serai: A kiss between Casey Connor and Zeke Tyler (StonerBunny)
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I know some of you are big Sherlock fans, so I thought you'd get a kick out of this (if you haven't seen it already)...




Martin Freeman is not turned off by RACY FAN ART



Isn't that a yummy thought? Okay, you RPS girls. One, two, three... GO!!!

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serai: A kiss between Casey Connor and Zeke Tyler (EthanSnow)
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Haven't seen this posted yet, so...




The cast of Penny Dreadful talk about Season 3



Damn, how'd that plate of sliced tomatoes get under my ass all of a sudden?

I do miss Ethan's mane, though. *sigh*

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serai: A kiss between Casey Connor and Zeke Tyler (StonerBunny)
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Kevin Spacey on Inside the Actor's Studio

James Lipton calls on Spacey to demonstrate an impressive talent.



This is truly hilarious. Spacey's way with voices and mannerisms is masterful, as is his ability to sum up a personality in one or two quips. Here his take on Pacino is my favorite.

The audio goes out of synch about halfway through, unfortunately, but it's still worth watching.

Elijah on Conan

Sunday, December 27th, 2009 11:42 pm
serai: A kiss between Casey Connor and Zeke Tyler (NowWeWillSquee)
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Elijah talks about 9, Up, doing voice over work, and how he auditioned for, got, and accepted the role of Frodo.

(Elijah's interview starts at 17:00 - the third section on the timer bar.)




Elijah on the Conan O'Brien show



Check out that sweater. He is still totally freaking adorable.
serai: A kiss between Casey Connor and Zeke Tyler (JesusSaysRightOn)
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Over the course of my life, my views on religion and what most people call "God" has changed and evolved. I was raised as a nominal Catholic. I and my siblings attended Catholic schools mainly because my parents felt (quite rightly) that the level of education we would get there far surpassed that of the public schools, even here in California, which in the 60's and 70's was at the top of the nation for children's education. My father has always been an atheist, and my mother, while religious, was very private about it, and rarely spoke on the subject. So my early encounter with religion was almost all based on what I was as an intrusion by outside authorities. Not always an unwanted intrusion, mind, but still an outside influence.

From the first, my most intense religious feeling was directed toward the female figures of religion - the Virgin Mary and her retinue of lady saints. The male figures of Catholicism did not offer me any spiritual nourishment, but rather imposed rules that I resented. The one exception was Jesus, who seemed in his downtrodden and ultimately sacrificial state to be much closer to the female figures than to the all-powerful, arrogant, and deeply unpleasant being claimed as his father, whom I had no liking for at all. Jesus seemed alright to me. True, he had a bit of a temper, could sometimes be unreasonable (that poor fig tree!), and at times flew off the handle, but by and large he was compassionate and at least paid women some attention (unlike his disciples, who mostly seemed like assholes).

As a teenager, I grew completely disillusioned with Catholicism, and by the time I was 19 had left it behind completely. Thanks to the good graces of a friend of mine, I came into contact with the Goddess. It was like coming home (the main image invoked by all people who find their own spiritual path), and I never looked back. After some years, I began to broaden my views, and read up on other religions such as Buddhism, Taoism, Islam, and other faiths, coming to understand that there is value in all faiths - they all have something to teach us, each in its own way. That's the great value of being a polytheist; it makes spiritual truth a much more universal thing. All gods and goddesses finally come to be seen simply as facets of an unknowable truth, something we humans will never be able to grasp fully, so it becomes logical that there are so many different ways to think about this subject. I went from Catholicism's "Our way is the only right way" to "You have something different? Please tell me about it!" Much more comfortable, interesting, and entertaining, as well as convivial.

And somewhere in there I made my peace with Jesus, whom after study of different faiths I recognized as another incarnation of the Sacrificed God, the son of the goddess, Dionysus of the Greeks, John Barleycorn, Osiris, all of whom are cut down to nourish the people. He is another of the Great Teachers, who has evolved through the centuries. I was especially delighted when I read about his similarities to the Buddha, how close their outlooks on life are, and how even the stories told about them are related. Did you know the story of Jesus walking on the water was being told about the Buddha three hundred years before Jesus was born? It's the exact same story, even down to what the Buddha says to the disciple who tries to follow.

All this because I'd like to present a wonderful interview that I just heard online. Terry Gross speaks with Karen Armstrong, a former nun who has been writing about world religions for many years now, with intelligence, grace, and a remarkable evenhandedness. She has a new book out called The Case for God, in which she argues that what many people think of as religion these days is really a very modern invention, something that has developed only over the last couple of centuries. She speaks here about the history of that, and about the problems inherent in treating religion as is it were the literal clinging to incredible fairy tales that so many characterize it as, and how it is imperative that a vision of religion, both older and newer, arise in the world, a vision that sees religion as not a literalist replacement for factual knowledge, but a poetic and metaphorical way of viewing the deeper problems of life, and a compassionate guide for how to deal with one another. Serving the needs of others rather than serving our own beliefs.




The Case for God - Karen Armstrong interview



I know there are some folks on my list who identify as atheists, and I would very much like for those folks to listen to this interview. NOT because I have any interest in changing anyone's beliefs - we pagans do not proselytize, thanks - but because it saddens me to hear so many people talking as if all religious people hold the same simplistic, childish, literal view that has dominated the discussions of religion in the media for the last couple of decades. Really, we're not all fools believing in Santa Claus. Many of us understand that religion is simply a map of the world, and not the world itself. The Buddha exhorted his followers to take care never to confuse the finger with the moon it points towards; if that were a lesson that was taught to every child, the world would be a much better place.

Enjoy!
serai: A kiss between Casey Connor and Zeke Tyler (JesusSaysRightOn)
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From Wired Online:


Interview with Evolutionary Theologian Michael Dowd

The Rev. Michael Dowd is preaching a surprising message: Evolution is real and science points to the existence of God.


Text of article here )

That creativity didn't exist at the beginning of time, making everything like a potter makes a pot, but exists through the universe in a nested sense. God, Goddess, Allah -- they're just proper names for that ultimate reality. God is a sacred proper name for 'largest nesting doll.' You may choose to call it by another name. Many people just call it the universe.


Hallelujah, Goddess! That is EXACTLY what I tell people when they ask me to define what I mean by "God" or the Goddess, and explain how I can hold religious views at the same time that I espouse purity in science education. If you want to heal the rift between religion and science, that's the way to go - understanding that religion is a metaphor for reality, a poetic way of dealing with what science says in a factual way. They don't have to contradict; they can co-exist beautifully.

That's why I get pissed at purist atheists like Richard Dawkins, who get all chesty about religion: their insistence on the idea that the only possible way to view religion is as a blinkered troglodyte clinging to a literal belief in fantastical nonsense. That's not only self-serving, it's prejudiced, and shows not just an incredible lack of imagination but also a profound disrespect for human intelligence, as if there were no possible way that such ideas could be held in a nuanced, poetic and even-handed way. And honestly, it's amusing as well, because it casts them as fundamentalists too. After all, if they insist that religion can only be viewed as fundamentalism, they're jumping right into that camp, albeit on the other side of the fence. No thanks - I'll take paradoxy over orthodoxy any day.

Read the interview. This guy seriously has his shit together. I sincerely hope his message catches on, because we can really use an injection of understanding, respect and common sense into the shouting match that the religion-science debate has become.
serai: A kiss between Casey Connor and Zeke Tyler (Promise)
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Here's an interview with Sir Ian, in which he talks about being an actor, protecting his privacy (and why), good vs. evil in choosing film roles, and playing Gandalf.


Interview with Sir Ian McKellen - MegaUpload link, .m4a file, 8.8 mgs.


A fair bit of it revolves around his work in LOTR, but the whole interview is fascinating.

Enjoy!
serai: A kiss between Casey Connor and Zeke Tyler (ReadingThisHeadline)
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Over at NPR, there are a couple of really great interviews you can listen to:


Michael Pollan on returning to a diet that consists of actual FOOD

Pollan makes the point that what we buy in the markets isn't really food as that word is traditionally defined. Great stuff on the changes in the way we see and think about food, and why those changes have endangered our health and world.


David Cay Johnston on how the rich get richer

You've got to hear this one. Johnston's new book, Free Lunch, is about how over the last thirty years, our government has funneled more and more money away from 90% of the population and towards the pockets of people who are already rich. For instance, did you know that NONE of the sales tax you pay at big-box stores like Walmart ever actually goes to the community? That the burglar alarms touted as being life-savers on all those scary commercials are actually making our communities far more dangerous? This interview is incredibly informative, and seriously, SERIOUSLY pissed me off. A real wake-up call.


Much as I dislike the political reporting at NPR (for a supposedly liberal network, they sure do tow the Bush party line on a lot of things), these cultural segments often deliver some really interesting stories that don't get covered elsewhere.
serai: A kiss between Casey Connor and Zeke Tyler (GothMe - from Thuri)
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Leonard Nimoy (yes, that Leonard Nimoy) has recently published a book called The Full Body Project. Nimoy is a lifelong photographer, and has published images of female nudes in the past. This time, he takes on the subject of women with bodies that are normally frowned upon.


Leonard Nimoy's "The Full Body Project" - an exhibit at the R. Michelson Galleries


This is delightful. The women are part of a performance group from Northern California that style themselves "The Original Fat Bottom Revue". They are neither shy nor ashamed of their bodies, and the photos show them laughing, dancing, smiling, doing the can-can. There's one particularly charming piece that is a one-to-one re-enactment of a painting by Henri Matisse, that I would love to have hanging in my home.

The exhibit is also opening tomorrow here in Los Angeles, with a reception and signing. I'm definitely going.


ETA: Here is a wonderful print interview with Nimoy about how he came to do this project, and his evolving ideas about beauty and culture. Do read it; he is a really cool guy!

(no subject)

Tuesday, May 1st, 2007 03:38 am
serai: A kiss between Casey Connor and Zeke Tyler (Stewart/Colbert)
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Bill Moyers interviews Jon Stewart

Streaming vid, 33:12


Transcript )


Gotta love a well-educated smartass.
serai: A kiss between Casey Connor and Zeke Tyler (Alatriste)
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Here's an interview with Viggo about his latest film, Alatriste, which I recently reviewed.

Viggo Mortensen: "Diego Alatriste es bastante diferente a Aragorn"

Since the interview is in Spanish, I've written a translation below. (My notes are in brackets.)


Viggo Mortensen: Diego Alatriste is pretty different from Aragorn )

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