Tag Archives: nature

University of Birmingham study: Neighborhood wellbeing and a sense of community is at the heart of a good home, say researchers

17 Mar

Jyoti Madhusoodanan and Nature magazine reported in the Scientific American article, Stress Alters Children’s Genomes:

Growing up in a stressful social environment leaves lasting marks on young chromosomes, a study of African American boys has revealed. Telomeres, repetitive DNA sequences that protect the ends of chromosomes from fraying over time, are shorter in children from poor and unstable homes than in children from more nurturing families…
http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/stress-alters-childrens-genomes/?WT.mc_id=SA_Facebook

Not only are the child’s gene’s altered, but there are behavioral indications of the stress being felt by the child.

Will Huntsberry of NPR wrote in the article, Kids’ Drawings Speak Volumes About Home:

When children reach 6 years old, their drawings matter.
Not because of those purple unicorns or pinstripe dragons but because of how kids sketch themselves and the very real people in their lives.
In a new study, researchers found that children who experienced chaos at home — including high levels of noise, excessive crowding, clutter and lack of structure — were more likely to draw themselves at a distance from their parents or much smaller in size relative to other figures.
In some cases, these kids drew themselves with drooping arms and indifferent or sad faces.
Their drawings were a reflection of this simple fact: Chaos at home meant parents were interacting with them less and, in many cases, the interactions that were happening were shorter and interrupted.
As a result, kids ended up with a depreciated sense of self, says Roger Mills-Koonce, who led the study with Bharathi Zvara at UNC-Chapel Hill. To be clear, Mills-Koonce did not blame parents or caretakers but called this kind of stress in the home a “function of poverty….” http://www.npr.org/blogs/ed/2014/12/08/368693069/kids-drawings-speak-volumes-about-home

This comment is not politically correct. If you want politically correct, stop reading. Children, especially boys, need positive male role models. They don’t need another “uncle” or “fiancée” who when the chips are down cashes out. By the way, what is the new definition of “fiancée?” Is that someone who is rented for an indefinite term to introduce the kids from your last “fiancée” to? Back in the day, “fiancée” meant one was engaged to be married, got married and then had kids. Nowadays, it means some one who hangs around for an indeterminate period of time and who may or may not formalize a relationship with baby mama. Kids don’t need someone in their lives who has as a relationship strategy only dating women with children because they are available and probably desperate. What children, especially boys, need are men who are consistently there for them, who model good behavior and values, and who consistently care for loved ones. They don’t need men who have checked out of building relationships and those who are nothing more than sperm donors.

Science Daily reported in Neighborhood wellbeing and a sense of community is at the heart of a good home, say researchers:

A sense of wellbeing and a thriving community is key to a happy neighbourhood according to housing researchers, who looked at the relationship between the experience of the home and wellbeing.
The study led by the Centre on Household Assets and Savings Management based at the Universities of Birmingham and Manchester and funded by VIVID homes, examined a mix of social renters compared to, shared owners and owner-occupiers.
Building on initial findings published in winter 2017, the full research report ‘Homes & Wellbeing – breaking down housing stereotypes’ suggests that social housing plays a positive role in protecting people from anxiety.
Interviewing different types of tenants, including owner occupiers and social renters, the researchers found that what really mattered was feeling secure and having a degree of control over their home. In comparison, other aspirations such as climbing onto the housing ladder featured as less of a priority.
Dr James Gregory, Centre on Household Assets and Savings Management, University of Birmingham said: ‘We have consistently found that, no matter what the tenure or ownership status of a person’s home, one of the most significant features of a good home is a sense of security and confidence that you can ‘get away from it all’ at home. Good neighbours, good design and good management are all as important for wellbeing as a person’s tenure or tenancy.’
Other factors found to affect well-being included financial pressures such as debt and the stress of raising children, with the view that housing was a vital part of the wellbeing story, but should be understood in a wider setting.
Based on their findings the researchers made key recommendations:
· Social housing should be seen as a policy tool for addressing the housing needs of more than just the most vulnerable;
· A wider social housing offer may actually be better for their wellbeing, providing the emotional security and stability that is one of the key drivers of the apparent aspiration to own a home;
· The report points to a need to look at how the social housing sector could deliver a step-change in the supply of social housing… https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/03/180316101018.htm

Citation:

Neighborhood wellbeing and a sense of community is at the heart of a good home, say researchers
Date: March 16, 2018
Source: University of Birmingham
Summary:
A sense of wellbeing and a thriving community is key to a happy neighborhood according to housing researchers, who looked at the relationship between the experience of the home and well-being.

University of Birmingham. “Neighborhood wellbeing and a sense of community is at the heart of a good home, say researchers.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 March 2018. .

Here is the press release from the University of Birmingham:

Neighbourhood wellbeing and a sense of community is at the heart of a good home, say researchers
Posted on 16 Mar 2018
A sense of wellbeing and a thriving community is key to a happy neighbourhood according to housing researchers, who looked at the relationship between the experience of the home and wellbeing.
The study led by the Centre on Household Assets and Savings Management based at the Universities of Birmingham and Manchester and funded by VIVID homes, examined a mix of social renters compared to, shared owners and owner occupiers.
Building on initial findings published in winter 2017, the full research report ‘Homes & Wellbeing – breaking down housing stereotypes’ suggests that social housing plays a positive role in protecting people from anxiety.
Interviewing different types of tenants, including owner occupiers and social renters, the researchers found that what really mattered was feeling secure and having a degree of control over their home. In comparison other aspirations such as climbing onto the housing ladder featured as less of a priority.
Dr James Gregory, Centre on Household Assets and Savings Management, University of Birmingham said: ‘We have consistently found that, no matter what the tenure or ownership status of a person’s home, one of the most significant features of a good home is a sense of security and confidence that you can ‘get away from it all’ at home. Good neighbours, good design and good management are all as important for wellbeing as a person’s tenure or tenancy.’
Other factors found to affect well-being included financial pressures such as debt and the stress of raising children, with the view that housing was a vital part of the wellbeing story, but should be understood in a wider setting.
Based on their findings the researchers made key recommendations:
• Social housing should be seen as a policy tool for addressing the housing needs of more than just the most vulnerable;
• A wider social housing offer may actually be better for their wellbeing, providing the emotional security and stability that is one of the key drivers of the apparent aspiration to own a home;
• The report points to a need to look at how the social housing sector could deliver a step-change in the supply of social housing.
Professor Andy Lymer, Centre on Household Assets and Savings Management, University of Birmingham, explained: ‘There’s an affordability crisis in the housing system and financial challenges are driven by government policy (the loss of grant and changes to how developers can discharge their Section 106 obligations), as well as the cost of land in the ever-rising housing market.
‘But, it’s more vital than ever that housing associations shape the future delivery for the wellbeing of its customers and society as a whole.’
Mark Perry, Chief Executive of VIVID said: ‘We’re dedicated to building more homes, while looking after the wellbeing of our customers.
‘Our research shows that the most crucial part of the home, is the social fabric of the neighbourhood in which it’s embedded. The social value of tenure mix and giving people the opportunities to interact with each other, all reduce neighbourhood tension. Build quality also comes hand in hand with this; ensuring we have well built homes that help give security as well as allow for the development of a community is clearly very important.
‘We need to think harder about how we build new homes and neighbourhoods, and create the right environment for communities to thrive. It’s important we get it right, to make sure everyone has the best chance in life.’
ENDS

For interview enquiries, please contact Rebecca Hume, Communications Manager, University of Birmingham on +44 (0)121 414 9041.
For out of hours media enquiries, please call: +44 (0) 7789 921 165
Notes to editors
• The full report can be found online here
• The University of Birmingham is ranked among the world’s top 100 institutions. Its work brings people from across the world to Birmingham, including researchers, teachers and more than 5,000 international students from over 150 countries.
• The Centre for Household Assets and Savings Management (CHASM) is based jointly in the School of Social Policy and the Birmingham Business School within the College of Social Sciences. CHASM forms part of the University of Birmingham’s £60 million ‘Circles of Influence’ campaign.
• Vivd Homes is Hampshire’s largest provider of affordable homes with around 70,000 customers and 30,000 homes in the South East, mainly across Hampshire and Surrey. Vivid have around 800 staff including our repairs team and our own construction arm, VIVID Build. https://www.birmingham.ac.uk/news/latest/2018/03/neighbourhood-wellbeing-and-a-sense-of-community-at-the-heart-of-a-good-home.aspx

Moi blogs about education issues so the reader could be perplexed sometimes because moi often writes about other things like nutrition, families, and personal responsibility issues. Why? The reader might ask? Children will have the most success in school if they are ready to learn. Ready to learn includes proper nutrition for a healthy body and the optimum situation for children is a healthy family. Many of society’s problems would be lessened if the goal was a healthy child in a healthy family. There is a lot of economic stress in the country now because of unemployment and underemployment. Children feel the stress of their parents and they worry about how stable their family and living situation is.
The best way to eliminate poverty is job creation, job growth, and job retention. The Asian Development Bank has the best concise synopsis of the link between education and poverty in Assessing Development Impact: Breaking the Cycle of Poverty Through Education http://www.adb.org/documents/assessing-development-impact-breaking-cycle-poverty-through-education There will not be a good quality of life for most citizens without a strong education system. One of the major contributors to poverty in third world nations is limited access to education opportunities. Without continued sustained investment in education, we are the next third world country. See, http://education.stateuniversity.com/pages/2330/Poverty-Education.html

Our goal as a society should be:

A healthy child in a healthy family who attends a healthy school in a healthy neighborhood ©

Where information leads to Hope. © Dr. Wilda.com

Dr. Wilda says this about that ©

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Creative people march to the tune of their own drum

6 Mar

Here’s today’s COMMENT FROM AN OLD FART: The question moi has been pondering lately is whether society can educate mass numbers of students giving them a foundation in basic knowledge without stifling creativity?
One of the most popular personality typing instruments is the Myers-Briggs Assessment. It list 16 personality types. See, High-Level Description of the Sixteen Personality Types https://www.personalitypage.com/high-level.html Flowing through several of the types is the trait of creativity, although most people can be creative.

Carolyn Gregoire wrote in the Huffington Post article, 18 Things Highly Creative People Do Differently:

While there’s no “typical” creative type, there are some tell-tale characteristics and behaviors of highly creative people. Here are 18 things they do differently.
They daydream.
Creative types know, despite what their third-grade teachers may have said, that daydreaming is anything but a waste of time….
Although daydreaming may seem mindless, a 2012 study suggested it could actually involve a highly engaged brain state — daydreaming can lead to sudden connections and insights because it’s related to our ability to recall information in the face of distractions. Neuroscientists have also found that daydreaming involves the same brain processes associated with imagination and creativity.
They observe everything.
The world is a creative person’s oyster — they see possibilities everywhere and are constantly taking in information that becomes fodder for creative expression. As Henry James is widely quoted, a writer is someone on whom “nothing is lost….”
They work the hours that work for them.
Many great artists have said that they do their best work either very early in the morning or late at night. Vladimir Nabokov started writing immediately after he woke up at 6 or 7 a.m., and Frank Lloyd Wright made a practice of waking up at 3 or 4 a.m. and working for several hours before heading back to bed. No matter when it is, individuals with high creative output will often figure out what time it is that their minds start firing up, and structure their days accordingly.
They take time for solitude.
“In order to be open to creativity, one must have the capacity for constructive use of solitude. One must overcome the fear of being alone,” wrote the American existential psychologist Rollo May….
They turn life’s obstacles around.
Many of the most iconic stories and songs of all time have been inspired by gut-wrenching pain and heartbreak — and the silver lining of these challenges is that they may have been the catalyst to create great art. An emerging field of psychology called post-traumatic growth is suggesting that many people are able to use their hardships and early-life trauma for substantial creative growth. Specifically, researchers have found that trauma can help people to grow in the areas of interpersonal relationships, spirituality, appreciation of life, personal strength, and — most importantly for creativity — seeing new possibilities in life….
They seek out new experiences.
Creative people love to expose themselves to new experiences, sensations and states of mind — and this openness is a significant predictor of creative output…
They “fail up.”
Resilience is practically a prerequisite for creative success, says Kaufman. Doing creative work is often described as a process of failing repeatedly until you find something that sticks, and creatives — at least the successful ones — learn not to take failure so personally….
They ask the big questions.
Creative people are insatiably curious — they generally opt to live the examined life, and even as they get older, maintain a sense of curiosity about life. Whether through intense conversation or solitary mind-wandering, creatives look at the world around them and want to know why, and how, it is the way it is.
They people-watch.
Observant by nature and curious about the lives of others, creative types often love to people-watch — and they may generate some of their best ideas from it….
They take risks.
Part of doing creative work is taking risks, and many creative types thrive off of taking risks in various aspects of their lives….
They view all of life as an opportunity for self-expression.
Nietzsche believed that one’s life and the world should be viewed as a work of art. Creative types may be more likely to see the world this way, and to constantly seek opportunities for self-expression in everyday life….
They follow their true passions.
Creative people tend to be intrinsically motivated — meaning that they’re motivated to act from some internal desire, rather than a desire for external reward or recognition. Psychologists have shown that creative people are energized by challenging activities, a sign of intrinsic motivation, and the research suggests that simply thinking of intrinsic reasons to perform an activity may be enough to boost creativity….
They get out of their own heads.
Kaufman argues that another purpose of daydreaming is to help us to get out of our own limited perspective and explore other ways of thinking, which can be an important asset to creative work….
They lose track of the time.
Creative types may find that when they’re writing, dancing, painting or expressing themselves in another way, they get “in the zone,” or what’s known as a flow state, which can help them to create at their highest level. Flow is a mental state when an individual transcends conscious thought to reach a heightened state of effortless concentration and calmness. When someone is in this state, they’re practically immune to any internal or external pressures and distractions that could hinder their performance….
They surround themselves with beauty.
Creatives tend to have excellent taste, and as a result, they enjoy being surrounded by beauty….
They connect the dots.
If there’s one thing that distinguishes highly creative people from others, it’s the ability to see possibilities where other don’t — or, in other words, vision. Many great artists and writers have said that creativity is simply the ability to connect the dots that others might never think to connect….
They constantly shake things up.
Diversity of experience, more than anything else, is critical to creativity, says Kaufman. Creatives like to shake things up, experience new things, and avoid anything that makes life more monotonous or mundane…
They make time for mindfulness.
Creative types understand the value of a clear and focused mind — because their work depends on it. Many artists, entrepreneurs, writers and other creative workers, such as David Lynch, have turned to meditation as a tool for tapping into their most creative state of mind….
And science backs up the idea that mindfulness really can boost your brain power in a number of ways. A 2012 Dutch study suggested that certain meditation techniques can promote creative thinking. And mindfulness practices have been linked with improved memory and focus, better emotional well-being, reduced stress and anxiety, and improved mental clarity — all of which can lead to better creative thought. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/03/04/creativity-habits_n_4859769.html?utm_hp_ref=mostpopular

Carmine Gallo of Forbes wrote an interesting article about Steve Jobs.

In Why Larry Ellison Calls Steve Jobs Another Picasso And What It Teaches Us About Creativity, Gallo wrote:

Picasso and Jobs. The comparison fits because both inventors teach us that innovation requires creativity and creativity requires a mind open to new experiences, the courage to take risks, and a burning desire to challenge the status quo…. http://www.forbes.com/sites/carminegallo/2013/09/16/why-larry-ellison-calls-steve-jobs-another-picasso-and-what-it-teaches-us-about-creativity/

Education should encourage more, not less creativity.

The Vinci blog’s interview with George Forman, Professor Emeritus UMass gives one much to ponder:

Q: How Can Teachers Identify A Great Technology Program to Support Student’s Creative Thinking?
A: Watch your children interact with technology. Do not judge based on newspaper headlines alone. Bear witness to what children are learning. Then, if you think they are not thinking, and are locked into repetitive games, or digest content with dubious values, at that point, you must intervene. Forget the labels – concentrate on observing and analyzing your students’ learning outcome.
Q: Generally speaking, what is the importance of the “social” aspect of school?
A: Social relations should be a medium for learning, not something that happens at recess. Children learn more deeply when the content lives in a social context of “my friend and I agree (or disagree).” How sad that some school separate two children that talk too much during class. How much more enlightened that school would be to use strong affiliations as way to engage the children’s minds.
Q: What are some key considerations in early childhood education in light of technology use?
A: Technology should be designed to bring the child into the computer, e.g. video, voice, drawings. Technology today has the power to help children track and reflect on their own thoughts. The objective of technology should be to help children manipulate and compare facts, not to learn facts, and should have the ultimate objective of facilitating the child’s attempts to reinvent what others know, because in this process of reinvention from their own conceptions comes a more robust form of understanding.
Q: Anything else on what technology should or should not do for students?
A: Technology should not try to create errorless learning, but provide children with a platform to pace their “errors” through a sufficient number of cases to understand the nature of their misconception. Errors should be embrace and unpacked, not replaced simply with the correct explanations.
Interview with Prof. Forman: Encouraging Creative Thinking http://www.vincieducation.com/interview-with-prof-forman-ecouraging-creative-thinking/

See, Encouraging creativity can improve education http://www.purdueexponent.org/opinion/article_bd0b91ad-57ea-5fc3-a5f0-0714ecdcd6de.html and How Schools Kill Creativity http://www.ted.com/talks/ken_robinson_says_schools_kill_creativity
Robert Sternberg wrote a thoughtful essay for the Chronicle of Higher Education about creativity in higher education, although his thoughts have wider application.

In, Teach Creativity, Not Memorization, Sternberg opines:

As educators, then, we need to do a better job teaching students to mobilize their creativity successfully. Let me suggest 12 ways to encourage creativity in the classroom.
Redefine the problem. We can promote creative performance by encouraging students to define and redefine their own problems, projects, presentations, and topics for papers, subject to approval; to choose their own ways of solving problems; and sometimes to choose again if they discover that their approach was a mistake.
We cannot always offer choices in the classroom, but having choices is the only way students learn how to choose. Giving them latitude helps them develop taste and good judgment, both of which are essential elements of creativity.
Question and analyze assumptions. Everyone has assumptions, although they are not often widely shared. Questioning assumptions is part of the analytical thinking involved in creativity. We can help students develop this talent by making questioning a part of the daily exchange. It is more important for students to learn what questions to ask—and how to ask them—than to learn the answers. We need to avoid perpetuating the belief that our role is to teach students the facts, and instead help them understand that what matters is their ability to use facts.
Teach students to sell their creative ideas. Everyone would like to assume that his or her wonderful, creative ideas will sell themselves. But they do not. When I was a first-year assistant professor, the second colloquium I was invited to give was at a large testing organization. I was delighted that the company was apparently interested in adopting my ideas about intelligence, even though I was only 25 years old. My career seemed to be off to a spectacular start. I took the train to Princeton, N.J., and gave the talk. It was an abject failure. I went from fantasizing about a dazzling career to wondering whether I would have a career at all.
Students need to learn how to persuade other people of the value of their ideas. That selling is part of the practical aspect of creative thinking. http://chronicle.com/article/Teach-Creativity-Not/124879/

In Critical thinking is an essential trait of an educated person, https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2012/01/22/critical-thinking-is-an-essential-trait-of-an-educated-person/ moi said:
There is a great deal of dissatisfaction with the state of education in America. A lot of that dissatisfaction comes from the belief that the education system fails to actually educate children and to teach them critical thinking skills. The University of Maine at Augusta defines an educated person:

An educated person exhibits knowledge and wisdom; recognizes and respects the diversity of nature and society; demonstrates problem solving skills; engages in planning and managing practices; navigates the on-line world; writes and speaks well; acts with integrity; and appreciates the traditions of art, culture, and ideas. Developing these abilities is a life-long process. http://www.uma.edu/educatedperson.html

Essential to this definition is the development of critical thinking skills. The University of Michigan outline, Critical and Creative Thinking links critical thinking and creativity. http://www.engin.umich.edu/~cre/probsolv/strategy/crit-n-creat.htm

It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
Aristotle

The school is the last expenditure upon which America should be willing to economize.
Franklin D. Roosevelt

If you think education is expensive, try ignorance.
Derek Bok

Resources:

The Global Creativity Index
http://www.theatlanticcities.com/jobs-and-economy/2011/10/global-creativity-index/229/

The Rise of the Creative Class
http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/features/2001/0205.florida.html

We, as a society must find a way to educate the masses and give foundational basic information without stifling the creativity necessary to save society from itself.

Where information leads to Hope. © Dr. Wilda.com

Dr. Wilda says this about that ©

Blogs by Dr. Wilda:

COMMENTS FROM AN OLD FART©
http://drwildaoldfart.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda Reviews © http://drwildareviews.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda ©
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The 11/20/13 Joy Jar

20 Nov

It is officially not winter in Seattle, but it is a cold clear day with some of the bluest skies around.

Seattle

The bluest skies you’ve ever seen are in Seattle
And the hills the greenest green, in Seattle
Like a beautiful child, growing up, free an’ wild
Full of hopes an’ full of fears, full of laughter, full of tears
Full of dreams to last the years, in Seattle
. . . in Seattle!

When it’s time to leave your home and your loved ones
It’s the hardest thing a boy can ever do
An’ you pray that you will find
someone warm an’ sweet an’ kind
But you’re not sure what’s waiting there for you!

The bluest skies you’ve ever seen are in Seattle
And the hills the greenest green, in Seattle
Like a beautiful child, growing up, free an’ wild
Full of hopes an’ full of fears, full of laughter, full of tears
Full of dreams to last the years, in Seattle
. . . in Seattle!
http://www.kokomo.ca/pop_standards/seattle_lyrics.htm

Today’s deposit into the ‘Joy Jar’ is the blue sky in Seattle.

“If the sight of the blue skies fills you with joy, if a blade of grass springing up in the fields has power to move you, if the simple things in nature have a message you understand, Rejoice, for your soul is alive.”
Eleanora Duse quotes (Italian Actress. 1858-1924)

“Somewhere over the rainbow, skies are blue, and the dreams that you dare to dream really do come true”

Lyman Frank Baum

“I thank you God for this most amazing day, for the leaping greenly spirits of trees, and for the blue dream of sky and for everything which is natural, which is infinite, which is yes.”
E. E. Cummings

“Oh! `darkly, deeply, beautifully blue’, / As someone somewhere sings about the sky.”
Lord Byron

“People usually consider walking on water or in thin air a miracle. But I think the real miracle is not to walk either on water or in thin air, but to walk on earth. Every day we are engaged in a miracle which we don’t even recognize: a blue sky, white clouds, green leaves, the black, curious eyes of a child — our own two eyes. All is a miracle.”
Thich Nhat Hanh

“In thinking of America, I sometimes find myself admiring her bright blue sky-her grand old woods-her fertile fields-her beautiful rivers-her mighty lakes and star-crowned mountains. But my rapture is soon checked when I remember that all is cursed with the infernal spirit of slave-holding and wrong; When I remember that with the waters of her noblest rivers, the tears of my brethren are borne to the ocean, disregarded and forgotten; That her most fertile fields drink daily of the warm blood of my outraged sisters, I am filled with unutterable loathing.”
Frederick Douglass

“Arithmetic is where the answer is right and everything is nice and you can look out of the window and see the blue sky – or the answer is wrong and you have to start over and try again and see how it comes out this time.”
Carl Sandburg

“Give me the clear blue sky above my head, and the green turf beneath my feet, a winding road before me, and a three hours’ march to dinner – and then to thinking! It is hard if I cannot start some game on these lone heaths.”
William Hazlitt

“Saints will aid if men will call: / For the blue sky bends over all!”
Samuel Taylor Coleridge

“By reading the scriptures I am so renewed that all nature seems renewed around me and with me. The sky seems to be a pure, a cooler blue, the trees a deeper green. The whole world is charged with the glory of God and I feel fire and music under my feet.”
Thomas Merton

The 10/27/13 Joy Jar

28 Oct

Moi watched this very troubling story, Biologists search for cause of sea star deaths:

Divers were out in Puget Sound waters Saturday to see if they can help solve a mystery. Scientists are trying to figure out what’s causing one species of starfish to die in parts of Puget Sound and the waters off of Canada.
http://www.king5.com/news/environment/Biologists-search-for-cause-of-sea-star-deaths-229408861.html

The oceans are essential to sustain life on earth. Today’s deposit into the ‘Joy Jar’ is the fervent hope for a healthy ocean ecosystem.

Looking up and out, how can we not respect this ever-vigilant cognizance that distinguishes us: the capability to envision, to dream, and to invent? the ability to ponder ourselves? and be aware of our existence on the outer arm of a spiral galaxy in an immeasurable ocean of stars? Cognizance is our crest.
Vanna Bonta

You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.
Mahatma Gandhi

We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop.
Mother Teresa

We are tied to the ocean. And when we go back to the sea, whether it is to sail or to watch – we are going back from whence we came.
John F. Kennedy

Ships that pass in the night, and speak each other in passing, only a signal shown, and a distant voice in the darkness; So on the ocean of life, we pass and speak one another, only a look and a voice, then darkness again and a silence.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Men go abroad to wonder at the heights of mountains, at the huge waves of the sea, at the long courses of the rivers, at the vast compass of the ocean, at the circular motions of the stars, and they pass by themselves without wondering.
Saint Augustine

I was like a boy playing on the sea-shore, and diverting myself now and then finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me.
Isaac Newton

Unlike a drop of water which loses its identity when it joins the ocean, man does not lose his being in the society in which he lives. Man’s life is independent. He is born not for the development of the society alone, but for the development of his self.
B. R. Ambedkar

Individually, we are one drop. Together, we are an ocean.
Ryunosuke Satoro

The progress of rivers to the ocean is not so rapid as that of man to error.
Voltaire

The least movement is of importance to all nature. The entire ocean is affected by a pebble.
Blaise Pascal

Always keep your mind as bright and clear as the vast sky, the great ocean, and the highest peak, empty of all thoughts. Always keep your body filled with light and heat. Fill yourself with the power of wisdom and enlightenment.
Morihei Ueshiba

You and I are all as much continuous with the physical universe as a wave is continuous with the ocean.
Alan Watts

How inappropriate to call this planet Earth when it is quite clearly Ocean.
Arthur C. Clarke

Ocean: A body of water occupying about two-thirds of a world made for man – who has no gills.
Ambrose Bierce

The 09/25/13 Joy Jar

25 Sep

One always knows when it is officially autumn – when the pumpkins and mums are all over the supermarket. No matter what the calendar says Safeway, QFC, Freddies, and Albertson will tell you what time of the year it is. Today’s deposit into the ‘Joy Jar’ are pumpkins and mums.

The foliage has been losing its freshness through the month of August, and here and there a yellow leaf shows itself like the first gray hair amidst the locks of a beauty who has seen one season too many…. September is dressing herself in showy dahlias and splendid marigolds and starry zinnias. October, the extravagant sister, has ordered an immense amount of the most gorgeous forest tapestry for her grand reception.
Oliver Wendell Holmes

Bittersweet October. The mellow, messy, leaf-kicking, perfect pause between the opposing miseries of summer and winter.
Carol Bishop Hipps, “October,” In a Southern Garden, 1995

Is not this a true autumn day? Just the still melancholy that I love — that makes life and nature harmonize. The birds are consulting about their migrations, the trees are putting on the hectic or the pallid hues of decay, and begin to strew the ground, that one’s very footsteps may not disturb the repose of earth and air, while they give us a scent that is a pefect anodyne to the restless spirit. Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.
George Eliot, letter to Miss Lewis, 1st October 1841

No spring nor summer’s beauty hath such grace
As I have seen in one Autumnal face….
John Donne, “Elegy IX: The Autumnal”

Oh how we love pumpkin season. You did know this gourd-ish squash has its own season, right? Winter, Spring, Summer, Pumpkin…. We anxiously anticipate it every year.
Trader Joe’s Fearless Flyer, October 2010

A hidden fire burns perpetually upon the hearth of the world…. In autumn this great conflagration becomes especially manifest. Then the flame that is slowly and mysteriously consuming every green thing bursts into vivid radiance. Every blade of grass and every leaf in the woodlands is cast into the great oven of Nature; and the bright colours of their fading are literally the flames of their consuming. The golden harvest-fields are glowing in the heart of the furnace…. By this autumn fire God every year purges the floor of nature. All effete substances that have served their purpose in the old form are burnt up. Everywhere God makes sweet and clean the earth with fire. ~Hugh Macmillan

Autumn carries more gold in its pocket than all the other seasons.
Jim Bishop

October gave a party;
The leaves by hundreds came,—
The Ashes, Oaks, and Maples,
And leaves of every name.
The sunshine spread a carpet,
And every thing was grand;
Miss Weather led the dancing;
Professor Wind, the band….
The sight was like a rainbow
New-fallen from the sky….
George Cooper, “October’s Party”

Magnificent Autumn! He comes not like a pilgrim, clad in russet weeds. He comes not like a hermit, clad in gray. But he comes like a warrior, with the stain of blood upon his brazen mail. His crimson scarf is rent…. The wind…. wafts to us the odor of forest leaves, that hang wilted on the dripping branches, or drop into the stream. Their gorgeous tints are gone, as if the autumnal rains had washed them out. Orange, yellow, and scarlet, all are changed to one melancholy russet hue…. There is a melancholy and continual roar in the tops of the tall pines…. It is the funeral anthem of the dying year.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Well, it’s a marvelous night for a moondance
With the stars up above in your eyes
A fantabulous night to make romance
‘Neath the cover of October skies
And all the leaves on the trees are falling
To the sound of the breezes that blow
And I’m trying to please to the calling
Of your heartstrings that play soft and low…
Van Morrison

Of all the seasons, autumn offers the most to man and requires the least of him.
Hal Borland

O’ pumpkin pie, your time has come ’round again and I am autumnrifically happy!
Terri Guillemets

[A]utumn, that season of peculiar and inexhaustible influence on the mind of taste and tenderness, that season which has drawn from every poet, worthy of being read, some attempt at description, or some lines of feeling. She occupied her mind as much as possible in such like musings and quotations…
Jane Austen

Autumn is the eternal corrective. It is ripeness and color and a time of completion; but it is also breadth, and depth, and distance. What man can stand with Autumn on a hilltop and fail to see the span of his world and the substance of the rolling hills that reach to the far horizon?
Hal Borland

Autumn is the perfect time to take account of what we’ve done, what we didn’t do, and what we’d like to do next year.
Unknown

The 09/13/13 Joy Jar

14 Sep

The summer of 2013 in Seattle has just been grand. So, even though everyone knows that seasons change, the weather report of cooler and rainier weather next week means that Autumn is just around the corner. Today’s deposit into the ‘Joy Jar’ is the approach of Autumn.

Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.”
Albert Camus

“You expected to be sad in the fall. Part of you died each year when the leaves fell from the trees and their branches were bare against the wind and the cold, wintery light. But you knew there would always be the spring, as you knew the river would flow again after it was frozen. When the cold rains kept on and killed the spring, it was as though a young person died for no reason.”
Ernest Hemingway, A Moveable Feast

“I would rather sit on a pumpkin, and have it all to myself, than be crowded on a velvet cushion.”
Henry David Thoreau

“I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.”
L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables

“Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.”
George Eliot

“Fall has always been my favorite season. The time when everything bursts with its last beauty, as if nature had been saving up all year for the grand finale.”
Lauren DeStefano, Wither

“No spring nor summer beauty hath such grace as I have seen in one autumnal face.”
John Donne

“Aprils have never meant much to me, autumns seem that season of beginning, spring.”
Truman Capote, Breakfast at Tiffany’s

“Don’t you love New York in the fall? It makes me want to buy school supplies. I would send you a bouquet of newly sharpened pencils if I knew your name and address.”
Nora Ephron

“At no other time (than autumn) does the earth let itself be inhaled in one smell, the ripe earth; in a smell that is in no way inferior to the smell of the sea, bitter where it borders on taste, and more honeysweet where you feel it touching the first sounds. Containing depth within itself, darkness, something of the grave almost.”
Rainer Maria Rilke

“Autumn…the year’s last, loveliest smile.”
William Cullen Bryant

“I loved autumn, the one season of the year that God seemed to have put there just for the beauty of it.”
Lee Maynard

The 09/06/13 Joy Jar

7 Sep

Moi was riding the bus when an imposing elder American Native got on, of what tribe, moi could not tell. Then another elder got on, from the other side of the world – possibility from Samoa, but definitely from Polynesia. There was something deeply spiritual about these two gentlemen from different parts of the world. Today’s deposit into the ‘Joy Jar’ is the wisdom of our native peoples.

“A Native American elder once described his own inner struggles in this manner: Inside of me there are two dogs. One of the dogs is mean and evil. The other dog is good. The mean dog fights the good dog all the time. When asked which dog wins, he reflected for a moment and replied, The one I feed the most.”
George Bernard Shaw

“Any man who thinks he can be happy and prosperous by letting the government
take care of him better take a closer look at the American Indian.”
Henry Ford

“Our job is to be an awake people…utterly conscious, to attend to our world.”
Louis Owens

The Great Spirit is in all things: he is in the air we breathe. The Great Spirit is our Father, but the earth is our mother. She nourishes us; that which we put into the ground she returns to us
Big Thunder (Bedagi) Wabanaki Algonquin

And so do not forget.Every Dawn as it comes is a holy event and everyday is holy, for the light comes from “WAKAN-TANKA” And Also you Must remeber that the Two-leggeds and All other peoples who Stand upon this Earth are Sacred and Should be Treated as Such
“White Buffalo Woman” Sioux Sacred Woman, quoted by Black Elk , (Oglala Sioux)1947.

The life of an Indian is like the wings of the air. That is why you notice the hawk knows how to get his prey. The Indian is like that. The hawk swoops down on its prey; so does the Indian. In his lament he is like an animal. For instance, the coyote is sly; so is the Indian. The eagle is the same. That is why the Indian is always feathered up: he is a relative to the wings of the air.
Black Elk, Oglala

You have noticed that everything as Indian does is in a circle, and that is because the Power of the World always works in circles, and everything tries to be round….. The Sky is round, and I have heard that the earth is round like a ball, and so are all the stars. The wind, in its greatest power, whirls. Birds make their nest in circles, for theirs is the same religion as ours… Even the seasons form a great circle in their changing, and always come back again to where they were. The life of a man is a circle from childhood to childhood, and so it is in everything where power moves.
Black Elk, Oglala