Monthly Archives: July 2011

Space Shuttles, Curiousity, and the Human Spirit.

STS-135 Atlantis Launch

A Toast to the Shuttle Program, to the men and women who flew to humankind’s farthest reaches, to the men and women who gave up their lives pushing the boundaries of human experience.

 

A Vote for more space exploration! The human spirit is fed by exploration of the unknown, and a deeper delving into the mysteries of creation. Space is the next horizon for us – the place we can see, but can’t explore yet. A place where imagination, perseverance, sacrifice, will open new understandings of the universe and ourselves – if we dare to look.

 

The biggest objections tend to be around budget: how can we spend money on that when our schools are in disarray and poverty is rampant and, and, and… If we were to stop spending money on space today, none of those problems would be fixed. People try every trick in the book to pay as little tax as possible, then complain about the lack of services. People don’t vote – or don’t educate themselves about candidates before they vote – and then complain about how money is being spent. Giving up space exploration means giving up a part of the human spirit, but it also means giving up a direct means for technological innovation. All sorts of technology has come from space: Cordless power tools came from the Apollo Program , the winglets on the wingtips of airplanes , suits for firefighters , and many more .

 

I have been watching the shuttles my entire life; I watched the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster from my living room in San Jose when I was six; I spent hours with NASA TV’s shuttle mission coverage streaming in a corner of my computer screen; I watched the Space Shuttle Atlantis land earlier today and I was surprised at how sad I felt.

 

Fortunately the private sector is off and running. Virgin Galactic spawned from Burt Rutan and Scaled Composite’s brilliance continues to move forward . There are a wealth of new conventional craft as well.

 

I still dream of looking out of a window onto the earth floating below…

My journey as a provider

At a Men’s Breakfast recently we discussed the role of the Provider. The most important part for me revolved around the realization that when I take on this role too strongly – trying to eliminate any worry, hurt, fear, from another persons life – I have a tendency of becoming lost from myself: I lose track of what I care about, what I need, what is going on in my life. To live as if the sacrifice of so much of myself is necessary for someone else is condescending towards that person, encouraging of unhealthy dependence, and can harm myself to the point I’m no longer able to even be of any support. For everyone, love and support are important, but no one needs my constant intervention; by so over giving myself I am behaving as if they are lost without me; by losing myself I lose the power and safety of my support, and my ability to sustain it.

EagleOne of the members of the group likened it to not seeing the forest for the trees. If I look at a single tree it seems fragile: a heavy wind blows and it sways and bends and I fear it might topple. I forget that the tree is part of a forest where each tree provides a wind break for its neighbors; each is a part of a vast system, and even if one falls the forest remains.

The man shared a helpful image with me. The picture of a bald eagle: strong in flight, leaping from its perch on a tree and soaring to great heights, looking down and see the forest stretching on and on. A person is more than the hurt they are sharing; each thought and feeling is a tree in a vast forest.

Why ads?

Why is there that big ugly banner on the right?

The essential reason for putting an ad on this blog was I wanted to see how they worked, how they paid out: to gain insight into why they are everywhere on the web. How does it change a blog to have advertisements and are people really making so much money having them there?

obnoxious advertisement

The “Stanford Guidelines for Web Credibility” http://credibility.stanford.edu/guidelines/index.html says “If possible, avoid having ads on your site.” What is your reaction to seeing ads on a site, and do you notice if they aren’t there? I tend towards elitism, elegant design, a large banner ad detracts from the appearance of both – I definitely notice ads.

And yet, I persist. This blog will have a big Google driven ad for atleast the next while. After a few months I will post again about the fiscal success of this project (expectations are low), and the emotional/aesthetic costs (the novelty protects me now). I thank you for your forbearance and wish you happy clicking!

Liminal Drift Begins

Welcome to Liminal Drift

This Blog will follow a theme of social change through exposition, art, and of course opinions!  Below is included the thesis and inspiration for this page.

lim·i·nal/ˈlimənl/Adjective

  1. Of or relating to a transitional or initial stage of a process.
  2. Occupying a position at, or on both sides of, a boundary or threshold

 

drift/drift/

Verb: Be carried slowly by a current of air or water.

Noun: A continuous slow movement from one place to another.

 

 

Liminal Drift is a way to describe how the point in time when social change occurs can be moved. Through the sharing of thoughts, art, and personal experience, we affect on those around us. This effect is greatest when there is a diversity of opinion, beliefs, expressions, experience: of which our ability to share, both with those around us, and people around the world, is greater now than it has ever been.

Our greatest strength, our hardest challenge – diversity is the root of much of the change in our society. We find in it a huge potential for learning, excitement, creativity. In every art form we see inspiration coming from different cultures mixing; on every street we see people of those different cultures interacting. Unfortunately not all of the interaction is positive; intolerance continues to be a plague on our society. We also will tend to find comfort with the familiar. This is a good and necessary part of being human, however we often tend to let it invade all parts of our lives: instead of familiar things feeling good, unfamiliar things begin to feel bad. This has the force to homogenize the look and feel of the world around us. Unique expression has given way to a predictable facade that is comfortable, unemotional, implicitly easy. The sometimes uncomfortable openness to differences, emotion, beliefs – let us experience the world in a way where we may effect change and be changed

Maturity through discomfort, growth through hard work, faith through doubt, peace through acceptance, stability through diversity, new ideas through sharing – these are the essence of Liminal Drift.

Let yourself be provoked…

Currently Reading:

The Confusion by Neal Stephenson