Ursi's Eso Garden
Your Competent Esoteric Guide
Sunday, 29. June 2008
Secrets Of The Parthenon
How did they build this magnificent temple with such incredible precision in a mere eight or nine years? How did they manage to achieve apparent perfection in a building that contains almost no straight lines or right angles? And, most baffling of all, how did they accomplish all this apparently without using the tools that a modern architect would find essentiala building plan or a blueprint?
Watch as NOVA takes on these mysteries with the help of some of the foremost experts on ancient Greek architecture, including the chief architect of the Acropolis Restoration Project, Manolis Korres, and scholars Barbara Barletta of the University of Florida, Mark Wilson Jones of the University of Bath, and Lothar Haselberger of the University of Pennsylvania.
Runtime: 53 minutes
You may also like to read the Transcript.
See also at the NOVA Secrets Of The Parthenon:
See how architects, historians, and skilled masons are painstakingly reassembling the Parthenon.
Detailed line drawings reveal the tools and techniques of ancient Greek craftsmen.
Trace the building's various incarnations as a temple, church, mosque, and even an army barracks.
Saturday, 28. June 2008
Myths and Legends Explained
Myths and Legends Explained by Neil Philip, Ph.D.
DK ADULT, Revised edition 2007 | 128 pages | PDF | 21.3 MB
The designs known as vevers are used to call the gods and are drawn on the earth in flour. At the centre of the circle in a Voodoo ritual would be the poteau-mitan, the center-post by which the gods make their entrance to the ceremony.
The ship symbol stands for Agwé, the god of the sea and formal consort of Erzulie. Agwé himself is generous, faithful, and strong.
101 Ghost Jokes
Jokes and puns poke fun at the characteristics and behavior of ghosts.
101 Ghost Jokes by Lisa Eisenberg & Katy Hall; illustrated by Don Orehek.
Scholastic, 1988 | 24 Pages | PDF | 1.3 MB
Friday, 27. June 2008
God, does this bring back memories !
This album (original 2LP pressing) is mainly the work of Rick Holmes who wrote the text about the different zodiac signs, each sign being represented in a different track with Rick Holmes narrating over a background of funky spaced out jazz, produced by Cannonball and David Axelrod, the music is by Nat Adderley's sextet. The album was released in 1972 on Capitol Records, digital released May 2008.
It's a darkly brooding batch of funky jazz that shows a strong Miles Davis electric influence at points, thanks to Nat Adderley's spacey trumpet lines, Mike Deasy's trippy guitar, and George Duke's excellent keyboards! Other tracks are a bit more laidback, fitting the mood of their respective signs.
Really adventurous! Enjoy!
Rick Holmes, Narrator
Soul Zodiac: Introduction (03:01)
Thursday, 26. June 2008
On the trail of the ‘Indian yeti’
In the US it's known as bigfoot, in Canada as sasquatch, in Brazil as mapinguary, in Australia as a yowie, in Indonesia as sajarang gigi and, most famously of all, in Nepal as a yeti.
The little known Indian version of this legendary ape-like creature is called mande barung - or forest man - and is reputed to live in the remote West Garo hills of the north-eastern state of Meghalaya.
Reports of a yeti or forest man have existed in the north-east Indian state of Meghalaya for centuries. Many people in the Garo hills believe that this is a fossilised footprint of a giant early yeti.
I [Alastair Lawson] was invited by passionate yeti believer Dipu Marak to travel throughout the area to hear for myself what he says is compelling evidence of the existence of a black and grey ape-like animal which stands about 3m (nearly 10ft) tall.
There have been repeated reports of sightings over many years by different witnesses in the West, South and East Garo hills.
Mr Marak estimates the creature weighs about 300kg (660lb) and is herbivorous, surviving on fruit, roots and tree bark.
The Garo hills comprise more than 8,000sq.km of some of the thickest jungle in India.
And as I soon discovered, there is no shortage of people who say they have seen the creature at first hand.
'Yeti witness' James Marak
Take woodcutter Nelbison Sangma, for example, who works on the fringes of the Nokrek national park in the Garo hills.
In November 2003, he says that he saw a yeti three days in a row.
He took me from his village to the spot where he says he made the sighting, a five-hour walk in intense tropical heat from his house.
"I saw the creature quite clearly on the other side of the river. It was breaking branches off trees and eating the sap. Its strength was amazing.
"Obviously I wanted to photograph it, but I knew that if I left the area, it would take at least 10 hours or more to get a camera as I do not own one. By that time the creature would have disappeared."
Mr Sangma says that he told the state forestry department of his sighting, but they did not believe him.
He took me to the spot where he says the yeti destroyed a tree - an exhausting uphill walk through thick jungle infested with blood-sucking leeches.
Mr Sangma showed me where the creature broke the tree's branches and clearly visible scratch marks on its bark.
Are these hairs from Mande Barung?
A 10-hour drive away from Nokrek is the other national park of the Garo hills, Balpakram, which lies amid thick jungle on the border with Bangladesh.
It is an extremely remote area, where the hum of insects clicking in the undergrowth sounds like a series of disconnected power cables.
Balpakram is famous for its vast jungle-filled canyon which spans several miles and is surrounded by spectacular cliffs. Any descent is a treacherous exercise.
If ever there was terrain where a peace-loving yeti could live its life undisturbed by human interference, then this has surely got to be it.
Perhaps the most famous reported sighting was in April 2002, when forestry officer James Marak was among a team of 14 officials carrying out a census of tigers in Balpakram when they saw what they thought was a yeti.
According to the author and environmentalist Llewellyn Marak, such stories cannot be dismissed out hand.
"I saw the footprints for myself last year," he said, and they cannot easily be explained away.
"The prints were different from other animals - and were almost human in appearance - apart from the fact that they were about 18 inches [46cm] long.
"Both my father and grandfather also saw the creature at different times. Each said that it resembled a large gorilla."
Mr Marak argues that the Meghalayan forestry department has not seriously investigated the sightings because they are "uninterested and too lazy".
The western side of the state of the Meghalaya is predominantly made up of Garo tribespeople. They are traditionally a matrilineal community, where property is inherited through the female line.
They are also a community where stories and fables are deeply ingrained culturally, which is why senior politicians and officials are reluctant to discount openly tales of a yeti roaming about.
Meghalaya's Divisional Forestry Officer Shri PR Marak denies suggestions that his officers have not properly investigated alleged yeti sightings - which he argues is an expensive exercise in thick jungle only accessible by foot.
He uses diplomatic language when discussing whether yetis exist in the state.
"I have gone to see the evidence for myself and have even taken a plaster cast of one of the footprints," he says.
"As you know the presence of such a creature is an important part of our culture - passed down to us by our parents and grandparents.
"But we have no concrete evidence it exists, and there may even be a possibility that some of the evidence has been manipulated to create a stir.
Measuring 'yeti' footprints
"Because the area where it is believed to live is thick jungle, it will be very difficult to know the truth."
But Dipu Marak has voluminous correspondence from various eyewitnesses to support his contention that there is something out there.
To critics who say he has no photographs of this mysterious creature, he insists that "absence of evidence is not evidence of absence".
"We have so many reports of sightings that I sincerely believe there is some sort of huge creature in the Garo hills," he said.
"This is not just a fairy tale, nor is it an effort to woo tourists. It's deeply embedded in our folklore and scientifically it is possible too.
"While I cannot prove conclusively that this creature definitely exists, nobody can say conclusively that it does not exist either."
Such is the impenetrability and extent of jungle in the Garo hills that the legend of mande barung looks likely to live on in the foreseeable future.
"The truth is out there somewhere," says Dipu Marak sincerely.
"But like the Loch Ness monster this creature is obviously not fond of giving too many photo opportunities."
Source: BBC News
You may also like another cool Bigfoot story:
'Bigfoot' was here! by the Borneo Post. (WITH PICS)
They probably resembled those mentioned many times in foreign reports in claims of sightings of the mysterious Bigfoot. The shocker has been spreading like wildfire in Daro district for the past few days and among those drawn to the phenomenon was local businessman Tan Soon Kuang.
Yesterday, Tan, 42, e-mailed the images of the mysterious creatures footprints. He said he personally went to the village (which he refused to name out of respect for the wishes of the locals) to check on the truth of the story. The truth is in the photographs that I have taken with my camera, he told The Borneo Post in a telephone interview yesterday. According to him, each footprint measures 47 inches from heel to toe and 17 inches sideways clearly too gigantic for any normal human being.
Local community leader Pemanca Tan Poh Kuan is among those who visited the site to take a closer look at the mysterious footprints.
UK Police Helicopter captures ‘UFO’ on film
Another curious story for today:
Raw video: June 08/08: Recently released footage: Welsh police confirmed that one of their helicopter crews had spotted an "unusual aircraft" flying over Cardiff earlier this month.
An investigation into the sighting had been launched, they said.
The police clarification came after tabloid newspaper The Sun reported a UFO had "attacked" a police helicopter, following it for several miles over the Bristol Channel.
"The pilot banked sharply to avoid being hit, then launched into a high-speed pursuit. But he was forced to give up the chase as the helicopter's fuel ran low -- and the UFO escaped," the tabloid reported.
The helicopter crew had described the object as "flying saucer-shaped and circled by flashing lights," it added.
That description was rather more dramatic than the official police version, which said: "South Wales Police can confirm its air support unit sighted an unusual aircraft.
"This was reported to the relevant authorities for their investigation," they added in a brief statement, avoiding the use of the term "UFO", or Unidentified Flying Object.
At the time of the incident, the helicopter with three men on board was waiting to land at the St Athan RAF base near Cardiff. The sighting reportedly took place at 00:40 am (23:40 GMT) on June 8.
South Wales Police denied there was a pursuit and indicated that the helicopter crew was never in any danger.
A Ministry of Defence spokesman said it had heard nothing about the incident.
"But it is certainly not advisable for police helicopters to go chasing what they think are UFOs," he added.
UK Police Helicopter captures 'UFO' on film
Alien army by the Sun (WITH VIDEO).
A shaken soldier told last night how he saw THIRTEEN UFOs spinning in the skies above his military barracks. Corporal Mark Proctor was among three squaddies who spotted the objects while out on night patrol. He filmed them on his mobile phone and reported the close encounter to Army top brass.
Well, and last but not least: "Nasa film UFO falling to earth and hitting the ground", found yesterday at LiveLeak, posted here to sharpen your mind ...
Looks cool, don't u agree?
But no, it's not an UFO. That is the Genesis probe that had its parachutes fail on reentry. This was in Utah a few years ago.
See the report, and video, by MSNBC and/or the article by Space.com.
So, don't believe online videos for everything! Too often troll people, some of those weird stalker types, try to sensationalize stuff, also in that case.
Wednesday, 25. June 2008
Relax with a little game today and rock the Ashram with Sitar Star!
Created to promote Mike Myers' latest farce "The Love Guru", Sitar Star is a take on Guitar Hero, allowing you to use your number keys for the strings and your space bar to strum them. As the coloured notes drop down the screen, you must strum the right strings at the right time.
Be warned - it's addicting!
Category: Games & Humor |
Every single night we visit our personal dream world. Although most of us don't recall dreams in the morning, we all have dreams every night. A dream world that feels as real as the waking world. Lucid dreaming offers you the possibility to become aware of those dreams while you are experiencing them. Anyone can learn how to have lucid dreams. Be Superman. Have sex with anyone you want, practice for extreme sports or visit a distant planet. Anything is possible. Although ultimately an illusion, the experience is transferrable to the waking state. Be a hero in your lucid dream, feel heroic throughout your waking day. Become lucid and boost up your life.
Lucidipedia - Learn lucid dreaming by Tim Post.
Whether you're a complete controlled-dream neophyte or a veteran of lucid sleep, Lucipedia can help you learn more about controlling your subconscious wanderings. Offers Journals and Forums for Lucid Dreaming and signing up gives you also a journal space to track your memories and successes, as well as free reign to edit collaborative articles on any dream-related topics. Well done!
Category: Dreams & Sleep |
Tuesday, 24. June 2008
The Pale Blue Dot
This excerpt from 'A Pale Blue Dot' was inspired by an image taken, at Sagan's suggestion, by Voyager 1 on February 14, 1990. As the spacecraft left our planetary neighborhood for the fringes of the solar system, engineers turned it around for one last look at its home planet. Voyager 1 was about 6.4 billion kilometers (4 billion miles) away, and approximately 32 degrees above the ecliptic plane, when it captured this portrait of our world.
Adapted from the Carl Sagan's book 'Pale Blue Dot: A vision of the human future in Space'.
"Look again at that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there--on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam."
"The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds."
"Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves."
"The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand."
"It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we've ever known."
-- Carl Sagan, Pale Blue Dot, 1994
Want more? OK.
Some time before he died in 1996, Carl Sagan recorded a partial audio version of his 1994 book "Pale Blue Dot", often described as the "sequel" to Cosmos. This video is "episode one" of an unauthorized attempt at producing a series of videos based on Carl Sagan's "Pale Blue Dot" audio book combined with a soundtrack and appropriate video and still images intended to recall the feel of the classic documentary series "Ascent of Man" and "Cosmos".
It's an unofficial film version of chapter one by Lang Kasranov. In his blog, he said last September: "I wanted to advise everyone that PBD Episode Two is indeed coming."
Well - hopefully soon ...
Let me say, it it is a fantastic documentary worthy of PBS and a moving and fitting tribute to Carl Sagan.
Runtime: 40 minutes
You may also like:
The Carl Sagan Portal
Monday, 23. June 2008
Click the picture for a larger view.
There are no accidents... there is only some purpose
that we haven't yet understood.
~ Deepak Chopra
~~~ Find Your Inspiration ~~~
Category: Poetry & Inspirations |
How to Find Balance
Finding balance is one of life's great goals, but it can be as elusive as it is desirable. Change your approach and its true nature will emerge.
When you're balanced, you can feel it. You get the sense that your life is moving along steadily. You take things in stride. You feel healthy and vibrant, challenged by your life, but relaxed enough to enjoy it; protected by the familiar, but excited by the possibilities ahead. So why does achieving it -- and maintaining it -- seem so difficult to do for so many of us?
Study balance a little closer, and you realize that what many of us perceive to be the ideal balance is in fact not balance at all. Unlike, say, a balanced scale, a balanced life is not symmetrical, still, or neutral. Like riding a bike, living a balanced life comes easier to you as you gain momentum. From that perspective, the myths and truths that follow can help you find a new understanding of balance -- and, finally, a way to get there yourself.
Myth 1: You must be even-tempered.
Truth: Balance encompasses the full range of emotions.
You may think the balanced person takes everything in stride, never gets upset or irritable, rarely gets depressed or overwhelmed. But that's simply not true. Balance is not about remaining placid and peaceful. In fact, by avoiding negative emotions such as anger, grief, or sadness, you are causing an unhealthy imbalance, says medical intuitive and neuropsychiatrist Mona Lisa Schulz, author of "The New Feminine Brain: How Women Can Develop Their Inner Strengths, Genius, and Intuition."
So go ahead, get angry. Have a good cry. True balance is achieved by understanding the nature of our moods and feelings, not by suppressing them.
Myth 2: Balance is effortless.
Truth: Balance is efficient.
In physics, equilibrium is a state in which all external forces cancel each other out, with no one force exerting dominance over the other. That's how balance can work, too; it's not that you're not exerting any effort, it's that you're providing just the right amount for each need.
When you're balanced, your exertion is distributed so well -- your big muscles doing the big work and your little muscles carrying a lighter load -- it feels effortless even though it's anything but. One way to tune in to your balance is to appreciate your physical balance, whether through running, walking, or doing yoga or any activity that calls for focus.
Myth 3: You must be in control.
Truth: Real balance means being in flux.
At the circus, all eyes are on the tightrope walker. Why? Because where there's balance, there's also tension and risk. The tightrope walker's talent and skill resides not in her ability to defy gravity, but in making the hundreds of subtle, incremental readjustments to account for imbalance. In the same way, our ability to achieve balance is in learning to reestablish it when forces put it to the test.
This is why stability alone is not balance. The more we cling to things (circumstances, people, possessions) to hold us in balance, the less we rely on our internal strength and flexibility to adapt. And because balance is not a fixed point, but always moving forward, we need to move forward, too. This can mean embracing change and allowing ourselves to evolve.
Moving to a new city, letting go of an old relationship, or losing a job are potential triggers for imbalance, and any one of them has the potential to throw you off your axis, causing stress, exhaustion, or anxiety. Balance comes when we adapt to change, rather than try to resist it. But you can start small: Encourage and practice smaller-scale changes in your life so that you're better prepared to handle the bigger ones.
For two other myths and five ways to change your brain: Read more ...
Sunday, 22. June 2008
Religions of the World: Hinduism
This video is part of the "Religions of the World" series, narrated by Academy Award winner Ben Kingsley. You do not have to see the other videos for this one to make sense.
Learn how and why Hinduism has survived to be one of the oldest and largest world religions with nearly one billion followers located mostly in India. Hinduism encompasses wide practices and traditions largely due to its great capacity to integrate the new with the old.
You will learn about the descendants of the Indus River Valley, who, around 1500 B.C.E., used Sanskrit to transcribe their daily rituals and customs. You will also discover Hinduism's impact on the literary world with its library of tens of thousands of sacred hymns and poems known as the Vedas, which means "truth" or "knowledge."
I would recommend this video for those wanting to understand a bit more about Hinduism.
Runtime: 47 minutes
Saturday, 21. June 2008
Dream Dictionary For Dummies
Dreams! What do they mean? You probably recognize a connection between the dream world and the "real" world, but did you know that you can actually do things to nurture your dream life? 'Dream Dictionary For Dummies' is the fun and fascinating guide that shows you not only how to decode your dreams, but how to remember them and even how to make a dream work for you.
Discover how to:
Increase your ability to remember your dreams
Keep and use a dream diary
Notice your waking dreams
Uncover hidden messages in your dreams
Focus your dreams to solve problems or make decisions
Form a dream support group
So start dreaming and get back to reality with a little help from that guide.
Dream Dictionary For Dummies by Penney Peirce
For Dummies, 2008 | 336 pages | PDF | 5.6 MB
The Seeker’s Glossary of Buddhism
Note to the second edition:
This is a revised and expanded edition of 'The Seeker's Glossary of Buddhism.' The text is a compendium of excerpts and quotations from some 350 works by monks, nuns, professors, scholars and other laypersons from nine different countries, in their own words or in translation.
The Seeker's Glossary of Buddhism
by Sutra Translation Committee of USA/Canada
STC of USA/Canada, 2nd ed 1998 | 999 pages | PDF | 4.8 MB
Also available at BuddhaNet and Urban Dharma.
Friday, 20. June 2008
The Music of the Spheres
In Shakespeares The Merchant of Venice the young Lorenzo woos his sweetheart with talk of the stars:
"Theres not the smallest orb which thou beholdst
But in his motion like an angel sings,
Still quiring to the young-eyed cherubins;
Such harmony is in immortal souls;
But whilst this muddy vesture of decay
Doth grossly close it in, we cannot hear it."
This is the music of the spheres - the idea that the stars and planets as they travel through space make beautiful music together.
The music of the spheres played out of the classical world, through the medieval period and into the Renaissance. It affords us a glimpse into minds for whom the universe was full of meaning, of strange correspondences and grand harmonies.
Melvyn Bragg considers the celestial harmonies of the planets, a Pythagorean concept which fascinated astrologists, artists and mathematicians for centuries.
He is joined by:
Jim Bennett, Director of the Museum of the History of Science at the University of Oxford
Angela Voss, Director of the Cultural Study of Cosmology and Divination at the University of Kent, Canterbury
Broadcast was on 19 June 2008 at BBC 4, 'In Our Time'.
Also available for RealPlayer.
You may also like:
Kepler and the Music of the Spheres
Geometry in Art & Architecture, Unit 3 - Paul Calter:
Pythagoras & Music of the Spheres
Essay by Angela Voss on The Music of the Spheres:
Ficino and Renaissance Harmonia
The Pythagorean Theory of Music and Color
An astronomical approach to the Music of the Spheres by Greg Fox:
Carmen of the Spheres
The Music of the Spheres: Music, Science, and the Natural Order of the Universe by Jamie James.
Click the picture for a larger view
These are the duration in seconds of our stars planets (and Pluto):
Mercury: 0.453028141, 0.906056282, 1.812112564, 3.624225128, 7.248450256, 14.49690051
Venus: 0.578586448, 1.157172895, 2.314345791, 4.628691582, 9.257383163, 18.51476633
Earth: 0.470244884, 0.940489769, 1.880979538, 3.761959076, 7.523918152, 15.0478363
Mars: 0.442216873, 0.884433746, 1.768867493, 3.537734985, 7.075469971, 14.15093994
Jupiter: 0.697366839, 1.394733678, 2.789467356, 5.578934712, 11.15786942, 22.31573885
Saturn: 0.432755629, 0.865511258, 1.731022516, 3.462045032, 6.924090064, 13.84818013
Uranus: 0.617729291, 1.235458581, 2.470917163, 4.941834326, 9.883668652, 19.7673373
Neptune: 0.605743574, 1.211487148, 2.422974297, 4.845948594, 9.691897187, 19.38379437
Pluto: 0.455707172, 0.911414343, 1.822828687, 3.645657373, 7.291314746, 14.58262949
And in hertz (cycles per second):
Mercury: 2260.345235, 1130.172618, 565.0863088, 282.5431544, 141.2715772, 70.6357886
Venus: 3539.6612, 1769.8306, 884.9153001, 442.45765, 221.228825, 110.6144125
Earth: 2177.588813, 1088.794407, 544.3972033, 272.1986017, 136.0993008, 68.04965042
Mars: 2315.605899, 1157.802949, 578.9014747, 289.4507373, 144.7253687, 72.36268433
Jupiter: 2936.761379, 1468.38069, 734.1903448, 367.0951724, 183.5475862, 91.7737931
Saturn: 2366.231498, 1183.115749, 591.5578744, 295.7789372, 147.8894686, 73.9447343
Uranus: 3315.368124, 1657.684062, 828.8420311, 414.4210156, 207.2105078, 103.6052539
Neptune: 3380.968593, 1690.484297, 845.2421483, 422.6210742, 211.3105371, 105.6552685
Pluto: 2247.057022, 1123.528511, 561.7642555, 280.8821277, 140.4410639, 70.22053193
In 2006, Greg Fox took the above orbital periods and divided them until their frequencies fell within the human acoustic range. This gave him six octaves of "planetary notes" for each planet. He called the resulting "music": "Carmen of the Spheres". It can be heard here or click the link above.
for nine sine waves totalling 64 minutes 12.246 seconds for stereo speakers.
from Fludd's De Musica Mundana: