The rantings of a beautiful mind

On life, society, and computer technology.

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Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

I live in the Fortress of Solitude. I drive the Silver Beast. My obsession is justice. I used to be a Windows software developer. I retired in 2000 when my stock options helped me achieve financial security.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Eros and Art

There is a wonderful Balinese saying that goes something like, “We do not have art – we do everything as beautifully as we can.” When we build ugly cities where beauty is abused and people are depersonalized and then build a beautiful art museum, the Shechina is in exile. We exile the eros of beauty to the constricted precincts of formal art. The same is true of music. Music is not limited to symphonies or rock concerts. We are all musicians, and life is overflowing with music. Are you familiar with the off-Broadway show Stomp? There is no dialogue: it is all music and dance. The catch is that no musical instruments are used. The “instruments” are adapted from the fabric of everyday living: pots, pans, brooms, sinks, faucets, garbage can lids, bottles, bags, newspapers, hands, feet, virtually every part of the body – all of these are used to make music. The implication is stunning: We usually limit art to formal work by people we call artists, just as we limit music to formal instruments and musicians. Formal music and art need to model the erotics of sound and beauty in all aspects of our lives and not just in their narrow provinces. Music and art need to pervade all of life. Every moment is a canvas and possesses its own melody.

Just as it is nonerotic for art to exist only in a museum, so too it is nonerotic for love to exist only in a small circle of caring. When we fall in love with one woman or one man to the exclusion of all other people, Shechina is in exile. When you are truly erotically engaged then through the love of one comes the love of all. For true love partakes in the essential connectivity of being. Unity is not divisible; it is holographic; in every moment of love are the lovers and all the love in the world.

- The Mystery of Love


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