school with video-capable, web-oriented, handheld phone computers.

If you want to explore teaching a class (45 hours ?), as in a university course, (and/or just something 10 minutes long as you're walking down the street), as graduate students, teach to your web cam, and post this to the WUaS wiki. It can be great experience, and doing so is very open-ended offering a lot of creative potential. (Linguistics, boat building or how to use gps are all potential subjects, for example). Or video a class which you're already teaching, and post this to youtube and then to this WUaS wiki. Interactivity, conversation, and idea exchange can occur in Second Life, for example.

You might find this free, education software at WUaS helpful - It's the best, free software I've found. Please post more, and to other pages.

I see World University and School as a generating a conversation which may go in many, multiple directions, especially as people start adding links to it. Here's a World University and School Facebook page to stay in touch through concerning WUaS - Please join it!

Looking forward to staying in touch with you. Please forward this photo and email list to anyone in the class not on the list.

Here's a 14 minute machinima I just made about my virtual Harbin Hot Springs ethnographic project - It could be a great linguistic field site, because both voice and type chat are recordable and possible. Let me know if you'd like to explore this

Thanks again, Guillaume!


Silk worms and leaves ...

And ...

another way to access this "The Making of Virtual Harbin" machinima (14 mins).

( - May 8, 2009)

Red Velvet Mite: Writing About Seeing Things Differently, Loving Bliss & Modernity, Hippie Explorations

Seeing things differently ... or not? ... and writing about these.


Loving bliss preceded by the relaxation response? Yes ... What happens when getting things done in the context of modernity has precedence over the relaxation response and loving bliss?

... Stanford Psychology Professor and Emeritus Phil Zimbardo, as a start ... ?


Hippie explorations ...

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Velvet Monkey: The Relaxation Response & One Laptop per Child News

Relaxation Response ... Yes

How can one weave this ~ this neurophysiology ~ into the fabric of one's life, like music:

Relaxation Response -

Relaxation Response ... MMmmm ...


Here's One Laptop per Child News (OLPC):

They are bridging the digital divide :)

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Larynx: Cases, in anthropology, are shaped by symbolic processes, Vive le Symbole et L'Ordinateur

What is a case in anthropology?

Cases, in anthropology, are shaped by symbolic processes.

The ‘word,’ language, ideas, or media, provide structure, - textual and semantic - and thus cases are infinitely open-ended. So writing, film, musical notations and, more recently, digital media give new form to cases in ongoing ways. Previous anthropological cases may or may not inform subsequent creations of cases. So, more particularly, it’s the relationality of words, sentences, images, information technologies and memes, which give structure to the case. Each of the videos here - - creates a case, is a case, and many of these videos characterize explicitly what cases are and how they function, from specific ways of thinking, thus potentially informing subsequent cases. Ethnography, as a modality of anthropological case production, creates specific open-ended forms of cases that I’m particularly interested in.

The larynx (voice box) has been central to generation of these symbolic processes, in an evolutionary sense, for, without the evolutionary development of the larynx, human language wouldn’t have developed (Deacon, “The Symbolic Species,” 1997). This is important because it relativizes the significance of cases, in anthropology, in an evolutionarily biological context, thus leaving open-ended the generation of new kinds of cases vis-a-vis ethnography, and in new modalities, as symbolic generation processes.

(I posted this to May 6 2009 at the end of a semester's course, "Ars Synthetic," with UC Berkeley Professor Paul Rabinow, where there are also more thoughts about what a case is. Here's also "Thinking by cases, or: how to put social sciences back the right way up," by Jean-Claude Passeron and Jacques Revel (eds.), Penser par cas, 2005

Epistemologically, anthropology is hard to reduce.


Vive le stylo!

et Vive le symbole!

et Vive l'ordinateur ~

It looks like computing and the internet will be with humans forever, like symbols, writing, and language ...

St. Johns Wort Blue Velvet: Velvet is Soft, Phil Zimbardo's Advice, Loving Bliss Bodymind

Velvet is soft, and beautiful, and it feels so good, too ... and folks in the 60s loved it ... it can be kind of psychedelic too :) ...


Here is Phil Zimbardo in Stanford University Open Office Hours with sound advice:

Stanford's Open Office Hours are also at World University and School Courses -


A velvet, bodymind brain of loving bliss? MMmmm :)

Let's develop this ~ ~ with language ...

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Pink Dandelion: World University & School as Legal Cooperative? Languages to the Top of the List?, Anticipating Developing Countries Coming Online

Shall we incorporate World University and School as a cooperative, legally? Let this question stand as a Request for Comments, a process used in the 1970s as TCP/IP - Transmission Control Protocol / Internet Protocol, which are the protocols for the internet - was being developed.

A cooperative university, like Rainbow Grocery in the San Francisco, where we all own it, and an economy develops?

Has a co-op University existed before?


How about raising to the top of the World University and School's Languages' wiki page any country in which a war breaks out, to make possible teaching and learning, communication and idea exchange, in lieu of fighting, on handheld, internet and video capable devices? Computers instead of guns?


I'll put One Laptop per Child countries' languages to the top of the World University and School's Languages' wiki page soon {}, with its focus on OLPC countries.

Simply to develop World University and School's Wiki for every language and country, as poor people in the developing/transitioning world come online, will benefit disadvantaged people, as well as make possible creative teaching and learning opportunities for and by all of us.

Starting with something like 4 courses, for example, in computing, business, agriculture, and English, and keeping the WUaS Wiki open and free, will help a lot of people to start then teaching and learning via the world wide web.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Earth's Mantle: Free, Open Libraries at World University & School

I've added these free and open libraries to World University & School Library Resources - - recently:

Add {'edit this page'} free, open Libraries, Archives, or eBook collections

Arxiv at Cornell University Library

arXiv is an e-print service in the fields of physics, mathematics, non-linear science, computer science, quantitative biology and statistics


the public's library and digital archiv

MIT Classics

Bringing the wisdom of the classics to the Internet since 1994

Dave McKay's Philosophy Books

Philosophy texts

University of Pennsylvania's Online Books

Listing over 35,000 free books on the Web

Project Gutenberg

A grand total of over 100,000 titles are available at Project Gutenberg Partners, Affiliates and Resources

eTexts at Adelaide University

Free web books online

Poem Hunter

Poetry Ebooks

Free Books

A lifetime of free audio ebooks and chapters

Planet Book

Classic literature for download as free eBooks

Online literature

Searchable online literature

Classic Book Shelf

The literature network - We currently have over 1900 full books and over 3000 short stories and poems by over 250 authors. Our quotations database has over 8500 quotes


The online literature library

The Free Library

News, Magazines, Newspapers, Journals, Reference Articles and Classic Books


Gros Morne National Park (UNESCO World Heritage Site), Newfoundland, Canada: - Another kind of wild, free, open library ...

Upthrusted rock from deep (3 miles?) under the earth during a geological period of plate subduction ...


to contact improv soon ...