Sunday, September 28, 2008

Life is a Masquerade?

No man for any considerable period can wear one face to himself and another to the multitude, without finally getting bewildered as to which may be the true. ~Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Scarlet Letter

Man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask, and he will tell you the truth. ~Oscar Wilde


Thursday, September 25, 2008

Surprise Retirement Luncheon for an Old Friend!

I still find each day too short for all the thoughts I want to think, all the walks I want to take, all the books I want to read, and all the friends I want to see.— John Burrough

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Tuesday, September 23, 2008



Monday, September 22, 2008

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Saturday, September 20, 2008

River Shimmers


Friday, September 19, 2008

Thursday, September 18, 2008

It's Been a Long, Difficult Week

The true way to soften one's troubles is to solace those of others.
Madame De Maintenon

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Cherry Blossoms. Life & Death, Joy & Saddness

How can life have meaning without death? How can joy have meaning without sadness?

Facing Death

Japanese samurai used to contemplate death. This was not some morbid fixation. Admitting their own mortality forced the warriors to accept that life is a precious and fleeting gift. They regarded the cherry blossom as a symbol of this insight. Cherry blossoms bloom for a brief period and then fall at the very height of their beauty. To the samurai this was a melancholy reminder of death amidst life. It was an example of great beauty and sadness.

This poignant insight into life and death allowed the samurai to live their lives more fully; they realised that death could come at any moment.
It is not for nothing that the samurai have chosen for their truest symbol the fragile cherry blossom. Like a petal dropping in the morning sunlight and floating serenely to earth,so must the fearless detach himself from life, silent and inwardly unmoved.
(Eugen Herrigel)

Cherry Blossoms

Cherry blossoms were seen to possess natural beauty and grace. The word 'beauty' does not refer simply to the appearance of the flower; it captures the sense of dignity and strength contained within something so fragile and fleeting. 'Grace' is a word seldom considered in our times. It can mean a variety of things: compassion, kindness, goodwill, elegance and beauty of movement. For the samurai, grace meant rectitude. Rectitude can be defined as appropriate conduct; considering how your behaviour affects other people and seeking to do what is right. The cherry blossom is a reminder that our life will not last. In the face of death, is there any need for pettiness, argument, callousness and cruelty? If you accept death, does that change how you live? Nothing that we consider important will last - especially ourselves.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Monday, September 8, 2008