Hi. I used to use this blog a lot more than i do now. I don't agree with much of what i've posted here, but such is the nature of time. :) My instagram & facebook are likely to be more up to date.

islam via omar mullick

>> Sunday, May 31, 2009

a lovely flow of events occurred yesterday, and i'll share with you all the notes taken. i was chilling out in Jamil's yesterday, picking up some jamaican colors for reggae night, and a photographer from national geographic comes in. his name is Omar Mullick, and he's a sharp cookie... we talk about anarchism, pittsburgh, photography and eventually islam. he has a degree in philosophy, a three year old boy and a rebellious past, so we had enough common context and perspective that i found it possible to ask things about islam without fear of offending him... or getting a bullshit response. also, having studied in a madrassa in saudi arabia, with orthodox in yemen and mystic sheikhs in america, he's got some real knowledge to draw from. he had some very interesting takes on orthodox islam's opinions of women, homosexuality and strictness. for instance, he claimed shariah literally means "broad road"... implying a lot more breadth than it's current limited interpretation.

a number of little links came out of this.

he recommended the thomas cleary translation of the quran. (interview with cleary here). he also recommended the footnotes in the yusuf ali version... he suggested they were good for a loving but critical eye on the text. when i asked about if there was any missing gospel-like b.s. with the preservation of the quran, he suggested i watch something called "the preservation methodology" on youtube (but i can't find anything long enough to be what he was suggesting...) he most fervently suggested nuh keller's "becoming muslim", despite feeling like it's title only represents a small aspect of what the (short) essay covers... Omar holds the sheik's work in "unambiguous regard".

on non-islamic topics he recommended i watch performance for it's hassan-i-sabah references. hassan is famous for stuff he probably didn't say, but i'm down with the myth anyway. he's buddies with the brian jonestown massacre. he also hat-tipped sweet earth, a collection of photographs of intentional communities.

omar mullick's website (most of the work is 3+ years old) is here.

anyway... good day.


quick personal update... UPDATED!

>> Monday, May 4, 2009

so a quick head's up on where i'm at...

i'm currently remodeling a kitchen for my friends @ premodern, cause they're having a youngin' mid-june. that's a 5-days-a-week construction job... busy, busy. but i get to pick my crew, there is some fine carpentry involved, and it's good pay which will help us have some free time to travel/do art/party in the summer... so that's that. on top of that, i'm deejaying around 1 gig a week, training to take on some extra gigs from my pal jeremy, a talented wedding deejay in town, helping my friend brad design frisbees for his company (none of the really cool ones are printed yet), and making time for family and personal work.... on the family tip, my son river (pictured above) is doing really well, healing fast from his early lead poisoning, learning tons of words and still enjoying music, dancing, bicycles, animals and playgrounds. my wife laura is enjoying getting to spend all day with river (which i'm a bit jealous of) but also keeping up on quite a few projects of her own, including the (just-started!) site rewitching.com. summer is in full swing in pittsburgh, so we've had some fun going to book 'em brunch, various shows & just wandering around allegheny cemetary (which is two blocks away). on the personal project tip, i continue to do work on "tower of babel", my epic 80-track, 80-minute bass mix, while recording side mixes to remember what using turntables is like. i'm also working on a few paintings to get ready for participating in the visionary arts festival (which a 22+ piece ensemble i play with, HI-TEC is also participating in...). one of my paintings is a take off on persian miniatures, another a black & white abstraction and i'm also working on a painting i've worked on since 2003. In other arts news, i have a commission for keeb$ of stackinpaper and some young rappers i know want me to work on a mixtape for this summer.

busy, busy...

BUILDING UPDATE: also, the building we own is getting full. the greater pittsburgh anarchist collective is using the first floor. despite some speedbumps and bad communication, it's mostly been going really well with them... the back house is filled by zach, who has expressed interest in helping renovate the basement space for a music studio. he's also floated the idea of a record store, which our neighborhood could really use. the second floor has been shown some interest from a local experimental spiritual collective. they want the space to host meetings, do divination readings, have events and teach classes. they're also amenable to our involvement, which is wonderful... it will be good vibes to have a floor below us. we're planning on helping them start renovations in mid-june.

BLOG UPDATE: i already have the material for the next digest post, so it will come. also i always have new dubstep jams (dz's "the fireman" anyone?!?!). eleven8 asked me to review his forthcoming e.p., so i will. (sneak preview... it's good!) i've been planning a photo tour of pittsburgh (hopefully with ryan) for those who have no idea about what's up with the city, and i still owe my palestine-israel analysis. as i approach the 400th post, i'm going to re-organize the tags and make a reader's poll to get your feedback. so more is to come from that veiled gazelle, so bear with me!


may day today!

>> Friday, May 1, 2009

it dawned on me recently this blog is over a year old... as i'm very busy (and having a great may day) i'm just going to link to last years may day content! there is some dated election content there, but if you don't know about the history of today's holiday (or don't even know it's a holiday) check out these links...



got money? feed kids!

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