• kiss your friends' faces more

    “kiss your friends' faces more / destroy the belief that intimacy must be reserved for monogamous relationships / be more loving / embrace platonic intimacy / embrace vulnerability / use emotionality as a radical tactic against a society which teaches you that emotions are a sign of weakness / tell more people you care about them / hold their hands / tell others you are proud of them / offer support readily / take care of the people around you”

    —Lora Mathis
  • Brilliant Level Design: To The Right, Hold On Tight

    An excellent breakdown of the brilliant level design of Super Mario Bros. World 1-1, which teaches players almost every crucial rule for the game within the first two frames:

    “the big question of level design – and i mean that every level design lesson i ever write will be a response to this question – is: how do i teach the player these rules? an unfortunate trend in contemporary games is to spell out every detail in a hand-holding “tutorial” session at the outset of a game – unfortunate because it shows both a great deal of contempt for the player’s intuition and a lack of confidence in the designer’s own design. but more than that, it’s a design failure because it tells the player the rules instead of allowing her to learn them.

    what if the first level of the game were laid out in such a way that the player could learn the rules simply by playing through it, without needing to be told them outright?”

    Check out the whole essay, by Auntie Pixelante (via the Wayback Machine, since her site is now defunct).

  • Judgement Is The Glue That Keeps The Illusion Locked In To Place

    “...the whole persona complex includes your moral principles. Ethics and social mores are internalized as part of the persona order, and [Carl] Jung tells us that you must take that lightly, too. Just remember, Adam and Eve fell when they learned the difference between good and evil. So the way to get back is not to know the difference. That's an obvious lesson, but it's not one that's very clearly preached from pulpits. Yet Christ told his disciples, “Judge not, that ye be not judged.” You judge according to your persona context, and you will be judged in terms of it. Unless you can learn to look beyond the local dictates of what is right and what is wrong, you're not a complete human being. You’re just a part of that particular social order.”

    —Joseph Campbell, Pathways to Bliss

    When you judge someone, you're not just affirming that they're “wrong”, but you're also affirming that there is wrong. And you're also affirming that they're not infinite, which follows that you're not infinite because you're also affirming that you're separate (or that there is such a thing as separation). Judging people for being wrong, also affirms the same wrong inside you. Instead, by not judging and forgiving all, you see people as Christ/Buddha/Self, which means so are you.

    Simply put, judgment is an affirmation that you want more judgement, which means you are affirming and strengthening the ego. The ego is what keeps the illusion locked in place.

  • A room where no one was afraid to speak

    I came across this incredible quote in the Guardian about Danny Boyle directing the opening ceremony for the London Olympics:

    “Danny created a room where no one was afraid to speak, no one had to stick to their own specialism, no one was afraid of sounding stupid or talking out of turn. He restored us to the people we were before we made career choices — to when we were just wondering.”

    I also found this article at The Intentional Workplace that asks how he and his team managed to pull off the spectacle, and importantly distills it into five lessons for intentional leadership and healthy, happy collaboration. Lesson 1 is “Assemble the People You Believe In & Maximize their Freedom”

    Lesson 2 is “You Can’t Truly Succeed Unless You are Willing to Take Real Risks”:

    Anyone who has seen the way bureaucracy — in government, in the fearful corridors of corporate America — eviscerates originality, seeks comfort in consensus, and hides behind the fear of even the most benign level of risk-taking to quash even the most tepid examples of boldness — has to marvel at the miracles of intact survival that Danny Boyle’s conjuration represents.”

    Lesson 5 is “Be Gracious. Be Grateful.”:

    If you’re a leader, your reputation precedes you. And as the saying goes, they’ll remember how you made them feel. That’s what stands out in Danny Boyles’ experiences with people at every level. One volunteer described, “He’s the most down to earth person you could imagine. He chats to everyone. He’s not just on the sidelines waiting for people to come up to him. He actually mingles with people and starts conversations with them.

    Read the rest of the article: Team Danny Boyle: 5 Lessons in Leadership

  • It's butterflies all the way down

    When Ed Lorenz, who was studying weather systems at MIT in the 1960s, plotted the changes of all the variables in his chaotic weather simulator as points in an imaginary "state space", he discovered an image appear over time — what he called a "strange attractor," and which looked strikingly like a butterfly.

    He also inadvertently discovered fractals. An attractor is called strange if it has a fractal pattern. In other words, the butterfly attractor when magnified infinitely, still produces orderly patterns all the way down.

    Conclusion: It's butterflies all the way down.

  • The Universe Is a Green Dragon

    (a nice review I came across for Brian Swimme’s charming and profound book, The Universe Is a Green Dragon: A Cosmic Creation Story):

    “The universe continues to unfold, continues to reveal itself to itself through human awareness”. Simply stated, Swimme’s premise is that “the universe is a single multiform event. There is no such thing as a disconnected thing. Each thing emerged from the primeval fireball, and nothing can remove the primordial link this establishes with every other thing in the universe, no matter how distant”. The same dynamics that forged the fireball and the trillions of stars are also at work within us. We are dragon fire.

    “The universe is enchantment”, and Swimme’s profound book is liberating. As the universe unfolds, it demands our response: “Do we awake, dedicating ourselves to a vision of beauty worthy of our fire’s origin?”.