Friday, May 30, 2014

Of Cats And People...


Her Fluffiness, Miss Kiki

If we treated everyone we meet with the same affection we bestow upon our favorite cat, they, too, would purr. - Martin Delany


For cat lovers only

  
  

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Happy Memorial Day!



A hero is someone who has given his or her life to something bigger than oneself. - Joseph Campbell

Happy Memorial Day! 

Formerly known as a Decoration Day, Memorial Day commemorates all men and women who have died in military service for the United States. Memorial Day is observed on the last Monday of May.  

Originally Memorial Day was an event to honor Union soldiers, who had died during the American Civil War. The holiday was inspired by the way people in the Southern states honored their dead. After World War I, it was extended to include all men and women, who died in any war or military action. The current name for this day did not come into use until after World War II.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Quote of the Day


 The Sleepwalker - Maximilian Pirner, 1878

Our fantastic civilization has fallen out of touch with many aspects of nature, and with none more completely than with night. Primitive folk, gathered at a cave mouth round a fire, do not fear night; they fear, rather, the energies and creatures to whom night gives power; we of the age of the machines, having delivered ourselves of nocturnal enemies, now have a dislike of night itself. 

With lights and ever more lights, we drive the holiness and beauty of night back to the forests and the sea; the little villages, the crossroads even, will have none of it. Are modern folk, perhaps, afraid of night? Do they fear that vast serenity, the mystery of infinite space, the austerity of stars? 

Having made themselves at home in a civilization obsessed with power, which explains its whole world in terms of energy, do they fear at night for their dull acquiescence and the pattern of their beliefs? Be the answer what it will, to-day's civilization is full of people who have not the slightest notion of the character or the poetry of night, who have never even seen night. Yet to live thus, to know only artificial night, is as absurd and evil as to know only artificial day. 

By Henry Beston, in "The Outermost House: A Year of Life On The Great Beach of Cape Cod"

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

The Incredible Lightness of Being



"The Earth is a natural source of electrons and subtle electrical fields, which are essential for proper functioning of immune systems, circulation, synchronization of biorhythms and other physiological processes and may actually be the most effective, essential, least expensive, and easiest to attain antioxidant." - Dr. Joseph Mercola

Have you ever heard about "earthing?" There is an emerging research investigating the relationship between contact with Earth and our health and well-being.

I travel a lot by airplane and also spend many hours working at the computer. Despite an otherwise healthy lifestyle I sometimes feel "disconnected" from my own energy core. No amount of sleep or relaxation seem to help.

Last week I had my eureka moment. I was in Florida over the weekend and jumped into sea water. There were hardly any people on the beach. Only few joggers dared the early morning breeze. 

I took a very long walk, barefoot. Everything was perfect. The sound of waves calmed my thoughts; the salty breeze nourished my lungs; the morning sun caressed my skin without burning it. It was a perfect morning that ended with a large bowl of freshly made fruit salad. 

The eureka moment came when I realized how energized I was after my walk. I love walking and walk whenever I have a chance, but I hardly ever walk barefoot. A two-hour walk on the beach did more for me than an eight hours of sleep in a super comfortable bed. 


I wasn't imagining things. The energy surge was very powerful and I wondered if this was how "earthing" really worked. 

Researchers believe that the electrons from the Earth have a powerful antioxidant effect on our bodies. Our immune system works best when our bodies have a constant supply of electrons. The easiest way to charge the body is to walk barefoot in grass, dirt, sand or even concrete, especially when they are wet. Moisture amplifies the conductivity.

When we walk barefoot we are establishing a contact between Earth and the body. This allows a free flow of electrons.

Researchers believe that earthing minimizes the consequences of exposure to potentially disruptive energy fields like electromagnetic smog or "dirty electricity" and may be especially beneficial to people who spent a lot of time working with computers or using electronic devices such as cellphones.

Studies show that earthing improves blood viscosity, heart rate, stress hormone levels, inflammation, detoxification and sleep. 


For most part of their evolutionary existence humans were well connected to Earth. They slept on the ground, used natural building materials, natural fabrics and either walked barefoot or wore leather shoes. Rubber and plastic are relatively recent inventions. They are perfect insulators and prevent the flow of electrons between Earth and the human body. 

When you wear shoes with rubber soles you are completely disconnected from the Mother Earth. To re-establish the connection take off your shoes as often as you can and walk barefoot. I am certain, you will notice the difference in no time!

By Dominique Allmon



Dominique Allmon@2014


Saturday, May 10, 2014

No Safe Investment


Modesty (detail) by William Adolphe Bouguereau (1825-1905)

There is no safe investment. To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly be broken. 

If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket - safe, dark, motionless, airless - it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. The alternative to tragedy, or at least to the risk of tragedy, is damnation. 

The only place outside Heaven where you can be perfectly safe from all the dangers and perturbations of love is Hell. I believe that the most lawless and inordinate loves are less contrary to God’s will than a self-invited and self-protective lovelessness… We shall draw nearer to God, not by trying to avoid the sufferings inherent in all loves, but by accepting them and offering them to Him; throwing away all defensive armor. 

If our hearts need to be broken, and if He chooses this as a way in which they should break, so be it. What I know about love and believe about love and giving ones heart began in this. 

C.S. Lewis in The Four Loves

Image source here

         

Monday, May 5, 2014

Happy Cinco de Mayo!



It's fiesta time! In Mexico and in the United States people of Mexican descent get a perfect chance today to celebrate their Mexican origins. 

Cinco de Mayo commemorates victory of the poorly armed Mexican army over the powerful French occupying forces. The decisive battle took place on May 5, 1862 in Puebla under the leadership of general Ignacio Zaragoza SeguĂ­n. The battle is oft regarded as a battle of David against Goliath which helped restore pride and establish sense of national unity. 

Unfortunately, the Mexican victory was short lived.  Only a year later the French were able to defeat the Mexican army and capture Mexico City. As a consequence Emperor Maximilian I was installed as ruler of Mexico in 1864. His reign lasted only three years. As the Mexican forces, with the help from the United States, re-gained control of the Mexican territory and liberated Mexico City, Emperor Maximilian I was captured and executed in June 1867.

In the United States Cinco de Mayo celebrations originated in the Mexican communities of the American West, Southwest, and Northwest. It is believed that Mexicans living in California during the American Civil War were the first to celebrated the victory at Puebla.

Mexican communities all over the United States celebrate Cinco de Mayo with parades, music, dances and good food. 

By Dominique Allmon

         

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Hot Air Balloon Fiesta in Roswell



It's not always the flying saucers that appear in the skies over Roswell. Once a year, during the first weekend of May, hot air balloon aficionados meet for the annual Old Timers Rally.


The spectacle is quite amazing and really worth seeing. All proceeds go to charitable organizations in Roswell. 


If you missed the Roswell event there will be three more hot air balloon rallies in New Mexico: One in September in Elephant Butte and two in October - the famous Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta and Mountain Balloon Rally in Taos.

Images by James W. Allmon©2014

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Happy May Day



In the wondrous month of May,
When all buds were bursting into bloom,
Then it was that in my heart
love began to blossom.

In the wondrous month of May,
When all birds were singing

Then it was I confessed to her
my longing and desire.

By Heinrich Heine (1779-1856)

Translation by Richard Stokes, The Book of Lieder


The beginning of May is celebration of fertility. Nature wakes up after a long, cold winter and it is no wonder that people are ready to celebrate. 

There is an old tradition in Germany that goes back to the 16th century: The Maypole. People all over the country decorate a tree trunk or a pole and erect it on a village green or in the center of a town. The maypole is usually erected on the last day of April and the ceremony is often preceded by a joyful procession and followed by a dance around the pole. 

The origins of maypole are unknown but researchers speculate that the custom might date back to the pre-Christian era. It probably had some religious importance to the Germanic pagan tribes. The tradition survived Christianization, but most certainly lost its original meaning. 

The symbolism of the maypole is debated by ethnologists but it is often assumed that the pole symbolizes axis mundi or the cosmic axis, or may simply be expression of the ancient Germanic veneration of trees. 


Modern Germans celebrate the May Day with picnics, dances and bonfires. This is a perfect time to leave the old ballast behind and gather in exuberant mood with friends and family. 

Happy May Day!

By Dominique Allmon

Images source here