Archive for the ‘Love’ Category

Cruisin’

Posted: 04/21/2012 in Happiness, Karma, Love

I have sure lost track of time these last few months and I don’t even remember the last time I posted on this here weblog. I’ve been grinding away at work, makin’ that paper and spending any time I can with my girl and hanging with my son on the weekends. The good thing is, even though there is sort of a routine day-to-day, it really doesn’t feel like it. I don’t feel bored and stagnant any longer, like I have in the past.

I will admit I haven’t spent much time on the cushion lately. OK, OK, you got me, I’ve meditated maybe twice since last year. I sometimes read (right now it’s Rebel Buddha by that rockstar Ponlop), but meditation has taken a backseat. When I first started this journey, I think I used mediation as an escape from the stress of the bullshit that was happening in my life. Now things are just going so well since I met this woman, the cruise control is just engaged and I’m enjoying life. I will sit when my head feels cloudy. Am I “doing it wrong?” Dunno…

Good things are happening: the divorce is almost complete, waiting for the judge to sign off on it. I just paid off my truck this morning. Work is going really well and I’m on the right track for advancement. The best part of all is that I met someone who I truly believe is my soul mate. Yeah, it sounds cliche’, but whatever. No woman I’ve been with has ever made me feel as good about myself as she does. Yes, I’ve been in love before, but not like this. I’m just bummed it took 35 years, but at least I will get to spend the next 35+ years with her and her rad daughter.

I guess this is an update entry, stream of consciousness, really. I’m alive, just enjoying waking up every morning and actually looking forward to what the day brings. I missed that feeling.

Later!

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Falling To Pieces

Posted: 06/13/2011 in Inspiration, Love, Metal, Music

A few months back I wrote a post about some recent deaths of musicians in our local metal community. One of those fallen musicians was Nicci D. of the bay area band Falling To Pieces. I know it’s been a rough few months for the band, yet they are strong dudes, I know this for a fact. Before Nicci’s death, they had been in pre-production for their new album. Well, in their own words, here’s what they did:

 In October of 2010, Falling to Pieces began pre-production on our 3rd album. Working hard and tracking rough song ideas and vocals, we were shaping up some of our best songs to date. On November 6, 2010 our singer Nicina “Nicci D.” Acevedo was taken from us in a tragic motorcycle accident. Without hesitation we knew what we had to do. We decided to honor Nicci by going forward and finishing the album we had started with her. After tracking all of the songs in the studio, we then took her scratch vocals from pre-production and lined them up with the new recordings. We then reached out to some of Nicci’s favorite friends, local musicians and peers to guest spot on the album and without hesitation, people responded. We poured our hearts and souls into this album and backed up by some of Nicci’s favorite local and national artists, we can only hope that this album puts a smile on her face and allows her memory and legacy to echo on into eternity. Of all the albums any of us have ever been a part of… this is the one we are all most proud of.
Nicci – Even though we will never get to perform these songs live with you at the helm, we know that you will be with us for every note we play from this day forward. You will always be missed, never forgotten, and with your strength we will carry on to accomplish what we started with you. We dedicate this album to the loving memory of Nicci D. You are forever in our hearts and I hope we’ve made you proud. We love you kiddo! See you on the other side.

I am looking forward to getting my hands on this. You can hear some teasers of the new tunes here:

To be honest, I’m still torn up about Nicci’s passing. Nick, Kimo, Ruxton, and Scott…love you guys. Thanks for honoring Nicci’s memory by blessing us with this album.

On Being a Man

Posted: 05/28/2011 in Compassion, Inspiration, Love

I found this story on Art Of Manliness, which is one of my favorite sites. I will admit, I had to go find a tissue after watching this. I don’t have a lot to say about it, other than it is the best example of being a hero.

This man gave his life to alleviate serious injury or death to his wife. I feel compassion for her in that she lost the love of her life and what she has to deal with now, but at least she can know she had someone who loved her to the depths of his core, and not only could say it, but proved it. Don Lansaw was a true man. Safe travels, sir.

The video would not embed, so you will have to click the link.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/3032619/#43174546

Metta is Metal

Posted: 07/06/2010 in Compassion, Love, Metal, Music

**Edit: This is the first of a series of posts I am attempting about how Buddhism is Metal.**

Since I began my practice less than a year ago, I have been contemplating the connection between Heavy Metal and Buddhism and wondering if it is even possible. I have been asked how I can even consider being a Buddhist while continuing to “be metal.” On the surface, Heavy Metal – the music and the identity – seem to be polar opposite of the principles of Buddhism. However, I believe there is indeed a connection between metal and metta, or loving-kindness, and I would like to share a few examples.

An outsider looking in would view the violent lyrics and aggression portrayed at metal concerts as the opposite of the love and compassion that Buddhists strive to exude. But if those that have that judgment spent any time in a moshpit, they would find a great example of compassion that happens there. Yes, there are guys and girls that are violently thrashing into each other (and unfortunately with the advent of hardcore dancing, throwing punches and karate kicks), and pushing each other around. But every single pit I have been in, if someone falls, there are two or three people there to pick the person up, dust them off,  and then get right back to it. If that is not a display of compassion or metta, then I may not understand the definitions. Usually the band playing will even instruct the crowd to “take care of each other out there, we don’t want anyone hurt.” You see, heavy metal fans are a brotherhood. They take care of each other in the pit, they buy tickets to concerts when their friends cannot afford them (case in point: I’m looking at the ticket to Slayer my friend bought me), and when they see another metalhead wearing a band shirt, a connection is made and they end up discussing favorite albums, songs and similar bands. I don’t really want to get into the discussion of lyrics, because I’m a guitar player, not a vocalist and have never paid much attention to them. My point here has more to do with heavy metal as a whole, not just one factor such as lyrics.

Another great example is something I read about one of my heroes, Darrell “Dimebag” Abbott of Pantera fame, and I will try to remember the details and sum it up here because it’s an awesome example of loving-kindness. A few years ago, Dime did an autograph signing in a music store. There was this young kid that came up with his dad to get an autograph and had told Dime he wanted to be a guitar player just like him. After talking to him, Dime took the store manager off to the side and told him to have the boy and his dad hang out for a while. Long story short, when he had signed all the autographs he told the kid to pick out any guitar in the store he wanted and Dime would buy it. I still get choked up when I think of that story, because that is true metta. Here’s a guy who has sold millions of albums and toured the world with one of the most hardcore of hardcore metal bands, and yet he displays metta in such a heartwarming way. That’s just one story of many from that guy, a true metalhead, a rockstar, yet full of metta and no ego.

Here’s another example of the metta displayed in this community of metalheads, and it is from my own experience. Another of my guitar heroes is Zakk Wylde, who played with Ozzy Osbourne for years and has his own band Black Label Society. A couple years ago, Zakk did an acoustic tour at the Hard Rock Cafe, and stopped into our local radio station. I have a friend who works for the station and I was invited to go to the show but had no idea what was in store. I met my friend at the station and not knowing Zakk was still there, followed my buddy right into the conference room where Zakk was giving a guitar lesson to a contest winner, so I had the pleasure of watching that from across the table and just being there was the coolest thing ever. Even though his tour manager and the station manager were chomping at the bit to get going, I got a couple minutes to meet him. I happened to be wearing a Pantera t-shirt, and instead of just shaking hands, this guy grabbed me in a full-on bear hug. We shared a couple quick words about our love for Dime (they were best friends), snapped a couple pictures together, got an autograph, hugged again, and they rushed him off.

These are just a few examples of how I believe a metalhead can be a Buddhist, regardless of the violent stigma attached to heavy metal music and those in the metal community. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this issue, as there may be other connections I have missed, and I would even like to hear if you think I’m wrong.

Metal metta to you! \m/