Monday, April 30, 2012

A rose by any other name would do more

At a company photo shoot, my dance director had me to try on a black, straight wig. She loved it on me. "This can be your alter ego. You need a name... Maya!"
I was surprised. "That's the name my dad wanted for me," I told her. My parents agreed on my mom's choice, though.  My real first name means Helper or Defender of Man (Greek, alexo) and my last name is rabbity. Hmm...

But back to Maya. I'd deleted my original facebook before moving to NY (and it felt amazing!) but needed to create an account for promo and communication purposes. A lot of the NY belly dancers that do gigs like us have handles like Sarah Bellydance. I had another name on there for a while but it was kinda tedious for a stage name so I wanted to change it. Maya Alexis spoke to me after the photo shoot. 

A few weeks after changing it, I was reading my Sync Book and discovered how syncy Maya is. The Maya people and their culture, the Mother of Buddha, Illusion, Goddess of Dreams. That's heavy. Dad's into studying Eastern religions/philosophies so it makes sense.

Queen Maya and Buddha

 In the 10th grade I wrote a paper about how in Dead Poet's Society the characters used alternate names which allowed them to do bolder things than normal. In some mythologies to know/speak a deity's name invokes magic power over them. Isis & Ra.
Why do we use stage/pen names when we don't really have to? Yes, there are creepers and haters and sensitive family members. But, we should believe in what we're doing enough to be proud of it as ourselves.

Renaming gets rid of some of our ego stuff. The baggage. It's still there, but it's also not. In other words, it gives us a perception of distance from all our social identity traits like race, education, job, and all the history of our past.  The stories we tell ourselves about our Self.
Psychological experiments show that when you decrease sense of personal identity (ex by wearing a uniform), we are more likely to behave immorally (ex stealing candy, soldiers torturing). When you increase self-identity (wearing a name tag, your own clothes, being in front of a mirror), we are more likely to behave in socially-approved ways.  But this isn't about good and evil. It's just about getting to that space where freedom from judgement exists within your mind. It promotes divergent thinking aka creativity.

One of the hot topics in psychology these days is flow (wiki - flow). Basically, it's where, under certain conditions, You get lost in your work. All you are concentrating on is what you're doing, not how it will make you look. If you can get here while creating or problem-solving, you're golden. It gets you through that phase where you're viewing your painting thinking "This is CRAP!" and want to throw it across the room. No. You gotta keep goin'! Changing your name, even if temporarily or jokingly, can facilitate this process.

So, who are you when you meditate or have a Jill Bolte Taylor stroke experience or use substances or get lost in your work or change your name or discover syncs? When you get back from your la-la land, what do you do to improve humanity? The answer's a work in progress, for all of us, until we die. Make it good!

Monday, April 23, 2012


Hey, so my college is a Kabbalistic Tree of Life.

The College of William and Mary
Williamsburg, VA

Old and Ancient Campus are flanked by Jamestown and Richmond Roads, which are main roads in Williamsburg. Jamestown Road goes to Jamestown, VA, and Richmond Road goes to Richmond, VA. I know, it makes no sense. Anyway, east of the Tree, divided by Boundary Street, is Colonial Williamsburg (aka CW), the restored historical town of yesteryear complete with everything from the Capitol Building, Courthouse, shoemaker, Magazine, taverns, gardens, baby lambs in spring, horses, oxen, wooden stocks, jail, windmill, apothecary, and actors in colonial garb. Duke of Glocester Street (aka DOG Street - Siriusly.) bisects the corner perpendicularly.

There's a statue of the 4th Baron Botetourt in front of the Wren Building, a Brit who served as the Governor of VA. There is a paragraph on it basically saying how cool he was to leave his country to come here and make everyone happy. His successor, the 5th Baron Botetourt, was Grand Master of the Freemasons.

The Wren Building is the oldest academic building in continuous use in the US. It used to be the entire college - dorms, classrooms, offices. The Wren Chapel is still used today. I read a passage in my friend's wedding there. The Wren Cross controversy made national headlines.  (The college president at the time removed the cross to make the space more inclusive, but he had to resign after conservatives withheld millions in funding over it.)

Tiferet: At first when the idea popped in that WM was a Tree, I thought, "There is no building in the Sunken Garden." But then I realized that these steps are in the right place. They allow you to look over the whole Sunken Garden at once - a unified view. And it is beautiful.

The Sunken Garden basically functions like a quad - people lay out here, study, play frisbee, have protests, memorials, and dances here. 

How awesome is it that the Philosophy department is at the Chokhmah Sefirot? I didn't really think to include this when I drew my map (I love maps! (just saying)), but there is an echo spot here. All you gotta do is stand in the Tyler garden (three busts of Tyler men), face the western wall of James Blair Hall, and speak. It's spooky-cool.

Deter: There is an arc on this spot, described by a fence. The ground below it drops down into the woody, leafy dell. I really like that it changes to nature here. It's a nice quiet spot.
There are some benches in the clearing and a path that leads to the Crim Dell Bridge.


Before students graduate, campus tradition is that they must complete the WM Triathlon:

1) Jump the Governor's Palace wall in CW after hours, and go through the hedge maze (amusing labyrinth). Seven VA governors lived in the palace, including the Baron Botetourt, plus founding fathers Patrick Henry and Thomas Jefferson.

next, you giggle your drunken way up DOG Street, through Ancient Campus, disrobe, and
2) Streak across the Sunken Garden
3) Swim in the Crim Dell (baptism/mikvah/purification process?)

It's interesting that the Tree that inspired this discovery is located at the end of the Oregon Trail, where this one connects (via Jamestown Road) to the first permanent English settlement by "gentlemen" entrepreneurs and is in the colonial capital of VA.

The end connects to the beginning.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Boat Shows Blanket

Get What You Want.

One of the steps to getting what you want is asking for it from a place of sincerity, but you have to be willing to receive a "no." It may also manifest itself in a different way than you imagined. Oh yeah, and put forth the necessary earthly effort. Gratitude for what you do have at this present moment helps, too, I think.

I wanted to go on a cruise ship for work. The contracts are long (6-12 months), but the pay is steady and you can have a lot of fun and travel. There are certain assertive things you can do to book the gig, like going to consecutive auditions for the same company, if you are really sure you want the job. I went to a few cattle calls, but I had an internal conflict about it, since I am in love with my City. I asked the universe about getting the cruise ship job.

You never know when you'll get your answer, but if you're paying attention you'll experience it.  

 Of a sudden, I was booked for some shows on boats in NY. Gah - I was struck! Thank you Universe! You are awe-inspiring. I'm sure a positive-intentioned magick token in my possession doesn't hurt either. I hadn't considered that as the weather warmed, people have events on those vessels that sail  the Hudson for a panoramic evening of sparkle motion. I even told my director about the situation excitedly - "I never thought... that is the answer!" She agreed without hesitation, "Yes, that is the answer."

Family History

On the boat, in between sets, I observed its proximity to Ellis Island. My maternal teenage great-grandparents landed there individually from an Eastern European and a Mediterranean country after their ship rides to America. Though I was born and raised on southeast VA's waters, woods, hills, and houses, my predecessors had taken a journey from the old country and ended up living in the borough above Manhattan. Public records show that great-granddad was  NYC subway mechanic. I sync on the subway all the time. My mini-cruise seems serendipitous.

My Dorothy-esque adventurousness may be related to my paternal ancestors as well. Our pioneering predecessors were early Americans from Europe hundreds of years ago, including an indentured servant at Jamestown, VA (more info -,_Virginia). My parents' childhoods were in the North and Midwest, but somehow I ended up attending Jamestown High School, mere minutes away. A different dude was a settler of Rhode Island. They moved westward at some point, hitting up several states including Kansas (ha!) and going as far as California.


I'm seeing and connect some dots. The blanket we are all a part of, à la I Heart Huckabees, is looking really comfy.

I Heart Huckabees - The Blanket Truth Clip

Grab a bit of the blankie, snuggle up, lay in the grass, ask for what you want, and breathe deep. Ahhhhhhhh.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Back to Oz

I was pleasantly surprised by a gig I got in New Jersey.

I was making plans, typing that I didn't know "when I will get back to..."  when the T9 function on my phone decided that the word I was trying to type was "my." I hit the next button, it showed "Oz," I hit next again, and it finally showed "Ny." I paused because I had just noticed the man playing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" on a subway platform a couple days before.

On my merry way, more nervous about getting to the venue way far away the actual performance, I found the NJ Transit section of Penn Station and observed the system's rainbow-esque logo. It's painted on the trains and buses:

The next thing I noticed upon exiting the train was the bright yellow painted edge of the platform. The concrete there is textured, so that you are less likely to slip and fall onto the tracks. These are in train stations everywhere, I realize, but at that moment all I could think of was the yellow brick road.

As I sauntered down the station steps to ground level, a mural spotted me. There was a country house in a grassy field with a group of people standing around the porch waving at me. Why's there a Kansas painting in that NJ train station?

I danced like an Indian pop star then wrote and ate as I waited for the train back to Oz. I thought about how I used to watch "The Wizard of Oz" daily when I was a child. About how people come to bright urban places like NYC or LA or Paris or wherever to follow their dreams. They can get buffed, shined, and spirits refreshed and/or warned to surrender. About how in my Emerald City live several close friends who are green-obsessed including Kelly, plus Mr. and Ms. Green of Midori Jade apartment. People come here looking for their personal Magic Wizard, and leave when they achieve, get sick of the negatives, see the man behind the curtain, or want to settle down, having some interesting experiences along the way.

The train arrived as scheduled, at 12:42 am. Thanks for the magic wink, universe.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Over the Rainbow and through the Rabbit Hole

The day after my little 42 sync freakout, I went to out dinner with my best friend. We went to Blockheads, a NY chain that she introduced me to one of the first times I visited. It's Mexican and they have the best (strongest) $4 frozen margaritas. It was really good to see her. When we got the bill we saw the tip was already included (weird for only 2 people, but whatever,) and the tax. We ordered about the same amount of stuff so I suggested we simply split the amount in half. It was 24.40 each. She wanted to get back to her apartment ASAP and I rode with her. The cab was 12.40.

By then I'd mentally digested the recurring sync enough to kind of be used to it. The problem was the lack of context. When I talked to Mr. Green the night before, he suggested that I reflect back later because a pattern might emerge. He gave an example off the top of his head that it was something about Home, since that's when I always see it.

Well, I was on the way home from rehearsal yesterday, when I noticed for this mosaic mural for first time in the 50th St (1) station:

Uptown (1) to 242nd St Platform 
Mad Hatter and White Rabbit

and this:

There are 4 murals of Alice in Wonderland, down here in the underworld.

Downtown Platform to South Ferry

Oh! and I can't leave out that while I was taking photos, an old man was playing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" on trombone. It probably didn't help that I've been reading Kevin Halcott's Sync Book chapter, which explores the aforementioned elements, along with the rainbow bridge. It'd fit with the Home theme, too, since Dorothy was just trying to get back to Kansas.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

My White Rabbit and a Spring Sync Attack

This is Big Bunny Hopkins. He was a good guy. I usually revisit this photo at this time each year.

How was your first day of spring? I called up the Greens because I had a synch attack.

(If I had some sweet Photoshop skills I would display a person ducking from flying spiral sinks...)

Anyway, I was well-aware that it was the equinox and first day of spring because the Sync Book Press released its second book, Accidental Initiations: In The Kabbalistic Tree Of Olympia by Andras Jones. More info here - Happy Creatures or here - Accidental Initiations 2 I'm sure it's really interesting, and I'm excited to read it, once I finish The Sync Book.

The weather gods over NY were also aware of the season. It was 67, sunny and bright. I had worked the night before and was paid in part by this:

Can we just pause right here? I just want to say how crazy I feel already, simply by taking a photo of a $20 that somebody wrote "24" on. Who does that??

Okay so moving along. My plan for the day was to run a really important but frustrating errand (DMV uuuugh), then I was going to go home. I tried but it didn't work out and I wanted to take advantage of the pleasant weather instead of waiting in line for hours so I walked to Bryant Park, stopping only for mango yogurt gelato. I passed MegaMillions sign declaring the jackpot was up to $241 million. I read some Sync Book and chatted with one of my distant friends who happened to call then while basking in the sun's super lovely radiation. Ahhhhhhh yeah. It was nice.

Once the sun starting hiding behind skyscrapers, I went down to Union Square where there's a giant Barnes and Noble - I'd been meaning to buy a particular book for a friend for a while - and a Trader Joe's wine store. I was walking from the bathroom and right next to it I spotted a Mayan Prophecy pretty coffee table book in the bargain books section. I leafed through it, but no surprising or new info really popped up. At the December equinox this year their time system restarts. Things will shift in the world in certain ways at some point, spiritually and physically - kinda vague. I think one of my favorite bloggers, Leo Babauta of (he writes about things like simplicity, being present), summed it up this way on New Year's day via twitter: "Predictions for 2012: Change."

I picked up Men are From Mars, Women are From Venus. I read it last year and I highly recommend this book to pretty much any human being, married or single or whatever. I wish I had read it 10 years ago. The more you know... ya know? I hadn't thought about the planetary reference in sync terms before, but it crossed my mind then. Thoughts?

 I was very hungry so I bought a giant pretzel off the street and the vendor called me his habibi. I felt super worldly knowing what that means. Then I bought $2.99 wine from Trader Joe's.

On the way home it got weird. I took the subway from where I was and transferred trains via 42nd Street as is often necessary, no big deal. I was on the (1) train, which I live off of. I noticed a girl that looked exactly like a friend I used to work with, and who I'd unexpectedly run into a few days before. I said her name a few times but it wasn't her. Then I noticed the individual car I was riding in had been labeled number 2413. Of course.

I decided to get off a stop early so that I could go to the best grocery store in the neighborhood. Stepping out of the car I looked up to see the hanging exit signs that direct you. This particular subway line, unlike most, has electronic boards hanging as well, that tell you how long you it will be until the next train arrives. The direction of the train is indicated by its endpoint. I glanced at the schedule board while looking for the exit and for the first time, after having ridden this train home essentially every night for 3 months, I realized that (1) ends at 242 St in the Bronx. It is heavy, but this was a major turning point in my perception of my perceptions. 

I made my way towards the store and noticed "124 Alex Deli" with a phone number ending in "0214." Curious on what I was supposed to do and feeling my gut/intuition tense/excited, I went to the deli. I didn't know why I was there so I asked for Junior Mints, my current favorite candy, especially when intoxicated. I get them at the deli near the corner by my apartment sometimes. This place didn't have any so I thought of something else I might be there for but they didn't have lotto tickets either. 

I was feeling strangely anxious at this point and kind of wondering what the deal was. I thought, "What are you trying to tell me?!" But all I got were a several more incidences of related number combinations. I was freaking out internally. Yes, you can "scientifically" explain this shift by saying that I was focusing my attention on finding 42s. But why at this particular point in time? And are there really always that many that I don't notice? Like when I walk around on the street every day - even earlier that day? I've never done a hallucinogenic drug but my change in perception/energy focus was similar to what I imagine such an experience to be like on a smaller scale. Or maybe a better comparison is to an anxiety attack, but somehow without the negativity? That's contradictory.

Finally it subsided as I continued walking. I was relieved but intrigued. I've had other syncs that I'd like to share but this one has come on so strong that I had to tell you about it.
Interpretations to come.

Good morning,

Monday, March 19, 2012

Sunday, March 18, 2012


A short time ago, I silently asked the universe a question, hoping for the answer to appear within the next few days or weeks, possibly to be interpreted through some symbolic medium.

"What am I supposed to be doing (with my life) right now?"

The immediate answer I received was a clear thought: Exactly what you are doing.


Friday, March 16, 2012

Start Syncing

My introduction to synchronicity occurred with the history of psychology. I was a psych major in college, but somehow I had started studying it in high school. I suppose this came from feeling different. I liked reading books, was quiet, went to dance class, and was simply really good friends with a select few of my peers instead of whoring my way into controlling the HS social scene. Whatever the reason, I found myself research and stumbled upon Carl Jung and his mysterious ideas. The archetypes seemed pretty obvious once you thought about it. We chronicled them in 9th grade English class via Star Wars and The Odyssey. Synchronicity included those odd coincidences that happened to all of us without explanation. Everything has a dark side, and if you pretend it doesn't it will bite you in the ass. Okay. I didn't think too much more about sync until talking with the Greens and the release of the Sync Book and its Sync Event.

In January 2012 I started reading The Sync Book at Editor Green's apartment while taking care of the Greens' feisty cat. While proud and happy for my friend, I didn't spend too much mental energy on it other than feeling that it was cool and that I liked thinking about it more than I liked thinking about conspiracy theories. I participated in the Sync Event as an audience member and as the randomly chosen final Radio8Ball guest. Maybe in the future I'll delve into that, but suffice to say I was initiated into the sync family. Since then I've read the HappyCreatures blog posts, many the blogs it follows, and listened to some 42 Minutes radio shows.

The number 42? Had I even seen the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy? Nope. But after being notified of if its (perceived) significance, I noticed it, absolutely, strangely. Without cable or Netflix or a lot of expendable income, I don't watch too many television shows or movies, to be honest. True, I do live in NY, the city that never sleeps with its constant media barrage. But I'd always felt pretty skilled at hanging onto the thoughts I'd recognized as my own. Then the syncs started to hit.

I'm 24. My first home address was 204. My first NY 724... Okay, that's all mere coincidence...

I was walking to rehearsal a few days after the Sync Event, noting all of the street, building, and other printed media numbers. I started to feel a little ridiculous looking around for it so I mentally told myself, "Let it go, you are simply processing the past few days." I texted my director when I get to our rehearsal location, a very upscale building. A few of us practiced new choreography for an upcoming show, then went into the women's locker room for a costume fitting. Normally we would all just change in there but a naive nanny was oblivious to the fact that it wasn't appropriate for that old enough boy (seriously, he was like 10...) she was taking care of to be in there. Annoyed that I had to move, I grabbed my costume and went into the clean, pretty, spacious bathroom in this expensive building. I'm thinking about the show, the choreography, the music... But there it is, literally the writing on the wall: " 24" ." The only thing I've ever seen scrawled onto any surface of that building. Really? It was the last thing on my mind when I noticed it. I wondered if it meant that I am supposed to be doing what I'm doing in - living in NY and dancing.

I live in Manhattan. It is pretty f---ing expensive. Naturally, as I like to hang onto my money as long as possible, I found a good deal on a room here. The biggest problem with this room was that the ceiling leaked. Not when it rained, but somehow internally from the pipes above. I am on the 3rd floor, number 32. Guess what apartment directly above me it leaked from?

Okay, so Jupiter's number, blah blah blah, Kubrick, noticing when it is 2:04, 4:20, 7:24, 12:24, etc, Numbers stamped RIGHT OVER my name and address by FedEx (see photo)... it has to fade, right? Plenty of official psychological explanations for these phenomena - confirmation bias. It is now mid-March, and the 42s seem to have subsided. I'm on the phone telling my mom about my exciting night of dancing in a famous NYC landmark, barely even looking around me, when mid-sentence I stop upon noticing the giant orange "42" spray painted on the pavement. I paused, chuckled, and continued my story...