Nov 30, 2010

Try Hooping to Silence (Bird Dance)

And you'll find out that silence can be substantial. Not boring and certainly not without voice. And you'll hear your self. As I hooped today, the batteries got low and I had to ditch the iPod. What happened was phenomenal. I was suspicious. Will I be able to move feelingly without music?

At first it was stiff. Without music to occupy me, I had to manually do something with my mind. So I started singing a mantra to Radharani because She is the source of all inspiration, as Srila Prabhupada says. It was nice to hoop to your own singing.

Srimati Radharani, the Divine Mother
Then another idea came to me. I should hoop like a bird. For the past couple of days I've worn blue feathers in my hair. I also saw two dreams recently with a human-size peacock/phoenix looking bird that spoke to me. Seeing such in a dream symbolizes change and trust. Even right before I started hooping I saw a big bird circle above me in the sky and fly away.

It felt like a right thing to do - a bird dance. I had SO MUCH fun dancing and moving that I'm definitely going to hoop to silence again. Never know what you will hear when it's just you and the hoop.

So here we go:

Nov 29, 2010

Meet My Parents

Continuing the 30 Days posts on set topics.

Day 4 - Your parents

I've always had a very warm and good relationship with my parents. I love them :) They would always support me in everything (except maybe some really dumb stuff). They still do. Of course, my dad passed away last year. But I feel his positive, always supportive and encouraging spirit vividly when I think about him. His name is Kauko, but everyone calls him Kake (pronounced Kah-keh). Since babyhood he instilled in me an everlasting fondness for Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Jimmy Hendrix, The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Bob Marley, The Ramones, the Woodstock, kindness, Native Americans, the sea, and a lot more, but perhaps most importantly, being your own person. Thank you. 

My mom is Heini. She's so cool. And sweet. The way she dresses is awesome. She's super expert yet insecure cook and makes the best Finnish and Indian and everything-in-between vegetarian food. Simply her cooking makes me miss Finland. Heini jogs and runs and always has many things going on. When she was pregnant with me she would listen to classical music because she heard that such music makes the baby wise. Can't hurt to try right? Thanks mom so much :)

In conclusion, you gotta have pretty kickass parents if one of the first things you ever learnt to speak, in anticipation of dancing in the living room for hours, was: "Soita klokkia tai klekeitä!" which translates to "Play rock or reggae!" [insert funny baby r's]

Nov 26, 2010

Talk to Strangers - The Peaceful Program for Overcoming Paranoia

I sat down on a bench in front of the library. A girl was sitting next to me. She was wearing a black coat, blue jeans and reading a book. She put the book down on top of a few other books to answer a phone call. I looked at the book, it was titled 'Pill Head'. Interesting. I wanted to ask her about the book but didn't feel confident to speak to her. I was afraid of her response. Maybe she would feel awkward. Or didn't want anything to do with me. She was finished with her phone call and started to pack the books into her bag.

I remembered the quote from Walt Whitman I put on
my latest hoop video
Stranger, if you passing meet me and desire to speak to me, why should you not speak to me? And why should I not speak to you? 
I figured, I can't be a hypocrite - suggest to others to do something I won't. I decided to open up and in the process, become vulnerable, not knowing how she'll react. "What's that book about?" I asked. She looked at me. She had strong black eyeliner. Like, super strong. She explained what the book was about and we started talking about movies, we had similar taste. I recommended a book to her, and she was glad to hear about it. She was really sweet and our exchange was natural.
There's this whole big 'War on Terror' campaign going on. How about a 'Peaceful Program for Overcoming Paranoia', starting with talking to strangers, for example. So many times I've had the police or security called on me when I've parked somewhere with our house-mobile. How about coming over and asking what's up instead.

At least I can do this. A personal, peaceful program for connecting with others, giving (even if it's a little bit of good energy) and learning. In the Srimad-Bhagavatam there's a story of a sage who accepted so many gurus. Some of his teachers were examples to him of how
not to do things. You can learn something from anyone. It's ok to be vulnerable. There's this strength about it.

Nov 25, 2010

How to Take a Trip to Omwoods

Continuing the 30 Days posts on set topics.

Day 2 - Meaning behind your blog name 
I used to post on some forums with the name Lovewoods like then years ago. When I started to do more stuff online again I had forgotten the passwords to all my Lovewoods accounts, and this is how Omwoods came to be. And I figured it describes me a bit more accurately.

Omwoods is a place too! Eyes closed, say om real slow a few times, with Attention. Open your eyes. Look around. You're in Omwoods. When you start drifting away from Omwoods, go back. Get lost. Make magic discoveries.

Day 3 - Your first love 
Antti. I was 2, he was 7-ish. When me and my sisters were kids we would spend the day at a carekeeper's house like most Finnish kids do, and be picked up again after our parents got off work. Antti was the son of my nanny. I even named one of my top three precious baby toys Antti. He passed away when he was 15 or so, in a moped accident. I invited him to my 3-year birthday when I wore a fancy fluffy pink dress. I still have Antti, the doll.

Alright travelers, these pictures give you a beginning of a hint of what it looks like in Omwoods:

Happy omming!

Dear State Police

Beep, beep!
Beep, beep!

What I bought for breakfast,
the places where I’ve been,
the name of my mother,
it’s all there on your screen.

I’m a straight-edge spiritualist,
peaceful as can be, oh pray
tell why I was flagged so
you’ll detect me two miles away.

Well, little do you know:
I have learnt the science
and microwaved for precisely
five seconds my driver’s license.

You should harass me less,
this should have done the trick.
No beeps and zero privacy, but
one more melted microchip!

Nov 23, 2010

How to Destroy the RFID Chip in Your Driver's License

Me and my husband travel all year round. For some reason we used to get pulled over by the police surprisingly often. We thought it's because we have another state's register plate and our windows are tinted black - maybe we look suspicious to their paranoid sensitive eye.

A friend of ours got into legal trouble and since then used to get followed and pulled over by the cops constantly. The police can actually have a machine that detects signals from a flagged RFID (radio frequency identification) chip embedded in your driver's license. Our friend understood that they must have flagged his chip because of the legal issue. But once he grabbed a hammer and smacked the heck out of the chip, all police hassle on the road was gone. Almost miraculously.

So we figured out that for some reason or another, we too must have a flagged microchip signaling out wherever we drove or parked. Since we destroyed the chip, we've had ZERO trouble with getting pulled over for no reason. It's been over six months now. On average we got pulled over at least once a month.

I checked the Homeland Security website but didn't find info on which states have these "enhanced driver's licenses" as of yet.

Ok boys and girls, this is what you need to do to destroy the chip in an unnoticeable manner:

1. Put your driver's license in the microwave for 5 seconds. We did for 10 seconds.
2. Put it back into your wallet or wherever you keep it and smile knowing that your privacy just increased.

Nov 22, 2010

15 Interesting Facts About Me Me Me

I saw a list on Haley's blog about 30 things to talk about on 30 different days. It looked interesting and I decided to do it. Here is Day 1: 

Introduce, recent picture, 15 interesting facts

Hi! My name is Bhakti. I am a spirit soul, currently residing within the heart of this 26-year-old body :D I meditate every morning - I chant the Hare Krishna mantra, it goes like this:

Hare Krishna Hare Krishna
Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama
Rama Rama Hare Hare

See Fact #9

15 interesting facts:
1. The name my parents gave me is Anni Marjatta. 
2. My middle name Marjatta literally translates to Berryless. No berries for me.
3. I love blueberries. The real ones, that grow wild in Finnish forests and actually stain your fingers and teeth with purple. Not the big puffy ones that are grown in America. Although I love those too. ORGANIC.
4. I believe there is life on every planet, and between the planets.
5. I'm afraid of animals period.
6. I've been to India three times and I want to go again.
7. I used to have thick crazy dreadlocks. One sunny day I took a friend and a pair of scissors to a park, introduced the two to each other and became really, really short haired.
8. I haven't lived in a house for years now. I live in a Ford cargo van that was converted to run on waste vegetable oil instead of diesel. Ecological and well yes, cramped. (edit: used to...)
9. During my period I put a special background picture on my desktop that's all pink and says: "It's Raining Cupcakes". It makes me feel sane.
10. I make websites,
11. I'm a pretty good skateboarder as long as I don't need to impress anyone with multiple tricks.
12. I write down everything I eat. (edit: used to...)
13. The longest I have driven was 17 hours. No caffeine, just iPod and me. I knew Madonna was good for something :D
14. When I was a kid I used to sneak into an old people's nursing home in my town and steal borrow ice cream from the freezer in their cafe.
15. Almost every morning for the past 8 years I've taken a cold shower.

I would gone more wild with my facts but realize my mom reads my blog so this is it folks. Sorry mom for helping myself to the ice cream cones in the nursing home next-door to our house. Please don't tell them :)

Me at Wal-mart parking lot where I woke up and spent this morning:

Nov 17, 2010

Unexpected Turn While Hooping

I made a little video of what happened just the other day. I've been busy with getting us all the way down from Boston, Massachusetts, to North Carolina. I have to go to a US Citizenship & Immigration Services office in Charlotte for giving them my fingerprints (yet again) and for taking a picture of my face (yet again), for extending my greencard for 10 years. Yeah it looks like I'm not going anywhere :)

Ok friends, enjoy the video - it was a lovely hoopy day! The song is "What You Mean" by Wookiefoot.

Nov 4, 2010

Our Angelic (?) Fairy Music Recording

These are the elf ladies I was singing with the other night in Finland by the fireplace. Meet Mani:

and Kaisu:

I sang Baker Baker by Tori Amos, Mani and Kaisu did the hummings and beautifullings to it. I almost remembered how to play it with the piano, and somewhat remembered the lyrics too although I might have re-organized them a bit.

Here's a little recording of it for you all with Kaisu's art, and pics of her that my other sister Minna took.  All with a wintery feeling - yep I'm feeling the winter coming, we're up in Maine and it's freezing. Wait, we're in New Hampshire. Anyway, one of those places :)


Nov 1, 2010

Our van-home's engine broke

...but will be fixed some time this week. The problem is that I'm flying to New York in two hours and arriving there this evening. Philip called me some days ago and told me that he's stranded in New Hampshire with the broken van, or Balarama as we call it :) That's 8 hours from NYC. So, I started looking for a place to stay in NY with a two day's notice until Philip can come and pick me up. I went on and met this awesome artist, yogi and now friend, Ferenz, who offered me a place.

It turns out that Philip will come to JFK with a rented little car and pick me up. I guess he's missed me too much :D Now can you believe this special soul Ferenz - he's in Woodstock making music and such but suggested we go stay at his place anyway, so we don't have to sleep in that little car until we get back to New Hampshire for our van on Tuesday night. This whole thing makes me feel Very Grateful.

Oops, have to go to the airport now. Have a great week everyone! Much love.

Philip changing a filter on Balarama. It runs on waste vegetable oil :)