David's Story

Hello all

Just to give some response: I'm supportive and glad to see the efforts at revamping the website of the work of Marvin his colleagues and associates. I'm flexible on URL. Either NBDM.com or standing around.com could work, although NDBM is shorter and not sure if humor is appropriate?

I haven't replied earlier on the more substantive writings and trying to verbalize the years working with Marvin and others seems a difficult task.

I should say I learned a tremendous amount on all fronts working with, Marvin, Jean, Barry, Grant, Alan, Anya, Charles, Greg and many others. The time spent woodworking and designing with the polyhedral geometry was really one of the highlights of my life. The notion that there was an 'uptight' 90 degree world and a more 'relaxed' 60 degree world was intriguing and enabling. It enabled us perhaps to avoid or beware of trying to fit a circular Rhombic peg into a square hole and taught us how to attempt to avoid this in our lives.

Not everyone fits into society's 90 degree system. This often gives me the image of energetic, creative and 'unruly' school children being given drugs like Ritalin so they will sit upright in a square desk in a rectangular room in a rectangular building. It's just not their natural inclination. Of course, sooner or later, we all have to learn how to adapt ourselves to the '90 degree world,' but maybe in the process, we can soften some of those angles.

Rhoma, the puzzle in the shape of a Rhombic Hexahedron, started as a cube shape which was pushed over until it's diameter was the same length as it's edges. This shape had balance, and four of them made up a Rhombic Dodecahedron. The Rhoma Puzzle had only one solution, compared to the 211? of the Rubik's Cube puzzle.

I will never forget working with Grant Phipps making wooden lamps in the shape of a Rhombic Dodecahedra and various Puzzle Sculptures. We had a very accurate wood shaper and the struts we used for building were cut to within two or three thousandths of an inch, tolerances virtually unheard of in woodworking! Grant would often object if we went over two thousandths.

Our woodshop was in our community center in an old mill building next to the Charles River in Watertown, MA. Ironically, after a day of 60 degree accuracy, our night job was cleaning out ash trays and vacuuming dirty rugs in the adjoining landscape architect's space next door. Talk about fitting back into the 90 degree world.

Of course, nearby was a meditation 'rug room.' This was where Marvin held forth, leading or initiating demonstrations and the practice of Non Directed Body Work. One might start in a standing opposition, being aware of the body. After awhile, as awareness increased, one might bend or 'fall' to the floor, where awareness and unwinding might continue.

One theory was that as one continued awareness, and put their focus on certain parts of the body; stressed, strained or painful parts of the body might 'unwind.' This unwinding might lead to the release of difficult fears, feelings or emotions; restoring balance to the body. Watching or being aware of these feelings as they are released might lead to increased awareness of stresses that are affecting us more than we realize. Ultimately, the body might unwind into better balance or harmony, allowing for better health and self-healing to take place.

In the process, some might explore and unwind their relationships, providing insight and eventually a better way to deal with others.

Writing this is making me hungry and reminds me that every Tuesday evening since the 1960s, we/the group have had a potluck supper at the center. There is never any planning. Everyone brings what they are inspired to bring and the universe seems to provide a balanced meal.


David Pap