December 10th, 2005


last day of vacation

I don't have anything I have to do today. a few things I should do I suppose but nothing I must do.

oh wait. need cat food.

ok one thing.

their papers come in tonight and then it will be a little grading marathon as I try to get their grades in order by the 19th. that gives me a little over a week to finish everything and I think that is doable even without great anguish. I just have to start promptly meaning tomorrow is my monday which makes today sunday and I've noticed that if my sunday doesn't fall on everybody else's sunday I don't feel as crappy as I usually feel on sundays on either day.

I got a book on buddhist psychotherapy just so I can get an idea of how it is I'm supposed to be putting together a healthy self when both my philosophical and "spiritual" leanings tend towards the "no such thing" position and it is interesting to see that once again buddhism--according to this guy anyway--presents itself as a third way between substantiality and nothingness, which is interesting because the way I've been thinking about things has the individual occurring as an event along a membrane that does not neatly demarcate inside from outside but which does occur nonetheless and this is something like the way in which life moves: the process of keeping the membrane up by incorporating environmental elements is the way or the style of the animal. and the plant.

anyway it is interesting to see buddhism interpreted not as taking up the nihilistic negation of self as opposed to the establishment of the acquisitive ego, but rather as an uncertain oscillation that declares that either stance is a stance and that is precisely the problem. if zen is "not-knowing" then it is so in one way because not knowing is the relinquishing of the power to name and to establish discrete boundaries and, incidentally, to dominate or conquer. but so the self is neither dogmatically present nor dogmatically absent but is always put into question where the answer cannot be dogmatic at all and thus tends to be another question.

anyway. I guess I could sit on this.
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survey says

A book review:

I was going to put this on amazon but decided why be such a spoilsport and no one will have any idea what I am talking about anyway so I'm putting it here instead. mostly I've been irritated all day because not one but two different "Westerners"' books on Buddhism have suggested that shyness and self-consciousness are the equivalent of sin in the Buddhist universe.

but rather than address that head-on, I take a slightly different swipe:

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