I promised an update on the vipassana retreat. Here are a bunch of random thoughts.
But first...article update.
New wrestling article is up here.
My latest Geek Love article for Suicide Girls article is up here. It's on the importance of guys taking charge in a relationship and has already got some interesting comments.
As well, Rumble in the Ring is the next OSCW show, taking place this Saturday at the Hazeldean community hall, featuring a 20 man Royal Rumble style match. If you're interested in coming, message me, and I'll put you in touch with the folks that can get you tickets.
Back to the Buddhism stuff...I didn't have a notebook, so these are random notes I jotted after the fact. Some of them may grow up to be jokes one day.
-Living like a monk for two weeks was fun. If you call getting gonged awake at four in the morning fun. And you know what makes being up at four in the morning even better? Chanting. Foreign language chanting.
-We weren't allowed to speak or interact with each other in any way. Since I didn't know anybody's names, they got cool nicknames in my head like "Cool Haircut Guy" or "Unabomber." Although it made me think about what counts as communication. Sure I couldn't directly address people, but what if I were merely to express my feelings about being awoken at four in the morning--say by slamming my head into my bunk five or six times--and other people happened to be around. Was that breaking my vow? I say no. But I took a lot of blows to the head.
-Even at a meditation retreat, I found myself getting competitive. I wanted to out-meditate everyone. I was like, "I'm a being of way more compassion than those losers." I later learned a lot of guys were feeling the same way. The only thing that kept some of them from running out screaming when their back and legs were cramping up and they felt their minds were going crazy was the fact they refused to be the first one to quit. Competition is a good thing, I guess.
-There was a log in the camp and for fun, we would often walk across it, balance-beam style. Trouble started though when you saw a guy coming the other way. Because the rules say you aren't allowed to talk or interact with each other. But you know what isn't in the rules? Being a bitch. So you'd just keep walking towards each other until you found out which of you was the better, more compassionate person...and which of you was the winner.
- I am not an enlightened person. People talk about inner peace and serenity when medidtating. I mostly got songs stuck in my head, memories from the firt season of Big Brother and the track listing to Skid Row's debut album. I guess my Buddha-nature likes to rock.
- You would think with nothing to do, there would be no stress, but I found instead, my brain would magnify everything in order to give me something to be neurotic about. I remember coming out of the breakfast hall thinking, "Man, I have to brush my teeth AND take a nap? There is not enough time in the day."
Monday, June 22 - The Comic Strip