Trigger of Light

In Los Angeles, browsing Chinatown one summer, I discovered — in a dim sandalwood-scented shop full of painted vases and antique scrolls — a book by D. T. Suzuki: Zen and Japanese Culture. It was a substantial hardback, printed on milky paper with a hefty scattering of illustrations: insects on withered leafs, brush-painted tigers, peach blossoms in snow, monkeys peering from bamboo, cloud-hidden huts of meditation masters. In the shop, a few joss sticks burned in a ray of light. A cat napped under a red and gold altar with antique photos over it. Tangerines glowed in their porcelain bowl on a carved mahogany table. The world seemed suddenly very old — and very new. In awe of the book’s content and illustrations, I purchased it (probably the most I’d ever spent on the printed word) and eagerly devoured every page.

Trigger of Light | Kyoto Journal

Article by John Brandi in Kyoto Journal.

Also this:

Among the grasses
an unknown flower
blooming white

—Masaoka Shiki (1869—1902)

Temples of Books

‘Temples of Books’ Is an Ode to the Grandeur and Democratic Ideals of Public Libraries


Lots of lovely images of libraries. I can almost smell the books!! Click on the link or on the image below…

Thinking in Centuries

In his new book, The Long View: Why We Need To Transform How the World Sees Time, BBC journalist Richard Fisher explains how this short-term mindset has come to dominate Western society, why that could spell disaster for our future, and explores historic and real world examples of those who are taking a long-term view.

From the architects who began work on England’s Wells Cathedral in 1175 knowing that construction wouldn’t be complete until well after their deaths, to an experiment at an Australian laboratory still ongoing a century after it began, and the Indigenous tribes whose ways of life are centered on intergenerational links, Fisher argues what makes humans unique is our ability to learn from the past and envision the future.

We Can Start Thinking in Centuries


In the book Hopeland a character declares “orthopraxy not orthodoxy” and, later, “doing not believing”.

Orthodox is the combination of two Greek words. Ortho means correct or upright. Dox means belief or opinion. The correct belief. Orthopraxy combines ortho with the word praxy, which means action, doing, or practice. The right deed, the right practice. 

There is much orthodoxy on this planet and not enough orthopraxy. 

I will not become a good guitar player by believing that I am good, but through practice. I would go so far as to say it doesn’t really matter what I believe because it is only what I do that matters. Nobody should care what I believe. My actions (or practice), on the other hand, matter. Believing is easy, doing is hard, which is why we would rather believe than do. 

I think this applies to everything in life.


It draws on so many threads – music and art, climate justice, mysticism, electrical engineering, economics, gender politics – and has such a huge cast of finely drawn characters. By all rights, it should collapse under its own weight. I mean, seriously – who can write multi-page passages describing imaginary music and make it riveting?
Pluralistic: Ian McDonald’s “Hopeland” (30 May 2023)

Multi-page passages describing imaginary music and it’s riveting? Sounds like it might be the next book on my reading list. 

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