Pray Your Loneliness

Pray that your loneliness may spur you
into finding something to live for,
great enough to die for.
~ Dag Hammarskjold

Lone Man by Nur Nielfa

#loneliness #livelife #madrid #spain

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Shadow in the Darkness

To speak with the shadow,
you must know the language of the darkness!
~ Mehmet Murat ildan

Photo by Aleksey Bednyi
#shadow #pigeon #alone #darkness

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Ocean of Life

Ships that pass in the night, and speak each other in passing, Only a signal shown, and a distant voice in the darkness; So on the ocean of life, we pass and speak one another, Only a look and a voice, then darkness again and a silence
~ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

2953 by Peter Holme III on 500px
#ship #encounters #friendship #livelife #clarepatrick #boat
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Knowledge of Wonder

The larger the island of knowledge,
the longer the shoreline of wonder.
~ Ralph W. Sockman

Photo: Slippery and dangerous by Andrei Reinol on 500px
#wonder #curiousity #knowledge #livelife

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Starry Sky Moral

Two things awe me most,
the starry sky above me
and the moral law within me.
~ Immanuel Kant

#starrysky #stars #starrynight #livelife #moral
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Good and Bad in Us

There is so much Good in the Worst of Us,
And so much Bad in the Best of Us,
That it hardly Behooves any of Us
To Talk about the rest of Us.
~ Edward Wallis Hoch

Photo by Zac A Pagett

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Desire to Love

Ultimately, it is the Desire,
Not the Desired, that we Love.
~ Friedrich Nietzsche

Photo by Наталия Жмерик
#red #desire #love
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Exist to be alive

It appears to me impossible
that I should cease to exist,
or that this active, restless spirit,
equally alive to joy and sorrow,
should be only organized dust.
~ Mary Wollstonecraft

#livelife #spirit #alive #joy #sorrow
Photo by Fan Ho
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Eye – The Interpreter

The soul, fortunately, has an interpreter
– often an unconscious but still
a faithful interpreter – in the eye.
~ Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre
Photographer: Max Eremine Model:Linda Khounvichit
#soul #eye #unconscious
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A Soul is far too large to Hide.
~ Maggie Schein

Photo by John DeFiora
#hide #soul #livelife #clarepatrick #brunettewednesday

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In Prayer

Prayer is not asking.
It is a longing of the Soul.
It is daily admission of one’s weakness.
It is better in Prayer
To have a Heart without Words
than Words without a Heart.
~ Mahatma Gandhi

Photo by Sergey Timofeev #prayer #soul #heart #words #livelife #yoga

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Everyone is Alone

The Tragedy of this World is
that Everyone is Alone.
For a Life in the Past cannot
be shared with the Present.
~ Alan Lightman – Einstein’s Dreams

Karkonosze mountains, Poland
On the Way by Piotr Krzaczkowski on 500px

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Future Remains

When all else is Lost,
The Future still Remains.
~ Christian Bovee

Pencil Art by Isaiah Stephens
#hope #despair #lost #future #livelife #pencilart #eye #expectation

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Darkness I Became

The Shortest Path to Go to Heaven
is to Go Through Hell!
I was in the darkness,
so darkness I became!

#heaven #hell #darkness

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Thought, Knowledge, Mankind

Thought is the Wind,
Knowledge the Sail,
and Mankind the Vessel.
~ Augustus W. Hare
#thoughts #knowledge #mankind
Photo: StevenStahberg – The Queen of Faery on the eve of her wedding
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Happiness dwells

Happiness resides not in possessions,
and not in gold, happiness dwells in the soul.
~ Democritus
#happiness #possession #soul
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Life Pleasure

In Life there is nothing more Unexpected and Surprising than the arrivals and departures of Pleasure. If we find it in one place today, it is vain to Seek it there Tomorrow. You can not lay a Trap for it.
~ Alexander Smith

Photo by Japi Paola Baffetti
 #pleasure #trap #life #expectation #happiness

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Lust for Love

People wait around too long for love. I’m happy with all of my lusts!
~ C. JoyBell C.
#love #lust
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Love is not gonna be easy

So it’s not gonna be easy. It’s going to be really hard; we’re gonna have to work at this everyday, but I want to do that because I want you. I want all of you, forever, everyday. You and me… everyday.
~ Nicholas Sparks, The Notebook
#love #marriage
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Desperation for Charge

Desperation is the raw material of drastic change.
Only those who can leave behind everything
they have ever believed in can hope to escape.
~ William S. Burroughs
#desperation #change #escape
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Despair is the price one pays for self-awareness.
Look deeply into life, and you’ll always find despair.
~ Irvin D. Yalom, When Nietzsche Wept
#despair #awareness #lifequote #selfawareness  
Pencil drawing by Olga Melamory
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Cupid Painted Blind

Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind
And therefore is winged Cupid painted blind.
~ William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Photo by Frank Uyttenhove
#love #cupid

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Love Concept

We never love anyone.
What we love is the idea we have of someone.
It’s our own concept—our own selves—that we love.
_~ Fernando Pessoa*

Photo manipulation by Joe Moore


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Prey and Predator

If we act like Prey,
they’ll act like Predators.
~ Alyxandra Harvey, My Love Lies Bleeding
Photo by Alexander Safonov
#prey #predator
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Love at Heart

Keep Love in your Heart.
A Life without it is like a sunless garden when the flowers are Dead.
~ Oscar Wilde

#love #heart #dead

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Morning Dew

Beauty, Sweet Love, is like the Morning Dew,
Whose Short Refresh Upon Tender Green,
Cheers for a Time,
but till the Sun doth Show And Straight is Gone,
as it had Never Been.
~ Samuel Daniel

>>> Good Morning!  Enjoy the Day When You Can!! 🙂

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Passions of Love

All the Passions make us Commit Faults;
Love makes us Commit the most Ridiculous Ones.
~ Francois de La Rochefoucauld
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Till Tomorrow

Be thou the rainbow in the storms of life.
The evening beam that smiles the clouds away,
and tints tomorrow with prophetic ray.
~ Lord Byron

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To Be Loved

We have to allow ourselves to be loved by the people who really love us, the people who really matter. Too much of the time, we are blinded by our own pursuits of people to love us, people that don’t even matter, while all that time we waste and the people who do love us have to stand on the sidewalk and watch us beg in the streets! It’s time to put an end to this. It’s time for us to let ourselves be loved.
~  C. JoyBell C.
#people #lovedones #love #waste #time #beloved
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A Vision of the Things

Every Age Needs Men Who will Redeem the Time
by Living with a Vision of the Things that are To Be.
Adlai E. Stevenson

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Courage to Live

Sometimes even to live is an act of courage.
~ Seneca
#lifequote #survive #courage
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Stay still as Life Moves On

Stay still as Life Moves On
~ Clare P.
#lifequote #lifegoeson
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I am Blessed

In the Middle of My Mess,
I Forgot How I Blessed I Am
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Rescue Ourselves

We’re our own dragons as well as our own heroes,
and we have to rescue ourselves from ourselves.
Tom Robbins


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You Are Always Here

WHERE ARE YOU????????????
For Ages, I Looked Everywhere for You.
After so much Sorrow and Misery I Finally Realized, I Overlooked.
You Were Always Here.
You Are Always Here, As I Am
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Past & Future

How can I Know Anything about the Past or the Future,
When the Light of the Beloved Shines Only Now
~ Rumi
#lifequote #past #present #future #beloved
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Risk of Love

To Love is to Risk Not Being Loved in Return.
To Hope is to Risk Pain.
To Try is to Risk Failure,
But Risk must be Taken
Because the Greatest Hazard in Life is
To Risk Nothing.
~ Anonymous

#love #hope #risk #failure #life #lifequote

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Love with Snow and Fire

As soon go kindle Fire with Snow,
as seek to Quench the Fire of Love with Words.
~ William Shakespeare
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Never Forget

To love. To be loved.
To never forget your own insignificance.
To never get used to the unspeakable violence
and the vulgar disparity of life around you.
To seek joy in the saddest places.
To pursue beauty to its lair.
To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple.
To respect strength, never power.
Above all, to watch. To try and understand.
To never look away. And never, never to forget.
― Arundhati Roy, The Cost of Living
#life #love #lifequote

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Angel Love

If there is anything that keeps the Mind Open to Angel Visits,
and Repels the Ministry of Ill, it is Human Love.
~ Nathaniel Parker Willis
#angel #human #love #nathanielparkerwillis #openmind
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Let Go

Every time I look at the sunrise, my eyes begin to tear
because I become lost and confused
from the moment I realized it was time to let you go,
but I embrace the choices I’ve made and
realize that I could never waste a breath of life
to say I love you.
~Ty S Onda
Sunrise – Mt. Fiji, Japan
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Reason of Love

Reason is Powerless in the Expression of Love
~ Rumi
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A Brand-New Love Every time

But Love is always new. Regardless of whether we Love once, twice, or a dozen times in our life, we always face a brand-new situation. Love can consign us to hell or to paradise, but it always takes us somewhere. We simply have to accept it, because it is what nourishes our existence. If we reject it, we die of hunger, because we lack the courage to stretch out a hand and pluck the fruit from the branches of the tree of life. We have to take Love where we find it, even if that means hours, days, weeks of disappointment and sadness.

The Moment we Begin to Seek Love,
Love Begins to Seek Us. And to Save Us.
― Paulo Coelho, By the River Piedra I Sat Down and Wept

Photo by Oleg Dou

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Broken Heart

We cannot love a person with an all accepting, transcending and encompassing love without being hurt somewhat, without being disappointed, without being failed of our expectations. We cannot love without being broken, yet we cannot continue in love without being stronger than our brokenness.
― Jocelyn Soriano, Mend My Broken Heart
#brokenheart #lovequotes #love #expectation #mendmybrokenheart  #livelife
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Love Me Everyday

Don’t Love Me Forever;
Love me Everyday. <3
― Melissa Claire Bautista
#love #loveforever #everyday

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Love in Mind

Love Looks Not with the Eyes, But with the Mind.
― William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night’s Dream

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Angels & Heroes at Heart

We don’t need Wings to be Angels
We don’t need Reasons to be Right
Your Love makes Us all Better
That Who We Really Are
Angels and Heroes at Heart
― Brian Littrell
#angel #love #quote #hero #heart #whoweare

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A Question of Love

Once upon a time there was a boy who loved a girl,
and her laughter was a question
he wanted to spend his whole life answering.
― Nicole Krauss, The History of Love
#love #quote #question #answer #life #boyandgirl #nicolekrauss #historyoflove

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Love chooses you

Remember that you don’t choose Love;
All you really can do is Accept it for all its Mystery
when it Comes into your Life.
Feel the way it fills you to Overflowing
then Reach Out and Give it Away.
~ Kent Nerburn
The dam overflowing near Chiang-Mai (Doi-Saket), Thailand
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Men vs Women

Men always want to be a woman’s first love,
women like to be a man’s last romance     
~ Oscar Wilde
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To Love & Be Loved

I heard what you said. I’m not the silly romantic you think.
I don’t want the heavens or the shooting stars.
I don’t want gemstones or gold. I have those things already.
I want…a steady hand. A kind soul.
I want to fall asleep, and wake, knowing my heart is safe.
I want to love, and be loved.
― Shana Abe

Photo: Aequilibrium, Andrew Shushvalyuka

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Love Oneself

To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance.
Oscar Wilde

#romance #love #oscarwilde   #vieuniq

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Live Life

“Life will break you. Nobody can protect you from that, and living alone won’t either, for solitude will also break you with its yearning. You have to love. You have to feel. It is the reason you are here on earth. You are here to risk your heart. You are here to be swallowed up. And when it happens that you are broken, or betrayed, or left, or hurt, or death brushes near, let yourself sit by an apple tree and listen to the apples falling all around you in heaps, wasting their sweetness. Tell yourself you tasted as many as you could.”
― Louise Erdrich, The Painted Drum LP
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Trust Love

“Trust your heart if the seas catch fire,
live by love though the stars walk backward.”
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Love is Difference

Love is a gross exaggeration of the difference between one person and everybody else ~ George Bernard Shaw

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Sunrise Love

At sunrise everything is luminous but not clear. It is those we live with and love and should know who elude us. You can love completely without complete understanding ~ Norman Maclean

Bonjour la France, tu me manque!

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Love is…

Love isn’t something you find. Love is something that finds you~ Loretta Young

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Actions vs Words

Characterize people by their actions and you will never be fooled by their words.

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Lamp and Shadow

Love is a Lamp,
while Friendship is the Shadow.
When the Lamp is Off,
you will find the Shadow Everywhere.
#friendship #love

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Beauty is

Love of Beauty is Taste.
The Creation of Beauty is Art.
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
#love #beauty #art   #livelife #life
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The Way of Walking Alone

The Way of Walking Alone, was written a week before Musashi died in 1645. This personal manifesto expresses a stringent, honest, and ascetic view of life in 21 powerful principles.

  1. Accept everything just the way it is.
  2. Do not seek pleasure for its own sake.
  3. Do not, under any circumstances, depend on a partial feeling.
  4. Think lightly of yourself and deeply of the world.
  5. Be detached from desire your whole life.
  6. Do not regret what you have done.
  7. Never be jealous.
  8. Never let yourself be saddened by a separation.
  9. Resentment and complaint are appropriate neither for oneself nor others.
  10. Do not let yourself be guided by the feeling of lust or love.
  11. In all things, have no preferences.
  12. Be indifferent to where you live.
  13. Do not pursue the taste of good food. [Do not overindulge.]
  14. Do not hold on to possessions you no longer need.
  15. Do not act following customary beliefs.
  16. Do not collect weapons or practice with weapons beyond what is useful.
  17. Do not fear death.
  18. Do not seek to possess either goods or fiefs for your old age.
  19. Respect Buddha and the gods without counting on their help. [Respect the belief systems of others.]
  20. You may abandon your own body but you must preserve your honour.
  21. Never stray from the way.


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Small World, Big Circles

It’s a small world, but we all run in big circles.
#smallworld #circle   #livelife #life   #toureiffel #paris
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Love is a Moment

If Love is a Moment that Lasts Forever(in memory), why are we keep searching for another Moment to Match?
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Master Yourself

Mastering others is strength.
Mastering yourself is True Power
~ Lao Tzu

#master #strength #power #laotzu #vieuniq   #quote   #livelife #life

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Perspective vs Perception

Art…Perspective…Perception! ;))
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Adversity is a mirage. People, situations, and relationships sometimes change for the worst but inevitably clear a path for far better replacements. The continued journey will always find bliss.
~ Carl Henegan

Photo by Masao Yamamoto
#adversity #mirage #bliss #livelife #clare #path #journey

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No Fear. No Power

No power on earth, if it labours beneath the burden of fear,
can possibly be strong enough to survive.
~ Marcus Tullius Cicero

#fear #livelife #clare #skateboard
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A Mask

We understand how dangerous a mask can be.
We all become what we pretend to be.
~ Patrick Rothfuss
Alakas Dune by

#mask #pretend #livelife #clare

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Black Holes

Black holes ain’t as black as they are painted. They are not the eternal prisons they were once thought. Things can get out of a black hole both on the outside and possibly to another universe. So if you feel you are in a black hole, don’t give up — there is a way out.
~ Stephen HawkingPhoto by Jaxson Pohlman

#blackhole #depression #night #livelife #clare

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Life Variety

I was within and without, simultaneously enchanted and repelled by the inexhaustible variety of life.
~ F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby

Photo by JR Photography
#livelife #clare

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Life is a Lone Wolf

Life is a lone wolf, scratching out a living with teeth and claws and a heart of stone.
~ Dan Wells
#livelife #clare #lone #maddieonthings

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Blind but Seeing

Why did we become blind?
I don’t know, perhaps one day we’ll find out.
Do you want me to tell you what I think?
Yes, do, I don’t think we did go blind,
I think we are blind, Blind but seeing,
Blind people who can see, but do not see.
~ José Saramago
#blind #livelife #clare
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Things I like about myself: 1:_____________________

Things I like about myself:
1. ___________________

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Path To Go

I asked for a Path, but I’ve never asked what this Path is going to Take Me!!

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Outrageous Buyer Request

Kiss my Ass

Kiss my Ass

Once in a while, potential customers come up with outrageous requests, here is my answer to one of them:
“Hey, I am selling you my products, not my business, as you are also not buying stocks in a stock market,  why do you want to see my company’s Financial Statement, and you are requesting for an Audited Financial Statement???  If your company is requesting a credit line, my company should be the one asking you for your financial statement!!”

#kissmyass #buyerandseller #business #financialstatements #auditedfinancialstatement

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My eyes always keep searching,
something inexpressible,
above the far sky.
I long to get Lost,
inside the Evening-Twilight.
Silence always tickles me
—in a strange way;
I meet “me” in the time
between Sunset and Darkness.
~ Sabr Muz Leemah
Your Voice Around the World
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Happy 2015

Happy New Year 2015

Happy New Year 2015

Happy 2015…Start a Year Anew

Remember What’s Worth…Forget What is not.

In  this New Year of 2015,

“Promise Yourself (Myself)

To be so strong that nothing
can disturb your peace of mind.
To talk health, happiness, and prosperity
to every person you meet.

To make all your friends feel
that there is something in them
To look at the sunny side of everything
and make your optimism come true.

To think only the best, to work only for the best,
and to expect only the best.
To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others
as you are about your own.

To forget the mistakes of the past
and press on to the greater achievements of the future.
To wear a cheerful countenance at all times
and give every living creature you meet a smile.

To give so much time to the improvement of yourself
that you have no time to criticize others.
To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear,
and too happy to permit the presence of trouble.

To think well of yourself and to proclaim this fact to the world,
not in loud words but great deeds.
To live in faith that the whole world is on your side
so long as you are true to the best that is in you.”
~ Christian D. Larson, Your Forces and How to Use Them



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I was, I am, I shall always…

I was, I am, I shall always

I was, I am, I shall always

I am.
I always was.
I always am.
I shall always be.

The past and the future
meet in the eternal now.
I am the eternal now.

I exist.
I am.
I am in the past.
I am in the future.
I am in the now.

One is all, and all are one.
We are one.
Everything I see
is a part of myself.
Everything I can imagine
is a part of myself.
I could not imagine something
that is not.
Everyone I interact with
is a part of myself.

Whatever I put out, I get it back.
My state of being matters,
it crystallises in my circumstances.
The way I respond to my circumstances
reinforces my state of being.

When I see an echo of an old belief
I respond with peace in my heart.
My actions are matched with
the highest version of myself
I can imagine in that moment.

Everything changes,
and everything transforms
from one form of life
to yet another.

It is a constant flow of life.
It is the heart of all existence.
Nothing can perish,
nothing can cease being.

I am always new.
I am always history free.
I am always consequence free.
Yet I can create an illusion of consequence.

Everything is possible,
yet not everything is probable.
It all depends on my synchronicity.
What I choose to explore
shall present itself to me.

What I believe to be true, is true.
All illusions are made out of different beliefs.
Yet there is only one knowledge.
It is the wisdom of old, yet new.

The thought gains the power,
when it merges with the feeling.
I feel what I desire.
I always receive what I ask for.
I always manifest instantly with no effort.
My wisdom is to be aware of what I request.

So it be.
So it is.
I ask for love,
and I welcome bliss.
~ Raphael Zernoff

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Sunset Wishes

Sunset wish and hope

Sunset wish and hope

To wish was to hope and to hope was to expect ~ Jane Austin

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Simplicity is the most difficult thing to secure in this world; it is the last limit of experience and the last effort of genius. ~ George Sand

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You can’t save someone who doesn’t want to be saved.

You can't save someone who doesn't want to be saved.

You can’t save someone who doesn’t want to be saved.

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We See What We Look For, We Hear What We Listen To. ~ Aianna

We See What We Look For, We Hear What We Listen To. ~ Aianna

We See What We Look For, We Hear What We Listen To. ~ Aianna

We See What We Look For, We Hear What We Listen To.

~ Aianna

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Beyond the Limit


Aston Martin scores a hat-trick of podiums at the Nürburgring, Germany

On a given day, a given circumstance, you think you have a limit. And you then go for this limit and you touch this limit, and you think, ‘Okay, this is the limit’. And so you touch this limit, something happens and you suddenly can go a little bit further. With your mind power, your determination, your instinct, and the experience as well, you can fly very high.
~ Ayrton Senna

Photo: Aston Martin scores a hat-trick of podiums at the Nürburgring, Germany

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Beyond the Limit


Aston Martin scores a hat-trick of podiums at the Nürburgring, Germany

On a given day, a given circumstance, you think you have a limit. And you then go for this limit and you touch this limit, and you think, ‘Okay, this is the limit’. And so you touch this limit, something happens and you suddenly can go a little bit further. With your mind power, your determination, your instinct, and the experience as well, you can fly very high.
~ Ayrton Senna
Photo: Aston Martin scores a hat-trick of podiums at the Nürburgring, Germany


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C’est La Vie

C'est la vie

C’est la vie

C’est La Vie

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Life is how we make it

Life is

Life is how we make it!
Make every moment count!

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Feeling Alive

Matthew Scherfenberg

Matthew Scherfenberg

To hear never-heard sounds,
To see never-seen colors and shapes,
To try to understand the imperceptible
Power pervading the world;
To fly and find pure ethereal substances
That are not of matter
But of that invisible soul pervading reality.
To hear another soul and to whisper to another soul;
To be a lantern in the darkness
Or an umbrella in a stormy day;
To feel much more than know.
To be the eyes of an eagle, slope of a mountain;
To be a wave understanding the influence of the moon;
To be a tree and read the memory of the leaves;
To be an insignificant pedestrian on the streets
Of crazy cities watching, watching, and watching.
To be a smile on the face of a woman
And shine in her memory
As a moment saved without planning.
~ Dejan Stojanovic

Photo: Matthew Scherfenberg

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If you possess it, you don’t need to ask what it is. When you attempt to delineate it, you move away from it. Fabulous is one of those words that provide a measure of the degree to which a person or event manifests a particular oppressed subculture’s most distinctive, invigorating features. What are the salient features of fabulousness? Irony. Tragic History. Defiance. Gender-fuck. Glitter. Drama. It is not butch. It is not hot. The cathexis surrounding fabulousness is not necessarily erotic. The fabulous is not delineated by age or beauty. It is raw materials reworked into illusion. To be truly fabulous, one must completely triumph over tragedy, age, and physical insufficiencies. The fabulous is the rapturous embrace of difference, the discovering of self not in that which has rejected you but in that which makes you unlike, the dislike, the other.*
~ Tony Kushner

Photo by  Svetlana Belyaeva

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Love and Desire

Love and Desire

Love desire and Touch

If you love and must needs have desires, let these be your desires:

  • To melt and be like a running brook that sings its melody to the night.
  • To know the pain of too much tenderness.
  • To be wounded by your own understanding of love; And to bleed willingly and joyfully.
  • To wake at dawn with a winged heart and give thanks for another day of loving;
  • To rest at noon hour and meditate love’s ecstasy;
  • To return home at eventide with gratitude;
  • To sleep with a prayer for the beloved in your heart and  a song of praise on your lips.

~ Kahlil Gibran

Photo: Pheed Inc


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Chicago reflected on Lake Michigan

Magical image of Chicago reflected on Lake Michigan is captured by Mark Hersch

Magical image of Chicago reflected on Lake Michigan is captured by Mark Hersch


The city under the clouds: Magical image of Chicago reflected on Lake Michigan is captured by plane passenger coming into land

Mark Hersch glanced out of the cabin window in time to see the amazing optical illusion

Chicago appears like a city in the clouds in this stunning photograph taken by a passenger from his plane window.

Plane enthusiast and amateur photographer Mark Hersch captured the jaw-dropping scene of the city silhouetted in Lake Michigan from his seat on a Chicago-bound flight making its final approach.

The late-afternoon image shows the low sun casting a golden glow on the water, which is visible beneath cloud cover.

The buildings of the Windy City cast long shadows out into the water – while closer inspection reveals another passenger jet near the centre of the picture.

Mark said the image is straight out of the camera, without use of image manipulation.

‘I was flying home to Chicago from a business trip recently,’ he said. ‘It was a cloudy day, late in the afternoon. We were flying eastbound, made a pass by O’Hare International Airport, then made a sweeping 180-degree left turn over Lake Michigan for our final westward approach into the airport.”

‘I looked down and through a narrow break in the clouds, I saw the shadow of the Chicago skyline projecting onto the lake. Oddly enough, I am a very frequent flyer and almost always sit in an aisle set, but on this flight there were only window seats available.

‘I grabbed my iPhone and snapped off a single shot, hoping I captured the scene. When I got home I opened the photo on my computer. Not only was I amazed at the shot, but I noticed I also captured another plane on a parallel approach – which you can see if you look closely at the clouds above the skyline in the centre of the image.

‘My only regret is that the image is not as sharp as I would like; it’s merely an iPhone capture, after all. Ironically, I am an avid amateur photography enthusiast, with some pretty expensive pro equipment.’

Article from DailyMail  Daily mail with Mark Hersch



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Aianna, Your Voice Around the World

Behold, Behave, Believe…BE YOU!

Aianna…Your Voice Around the World


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Plague Doctor

Plague Doctor Mask

Plague Doctor Mask

A plague doctor (Italian: medico della peste, Dutch: pestmeester, Spanish: médico de la peste negra, German: Pestarzt) was a special medical physician who treated those who had the plague.[1] They were specifically hired by towns that had many plague victims in times of plague epidemics. Since the city was paying their salary, they treated everyone: both the rich and the poor.[2] They were not normally professionally trained experienced physicians or surgeons, and often were second-rate doctors not able to otherwise run a successful medical business or young physicians trying to establish themselves.[1]

Plague doctors by their covenant treated plague patients and were known as municipal or “community plague doctors”, whereas “general practitioners” were separate doctors and both might be in the same European city or town at the same time.[1][3][4][5] In France and the Netherlands plague doctors often lacked medical training and were referred to as “empirics”. In one case a plague doctor had been a fruit salesman before his employment as a physician.[6]

In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, some doctors wore a beak-like mask which was filled with aromatic items. The masks were designed to protect them from putrid air, which (according to the miasmatic theory of disease) was seen as the cause of infection. Thus:

“The nose half a foot long, shaped like a beak, filled with perfume with only two holes, one on each side near the nostrils, but that can suffice to breathe and to carry along with the air one breathes the impression of the drugs enclosed further along in the beak. Under the coat we wear boots made in Moroccan leather (goat leather) from the front of the breeches in smooth skin that are attached to said boots and a short-sleeved blouse in smooth skin, the bottom of which is tucked into the breeches. The hat and gloves are also made of the same skin… with spectacles over the eyes.”[7]


The first epidemic of bubonic plague dates back to the mid 500s, known as the Plague of Justinian.[8] The largest epidemic was the Black Death of Europe in the 14th century. In medieval times the large loss of people due to the bubonic plague in a town created an economic disaster. Community plague doctors were quite valuable and were given special privileges. For example, plague doctors were freely allowed to perform autopsies, which were otherwise generally forbidden in Medieval Europe, to research a cure for the plague.

In some cases, plague doctors were so valuable that when Barcelona dispatched two to Tortosa in 1650, outlaws captured them en route and demanded a ransom. The city of Barcelona paid for their release.[4] The city of Orvieto hired Matteo fu Angelo in 1348 for 4 times the normal rate of a doctor of 50-florin per year.[4] Pope Clement VI hired several extra plague doctors during the Black Death plague.[9] They were to attend to the sick people of Avignon. Of eighteen doctors in Venice, only one was left by 1348: five had died of the plague, and twelve were missing and may have fled.[10]


Main article: Plague Doctor Costume

Some plague doctors wore a special costume, although graphic sources show that plague doctors wore a variety of garments. The garments were invented by Charles de L’Orme in 1619; they were first used in Paris, but later spread to be used throughout Europe.[11] The protective suit consisted of a heavy fabric overcoat that was waxed, a mask with glass eye openings and a cone nose shaped like a beak to hold scented substances and straw.[12]

Some of the scented materials were ambergris, balm-mint leaves, camphor, cloves, laudanum, myrrh, rose petals, storax.[6] This was thought to protect the doctor from miasmatic bad air.[13] The straw provided a filter for the “bad air”. A wooden cane pointer was used to help examine the patient without having to touch them, it was also used as a means of repenting sins, many believed that the plague was a punishment and would ask to be whipped to repent their sins.[14][15]

 Public servants

Plague doctors served as public servants during times of epidemics starting with the Black Death of Europe in the fourteenth century. Their principal task, besides taking care of plague victims, was to record in public records the deaths due to the plague.[6]

In certain European cities like Florence and Perugia plague doctors were requested to do autopsies to help determine the cause of death and how the plague played a role.[16] Plague doctors became testators and witnesses to numerous wills during times of plague epidemics.[17] Plague doctors also gave advice to their patients about their conduct before death.[18] This advice varied depending on the patient, and after the Middle Ages the nature of the relationship between doctor and patient was governed by an increasingly complex ethical code.[19]


Plague doctors practiced bloodletting and other remedies such as putting frogs or leeches on the buboes to “rebalance the humors” as a normal routine.[20] Plague doctors could not generally interact with the general public because of the nature of their business and the possibility of spreading the disease; they could also be subject to quarantine.[21]


Notable medieval plague doctors

A famous plague doctor who gave medical advice about preventive measures which could be taken against the plague was Nostradamus.[22][23] Nostradamus’ advice was the removal of infected corpses, getting fresh air, drinking clean water, and drinking a juice preparation of rose hips.[24][25] In Traité des fardemens it shows in Part A Chapter VIII that Nostradamus also recommended not to bleed the patient.[25]

The Italian city of Pavia, in 1479, contracted Giovanni de Ventura as a community plague doctor.[4][26] The Irish physician, Niall Ó Glacáin (c.1563?-1653) earned deep respect in Spain, France and Italy for his bravery in treating numerous victims of the plague.[27][28] Paracelsus was also a famous medieval plague doctor.[29]

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Tintypes – Celebrity Style

elijah wood

Philip Seymour Hoffman by Victoria Will

Tintypes by Victoria Will.Elijah WoodElijah Wood by Victoria Will

A tintype, also known as a melainotype or ferrotype, is a photograph made by creating a direct positive on a thin sheet of iron coated with a dark lacquer or enamel and used as the support for the photographic emulsion. Tintypes enjoyed their widest use during the 1860s and 1870s, but lesser use of the medium persisted into the early 20th century and it has been revived as a novelty in the 21st.

Tintype portraits were at first usually made in a formal photographic studio, like daguerreotypes and other early types of photographs, but later they were most commonly made by photographers working in booths or the open air at fairs and carnivals, as well as by itinerant sidewalk photographers. Because the lacquered iron support (there is no actual tin used) was resilient and did not need drying, a tintype could be developed and fixed and handed to the customer only a few minutes after the picture had been taken.

The tintype’s immediate predecessor, the ambrotype, was the same process using a sheet of glass as the support. The glass was either of a dark color or provided with a black backing so that, as with a tintype, the underexposed negative image in the emulsion appeared as a positive. Tintypes were sturdy and did not require mounting in a protective hard case like ambrotypes and daguerreotypes.

There are two historic tintype processes: wet and dry. In the wet process, a collodion emulsion containing suspended silver halide crystals had to be formed on the plate just before it was exposed in the camera while still wet. Chemical treatment then reduced the crystals to microscopic particles of metallic silver in proportion to the intensity and duration of their exposure to light, resulting in a visible image. The later and more convenient dry process was similar but used a gelatin emulsion which could be applied to the plate long before use and exposed in the camera dry.

In both processes, a very underexposed negative image was produced in the emulsion. Its densest areas, corresponding to the lightest parts of the subject, appeared gray by reflected light. The areas with the least amount of silver, corresponding to the darkest areas of the subject, were essentially transparent and appeared black when seen against the dark background provided by the lacquer. The image as a whole therefore appeared to be a dull-toned positive.[1][2] This ability to employ underexposed images allowed shorter exposure times to be used, a great advantage in portraiture.

To obtain as light-toned an image as possible, potassium cyanide, a very dangerous and powerful deadly poison, was normally employed as the photographic fixer. It was perhaps the most acutely hazardous of the several highly toxic chemicals originally used in this and many other early photographic processes.

One unusual piece of tintype equipment was a twelve-lensed camera that could make a dozen 3/4 x 1 inch “gem” portraits with one exposure.[1] Portrait sizes ranged from gem-size to 11 x 14 inches. From about 1865 to 1910 the most popular size, called “Bon-ton”, ranged from 2-3/8 x 3-1/2 inches to 4 x 5-3/4 inches.[1]

Each tintype is usually a camera original, so the image is usually a mirror image, reversed left to right from reality. Sometimes the camera was fitted with a mirror or right-angle prism so that the end result would be right-reading.


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What is Prairie Restoration?

James Nedresky.prairie fire. flint hills, ks

James Nedresky.prairie fire. flint hills, ks

Prairie restoration is an ecologically friendly way to restore some of the prairie land that was lost to industry, farming and commerce. For example, the U.S. state of Illinois alone once held over 35,000 square miles (91,000 km2) of prairie land and now just 3 square miles (7.8 km2) of original prairie land exist.


Ecologically, prairie restoration aids in conservation of earth’s topsoil, which is often exposed to erosion from wind and rain when prairies are plowed under to make way for new commerce. Conversely, much more of the prairie lands have become the fertile fields on which cereal crops of corn, barley and wheat are grown.

Many prairie plants are also highly resistant to drought, temperature extremes, disease, and native insect pests. They are frequently used for xeriscaping projects in arid regions of the American West.

A restoration project of prairie lands can be large or small. A backyard prairie restoration will enrich soil, help with erosion and take up extra water in excessive rainfalls. Prairie flowers are attractive to native butterflies and other pollinators. On a larger scale, communities and corporations are creating areas of restored prairies which in turn will store organic carbon in the soil and help maintain the biodiversity of the 3000 plus species that count on the grasslands for food and shelter.

 Types of plants

Prairie plants consist of grasses and forbs. Grasses, which are monocots, are similar to what may be in a yard, but grasses in the prairie will be of a broader leaf. Some prominent tallgrass prairie grasses include Big Bluestem, Indiangrass, and Switchgrass. Midgrass and shortgrass species include Little Bluestem and Buffalograss. Forbs fall into an unusual category. They are not grasses, trees or shrubs, but are herbaceous and share the field with the less diverse grasses. Most wildflowers and legumes are forbs. Forbs are structurally specialized to resist herbaceous grazers such as American bison, and their commonly hairy leaves help deter the cold and prevent excessive evaporation. Many of the forbs contain secondary compounds that were discovered by the American Natives and are still used widely today. One particular forb, the purple coneflower, is recognized more readily by its scientific name Echinacea purpurea, or just Echinacea, which is used as an herbal remedy for colds.

Early prairie restoration efforts tended to focus largely on a few dominant species, typically grasses, with little attention to seed source. With experience, later restorers have realized the importance of obtaining a broad mix of species and using local ecotype seed.[1]

 Care of prairies

Fire is a big component to the success of grasslands, large or small. Controlled burns, with a permit, are recommended every 4–8 years (after two growth seasons) to burn away dead plants; prevent certain other plants from encroaching (such as trees) and release nutrients into the ground to encourage new growth. A much more wildlife habitat friendly alternative to burning every 4–8 years is to burn 1/4 to 1/8 of a tract every year. This will leave wildlife a home every year and still accomplish the task of burning. The Native Americans may also have used the burns to control pests such as ticks.

If controlled burns are not possible, rotational mowing is recommended as a substitute.

One of the newer methods available is holistic management, which uses livestock as a substitute for the keystone species such as bison. This allows the rotational mowing to be done by animals which in turn mimics nature more closely. Holistic management also can use fire as a tool, but in a more limited way and in combination with the mowing done by animals.[2]

Wikipedia: Prairie Restoration

Photo Source by James Nedresky.prairie fire,Flint Hills, Kansas

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Benefits of Reading

Book Art

Book art

Read it with sorrow and you will feel hate.
Read it with anger and you will feel vengeful.
Read it with paranoia and you will feel confusion.
Read it with empathy and you will feel compassion.
Read it with love and you will feel flattery.
Read it with hope and you will feel positive.
Read it with humor and you will feel joy.
Read it with God and you will feel the truth.
Read it without bias and you will feel peace.
Don’t read it at all and you will not feel a thing.
? Shannon L. Alder

The Huffington Post | By Laura Schocker

In a world of omnipresent screens, it can be easy to forget the simple pleasure of curling up with a good book. In fact, a recent HuffPost/YouGov poll of 1,000 U.S. adults found that 28 percent hadn’t read one at all in the past year.
But the truth is that reading books can be more than entertainment (or a high school English assignment). A study released earlier this month suggests that enjoying literature might help strengthen your “mind-reading” abilities. The research, published in the journal Science, showed that reading literary works (though, interestingly, not popular fiction) cultivates a skill known as “theory of mind,” which NPR describes as the “ability to ‘read’ the thoughts and feelings of others.”
And that’s hardly the only way being a bookworm can boost your mind and well-being. Below, six more science-backed reasons to swap the remote for a novel.
Reading can chill you out.
Stressed out? Pick up a paperback. Research conducted in 2009 at Mindlab International at the University of Sussex showed that reading was the most effective way to overcome stress, beating out old favorites such as listening to music, enjoying a cup of tea or coffee and even taking a walk, The Telegraph reported when the findings were released. It took the study participants just six minutes to relax (which was measured by evaluating heart rate and muscle tension) once they started turning pages.
“It really doesn’t matter what book you read, by losing yourself in a thoroughly engrossing book you can escape from the worries and stresses of the everyday world and spend a while exploring the domain of the author’s imagination,” study researcher Dr. David Lewis told The Telegraph.
It could help keep your brain sharp.
A lifetime of reading might just help keep your brain in shape when you reach old age, according to research published earlier this year in the online issue of the journal Neurology. The study, which included 294 participants who died at an average age of 89, found that those who engaged in mentally stimulating activities (such as reading) earlier and later on in life experienced slower memory decline compared to those who didn’t. In particular, people who exercised their minds later in life had a 32 percent lower rate of mental decline compared to their peers with average mental activity. The rate of decline amongst those with infrequent mental activity, on the other hand, was 48 percent faster than the average group.
“Our study suggests that exercising your brain by taking part in activities such as these across a person’s lifetime, from childhood through old age, is important for brain health in old age,” study author Robert. S. Wilson, Ph.D., of the Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, said in a statement. “Based on this, we shouldn’t underestimate the effects of everyday activities, such as reading and writing, on our children, ourselves and our parents or grandparents.”

And it might even stave off Alzheimer’s disease.
According to research published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences in 2001, adults who engage in hobbies that involve the brain, like reading or puzzles, are less likely to have Alzheimer’s disease, USA Today reported at the time. However, the researchers identified only an association, not a cause-and-effect relationship: “These findings may be because inactivity is a risk factor for the disease or because inactivity is a reflection of very early subclinical effects of the disease, or both,” they wrote in the study.
“The brain is an organ just like every other organ in the body. It ages in regard to how it is used,” lead author Dr. Robert P. Friedland told USA Today. “Just as physical activity strengthens the heart, muscles and bones, intellectual activity strengthens the brain against disease.”
Reading may help you sleep better.
Many sleep experts recommend establishing a regular de-stressing routine before bed to calm your mind and cue your body up for shut-eye — and reading can be a great way to do so (just as long as the book isn’t a page-turner that’ll keep you up all night). Bright lights, including those from electronic devices, signal to the brain that it’s time to wake up, meaning reading your book (under a dim light) is a better bedside bet than a laptop.
Getting lost in a good book could also make you more empathetic.
According to a study published in the journal PLOS ONE in January, losing yourself in a work of fiction might actually increase your empathy. Researchers in the Netherlands designed two experiments, which showed that people who were “emotionally transported” by a work of fiction experienced boosts in empathy.
“In two experimental studies, we were able to show that self-reported empathic skills significantly changed over the course of one week for readers of a fictional story by fiction authors Arthur Conan Doyle or José Saramago,” they wrote in the findings. “More specifically, highly transported readers of Doyle became more empathic, while non-transported readers of both Doyle and Saramago became less empathic.”
So go ahead, let yourself get caught up in a particularly compelling story, or swept away by a powerful character — it’s good for you!
Self-help books, on the other hand, can ease depression.
Self-help books might actually help you help yourself. A study published earlier this year in the journal PLOS ONE showed that reading self-help books (also called “bibliotherapy”), combined with support sessions on how to use them, was linked with lower levels of depression after a year, compared to patients who received typical treatments. “We found this had a really significant clinical impact and the findings are very encouraging,” study author Christopher Williams of the University of Glasgow told the BBC. “Depression saps people’s motivation and makes it hard to believe change is possible.”

And self-help books could even work in cases of severe depression. According to a University of Manchester meta-analysis published earlier this year, people with severe depression can benefit from “low-intensity interventions,” including self-help books and interactive websites, as much or more than those who are less severely depressed.

Photo: book tunnel by petr kratochvil. a book tunnel in Prague’s library.

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Happy Napping

Take  a Nap

Take a Nap

Sara Mednick, PhD, a sleep medicine researcher at the University of California at San Diego and author of Take a Nap! Change Your Life, but a daily nap of between 20 and 90 minutes before 4:00 pm will also increase your mental performance, reduce your chances of gaining weight, and make you feel a whole lot more like having sex after dinner than you probably do now. What’s more, it won’t affect your nighttime sleep.

All told, a nap, according to Dr. Mednick, will:

• Increase your on-the-job alertness by 100 percent
• Sharpen your thinking so you make more accurate judgments and better decisions
• Ramp up your productivity
• Regenerate skin cells so you look younger
• Increase your sex drive
• Help you lose weight by altering metabolism and shifting chemicals that affect appetite
• Reduce your risk of heart attack, stroke, irregular heartbeat, high blood pressure, and other cardiovascular problems
• Lift your mood by bathing your brain in the neurotransmitter serotonin
• Speed up your ability to perform motor tasks, like typing, operating machinery, even swimming
• Improve your accuracy—in everything
• Improve the way your body processes carbs, which reduces your risk of diabetes
• Sharpen your senses so you take in what’s important in your environment—and screen out the 24-hour culture chatter that surrounds us
• Put your brain into its creative gear so you can come up with fresh ideas
• Trigger a naturally occurring hormone that blocks the destructive chemicals produced by stress
• Boost your ability to learn something new—and, better yet, remember it
• Zap the need for drugs like caffeine and alcohol to manipulate your mood and energy level
• Relieve migraines
• Improve your nighttime sleep by eliminating that wired feeling and thus shutting off the brain chatter
• Make you feel good all over

Article from Best Michaud with Julie Bain

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Formula of Happiness

Be yourself

Wild laugh

20% Humor
20% Craziness
10%  Forgiveness
10%  Senility
10% Sanity
30% Be Yourself
=  100%  H a p p i n e s s

~ Clare Patrick

What does happiness mean to you?

Defining happiness ~
Defining happiness can seem as elusive as achieving it. We want to be happy, and we can say whether we are or not, but can it really be defined, studied and measured? And can we use this learning to become happier?

Psychologists say yes, and that there are good reasons for doing so. Positive psychology is “the scientific study of the strengths and virtues that enable individuals and communities to thrive.” These researchers’ work includes studying strengths, positive emotions, resilience, and happiness. Their argument is that only studying psychological disorders gives us just part of the picture of mental health. We will learn more about well-being by studying our strengths and what makes us happy. The hope is that by better understanding human strengths, we can learn new ways to recover from or prevent disorders, and may even learn to become happier.

So how do these researchers define happiness? Psychologist Ed Diener, author of Happiness: Unlocking the Mysteries of Psychological Wealth, describes what psychologists call “subjective well-being” as a combination of life satisfaction and having more positive emotions than negative emotions.

Martin Seligman, one of the leading researchers in positive psychology and author of Authentic Happiness, describes happiness as having three parts: pleasure, engagement, and meaning. Pleasure is the “feel good” part of happiness. Engagement refers to living a “good life” of work, family, friends, and hobbies. Meaning refers to using our strengths to contribute to a larger purpose. Seligman says that all three are important, but that of the three, engagement and meaning make the most difference to living a happy life.

Moment-by-moment vs. long term
Researchers also distinguish between the moment-by-moment feeling of happiness produced by positive emotions and how we describe our lives when we think about it. Regardless of whether you had a good day or not, do you describe your life as a happy one? Or describe yourself as a happy person? Psychologist Daniel Kahneman describes this difference as the “experiencing self” and the “remembering self.” Psychologists study both to better understand how daily experiences add up to a happy life.

Scientifically measuring happiness
Since happiness is so subjective, can it really be measured and studied scientifically? Researchers say yes. They believe that we can reliably and honestly self-report our state of happiness and increases and decreases in happiness. After all, isn’t our own perception of happiness what matters? And if we can report it, scientists can measure it. Psychologist Daniel Gilbert compares this to optometry: “Optometry is another one of those sciences that is built entirely on people’s reports of subjective experience. The one and only way for an optometrist to know what your visual experience is like is to ask you, ‘Does it look clearer like this or (click click) like this?’”

Research framework
Researchers have formed a useful framework for studying happiness:

  • Happiness is made up of pleasure, engagement, and meaning
  • It involves both daily positive emotions and a global sense that life is worthwhile
  • People can accurately report their own levels of happiness

Using this framework, researchers are learning more and more all the time about who is happy, what makes them happy, and why.

Read More:  What is Happiness by

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Be Yourself

 Andrew Lucas

Andrew Lucas

“To be Nobody But Yourself in a world which is Doing its Best, Night and Day, to make you everybody else means to fight the Hardest Battle which any human being can Fight; and Never Stop Fighting.”
~ e. e. Cummings

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Like a Columbus of the heart, mind and soul I have hurled myself off the shores of my own fears and limiting beliefs to venture far out into the uncharted territories of my inner truth, in search of what it means to be genuine and at peace with who I really am. I have abandoned the masquerade of living up to the expectations of others and explored the new horizons of what it means to be truly and completely me, in all my amazing imperfection and most splendid insecurity.”
 ~ Anthon St. Maarten


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Empire State Building Contruction – 1931

The Empire State Building is a 103-story skyscraper located in Midtown Manhattan, New York City, at the intersection of Fifth Avenue and West 34th Street. It has a roof height of 1,250 feet (381 meters), and with its antenna spire included, it stands a total of 1,454 ft (443.2 m) high.[6] Its name is derived from the nickname for New York, the Empire State. It stood as the world’s tallest building for nearly 40 years, from its completion in early 1931 until the topping out of the World Trade Center’s North Tower in late 1970.[11] Following the September 11 attacks in 2001, the Empire State Building was again the tallest building in New York (although it was no longer the tallest in the US or the world), until One World Trade Center reached a greater height on April 30, 2012.[12] The Empire State Building is currently the fourth-tallest completed skyscraper in the United States (after the One World Trade Center, the Willis Tower and Trump International Hotel and Tower, both in Chicago), and the 23rd-tallest in the world (the tallest now is Burj Khalifa, located in Dubai). It is also the fourth-tallest freestanding structure in the Americas.


The Empire State Building is generally thought of as an American cultural icon. It is designed in the distinctive Art Deco style and has been named as one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World by the American Society of Civil Engineers. The building and its street floor interior are designated landmarks of the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission, and confirmed by the New York City Board of Estimate.[13] It was designated as a National Historic Landmark in 1986.[9][14][15] In 2007, it was ranked number one on the AIA’s List of America’s Favorite Architecture.


The building is owned by the Empire State Realty Trust, for which Anthony Malkin serves as Chairman, CEO and President.[16]In 2010, the Empire State Building underwent a $550 million renovation, with $120 million spent to transform the building into a more energy efficient and eco-friendly structure.[17] Receiving a gold Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating in September 2011, the Empire State Building is the tallest LEED certified building in the United States.[18]

Design and construction


The Empire State Building was designed by William F. Lamb from the architectural firm Shreve, Lamb and Harmon, which produced the building drawings in just two weeks, using its earlier designs for the Reynolds Building in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and the Carew Tower in Cincinnati, Ohio (designed by the architectural firm W. W. Ahlschlager & Associates) as a basis.[20][21] Every year the staff of the Empire State Building sends a Father’s Day card to the staff at the Reynolds Building in Winston-Salem to pay homage to its role as predecessor to the Empire State Building.[22] The building was designed from the top down.[23] The general contractors were The Starrett Brothers and Eken, and the project was financed primarily by John J. Raskob and Pierre S. du Pont. The construction company was chaired by Alfred E. Smith, a former Governor of New York and James Farley’s General Builders Supply Corporation supplied the building materials.[2] John W. Bowser was project construction superintendent.[24][25][26]


Excavation of the site began on January 22, 1930, and construction on the building itself started symbolically on March 17—St. Patrick’s Day—per Al Smith’s influence as Empire State, Inc. president. This was about the time that the Great Depression started. The project involved 3,400 workers, mostly immigrants from Europe, along with hundreds of Mohawk iron workers, many from the Kahnawake reserve near Montreal. According to official accounts, five workers died during the construction.[27] Governor Smith’s grandchildren cut the ribbon on May 1, 1931. Lewis Wickes Hine’s photography of the construction provides not only invaluable documentation of the construction, but also a glimpse into common day life of workers in that era.[28]


The construction was part of an intense competition in New York for the title of “world’s tallest building”. Two other projects fighting for the title, 40 Wall Street and the Chrysler Building, were still under construction when work began on the Empire State Building. Each held the title for less than a year, as the Empire State Building surpassed them upon its completion, just 410 days after construction commenced. Instead of taking 18 months as anticipated, the construction took just under fifteen. The building was officially opened on May 1, 1931 in dramatic fashion, when United States President Herbert Hoover turned on the building’s lights with the push of a button from Washington, D.C. Coincidentally, the first use of tower lights atop the Empire State Building, the following year, was for the purpose of signaling the victory of Franklin D. Roosevelt over Hoover in the presidential election of November 1932.[29]



The building’s opening coincided with the Great Depression in the United States, and as a result much of its office space was initially unrented. The building’s vacancy was exacerbated by its poor location on 34th Street, which placed it relatively far from public transportation, as Grand Central Terminal and Penn Station were (and are) several blocks away, as is the more-recently built Port Authority Bus Terminal. Other more successful skyscrapers, such as the Chrysler Building, did not have this problem. In its first year of operation, the observation deck took in approximately 2 million dollars, as much money as its owners made in rent that year. The lack of renters led New Yorkers to deride the building as the “Empty State Building”.[30][31] The building would not become profitable until 1950. The famous 1951 sale of The Empire State Building to Roger L. Stevens and his business partners was brokered by the prominent upper Manhattan real-estate firm Charles F. Noyes & Company for a record $51 million. At the time, that was the highest price paid for a single structure in real-estate history.[32]


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Jellyfish Lake, Eil Malk Island, Palau


Jellyfish-Lake-is-a-marine-lake-located-on-Eil-Malk-island-in-Palau. Photo by Tan Yilmaz

Snorkeling in Jellyfish Lake

Snorkeling in Jellyfish Lake

Jellyfish and Hand comparison

Jellyfish and Hand comparison

Snorkeling with Jellyfish

Snorkeling with Jellyfish





Golden and Spotted Jellyfish

left image: golden jellyfish (Mastigias cf. papua etpisoni) in Jellyfish Lake, Palau. right image: spotted jellyfish (Mastigias papua) at the New England Aquarium. The red bars indicate the extent of the clubs. The clubs are almost completely absent in the golden jellyfish that inhabits the jellyfish lake.

Jellyfish Lake (Palauan: Ongeim’l Tketau, “Fifth Lake”) is a marine lake located on Eil Malk island in Palau. Eil Malk is part of the Rock Islands, a group of small, rocky, mostly uninhabited islands in Palau’s Southern Lagoon, between Koror and Peleliu. There are about 70 other marine lakes located throughout the Rock Islands. Jellyfish Lake is one of Palau’s most famous dive (snorkeling only) sites. It is notable for the millions of golden jellyfish which migrate horizontally across the lake daily.

Jellyfish Lake is connected to the ocean through fissures and tunnels in the limestone of an ancient Miocene reef. However the lake is sufficiently isolated and the conditions are different enough that the diversity of species in the lake is greatly reduced from the nearby lagoon.  Jellyfish Lake is really small – only circa 420 meters long and up to 30 meters deep. What could be unique in such a small place? But Jellyfish Lake is truly unique not only in Palau but in the whole world. Jellyfish Lake is connected to the ocean through fissures and tunnels in the limestone of an ancient Miocene reef. However the lake is sufficiently isolated and the conditions are different enough that the diversity of species in the lake is greatly reduced from the nearby lagoon. The golden jellyfish, Mastigias cf. papua etpisoni, and possibly other species in the lake have evolved to be substantially different from their close relatives living in the nearby lagoons.   Two species of scyphozoan jellyfish live in Jellyfish Lake, moon jellyfish (Aurelia sp.) and the golden jellyfish (Mastigias sp.).
Tourists are required to obtain a pass to access Jellyfish Lake. The Rock Islands/Jellyfish Lake pass is $100 and is good for 10 days.
Snorkeling in Jellyfish Lake is a popular activity for tourists to Palau. Several tour operators in Koror offer trips to the lake. Eil Malk island is approximately a 45 minute boat ride from Koror. The lake is accessed by a short trail from the beach on Eil Malk to the lake.
Scuba diving by tourists in the lake is not allowed. Two reasons are put forward for this:
• The bubbles from scuba tanks can harm the jellyfish if they collect beneath their bell.
• The anoxic layer that begins at about 15 meters contains high concentrations of hydrogen sulfide which can be absorbed through the skin of a diver which can lead to death.
Jellyfish Lake is currently the only one of Palau’s marine lakes open to tourists.

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The Siq, Petra, Jordan

The Siq, Jordan

The Siq, Jordan by  Kris.K.G Photography

The Siq (Arabic: السيق‎, transliterated al-Sīq, transcribed as-Sīq, literally ‘the Shaft’) is the main entrance to the ancient city of Petra in southern Jordan. The dim, narrow gorge (in some points no more than 3 m wide) winds its way approximately 1.2 km (about one mile) and ends at Petra’s most elaborate ruin, Al Khazneh (the Treasury). A wide valley outside leading to the Siq is known as the Bab as-Sīq (Gateway to the Siq).

 Unlike slot canyons like Antelope Canyon, which are directly shaped by water, the Siq is a natural geological fault split apart by tectonic forces; only later was it worn smooth by water. The walls that enclose the Siq stand between 91–182 m (300–600 feet) in height.

The entrance to the Siq contains a huge dam, reconstructed in 1963 and again in 1991, designed to bar the mouth of the Siq and reroute the waters of Wadi Musa. The dam is a fairly true reconstruction of what the Nabataeans did to control Wadi Musa between the 1st century BC and the beginning of the 1st century AD. The entrance also contains the remnants of a monumental arch, of which only the two abutments and some hewn stones of the arch itself have survived. The arch collapsed in 1896 following an earthquake, but its appearance is known from the lithographs of Matthew Boulby and David Roberts.

The Siq was used as the grand caravan entrance into Petra. Along both walls of the fissure are a number of votive niches containing baetyli, which suggest that the Siq was sacred to the Nabatean people. In 1998, a group of statues were uncovered when digging was conducted to lower the road by more than six feet. Although the upper part is greatly eroded, it is still possible to recognise the figures of two merchants, each leading two camels. The figures are almost twice lifesize.

 Along the Siq are some underground chambers, the function of which has not yet been clarified. The possibility that they were tombs has been excluded, and archaeologists find it difficult to believe that they were dwellings. The majority consensus is that they housed the guards that defended the main entrance to Petra.

The Siq, Jordan.Wikipedia

The Siq by Kris.K.G Photography

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Spotted Eagle Ray

Spotted Eagle Ray formation, Keauhou Bay, Big IslandSpotted Eagle Ray formation

Spotted Eagle Ray formation, Keauhou Bay, Big Island, Hawaii by Steve Dunleavy on Flickr

The spotted eagle ray (Aetobatus narinari) is a cartilaginous fish of the eagle ray family, Myliobatidae. It can be found globally in tropical regions, including the Gulf of Mexico, Hawaii, off the coast of West Africa, the Indian Ocean, Oceania, and on both coasts of the Americas at depths down to about 80 meters (262 ft). The rays are most commonly seen alone, but occasionally swim in groups. Rays are ovoviviparous, the female retaining the eggs then releasing the young as miniature versions of the parent.

This ray can be identified by its dark dorsal surface covered in white spots or rings. Near the base of the ray’s relatively long tail, just behind the pelvic fins, are several venomous, barbed stingers. Spotted eagle rays commonly feed on small fish and crustaceans, and will sometimes dig with their snouts to look for food buried in the sand of the sea bed. These rays are commonly observed leaping out of the water, and on at least two occasions have been reported as having jumped into boats, in one incident resulting in the death of a woman in the Florida Keys. The spotted eagle ray is hunted by a wide variety of sharks. The rays are considered Near Threatened on the IUCN Red List. They are fished mainly in Southeast Asia and Africa, the most common market being in commercial trade and aquariums. They are protected in the Great Barrier Reef.

Spotted eagle rays have flat disk-shaped bodies, deep blue or black with white spots on top with a white underbelly, and distinctive flat snouts similar to a duck’s bill.Their tails are longer than those of other rays and may have 2–6 venomous spines, just behind the pelvic fins. The front half of the long and wing-like pectoral disk has five small gills in its underside.

Mature spotted eagle rays can be up to 5 meters (16 ft) in length; the largest have a wingspan of up to 3 meters (10 ft) and a mass of 230 kilograms (507 lb).

Spotted eagle ray preys mainly upon bivalves, shrimps, crabs, whelks, and other benthic infauna. They feed on mollusks and crustaceans, particularly malacostracans. and also upon hermit crabs, shrimp, octopi, and some small fish.

The spotted eagle ray’s specialized chevron-shaped tooth structure helps it to crush the mollusks’ hard shells.The jaws of these rays have developed calcified struts to help them break through the shells of mollusks, by supporting the jaws and preventing dents from hard prey. These rays have the unique behavior of digging with their snouts in the sand of the ocean. While doing this, a cloud of sand surrounds the ray and sand spews from its gills. One study has shown that there are no differences in the feeding habits of males and females or in rays from different regions of Australia and Taiwan.

Source: Spotted Eagle Ray

Photo :  Spotted Eagle Ray formation, Keauhou Bay, Big Island, Hawaii by Steve Dunleavy on Flickr


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Life at the end of the Tunnel

Metin Demiralay

Metin Demiralay


The light at the end of the tunnel is your life; it’s the tunnel that’s temporary.

~ Michael Josephson

Often hear there is Light at the end of the Tunnel,  what if that is the end of  life.  A exhausted physical body slowly walking toward the Light believing that path would lead to eternal peace where is no pain, no more sorrow.   Would it be considered optimistic giving up the fight in a miserable life?

 Theory of light at the end of the tunnel provide comfort for terminally ill patients, but not so much for those who aren’t satisfied with their lives?

Life is a Journey to experiment, to cherish moments of ups and downs.  Let’s live!

Photo: Metin Demiralay

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Time is Life

Michael Montgomery by RJ Muna for Alonzo King’s LINES Ballet

Michael Montgomery by RJ Muna for Alonzo King’s LINES Ballet

Take too much Time,
and Time will Take You.
~ Lisa Kleypas, Love in the Afternoon

There are things in life causing us to hesitate.  Time isn’t wasted to find out what we are heading, we may have lesser time each day as we are trying to decide.
Michael Montgomery by RJ Muna for Alonzo King’s LINES Ballet

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Colin Powell’s Inspirational Speech

michael zuhorski on Flickr

michael zuhorski on Flickr

The less you associate with some people, the more your life will improve. Any time you tolerate mediocrity in others, it increases your mediocrity. An important attribute in successful people is their impatience with negative thinking and negative acting people. As you grow, your associates will change. Some of your friends will not want you to go on. They will want you to stay where they are. Friends that don’t help you climb will want you to crawl. Your friends will stretch your vision or choke your dream. Those that don’t increase you will eventually decrease you.


Consider this:

Never receive counsel from unproductive people. Never discuss your problems with someone incapable of contributing to the solution, because those who never succeed themselves are always first to tell you how. Not everyone has a right to speak into your life. You are certain to get the worst of the bargain when you exchange ideas with the wrong person. Don’t follow anyone who’s not going anywhere.


With some people you spend an evening: with others you invest it. Be careful where you stop to inquire for directions along the road of life. Wise is the person who fortifies his life with the right friendships. If you run with wolves, you will learn how to howl. But, if you associate with eagles, you will learn how to soar to great heights.


“A mirror reflects a man’s face, but what he is really like is shown by the kind of friends he chooses.”


The simple but true fact of life is that you become like those with whom you closely associate – for the good and the bad.


Note: Be not mistaken. This is applicable to family as well as friends. Yes…do love, appreciate and be thankful for your family, for they will always be your family no matter what. Just know that they are human first and though they are family to you, they may be a friend to someone else and will fit somewhere in the criteria above.


“In Prosperity Our Friends Know Us. In Adversity We Know Our Friends.”


“Never make someone a priority when you are only an option for them.”

“If you are going to achieve excellence in big things, you develop the habit in little matters.

Excellence is not an exception, it is a prevailing attitude..”..


~ Colin Powell

Photo: Michael Zuhorski on Flickr

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Standing Tall ~ Snowy Owl

Snow Owl Perched in morning mist by Daniel

Snow Owl Perched in morning mist by Daniel

Although Alone in the Mist
Standing Tall is a Must.
~ Clare Patrick

Snowy Owl: This yellow-eyed, black-beaked white bird is easily recognizable. It is 52–71 cm (20–28 in) long, with a 125–150 cm (49–59 in) wingspan. Also, these birds can weigh anywhere from 1.6 to 3 kg (3.5 to 6.6 lb).[3] It is one of the largest species of owl and, in North America, is on average the heaviest owl species. The adult male is virtually pure white, but females and young birds have some dark scalloping; the young are heavily barred, and dark spotting may even predominate. Its thick plumage, heavily feathered taloned feet, and colouration render the Snowy Owl well-adapted for life north of the Arctic Circle.

Photo: Snow Owl Perched in morning mist by Daniel Behm on flickr

The Snowy Owl

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Perspective of Darkness



“People often believed they were safer in the light, thinking monsters only came out at night. But safety – like light – is a façade…the only way to truly be safer, was to accept the dark” “
 ~ C.J. Roberts, Captive in the Dark

Photo: Shining Lights by Nilgun Kara on deviantart


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Hard Things You Need To Do To Be Successful


You have to do the hard things.

  • You have to make the call you’re afraid to make.
  • You have to get up earlier than you want to get up.
  • You have to give more than you get in return right away.
  • You have to care more about others than they care about you.
  • You have to fight when you are already injured, bloody, and sore.
  • You have to feel unsure and insecure when playing it safe seems smarter.
  • You have to lead when no one else is following you yet.
  • You have to invest in yourself even though no one else is.
  • You have to look like a fool while you’re looking for answers you don’t have.
  • You have to grind out the details when it’s easier to shrug them off.
  • You have to deliver results when making excuses is an option.
  • You have to search for your own explanations even when you’re told to accept the “facts.”
  • You have to make mistakes and look like an idiot.
  • You have to try and fail and try again.
  • You have to run faster even though you’re out of breath.
  • You have to be kind to people who have been cruel to you.
  • You have to meet deadlines that are unreasonable and deliver results that are unparalleled.
  • You have to be accountable for your actions even when things go wrong.
  • You have to keep moving towards where you want to be no matter what’s in front of you.

You have to do the hard things. The things that no one else is doing. The things that scare you. The things that make you wonder how much longer you can hold on.

Those are the things that define you. Those are the things that make the difference between living a life of mediocrity or outrageous success.

The hard things are the easiest things to avoid. To excuse away. To pretend like they don’t apply to you.

The simple truth about how ordinary people accomplish outrageous feats of success is that they do the hard things that smarter, wealthier, more qualified people don’t have the courage — or desperation — to do.

Do the hard things. You might be surprised at how amazing you really are.

Reference:  Business Insider

Photo:   Tanya Etessam

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Atlantic Puffin

Atlantic Puffin

Atlantic Puffin

The Atlantic Puffin (Fratercula arctica), also known as the Common Puffin, is a species of seabird in the auk family. It is the only puffin native to the Atlantic Ocean with two related species, the Tufted Puffin and the Horned Puffin, being found in the north eastern Pacific. The Atlantic Puffin breeds in Iceland, Norway, Greenland, Newfoundland and many North Atlantic islands, and as far south as Maine in the west and the British Isles in the east. The Atlantic Puffin has a large population and a wide range. It is not considered to be endangered although there may be local declines in numbers. On land, it has the typical upright stance of an auk. At sea, they swim on the surface and feed mainly on small fish, which they catch by diving underwater, using their wings for propulsion.

The Atlantic Puffin has a black crown and back, pale grey cheek patches and white underparts. Its broad, boldly marked red and black beak and orange legs contrast with its plumage. It moults while at sea in the winter and some of the bright-coloured facial characteristics are lost. The external appearance of the adult male and female are identical except that the male is usually slightly larger. The juvenile has similar plumage but its cheek patches are dark grey. The juvenile does not have brightly coloured head ornamentation, its bill is less broad and is dark-grey with a yellowish-brown tip, and its legs and feet are also dark. Puffins from northern populations are typically larger than their counterparts in southern parts of the range. It is generally considered that these populations are different subspecies.

The Atlantic Puffin spends the autumn and winter in the open ocean of the cold northern seas and returns to coastal areas at the start of the breeding season in late spring. It nests in clifftop colonies, digging a burrow in which a single white egg is laid. The chick mostly feeds on whole fish and grows rapidly. After about six weeks it is fully fledged and makes its way at night to the sea. It swims away from the shore and does not return to land for several years.

Colonies are mostly on islands where there are no terrestrial predators but adult birds and newly fledged chicks are at risk of attacks from the air by gulls and skuas. Sometimes a bird such as an Arctic Skua will harass a Puffin arriving with a beakful of fish, causing it to drop its catch. The striking appearance, large colourful bill, waddling gait and behaviour of this bird have given rise to nicknames such as “clown of the sea” and “sea parrot”. It is the official bird symbol for the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador.

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Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle

The Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus; hali = sea, aeetus = eagle, leuco = white, cephalis = head) is a bird of prey found in North America. A sea eagle, it has two known sub-species and forms a species pair with the White-tailed Eagle (Haliaeetus albicilla). Its range includes most of Canada and Alaska, all of the contiguous United States, and northern Mexico. It is found near large bodies of open water with an abundant food supply and old-growth trees for nesting.

The Bald Eagle is an opportunistic feeder which subsists mainly on fish, which it swoops down and snatches from the water with its talons. It builds the largest nest of any North American bird and the largest tree nests ever recorded for any animal species, up to 4 m (13 ft) deep, 2.5 m (8.2 ft) wide, and 1 metric ton (1.1 short tons) in weight.[2] Sexual maturity is attained at the age of four to five years.

Bald Eagles are not actually bald; the name derives from an older meaning of “white headed”. The adult is mainly brown with a white head and tail. The sexes are identical in plumage, but females are larger than males. The beak is large and hooked. The plumage of the immature is brown.

The Bald Eagle is both the national bird and national animal of the United States of America. The Bald Eagle appears on its Seal. In the late 20th century it was on the brink of extirpation in the continental United States. Populations recovered and the species was removed from the U.S. federal government’s list of endangered species on July 12, 1995 and transferred to the list of threatened species. It was removed from the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife in the Lower 48 States on June 28, 2007.


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Lake Kaindy, Kazakhstan

Lake Kaindy, Kazakhstan

Lake Kaindy, Kazakhstan




Lake Kaindy (Kazakh: Қайыңды көлі, Qayıñdı köli) is a 400-meter-long (1,300 ft) lake in Kazakhstan that reaches depths near 30 meters (98 ft) in some areas. It is located 129 kilometers (80 mi) east-southeast of the city of Almaty and is 2,000 meters (6,600 ft) above sea level.

The lake was created as the result of an enormous limestone landslide, triggered by the 1911 Kebin earthquake.[1] The track to Lake Kaindy has many scenic views to the Saty Gorge, the Chilik Valley, and the Kaindy Gorge. Dried-out trunks of submerged Picea schrenkiana trees rise above the surface.

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Frank Hurley – Photographer and Adventurer

  James Francis “Frank” Hurley, OBE (15 October 1885 – 16 January 1962) was an Australian photographer and adventurer. He participated in a number of expeditions to Antarctica and served as an official photographer with Australian forces during both world wars. His artistic style produced many memorable images. He also used staged scenes, composites and …


George Herbert Leigh Mallory


1924-Everest-team-George Leigh Malloryand Andrew Irvine

George Herbert Leigh Mallory (18 June 1886 – 8 or 9 June 1924) was an English mountaineer who took part in the first three British expeditions to Mount Everest in the early 1920s.
During the 1924 British Mount Everest Expedition, Mallory and his climbing partner Andrew “Sandy” Irvine both disappeared on the North-East ridge during their attempt to make the first ascent of the world’s highest mountain. The pair were last seen when they were about 800 vertical feet (245m) from the summit.
Mallory’s ultimate fate was unknown for 75 years, until his body was discovered on 1 May 1999 by an expedition that had set out to search for the climbers’ remains. Whether Mallory and Irvine reached the summit before they died remains a subject of speculation and continuing research.

The 1924 Everest expedition team, with (rear left and second left) Sandy Irvine and George Mallory, whose deaths left an enduring mystery. Photograph: The Times/Camera Press Digital

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How Yoga Changes Your Body, Starting The Day You Begin



The Eastern practice of yoga has become a modern-day symbol of peace, serenity and well-being in the West. More than 20 million Americans practice yoga, according to the 2012 Yoga in America study, with practitioners spending more than $10 billion a year on yoga-related products and classes.

The mind-body practice is frequently touted for its ability to reduce stress and boost well-being, but it also offers wide-ranging physical health benefits that rival other forms of exercise. While the scientific research on yoga’s health benefits is still young, here’s what we know so far about its potential effects on the body. View the infographic below and scroll down for more detailed information.





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5 Key Steps to Habit Change

Tia Danko

Tia Danko

To change the habit we must first bring it into consciousness again. That takes self-awareness, a fundamental of emotional intelligence. When that leader became mindful of his self-defeating habit, he realized that it was his own fear of failure that made him panic inside and lose control of his own behavior. He knew it did not help to attack, but could not seem to stop himself.

 Tara Bennett-Goleman on her new book, Mind Whispering: A New Map to Freedom from Self-defeating Emotional Habits, which explains the neuroscience of habit change. She recommends mindfulness as a way to bring unconscious habits back into awareness where they can be changed. And she outlines a simple five-step process for making that change, especially helpful if the person is working with a coach.

1) Familiarize yourself with the self-defeating habit. Get so you can recognize the routine as it starts, or begins to take over. This might be by noticing its typical thoughts or feelings, or how you start to act. You can also follow Paul Ekman’s simple suggestion: keep a journal of your triggers.

2) Be mindful. Monitor your behavior — thoughts, feelings, actions — from a neutral, “witness” awareness.

3) Remember the alternatives — think of a better way to handle the situation.

4) Choose something better — e.g., what you say or do that would be helpful instead of self-defeating.

5) Do this at every naturally occurring opportunity.

Tara Bennett cites the neuroscience evidence that the more often you can repeat the new routine instead of the self-destructive one, the sooner it will replace the self-defeating habit in your basal ganglia. The better response will become your new default reaction.


Photo by Tia Danko


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F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Great Advice for New Year

Alma Recinto. Port Moody.BC.Canada.Flickr

Alma Recinto. Port Moody.BC.Canada.Flickr

F. Scott Fitzgerald gave some fantastic advice to his 11-year-old daughter Scott in a 1933 letter, as Maria Popova points out at Brain Pickings.

Discussing what to worry about in life, Fitzgerald touches on several things that are relevant