This page is taking a respite from all the chatter and business of every day life to spend some time for reflection ....and fun.
Happiness is the great work, though every heart must first become a student to one who really knows about love. ...
Greatness is always built upon this foundation: The ability to appear, speak and act as the most common man.
How do I listen to others? As if everyone were my Master speaking to me his cherished, last words.
Hafiz (aka Shams-ud-din Muhammad Hafiz)
"He had often heard all of this before, all the numerous voices in the river, but today they sounded different. He could no longer distinguish the different voices--the merry voice from the weeping voice, the childish voice from the manly voice. They all belonged to each other...they were all interwoven and interlocked, entwined in a thousand ways. And all the voices, all the yearnings, all the goals, all the sorrows, all the pleasures, all the good and evil, all of them together was the world. All of them together was the stream of events, the music of life. When Siddhartha listened attentively to this river, to this song of a thousand voices; when he did not listen to the sorrow or laughter, when he did not bind his soul to any one particular voice and absorb it in his Self, but heard them all, the whole, the unity; then the great song of a thousand voices consisted of one word: Om-perfection."
Herman Hesse (from Siddhartha)
"I look from the weeds at the play you are staging...
(while my guitar gently weeps.... )
As I'm sitting here doing nothing but aging...
(still my guitar gently weeps...)"
Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.
And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.
Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away.
When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things. For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known.
And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
Corinthians 13 (King James version)
I would like to share some words I feel epitomized my sister, Sasha's, incredible courage and bravery over the course of too many years fighting breast cancer. The disease consumed her body, though she would fight it until the very end, in April, 2006. She loved life, and she lived it fully, even while knowing her days were numbered. But she was also blessed throughout her life by the love of friends and family including her loving husband, children and grandchildren, and especially by the joy manifest in her creative genius, producing beautiful and moving works of art for all of us to remember her for days and years to come.
I believe that the following was probably at least the substance of a mantra which most likely helped to guide her through the last weeks and days of her life with cancerLove is greater than anger;
Love is greater than self-pity;
Love is greater than all morbid feelings;
Love is greater than depression;
Love is greater than all the afflictions of the body and mind.
Excerpted from Right Resolution, Swami Paramananda, Vendanta Centre, Cohasset, MA
I lost both my parents within a year...my father most recently, on May 9th, 2011. My heart is broken. All my family my dear sister and parents are gone.
Both folks were blessed for most of their lives together, my father enjoying a rewarding career in retail business, my mother raising and nurturing two children while also active in community volunteer work, and later, part time employment, mostly within the challenging medical profession. They were especially blessed by an opportunity for early retirement in Florida and then nearly 30 yrs of happy, healthy, active living amongst many friends and the continued support of a large, loving family.
For the first 89 years, or so, Life was very good for each of them, indeed. Then, that Good Life, with little warning or preparation, spiraled precipitously into the darkness and for them and for those who loved them it was never the same. There was much suffering, especially for my father. My mother lost hope, became angry and refused to make a life for herself because my father was still here, still suffering. She cried often. Life from her eyes was hopeless. With recently discovered serious health problems of her own, she said one day, quite calmly, that she was "ready"...and a few weeks later, in April 2010, she died. My father hung on another year, though I never understood why, as he was both severely physically and severely cognitively impaired, frightened and in pain every day, unable to speak a single word, or to move his body without help, and completely without any joy upon which to draw strength and sustenance. In many ways, his recent passing was a merciful ending to his misery.
I will miss my parents, Sam and Ruth, forever. I will try to use my memories of them...the many laughs we had over the years, the poignant moments of joy and sadness, even the occasional discord we shared as only family can share with one another...to give me strength to accept the tragedy that has happened to them in later life, and then at some point, to move on with my own life. I try to remind myself often that, with recent exception, they really had a wonderful life.
But still, it's so hard what happened to them.
"I love you Mom! I love you Dad!"
The world lost a wonderful fellow human being December 9th 2006. More than four years have now past, and his presence is no less missed now than it was the then. His untimely death, at only 44 yrs of age, was and is still a hard blow to many of us who knew him, who loved him because of who he was. Bill Neumann touched many creatures, human and non-human …all of whom will feel an aching, empty heart for some time to come.
Since that dredful day in 2006, every time I look at my computer, especially when I work on something technical. or creative, such as music, video or this website, my mind's eye instinctively sees Bill looking over my shoulder, selflessly sharing his wisdom and labor to find me a way to make my work better, easier, and more fun. He loved helping, that way.
But that was just one part of what I miss about Bill....
Bill embodied what was right in this world: He was a generous, always kind, respectful, compassionate, sincerely caring and loving man, a one of a kind soul who can never be replaced. He would never acknowledge that his soft-spoken reassuring words and unselfish deeds to help others …the essence of his persona… were expressions of his unique spirit and in that regard that he was a special man. Instead he understated the significance of his unabated kindness, as he often did about his own accomplishments as a gifted computer graphic artist, and as a seasoned deep water diver.
Despite the tragic loss of his life four years ago, a little bit of Bill continues to live on in all of us who knew him. He will never be forgotten, and he will always be missed..
and, in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make.
Dear Muffin and ChumChum,
You were my two favorite sweeties. I was hoping to see you soon, but now will instead just have many wonderful memories of you . Thank you for trusting in me...and for enriching my life.
This in a recent Seattle Times. This dog has the right idea!!
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