I have a hang over. It’s the fault of those dang Nepalese! I didn’t have that much wine; I think it was the apple tobacco. Or perhaps it was the time warp to 2063 B.S.? (No, that’s not what you think, it’s Bikram Sambat.) (Which may or may not be the same as the Vikram calendar, which describes the four eras of Hindi temporality.)
Supposedly the flavored tobacco smoked through a hookah is a traditional fixture among folks gathering just to chat. I smoked more than the last time (and I’m not a smoker). The truth is, I’m no longer in my twenties, or even early thirties! Can’t party so hearty anymore. sigh I had to leave before the promised 4 am meatballs and music.
I reacquainted myself with now Dr. Alenka, Jake, and a few other occasional bowlers as well as folks I tend to see only at these soirees. I had a great conversation with Suvas (whose field of study so shocked me I’ve completely blanked it from memory) and Dinesh (who mostly eavesdropped) about limits to consciousness. We reflected on the universal (!) human fact that we are all raised in environments with norms for talking and conceptualizing the world that become a kind of mental boundary. And then, somehow, some people choose to leave that environment (most stay) and encounter new ways of talking and conceptualizing the world. And then various accommodations occur along a continuum of refusal/denial of difference (a kind of entrenchment, eh?), resistance to changing one’s cognitive boundaries, to versions of acceptance and change up to and (for some) including conversion.
There’s a challenge for those of us who “leave” in dealing with those who “stay”, because we have to figure out how to interact with them on the basis of the boundaries they’ve got without pity or judgment. It reminds me of the conversation I had earlier in the day with one of the Tent State organizers. We briefly touched on the question of “too much” vs “not enough” structure. I’m hoping to explore the question somewhat (during TSU) from the angle of group relations theory.
I digress. 🙂
Only Luscious had a clue regarding the originary event for the Nepali calendar. There are no references to a virgin bleeding to death in any of the sites I searched. (I think he made it up.) And there’s our other recently anointed Dr. who had strange visions at a pollen tube dissertation defense. And a couple of (strange) Russians attending from Mars.
I did not neglect a poll regarding affairs of state in Nepal. The King as a symbolic figurehead was supported by two of the three victims of my un-party-like curiosity. His present actions are deplored by all. An interview by Amy Goodman yesterday emphasized the necessity of recognizing the country’s Maoists. I was assured that Nepal’s Maoists are “very different” from Chairman Mao’s Maoists.
All intellectualizing aside, I’m most grateful to Afry for his suggestion of miso soup as a medical treatment.