Honors of 2009!

On this last day of the year I am flashing my honors of 2009!

I am not sure which deeds or undeeds that made me achieve these noble honors, but somehow I must have met the requirements -
and the requirements are as follows: DoItYourself ;-)

Happy New Year!

If you can't get enough of honors, be inspired here.

Brussels Sprouts Healing Therapy

Try Brussels Sprouts Healing Therapy - it cures almost everything on Earth: pickiness, low self esteem, down grown nails, irritating neighbours, stomach rumbling, parking fines ... you name it ... it cures it!

Tree Therapy

Do you suffer from hypertension and muscular tension?
Or are you just a bit stressed up?
Then TREE THERAPY might be something for you!

International studies from Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences conclude, that subjects exposed to the sight of a green and friendly woodland scenery will relax more easily and have fewer muscular tensions as well as a lower pulse and blood pressure.
The effect is not the same if people are exposed to fields, buildings or a naked winter landscape.
And also new studies from Rochester University reveals that nature makes us more compassionate and gives us a sense of being in contact with our authentic selves.

Yes, sure, yes - I love spending time sitting on a tree stump alone in wildish nature (as long as my stomach is full, I am not soaking wet and no wolves, brown bears, bugs or maniacs are bothering me) - but I wonder if it applies to all - I have noticed that many young urbans don't seem to appreciate nature the same way. On contrary they seem to get bored and stressed out at once when being exposed to nature out there for REAL. I wonder if these kind of young people are included in the studies ....
And I recall passages from Eating, What we eat and why it matters by Peter Singer addressing how we are getting more and more used to artificial meat, artificial vegetables etc. - which means we can no longer distinguish properly between "nature" and nature - in fact the majority prefer "nature" to nature nowadays.
Danish author Keld Hansen is similarly writing about how we are getting more and more accustomed to "forests", which in fact does not deserve the title "forest" but should rather be called "intensively cultivated plantations".
So I personally question the deeper values, when we go green to beat the blues and are opting for nature therapy, eco therapy, wilderness therapy, healing gardens, green therapy or you name it ......
In a way we have still chosen the artificial in favour of the natural.
But no doubt, the longing for the lost wilderness is present and has to be taken seriously - the most simple step is to go out there in the nearest woody thing, called a forest or not, and find one's own NATURAL place ...while it's still there and for free... and start d r e a m i n g.

Curious Cocoon

Once I used to go to cathedrals or art museums to get a sense of awe and wonder. Now I go to natural history museums (... or occasionally I go to the source itself: nature).

However, after having read Stuffed Animals & Pickled Heads: The Culture and Evolution of Natural History Museums I cannot enter a natural history museum without being very much aware of the overall focus and ideology behind that particular museum's display.

I have just returned from visiting the newly opened Darwin Centre at Natural History Museum, London - and here there is no doubt: the underlying paradigme is evolution and the focus is on evolution and on education about science and scientist's work.

The means are new interactive media and an architecture - the Cocoon - that attemps to turn the museum inside out and reveal what's going on backstage.

Scientists are displayed "live" and their personal (natural) (hi)stories are told - stories about curiosity and about excitement of exploring. And important stories about how their research play a significant role in wider society.
The viewer also get glimpses of the enormous collection of plants, animals, minerals and fossil specimens stored in the cocoon.

Overall - I can highly recommend visiting the place if you would like to know more about (y)OUR (natural hi)story.

Yes, Darwin is everywhere (we are in London, not in Paris :-)). His theory is - a theory - but indeed the best one we have had to date to explain the process how it all came about - but as I have written previously, I still cannot see why we can't all party together. Let the Carnival of Evolution join the creationists, the ID'ers and the indifferent in a topsyturvy polyphonic Bakhtinian carnival.
For Bakhtin, truth is not a statement, a sentence or a phrase. Instead, truth is a number of mutually addressed, albeit contradictory and logically inconsistent, statements. Truth needs a multitude of carrying voices. It cannot be held within a single mind, it also cannot be expressed by “a single mouth.” The polyphonic truth requires many simultaneous voices.
So let's meet in awe and wonder and celebrate the beauty and complexity of life on Earth! Because at the end of the day - what DO we know?

Wild Woman

This summer I came across a book series called The Ringing Cedars of Russia. It is written by a Russian businessman - now turned spiritual writer and businessman (over 10 million copies sold in 20 languages!) - and is about his acquaintance with a young Russian woman, Anastasia who lives as a recluse in the depths of the Siberian Taiga.
In some respects the series reminds me of the books by Carlos Castaneda about his encounter with the Mexican shaman don Juan Matus. But somehow this Russian series is even further away from "normal" reality, and personally I don't buy most of the content.
However, I picked bits here and there that I liked - and what I REALly do like is, that it seems to have inspired loads of people all over the world, particularly in Siberia, to create their own eco-villages and to becoming aware of the power of plants, especially the power of homegrown plants.
I am already preparing my garden in order to be ready for spring and a journey into The Secret Teachings of Plants.

Natural History no. 13

It's troll time!!

You might ask who cares about trolls these days?
However, trolls are still very much alive in the Scandinavian worldview, and I reckon it applies to many other parts of the world.
In Scandinavia you are taught about trolls from early childhood - as a matter of fact - children grow up with a certain ambiguity about trolls, because on the one hand they are taught about the appearance and lifestyle of trolls etc. and simultaneously on the other hand they are reassuringly told that trolls don't exist in reality.
Luckily kids are generally good at coping with complex statements, so most of them are not traumatized by this ambiguity.

To me trolls represent the blurred borderline between man and nature. However, in today's urban lifestyle "wild" nature has almost vanished and there is no need for a border anymore. Trolls belong to a time when nature seemed mysterious and threatening for man, contrary today where it is more the other way round.

But you can actually do an attempt to approach trolls. Like mystics who are exploring the inner alchemical state of nigredo in absolute darkness, you can do a similar thing: spend a night out ALONE in a deep forest with no artificial light and come back and let me know:
Did you get a glimpse of them??? I am all ears ;-) What if?
Understandably most people don't dare this - it's actually more trembling than you might expect - please check it out for yourself! And many people do not even have the opportunity, because they live too far away from a big forest. We haven't got many big forests left these days.
But one thing is for sure - you can always READ about trolls while you are indulging in a cup of troll tea.
And here is a little tip: If you have danced all night with the most enchanting dance partner and you happen to notice a tail sticking out under your partner's skirt or trousers, then you know for sure that the one you are taken by is a troll. BEWARE! Or should I say CONGRATULATIONS!?
Finally I want to let you know, that trolls can be tamed and trimmed to a certain degree - as long as you do it with love and a twinckle in the eye ;-)
This video-installation by Joss James, Anne Mølleskov and Ingrid Weiss was shown as part of the exhibition Who's that tripping over my Bridge? at Frederiks Bastion, Copenhagen, 2002.


Today I saw loads of educational posters at the exhibition AUTOPSI.
The boards were beautiful as they were and reminded me of a time where the world was easy to grasp.
This is how the golden oriole was depicted (the breeding couple in the bottom right hand corner):

Today this bird is more rare and might rather be depicted like this:

At the moment it is possible to see modern object pictures at the exhibition Blikfang og Blærebilleder at Medical Museion.
What is on show is the images that researchers are using to illustrate their lectures at conferences and seminars. These images must also be highly communicative in order to make clear points.
However, I reckon kids today would rather prefer interactive media such as Wii, when learning about the incomprehensible world....

Please Walk on the Art

Last Friday I was Professor Doctor Doodlelutsky Hansen, Phd., certified artist, artificial art coach and art funk quack in Vejle, Denmark.
I had a hard time prescribing doodles, making Art4ALL, Art2Wear, Art2Go, Internal Art, Art Treatment and Artificial Art coaching.
Hallelujah. Art cures it all!