Something to share in every single week throughout the year

Thoughts

Week 37 – Compassion For The Refugees – The Desire To Live

leaves in the crack

Those leaves in the crack revealed they had struggled to grow through the crack to reach surface to survive.
They thought once they reached the surface they could have a better life.
One who liked them, walked pass with a smile, and one who didn’t “see” them, step on them, ended their hopes and lives.
This photo was taken one night on a street when I was heading home after dinner. At the moment I photographed this photo, I thought of recently refugee crisis in Mediterranean.
People are dying and suffering, their homeland has became war field and they are fleeing continuously from war and conflict to European country. They struggle across the ocean on overcrowded boats seeking for shelter. Some survived, but some buried in the ocean.
I believe that every living beings have the desire to be happy and to overcome suffering. And this desire should be equal.
I believe that this is the hard time for the refugees, but also the time to test one’s compassion.

Week 33 – A Thought To Ponder “A Mind At Peace”

Wayne Dyer said, “A mind at peace, a mind centered and not focused on harming others, is stronger than any physical force in the universe.”


Week 8 – Getting So Behind…

I’m sorry that I’m getting so behind on my blog! This year it’s been so hard to keep up. I guess I’m doing many things at the same time that it is so hard to keep posting every week.

Now, what should I do? … Maybe I should start with telling you guys of what has happenned recently in my little world. 😀

My coworker is owning two babies turtles in the office. Both of them have yellow points on their heads. They are semi-aquatic turtles, so they need an habitat setup with both separate land and water areas to mimic their natural environment. But I think it is still not enough space for them … they need more space and sunlight… But if I were him, I would rather not owning them, I prefer letting them free in real natural environment.

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On February, I had been to Singapore (again). I mainly visited temples and churches on that trip. I’ve found that there are still so many places in Singapore that I haven’t visited yet. I never get bored visiting Singapore again and again. 😀

On April, uncle stayed at my house for a month. After that, I’ve spent almost all the weekends doing some little work for my house renovation. Until recently I have a little time posting. ^0^


Week 28 – Practicing Detachment

week 28
I bought an Orion StarMax 102mm EQ telescope three years ago. I wanted it to be my first tool to learn astrophotography. I wished I could use it to take photos of the clusters and stars. Unfortunately, I wasted about almost three years using it only to take photos of the moon, as the moon was always the brightest thing that I could see in the night sky. It was not because of the quality of the telescope that limited the object to be captured on film, I think it was because of the excessive light pollution in the area that I live, which obstructed the telescope to see others amazing things in the universe.

After a year, a coworker of mine asked me to lend him the telescope to take picture of the moon. That moment, I felt so attached to my new toy, not willing to share it with anybody. He asked me the same question a lot of time, but I made my excuses every time he asked me the same thing.

Two years passed, I learned to detach from things that I own. A same coworker came to see me and asked me again. This time, without hesitation, I did what it should be had done two years ago. I lent my telescope to him and told him he can keep it as long as he wants.

Learn not cling to things is not easy. I’ve took about two years to stay detached from a thing that I liked it so much. So, what will happen when it comes to face challenges of letting go emotions, places and people, in the life journey ahead? All these things are inevitable. If today I can’t even let a thing go, how I could possibly in the future let go of other things like, feelings, places, people that I love and even myself. This is only my first lesson to practice detachment. I believe that the lessons ahead will be more challenging.

Have a nice weekend, everyone! 😀


Week 26 – Donate Books

week 26
DONATE MY BOOKS TO THE LIBRARY ARE BETTER THAN TO LEAVE THEM ON MY OWN BOOKSHELF

I’m arranging my bookshelf looking for some useful or inspiring and not too old books which can be donated to the Central Library. The library has its own instruction. Books with publish date more than a decade or books with are not accepted. I have to choose my books carefully, trying my best to match my donations to what the library asks for.

After a month, the library will send letter to books donors informing them which books are accepted. Then, people can choose to go collecting back the books that are not accepted or choose to remain in the library letting the library to sell those books for charity. 😀


Week 21 – Please Help Find Nichole – Reblog Post

Commentality - Lotsa Comments ....

I have no clue how to reblog/repost stuff, but dang if that’s gonna get in my way! You can go to http://guapola.wordpress.com/2013/05/17/please-help-find-nichole/ if you’re intelligent enough to do a reblog. Me, I’ll stick with good old copy/paste. Good luck!

Please Help Find Nichole

I’ve never said this to any of you, but PLEASE REBLOG THIS! We need as many people as possible to see it, even if you live overseas – PLEASE REBLOG or REPOST!

This past Sunday night, a local teenage girl went missing and no one has seen or heard from her since.

MISSING: Nichole Kristine Cable

15-year-old Nichole Kristine Cable of Glenburn, Maine was last heard from Sunday night at around 9:20pm. Her parents have reported that she had received messages on Facebook from an unknown male and had plans to meet up with him. From what I’ve gathered, he posed as one of her Facebook friends to get her to accept…

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Week 19 – Follow Your Heart

week 19

I’m hoping to wake up from a cloudy nightmare.

Recently, life has put me a lot of things to do, a lot of things to worry about and a lot of things to think about. All of these things have stolen my smile. I don’t want to live this way, and I think I need to stop and start to restore my life again right now.

Until few days ago, light has shed on my life after reading a post from a nice and great blogger. She told us that she has to do other thing and to end the blogging life. I was so sad after reading her post, but at the same time, when I was commenting on her post, I realized that that was what life is. We always have to move on to do other things and leave the old things behind us.

Suddenly, I felt that it was unnecessary for me to feel so overwhelmed by recent life’s challenges.

Sometimes, we need to let go of what has happened and to move on. And sometimes, we just need to let go of the thought of what might or not to happen and follow our heart to do whatever things we miss and enjoy to do in order to restore our life again.

Although in this passing month, life has just made me see nothing but only troubles, but now, I think I am stepping out from the cloud and restore my life again. 😀

Thank you for reading this post and for yours company. I feel uplifted again!


Week 15 – Nothing Happens Until You Make it Happen

week 15_heart sutra
A monkey is being held captive in a huge cage with plenty of food. Not far away from the cage there is a blackboard, and this is the instruction written on the blackboard, “You can unlock the door by using the key placed in your pocket. You will be free.” The monkey reads the instruction every single day, but still in the cage.

One day, a man approaches the cage and asks the monkey:
Man: “Do you want to go free?”
Monkey: “Yes, I do.”

Man: “Haven’t you read the instruction written on the blackboard?”
Monkey: “I have.”

Man: “If so, why don’t you unlock the door and go free?”
Monkey: “I already did.”

Man: “Did you?”
Monkey: “Yes, I did. I can unlock the door by using the key placed in my pocket. After that, I will be free! How easy it is! I’m free!”

Man:”…Do you really understand what it means?”
Monkey: “Of course I know!” So simple! Unlock the door and go free!”

The monkey wants to go free. He says he knows how to go free but he never really try follow the instruction to unlock himself from the cage.
He knows how to free himself, but he does nothing.

Yesterday, I and my boyfriend went to a bookshop and bought two books about Heart Sutra (a comic version and a word version). We began to read it last night, and today when we meet each other we talked about them. In our conversation I suddenly realize that without practice and experience I cannot fully understand what something is really mean. It is just like that I know salt is salty, but if I never taste it I cannot truly say that I know what salty is.

Have a nice weekend! 😀


Week 12 – A Thought To Ponder: “Life As A Play”

week 14_play
“All the world is a stage and all men and women merely player.”
– William Shakespeare

I have a question.
Do we play life or life plays us?
If we play life, we are freely to choose. If life plays us, we don’t have choices at all.

Look at the world we are living in. Look at the people around us. Look at their lives. Look at ours. What do you see?

I think I’m freely to choose, because I’m aware that there are countless of thoughts that I can choose to have at the moment I think about anything, there are thousands of words that I can choose to say at the moment I speak, also, there are so many actions that I can choose to take at the moment I do anything.

This idea seems to be true but it also seems to be untrue when I recognize that the choices I have made have fatefully brought me to a situation in which I will more likely to think that the choices I have made were already decided. Not decided by myself, but by life itself.

Also, there are other times that I realize no matter which path I choose to take, it would eventually takes me to the place I should be.

If that is true, it is life that plays us. Not us play life.

Camera: Iphone 4S


Week 2 – A Thought To Ponder: “Discover Your Work”

week 2_2013

Buddha says, “Your work is to discover your work, and then with all your heart to give yourself to it.”

I always ask myself (this usually happens on Mondays) why I’m trapped in a small office room dealing with uninteresting and boring paper works. When will I be free?

That takes me to wonder, If I had discovered my work, If I had learned the ultimate “lessons” I need to learn at this small and uninteresting working place, would I be free from work then? 😛

P.S.: Only my work that I feel uninteresting, but people I’ve met at my work are all nice and great. 🙂

Camera: Iphone 4S
Location: At the office


Week 52 – Thank You

week 52

At the end of the year, I should say “Thank You” to …
– all the blog visitors and followers (without your support, I won’t keep up the last post of the year 2012);

– people who stopping by and comment (you are the most incredible and lovable person on earth!) 😀

– people who liked my posts (thank you for encouraging me to keep it up)

– each and every person that I’ve met (thank you for every smile and kindness)

– my friends
(thank you for always being there for me)

– my coworkers
(thank you for helping me dealing with problems and bearing with my lazyness)

– my parents
(I love you! To see both of you happy, I’m happy!)

– my dearest dear
(thank you for your love (even though I was annoying … sometimes)

– all the people in the world
(just to say thank you)

– all the food I have eaten
(without food, I cannot survive)

– and…

– finally, I have to say thank you to myself, especially to my physical body, without it I would not have chance to experience life and to see the greatness of the world! 😀

HAPPY NEW YEAR, EVERYONE! 😀


Week 32 – Wild Animals In The Zoo

DID WE MAKE THE RIGHT DECISION, KEEPING WILD ANIMALS IN THE ZOO?

Some people may say yes, and the reason is that we could help to prevent species from becoming extinct and to provide educational programs; other may say that it is wrong and selfish to keep wild animals in the zoo, taking them away from their home and freedom. What do you think? I love going to the zoo, but I feel sad when I see the animals looking sad and lifeless. It makes me think that they don’t seem to like being kept in the zoo for some reason. Maybe you would say that I’m just being subjective. (Yes, I am.) There is no factual basis to support what I’m thinking. Who are we to speak for the animals?

If we could talk to animals and learn what they really feel about being locked behind bars, do you think that things would have been the same?

Camera: Olympus C730UZ
Photo created on June 12, 2006


Week 29 – We Have The Choice


About four years ago, I saw Batman 2 – The Dark Knight in the cinema. I still remember quite well the feeling I had when I was leaving the cinema after the end of the movie. I had a great time. The story was great. I liked it the way Christopher Nolan presented the film.

The movie led me to some thoughts about human weakness. When a very bad situation comes, there is a chance that even the most decent-hearted people could fall into temptation. However, in my opinion, there is always a choice. To be an evil or to be an angel is just a matter of what we choose to do.

I think that there is no guarantee in life that everything would be perfect, great and out of chaos. Bad things happen and always happen, even to good people. In these cases, people who are not strong enough to remain kind-hearted to deal with unfair and unpleasant situations would, eventually, fall into temptation to act badly. So, to be a good person is not an easy task, it needs resistance and perseverance, at least.

I remember that there is a story about how a devil tempts a good-hearted and hard working farmer to fall into the hands of the “unfavorables”. The devil fails in the beginning by giving the farmer bad luck, poverty, pain, struggle and suffering. It seems like there is nothing can impure the farmer’s pure heart. Until one day, the devil finds a very simple way to tempt the farmer, which is by giving him lots of money. Finally, the farmer falls into temptation and the devil successfully takes the farmer’s soul.

The little story here shows that human are so vulnerable. A friend of mine asked me what I think about a kind-hearted person. To me, a kind-hearted person must be someone who can always look for the good side in people and who can forgive others in any kind of situation, even when being treated unjustly, unfairly and badly by someone else. I know it is easier said than done. However, these are choices we have. We can choose to be good or to fall…

Image: Rough Sketch


Week 28 – Practice And Talks By Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo


A friend of mine offers me two tickets to the “Practice And Talks By Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo”, an English-Tibetan Buddhist nun who spent 12 years in a remote cave in Himalayas, searching for spiritual enlightenment.

I never thought I would actually meet someone that honorable like her. I’m not a Buddhist, but still find her path and life experience very interesting.

The talk starts at 10 a.m. and ends at 4 p.m.. It is quite long but worth a visit. Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo mainly talks about the mind training in eight verses, and I just can’t wait to share them with you here. They are:

THE MIND TRAINING IN EIGHT VERSES

1. Wishing to attain enlightenment
For the sake of all sentient beings,
Who excel even the Wish-fulfilling Jewel,
May I constantly cherish them all.

2. Whenever I am in the company of others,
May I consider myself least important,
And, from the depth of my heart,
Cherish others and hold them supreme.

3. In all activities, my I examine my mind,
And as soon as disturbing emotions arise,
Endangering myself and others,
May I firmly face and avert them.

4. Whenever I see ill-natured people,
Overwhelmed by strong misdeeds and sufferings,
May I cherish them as something rare,
As though I had found a treasure-trove.

5. When others out of envy
Mistreat me with slander and abuse,
May I take defeat upon myself
And offer the victory to them.

6. Even if someone whom I have helped
And in whom I have placed my hopes
Does great wrong by harming me,
May I see them as an excellent spiritual friend.

7. In brief, directly or indirectly,
May I give all help and joy to my mothers,
And may I take all their harm and pain
Secretly upon myself.

8. May none of this ever be sullied
By thoughts of the eight worldly concerns,
May I understand all things as illusions and,
Without attachment, gain freedom from bondage.

I quite like the atmosphere in the hall, it is quite peaceful and full of positive vibes. The way how she talks is wonderful. There is richness in her message, and wisdom in her eyes. Her words have souls. One of the thing she said that most impressed me was: “There is a seed in everyone of us, we all can awaken, and break free of the bonds of the wheel of reincarnation.”

Wish you all have a great weekend, and “love, compassion and healthy vibes” to you! 😀


Week 23 – Power The World (with your love)

There are 1.3 billion people in the world who still live in “darkness” with zero access to electricity. Since electricity is one of the essential element of daily living, I couldn’t imagine what life would be like without power supply.

I know there are so many other people out there who need help, also there are countless of issues which need to be concerned about. So, we may think, it looks like things won’t change much no matter what we do for them, because we think what we can really do is so little. However, those are hard works, and it takes a lot of time and effort, in order to change for the better. If we, everyone of us, raise awareness of the need for helping others, the world will have hope, and the world will change.

Here is the story of Imani:

If you would like to support “Power The World”, you can help by visiting their official website and signing a pledge to help one million families gain access to sustainable energy. Here is the link:
http://powertheworld.org/

No matter how small the amount is, little a little, the world will be illuminated again with your love and compassion. 😀

Camera: Canon EOS 450D
Photo created on June 8, 2012.
*This topic of “Power The World” is brought by this awesome blog: Mike Shinoda’s blog.


Week 20 – Message From A Sea Turtle

MESSAGE FROM A SEA TURTLE

A sea turtle caught my attention while I was taking picture at the sea turtle pool. It kept swimming around in circles over and over, trying to look at the world outside the tank through the glass. I approached the tank and placed my hand on the thick glass, realizing that while we were enjoying watching them swimming in the tank, they were losing their life slowly in a place where they would never call home.

Camera: Canon EOS 450D
Photo created on Oct 16, 2009, during the trip in Okinawa.


Week 16 – Chinese Calligraphy

People say that practicing Chinese Calligraphy can bring benefits to both our physical and spiritual well being, such as increasing one’s discipline, concentration, persistence, and enhancing calmness and peacefulness. Although there is a list of benefits, but I do not think I would going to start practicing it soon, cause I am allergic to the ink.

This morning, I visited my boyfriend and saw him practicing Chinese Calligraphy. While I was watching him practicing, I silently think to myself, “He seems to like this kind of art so much. It has became his daily practice since a long time ago, I guess.” I asked him to write a word for me to be photographed and to be put on this post of this week. Then, he wrote me this:

“莊周夢蝶”

It means “The Butterfly Dream of Zhuangzi”.

Once upon a time, Zhuangzi (also known as Zhuang Zhou) , a philosopher back in 300 BC to 200 BC, dreamed that he was a butterfly, and in the dream he was conscious only of his life as a butterfly and unaware that he was himself as a human being. Soon after awake, he found himself to be Zhou again.

Zhou: “Now I do not know whether I was then a man dreaming I was a butterfly, or whether I am now a butterfly, dreaming I am a man.” 

Have a nice weekend everyone. 😀

Camera: Canon EOS 500D
Photo created on April 21, 2012.


Week 11 – Invisible Connection

A week ago (on Saturday), about the same time of the day, between 3 to 4 pm, I was taking a nap on my bed while Helen was heading to the place where her parents live; between 7 to 8 pm, I was standing in front of the lake watching the scenery while Helen was enjoying her tea time at home, etc…

I and Helen had planed to do a full day of photo shooting on a same date, starting at seven o’clock in the morning on March 10, 2012, then share the photos on both of our blogs.

Now, the photo project is completed, and the experience leads me to some thoughts about a magical connection between people who are thousands of miles away from each other, and have never met in person, but share the same interests – photography and blogging. And, it is these common interests that link people together. What a wonderful thing in the world!

Camera: Canon EOS 450D
Photo created on March 17, 2012.


Week 10 – 24 Hour: A Collaborative Photo Project

I am so happy to join with Helen to do the same photo project together at the same date, on March 10, 2012. We took pictures throughout the whole day, and while Helen was doing it in UK, I was doing it here in Macau. 😀

Here are the photo sets:

24 HOUR: TIME FLIES OUT THE WINDOW (by Ristinw)

The message: “I watch the time flies out the window, realizing only a few things I actually can do in one single day. I wish I could stop the clock and achieve everything I need to get done before all the time slips away.” — March 10, 2012 Ristinw

07:04: Alarm clock on, turn it off, then get back to sleep.
08:18: The first object I see when I open my eyes.
09:01: Deciding what to wear.
10:05: At the Lighthouse of the Guia Hill.
11:02: I think to myself, “Hmmm…The clock is being re-painted!”
12:02: Walking past Se Cathedral, and ask myself, “Why is time passing so quickly?”
13:20: My lunch.
14:16: z Z…
15:06: …z Z
16:44: z Z…In the dream: I am throwing the clock out the window.
17:31: Wake up. I look at the clock and think, “I will be late!”
18:10: At the Leal Senado Square.
19:05: Walking past Nan Van Lake, and ponder…
20:16: My dinner.
21:25: Walking past Leal Senado Square.
22:10: Just finished my hot chocolate.
23:17: Walking past Se Cathedral, and look at the clock…
00:03: On my way home.
01:44: I can’t wait to crawl into my bed.
02:00-06:53:…z Z

View the above images as a slideshow.

Camera: Iphone 4S
Images created between March 10-11, 2012

24 HOUR IN PHOTOS (5983 Miles Apart) (by Helenog)

Here I am in the UK ready to tuck into a mid morning snack, and while I am writing Cristinain Macau is probably eating her evening meal. We live 5983 miles apart and have never met but we’ve been following each other’s photo blog for the last year… (To read the full post)

7-8 am : A sleepy eyed sunrise
8-9 am : I can’t put my book down!
9-10am: Lovely post 🙂
10-11am : Late breakfast
11-12pm : Getting ready to go out
12-1pm : Waiting for the train
1-2 pm : Watching the end of Mart’s football match
2-3 pm : Lunch on the road in Birmingham
3-4 pm : Heading to Bolton where my parents live (2 hours away in the North West)
4-5 pm : Passing the Reebok Stadium; the home of Bolton Wanderers FC …when I see the stadium I’m nearly home!
5-6 pm : Northern cobbled back streets
6-7 pm : The view from my old bedroom
7-8 pm : Tea time
8-9 pm : Feet up with chocolate and a magazine
9-10pm : Reading a friend’s dissertation on my iPad
10-11pm: Time for bed
11pm-6am: Sleep
6-7 am : An early get up to go and watch Mart’s half marathon run

7-8am, 2. 8-9am, 3. 9-10am, 4. 10-11am, 5. 11am-12pm, 6. 12-1pm, 7. 1-2pm, 8. 2-3pm, 9. 3-4pm, 10. 4-5pm, 11. 5-6pm, 12. 6-7pm, 13. 7-8pm, 14. 8-9pm, 15. 9-10pm, 16. 10-11pm, 17. 1-2am, 18. 11-12pm, 19. 12-1am, 20. 4-5am, 21. 3-4am, 22. 2-3am, 23. 5-6am, 24. 6-7am

View the above images as a slideshow.

Cameras: HTC phone or Lumix DMC-G1
Images created between March 10-11, 2012

Visit Helenog‘s blog: click here


Week 7 – The reason Why I Like Photography


I remember I started learning photography in the school of arts from a respectful professor, artist and photographer, Frank Lee. The world he showed me through his camera lenses was so beautiful, sensitive and full of emotions. He told me that every picture is a story and the composition of a picture is the soul of a photo. This is so true, and I totally agree with it. Also, he taught students to create our own pinhole camera and taught us to develop film in the darkroom, as well. All of those activities were so fun and quite interesting. Since then, I fell in love with photography.

The world seems to be so different when one is looking at it through a camera lens. Do you agree? Everyone has its own story to tell, and everyone has its own unique style to express this story. I’m so happy to have met so many other awesome people here in WordPress who also like photography, and to have the opportunity to look at so many different stories that these great people create through their camera lens.

Your “eyes” broadens my mind! Thank you. 🙂

Photo created a long time ago during photography class.


Week 3 – What We Need In Winter

People say, in Winter we need warm foods and warm drinks, but I say, in Winter we need ice-creams and colors.

In Winter, when the sun doesn’t shine too often and the blue sky is always covered by clouds, everything on the street just looks less beautiful and lifeless. Consequently, some people who are more easily affected by weather will prone to have low mood. We won’t notice it at all, and we probably won’t even notice the slightly changing in mood day after day affected by the lack of sunlight.

Ice-cream, therefore, can make wonders in this situation. Eating ice-cream really does make us happy.  It stimulates the production of happiness hormone (known as serotonin) in the brain, making us to feel happy and pleasure. If it sounds crazy to have ice-cream in such cold weather, there is still other way to lift the mood in the Winter. It is color. Looking at colorful things will make us happy as well. However, I understand that we have different perception of colors, not only by gender, but also by culture and personality itself. Some may view black as a color of style, elegance and power, others view it as a symbol of deceit, negativity and things hidden. Some may view white as a color of purity, innocence and faith, but others view it differently. It is fun to have these differences, but in general, bright and colorful colors really do make us happy.

I think I’m this type of person, the kind of person who is easily emotionally affected by the weather and by the lack of sunlight. I really don’t even notice it until I have the experience of a totally lift up after a bite of an ice-cream. 😀

Camera: Canon EOS 450D

Photo created on January 20, 2012.