Originally posted for the 2009 Marginalia show at MTS Gallery.
this is a excerpt from last part of book, Siddharta, by Herman Hesse-
“Slower, he walked along in his thoughts and asked himself: “But what is this, what you have sought to learn from teachings and from teachers, and what they, who have taught you much, were still unable to teach you?” And he found: “It was the self, the purpose and essence of which I sought to learn. It was the self, I wanted to free myself from, which I sought to overcome. But I was not able to overcome it, could only deceive it, could only flee from it, only hide from it. Truly, no thing in this world has kept my thoughts thus busy, as this my very own self, this mystery of me being alive, of me being one and being separated and isolated from all others, of me being Siddhartha! And there is no thing in this world I know less about than about me, about Siddhartha!”
Which is similar in narrative to last part of Jammes’ book- the hare facing his own death, and the very reality of death in relation to the philisophical and spiritual inquiry that only life and the body allow.
I have used hare and rabbit imagery a lot in my own practice- in a very specific manner- to both veil and narrate personal tales, of sexuality, cycles, and death, and social inquiries of implicate meaning and order.
There is a big difference in working and in understanding; between illustrating an idea and being the idea.
A hare is not a hare.
It is only at a hare’s death that one may look closely at its fur, whiskers, nostrils, and glazing eyes.
Otherwise it exists only in moment/distance/mind’s eye
A hare is everything that is not hare.
A hare is hare-ness.
Where does hare start and end?
“History is best remembered when condensed into myth.”
- Arthur Danto
I have been listening to Podcasts from the Australian Buddhist society. They are spoken every Friday night by this monk named Ajahn Brahm. He talks about all kinds of things like patience and procrastination and love and reincarnation. And in one talk a story came up about a Franciscan monk who was the height of selflessness. So this monk ( having taken a vow of poverty) would walk around the city in his robe with an empty bowl. But one day a beggar told the monk he was cold and asked him for his robe. So the monk undressed, gave the beggar his robe and returned to the monastery naked. At first they sent him away thinking he was a pervert, and then they recognized him and allowed him back in. He explained what had happened, they gave him a new robe and the next day came. Well, at the end of the next day the monk came back naked again. So this happened three or four days in a row. It was clear that this monk was becoming known as a sucker, so the abbot called the monk into his office and has a stern talk with him. He told him that charity is good, but to be such a dummy.Their robes were bought by parishoners, who themselves weren't rich, and that he shouldn't be so foolish. So the lecture went on for a good hour until it was apparent that the monk understood. So he left the abbots office and within a few minutes came a knock on the door. When the abbot opened it, there was the same monk standing with a bowl of hot soup. He told the abbot that he had brought it for him because he wanted to soothe his throat that must be dry from yelling at him for the last hour......... So this story illustrated the ultimate kindness and conciliatory nature of the monk. Even after being scolded for an entire hour, all he could think about was how the abbot had worn out his throat. Anna Raupp
A recent string of posts initiated by Kayla Spaan focus on mythical hares, the most famous of which being the Jackalope.
While reading about these creatures I found a common thread, one that extends beyond these monster hares.
The desire to explain what was once seen as magic through science and medicine.
The best example being the Jackalope itself. No longer an elusive hybrid between a hare and antelope, but the sad result of an often fatal disease. The Shope papilloma virus is a type I virus possessing a nonsegmented dsDNA genome. It infects rabbits and hares, causing keratinous carcinomas, typically on or near the animal’s head. These tumors can become large enough that they interfere with the host’s ability to eat, eventually causing starvation.
This desire to demystify does not limit itself to fairy tales and folklore. Scientists have explanations for religious miracles as well,including the stigmata of Saint Francis of Assisi.
The following was taken from Wikipedia's entry on Stigmata:
From the records of St. Francis’ physical ailments and symptoms modern doctors believe they know what health problems plagued the holy man. Doctors believe that he had an eye ailment known as trachoma, but also had quartan malaria. Quartan malaria causes the liver, spleen, and stomach to be infected causing the victim intense pain. One complication of quartan malaria occasionally seen around Francis’ time period is known as purpura. Purpura is a purple hemorrhage of blood into the skin. Purpuras usually occur symmetrically, which means each hand and foot would have been affected equally. If this were the case of St. Francis he would have been afflicted by ecchymoses, an exceedingly large purpura. The purple spots of blood may have been punctured while in the wilderness and therefore appear as an open wound like that of Christ’s. This is not historically supported, only a speculation by some present day physicians.
The following photographs taken by Rachel Weber.
...one of the books that I was reading this winter, just side by side with Le Roman Du Lievre was a proper new age book that really freaked my square. It really did, I just got sucked into another dimension as I read it. It is called "Path of Empowerment; Pleidian Wisdom for a world in Chaos" and was written by this woman who has been channeling for these multidimensional beings since 1988. They, the Pleidians are beneficent beings that have come to inform us about a very accelerated energy that is currently affecting our world. From 1988 through 2012, we are experience an increase in energy thousands times what has come before. With an awareness of this, we can harness that energy to serve the evolution of humanity and heal and exist on multiple planes of reality simultaneously, but if we don't change our patterns, the effects will be that much worse. This was the first New Age book I have ever read. I made copius notes too. I found it compelling, useful and slightly repellent. The author is not writing, but simply channeling this message from this multidimensional beings. In a sense one of the distinguishing features of Saint Francis was that he could communicate with non-human beings. He opened up a channel within himself where he could speak with birds and wolves. I guess the difference is is that those creatures are of this planet and Pleidians are from another planet. But is a saint still of this planet? When we conceive of higher consciousness does that look like verticality? We say that heaven is in the sky. Really? Or is this our best conceptual framework for states of expanded awareness? What makes someone able to be a channel for God or Pleidians or animals or art?
laden with love and bursting-ness....
- Emily Noelle Lambert
A drawing and a Linolium block print from Florence Boyd.
It was my plan this weekend to film Sarah Bowerman as St Francis and theHare, in the Botanical Gardens at Kew.
Unfortunately Sarah went to the dentist on Friday and has very bad toothache today, so we can't film after all. In the meantime here's someone else's photograph of Kew.