El Paso Murals

El Paso murals of Segundo Barrio. Click here for a map of the locations of these murals. Such fine examples of Chicano art, laden with the struggles, beauty, culture and heritage of the border region. Also laden with massive amounts of occult symbolism. Check out the true meaning of the cross

This next mural I really like. Notice the infinity symbol, meant to signify the interconnectedness of everything and also to show that time is not really linear as we experience it, except to those of us on this plane of low-vibratory existence. Notice the divine goddess, or sacred feminine entity sharing cosmic, infinite consciousness with the young girl. Or, maybe it’s an exchange or knowledge or the young girl is exhaling cosmic consciousness and the goddess is blessing it.

Comandanta Ramona from the EZLN, los Zapatistas. More political than symbolic, I hope everyone wakes up and takes a firm stance supporting the indigenous peoples of the world. I believe that the powers that be, the white (possibly alien) hands behind the scenes trying to rule the world for centuries have made a concentrated effort to extinguish the indigenous peoples of the world in an effort to ultimately extinguish their knowledge: of our true origins, about “star people”, that we are all connected, the holographic nature of the universe, the truth of plant spirit medicine and our relation to a living earth and all the smaller spirit beings connected to her.

More from the sacred feminine, divine goddess, mother earth here represented as a tree person, shown here sharing her light, the halo behind her head a long-used symbol used to denote that this is an enlightened being. I first noticed this in the art of the byzantine era, as seen in the art at the Haghia Sophia in Istanbul, Turkey. The halo, which now is depicted as a weird little gold ring atop the heads of Jesus and Saints, was originally a disk behind their heads to show their attainment of spiritual illumination.

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Holi Festival in the Hill Country

Big K and I rolling through the twists and curves of the Texas Hill Country. The sky was grey, cloud shapes and depth marked by the dark bulges of precipitation. A soft pitter-patter that made me put on my wipers on the lowest setting. Turned off the road to the Radha Madhav Dham Hindu.

Walking up to the main area, a rumble in our bellies, we went straight for the food lines. We got our tickets and and went straight towards food. We circled the aromatic comestibles like hungry wolves circling a flock of sheep. Drooling, long tongues hanging out, eyes wide. We got kebab, Dhosas, Pakoras, and Chai or Mango Lassi to drink.

Walking around, there was multi-colored powder on the tiled floor near parking lot. We thought we missed part the Holi festival. A vendor said we didn’t miss anything, and to wait for the people praying inside of the temple to file out. We hung back and a family appeared to our right and smeared some powder our faces and atop our heads.

We make our way to the outdoor stage area and the procession began. A band started playing. Tambourines shaking, drums rolling, brass horns of various sizes buzzing and honking. A crowd formed to the left. A few people handed out or threw what must have been hundreds of bags of multicolor powder. Once everyone had several bags, everyone waited for the cue. The cue came, and everyone seemed to burst into powder. Clouds of red, orange, yellow, blue, green and purple exploding, the powder suspended in air. Colorful lack of visibility. I imagined that the air on Jupiter must look like that. The powder got everywhere. In my ears, eyes, hair, and in my mouth because I was laughing. It was bitter and tasted horrid. The band played feverishly, holding a high tempo for long periods of time. At intervals the whole crowd would shout something that sounded like “Holi hands!!!” We danced and threw powder and shouted for what seemed like hours. I took a few photos with an Olympus film camera I bought for $5 at Goodwill. Some Indian gentlemen started a congo line. I felt elated and was reminded of being back in India, a country I came to love. There were circles of people dancing Bollywood-style. Then the bags of powder started running out.

Exhausted, both of us a mess. Creatures baked under a multicolored crust. I lined my car with old clothes I had in my trunk so we wouldn’t color the upholstery. And we drove off, exhausted into the drizzling day.

I had never attended Holi. I know the University of Austin holds one. But I especially liked this one, out in the beautiful Hill Country, and at a very beautiful temple. There were many people of all ages and it was very welcoming, the food was bomb, and it was a great time. I highly recommend it if you are around Austin in the late winter.

Honk! TX

Honk! TX

How refreshing to have a second line in Austin. I don’t visit my former home New Orleans as often as I’d like. We walked, they made music. We would cross the street en masse. The large crowd only getting halfway through the crosswalk before the light would turn green. Yuppies in fancy cars fuming that we were blocking their green light. Fuckin’ yuppies. I realized then people don’t use that word anymore. Minor Mishap Marching band would play, then the Brazilian percussionists. A wave of music sloshing back and forth between the styles. Tidal tunes. We would stop at certain spots, form an amoebic semi-circle and dance. My favorite was when they played Do What You Wanna, a very NOLA song by Kermit Ruffins if my memory serves me. We made our way around to venue 3TEN where the second line started. Dozens of musicians packed on the waist-high stage. We danced some more, everything bathed in multi-colored light. Blues and purples. Can’t beat brass. So much fun. Cute girl holding the Minor Mishap flag too.

Honk! TX

 

Honk! TX

Honk! TX

Honk! TX

Honk! TX

Winter Solstice Parade

Minor Mishap Marching Band

“Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today, to get through this thing called life..” started the event. Over 100 souls gathered. We sang Prince, Starman – Bowie, Hallelujah – Leonard Cohen, artists we lost in 2016. Costumes abounded, Christmasy devils, fairies, turtles and whatchamacallits. Lanterns of all makes, un-shapes and non-sizes. Minor Mishap Marching Band led the parade. After the singing came the brass.  The throaty tubas, the bellowing trombones, the trill of trumpets all in attendance. The gentle melodic wheezing of an elusive accordion. Some walked, some danced, some pranced and skipped. We made our way around the band, with them, sometimes in front of them. There were so many they spread out amongst the mobile crowd. Here and there one would stop to let their brass speak to us. We stopped, we walked, we stopped some more. The whole conglomerate of musicians a huge badass amoeba of talent.  Extending here, ebbing there. Advancing. A group reminiscient of the brass bands of New Orleans. Though these dames and gents put a singular Austiny flavor in their craft no doubt. Some sounds at some turns even seem to nod to the Romani. An orchestra of dance. A procession of wind and arm powered sound. This is how many of us Austinites chose to welcome in the winter.

Winter Solstice Parade

Minor Mishap Marching Band