Thursday, November 16, 2017

Love continued

In all about love, the chapter on mutuality was a bit challenging to hear, but I can't say hooks is wrong. She contends that men seek out partners to mother them, to preserve their peter pan-ness. Men want to be loved without having to extend themselves and evolve, able to not communicate when they don't want to. Women are then put into the nagging position and that is when men can use violence to shut up the nagging. hooks puts the blame for this whole situation on men, and suggest that blaming women or even trying to see it equally at fault, is to not see the situation clearly. I'm sure these themes are developed further on her book about men and love.

She discusses divine love and romantic love. I remember in college I thought Gitangali by Tagore was about romantic love, but it was about divine love. Boy was I embarrassed.

Now I'm on the chapter of loss. She talks about love of death versus love. She quote Fromm, and that got me thinking about the death instinct. I think we're in an era of the death instinct. I think policies of government are known to increase deaths. Until we can cherish all life, I'm afraid we're doomed. I should speak, I hardly control my own negativity, acting in my own self interest is hard somehow.

The book is an up and down mixed bag, but I'm really enjoying it. I find it worthy of following her thoughts.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017


bell hooks had a powerful chapter on greed in her book all about love. I'm not going to summarize or quote it. It moved me a lot.

hooks thinks the best way to get love is to avoid romantic relationships and have a circle of family and friends who are truly loving, that stand the test of time. She thinks small communities are best for this.

I've gotten friendly with a Colombian woman at the park, who has a daughter one month younger than mine. She says in NYC, people are not friendly because everyone is wary and rightly so. But someone at the park with a child is unlikely to whip out a gun. I work to build community in my neighborhood. Unfortunately everyone worth being friends with works and comes home to gork at the TV. Mothers at the park are interesting but primarily concerned with the children, I have to run after my daughter when she runs away, which is not conducive to conversation. I'm thinking I'm going to make more of an effort to befriend the males that live near me. But to tell you the truth, I do want to move to a small town, I'm over NYC.

In the mail I have 2 more books on Love, never mind all the ones hooks recommends. The Forgotten Art of Love: What Love Means and Why It Matters is by a doctor with a doctorate, Armin A. Zahed, a professor at Johns Hopkins medical school.

Big Love is by Scott Stabile who is an inspirational writer from Brooklyn.

Friday, November 10, 2017

Parenting and the dhamma

"If you’re a parent, for instance, a large component of your practice might center on understanding and thereby attempting to release the feelings of stress that arise around your children’s welfare. The very areas of your life that are sources of suffering for you can also help you to develop all the inner qualities which are necessary for attaining peace. Ajahn Viradhammo

Monday, November 06, 2017


In bell hooks' all about love she writes about the importance of honesty in association with love in chapter 3. When someone asks her if she liked a present, she is honest with them. Often times people are upset at what they hear.

I think sometimes in language you have to translate social conventions into what they really are. If someone asks if you like a present, they want a thank you really. They don't want honesty. They may want a hint of honesty, to see if it was a good present or not. To my utter shame and cringing I once told my uncle that I didn't really like the Star Wars spaceship he got for me for Christmas. I think the sentiment is wonderful. My uncle loves me and tried to get me something I would like. All kids liked Star Wars. He was really sweet and I responded with harsh truth. I think speaking the unvarnished truth, at times, is socially jarring and shows a lack of empathy for the other person.

Another example is, "how do I look?" I think the important thing to communicate is that you love someone, find them capable of being attractive, that their presentation matches the awesomeness that you see in them. To say, "I don't like bangs," or shoulder ruffles or whatever isn't really something to break out at that moment if it is the truth. Of course people will be angry if they later find out that you don't like bangs, so there is some questions. Anyway, if you want to go ahead and say you're, "not a fan of bangs, but they seem to pull it off," that captures both truth and commitment to a person.

This brings up the question of verbal dexterity. I'm not great in the moment in communicating often. It is to not accept me to think I should stop this immediately. I've been learning scripts my whole life to try and be apt in the moment, but novelty outstretches my experience. I think to not understand that communication is a first draft, it perhaps a bit harsh.

Some people can hear the intention behind the words, and that is quite a lovely skill. But to use that knowledge for lying, well that's mendacity.

Having written that, we live in a time when lying seems to be OK for the President of the United States and his staff. And as per bell hooks, I'm not feeling a lot of love from the executive branch.

Friday, November 03, 2017


In bell hooks' all about love she likes Scott Peck's definition of love as "the will to extend one's self for the purpose of nurturing one's own or another's spiritual growth."

She asserts that "love is as love does." One cannot abuse or neglect someone and then say they love them. Well, they can say that, but it's a confusion. Therefore patriarchy, sexism, racism, and savage inequalities are barriers to love. To participate, even unknowingly in these systems of oppression, any oppression is to not love.

In the chapter I just read, she talks about how parents think that abusing a child physically is OK, but that it's no OK for adults to abuse other adults. The family is perhaps open to autocrats and fascists. The idea that blood relations equals love does not equate with the above definition. Blood has nothing to do with it.

I find this book pretty amazing.

On another note:

Please consider donating to a friend who incurred medical expenses not covered in his cancer treatment by his insurance.

Monday, October 30, 2017


For some reason Blogger has been making it hard, and I've been making mistakes and publishing other blogs here. Sorry about that.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Vegan treats to explore in Gotham. Enjoy. 😊

Bakeries, NYC

1) Bushwick

2) Clinton Hill

3) Greenpoint

4) Williamsburg

5) Broome

6) Bleecker

7) East 10th

Bookstores, NYC

1) Allen

Cafes, NYC

1) West 20th

Cheese Shops, NYC

1) Prospect Heights

2) Williamsburg

Chocolate Shops, NYC

1) East 9th

2) West 20th

Doughnut Shops, NYC

1) Williamsburg

2) East 8th

Eco-Shopping, NYC

1) Orchard

2) Stanton

Grocery Stores, NYC


Ice Cream Parlors, NYC

1) East 17th

Juice Bars, NYC




Restaurants, NYC

1) Bay Ridge

2) Bedford-Stuyvesant

3) Boerum Hill

4) East Williamsburg

5) Fort Greene

6) Greenpoint

7) Greenpoint

8) Greenpoint

9) Park Slope

10) www.VSpot.NYC/locations/view/1 Park Slope

11) Williamsburg

12) Williamsburg

13) Williamsburg

14) Williamsburg

15) Williamsburg

16) Williamsburg

17) Williamsburg

18) Pine

19) Pine

20) Maiden

21) Front

22) Doyers

23) East Broadway

24) Church

25) Mulberry

26) Broome

27) Lafayette

28) Carmine

29) Bleecker

30) East 3rd

31) West 3rd

32) West 4th

33) West 4th

34) East 6th

35) East 6th

36) East 6th

37) East 7th

38) East 7th

39) www.VSpot.NYC/locations/view/3 East 8th

40) West 8th

41) East 10th

42) East 11th

43) East 13th

44) East 14th

45) West 15th

46) West 17th

47) West 17th

48) West 21st

49) West 22nd

50) West 23rd

51) West 23rd

52) East 27th

53) East 28th

54) West 29th

55) East 32nd

56) West 33rd

57) East 34th

58) West 37th

59) East 39th

60) East 43rd

61) West 43rd

62) West 48th

63) West 48th

64) West 56th

65) West 58th

66) East 63rd

67) East 63rd

68) East 74th

69) East 79th

70) West 81st

71) West 82nd

72) West 84th

73) West 89th

74) West 113th

75) West 177th

76) Forest Hills

77) Rego Park

78) Ridgewood

Smorgasburg, NYC

1) Prospect Park

2) Williamsburg