Archive for gravity

Circling Bodies

Posted in Lucerne Village, Mystical Experience, Sacred Geometry, Unknown with tags , , , , , , on August 26, 2012 by javedbabar

Sami walked around Guru Baba, who himself walked around a tall fir tree. This was meant to illustrate the workings of our solar system – the fir was the sun, Guru Baba the earth, and Sami the moon whizzing around, showing its restless devotion.

As Guru Baba completed a quarter circuit of the fir, Sami lost his footing and collapsed at his feet. It was an embarrassing moment for both of them. Sami was on his knees to his holy bossman, who despite being a sage, disliked sycophantic behaviour. He saw himself as teacher of peers. They all taught him something too.

Guru Baba decided to make light of the situation and said, “You were meant to be the moon not a comet! This isn’t a Bruce Willis film.” Sami arose from the boggy ground, leaving a crater. “Okay, let’s stop now. Time for rest. Why don’t you lie down for a while?”

Sami said, “Guru Baba, I need to return home. Preferably to bed, but if not, then at least to change my clothes. Can I go now?”

A flash of anger crossed the sage’s face but then was gone. He said, “You can go if you wish to. However, if you do that you can never come back.”

Sami had heard such threats before, but they continued to surprise him. Did Guru Baba really mean it? Did he value his assistant’s devotion so lightly that a minor disagreement must result in termination?

This crazy old man was the wisest person he’d ever known. He was the grandfather he’d never had, maybe also the father he barely remembered.

It was a nasty threat. Should he comply yet again with his unreasonable request, or this time call his bluff? Sami decided enough was enough.

“Sorry, Guru Baba, I am cold, wet and tired. I’m going home.”

“Okay,” said Guru Baba. “Good night Sami. Thank you for your help this evening. I really enjoyed it.”

Sami began walking towards town but he didn’t seem to be making progress. Every step he took continued his circuit around Guru Baba. He became confused and angry, then bemused and began laughing. Something strange was going on here. He no longer felt cold and tired.

“What’s so funny?” said the sage.

“Maybe I will lie down for a while.”

Gazing up at the sky, Sami saw a black spot transit the moon. He rubbed his eyes, it must be dirt, but it was still there. He said, “What’s that, Guru Baba?”

“I was wondering when you’d see that. It’s another moon. Yes, yes, another moon. Can’t the moon have a moon too? Everything has something circling it. The centre of the galaxy has the sun, the sun has the earth, the earth has the moon, the moon has an asteroid, the asteroid has a rock, the rock has a grain, the grain is made of atoms, circled by electrons, and so on and so on!

“And I must circle you?”

Guru Baba acknowledged the question but didn’t answer directly. “The moon is in motion for a reason. It wants to maintain its relationship with earth. If it stayed still that relationship would end. Moving is loving, and loving is living. Now, Sami, you can get up and go home.”

Sami arose and smiled, till Guru Baba said, “Please change and come back soon. Remember I gave you the day off because tonight you’d be working.”

Syzygy

Posted in Lucerne Village, Mystical Experience, Sacred Geometry with tags , , , , , , , , , on August 25, 2012 by javedbabar

“Let’s play a game,” said Guru Baba. “You stand still and I will walk around you.”

A request such as this was not strange to Sami. Working for his holy bossman, he had come to expect the unexpected. Like tonight, where he’d been “given the day off” but was expected to stay up all night “working”.

He said, “Okay Guru Baba, where shall I stand?” They were in the boggy part of a harvested hayfield outside Lucerne village. Some places would surely be better to stand than others.

“Stand wherever you like. It doesn’t matter to me.”

Sami wondered if this was a variation of a previous exercise where he and Shama were required to play flutes and Guru Baba walked around finding “sonic spots”? He said, “Okay, I’ll stay where I am. What next?”

Guru Baba said, “This next.” He began strolling at an even pace, circling ten metres about Sami. He was also spinning slowly as he walked, making about one revolution every quarter circuit. Sami asked why he was spinning. His response, facing away from Sami at the time, was “Technical reasons.”

After four circuits, Guru Baba said to Sami, “How do you feel?”

Sami had closed his eyes a while back; it was getting late and he was tired. “Quite bored. I’d rather be sitting or moving.”

“Good. Now it’s your turn. I will stand still and you walk around me.”

Sami followed Guru Baba’s example, and began walking at a steady pace. He said, “Do you want me to spin too – for technical reasons?”

“Yes, if you can manage it without getting dizzy, that would be good.”

After four circuits, he asked Sami, “How do you feel now?”

“At first I started getting dizzy, but then became peaceful, almost hypnotized. I think I could keep walking and spinning like that for hours.”

“Very good!” Guru Baba wiped mud off his sandals. “Now imagine that fir tree is the centre, and I will walk around it, and you walk around me. We will start slowly but then speed up. Ready?”

There was no point in complaining or rolling his eyes. Sami said, “Sure.”

Guru Baba walked at the same pace as before, but Sami needed to go much quicker. He could slow down when circling against Guru Baba’s direction, but had to hurry and retain co-ordination when turning with him.

Guru Baba said, “Now imagine that tree is the sun, and I am the earth, and you are the moon. Isn’t that an exciting place to be? Moving so fast around us? Whizzing about! In cosmic terms we are connected to the moon, and we subconsciously know how hard it’s working. It is maintaining the rhythms of tides and other waters of the world, both outside us and within us. Just the thought of that is exhausting. That’s why whenever we see the moon, we feel like sleeping.

Living on the Moon

Posted in Classic Sci-Fi, Lucerne Village, Mystical Experience with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 24, 2012 by javedbabar

Despite there being a full moon tonight, Guru Baba had encouraged Sami to undertake a Dark Moon Retreat. Such were the strange ways of his holy bossman. He was never predictable.

Now back in the boggy part of a field outside Lucerne Village, they studied the moon. Sami felt a new lightness after his prolonged meditation, as if a great burden had been lifted from his soul. Guru Baba was right – death required preparation, as did any important task. Right now Sami’s gaze was floating high and he said, “I wonder what it would be like to live on the moon?”

“Why wonder?” said Guru Baba. “Why don’t you find out?”

“How can I do that? Is there a special form of meditation?”

“No, no, no! Not everything is about meditation! You youngsters get carried away. That’s why Lao Tzu said, Those who know, do not speak; those who speak, do not know. People just hear one thing and get stuck on it, like there’s nothing else.”

Sami became self-conscious and said nothing more. Guru Baba sensed his distance and said, “I’m sorry, it’s my pet peeve. Meditation has a purpose, but so does logical thought.” Sami remained quiet. He needed encouragement. “Come on, let’s find out what it would be like to live on the moon.”

Sami said quietly, “Okay, how?”

“You asked a question: What would it be like to live on the moon? Ultimately you must answer all of your questions yourself. Nobody else can do it for you. Let’s break down the components of life on the moon. What will you need to live there? That’s right, some kind of a base or home. What will you make it out of? Yes, materials brought from earth, or mined on the moon. How will you breathe? Yes, using recycled air, maybe via algae-based purifiers. What about light? Yes, you will need to be prepared for very long days and nights – up to two weeks – unless you live at the poles. And temperatures? Yes, there will be huge fluctuations. And gravity? Yes, you will need to compensate for the lack of it, and there could be long-term hazards to health. See, you just ask the right questions and answers present themselves. Please continue yourself.”

Sami said, “Power could be made using solar or nuclear methods. Food could be grown by rotating crops to regulate sunlight, creating radiation protection for them, and introducing insects for pollination. There’s water frozen at the moon’s poles that could be processed. Transport would be easy with the low gravity there, using locally-produced fuel or electromagnetic cannons. Communications would be easy, with no atmospheric diffraction. But…”

“What is it, go on…”

“Being so far from earth. It would feel very isolated.” He thought some more and said, “But the earth would be clearly visible. It would look so beautiful always, like a precious blue pearl. I would love it more than ever.”

Earth, Moon and Sun Aligned

Posted in Lucerne Village, Mystical Experience, Sacred Geometry with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on August 20, 2012 by javedbabar

Guru Baba had brought his assistant Sami into a field at dusk, saying that he must stay there all night, “learning lessons from the Man in the Moon.” When Sami asked why, Guru Baba got angry and said, “Because I said so! I know more than you!” Then he told him about Yoshitoshi, the Japanese artist who had made a series of woodblock prints called One Hundred Views of the Moon.

Guru Baba took Sami’s arm and said, “Let’s walk this way,” leading him towards a boggy area. Sami was about to suggest a different direction, but decided to hold his tongue.

Their feet began squelching. Sami was wearing boots but Guru Baba wore sandals and his feet became mud clumps. They reached a natural pond, partly covered with lilies, and stopped to inhale their lush aromas. Guru Baba gave a low laugh and pointed to a darker corner of the pond and said, “Look at the moon in the water.”

Maybe Guru Baba was on to something. Sami really should improve his observation.

It was barely dusk. The faint moon in a pale blue sky was even fainter in the water. It was barely visible. When he focussed upon it though, there it was, with the same strange play of light and dark across its face. It was subtle and hopeful, always changing but always whole. He realized that he didn’t really understand why the moon waxed and waned, or at least why it appeared to do so from earth.

“Do you feel drawn towards it?” asked Guru Baba. Sami half-nodded. “The earth and the moon are attracted to each other. It’s nothing strange, just the same power we experience everyday – gravity. But the earth doesn’t let the moon steal its possessions, so the moon just tugs a little at the water.”

“That’s what causes the tides, isn’t it?”

“Yes it is. The oceans’ waters rise and fall according to the moon’s position, with a  little help from her brother sun. The highest and lowest tides are when their pulls are combined, when earth, moon and sun are aligned. These alignments formed the basis of ancient calendars.”

Sami looked at the pond again but the moon was gone. He had to step forward to see it now; it moved more quickly than he’d realized. Guru Baba continued, “And it doesn’t just affect tides. It affects all water. That’s why it’s better to plant crops at certain times of the month, when moisture is nearer the surface.”

“Does water creates mirages?” said Sami.

Guru Baba said enigmatically, “Maybe it does.” He adjusted his robes at the back in an unseemly manner. “But most of all the moon affects us. Yes, it affects unbounded bodies of water like the earth’s oceans, but it also affects our smaller, bounded oceans. The moon affects our dreams and fertility. It alters our blood, organs and brains. That’s why I behave the way I do sometimes. I am being visited by the Man in the Moon.”

Sami was confused by the moon sometimes being masculine and sometimes feminine. Maybe that was a lesson in itself.

Hours of the Moon

Posted in Conceptual Art, Lucerne Village, Mystical Experience with tags , , , , , , , , on August 19, 2012 by javedbabar

Guru Baba gave his assistant Sami the day off, “But only the day!” he said. “Tonight you will stay up working!”

“May I ask doing what?” said Sami. He was accustomed to Guru Baba’s mysterious utterances, but there was no harm in trying to glean some extra information.

The bearded sage adjusted his orange robe beneath the waist in an unseemly manner, and smiled. He said, “You will see!” He also adjusted the tilt of his turban. “You will see!”

Guru Baba’s first year of retirement to “the nice village with the white mountain above it” had been a confusing period. There were concerns that this famous holy man was suffering from dementia. Many global leaders had come to see him, thinking that he may soon die – it was a valuable PR opportunity not to miss out on! – but here he was in tip-top shape. Sami had given up trying to understand the man. He had developed a deep fondness for him, even when he was being very annoying, like now.

Sami didn’t want to have the day off and work all night. He made another attempt at extracting information. “Guru Baba, what for?”

“What for? What for? Because I said so! I know more than you! Come here at six o’ clock tonight or don’t ever bother coming here again.”

Sami spent the day watching movies and cleaning the house. He should do it more often, not let it build up like this into a disaster zone. Did spiders really think they’d catch sumptuous dinners in his apartment? Bug screens kept all the insects out, but seemed to have no effect on fluff and dust.

Sami appeared at six p.m., as instructed, at the Transparent Temple. Guru Baba said cheerfully, “Come on, let’s go for a walk.” They walked along the canal trail for a kilometre before turning off into a field. “Look,” said Guru Baba. “There’s the moon.”

This was true. Though it was not yet dusk, a full moon had appeared, more grey than white, in a pale blue sky. Guru Baba said, “You will be learning lessons from the Man in the Moon tonight.” Then he produced a sketch pad and pencil from beneath his robes and said, “Draw the moon.”

“But I can’t really draw,” said Sami. He’d never enjoyed art class.

Sami recognized the signs when Guru Baba was angry. His nose drew up and he shouted, “Draw it! Drawing is just looking! Look at it!”

Sami did the best he could. There was nothing to draw really, just a circle with some shading. “Well done,” said Guru Baba in a conciliatory fashion.

They continued looking. The sage said, “Do you know the Japanese artist Yoshitoshi? He made a series of woodblock prints called One Hundred Views of the Moon. They are very beautiful, and so surprising and original, with lovers, warriors, old women, children, farmers, and monkeys all looking at the moon. They are entranced by it. I want you to always look at the moon like that. Yoshitoshi was the last master of woodblock printing before photography and other forms of mass reproduction destroyed it. His life represents one man’s struggle against time. He eventually lost. We all do. But while he was alive he was always looking.”