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Tuesday, June 19, 2018

My Neighborhood Walk





A few weeks ago, I posted about unusual coincidences related to seeing things clearly. On my daily two-mile walk through our neighborhood, I found eye drops, bottled tears and reading glasses on three different occasions. One of the funnier comments received on my blog, suggested the neighborhood might not be as tidy as I may have thought. Since I don’t see anything out of the ordinary, I figured I’d post some pictures of our walk and let my followers see firsthand.  (We also have a homeowner’s association that comes down on anyone wanting to be sloppy.)

Walking inspires me in so many ways. 
This may not look steep but it's a huffing and
 puffing grade on the way home.
When it's chilly I jog down hill.
I see things I’ve never seen, almost every time. I meet neighbors, breathe fresh air and notice patterns in nature. I frequently see lizards, rabbits and squirrels. From our home, we can walk to a  grocery store, hair salon, dentist and dangerously delicious places such as: donut shops, pizza parlors, taco or burger joints  and gourmet restaurants serving local wine and craft beers. (Walking is a wonderful way to drink without driving. But I have heard that texting and walking can be hazardous, so be careful.)

Walking has many benefits, most importantly, exercise. 
 Did I mention flowering trees, blossoming hedges, daffodils, tulips, lilies and roses? Climbing vines, clematis and bougainvillea? This is the best time of year for observing the colors of nature and if you're  a photographer, grab that camera and zoom in, before the heat of summer takes some of the pizzazz away. (If you are allergic to pollen there are many over the counter allergy medications that can help you cope.) 
Learn
If you're a writer, stop imagining the rose petals and how they curve around each other when you can see them with your eyes.  The clouds, the weather, the chill in the air. Later, your prose and poetry will benefit from the experience. 

The point is to put down the tablet, computer game and maybe your Smart phone and forget about technology for part of an hour. It will recharge your cells, your thoughts will sharpen and the ideas might flow. Try it and observe. Justify the walk. What did you see that you haven't seen before? What made the walk unique? 

Take your dog. 
Did I mention our pups Pinky and Fiona enjoy walking too? In fact, they LOVE it.  

Oh, and we live about five miles from a large body of water called Lake Elsinore, thus explaining the cute visitor in the photo below.

                                         It's a glorious time of year for walking.
                                               I hope you can get outside soon. 

Right on our street!
  
Have I inspired you to take a walk?

Monday, June 4, 2018

The Oldest Book in the World


“The gold in one’s heart is far more precious than the gold in one’s purse.” --Confucius

While doing research on fortune cookies, good luck and fate for my upcoming novel, I came across some interesting tidbits about the I Ching. First, I learned it’s the most influential book in China. Most families have a copy of the revered book of wisdom because they feel it brings them good health and prosperity.

The I Ching, also called “The Book of Changes”can be traced back as far as 7,000 B.C. when a sage by the name of Fuxi (please don’t try pronouncing his name if you’re in an office full of people.) had many lessons to share about fishing, hunting and marriage. He began to use mystic symbols that represented positive and negative situations with long and short bars called yang and yin. He devised something called a Pa Kua which later evolved into a group of 64, six-line figures called Hexagrams.
The most fascinating part of all of this is two-fold: Not only is the I Ching the oldest book in the world, but the binary system using those ancient hexagrams is the basis of modern electronic computing.  



Oracle bones predate recorded history
After carving a story, they would put it into the fire.
The cracks were the messages from the past.
(Wikipedia-Creative Commons)

While I wish I understood the numerical breakdown and the practical applications that even attracted famous minds, such as the Swiss psychologist C. G. Jung and Swedish physicist Niels Bohr, I am in awe of the collective opinions of experts who admit the predictions seem divine and above human understanding.

In my humble opinion, the mathematical sequences and patterns are repetitive, in the same way, that history repeats itself. Do you think we can find our own luck by studying our past?

“The answer you seek is within you, but it may be hard to find.” --Confucius