Getting Caught up in Fear, a personal story.

Fear can be a crippling emotion to experience, it can cause panic, anxiety, and stress that causes us much suffering in our lives.

My own personal experiences with dealing with fear, and how I have moved forward learning the necessary skills to live a happier life, may also help you.

I would love to share these skills and understanding I’ve gained with you today.

First let me explain my first hand experiences dealing with that onrushing, seemingly uncontrollable fear that can have crippling effects on us.

My first story comes from what seems like a long time ago now, a time when I lived in South Africa. This was during the now historical time of Nelson Mandela’s first and second run as president, the great man had just been released from prison.

It was a troubled time and no one knew what would happen next, Zimbabwe had seen a change in ruling power and an explosion of revenge killings had arose.

To make matters harder for the people of South Africa it also had at this time a 50% unemployment rate with no government help. Crime was high and rife, Jo’berg was considered the 3rd most dangerous city in the entire world. The first two on the list both had wars going on.

Everyone lived behind bars. Every house had these big security windows and gates made out of think metal to stop intruders. I grew up in safe and secure England and I remember my first impression of living like this as feeling like I was living in my own paid for prison. Strangely you quickly get used to it.

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It was a worrying time indeed

My house was broken into twice in my 7 odd years living in this wonderful country both times with us inside the house.

The first time this happened, fear crippled me.

At about 3am whilst fast asleep the sound of a broken window awakens me. I’m instantly alert, lying in the darkness and trying to figure out, did I really hear what I thought?

Then that unmistakable sound of crunching glass underfoot.

Fear propelled me out of bed, I leapt for the light switch and turned it on. It was as I did this that fear turned to panic and held me tight, I couldn’t move, I was standing there in a pair of boxer shorts illuminated by the light I had just turned on. what had I just done? Why had I turned the light on to reveal my position? Now I’m going to be shot! I froze unable to decide which way to turn.

Fear had turned to shear panic and that panic held me firm, frozen.

Luckily my presence and noise in getting up to turn the light on was enough to instal fear inside the intruders who also panicked and fled the scene. I still feel I’m so lucky to this day. I honestly thought I was going to be shot.

The whole incident left its mark on my mind and I had now seen how fear can have considerable power if we let it cripple our thinking.

My second story comes from the same time in my life. Again living in South Africa where I used to surf. Now me being me I never do anything by half, and I used to surf big big waves, sometimes faces the size of a second story house.

On just another normal day, I was meeting a group of surfer friends at the beach carpark to go for a fun filled surf session with mates. We arrived at the beach to find huge waves almost instantly closing out the entire bay. Not really good for surfing.

A close out is when the wave crashes all in one go along the entire line. To surf you need something to crash it’s white water and peel one way or the other. A close out isn’t a good day to be surfing. And these waves where at least 20ft or 3 times over head.

We all stood in the carpark in admiration at the shear size and power, the sound was like thunder. A friend of ours comes out of the sea and walks up to the car park carrying his broken surfboard. There’s NO surf today. He throws his board to the ground swearing as he did, grabs another board from the top of his car, turns and heads back out to sea.

That was all I needed. I grab my board, suited up and paddled out to meet him. Lying flat on a surf board as a 20ft wave comes at you is mind blowing, and if you live in a two story house, lye down flat on the grass and look up, that is roughly what it looks like. A giant slab of moving water the size of a house. I was able, capable and could surf. I felt good. I wasn’t frightened or scared, just excited to be part of this energy.

What came next taught me the most valuable lesson I’ve ever experienced with fear.

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I dropped down the face of some monster wave, bottomed turned and tried to slot under the lip that had thrown itself over the top. I missed and got thumped by 10ton of water, I relaxed and waited, being tumbled this way and that, that’s all normal, it’s like going through a washing machine, but you learn when to swim for the surface and when to relax.

Finally the turbulence subsided and so I swam to the surface, pulled my lease cord to find a snapped board. The next wave was coming!

I took a massive breath and dived down as far as I could. The turbulence again subsided and I swam to the surface. My lease cord had ripped from my leg, and when looking at my position i had drifted towards the rocks. But no time to think!

another wave came, then another and then another.

With each wave I casually and confidently dove as deep as I could holding onto kelp to try not get pulled further into the rocks. Every time I came for breath I could see I was slowly getting closer to the rocks. Every time I came up to take a breath more and more people were also gathering along those rocks.

Amazingly at this point I’m still feeling ok. In my mind I’m still confident, I was a strong strong swimmer back then, and could hold my breath on land for almost 4 minutes.

The next thing that happened changed all that!

As I came up for another breath a man with hands on top of his head leapt two or three rocks towards me with panic written all over him, his face told me I was a dead man!

Fear came flooding in, so intensely, and so quickly it became all consuming. There was nothing I wanted more than to live!

I didn’t want to die, I wanted to live, the panic that fear manifested into found me swimming directly at the big waves, I had no logical thinking left, I was on auto pilot. I wasted what little energy I had left very quickly.

I never thought of my family or past events, I was in the moment fighting for my very life. And I was loosing. The panic was using my now very little energy twice as fast and I couldn’t hold my breath for as long as required. It was coming to a crunch point!

I was going to die! Right here, right now!

Then Everything Inside of me calmed for only a few moments, but those few moments I can still clearly remember, everything in life felt so perfectly perfect, that mere words can’t justify its perfectness. I watched as a big wave pitched higher and higher in front of me.

This was my wave!

I was completely calm and had perfect presence of mind. I instantly knew everything was just the way it was always going to and always will be. My whole life had led to this one moment, every decision I had made always led me here to this one wave that was coming, this wave was my my wave, my destiny.

I choose to drown rather than be smashed onto the rocks and took my last deep breath!

Don’t panic, obviously I survived or I couldn’t write this.

I was pulled out by the sea rescue who had been all around me yet I hadn’t noticed. A helicopter had even been dispatched and two jet skies were all around me, yet I hadn’t been aware. I was checked out and fussed over for a bit, then sort of left to my own devises. The shock of what happened left me numb and completely out of it.

I had no idea how I got home, I just remember my girlfriends father found me in the bath still in my wetsuit, just sitting starring at the taps. I have no idea how long I had been there. Post traumatic stress hit me hard and for the next two years I couldn’t work life out. It had changed something about my fundamental understanding of life. I know you hear people say that a near death experience leaves you feeling more alive then ever before. I just felt like crap, an almost insignificant feeling.

Ok so that’s a rather dramatic story but one I do enjoying telling.

So how did I move forward, learning the necessary skills as I did. Well It was a long journey for me, a journey that took me across the whole of Asia searching for the answers. Eventually becoming a Buddhist monk to learn those vital skills needed to master the understanding of my mind.

And I want to help you learn them too.

The foundation to overcoming fear is to really understand what and who fear really is. Just like in the second story, I had to face my fear head to on to really understand it. Meditation is that very foundation and key to facing your fears head on, but all in the safety of your own home. This is the very starting point in knowing fear, anxieties, stress, anger and any of the 108 defilements or destructive forces of the mind.

My soul aim here at 4enlightenment is to provide a safe place for you to explore with others this wonderful art form called meditation, too bring inspiration to you from my own personal story to help you face and overcome your own problems. As a former Buddhist monk I learnt amazing tricks and techniques that truly work in our daily lives. I understand the human consciousness and have slowly worked out how I transfer my knowledge to help others, Slowly over the next couple of months this website will grow into the vision I have to help you and others, eventually establishing an international charity based on kindness.

It would be wonderful if you could join me for the journey

Kind regards

Dhamma Tāpasā*

To learn More About Meditation & Mindfulness

*Dhamma Tāpasā is a trained former Buddhist Monk and the spiritual name given to Andrew Hallas. An inspirational teacher of mindfulness and meditation techniques through the art of storytelling. Dhamma Tāpasā is able to capture our imaginations whilst teaching us valuable moral principles and deepening our understanding of the human consciousness and the everyday problems we face.


Just a few of Our Inspirational 10-Minute Original Buddhist Moral Stories


©️www.4enlightenment.com2021

A Massive THANKS for 500 Likes

A special moment indeed. Feeling rather proud that my little stories of morality and life lessons have relieved 500 likes.

A massive THANK YOU to everyone thats taken the time to press that like button or share with your friends.

Here’s to the next 500 likes!

Is individualism a good or bad thing?

Individualism in the 21st century

From very small all of us start to learn individualism, we may not realise this is what we are learning but with re-enforcements from parents, teachers and peers we soon begin to experience ourselves and those around us as individuals. We begin the process of labelling each other and ourselves, Matt’s rich, Katie’s an artist, Gordon’s good at sport. We start to see where we fit in life, and who we associate with. Groups start to form of likeminded individuals, and labels soon follow to identify each other. I am French I am Scottish, I am Male, I am Female. This is a good thing right?

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Individualism is welcomed and even encouraged in our society as a good thing. Finding what your good at and enjoy, what you like and dislike is all normal behaviour. You and I have been participating in this game all our lives.

We find our passions, what we like and dislike. We find the right type of work befitting to our character maybe that’s manual work or working in an office. We find what types of food we like, books to read music to listen too. We also gain country, religious, race and sexual identities. By the age of 20 most people have formed so many characteristics we can easy state; Josh, he is a white Male, heterosexual, of no particular religion, wants to be an engineer, likes football, swimming and T.V. All very normal behaviour. So is it actually good behaviour?

I do actually indeed salute individualism and believe it plays an important role in our societies and lives of today. However I am also a firm believer and advocate of the complete opposite of individualism that of similar-ism , or togetherness, and how we are also very much more alike than individual. I feel this vital piece of information is missing from our educated lives and if we can only see how alike we all really are, I see a real beginning to the ending of racism, sexism, and religious conflict.

If we could truly understand how more alike than different we are, I see the start of a kinder more understanding society that starts to loose its hatred for other religions, countries or the colour of skin. If we could only see how our brothers and sisters from every corner of the world are more alike than individual, maybe, just maybe, our collective consciousness can have a shift in its thinking and start to distribute the wealth, food, water, and medicine more fairly.

How does this shift in consciousness begin? If I take a look at the person next to me I only see differences? How do I associate myself with someone on the other side of the world?

This all starts with recognising and embracing our similarities, seeing how each and every single one of us experiences pain, disappointment, anger, boredom, happiness, in exactly the same way. How my happiness is the exact same feeling of pleasure you also experience. The difference is the intensity of that happiness and the context in which it arose. The pain of loosing a child is exactly the same sadness no matter where you grew up, what education you received, religion you support, job you do, or football team you support. The intensity and context for arising will always be different.

As humans we experience the world through our 5 senses. The sense of smell, touch, taste, sound and sight these sense impressions are then experienced within our six sense, that of the consciousness and can only be experienced in three ways. They will be either positive, negative or neutral. Since everyone reading this is a human everyone of us experience the world around us in exactly the same way. The education, parents, health, country and a trillion billion other possibilities happen to create different contexts and levels of intensity for us to experience pain, or hatred, happiness or love. This illusion of individualism gives rise to an impression and feeling that no one can truly understand my suffering believing that this is personally happing Me, I or Mine.

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Everyone of us is living and experiencing life exactly the same way. We all suffer with anger, frustrations, love, fears, and anxieties. We are a complicated bunch on an individualistic level. But as we start to see these same similarities of experiencing the world, we start to see that everyone is our brothers and sister no matter what side of the world you come from. We soon develop a deep empathetic compassion for the other, no matter who he/she maybe. We see the others suffer as our suffering is to us and can only have compassion for say the shop keeper who might have been a little bit off with you this morning.

I honestly believe if we could truly start to see this simple truth of life, if we could just start to teach our children this fact, that we are more similar than individual, I can only see a better and better society of individuals but also of common unity. After all we have given ourselves the proud and noble title of MANKIND so let’s try to live up too this Kindness we so proudly named ourselves, and see how the suffering and it’s pain associated are felt by us all. How the elations and joys of life are also felt by us all. Then we will begin to act more kindly towards our fellow man and truly live up to the name MANKIND.

Kind regards

Dhamma Tāpasā

Four Trees Video

Finding Calm in Karma

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We are please to announce Dhamma Tāpasā recently gave us his valuable time to record a voice over to the video and story “The Four Trees” our most loved Moral Story to date.

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Here at 4enlightenment we believe that kindness creates kindness, that’s why morality is at the core of everything we do.

From the stories we write to the mindfulness techniques we share, we believe in doing things right, always with kindness and compassion as our guide.

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Please follow the links to YouTube to see our Audio & video version of “The Four Trees” narrated by Dhamma Tāpasā. If you could also share, like and comment that way we can spread the kindness further.

Kind regards

The Roman Soldier

Our story comes from a time during the Roman Empire where there were mighty gladiators and legendary Emperors. Our story is centred around a normal soldier who became a legend in his own right.

Inspirational Short Moral Story

The Roman Soldier

From a young age our soldier was always good at sports and always dreamed of becoming a soldier. His dream wasn’t just of an ordinary soldier he dreamt of glory and recognition.

By the age of twelve he had proved himself, and was excepted into the military academy. He enjoyed his life and strived everyday to become the best. He knew of nothing better he could be, than that of a soldier in the Roman army.

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He progressed well becoming one of the top students. Finally the day came of graduation, where he was selected to join the twelfth legion. An elite legion known for there bravery and savagery on the battle field.

He quickly excelled with his new legion, making friends quickly and soon become recognised as fearless and ruthless in battle. He rose through the ranks and became a sergeant looking after a dozen men.

Battle after battle were fought with our soldier and his brave twelve victorious at every turn.

He was gaining a reputation as one of the most mastered and revered soldiers in the entire Roman Empire.

More battles came with victories at every turn.

Until things started to change and a true legend was born.

It began with a pause in a battle to remove the wounded. While resting he watched the old and young come and tend to the wounded and find their loved ones. He watched as tears flooded the eyes and heart of one particular mother who wept desperately for her son, now lying motionless.

Like a lightening bolt our soldier could see this heartache and devastation was caused by his own sword and how his actions had an equal and opposite reaction.

No matter how hard he tried to shake these thoughts from his head, he just could rid himself of what he had witnessed. Something deep within him had started to change.

The battle was won and the legion were triumphant, but our soldier wasn’t celebrating, he was in deep remorse for that poor old lady and her son.

Right there and then he threw his sword to the floor never to pick it up again. He went to find the old lady who had wept for her son and on bended knees begged for her forgiveness.

He was released from duty, officially recorded as exhaustion, where he returned to his home town. Upon arriving home he was greeted as a hero, anyone brave enough to fight in the Roman army were treated this way. He felt very guilty for all this praise knowing the hurt and pain it had caused others.

Within a matter of days he entered a monastery to practice a simple life and to repent all his sins. He learned under a great master of the time and before long his heart was pure enough to allow for the healing.

With love now in the soldiers heart he walked the countryside spreading kindness and compassion wherever he could. His reputation began to spread far and wide as a saintly man full of love in his heart. He now wore the simple robes and collected only alms for his food.

He began to gather a following of men and women all eager to hear words of wisdom from this great man.

An so a legend was born.

The transformation of a soldier man

Author:- Dhamma Tāpasā*

With just 3 questions I can Unlock limiting beliefs that maybe causing You Stress, Anxiety or even underlying Depression!

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Moral of Story:

All our actions have consequences this is called Karma. Whatever we do, think or say produces Karma. If we harm others or ourselves then that karma caused is only negative. Over the long run that has a devastating effect on both our peace of mind and our wellbeing. What we think we become!

*Dhamma Tāpasā is a trained former Buddhist Monk and the spiritual name given to Andrew Hallas. An inspirational positive life purpose & Motivational coach who Teaches Meditation & mindfulness techniques through the art of his original moral stories. Dhamma Tāpasā is able to capture our imaginations whilst teaching us valuable moral principles and deepening our understanding of the human consciousness, motivating and inspiring us to face our everyday problems with a renewed energy and vigour.


Some of our most Compelling Stories


©️www.4enlightenment.com

Let’s Talk Meditation

Meditation and the Truth

Most of us have heard about meditation and mindfulness over the last few years, but how many of us truly understand how to practice this ancient art form passed down for thousands of years. This article is where I want to correct the balance and put straight some of the facts about this noble way to practice.

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Most of the information I see on Pinterest, Facebook or Instagram is given freely but at the cost of heavily advertised websites, Click baited headlines to draw your curiosity in to only find a half hearted explanation and little to no advice. Most of these websites are written by wanna-be social media stars and there is a growing concern that meditation and mindfulness has become, or is becoming, a watered down version of a truly remarkable aid in the development of our human consciousness. An aid, that if understood correctly, can and will change your life dramatically for the better.

What can Meditation do for me?

Meditation has the ability to reshape your life towards a more peaceful, respectful and compassionate way to live. A life with less worry and less anxiety, a life where gossip doesn’t amuse or intrigue and fear struggles to reside. Meditation can calm and clear your mind like that of a still lake and reflect back a better version of yourself. And by searching within for that elusive happiness we truly can change the world around us.

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My experience with Meditation

My experience with meditation has completely changed my life for the better. I have been practicing meditation for well over 15 years, a large number for some but a small number for others. In this time I have gone from a lost soul not understanding the way of the world, feeling like I didn’t fit in, or that something was wrong with me. I now have a life living completely satisfied and fulfilled, a life full of love and compassion. I now have a relationship with my father something that in my early life I did not and this is something I cherish dearly.

In these 15 years I have been trained by meditation masters such as Thich Nhat Hanh and from the direct descendants of the forest monk Ajahn Chah. I have been an ordained Buddhist monk for many years practicing in the seclusion of the northern forests of Thailand. I now wander the European countryside as a monk still searching the depths of my mind and all its wily tricks and parlour games it plays. I am totally addicted to meditation and mindfulness like a smoker is to cigarettes. Everyday I practice watching or observing the play of consciousness and it’s relationship to our experiences. Everyday I grow and learn more.

I am not enlightened and don’t pretend to be, I am enjoying the search tremendously and as so I have for a long time dedicated my life to understanding the truth of our human condition.

How to truly meditate

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We have all heard that the art of meditation is to follow the breath. Breathing in, you really observe and feel the breath coming in. We need to be invested in this process of observance, completely absorbed and focused. See how the air passes through you nostrils, tickling the hairs in your nose, watch and witness the abdomen enlarge and the lungs expanding gently as a response. Breathing out observe the process as you would a movie get yourself involved and watch the lungs deflate as a response to you abdomens movement. Observe the air as it comes out through your nose, tickling those nostril hairs. And then the slight pause before we breath in once again.

This is just one step in meditation and is the foundation of all training it is called Samantha or Samadhi meditation. However this is just a foundation and only when our foundations are solid and secure can we start to build upon this to investigate and discover the real interplay between our thoughts and there corresponding actions. This is known as Vipassanā meditation. Translated as ‘truly seeing‘, or insight meditation.

Vipassanā Meditation

Vipassanā Meditation is an observance of the our thoughts within the consciousness. We watch, without interference, how each thought arises from something and then passes away. How one thought leads to another and to another and then to another. Vipassanā Meditation is the observance of the minds three facts of existence, impermanence, suffering and non self as they reveal themselves through consciousness. Truths that once experienced as reality changes your whole way of life. Knowing this is not enough, experiencing this for yourself is the true purpose of meditation and one that can take minutes or sometimes a life time.

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Vipassanā is an art form that takes a long time to develop and should only be attempted after many hours of Samantha meditation as described above. The reason is to develop the skill as an observer without interference so as to experience these truths for yourself. There is no point in just mere understanding, one must truly experience this birth and death for ourselves, experience the ever changing impermanence that exists in everything.

For another explanation of Vipassanā Meditation from a more scientific view point Click Here

What to do now

The most important factor to remember with meditation is to always be kind towards yourself. When we loose focus on our breathing, gently laugh or chuckle to yourself and bring back your attention. Try not to be harsh with yourself it is the journey that is far more important than the destination. Kindness goes an incredible long way in this world and something that if practiced towards ourselves helps elevate a lot of our problems.

Practice breathing meditation or Samantha meditation until you have got a solid foundation, a foundation where you feel present in the moment, grounded in the breath. Once this has become established then allow your mind to investigate, to clearly see with Vipassanā Meditation.

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For any help or advice please feel free to contact me using the contact form provided in the menu. There is no pressure on your behalf and I am here to help. I have been lucky enough to be guided by Masters over my time and it would be a delight to help in anyway I can.

kind regards

Dhamma Tāpasā

Words of wisdom and Moral Principles

Words of Wisdom & inspirational quotes

These Words of Wisdom or inspirational quotes have all been selected to try and ease our suffering, to bring about a calm within our minds. There is an unprecedented amount of pain and suffering going on in the world today and it is each of our responsibility to help in any way we can.

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The world we all live in is an ever changing, impermanent entity and today this seems more so than ever before. Coronavirus or Covid19 has altered our entire way of life in a very short period of time. No matter what country you come from, no matter what colour your skin, no matter the religion you believe or disbelieve everyone has been touched by this deadly virus. Masks are starting to become an everyday aspect of our lives, social distancing is necessary or enforced and millions of people are suffering as a result.

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Myself, Dhamma Tāpasā, and my adopted stray dog, Marley Moo, spend our time wandering the European countryside, what the Buddhists call Tudong, in search of spiritual enlightenment. Each day we meet scared individuals, frightened for there very lives and that of their families. My job as a Monk and Meditator is to help in anyway I can, through my unique Moral Stories created from real life experiences we come across during our week. We create words of wisdom or inspirational quotes that have been passed down through the ages and we teach meditation and mindfulness techniques to calm the mind from worry and try and alleviate our own suffering. Meditation is more than just a relaxation tool and I urge you to find out more.

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Learn more about Meditation

To learn more about mindfulness and meditation techniques, we have included FREE within these pages a complete Beginners Meditation guide, advancing to the more sophisticated Vipassana meditation practice. We have sections to help with our posture and sitting position for meditation, mini meditations that can be practiced for people with busy lives. Body scan meditation to learn how are body feels at any given moment, and many many more meditation tricks and tips that help with any problems you may be facing along the way.

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A New Set of Moral Principles through Moral Stories

I believe the world needs a new set of Moral principals to help us progress, develop and thrive in this 21st century. Our time on this planet is short and at the moment it seems the manipulation of large corporations, the absurdity of immoral sports personalities, lying governments and the wealthy elite are gaining ever more popularity of followers all dreaming that this is the correct way to live our lives.

The results or our Karma following this way of life are very clear to me. With more and more searching for Youtube star sensation and Facebook fame we are all starting to fall victim to an immoral set of principals that only harm others in favour of ourselves.

We share this planet with 7 billion other humans and more than 7 times that number of other mammals, insects and birds, something we have all seemed too of forgotten. If we keep chasing greed of wealth, and the constant wanting of more things and stuff we will be the generation that brings the end to life as we know it.

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I urge us all to change our ways and learn more about peace, happiness from within ourselves and not from external situations. For none of us can become truly happy by external happiness, only by looking deep within can we truly escape the suffering we are causing ourselves and others.

Morality seems to of been casted aside in this century and I wholeheartedly believe a new set of principles needs to be found by all of us. This is why I try to write a Moral story each week to show clear examples of our behaviour and it’s direct consequences. Most of these short sweet Moral stories are from inspiration on our wanderings, designed to be read by children and adults alike.

Kind regards

Dhamma Tāpasā