The wise woman’s stone

By | Compassion, Wisdom | No Comments
Woman at Stream (oil painting by Katherine Taylor)

Woman at Stream (oil painting by Katherine Taylor)

A wise woman who was traveling in the mountains found a precious stone in a stream. The next day she met another traveler who was hungry, and the wise woman opened her bag to share her food. The hungry traveler saw the precious stone and asked the woman to give it to him. She did so without hesitation. The traveler left, rejoicing in his good fortune. He knew the stone was worth enough to give him security for a lifetime.

But, a few days later, he came back to return the stone to the wise woman.

“I’ve been thinking,” he said. “I know how valuable this stone is, but I give it back in the hope that you can give me something even more precious. Give me what you have within you that enabled you to give me this stone.”

Sometimes it’s not the wealth you have but, what’s inside you that others need.

[source: http://www.religioustolerance.org/anon08.htm]
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Perry’s journey – a tale of two sites

By | My journey | No Comments

Before posting my trip to Krabi with friends, let me share the amazing journey of Perry Gan to north Sulawesi for underwater scuba diving trip. Perry is a friendly and nice guy I know and also an amateur photographer and diver (that was what he told me humbly, though he just got his PADI master diver qualification). I met Perry in photonian‘s gathering and that was when he shared his interesting diving experiences and underwater photos he took. After having chat with him, I discovered that Perry is also a nature lover and always encourages others to protect nature and preserve life.

Two weeks ago when I met Perry again, he shared some underwater photos he took during scuba diving. Those shots are really fascinating. So I made a request to post his photos sharing with other friends and he agreed. More to that, he also shared with me this tale of the two sites (Bunaken and Lembeh) in northern Sulawesi of Indonesia which he experienced. This is the story of a wonderful marine park, some interesting people and a remarkable adventure:

Surface Interval: 3rd Row: See Hian and Greg 2nd Row: Tee, Lee, Helen, Siong, Teng, Perry, Jack. 1st Row: Lily, Ginn and Loy

Surface Interval: 3rd Row: See Hian and Greg 2nd Row: Tee, Lee, Helen, Siong, Teng, Perry, Jack. 1st Row: Lily, Ginn and Loy

North Sulawesi has long been hailed as one of the finest dive destinations our world has to offer. Being a rookie I had come to this place with a brimful of dreamy images conjured up from the centerfolds of diving magazines. Wanting nothing more than to bookmark the flora and fauna; and to put ticks next to images in fish ID books, I ended up getting much more than what I had hoped for. I returned with a very different outlook on the reefs and the sea and now consider myself a convert as well as a macro aficionado.

Spinecheek Anemone fish

Spinecheek Anemone fish

Bunaken and Lembeh, are definitely more than meet the eyes. These are places where the incredible and unusal come together. It is perhaps premature and presumptuous for a newbie to crown this place with such superlatives, not having been to that many dive destinations around the world. I, however, found it simply impossible not to be in awe of the grace and diversity of the sea. What I saw and experienced had enriched me as a diver, as well as made me a human being much more appreciative of the world he lives in. Here is an account of my “fun-tabulous” and “muck-elicious” trip…

Back in May 2008 when I confirmed going on this trip, I had only logged about 50 dives. While in Redang, Tee took me to Sandy Bottom to do my first muck dive. That particular dive yielded many surprises. Apart from the sighting of a pretty sea horse, there was also a tiny painted frog fish, apparently a first in Redang. I was also made acutely aware that buoyancy skill was the determining factor to a good muck dive. A good “honing” session with Tee during that trip proved invaluable.

I later found out that I was actually going with a bunch of “old salts” with an average of 300 dives under their belts. Although a little concerned about how I would measure up, this bunch of “EAD”s proved my worries unfounded and were in fact lots of fun to be with. (EAD: an acronym only known to this particular group, should hopefully be explained to me on my next trip to Anilao.)
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Portrait photography – Xiao Bao

By | Photography | 3 Comments
Xiao-Bao the kitty on couch

Xiao-Bao the kitty on couch

Since my mom adopts and provides shelter to unwanted cats, I always wanted to have portraits of these cats. I was however being lazy and so missed out many opportunities to get the best moments of these adorable cats.

At last I got a chance today. While I have some free time, I saw Xiao-Bao (Chinese, which means little precious), one of my family’s favorite kitties lying lazily on the couch. It came to my mind suddenly to snap photos of a kitty. Immediately setting up the table lamp and using a white board as a reflector, I was preparing to snap some photos of Xiao-Bao while it still didn’t know what I was trying to do.

Unlike human, taking photos of pets is not easy; pets won’t pose to camera. And if you force it to, it would become irritated and try to escape from you. Patience is definitely virtue and no doubt when it comes to photographing pets. Too there is an advantage of photographing pets, they are ‘naturally’ natural.

When I was photographing Xiao-Bao, I had to keep it as comfortable and at ease as possible, and waited for best moments to press the shutter. Initially the light source irritated Xiao-Bao and it tried to run away from the couch. Fortunately, my mom and sister helped me to pamper and calm the kitty while I tried to capture its photos.

I took my time and enjoyed this session. Eventually Xiao-Bao became tired and fall asleep, then I took a few shots of its nap and ended the shooting. The shots turn out to be ok, but there is space of improvement which can help me sharpen my skill in pet’s portrait photography in future.

Special thanks to Xiao-Bao although it might not know what was going on, and also my mom and sister for helping me. May all beings be happy.

More photos after the jump:

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快乐紫天使。Adelyn Purple

By | Photography | 4 Comments

Adelyn Purple

紫色是介于红色和蓝色的色彩, 在光谱中是人类可见光所能看到波长最短的光。Adelyn Purple 大家都是这么叫她的。她喜欢紫色、喜欢阳光、喜欢自由、喜欢自然… 认识她在KL Photonian的第一次聚会里,觉得她很开朗很阳光。她很男友Avex是很衬的情侣。Avex也是我在Photonian认识的。他们对朋友都很好。创意和摄影都是他们的爱好。

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老父母呵护残缺女‧32年来不离不弃不怨

By | Compassion | 3 Comments

虽然年事已高,可是叶少章与妻子玉梅并没放弃痉挛女儿,30多年来没半点怨言照顾孩子。(图:星洲日报)

有一种爱是世上最无私的爱、有种关怀是世上最永久的关怀,这就是父母亲的爱。

父母赋予孩子的不仅是生命,也是自己生命中的一切。即使孩子残缺,他们依然对孩子不离不弃,尽心尽力呵护。

常言道“养儿100岁,常忧99”打从孩子呱呱坠地来到世上后,父母就费尽心思养育孩子长大,所付出的一切从不奢望得到回报。

今年74岁的叶少章与63岁的妻子方玉梅就是典型的模范父母。家境贫穷的他们虽然没从给孩子奢华的物质生活,但却把全部的爱献给孩子。

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Best picture of peace

By | Drawing and artwork, Wisdom | No Comments
Peace - by CJ

Peace - by CJ

There once was a king who offered a prize to the artist who would paint the best picture of peace. Many artists tried and submitted their work. The king looked at all the pictures. There were only two he really liked, and he had to choose between them.

One picture was of a calm lake, perfectly mirroring the peaceful, towering mountains all around it. Overhead was blue sky with fluffy, white clouds. It was the favorite of all who saw it. Truly, they thought, it was the perfect picture of peace.

The other picture had mountains, too, but these were rugged and bare. Above was an angry sky from which rain fell and in which lightening played. Down the side of one mountain tumbled a foaming waterfall. A less peaceful picture would be difficult to imagine. But when the king looked closely, he saw beside the waterfall a tiny bush growing in a crack in the rock. In the bush a mother bird had built her nest. There, in the midst of the rush of angry water, sat the mother bird on her nest in perfect peace.

Which picture would you have selected? The king chose the second picture. Do you know why?

“Because,” explained the king, “peace does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble, or hard work. Peace means to be in the midst of all these things and still be calm in your heart. This is the real meaning of peace.”

[source: http://go.webassistant.com/wa/upload/users/u1000057/workspaces/30stories/]
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