Bodhisattva Vow

I’ve listened to the Beastie Boys for a long time. They definitely defined the music for that generation. On spotify I was scrolling through some Beastie Boys songs and I stumpled upon a song I had listened to before but had not paid attention to the name of the song. The song was called Bodhisattva Vow. The reason it caught my attention is that I’m studying Yoga and have been for the last year. I say studying because for me it is much more than just postures and physical practice. It’s really about being able to control your energy. More on that later. But back to that song. The name of the song doesn’t have the same kind of punk aspect to it as most of the songs have. It’s obviously related to India and possibly buddishm. So I found the lyrics and they are quite interesting. Also reading more about the guys in the band I found out that the two Adams were studying Buddism. And the text shows a different aspect of their thoughts and messages in their songs. I actually don’t listen that much to lyrics in songs, but I think this is not something that could have been heard clearly in that song in particular.

As I develop the awakening mind
I praise the Buddhas as they shine
I bow before you as I travel my path
To join your ranks, I make my full-time task
For the sake of all beings I seek
The enlightened mind that I know I’ll reap
Respect to Shantideva and all the others
Who brought down the Dharma for the sisters and brothers
I give thanks for this world as a place to learn
And for this human body that I know I’ve earned
And my deepest thanks to all sentient beings
For without them, there would be no place to learn what I’m seeing
There’s nothing here that’s not been said before
But I put it down now so that I’ll be sure
To solidify my own views
And I’ll be glad if it helps anyone else out too

If others disrespect me or give me flak
I’ll stop and think before I react
Knowing that they’re going through insecure stages
I’ll take the opportunity to exercise patience
I’ll see it as a chance to help the other person
Nip it in the bud before it can worsen
A chance for me to be strong and sure
As I think on the Buddhas who have come before
As I praise and respect the good they’ve done
Knowing love can conquer hate in every situation
We need other people in order to create
The circumstances for the learning that we’re here to generate
Situations that bring up our deepest fears
So we can work to release them until they’re cleared
Therefore, it only makes sense
To thank our enemies despite their intent

The Bodhisattva path is one of power and strength
A strength from within to go the length
Seeing others are as important as myself
I strive for a happiness of mental wealth
With the interconnectedness that we share as one
Every action that we take affects everyone
So in deciding for what a situation calls
There is a path for the good for all
I try to make my every action for that highest good
With the altruistic wish to achieve Buddhahood
So I pledge here before everyone who’s listening
To try to make my every action for the good of all beings
For the rest of my lifetimes and even beyond
I vow to do my best, to do no harm
And in times of doubt, I can think on the Dharma
And the Enlightened Ones who’ve graduated Samsara

Songwriters: Adam Horovitz / Adam Nathaniel Yauch / Mario Caldato Jr. / Michael Louis Diamond

The russian cosmonaut

So, I haven’t seen this movie. But someone used this in a song, or really as an intro for his CD. And for some reason it got added to a playlist I listen to a work. And the message is really interesting. Because it’s really about focus and being able to remove what is distracting you. Fall in love with the distraction. Normally you would constantly think about the distraction, which really just adds on to the negative energy of the distraction. So the message here is really to do the opposite in the situation.

Why Star Trek is interesting to me

I remember watching Star Trek the Next Generation both on TV and on VHS. At the time (80’s) it was the kind of TV I liked to watch. It was a combination of science fiction and some reality I didn’t know what to call. The science fiction part was of cource interesting to me. I liked everything about physics and was all about thinking about how they would do that or the other thing with this kind of technology. And their technology was interesting. It definitely inspired humans in creating what they have created.

But there was something more to Star Trek than just technology. Star Trek is a story. A story about humans and non-humans (aliens?), working together on solving problems. And its the working together part that stands out. There are challenges, some of which are still present in our society today. But they are dealt with. And with respect.

I saw the other day that Obama is a Star trek fan. He mentioned that for him, the show is about values and human relationships. I think if I were to describe Star trek with one word, it would be respect. Respecting other cultures, respecting people around you, respecting nature.

Being addicted to information

Information is all around us and in various forms. The information is fed to us. It’s a business. People other than us are making money because we are taking this information in.

I enjoy all kinds of information. Collecting various data, working with it and knowing that it is there and available. And being able later to do something more with it. And it’s probably some kind of an OCD. Definitely. I realized after having set up a sensor network at home that I really didn’t need the sensor network. But I wanted to do it anyway. I wanted to build it and collect the information.

Information can make us feel connected and more confident in some areas. We might learn something. We might feel more connected to someone. It might make us feel more secure. Does that mean we are insecure without that information? Does it mean there is an underlying problem that a person might need to deal with?

Could the fact that we are being fed information make things worse?

I think it might be interesting to go on an information diet.

A good way to choose new passwords

So, everyone should change their passwords regularly. But sometimes, systems like Exchange require you to choose a new password every 30 days or so. And the password needs to be different from the last few passwords. So, it’s always a bit hard to find a good new password. Unless of course you have a system. For example, one of my former co-workers just appended more and more digits of Pi. That worked for him.

So, it’s not a problem to find some random characters and digits and put together a password. But how about using a word or sentence that is meaningful at a particular time. This guy did exactly that. And the results were motivational passwords. And it worked.

The rule of three

I’ve had a bit of a hard time focusing this week. Too many things to do. Post-it notes piling up. Which is fine, I’ll take a look at them later. But when you have so much to do, it can be a bit hard to prioritize and find actual time to do everything you need to do.

I try to focus on as few items at a time. And recently I came a across a nice article which is about focusing on the Rule of Three. It basically is about focusing on working on or improving only three things at one time. There are different timeframe where this can apply. For example, a day, a week, etc.

For me, having only three things on my todo list each day would be pretty nice. It would be hard to create these priorities. But I think that that is an important part of this. Making the choice that you will not be doing something else, but focusing just on those three things. And the outcome will be a job better done.

Building things

I’ve spent a few Saturday nights watching videos from this guy Matthias Wandel on Youtube. What is interesting about this guy is that he seems to be able to build basically anything from wood. And I guess he’s a perfectionist. I think he’s a great motivation to people that like to build things because he demonstrates that often you don’t need expensive equipment, you only need to have a good plan.

I recently almost bought a band saw in the hardware store just because I had been watching some videos from him. And I figured everyone should own a bandsaw, the possibilities are endless. But I didn’t buy it. I guess it would be better to know what to build first.