Changing things up: time for a new theme, new name

My focus on this blog is on the content, so I try not to mess around with the design/layout very much. There comes a point, though, when things need to be relooked and freshened up, and that time has come around again.

I’ve been looking at different themes, with an eye on going even more minimal than I already am. Every time I’ve considered going really minimal, I still always end up with something a bit more “busy” than what I really wanted. After reading Linchpin, I now realize that I was just giving in to the resistance, doing what I thought others would want or expect me to do.  (Who are these “others”, anyway?)

After some quick research, I’ve put the Wu Wei theme by Jeff Ngan at the top of my short list of possible themes. I like the look, and the philosophy, of the theme. If you use Wu Wei, I’d love to hear from you.

As for the name of the blog, I’m not really sure what I was thinking including the word cum in the title. It doesn’t really matter that it is a Latin word in a Latin phrase. You would not believe some of the search terms that end up pointing here (OK, maybe you would) just because of that word. A bit on the Colbert Report last night about the renaming of the magazine “The Beaver” to “Canada’s History” also got me wondering about how spam filters would treat anything from here.

So, I’m changing the name to Brett’s Waste Blog. Shouldn’t be anything too controversial with that. Plus, I think it better reflects what this blog is all about.

This shouldn’t affect your experience with the blog, especially if you view this mostly through RSS. Just wanted to let you know in case you find your way here sometime and wonder if you are in the right place.

Never fail to act

Several years ago I picked up Deng Ming Dao’s 365 Tao.  As the title suggests, it contains 365 daily meditations, ranging from the banal to the profound.  I’ve used several of the meditations as the basis for blog posts before (see here and here, for example), but my personal favorite is today’s meditation on Engagement.

Prey passes the tiger who
Sometimes merely looks,
Sometimes pounces without hesitation,
But never fails to act.

Along with each meditation is a short (< 1 page) discussion by the author.  The discussion on Engagement includes the following:

Whatever comes to you, you must engage it somehow.  You receive it, you may aler the circumstance and let it go, you may interject something of your own into it, or you may knowingly let it pass.  Whatever you do, there is no need to be apathetic toward life.

To hear the whole discussion on Engagement, and to get your own daily dose of Taoist wisdom, check out the 365 Tao podcast.  You don’t have to be a Taoist to appreciate the lessons to be learned.

A meditation on censorship

The following meditation on censorship comes from 365 Tao (June 13). It’s been on my mind lately, and Kristina Chew’s recent post The R Word and Not So Nice Language has prompted me to share.

Emperors uphold censorship,
But extreme repression leads to extreme reaction.
Individualists believe in freedom,
But extreme expression leads to extreme reaction.

The challenge, of course, is learning how to live and act in between these two extremes, and how to deal with those who inhabit the extremes.