Tag Archive: nature


Kudos to the blogs/bloggers who patiently post philosophical /healing gems Every single day , inspiring us lesser mortals 👏🙏

When I sit on my cliff-edge with untimed 
patience, letting the beauty and serenity of my surroundings seep into my being, I begin to feel that I, 
too, have become a part of the quiet landscape. I am absorbing into my nature the stillness of Himalaya. I squat on the ground rooted like the 
Deodar tree before me.


We humans have become so self-important and 
so self-conceited in our own eyes that it does not 
occur to us that the Great Mother who bears us so 
patiently , feeds us with such 
abundant variety of foodstuffs, and takes us back 
again when we are sufficiently tired, has a purpose of 
her own which she wishes to achieve in us if we will 
but let her. We have set up our schemes and projects, we have decided what we want to get from life, and we are thinking, striving, struggling and even 
agonizing in our efforts to obtain the satisfaction of 
our desires. If, however, we devoted a quarter of our time to ceasing from self-efforts and quietly 
letting Nature’s mind permeate our own, we might 
make a wise revision of the catalogue of things wanted, yet at the same time secure Nature’s co-operation in obtaining them. 
The world is but an enlarged hotel, where we are 
lodged and fed by Mother Nature, pay our bill and 
then pass on.

To co-operate with Nature 
is to give up carrying the burden of life 
and to let her carry it for us ; everything becomes 
easy, even miraculous. 
I have seen these truths before, but now, in my 
mountain sanctuary and in closer tie with the Mother, 
I see them with startling clarity. 
A poet has said that Nature is the garment of 
God. Yes, but to me Nature is indistinguishable from 
God.
If God is the Grand Architect, then Nature is the Master Builder of this universe, in the Freemasonic 
system of our world. 
My Master explains the futility of separative 
self-effort by an effective simile. He asks, ” What 
would you think of a man who entered the compartment of a railway carriage whilst carrying a trunk on 
his head, and who then sat, down on his seat but 
refused to put the trunk down on the floor ? Yet people refuse to surrender the burdens of their existence to God, insisting on carrying them themselves 
under the delusion that no one else can carry them, 
just as the man in the train was under the delusion 
that it was not the train but himself who carried the 
trunk. So, too, God who supports this earth supports us and our burdens and carries all along with 
Him.” 

High up on a snow-surrounded natural throne, Shiva, the god who took the 
body of a Yogi, is still believed to be lost in one 
eternal aeon-old meditation. In the little tree￾shadowed valley of Agastyamuni, the great Seer 
named Agastya had practised his Yoga in ancient 
times. The sacred river Bhagirathi which flows across 
this kingdom is mentioned in the holy books, the 
Puranas, for it is really the chief feeder of the Ganges. 
Its name is associated with that of King Bhagirath, a 
royal Saint. The temple of Badri Narayan in a glacier valley is sacred even to the Buddhists, no less than 
the Hindus,The place suggests cloistral peace. If serenity can be
attained anywhere on earth, this is indeed one region
among the few. This unspoilt border State, where the
ancient Hindu gods have walked, seems quite apart
from the rest of India.Most spiritual of all
trees, legend makes the deodar the favourite of the
gods.

( Brunton and his Guru (Shri Ramana Maharshi ) may have been the inspiration for the characters in Maugham’s work of fiction )

The Hindus, like
the Tibetans, firmly believe that the Himalayas are
the secret abodes of the gods, as well as of those
spiritual supermen whom they call the Rishees, who
to-day are supposed to dwell there in invisible etheric
bodies. Yes, one of them has brought me here .

It may even be that this unimaginably beautiful and
secluded spot is his very dwelling place. Enchantment
creeps upon me.
It is a fact that the broad mountains of this kingdom of Tehri are holy precincts. The Hindus believe
that these Himalayan shrines, set in the colossus among
mountain ranges, are even more sacrosanct than their
holy cities of Benares, Puri and Nasik. Twice
a day, at the favoured times of dawn and dusk, I shall
climb its steep face with the aid of the stick, and then
settle down to learn how a man might arrive at the
art of being still and, perchance, even ultimately know
God.

The best way to spread the
spirit of benevolence is to begin with myself. Let me,
then, compose my thoughts and silently repeat the
Buddhist formula for world well-being, whose spirit if
not whose words is :
“To the four quarters of the world, I send compassion. To the north, south, east and west, above
and below, I send compassion. To all living creatures
upon the earth, I send compassion.”

The brain is like a wheel which endlessly revolves,
picking up fresh thoughts with every revolution. Now
I watch the wheel slow down. The more I hold to
my resolve to press attention deeply inwards towards
a central point, the more my thoughts diminish in .
We are talking of the difficulty which beginners experience when attempting to learn how to concentrate
the mind. The adept remarks :
” If we assume that the average number of
thoughts which pass through a man’s brain during a
given period is one hundred, and if he succeeds in
reducing it by constant practice in regulation to eighty,
then we may say that he has gained the power of
concentration of mind to the extent of twenty per cent.
Therefore the most direct way to obtain such concentrative power is to practise the lessening of the number
of one’s thoughts.”
And with the slower working of my brain, yet
with all attention not a whit less alert, I begin to feel
a profounder peace enveloping me. The prolonged
concentration of thought has ultimately induced a
finer state to arise inside. How sorry I feel for the
city dwellers who are subject to turmoil without end I
Why should they make the intellect supreme ? Yet
their way of escape cannot inwardly be different from
mine. Minds, exasperated by the inevitable frictions
and disappointments of daily life, may find in the respite gained by mental quiet a soothing and healing serenity that will anoint their wounded nerves with
balm.
The intellect is but an instrument and not the
essential being of man. It is not self-sustained. It
is an automatic and routine faculty. Modern man
represents the triumph of mechanistic intellect over
mere instinct, just as future man will represent the
triumph of divine intuition over mere intellect.

The comparative stillness which surrounds me now
may not be, nay is not, the utter stillness which I long
to attain, for not a few slow-walking thoughts contrive
to meander around inside the emptied halls of my
brain. To be really still is to be centred. Nevertheless,
I shall be contented with it to-day and not attempt to
cross the mystic frontier.


The young cultured Hindu
who dresses like the moderns but thinks like the
ancients is fast disappearing.

Why should I waste my
time, with millions, in railing and ranting against the
defects of established society ? Rather should I do
a little constructive work. We shall have a pacified world when we
have pacified hearts-not before. The ancient Sages
who gave this simple formula are nowa-days denounced as impractical idealists. But if the
final test of a policy is its results in material affairs,
we must confess tohat this peaceless world has not
improved on them. The spiritual emptiness of our
epoch and the poverty of our inner resources express
themselves clearly ellough in the chaos, the distress
we see everywhere around us, and the dolorous servitude which we give to unworthy ideals and unworthy
men.
The world’s development of egotism and intellect
has given it a fictitious sense of practical wisdom.

Excerpt from Hermit in the Himalayas

I take Nature’s gift thankfully. The Gods who made
this land must have been beauty-drunk. The wild
beauty of the scene outsteps imagination. It inspires
the mind and uplifts the soul. Were I a Shelley I
Would quickly become lyrical over this region, but
alas ! I am not. For the lordly Himalayas exist with
an aura of complete solitude which is ineffably
peaceful and inspiringly grand. In these Himalayan
highlands, there arises the true charm of mountaineering ; civilization is so remote, towns so distant and
serenity so prevalent. They carry the suggestion of
eternity, although there are hill ranges in the south
which, geologically, are far older. The tremendous
heights are, perhaps, chiefly responsible for this
suggestion. Here one is face to face with the universal
mystery itself, hiding behind no man-made facade of gregariously-built cities but revealing its calm challenging face directly and assuming it,s wildest form..
Himalaya embodies the grand forces of Nature.
For
destiny has truly prepared a special place for my
meditations and when I search the long rugged line.
of the Himalayas on the map and let my finger rest
on the kingdoin of Tehri-Garhwal, where India’s
sacred river, the Ganges, takes its rise, I feel, as by
inspiration, that here must be my substitute for Mount
Kailas

Moreover the most sacred
shrines of India are here. Many stories of the deities,
sages and Yogis who have lived in this secluded king-
dom have come down from the mists of tradition.
Here, if anywhere, I may find a fit spot for my meditations, for it is set amid the world’s grandest scenery.

Dawn has spread over the East
like a pinkish pearl. When the music of twittering,
chirruping, singing and jubilant birds, excited over
the event, has somewhat subsided, I get the bags
opened.
Mount Arunachala, in South India,
where my Master dwells and where I have taken up
-my temporary abode, is called in very ancient Hindu
books, ” the southern Kailash.” It possesses a strong
spiritual affinity with its Tibetan confrere, as well as
striking historical ties.
The sacred peaks of Badrinath,
Kedarnath , continue the jagged sky-line
and glitter against a cloudless sky.
It is a curious and startling thought that a visitor
from another planet who was approaching our earth,
would notice first of all this serried Himalayan range.
Par, with hundreds of peaks, at least, more than
twenty-thousand feet in height, the Himalayas become
the most outstanding object on the surface of our own
planet !

What luck ! To have an entire forest of
Christmas trees at one’s door ! And each tree carries a load of gifts upon its needled branches-gifts intangible and invisible, maybe ; gifts of serenity and
quietude ! The tops of these towering trees reach
almost to my very door, but their roots are about
fifty feet down the mountain-side. What the firs lack 
in girth, they make up for in height. They are lordly 
and grand in their vivid green garments

. The ground is thick 
with fallen brown fir-needles. , snow-white blossoms of 
faintly-scented little flowers which brighten the 
shadowed scene. They spangle the dark foliage like a 
firmament of shining stars. Among these silent tree-
shadows I may find, doubtless, what the towns cannot 
give- peace, depth and healing.


We continue climbing the narrow track. The-
steep paths of Himalaya are akin to the steep paths
of life itself. But I adventure up the rugged trail
with music sounding in my ears. God is luring me-
on. I am riding, not merely into Himalaya, but into
heaven. I have forsaken one world only in order to
find a better.
The air is sweet and The mountains are flushed with
beauty that belongs, not to them, but to God.


A secret nook in a pleasant land,
Whose groves the frolic fairies planned ;
Where arches green, the livelong day,
Echo the blackbird’s roundelay,
A spot that is sacred to thought and God
, when I am safe in my sylvan home,
And when I am stretched beneath the pines,
Where the evening star holy shines.


A Yogi who meditates on
mysterious forces , while he sits upon the Ganges
bank beyond Rishikesh, that unique town where
recluses, monks and pilgrims make their permanent or
temporary abode ; with great calmness he tells me
how he separated the spirit from the body and found
himself witnessing scenes in far-off Calcutta or even
hearing the noise of London as he looked down
upon it ! Then there is a young Bengali lady who has
achieved an exceptional height of spiritual realization,
and whose face reminds one of the beatitude-filled face
of St. Teresa, while she sits with half-closed eyes
surrounded by a large group of devotees ; a lean, bent
old muhammedan grey-beard who takes me through
clingy Delhi alleys and bazaars to the Jumma Masjid,
India’s largest mosque, where he discourses to me
of his youthful adventures upoil the Mecca pilgrimage,
and then tells me how he is preparing himself for
another kind of pilgrimage, to wit, his exit from this
world.

I had no
desire to meet the leading men of any town. Besides,
why all the bother ? I had done a bit of journalism,.
a bit of editing, and a bit, I hope, of finer writing in a
few books.
Time to give a party when I shall have accomplished
something worthwhile, when I shall have climbed the-
Himalaya of the soul and reached its white summit,.

I hear the cuckoo. Its call makes me think
of spring’s sure recurrence in Europe.
Sundown brings a rapid change of colours. The
peaks and crags of ethereal white which rise to the
sky are now warmed by the waning beams into masses
of coral and pink ; but this is only temporary. The
descent of the dying sun transforms the frosted silver
of the snows from colour to colour, while suffusing the
lower forest-covered ridges with saffron. The red drifts
into gold and the gold returns once again to yellow.
And when the final rays take their leave, the warm
colourings also abandon the range and the snows
assume a chalky whiteness. The pallor becomes more
pronounced and ends in greyish-white.

We ride 
through a monstrous yet beautiful ghost-world. 
Leaves turn to silver in the moon beams and tree-
trunks seem to be carved out of frosted stone. There 
is something indescribably weird in the picture of pale 
moonlight on the world’s giants. I

Each is now a wraith-like titan, 
grand, grim, yet undeniably beautiful. For the Himalayas, in this 
weird light, has become the fabled land of the giants. 
.

Overhead, the sky scintillates with its wealth of 
beauty. Planets wander through the firmament with 
unnatural brilliancy. The stars, in their high heaven, 
are like clusters of diamonds upon the crowned hair 
of night

And of what shall my activities consist ? The
principal one is just sitting still ! I am quite serious.
It is indeed, I must admit, a queer kind of work, the
queerest which I have yet undertaken ever since my
ship weighed anchor and turned its bow from the
British shore ;

. Yet that is the absolute truth, the sole purpose
of my cutting adrift from the generality of men and
settling for a while in this unfrequented Himalayan
kingdom. I expect no excitements, no hair-raising
situations, no perils, in this new adventure of mine.

I am not even to continue my ancient
labours of self-conscious meditation, he counsels, but
just to be still !
I am to seek no outer adventures, nor even any
inner ones. I am to take Nature as my tutor, to merge
my spirit into the absolute silence of her surrounings, and to let every thought lapse away into mere
nothingness. I am to become a living paradox, seek-
ing attainment of a higher order of being by the
curious method of making no effort ! In short, the
Psalmist’s saying, which my Master quotes again at
the end of our sitting, is to be taken in its literal
fulness.
So, in my hunger for the divine presence, I set
out on my journey northwards, hardly knowing, where
my feet will come to rest.
In this undertaking I am simply obeying the injunction laid upon me by my revered spiritual Master
two days before I parted from him. The scene sticks
adhesively to memory. We sit in utter silence during
the eventide hour.

Plants …urban jungle and auroville

https://stanflouride.com/2016/11/26/nasa-guide-to-air-filtering-houseplants 

Interesting site about houseplants,greenhouses and interiors – https://www.haarkon.co.uk/explore-blog/

http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-features/tp-metroplus/heaven-in-the-eyes-of-the-beholder/article19706338.ece
“My biggest inspiration is my life in Auroville,” she says, over a Skype call from the experimental township where she lives and works. The rolling landscapes and unfettered spirit of Auroville are her muse. “Her untamed wilderness often hits my heart. And I always work spontaneously following a mood in my heart.”
Much of her latest collection, “…so many heavens…”, which will open at the Centre d’Arts Citadines, Auroville on September 16, is a paean to Auroville. “We had a bad monsoon last year and lands were starving for water,” she remembers. Her work at that time was dark, “shades of brown and bronze, with pools of blue,” to symbolise “this longing for water”.
Then there would be one shower and in two days, star-like wild jasmines would light up the gritty dryness. “It was glorious; this alternation between seeming death followed by abundance and optimism. And this would make me weep that we are surrounded by so many heavens… each a universe in itself.  “We all carry seeds, many different kinds of seeds,” says Sundaravalli. But like a plant, it needs the right environment to blossom, she smiles.  

Research – http://www.sacar.in/index.php

Dream homes in nature

transylvanialand:Cotswold Lavender by Andrew Lockie on Flickr.

dreaming-of-rain:xxoldchum:Oswald’s Mill - Mill tourysvoice:| ♕ |  Meadow house near Melrose Abbey, Scotland  | by © Sonja Pieper http://www.home-designing.com/2012/02/eero-saarinen%E2%80%99s-%E2%80%9Cmiller-residence%E2%80%9D

dyingofcute:veranda

raben-schwarz:Toriimoto, Kyoto. on We Heart It - http://weheartit.com/entry/65978044frommoon2moon:Kathryn Island

  concocted:by cath ameswanderlusteurope:Hospice du Simplon, Valais, Switzerlandreoccured:Landscape+Architecture blog

(via Stop chasing after so many things)

photographyweek:The Old Lifeboat House by William Razzell"I have visited Newquay in the UK several times so when there was a rapidly passing storm in the evening I knew that this spot, overlooking the Fistral headland, would be great for when the clouds began to clear."View more of William’s photography.Image copyright William Razzell and used with permission.__See the world’s most inspirational images every Thursday in Photography Week. Get five free issues today at http://bit.ly/RHzJmN

my dream home

Free Verse: Bamboo Grove

solitude

Bastet and Sekhmet's Library

bamboo

Free Verse

Bamboo Grove

Walking in a bamboo grove
searching for serenity
the rustling leaves
gave me the peace I sought
their shade from harsh light
refreshed my soul.
Basho would say
that harmony can be found
even in a crowded city.
I travelled to a park
among pine trees, palm fronds
and a bamboo grove
and was rewarded.

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Reflections

click pics for sources (Flickr & Tumblr )

woodendreams:(by Iggy63)

theoceanrolls:Salar de Surire - Chile (by lostin4tune)

sp1tfir3: 

 

Nature in all its glory – wonderful

cloudsssssss !!

An August night

FRAMES IN FOCUS

August Night

EXIF: Canon EOS 60D, Lens: EF-S15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM, Focal length: 15mm, 2.5 sec, f/3.5, ISO 1600, White Balance: Auto

An August night

Ocean, moon, stars and rain……… its hard not to feel poetic. Last night I witnessed a much more splendid view than ISO 1600 could capture. You can see rain pouring down in the centre of the image, along the horizon. I have witnessed such isolated rain showers only at sea.

Shot in Atlantic Ocean, off Bermuda Islands.

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Flowers and Critters

Birds of Paradise – Magical Beauty

On a summer morning

New beginnings

Veraiconica's Blog

valerio-clementi

On a summer morning
take the walking stick,
your worries will go away
like fog disappears.

Cheery blueness of the sky
smiles in your heart
surrounded by God’s faithfulness
with his loving umbrella.

All around you only flowers, new shoots
and heavy stalks,
it is as love walks besides
you on the road.

It all sounds so much like home
in your father’s house,
and above the larks song
your soul is ascending.

Theodor Fontane

An einem Sommermorgen
da nimm den Wanderstab,
es fallen deine Sorgen
wie Nebel von dir ab.

Des Himmels heitre Bläue
lacht dir ins Herz hinein
und schließt, wie Gottes Treue,
mit seinem Dach dich ein.

Rings Blüten nur und Triebe
und Halme von Segen schwer,
dir ist, als zöge die Liebe
des Weges nebenher.

So heimisch alles klingt
als wie im Vaterhaus,
und über die Lerchen schwingt
die Seele sich hinaus.

Theodor Fontane

Photography Credit…

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