Enter a casino for the first time and you are assaulted by the myriad jingle-jangle ringing of the slot machines.
Rows upon rows of bright lights and three-note chords echo through your mind's eye and ears, and take you for a psychedelic dollar-by-dollar ride into the blank daze that is gambling.
You've heard of slot machines being called the "one-arm bandits" haven't you? Well, I don't know if it's true of other modern casinos, but the slot machines *I* saw were mostly computerized. No levers to pull but plenty of buttons to push.
Pavlov himself would salivate at the very embodiment of his well-known behavioral theory, even if the embodiment of that theory consisted of retirees spending their potentially limited income and gambling themselves into an almost slavish trance.
There were even drink carts being pushed around by casino staff, enabling gamblers to just sit there and push buttons endlessly, as though their life depended on it. (And that's really no joke, considering the cost of health care these days, and continual slashing of Medicare. It's no wonder that older folks flock to casinos in hopes of high payouts---they might be on heart or blood pressure meds that cost a fortune.)
I would be a hypocrite to say, however, that I did not join in the trance for a while, because I did. There was one machine in particular that seemed to "work" the best, given this was my first time gambling. I had managed to get up to a certain amount of machine credit where, if I had pressed the 'cash-out' button, I would have gotten approximately $15 dollars, give or take a few quarters. But I pressed on, thinking that I would win bigger and bigger...which is precisely the trap that gambling lays for the partaker.
I am not saying that gambling itself is a crime, or a sin, or some such nonsense. We must all take risks in life sooner or later. Life itself is a gamble, and the stakes, evolution-wise, are *very* high indeed.
I can say, however, that I just don't think I'm the sort to want to constantly sit there and put in money, because the payouts are always in favor of 'the house,' as any seasoned risk-taker knows.
And frankly, it was almost hellish to watch all these people just go from machine to machine, sitting there hour after hour...I felt like I was right smack in the middle of the 'Devil' Tarot card--but instead of the image of a man and a woman being chained to the devil's chair, an image of a man and a woman chained to slot machines appeared.
I don't necessarily believe that there is an actual physical "devil." I do think that the 'Temperance' card is in the Tarot pack for a reason. And if there is any place that needs a big reminder of temperance, it's a casino.
I can only imagine when they officially start serving alcohol on the gambling floor, because the casino buffet itself is a paean to Jupiterian excess!
So, yeah, that was how I spent most of my 4th of July holiday...and when we got home, Q and I didn't even want to go see the fireworks...we'd already been out of the house for 6 hours and we were mentally wiped out.
And mind you, Q and I are Sensitives--we kinda felt the stress and the chaos a bit more than most people. For us, if we do this kind of thing again, it's going to be a special occasion occurrence.
I will say that I would much rather give my hard-earned moolah to the Native American tribe that runs the casino we went to, than tossing the money at places like Wally-world.
It'll be interesting to see what we end up doing next year....
Wow! 490-something days since my last blog entry? Sheesh! I've got gobs of blogs...just like I've got gobs of regular paper journals...I think I'm addicted! Which tells me I had better jump on my writerly tendencies...I've got a lot to say and so I guess here's where I will really say it.
I've got a lot of goals for myself...not the least of which are:
1)Get a hybrid car. 2) Get a guitar 3) Study poetry so I can learn to write song lyrics. 4) Get a place for me and Q to just be ourselves and create our ways of doing stuff without a lot of BS from our respective families.
There are dreams I have that may never fully come true...like meeting certain famous people who continually inspire me. But I suppose I'll meet 'em in heaven--maybe. Of course by then, they will have shed their Earthly selves and will have become part of the Pure Energy...and if that Pure Energy is even remotely akin to the joy I feel right now at hearing these folks' inspired words and music, then perhaps it will not matter that I never got to know them while here on Earth...
...besides...two of them have made me their MySpace friends--and I guess that's as close as I can get to knowing them in person.
Yet, there's something to be said for being able to speak with such people in person and telling them to their face that they're some of the coolest, most wonderful people on the planet, just because they've created such wonderful works and have therefore inspired a lot of people.
But how can you put into words such strong, ineffable feelings? Even saying things like "I love what you've done for the planet, and so on.." seems a bit superficial, when what you feel in your heart goes much, much deeper than that. I guess that's where music comes in...because music tends to be able to convey things that words alone cannot.
So, I guess it could be said that music is a bridge to the ineffable...the mysterious...the mystical...because you can know something in words...but music helps you KNOW things in your HEART...and the Heart does not need words.
Hi everyone! I know...it's been ages since I last posted, but then it's been ages since I've been able to purchase anything related to, or written by, Jon Anderson.
My last purchase was "Olias of Sunhillow," which I listen to at LEAST three times weekly if not more.
But I just bought his 1995 album "Angels Embrace." If there is ever a soothing Jon Anderson CD with which to travel to the Dreamtime, it's this one. Light just one or two candles, put this CD on repeat and allow yourself to juuuust relaaaax...the entire CD expresses the soft, angelic, space-mystic undercurrent in Jon's soul that I keep perceiving even above the uproarious music he's created. It's this undercurrent that shows up especially when he's collaborating with Vangelis..."So Long Ago, So Clear" is STILL my favorite Jon-&-Vangelis song.
My favorite tracks on 'Angels Embrace' are: "Angels Embrace"(title track), "Prayersong" (the lyrics are sweet), and "Midnight Cello." The album is primarily instrumental, which is cool, and it shows off Jon's skills in composing melodies and shifting chords.
To sum up:
"Olias" is soothing and trippy enough to take you to Dreamtime, but "Angels Embrace" takes the soothing atmosphere one step further. It works in the daytime as a background for massage or Reiki therapy, and at night, for calming down a child, or your own world-weary soul. Jon kinda has that effect on me, anyway.
Now if I can just get a DVD of a YES concert---but next CD I get will probably be "In Elven Lands: The Fellowship." Jon's got some contributions on there that are slightly reminiscent of "Olias," simply because "Olias" was slightly inspired (some say) by "Lord of the Rings." Wouldn't surprise me, since Jon IS British...
Somethin' else I found out about Jon--he's from Lancaster (Abbrev. "Lancashire"?), up within a 100 mile radius of the Scot-English border...so in some songs he sings he has a teensy-weensy bit of a brogue...delicious to listen to for this girl-with-a-Divinely-Scottish-Mother!!
Anyway...must sign off for now!
Brightest Dreamtime Blessings, Kat, the Eternal YES-head ^.^
Well, I just received a copy of Jon's 1976 solo album called "Olias of Sunhillow." If you've never heard this before, but have gotten your own copy, you are soooo in for a treat! This is music to get lost in and not regret getting lost! Dreamtime music of the highest caliber, one reviewer at Amazon.com had the LP of "Olias" and had put it on continuous play. I totally understand why she did...
This is almost akin to Andreas Vollenweider's concept albums that Andreas is known for...dreamy, otherworldly, yet it is ALL by Jon...harps, keyboards, vocals, etc and of course Jon's trademark Dreamtime lyrics. It makes one wonder--and even believe--that Jon is a conduit for all the majestic, Otherworldly music that flies around in the Ethers, waiting for musicians to write it down on Earth and perform it for all to hear the wonders of the Universe and all its myriad dimensions...what makes this thought more possible is that Jon himself had said that he locked himself in his garage for 6 months and nearly went mad while composing this...considering the beautiful, heavenly vibrations of "Olias," and knowing somewhat about ecstatic states of mind, I can totally see why he'd've gotten close to something at least akin to what most people call 'insanity.' Heck...I consider myself Pagan, and I still listen to Jon's Christmas album...why? It's all about the vibes...
So it is with Olias...as with the other Jon Anderson music I have in my library, this one is SOOOO a keeper!
People wonder why LPs were called records...and recordings...I believe it is because we are truly recording the sounds of the Otherworld...capturing the Light of Sound Creation, the colors of All-That-Is...even in the more technological world of CDs and Internet downloads, we are all sharing each other's sounds...light...waves...so I believe it is the Divine Joy and Task of all musicians to do what they do...and it is clear, just by listening to "Olias of Sunhillow," Jon has definitely accepted his calling...gratefully and joyfully...and therefore I and others have gratefully received his musical gifts to all the world...all the Earth...
Easiest way to share with you my own experiences is to blog it here...
My very first intro to Jon Anderson's music was when Pop brought home the holiday album "3 Ships," the title track of which was so very entrancing and stirring to my eight-year-old soul. Needless to say, I was hooked!
I was very content with this until I was in junior high, listening to Vangelis' "Heaven and Hell" album, which includes the very beautiful song, "So Long Ago, So Clear;" then I knew I had to find a way to find more music by Jon. Not knowing he had been with a band, I did not encounter more of his stuff till 2002, when, during a one-year sojourn in a New Age chatroom, I encountered others who knew of Jon's work with YES as well as other solo/collaboration efforts. Two people mailed me CD-RWs of various albums from Jon/Vangelis, Jon/Kitaro and of course, his work with YES, and upon my honor, I have yet to encounter another prog-rock and/or New Age musician with the style, intensity and musical caliber that Jon's got, save for Vangelis and Kitaro, two other Dreamtime-Musician favorites of mine who I've mentioned above.
Granted, I do not have all of Anderson's work, but if I gotta comb through every nook and cranny of Amazon.com or Barnes and Noble I will find it. For this very reason have I created this group--not just to chat in general, but as a resource for anything related to the magnificent Cosmic Musician Jon Anderson...
Top Ten Movies...this should give you a clearer focus on who you're talkin' with. It makes sense to me that a person's favorite movies and TV programs helps project a true witness to their soul's passions and dreams.
BB, Kat ^.^
1. Superman (and its sequels)...a long time number one favorite...27 years on my personal charts...never has once moved. (Casey Kasem would be impressed)
2. The Matrix trilogy
3. Lord of the Rings Trilogy
4. The Harry Potter series (Can't wait to see Goblet of Fire!)
5. Star Wars Sextet--I like all six movies...Prequels and main trilogy alike, George Lucas is a cinematic genius!
6. The Lion King--Mufasa, Rafiki, Timon, Simba...I love it all!!!! And the message is spot-on, too!
7. Ghostbusters duo--consider the fact that I LOVE watching 'Ghost Hunters' on Sci-Fi channel
8. Home Alone--my perennial Christmas favorite.
9. Hello Dolly--stars three of my favorite stage n screen people, and it's thanks to those three that this movie has become one of my favorites
10. Annie (1982 version with Aileen Quinn)...this movie version of the musical keeps to the message that no matter how tough times can get, things can only get better.
Here are my top ten website favorites...Naturally, they are subject to change, but here is a current list...
BB, Kat ^.^
1. www.fiosfeasa.com...a great place to learn Irish Gaelic (they have a great sound library!)
2. www.mooncatsastrology.com...my favorite place for moon phases and placements in the signs...
3. www.christopherreeve.org...THE place to sign up for spinal cord research alerts! Keep Chris Reeve in your memory by doing this..
4. www.gamehouse.com...a fab place for online gaming!!!
5. www.bardwood.com...a beautiful site for those who follow the Elven/Druidic/Fae path of nature...
6. www.aboutmylife.net...a great place to blog!
7. www.dreamjournal.org...a fantastic dream journal site! Build your own dream symbol dictionary in order to track your dreaming patterns!
8. http://gaelicdreams.com...a place for those of Scottish descent to find their clan tartans, badges etc!!
9. http://www.geocities.com/RainForest/4076/index.html---a GREAT place to find out about animal wisdom!
10. www.thevesselofgod.com...a neato site regarding Holy Grail research (those who loved 'The DaVinci Code', go here!!!!)
Thanks to Bill C. for your comment on my rant entry...the only dietitian I know to speak with is the one that's been working with my mom on her diabetes. And that costs moolah that my folks don't have. But knowing I can go ahead and eat eggs...at least for a lil while, makes me feel a bit better.
Now, back to doing things like signing petitions and being active that way.
I don't know about you all, but this bird flu thing has me extremely annoyed, let alone scared. For one thing, it's taken all the joy out of eating eggs, especially as I am hypothyroid and a vegetarian, and as I can't have much soy, I like to get my protein other than via eating fish, though making a complete switch from eggs to fish is SOOOO not a problem for me, as I ADORE ocean perch and white bass. Fine and good right? Not really. My dad is effing stubborn about anything that smacks of what seems like a fad to him. Health food=beef, pork and other fatty foods that he thinks is healthy. He thinks I'm nuts for being vegetarian, suffice it to say even though he goes ahead and buys me fish. Not only that, he thinks he has to martyr himself by putting too many events in his calendar. He already is under enough emotional stress dealing with past issues about his parents. So to try to convince my dad he needs to make changes in his life that will keep him alive---not just by surviving this bird flu thing but possibly surviving a heart attack or stroke is going to be near impossible. If there is one thing I fear about death, it's losing the ones I love before they're ready to go...and possibly leaving the planet myself before it's my time. I still have a life to live, dang it! Why must I jeopardize my health just because a member of my family refuses to make room in the budget for extra fruits n veggies? I guess it's clear I need to take my life in my own paws. At least I have people in my life that can help me with certain things like obtaining herbs n such. Sounds selfish, doesn't it? Maybe, but I have a vested interest in staying alive. If I didn't still feel needed here on earth, I'd allow myself to abscond from this violent planet via an illness. But I am needed...wanted by many people. I would even go so far as to say the Spirit Realm needs me to be here, to help the Earth transition. (those who follow such philosophies know what I am talkin about,) If any of you receive NewsTarget Insider from Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, good on ya...if not, find a way to get it in your email, because this guy is here to help, I feel.
Who's up for getting a petition started to incite Congress to put forth the money to get a vaccine made and stockpiled? They're draggin' their clay feet...if I was a cat, I'd dig up their clay feet and bury my biz under it...that's what I think of their lazyness... Gotta get some sleep... The Sort of Anxious Kitty..
I have always been a
strong proponent of a
future united, federal
Europe - a single
European country, as a
more progressive, liberal
counterpoint towards the
current U.S. hegemony and
towards the upcoming
powers of China, India
and Russia. And I feel...
The sun in the North is a
temporary guestWho brings
with him much warmth and
light when he comesFor a
few precious months every
year he keepsUs company
through night and day He
makes the trees green, he
makes flowers bloomHe
makes the birds sing, and