May 29, 2013

The Guru as Artist

If we recognized that what we are attracted to in the guru is the war they are waging on their own pain, we would just watch them with whatever degree of empathy we could scrounge, see what their rage drove them to see, wonder at the ways in which their language bends the typical arc of the mind, and feel their terror expand our hearts into a greater tolerance for uncertainty. But we would not do what they told us to do. Because we would know that they were on their path, and we were on our own. Because we would know that the directions they really really want to give us are meant primarily to fulfill their own needs.
May 21, 2013

Ayurveda and the accusation of pseudoscience

These days, when I sit with clients as an ayurvedic practitioner, I know that I’m a time traveller to the future. I’m looking at people’s energies, habits and uniqueness through the very old lens I’ve cobbled together from multiple teachers, threads, and fascinations. This old lens is not pseudoscientific in itself, because it arises in a pre-scientific age -- but it will become pseudoscience if it forgets its heritage, and believes it should compete with biomedicine.
April 25, 2013

Notes on the nirguṇa / saguṇa paradox, by way of homage to Aghori Babarazzi

Aghori's masala of cruel empathy flavours the absurd task of making us naked and strange to ourselves, forcing us to wriggle, shift, and grow in the glare of our own contradictions. It’s a dirty, dirty job, but somebody – I mean nobody – I mean somebody who’s made himself a nobody pretending to be everybody – has to do it.