Spiritual Transformations I-II

(c) by Ryszard Павел Kostecki, 7.V.15–2.IX.16

dedicated to all my friends and beloved ones, with whom I've shared this beautiful time

8:09 7.5.15

The key is the frequency I’m working at.
Lower the frequency to bring out a longer wave of consciousness.
A magical falling in love with life, combined with mindfulness
– a sort-of-mythologisation of here-and-now, focused on opening, not closing, of all the senses.
Dynamic changes embraced with loving affirmation.
Mindfulness instead of mindlessness.
A marvel in every detail, because of perception beyond patterns.
Fears do not exist, as they are a trembling of a fiction – of a personality built on habits and appearances.
That which exists abundantly in the field of view is slow. Even chaos is infinitely slow.
The belief that one can be late for anything is an illusion.
One is always just in time for the foremost feast. It is right here.
A characteristic, warm and outward – and at the same time enfolding – care, tenderness, delicacy.
A softness of movement, a step beyond the nonsense of division into the active and the passive.
A dance that is a sensitive contemplation and a creative affirmation.
They do not preclude appropriate actions, filtering out noise and cracks; yet actions that are loving rejections – not reactions.
Remaining in reaction is a trait of a superficial personality, this armour of distrustful disbelief in the possibility of synchronisation in slow being.
Outside the window, where the trees and sun illuminate the lawn in their shadowplay, a duck is strolling;
a small rabbit is hopping in the bushes, other ducks are flying over the lake;
one can hear their cries, and tweets and trills of small birds in the tree branches.
Ever slower, ever more beautiful, ever more towards oneself in the foundation.

(7.V.15, Perimeter Institute, Waterloo; a translation – by Michał Kotowski – of my text in Polish, written two years after near-death carbon monoxide poisoning)


   Ducks 8: Eternal light

(2.VI.2015; based on a photo made on very early morning over the Silver Lake)



(6.VI.2015; this graphics was used as a cover artwork for the first issue of the Carved Voices online magazine)





   Eye of the beholder



   All surfaces are sufficiently stable



   Marysia (Nightcall)






   Marysia 2 (Dancing butterflies)




(3/4.IX.2015, a fragment)


   鎮魂曲 [閉殻症] / requiem [closed shell syndrome]

(7.IX.2015, a cover graphics for an eponymous CD; cf. a complete mp3 of this album)


   Marysia 3 (Digital dissolution)



   Open mind: the pulse of consciousness



   Pro memoria: Finis Poloniae

(17.IX.2015, acrylics and fruits on paper, with some collaboration of Andrzej Banburski and a support of Alexa Meade)


   Witkacy's laughter: Historia Revolvo Ipsum



   Studio #357




(28.IX.15, Supermoon eclipse)





   In the fog of life

(13.IX-6.X.2015, full resolution BMP mosaic image has ~1.8GB[=3xA3x7500DPI] size and is based on ~100000 unique photos from my personal archive, so only the 6MB resized demo is linked here; feat. a photo by Krzyś Bielicki)


   Ducks 11: The colors of silence



   Trees: The silence of colors



   Nie muszę
[I don't have to]

(10.X.2015, finger-painted acrylics on canvas)



(12/15.X.15, based on a photo by Amelia Does)


   Deep dive

(23.X.11/23.X.15, based on a photo by Janka Spicha-Konarzewska)


   Let's take a trip together, headlong into the irresistible rainbow

(10.X/13.XI.2015, based on a photo by Piotr Migdał)


   Waiting for Tesseract



   Acid Antoni / "Truth is the cry of all, but the game of the few"

(11.XI.2015, designed using the deep neural network algorithm arXiv:1508.06576 applied to undisclosed contents of internet)


   Toward a philosophy of the act: Still life with two human faces and a skull

(15/18.XI.2015, design & remix by RPK, photo by Michał Kotowski, starring RPK, Marcin Kotowski, Mikhail Bakhtin's spirit)


* * *


Dialogues Heroes III: Из Вагантов

   ...so if I’d believe in something from nothing today, in laudative Te Deum,
Wouldn’t it be better to believe in the happy Mickeymouseoleum?
In the spirits of dreams, the spirits of trees,
And―free of blood and gluten―the simulacras of tears?...


* * *

   "Don't burn myths, but create your own" (Jacek Kuroń 10x10 blotter)



   Mental Maṇḍala

(8.XII.2015, with contributions from Aimee Fogler, Tanya Williams, Camilla Bouchet, Jay Carnahan, Todd Schiedel, Adam Reinhart, Marcin Kotowski)


   Sunday lunch in the Crystal Palace

(13.XII.2015, joint work with Djuna Lize Croon)


   Metaphysics Dreamstitute



   Mental Maṇḍala 2



   In the Space

(20.XII.15, recording the audio of the post-psychodelic cover of Stalker; see also Black hole stalker [in Polish] for further discussion)





   Astral DMT ascension procedure activated

(25.XII.2015, acrylics and markers on paper)


   Kundalini lotus meditation

(25/26.XII.2015, acrylics and markers on paper)





   Я красна дѣвушка

(29.XII.2015/22.I.2016, "I am a red/beautiful girl")


   道Дༀ बुद्ध

(4/5.I.2016, acrylics on canvas 8"x10")


   A tribute to David Bowie

(6.II.2015/12.I.2016, joint work with Marysia Bator)


   Be water

(28.XII.2015/21.I.2016, acrylics on grey paper + research proposal submitted to FQXi)


   Mental Maṇḍala 3: Higher topos theory



   Ducks 16: Hermeneutics of perception

(2.VI.2015/23.I.2016, a tribute to Abstractions 2002-2003, based on the same photo as Ducks 8)


   As below, so above and beyond, I imagine



   Introduction to HoTT Yoga

(1.II.2016, based on a photo by Michał Kotowski)




«A sufficiently degenerate language becomes so polyvalent, so multi-interpretable, that it obstructs the emergence even of a consistent, related group (set) of readings (receptions). In contrast to abstractions, realistic or naturalistic painting does not act as a language. Instead it assumes the status of diverse forms of symbols and symbolic allusions to its para-iconic content, such as mythology or even folk and fairy tale, as in the case of Hieronymus Bosch (naturally, there can always emerge hybrids like Pieter Breughel the Elder). Consequently, a painting which “translates” some proverb into various groups of motionless people is both symbolic and nonsymbolic, because language (the language of the proverb) is a system of semantic reference. It is clear that, apart from aesthetic value, such a painting has a certain semantic value as well, established in relation to a certain definite meaning. This aspect is analyzable by aesthetic theories used in the fine arts. At the same time we must realize that any sufficiently complex system is – in view of the theorems of information science – divisible into multiple subsystems of many diverse kinds. Of course in this situation the choice between the idiographic or nomothetic method depends more and more on the critic and increasingly less on the picture itself. To put it bluntly: viewers perceive whatever they shape, interpret, and aesthetically evaluate for themselves. Today such evaluations are already arbitrarily erratic, thanks to postmodernism which obliterated the boundary between a work of art and a piece of garbage.»
– Stanisław Lem, 1994, Lem in a Nutshell (in: Swirski P., 1997, A Stanislaw Lem Reader, Northwestern University Press, Evanston)

What are all those .jpg files about? Information about what? Whose information? For whom? To be honest, I was more involved in the acts of creation, and the associated meditative spiritual, intellectual and emotional experiences, than in an interpretation of the collection of the data sets (or, rather, groupoids) that have resulted from the selective post-processing of outcomes of these acts. All of the above data sets (or, rather, groupoids) were constructed as improvisations, with no idea where they would lead to. There are always some feelings, some thoughts, some intuitions, some experimentation, but it is a flow that is synchronised with so many things, including mood, weather, the music I am listening to, myriads of other categories, as well as the noncategorisable shadow.

The myth of a “genuine representation” seems for me to be the original sin of photography. It consists of allowing oneself to be seduced into a specifically restricted understanding of our living (thus: unbounded, uncertain, unquantifiable) experience into a normative (thus: bounded, certain, quantifiable) construct of an (internal and/or external) “reality”. The games with deconstruction of this myth became a vital field of the photography itself. Leaving the saṃsāric realms of the construction–deconstruction spiral, together with the (classy, yet so worn-out) issues of aesthetics and symbolics, I allow myself to consider the art of conveying the spiritual pulse of experiencing and becoming here-and-now as a way of transgressing beyond the original sin, back to the same root from which the power of classical painting stems from. (The generic powerlessness of semiotic analyses of classical masterpieces uncovers hyperrealism, as well as disempowering rôle, of semiotics – at least as long as the latter is understood as a relationship between formal systems of signs and their representations.) Naturally, it is not an easy task to fulfil, and it requires high purity of the meditative state within which the act of registration of light’s properties is performed. And I feel that I am still far away from it in most of my photographic practice.

Maybe this is the reason for this kindergarten-artsy stuff? I don’t really know what I am doing. But if you would ask me to improvise some explanation, I would say that I have an impression that in my post-photographics I am trying to dissolve the fiction of a “factual representation” of the objective spatio-temporal localised fragment of an “objective global reality” which is associated to a photo (and, more generally, to any graphics – if one considers internal states of emotions, intuitions, and thoughts as a fragment of one’s own “internal reality”, which is nameable by means of a visual communication; in such case the core illusion rests in the idea of a static presence of any single “internal reality”). The method of transformative dissolution–maṇḍalaisation of the original “realistic” (usually photographic) image, – which effectively becomes a technique of composition, – is intended to point out to some sort of unnamed (because profoundly lived-through) spiritual feeling, contained in the original experience of here-and-now that is an ultimate source of a given graphics, but becomes overshadowed by the dishonest act of a visual representation. In other words, transformative dissolving–maṇḍalaising of an image is an attempt to rebalance the illusion of reality of the nameable content of experience (defined both by an illusion of a specific object and an illusion of a specific observer) in order to expose the immanent transcendence of the act of experiencing.

The only place where I have ever met an objective global reality was in the contents of the metaphysical beliefs of various people (and, yes, materialism is also just a metaphysics). My personal experience, and the experience of other people (at least among those, whose message is trustable enough for me), consists of a dynamic rainbow of different possibilities of feeling, thinking, perceiving, and becoming which are swirling in the improvised dance with the variety of possible structuralisations into concepts, attitudes, personalities, systems of thinking, etc. This dance has neither a single space (completely dominating type of control parameters) or a single time (completely dominating type of construction–deconstruction). If any of these deformations/transformations have brought to you a slight vibe undermining the myth of a local (internal or external) reality being just a passive fragment of an objective global universe (understood as an ontic container, not as an intersubjectively shared cognitive limitation), or if you felt for a moment some transgressive pulse stemming through otherwise mundane and irrelevant collection of RGB pixels (including these words), then this text can make sense to you in a way similar to how it makes sense to me. Otherwise, let be praised your own being in its freedom from necessity of subordination to some particular sheaves of myths, and its freedom to bathe in the fountains of any possible ever-new experiences and the systems of their categorifications that you are blessed, and bounded, with.

As they say, – have a nice day.

... ≃ RPK ≃ 道Дༀ ≃ ...

Waterloo, 15:13 3.2.16

  Part II: Ākāśic Investigations

   Quantum investigator



   Eye five!



   Herz mein Herz



   Fluidity of never

(16.II.2016, based on a photo by Piotr Achinger)


   Self-portrait with a glass wall






   Das Wirrwarr






   Back in Poland



   A tribute to Post Regiment



   This is not a program



[tabi ni yamai de]

(16.VI.2016; 'sick on a journey / my dreams wander / the withered fields' - Matsuo Bashō, transl. by Robert Hass)


   I'll be right back



   Midnight tale



   Microreunion @ Studio #357, take 1



   Microreunion @ Studio #357, take 2



   Relativistic vacuum state

(4.VIII.2016, using a photo by Lisa Willis at House of Yoga Studio, Toronto, in July 2016, and a photo of a slide from a talk by Stephen J. Summers at AQFT50 conference, Göttingen, in August 2009)


   The end of an Island #357

(19.VIII.2016, featuring chalk graphics by Evelin Witkowska)


   The Epicentre



   Notion of saṃsāra

(25.VIII.2016, using a photo by Raquel Gomez and a text by Ayur Zhanaev)


   In the eye of the acid monsoon



   Continuum hypothesis



«Over thinking, over analyzing separates the body from the mind.
Withering my intuition leaving opportunities behind.

Feed my will to feel this moment urging me to cross the line.
Reaching out to embrace the random.
Reaching out to embrace whatever may come.

I embrace my desire to, I embrace my desire to
feel the rhythm, to feel connected
enough to step aside and weep like a widow
to feel inspired, to fathom the power,
to witness the beauty, to bathe in the fountain,
to swing on the spiral, to swing on the spiral,
to swing on the spiral of our divinity and still be a human.»

Tool, Lateralus

* * *


Black Hole Stalker
    (28.XII.2016, currently only in Polish)