Thursday, December 18, 2008

The Importance Of Love...

Fortunate enough to hear one of the last speeches of Justice Michael Kirby, Australia's (retiring Feb 2009), High Court Judge...he spoke not of law, the economy, but love.

Here in some edited reprint from: http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/the-truth-about-life-20081216-6zro.html?page=-1

The Truth about Life:
17/12/08
(by Michael Kirby).

"THERE is nothing like the prospect of a radical life change to concentrate the mind on the things that really matter.
I want to identify, if I can, the most important thing that I have discovered.

I refer to love.

Love for one another.
Love for our community.
Love for others everywhere in the world.
Love transcends even scholarship, cleverness and university degrees.
It is greater than pride and wealth.
It endures when worldly vanities fade.

Love exists at different levels.

Last week, in Australia and the world, we celebrated the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
It was brought into effect by an Australian, Dr H. V. Evatt (a past justice of the High Court of Australia) and president of the General Assembly of the United Nations in 1948 when the declaration was adopted.

Over the ensuing six decades, it became the foundation for the worldwide movement to express the fundamental freedoms that inhere in all human beings, simply because they are human.

Of course, there are people and interests with unchecked power who hate such notions. These are ideas to put limits on their power. To uphold the dignity of the powerless. To put a brake on the hegemony of the rich and influential.

The essential underpinning of fundamental human rights is love.
Love for one another.
Empathy for fellow human beings.
Feeling pain for the refugee; for the victim of war; for the prisoner deprived of the vote; for the child dying of cholera in Zimbabwe.

We can imagine what it must be like to be a victim because, as human beings, we too feel, and yearn for, life, freedom and justice.

Australians must be voices for the voiceless and protectors of the weak and vulnerable. With our privileges and gifts go duties and obligations.
Australian democracy is not merely a rule of majorities. Don't believe it when public figures say otherwise or when sections of the media, revelling in their power, say that everything can be safely left to parliament, which will quickly fix things up. Majorities can certainly err. They have done so in the past. They will do so again.

Basic human rights afford the means to remind majorities of the love they owe to all human beings, both at home and abroad.

We need to love our communities.
In Australia, we did not always love our indigenous people. Some still don't. In law, we rejected their land rights. We consigned them to the outskirts of our civilisation. Many are still there.

So too with Asian people in the decades of White Australia. We did not love them either. We feared their numbers and their different ways.

So also for women and for gays. Here, too, there was an absence of love and empathy. Now we Australians are getting better.

I believe that this is because of knowledge, acquaintance and love."

........and

"When we take time to think about what our lives actually mean, we surely know how lucky we are if we still enjoy consciousness, rationality and love.

But the greatest of these is love."

------------------------------------------------------------

Yes, indeed Justice Michael Kirby-yes.










"Love is not a thing to understand.
Love is not a thing to feel.
Love is not a thing to give and receive.
Love is a thing only to become And eternally be. "

- Sri Chinmoy


Kiss The Earth
~
Walk and touch peace every moment.
Walk and touch happiness every moment.
Each step brings a fresh breeze.
Each step makes a flower bloom.
Kiss the Earth with your feet.
Bring the Earth your love and happiness.
The Earth will be safewhen we feel safe in ourselves.

- Thich Nhat Hanh





Some see Your form as red like the sun,
with rays that are redder still than the red of minium or red lac;
Others, as beautiful intense blue like a powder of splintered fragments on the precious stone, sapphire;
Others again as shining like gold, or dazzling white, surpassing the milk when the Ocean of Milk is churned.
It is a universal form, varied like crystal, since it changes according to circumstance.

- Sarvajnamitra


Don't look at your form, however ugly or beautiful.
Look at love and at the aim of your quest. ...
O you whose lips are parched, keep looking for water.
Those parched lips are proof that eventually you will reach the source.

by: Rumi

Thanks so much to Thannhausen for the link to www.writespirit.net much appreciated.

I hope to get and visit everyone this week, that will be me ratting around, trying to be quiet, catching up....if not have a wonderful xmas time. 2008 was very interesting, some good, some beautiful, some just plain wacky and some a little sad..but heck, let's do it again.



Monday, November 24, 2008

White Ribbon Day...25th November

To be a woman, independent, free, healthy, happy, and alive on the 25th of November 2008, is something I personally feel very appreciative of. Many of my sisters do not share this.Today is White Ribbon Day.

"White Ribbon Day was created by a handful of Canadian men in 1991 on the second anniversary of one man's massacre of fourteen women in Montreal. They began the White Ribbon Campaign to urge men to speak out against violence against women.

"http://www.whiteribbonday.org.au/About-WRD-34.aspx

"In 1999, the United Nations General Assembly declared November 25 the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women (IDEVAW) and the White Ribbon has become the symbol for the day."

"Violence against women continues to persist as one of the most heinous, systematic and prevalent human rights abuses in the world"
(Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary General)

"At least one out of every three women worldwide are beaten, coerced into sex, or otherwise abused in her lifetime, with rates reaching 70% in some countries."
(Amnesty USA)

"Today hundreds of thousands of white ribbons are worn by men and women across Australia - men at work; men and women in all Australian police forces; men in national and local sporting matches and organisations; men in the media; men and women in politics; men in the defence forces; men and women in capital cities and in rural and regional Australia.

The campaign continues to go from strength to strength and now boasts more than 230 white ribbon Ambassadors Australia wide, as well as more events across the country and more organisations and individuals participating year upon year.

(all from):http://www.whiteribbonday.org.au/About-WRD-34.aspx

The following nations participate in White Ribbon Day: Africa: Kenya, Morocco, Namibia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Uganda

East Asia: Australia, Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Tonga, Vietnam

Europe: Austria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Italy, Lithuania, Norway, Poland, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom

Latin America: Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Peru

Middle East / Former USSR: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Israel, Russia South

Asia:Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka"

(from White Ribbon Site..) http://www.whiteribbonday.org.au/Welcome-64.aspx

"Men who want to support women in our struggle for freedom and justice should understand that it is not terrifically important to us that they learn to cry; it is important to us that they stop the crimes of violence against us. "
Andrea Dworkin

"Women are the worst affected from any kind of violence - be it domestic, development-related or that caused by corporate polluters like Union Carbide. It is up to us, the women, to join hands across the world and keep the fight for justice and against violence alive and unwavering."
Rashida Bee, Bhopal Gas Affected Women's Stationery Union, and winner of the Goldman Environment Prize 2004

I think of, pray for, and celebrate life for my sisters today... (Me).

O world-ignorance,
Although You have shackled my feet,
I am free.
Although You have chained my hands,
I am free.
Although You have enslaved my body,
I am free.
I am free because I am not of the body.
I am free because I am not the body,
I am free because I am the soul-bird
That flies in Infinity- Sky.
I am the soul-child that dreams
On the Lap of the immortal King Supreme.

(The Soul Bird~ Sri Chinmoy).

...and a little poetry celebration of some of my favorite female poets...



Still I Rise

(by Maya Angelou)

You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I'll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?'
Cause I walk like I've got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I'll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops.
Weakened by my soulful cries.

Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don't you take it awful hard'
Cause I laugh like I've got gold mines
Diggin' in my own back yard.

You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I'll rise.

Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I've got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?

Out of the huts of history's shame
I rise
Up from a past that's rooted in pain
I rise
I'm a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that's wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise
I rise
I rise.



Touched by An Angel

by Maya Angelou


We, unaccustomed to courage
exiles from delight
live coiled in shells of loneliness
until love leaves its high holy temple
and comes into our sight
to liberate us into life.


Love arrives
and in its train come ecstasies
old memories of pleasure
ancient histories of pain.
Yet if we are bold,
love strikes away the chains of fear
from our souls.


We are weaned from our timidity
In the flush of love's light
we dare be brave
And suddenly we see
that love costs all we are
and will ever be.
Yet it is only love which sets us free.


Understand Old One

by Oodgeroo Noonuccal


What if you came back now
To our new world, the city roaring
There on the old peaceful camping place
Of your red fires along the quiet water,
How you would wonder
At towering stone gunyas high in air
Immense, incredible;
Planes in the sky over,
swarms of cars
Like things frantic in flight.



Risk

by Anais Nin

And then the day came,
when the risk to remain tight
in a bud
was more painful
than the risk
it took to Blossom.



Autumn Song

by Sarojini Naidu

Like a joy on the heart of a sorrow,

The sunset hangs on a cloud;
A golden storm of glittering sheaves,
Of fair and frail and fluttering leaves,
The wild wind blows in a cloud.
Hark to a voice that is calling
To my heart in the voice of the wind:
My heart is weary and sad and alone,
For its dreams like the fluttering leaves have gone,
And why should I stay behind?


The Longing

by Nimah Nawwab

Freedom.
How her spiritHaunts,Hooks,Entices us all!
Freedom,
Will the time come
For my ideas to roam
Across this vast land’s deserts,
Through the caverns of the Empty Quarter?
For my voice to be sent forth,
Crying out in the stillness of a quiet people,
A voice among the voiceless?
For my thoughts, that hurl around
In a never-ending spiral,
To settle
Mature, grow and flourish
In a barren wasteland of shackled minds?
Will my spirit be set free—To soar above the undulating palm fronds?
Will my essence and heart be unfettered,
ForeverFreed,
Of man-made Thou Shall Nots?


Girl

by Lisa Zaran


She said she collects pieces of sky,
cuts holes out of it with silver scissors,
bits of heaven she calls them.
Every day a bevy of birds flies rings around her fingers,
my chorus of wives, she calls them.
Every day she reads poetry from dusty books she borrows from the library,
sitting in the park,
she smiles at passing strangers,
yet can not seem to shake her own sad feelings.
She said that night reminds her of a cool hand placed gently across her fevered brow,
said she likes to fall asleep beneath the stars,
that their streaks of light make her believe that she too is going somewhere.
Infinity,
she whispers as she closes her eyes,
descending into thin air,
where no arms outstretch to catch her.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Glimpses of Spring...



I am heading interstate again, will back soon, sorry haven't had a chance to visit anyone, miss you.... but I will return .




Death is Not the End
~
Death is not the end
Death can never be the end.
Death is the road.
Life is the traveller.
The Soul is the Guide
...
Our mind thinks of death.
Our heart thinks of life
Our soul thinks of Immortality.

- Sri Chinmoy




Just some images from over the last few weeks-ish...





































































In Memory of You

I find an old photographand see your smile.
As I feel your presence anew,
I am filled with warmth
and my heart remembers love...
Kirsti A. Dyer.





This beautiful black swan has landed on our house dam, I quietly walked down and took some photos, it spotted me and started to call out, it has the softest call, so, naturally I called back, we had a great chat. :)




O world-ignorance,
AlthoughYou have shackled my feet,
I am free.
AlthoughYou have chained my hands,
I am free.
AlthoughYou have enslaved my body,
I am free.
I am free because I am not of the body.
I am free because I am not the body,
I am free because I am the soul-bird
That flies in Infinity- Sky.
I am the soul-child that dreams
On the Lap of the immortal King Supreme.
(The Soul Bird~ Sri Chinmoy).








There are three horses in this picture...

















A brief film of our guest, the swan, if you listen carefully it calls (very softly), at the end of the film..



video

My Secret and Sacred Bird


My secret and sacred bird now flies

To meet the Spirit's vacancy.

All chaos of life today dissolved;

In me a surge of ecstasy.


Gold flames within my longing heart

Invoke the cosmos' Parent-Sun.

A tapestry of Truth unseen

Bursts forth within; the Play is begun.


(Excerpt from My First Friendship With The Muse by Sri Chinmoy).

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Faces In The Street...Part 1


A few days in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.
"When you look at a city, it's like reading the hopes, aspirations and pride of everyone who built it."
(Hugh Newell Jacobsen)

Sydney Harbor, picture taken from a ferry ride around the harbor, yes! that cruise ship fits under the Sydney Harbor Bridge.









In hours before the dawning dims the starlight in the sky
The wan and weary faces first begin to trickle by,
Increasing as the moments hurry on with morning feet,
Till like a pallid river flow the faces in the street
Flowing in, flowing in,
To the beat of hurried feet
Ah! I sorrow for the owners of those faces in the street.
(Henry Lawson)
City life and it's existence just reminds me of how strong my local small town community is, walking down my small town streets and greeted by smiles and hellos and questions....and then there are cities, I don't think I will ever get used to it...a very hollow feeling, fun, exciting and a beautiful city, but such a hollow feeling?





Sydney Opera House roof tiles close up..I would have loved to have scrambled up and slid down the slippery slope...


The lighting and ambience of the Sydney Opera House toilets. :)
So beautiful.


RAAF planes doing some kind of fly over maneuvers..


















Loneliness.. (by Rainer Maria Rilke)

Being apart and lonely is like rain.
It climbs toward evening from the ocean plains;
from flat places, rolling and remote,
it climbs to heaven,
which is its old abode.
And only when leaving heaven drops upon the city.


A monorail scoots around the main part of CBD, you can get a day pass for a few dollars and do the loop. Not a bad view, either.


Astral restaurant lighting...

















A sunset...

Falling Stars.. (by Rainer Maria Rilke)

Do you remember still the falling stars
that like swift horses through the heavens raced
and suddenly leaped across the hurdlesof our wishes--do you recall?
And we did make so many!
For there were countless numbersof stars:
each time we looked above we were astounded by the swiftness of their daring play,
while in our hearts we felt safe and secure watching these brilliant bodies disintegrate,
knowing somehow we had survived their fall.