Friday, 8 December 2017

One world

"You may say I am a dreamer,
but I am not the only one
I hope some day, you will join us
and the world will live as one"

Do you remember these beautiful lyrics

"Imagine all the people sharing all the world"

Let us all join that dream.
I know that your neighbors may be still angry people,
perhaps envious of you or over-greedy.

The world is extremely far from the "dream"
The idea of unity and universal sharing has been around for >3000 years.
I guess we had to achieve a certain level of technology to provide enough,
enough for the whole world population.

I think now is the time,
that we do have enough if we do away with greed
I think now is the time,
the idea of sharing among everyone is taking roots
I think now is the time,
the tree of kindness is ready to shoot out of the ground
and grow into a huge forest in which the world can get lost
I think now is the time,
the solidarity among people is ready to blossom.
I think now is the time,
that the ugly face of greed is showing
its disgusting face in so many governments
I think now is the time for wisdom
to gain track
I think now is the time.

All we need is enough people to join the dream!

Thursday, 7 December 2017

Harmony

Harmony has been on my mind this morning.
Actually it is on my mind quite often.
Really, I think that harmony in this world is possible
Many people may doubt it is to happen very soon but
On mornings like today, I get really convinced that
Nothing can stand in the way of the ever increasing harmony.
Yes, harmony is a thought whose time has come

We will soon see that love will reign
In our house, in our village in our state
Love will reign in the whole wide world
Love will win over greed and crime and fights

Soon we will see harmony in our world, everywhere, all the time.
On every corner of the street we will see smiles and lovely faces
On every field, in every house we will meet friendliness and kindness
Nastiness and quarrels and ill will will be a thing of the past

Believe that this may happen. The more people believe, the sooner it will happen
Every person on earth has the right to harmony and we can make it happen.

Harmony is in my dream, harmony is in my mind, in my heart.
Every soul on earth has this silent longing to live a harmonious life
Right now is the time, today is the time, let us no longer wait
Everyone can make a small contribution today toward lots of harmony in the world





Friday, 1 December 2017

Bliss & ego

Friday morning, part of the weekend in the state of Kelantan, where I live.
I am on call today and this morning I drove to the hospital.
I was in a quiet mood and asked our God for bliss and peace of mind.
I tried to open up my heart  for the quietness around me and drove slowly.
The traffic light in front of me turned red.
I realized that bliss was more something we open up to,
than something we get from far away.

My car was the only car standing in front of the red traffic light,
when a few moments later car came from behind at high speed.
The car drove next to mine and stopped a few meters in front of me.
He was almost standing on the crossroad.
When it turned green, I thought I have to be in front of him.
My engine was a bit bigger then his and sure enough i managed to
speed off in front of him.
I was going faster than usual in this monsoon season.
When I suddenly hit a puddle of water my car moved sideways a few cm.
Luckily I managed to keep the car on the road.
I suddenly was aware that my big ego had taken over.
A small challenge, and bliss had become secondary to my ego.
I had chosen to drive dangerously, just to show off to another guy.

At the very next junction the car behind me chose another road
and I came back to my senses.
The rest of the ride to work, I managed to remain focused on bliss
and peace of mind and let people who were apparently in a hurry go first.

I just want to share the above real story, to illustrate how easily
we tend to give way to our ego to disturb our peace of mind and
make us do dangerous things, we would not normally do.

We are humans. We have an ego, sometimes a big ego
We do also have a soul. Let us try to practice to listen more to our soul
and a bit less to our ego. Our ego will prop up now and then.
But with some exercise we may become better at controlling it.

Thursday, 30 November 2017

Good or bad

Our notion of what is good or bad is sometimes flawed.
I think all of us have memories of apparently bad events,
about which we were frustrated, the moment they happened,
but about which we are now very happy that they happened;
because with hindsight, we can see the huge benefits they brought in our life.

There may be also events that have appeared initially as very good,
but afterwards it turned out that there were no blessings in those events.

Now there are events that seem so extremely bad that our human mind
cannot possible conceive that they may be anything else than bad.
For example a tsunami costing hundreds of thousands of lives.
No one likes a tsunami. No one can see a good thing in it.
Perhaps three hundred years from now, people may understand why it had to happen,
but for now we see it all as a huge mishap.

Scientists who have a certain arrogance, see this as a proof that a good and almighty God
cannot exist. Before agreeing with their arrogance, let us take a moment to be a bit humble,
accept we do not understand everything and imagine what it would be like to live in a perfect world.
About three years ago, I wrote about a a perfect world versus the gift of creativity. Please click on the link to read that small reflection on what it would be like if our Almighty would have created a perfect world.

Somehow I am grateful to our God that the world is not perfect in the way we perceive perfection.


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Note: if you click on the vertical black bar at the right of this page, you can go to the archive of this blog and read more inspiring or thought provoking ideas.
Feel free to share any of these postings. They are not copyrighted. 




Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Time wasted

Since the beginning of this year I have been spending an excess of time on reading about and looking at satirical videos about Donald Trump. It has not contributed to any of my peace of mind, it has not contributed to my knowledge, it has not contributed to my psychological or spiritual growth. It has just given me an occasional laugh but more often it has given me enervation, anger and worry.

If I look at the obvious stupidity, narcissistic nonsense of that president, you feel a certain disgust, you feel a certain danger hanging above your head. Several times I have made the resolution not to look at it any more, but  somehow to see people ridicule the wickedness and bombastic stupidity of the man in power, seems a bit addictive.

Still it is a pure waste of time to follow exactly what this president of the USA is doing and saying and tweeting. I again have the firmest intention to stop reading about him, to stop looking at the satirical videos about him and use that time for my own spiritual and mental growth.

Let us on and off reflect, how much time we have wasted today.
Every minute of wasted time is a minute of wasted life.
Our life has only a limited number of minutes.

Let us reflect and think about how to spend our time in the best possible way
Love and helpfulness will boil up and that will help us lead a life
that is fulfilling and pleasant and peaceful.

If you click on the vertical black bar on the right of this page, you can go to the archive of this blog. on 5.7.16, I wrote something similar. Please enjoy the other great ideas in the archive too. 


Tuesday, 21 November 2017

The story of the refugees

Centuries ago, a boat of refugees reached the shore of India.
The leader of the refugees went to meet the king and asked 
for the permission to stay in his land. 
The king showed to the leader a glass that was full of water.
"You see, the glass is like my land.
Like the glass is filled with water,
my land is already filled with my people"
The leader took a spoon of sugar and put it into the water. 
He waited until the sugar dissolved in the water and said:
"My people will dissolve into the community of your people 
and in the process make it sweeter" 
The king allowed them to stay.

Perhaps today most countries facing an influx of refugees,
get them because the Universe thought they needed a bit
of extra sweetness, a bit of extra spice. 

I read the above story in a book, titled 'the gift of anger'
written by Arun Ghandi, the grandson of Mahatma Ghandi.
I warmly recommend this book as a very good read!

Saturday, 18 November 2017

What a power!

At any time we see only a very small part of the whole world.
We see only our own garden, the book in front of us,
maybe more often the screen in front of us,
the person that does something we like,
the person that does something we don't like.

That is such an extremely small, minuscule part of the world.
And even a much smaller fraction of the universe.

The nice thing about the above thoughts,
is that actually we can choose what to look at, at any time.
We can even choose how to look at it (with an open mind,
with an angry heart, from a distance, as a bystander
as a victim,....).

If we become aware of this power to choose,
our whole life may become a bit different.
We do not need to be just undergoing what is happening,
we can choose to observe it or not,
to be involved in it or not,
to like it or not.

If we do not like it, we can choose to focus on something else.
It sounds, easy. It is initially not easy.
It requires some exercise.
Our mind is actually under our control
We say: my mind, meaning the mind of me
That me, that I who owns the mind
is not the mind. It is the higher self.
If our mind refuses to let go of a negative thought,
we can choose to think about something else and
the mind has to release anyhow.

I was reading about mindfulness from a few sources. 
The above is a kind of what I understood from it.

Friday, 17 November 2017

Poetry and greed

Can poetry help do away with the greed in this world?

Here is a quote from RW Emerson: " The use of symbols has a certain power of emancipation and exhilaration for all men. We seem to be touched by a wand, which makes us dance and run about happily, like children. We are like persons who come out of a cave or cellar into the open air. This is the effect on us of tropes, fables, oracles, and all poetic forms"

Would you not agree with Emerson?
The poet is putting new ideas in often symbolic language.
A touching metaphor can change one's life.
If we manage to have more poets writing truly positive ideas in wonderful verses,
it may be quite likely that poetry may save the world from destruction through ever increasing greed.

I have tried myself to make minuscule contribution to that way of thinking by writing a few uplifting poems, I think.

Please visit the page with the poems  (by clicking on the link).
Pick a few poems and perhaps let yourself be inspired to write a poem that may contribute to a better world yourself. :)

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

Race

Does a white man have to be ashamed of the actions of his ancestors (the aggression of the vikings, the inquisition, the extinction of many American native tribes, the nazi movement, the more recent senseless wars in Vietnam and Iraq, etc.) or does a white man have to be proud of the achievements of his ancestors (Plato, Edison, Pasteur, the wright bothers, mother Teresa. etc.) or is it best for the white man not be ashamed and neither be proud?

Honestly speaking, I am a white man, and I have nothing to do with the nazis, nothing to do with the cruelties. Also I have nothing to do with the achievements of other white people. I am as proud of the achievements of Marten Luther King and Gandhi as my fellow humans as I am proud of the achievements of Lincoln. We are all humans. I am as ashamed of the crimes committed by the Taliban as of the Nazi crimes and the crimes against the current Palestinians.

Let us forget the color of our skin altogether. Let our world be our nation and let the huge variety of belief systems be an enriching experience rather than one leading to violence.

I do not know my ancestors. I am sure some of them were really good people and some of them were crooks. If we just go 20 generations back, there are mathematically (2 to the power of twenty) more than a million ancestors. If only 0.1% of them would be crooks, that would still amount to 1000 of your ancestors.

Let us all learn from all history.
- Let the huge crimes committed by people of any race or creed be a lesson for us, never to be repeated.
- Let the wonderful achievements by people of any race or creed be a source of inspiration to all.

Saturday, 11 November 2017

Handy


Tonight I was looking at my right hand. It looked wonderfully alive. I could flex all of my fingers and then each finger individually. A hand that can love, a hand that can give, a hand that can pick up garbage, a hand that can work. I was, for a few moments, so happy to have a hand like that. But then I thought of the hands of my uncle, that were folded on his lap. They were icy cold and by now must be nothing more than dust. I was thinking about the millions and billions of hands that have been and are no more. My hands sooner or later will belong to this category, but while they are still alive, I will use them to give. To give something, to write something, that can help others, that can inspire others. 

Let us all use our hands for the good of the world :) 

The perfect tree

A tree in your garden
A tree in your street
A tree in your park
carries wonderful perfection.

Have you seen it?
Did you notice its perfection?
Did you touch it?

Take a look at it, touch it,
that wonderfully perfect tree,
that is ornamenting your garden,
your street, your park.

Thursday, 9 November 2017

Imagine

We tend to be busy often with questions like:
Why is this world going so awfully wrong?
How can the world be that bad?

We may feel helpless:
What can we do?
What is the use?

But,
even if we manage to make a small difference for one person in the world,
we have done something extremely worthy.
If we try every day to make small difference for one person,
how many persons we affect in a year?

And you know what?
Each time we make a small difference for another person,
we make a small difference for ourselves.
That is 365 small differences for ourselves every year!

Can you imagine a world where more people would stop asking: what is wrong? Why?
and they would start asking questions like: what gift can I give to the world today?
And tomorrow? and then again?

Try to imagine, Try to imagine !

Seeking Truth

When I was in my late teens,
I was seeking the Truth.
The Truth with a big, capital T.

While believing or attempting to arrive at the big Truth, is a foolish futile thing,
attempting to get a bit closer to it, even without any hopes of uncovering it completely
tends to put us on an amazing journey !

If we really, in the deepest of our heart and soul, search for Truth,
we quite soon come to an awareness that the Truth is enormously big.
The complexity of the physical world is enormous,
The complexity of the spiritual world is enormously enormous.

As a human we tend to cling to some of our insights some of the things we accepted as truth.
We make it our final truth and the wonderful journey of seeking ends; we tend to become arrogant in our beliefs, thinking we are right and all others are wrong.

A small glimpse of the Truth with capital T
will make anyone understand that we cannot understand that Truth.
This makes us  in a way all wrong in our perception of it.
So be it. Let us accept that no matter how good we are,
no matter how long we went to school or to study holy books,
no matter what, we cannot fully grasp the Truth

I have seen people who consider anyone believing in God
as children clinging to an illusion,
but these same people had no problem believing the big bang theory.
Bing bang originated in the mind of scientists, so even though it makes
minimal sense to any sound thinking mind, so many people blindly accept it.

I truly think there are much bigger questions that should keep us occupied
than the question where we come from or how the world came into existence.
The bigger questions are how we can make this world a better place to live in.
While science has helped us to lead comfortable life
it has not helped us a lot to be more happy.

Whatever it is, my friends, never give up your search for the Truth.





Friday, 3 November 2017

Poetry

Poetry

The stirrings into the most beautiful and colorful veils
of the soul and the heart, slowly exposing that
amazing imagination that loves and inspires

Poetry

The forest so marvelously fresh and exquisitely attractive
Angelic smells of wet branches and soft leafy soil
A forest you really want to get lost in for hours and hours.

Poetry

Let's get lost in poetry tonight.
Just read and read tree after tree
path after path, imagination after imagination
poem after poem

Poetry

Let's get lost in it tonight
A wonderful place to start:
http://aufiezophypoems.blogspot.my/?view=timeslide


(Complete collection )

Thursday, 2 November 2017

The response

        Love and kindness and goodness are the right response to loving persons
        Love and kindness and goodness are the right response to kind persons
        Love and kindness and goodness are the right response to good persons
        Love and kindness and goodness are the right response to wicked persons
        Love and kindness and goodness are the right response to evil persons
        Love and kindness and goodness are the right response to hateful persons


Evil and harmful behavior are the result of ignorance,
the result of weakness.

So if a weak and ignorant person displays some evil or harmful behavior in front of you,
do you want to show off that you are equally weak and ignorant and that you can descend
to their level of behavior?

Surely not!

Let us answer hatred with love
evil with goodness
harm with kindness

To answer harm with harm is like supporting an endless chain of violence;
it is like kicking a seriously suffering soul in pain and ignorance;
it is like pushing a severely crippled being down a flight of stairs.

To answer hatred with hatred is like putting oil on a fire;
is like endorsing a person full of hatred that he is right,
that his behavior is worthy of being followed and copied.

To answer evil with evil is like engaging in a contest
a contest on who is the most ignorant of the two,
who is the weakest and most stupid?


Answering hatred, evil and harm
with love, goodness and kindness
is keeping our own values high!
It is like helping the weak in the weakest of their weak moments
helping the ignorant in their most ignorant phase of their life.

The hateful, evil and harming people are suffering
they need help.

        Love and kindness and goodness are the right response to loving persons
        Love and kindness and goodness are the right response to kind persons
        Love and kindness and goodness are the right response to good persons
        Love and kindness and goodness are the right response to wicked persons
        Love and kindness and goodness are the right response to evil persons
        Love and kindness and goodness are the right response to loving persons






-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Hope you enjoyed this reflection by Hans Van Rostenberghe
Feel free to share it, use it in any positive way.
The link is http://reflectionsbyhans.blogspot.com/

If you have time, please take also a look at
the inspirational quotes page connected to this blog some of my poems published under my pen name Aufie Zophy.

Sunday, 29 October 2017

Old versus new

It is time to wake up.
It is high time to awaken.


Knowing about the existence of water
and all its wonderful cleaning properties
Knowing about water,
and all properties to alleviate thirst
and to nourish all our cells in our body
Adoring water and praising water,
Observing water standing in a bottle on your table
will not clean your body, will not nourish you.
We have to bathe in it, wash ourselves in it,
we have to drink it, internalize it.

So is it with the love of our God.
We may know about it, talk about it every day,
it may sit in the book on our shelves or our night table
We may observe it and look at it,
but as long as we do not experience it, feel it
bathe in it, it will not cleanse our souls,
As long as we do not internalize it, drink it,
it will not still our spiritual hunger.
We have to make it quiet in our life, from time to time
and think truly with our mind, heart and soul
about that goodness, that immense endless love of our God.

Open up for it, let ourselves be immersed in it.
and share all the good feelings and wisdom with the world around us
share all the inspiration, love, harmony and peace that comes with it.
It will make us humble, grateful. It is the greatest gift we can receive.
Just try to experience the love of our God.
All we need to do is make it quiet, quiet outside,
quiet inside, quiet in our mind, forgive everyone and everything,
so it will become quiet in our heart and our soul.
and bathe in, drink the love of our God.

Bismillahi Rahmani Rahim,
is just what that means; it is 114x repeated in the Quran.
The love of our Creator is It is also the cornerstone of Christianity.
It is fundamental in every reasonable faith in the world.

Keep knowing about it,
but make the jump to feeling it as well
Only knowing about it, is the old way.
Feeling it is the new way!

 (Metaphors used above were inspired by a talk by Michael Beckwith)

Thursday, 26 October 2017

Morning

The morning hours were whispering and nudging me softly
to wake up and do some work. My half awake mind and
my ever alert soul, could see the beauty of the breaking day
and a thankful heart was fully in love with the universe.

A small hunger pang made me get up and head to breakfast
The aroma of coffee and a delicious slice of full grain bread
A piece of French toast with sugar and a sunny side up egg.
All too soon a second filling of coffee was inside my cup.

My body felt satisfied, my soul and heart and mind were too.
I sent a loving message to my wife and sons and i was ready
for a day with lots of work, lots of thoughts, lots of love.
Quite a long time ago, I wrote a senryu/haiku about the morning:

My God, let it be
that the morning hours' glory
stays 'till night with me  

 

Saturday, 21 October 2017

Back to a simple belief

When I was small, one evening, my auntie and me were sitting in front of the front window of our house. it had been a hot day and now the skies were quite dark with one huge grey dark cloud. My auntie had the newspaper on her lab and was reading about the story of a thief who had been captured by the police in the act of stealing. 
I remember so clearly asking myself, how can it be? Why not everyone is just good and happy? Why for goodness sake do people decide they want to go stealing?

Growing up, my simple goodness suffered confrontation with a real world. I got to understand why people were stealing, why the world was not as good as it was supposed to be. My ideals suffered with it and my belief in a world that was intrinsically good was crumbling. 

Now in the (early😉) autumn of my life, I seem to move back to my belief that soon the world will be uniformly good. Now I see that we were made in such a way that true peace of mind and true happiness lies so strongly and so permanently fixed in selfless altruism. Anyone performing a random kind act without the expectation of getting something back from that person, can confirm the great feelings that random kindness, selflessly done, bring. 
So the most selfish thing, one can do, the most logical thing one can do in order to feel good, is to render selfless service. Attempting happiness through other means seems only to fail time after time. Sure enough, we need our primary needs (like hunger, thirst and need of a stable relationship) to be fulfilled; we need a certain level of comfort; but then it is only madness to go and seek happiness and peace of mind in more and more, or in crazy senseless partying, or in acquiring stupid levels of power over others.
If we reach a critical  number of people, understanding this truth, soon the number of people needing to fight  in order to get primary needs met and to reach a certain level of comfort will tumble and the exponential growth of the group, understanding what brings true peace of mind, will soon engulf the world as a giant wave of kindness. 

Join the group who understand today. No one will ever regret joining early.
Sincere selfless kindness....  a joy, a happiness, a giant peace of mind.  


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Hope you enjoyed this reflection by Hans Van Rostenberghe
Feel free to share it, use it in any positive way.
If you share, please mention the link http://reflectionsbyhans.blogspot.com/

If you have time, please take also a look at
the inspirational quotes page connected to this blog
some of my poems published under my pen name Aufie Zophy.

Friday, 20 October 2017

Big

Big-hearted people have no time to criticize others.
They have so much positive news,
that all the negative news about others seems a mere waste of time.

There are truly so many truly nice things happening int he world
so many beautiful things in nature,
so much love and charity among humans
so many honesty and peace loving women and men,
so much of wonderful things we can do,
so many words that can inspire and help others
so many poems, so may fantastic arts,
so much positivity,
that focus on the petty mistakes of others becomes absurd
that focus on our petty differences becomes absurd
that focus on negativity becomes truly absurd...

Sunday, 15 October 2017

Plus

A small poem:

In our wide wonderful planet
Cruelties and sadness are abound
Greed and hatred, name it
you can find it all around
We have enough of all of these
No need to spread this type of news

The thing that is not enough
Is loving kindness, simply love
So if you see or do an act of love
don't be shy just spread the word
Write more about what is not enough
and make this a little better world 

Dear friends,
If you feel the need to talk with your friends about a real bad thing,
think for a while how much negativity is already circulating in this world,
in the media, in the conversations all over the world.
If you can choose a positive note instead, please do so.
We do not have enough positivity,
We have an excess of negativity.
Please my friends, find a positive message today,
share it in writing, share it in pictures, share in all your talk.
Find many positive messages today and
share them in writing, in pictures and your talk


   ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Hope you enjoyed this reflection by Hans Van Rostenberghe
Feel free to share it, use it in any positive way
Will be grateful if you mention the link http://reflectionsbyhans.blogspot.com/

If you have time, please take also a look at
the inspirational quotes page connected to this blog
some of my poems published under my pen name Aufie Zophy.

Saturday, 14 October 2017

The sea...

Music of rolling waves
enters my hungry heart
striking a chord of harmony


The notes roll up and down,
and a wondrous breeze of love
inspires my mind and soul


My ears filled with beauty,
my being lightly afloat
in God's Glory


  ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Hope you enjoyed this reflection by Hans Van Rostenberghe
Feel free to share it, use it in any positive way
Will be grateful if you mention the link http://reflectionsbyhans.blogspot.com/

If you have time, please take also a look at
the inspirational quotes page connected to this blog
some of my poems published under my pen name Aufie Zophy.









Thursday, 12 October 2017

The optimist

I tend to be a bit optimistic, compared to my friends.
My friends who are more pessimistic claim to be more realistic.
I came across the next quote from Ralph Waldo Trine.
I liked it.

"The optimist is right. The pessimist is right. The one differs from the other as the light from the dark. Yet both are right. Each is right from their own particular point of view, and this point of view is the determining factor in the life of each. It determines as to whether it is a life of power or of impotence, of peace or of pain, of success or of failure.

The optimist has the power of seeing things in their entirety and in their right relations. The pessimist looks from a limited and a one-sided point of view. The one has their understanding illuminated by wisdom, the understanding of the other is darkened by ignorance. Each is building their world from within, and the result of the building are determined by the point of view of each The optimist, by their superior wisdom and insight, is making their own heaven, and in the degree that they make their own heaven are helping to make one for all the world beside. The pessimist, by virtue of their limitations, are making their own hell, and in the degree that they make their own hell are they helping to make one for all mankind."



Initially I wanted to quote only the first paragraph and then elaborate a bit, but the second paragraph of the author is so good, that not much elaboration is needed.

Let us choose optimism :)
Look forward to your comments.

  ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Hope you enjoyed this reflection by Hans Van Rostenberghe
Feel free to share it, use it in any positive way
Will be grateful if you mention the link http://reflectionsbyhans.blogspot.com/

If you have time, please take also a look at
the inspirational quotes page connected to this blog
some of my poems published under my pen name Aufie Zophy.

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

It's an art!

When I ask young people (my students, my sons, my nephews or nieces).
what was the best experience they had during that day or week, they seem
quite often to have a hard time coming up with something.

I think we have not been good at teaching our young ones the art of reflection.
Just thinking back about what we did, who we were what made us feel good
and what made us not feel too good, is so important; at least that is what I think.

If we practice systematically the art of reflection
we may make daily small improvements to our life.
If every day we improve a small little bit,
what does this mean over a year?

Let us start today, the art of reflection
It's an art!
The more we do it, the better we become at it...

Sunday, 1 October 2017

Forest of gratitude



In the shadow of the tree
Of endless grace and amazing mercy
Lies a magic acorn filled with gratitude
Spouting fast into a giant oak of awe
Exploding into a forest of kindness
Filled with wonderful paths colored with love.
Let us all get lost in this forest of gratitude
Leaving behind and never return
To the barren cities of greed.



My other poems can be found via this link
Enjoy!