Sunday, January 01, 2012

Suggested Viewing -- I AM: I'll bet you are wondering as I did what is I Am. “I Am” was shown on Oprah’s OWN network this afternoon. It is a documentary by Tom Shadyak former extraordinarily successful comedy writer for the comedic greats such as Jim Carey, Eddie Murphy and Robin Williams. Shadyak’s life was reversed in a nanosecond by a bicycle accident which left him with a severe concussion, fractures and many difficult long-lasting post-concussive aftereffects.

I suspect one could think about the title "I Am" as I did metaphorically. Moses, as the tale is told, confronted God from a burning bush on the mountain of Sinai in the age old from-slavery-to freedom story in the Old Testament book of Exodus. He asked God when he came upon Him "Who shall I tell the people you are and who has sent me?" A voice told him: "Tell them I Am that I Am, tell them I Am has sent you." The film relates to the awe inspiring interconnectedness of all humanity and humanity’s affect on our universe. He uses science to reinforce some of his uncovered truths. This film is a search for that which connects us all which has profound effects on every other living thing and even on the universe itself.

He ultimately asks the questions most of us ask in our lifetime trying to discover the meaning of it all and why so much seemingly has gone so wrong. He went on his own world-wide journey asking those questions of some great sages and also asks them what we can do to fix it.

The conversations he had with a variety of people such as the late Howard Zinn, Noam Chomsky, Desmond Tutu, scientists and many others had a profound impact on even a curmudgeonly skeptic like me. I hope if you view it, it will do the same for you. Perhaps, we can even talk about it some day.

I post the link to it below.
Twitter, Twitter Little NON Star: I strongly agree with Joan Venocchi's Sunday, January 1, 2012 Boston Globe editorial "Twitter, Twitter, on the wall" (linked below.) I tried to get into Twitter several times to understand its concept and its rules. When contemplating an issue I typed over the 140 character limit by about 10,000 characters I knew it was at the top of my list of those things reflecting our culture that drive me berserk.

McDonald's has been, until now, my symbolic prototype for the nation's addiction to instant gratification and a mirror-reflecting example of much that I believe is wrong in our land. Twitter, perhaps, now is taking its place at the apex of my list as the number one detestable computerized example of exactly who we are and how repugnant it is. Twitter is utterly devoid of substance on issues that often need encyclopedic discussion. America, in particular, has no time for that with its attention span lasting at best 10 minutes, its historical memory lasting maybe 20, and its need to watch Kim Kardashian's wedding (or is it divorce) above listening to Yo Yo Ma at Symphony Hall.

How did so many of us get so vapid, vacuous and, well, just plain dumb? When one's life is devoted to not just saying but needing to say "Justin Beber's hair was out of whack and so is mine" instead of reading and discussing in depth the relevance of Dickens's "Hard Times" or Tolstoy's "War and Peace, or the content of Ron Suskind's book "Confidence Men" then I feel blessed that I missed entering this earth in, as Dickens's Tale of Two Cities might contend, the worst of all possible times -- the era of stupid!