Everything gets better when you change yourself on the inside.

Hey, are you feeling the heat?
Not just the heat waves (though there’s plenty of that too).
But tension…

STRESS.

Even depression.
It’s more common now than ever before, and for a lot of reasons (even besides the obvious).
The thing about stress, depression, or just plain “feeling bad” is that it takes EVERYTHING from you.

Health goes down…
motivation wipes out…
and charisma shrinks until you’re not so fun to be around.

That’s why if you want to have the best success in every area of your life…

…you’ll want to get happy right now.

The problem with trying to chase “good feelings” is this:
It almost always pushes you to “fake it til you make it” or do something to escape your life.

Put a plastic smile on your face all day… or go take a few shots of whiskey and watch Netflix.

Neither will work for most people.
What I want is for you to smile naturally BECAUSE you feel good.
And I want you to enjoy those shots of whiskey and TV if it’s in genuine celebration of a life you love.
That’s why I’m so psyched for something called the New Happiness Code.
It’s a way to “get happy” I’ve never seen before.
You don’t need willpower… or anything good in your life happening at all.

You don’t have to learn anything or do endless meditations or affirmations.
What do you get once you have this in your life?

Well, everything picks up automatically.

You get luckier…
people want to spend time with you…
…sickness and injuries just seem to go away on their own (this baffles doctors!).

And yes, you end up with a healthier bank account too.
Everything gets better when you change yourself on the inside.

— Spam

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Sie Ruhten in Netzen von Spinnen

Traum von einem Seminar, in dem das Vermächtnis eines im Südpazifik verschollenen Naturphilosophen besprochen wurde. Wir rüsteten auch eine Expedition aus, um nach ihm zu forschen, das Klima war südamerikanisch, tropisch, eine Regenwaldinsel mit orangenen Äffchen, die so winzig waren, dass sie sich morgens in den Netzen von Spinnen ausruhten und dort die Tautropfen von den Fäden tranken.

Der Klassenraum und das seltsam enge Verhältnis zu dem Dozenten, große Folianten, die aufgeschlagen auf den winzigen Stuhl-Tischen lagen, dann wieder wateten wir durch ein Flussbett, das nur niedriges Wasser führte und die Zweige waren voll mit rosanen Papageien; einige trugen Spitzhacken bei sich, aber unser Guide wies sie an, sie zurück zu lassen, eh wir die Boote bestiegen und wir weinten beinah, weil das bedeutete, dass wir die Insel nie wieder betreten würden. Als wir mit den Booten ans Festland gelangten, war unsere Fahrt noch nicht vorbei: Die Einwohner begegneten uns mit Misstrauen, sie schlossen ihre Läden vor uns, als wir in eine Art Basar kamen.

(Vielleicht war es auch ein Komponist, aber von seiner Lehre oder von seinen Werken war kaum noch etwas überliefert)

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HAHAHAHA!

Anomie is our condition, Anomia is our curse, Anomaly is our profession. Or to put it another way: our scabrous individuality consists of trying to name our condition.

— e.m. cioran fall into time

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Imaginary Economy

How does photography serve to legitimate and normalise existing power relationships? How does it serve as the voice of authority, while simultaneously claiming to constitute a token of exchange between equal  partners? What havens and temporary escapes from the realm of necessity are provided by photographic means? What resistances are encouraged and strengthened? How is historical and social memory preserved, transformed, restricted and obliterated by photographs? What futures are promised; what futures are forgotten? In the broadest sent, these questions concern the ways  in which photography constructs an imaginary economy. 

— Alan Sekula, “Photography between Labour and Capital”(1983)

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Vague Clues

Gilman’s room was of good size but queerly irregular shape; the north wall slanting perceptibly inward from the outer to the inner end, while the low ceiling slanted gently downward in the same direction. Aside from an obvious rat-hole and the signs of other stopped-up ones, there was no access—nor any appearance of a former avenue of access—to the space which must have existed between the slanting wall and the straight outer wall on the house’s north side, though a view from the exterior shewed where a window had been boarded up at a very remote date. The loft above the ceiling—which must have had a slanting floor—was likewise inaccessible. When Gilman climbed up a ladder to the cobwebbed level loft above the rest of the attic he found vestiges of a bygone aperture tightly and heavily covered with ancient planking and secured by the stout wooden pegs common in colonial carpentry. No amount of persuasion, however, could induce the stolid landlord to let him investigate either of these two closed spaces.

As time wore along, his absorption in the irregular wall and ceiling of his room increased; for he began to read into the odd angles a mathematical significance which seemed to offer vague clues regarding their purpose. Old Keziah, he reflected, might have had excellent reasons for living in a room with peculiar angles; for was it not through certain angles that she claimed to have gone outside the boundaries of the world of space we know? His interest gradually veered away from the unplumbed voids beyond the slanting surfaces, since it now appeared that the purpose of those surfaces concerned the side he was already on.

— H.P. Lovecraft: Dreams in the Witch House

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Murderers of the Real

At stake will have always been the murderous power of images, murderers of the real, murderers of their own model, as the Byzantine icons could be those of the divine identity. To this murderous power is opposed that of representations as a dialectical power, the visible and intelligible mediation of the Real. All western faith and good faith became engaged in this wager on representation: that a sign could refer to the depth of meaning, that a sign could be exchanged for meaning and that something could guarantee this exchange – God of course. But what if God himself can be simulated, that is to say, can be reduced to the signs that constitute faith? Then the whole system becomes weightless, it is no longer itself anything but a gigantic simulacrum – not unreal, but a simulacrum, that is to say never exchanged for the real  but exchanged for itself, in an uninterrupted circuit without reference or circumference. 

— Jean Baudrillard, Simulation and Simulacra

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A Sunset

A sunset: 78%, a landscape: 76%, a little girl playing with a cat: 56%, a woman breast-feeding: 54%, a folk dance: 46%, a weaver at work: 39%, a famous monument: 27%, a first communion: 26%, a snake: 20%, a rope 16%, a metal frame: 15%, cabbages: 12%, a butcher’s stall: 9%… a car accident: 1%

— Pierre Bourdieu, What makes a beautiful photograph? (the numbers in brackets represent the percentage of subjects who considered that these objects could produce a beautiful photograph): From: “The Social Definition Of Photography” in: Photography, A Middle Brow Art

There is something depressing about this Bourdieu-Quote: That beauty is not much more than a set of visual clichés, enforced and perpetuated by systems of power to conserve the (visual) status quo. 

But then there is also a glimmer of hope in that: Once  we accept that beauty is the result of of a social negotiation and not something handed down to us by the gods and reflects who we are as much as who we want to be as a society, this also means we can change what we perceive as beautiful. 

Suddenly, a picture of a woman that does not have an endangering eating disorder can be seen as beautiful, food that is real and actually carries the dirt of the earth it comes  from can be seen as yummy, and the picture of two men kissing, instead of being seen as an abomination, can be seen as an extension of what love can actually mean.

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