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Revisiting "The Dark Night of the Soul" Mar. 21st, 2005 @ 01:15 am
I found myself reviewing St. John of the Cross' "The Dark Night of the Soul" while resting for one last burst of work. (And several other times earlier "yesterday".

It's strange that much of my experience is reflected in that book. The emotion of being abandoned by God is the background (if not empirical pre-requisite) for almost all of the book is, so far, completely alien to me¹. The Achilles' heel of the exercise of my belief has been, and is, that of the Apostle Thomas: Except that I see...I will not believe.

That, a posteriori, most of the rest of the book "fits" is counterintuitive.
¹Although some would disagree.Collapse )

Today has not been smooth sailing Feb. 19th, 2005 @ 11:02 pm
Enacting "Taking any thoughts captive, let alone all" has not been going smoothly today. And it's not just that the circadian turned into a yo-yo from one can of Red Bull Wednesday evening. [I had a no-thought work queue: amenable to a one-shot dose of caffeine.] (Tonight will be a reasonable "crash into total relaxation" time of 1-2AM Central, as was Thursday night. Last night was 4AM Central.)

No...this afternoon and tonight, the slightest attempt at directed thought quickly leads into the synesthetic(?) imagery of lactic acid in the brain. (And no, composing this post doesn't entail any directed thought, just doing what is congenial to the physical body anyway. Ditto for psuedocoding yet another C++ class for the math AI.)

I had been stacking Iron Shirt Chi Kung techniques, on top of Hatha Yoga's lotus positions, for proximate relief. I suspect temporarily extending my physical limits this way isn't prudent....

It's clear that I have been about as irreverent as Habakkuk the past two days. Jan. 11th, 2005 @ 02:18 am
... I will keep watch to see what He will speak to me, and how I may reply when I am reproved.
I take for granted that my historical inability to reliably use organizational technology is a spiritual problem, an aspect of Western Original Sin defined medically. That the presentation is physical (no pain, no sustained work) is irrelevant: I have sunk enough research into various techniques (Zen Buddhist/Hatha Yoga/Taoist meditative, biofeedback, Western dietary control and supplementation) that I intellectually have adequate workarounds. As for meta-principles: it looks like consistently stacking Ecclesiastes 7:15-18 on top of James 1:5-8 will vastly improve things. In particular, I'd like to experiment with superseding Zen Buddhism's "monkey mind" exercise as an adjunct to the continuing goal, "taking all thoughts captive".

So: is considering how to paralyze the spiritual issue physically what I should be looking at? I'm unaware of a good metaphysical reason why this shouldn't work. So the way I have emotionally veered, from planning such approaches in detail, is superficially neutral. [From a memetic point of view, such veering is evidence that "paralyzing the spiritual issue physically" is highly relevant.]
I was reviewing Habakkuk as an escape from frustration regarding the time management disorganization. "I don't believe my excuses — why should you?"

Meditative postures to do clerical/programming work from Dec. 13th, 2004 @ 03:35 am
  • Iron Shirt Chi Kung and Tai Chi have very similar instructions for concentrating on correct standing posture, once they're translated to kinesthetic experience from visualization. Either of these works.
  • Hatha Yoga: Both half-lotus and full-lotus postures work. [Bound lotus doesn't leave the hands free.] My current limit for either of these is about one hour; after that point, the muscles in the outer thighs are stretched enough that they no longer protect the nerves from stretching. Correct action is to stop the particular handedness immediately, and do not resume for several hours.
Things would be simpler if I wasn't working around a maleducated conscience. There's no problem when I'm actually working within All things are permissible, but I shall be mastered by nothing. Outside of that...charitably speaking, religious synthesia tries to portray "practicing" a different religion than my declared one as an immediate problem. (Which I fail to enact.)

Intellectually, this is misguided: I have found almost no literature on either Christian or Judaic physical monasticism. Volume IV of the Philokalia does have one reference. But it's not internally of high quality...it's more "Gregory of Sinai referred to it, so include it."
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