Sunday, June 12, 2016

Sunday Topic: Religion and Spirituality



Religion -


1) the belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, especially a personal God or gods.
2) a particular system of faith and worship


Spiritual -
1) of, relating to, or affecting the human spirit or soul as opposed to material or physical things.
2) of or relating to religion or religious belief

See? There is a difference!


I've always seen a difference between the two, and understood my need for them in separate manners. Religion is the structure in which I express my spirituality through the lens of culture/time/current ethics or morals. Spirituality is the core truth, the message and the importance it has on me. Spirituality is the code/the message, Religion is the way the message is presented and the ritual I use to express it.


Religion shifts and changes with the culture and time that uses it. Christianity today is vastly different than Christianity 100 years ago, or even just 50 years ago. The message/truth/code/guidelines/expression of reality that Christianity proclaims hasn't changed; what has changed is how we interpret it and how we express it. Christianity in America is different than Christianity in Germany, same day but different culture. At the heart, both cultures draw upon the same information and resources but due to the lens of society interprets it vastly different.


Spirituality however, that is something I feel a bit more fundamental. It is the thing we understand in our hearts as right, it is the moral/ethical code we follow to be a better person. It is those beliefs we have that defy explanation or assumption, it is the way of living that feels right. These are fundamental cores of our nature, the things that are "real" to each of us. These have to be expressed, they defy our understanding in an animistic way, and thus we create filters to understand them. These filters are built out of our cultural heritage and thus the message will change...into Religion.

Can you have pure spirituality and no religion? I think some people do, but they are rare. Isolated monks, spiritual guru's hidden in the wilds, these are people who have no tie to culture or the times and express their spirituality through an unfiltered/less tainted lens. But for the rest of us, our spiritual needs become expressed through the religion we choose to follow. I think it's a good thing to understand that.


What are your thoughts on the matter?

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Artist Life



Artist Life is...

. Being unable to eat, sleep or even control your breathing due to the INTENSITY that you feel you must create art.

. Being nervous about spending $0.99 on an app that will provide a few hours of entertainment, but you cannot pull out your credit card fast enough for a multi-book binding of three 14th Century cooking manuscripts for $100.00.

. Having to pause moments of your day to jot down notes or ideas, as brief bouts of inspiration hit due to random circumstance.

. Meeting a fellow artist, and spending hours just enjoying the shop talk and sharing of knowledge with a new friend. But when someone asks you later who you were talking to...not remembering their name because you realize you forgot to ask it,

. Hating the things that people praise the most, because you feel the praise is unjustified.

. A whole host of superstitions from years of work that infect your every move when creating art. Examples being specific chairs you must sit in to write, temperature/humidity to compose music to, just the right amount of clothing in the right spots to feel inspired to write.

. Seeing the world in a completely alien way than most of the population...and the learning to cope with that separation. 

. Flying into a rage because you could not properly explain to your loved ones the vision you have, the artistic mindset you wish to impart.

. Weeping at the chance to spend weeks of your life slaving away on a project that will perhaps only be experienced by people once, to be put on display for a majority who will never know the pints of blood poured into the task. 

For me, the biggest thing is seeing the world differently. And it's not so much a physical change in what I see...I see the boats on the water just like everyone else. It's just so much more than that.

I see the boats on the water, water stained gold and red with the light of a dying day. The water surges up the side of each ship, bleeding the promise and dreams of deeds done that day before becoming swallowed by the black night and the promise of death. Each ship drifts along, sailing despite the dying day, continuing its journey despite setbacks because it is confidant that with death must follow a new life and a new day. Some boats are pure of heart, some shadowed in an inner darkness reflected out, some striving for that purely human element of the middle which we must all arrive in. Some sails are unfurled to learn what it can of the knowledge of wind, some lowered to trust their own steering of the rudder. Always sailing, forever along the ocean of life and death. 

This is Artist Life.

Monday, June 6, 2016

Recipe: Miso Soup

This recipe posted here is the one i used to make my miso soup served in my Fall Coronation 2015 feast. It got many rave reviews and asks about a recipe, so I figured as I am working on more regular blogging I will share it here! The recipe is broken down to serve 5-10 people.

Miso soup


Ingredients:

3 quarts water - I use standard tap water here, nothing fancy
1 quart of fish stock - This one is a bit tricky, and will depend on how crazy you wanna go. For the stock, I made it from lightly boiling tuna. You can of course buy fish stock in Asian grocery stores (or the odd Publix wth a large international selection), but I made it fresh.
1/4 cup dashi granules - Can be purchased in any Asian grocery store
1/4 cup miso paste - Can be purchased in any Asian grocery store, but I have seen at Publix and Whole Foods!
Salt to taste - I used sea salt, but use your favorite salt here!
1/2 pound fresh cold wakame - I have only found this is Asian grocery stores, but I've heard this can be found in Whole Foods as well.

Instructions

1)
In a large pot with a well fitting lid, add in water and fish stock. Bring to a rolling boil.

2) Once water and fish stock have reached a rolling boil, add in dashi granules. Stir for one minute, until granules are fully mixed in.

3) Once granules have been mixed in, add in wakame. Stir vigorously, until the wakame is broken up and softened.

4) Whisk in miso paste, until water has turned one solid color. Drop heat to a simmer, fit tight with a lid and let simmer for 25 minutes.

5) Remove lid, stir to mix up wakame that may have settled. Sprinkle salt to taste, serve hot.

Enjoy!

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Writing Commitments

So when I first started this blog YEARS ago it was to help stimulate my creative flow. It shifted to focusing more on SCA, with my personal writings and musing being sprinkled around. I want to write more, to invest more into my writings. Honestly, life has kept me away from many things including my writing habits, but I want to change that. I am committing to 2 blog posts a week, one on Sundays and one on Thursdays. If I feel like updating more...cool! If not, I will be sticking to my commitments.

I want to get into writing, and having a desk and a desktop to do it on now will make life easier. I have a lot to catch up here and document, so here's to many more posts! See you guys on Sunday!

Filk: Do You Wanna Enter Art/Sci?

This is a filk that my best friend and sister for life Ever co-wrote, late one night in between Facebook messenger. It's gone through a few edits, and I'm sure it will go through more, but as I cannot sleep and want to update the blog...ta-da!


Do you wanna enter Art/Sci?
To the tune of "Do You Wanna Build a Snowman?"
Ever:
Do you wanna enter Art/Sci?
And document our every move?

Chris:
We review our every source we find, check all the words we write until our papers prove!

Ever:
We used to be so social, but now we're not. I wish we could have more time...!

Chris;
Do you wanna enter Art/Sci?

Ever:
It doesn't have to be at kingdom...

James:
Go away you two!

Chris/Ever:
Ok bye...

Ever:
Do you wanna enter art/Sci? And be authentic as you can?

Chris:
You will get all sorts of cuts and scrapes, with Middle French and poison dust to drive you mad!

Chris/Ever:
Just trust us.

Ever:
It can be so lonely, all these dusty books, just reading the same old things!

Chris/Ever:

Page flip, page flip, page flip, paper cut!

Chris:
Hello?
Please, won't you just try if? Laurels are asking where you've been.

Ever:
Come out and try you're hand at it, you've got a real talent, just let it shine!

Chris:
Art/Sci's really easy, we believe in you, please just give it a try...?

Ever:
Do you wanna...

Chris:
Enter art/sci...?