29 June 2012
Art and Design, Media, Teaching
This came up in a discussion on Facebook, and I wanted to bookmark this idea — the idea that the Tree of Life from Jewish mysticism is a model of creativity. If there’s some interest in exploring this idea further, I’ll be happy to talk about some ways that a public or private school teacher could alter this model to help them teach kids to be more creative.
Another way to think of a model of Creativity is the Tree of Life: the mind of God (white circle at the top) generates an idea. It comes to the realm of the Fixed Stars — a vague, bad draft. You critique and limit that idea — Saturn. You find what’s beautiful — The Sun. You are generous to the idea — Jupiter… while also being vicious to it — Mars. You draw into your idea the concepts of universal form and common language, and recognizable symbolism — Mercury. You accept the energies of love and abundance — Venus — in order to give a strong outer form and image to the idea — Moon — in order to manifest it in the material world — Earth/Malkuth. Good luck!
Update: I made a short (6-second) video on Vine, showing the basic run-down of steps to lay out the Tree of Life, which is available through a link, here.
29 June 2012
chi, energy, exercise, taiji, work, workout
Yesterday, I noted that I can now do the Eight Pieces of Silk in what I call “hard” style. What this means is that I tense my muscles, and I work through each of the eight postures, six repetitions, with the muscles tensing against one another. This makes Eight Pieces of Silk into a set of isometric exercises. When I do that, I sweat. Not profusely, but I sweat.
Yet I noted that I had never done the form all the way through using a “hard” style. I tend to do it softly, and rather too quickly, and the result is that I get a workout that sometimes is sweaty, and sometimes not. But the quality of the workout is in a sense compromised. Because I cannot shift back and forth between hard and soft easily.
So today I did the form, “hard”-style. I’d have to say that the results were good — I’m sweaty, I’m breathing hard, and I got a good workout this morning.
Right next to me, though, was the kavad. And although I have morning activities to follow up on today, I can’t wait to get back to it later today.