Category Archives: Zen

Project, Week 1


Books (Photo credit: henry…)

It’s been so damn hard to start my “read or create” project. Until this morning, I had no idea what to do this week. Moreover, I’ve had a “no computer” weekend, so I’ve only been using my brand new tablet and my phone. So, this morning, while having my morning coffee, I decided to buy some new e-books. And I chose one of them for today. “Zen Wrapped in Karma Dipped in Chocolate: A Trip Through Death, Sex, Divorce, and Spiritual Celebrity in Search of the True Dharma” by Brad Warner.

I’ve read (and I own) BW’s first book, “Hardcore Zen: Punk Rock, Monster Movies & the Truth About Reality” that is a half biography, half introduction-to-zen kind of book. And I absolutely love it as it’s a down-to-earth book about what zen is and what it is not.

Zen Wrapped… is actually BW’s third book. I deliberately skipped the second one as after some research, I decided it’s not really for me. Zen Wrapped is more like ‘what happened after I wrote my first book’ kind of a story. In short, the “moral of the story is”: ‘Even if BW is a so-called zen master who has done zen for twenty years, he still does stupid mistakes in his every-day life, thinks life is hard sometimes and worries a bit too much’.

Also, I bumped into two things that are close to my heart (heavy metal and Doctor Who) and one movie that I intend to watch this summer (Rashomon). Well, first, Randy Blythe, the vocalist for Lamb of God is into zen, too, so it was only natural for Brad to meet him. (Besides, “Redneck” by LoG is one of the metal songs recorded in the 2000s). And no, BW didn’t compare the Tardis  to the human mind (because the Tardis is “bigger on the inside”) but just mentioned the famous theme song of Doctor Who. If I was superstitious or religious, I would call these things “divine coincidences”. But they are just fine examples of how small the world is. Well, the world of entertainment, anyway.

Still, I’m slightly disappointed at the book. After the mind-blowing Hardcore Zen, this one was just ok. Nothing new, Who really cares who he has fallen in love with or how much he has f*cked them? There’s nothing wrong with sex, but I just thought that the very short sex scenes could have been written because the masculine side of BW wanted to boast “hey, check this out, I just had a lot of sex!” :D. But well, BW is sometimes a controversial character and nothing like a traditional, stereotypical zen master. He’s just a stupid human being like all of us.

I’d say this is good for those who have already read Hardcore Zen and now think “now what?” and “what has happened to Brad Warner ever since?” So: if you haven’t read Hardcore Zen yet, read it. Or not.

Now Playing: Witherscape – The Inheritance



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End of July, New Project…


creativity (Photo credit: Sean MacEntee)

It’s the end of July and as always, the summer is almost gone. They always pass us by so quickly. Even though it’s not very zen, letting summer go is kind of frustrating. This is basically because for most Finns, summer is the best season. Well, sometimes it is too hot and there is too much light, but for the most part, it is better than winter that is usually cold and dark.

It’s actually worrying about the end of summer because I’ve only had the first half of my summer holiday. The second part will start in about 2½ weeks. I really don’t want to be someone who worries about the past and the future and that’s why forgets to live in the here-and-now. I’ve been like that practically all my life and I’m starting to get rid of it.

English: Signed Painting of a Girl Reading A B...

English: Signed Painting of a Girl Reading A Book by Emma Eilers (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

But in the end, no matter how “zen” I get, there is one question that puzzles me. Is it true that the older you get, the harder the relationships become? When I was young, they were easy. “Boy meets girl, boy likes girl and girl likes boy, boy and girl fall in love” and so on… There was no doubt, hesitation, emotional locks or other things like that. Could it be that I’ve changed so much during the years? And I am the only man ever to think about things this silly as this? Well, f**k it, I don’t care :D.

So much for the stupid complaining. Damn, I’m a grown man, you know. Today is the first day of my new two-part project. By “two-part” I mean it has daily tasks as well as weekly tasks. The daily tasks are simple: physical exercise (jogging etc.) for 20 minutes + meditation for 20 minutes every day. The weekly tasks are probably going to be a bit more complicated: writing a short story, reading a book or writing a new song every week. Or perhaps something else that is creative and “constructive”, so to say.

Creativity intention plate

Creativity intention plate (Photo credit: Pilisa)

Why this project? Many reasons, many reasons. First, I want to expand my creativity and imagination. Playing in a band (and writing songs for it) for twenty years is quite safe, even though Eternal Tears of Sorrow has always been an experimenting band in a way. We’ve always wanted to try new things. Still, doing something new and creative every week could be very refreshing.

Also, I want more routines in my life. I’m not a fan of routines but they could make my life a bit easier. It could give me the space to concentrate on more important things.

But tonight, I’ll keep planning this new project. I need a list of books I’m going to read during the next, say twelve months. Actually, I don’t know how long this project should last. Twelve months sounds ok, though.

So, I’ll write how the project starts. Well, I hope but you never know. I’ll try my best, I know that. Now: the sauna, some meditation and planning. Sounds like a plan! Or more like: sounds like planning a plan!


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