Wednesday, May 12, 2010
blossoms are soul food. the abundance of their beauty is a joy. it seems like they are blooming only to celebrate life and the magic power of renewal. I walk through the park in the morning, it's cold and rainy, the umbrella shields from the rain, yet the flowers show off their beauty like no cloud in the sky could ever stop them.
and i can't help it to think how life would be if my mental clouds would not stop me from celebrating the beauty of life.
would i smile. again.?
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
cold days, windy. the city feels grey, despite the new green leaves, exploding on each tree branch. i'm cold. i'm freezing cold. time seems to be a different beast and with a blink of an eye a day has dissolved. the repetitiveness of the supports the notion of timelessness ..
Thursday, May 6, 2010
life feels like a roller coaster. it does. i have the feeling that these days everyone is trying to pull me into a different direction. While I'm the 'good' girl, trying to make it just right. An approach, that will fail. What is a guideline for right behavior if fear is my guidance. i'm aiming for being understood, while i'm accused for not being understanding. life is a roller coaster and sometimes there aren't any simple answers.
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
the gardens are beautiful. the blossoms and fresh new leaves are eye catching. the morning walk is soul food. hardly anyone can be seen in the park. at best some runners are crossing my way.
i am walking against time. every morning. and at night i am scarred. by lonely roads and the dark shadows. on weekends i go running myself, yet i'd rather avoid the park on weekends, it's crowed and the beautiful emptiness is disturbed. i wonder if i would enjoy lunch there.
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
three and half months late, Mieze returned.
small, vulnerable, very skinny.
my heard is filled with joy and love.
i love this little small cat, this old lady, this road warrior.
i wish she could talk and tell me what had happened in the last months while she was gone.
her return is a true miracle and it feels like she is telling me another life lesson, as she did the last two and half years..
Friday, April 16, 2010
Spring has arrived.
and dust particles from a volcanic eruption are dancing in heigh altitudes. the sky is blue and yet the black dust from the ongoing eruption is out there. high high in the sky. what we see is not reality, it is just an impression, a glance, an idea, an option. Here in the public gardens, the cherry blossoms have reached their peak, their might be fire works tonight, leaving traces of smoke in the air.
Sunday, April 11, 2010
'my soul' or should i say 'my sprit' is still traveling, while my body arrived on the other side of the great ocean. but apparently my body also has some difficulties to adjust to the new environment and 'blesses' me with a severe cold and bad cough. Last night i slept for a total of 12 hours and if i do the math i still need 8 more hours to catch up with the sleep deprivation, which accumulated over the last four days.
When i look out the window now, i see buildings and a grey sky, but even without closing my eyes i can also see the beautiful country road. What is the average speed with which a soul travels?
Tuesday, April 6, 2010
spring has arrived and so did the rain this morning.
the skies are grey and the temperatures are lingering in the lower 50's again. i hoped to be able to go for a long run before my travel but it looks like the weather will not cooperate. i hoped to work on my flower beds, too. Actually, the rainy weather frees more time, which i can certainly use to start packing or at least to get prepared. making stacks of clothes, printing out my 'what-to-pack-itinerary', ironing shirts, polishing shoes, selecting books and papers, going through my final to-do-list.. yet.. i drink outside, letting the mind wander would be more to my liking...
Sunday, April 4, 2010
the house woke up early today. so did the birds.
a long run. 4 miles.
it had the perfect temperature for a run in the early morning hours.
Sometimes a run can be so soothing.
the thought of the finish line disappears and one just runs for the sake of running.
the day is still ahead.. a huge Easter brunch is waiting... the red face is slowly cooling off.
time will eat up this day quickly.. but for now it's Easter Sunday Morning.. still
Tuesday, March 30, 2010
imagine the following colors. grays, greens, browns, beige, black and white.
no image the scene or the object. a duck? a dress? a living room? a city street?
an abstract painting might be the best bet here. But i'm talking about the view out of my window on a rainy spring day. and to my own surprise I can not see one spot or sparkle of yellow or red or blue. amazing. I had always believed that if one looks carefully enough every color could be seen, but maybe this is just wishful thinking or yet another illusion. Maybe the camera, who is currently living in another dimension, would have been able to spot a hint of yellow. maybe.
Saturday, March 27, 2010
I cannot find my camera. i looked in every drawer, ever handbag and under every couche. I checked my coats and the car. I went through every room in the house. nothing. it's very upsetting. without camera, no images. without images no blog entry. This thing must be somewhere around here in another parallel universe. it' s probably sitting right next to me and is just not willing to be seen yet - or my system is filtering it out. who knows how reality is checked by our own brains? maybe we tune in and out of various dimensions, without being aware of it or even having an understanding of it? very well possible. i can 'see' the camera right next to my laptop if i could only touch it too. I need to find it. the absence of this object drives me crazy.
Friday, March 26, 2010
the first signs of spring can be found everywhere. the grass is beginning to turn green, the bushes have their first buds and some flowers are actually trying to make their way above ground. just an hour south of here daffodils and snowdrops are already blooming. the grey clouds and the cold winds are a reality too. snow flurries are predicted for later in the day. - a tree can never walk away. -
Sunday, March 21, 2010
what was the cat thinking? what does the expression on her face reveal? would she turn around and walk downstairs again if the right word, smell or sound came along? or is her mind set, regardless of all of the above? are we like cats? Could anything be a tricker and consequently we would abandon our original plan?
Sometimes i wonder what is on my mind and what it takes to stay focused.
Saturday, March 13, 2010
....excuses are numberless. i need to put an end to them!
one of my new vows, which i should recite daily. I suppose.
the last entry on this blog as six days ago, and why so? because
i don't have an image to upload and the entire idea of the daily happiness is the combination of word and image.
My digital camera is working and it's a bit pathetic to say, that i don't find time to go out and photograph. how much time does it really take? But in my mind i don't even go there, i stop at the thought, which notes that i don't have an image to upload.
Consequently days go by and no entry will be written, instead I built successfully a guilt conscious.
.....the mind is boundless, i need to master it
Sunday, March 7, 2010
it's Sunday morning, the sun is shining and the weather forecast looks promising. I have already spotted the first sprouts in my flower beds and it puts a huge smile on my face. I cannot wait for spring to arrive. As a matter of fact i can wait very well, because there is no choice at all here. When were the tulips blooming last year? Easter is also 'around the corner' - 'the corner of time'? that is an interesting thought. time squared. blue skies.
Friday, March 5, 2010
More often then not my mind picks a subject and then holds on to the chosen theme by repeating a few thoughts/sentences time and again. it is sheer impossible to stop my mind, even when I become aware of this 'auto-pilot' setting. The mind seems to have a life on its own, independent from 'myself'. These repetitive thoughts are most of the time negative. Either 'it' (='I') regrets something i did or didn't do in the past, or 'it' rolls out the 'dark' future. It seems like 'I' have no control over the subject matter nor the length of this mental noise. I can feel how 'this' wears me down, eats up my energy and leaves me feeling hopeless and empty. I try to argue against the statements but its a fruitless debate. 'my' mind is very convincing and makes 'itself' sound like the ultimate truth. - the most amazing part is, that 'my mind' seems to have an endless repertoire of topics. sometimes some topics will fall out of 'fashion' but they are instantly replaced by new ones. - I truly wonder what it takes to either stop this 'auto-pilot' behavior of my mind or - at least - to change the topics from negative to positive ones.
Thursday, March 4, 2010
'there is comfort in a routine'. is there? or is routine just a way to avoid thinking outside the box?
or is routine a way to master the daily tasks?
is discipline required for a routine?
if so would it be right to say 'there is comfort in discipline'?
discipline as a structure of time, something to hold on to, while the emotions are on a roller coaster ride.
is discipline in conjunction with repetitiveness?
so repetitiveness comforts the soul if it is a freely chosen repetitiveness? yet again, don't we need discipline to go through a routine, because in times we might not like "the doing" at all?
which elements of a routine can be changed?
if at all? and are routines boring - or not?
Saturday, February 27, 2010
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
windows covered with colored card boards and fabric pieces. Why?
it almost looks like an art installation, but it is is the window front of an old abandoned factory building. it's possible to glance inside but there is nothing to be found. the hall is emptied out.
Whoever covered the glass pieces must have done this with a creative eye. At least that is my 'judgement' here.
there is always something to be seen. even if it is only the attempt of someone to protect the inside from being seen.
Saturday, February 20, 2010
the demons of the mind.
self-centered thought processes.
hours are spent thinking about past decisions, trying to analyze them. lost in memory. paralyzed by regrets.
i need to save myself from this destructive pattern.
i need to shield myself from the critical inner voices.
it's just Saturday. windy and cold.
Friday, February 19, 2010
when i wake up in the middle of the night and i can't go back to sleep, i pick a book and start reading. most of the time this activity calms me down and within 10-15 minutes I fall asleep. Last night i read a chapter from 'Beginner's Mind' by Suzuki. he talked about the mind and that the arising thoughts are like waves on the surface of the water. there is no water without waves. no waves without water. the difference is how we perceive the waves. At night it all seems so perfectly logical or at least understandable. And last night specifically. it felt like i had discovered some fundamental truth about thoughts, which is, that every idea or thought can be broken down into various little pieces and the smallest of them can be found in the now. all other pieces are just images used to create a certain phantasy about the near or fare future.. - i felt so happy about this discovery, it felt like a major break through, a huge discovery. like my life would be altered from now on....
I woke up this morning having a vague recollection of last nights discovery but i cannot grasp the magnitude or beauty of these waves anymore. Now equanimity should come into play....
Monday, February 15, 2010
At the Metropolitan Museum they have a current exhibition titled 'playing with pictures - the art of Victorian photo collage'. the work is mostly done by women, who painted or drew images, in which they included the cut outs of photographs. some drawings/collages are really wild, others more conventional. this particularly one reminds me of my childhood. My mom and I loved to draw dresses from this area. My mom was really good and I was always a bit jealous as her sketches seemed to me more colorful and detailed.
However, at some point we drew a simple living room, with a chair and windows, curtains and mirrors. then we arranged the 'cut out' ladies in her fancy dresses in this room. i wish i had some of these old collages now.
Monday, February 8, 2010
I wonder how if felt to be a sailor on a ship like this. this one is an image of the 'Columbus', one of the first ships to reached the east coast of America. Sailing for weeks at end with no land in sight. Did they ever panic? were they afraid? how did they maintain faith?
and then the elements, the storms, the huge waves or no wind at all. what character traits must one have to travel on one of these discovery ships? I bet these traits could be perfectly applied to todays uncertain times.
Thursday, February 4, 2010
the sunrise this morning was spectacular, the high rises across the Hudson river were illuminated by the morning sun, and they looked like gigantic orange lamps. i would have enjoyed watching them had i only slept well during the night. Yesterday, at the shoe repair store, a perfect stranger gave me a business card for a repair store, which she calls "the shoe repair alternative" or "THE under the radar shop", - which is supposedly the best in town. She was so excited that she even gave me her email address so i could let her know, what i think of this 'jewel' of a shoe repair store. sometimes the city can be a blast. Perfect strangers crossing paths for a few minutes - sharing a story, an idea, a thought - and then taking off again. This little chit-chat was an energy boost for my spirits. and the crowded subway ride home seemed less annoying than usual.
Tuesday, February 2, 2010
tomorrow is my blog's birthday.
wow. has it really been an entire year ?
i remember how very excited i was at the beginning, and how this changed over the course of the year.
i remember going out and shooting images specifically for the blog.
i remember writing my blog entries, while sitting outside under the tree, or next to the fire place, or in a hotel room or in an office.
One year of writing about whatever entered my mind at a particular moment. I'm thinking of making changes to these entries.. maybe only images, or more images, or more text...maybe a theme.. my mind is as foggy as the frosted glass window, for now!
Thursday, January 28, 2010
winter is returning. it's snowing and the brownish, grey fields are covered with a white glaze. the snow flakes are tiny.
when i woke up very early this morning, the moon was still shining, but grayish clouds now cover the sky.
later in the day i have to go to work and I'm not looking forward to the drive on these slippery roads.
two more months. only 60 more days and the first signs of spring will appear... every winter i start counting the days. at some point i just miss the full color palette of nature so much.. grey, white, blue, .. pretty.. but a splash of yellow, a hint of red, facets of green make such a difference... i wonder how it was in 'the old days', when winters also equaled a massive reduction of food varieties.... It is probably not even a century ago, when roots and dried and preserved fruits were on the daily menu...
winter has returned and with it, the temperatures are dropping again... 60 more days to go...
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
there is so much to learn about Buddhism and it feels overwhelming at times. Practice is necessary, Monshin said, yet one can choose the type of practice that meets one's personality best. oh well. So i picked up meditation, or to be more accurate here, i 'try' to meditate, to let my thoughts dissolve in the sounds of bells. i try to observe them and let them go. i count my breaths, i visualize.. and i like it. meditation does have - to say the least - a calming effect on me when i',m meditating with others in the temple. but i don't get my butt on the cushion during the week. i have a little bell, i have incense and a candle, a cushion and a nice corner in the house... yet, day after day, i find millions of reasons why 'now is not the time' - it's too early, too late, I'm too hungry or too full, too tired, too busy, and so on. consequently, i don't meditate; consequently i don't practice; consequently, i don't follow the Buddhist path - at least not as a daily practise. luckily, there are so many more aspects to it..
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
the sunshine today had a certain kind of energy to it. it felt brighter and more promising. the sun was a synonym for power and life, for hope and joy, for the magnitude of a moment.
i think of Mieze and tears still roll down my cheeks...
this little feral cat taught me so much about love ...
i think of all the shelter cats i saw last sunday and i want to take them home - all of them, all of them. they all should experience the joy of a loving home and what it means to be cared for! yet i can only take two. how can one possibly choose.
the sunlight today was powerful and i drank in every minute of it.
Monday, January 25, 2010
It is raining. we have a 'rain storm' with temperatures in the upper 40's! The snow banks are melting and turning into huge water puddles now. the creek is getting wider and wilder by the minute.
power interruptions, dark rain clouds, damp wet air. in short: it's ugly out there! i had to turn on the lights in the house and i would have taken a hot bath if my bathtub had not been leaking. the last thing i needed was a huge downpour inside the house. !
if i could, i would go to bed and just sleep through this!
Thursday, January 21, 2010
I love this big face. this large head. i wish i had space for it at home.
the expression on this face radiates peace, calm and silence.
at least this is how i see it. how many faces do i see every day, how many expressions do i come across every day? and how many of them have a soothing and comforting impact? i don't remember where the following quote originates, but anyhow i really like it : " when you turn thirty, you start being responsible for the wrinkles on your face and your facial expressions.." ...if eyes are the entrance to the soul, then faces are the mirror of the life lived...
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
i wish all closed doors would be as appealing as this one.
i wish i knew where this door was originally used and who entered and exited it - when and why. doors are perfect fairy tale subjects.
each hero always has an obstacle to overcome and a closed door is just one of many. Old doors were so beautifully crafted, full of ornaments and details. now we have glass doors which open automatically... or metal gates controlled by cameras and number combinations... behind closed doors dreams and nightmares take place. I'm sure that there is a large art piece somewhere out there where a huge door is put up in the middle of nowhere. this reminds me of the beautiful gate in the movie 'spring, summer, fall, winter and spring'. i guess i love doors..
Sunday, January 17, 2010
it's a grey Sunday. the Amaryllis is finally blooming, adding some color to the otherwise bland looking color pallet outside.
incense is burning. this morning i went online and read article after article about Haiti and the magnitude of this catastrophe makes me feel immensely helpless. I wish i had a skill set that could be used down there.. i would fly there in a heart beat. my little inner voice is whispering, 'well, why don't you help in your immediate neighborhood' true, i suppose, but then again, not true.
this red flower cheers me up. how can i pass it on?
Thursday, January 14, 2010
so, the concept of 'no thought' or 'no leaking thoughts' in the absolute world, can be called a 'no-leaking' mind or wooden spoon. whereas in the provisional world discursive thoughts are unavoidable. but the absolute state of mind hovers over the provisional approach like a shadow and ensures that the discursive thoughts of this world do not enter the absolute, causing the mind to leak.
So, the provisional world is not leaking into the absolute world. both minds function within the same moment, within the same mind, within the same body. this makes sense as they are ultimately the same anyway, right? this concept of Wunien seems to be so simple and clear, and yet it is impossible to grasp and even to be understood for even a second by a beginner's mind like mine. i want to think it through and yet i know this does not get me anywhere. very difficult to accept.
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
dinner was heavy. too much pizza. too much wine too. after a long work day. my mind is already making lists for tomorrow - all the "must-do's and want-do's". and somehow i have to sneak my Spanish lesson in. less than a year ago i didn't know a single word of Spanish and now i should theoretically know about 16oo words and quite a lot of Grammar too. but despite this progress, I feel overwhelmed and i find myself in a very old and familiar thought pattern that starts with the phrase> you are never going to learn this, because.....< . quite astounding that i approach all of my activities with this negative attitude. yet, today at the book store, looking at various 'how to learn Spanish books' i thought to myself ... ' a word a day, a piece of grammar a day, there is no time limit and there is no official test either, just keep going and you'll get there'.. and i was surprised by these encouraging thoughts . maybe a year from now i will be able to write a few sentences in Spanish...
Sunday, January 10, 2010
it's so bitterly cold that the snowman won't melt. he is still guarding the house and i kind of like it. today, Sunday the 10th, i did nothing!. yes, nothing! - at least according to my standards.
i slept in until 9.00 am, which is really late for me. i played a game with the little one; made myself comfortable on the couch; read a book for hours; did a Pilates workout for my lower back and then went back to reading and making a few phone calls. at some point i had a cheese sandwich and finally I left the house in the late afternoon. i was invited for dinner at a friend's house. what a brilliant, lazy day. i cannot recall a day like this for months! maybe even years! maybe it was just time to recharge my battery, to rest and be lazy, to adjust to the bitter cold? whatever the reason for this slow day was does not matter, i loved it.. and may the guardian angels stay close!
Wednesday, January 6, 2010
i heard today that we will encounter the coldest winter since the 1930's. wow. now, the typical me would complain and bitch but i have the words from Monshin in my mind, saying that this time of the year is a perfect time to concentrate on Buddhist practices, to reflect upon life and all its aspect, and to extend compassion, love and equanimity. what a great concept if you really think about it. cold weather as an opportunity rather than a pain. tonight i was invited to a women's gathering. all of us had been involved with a store here called 'great finds'. it was a very funny and loving get-together and i truly enjoyed how different we all are, which is a notion I very rarely have. Now I'm home, drinking a glass of wine. Actually it is a holiday today. the day the three kings visited Jesus Christ.. at least i think that is how the story goes.. Myrrh, Gold and frankincense...
Monday, January 4, 2010
361 days left and snowmen everywhere. they put a smile on my face and they seem to hold the future in their little hands / like aliens hovering over the area. i love them. 361 days and counting.
when will my Mieze come back home? more then 200 flyers later..neighbors call, expressing their sympathy.. i need a snowman to look after her and guide her home through the snow and cold.
Friday, January 1, 2010
Happy New Year. New Year. New counting. new beginning.
i finally slept in and i think i haven't slept that long in 10 years.
So, a new start. some resolutions in my head.
last night's meditation into the new year accompanied by 108 rings of the bell was magnificent, and the slow unfolding of the first day of the new year is too.
new ways. new thoughts. new patterns. old costumes.
the time is still ticking with the same steadiness. happy new year.