Little Things Matter, Hummingbird Magic –

spend a few minutes being mesmerized by the Hummers

I just love Hummingbirds. Their dazzling wings and swift movements remind me of gloriously clad angels. And like angels they appeal to the spiritual side of my nature. I can’t cease to wonder at the beauty of nature and all it has to offer. Who can doubt there’s a divine plan for ourselves and all creatures, when watching a tiny humming bird. They are so tiny, so exquisite that we are simply mesmerized by them. We need to wake up and fall in love with Earth’s creatures before we lose them forever. Yes, even the tiny hummingbirds we can lose if we destroy their habitat. We’ve been homo sapiens for a long time. Now it’s time to become homo conscious.

Our love and admiration for the Earth and her beauty has the power to unite us and remove all boundaries, separation and discrimination. We have all suffered, for too long, centuries of individualism and competition that have brought about tremendous destruction and alienation for other creatures and the Earth itself. We need to re-establish true communication–true communion–with ourselves, with the Earth, and with one another as children of the same mother.






images from the Internet

images from the Internet

How to mend a broken heart according to Buddhism

Originally posted on Kadampa Life:

This continues on from Why do I feel so lonely?

So close and yet so far

I have recently been in New York City for a week. People often say they feel lonelier in the middle of a huge city surrounded by long queue at airportmillions of people than in a rural area with hardly anyone around. A friend of mine who used to live in London said he always felt somewhat alone there. Then one weekend he did a Buddhist meditation retreat “in a field with a bunch of hairy men” and “never felt happier or more connected.” There was no turning back!

I think this is because, when we are surrounded by others, we are holding even more tightly to our own sense of personal space, trying to protect ourselves from uncomfortable intrusion by strange “others”, increasing that gap. It can be useful though — as mentioned in this article

View original 1,595 more words

The First God – A story from the Chhandogya Upanishad/Inspirational

Isabelle V. Lim

Isabelle V. Lim

What if you gave someone a beautiful gift, and they neglected to thank you for it, would you ever give them another?  Life is the same way. In order to attract more of the blessings that life has to offer, we must truly appreciate what we already have. For God is in everything. Food comes from God. In fact food is our first God, although we often forget. Here’s a story about that. :)

In the Upanishads there is a beautiful story. Shvetketu, a young man, came back from the university full of knowledge. He was a brilliant student, he had topped the university with all the medals and all the degrees that were possible, available. He came back home with great pride.

His old father, Uddalak, looked at him and asked him a single question. He said to him, “You have come full of knowledge, but do you know the knower? You have accumulated much information, your consciousness is full of borrowed wisdom — but what is this consciousness? Do you know who you are?”

Shvetketu said, “But this question was never raised in the university. I have learned the Vedas, I have learned language, philosophy, poetry, literature, history, geography. I have learned all that was available in the university, but this was not a subject at all. You are asking a very strange question; nobody ever asked me in the university. It was not on the syllabus, it was not in my course.”

Uddalak said, “You do one thing: be on a fast for two weeks, then I will ask you something.”

He wanted to show his knowledge, just a young man’s desire. He must have dreamed that his father would be very happy. Although the father was saying, “Wait for two weeks and fast,” he started talking about the ultimate, the absolute, the Brahman.

The father said, “You wait two weeks, then we will discuss about Brahman.”

artwork Isabelle V. Lim

Isabelle V. Lim

Two days’ fast, three days’ fast, four days’ fast, and the father started asking him, “What is Brahman?” In the beginning he answered a little bit, recited what he had crammed, displayed. But by the end of the week he was so tired, so exhausted, so hungry, that when the father asked, “What is Brahman?” he said, “Stop all this nonsense! I am hungry, I think only of food and you are asking me what Brahman is. Right now, except food nothing is Brahman.”

The father said, “So your whole knowledge is just because you were not starved. Because you were taken care of, your body was nourished, it was easy for you to talk about great philosophy. Now is the real question. Now bring your knowledge!”

Shvetketu said, “I have forgotten all. Only one thing haunts me: hunger, hunger – day in, day out. I cannot sleep, I cannot rest. There is fire in my belly, I am burning, and I don’t know anything at all. I have forgotten all that I have learned.”

The father said, “My son, food is the first step towards Brahman. Food is Brahman — ANNAM BRAHMA.” A tremendously significant statement. India has forgotten it completely. ANNAM BRAHMA: food is God, the first God.


The Real Deal For Mrs. Phyllis Krystal


I am not the deha (body); I am the Dehi (Indweller).

The body is made up of five elements and is bound to perish sooner or later,
but the Indweller has neither birth nor death.
The Indweller has no attachment whatsoever and is the eternal witness.
Truly speaking, the Indweller, who is in the form of the Atma,
is verily God Himself.
(Telugu Poem) – Sathya Sai Baba

The Ashram Becomes the Body of The Guru – After His Demise


An ancient axiom holds that when the disciple is ready, the guru will appear. Much less is said about what happens when the guru disappears or dies – and, for this, disciples are rarely ready. It’s often a more traumatic event than the death of a family member because the relationships with parents, lovers, and friends are of a different nature. While close relationships can involve deep and lasting love, the love of a guru becomes the lens through which the disciple understands the ‘self’, the ‘other’ and the world.

The guru not only shows the way but is the way. “I am the way, the truth, and the life”, is how Jesus’ disciples remembered him. Or  the words Sai Baba used: “I am in your heart – find me there.”

Abhishiktananda, a modern Roman Catholic monk initiated into Indian Advaita by his guru, Gnanananda, writes that “Guru and disciple form a dyad – a pair – whose two components call for each other and belong together. As two poles of a magnet, they can only exist by being related to each other. On the way toward unity, they are a dyad. In ultimate reality, they are non-dual.”

So what happens when the guru dies or goes away? How do disciples cope with the absence of the one living and loving presence that has opened the door to their own heart?

The sudden absence of the guru’s body initially catapults the disciple community into the unknown.This withdrawal presents a crisis.Yet this crisis does have a resolution. From sacred space to fluid reality, the body of the guru eventually becomes the body of the Ashram itself.

The Ashram, that external expression of the guru, is charged with both vibration and memories of all that took place during the guru’s lifetime. Here we can draw on our memories and reflect on all that took place while in the guru’s presence. While in the ashram, we are reminded, and also in those others gathered there, of the pain of loss. It’s a shared experience of grief, that only time can heal.

The atmosphere of the ashram is charged with spiritual vibrations created by the system, discipline, good thoughts and spirituality of many who live in or visited it. When we go to the ashram, we find those positive, spiritual energies flowing, and yet the mind cannot comprehend and the senses cannot see or smell, but only the inner being understands. In order to maintain the purity of those vibrations, it’s important the ashram is kept and respected as the living field of the Guru and his teachings. I would like to end on this note. Rumi, The supreme poet of love once said, “Lovers do not suddenly meet somewhere, but they are in each other, all along.” The same is true of the spiritual teacher or guru and the disciple.



This short note is from the website of Mrs. Phyllis Krystal. I don’t think I need add anything to this. It speaks for itself.

I, Phyllis Krystal declare from this day forward to have nothing to do with Madhusudan from Mudhanahalli. My difficult life situation, and weakened physical condition, unfortunately let me drift from my inner contact with Baba, my own HiC. I started to rely on this outer source.

I wish to return wholeheartedly to what Swami taught us over and over again, to seek Him in our heart instead of somewhere outside. Which, also corresponds with the Method that was given to me so many years ago.

I therefore want to cancel the planned visit of Madhusudan and his group this weekend, including any further future visits.

 Guildford, August 29th 2015 

An Island Called Independence –

Rose of Shanon

Rose of Shanon

So tired of hearing the press call the U.K. and France uncaring in light of the migrant crisis. Finger pointing at the European continent is not going to help solve this crisis. Finger pointing will only build more resentment and more unrest as if there is not enough in Europe already. There are plenty of very rich people who can help with this crisis without any need of govn. funds being used. Here’s a great solution put forward by the billionaire Naguib Sawiris – let’s hope he keeps to his word.  I might just add,  given a little sharing by the billionaire class, we could provide for the poor on every continent. In Europe we could cancel Greek’s debt and cancel out austerity. We could make the unthinkable come true -a world worth living in. Let’s hope other billionaires dig deep into their pockets to  give back just some of the wealth that has been given to them.

Egypt’s third richest man, Telecoms billionaire Naguib Sawiris, has disclosed that he plans to purchase an island off Italy or Greece and develop it to house hundreds of thousands of refuges fleeing from the conflict in Syria.

“Greece or Italy sell me an island, I’ll call it independence and host the migrants and provide jobs for them building their new country,” Sawiris said in a tweet on Tuesday that has since gone viral.

Naguib, who spoke to Agence France Press (AFP) after publishing his tweet, believes his idea is feasible and insists that he is serious about his proposition.

“You have dozens of islands which are deserted and could accommodate hundreds of thousands of refugees,” Sawiris said in an interview to AFP on Thursday.

Acquiring an island off Greece or Italy could easily cost Sawiris anywhere between $10-$100million but the Egyptian billionaire believes he could build a new country from scratch by investing heavily in infrastructure.

Outlining his blueprint, Sawiris stated on Twitter that he could build temporary shelters to house the refugees, and then employ the people to build housing, schools, universities and hospitals.

“And if things improve, whoever wants to go back (to their homeland) goes back,” he added. Sawiris promised that if his plan works, the refugees who take refuge in his new country would be treated as “human beings”.

Seeing Miracles –

Petals in the fountain - by Eve

Petals in the fountain – by Eve

“People usually consider walking on water or in thin air a miracle. But I think the real miracle is not to walk either on water or in thin air, but to walk on earth. Every day we are engaged in a miracle which we don’t even recognize: a blue sky, white clouds, green leaves, the black, curious eyes of a child — our own two eyes. All is a miracle.”

― Thich Nhat Hanh

For these pics. I used a Lumix XL7 camera on macro setting.

Blackberries growing under the hedge

Blackberries growing under the hedge

begonia and geranium floating in the fountain

begonia and geranium floating in the fountain

white hydrangea

white hydrangea

The Enchantment – Rumi Video with Valdi Sabev’s Music

With the constant rain and windy weather this year, I’ve kept my spirits high by creating You Tubes. They are fun to make although not at all an easy process. First to consider is the music. Music is tricky, choose the wrong music and your You Tube will flop. My best tips for people wishing to embark on creating You Tubes is to spend time watching other people’s efforts. Study the images used. Transitions are important, don’t use too many. Text is probably the most difficult, get it wrong, and your You Tube will look amateurish. I have to admit I’m still learning!

For this  most recent You Tube, I have again used summer flowers, together  with a Rumi Poem. The Music used is  from  Valdi Sabev – “A Perfect Day.” – I love it. Do  hope you will stop by for a few minutes to watch and enjoy. (For this You Tube, I’ve used a newer version of Movie Maker – this proved much more difficult on timing the transitions.)

Rumi for All Seasons


Who is the real Rumi? Was he religious, or a progressive thinker, or a hip spiritualist believing in the occult, or was he a scholar or a professor? The correct answer is all of the above. Due to his incredibly long and prolific creative life he has covered every topic imaginable from erotica to deeply philosophical, hence he has become a projection of the reader’s own mind.

For example Rumi talks about God in some of his poems and then dismisses him in many others. His prime message is that God is found in your own heart. He recited hundreds of poems where he mentions that he would set fire to Ka’ba and any temple or church, because God is not found there. He then encourages the reader to look into his or her own heart instead.

Due to the fact that Rumi recited poetry for about 25 years and 70,000 verses, he has covered every morsel of emotion, thought, idea and topic. Therefore, he can’t be pinned in one saying. Also because of the long duration of his creative expression he changed his mind often. Hence, you have poems where he praises God and then poems where he outright destroys any such concept.

In 800 years of popularity, Rumi has become a mirror projecting what the reader imagines. An orthodox or a religious reader, or a university professor, or a New Age type, or an advanced progressive thinker, all embrace Rumi as one of their own.

Seeing Everything As A Gift – Inspirational

Photo from Corlay, Brittany, 2014

Photo from Corlay, a small village in central  Brittany,

Walking around with my camera as I tend to do,  I never know what’s around the corner. It could be everything. Or it could be nothing. I keep putting one foot in front of the other, until something appears I want to photograph. The picture here is of a path, one I regularly visit.  While shooting  the photo, I’d focused on the trees only, thus, had not seen the lady with the white dog. Sitting later in the computer room, editing the photo, the lady in the far background suddenly became visible.  How had I missed her? She was wearing  a red coat, a colour that stands out, but somehow I had not seen her. Now, I wonder was she real or was she a phantom?  I will never know. She is a pleasing gift for this photo though.   Thank you lady in the Red Coat!   

“As we traversed rural India at the speed of a couple of miles per hour, it became clear how much we could learn simply by bearing witness to the villagers’ way of life. Their entire mental model is different—the multiplication of wants is replaced by the basic fulfillment of human needs. When you are no longer preoccupied with asking for more and more stuff, then you just take what is given and give what is taken. Life is simple again. A farmer explained it to us this way: “You cannot make the clouds rain more, you cannot make the sun shine less. They are just nature’s gifts—take it or leave it.”

When the things around you are seen as gifts, they are no longer a means to an end; they are the means and the end. And thus, a cow-herder will tend to his animals with the compassion of a father, a village woman will wait three hours for a delayed bus without a trace of anger, a child will spend countless hours fascinated by stars in the galaxy, and finding his place in the vast cosmos.

So with today’s modernized tools at your ready disposal, don’t let yourself zoom obliviously from point A to point B on the highways of life; try walking the back roads of the world, where you will witness a profoundly inextricable connection with all living things.”

–Nipun Mehta, PATHS ARE MADE FOR WALKING: Four steps to take on the road of life

Here are several other favourite paths from central Brittany, France. “Photos of Fall”




a favourite path

a favourite path