Aug 31, 2010

If I Had a Sewing Machine

...I would make this outfit, after consulting a genius who could draw me the pattern for it. So I need two things: a genius and a sewing machine. Maybe a second genius to guide me how to sew based on a pattern. A third one to calm my nerves when it doesn’t work out. I would definitely give it a try, but probably could use a forth genius to actually get it done. But it’s pretty, no? In an earthy, hobbit chic kind of way.

Aug 27, 2010

Hula Hoops Don't Match the Lifestyle of Modern Kids

Sad/hilarious. (click it to see it bigger)

If I Wanted Not to Fear America

...I wouldn’t read the following little pieces of legislation. Funny how it’s completely against the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, and basic human principles.

Should an economic instability cause some unrest among the people, or to prevent such from happening, the President of the USA can sign a paper and make the following happen:
Executive order 10995: Allows the government to seize and control the communication media. (No more blogging?)
Executive order 10997: Allows the government to take over all electrical power, gas, petroleum, fuels and minerals. (Let’s make a fire!)
Executive order 10998: Allows the government to seize all means of transportation, including personal cars, trucks or vehicles of any kind and total control over all highways, seaports, and waterways.
Executive order 10999: Allows the government to take over all food resources and farms. (Goodbye anything organic. Goodbye a bunch of things.)
Executive order 11000: Allows the government to mobilize civilians into work brigades under government supervision. (I’m at a loss of words here)
Executive order 11001: Allows the government to take over all health, education and welfare functions. (The loss of words continues)
Executive order 11003: Allows the government to take over all airports and aircraft, including commercial aircraft. (How about seeing my family overseas?)
Executive order 11004: Allows the Housing and Finance Authority to relocate communities, build new housing with public funds, designate areas to be abandoned, and establish new locations for populations.
Well, the good news, I guess, is that as non-material conscious beings we can choose not to let our mind be tossed around by the (material) affairs of this world. Nothing can come between our relationship with the Supreme, because that relationship is the ultimate reality. If we’re aware of that connection, the spiritual power of that consciousness will override any material circumstances we find ourselves in, and we’ll  remain peaceful and fearless.

What do you think of these “executive orders”? Which one is the worst? Do you think there’s a way to prevent stuff like this from happening?

Aug 26, 2010

I Climbed on an Animal

If there is one thing I haven't done in my life, it's riding a horse. Usually I am afraid of animals, no matter what species they are. Yesterday I was teaching my friend Citra some hoop moves and she suggested that she could in turn teach me how to ride a horse (she has many). And so I rode a horse. Who would have thought? Surely not anyone who has seen me interact with animals before! What to speak of the giant ones.


It wasn't too bad. It actually felt like I was riding a dinosaur, as he was stepping slowly and I swayed slightly from side to side. I learnt how to turn him, go forward and backward.

I don't think I have even touched a horse before. Eventually I gave Silver a big hug. I might just do this again some day. After I got off the saddle, Citra's son Deva (3) showed me how it's done.

Aug 17, 2010

This Is Love

"This is love. And if God accepts your offerings, then what more do you want? He becomes your most intimate friend. If you make God your intimate friend, then there is nothing wanted. You'll be fulfilled. You'll find that I have got everything.

And if we become convinced that Krishna is my protector, then how much happy and peaceful we will be. Offer something. Just be in love with Him. Then just see how much peaceful you feel. 

How much tranquility you feel and how you are protected by Krishna, how you avoid insufficiency, how you become pure, and how you make progress in spiritual life." 

words from Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

I was just at a laundromat and talked with a guy about places worth visiting here in Oregon. He told me he took once part in a meditation circle of 10 000 people, all chanting om, and the experience "nearly knocked him down". I can imagine! 

As we were talking, another guy came up to me with a CD called Bhakti which means devotion in Sanskrit (and is also my name ahem). He said he plays guitar and made a recording of songs about Krishna, heard me talk about Krishna, and so wanted to give me a copy of his album. Sweet! 

He had brought his guitar to the laundromat so he played and we both sang Hare Krishna and other mantras until 1am. Other nightly laundry-washers seemed pleasantly surprised by our unexpected concert. :)

Aug 10, 2010

Dry But Beautiful

Alright friends, we were on the road for 20 hours, traveled from Denver, Colorado to San Diego, California. As I drove I took some photos of the landscapes:

Aug 9, 2010

Suddenly I Found Myself at a Rave in Utah

I was driving in downtown Salt Lake City, heading to the next day’s Warped Tour venue. It was 11pm, P. was fast asleep in the back of the van, and I was a bit drowsy. I was supposed to stay awake until early morning, just to keep up with my schedule of nightly driving despite our day (night) off. Then I heard the loud bass of electric music coming from a building and saw tens of kids dressed in total raver gear in front of this place called Club Sound. Fluffy legwarmers, neon clothes, fishnet stockings, super high heels, corsets, blinking light jewelry, golden bikinis, crazy make up and all that. 
I parked the van nearby, ran over and asked some guys what’s happening. They said it’s a rave, Darude and some others are playing, 30 bucks to get in. I started talking with these guys, who turned out to be the staff there, told them we’re in the city on the Warped Tour, we do non-profit work and distribute eastern philosophy & spirituality books during the daily shows. I told them I would love to come in since I have to stay awake anyhow, and, low and behold, Darude is from Finland like me and this is an utter funny coincidence that he’s playing here tonight!
They then proceeded to totally hook me up and (ssshh, don’t tell anyone) let me in for free. Before I went in, however, I ran back to the van and put on my butterfly shirt and super colorful pair of hair falls, these ones:

Needless to say, I danced my brains out, which I like to do every now and then. I really don’t know what it is that attracts me so much about trance, and psytrance specifically, but I just love dancing to it and falling to a total blissful state of expression. I didn’t bring my hoop to the party - I probably could have hooped on stage. They had many little dressed butt wiggler chicks on the stage, doing their thang.
I got a chance to talk with Darude as well, in the fairy language of Finnish, which I don’t get to speak too often here in the US at all. He was very kind in person and put on a really good show - he had written signs that he showed from behind the DJ desk during his set. I’ve never seen this type of connecting with the audience at an electronic music event before. He had signs saying “Hello again!”, asking “OK?”, referring to the tracks he was playing (and of course the crowd went nuts screaming “Yeahhh..”), and a bunch more, including one with a big heart he drew on it. Loved the set of the gentleman who played after him, didn't catch his name though.

Hey, if you like to read my ramblings, please do become a follower on that thingy on the right, and you won’t miss out on any of my posts. Take care, Hare Krishna, much love!

Aug 5, 2010

How to Make Incense Really Quick

What you need:
  • a  prairie
  • a few yards/meters of thread
  • sunshine
You don’t really need scissors, but if they happen to match your skirt, go for it. Now, collect branches of sage - sage grows all over any prairie pretty much.

Try to find the thicker ones with more leaves for your optimum incensical results. 

Divide them in small bunches and tie with thin thread, tightly. Make many layers on the bottom so the bunch won’t open up there.

Then go around the whole bunch with the thread, spiral up, and then down to the base. Make a few extra rounds there so that the thread won’t come loose. (Yep, my nails need some attention.)

Place the ready bunches in the sun. Generally they’ll be burnable after drying for a few days. If you’re in northern Europe, however, like I know many of you are :) then this process is more likely to take a couple of weeks - first you will have to wait for the sun to appear, and then you’ll have to pray to Surya (the sun god) to shine a little harder on them.

After my sage dries, I'll offer the first burn to Krishna on our little altar. Man I love sage!!!! I made 22 bunches today. By the way, the bushes behind me in these pics happen to be *ta-dah* sage! I ran into some fascinating wildlife while collecting the goods this morning, meet Mr & Mrs The Most Psychedelic Grasshopper You've Ever Seen.

The locals here in Salt Lake City think I'm nuts with my obsession, little do they good it smells :) What's your favorite smell?

Aug 2, 2010

About Inner and Outer Hygiene

We are in Kansas City right now, heading to Utah tomorrow. It's super hot, 100F/38C. I'm currently showering/ jumping into rivers every 3 hours. I'm trying to go to sleep now but it's still as hot as in the day, wish I was back here again:

As we currently travel the country on the Warped Tour, my schedule is pretty topsy-turvy. I drive every night anywhere from 4 to 10 hours. Then I cook, and sleep until about 5pm. I wake up, chant japa or mantras with my beads, hoop for about an hour and get ready to drive again. Chanting definitely takes care of my inner hygiene of keeping the mind more clear in the middle of all this :)

I absolutely love this prayer written about 500 years ago by Sri Chaitanya describing the cleansing effects of chanting mantra:

ceto-darpaṇa-mārjanaṁ bhava-mahā-dāvāgni-nirvāpaṇaṁ

śreyaḥ-kairava-candrikā-vitaraṇaṁ vidyā-vadhū-jīvanam
ānandāmbudhi-vardhanaṁ prati-padaṁ pūrṇāmṛtāsvādanaṁ
sarvātma-snapanaṁ paraṁ vijayate śrī-kṛṣṇa-saṅkīrtanam

"Let there be all victory for the chanting of the holy name of Lord Krishna, which can cleanse the mirror of the heart and stop the miseries of the blazing fire of material existence. That chanting is the waxing moon that spreads the white lotus of good fortune for all living entities. It is the life and soul of all education. The chanting of the holy name of Krishna expands the blissful ocean of transcendental life. It gives a cooling effect to everyone and enables one to taste full nectar at every step."