topic: calligraphy

domestic katas, time and freedom

Eastern martial arts – and other ‘physical motion disciplines’, Kabuki for example – are taught through forms, or katas. These are ways to train the subconscious so that it assimilates a particular linked pattern of motion – a pattern that is a distillation of a ‘system’. If we consider T’ai Chi, a martial art I studied for years, there are a fixed number of these katas that appear to be a complex dance, performed solo […]

on the Trans-Asia Express…

Blue Mosque & Hagia Sophia interiors with exquisite Islamic calligraphy...

It was colder in Istanbul than in Scotland when I arrived, blustery and lashing rain. I spent the next day, my only day in the city, incredibly cold, but unable to return for an extra layer – I had not thought to bring warm clothes at all – because my rucksack was locked away in a cupboard in the hotel I had had to check out of. The Blue Mosque was closed for prayers – […]

Spartacus: Blood and Sand…

I have been watching Spartacus: Blood and Sand with much enjoyment and would like to counter various sneering reviews such as this (it was another review I can no longer find that provoked me to write here)… The general drift seems to be to point out the banally obvious, that the show contains a constant diet of sex and violence, and to state that there is no plot. It seems to me that this entirely […]