Jack's Corner

My Simple Philosophical Statement

Co-operation instead of competition, generosity instead of greed, patience instead of haste, and sufficiency instead of indulgence.

The traditional Hindu social model is also one that I find realistic. It defines four distinct periods in life during which people can and should do certain things.

  1. Brahmic conduct (Brahmacharya) is the student stage, during which one learns about oneself and the world.
  2. Householder (Grihastha) is the stage of family and societal obligations.
  3. Forest dweller (Vanaprastha) is where one is freer to begin a contemplative life.
  4. Renunciation (Samnyasa) is where one goes deeper, surrendering all worldly things and living as a simple mendicant.
Living by this model makes one aware of the impermanence of each stage of life and, of course, of all worldly things. I have been in the contemplative stage for some time and look forward to moving more into the renunciation phase (although I realize that I will probably never arrive at the simple mendicant level).

“The future is uncertain but the end is always near” Heard in a bar, 1962

Some Favorites

We have many links on all the other pages, however, there are a few more sites I like to visit that warrant additional attention. Click on the titles below for information and links about my favorite people and subjects.

Think for yourself

A few subjects of interest are explained in the categories below. Click a title for more details.

DailyTao.org, The Book of The Way, Day by Day, is a good place to start and has a new saying every day.

Other Pages In This Section

Near Death Experience (NDE)

1975 found me stationed at Korat RTAFB, Thailand, in the 34th Tactical Fighter Squadron and flying the F-4 Phantom. This was an unaccompanied tour and I felt it was a good time to have a vasectomy since we didn't plan to have any more children. The Air Force was encouraging these procedures at that time and it would only mean no flying for 2 or 3 days. Several of the pilots had the operation.

On April 23, 1975, a normal, bilateral vasectomy was conducted by the squadron flight surgeon, Dr. (Captain) Roger F. Landry. Local anesthesia was used. He was assisted by a Thai doctor who I met just prior to the operation. The first portion of the operation was done on the left side by Dr. Landry and went fine, but when the Thai Dr. made his incision on the right side it appeared that he cut something incorrectly. Despite the anesthesia I experienced intense pain and lost consciousness.

Immediately I was floating above the scene, somewhere near the ceiling. Dr. Landry was very agitated and said “we're losing him!”; my heart had stopped. I felt totally relaxed with a pleasant feeling, could see everything clearly and could hear all of the conversation. I was surrounded by a very bright light, but didn't see its source. I heard no other voices outside of the operating room and did not leave that area.

Dr. Landry took over the operation completely at this point. According to the official report they used ammonia smelling salts to bring me back to consciousness. But what is not mentioned is that they also used some external stimulation to restart my heart, which I could clearly observe. The report says I was unconscious for about 15 seconds, but my sense of time had vanished and everything was in very slow motion. When my heart restarted I seemed to snap right back into my body and was quickly alert.

Immediately after this incident my blood pressure was 110/60 with a pulse of 56. I felt fine after they finished and wanted them to just forget the entire episode. However, this was not to be and Dr. Landry revoked my flying status.

I was sent to the large regional hospital at Clark AFB in the Philippines for a complete and exhaustive physical evaluation. This took almost two weeks and consisted of daily testing and lots of incline treadmill work. All tests came out excellent and they could find nothing wrong. The official diagnosis was “syncope, vasovagal, secondary to pain”. (Vasovagal means: relating to or denoting a temporary fall in blood pressure, with pallor, fainting, sweating, and nausea, caused by over activity of the vagus nerve, esp. as a result of stress.) Recommendation was to return to flying status with a waiver, which was eventually granted by the U.S. Air Force Surgeon General on July 2, 1975.

They returned me to flying status at Korat on May 28, 1975, with a waiver, which became a permanent part of my records.

The assisting Thai doctor is never mentioned in any of the records and I never saw him again. For some reason they didn't want him to be blamed for what appeared to be his incompetence. So I ended up with a blot on my record due to the doctor's mistake.

But the out of body experience was actually enjoyable and at the time I didn't care whether or not I returned to my body. Naturally I didn't discuss any of this with the doctors since I knew it would certainly be the end of any flying.