Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Monday, January 26, 2009
A post of gratitude to some of my visitors from around the world-Iran,London,England,Thailand, Nashville, Tennessee, North Holland, Lithuania, Paris - what a gift to see visitors who make blogging feel like a connection to a far away land. Here in South of France, it has been stormy and blustery, with the sun making its debut late this afternoon. I joined the sun on the horizon of the beach, where sand and sky and a sailboat met. I was blessed to have my sister-in-law here where we were sharing a chat while her sweet son slept. I want to share the vista with you all and hope it brightens your day and inspires hopeful thoughts and hugs among you and your loved ones. and yes, these photos represent the summer vistas---the gift of summer seasons and vacations to come!
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
What struck me throughout the day yesterday? as well as today- is the feeling of a global connectedness , a feeling like when the grinch's heart, grew and grew and grew....revealing possibilities long forgotten.
"It is better to light a candle than curse the darkness"
Sunday, January 18, 2009
Saturday, January 17, 2009
Richard's post-war career as an architect, along with his dedicated athleticism as a distance aerobic athlete, laid the groundwork for his artistic appreciation of another form of "flight" – the world of dance. His wife and daughter were immersed in classical ballet, and Richard, the architect-artist-athlete, discovered great beauty and inspiration in this most visually ephemeral of art forms.
Richard Calmes Dance Photography
angelica burgos photo above -wow
below the uncanny images of a dancer interfacing with the ordinary!
Friday, January 16, 2009
Andrew Wyeth died today at the age of 91. Aside from the one painting here of his wife smiling , his work is known mostly for a rather melancholy portrayal of rural American scenes- they are veiled in a brownish ,gray hues like that of his living space.
- This reminds me of the transformative power of art to create meaning out of the mundane allowing us a privaleged entry into other's inner worlds.
- It creates connections where there may have been none, or understanding where it is lacking.
- His most famous painting, 1948 's Christina's World- takes on special meaning when this woman in the dreary, overcast field was captured in her crab-like gesture crawling up the hill due to her physically handicapped condition.
- We are told that Wyeth saw dignity in her perserverance. Even without seeing her face ,I am drawn by her grace which seems frozen in time.
Thursday, January 15, 2009
Friday, January 9, 2009
Have a great weekend where ever you are--- let the light of the full moon inspire you!!
Thursday, January 8, 2009
After purusing the news on the internet this am, I announced to my sweet french hubby that I thought I should lay off the news, eventhough I want to be informed , I realized it really be a bummer. So to counter this side effect, my antidote was to check out my favorite bloggers:
- Here is where I went to get my infusion of hope and a morning giggle - to a rocking,upbeat blog, Creme de la Mode !
- here the "cone girls or creme girls", as they call themselves, dazzle me with perky posts, no pun intended!
- Hence, this post was no different and they chose a resource which is a favorite of mine, The Huffington Post- ok, so out with it ,you say, what is so contagious?
by Arthur Rosenfeld, courtesy of The Huffington Post
Just before Christmas of 2007, almost exactly a year ago, I steered into a Starbucks drive-thru line for a cup of tea on my way to teach a morning tai chi lesson. There were a few cars in line, and I got in behind them. When my turn came I gave my order at the billboard menu and moved up as far as I could while waiting patiently for the cars in front of me to get through the cashier line. While the South Florida weather would probably would have felt tropical to much of the rest of the country, I was a bit chilled and was looking forward to my hot drink.
The fellow in the SUV behind me reached the menu. Dissatisfied with the alignment between his mouth and the microphone, he laid on his horn, leaned out his window, yelled an insult and exhorted me to move up. There was nowhere to go. I was in a line, and mere inches separated my car from the one in front of me. Indignant at rudeness, I felt my temper come up, and because I am a pure and enlightened being who entertains nothing but positive thoughts, I reached for the door handle with the intention popping out of the car, taking a few steps, reaching into his open window, and sending him to the dentist for a holiday visit.
I’ll show you what happens to rude and impatient people, I thought. I’ll teach you that a martial artist is waiting in every car around you with the express mission of settling the world down into just the fair, quiet, and patient place they think it should be. Running that tape in my head, my ire grew even further. Testosterone and adrenaline flooded my body and in a few seconds I had transformed from the peaceful, content, slightly thirsty writer/teacher to a raving lunatic. My heartbeat was up, my hands were clammy, my muscles were tense, and the whole world had constricted down to the tiny business of completing my hostile mission.
Then I glanced in the mirror. The face of the impatient driver behind me was florid and twisted with anger and hate. I refocused my eyes and noticed that my own face didn’t look much different. Whatever plague had taken him had penetrated the steel and glass of my car to infect me too, robbing me of my much-vaunted equilibrium, my peace, my balance, my equanimity–precisely that thing that my beloved tai chi training, and the Chinese philosophy behind it prizes most highly.
I teach my students that it is best not to lose that balance–wuji in Chinese–through meditation, breathing, and tai chi training, but when you do, you can use any of three “doors” to get it back. Door number one is meeting force with force: I could go ahead and start a fight. Door number two is yielding: I could kowtow on the concrete, admit to being an idiot, and beg the other driver’s forgiveness. The best option, however, is door number three. That door is different every time. The trick is to figure out what that is.
The car in front of me moved off and I pulled up to pay. “I’d like to buy the coffee for the guy behind me,” I said.
The barista looked at me in surprise. “But he’s a jerk!”
“Just having a bad day, ” I said. “Happens to the best of us.”
“A random act of kindness, eh?”
I shook my head, thinking how I could explain door number three to her before the guy rammed my bumper with his. “Not really. I’m not doing it for him; I’m doing it for me. I was mad right back at him, but now that I’m doing this I feel much better.”
I had only a $10 bill in my wallet, and I handed it over. She checked her order screen. “He has ordered breakfast for five people. It’s a lot more than ten dollars.”
That gave me pause. I’d already regain my wuji. Did I really need to go through with more? I took out my credit card and handed it over.
She searched my face. “You’re sure?”
“Do it,” I said.
After I’d signed the charge slip, I drove away without a backward glance. I had found my door number three, was finished with the act, and indeed was already forgetting about it. I didn’t want to meet the guy on the road, either to hear thanks or more yelling, so I took a circuitous root to my lesson, avoiding the main highway.
Six hours later, I returned home to find my answering machine full of messages from the Starbucks manager, and from a reporter for NBC news. They had me using my credit card information. Apparently the guy behind me had continued my act of giving and the person behind him had done the same, and on and on. No doubt encouraged by the store manager, the chain was intact well into the afternoon. NBC covered the story.
The news spread around the world. Within 24 hours I had received calls and e-mails from as far away as Australia. The key point, of course, is that I had performed a random act of consciousness rather than a random act of kindness. I’d nearly lost my cool, had retrieved it, and done something good for myself and someone else in the process.
In a sense, you can think of this as self-centered, but in a good way. Keeping your cool, maintaining your wuji is just like putting your own oxygen mask on in a damaged airplane before helping those around you. If you pass out, you can’t help anyone. If you lose your temper, you are of no good to the world. Cool, calm and collected you are ready and willing to participate in the world.
Violent crimes and burglaries are up this holiday season. The financial crisis is creating anxiety, depression, desperation and anger. Spread the word about wuji. Do your best to control your own feelings before acting rashly. Think twice before doing or saying something you’ll regret. Random acts of consciousness are perhaps even more contagious than random acts of kindness. Raise your level of view, dig deep for perspective, and help make this a more peaceful holiday season for everyone.
Monday, January 5, 2009
photo 2 is by a superb french photographer Philippe Pedat
ok gang-here is a midwinter perk! a bolt of great energy A Cuban In London - here is a blissful,upbeat blogger, go there and have whirl ---do you not feel like you have found a gemstone on a sandy beach when you discover a new beautiful blog just knowing that the spirit behind the blog is out there in the blogosphere - kind of re-assuring,yes! Like an angel sighting!
This first image is by an artist from Palestine by the name of Zuhdie al Adawi He spent time in prison and began to create his images on fabric which were smuggled out by visiting relatives as a way to communicate his experience-the barred window and fiery building dominate the painting with a dark misery related to his confinement.
Likewise , this second painter,Samar Ghttass also a palestian artist,
chose to paint an outlet ,like the window- which is a door,yes, I knew we would get that !! It is however, closed and the threshold is covered by crumbling rocks. Not particularly optimistic symbols. and yet in each painting there are symbols of HOPE and PEACE, at least that is how I see them- a rainbow in the upper one and a dove in the lower one. Even amidst trauma, the human spirit clings to HOPE-
I wonder if the pain of the traumas and restrictions prevent people from accessing their best inner resources for creating meaningful change? I know from medicine that this is so ,yet when applied to a society rooted in a long history of violence,displacement, and wars- is the human spirit so overwhelmed that they are incapable of trusting and halting their attempts for change even if it is self destructive and provocative-as is shooting rockets into a neighboring nation?
The painting here by David Gerstein,an Israeli artist,
reflects an openness, using similar symbols- here though there are open windows, playful figures, flowers and space!
Similarly,Pamela Silver's colorful, yes, vibrant rendering of a garden has trees,plants and life giving space that breaths calm and creativity.
It looks like the first set of paintings reflect a very traumatized culture who may need help sorting out viable solutions and yet, the second set of painting reflects a society with more resources to think outside the box--to react with a set of options that are not primitive, cruel and backward moving- it is like reopening a wound to such a degree that it will not heal and perhaps become outrageously infected,thus fulminating and contaminating others.
Friday, January 2, 2009
It still feels like I am traversing the end of 2008 and the welcome start of the new year. Something I have left behind with longing regret is knowing my Dad as he was before the veil of Alzheimer's fell more tightly upon him.
The Dad I knew was a surgeon for infants and children,one of the first twelve trained in the USA. He was rather a legend in our small state. He usually had an entourage of residents, medical students and foreign physicians following him everywhere. He loved teaching the students in the operating room , on the wards and intensive care units. He could be spotted in his white coat and his characteristic bow tie or his scrubs. Families of his young patients knew him to be available and willing to ease their emotional distress with long explanations and diagrams. The nurses throughout the hospital could always count on him to put in an IV or access a port or assess a problem. In addition,there were those who thought he had a special sense of impending disaster and intuitively was in the right place at the right time when a young patient, not necessarily his own,would go into crisis. He was surely called to serve the sick and dying. He was my mentor and my reason for studying all those long years to become a pediatrician. He caste a big shadow and now he is being cared for by some of his patient's mothers who work as nurses in the hospital where he lives. So perhaps the sense of saying goodbye to the Dad I knew all those years has made me reticent to enter into the reality of 2009. At little bit at time was my father's favorite saying...
Thursday, January 1, 2009
mon amour doing his thing- loving the process and wood and the history of the Hotel Particulaire from the middle ages located in the Herault. My your new year allow for following your bliss too!!!