while it is true I probably caught it on the plane on the way up, I bet I caught it from a Seattleite on their way home.
I never get sick on the train. I think they actually allow outside air in instead of recycling cabin air and subsequently concentrating and reconcentrating the microbes therein.
here is something I thought of later that I wished I had said in the conversation auditorium and I had about this idea of god. one of the reasons I love auditorium is that she does not look at me like I'm an alien when I say these things:
the event of appearance, which is not that which appears but rather the infinitesimal moment and act of appearing (although not an act for that which appears appears passively, through no effort of its own), is another way I think of the divine. the divine is thus perfectly legible on the surface of things but paradoxically does not appear as a thing or person or will but is something like a flowering that can't help itself. "god" really is a lousy way to name this event but it seems that something like it is what the idea of "god" in most traditions finds itself ultimately pointing to, if what they are pointing to is something like an origin. what happens though, when you get to this "origin," is that it loses its logical and temporal place as first cause and becomes both effect and precondition of appearances themselves.
in the end it may be that divinity can be stated as the potential to suffer, if appearance can be thought of as the event of exposure.
there's more too. this event disappears when you try to look at it or state it yet clings to the surface of phenomena. one could say that an event can be neither present nor absent because it is the very moment of differentiation whereby one can distinguish absence and presence. the problem it seems to me is that fundamentalist religions mistake the divine for a presence, a differentiated being, instead of the moment of differentiation.
anyway I find both buddhism and esoteric judaism to say some of the same things and usually with fewer fifty-cent words. what I don't know is whether sitting in meditation can carry one to the paradoxical moment of the event, or if rather sitting is simply a manifestation of eventfulness itself.
desire, though, which buddhism has a difficult time with, is to me the love of the event, which is quite different from egocentric acquisitiveness. for Levinas, for instance, desire is the desire for the Other, but the Other cannot simply be construed as another being in the present moment whom one wishes to have or take hold of: the Other is precisely the event which cannot be had or taken hold of and thus the love for the Other is the love of a kind of dispersal rather than a love of ownership.
anyway after half a liter of beer this all got rather fuzzy.
I apologize to jomarch, redhots, and aimgrrrl for being too socially retarded to engineer any kind of meet-ups. I'm not sure what happened to my zest for calling Stumbling Monk nights. it seemed to be replaced this time with the desire to stay in my hotel room and feel sorry for myself. that and sleep. I slept like a mofo.
but the best news is that both cats were here upon my return. they were sitting on my bed, Santiago draped over Jackson, looking at me like oh. were you gone? Jackson complains when Santiago tries to play with him but I think secretly he likes having him around.