Category Archives: Thought for the Day

A tribute to nature and the inspiration it offers.

Pain

Pain emancipates.


DAVE’s Six-inch Spinal Surgery Scar

PAIN

Prisoners
sometimes,
of our own
making

Pain
frees us
from the bonds
of our minds

Physical
or emotional,
it’s inseparably
mental

Washed
in Pain’s waves
we can’t escape
truth

And truth
is the path
to freedom from
Pain

©Naomi Estment

Quotes to consider:

“Pain is weakness leaving the body.” – US Marines as quoted (frequently :-D) by Dave, who has broken over 60 bones in his 54 years, mostly due to motorbike racing

“Wisdom is nothing more than healed pain.” – Robert Gary Lee

“We must embrace pain and burn it as fuel for our journey.” – Kenji Miyazawa

“Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding.” – Kahlil Gibran, ‘The Prophet

“Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.” – Unknown

“The pain passes, but the beauty remains.” – Pierre-Auguste Renoir

On a personal note, it’s almost two weeks since Dave’s double spinal fusion and he’s recovering really well. After a challenging weekend with intense pain down his right leg and into his foot (the one that was going numb before the operation), he had a localized cortisone injection yesterday. It’s brought huge relief and the sparkle back to his eyes.

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Stress

Whether you feel “I’ve-had-it-with-the-world-and-everything-in-it” hectic,


MALE LION BARING HIS FANGS – Schotia Safaris, South Africa

“get-out-of-my-face-I’m-having-a-bad-day” mad,

MALE LION SNARL – Schotia Safaris, South Africa

or “don’t-make-your-problems-mine” ratty,


LIONESS BARING HER FANGS – Schotia Safaris, South Africa

it pays to remember that stress arises inside.

STRESS:

In response
to a given stimulus,
Stress arises
inside

Allowed to rule,
it wreaks havoc
recognized, unresisted,
it recedes

Powerful,
potential teacher,
Stress offers options
on a silver platter

Succumb and suffer
or choose to transcend,
knowing that the choice
arises inside

©Naomi Estment

Quotes to consider:

“If you ask what is the single most important key to longevity, I would have to say it is avoiding worry, stress and tension. And if you didn’t ask me, I’d still have to say it.” – George F. Burns

“Don’t let your mind bully your body into believing it must carry the burden of its worries.” – Astrid Alauda

“Adopting the right attitude can convert a negative stress into a positive one.” – Hans Selye

God will never give you anything you can’t handle, so don’t stress.” – Kelly Clarkson

“Give your stress wings and let it fly away.” – Terri Guillemets

“Tension is who you think you should be. Relaxation is who you are.” – Chinese Proverb

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Belonging

Belonging is inescapable.


BABY BABOON WITH PARENTS – Moremi, Okavango Delta, Botswana

BELONGING

Acknowledged or not,
there’s no escaping
our own
belonging

Born of one,
born of another,
kissed into being
by the same breath

That bonds a baby
to its mother,
and cleaves a leaf
to a tree

The same sacred
infinitesimal
fibres
of life itself

Know our names,
cradle our souls,
which sing with
gratitude

At being a part
of the perfectly
complete
Whole

©Naomi Estment

Quotes to consider:

“I celebrate myself, and sing myself, And what I assume you shall assume, For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you” – Walt Whitman

“No house should ever be on a hill or on anything. It should be of the hill. Belonging to it. Hill and house should live together each the happier for the other.” – Frank Lloyd Wright

“See the things you want as already yours. Think of them as yours, as belonging to you, as already in your possession.” – Robert Collier

“The Earth is what we all have in common.” – Wendell Berry

“Sticks in a bundle are unbreakable”- Kenyan Proverb

“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

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Stillness

Stillness speaks. (Perhaps this is appropriate after last night’s party :-D)


Palm leaves in the sky

STILLNESS

A silent whisper,
barely perceptible,
perfectly distinct,
rustles the leaves
of consciousness

Its message murmurs
of mundane magic,
teased to life
by the act of listening
into the Stillness

©Naomi Estment

Quotes to consider:

“Within you there is a stillness and a sanctuary to which you can retreat at any time and be yourself.” – Hermann Hesse

“No thought, no action, no movement, total stillness: only thus can one manifest the true nature and law of things from within and unconsciously, and at last become one with heaven and earth.” – Lao Tzu

“It is the stillness that will save and transform the world.” – Eckhart Tolle

“The stillness in stillness is not the real stillness; only when there is stillness in movement does the universal rhythm manifest.” – Bruce Lee

“The only real valuable thing is intuition.” – Albert Einstein

“Believe nothing because a wise man said it.
Believe nothing because it is generally held.
Believe nothing because it is written.
Believe nothing because it is said to be divine
Believe nothing because someone else believes it.
But believe only what you yourself know to be true.”
– The Buddha

Synchronicity can be quite amazing. The message “stillness speaks” emerged in a recent meditation, prompting this post. Wordpress and the genius Zemanta feature added the link to Eckhart Tolle’s book by that name. Despite being a big fan of his writing, I’d not come across it yet, so guess what I’ll be reading first in 2011 . . .

On that note, here’s wishing you all a WONDERFUL New Year – lots of love, health, wealth and happiness by the bucketful, interspersed with true stillness. ENJOY it, everyone!

And finally, heart-felt thanks to all of you who’ve taken the time to read this blog during 2010 and leave such lovely, supportive comments. You’re a collective treasure that we sincerely appreciate. THANK YOU!

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Blessings

Blessings abound.


Arms outstretched towards the sun

BLESSINGS

Ever present,
all around,
they bathe us in love
and radiant light

If our eyes
simply see,
our hearts hear,
and fingers feel

Apart from attitude,
the primary prerequisite
to receiving Blessings
is open arms

And all at once
it’s crystal clear:
we aren’t just “in the flow”;
we are the flow

©Naomi Estment

Quotes to consider:

“You can’t shake hands with a clenched fist.” – Indira Gandhi

“When you focus on being a blessing, God makes sure that you are always blessed in abundance.” – Joel Osteen

“Do you know what a blessing it is to make movies that make people happy?” – Kate Hudson

“Prayers go up and blessings come down.” – Yiddish Proverb

“May God grant you always…A sunbeam to warm you, a moonbeam to charm you, a sheltering Angel so nothing can harm you. Laughter to cheer you. Faithful friends near you. And whenever you pray, Heaven to hear you.” – Irish Blessing

MERRY XMAS, HAPPY HOLIDAYS & richest blessings to you and yours 🙂

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Judgement

Judgement can be unjust.


VULTURE COMING IN TO LAND – Moholoholo, Hoedspruit, South Africa


VULTURES FEEDING – Moholoholo, Hoedspruit, South Africa

It’s a steamy summer evening near the Kruger National Park. Anticipation spikes the sunset as we pull up to the ‘vulture restaurant’ at Moholoholo (“The Very Great One”) rehabilitation centre. A simple patch of sand to us, the spot is significant to the birds. Dozens of them. The moment the carcass thuds to earth, they swoop in from their circling. A bombardment of quietly beating feathers flares dust into the air, muffling soft tearing and crunching sounds. Not a single squawk is uttered.

Each species knows precisely what to do. Larger-beaked prey ‘openers’ jostle beside their cousins who pick the bones clean. The ten minute melee is marked by precision feeding, highlighted with huge hops and tugs of war, as well as the intermittent scampering of a warthog. He’s having dinner too, snatching morsels from the heaving heap.

As swiftly as it began, the meal is over; barely a scrap to mark the spot. A flurry of large bodies lifts off and flies away. No wonder Nature is not strewn with waste. Among the less endearing of her feathered set, vultures sometimes receive a bad rap. Perhaps not the prettiest, they each have a part to play. As we all do.

Quotes to consider:

“Judge a tree from its fruit, not from its leaves” – Euripides

“We judge others by their behavior. We judge ourselves by our intentions.” – Ian Percy

“Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.” – Carl Gustav Jung

“The tendency to turn human judgments into divine commands makes religion one of the most dangerous forces in the world.” – Georgia Harkness

“. . . It’s one thing to feel that you are on the right path, but it’s another to think that yours is the only path.” – Paulo Coelho

“Although I cannot lay an egg, I am a very good judge of omelettes” – George Bernard Shaw

Here are a few more pics taken by Dave:


VULTURES & MARABOU STORKS – Moholoholo, Hoedspruit, South Africa


WARTHOG WITH VULTURES – Moholoholo, Hoedspruit, South Africa


WHITEBACKED VULTURE – Moholoholo, Hoedpsruit, South Africa


WHITEBACKED VULTURE – Moholoholo, Hoedspruit, South Africa

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Patterns

Patterns have purpose.


ZEBRA PATTERNS – Welgevonden Game Reserve, Waterberg, South Africa


ZEBRA PORTRAIT – Welgevonden Game Reserve, Waterberg, South Africa

PATTERNS

Nature’s babies note
their mothers’ markings;
Zebra foals imprint
mares’ patterns

Wild dogs follow the flash
of parents’ tails,
Lion cubs spot the black
behind adult ears . . .

But what of humanity –
makers of mistakes,
thanks to the gift of
free will?

Our patterns too
serve a purpose,
teaching lessons
long after leaving

negatives belong
to the winds of change,
positives provide the framework
for fulfilling lives

Quotes to consider:

“To understand is to perceive patterns” – Isaiah Berlin

“When patterns are broken, new worlds emerge.” – Unknown

“Creativity involves breaking out of established patterns in order to look at things in a different way.” – Edward de Bono

“Our character is basically a composite of our habits. Because they are consistent, often unconcious patterns, they constantly, daily, express our character…” – Stephen R. Covey

“A cloud does not know why it moves in just such a direction and at such a speed…It feels an impulsion…this is the place to go now. But the sky knows the reasons and the patterns behind all clouds, and you will know, too, when you lift yourself high enough to see beyond horizons.” – Richard Bach

“The same gold is fashioned into various articles; just so, the Lord has made the many patterns of the creation.” – Atharva Veda

To illustrate a few more of wildlife’s patterns:


AFRICAN WILD DOG walking away – Madikwe Game Reserve, SA


LIONESS looking away – Mabuasehube Game Reserve, Botswana

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