Walking Meditation

Walking Meditation

Walking meditation is one of the nicest ways to meditate, the body naturally walks and to experience being both aware of the body’s movements at the same time as being present in the immediate environment can keep us centred and relaxed. The recommended setup for walking meditation is a level, straight path of 20-30 paces, free from debris and somewhere quiet and secluded. The practice is to walk from one end to the other being mindful of each movement, when you reach the end you stand still for a few moments, turn and repeat the exercise to the other end. Walk at a pace that feels comfortable for you, this could be a calm or composed walk or a walk with ease or vigour, feel what is comfortable and as your mind settles your pace will slow accordingly.

Walking meditation, self help guide, personal development tips, inspirational help, spirituality, mindfulness
Walking meditation

Although many people may not have access to the the kind of level path that we recommend for walking meditation, it is still advisable to cultivate this as best as possible within a room, in this instance circumnavigating the room either clockwise or anti-clockwise would be suitable. The ideal location would be a straight path of 20-30 paces in a forest, park, beach or grassland, somewhere you feel safe and secure. The attitude of mindfulness to walking doesn’t have to be confined to just your meditation sessions and once the methods explained hear have been practiced it is possible to be mindful while walking in busy streets or places where there is a lot of footfall. 

The first step begins with composing are attention while standing at one end of your chosen path. Bring your attention to your breath and become present in the moment, spend at least half a minute relaxing and watching the breath. Stand in such a way you can very clearly feel the soles of your feet spread over the ground and rooted to that particular point. Breathing in be aware you are breathing in. Breathing out be aware you are breathing out. Once your calm and you feeling more relaxed and centred, slowly begin, first by gently raising your foot from the ground.

Raising one of your feet try to walk as slowly as you can but at your own body’s comfort. I want you to really feel each and every movement, explore the sensations in your body. Explore the tensing and relaxing of each muscle as it’s being used. Keep everything simple, walk from one end to the other, keeping in touch with your body sensations. 
The minds tendency may be to go into thinking or to get involved with what you see, in either case be gentle and kind towards yourself and bring the attention back to the body as you move each muscle.

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Walking Meditation infographic

When you are walking you can gather your arms either behind your back or in front of you, gently resting the palm of your hand on the opposite wrist. Recognise the repetitive pattern that goes with walking, feel the sensations as your feet press into the soil, then feel the release of pressure as you raise that foot again. Feel the sensations in your hips and lower back, feel each muscle tense as it moves when required, then relax when not.

Walking mindfully slows the minds rhythm, eventually settling into the physical sensations, the mind becomes calmer and clear. This calmness brings with it a regenerative energy that makes walking meditation feel tireless.

The difficulties that can arise form walking meditation can be a general agitation as the minds wanderings are bought into check and back to the exercise, typical with all meditation. If you feel this agitation start to build, pause and take some deep breaths, always be kind towards yourself, don’t scold, breathing in be aware your breathing in, breathing out be aware your breathing out. Do this for a few moments then resume. You may find yourself standing at one end of your chosen path and go stomping up the other end with little or no regard to mindfulness, or the practice at hand. Once again pause, long deep breaths and return to breathing in and breathing out, after a few moments, feel yourself relax, and start again. 

Walking meditation is a simple and beautiful meditation that is very easy to pick up and understand, it has the ability to centre us and keep us focused and relaxed. You can do this meditation for as little as ten minutes and feel the benefits, it is best to try and build on that and work up to half and hour and maybe even an hour.

Spiritual Quotes

Spiritual & spirituality Quotes

Abraham Lincoln spiritual quote

Abraham Lincoln 1809 – 1865

American lawyer and politician serving as the 16th president of the United States of America. A remarkable man who led his country through civil war described as the bloodiest war America has ever known, he abolished slavery, strengthened the federal government and considered by many to be the forefather of the modern economy with methods first introduced during his presidency.

Lincoln had grown up in a poor family upbringing in Kentucky, largely self educated he was an avid reader and having a life long interest in learning, compelling Lincoln to his destiny. Lincoln married Miss Marry Todd in 1842 the daughter a wealthy slave holding family, they were to have four children of which only one survived to adulthood. This is said to have had a profound effect of both Lincoln and his wife for the rest of there lives. Lincoln was assassinated in April 1865 a few days after successfully reuniting two opposing forces at war with remarkable policy’s of reconciliation.

A highly revered man in not only presidential history but of the history of the United States of America itself.

Dalai Lama 1935 – present

The 14th Dalai Lama, born as Tenzin Gyatso is the current spiritual leader of Tibet. Tenzin was born in the small village of Taktser in Tibet, selected from a young age as being the possible reincarnation of the 13th Dalai Lama. After careful selection and some remarkable coincidences or fate, Tenzin was chosen as the reincarnation at the age of five. He was 15 years old when he partly took over the political duties of Tibet. During the 1950’s China progressively and violently claimed Tibet as a state of the Chinese and denounced the Dalai Lama as a spiritual leader and all who followed him. The uprising that came and the cultural cleansing preformed by the communist Chinese is one of recent history’s most tragic stories. China was swift and brutal, burning all cultural as religious artefacts, destroying temples and performing horrific acts upon monks and nuns, while the civilised world just watched. The Dalia Lama fled with his life along with a few number of government officials to India in 1959.

Dharamshala has now become residence to the refugees of Tibet and his holiness the 14th Dalai Lama. It is also the capital for the central Tibetan administration (Tibet’s government in exile) from hear the Dalai Lama gives talks and meets and greets thousands upon thousands of tourists and well wishers who have travelled vast distances just to glimpse this truly enlightened man. A true loving example of peace

Eleanor Roosevelt 1884 – 1962

An American diplomat, civil rights activist, writer and political figure serving as First Lady of the United States during her husband Franklin D Roosevelt’s four terms as United States president. A passionate human rights activist that has her the nickname ‘the First Lady of the world’ first coined by president Harry S Truman.

She was born into the prestigious family of Livingston but lost both her parents at a young age. She was educated in both America and London England where it is said the headmistress had an enormous impact on her life. She married Franklin D Roosevelt in 1905 and after her husband had an affaire she became more independent wanting a public life of her own.

Sometimes outspoken always headstrong she redefined the role as First Lady campaigning strongly for civil rights of African and Asian Americans and the World War II refugees. Following he husbands death she would spend the next 17 years in public service becoming the United States very first delegate of the United Nations. Regarded by many as one of the most esteemed women of the world.

Buddha 563 – 483BC

Gautama Buddha lived 2562 years ago as a monk and teacher of which Buddhism was founded. Born a prince of the Shakya clan in northern India, now Nepal. Dissatisfied with his life and that of the human condition he left the royal palace in search of truth. After many years practicing Medici W yoga and other meditation techniques of the time, Sitting ina Medici was state for prolonged periods of time Gautama discovered his middle way or the noble eightfold path as the way to enlightenment. For the remaining 45 years of his life the Buddha taught this path, established the Sangha and monastery’s through out his travels leaving behind a legacy that has endured millennium.

Mahatma Gandhi 1869-1948

Leader of the Indian independence movement against the British rule of the time. Most memorable for his non violence approach, leading his fellow countrymen on a 400km march to the salt pans of Dandi in protest of the British imposed salt tax. Living modestly Gandhi wore the traditional Indian dhoti which he hand spun on his charkha. He ate simple vegetarian food and undertook long fasts as a means of both self purification and political protest. October 2nd is Gandhi’s birthday and worldwide has become the international day of non violence, in India it is also a national holiday. A truly remarkable man.

10 reasons to love yourself 

10 reason to love yourself 

1 Your smile is what makes life so beautiful

When you smile you bring with it a multitude of effects, not just beneficial for yourself, but everyone that comes into contact with a smile is softened instantly. Far better than a common hand shake a smile says far more when we meet someone. Your smile is so yours and yours alone. There isn’t anyone else that does it your way, from the way your skin is formed to the size of your lips, there isn’t two smiles the same. Own your smile it not only makes you more beautiful, it makes life more beautiful too.

Loving kindness, compassion, loving, generosity, wellbeing, spirituality, spiritual, love
Rainbows and Star Dust

2 Your made of the same stuff as star dust and rainbows 

The scientific community have unquestionably found that we are made up of the same base matter as that of star dust and rainbows. In fact every living and non living entity in our entire known universe is made up of this very same stuff, you are as equally unique as a shooting star or a passing rainbow. The beauty in every stone, tree, waterfall or landscape is inside you. From the rain drop on the mushroom to storm clouds that made it, you are that very same beauty.

3 Your laugh gives people happiness

Your laugh comes from within, a beautifully orchestrated melody of sound that fills people with happiness. No one can produce your laugh, it has been in evolution since your birth, your richness of tones, your accent and language all play a role in shaping your laughter but it is YOU who put the finally spin on it shaping it into you very own, there isn’t two people in the entire universe with the same laugh, which makes yours truly uniquely special. Don’t forget to share.

4 Your beautiful from the inside out

There is no one as beautiful as you, no matter your shape or size, inner beauty your always outshines, leaving people with a great satisfaction after meeting you. With your smile and laughter you have the power to heals wounds, the qualities you already posses inside yourself can far exceeded that of materialistic possessions, an ever lasting contentment of peace and tranquility, the key is yours and yours alone. 

5 Your big heartedness 

Your loving compassion and openness, willingness and patience make your heart filled with love. A heart that doesn’t just merely beat around 115,000 times a day, it isn’t just an organ to send oxygenated blood around your system, it is so so much more. With the capacity to envelope the entire universe with unconditional love and compassion, you have with in your heart all that is good, a heart can feel love and feel pain, but a heart also has the capacity to overcome pain and transform love into unconditional ever lasting peace and tranquility.

Loving kindness, love, generosity, compassion, kindness, wellbeing, spirituality, spiritual
The sunshine in your eyes

6 The sunshine in your eyes 

Your eyes have taken 550million years to evolve and that’s still an ongoing process, after your conception your eyes are already starting to form at two weeks, and once grown they stay the same size from birth to death, unlike your ears or nose. Like an iceberg only 1/6 of your eyes are visible and there are over two million working parts. You eyes have more unique characteristics than a finger print counting 256 compared to 40 for a finger print. Your eyes are the second most complex organ in the body after your brain and 80% of our memories come from our eyes. They are so unique to you they sparkle from your very soul.

7 The way you express love 

Love comes in many shapes and forms, your love is true, it’s pure an unconditional love that has the power to change the power to heal. Your love is all conquering and all encompassing, no one loves like you. Poets have written sonnets about this very love and never touch the ever lasting feeling your love brings. Your love is so bountiful and never ending, eternal, it can never be taken away from you, it is always yours to give.

Loving kindness, compassion, loving, generosity, wellbeing, spirituality, spiritual, happiness, positivity
Reflection on water

8 Your beautiful reflection in the water

You are so beautiful and perfect in every way, your still reflection is a perfect example. No matter your shape or size you really are completely and utterly perfectly you. No one could come close to your perfection, those little lumps and bumps you feel ashamed are yours and your uniqueness alone. No one comes close to being you, own it and walk with pride, you are truly uniquely beautiful.

9 When you speak angles dance in the twilight

The sound of your voice belongs to you, completely unique to you. When you sing angels really do know it’s you. Your shape and size all play an important role in your sound as well as the size of your vocal tract. Each an every factor from the location of your birth to environment you were bought up, have all shaped the way your voice sounds. A completely unique and special gift of yours.

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Angels dancing in twilight

10 Your completely and utterly unique 

From your smile which can only be yours to the laughter and love that makes the world a better place, the way you listen with your enormous heart containing unravelled unconditional love, your voice is perfectly in balance with the beauty of your body and the beauty from within. You really are as truly remarkable as a shooting stars and rainbows. You are and always will be Lovely. There is only one you, one complete unique you, treasure yourself for there is only one.

Loving kindness, love, generosity, wellbeing, loving, compassion, kindness, positivity, spirituality, spiritual
10 reasons to love yourself

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Words of wisdom

Words of wisdom

Words of wisdom, Ajahn Brahm, Quotes, quote, sayings, life quotes, mindfulness, meditation, spirituality
Words of wisdom Ajahn Brahm

Ajahn Brahm 1951 – present 

Is a British born Australian Buddhist monk from the Thai forest tradition and tutored under the auspicious Ajahn Chah. Born Peter Betts in London, England to a working class family, he was to have a normal upbringing for the time but whilst at school he showed exceptional abilities and won a scholarship to Cambridge university to study theoretical physics. It was at Cambridge university that a love affaire with Buddhism, eastern mysticism and meditation began and after graduation and a brief one year stint as a teacher he followed the hippy trail overland from England to the east finally finding his way to Thailand. At the age of 23 peter was ordained as a Buddhist monk in Bangkok. It was a chance encounter with Ajahn Sumedho that led him to the Thai forest tradition, where he settled and under the guidance of Ajahn Chah he would stay and study for 9 years. It was Ajahn Chah who asked him to help with teaching duties in Australia and together with Ajahn Jagaro they set up Bodhinyana monastery in Perth, Western Australia. This was the first Buddhist monastery in the Thai Theravada linage in the Southern Hemisphere, and still the largest today. In 1995 Ajahn Brahm took over as Abbott of Bodhinyana Monastery which is where he still resides today.

An amazing public speaker selling out concert venues across Singapore and Malaysia, author of two excellent books and credited with translating the Vinaya, the monastic code, into the English language. His easy going nature has earn’t him a large following and his down to earth style and approach make him one of the greatest living teachers of today. 

Words of wisdom, quotes, life quotes, quote, sayings, Eckhart Tolle, meditation
Words of wisdom Eckhart Tolle

Elkhart Tolle 1948 – present

Is a German Canadian spiritual teacher and author, best known for his work “the power of now”. He has been heralded as one of the most influential people living today. Born in a small town just outside of Dortmund, Germany, Tolle himself describes his childhood as depressing. His parents would fight a lot which led to them finally splitting up. He also grew up in a war torn Germany and experienced the devastation left, not just on the surface of bombed out buildings but deep scares it leaves within a nation. He suffered from depression, fear and anxiety from as early as he can remember, that is until the age 29 when living and studying in London, he was to experience an inner transformation that left him with an ever lasting inner peace and tranquility. He describes the experience as a discovery and dissolution of the self. After this awakening he spent a few years wandering in total bliss around London and was at this point he changed his name to Eckhart. He started to write “the power of now” and soon became a spiritual teacher with people seeking out his advice and wisdom. He moved to Canada in 1995 where he still spends most of his time teaching and living a simple life. Eckhart Tolle is not associated with any religion but has been influenced by Zen Buddhism, Hinduism, Sufism and the bible. 

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Words of wisdom Baba Ram Dass

Baba Ram Dass 1931 – present

An American born spiritual teacher, author, charity founder and clinical psychologist. He wasn’t know as Ram Dass until later in life and was born as one Richard Alpert into a Jewish family from Massachusetts. Studying hard as a child would see the young Ram Dass complete his education with a Bachelor of Arts, Master and doctorate all specialising in psychology. He took a professorship at Harvard university where he was to write and publish his first book. It was also at Harvard he was to research the potential therapeutic effects of hallucinogenic drugs such as LSD and Psilocybin. The young Ram Dass was dismissed from Harvard just over a year later where he then moved to New York setting up a commune still experimenting with hallucinogenics searching for a route to the higher consciousness. It wasn’t until a trip to India in 1967 where he would meet his spiritual guru Neem Karoli Baba. He was given the name Ram Dass by his guru which means ‘servant of god’. Ram Dass learnt and studied with Neem Karoli Baba until his return to the untied states where he stayed at the Lama Foundation in New Mexico. It was hear that Tolle presented his manuscript entitled ‘From Bindu to Ojas’ to the foundation who would edit, illustrate and lay out the text to what would ultimately become the internationally best selling “The Power Of Now” a personal spiritual journey from psychedelics to enlightenment.

During the 70’s, 80’s and some of the 90’s Ram Dass focused on teaching, writing and founding numerous charitable non profit educational foundations ranging in diversity but all for the welfare of humanity. After a stroke in 1997 he has spent most of his time in residence on the island of Maui in Hawaii, where he still teaches and regularly gives a podcast. In summing up his life he is quoted as saying “I help people as a way to work on myself, and I work on myself to help other people” 

Words of wisdom, quotes, quote, life quotes, sayings, Zen Buddhism, Alan Watts
Words of wisdom Alan Watts

Alan Watts 1915 – 1973

British born American philosopher, teacher, author and commentator he was to popularise eastern culture, philosophy and mysticism with a western audience. Born into a middle class family in Kent, England, where growing up he is said to of always been fascinated with the east, its mysticism and enchantment. From an early age he discovered Buddhism and meditation and at the age of 16 became the London Buddhist lodge’s secretary, at the time the Buddhist Lodge was run by Christmas Humphrey considered to be one of the forefathers of bringing Buddhism to the west. After his marriage to Eleanor and successful publication of his first book “Spirit of Zen” Alan moved to America where he had an eventful and fulfilling life, spending time as an episcopal priest, training in the ways of Zen Buddhism, had 3 marriages and seven children, he produced numerous works on the human conciseness and its experience all relating themselves through Zen, Buddhism and Hinduism. His later life was spent teaching and public speaking touring America and Europe he captivated audiences wherever he went with his philosophical and mystical insights which would have a great lasting impact on the audiences. Still today you can find Alan Watts talks on YouTube, and his talks still resonate truth in today’s world.

Words of wisdom, quotes, life quote, sayings, Buddhism, Ajahn Chah
Words of wisdom Ajahn Chah

Ajahn Chah 1918 – 1992

Was a Buddhist monk of the Thai forest tradition, respected and well loved in his own country as a man of great wisdom, it wasn’t until the arrival of the hippies of the 1960’s that the west finally got to hear of this great spiritual master.

He was born into poverty in the northeast region of Thailand, his parents were rice farmers surviving from day to day. With no real education to be had in the region the young Ajahn would start his monastic training a the age of nine. He spent three years in the monastery where he learnt to read and write. He returned to work on the land of his parents but returned to monastic life at the age of 17. He was ordained at a local monastery where he stayed and practiced meditation until 1946 when he decided to become a wandering ascetic monk, a practice called dutong. He wandered learning from teachers of the time, by far his biggest influence was Ajahn Mun a renowned enlightened meditation master. He spent this time of his life meditating in caves and forests until finally establishing a monastery near his home town where he taught his simple meditation techniques and started to gain a large following of disciples and lay people alike. The arrival of the first western disciple, Ajahn Sumedho saw the development of a new monastery focused purely for the western mind filled with knowledge, the first of its kind in Thailand. A few years later Ajahn Chah was invited to give talks in England where he was to form the very first monastery in the Thai forest linage, called Chittaviveka. Ajahn Chah’s health was in decline by the early 1980’s and he was to suffer a massive stroke leaving him bedridden and unable to speak for ten years. Still in this condition he transmitted the teachings of the Buddha using his own body as evidence enough of impermanence and the importance of seeking refuge within ourselves. Ajahn Chah’s legacy of students continues today with Ajahn Brahm, Jack Kornfield, Ajahn Summadho and Ajahn Amaro to name just a few. 

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Loving kindness meditation or Metta Bhavana meditation

Loving kindness or Metta Bhavana meditation 

There are a few methods and ways to practice loving kindness, the method I describe below I find works wonderfully for me. It is one of visualisation, I was a Buddhist monk in Northern Thailand and after many years of meditation practice and guidance I find this is the most suitable way for my western mind.

Loving kindness meditation, compassion, spiritual, spirituality, mindfulness, happiness, generosity, wellbeing
Loving kindness Metta meditation infographic

This method however is just one of the three ways to practice which will achieve loving kindness in the heart. Reflecting and auditory are the other two methods used to create the feeling of loving kindness. Reflect on the positive qualities of yourself or a loved one will ensure loving kindness to flourish with in the heart. Using a mantra is the auditory approach and an example could simple be the words loving kindness.

The First thing we need to do is find the love from within ourselves. Now I understand that may sound a little scary to some. Visualisation is a great way to achieve love inside, we all have something we love, something that will bring that feeling back when you start to think deeply enough about it. For me this is my adopted stray dog Marley and the crazy fun things he gets up to. If your still finding difficulty thinking of something that your really love this much, then try hitting this link 7 wonders of life, it will help you find something wonderful in your life to feel that loving kindness and to help with the practice. Now that we have our object of focus, it time to relax.

Loving kindness Meditation, mindfulness, spirituality, spiritual, wellbeing, happiness, compassion
Loving kindness infographic

Find a comfortable place somewhere you won’t be disturbed. Now sitting in a comfortable position with a straight spine, gently relax your shoulder and neck muscles and slowly close your eyes. Take a few long deep breaths and feel yourself relaxing.

Let’s start by calmly watch your breathing, don’t disturb your breathing, just let it be natural. Breathing in, be aware your breathing, breathing out, be aware your breathing out. Count one.

This is a great link to learn how to practice Breath Meditation. Relax and do this for a count of ten.
Now bring your object of love to the forefront of your mind and begin to feel the love you have. really start to explore that feeling, the feeling of love. Don’t worry if you feel a little resistance at first, be kind to yourself and be patient. Try to find where the feeling is coming from, do you notice how the feeling grows the more you explore it. Again don’t panic if you feel resistance to this, it is all ok, it just means a little more patience and kindness towards yourself is needed. Now feel that love start to consume you, feel it’s warmth, is your smile hurting you cheeks yet.

If you are having trouble visualising, please still use loving kindness with yourself, this is not going to be easy for some. Tell yourself it’s ok we can have another go later, always be patient and kind towards yourself and even that is practicing loving kindness.
Loving kindness meditation, compassion, spiritual, spirituality, happiness, positivity, mindfulness, generosity, wellbeing

Loving kindness informative graphic

Once we have the feeling of love flowing within ourselves, it’s time to send out our love to others. We now use a mantra with our loving kindness, to truly send out our positive vibration to the chosen person. First we start with ourselves. Repeat this ten times to yourself, or out loud that’s entirely up to you.

May I be happy 

May I be free from metal suffering and distress

May I be free of physical pain and suffering

May I be peaceful and at ease

Now we are going to give that love from our heart, that loving kindness to someone other than ourselves.

The Four Types of Persons to develop loving-kindness towards are 

  • A respected, beloved person – such as a spiritual teacher
  • A dearly beloved – which could be a close family member or friend
  • A neutral person – somebody you know, but have no special feelings towards, e.g a person who serves you in a shop
    A hostile person – someone you may be having difficulty with
  • Starting with yourself, then systematically sending loving-kindness from person to person in the above order will have the effect of breaking down the barriers between the four types of people and yourself. This will have the effect of breaking down the divisions within your own mind, the source of much of the conflict we experience
  • May (insert name) be happy
  • May (insert name) be free from suffering and distress 

    May (insert name) be free of physical pain and suffering 

    May (insert name) be peaceful and at ease 
    Loving kindness meditation, compassion, spiritual, spirituality, mindfulness, happiness, positivity, love, generosity, compassion

    Loving kindness graphic

    If you find your mind wanders or you notice your loving kindness looses it ferocity, at this point always be kind and patient with yourself, slowly return to the original object of focus, take a few deep breaths and start again. once you have established the feeling again in your heart, continue with the mantra. 

    For a more in depth analysis of loving kindness and it benefits click hear.

    Words of wisdom 

    Words of wisdom

    Quotes of love

    Joseph Campbell 1904 – 1987

    An American professor of mythology and religion, and celebrated author all of which delve into the human condition of experience. Born in New York into an Irish catholic middle class family, he excelled at academia from an early age later going on to receive a Bachelor of Arts and a Masters of Arts. After spending five years working, studying and living in Europe, Campbell came away spiritually awakened to the philosophies of the Indian sub continent, Hinduism and the ancient language of Sanskrit.Soon after returning to the United States he took up the position of professor at the Sarah Lawrence College in literature. In 1938 he married a previous student of dance and stayed teaching for 38 years and in that time produced some of the greatest works on the human experience.

    Nikki Giovanni 1943 – present day

    An celebrated African American poet, writer, commentator, activist and educator. One of the worlds most loved and well known African American poet, winning numerous awards for her poetry recording and her non fiction essays and poetry anthologies. Born in Tennessee and educated in the Austin High School, still in the area, then later accepted, at an early age due to excellence, into Fisk university in Nashville, where she graduated with a Bachelors Arts history degree

    Nikki lost her grandmother soon after graduation, Giovanni would turn to writing as a solace and comfort, beginning a passion and love affaire ever since, it is from this period that she first privately published “Black feeling Black talk”. Nikki has been awarded the Rosa Parks award, the NAACP image award, Langston Hughes Medal, been nominated for a Grammy award, has twenty honorary doctorates and has been selected by Oprah Winfrey as one of her 25 living legends.

    LAO TZU 601BC – unknown 

    LAO TZU was an ancient Chinese philosopher and writer having a great influence on t he shape Buddhism took across China and into Japan. LAO TZU literally translates as old master from the Chinese symbols and is credited with writing the TAO TE Ching and being the founder of the philosophical religion of Taoism.

    There is a lot of mystery and confusion surrounding the very life of LAO TZU and even his death is unknown as it is believed he travelled west to live as a hermit in around 531BC aged 70. According to the traditional accounts of LAO TZU life, LAO worked as a scholar for the archives to the royal court of Zhou, it is believed he met and encountered Confucius, where upon hearing his words changed something in his heart, a search for truth was awakened and slowly the ideas of Taoism came about after hours of contemplative meditation.

    It is said LAO TZU spent most of his life roaming the countryside of China teaching the Taoist way to many thousand followers, until he was eventually asked to record his wisdom for the good of the many. The TAO Te Ching is credited to his teaching and vastly complicated,it may take many years before we in the west truly understand it’s full genius.

    Even after LAO TZU passing Taoism grew and spread through China, schools of learning were erected and empires all claimed linage direct from LAO TZU himself. As Taoism spread to the furthest shores of China it would cross the water and hit Japan with Zen and Zazen meditation. A colourful character although surrounded in mystery and myth, it is undoubtedly the spread of Taoism and it far reaching effects that are LAO TZU legacy.

    Don Byas 1912 – 1972

    Don Byas was an extraordinarily gifted jazz saxophone musician. Born in Muskogee, Oklahoma he was to show exceptional talent from an early age, both his parents were musicians and started there young Don’s training at an early age first teaching classical music, the violin the clarinet and then finally the saxophone, a love affaire grew with his very first sax and was to become part of his life until his death of lung cancer in 1972.

    He played with some of the greatest all time swing and jazz musicians of his era and some of the well known big bands at the time. Eddie Barclay, Bill Coleman,Don Redman to name just a few.

    Don spent the last 26 years of his life living and working in Europe, touring with his own big ban as well as other great musicians. He was inducted into the Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame in 1997

    Sam Keen 1931 – present 

    American born author and professor of philosophy, best known for his exploits into questions of love, religion, and the human experience. He has produced numerous works of literacy both in and out of print, some of these titles include “To Love &a Be Loved”, “Faces of the Enemy”, which he co-produced into a PBS award winning documentary with the same name, and “The Passionate Life” Sam Keen has also been the subject of a television documentary in the 1990’s and spent 20 years as editor of Psychology Today Magazine. He resides in California with his wife Pratrica de Jong.

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    Love Quotes

    Love quote, quotes of love, loving kindness, valentines, valentine, love, compassion, generosity,
    Charles Dickens love quotes

    Charles Dickens 1812 – 1870

    One of England’s greatest literary and social critics creating some of the most loved and well known fictional characters of our time. Born into a family of eight children it was his fathers brief time working as a clerk for the Navy Pay Office that enabled a few years private education for Charles, however Charles’s father was living well above his means and in 1824 was imprisoned in a debtors prison, at the age of twelve Charles was forced to leave school and find employment working a 10hr shift in a warehouse pasting labels, cementing an image that Dickens would recreate so well in future works.

    Dickens literacy success began with the publication of the Pickwick Papers and within a few years he had risen to become an internationally celebrated author. For the most part Dickens novels that we know and love today started out as serial publications, mostly monthly, some weekly instalments that pioneered the serial publication that become the Victorian’s standard way of book publication. Because of the serial episode approach, Dickens was able to add flavours and feelings of the time and use the current politics for wit and satire to great effect, developing characters as he went based on his readers reactions. As such, his works become a fascinating insight into Victorian England. His great works of classics fiction include ‘Great Expectations’, ‘Oliver Twist’ and a ‘Tale of Two Cities’ to name but just a few. He is revered by fellow literary artists as one of the all time greats

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