Seedlings – Inspirational

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Whichever angels guide us toward wakefulness, we must be prepared to do our part. Our immediate labour is to ready the ground for ourselves so that the seeds of truth, spoken by our teachers, spouse, or stranger, may find fertile soil in which to grow. Here are several seedlings in the form of quotes that may inspire. I hope so. Eve

I have included this beautiful you tube here. I am sure you will enjoy the magical photos along with the mystical and sublime Rumi poem. 🙂 

“One who is invisible cannot shake hands or converse with another until he becomes visible. An angel or spirit could have no intercourse with a man, even if standing close to his body and before his face. Neither can any one’s soul converse with another or act with another except by means of his body.”

– Emmanuel Swedenborg

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 “There is a bridge between Time and Eternity; and this bridge is Atman, the Spirit of Man. Neither day nor night cross that bridge, nor old age, nor death nor sorrow.

Evil or Sin cannot cross that bridge, because the world of the Spirit is pure. This is why when this bridge has been crossed, the eyes of the blind can see, the wounds of the wounded are healed, and the sick man becomes whole from his sickness.

To one who goes over the bridge, the night becomes like unto day; because in the worlds of the Spirit there is a Light which is everlasting.”

– the Chandogya Upanishad

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“Thy light has illuminated the dark chambers of my mind; Thy love is rooted in the depths of my heart; Thine eyes are the light of my soul; Thy power worketh behind my action; Thy peace alone is my life’s repose; Thy will is behind my every impulse; Thy voice is audible in the words I speak; Thine own image is my countenance. My body is but a cover over Thy soul; my life is Thy very breath, my Beloved, and my self is Thine own being.

Thou pourest wine into my empty cup wherever we meet, on hills and dales, on the tops of high mountains, in the thick forests and in the barren deserts, on the shores of the roaring sea and on the banks of the gentle river; and there ariseth in my heart the unearthly passion and the heavenly joy.

Thou hast won my heart a thousand times over; Thou comest veiled under many and varied guises, and in every guise thou art unique. Who is not attracted by the splendour Thou hast so skillfully produced on the face of the earth? In this beauty fair Thou shinest, adorned in myriad garbs. Thine own is all the beauty, and Thou shinest and yet are not Thyself attracted by it. Thou in this stage of life actest as friend and foe, and Thou alone seest the play performed so wonderfully. I sought Thee so long, my Beloved, and now I have found Thee at last, O Winner of my heart, and in finding Thee I have lost myself.

Let me feel Thine arms around me, my Beloved, while I am wandering away from home. Let my heart become Thy lute. Hearing Thy song my soul cometh to life. Let my virgin soul dance at Thy Court, my Indra; the passion it hath is for Thee alone. O, let me lean my head on Thy breast; Thine arms enfolding me, my feet touch paradise.

Wherever I look, I see Thy beloved face, covered under many different veils. The magic power of my ever-seeking eyes lifted the veil from Thy glowing countenance, and Thy smile won my heart a thousand times over. The lustre of Thy piercing glance hath lightened my darkened soul, and lo! now I see the sunshine everywhere…”

 

~Hazrat I. Khan

Through Beauty – Inspirational

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Flower Mock Orange taken this Spring

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Here are seveal of my recent photos of the Mock Orange. I love taking photos of this flower because of its elegance and sublime beauty, and the way it lends itself to the camera. The pity is the Mock Orange does not last long, along with all other Spring flowers it fades before there’s time to really take enough photos to make a good collection. Here are two of my better photos of this imposing flower from a few weeks ago taken outside in the rain.


.Black Iris - Karen Platt's Blog

Photo ~ Black Iris, Karen Platt’s Blog


“There are moments in our lives that stand still in time while all the frantic hours and years surrounding them have blurred into an obscurity of grayness. One such moment remains vivid in my mind after more than thirty years, a luminescent spot of time, as clear as if it had happened only yesterday. It was in one of those dark, cavern-like vaults of a lecture hall in college where Art History was offered as a slide show, and it was a perfectly ordinary lecture on American artists, clicking through shadowed images of Cubism and Futurism until a huge close-up of an iris glowed from the screen. “Black Iris.” Georgia O’Keeffe. A simple polarity of translucent light petals reaching upward and dark falls cascading downward made the flower look like a cathedral illumined from within. Breath stopped, mind stopped, and I felt myself dissolve into beauty, passing through painted veils of titanium white and dove gray mist, suspended over waves of amethyst, troughs of onyx. It was as if a thread of light flowing through the moment pierced me to the soul, connecting me to a higher realm.

There were no words in my nineteen-year-old mind to describe the epiphany I’d felt; there are no exact words this day. Words attempt to anchor experience, but that place was wordless and ineffable. In that light-filled moment I was changed forever, uplifted with new possibility. When I left class that afternoon, I had a mission in life: to attempt to stir in others that same sense of wonder: I began to study painting.”

–Rebecca Robison, an excerpt from “Through Beauty,” reaching for a harmonious whole, in PARABOLA, Volume 27, No. 3, Fall, 2002, “Grace.”

Beauty Redeemed- Inspirational Quotations

Hellebores from my garden
Hellebores from my garden

 

 

Being overwhelmed by the news and the continuing ordeal of the Charlie Hebdo events, I took off to the garden to take photos. I hope another post on the delights of the camera is not over doing it.

Often, during the winter, photography is not an option. The sun is hidden behind dark, low clouds, all looks grey and listless. At least they do here. There is little hope, with such weather, to take even a decent outside photo. It’s only when the sun suddenly and unexpectedly peaks through the clouds, perhaps at lunchtime some days, when I can venture into the garden to see what’s growing. There is one beautiful flower that somehow thrives in the darkest winter months – that is the Hellebore. The flowers of the Helleborus are almost a threat to the darkness of winter, for they are one of the most beautiful of all flowers. I have several Hellebores in the garden, from darkest purple to creamy pink. Here are some photos of the creamy pink one. I don’t even think the camera can do them justice, still I try. Here’s a few from today.

Youtube, at the bottom of this post, is quite special, a time lapse nature clip with amazing photos of butterflies, bees and hummingbirds. What can be better than to watch such beauty on a cold winter’s day. 🙂

Camera Lumix LX7 – macro flowers, edited in Topaz Clarity, and Ribbit, although not too much editing on classic flowers.

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A Favourite Quote

With our faith invested in the lies, we no longer see the truth. The lies blind our faith, the power of our creation.  ~ Don M. Ruiz

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We Are All Connected – You Tube
(Beautiful, breath-taking time lapse photography)

Easy To Be In Love With A Tree – Inspirational Quotations

the big old conifers were cut down this year. The new shrubs are my new additions to the garden.
The big old conifers were cut down this year.
The new shrubs are my new additions to the garden.

When I think of trees, I think of temples. For me trees represent temples. They provide both shade and sanctuary to all creatures. They feed the earth and give shelter to the birds. Trees are holy and vital to our well-being. Yes, I am a tree hugger. The vibrations of trees has a strong attraction for me.

For the past eight years I have sat back and watched  over forty trees cut down all around us. It was devastating to see those old temples go. None of them deserved it. We were told the trees were a nuisance for they cut out  light, they dropped leaves, they had nasty growing habits.  So they met an untimely end by  mutilation. I have never come to terms with the loss of trees. Although I have filled the garden, (although home now for sale,) with new trees. Among them, two beautiful young Weeping Willows, planted last winter. Hopefully, they will thrive at the bottom of the garden where they bother no one. Perhaps they will receive more care –  new temples for a new age. I won’t be here to see them grow, I can only wish them well.


 

One of the most beautiful passages in literature and perhaps the most profound thoughts anyone has ever uttered about trees, comes from the pen of Hermann Hesses, whose  melancholy joy and heartfelt understanding of his light and darkness strikes a cord with me.

This Ode to Trees is  found in Hesse’s Wondering: Notes and Sketches, published in 1920, after caring for World War I prisoners and experiencing multiple family losses and conflicts:

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For me, trees have always been the most penetrating preachers. I revere them when they live in tribes and families, in forests and groves. And even more, I revere them when they stand alone.

They are like lonely persons. Not like hermits who have stolen away out of some weakness, but like great, solitary men, like Beethoven and Nietzsche. In their highest boughs the world rustles, their roots rest in infinity; but they do not loose themselves there, they struggle with all the force of their lives for one thing only: to fulfill themselves according to their own laws, to build up their own form, to represent themselves.

Nothing is holier, nothing is more exemplary than a beautiful, strong tree.

When a tree is cut down and reveals its naked death-wound to the sun, one can read its whole history in the luminous, inscribed disc of its trunk: in the rings of its years, its scars, all the struggle, all the suffering, all the sickness, all the happiness and prosperity stand truly written, the narrow years and the luxurious years, the attacks withstood, the storms endured.

And every young farmboy knows that the hardest and noblest wood has the narrowest rings, that high on the mountains and in continuing danger, the most indestructible, the strongest, the ideal trees grow.

Trees are sanctuaries. Whoever knows how to speak to them, whoever knows how to listen to them, can learn the truth. They do not preach learning and precepts, they preach, undeterred by particulars, the ancient law of life.

A tree says: A kernel is hidden in me, a spark, a thought, I am life from eternal life. The attempt and the risk that the eternal mother took with me is unique, unique in the form and veins of my skin, unique in the smallest play of leaves in my branches and the smallest scar on my bark. I was made to form and reveal the eternal in my smallest special detail.

A tree says: My strength is trust. I know nothing about my fathers, I know nothing about the thousand children that every year spring out of me. I live out the secret of my seed to the very end, and I care for nothing else. I trust that God is in me. I trust that my labor is holy. Out of this trust – I live.

When we are stricken and cannot bear our lives any longer, then a tree has something to say to us: Be still! Be still! Look at me! Life is not easy, life is not difficult. Those are childish thoughts. Let God speak within you, and your thoughts will grow silent.

But when we have learned how to listen to trees, then the brevity and the quickness and the child-like hastiness of our thoughts will achieve an incomparable joy. Whoever has learned how to listen to trees no longer wants to be a tree. He wants to be nothing except what he is.

 

That is home. That is happiness.

If  trees could speak, they would say:  “Please let us live!”

Earth Does Not Belong To Man Alone – Inspirational Quotations

Another and probably my last –  time lapse 3D you tube from the same Film Creator,  together with an important message from  mycologist, Paul Stamets where he discusses the important role mushrooms play in the survival and health of the earth and human species. Also included in this post, the wonderful talk  “Living Spirit”  by Chief Seattle.     

Amanita muscaria
Amanita muscaria

 

How precious Is Our Earth?

Chief Seattle has become well known for his impassioned speech when asked to ‘sell’ his land to the European settlers. Although there has been some recent debate about who actually wrote the words, the message still stands. ‘How can you buy or sell the sky, the warmth of the land?’ he pleaded. ‘If we do not own the freshness of the air and the sparkle of the water, how can you buy them?’

All the memories and identity of his people were linked to the relationship they felt with this land. Was it so easy to give this up for beads and blankets? He realized the inevitable truth, however, that his people had been broken by starvation and war, and that they were going to lose their ancestral homeland to the mad rush of European settlers passing themselves off as the legitimate government of a country which they had, for the most  part, stolen. But before resigning himself to sign the treaty, he offered to them the natural wisdom of his people. His speech is a beautifully poetic and a haunting reminder of what most of us have forgotten. ‘This we know.’ he finally concluded. ‘The Earth does not belong to Man. Man belongs to the Earth. We are all connected, like the blood that unites one family.’


 

The Living Spirit

 

‘Every part of this earth is sacred to my people. Every shining pine needle, every sandy shore, even mist in the dark woods, every clearing and humming insect is holy in the memory and experience of my people. The sap which courses through the trees carries the memories of the red man.

The white man’s dead forget the country of their birth when they go to walk among the stars. Our dead never forget this beautiful earth for it is the mother of the red man. We are part of the earth and it is part of us.

The perfumed flowers are our sisters, the deer, the horse, the great eagle, these are our brothers. The rocky crests, the juices of the meadows, the body heat of the pony, and man – all belong to the same family.

For this land is sacred to us. This shining water that moves in the streams and rivers is not just water but the blood of our ancestors. If we sell you land, you must remember that it is sacred, and you must teach your children that it is sacred and that each ghostly reflection in the clear water of the lakes tells of events and memories in the life of my people. The water’s murmur is the voice of my father’s father.

The red man has always retreated before the advancing white man, as the mist of the mountains run before the morning sun. But the ashes of our fathers are sacred. Their graves are holy ground, and so these hill, these trees, this portion of the earth is consecrated to us.

 You must teach your children that the ground beneath their feet is the ashes of our grandfathers. So that they will respect the land, tell your children what we have taught our children, that the earth is our mother. Whatever befalls the earth, befalls the sons of the earth. If men spit upon the ground, they spit upon themselves.

 This we know. The earth does not belong to man; man belongs to the earth. This we know. All things are connected like the blood which unites one family. All thing are connected. Whatever befalls the earth befalls the sons of the earth. Man did not weave the web of life, he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself.

Even the white man, whose God walks and talks with him as friend to friend, cannot be exempt from the common destiny. We may be brothers after all; we shall see. One thing we know, which the white man may one day discover – our God is the same God.’

– Chief Seattle – from an oration given at the tribal assembly of 1894

preparatory to the Indian Treaties. (translated by Dr. John Smith)

 

 

 

“Letting Go” For Happiness – Inspirational Quotations

Thanks to Val Boyko for the youtube.

 

Alan Watt’s videos are a great source of wisdom. This short one is no exception. He speaks here about attachment, and how we humans hang on to things. We grasp at fleeting happiness that, like a butterfly, flits in and out of our lives leaving only memories. Neither things nor people make us really happy. We need to learn happiness from those who are masters in that department. Anandamayi Ma was a master of happiness or what she called bliss.

In the book The Essential Sri Anandamayi Ma, the author, Alexander Lipski has given many wonderful accounts of her mastery and her teachings on non-attachment. Anyone who was fortunate enough to meet Anandamayi Ma – and there are many fortunate ones still living – knows that something of her teaching is in her very person. She was the living embodiment of  “A Blessing”, a gift to mankind. I wish there were more like her alive today, but it seems as the darkness of the age has drenched us with uncertainty and fear, so the great masters have retreated from our world. We are left with their words and  timeless wisdom, in those we need to find solace in this age of  Kali.

 


Ananadamayi Ma
Ananadamayi Ma

From Selected Discourses – Anandamayi Ma..

 

Question:  “Please explain the nature of worldly and divine happiness.”

Mataji: “Divine happiness is pure, unalloyed bliss, happiness in its own right.”

Question:  “But surely, there is happiness in the world too!”

Mataji: “Then why do you make this remark?”

Question: “Why do people run after material happiness?”

Mataji:

“You know this happiness from experience, and hence your question. But the Divine is gracious and makes you see that this so-called happiness is not happiness. He kindles discontent and anguish in you, which is due to the want of communion with the Divine. Worldly happiness is derived from the countless manifestations of God. People talk and marvel about those who renounce the world, but in actual fact it is you yourself who have renounced everything. What is this “everything”? God! Leaving Him aside, everyone is literally practicing supreme renunciation. It is only natural that the sence of want should awaken. Even in the midst of comforts and pleasures one feels homesick in a foreign land. There is distress even in happiness, one’s possession are not really one’s own – this is what He causes man to feel. It is said, it is not, that on being hit one recovers one’s senses, one learns by receiving blows.

When He manifests Himself as worldly happiness, one does not feel contented, for along with it He appears as the sense of want. But divine happiness, even the tiniest particle of a grain of it, never leaves one again; and when one attains to the essence of things and finds one Self – this is supreme happiness. When it is found, nothing else remains to be found; the sense of want will not awaken anymore, and the heart’s torment will be stilled forever. Do not be satisfied with fragmentary happiness, which is invariable interrupted by shocks and blows of fate: but become complete, and having attained to perfection, be YOURSELF.”

 


 

A Parable:.

A precious necklace was seen flashing from the bottom of a lake. Many felt tempted to recover the valuable ornament and dived deep into the water for it, but found no necklace anywhere. Yet it was clearly visible to everyone from the edge of the lake. They were all puzzled. Eventually they realized that there was no necklace at the bottom of the lake; what they saw was its reflection in the water. They looked up and discovered the precious ornament hanging from a tree. A bird must have picked it up from somewhere and deposited it there.

God who dwells within you is the source of true happiness. In the objects of the senses this happiness is merely reflected. The individual, misled by birth after birth by having only a glimpse of this reflected joy, thinks that this is the real thing, namely sensuous delight. So long as one believes that true happiness can be had in sense objects without searching within, one will never taste true happiness. The kingdom of God, hence of happiness, is within you.

– Anandamayi Ma, the Mother Bliss – Incarnate, by Anil Ganguli

My New Handbag – Inspirational Quotes and Poems

My new handbag
My new handbag

 

 

I’ve just made my best purchase of the year, a new handbag. Mine though is not shiny, bright with a famous logo or designer label. My handbag is gorgeous  but it’s second hand. I love it. I love the way it looks so elegant but only cost me a tenner. (10 pounds) – I know i shall treasure it along with all my other handbags. Talking about my other handbags, I have just decorated several with  French crochet motifs with bright shiny buttons. The handbags look chic and instead of the once  “that little out of date look,”  now they  look brand new. What do I carry in my handbag, well the usual but sheesh! I am not telling all. I have posted a really snazzy little poem on woman’s handbags.  enjoy

 

 

boho bag with pink button. This idea is so easy to copy on to any handbag. :)
boho bag with pink button. This idea is so easy to copy on to any handbag. 🙂

 

 

The handbag is a rare delight, it’s like Aladdin’s cave,
All sorts of things are hidden there, that females like to save,
It’s black and big and heavy, with a nice long shoulder strap,
Its weighted down with odds and sods and other stuff like that.

But the lady finds just what she wants deep down amongst her treasure,
Of keys and pins and leg hair wax and a metric rule for measure,
The remnants of forgotten ills with aspirins held so dear,
Birth control and other pills with labels quite unclear.

Calorie counters, cotton buds, old lottery tickets too,
Handkerchiefs and white tissues for visiting the loo,
A book of stamps, a tube of glue, letters from I don’t know who,
Horoscopes with personal star, petrol vouchers for the car.

Perfume loaded by the box, knitting needles, pairs of socks,
Bank statements and counterfoils, sachet samples, body oils,
Cassette tapes and eye mascara, postcards from old Connamara
Itineraries for keep-fit classes, lipstick and a pair of glasses,

Emery boards, a pot of Vic, silver tweezers, half a brick,
Screwdriver, spanners, ball of wool, ancient notebook partly full,
Bristle brush for long tresses, photographs and addresses,
Polo mints and a mobile phone just in case they stray from home.

Cheque book stubs, leather gloves, insect spray for the shrubs,
Driving licence, bingo card, cuttings from the paper,
Favourite verse, loaded purse and a windscreen scraper,
Credit cards, safety razor, golden buttons off a blazer.

But best of all it is a friend, that’s with them every day,
Slung upon the shoulder in a casual way,
And don’t forget it is a club – not of the member kind,
But the bag itself when wielded right could change a mugger’s mind. ~Bridget Patrick

 


There’s a new book out called In How to Tell a Woman by Her Handbag, a former swimwear model called Kathryn Eisman makes her pitch for the Pulitzer with her tome on what she calls “purse-onality” (titter): “A woman’s handbag is an extension of who she is and it helps her facilitate the roles she plays – be it files for her career, shopping lists for her domestic responsibilities or make-up to be aesthetically pleasing. A woman’s handbag is her grown-up ‘security blanket’ – carrying items to navigate the world.

Say I Am You – Inspirational Quotations and Poem

threading flowers for garlands, she is lost in contemplation
threading flowers for garlands, she is lost in contemplation

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Here is the second in the photography series, Say I am you.  I don’t know how many of you read Rumi, I find his poems irresistible and this one in particular.   Rumi’s poems elegantly and consistently touch our inner being and inspire us to go beyond our limitations towards the Divine.  He is expressing once more in this  poem how he is in everything, and everything is in him. He ends with these few words,  “Jelaluddin, You the one in all, say who I am. Say I am You.”

 

The Hari Krishna ladies, Bangalore
The Hari Krishna ladies, Bangalore

 

 

the street vender - I wonder what she is thinking?
the street vender – I wonder what she is thinking?

SAY I AM YOU

I am dust particles in sunlight.
I am the round sun.

To the bits of dust I say, Stay.
To the sun, Keep moving.

I am morning mist,
and the breathing of evening.

I am wind in the top of a grove,
and surf on the cliff.

 

Getting Ready for xmas-Bangalore
Getting Ready for xmas-Bangalore

Mast, rudder, helmsman, and keel,
I am also the coral reef they founder on.

I am a tree with a trained parrot in its branches.
Silence, thought, and voice.

The musical air coming through a flute,
a spark of a stone, a flickering

in metal. Both candle,
and the moth crazy around it.

Rose, and the nightingale
lost in the fragrance.

I am all orders of being, the circling galaxy,
the evolutionary intelligence, the lift,

and the falling away. What is,
and what isn’t. You who know

 

little boy in Andra Pradesh village. He is stepping into his home, away from me and the camera -
little boy in Andra Pradesh village. He is stepping into his home, away from me and the camera –

Jelaluddin, You the one
in all, say who

I am. Say I
am You.

 

~rumi

 


The poem “I am You” to soothing but apt music. Heavenly!

 

The photographs here are from my Indian Collection.  

Visits 2012 and 2013. thank you!