Friday, December 30, 2011

Desert Reflections.

Behold - the vast desert around me, falling away in every direction. The sand molds between my bare toes while the rock holds me back from sinking into the sky. Wisps of white follow the circling birds of the vast blue, converging into shapes not yet discovered.

The stones I touch transmit the knowledge of the universe, a timeless seat of eternal observation; victim to the slowest of movement, master of concentration. The naturalness abounds, only I am out of place. Maybe a millennium past I would be accepted. Now my kind doesn’t sit and accept itself as a part of nature; instead we find creative ways to control it. Can I interact with my beautiful surroundings in a truly appreciative and natural way?

I remove my clothes and let the sun warm my body. I am joined also by the lizards, the desert fox, and his rabbit also naked and beautiful. I am joined by everyone who stood in this spot and looked towards the sky with a smile; I am joined by everyone who will do so in the future. Without my clothes I shed the inhibitions and illusions of my society. I empathize with the piƱon and sagebrush, grounded in the earth yet wild with the wind.

Running barefoot through the sand I reach the edge of a vast cliff. Below me, the valley holds water and life and grasps the remaining light of day. Am I privileged enough to dance with the fearless nocturnal creatures? They emerge happily, curiously, oblivious to my troubled mind. The tempest of my thoughts touches ground at this very spot, eternally and impeccably quiet. A fire shoots sparks upwards, mingling with distant stars and planets; the calm atmosphere settles upon the southwest. My breath lingers, trembling.

I awake to the miraculous emergence of the sun, the trumpets of finches and crows declaring its arrival. Walking from my solitude towards the world I know, my head drops. I put on my clothes and return to my home, full of love for that beautiful place I know; full of sorrow for the eyes oblivious to this beauty, focused instead on a flawed and corrosive world of our own design.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Wild Adventures

Well, I'm back in action and it's time to get the blog going again. I have lots of photos and philosophical musings to share, and random thoughts to get off my mind. Although I'm currently "unemployed" in the typical sense of the word, my life is full with action and I am living every day as a challenge, and a chance to improve myself in some way. I hope that the following entries, although perhaps a bit obscure on occasion, will help my friends and family become inspired to do the same. Our life is short and precious, but not that short, and we are capable of some amazing things. The key is to find your passion, and to devote yourself completely to it.

Without action, we are not true to our nature as animals. Without loving passion, we are not true to our nature as humans. Follow your heart with a smile :-)

With love to the universe and all my wonderful friends and family,

Monday, May 16, 2011

The Smile of Buddha, and the Wheel of Dharma

Last week was Buddha's 2555th birthday celebration, and here in Korea it was quite a party!  Heather and I were able to visit Jogyesa in Seoul, surely one of the brightest Buddhist temples in the country.  Shimmering in the hazy light pollution of the city, the lanterns cast a colorful reminder of spring, of beauty, and of the fact that we should never forget to smile.

Taking that lovely advice to heart, I smile, and am reminded of all the wonderful things in our world.  They are far too easy to overlook.  Bringing out my camera for the first time in several months, I am inspired to look through the eyes of a buddha, with a wild admiration for everything living and non; to see the joy that has ever touched any place, and the joy that ever will touch any place.  What do I see?  Nothing that a lens can truly capture, nor the cropped and dusty sensor inside my camera.  The images that I create are simply rudimentary depictions of the action of happiness.  The painter has her colors and brushes, I have my nikon; but these are just tools, and the products just combinations of color.  The real beauty of these things lies within the actions which brings them about.  The memories which inspire those actions.  The people that help create those memories.  The chain reaction of inspiration spreads through an interminable distance; everything I am doing now has an infinite number of causes, and likely an equivalent number of effects.  By this I only mean that for each picture that I take, it is really the whole world taking this picture, everything that has ever existed.  If we employ a method as simple as causality, this makes a little sense.  But I know it is a little more complicated than cause and effect...

As I see Buddha's smile in everything around me, my internal wheels of happiness start to spin.  I begin to feel uplifted and joyful.  Simply by taking time to look around and truly focus on things around me, patterns, contrasts, the foils of the living and the inanimate, a smile arises, manifested by something I don't understand, but there none-the-less. 

I am happy to be here, 
I am happy to be,
I am happy.

: )

Monday, May 2, 2011


I have decided to put up some more of my photos online, to share them with others in an easier way.  You can see them at the link below:

I hope all my friends and family in other corners of the world are able to enjoy the same sunsets I am, just at different times :-)

Sunday, April 24, 2011


We have been in Korea for 8 months now, and things are going great!  Teaching is so much fun, though I feel like I'm learning more as a teacher than I ever did as a student. 

The dreary cold winter has ended, and April has brought bursts of color from the trees and the soil.  The flowers are really spectacular this time of year.  I haven't been taking too many photos, but inspired by the beauty around me, I thought I'd take out my camera. During the last few weeks, I've made some of these shots: