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Posts Tagged ‘Happiness’

It is all out there.

It is all out there.

Give me a Wave.

Go for it.

Go for it.

To navigate through the World Wide Web, is called ‘surfing the web’ or spending time on the Internet. Cyberspace is like a vast ocean. So surfing the net is an appropriate metaphor. Surfing the ocean waves is physically good for you and surfing the Webb is a good mental exercise. Surfing the web is mentally surfing invisible waves.

Go for it in the library on the computer or real ocean waves.

Go for it in the library on the computer or real ocean waves.

To learn I read mostly nonfiction. Educational, do it yourself type books I struggled with what I called ‘heavy books’ they were like trying to read a foreign language. I found a dictionary helpful but the going was a tedious slog.

We start small.

We start small.

One of my favourite subjects is happiness.

Have some fun and grow.

Have some fun and grow.

Every book I saw pertaining to happiness I would read, this took me into the motivational and psychology shelves of the library.

going for it.

going for it.

Because I had travelled in Thailand and seen the effect Buddhism had on Thai people. They are educated in Buddhism and are honest, friendly, happy people. That got me interested in South Eastern Asian philosophy. Then I branched into Greek philosophy. I had made an assumption about Greek philosophy because of their mythical supernatural gods and I had seen the fresco by Raphael of the ‘School of Athens’ when visiting the Vatican. This gave me a wrong idea seeing the Greek philosophers displayed in the Papal Palace where the Pope lives. Here is a link that is worth visiting if you are into art or philosophy or have an inquiring mind. https://www.khanacademy.org/humanities/renaissance-reformation/high-ren-florence-rome/high-renaissance1/v/raphael-school-of-athens

getting into it.

getting into it.

One of the best happiness books was The Happiness Hypothesis, By Jonathan Haidt.

 To make you smile.

To make you smile.

Hypothesis I did not know what kind of herbal concoction it was, whether you smoked it or injected ¬†it. ūüėú Yes I was ignorant and when I surf the net I realise I am still not smart.

The monkey mind up to mischief.

The monkey mind up to mischief.

Since then I have learned a few things, I discovered Greek philosophers.

A great big wonderful world.

A great big wonderful world. Oakura NZ.

Their ideas, in most cases different to what I had assumed. Epicurus had a lot in common with Siddhartha Gautama, the original Buddha.

They are going for it every where there waves. Burleigh Qld.

They are going for it wherever there are waves. Burleigh Qld.

Now I Google a word I am unfamiliar with or can’t even pronounce, often one word leads to another and I get carried away on a wave, one link leading to another. Then I am really surfing, I come back to the book later.

This is it.

This is it.

Like surfing the ocean waves you are in the now, going with the flow. No paddling out through the white waves it is too easy, a pleasure for old surfers.

Don't worry about the horizon just enjoy the surfing.

My son Jason 1982, don’t worry about the horizon just enjoy surfing.

 

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Eyes for each other.

Eyes for each other.

Ataraxia.

The only care is a caring Dad.

The only care is a caring Dad.

Ataraxia is peace and freedom from fear and aponia means absence from pain.
The Greek philosopher Epicurus believed the goal in life was happiness and pleasure, he defined pleasure as the absence of pain.

A simple joy for Mum and her boy.

A simple joy for Mum and her boy.

Aponia is the pleasure one has when they are free from want or pain. He advocated a simple life, this is more like Minimalist, than Hedonism.

What a way to spend the day.

What a way to spend the day.

A couple of hundred years before Epicurus the Buddha found freedom from pain and suffering in a similar way.

Especially if you catch something.

Especially if you catch something.

Epicurus school of thinkers met in a garden and were the first to admit women into their school and he emphasised friendship as an important ingredient to happiness. Like The Buddha he said nothing should be believed till tested by practice and logical deduction.

I feel for the fish but he was trying to steal my bait.

I feel for the fish but he was trying to steal my bait.

The Buddha never entered into the God debate. Whereas to Epicurus fearing and worshiping gods did not fit in with ataraxy.

This is better than watching some one TV, have fun.

This is better than watching some one on TV, having fun.

To quote Epicurous, ‘It is preferable not to commit crimes, even secret ones, since there will always be anxiety over the possibility of detection, and this will disrupt the tranquility or ataraxy that is the chief basis of happiness in life.’ Gods were unnecessary in his opinion, gods were useful only as an example in life.

This is not John Travolta and Olivia Newton John.

This is not John Travolta and Olivia Newton John.

Like  Democritus he believed in the atomic theory. That matter is made up of tiny particles called atoms, from the Greek word indivisible.

 

My pommepal miles from home.

My pommepal miles from home.

Our understanding of atoms has come a long way since then. The cathode ray tube the basis of television, x-ray and nuclear fission.

Creating not spoiling.

Creating not spoiling.

Hiroshima and Nagasaki 1945 is a long way from ataraxy.

Enjoying life with loved ones.

Enjoying life with loved ones.

Can we get back to Ataraxia, a state of freedom from anxiety and distress, to
tranquility and a peaceful state of mind?

This is how it is done.

This is how it is done.

It will take some education in understanding the true nature of things.
If we have not got the self-control to stay thinking and acting decently.
We need an ethical personal trainer in the gym of life,

Here is my personal trainer.

Here is my personal trainer.

May be this is where the God-fearing idea originated.

Together and looking with appreciation.

Together and looking with appreciation.

We should be able to live without fear, fear is a poison that kills loving kindness.
We are made up of atoms that will one day disperse and become part of the cosmic eternal oneness.

All together in the swim.

All together in the swim

As we all bleed the same colour we all decompose to feed the circle of everlasting life, There is no need to fear death while enjoying life and when dead sentient beings feel nothing. Dead men don’t cry.
Death is going home to where we came from before birth, at one connected with all.

Just take it easy.

Just take it easy.

Get with it! Live life with respect and appreciation, savour the taste of this passing experience. Delight in friendship, relish the nourishment that sustains you, love life and it will love you. I hope after this somewhat heavy meal you do not suffer indigestion.

Pushing up daisies..

Pushing up daisies..

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Wild Aussie Hibiscus.

Wild Aussie Hibiscus.

You are the one accountable. 

Pelican Lake two minutes from my home.

Pelican Lake two minutes from my home.

 I count: I count my blessings and I am accountable.

The Dog Park at the end of my street.

The Dog Park at the end of my street.

My cups full and running over. I am aware of all the good things in my life. All the free gifts bestowed on me by Mother Nature. Life is full of joy. What do I need, I all I need is the air I breath, food and shelter from the elements. I want for nothing, therefore I have it all.

Dog Park. BMX track and Nature Bush Reserve.

Dog Park. BMX track and Nature Bush Reserve.

The sun is shining the birds are singing, the flowers are blooming and the bees are buzzing. I don’t think of money, we all have this honey. If ¬†you’ve got your health it is¬†the greatest wealth.

Heavy rain tree up rooted at Burleigh Beach.

Heavy rain, tree up rooted at Burleigh Beach.

If you are challenged and the sun is not shining and raindrops are falling on your head.  Look around and see there are worse off than you. That is when you count what you have. Not what you want.

Amazing things can be seen if we look. Green Bug.

Amazing things can be seen if we look. Green Bug.

To want is to invite trouble. If you get what you want the pleasure soon passes. Everything is changing, rearranging, growing old, wearing out. Nothing remains the same.

See the bee flying past.

See the bee flying past.

The beauty of life is, everything is passing. All we have is the now. This moment in time to make count. Be mindful of now, the most important thing is what you are involved in now. Pay attention, the most important person is the one you are with now.

Clouds depart, flowers soon die, that's the way it is.

Clouds depart, flowers soon die, that’s the way it is.

So when the storm clouds gather and life is not all good, remember the clouds will blow away revealing a sunny day. You can count on them passing.

Yellow, blue, green and  the prettiest  clouds I have seen.

Yellow, blue, green and the prettiest clouds I have seen.

Into our life some rain must fall. Without the rain the flowers cannot grow. we must have the down to know what’s up, We must have the right to know what’s left. Do not be distressed it does not last, all that’s now will soon be past. Don’t be sad take the good with the bad. Things are just as they are. Make your days count and it will all add up to the right change.

A golden Banksia leaf for a change.

A golden Banksia leaf for a change.

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A view of Sydney Harbour, CBD, bridge and all.

A view of Sydney Harbour, CBD, bridge and all.

On top of the world.

The Hawkesbury area North of Sydney.

The Hawkesbury area North of Sydney.

We departed the house we were minding in Canberra. Our flight plans did not coincide with our hosts. We left a day before they got back, it would have been nice to welcome them home but they would probably be tired and Peter was happy to mind Millie the dog and would drive us to the airport and pick up his daughter and family next day.

Wonder Woman at Work.

Wonder Woman at Work.

We were grateful for this and the enjoyable stay.

Flowering plants multiply flowers die.

Flowering plants multiply flowers die.

Pauline and I wanted to make it a warm welcome for their arrival home. Pauline Added the feminine touch to our tidy up. I know they will be happy just to be home with familiar things.

A statue at Canberra Air Port.

A statue at Canberra Air Port.

Our trip home went well only minor flight delays. That allowed me to take some photos at the airport, of sculptures, people and windows. I have plenty of photos for the Lingering Look at Windows, blog.

Best to be early.

Best to be early.

If I get organised, Pauline can tell you I just go with the flow. I am not saying I let Pauline do it all. What I am trying to say is I fit in with the inevitable changing my plans to suit prevailing conditions.

Tasteful wall decorations.

Tasteful wall decorations.

 This post is about the beauty of things that are a source of joy like flying home. Flying is always exciting providing we do not let it become stressful. Impatient to get there is a spoiler of any journey. If you have a delay there are lots of things to do.

Beautiful people.

Beautiful people to talk to.

You could walk and look at the unfamiliar surroundings. Walking is a good idea as you are going to be sitting while in flight. Observe the diverse range of people, note their dress, their moods and just watch all the activity.

Happy travellers.

Happy travellers.

 We love our home with its beautiful garden. There are no gardens liked it in our area. High fences and walls are the fashion and every inch packed with large expensive housing. If there is any garden at all it is low maintenance manicured and sterile. Nature is not welcome with chlorine in the pool instead of fish and water lilies.

Stop over at Sydney.

Stop over at Sydney.

If there is a fish pond it is not balanced naturally air pumps keep it oxygenated. Everything has to be pumped up artificially. Pauline and I have our beautiful oasis we have the best of both worlds at Burleigh.

Pauline in our back garden.

Pauline in our back garden.

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All colours are beautiful.

All colours are beautiful.

We are one but we are many.

"Smile Sweetie you are on 'candid camera'. so are you baby."

“Smile Sweetie you are on ‘candid camera’. so are you baby.”

 The Canberra Floriade was a joy not only because of the flowers. The weather was perfectly  tempered warm sunshine. That made the flowers dazzlingly brilliant in a beautiful area by the lake. Everyone was in a friendly mood that match this spectacular free show.

Life is a picnic to enjoy.

Life is a picnic to enjoy.

There were people from many different lands all mixing friendly and happily. Australia is a multi-cultural land. I was reminded of the song ” We Are One But We Are Many”.

Their love shows.

Their love shows.

I took almost as many photos of people as flowers. Because I knew I would do a post showing how we are really all brothers and sisters.

They are bubbling with love.

They are bubbling with love.

We all enjoy  Natures beauty, we all feel the same joys and the same sorrows.

It is times like the Floriade that we forget our problem and unite in the appreciation of our good fortune.

I hope this post with my poem spreads the goodwill felt on this wonderful occasion.

A loving scene.

A loving scene.

 Consider, Consideration.

Beautiful flowers every to look at.

Beautiful flowers every to look at.

No one is bad for having a different view.

I do not want to change the world it is such a lovely place.

There is something we may want to change and that’s the human race.

Slow down life is not a race,

we all end up in the same place.

This was taken at the National War Museum.

This was taken at the National War Museum.

If I raise my voice in an angry shout,

Tell the people what it’s all about.

To argue fight protest and start a war.

These things have all been done before.

To let them be is a good decision.

There can be no war without division.

Slow down and enjoy.

Slow down and enjoy.

The whole cosmos is interconnected,

This is a thought to be reflected.

All that is needed is to love one another.

Then a wonderful world we discover.

In nature everything changes,

Nothing is lost it just rearranges.

Our body consists of atoms of matter,

When we die those atoms scatter.

Smiling beautifully.

Smiling beautifully.

Wasting time grieving about anger, envy and hate.

Enjoy this fleeting world before it is too late.

Unbiased living, loving, kind and caring.

Appreciate the world we are sharing.

Carried away with flowers.

Carried away with flowers.

Chew on these words of nourishment.

Changing ourselves should be our intent.

We cannot force other people to agree.

Show by your example for them to see.

A load of beautiful flowers.

A load of beautiful flowers.

With this understanding of life,

We are free from trouble and strife.

There is no problem in the world it is in us.

A change of attitude stops the fear and fuss.

Love is every where.

Love is everywhere.

Improve yourself every day.

To show the world a better way

If some are too ignorant to see.

It is their problem, do you agree?

If you know of a better way,

Please do not hesitate to say.

Enjoying life with out a care.

Enjoying life with out a care.

We must stay calm to hear another person’s views.

Be unemotional and put ourselves in the others shoes.

If we could stand in their position.

There would be a whole transition.

Our view would alter in perspective.

We would become more reflective.

He looks happy has he found contentment?

He looks happy has he found contentment?

We do not have to agree,

Only understand and see.

No one is bad for having a different view.

It becomes a problem when forced on you.

Love flowers every where.

Love flowers everywhere.

One must consider with an open mind.

Leaving judgemental prejudices behind.

Weigh up the facts then understand,

You are now right the world is grand.

Happy serving lunch a great attitude.

Happy serving lunch a great attitude.

Take time to consider and appreciate the other side of the equation.

Love, compassion and consideration are all that is needed as persuasion.

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Like sun beams.

Like sun beams.

 

How to think.

Looking for smile.

Looking for a smile.

I have to weed the garden. That is not how to think. Think in a positive way. You do not have to weed the garden, natures garden is growing nicely without my interference. You may think the garden needs some tender loving care, I need some exercise and fresh air.

 Unnoticed, but cows appreciate.

Unnoticed, but cows appreciate.

Do not see weeds, see flowers growing out-of-place. Take a thoughtful look at the Dandelion. It is a beautiful example of what some people dismiss as an invasive weed. Yet a child loves the yellow flowers to make a daisy chain and is delighted to blow the seed heads everywhere.

Look at me, please.

Look at me, please.

Time is not important to a child. The Dandelion clock is a child’s toy. A child picks the seed head, parachute ball, holds it close to the lips and puffs, saying one o’clock, this is a stubborn one, try again, two o’clock and some of the little parachutes float off on the breeze to distant fields. The child puffs again three o’clock and in this way joy is spread far and wide.

A little help from a friend.

A little help from a friend.

A lover may blow the seeds to carry a host of heart-felt wishes to a distant loved one. My wish is when you read this you recall those Dandelion days.

Spreading happiness.

Spreading happiness.

The Dandelion is a joy and grows all over the world. I read it is a native to Eurasia, botanical name Taraxacum, family Asteraceae, It has grown in Eurasia for thirty thousand years.

Mary Poppins using an umbrella I gave her.

Mary Poppins using an umbrella I gave her.

Why do some judgemental people call it a weed? They get all upset because they cannot go with the flow of nature. The right attitude is to not be so judgemental and appreciate all the free gifts of nature

Ball point on serviette, waiting for lunch in café.

Ball point on serviette, waiting for lunch in café.

I am not saying you should not have favourites and do some selective gardening. Only do not let it become a chore. I am not afraid of hard work; I could lie down beside it and go to sleep. Cultivated flowers are beautiful, still we should also appreciate the free gifts.

Escapees hiding in the wild clover.

Escapees hiding in the wild clover.

Be observant consider all the Dandelions attributes. Bright yellow flower heads with hundreds of florets, then those superbly designed seed heads are to be appreciated. The glorious green leaves.

Bees love me.

Bees love me.

Dandelion is a corruption of the French name Dent de Lion meaning Lions tooth. Dandelion lions are more than eye candy; they are a food full of vitamins and minerals. The ground up root makes a caffeine free coffee and their leaves are nourishing, they can be blanched to take away the sharp taste, and the flowers are used in wine.

A perfect design.

A perfect design.

What are your thoughts on Dandelions?

Van Gogh was sun flowers, I am crazy about Dandelions.

Van Gogh was Sun flowers, I am crazy about Dandelions.

Do you see them as invasive weeds?

Sorry I love them.

Sorry I love them.

There are many pleasures in this wonderful world, earthing out barefoot in a field of Dandelions, counting your blessings, making a thousand wishes and blowing those seeds of joy to the wind. To land on someone in need of kindness, these are real pleasure.

They blow me away, as trey say.

They blow me away, as they say.

We are shaped by our thoughts, we become as we think. When the mind is pure, joy flows like a mountain stream, bubbling with exuberant enthusiasm. Stress is not the heavy traffic, the barking dog or challenging work. Stress is our thoughts about them.

Two varieties are like Pauline and love to travel.

Two varieties are like Pauline and love to travel.

 Lisa these sketches are to show drawing is fun and can fill a few minutes of spare time. I thought they made this post appropriate for Time out for art. 

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Does Mother need more cloths or would she rather you took her on a picnic.

Does Mother need more cloths or would she rather you took her on a picnic.

The Cure.

It is MADNESS but some will not see.

It is MADNESS but some will not see.

What is the cure for the stress in the fast pace modern world?

We could pray.

We could pray.

 Is the detrimental effect the commercial system has on the environment causing us anxiety? Are we worrying that our protesting and complaining is futile against the multinational take over? Are we frustrated because advertising has invaded every available public space, as well as our home?

We could just drop out of the rat-race.

We could just drop out of the rat-race.

¬†Should we just sit back and let the TV ads induce us to buy things we do not need?¬† Advertising plays on our ego enticing us to buy superfluous things, brand names are only superfluous status symbols.¬†Ads keep us working at the treadmills turning the wheels of production. It is a vicious circle this tread mill, known as ‚Äėthe rat race‚Äô. How can one escape?

You may think I am full of rubbish.

You may think I am full of rubbish.

There is a way to stop this stress, it has been around for 2500 years, but The Buddha‚Äôs philosophy has been distorted.¬†There is another easier way to escape the ‚Äėrat race‚Äô. I could write volumes explaining this method and not do it as good as putting in a few link, for you to click on. If you are interested in taking some steps that will benefit you, the environment and the community in general, look at these links.

This is all unnecessary rubbish.

This is all unnecessary rubbish.

Books are better than passive TV watching. Most worthwhile things in life take an effort. Make the small effort to hit these links and learn what they have to say and from there to further helpful reading links.

Can you see, 'we are living in this as if there was another to go to.'

Can you see, ‘we are living on this planet as if there is another one¬†to go to.’

We would all like to help right the wrongs in the world.

I ask myself, what am I doing, helping or hindering the problems in the world today?

I do not sign partitions or join in protests, I do write my blog, but is appealing to others going to fix anything.

I actually do nothing because this is an important concept in Taoism. What Lau Tzu calls ‚Äėwu wei‚Äô: the action of non-action.

who said you need shoes like these?

Who said you need shoes like these?

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Morning greets me through the bedroom window.

Morning greets me through the bedroom window.

Good Morning to Blue Sky.

With gum leaves and gum nuts.

With gum leaves and gum nuts

 Up one level gets the best view, as well as the fresh air filtering through the eucalyptus leaves, then coming in my window, on the gentle morning breeze. It is great to be alive, I am one fortunate fellow.

I am greeted by a family of little friends.

I am greeted by a family of little friends.

Looking at those beautiful gum nuts, reminds me of my childhood when¬†reading May Gibbs book Bib ‚Äėn‚Äô Bub, I imagined how those gum nuts would have been when in blossom covered in bees. They are still beautiful; I will¬†get my camera, they deserve a photo.

Life is full of surprises if we are aware.

Life is full of surprises if we are aware.

Lucky Jack, if there is someone up there, he has¬†turned it on for me. The bees have stopped visiting, but the birds are visiting this morning and I have my camera ready. Click, click, click you have to be quick, I think I’ve got them.

Natures  sweet gift today is like Christmas.

Natures sweet gift today is like Christmas.

Pauline will be starving! I will go make breakfast, I like making it just right,  I look at the colours and patterns while cutting up  fruit and add dried fruit,  today we have a dragon fruit fresh from the house garden.

Dragon fruit tastes as good as it looks.

Dragon fruit tastes as good as it looks.

‚ÄúDon‚Äôt play with your food, hurry up.‚ÄĚ Mothers say. I like to enjoy both preparing and eating my food. Why rush something as enjoyable as food. Savour every morsel. It is one of life‚Äôs necessities, like air we cannot live without it. Yet people are oblivious to this fact until they are deprived of them. Same as with our health, we are unhappy if we are sick and ailing but are we happy and grateful to be free of pain¬†and not suffering?

See fruit looks great and healther than Coccopops.

See fruit looks great and healthier than Coccopops.

Get with it, wake up and live, the morning is beautiful and sunny. Yesterday was wonderful and rainy; the garden loved it, so did I. When I saw a puddle I felt like paddling bare foot in it, but I acted my age, how stupid of me.

Come and get it! and lemon grass tea from the garden too.

Come and get it! and lemon grass tea from the garden too.

Many years ago on my first visit to England a young lady took me for a drive around the Lakes District. She apologised for the English weather, I saw nothing to apologise for, it was beautiful. I think I saw it at its best, like a beautiful water coloured painting.

Water another of life's necessities often not appreciated.

Water another of life’s necessities often not appreciated.

Life is always wonderful it is the way we sometimes look at it that is twisted and distorted. At 82 I have to expect some wear to occur as payment for the good times. All the scars and wrinkles are badges won in the battle field of life’s¬†pleasures. That is the only field to fight in. In the field of fun give it your best shot¬†the battle must be fought and won.

Sunset in a rain clouded sky.

Sunset in a rain clouded sky.

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I picked these waterlilies  for you.

I picked these waterlilies for you.

How to win the rat race.

A white one and

A white one and

 When I was young I was a show off, some say I am still young, I loved to ride the crane-hook and get an adrenalin buzz walking along steel beams high up where a tight-rope walker would not go without a safety net. Another incentive for being a Rigger was we were paid well. Only one thing I loved more than earning money, was spending it. Not always wisely, but it was easy come easy go back in my youth.

a blue.

a blue.

The first past the post is not always the winner. I was paid to do what I liked, that is how I won the rat race. As they say find an occupation you like and you never have to toil again. With the right attitude work is a pleasure, your time and effort is worthwhile. Hard work is all in our mind. I thought interesting, diverse work, out in the fresh air, keeping fit; constructing useful projects, of benefit to people, was a good game to play.

Australian Wild Western flowers.

Australian Wild Western flowers.

What is a winner? Mike Tyson was Heavy Weight Champion of the World and won millions in prize money, but his life was a mess. That is not my idea of a winner punching someone senseless. A winner has life skills and is aware of the effect of his actions on the world he lives in. There are many rich and famous people who are not enjoying life. Money is good if use in the right way.

Some  hurry by almost missing the beauty.

Some hurry by almost missing the beauty.

I was not first past the post I stopped too often to admire the flowers and followed a few wrong paths. I learned from the detours and always found my way back on track. The people who raced past me in haste missed a lot of free gifts. The people who paused and appreciated this wondrous world were the winners.

Sitting quietly mindful of the wondrous.

Sitting quietly mindful of the wondrous.

Trophies on the shelf for worthwhile achievements are good, but there is much more to life than collecting things. No one owns a sunset, but all can enjoy it. One does not need to own a swimming pool to have a swim, there are rivers and oceans. Without envy we can appreciate many things on display without owning them. Possessions are often a hindrance to our freedom and happiness, a burden to care for and protect.

The great and

The great and

Winners do not participate in the rat race or if they do they withdraw early. I learned the hard way, like a donkey, hungrily chasing a twenty-two caret prize, I almost became a looser. Everyone makes mistakes it is not learning from them and fretting over them that is erroneous. In time these mistakes can turns out to our advantage. Never cry over spilt milk, is good advice. The loss is bad enough, without letting it spoil your day.

the small.

the small.

 

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The cake a work of joy a pleasure to share.

The cake a work of joy a pleasure to share.

A piece of cake, so easy.

This Christmas tree was like a burning bush.

This Christmas tree was like a burning bush.

It is time to bake a Christmas cake to celebrate Jesus Christ’s birthday. I am pleased that it is not traditional to decorate it with candles, two thousand and fourteen candles would create a fire hazard. As I do not believe in the supernatural I would only put thirty or thirty-three, the date of his crucifixion, still that would be enough to create problems in blowing them out. That would be a minor feat for Jesus and divided by three, The Father the son and the Holy Ghost that is only eleven candles to extinguish.

Santas walking on water.

Santas walking on water.

I am going to respect tradition, no candles, only cake, compassion and kindness. This is what Jesus promoted, not putting on a big show to sell candles. Christmas is a good opportunity to share some of our cake with others. Luke 6:31 Do to others as you would have them do to you. This is true Christmas spirit, not the kind that is bottled and sold. Once the cork is pulled the dangerous intoxicating spirit escapes from the bottle and can turn Christmas into a time of grief. In other words don’t drink and drive or lose your senses and act stupid.

The presintation is inportant.

The presentation is important.

Jesus did not object to a slice of bread and glass of wine. To some Christian denominations this represents Jesus’ flesh and blood. I do not understand or see any value in many Christian observances, rites and rituals. But I do like and respect the sincere loving believers that do kindness where it is needed. I trust these people because they up hold the values Christ advocated. These are same principle other people of different beliefs practice.

The wise follow the star.

The wise follow the star.

Jesus was one role-model to emulate as a path to morality there are other paths to the same destination. Let us not squabble over who we are following. Try to see the good in people and do to them as you would like them to do to you. This quote in some form is in every religion. It is known as the Golden Rule, the rule of reciprocity. It features in Confucianism 551 ‚Äď 479 BC, also in Hindu and Buddhism. All this is ancient history; let us not get too excited about who did this and who said that, that would spoil the joy of Christmas day.

To the four story heigh top.

To the four-story high top.

Do not get all fired up, hot and excited, that is probably why there are no candles on a Christmas cake. The candles may have been omitted to remind us not to turn this special birth day into a party but keep it a tasteful occasion to spread peace and kindness. To put behind us the petty upsets and use this as a time to show forgiveness. Christmas can be a time for all to show respect.A great opportunity to renew old friendships that have been neglected in the hustle and bustle of modern life. We have an excuse to send a card and get back in touch. Christmas can be a wonderful time for everyone.

Decorations in Sydney are big and beautiful.

Decorations in Sydney are big and beautiful.

You do not need to stress out worrying about buying expensive gifts as commerce encouraged us to do. Our loved ones just want our loving kindness. We cannot smile and be full of love if we are stressed about finance. That is why I am cooking a Christmas cake One of life’s joys is sharing a slice of cake with friends. I can afford a little more than just a cake and it will give me pleasure to do so. As Jesus would agree it is better to give than receive. Real joy is in giving kindness and love it is not measured in dollars.

A closer look.

A closer look.

I remember my childhood Christmases not the material gifts but those wonderful Christmas dinners. Sharing food cooked with love by my mother. The Christmas pudding had silver three penny pieces in it. We had to eat carefully and the whole family enjoyed sharing the fun. If I missed getting a coin, Mum would say ‚Äúhere have another small slice‚ÄĚ and her magic ensured I got a coin. A trick my Dad played was to slip a half-crown, like fifty cents today, disregarding the effects of inflation, into his pudding and pretended to almost choke retrieving it. It did not fool anyone but did create a laugh still echoing today. I played this game with my sons and the laughter was worth more than the money.

Christmas is a pleasure to the eye.

Christmas is a pleasure to the eye.

As well as a cake I am going to cook a pudding and get some old silver coins and ply the old joke with my five grand children. Christmas lunch with the family and especially the young children is a special time for love to flourish. Those that cannot be there we visit when we can and keep them informed through modern technology. I am thankful for Christmas and what it means compassion and peace on earth.

Window shopping is also fun.

Window shopping is also fun.

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