Greetings, friends, associates, and fellow seekers of peace around the world!
It is said that to achieve the satori, one must divorce one’s self from desire. A good Buddhist monk wants nothing, and receives only what is offered to him.
This represents a problem because my readers are always sending me special treats in the mail, such as Anton in Holland who sent me the marvelous “Bubbleganic”, replete with orange and purple hairs, crusty, resin-soaked nodules and the like. I have gotten off the subject just thinking of that wonderful gift! What I mean to say is that as I frequently check the mailbox to see what new presents have arrived, I allow desire to take hold. And this is not good.
So last month I made a very serious resolution: I would have Arturo, my friendly 80 year-old neighbor, bring me my mail from our shared post box. Arturo has lived in the area for years, and although my Spanish is not the best, we manage to communicate nearly every day about the weather and many other things I don’t really understand. With the new arrangement, I only receive what is given to me, and do not need to check my mail box 2 or 3 times per day when my supplies are running low. This gives me more time to take long, meditative walks around my property concentrating on nothingness and the lack of desire.
At the beginning of my new arrangement, I was very pleased to have Arturo hand me a small package from Sub Pop records. Inside was what has become my favorite album of the year– All Night Radio’s Spirit Stereo Frequency. Arturo started talking about something, smiling in his shy way, and I laughed and said “Si Mi Amigo!” When he left I meditated for about an hour before listening to the record.
Dave Scher and Jimi Hey of All Night Radio
What an experience! Spirit Stereo Frequency is a melodic trip through some of my favorite strains of rock DNA: Glam, British Invasion, Pyschedelia, and Experimental. But that sounds like a music geek, and I am just a humble American Buddhist monk. In truth, this album just makes me feel happy and alive, as it uses so many different elements (Mars vocals, Moon guitars, Venus Keyboards, Milky Way drums) to create a universe of its own. From the opening song I felt as though I was Major Tom and not just Ground Control, floating in a tin spacecraft through time and space.
What is so impressive about this album to me is how effortless the whole thing seems. The harmonies sound organic and spontaneous, the melodies sound like they’ve been around since the dawn of time. But the polish and production, the melding of so many different elements reminds you that this album is a masterpiece that didn’t just get beamed down from the Sun and other stars.
At that moment I was reminded of the Koan: One moon shows in every pool; in every pool, the one moon.
As I pressed play for the 3rd time on my Discman, I produced from deep within the folds of my robe a small bong nicknamed Basho. The bowl was empty so I looked into my stash box but it was empty as well! How strange, I didn’t remember draining it so soon. Then I realized that Arturo had not brought any magic packages from my fans around the world in quite a while, which was odd.
I put my headphones back on and meditated for a few more minutes but desire to see the pool from the moon was strong and I could not fight it, so I walked down towards the mailbox and Arturo’s cottage. Finding the mailbox bare, I knocked on Arturo’s door. He and his 26 year old bottle blonde wife Jackie were laughing like hyenas and holding a joint the size of a baby’s arm. I joined them with merriment and glee, and put the All Night Radio CD into their stereo, sure it would last us all night.
A quote from Basho reverberated in my head as Arturo and Jackie grooved to the beats: Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the men of old; seek what they sought.
MP3: Daylight til Dawn