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i am a spirit bound in a female body. Yet human life has taught me bitter and sweet lesson and forced the spirit to think as if i'm the male body.

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21 Dec 2011 (updated 24 Dec 2011 at 14:10 UTC) »

I pledge my support to Software Freedom Conservancy. Their current Member Projects. I hope to work towards implementing Raph's Trust Metrics to build democratic process for Chinese ordinary internet users using Darcs as my distribution platform.

I believe co-operation is a learned world view. To build Trust is a difficult task among different people sharing little common senses as pockets of world material/natural resources are controlled even more tightly than ever before. Cooperative activities are never to be taken for granted. Our natural instinct is to defend ourselves against extinction, suppression, enslavement on every turn. So help me folks. Thank you.

Congratulation, Mrs. Tai, for translating Dr. Lee's autobiography 'Making a World of Difference' from English to Chinese. I am looking forward to reading your 中華文化詩詞入門. I also would like to read works by Dr. Lee's late father and Chinese historian 李天民 .

I am also most interested in two different versions of history books about Chinese Civil War (1927-1949/1950) .

According to wiki, "However there is debate on whether the war has officially ended. The conflict continues in the form of military threats and political and economic pressure, particularly over the political status of Taiwan. The continued tension is described in cross-Strait relations." 2007年中共十七大時,中共中央總書記胡锦涛提出「兩岸簽署和平協議」主張,当时執政民主進步黨并沒有正式回應。但在國民黨二次政黨輪替後,總統馬英九称不排除與中國大陸簽署和平協議,不過並沒有時間表

在冷戰漸趨緩和之下,中華民國自1980年代後期起實施一連串的民主化改革,並恢復與中國大陸的交流,國家體制遂漸與台灣社會相融合。現今的中華民國於國際間常因地理位置或政治因素而通稱為「台灣」或「中華台北」,以經濟成就與民主改革聞名於世[2][3]。

轟動一時的國際事件江南案
Henry Liu (7 December 1932 – 15 October 1984), often known by his pen name Chiang Nan (江南), was a writer and journalist from Taiwan, Republic of China. Born in Jingjiang, Jiangsu, China, he was a vocal critic of the Kuomintang (Nationalist Party), then the single ruling party of the Republic of China in Taiwan, and was most famous for writing an unauthorized biography of Chiang Ching-kuo, former president of the Republic of China.[1] He later became a naturalized citizen of the United States, and resided in Daly City, California, where he was assassinated by the Taiwanese.

to watch Formosa Betrayed

Name: Gervasoni Julia
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Nous proposons beaucoup de services pour l'internaute.
Connaitre des nouveaux amis: tchat, webcam, en groupe ou duel
style msn avec un serveur RMS dédié juste au webcam.
Partage: vidéo, musique, photo.
Création: Blogs, articles, nouveautés, Board de création
Avatar, dépôt d'annones, publication des sites.
Jeux en flash classés en catégories juste pour vous.
Vidéos YouTube classées en catégories, les plus regardé,
meilleurs votes, en qualité HQ.
Forum interactif.
Réferencement Gratuit.
Multi-langage: Français, Anglais, Arabe.

28 Sep 2011 (updated 27 Nov 2011 at 17:19 UTC) »

靳军
(1966年-),现任中央美术学院设计学院教师。1989年获清华大学工学士学位,1995年获中央工艺美术学院硕士学位,1998年获美国波士顿大学艺术硕士学位。主要作品展览有 《靳军平面设计展》等。

靳军:素描是
一种真诚的艺术

艺报:请谈谈关于您和这个展览的渊源?
靳军(以下简称靳):这个展览当初主要是徐冰院长的一个想法,我参与进来稍微晚了一点。他们把这个展览划分为三个部分。素描是一个很基础、本质的东西,对艺术创作来说,以前每个学艺之人都会去画,几乎很少有一个全面完整的素描展,所以借着09年建国六十周年的契机,我们做了一个整体的组织,来对公众进行传达。
艺报:在学院教育里还很重视素描,但当代艺术似乎越来越远离素描了。
靳:无论是传统艺术还是传统艺术教育,到现今的一些创作,素描对他们每个人来说都不是无足轻重的。我们做这么一个展览来对素描进行完整的呈现,是希望大家能够重新对素描进行思考,一个旧事物再给人新感受,这种新感受帮助我们对自己的思想认识再整理,每个人通过这个展览去感受素描的本质魅力和对其创作的意义作用。素描帮助艺术家把个人情感转化为视觉表达,如画面构图、气氛烘托、人物精神刻画等。
艺报:在您的素描概念里,它是一种造型手段吗?
靳:实际上素描就是绘画最简单、最直接的绘画形式,使用任何工具都可以完成,是对造型最直观的表达,艺术家可以通过这种方式完成对空间、情绪的表达要求,它是绘画的第一步。
艺报:作为一个设计学院的老师,您如何看待设计学院的素描教育?
靳:设计和传统绘画是一个整体,绘画在几百年前也是为社会服务的,设计学院只不过是直接为社会服务的,当然这也是有其商业目的的,它把形式的东西与社会需要结合起来,所以设计也叫“实用美术”,更提倡功能性和形式性,从这个角度上说,设计与素描的关系更密切,它需要不停地画素描稿。
艺报:现在艺术包括设计越来越朝着观念性方向发展了,那素描的功用是不是也弱化了?
靳:观念虽然是一个抽象的想法,但最后还是要通过画面去实现,只不过它的目的和关注点不一样,虽说重点不在画面本身,但还是需要画面来完善。素描是一个手段,也是能力的表现,它不是仅仅把一个东西画出来,而是包涵了作者的审美情趣,对黑白灰的处理、空间的感觉、情感的触动,这是一种最基本的能力。
艺报:现在西方对素描并不那么重视了。
靳:西方的情况和我们不一样,他们对视觉艺术的认识是从小培养的,生活中信手拈来,绘画、雕塑、建筑等,素描的美学影响在很小就开始了,所以艺术教育就不是按传统模式进行了,更多地是注重其他新形式。当然这只是一部分,有些建筑设计类的专业的学生,他们的素描功底比造型专业的更强。他们的认识和能力已经融汇在生活中了。我们国家可能比较缺失这一块社会土壤,所以到了艺术院校需要更加强。
艺报:谈谈你策划的这部分“素描与创作思维”在整个展览中的意义。
靳:我们通过整理一些艺术家大型创作的素描稿,重点集中在对人物的创作上,有英雄、群众、领袖等,把握对人的认识是选取作品的一个原始方向。通过几十年的变迁,很多经典作品已经遗失了,所以我们把这些素描稿集中起来,也可以从另一角度了解这些作品。我们可以看到,素描在艺术家创作过程中的作用,他们是如何关注主题的,从哪些角度思考、认识的。就拿冯法祀先生创作的《刘胡兰就义》来说,他画了100多幅很大素描稿,对每个人物都做了很细致的刻画。老一辈的艺术家下的功夫很深,他们为了题材内容,深入生活,到与主题有关的地点考察写生、找相应的模特。画200天的作品和2个小时的作品是绝对不一样的,艺术也是要计量劳动的。
艺报:现在的艺术家似乎很少能这么沉下心来花这么多功夫。
靳:是的,现在很多人只是完成一件任务和事情,艺术还是需要真诚的,能力是一回事,但真诚是非常重要的。

殷双喜


good luck to Dave. better luck to Jim. They are all going to need it.
http://business.in.com/printcontent/28472

The Cool Maneuvers and Battle On the Net
We are living in the age of the cool maneuvers, a period of intense and sustained virtual struggle on the Internet
by Oxblood Ruffin | Sep 19, 2011

... the concept of war has become anachronistic, an outmoded approach.
- H.H. Dalai Lama

In 1957, the Soviet Union launched the first satellite, Sputnik I. It was nothing short of a shock to the US and it had no choice but to retaliate, at least in terms of innovation. President Dwight Eisenhower created the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) to recapture the technological lead in the arms race. The idea of a national communications network was hatched. It was designed in such a way that if one node was shut down owing to, say, a military strike, the network would stay up and running.

The ARPANET went live in 1969. Over time, universities in the United States and Europe were connected and the Internet became a sort of geeky communications medium with military network development happening quietly on the side.

Then there was a tectonic shift. Tim Berners-Lee, a British scientist, invented the World Wide Web in 1990 and changed the entire playing field. The Web represents the mainstreaming and democratisation of the Internet. As of March 2011, there were over 2 billion Internet users internationally. The Internet is a global communications medium of staggering proportions. It has become an international publishing platform, a marketplace, and a battleground.

But the fruit never falls far from the tree.

Something akin to the Cold War has re-emerged. Only, instead of the US and the Soviet Union it is now the US and China jockeying for position; defining and fighting for zones of influence; forming coalitions of nation states, and non-state actors; and, never quite boiling over.

We are living in the age of the Cool Maneuvers, a period of intense and sustained virtual struggle on the Internet. But unlike the Cold War which was animated by fear of nuclear annihilation, the Cool Maneuvers cannot be attributed to any one event or factor. Broadly speaking the information revolution has restructured society, challenged centrally managed institutions, and empowered individuals. On the Internet anyone can become powerful, and many are attempting to become so.

The threat scenarios for cyberspace are many. Cybercrime is far and away the greatest challenge to individuals through fraud and identity theft. State and corporate sponsored cyber-espionage can rock governments and corporations; some impact has also been generated in this category by cyber-activists, Anonymous being the principle practitioner.

And all of this is causing a great deal of hyperventilation. Breathless editorialists are warning of the dangers of cyberwar and digital Pearl Harbours as if these things could actually happen. The likelihood of some sort of Internet Armageddon is so unlikely that such speculations are better suited to Bollywood backlots than any serious consideration. Remember, the Cold War came about because governments realised after Hiroshima that their countries could not afford a nuclear war. By the same logic, there will be no cyber meltdown.

Just for starters, it is in no one’s interest to shut down the Internet. Cyber-criminals would do everything to keep it up and running — it’s their bread and butter. Governments need the Net to conduct cyber-espionage as do corporate players and cyber-activists. Anything other than a well-functioning Internet would be counter-productive. The entire objective is to steal sensitive data and monitor one’s political opposition.
mg_56362_cyberwar_280x210.jpg

Infographics: Vivek L. Shinde

But in a bait and switch act, governments are using the public’s fear of cybercrime and cyberwar to extend their controls over the Internet, a technology that was designed to prevent it in the first place.

Internet ‘kill switches’ are being furiously worked towards from Egypt to the US; UK wants to be able to monitor and control social networks; Danish police want to end online anonymity.

Most international governments appear to be moving to the model already prevalent in China: An Internet that is used more as a surveillance network, propaganda tool, and to control dissent. And it should be noted that China is now exporting censorship and surveillance technologies to dictators and despots around the world.

But it’s not just censorship and surveillance at which China excels. It has become a grandmaster of cyber-espionage, thieving corporate and government secrets at an alarming rate. And dirty tricks?

Last year, a Chinese telecom company ‘accidentally’ re-routed 15 percent of the world’s Internet traffic through its own servers. Official explanations of the accident reached comic proportions.

Virtual conflict extends the notion of war and requires a perceptual shift. Heretofore war was the business of nation states. It required large and well-provisioned armies and a great deal of effort to see war through. The Internet has changed all of that. It is now possible for an army of one to have a significant impact on the state of the Internet. And the troops are not necessarily all soldiers. Virtual conflict is more properly referred to as information war (infowar), essentially an umbrella term.

It is comprised of cyberwar, involving state actors, and netwar, involving non-state actors. The latter category is comprised of cyber-criminals and terrorists, and increasingly hacktivists who use technology to improve human rights. Infowar is a large and contradictory mix.

Theoretically, cyberwar is possible. Information security experts, politicians, and military strategists all say so. But what they fail to agree on is that one has actually happened. While the widely publicised Stuxnet malware was an innovative event — a kind we may see more of in the future — it was cyber-espionage. And thanks to it being unmasked and thoroughly analysed, security professionals are a step ahead, taking precautions to deflect similar probes in future.

The only countries capable of mounting true cyberwar are the nuclear powers. Not only is it difficult to project with certainty the outcome of a virtual assault. The fear of retaliation and those uncertainties also weigh on the equation. And of course there is the physical response with which to contend. A nuclear power would never enter into virtual conflict with another nuclear power. Espionage, yes. Knocking out a communications grid, never. A cyber-assault would be interpreted as the precursor of a physical war. Bombs would follow. Cyberwar at this level will not be happening. As with the Cold War, the Cool Maneuvers will generate heat but not cause a conflagration.

Canadian-born Oxblood Ruffin is a long time and old school hacker and member of the hacker group Cult of the Dead Cow (cDc). Ruffin is also a ‘hactivist’, a term he helped define, meaning the use of hacking as a tool for political protest.

18 Jul 2011 (updated 25 Nov 2011 at 17:09 UTC) »

EDER
THE REVEREND CRAIG EDUARD of Washington, DC, and Falmouth, ME, died Sun., November 22, 2009, at Sibley Hospital of complications related to congestive heart failure. He was born in 1919 in Ridley Park, PA, the son of the Reverend Charles and Wilhemina Eder.
After graduating from the Penn Charter School, Harvard University, and the Virginia Theological Seminary, he was ordained a minister in the Episcopal Church in 1945.
Following parish work in West Virginia, he became Chaplain at St. Albans School for Boys in 1953, where he remained for the next 20 years. He will be remembered by generations of St. Albans students for his gentle manner, good humor, and leadership on many summer trips, whether to do volunteer work in West Virginia, South Dakota or Tanganyika, or to bicycle through the British Isles and Europe. Retiring from St. Albans in 1973, "Rev" Eder, as he was known, served as interim pastor and priest-in-charge at numerous parishes in the Diocese of Washington from Potomac to St. Mary's City. In 1975 he became Assistant to the Rector at St. Columba's Church, with which he was connected for the next 34 years. St. Columba's recently honored him as Associate Rector Emeritus. Since the early 1980's he was deeply involved with the Friends of St. Benedict, and, more recently, with the Iona Poets Group.
Mr. Eder is survived by his wife Edith, with whom he spent almost 40 summers at their home on Casco Bay; his sister Shirley and her husband the Rev. Joseph Laird; nephew Craig Laird, nieces Holly Laird and Heather Laird Beaudry; step-children Edith Gilliss Faile, William Gilliss, and John Gilliss, along with a host of loving in-laws, grandchildren, grand nieces and nephews, friends, colleagues, parishion-ers and former students.
A Memorial Service in Rev. Eder's honor will be held at St. Columba's Church, 4201 Albemarle St. NW, Washington, DC, on Saturday, December 12 at 1 P.M. Interment will be private. Honoring his great love of his many dogs, his family suggests that donations be made in his name to the Washington Humane Society, 7319 Georgia Avenue, NW. Washington, DC 20012, or to the charity of one's choice.
The family would like to express their gratitude to the staff of The Methodist Home of Washington, D.C. for the wonderful care that they provided over the last several years.

EDER EDITH C.H. EDER A long-time resident of Washington DC, completed her life on July 10, 2010 at her residence on Connecticut Avenue, aged 93. Born Edith Corlies Houston Brown in Philadelphia in 1916, she was the daughter of Dr. Henry Paul Brown, Jr., and Edith Houston Brown. A graduate of the Agnes Irwin School and Radcliffe College, she worked in Boston, Philadelphia, and Avon, CT, before moving to Washington during World War II to work for Bishop Angus Dun of the Episcopal Diocese of Washington. In 1948, she married the Reverend Carter S. Gilliss; they lived in Poolesville, MD, where he was rector of St. Peter''s Church until his death in 1960. In 1968, she married the Reverend Craig E. Eder, then chaplain at St. Albans School. Their devoted marriage lasted until his death in November 2009. The Eders were enthusiastic travelers all their lives together, visiting friends in many parts of the world and spending as much as possible of every summer at their island home in Maine. Always generous with her time and resources, she led a life of service and of quiet philanthropy. She was a member of St. Stephen and the Incarnation Church for over forty years, serving on its Vestry for many of them. Other volunteer activities took her to various roles at Sibley Hospital, St. Albans School, Sidwell Friends School summer programs, and the City Hall hotline. Mrs. Eder is survived by a brother, Dr. Thomas Brown of Lebanon, NH; a sister, Mrs. Charlotte Dallett of Taconic, CT; daughter Edith Gilliss Faile and husband David of Fairfield, CT; son William Gilliss of Louisville, KY; son John Gilliss and wife Barrett Alexander of Portland, ME; grandchildren Carter Gilliss, Meghan Gilliss, Nathan Gilliss, and Edith H.M. Faile; and many nieces and nephews. A celebration of her life will be held at St. Stephen and the Incarnation Church, 1525 Newton St., NW, Washington DC, in September. Private interment will follow in Rock Creek Cemetery. The family wishes that any donations in Mrs. Eder''s name or memory be made to the Loaves and Fishes Program,1525 Newton St. NW, Washington DC, 20010.

The Rev. Charles E. Eder

Charles Eder is best remembered as the pastor of Grace Church, Mount Airy for thirty-five years. He was born in Philadelphia on March 31, 1887. He was educated at St. Steven's College, where he obtained a BA degree in 1911. Subsequently, he got an MA at the University of Pennsylvania in 1917. He went to the General Theological Seminary and was graduated from there in 1914. He was made a deacon by Bishop Gray in that year and the next year was ordained a priest by Bishop Rhinelander on May 26, 1915, beginning his career as curate of St. Martin-in-the-Fields, Chestnut Hill.

After six years with us, during which time he also played a major part at St. John the Evangelist in Essington, he resigned to become the rector of Grace Church. Dr. Eder was a most distinguished priest and a very active member of the diocese. He and his first wife had two children, Craig and Shirley. Craig was ordained a priest also and is associated with St. Alban's School, Washington, D.C. After the death of his first wife, Dr. Eder married one of our parishioners, the former Lucille Berlin. Mrs. Eder is now a resident of the Conner-Williams Nursing Home in Ridley Park. Dr. Eder retired in 1959 and died in 1960.

22 Jun 2011 (updated 30 Jun 2011 at 03:03 UTC) »

http://www.american-buddha.com/at.one.htm#AT%20ONE%20WITH%20THE%20SECRET%20OTHER

TRAVELLER IN SPACE -- AT ONE WITH THE SECRET OTHER

Chapter 6
At One with the Secret Other

Alongside the absent mother, whose gender-specific role of giving birth and mothering became symbolically usurped by the system, there existed also in the sacred space the secret consort or songyum, whose female sexuality was essential for those lamas wishing to practice Tantric sex secretly. Whist the word songyum is an honorific title meaning 'wife' which is applied to the actual wives of those lamas belonging to the lay tradition, it is also used to mean the 'sexual partner', and means literally in Tibetan, 'secret mother'. The fact that in the Tibetan language the words for 'wife' and 'mother' are synonymous, is not, as I hope to prove, insignificant. The purpose of the secret songyum was, in the context of the monastic establishment, to provide for male practitioners the opportunities for sexual activity, without the disruption of the structures of the system. So while a lama would, to all intents and purposes, be viewed publicly as a celibate monk, in reality he was frequently sexually active, but his activities were highly secret. Even highly prestigious lamas of the status of the fourteenth-century scholar, Longchenpa, resorted to this method. 'Outwardly wearing the habit, but inwardly a yogin of the Mantrayana, he took that nun as his secret consort so that nobody knew about it'.[1] These actions were only achieved, however, with the collusion of the women involved, and also of those monks who were particularly close to the tulku or lama, and who would protect him so that his activities would not be subject to public disclosure.

This shroud of secrecy extended also into the literature where most references to actual women in biographical accounts of lamas' lives were omitted, or given metaphorical status. Even in contemporary works by Tibetans or their followers, the songyum is often described as the visualized deity of the monk's imagination, the female consort to a male deity, whose presence had to be conjured in order for the meditator to realize certain insights pertaining to the symbolic union of so-called opposites, the male and female. However, this aspect of the practice was only part of the whole story, for in the actual social world of the monastery, the lama often acquired the secret services of a real woman in order, allegedly, to achieve these insights. In my own experience, as the songyum of a tulku-lama of the monastic Kagyu order, Kalu Rinpoche, only one other person had knowledge of the relationship, which lasted for several years, and which took place within the strictest bounds of secrecy. When the biography of this high lama was written it included periods of time during which I acted as his songyum, yet there was no mention whatsoever of my name in the text, or even references to a metaphorical 'consort'.

The Tibetan system was to all intents and purposes a 'secret society', as confirmed by the synonym for its religion, Songwa dorje Tegpa (Tibetan gsang.wa.rdo.rje.theg.pa.), which means the Secret Vajrayana, or Secret Diamond Vehicle. There is no doubt that secrecy played a large part in the religious practices of Tibetan Buddhism, and that this secrecy extended not only to the requirement that only initiates could attend certain rituals, but also to the fact that certain activities took place which even other initiates did not know about. That these activities concentrated on sexual acts is hardly surprising, because the institution, with its outward appearance of monasticism, could hardly have survived in the form it did, had the importance of the woman's position and status within it been openly acknowledged. The two elements which I believe helped to sustain the secret society of Tibetan Buddhism were the downgrading of the mother to a 'receptacle' for holy tulkus; and the hidden status of the songyum in the monastic system which made use or her. As Mircea Eliade observes in a study of secret societies, whilst they always 'emphasize the sexual element' they also 'constitute an attempt by men to establish life independent of women, a rejection of feminine power and influence'.[2]

iranda Shaw, in her book "Passionate Enlightenment," sets out to rationalize historically the status and the role of women within Tantra, by providing examples from ancient texts, many more than a thousand years old, in which details are given about Tantric women teachers, and the emphasis on the importance of viewing the female as an equal partner in sexual rituals. Shaw points out at the beginning that the secrets of the Tantric tradition in which she was most interested, i.e. the sexual aspect, 'are counted among its most esoteric and closely guarded features',[3] yet she describes them in great detail in her book. This is done in order to support her case that the women involved in Tantra, a thousand years ago at least, had equal status with the men, and were at least as responsible as the men for the propagation and continuation of the tradition. She believes that her research counteracts the work of many other commentators who have 'attempt(ed) to project a mood of male domination onto this movement'.[4] Shaw further criticizes 'Western scholarship and feminism for their emphasis upon domination and exploitation'[5] in their reading of the Tantric tradition, suggesting instead that culturally they could not appreciate the 'highly nuanced balances of interdependence and autonomy that can characterize gender relations in other societies'.[6]

Certainly there is much to be said for her observations, because it is apparent that the importance of the female within this tradition in ancient times implies a very different cultural ambience, in which it is possible that the relationships between the sexes were not the same as they are now, either in the west or the east. One can only conclude that the female prominence has either been suppressed throughout the last five hundred years or more, in the Tibetan tradition at least, or that there has been a degeneration of the teachings in general, which has resulted in women losing touch with their own powers and knowledge as Tantric lineage-holders. In her own search for a teacher who would transmit the details of the practices to her, and help with the translation of the texts, Shaw names the lama who agreed to cooperate with her, but fails to name any woman who could substantiate the teachings from a practice viewpoint, despite saying that 'it is necessary to obtain access to an oral commentarial tradition that is secreted in the minds and hearts of living masters (both male and female)'.[7] Clearly it begs the question, in the absence of actual commentaries by live women on their practices with actual men within the tradition, where are the living female masters of the Tantra in the Tibetan tradition, and if they exist, why must the woman's position, name and commentary be kept secret? It is obvious from Shaw's work, and the work of many others, that the actual details of the so-called 'secret' practices are in fact known and have been published many times. If, therefore, the secrecy is not in the details of the acts themselves, where is it? My contention is that the secrecy is in the 'hidden' subjectivity of the female, either as a participant in the acts, or as a symbolic figure whose mystical presence, though necessary for the continuation of the lineage, was gradually eased out of the picture, so that live women would not be seen to accede openly in the human form to the status of 'Buddha'. Shaw herself puts forward this same view in a way which implies the necessity of the woman's hidden nature, as if a kind of essential female nature was to be found in her suppressed or hidden status.

The women of Tantric Buddhism and their divine counterparts are often called dakinis, translatable as women who dance in space, or women who revel in the freedom of emptiness. As their name suggests these are not ladies who leave a heavily beaten path. At times their trail disappears into thin air where they took flight on their enlightenment adventures, but sometimes the trail resumes in the dense underbrush of ancient texts, amidst the tangled vines of Tibetan lineage histories...The traces of women of Tantric Buddhism are sometimes obscure, enigmatic, even hidden and disguised, but they are accessible to anyone who discovers where to look for them.[8]

However, it is not just the organizational context of the system which is of relevance in the diminishment of the prominent role and purpose of women's spiritual lives. The power of that particular system lay in the hands of men who themselves had often been traumatized by unfortunate childhood experiences which separated them from their families, and in particular their mothers. Obliged as they were to be later locked into their role as monks or tulkus, with very little freedom of will until adulthood, the effect of their removal at an early age from the maternal environment into the harsh reality of the masculine world of discipline in the monastery must have produced conditions where many of them may have harbored secret longings for their mothers and for the intimacy of the female world. Even in Lacan's account of the socialization of any young child, he believes that, 'With the entry of the named subject into language and the social order, the unnamed, repressed desires of the subject are driven underground'.[9] The kinds of yearnings which these young boys must have felt would have been doubly taboo in the environment of the monastery, especially where the monks of a lower status than the tulku dealt with their passions by viewing women as inferior and unclean. Despite this, there is some anecdotal evidence to suggest that often secret meetings and liaisons with their mothers or sisters took place during childhood and adolescence, with the knowledge of only the closest disciples.

These kinds of experiences, in which feelings for women were habitually channeled underground in an openly masculine environment, meant that the tulku became accustomed to associating women with secrecy, and later, when opportunities for sexual liaisons arose, whether in the context of Tantric practices, or quite simply as an expression of their own longings, they already perceived this kind of liaison as a norm. It is interesting that Irigaray categorizes all patriarchal cultures in this way, by pointing out that "Such traditions as these do not encourage love between women and men. Lovers fall back into a mother-son relationship, and the man secretly continues to feed off the woman who is still fertile earth for him'.[10]

From the patriarchal point of view, however, it is easy to see why this degree of secrecy developed, and why men colluded, in the name of the lineage and its power, to protect one another. But what of the women involved? In the absence of a female lineage of knowledge about Tantra and woman's role in it, and the difficulty of gaining access to texts which the monastic institutions often guarded jealously, how was their loyalty bought and what was in it for them, to bind them to the secrecy of a sexual relationship with a man of power? Was it simply profound faith in the lama-as-Buddha which helped them remain silent about their role, as they went unheeded and unrecognized as the 'dakinis' of high lamas? Or were the conditions surrounding the liaison, created by the powerful men at the heart of the system, such that women found it difficult to do anything other than acquiesce?

In my own experience, despite the absence of a Tibetan cultural upbringing, there were quite specific motivating factors which helped to keep me silent over many years. These factors were probably similar to those which influenced Tibetan women over the centuries, and which would have provided for them the personal sense of participation in societal rites which normally excluded women altogether. Firstly, there is no doubt that the secret role into which an unsuspecting woman was drawn bestowed a certain amount of personal prestige, in spite of the fact that there was no public acknowledgement of the woman's position. Secondly, by participating in intimate activities with someone considered in her own and the Buddhist community's eyes to be extremely holy, the woman was able to develop a belief that she too was in some way 'holy' and that the events surrounding her were karmically predisposed. Finally, despite the restrictions imposed on her, most women must have viewed their collusion as a 'test of faith', and an appropriate opportunity perhaps for deepening their knowledge of the dharma, and for entering 'the sacred space'.

For Tibetan women, raised and conditioned in a culture whose whole centre was the Buddhist dharma and the elaborate tulku system of rule by lamas, the acceptance of these factors and the idea that such an involvement would create 'good karma' for future lives must have been utterly compelling. For a western woman like myself, however, as a convert to Buddhism in adulthood, the motivation and conditions which supported secrecy could never have been as strong as theirs. Without such a background, it was difficult not to question the purpose of secrecy which affected the role of the woman in the whole affair, and also not to doubt the contemporary value of such practices, outwith archaic Tibetan society. At the outset, it was abundantly clear that any secret activities, whether they were to do with initiation rituals, or personal relationships with lamas, were always bound by vows of secrecy (damtsik, Tibetan dam.tshig.). These vows were often formally spoken as part of a ritual, whilst at other times became an unspoken agreement to secrecy. In my own case it was only when I became involved with a lama of very high status who was openly living as a monk, that it was plainly emphasized that any indiscretion in maintaining silence over our affair might lead to madness, trouble, or even death.

As an example of what might happen, I was told that, in a previous life, the lama I was involved with had had a mistress who caused him some trouble, and in order to get rid of her he cast a spell which caused an illness, later resulting in her death. I was also told that this woman must have been a powerful demon, and that the lama had only invited her to participate in sexual acts through compassion, but her trouble-making had become impossible to bear and posed a threat to the lama's position. This kind of information was compounded by a more concrete example of what might befall me. Some time into my own relationship with this high lama, a young Tibetan woman in her late teens, who had been taken as a second songyum, unexpectedly died suddenly from -- it was said -- a heart attack. The fears engendered by such events ensured that my own view of the situation into which I had entered became similar to that of someone living under a taboo. For outsiders to traditions such as this, these fears may seem unbelievable, but in the claustrophobic atmosphere of a closed group such as many of these religious sects become, the culture of the 'insider' can quickly predominate. It seemed that within the protecting environment of secrecy and esoteric ritual, safety would be guaranteed, whilst any step outwith these boundaries would be tantamount to breaking a taboo, with all its subsequent ramifications. In her account of the workings of taboos, Mary Daly astutely points out that,

Women are terrified by phallocentric Taboo and thus are kept back from Touching the 'object' -- our Selves -- in which the demonic powers (our own Elemental powers which are disguised by the Possessors) lie hidden. Women are paralyzed by this injected fear that our powers, if we Touch them or use them 'unlawfully', that is in ways contrary to the Lecherous State, will take vengeance by casting a spell over us as 'wrong-doers'. [11]

The imposition of secrecy therefore, in the Tibetan system, when it occurred solely as a means to protect status, and where it was reinforced by threats, was a powerful weapon in keeping women from achieving any kind of integrity in themselves, for it seems clear that the fundamental and ancient principles of Tantric sex -- the meeting together of two autonomous individuals as partners for sexual relations to promote spirituality--was tainted by the power wielded by one partner over the other. So whilst the lineage system viewed these activities as promoting the enlightened state of the lineage-holders, the fate of one of the two main protagonists, the female consort, remained unrecognized, unspoken and unnamed. Shaw's implication that this very state of being encapsulates the female experience, and is a necessary part of a woman practitioner's path to the subjugation of ego, nonetheless does not take into account the fact that this imposed hidden role meant that, within the Tibetan monastic system which dominated the Vajrayana, for other women practitioners, there were no overt role models and no open system of exchange between women.

The extent of the bounds of secrecy concerning not the nature, but the context of these kinds of practices, meant that often women were more knowledgeable about the 'underside' of the system, and of the nature of the men involved, than most of the men who constituted the establishment itself. It is only since the death of the lama with whom I was involved that I have been able to see the elaborate mechanisms which lay behind his secret relationships, and can now question them in the light of their transposition to the west, where, I am sure, many western men would happily adopt such practices, as part of their 'dreams of power'.[12] It is certainly intriguing to know that despite Kalu Rinpoche's activities with women, and even quite some time after his death, several Tibetan scholars in the west continued to show complete ignorance of the hidden life existing within the lama system. In his study of the history of Tibetan Buddhism, and in particular the difference between married lamas and celibate monks, Geoffrey Samuel wrote in 1993, 'Kalu Rinpoche was a monk, however, not a lay yogin, and most of his career took place in the celibate gompa setting of Pelpung'.[13] Whilst it is true that Kalu Rinpoche spent many of his early years in the monastery of Pelpung in Tibet, it is also true that, after escaping Tibet in 1959 when the Chinese annexed the country, he spent many more as the abbot of a monastery in India, and during many of these years was not a monk, yet was afraid of the consequences of revealing his secret life.

(to be cont'd.)


22 Jun 2011 (updated 22 Jun 2011 at 23:08 UTC) »

Craig Eder, 90, an Episcopal priest who served as longtime chaplain of the private St. Albans School and who retired as assistant to the rector at St. Columba's Church in the District, died Nov. 22 at Sibley Memorial Hospital. He had congestive heart failure.

Rev. Eder was chaplain at St. Albans from 1953 to 1973, during which time he taught sacred studies, conducted chapel services and started the school's community service program. In the last role, he took students to Quaker work camps in West Virginia, a church mission in eastern Africa and a Dakota Indian reservation.

In 2006, Rev. Eder told a St. Albans publication, "For the kids from St. Albans to come to know Indian people -- Indian persons -- was of real value. . . . One of my deepest convictions is that the real meaning of life is found in close personal relationships with people. God is involved in that."

After stepping down from St. Albans as chaplain, he spent about 14 years working at St. Columba's. He stayed involved with St. Albans as chaplain emeritus.

Craig Eduard Eder was born Sept. 6, 1919, in Ridley Park, Pa., and was a 1942 graduate of Harvard University. He completed studies at Virginia Theological Seminary in 1944 and the next year was ordained an Episcopal minister.

Survivors include his wife of 41 years, Edith Brown Eder of Washington; three stepchildren, Edith Gilliss Faile of Fairfield, Conn., William H. Gilliss of Louisville, Ky., and John H. Gilliss of Portland, Maine; a sister; and four grandchildren.

Rev. Eder said he initially intended to pursue a career in medicine and that his father, an Episcopal priest, played a key role in reorienting his focus toward the ministry.

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Edith C.H. Eder, 93, a resident of Falmouth and Washington, D.C., died July 10.

Born Edith Corlies Houston Brown in Philadelphia in 1916, she was the daughter of Dr. Henry Paul Brown, Jr., and Edith Houston Brown.

A graduate of the Agnes Irwin School and Radcliffe College, she worked in Boston, Philadelphia and Avon, Conn., before moving to Washington, D.C. during World War II.

In 1948, she married the Rev. Carter S. Gilliss. They lived together in Maryland until his death in 1960.

In 1968, she married the Rev. Craig E. Eder. They were married over 40 years until his death in November 2009.

She and her husband Craig were enthusiastic travelers, visiting friends in many parts of the world, and spending summers at their Falmouth home.

She is survived by a brother, Dr. Thomas Brown of Lebanon, N.H., and a sister, Charlotte Dallett of Taconic, Conn.; a daughter, Edith Gilliss Faile and husband David of Fairfield, Conn., two sons, William Gilliss of Louisville, Ky., and John Gilliss and wife Barrett Alexander of Portland; four grandchildren, Carter Gilliss, Meghan Gilliss, Nathan Gilliss, and Edith H.M. Faile; and many nieces and nephews.

A funeral service will be held on Sept. 18 at 11 a.m. at St. Stephen and the Incarnation Church, 1525 Newton St., NW, Washington, D.C.

Arrangements are by Rapp Funeral Services, 933 Gist Ave., Silver Spring, MD 20910.

Memorial donations may be made to the Loaves and Fishes Program, 1525 Newton St. NW, Washington, D.C., 20010.

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