Blog Posts

King Solomon’s Bird Hoopoe

Dear hoopoe, welcome! You will be our guide It was on you King Solomon relied To carry secret messages between His court and distant Sheba’s lovely queen (distichs 617-618) King Solomon had the gift of speaking the language of the birds and  other animals all of which would gather in his court and make speeches. One day, “the hoopoe or hudhud among the birds had the privilege to carry the letter from the holy King Solomon to the pagan Queen of Sheba and her benighted people, to lead them all out of spiritual darkness and to bring them to the

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The Book of Life

“Between the stimulus and response, there is a space and in that space lies our freedom and power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.” – Victor Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning Having been in the concentration camp during World War II, Viktor Frankl, in his search for an answer to “What makes a person human?” wrote the following : “ The question to ask is what life expects from us not what we expect from life. ” In his view, the answer does not lie in theories on life or meditative thoughts; rather it

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The Invisible Face of Love: Layla and Majnun continued

“ Love is greater than madness. “ Layla and Majnun, one of the best love stories that touches the heart, starts with the preface of Zia Inayat Khan[i]: Love is “divine madness” for Plato and “it is greater than madness” for Majnun. To the Sufis, Majnun represents the perfect devotee of the “Religion of the Heart”. In the fervour of his passion they discern a semblance of the Qur’anic maxim, “the faithful are ardent in their love for Allah” (2:165). Ardor in love became “ishq” in the parlance of Hallaj (d.922), who was crucified for uttering “I am the truth” —just

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Fireflies, Light-headed Excitements and Passions of the Soul According to Descartes

Here is my description of a moment of happiness particular to this month: In the quiet of a warm summer night, filled with the scent of linden flowers and the chirping sound of sparrows in their cozy corners; when all the colors, fragrances and the sounds of nature are settled to greet the evening, the fireflies suddenly emerged through the darkness and started their magical light dance in the garden. As the whole space whirled with the enchanting sparkles of light, one would just stand still to watch in exhilaration. A moment of supernatural beauty for the eye and of

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After Death

People like to wonder, and this is the kernel of science.                                                      Ralph Waldo Emerson   During the second World War, Karl Skala and his comrade, caught under artillery fire, take refuge in a fox inn. Skala’s friend gets hit and dies there whereas Skala, gets heavily wounded. He feels as if they are both rising up high in the sky, and find themselves looking at the battlefield below. Feeling the weight of his friend’s

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A State of Love

  The lover, madly in love cannot think of anything else but his love. All his thoughts and dreams are about the beloved. In the mirror, he sees himself through the eyes of his lover. Fantasizes about what she may be doing or whether if she thinking about him…he goes to sleep thinking about her, wakes up with an image of her. Wherever he goes, he is intoxicated with this love, all else fades away. At times, he laughs or he sighs turning his gaze to a point far ahead. The states of love – as we recognize are plenty,

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Charter for Compassion

Karen Armstrong Over the last decade compassion has become a major research area in psychology and cognitive neuroscience. It is defined as feeling for the ot.her and being ready to help her/him cease the pain. It is an affective state such that it instinctually motivates us to help the one in need. We react as if compassion is part of our nature. Neuroscientists say yes! It is in our nature, and the neurons are readily wired for the compassionate archetype. However, the individual differences measured on the scale of compassionate behavior are explained by how much it is cultivated in

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Dancing Universe

  Marcelo Gleiser, professor of physics, describes physics as follows in the introduction of his book Dancing Universe: Physics is a game played with nature. Then he states the following quote from Richard Feynman: Imagine that the world is something like a great chess game being played by the gods, and we are observers of the game. We do not know what the rules of the game are; all we are allowed to do is to watch the playing. Of course, if we watch long enough, we may eventually catch on to a few rules. The rules of the game

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Happiness

How to be happy? Where? With whom? When do we get happy? The question is asked as long as we are alive. We do evaluations and measurements of our happiness; then we may occasionally reach a conclusion : somewhat happy, sometimes happy, more or less happy, in the past or present, or will be in the future… We remember the last time we were happy, or it happens that we fantasize a possible future happiness. Sometimes we measure with what we have, sometimes we measure it as an extent of our expectations being fulfilled or just obtaining what we desire.

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Bhagavad Gita

A sacred Indian myth, dates back to hundred or according to some, 3000 years before Christ. It contains the essence of the eastern philosophy and mystical thought; considered as a masterpiece above all Indian doctrines. It basically consists of dialogues between Prince Arcuna who has to battle against his relatives for the sake of justice and the God Krishna who is the charioteer. Arcuna does not want to make war, whereas Krishna advises him that his soul and its comprehension will only be enhanced by taking action. He who acts and does his job in a good way will not

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