My Monday wash

Moving right along ... The attributes of this site are slowing consolidating: blog, podcast, web radio. You gotta touch all the cross media bases nowadays. Ask Kerry Packer or Rupert Murdoch -- cross media colleagues of mine. And beside it’s a lot of fun -- productive fun. Once I generate a modus operandi I’ll be able to engineer some scheduling.

Other attribute news:

  • I signed on with Skype primarily as a means to record interviews. The audio quality Skype to Skype is very good, but when you employ the Skype-Out option to ring standard handsets and mobile phones -- the results are very uneven, and the audio quality is poor. But Skype with its free calls and chat suits me.
  • Today’s podcast-- A one notion nation -- has already got around and has been taken up by Upstart Radio in the USA. I hear from Shawn Lennon that I get the final word in Upstart’s weekly Mindwalk show.
  • After this last effort I will be fast tracking production of the short play I wrote for radio -- Girt By Sea. If my audio skills can stand the pressure I hope to have it up to broadcast mode by Refugee Week (October 24-30th).
  • I’m also keen on feedback, folks --and suggestions. So if you have sometimes a great notion, please share it. This is especially true for Ratbag Radio which broadcast twice this last week. It’s building momentum and I’m working at developing a program format. Unlike podcasting and Mp3 downloads, "live" webstreaming radio has an immediacy which makes it very easy to create. However, there are 24 hours in each day, seven times per week and I have no ambition to fill all of that ‘space’ with my blather. But I am considering doing a and broadcasting spontaneous chat as a daily op. I’d do it primarily to build my audio skills and confidence -- whether you listen or not is neither here nor there.

[I’ll address last weekend’s Bali bombings in tomorrow’s post.] Unlike the recalled and best forgotten Redgum song. I have not been to Bali...too, but I am a keen aficionado of gamelan music and have experimented with wayang golek puppetry (a West Javanese form).

Balinese gamelan is different from the court styles you will find on Java. The bombing has drawn me back to my previous gamelan experiments and I’ll feature my home made gamelan -- Gamelan Billabongalong -- at least as a sound effect in some of my future broadcasts. With multi tracking audio I get to play all the instruments -- a one man band --and you’d think little ‘ol me was an ensemble. My initial ambition was to form a gamelan/bodhran community orchestra. Bodhrans are Irish frame drums that are played with a short single stick or tipper. That was my ambition ... but you know how it is..

Today’s my birthday too. I know that because October 3rd is also St Teresa’s feast day --aka "the little flower"/ St Teresa of the Child Jesus/Saint Thérèse of Lisieux. Come October 3 next year, you won't forget, will you -- as you did this year? I'd much rather you sent a cheque than offer up prayers (to me preferably, rather than her. She's humble/chaste/mendicant ... I'm not)

Unlike me, Teresa’s got her own movie deal .

But then, I'm no saint. But hey, I'm laughing ... she's dead and I'm not.


The mention of gamelan reminds me that the genesis of the philosophy of gemelan music relies on a strong thread of Sufism -- a form of Islamic mysticism . The Sufis love their music and if you have ever been exposed to classical Persian music you'll get well and truly Suff'd. I love the stuff. If I wasn't a dedicated dialectical materialist, I'd make a great Dervish --at least, for the aerobic exercise it would avail me of.

However, the mention of mysticism and "St Teresa" prompts me to refer to her namesake St Tersa of Avila -- a mediveal catholic mystic who got off on prayer:

... unio mystica, which for centuries was the ultimate goal of countless mystics. In the past, the proclamation of this joyful union with the godhead has had untoward consequences. During the middle ages proclaiming their insights of this experience cost some mystics their lives.
In the 10th century, the muslim mystic, al-Hallaj was put to death because he insisted that he and God were one. German theologian, Meister Eckhart, in 1329 was condemned as a heretic for the same reason. And yet in the following century, St. Catherine of Genoa, was left alone and later declared a saint despite her same insistence.

The 'unio mystica" state has long had sexual connotations. Being one with God was likened to sexual union with one's beloved. This was not the result of the mystic believing the union was sexual or seeing sexuality where it did not exist, but instead, it was the way the mystic herself described the experience. Here is how one of the great Christian mystics, St. Teresa of Avila (b. 1515) described the unio mystica in her spiritual memoirs, and how the sculptor, Bernini, between 1647-1652, executed Teresa's description of her mystical union with God.

"Beside me on the left appeared an angel in bodily form . . . He was not tall but short, and very beautiful; and his face was so aflame that he appeared to be one of the highest ranks of angels, who seem to be all on fire . . . In his hands I saw a great golden spear, and at the iron tip there appeared to be a point of fire. This he plunged into my heart several times so that it penetrated my entrails. When he pulled it out I felt that he took them with it, and left me utterly consumed by the great love of God."

"The pain was so severe that it made me utter several moans. The sweetness caused by this intense pain is so extreme that one can not possibly wish it to cease, nor is one's soul content with anything but God. This is not a physical but a spiritual pain, though the body has some share in it -- even a considerable share." SOURCE

Anyway, tomorrow I'll rejoin the real world., and mess it with the rest of us sinners.-- my kind of people.