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Archive for the ‘Nature and Man’ Category

Vertical Gardens

Tuesday, March 21st, 2017

I recently came across a website about façade greening in Sao Paulo, Movimiento 90°, and then found another very fascinating website of Patrick Blanc, a botanist and the inventor of the Vertical Garden. Partly, it is a special form of green walls, which I had already encountered with ivy-clad walls, also at the walls of may father’s office building. However, the Vertical Gardens Patrick Blanc has realised are much more sophisticated, hanging florist artworks.

The site about Movimiento 90° speaks about the advantages of such vertigal gardens:

“The plants improve air quality by filtering CO2, can help with heating and cooling in the buildings they are attached to, reduce acoustic problems and, during periods of drought, increase the relative humidity in the air. But to add an extra creative spin, Guils’ studio Movimento 90º invited artists to design the gardens they were creating, and encouraged them to treat the buildings’ walls as blank canvasses.”

May this creative way of using façades grow and bring a better quality of life into the stone, glass and concrete deserts of our cities.

Image: Wikipedia / Jean-Pierre Dalbéra from Paris, France: Le mur végétal (Musée du quai Branly)

Image: Wikipedia / Cillas: A wall of living plants designed by Patrick Blanc at Caixa Forum near Atocha station, Madrid

Image: Wikipedia / Thelmadatter: Green wall at the Universidad del Claustro de Sor Juana in the historic center of Mexico City

A Mountain Trip for a Wedding Jubilee

Wednesday, February 22nd, 2017

Last Monday, my wife and I made an excursion to Mount Chäserrugg. It is a flat mountain of about 2260 meters in the East of Switzerland. It was at a  Sai Baba seminar in 1984, which took place at the foot of this mountain, where the matchmaking started (without my knowing) which led to our marriage in February 1988. (Read in this blogpost the matchmaking story and the later continuation.) So my wife proposed this trip to the Chäserrugg to celebrate our 29th wedding anniversary.

The weather report two days before announced nice weather – but the weather conditions can quickly change in the mountains. When we went up, first with a cliff railway and then with a rope-way, the hilltop was sunk in clouds chased by ice-cold winds. The promo said you can have a panoramic view over 6 countries but we hardly could see a few meters.

We decided to first eat lunch in the newly erected summit restaurant. It was designed by the famous architects Herzog & de Meuron and has a fantastic wooden structure integrating the station into the mountain landscape. For short moments gorgeous mountain views showed up between the clouds, and when we left the restaurant the view was much better. We wanted to do a promenade along a maintained ridge-way. A breathtaking view with changing cloud formations. In the valleys, you could see the Rhine River and the Walensee were the coming spring had melted all the snow while here at the mountain top strong winds blew snow-clouds over the ways. And on the steep pistes skiers were rushing downhill.

Later, we went to the intermediate station at about 1330 meters and did a promenade there. Although there was still a lot of snow around it was much warmer and no wind. We walked a while on the “Klangweg” (Way of Sounds) with some installations for making sounds – with tubes or with cow bells.

Back in the valley, we tried to find the place in Wildhaus where the seminar had taken place (I had been there at a later seminar in 1985) but could not clearly identify it. But on the highway on the way back home we exchanged about the events which still have an impact on our present lives.

“I sow with every wind”

Saturday, November 19th, 2016

Yesterday evening I went out for a short walk. It was quite windy and raining a bit. A swarm of maple keys was approaching, some touching me, whirling high up, going even over the roofs of the neighbour houses. Then came another swarm, like swarms of locusts. We have a maple tree standing directly in front of our balcony. The leaves have gone and now it is time for the little “helicopters” to fly. I always thought that the maple keys on our balcony came from this tree but I now saw that the swarms flew a long distance, came from other trees at least some 50 meters away. I was astonished about this great Deva intelligence preparing first the leaves of the maples to fall and then, later, with the autumn storms, the maple keys are swarming out.

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Maple keys in front of our house

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Maple key on the balcony table

These little flying seeds made me think of my old French Larousse dictionary which I had used during my study times at the university. On the first page there was a publisher’s mark saying, “Je sème à tout vent”  – I sow with every wind.

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It fascinated me very much and it became a motto in my life – to freely distribute, be it what I learnt as wisdom teachings, be it the paintings coming to me or books. Karma cares for what comes back. Nature does not care or charge for “seed copyright protection” to finance the development costs or the shareholder’s purse, it freely distributes. Of course, artists or computer programmers want to survive and our society is not based on free giving. And what comes as free mostly is not free but carries a more or less hidden catch. However, giving money for something you get is an exchange of energy and can be done with an awareness of being free; you need not understand it as paying. Also the maple keys want fertile ground to grow after landing.

I yesterday read that in Switzerland more than 30 per cent of the people, especially the young ones, only consume “free media”, be it in print, be it online. Paying for quality content production seems to be out. The recent election whirlwind brought plenty of fake news with blunt lies. And there are many websites now producing twisted news – the more viral, the more effective and powerful. I recently read from Macedonian “fake news producers” which gain quite a lot of money with sowing these poisonous seeds infecting many ignorant people with their viruses. Not only elections become infections when bad seeds sprout to governments, to laws and to international relations. Other kinds of seeds are needed for a healthy harvest.

It demands a high degree of discrimination to observe, to discover the seeds of motives and not to get deluded in one’s ensuing decisions concerning what to do in these times of the Dark Age.

Good seeds often take a long time to sprout and to grow. Weeds grow much faster. The huge redwood trees grow over centuries. In my life I observed that it took several decades for the deeper seeds of wisdom to sprout and grow – and they had been sown not just in this life. The seeds are coming freely, the good ones and the others. It needs a good gardener’s work to take out the weeds and water the good seeds.

Autumn Gold, Scorpio Transformation

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2016

Nature withdraws its energies towards inside and the trees are turning into golden and fiery colours. In about a month, all the leaves will have fallen, transforming again into humus. Humus is related to humans – our mortal parts will one day fall and become one again with the elements from which it has been composed. But like next spring the leaves sprout again and within about one month all green will be back to the trees, we will also take again to new forms.

Scorpio hints at this miracle of transformation, and when we see through the veil of the golden colours of autumn / fall, we realise that there is immortality behind the mortality of the form and that the with each cycle of contraction we only prepare for a new cycle of expansion. In between or beyond there is the point which unveils the thread thread of continuity, of existence.

Here are some impressions of last Sunday afternoon walk close to my home.

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Exuberant Beauty. A Visit to Mainau Island

Monday, September 5th, 2016

Nature and culture sometimes seem to be contradictions. You think of artificial arrangements and manipulation. But they can also enter into an alliance of an increased beauty. This was my impression when two weeks ago we visited Mainau Island in Lake Constance. It is a garden island and a model of excellent environmental practices. You find more information on their website.

We stopped in a nearby village and walked through a lovely alley of old plane trees to the bridge via which the island is linked to the mainland. Although it was a sunny Sunday with a lot of visitors it didn’t feel crowded. The lush vegetation was set in harmonious forms intersected by paths on different levels. The majestic château gives fantastic views over the lake which was filled by sailing boats. A highlight is the arboretum with high old trees like sequoias and cedars. I was specially thrilled by the papiliorama, a tropical centre with hundreds of butterflies. Enjoy the impressions.

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Stone Circles and Geomantic Traces. A Visit in Austria

Wednesday, July 20th, 2016

My wife is active in a network called Spirit Release. The network group is meeting thrice a year and I join her for these encounters. Ten days ago the July meeting was at the home of friends in Feldkirch, Western Austria. The group wanted to visit the Rona Alp near Bürserberg, where about 10 years ago ancient stone circle and traces had been restored. It says that the neolithic site had been set up about 3 – 5000 years BCA. Later around 1100 BCA, the Rhaetian people came and treated the site with respect but the stone circles were destroyed in a later epoch. After researches on lines of force fields and excavations the structure of the site was reconstructed and the stones were re-erected on precisely the original locations. There are theories that the site served as part of a larger communication system. Some dowsers of our group wanted to examine the site – and we all were very interested to see it.

We first met in Feldkirch, and a friend gave some information about the site and the research done there. Then the group drove to the alp Rona at Tschengla. It was a hot summer day. We first walked through a wetland area and then came to a row of stones and the first stone circle. It as a fantastic location at the foot of a pyramidal mountain surrounded by other steep mountains. The dowsers found energetic spots, also one in a little forest at a place where animals use to meet at a brook. Other visitors also came and a girl used one of the stones for some acrobatics.

A little further ahead there was the second, larger stone circle surrounded by other stones. It was an impressive sight. I tried to feel the vibration – some of the stones with a tip-like form seemed like directing rays while the oblate stones seemed to hold the energy. On some of the stones there were natural structures in the shape of faces.

At the end of the site there was a small place where two (modern) stone plates carried inscriptions of Rhaetian wisdom, from bottom up: 1. Believe in me. I am the beginning of all. 2. All my names are holy. 3. My days are for you. 4. Your origin be your duty. 5. All life is valuable. 6. Preserve your dignity. 7. The Truth liberates you. 8. With ownership comes responsibility. 9. Do not covet. 10. Love.

At the end of the tour we had lunch at a mountain restaurant /dairy before returning to Feldkirch, where the group meeting continued. The way home was long and hot with some traffic jams. We were not the only ones who went out for an excursion.

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The larger stone circle

 

An Afternoon Walk in Lauterbrunnen – Falling Light and Deep Precipices

Thursday, May 12th, 2016

Last Sunday there was radiant sunshine. Around noon time my wife proposed that we should go for an excursion to Lauterbrunnen at the feet of Mount Jungfrau. It’s about 80 km from our home. Already on the highway there was a fantastic view of the Alps. And it got more impressive the more we approached. Lauterbrunnen is famous for a number of high waterfalls, especially the Staubbachfall (literal translation: dust brook falls; nearly 300 m descent). We parked our car directly near the falls – and it was breathtaking. The falls looked like falling light – the spray was radiant white and came down like falling angels.

I was surprised that there were not more tourists but it still was not yet main season – just some Indians, Japanese and Europeans were hiking or biking. We chose a road along the valley forbidden for cars. The air was filled with the sounds of the falls or the bells of cows. Some old sheds stood on the meadows behind which the towering walls of the mountains rose on either side of the valley. Through a side valley one could look up to Mount Jungfrau, the other mountains were hidden behind the promontories. We crossed a river and went to the Trümmelbach falls – a river coming down from the Jungfrau in a steep gorge with a number of waterfalls inside the mountain. We went up half way with a cog railway inside the mountain. And then the road led through kind of a canyon where sometimes the daylight fell down from above. We only had shirts – inside it was quite cold and water was dripping down.

When we came out again the sun already started hiding behind the mountain and the shadows in the valley were fast growing. Cows were grazing near the road and calmly observing the joggers or grazing. Back to Lauterbrunnen we found a camping restaurant where lots of English tourists were staying in the hostel – and finally got our “evening lunch” – pizza and pasta.

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Like clouds falling into the valley – or angels descending?

Mysterious Sri Yantra in Oregon Desert

Thursday, March 10th, 2016

A friend sent me the link to a fascinating short video about a huge Sri Yantra which was discovered in August 1990 in the Oregon Desert.

The Sri Yantra is a very holy symbol of the Divine Mother. This yantra in the desert is a perfect design of about 400 metres in width and length and is carved in a dry lake bed in a remote area of the Oregon desert. It was etched 7 centimetres deep into the extremely hard, sun-baked dry bedsurface. The complex structure has a perfect design and is oriented precisely in the North-South direction. There were no traces of footprints or tyre marks in the ground. You can read more about it here.

You find other huge mysterious signs on earth like this huge man in the Australian desert. And here is an article about a German artist carving beautiful Sri Yantras in metal.

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Photo from the video

The Humanoid Robot Atlas – From Fiction to Reality

Friday, February 26th, 2016

3 days ago, on 23 February, the video was published. Within 24 hours seen over a million times and now already nearly 10 million times:

The Google daughter Boston Dynamics  presents a YouTube clip with a humanoid robot marching through the snow or working in a factory hall. The new version of the “Atlas Next Generation” robot can walk over rugged ground or react on changing situations while packing boxes. Even when he falls down he gets up again and continues.

There are sensors and stereo cameras stabilising the metal guy. Boston Dynamics develops this humanoid “buddy” by order of the US American Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).

The next stage of humans & humanoids is coming from fiction to reality. What kind of intelligence is incarnating here? For the weal or for the worse? May the intelligence used be directed for good will and upliftment.

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Source: Youtube.com/Boston Dynamics

Full Blue Moon – A Time-Lapse Video from Australia

Saturday, December 19th, 2015

On the 31st of July, 2015, Luke Taylor captured pictures of an incredible rise of the Full Blue Moon 4 km (2 ½ miles) away from Cape Byron Lighthouse, on Belongil Beach, Byron Bay, New South Wales, Australia. This is the most easterly point of the Australian Mainland and therefore is the first place in Australia to watch the full moon rise. He took 1038 frames and then made this video “Once in a Blue Moon” by slowing down to as close to real time as possible. A fantastic video. Here is Luke’s Facebook-page (“Surflife Australia Photography”).

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Screenshot from the video (c) Luke Taylor