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The Hunter and the Bobcat

The Hunter and the Bobcat

(original story by BoSt)

 

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Once there was a great hunter and his family who lived in a remote part of the Northern wilderness, a long distance from any other lodge and it was seldom that they saw any faces other than those of their own household.

He was nevertheless content living in isolation, for he had a fair wife and two healthy, boisterous sons. Each day they were left in the lodge while he went out hunting in quest of the game whose flesh was their primary source of food.

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Game was very abundant in those days and his labors in the hunt and chase were often well rewarded. His two sons were still too young to accompany him and so all day long they were free to play make believe and discover things so long as they played within the confines of the lodge.

Observant as they were, they once espied a young man who visited the lodge during their father’s absence, and noted that these visits became more frequent as time went by.

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Curiosity winning over, once the elder of the two asked his mother in all innocence:

“Mommy, tell us who this tall young man is that comes here so often during our father’s absence.  Does the stranger wished to see father, but misses him? Shall we tell father when he comes back this evening so he can delay his departure time just a little?”

“Donquri, you little fool,” said the mother angrily, “this is grown up business, mind your bow and arrows, and do not be afraid to enter the forest in search of birds and squirrels, with your little brother. It is not manly to be ever about the lodge. Nor will you ever grow up to become a warrior if you tell fibs or all the little things that you see and hear to your father. Say not a word to him about this.”

The boys obeyed, but as they grew older and still noticed the visits of the stranger, their gut feeling being ill at ease, they resolved to speak again to their mother.

They now told her that they meant to make known to their father all that they had witnessed, for they frequently saw this young man passing through the woods, and he did not walk in the path, nor did he carry anything to eat. If he had any message to deliver at their lodge, why did he not give it to their father? For they had observed in other cases, that messages were always addressed to men, and not to women.

When her sons spoke thus to her, the mother was greatly perturbed. Fear took hold in her heart and she in great fury admonished them:

“You are still both young and have no real comprehension of things.  Hence, you should not interfere in adult concerns. If you insist with your meddling and cause trouble, I will be forced to be more severe. “She said, “I warn you both, do not speak of this to your father or me ever again!”

In fear they, for a time, held their peace, but still noted that the stranger’s frequent stealthy visits to the lodge persisted, they long at last resolved to brave any consequence and disclose this fact their father. Their loyalty to their father demanded it after all!

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Accordingly, one day when they were out in the woods, by then having grown up and learned to follow the chase, they caught up with their father and quickly told him all that they had seen in the past.

They watched with worrying eyes as the anger manifested on their father’s face then grew unnaturally dark. He remained silent and still for a while, and when at length he looked up there was unholy fire flaming in his pupils.

“It is done!” he said. “My children I ask that you tarry here until the hour of the setting sun, and then come to the lodge and you will find me there.”

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In two shakes of a hat he was at the lodge. The door flew open and he barged right in resembling a big fierce bear ready to tear all about him into smithereens.

But she was seated lone mending some tears in the children’s coats.

“Where is he?” He bellowed.

“Who?” She cried out in fear.

“You know very well who?” He murderously grabbed her by the shoulders and shook her senseless. “You broke your promise… Now I shall not beholden to my promise. I shall vanquish your kind one and all.” He growled at her.

She knew no amount of pleading will be of any use. He was heartless, a brutal hunter that had no compunction about killing entire species and wiping them from the mountains.  On that day he’d cornered her and her younger brother after killing her parents, the two little bobcat pups were shivering with fright.

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He was   about to deal both  a death blow when she had  stood in front of her brother  to protect him and swore by the Great Spirit of the Mountains, that if spared, she would serve this brute without complaint to the end of her days. The Great Spirit had answered her prayers, and turned her into a human. The hunter in turn had promised never to hunt her kind, so long as she stayed away even from her brother and served only him.  Tears streamed from her face remembering that cursed day and all the miserable days after that when she was not free and missed her brother terribly.  Her only solace was that her kind was left alone from then on to thrive and hunt in the mountain whereas all other predators faced extinction without mercy from the Hunter. Some species were hunted to extinction. Meanwhile her brother had grown up among other bobcats that adopted him. Missing his sister terribly, he’d eventually tracked her scent and found her for the bond of kinship was very strong.

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She was fearful for what the Hunter might do if he ever found out; still she could not help herself, for she loved her brother dearly. He called on her frequently and relayed to her all the news about her kind which somewhat mitigated her homesickness.

She pleaded and pleaded with the hunter for his mercy.  But he was bent on revenge and called on the Great Spirit to punish her.  The Great Spirit punished her for violating her promise by turning her into a horrid version of a Bobcat.  And so from then on she was barred from having any contact with her children as well as being shunned by her own kind. She was forced to live a horrible existence for the duration of her natural life, always lurking in the shadows.

Meanwhile, the two ingrate sons, that had more their father’s temperament than their mother’s, remained sporting away the time till the hour for their return had come.

When they reached the lodge the mother was not there. They dared not to ask their father whither she had gone, and from that day forth her name was never spoken again in the lodge.

In the course of time the two boys grew to be men and, although the mother was nevermore seen neither in the lodge nor on the paths in the forest, nor by the river side, she still lingered near the lodge.

Changed, but the same, with ghastly looks and arms that were withered, she appeared to her sons as they returned from the hunt, in the twilight.

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At night she darkly unlatched the lodge-door and glided in, and bent over them as they sought to sleep. Oftenest it was her bare brow, white, and bony, and bodiless, that they saw floating in the air, and making a mock of them in the wild paths of the forest, or in the midnight darkness of the lodge.

Fuelled with false facts, with outraged bias against her, the sons viewed their mother as a terror that hunted their peace and lives.  They cursed her existence for according to them she made every spot where they had seen her, hideous to the living eye. The hunter never witnessed such; still he was frustrated and grew somewhat weary of his sons’ complaints. Finally his sons were resolved, together with their father, now stricken in years, to leave the country.

They began a journey toward the South. After traveling many days along the shore of a great lake, they passed around a craggy bluff, and came upon a scene where there was a rough fall of waters, and a river issuing forth from the lake.

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In pursuit of them the mother came out of the woods in the form of a giant, grotesque, rabid bobcat. At this moment, one of them looked out and saw a stately crane sitting on a rock in the middle of the rapids. They called out to the bird, “See, grandfather, how we are persecuted? Come and take us across the falls that we may escape her.”

The crane so addressed was of extraordinary size, and had arrived at a great old age, and, as might be expected, he sat, when first described by the two sons, in a state of profound thought, revolving his long experience of life there in the midst of the most violent eddies.

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When he heard himself appealed to, the crane stretched forth his neck with great deliberation, and lifting himself slowly by his wings, he flew across to their assistance.

“Be careful,” said the old crane, “that you do not touch the crown of my head. I am bald from age and long service and very tender at that spot. Should you be so unlucky as to lay a hand upon it, I shall not be able to avoid throwing you both in the rapids.”

They paid strict heed to his directions, and were soon safely landed on the other shore of the river. He returned and carried the father in the same way; and then took his place once more where he had been first seen in the very midst of the eddies of the stream.

But the woman, who had by this time reached the shore, cried out, “Come, my grandfather, and carry me over, for I have lost my children, and I am sorely distressed.”

The aged bird, now questioning his earlier judgement, at first obeyed her summons, and flew to her side. He was a suspicious sort and seeing how hideous she looked in her grotesque bobcat form, once more doubted her story.  She had to have been an evil spirit in pursuit. She would harm then soon as she crossed the water. And so feeling rather noble he harboured a secret desire to harm this evil spirit and defend them. He carefully repeated the warning, expecting her to disregard it, that she was not to touch the crown of his head. Outwardly he begged her to bear in mind that she should respect his old age, if there was any sense of virtue left in her.

She promised to obey; but they were no sooner fairly embarked in the stream, that instantly the crane cast her into the rapids, and shook his wings as if to free himself of all acquaintance with her.

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“Why have you wronged me?” She cried as she sunk in the raging stream. The woman disappeared, was straightway carried by the rapid currents far out into the waters, and in the wide wilderness of shore-less depth, without companion or solace, and was lost forever.

“I’m preventing you from harming any other, you foul creature!” He responded very much pleased with himself for doing the noble thing. 

Suddenly however the gust of wind derailed him and unable to find his bearing, he too plummeted into the waters.

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“What a fool!” The hunter gritted his teeth for the loss of such a fine meal. They picked themselves off the ground and trudged along to find some other game to satisfy their growing hunger.

The mountain spirit could stand this injustice no longer, and in one breath, turned the hunter and his sons all to field mouse.

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They deservedly from then on live in fear and hunted by many.

Fin

 

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Readiness

Readiness

 

Nature's Abstract Palette 2017 (7)

 

When clouds rise in the sky, it is a sign that it will rain.  

There is nothing to do but to wait until after the rain falls.

 It is the same in life when destiny is at work.

 We should not worry and seek to shape the future by interfering in things before the time is ripe.

We should quietly fortify the body with food and drink and the mind with gladness and good cheer.

Fate comes when it will, and thus we are ready.

I Ching

 

Nature's Abstract Palette 2017 (1)

 

 

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Walking on Water

Walking on Water

It’s a wonderful time to be young and physically fit; for there are so many brilliant inventions for leisure activities. In summertime especially for the fair weather opens up opportunities for a wide range of exciting, thrilling sports. Now every young athlete can play at being James Bond with incredible stunts. I’m pretty sure I saw this in one in one of those spy movies.  A truly awe inspiring aerial tricks rising up into the air from the water, walking, gliding, riding or doing flips and all of it on water. What would the ancients say if they saw such an activity? No miracle is need here, only technology. Recently I witnessed this at the CNE on September 1, 2017. What a thrill it was! By chance I was on a bridge leading to Ontario Place and able to take these shots and video:

Please click here to see the video: https://youtu.be/HMqex1mMG7Q

Enjoy the following pictures:

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Order in Disorder

Order in Disorder

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Chaos is the score upon which reality is written.

HENRY MILLER

Click to see the music video: Order in Disorder

 

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“Peace and the survival of life on earth as we know it are threatened by human activities which lack a commitment to humanitarian values.

Destruction of nature and nature resources results from ignorance, greed and lack of respect for the earth’s living things. This lack of respect extends even to earth’s human descendants, the future generations who will inherit a vastly degraded planet if world peace does not become a reality, and destruction of the natural environment continues at the present rate.

Our ancestors viewed the’ earth as rich and bountiful, which it is. Many people in the past also saw nature as inexhaustibly sustainable, which we now know is the case only if we care for it.

It is not difficult to forgive destruction in the past, which resulted from ignorance. Today, however, we have access to more information, and it is essential that we re-examine ethically what we have inherited, what we are responsible for, and what we will pass on to coming generations.

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Clearly this is a pivotal generation. Global communication is possible.”

 ~Dalai Lama, An Ethical Approach to Environmental Protection

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Happiness via discarding of negative energy

Happiness via discarding of negative energy

 

01-A Beach Promenade - 1896- Michael Peter Ancher-Danish, 1849-1927

 

The whole concept of negative energy may be an alien thought to the steadfast realist.  Nevertheless, it does exist and it manifests in various forms that sometimes foster unhappy, unfulfilled or unsettled lives. 

This is not to say that one can shirk off all responsibility concerning one’s state of affairs.  One still needs to be held accountable for their actions, relationships, beliefs, thoughts and overall well being.

Meanwhile, through applications of the suggestions listed below, you can discard any unpleasantness and, ultimately improve your life’s sparkle:

 

Visual Stimulation:

 

An inspirational movie with a great narrative, paintings, photographs are one way to, through visual and vicarious experience, eliminate that pesky negativity.  And the common joy that is shared by many is the experience of a seaside excursion and summertime fun activities. To get you started on this, here’s a gallery of artworks set in a slideshow.

 

 

Click here to see: Summer Breeze and Puffed up Sleeves Slideshow

 

Music:

Who would dispute that Music is a required food for the soul. Depending on the melody, the mood is transformed into joy, excitement, somber reflections, peace or despair. As one has the choice however, chose carefully to attain happiness and to re-align good energies in yourself and your space.

Furthermore, if you can, play an instrument, sing a song or simply listen to an upbeat melody, you’ll be well on your way to fostering that upbeat energy. It’s a well documented fact that singing or listening to buoyant music promotes good health. It certainly can improve cognition, strengthen your lungs, lower blood pressure and improve posture. And the best part is, you can take it along with you wherever you go and whatever you do.

Foliage and Flora:

A leisurely walk in a forested region does wonders to ease those weighty concerns. The cacophony of Nature’s concert soothes all ears while bountiful oxygen fills the lungs and you are energized. 

Regarding indoor space plants are an essential garnish for establishing a positive space.  The soul is lightened by the confirmatory accoutrement of green hues of leaves and stems sometimes supporting colorful flowers. And that’s not all; plants also act as energy filters by cleaning and improving air quality. Moreover, it propels us to open curtains or blinds to invite the sunshine, the bright beneficial light, to energize and filter the room of unwanted negative energy.

 

Fragrance to delight the senses:

 

Here, a caution is warranted as we live in an age where some people have serious sensitivity to certain artificially made scents, sprays, mists, colognes or perfumes. One thing is for certain, bad odors and smells do beget negative moods; whereas memorable ones (like mom’s cooking or clean laundry) and pleasant, heavenly scents, uplift the spirits and make one function more effectively.

Bear in mind however, depending on the individual’s preference and life experience, certain aromas and ointments can either be pleasant or repulsive and detestable. Use common sense before striving to conceal those pesky, persistent odors while concurrently clearing away negative energies through the use of readily available store bought oils, sprays or catchy gismos. 

For the superstitious, there are also these options available:

Smudging:

 

Regardless of race and creed, a typical process for cleansing space of negative energy uses:  incense sticks, containers with lit incense within, lit candles, or bundled up dry herb leaves that are smoldering and releasing smoke.   The smoke is the key factor here, believed to be responsible for cleansing the adverse negative energies.  Carry the smoldering smoke throughout a home, business, special abode, holy building or sacred grounds. In cleansing your home, once you’ve reached the stopping point, then you can open a window to allow all the negativity to flow out.  

Use of Crystals:

 

Obsidian and black tourmaline are two of many crystals that are used in absorbing negativity. Place these in spaces requiring cleansing; in particular, around electronics that are known to foster disruptive, chaotic energy.

 

Below are some of my favorite paintings, enjoy! :

 

1-Alexander Gunin

Alexander Gunin

2-Boys Playing at the Beach - circa 1885 - Albert Edelfelt -Finnish, 1854-1905

Boys Playing at the Beach – circa 1885 – Albert Edelfelt -Finnish, 1854-1905

3-brown beach 800

-brown beach

4-Caillebotte, Gustave - French, 1848-1894 - The Diver - 1877

Caillebotte, Gustave – French, 1848-1894 – The Diver – 1877

5-Michael & Inessa Garmash2

Michael & Inessa Garmash

6-Duffy Sheridan

Duffy Sheridan

7-Evening at Padstow, Cornwall - 1890-Sir William Llewellyn -English, 1858-1941

Evening at Padstow, Cornwall – 1890-Sir William Llewellyn -English, 1858-1941

8-Fernando Saenz Pedrosa

Fernando Saenz Pedrosa

9-Summertime-garden

Summer-garden

10-Francesca Strino

Francesca Strino

11-Path to beach

Path to beach

12-Gleb Goloubetski

Gleb Goloubetski

13- bThe Cliff

The Cliff

14-Irving Willes

-Irving Willes

15-Jim Daly

-Jim Daly

16-Joaquin Sorolla (1863-1923) Sotto il baldacchino (1910). La pennellata come un soffio di vento.

Joaquin Sorolla (1863-1923) Sotto il baldacchino (1910)

17-Joaquin Sorolla y Bastida (February 27, 1863 - August 10, 1923

Joaquin Sorolla y Bastida (February 27, 1863 – August 10, 1923

18-Joaquin Sorolla y Bastida, (Spagna, 1863-1923) Dopo il bagno - After the Bath (1902)

Joaquin Sorolla y Bastida, (Spagna, 1863-1923) Dopo il bagno – After the Bath (1902)

19-John Lavery 1856-1941)

John Lavery 1856-1941)

20-Lady by a Window 1918- Louis Ritman -American (1889–1963)

Lady by a Window 1918- Louis Ritman -American (1889–1963)

21-Little Boat - 1884-Albert Edelfelt -Finnish, 1854-1905

-Little Boat – 1884-Albert Edelfelt -Finnish, 1854-1905

22-milk-lake2

milk-lake

23-My garden in summertime

-My garden in summertime

24-Paul Hedley

-Paul Hedley

25-quaiside-cafe-3DC-web-1

quaiside-cafe-

26-Time with Dad by Steve Hanks

Time with Dad by Steve Hanks

27-Vladimir Volegov - lovely morning

Vladimir Volegov – lovely morning

28-Vladimir Volegov cooling her feet

-Vladimir Volegov cooling her feet

29-Vladimir Volegov

Vladimir Volegov

30-Monika Luniak

Monika Luniak

 

Fin

 

With Lips Gone, Teeth are exposed to Cold

With Lips Gone, Teeth are exposed to Cold

(From: Spring and Autumn Annals)

 Re-written by BoSt

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Long ago, Duke Xian of the state of Jin wished to expand his realm and power; the Duke hence, bade Xun Xi to launch an expedition against the powerful State of Guo. The great distance however was of some concern and the campaign’s success depended on traversing the State of Yu. At the time there was a tentative alliance with Yu so Duke Xian asked Xun Xi for his counsel on this matter.

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“In order to secure Duke Yu’s promise to let our army pass …. Hmm…” Xun Xi remained hesitant for a moment, before resuming, “The surest way My Lord, would be to present Duke Yu with our Chuji Jade and good number of Quchan steeds.”

(Note: Xhuji in Xhanxi Province was famous at the time for producing excellent jade stones and Quxhan in Shanxi Province was renowned for its fine breed of horses.)

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“Is there no other way?” The Duke Xian was displeased with the suggestion. “The stone is an inherited treasure and should remain so for the next generations. And the idea of losing my steeds to that loathsome, pompous Lord is quite unacceptable. “Duke Xian grumbled, “Perchance, what if Duke Yu accepted our gift but refused our request, what then?”

Xun Xi braved Lord’s fury with this quick riposte: “Well my Lord, if Lord Yu refuses the fine gifts, we can be certain of his veiled hostility and look elsewhere for the safe passage. If however, his Lordship does accept it, we’d only be allowing his Lordship temporary custody of the treasures. What is there to be worried about?”

Duke Xian nodded with approval and soon after sent Xun Xi to the State of Yu to negotiate the army’s safe passage.  

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Xun Xi was quick to gain admittance to the Yu court.  He presented a splendid figure in his fineries holding the large precious stone before him.  Many courtiers gasped witnessing the magnificent steeds that were corralled into the courtyard, dazzling everyone. 

Duke Yu greedy for the fine gifts, was about to make the emissary of Jin Xun Xi a rash promise when one of his loyal subjects, Gong Ziyi, came forward to protest: “My Lord, I beg a private council with you, if you please.”

“What, now?” Duke Yu was annoyed.

“How preposterous an intrusion! Has propriety and good sense left Gong Ziyi” Many courtiers grumbled under their breath.

Nevertheless Guo Ziyi was a well respected, loyal minister and Lord Yu was bit intrigued. He signalled Guo to advance and gave him permission to speak his mind.

Guo Ziyi was most direct. “There shall be no promise of any kind, your Grace.” His strong, resounding voice simply ripped through the stone cold silence that had enveloped the court.

“What Yu is to Guo is like gums to the cheeks. Gums are closely related to cheeks and cheeks to gums; which is exactly the present situation of Yu in relation to Guo. As the old ancestral saying goes, ‘If the lips are gone, the teeth will be exposed to cold.’  The fact that Guo is able to exist depends on Yu while Yu’s ability to survive hinges on Guo.  This inter-dependency will be jeopardized, if we make way for Jin army, allowing Guo to perish.  Their demise will transpire in the morning to be followed by Yu in the evening.”

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Guo again spoke in good strong voice: “Why should we ever let Jin pass?  Why seek a small gain, only to harm vital interests?”

Duke Yu, however refused to listen to reason and, blinded by greed, in the end still gave the Jin army convenient access to Guo.

Thus Xun Xi attacked Guo and conquered it, and on the way back attacked Yu and conquered it too.

Xun Xi then triumphantly returned to Jin. The jade and the horses were once again restored to Duke Xian who, greatly pleased, said in good humor: “The jade remains the same, but he horses have got some more teeth!”

06-Charge-800-Final-Colorized_Painting

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What’s maturity

What’s maturity

(Definition provided by Buddhist Lamas)

The Twelve steps of maturity

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