About the blog

This blog is about both scientific, societal/political, and yoga-related issues - individually and considered as different aspects of the same problem/solution. A longer description is found in the first blog entry, and all old posts are found in a structured way here. The blog is an extension of my main home pages and Twitter: @gunnarcedersund

My new unplugged life

internetPosted by Jul 12, 2013 20:22

"Because of you, I'm changed, unplugged, a new man, so to speak". Agent Smith, from the Matrix reloaded.


As some of you know, I am living a life that is bi-phasic in many ways. I already wrote about how I oscillate between a travelling phase and a home-home phase. On a day-to-day basis, I - like everybody else - oscillate between sleeping and waking. But on an intermediate scale, the week scale, I oscillate between a meeting phase, and an unplanned - and now also unplugged - phase.

During the first of these phases, I have two or maybe three days a week, now during the Summer Tuesday and Wednesday, as meeting days. Then my calender is open for all, and all my students, friends, colleagues, etc, can book in times with me. This is important, because I am supervising many students, and have many collaborations, and this requirers regular meetings - and for students it is also important to have the feeling that they have an easy access to me. During these days, I just float along, and go to whichever meeting somebody has booked with me, and the only thing I care about is to feel good, so that I can inspire whomever I am talking to.

During the second of these phases, I have absolutely nothing booked in. Now this phase ranges from Thursday to Monday, i.e. 5 days in a row, and during these days my calender is completely empty. This means that my only principle is to follow my intuition, and my impulses regarding what feels like the coolest and most inspiring thing to do at this very moment. To try to sense where the most hip place seems to be for me right now. Where things could really start to happen. Or change in a way I want. And I have no plans to keep doing that a second longer than that feeling stays: the moment something else feels more exciting, I do that instead.

This freedom, in the second phase, has many advantages. First, it means that whatever I am doing - and whomever I am doing it with - will always be done immersed in inspiration. And it is from within that feeling that all good ideas flow, and it is from within that feeling that you do things on the very top of your capacity. Second, this gives a sense of freedom, and relaxation, and ease, and those feelings are very much what I am looking for in my life - much more so than any specific physical events. These are also, by inspiration and by example, the things I hope to bring into the lives of others. The standard response that people are giving nowadays, when they are asked how they are feeling is i) that they have too much to do, and ii) that they are tired. In this phase, I have nothing I need to do at any given moment. And I am only doing things at all, if I feel full of energy with which to do it: otherwise I simply go to lie down somewhere. Third, there are so many that complains, and I have too in the past complained about, that they do not have time to do the really important things. They are filling their days with unimportant details, and when they look back, they never get around to doing the really important stuff. The really fun and inspiring stuff. The things that they will truly remember and be remembered for, when all the silly details are forgotten. I am only doing these kinds of things, all the time. And fourth, I truly believe that the feeling of highest excitement, the feeling of your highest joy, is our inner guidance system telling us that we are moving towards that which we are looking for. It is the soul raising the hand when the teacher says his name, and saying "hi, that's me - and this is where I am".

The final thing I have to say - and the thing I really wanted to say today - is that I have now since about a week back taken this one step further. I am now only having my computer - including my iPhone! - at work, i.e. not at home, and not with me to any other places. In other words: outside of my office I am now just like agent Smith: unplugged. After just a week with this little experiment, my experience is so far almost exclusively positive. One of the main reasons for this - and one of the main things I hope to get out of this - is that I am now no longer going into the bad behaviours that I sometimes get caught in, and which almost always includes me sitting infront of the computer for hours, sometimes even days, doing nothing productive, and producing various types of stress and degeneration symptoms in my body. Now, I am still checking in from time to time on facebook, but it is typically just 5 min at one single time each day, while at work, and I have no longer a way of getting stuck for hours and hours without end watching stupid TV-series, in an endless escape-cycling from life.

Instead, I am nowadays unplugged, roaming around in the world, as people did before: watching the things around me, talking to the people I am encountering, and being present in the physical world. This also gives a wonderful sense of vacation, even though I am still officially working. When I leave the office, I have no idea if somebody wants to contact me, I have no way of doing things I might feel a bad conscience about. In fact, I don't even know what time it is! ^^

So: if you want to contact me, I will probably not answer directly, but with an approximately 24h delay. Unless you knock on the door to my home, or meet me be chance in real life :)

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Do you react or do you create?

internetPosted by Apr 08, 2013 06:44

This is my yoga desk, which is one of the many things that I can make appear on the empty floor, which makes up my yoga studio. The desk is simply a wodden plate, which I put on top of two speakers; but for me it is better than all other desks I have tested. In this place, I can sit in a medition pose while working, which means that my body is thriving, that my back is straight, and that ideas flow more easily. On top of the desk, you see my favorite, most inspiring item: an empty piece of paper. I think so, because I know that my empty piece of paper is the same empty paper as Mozart used when he wrote his operas, and the same piece of paper as Bach had in front of him when he started to write his Matthew Passion. I think so, because an empty piece of paper is like an empty space: and because true creations only appear into the void.


I want to expand a little bit upon what I said yesterday, about morning strategies, how to use the internet without loosing yourself, etc.

First of all, I want to say that I do think that the Internet is a marvellous invention. In my worldview series, I have introduced the concept of a multi-level Universe, where there may exist so-called super-beings, consisting of many individual beings, etc. And I do think that seeing the status reports and news items shared and discussed collectively online is a little bit like "tuning into the whispers of our collective global mind". And that is a marvellous thing. From that point of view, thinking the thoughts of others is a truly amazing thing. However, doing this unwisely does render the risk of making you an exclusively *reactive node*, in this global neural network. In other words, if all you do is to go online to see what others have done, and then react to that, you are letting them set the agenda, you are letting them set the tone of the conversation, you are letting them pick the subjects. You are then not living life on the highest level: on the creative level.

The morning strategies that I contrasted yesterday, was to either a) start the day by checking what has happened online, or b) first finishing the creation that you felt inspired to do in your morning meditation, and *then* go online. The reason why the latter strategy is so beneficial is that it makes it so much easier to act as a creative being. You then start with yourself, with the tone that comes to you from your own inner inspiration - from your own direct access to the global mind! In deep meditation, as in deep sleep, you reach a point of no thoughts. You reach a place that can be described as a sort of empty space, an empty mental space. And into that space, true inspiration is born. Into that space, the kind of thoughts that are genial appears. The kind of thoughts that finds solutions where everybody else just sees problems. The kind of thoughts that make others revel, and wonder "how on earth did you come up with that?". Into that space, true creations are born. And if you bring thoughts with you out from that space, out into the world, and out into the Internet, you bring a completely new kind of vibration into the mix. A vibration that really can make a difference: also for the global mind, and also for our global and shared problems.

In a way, the differences between a reactive strategy, and creative strategy may seem subtle. After all, they are the same word, except for a "c" that has been placed differently. But that "c" is all the difference. Or, to borrow from Neale Donald Walsch: "when you 'c' things correctly - then you truly see!".

I live my life so that I sleep when I am tired, and wake up when I am no longer tired. In the last few days, this has meant that I have woken up around 2AM, or even earlier. This has the benefit that you can see the sun go up. This is the view from my "yoga office".

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Whose thoughts are you thinking? Morning strategies concerning Internet

internetPosted by Apr 07, 2013 05:02
A few days ago, I said that I would explain why I then hadn't posted anything here for some days in a separate post. Here is that explanation.

Let me first just explain what had happened in those days. After I woke up, I had had a good start initially: I had kept lying in bed, to let my awareness naturally re-adjust itself into being in my body again; I had felt the inspiration come to this body; and this had resulted in me wanting to write something, perhaps on my blog, or on some scientific paper. So far, an excellent start. Never do anything unless you feel really inspired to. However, what I did then was to start the computer, and then log in to facebook, to see what had happened during the night. And then I saw all sorts of status-updates, links to interesting and not-so-interesting texts - which I browsed through, and went to some of the links, to follow up some of the seemingly most interesting links. And, without really noticing it, my original purpose had gone astray, and I had gotten sidetracked into all sorts of other lines-of-thoughts. Even more, many of these links described all sorts of problems going on in the society, which I got more-or-less upset about. And even though this might have resulted in me re-posting some of these links on my own page (and thus fulfilling one of my - in my veiw - obligations as a citizen: to spread important ideas), this had taken quite some time, perhaps 2-3 hours. And, worst of all, I didn't feel inspired anymore. I instead felt a bit stressed about not having done anything real yet. I knew that I perhaps could get back to the original inspiration with some work, but it felt far away. And the situation was not the same now as then: now I soon would have to go and get some food. And if I now spent the time to go back to the original inspiration, only to write a stupid blog post, almost half the day would have gone by without me actually doing anything. In short, I was in a bad place, and the once seemingly really inspired idea had been lost and turned into a bad start.

Now, let's diagnose this process a bit, before I turn to my new and more functional morning strategy.

The main problem with going online, and into social networks, news outlets, etc, is that you are being presented to a wide and quite diverse set of thoughts in a short period of time. Thoughts that are not your own, but others'. Most of those thoughts are pretty far away from your original vibrational set-point, but when you see the texts/titles/pictures you have no choice but to think the corresponding thoughts. The second, related, problem is that thoughts in internet are very linked to each other, so that it is very easy to attract more thoughts of the same character. In other words, the law of attraction is very prominent online, because you are dealing with easy-moving thoughts, and not physical objects (which have a much higher "inertia"). This does not have to be a problem, but it does mean that you are more likely to "spiral away" into tangents, by clicking on some link, which leads to other links, comments, etc. The final point of diagnosis has to do with a big topic: loss of body awareness.

When you are online, you are less likely to remember the feelings in your body while working at the computer. This is because Internet is a sort of virtual reality, where your body isn't necessary (except for your fingers which are writing without you really thinking about it). This loss of body-awareness is almost always a problem, no matter what the situation: in fact, I think that the degree to which you are present in your body is one of the most reliable parameter for how good you feel, and a 2h yoga-program can actually be seen as a 2h journey back to a sound body-awareness. One of the reasons for this importance, and which is prominent when you are online, is that if you are feeling bad, you are not really in a natural position to do something about it. Your body all the time tells you how you are feeling, including the goodness/badness of your current thought, but when you are focusing on the virtual reality of the Internet, you are less likely to use that feeling to adjust your state. You will typically not start to move your body to feel better, or to stretch out tensed muscles, and you will even less likely listen to your body's signals telling you if your current thought is good for you or not. Instead, it is quite easy and common to be online, feeling bad, and to project that bad-feeling to whatever is going on online. I think that this mechanism is one important and seldom mentioned reason why internet hatred is so prominent. It is so easy to come to a bad-feeling place online, and to stop using your normal regulatory systems for getting back to a good-feeling place again.

In any case, let me come back to my new strategy, which I am currently experimenting with. I am still starting the day as before: lying in bed, adjusting, feeling the inspiration come (perhaps aided by some morning yoga or meditation), whereafter I then - and only then - start to go out into life. However, now in this new strategy I am not turning on the internet. In other words, now when I am writing these words, I am writing them in a text editor, and after I am finished here, I will as the first thing I do online, post this text. In other words, I will only think my own thoughts for a much longer time. After that start, I then go on in whatever way I feel like. But I then do that with the base-feeling of already having done something, of being in a wonderful day of inspired action. And that feeling of control, that feeling of being behind the wheels, is almost the definition of feeling good.

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Copyright vs internet: a new deadline, a new opportunity

internetPosted by Feb 24, 2013 21:53

Evolution of ideas usually happens in leaps, when things come to confrontations, deadlines, judgements, votes, etc. Now there is a new such deadline approaching: the lobby for major copyright holders threatens to sue the individuals in the Swedish Pirate Party, if they do not stop acting as servers for the pirate bay. The deadline for their reply is February 26, i.e. tomorrow!

I do not have time to write a full analysis of this situation, but I anyway want to contribute to bringing some thoughts and opinions from my side

* I think that the current copyright laws that we have are outdated, and that they absolutely must change, i.e. become updated to the Information Age.

* I think that a system as a whole benefits from sharing of information, and that copyright by principle therefore is to be moved away from.

* I even more think that the current system, where the copyright lobby make insanely huge law suits on individuals who are in various ways involved in this transformation must stop! Such threats, which often mean that they go outside the law, or make use of the law in unfair ways - by e.g. making use of their advantage of driving hugely expensive law suit trials, which individuals have no chance of countering - are pathological symptoms of a system that is dying. Let's stop these - and let's foster the birth of a new system!

* I think that this fostering is helped by the development of concrete suggestions of alternatives to the copyright. We must produce realistic alternatives, which fulfills all relevant aspects of the equation: compensation for those who produce works that now are protected by today's version of copyright, ways to introduce such new compensations in a country-by-country fashion. We must also spread the fact that copyright often is counter-productive to what one think that it is there to help: the possibility to make money out of your ideas. Here I think that works of the Pirate Party representatives, like the recent book and ongoing blog posts by Rick Falkvinge and colleagues are very important. But more people must start discussing them, spreading them.

* This obligation to discuss and spread these transformative ideas about new alternatives lies on all our shoulders. And althought it is a good idea to use important deadlines as a way to gather momentum and achieve a more focused energy - we cannot only do these efforts at those occassions. This must be an ongoing process!

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The epic battle currently culminating over internet. Stop CISPA now!

internetPosted by Apr 18, 2012 14:38

We are right now in a very fascinating time, where I think an epic battle is reaching its most important climax. The fight is the same one as the one in which all other celebrated humans have thought: who should have the freedom, rights, and powers in our society, the people or the ruling elite?

Right now the fight is over these rights and freedoms and powers regarding the internet. We have in the last few months, at least won (or at least substantially improved) 2 major major battles on this: PIPA/SOPA and ACTA. Now here comes one more, which might be even more important than the others. Let's show them that we will throw down any attempt they throw at as regarding dismanteling the internet user rights. Then let's throw down those from power who attempts doing these laws. And then let's use our new awesome people power to - at last - bring a little bit of common sense into the ruling of this world. And bring on all the other changes that we all know must take place in the years and decades ahead.

Wouldn't it be cool if we could look back at 2012 some 30 years from now, and think that: "2012 was the year when we won the battle for internet, and that lead to all the other amazing rapid improvements that we have seen since then." I truly and profoundly believe that this could be the case, but I equally strongly believe that this is not the only possible future that we could move towards. Who makes the difference regarding which one you end up in? Only you! And this petition is a way of making that choice!

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Whispers of the global mind

internetPosted by Mar 25, 2012 23:51

I just found a new book on how and why the Internet and all the mobile connections we have to each other nowadays bring us a sense of connection we are longing for. We lost this connection when our families became mobile little units moving from city to city, and we miss it now more than ever when the over-populated cities and fear-mongering media makes virtual strangers of all of us. Therefore, if the units themselves break down in bitter divorces, we feel more disconnected and alone than ever. But...the internet (at least partially) restores that, and not only on the little tribal scale, but all the way up to the global scale, to the global identity that we are so sorely lacking an awareness of, and which lack is creating our extreme unresonsibility for our global actions.

The book also seems, despite some historical and scientific underpinnings, to be fairly poetically written, which is another mixture I appreciate a lot. For instance:

"The mobile has become the visible manifestation of the emotions evoked by our connections. Although, unlike the tendrils of the Pandorans, they have not burrowed their way beneath into our biology, we carry our mobiles everywhere. We use them to link with one another, consult the spirits of the ancestors (through their writings), and, as we watch feeds and updates scroll by, tune into the whispers of the global mind. We may imagine ourselves separate, but we yearn to link with all, dissolving in a sea of love."

...tune into the whispers of the global mind...I love it! :)

(incidentally, I wrote a poem myself on a similar theme a few weeks ago)

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Poem about the Internet

internetPosted by Mar 23, 2012 22:52
As you might already know, I am writing poetry since some years back. I have basically finished a first cycle, even though it isn't published yet. A few weeks ago, I got the inspiration to start on a second cycle. It is an idea I had a long time, but for which I haven't felt ready until now. But now when I finally have gotten started, things have flowed out of me rather effortlessly: I have now written about 10 one-page poems, which brings me a little bit more than half-way. The idea is to write these poems in the same style, and as a sequel to "The Prophet", by Kahlil Gibran, which is my favourite cycle of all. In this cycle Almustafa comes back, and talks about the new things, possibilities and challenges that have appeared since his last visit. The first poem I wrote, and which I think will be the first one in the ultimate cycle is the following one, on the joys but also limitations of the Internet.

And a computer hacker stepped forward and said: “Speak to us about the Internet”

Through the web, you can get a taste of the world of oneness to which you all long.

Because you all long for a place where all your friends are but a thought away, and where the action of one of you is experienced by the lot of you.

You long for a place of connection with others that you always can bring, wherever you go.

And you long for a joint place of Reason, to help you exchange and evolve ideas - freely and maturedly - for the betterment of mankind.

All of these things, and more, Internet can bring you.

But be aware, because this fulfills only half of your longing. And just like virtual food is unable to satisfy the hungry stomach, you can never use the Internet to dance, and your virtual friends can only numb, but not truly satisfy that deepest loneliness calling on you from within your heart.

Although time and space in Internet has collapsed into one point, this collapse is not complete until you bring in the Outer and Inner worlds therein as well.

Be therefore sure to balance the virtual Matrix with the joys of the outer world, and with the exploration of the Inner Matrix, wherein still resides that Point wherein all things reside.

And just like the addict alcoholic keeps looking for relief where he found it once, but where he now only moves away from it, you too run the risk of looking to deep in a place that then brings you out of balance and away from your body and away from your soul.

Therefore, when your virtual drinking buddies knock on your door late at night, ask yourself deeply if this is what you really want, and then enjoy - without shame! - your chosen universe, and your chosen nightly adventures.

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Using the Internet to counteract warmongering with love

internetPosted by Mar 23, 2012 01:20
Yesterday I wrote about attacks on the internet and our right to be anonymous therein. Today let's have a look at an example of why it is so important to fight for that right.

As you probably know, Isreal's, US', and Iran's leaders are all in war-mongering mode. All the things that led up to the Iraq war are repeating themselves. "We have to attack now, before it's too late, and they have weapens of mass-destruction that will destroy us", etc etc. (speaking of that, here and here are some interesting and enlightening segments on alternative views on this war-mongering at the Daily Show, with Jon Stewart - a show I can truly recommend). This is a recipe that has been well developed, and tested and perfected over the years. And if it would succeed also this time, I think we are in some dire straits, because Iran, unlike Iraq and Afgahnistan, and all other recent war-enemies, has the ability to strike back. However, there is a new ingredience in the mix this time, that weren't there just a few years ago: the internet, and all social medias.

One example of this is the campaign that has just started, which is called "we love you". It features ordinary citizen in both Iran and Isreal who post youtube-clips, facebook-images, and all other versions where they show in one way or another: i) who they are, and that they are just ordinary people, ii) that they have no intention whatsoever to start a war, iii) that they too want to balance the war-mongering with love.

Here is a very simple such clip, but which I think is very sweet. War is never allowed if a war-mentality is not present. With the internet, we the people have a completely different power to help create this mentality - a mentality that we want - also on the societal level.

That's one of the reasons why it is so absolutely important that we fight for our ability to use internet freely, and anonymously. In Iran, internet is much controlled and surveilled, and for Iranians, posting also these kind of links with no other message than love is a dangerous undertaking. That's one of the reasons why the Iranian posts rarely have images of whole faces.