When I read Becky McCray's writing on "Value Your Small Town Characters" it got me to thinking along sever lines. Here is the original post and an e-mail link if your want to add to the conversation... http://bit.ly/jj4QQ5 ( @SBSurvival)
This got things up there in my brainbox stirrin' - Not just small towns (but that is your focus) but NYC - when America's great Hoosier novelist/poet Marguerite Young died (she'd been living in The Village for decades & Scribners had published her 'MissMacIntosh, My Darling" back in 1965) - doing research for her novel had her 'haunting' the entire small town of NYC from the upper east side to Wall Street and beyond. When her obituary appeared in the N.Y. Times she was described as an 'icon' - Well, that'd be another word for 'town character' -One of the values I pick up from visiting Small Biz Survival is a strenghthening of my perception that we all inhabit small towns, even those of us who live right smack dab in the center of a big city. But back to Hooker, Slapout, Beaver, and Buffalo - I've visited and made myself a 'resident for a day' in so many small towns that I can attest to the fact that the local characters do stand out. I always bring it back to Mozart - my business is Mozart - so I've got a few ideas brewing about Mozart Around Town.
Only don't, I beseech you, generalizetoo much in these sympathies and tendernesses--remember that every life is a special problem which is not yours but another's, and content yourself with the terrible algebra of your own.
Much has been added, at later and later dates, to the Vedic texts. This includes all of the translations, learned opinions, points of view, interpretations, arguments, commentaries, traditions, ritualistic superstitions. All of this accumulated material is now by and large regarded as gospel, and repeated and repeated and repeated. Now we can hear the echoic opinions being treated as knowledge, and, with the introduction of the original material in all of this watered-down form to "the west" we have it being passed on by those whose knowledge is constituted by what they have gathered from their readings of error piled upon error. I took my first dive into these waters in 1949 (a banner year in my life LOL :-) when the blessed consciousness of Paramahansa Yogananda found its way to my brainbox as a gift from my piano teacher. I was hooked. I began Sanskrit studies at the University of Pennsylavania in 1955 under the tutelage of Indologist Professor Norman Brown - from there it was a constant soaking - Ford Foundation Fellow at the Universities of Chicago (Hans van Buitenen was my prof he was then working on his translation of the Mahabharata) and the University of Southern Indiana or Illinois (I have forgotten which) where I lived on High Street next to a house once inhabited by Tagore.
Then I was appointed a New York State Faculty Scholar in Oriental (they used that word in those days) Studies at Columbia University NY in 1964 - and in the next decade I was Senior Fellow at the Center For Advanced Studies in Pune India doing my work for one year on the musical dimensions of ancient Sanskrit texts. Bhimsen Joshi, Aurovindo Mangrulker, Vamanrao Deshpande were my gurus - as well as the spirit of Sri Aurobindo in whose ashram I took up residence for a while. I loved the proximity of the sea both in Bombay and Madras (their designations at that time) :-)
I received initiation into what was then known as Transcendental Mediation in 1974, having attended the public lectures of Maharishi a decade before when he was new to the West. This was one of many turning points, as was my 18 month residence as BhaktaSamaVedaWayne in one of Srila Prabhupada's temples. The daily chanting of the Sri Krishna Mahamantra was yet another epic turn.
I memorized the Sutras of Patanjali and every day recited all of them by heart for a couple of years, meditating on their meaning and its application in daily life.
All the while, the effect of all this absorbtion in my daily practice of Vedanta reached the depths of my music-making.
It has only been quite recently that it dawned on me that to know the Vedas I must do what our ancients did before the advent of the written word, before the dawn of our present mind with its conceptualizing intellect. I must sink into the sound itself, without regard to all that I had hitherto learned, and become simply a vehicle for the sound current carried forth by the mantras born from the Divine Within.
I looking forward to delivering Speech #6 and have decided to speak "On The Utility Of Twitter" - When the the subject of Twitter pops into the brainboxes of the non-tweeting public "Useful" is not a word that is likely to occur. But to me, the central charm of Twitter lies in the fact that it is an eminently useful tool with which to communicate.
Here are the categories I have discovered which are at the core of Twitter's usefulness:
1. A Public Utility - Absolutely Public - Anyone can see what I tweet - you don't have to sign in, be a member - Just go to the site: http://twitter.com/waynemcevillyand my consciousness is there, a public, global phenomenon. I love that. If you want to respond, then you have to have your own account.
2. A Revelation of Consciousness.
3. A meeting place for people who further expand my audience base and I theirs.
4. The #Hashtag feature - When I am finished with this list. I will tweet about my #Toastmasters speech and by the addition of that pound sign to the word, all the consciousnesses who are interested in the subject will be together in one place - I get to visit them and learn from others, and perhaps they from me.
5. Lists. I love my lists. Living in Oklahoma, I have built an #Okie list -it contains the tweets of everyone I have encountered who is domiciled in Oklahoma - so when I want to see what #Oklahoma is tweeting, I visit that list and voila! all together "in one room" there they are :-)
6. Community. Such a great tool for being a part of communities of those with like interests - which leads me to:
7. Chats - groups that meet on a regular basis to discuss subjects of common interests. I like #BlogChat on Sunday nights, #SpiritChat on Sunday mornings, #LeadFromWithin chat on Tuesday evenings and specialty chats that meet such as on the birthdays of composers: "LvBchat on Dec. 17th #MozartChat on Jan. 27
8. #GoodNews - Want the good news that is happening? Twitter is your best bet.
9. Immediacy - Something big just happen? Want to know more about it? Ooooh that was a huge earthquake! Go onto twitter, voila! there you are, at the epicenter of information about it. Want to know what your local TV stations are saying about it? Well, if you're in #OKC you'll want to go to your #Okie list!
10. Links - The heart and soul of Twitter. I post a link to my latest performance on TV - tweet it out and it has the potential of reaching thousands immediately. If I use a #hashtag, it gets the attention of the group interested in the subject -
11. Reality connections. Through my tweets, I have seen real concrete stuff happen - Money donated to my local library's Friends Group in support of my library programs, garbanzo beans arriving in my mailbox from the farm in Idaho - both thrilling moments the result of tweets!
12. Twitter makes my voice as an individual as potentially powerful as your voice as a corporate entity. Wow.