Ming the Mechanic
The NewsLog of Flemming Funch

Thursday, November 6, 2003day link 

picture I think Japanese youth culture and dress-up styles are fascinating. This is a picture of a girl in the Harajuku district of Tokyo, from here. As a tourist guide says:
"For youth culture Japan - "cool" and "cute"- Harajuku, just north of Shibuya, is the number one fashionable, fun, faddish, ridiculous, crazy "crib" to "chill out". Come along on a Sunday and you'll see it all!"
And here's from a Japanese teen writing a paper on pop-culture:
"Harajuku is weird central," says a Japanese friend of mine. Youth in Harajuku exhibit anime-style, gravity defying, Technicolor hair and wear elaborate makeup and costume-like clothing. Japanese visual rock bands are probably the greatest influence on this urban sub-cultural style. In these bands, the visual image projected by their clothes style and makeup is as important as the music they produce. Band members create onstage personas that extend far offstage. I present Japanese visual bands as an extreme of using fashion to "fabricate" an identity.

So how do these bands identify themselves? I would argue that the extremist style was developed to distinguish themselves from the mainstream music industry, largely occupied by corporate factory line, "idol school," produced singers. There is definitely shock value is this style of dress. The first thing you probably notice when looking at the photo of the band Glay, are the bands members' Technicolor, gravity-defying hairstyles. Dying hair is an obvious rejection of the Asian confine of basic black. It is symbolic of breaking out of the mold of appearing "Oriental". But more so, I think, the eye-catching hairstyles allude to anime and manga, where hair color and style often becomes a distinguishing feature of the characters."

[ | 2003-11-06 04:59 | 4 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 A laugh in Ethiopia
picture An Ethiopian fellow named Belachew Girma broke his own record in laughing non-stop. And got a crowd of unlookers to do the same. There's not always a lot to laugh about in Ethiopia, but sometimes the best therapy is to do so anyway. Story at BBC.
"We are living full of stress... Natural disasters, economical, political, social problems... My aim is to minimise this stress. Please let us communicate by smiling," he said. "Our slogan is 'laughter, love, peace for all human beings'."
Indeed. The laughing exercise appears in a number of different traditions. I believe it is an old Buddhist exercise for one thing. I've participating in group laughing several times, and I can testify that it is very healing. In brief, you just start laughing, for no necessarily good reason. Sometimes that's difficult to do non-stop, but it helps to do it with a group of people. And it is kind of strange to break through the barriers that stop you from doing it. Crying works too, but I prefer the laughing process. Some people can hardly stop again. And just look at the smiling face of Belachew there. Hard not to laugh with him.
[ | 2003-11-06 05:15 | 4 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 Harmonic Concordance
picture This weekend there's a very unusual constellation happening in the sky, with, apparently, deep significances. Similar to what was called the Harmonic Convergence in 1987. Here's from Al Joy:
On November 8–9 (depending on your location) a very rare and special global event will occur. Six planets and objects (Moon, Sun, Saturn, Chiron, Jupiter and Mars) will be aligned in a grand sextile or star pattern, a most unusual configuration.

Perfectly aligned for the first time in 2000 years to a Star of David configuration, these planets and objects will form a Grand Sextile of Earth and Water signs which is being called a Harmonic Concordance or the opening of the portal of Concordance (Concordance means Heart).

I believe that this celestial/astrological configuration will open a portal for a morphogenetic region of knowledge that will shift the morphogenetic patterns of all those who are exposed to it.

People will have an opportunity to be in alignment with divine knowledge and to live beyond the distorted perceptions of an evolving self whose instinctual, emotional, and physical perceptions and experiences have been overlaid by many different morphogenetic regions of knowledge on the planet.

For the last four decades, we have been experiencing strong outer planetary influences that have led to a dissolvement of our human self to merge with machines, chemicals, and devices. We have also experienced an ability to remote view and process extraterrestrial information. The complex psychological and ethereal environments that these influences have created are pushing us at speeds that we as humans can’t understand nor do we feel grounded or nurtured within. That’s because we’re having to take in and process data that is outside the realm of our physical and emotional expression. You can see the discrepancy that this creates when you compare certain parts of the globe that are still using human interaction vs. those that are using machines, chemicals, and devices to organize the world around them. By dissolving our human self, we end up removing humanism as the centerpiece of what our lives revolve around.

The Grand Sextile of Earth and Water signs that we are about to experience will awaken and bring a resurgence of female energy and passivity on the planet, balancing the male energy and reduced sense of humanism that has been dominating this time period.

The Earth and Water signs, as conduits for female energy, will allow us to integrate our physical and emotional interactions as we merge and dissolve with the radical, transforming knowledge that is being dispensed. Operating at a much slower speed, the Earth and Water signs bring structure and nurturing, giving us time to absorb and retain what is taking place around us.
We could sure use that. See more here. Many synchronized ceremonies, rituals and events across the world this weekend.
[ | 2003-11-06 13:59 | 7 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

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