Sunday, August 21

Ora --- Cluster Reflection Gathering today was amazing! We had the Local Baha'i Spiritual Assemblies celebrating grassroots initiatives, a beautiful devotional program, guest speakers from Baltimore, from the Baha'i World Center in Haifa, and from the Regional Council for the Southern States!

I leave Richmond in one week. I'll be driving with Robbie to his new home in Evanstan (right outside Chicago), where a number of my friends reside. After visiting with them, I'll be flying to Quebec, where I'll stay for 3-4 months before moving onto China. Charlotte (my sis) and I are already planning a trip with her family to Richmond beginning October. Should be oh-so-nice! We'll probably rent a car for a phew days and drive to and from.

This last week I'll be wrapping stuff up to be done with Richmond for at least the next year and a half, if not the rest of my life (except for occasional visits - my parents still live here, after all!)

I'm learning Mandarin!! or at least trying to... the audio lessons can only go so far in teaching all the tones...

Time to get my hands messy with this bread bowl full of black bean soup!

Tuesday, August 9

Lost & Found --- Have you ever felt like you suddenly appeared, and hadn't realized you were gone?

About a week ago, I went to through whole day in a state of great bliss. Now, danio is a happy guy on average, taking things throughout the day as source of joy. However, on this day, danio distinctly felt a presence and magic, which he immediately recognized. This went on for days.

What I recognized was myself, like I had been gone for a couple of weeks, not really myself in the meanwhile. It's a great feeling (still have it), but two questions immediately arose:

1. Where did danio go during those few weeks, and who was here on Earth?

2. How did danio manage to return.

The second question is especially important, because I want danio to be here to stay, to be here long time.

I remember two months ago I was explaining to a couple of friends that I've developed this ability to reorient my vision at any given, and absorb the beauty in my surroundings, thereby creating a state of joy and gratitude. I added that the only problem remained the lack of instances when it occurred to me to practice this. I believe my absence equated to a discontinuation of such moments.

Here are some of the elements I associate with my return: spending time with a couple of very close, uplifting and inspiring friends; picking up meditation once again; working out more. Something else must have done it though, with these signs following.

For now, though, as these questions are mulling in my head, I will focus on maintaining this state of joy that I have regained.

It's good to be back!