Immanence

Posted by on Mar 21, 2011 in Otherhood | No Comments

I’m heading off the grid for a week, but I really look forward to giving this more attention when I get back: “artmonks: children of Thoreau & Whitehead,” a post by Adrian Ivakhiv. If Thoreau’s quest to “live deliberately […] and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived” were cross-bred with […]

Theophane the Monk was an artmonk

Posted by on Mar 17, 2011 in Otherhood | No Comments

Next week I’m heading to the Vedanta Society’s Olema retreat center in Marin County. One thing I’m definitely bringing is Theophane the Monk‘s Tales of a Magic Monastery. Here’s one of his tales: There’s a monk there who wears a red robe. I was wondering why, but it was my little son who dared to […]

Jim Woodring is an artmonk

Posted by on Mar 15, 2011 in Otherhood | No Comments

Finally ordered a print of one of my favorite li’l art pieces, signed by cartoonist Jim Woodring. Woodring’s words about Hieronymous Bosch’s Garden of Earthly Delightsadequately reflect my feelings about Woodring’s work:   “I see endless beauty and mystery in it. Like the world it reflects, it can never be understood, even when it is […]

Sister Corita Kent was an Artmonk

Posted by on Mar 13, 2011 in Otherhood | No Comments

Via Here: Corita Kent was an artist, teacher, philosopher, political activist, and possibly one of the most innovative and unusual pop artists of the 1960’s. However, what is perhaps even more incredible is that she was a catholic nun. Corita: Passion for the Possible (exerpt) from BlackLake on Vimeo.

Brands, beliefs, practices, objects, rituals and community

Posted by on Mar 12, 2011 in Otherhood | 2 Comments
Brands, beliefs, practices, objects, rituals and community

In developing ideas for an open-source monastic tradition in my last post, I’ve been thinking of religions and lineages as more or less illusory aggregates of individuals and their communities, unified by a common brand more than anything else. Individuals have beliefs. Communities support these beliefs, or they do not. Occasionally, especially in the early stages, […]

Creating an Art Monastery

Posted by on Mar 6, 2011 in Otherhood | 10 Comments
Creating an Art Monastery

Living in intentional community is not for everyone—the idea triggers an autoimmune response in some people, for whom it might signify the sacrifice of personal autonomy and individuality—but once you develop a taste for the stuff, it doesn’t fade. I unabashedly love it.

Since I began this blog-inquiry into monasticism just six months ago, dissecting Taoism, Vedanta, Eastern and Western Christianity, as well as the various vehicles of Buddhism into what I have called the elements of monasticism, community is an element I haven’t written about directly much at all. Yet it figures in my mind as an important piece of what all monasticisms are aiming at. For those individuals who dwell in abbeys, ashrams, friaries, priories, sketes, lavras, mathas, mandirs, koils, gompas, lamaseries, wats, viharas, community is a powerful spiritual practice.

So we’re making a monastery.Living in intentional community is not for everyone—the idea triggers an autoimmune response in some people, for whom it might signify the sacrifice of personal autonomy and individuality—but once you develop a taste for the stuff, it doesn’t fade. I unabashedly love it.

Since I began this blog-inquiry into monasticism just six months ago, dissecting Taoism, Vedanta, Eastern and Western Christianity, as well as the various vehicles of Buddhism into what I have called the elements of monasticism, community is an element I haven’t written about directly much at all. Yet it figures in my mind as an important piece of what all monasticisms are aiming at. For those individuals who dwell in abbeys, ashrams, friaries, priories, sketes, lavras, mathas, mandirs, koils, gompas, lamaseries, wats, viharas, community is a powerful spiritual practice.

So we’re making a monastery.

The Ages of Western Monasticism

Posted by on Feb 28, 2011 in Otherhood | No Comments

From P. Langdale Hough at Plumblines: From Walled Towns (1919), by Ralph Adams Cram (courtesy of Schmitz). Pages 34 – 35: At the beginning of the Christian the impulse was personal, the individual was the unit, and the result was the anchorites and hermits, each isolating himself a hidden mountain cave, a hut in the desert, […]

“Convento” at SXSW

Posted by on Feb 18, 2011 in Otherhood | No Comments

Anyone going to South by Southwest this year? Check out Convento, a documentary by Jarred Alterman: Dutch kinetic artist Christiaan Zwanikken resurrects the deceased local wildlife by reanimating the skeletal remains with servomotors and robotic engineering. He breeds these new species in a 400 yr. old monastery in a village in Portugal that has been […]

Rilke was an artmonk

Posted by on Feb 4, 2011 in Otherhood | No Comments

In his 20’s, German poet Ranier Maria Rilke visited a Russian monastery. The private prayerbook that resulted is now published as his Book of Hours. From the Book of Monastic Life, translated by Anita Barrows and Joanna Macy, Wenn es nur einmal so ganz stille wäre: If only for once it were still. If the not quite […]

1/4/11 San Francisco Artmonks meetup

Posted by on Jan 2, 2011 in Otherhood | No Comments

This Tuesday the San Francisco Artmonks will convene at the Berkeley home of two artmonks, composers Tom Bickley and Nancy Beckman. Tom & Nancy came to the Art Monastery in Labro, Italy last spring as artmonks-in-residence, and are now connecting with other Bay Area artmonks to develop a local community of contemplative creatives. They have generously offered […]