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a profound act of kindness

Generosity is the most natural outward expression  of an inner attitude of compassion and loving-kindness. 
The Dalai Lama XIV
Image: Offerings at a Thai temple

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Learn to get in touch with the silence within yourself, and know that everything in life has purpose. There are no mistakes, no coincidences, all events are blessings given to us to learn from. - Elisabeth Kubler-Ross
Image: Silent Buddha And The Hydrangea by Dominique Allmon@2017


By Anton Chekhov
The snow has not yet left the earth, but spring is already asking to enter your heart. If you have ever recovered from a serious illness, you will be familiar with the blessed state when you are in a delicious state of anticipation, and are liable to smile without any obvious reason. Evidently that is what nature is experiencing just now.

The ground is cold, mud and snow squelches under foot, but how cheerful, gentle and inviting everything is! The air is so clear and transparent that if you were to climb to the top of the pigeon loft or the bell tower, you feel you might actually see the whole universe from end to end.

The sun is shining brightly, and its playful, beaming rays are bathing in the puddles along with the sparrows. The river is swelling and darkening; it has already woken up and very soon will begin to roar. The trees are bare, but they are already living and breathing.

Literary quote from Anton Chekhov "The Exclamation Mark"


the wolf moon

Today, January 12th, is the first full moon in the New Year. The Algonquin tribes who lived in regions extending from New England to Lake Superior called it the Wolf Moon because of the howling wolves that would come close to their villages in search of food. By the time the moon was full in January the harsh weather conditions made it very difficult for the wolves to find food in the wild.

"Amid the cold and deep snows of midwinter, the wolf packs howled hungrily outside Indian villages. Thus, the name for January’s full moon. Sometimes it was also referred to as the Old Moon, or the Moon After Yule. Some called it the Full Snow Moon, but most tribes applied that name to the next moon." - Farmer's Almanac Many ancient civilizations, reaching as far back in time as the Neolithic Age, portrayed wolves with the moon in their legends, art, and literature. Hecate, the Greek goddess of the moon, was depicted wearing three wolf heads and was sometimes called She-Wolf. A…

constant observation of nature

How can we teach unobservant people to notice what nature and life are trying to show them? First of all, they must be taught to look at, to listen to, and to hear what is beautiful... Nothing in life is more beautiful than nature, and it should be the object of constant observation... And do not shun the darker side of nature. Look for it in the marshes, in the slime of the sea… and remember that hidden behind these phenomena there is beauty, just as in loveliness there is unloveliness. - Constantin Stanislavski

pearls of wisdom

If we never experience the chill of a dark winter, it is very unlikely that we will ever cherish the warmth of a bright summer’s day. Nothing stimulates our appetite for the simple joys of life more than the starvation caused by sadness or desperation. In order to complete our amazing life journey successfully, it is vital that we turn each and every dark tear into a pearl of wisdom, and find the blessing in every curse. - Anthon St. Maarten inn "Divine Living: The Essential Guide To Your True Destiny"

Wishing all my readers a very happy and peaceful Thanksgiving - Dominique
Image: Pecos Valley Diamonds by Dominique Allmon©2016

happy st. martin's day

St. Martin's Day or Martinstag is celebrated on November 11. It is a religious observance in Germany that is very popular with children. It is dedicated to St. Martin of Tours, or Martin le Miséricordieux, and celebrates modesty and altruism, values that are commonly associated with Saint Martin.  
St. Martin is known as a friend of children and patron saint of beggars, wool weavers, soldiers, vintners and innkeepers, and the geese.
The celebrations usually involved evening processions with handmade paper lanterns, but the celebrations were suspended in 2015 in order not to offend the migrants from the Middle East.
This holiday was traditionally followed by a fast that lasted until Christmas, so normally St. Martin's Day would center around good food. Martin's Gans, or the roasted goose served with dumplings and fragrant red cabbage stew, is one of the many dishes that people in Germany enjoy on this day. 
History of the tradition
"Saint Martin of Tours (316 - …