Tag Archives: Buddha

Phra Buddha Palilai

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Phra Buddha Palilai, Wat Pho – Bangkok Thailand

Canon 6D, F9, 1/40 sec, ISO 1250, handheld

This scene really interested us when we saw it. Out minds again explored the link between Hinduism and Buddhism. We wondered why the monkey and elephant were kneeling in front of the Buddha. I know one person (Nirun) that will either already know the answer or who will explore this link:http://www.watpho.com/buddha.php?id=5&lang=en

Hazrath Soofie Saheb RA Mosque at 45th Cutting Durban

“Pleasure is always derived from something outside you, whereas joy arises from within” ~ Eckhart Tolle

“All paths are one” sits very well with me as far as religion and spiritual paths go, although The Buddha does have a special place in my heart. NB: He might not be that smiling overweight chap that you see on people’s mantelpieces 😉.

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I see the Hazrath Soofie Saheb RA Mosque at 45th Cutting Durban every time I leave home and return. At set times Adhan (the Islamic call to prayer) solemnly drifts across the valley; enhancing the peaceful feeling already apparent in the area.

See previous post of same Mosque via this link.

Happy birthday Mom

Dear Mom,

I have just spent the last three hours preparing your birthday presents. They are photos of the Grand Bazaar and a look across Sultan Ahmet Park in Fetih, Istanbul.

The photo of the park, shown first, was not an easy exercise. I had to wake up before sunrise, run a kilometre to the edge of the park, set-up the tripod, change the camera settings and then shoot.

A pack of semi-wild dogs were running around madly and my only companion in the whole park was a Japanese photographer about 300 metres away.

My HDR photography blending skills are much better than when you saw me trying so hard at the hospital but failing so brilliantly. However, I still seem to pick up the usual defects although Photoshop does help somewhat.

1And8more_tonemapped.tif “Margaret Rose Harvard, You carried me for months and then brought me kicking into this world, tenderly held my screaming face and wiped the little sweet tears.

Fed my hungry and drooling mouth, and provided that first bright red toy. Fetched me from school, took me home to a healthy meal and warm cosy bed. We had little to begin but worked our way up.

You enriched my relationships with others and kept me on the straight and narrow at times, but allowed me to learn much needed hard lessons to grow. You led by example and so many things suffered by you were later encountered by me, your loving son; I was thus armed and ready to face them. My beautiful mother had shown me how: she had suffered for me.

When death for you was a certainty, you gave the final lesson of thousands whilst on this earth. You never ever gave up but did rest at times. You confounded your critics and disarmed them completely. You looked death in the eyes with strength and challenged it.

Then, knowing for sure that the time had come, you embraced death with great confidence and surety. If any person has ever departed this world in such an elegant and composed manner, then it is you. The single tear you shed before your final breath was surely the frustration that you had not done just that little bit more to help the many people you had always so unselfishly served; for you truly lived your life fully in the last few years and given so much of yourself.

You used your abilities so well that it was often to your detriment. That tear no doubt also carried the worry that your loved ones would not cope fully without you being there.

However, you certainly ensured in the last months that your son at least was in safe hands.

To say you are one in a million is an injustice; you are truly unique and a guiding beacon of hope and unconditional love to all living beings.

I have taken your last advice, and I speak to you more now than before. That quiet place at the bottom of the garden, as you said it would be, is serene and a wonderful place for us to catch-up and laugh about the days gone by. This will always be ours and will never weaken or diminish.

You have taught and prepared your son so well, and he will keep on passing your love and wisdom around.

You were and always are right!

Happy birthday, your loving son, always” ~ Andy

grand bazaar

Tribute to a loving warrior 2

Another tribute to my mother, a loving warrior, following a previous post. She continues to care for the animals she so loves. This commemorative plaque is at Kloof SPCA, kennel 54.

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Tribute to a loving warrior

A tribute to my mother, a loving warrior, below:

“Margaret Rose Harvard, You carried me for months and then brought me kicking into this world, tenderly held my screaming face and wiped the little sweet tears.

Fed my hungry and drooling mouth, and provided that first bright red toy. Fetched me from school, took me home to a healthy meal and warm cosy bed. We had little to begin but worked our way up.

You enriched my relationships with others and kept me on the straight and narrow at times, but allowed me to learn much needed hard lessons to grow. You led by example and so many things suffered by you were later encountered by me, your loving son; I was thus armed and ready to face them. My beautiful mother had shown me how: she had suffered for me.

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When death for you was a certainty, you gave the final lesson of thousands whilst on this earth. You never ever gave up but did rest at times. You confounded your critics and disarmed them completely. You looked death in the eyes with strength and challenged it.

Then, knowing for sure that the time had come, you embraced death with great confidence and surety. If any person has ever departed this world in such an elegant and composed manner, then it is you. The single tear you shed before your final breath was surely the frustration that you had not done just that little bit more to help the many people you had always so unselfishly served; for you truly lived your life fully in the last few years and given so much of yourself.

You used your abilities so well that it was often to your detriment. That tear no doubt also carried the worry that your loved ones would not cope fully without you being there.

However, you certainly ensured in the last months that your son at least was in safe hands.

To say you are one in a million is an injustice; you are truly unique and a guiding beacon of hope and unconditional love to all living beings.

I have taken your last advice, and I speak to you more now than before. That quiet place at the bottom of the garden, as you said it would be, is serene and a wonderful place for us to catch-up and laugh about the days gone by. This will always be ours and will never weaken or diminish.

You have taught and prepared your son so well, and he will keep on passing your love and wisdom around.

You were and always are right!

Happy Mother’s day, your loving son always” ~ Andy

A Mother’s Love

“A mother’s love for her child is like nothing else in the world. It knows no law, no pity. It dares all things and crushes down remorselessly all that stands in its path” ~ Agatha Christie, The Hound of Death

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Cats, dogs and other animals were loved in the same way.

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Margaret Harvard 3 August 1949 – 6 February 2013

A loving warrior lays to rest for a while

“Death is nothing at all. It does not count. I have only slipped away into the next room. Nothing has happened.

Everything remains exactly as it was. I am I, and you are you, and the old life that we lived so fondly together is untouched, unchanged. Whatever we were to each other, that we are still.

Call me by the old familiar name. Speak of me in the easy way which you always used. Put no difference into your tone. Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow. Laugh as we always laughed at the little jokes that we enjoyed together. Play, smile, think of me, pray for me. Let my name be ever the household word that it always was. Let it be spoken without an effort, without the ghost of a shadow upon it.

Life means all that it ever meant. It is the same as it ever was. There is absolute and unbroken continuity. What is this death but a negligible accident? Why should I be out of mind because I am out of sight? I am but waiting for you, for an interval, somewhere very near, just round the corner.

All is well. Nothing is hurt; nothing is lost. One brief moment and all will be as it was before. How we shall laugh at the trouble of parting when we meet again!”

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Margaret Harvard 3 August 1949 – 6 February 2013

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God is Greatest 2

This is a follow-on of my previous post “God is Greatest 1 which featured photos of the Hazrath Soofie Saheb RA Mosque at 45th Cutting Sherwood Durban.

A post and photos of the Umgeni Road Temple (Sri Vaithianatha Easvarar Alayam) followed.

Over the past few weekends I have visited a few other places of worship.

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Kendra Hall

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Grey Street Mosque

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St Anthony’s

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Clairwood Siva Soobramaniar Temple

To end off, I would like to share a quote I noticed on Andrew Vokes’ blog last night:

He that cannot forgive others breaks the bridge over which he must pass himself; for every man has need to be forgiven” ~ Thomas Fuller

I also found the following quote on Andrew’s Facebook page:

Everyone is a moon, and has a dark side which he never shows to anybody” ~ Mark Twain

This got me thinking of Lance Armstrong once again; in that he, like most (all) of us, has a dark side.

I also read another article about David Walsh, the journalist who hounded Lance Armstrong about doping for 13 years.

As much as I admire Lance’s courage in certain areas of his life, I have to give David full-score and a huge pat on the back for pursuing what he believed to be true and never giving up – his relentlessness being rewarded in the end.

Both heroes but on opposite sides?

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 Mohammedeya Musjid

God is Greatest

I have been very fortunate to experience a number of spiritual paths in this lifetime.

“All paths are one” sits very well with me although I have been more drawn to Buddha. Click here if you think he is that smiling overweight chap that you see on people’s mantelpieces.

I see the Hazrath Soofie Saheb RA Mosque at 45th Cutting Sherwood Durban every time I leave home and return.

Adhan (the Islamic call to prayer – listen here) solemnly drifts across our valley; enhancing the peaceful feeling in this area.

The Soofie Saheb website reveals the following about the arrival of Hazrath Soofie Saheb RA in Durban, South Africa:

“It was a normal morning in the winter of 1895 when a ship S.S Hoosen, docked at the Durban Harbour. On board was a person, simple in dress in a yellow garb and a cloth hat.

As he stood on the deck of the ship looking at the people on the wharf to welcome their respective relatives and friends, little did the people realise that he was to make such a great impact in their life-style, to make them God-fearing and to bring about spiritual, mental and social upliftment, and an enhancement in the quality of their lives.

His was a name that, with the Grace of Almighty Allah, will till Eternity, remain on the lips of the people, a name that will remind future generations of his selfless sacrifice for the Deen of Islam and for the general upliftment of the masses in South Africa.

Custom formalities being over, the passengers now disembarked and on the wharfside, relatives embraced, hugged and met each other. Some were helping the passengers with their heavy luggage, tin trunks and suitcases along the gangway from the ship, others were stacking the luggage on the horse wagon on the wharf, while some were being driven away by their relatives and friends.

Looking at the scene as he came down the gangway, this humble son of Islam, with a walking stick in one hand and a small cloth-covered bundle in the other (in it were his spare koortha, loongie, singlet, miswak, towel, a Quraan, a tasbih and a book with various wazifas) carefully stepped on to soil of Southern Africa with confidence knowing that the blessings of Allah and his Pir are with him.

As he walked he greeted the people, some returned his greetings while others just stared at him curiously. No one offered to give him a lift into town or even ask him whether he had a place to stay. Hazrath Soofie Saheb RA made his way to the Jumah Musjid which was then a very simple building in Grey Street.”

It is interesting to read the tale of how the first Mosque came about at Riverside.

Given all of this, it was set in stone that I had to take a few photos of the 45th Cutting Mosque to share with some of my Muslim friends:  Allāhu Akbar (God is Greatest).

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The Buddhist Retreat Centre & Pathways in Life

In or around 2005 I first encountered the teachings of Buddha and attended regular teachings for the next two years.

I left that particular path or tradition and it was during May 2007, over a certain weekend, that I “somehow” found myself  “involved” at another tradition: Buddhist Retreat Centre (BRC) in Ixopo, South Africa.

On the Saturday evening of that weekend, sitting alone next to a glowing fireplace, I read a short biography of Mother Theresa and it really touched my heart.

The photos below were taken that weekend using a Canon Ixus.

A few years later I sat in silence a few metres from Mother Teresa’s tomb in Kolkata, India and visited her home for the sick and dying.

There are no “some-hows” – only pathways; cause and effect (Karma) in action.

None of the happenings above were “random”. They all came about through paths I had taken and numerous causes that had arisen.

Buddha gave advice on the The Noble Eight-fold Path listed below:

1. Right view
2. Right intention
3. Right speech
4. Right action
5. Right livelihood
6. Right effort
7. Right mindfulness
8. Right concentration

There seem to be lots of paths in and around the BRC now that I study the photos nearly six years later

Below there are approximately Eight Paths and some other views of interest.

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