Archive for October, 2013

BOG Peeps

Posted in Environmentalism, Organic Agriculture & Horticulture, Organic Architecture, Organic Development, Organic Gardens, Pagan, Psychology, Sustainability with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 31, 2013 by Drogo

Beautiful Organic Garden People

This art series advocates Organic Agriculture (Gardening / Farming / Foraging), Permaculture, and Sustainable Architecture. A series of ‘beautiful’ images of humans and animals, males and females, working or meditating or playing in the garden, farm field, barn, orchard, or wilderness…. poses not bound to traditional commercial or pinup surface objectification… in favor of equal-rights showing strength, intelligence, and skill. One idea being that people will see attractive or cute people and other sentient beings gardening, and more and more people will want to garden and feel or look like them; and by relating to them, they will want to garden; and vice versa. Based on “Organic Pinup Girls” project, expanded.

Plant Weed*

Pocahantas*

Mattock Hoes*

SCOD Hoveland*

flower cutngather*

women-planting-tree-outdoor*

Apollo on Apollo*

angel pixie apples*

Adevik*

Celtic Couple 2*

Grow Together*

Vegirl_1*

Cheri Tyvm*

Keith psyche

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* BOG PEEP Book – for sale on Amazon

Journalist Laura Flanders about SCOD Bog Peeps – “If I had to pick an avatar from those cool Organic gardeners, I’d go for the green haired woman with the shoulder tattoo and the shovel. Funnily enough, I just walked inside after a morning spent wielding a machete in an overgrown garden.” – in an email to Drogo 8/2/2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Evolving Critical Evaluation

Posted in Arts (Design & Performance), Critical Commentary of Civilization, Environmentalism, Music Reviews, Psychology with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 23, 2013 by Drogo

Redefining Good vs Bad judgments based on the Evolution Humanitarianism and Environmentalism

Changes in politics and economics show that there is indeed a paradigm shift slowly happening since the 1960’s from a human perspective about civilization. This self-aware hippy attitude of good-will has yet to trickle through to main-stream media critics, who have created a whole new generation of ‘everything is shit except what i like’ haters. So in response to less hateful aggressive competition, we hear critics talking about how stupid it is to give every kid a badge who was involved in the game (since the 1980s).

First of all that argument about there being no incentive to win because ‘every one gets a trophy’ holds no sway with me. In soccer the more games you won, the larger the trophy you got; and as I got older, the team I was on lost more and more games. The reason we lost games was not because we were content with getting what-ever it was we got at the end of the season (a paper document if we were lucky); it was because other teams were better. I cannot describe fully how bad it still felt to lose over and over again, with nothing show for it. So to all those critics of encouraging people to keep playing next year by giving them some prize, I say “Fuck you!”. Ok, is that humanitarian enough for you?

Next, there is a growing awareness in America that we are fucking up the planet we live on for ourselves and future generations. This is called Environmentalism (for those not in tune with the movement already). For those that don’t care about life in general or other lives, I ask them to imagine burning to death, drowning, or starving … as an Environmentalist I am opposed to that happening to the masses of animals, including humans, on this planet; but it is happening now because of our collective ignorance on an industrial scale.

So now we come down to individual artists, musicians, and farmers being able to do what they love doing for a living. It is impossible for most of us to earn a living growing our own food, playing our own music, and making our own art currently; however this is where critical evaluation needs to keep evolving! We are redefining our collective definitions of ‘good and bad’ creations, at social events like drum circles, free art shows, and small farm gatherings. Rather than the emphasis being placed on selfish competition and arrogant petty comparisons, critical emphasis is evolving to embrace individual expression and the importance of compassion. To promote the work of another that you can identify with, becomes a way of promoting yourself as a good person.

A good creation has social and environmental worth beyond talent or skill.

A bad creation has destructive dimensions beyond the surface glamor.

Both have value for self-reflection.

* Related articles:  Art Evolution;

 

 

 

 

 

Clues to Happiness

Posted in Medical, Philosophy, Spiritual with tags , , , , , , , , , , on October 19, 2013 by Drogo

Here are some Psychological and Chemical Clues to Happiness

Think of something that makes you happy, so much that it feels real as a meditation.

Missing a friend is an uncomfortable feeling, like a missing connection in a machine; it messes with our functioning. So feel those good feelings that they make you feel, even if it makes you cry. Do not be afraid of your own feelings.

Now let’s think about the Emotional ‘Heart’ aspects of our brain / body:

Adrenalin (Epinephrine) – neuro-transmitter hormone that stimulates body functions like heart-rate, blood-pressure, and metabolism. Adrenalin is released by stress and causes the emotion fear. It can also aid in memory retention. ‘Adrenalin junkies’ may be addicted to the endorphins simultaneously released.

Endorphins – neuro-transmitter chemical produced by the brain during exercise, pain, eating spices, sex, and the ‘feeling’ of ‘love’. The exhilaration produced can be beneficial for happiness, pain-relief, and further enhance love as euphoria.

Dopamine – neuro-transmitter chemical that sends ‘reward’ signals between nerve cells during pleasurable and painful activities or thoughts. Dopamine has prime roles in reward-motivated behavior, excitement, hormone production, and nervous-system dexterity / agility (‘motor-skills’). Dopamine also affects blood vessels, kidneys, pancreas, digestive-system, and the immune-system.

Dopamine-activating stimulants such as cocaine, amphetamine, and meth-amphetamine amplify the effects of dopamine. Conversely, many anti-psychotic drugs act by suppressing the effects of dopamine. Drugs that act against dopamine are anti-nausea agents.

Oxytocin – neuromodulator hormone in brain and blood. Causes complex emotions of trust, attachment, euphoria, and morality. Produced by sexual/reproductive activities and compassionate exchanges like hugging.

Serotonin –  neuro-transmitter chemical in the digestive-system (bowels), nervous-system (CNS), and circulatory-system (blood platelets) derived from tryptophan and melatonin. Serotonin affects healing, happiness, and contentment. Serotonin also affects alpha / beta behaviors, and ‘flight-or-fight’ responses in complex ways.

Psychedelic drugs mimic Serotonin as ‘agonists’. Anti-Depressant drugs alter Serotonin levels.  Thus there are spiritual, medical, and psychological therapeutic aspects to Serotonin.

Melatonin – chemical endocrine hormone preservative that protects DNA, and is an anti-oxidant sleep-aid. Melatonin production is derived from tryptophan, produced by the pineal gland in the center of the brain, and released by visual darkness. Melatonin is also found in herbs like fever-few and saint-Johns-wort; vegetables like rice and corn; and fruits like cherries and grapes .

Melatonin controls our internal ‘circadian’ clock rhythms, including being awake and asleep. There-fore Melatonin is beneficial for over-all good health and long-life. It is used to treat diseases, depression, and insomnia. Regular restful periods of sleep are important to cleanse the brain of toxins that accumulate during conscious activity, and thus prevents related illness like Alzheimers.

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Social Anxiety at Public Parties or Pubs

Posted in Arts (Design & Performance), Cooperatives / Communities / Networks / Travels, Critical Commentary of Civilization, Psychology, Pub Library with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 19, 2013 by Drogo

Public Parties, Pubs, Clubs, or Bars and Social Anxiety

Thoughts by Drogo Empedocles –

The older I get, the more freakishly strange it feels to go to bars; its always been an odd feeling because it is so different than the rest of society… and yet not odd enough for me, i cant quite explain it.

I am not straight-edge, and I do not consider myself a drug ‘addict’; I strive for moderation most of the time, in most things. However I do like to ‘get out every-once in a while’ and be social, or even host parties; so i would like to express some feelings i have regarding the psychological issues i experience.

Even just to go for music it trips me out. People at parties are a different experience, i remember first learning this at my house as a kid when my parents had Gallery Shows. Some of the social anxiety pressure i think has to do with the amplified volume of collective energy, emotions, and noise. Voice volume gets raised, just to have a conversation or say anything at all; then by nature it feels aggressive or hostile even.

Differences between people aside, im wondering if it is simply the odd condition of people relating to each-other in a much more familiar way than outside the bar? I think it makes it very strange when someone does not interact by those rules in some way, whether being quiet or not wanting to be touched in anyway, etc…

Diversity is important, but it makes for interesting dynamics. Hunter vs Prey scenarios, and what-not. It is funny because im such a sensual and compassionate person at heart, im cool with mutual public affection of common forms, but i realize some other people are not for various reasons, including relationship contracts; and therefore this presents ‘issues’. Usually the most gregarious types of people will be the ones at the party or bar, yet there will inevitably be a minority of introverts or people hostile to affection.

At this point I do not have many conclusions. Perhaps it is simply best to generally avoid the conflict of personalities in any public setting, especially parties and bars.  Yet parties and bars are considered the most fun, and appropriate for Holidays and Celebrations! Hmmmm. I guess I’m somewhere in the middle on all of this, since I am a compassionate introvert at heart, that does occasionally like the thrill of adventure.

Musician Austin Litz

Posted in Arts (Design & Performance), Interviews, Music Reviews, Organic Development, POB Audio, Spiritual with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 17, 2013 by Drogo

Local area musician Austin Litz is from Gaithersburg, MD; but actively plays and tours with many other musicians from Frederick, Baltimore, and DC. He plays a multitude of instruments, including keyboard, saxophone, his own voice and digital equipment.

“Balance is the key to the cosmic dance of vibrational intentions. ϕ . In music, balance can be measured with tangible, quantitative evidence (volume, tonality). In life, and in music, balance is also subjective matter. Thats where listening to your mind body and soul comes in. All three voices (mind,body,soul) function like a chord and must be tuned accordingly to resonate with the highest purity and beauty (whats beauty? a question for another day I suppose). When observing the majority of the American people, I do not hear a beautiful chord. The body and soul are hard to tamper with directly but can be de-tunned threw manipulation of the mind. Thats where we come in, to send a message of opening your mind. Your body and soul will soon follow. Organizations like Monsanto and Exon exist due to an abundance of ignorant contentment. Commodified love. Tune yourself into a technicolor chord, try 528Hz! In the Spring I personally can’t wait to plant a dank Garden in the backyard of the Litz house, ride my bike everywhere I can, and learn as much as possible with an unbiased, open mind.”

–  Austin Litz

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Tensions in Sustainable Transportation: Tesla Motors Not Allowed in Virginia

Posted in Science & Math, Technology - Vehicles, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on October 14, 2013 by Jessica Bowen

I was a bit surprised and irritated when I found out that Tesla motors, an upcoming electric car company, wasn’t allowed to have a dealership in Virginia. They still have a gallery in Tysons Corner, VA, but can’t directly sell cars from the location. Fortunately, there are other dealerships in the relatively close locations of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Raleigh, North Carolina. However, this serves as an example of how our current system works in a way that perpetuates itself, and makes it difficult to integrate new ways of doing things.  It’s another illustration of the way that our system is not yet set up to really handle sustainability.

Tesla Model S

Tesla is a relatively new manufacturer, and they sell their cars directly to consumers, with no middle-people doing the transactions.  In Virginia, as in some other states, laws are in place that make manufacturers work through a franchised dealership to sell their cars to the public. There are loopholes, in case there are no dealerships available (as in the case of Tesla.) Despite this, the Virginia state Department of Motor Vehicles commissioner, Richard D. Holcomb, ruled that there is no evidence that there is no dealership Tesla can sell through. And so they can’t sell cars in Virginia at all.

Perhaps, though, this has more to do with tax dollars than dealerships. As in the case of other states considering adopting legislation to tax electric cars more than fossil-fuel cars, keeping a Tesla dealership out of Virginia could be a way of trying to keep some number of electric cars out of the state, thereby guaranteeing more tax revenue through gas purchases by the public.

A quick Google search even revealed to me a document on Virginia’s website by Richard Holcomb, concluding that the “DMV is facing a nearly $20 million decline in revenue starting July 2013.”

(Image Copyright University of Maryland)

With this in mind, if the State does generate a good bit of money from gas sales, losing that could be intimidating to them. In my mind, that might make a state want to increase the gas tax, to maintain revenue as the (polluting) fuel becomes less available and push for the public to purchase electric vehicles or use other means of transportation. At the moment, though, it seems that we have built a system around gasoline-powered vehicles. And we do still need to fund roads, of course.

The ideology behind the free market’s supposed ability to fix social and environmental problems is a big consideration, as it has become very ingrained in our thinking and structure.

In a lighter sense, Tesla’s being denied access to public car sales in Virginia could be seen as just one hiccup in a much wider change that is happening. Despite this one dealership denial, Teslas can still be seen driving around the DC area, proving that they’re still somehow available to that public. And so, maybe the car maker’s dealership denial can be seen as both an illustration of the way our current system works to keep change out, but also an illustration of how change will find a way.

[article written by SCOD Member Jessica Bowen]

Further Prophecies by Drogo

Posted in Cooperatives / Communities / Networks / Travels, Critical Commentary of Civilization, Environmentalism, Philosophy, Spiritual with tags , , , , , on October 10, 2013 by Drogo

Further Prophecies by the Prophet Drogo Empedocles,

We will restructure our economy to be more environmental and democratic. By reshaping our economy we change our politics from corporate to grassroots, our building designs will not be as ignorant, and our landscape will have value because of its natural worth.

Earth will continue to experience climate change; with freak blizzards, but overall global warming will continue to melt the arctic ice, and raise the ocean level, causing coastal areas to flood. The heat by 2040 will make Tropical areas into deserts.

SCOD communities will manifest in higher altitudes, with earth-shelters to protect from the Sun, and thermal-mass to insulate interior temperatures keeping them stable for habitation or green-houses.

more to come….