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Overview

  • 0 references
  • Fluent in English, Estonian; learning Finnish, French, German, Russian, Thai
  • 38, Male
  • Member since 2008
  • Consultant, corporate copywriter
  • MSc - London (LSE), MA - Tartu
  • From Viljandi, Viljandi County, Estonia
  • Profile 65% complete

About Me

"Do it alone, it's weird.
Do it with others, it's a club."

I've lived a yuppie life, a hippie life, a full-on hyper social party life, a full-on secluded contemplative life in a remote Nordic cottage, an academic life, a working life... many lives... every day a new one.

I'll usually get people smiling. I quit drinking 6 years ago and I don't smoke, so I rarely randomly party these days, unless it is really, really worth creating a storm in the mind. It is true, there are sometimes people or situations when it seems it might be worth it.

I suck at drawing. But I want to learn. If you can teach me, awesome! I have some sketches... :)

Oh... and violin at an older age... one day...

Why I’m on Couchsurfing

For the authenticity and fun of it. I'm new to this. I have an anthropological curiosity why people (me included) roam, why do we wander. I take joy in playing with the word "tour-ism" and comparing it to other -isms. :) But in reality, despite signing up many years ago, I've never gotten down to using CS for real. I'm imagining it gives the possibity to have a more realistic experience of another culture. I don't like "travelling", which I understand as going from one place to another taking photos, but I do enjoy immersing myself in an unknown environment - the longer the better. Only then does one have any hope of feeling the there culture. Really feeling something about it. I've lived in four different countries for longer or shorter periods, and these immersions have been the best.

Interests

Secular Buddhism, meditation, philosophy, West-African drum music (I play), writing (mostly poetry), classical music, communication that happens when the awkwardness of silence has been transcended by not filling it up with deafening small-talk -- takes courage for strangers to jump to such honesty fast. But it is possible, and then true communication can take place.

  • culture
  • writing
  • poetry
  • education
  • environment
  • meditation
  • traveling
  • classical music
  • anthropology
  • teaching
  • languages
  • psychology
  • buddhism
  • mindfulness
  • learning
  • agnosticism

Music, Movies, and Books

Books... science fiction, utopias/dystopias, Huxley, Orwell, Asimov, Bradbury, scholarly work/research, ancient texts (Buddhist suttas, the Holy Quaran). Of course Kahlil Gibran's Prophet, Rumi's works, poetry, psychology, works by Batchelor on secular Buddhism...
Ambient and classical music have remained, rest has fallen off. Chopin, Vivaldi, Aphex Twin. I used to listen to all sorts of electronic music and danced a lot but it is getting too loud - if one sharpens one's senses, intense visual and auditory stimulus may actually change from pleasant to unpleasant.
Terry Gilliam's movies, especially Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus and Brazil. Also Guy Richie's Revolver, despite some psychologically implied semi-graphic violence in it, which is misunderstood by most people. Maybe also the Holy Mountain, although its beginning is a bit rough/gross, but it gets refined as the movie develops...

One Amazing Thing I’ve Done

I gave up a promising career perfectly matched with my skills and academic education and moved to a tropical island in Thailand 8 years ago or so. I put aside my suite and tie to focus on learning music, learning about different modes of living, exploring the potential of the human mind, to explore my mind and body and study Theravada Buddhist approaches to mental cultivation. I've reinvented myself a few times. To be repeated. :)

Teach, Learn, Share

"Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away." (Antoine de Saint Exupéry)

What I Can Share with Hosts

Crazy stories from a crazy tropical island. Fun facts about languages of the world. And everything I've learned from the monks in the jungles of Myanmar and Thailand and how it is compatible with the atheist views of the people in the #1 or #3 secular country in the world where I come from, and the little I know about yoga, tantra and a few other weird things in this life.

Countries I’ve Visited

Belgium, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Moldova, Myanmar, Netherlands, Poland, Russian Federation, Singapore, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States

Countries I’ve Lived In

Estonia, Thailand, United Kingdom, United States

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