Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Milan, Italy

In October 2006 Ryszard Kapuscinski was a guest in Bolzano, Italy. He gave a speech at the university there and also met students from Trento.
Someone who was there at the time and listened to Ryszard shares the impressions on bumerangdiares.

I have never met Mr. Kapuscinski in person. And all I can do it read or re-read his books.

I have never been to Italy either. But on Friday I am going to be in Milan – the city of culture, fashion, and AC Milan. I really cannot wait.

I am going to go to La Scala, to see Duomo di Milano and San Siro Stadium among others.


And the sense of anticipation is really huge. Real thrill.

I will write about my trip after I come back and post a few pics.

P.S. My source here was Wikipedia among others.

In memoriam


One of the prominent Polish writers died in Warsaw on Tuesday, January 23rd 2007. He was 74. One of the people, whose name was recognisable all over the world. He was a traveller, sensitive reporter and a great personality. Among his books are "Ebony", "The Soccer War", "Herodotus" - to name just a few.
The picture is the courtesy of AP and was also used in an article on bbb.co.uk.

Today his funeral took place in a cathedral in Warsaw. Here is the writer's official website in Polish on Gazeta Wyborcza portal. I am not sure if there is an official website in English but sure you can find plenty of articles on the web yourself.

Here is a link to the delhibelly blog with a post on Ryszard Kapuscinski.
***
People are born and people die.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Birthday Card


All the best to other Aquarians. The card is the courtesy of 123Greetings.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Birthday


Tomorrow is my birthday so I am posting a photo of a candle. There should be more candles than just this one but it is just symbolic I guess. I am at work and I don't have a birthday cake or candles to blow but I am still making some wishes and fingers crossed it will work out...

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Yellowstone - perfect for night sky spying



Today, I am posting real quick as I am at work. I was going through my little night sky guide last night but got fed up quickly. It is no use reading about the constellations if you cannot look up the sky and try to find them. Unfortunately, city is not a good place for doing that. There are too many lights on at night. I might try to go away somewhere to find a good spot and finfgers crossed I will given my busy schedule recently.

The best place for night sky spying I ever was in is Yellowstone National Park. It is so wild and dark at night that you can see almost every star in the northern hemisphere unless there are clouds. And imagine – night, stars, erupting geysers, and a coyote here or there. That’s pure magic J . It is so beautiful and exceptional there.
It is very quiet too except for the noises of night animals.

Last night when I went to bed I was thinking that it would be great to be there and look up and see the starry sky. There is now lot of snow in Wyoming and it is cold but still it is lovely there because it is different.

Here are some photos of the Park by QT Luong.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Flower


as a follow up on the subject of dew and nature - this time a photo by me.

Water in the city

Flooded Hamburg - I would not like to be there now.


Picure is the courtesy of Gazeta Wyborcza and it was taken from here



Cork looked much better than Hamburg; never seen real flood here.

Below - the city of Breslau 1997.

Pictures taken from Gazeta Wyborcza

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Hi
it is another rainy day - nothing really usual on the Emerald Island.
Still rain can be beautiful -
here something to support my statement. To illustrate I will use photos by Arkadiusz Kowalczyk taken from this website
I would recommend this webpage www.polska.pl or www.poland.pl Enjoy :-)

Thursday, January 11, 2007

spy art 2


An example of spy art . It is art indeed as you must be precise with those small parts and mechanisms. But what if someone does pay with such a coin in a shop? Well, watch out; it is a highly valued currency I bet.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Celtic Art and symbol of swastika

Hi.
Today it’s my 820th day in Eire and I am having quite an enjoyable time here. Starting to count? No, not really. I am happy here so time passage does not count ;-)

There is routine in full swing here anyway.
Work, college and college, work. Sleep some time in between.
Books are a good escape from all of it.

I was reading the Art of the Celts last Monday night – by David Sandison

I read a fragment that was really riveting so as usual I went to sleep very late but it was worth it. The piece was on the ancient symbols of swastika and triskeles (I know finally where the Triskel Gallery in Corcaigh took its name from). It was quite brief but to the point and concisely described the origins of the two symbols, their importance for the Celts and they way they would depict the two in their art.

Swastika is thought to be symbol of good luck. It epitomizes Sun and is often called sunwheel or suncross (it is used both clockwise and anticlockwise). For the Celts it was a powerful talisman supposed to protect them from bad spells. An Indo-European symbol, it survives in Hindu and Buddhism and has similar connotations.





Swastika is to be found on Celtic crosses as well – for example on the Kermeria cross from La Tene period. You can find a photo in Sandison's book. The photo posted is courtesy of images





Yesterday just by accident I found an article online about Hitler. So I was surprised to find out that Adolph was the one to design it. It made me really laugh. I will not tell which website but the author was criticized on the forum for not even doing a proper research.

So while browsing the net yesterday I came across lots of websites on swastika (unlike the ignorant author of that article), triskeles and other related subjects ((Pagan beliefs in maiden mother and crone; Celtic Gods and Goddesses: Lugus – god of sun, Cernunnos – god of animals; Irish festivals – Imbolc, Samhain (November 1st – the Feast of the Dead), Beltaine (opposite to Samhain and associated with god of war Belenus, it would take place on the first day of May), Lugnasad – on August 1st, associated with sun god and snamh aoinaigh, which means ritual horse-bathing, horse swimming races))

The Pagan festival of Imbolc, which would take place on the first day of February to celebrate the beginning of spring, has been renamed as Brigit’s Day. It is easy to conclude that Irish missionaries found it to easier to appeal to the Celts and to convert them to Christianity by taking over the old customs and modifying it – changing its meaning to incorporate Christian teachings. Other festivals were also transformed and their Pagan origins are considered folklore not really related to spiritual celebrations nowadays. Still it is good to know Christian holydays stem from older Pagan festivals – that makes lot of sense to me and gives a sense of continuity.

Sandison suggests that the Celts in Ireland had no problem accepting the dogma of the Holy Trinity as their beliefs were also based on triplism – they had triple goddesses and gods – for example in Ireland there were “three Irish Brigits who ruled over healing, poetry and metal craft” (David Sandison, The Art of the Celts, Reed Consumer Book Limited 1998 page 34). So it must have made sense to rename Imbolc as Brigit’s Day.

The well known pattern of Brigit’s cross was inspired by the Celtic swastika symbol – so there is another proof of the Pagan imagery entering the Christian world.
The decorations in the Book of Kells also boast a number of Celtic motifs. Sandison also mentions the Book of Durrow and Lindisfarne Gospels as having decorations inspired by Celtic art.

The photo was taken this website





St. Bridget's Well, Liscannor. George Petrie, 1825 - is attached below.



Here goes a description of some
festivities
in County Clare.

Some webpages for reference:

A Google groups forum on various meanings of swastika and its origins – it is an interesting study of etymology as well.

You will also find an extensive description of the meaning of the swastika symbol in a number of countries and nations / cultures together with the history and importance in various religions.

There are some notes on TCD
Falu Dafa Society
– I really recommend that one, also when you have interest in Sanskrit and other ancient languages. The image posted is taken from the attached website.



Other websites for reference though I am sure you can find loads on your own.

http://www.innisfreeglass.homestead.com/triskele.html
http://racines.traditions.free.fr/svast1ka/svast1ka.pdf
http://www.bestcelticjewelry.com/site/1276845/page/830183

Last but not least, the symbol of triskeles (triple arms) was a hate symbol for Nazi – along with swastika. I have no clue why the Nazi / Hitler would either to symbolize evil but here it goes.
It was quite ironic.

Especially since “The floor of the synagogue at Ein Gedi , built during the Roman occupation of Judea, was decorated with a swastika mosaic”.

Sunday, January 7, 2007

moon photos













Hi there.

Today an easy going stuff as it is Sunday and life is slow and nice.
No hurry.
So far I have not found any satisfactory pictures of sky on the Internet.
The pictures above are mine and I was lucky to manage to take the first one.
My camera died straight after.
Well I could say they were taken in a certain very definite place but since they depict sky only,
they may just as well have been taken almost anywhere else.

Hope you had nice weekend ;-)

Saturday, January 6, 2007

Traces of the Goddess in Ireland

Just found another website where you can find quite a few traces -
so for those interested, there is the link. I have only been to the hills of Tara so far but sure I'll go and explore more of Ireland once the winter is over.
This website is interesting enough and I like when it is explained what a particular name means in Gaelic.
E.g. Tara - Temair - "place of great prospect".
It named so probably of the geographical location - from the hill you could have a great view. But I'd like to think it was also a place of great vision. What I like about those old Irish names is that they point to the reality that is long gone and that we can try to explore through some (archeological) research. But I would say using a bit of imagination can be even more rewarding.

The writer Pete McCarthy also wrote about what some Gaelic names of places in Ireland and that those names mean in English. I took the examples from his book McCarthys Bar.
e.g. Garvaghy - Garbhochadh - the rough field
Drimoleague - Drom Dha Liag - rigde of the two pillar stones
Sligo - Sligeach - the shelly place



If you would know any good links about the Goddess or have similar interests yourself, please leave me a comment,

Weekend.

Life feels good again and common as it may sound, it is not a bad complaint :-)

Weekend is always to look forward to and Friday afternoons are most relaxing.
On Thursday I listened to Dire Straits

Baby I see this world has made you sad
Some people can be bad
The things they do, the things they say
But baby I'll wipe away those bitter tears
I'll chase away those restless fears
That turn your blue skies into grey

Why worry, there should be laughter after the pain
There should be sunshine after rain
These things have always been the same
So why worry now

Why Worry

I really found it hard to believe because I felt low but it turned to be true anyway and things turned out well in the end. Maybe not exactly the way I wanted but ok anyway.

On Friday, no music just reading.
I could not really decide what to read. I finished "McCarthy's Bar" by Pete McCarthy and it was a light and refreshing read on Ireland and West Cork in particular. Before that I finished "Snow" by Orhan Pamuk.
I want to quote an excerpt from this book here, which I found somewhat deep and interesting.

"SNOW. The solid form taken by water when falling, crossing, or rising through the atmosphere. Beautiful crystal starlets, usuall forming a hexagon. Each crystal snowflake forms its own unique hexagon. Since ancient times mankind has been awed and mystified by the secrets of snow. In 1555, when a priest named Olaus Magnus in Uppsala, Sweden, discovered that each snowflake, as indicated in the diagram, had six corners...
[...]
After Ka had finished looking at the encyclopedia he reached into his pocket and, like a student sitting down to do his homework, took out his notebook. He began to write a poem - the tenth to have come to him since his arrival in Kars. In the opening lines, he extolled the singularity of snowflakes, then went on to describe his childhood memories of the mother-and-child he had just failed to find at the back of the fourth volume of the Encyclopedia of Life. In the final lines he mapped out a vision of himself and his place in the world, his special fears, his distinctive attributes, his uniqueness. The title he gave this poem was 'I, Ka'. "

[Snow by Orhan Pamuk, published by Faber & Faber, 2004. pp219-220]

Human being as a snowflake - each one is different and unique but all are similar the way they are created. Human being having fears and dreams as well. Well, this book is about how dreams do not come true, which is sad. The reason why they do not come true is that fear - fear of happiness and more than that. But I will not add more - have a read yourself.

Here as reference, two book covers of the Snow - one from the edition in English [above] and the other one from the Polish edition [below].










Anyway re the evening read - I finished off the evening reading about the Celtic art, which seems kind of relevant in Ireland :-)
Hi again
how are you folks? I am not too bad myself - just trying to make out some sense of what happened over the last couple of days.

I was thinking about last Thursday night and how good I felt then. I slept a healthy sleep and had most wonderful dreams. I went to bed in such a good mood and was so elated that it was not surprising. When you actually realize that the bad thing you did was not that bad after all and you are just told to forget about it - it feels really good. It was a huge relief.

On the whole Thursday was a bad day. When I was so down and desolete really I got a message that my someone I know escaped from a hospital and was missing for a few hours. I was scared witless that he would try to do something to himself. But he phoned his friend who took him home. So it was good news anyway although I was never contacted by either his family or himself. Only his friend phoned me to ask if maybe X was with me. X never contacts me these days and his family most probably thinks I am to blame for every misfortune that happened to him. I do not accept it. I firmly disagree. I cannot be held responsible for the life he had led before he met me. I may have done a few things wrong when with him but I refuse to be blamed if someone wants to part with his life.
I want to be happy in my own life. If he at least let me know that he was OK. No, it was done by the same friend who phoned me.
Yes I may sympathise with him over some things that were indeed beyond his control and that are difficult to bear. I can sympathise and care and I may want to try to help as well. I am not insensitive and I understand you may have bad luck in life as well. Yet I do not like silence like this on his part or unspoken accusations on part of his family.

Yet finding out he was safe at home was a huge relief. Straight after I found out I went to sleep. I was too emotionally exhausted. So I slept very well and I was happy. I have tried to find an image that would reflect how I felt that Thursday night. It is hard to find a good one just as it may be hard for me to convey my emotions. But I felt good and simple.
So here go some photos - just for the good mood (courtesy of google images).

Thursday, January 4, 2007

darker night still

Hi again,
I had another very bad time last night but it was deserved. I told the truth and that is it. Bitter truth. The truth I don’t like. But there is nothing I can do about it any more.
Evil is so evil because it is not reversible here. I am evil then and I don’t like it either.
But I am not able to explain why I did it. I will not revert to Blake in search of explanation. That would be useless since I cannot take anything back of what happened.

I like William Blake’s sketches, writings and his visionary mythology appeals to me. It depicts a “darker” side of human nature but it also gives a hope. I know little about Francisco de Goya but both he and Blake were romanticists and they both created dark and disturbing images. After a fitful night I will not go into details here as Blake’s writings are just complex. But they are one of my interests and I still can follow it in free time.

So the point is – I did evil and I ruined another person’s life. Awareness of that makes my life hard enough but it is deserved. I cannot reverse what happen.
So I want to follow my passions and enjoy them while I still can. I may be thought of as a shallow person – so be it.

Another passion I have – that of “following the Goddess” – gives me quite a thrill. I was very excited to see Sheela na Gig in the Bunratty Castle near Limerick. That was the first Sheela I could really see and touch. And that really felt good. This has been my passion for a good few years and that is the major reason I decided to create my blog.

I know evil can be thought of as weakness. I am weak and I also like clinging. It can be clinging to hope, to dreams, to an idea of future. It is also clinging to hobbies and passions in my case.

The Show Must Go on.
Inside my heart is breaking, my make-up may be flaking but …

I cling on.

Yes, it is a song by Queen (of course they do not sing “cling on”). I listened to it last night but not to the version by Queen. It is also on Moulin Rouge soundtrack. I like some of the songs on the soundtrack.













Last but not least, last night and this morning I felt like listening to Cohen’s Alexandra Leaving because of the lyrics. “A fitful dream, the morning will exhaust” seems quite a relevant sentence. I had a fitful dream last night but now it is a bit of a waking nightmare so I cannot hope morning would help me out but still I don’t know why morning makes bad things look different. Maybe it makes the bad look less hopeless after all and it maybe my clinging nature that makes me write so.
Even more relevant seems the line about the coward’s explanation. I was a coward and I don’t even know why I did what I did. Referring to songs does not help here. It may just help me sort out my feelings a bit. But now it really feels more like “The Thousand Kisses Deep.”
I saw there were no oceans left For scavengers like me.


LEONARD COHEN lyrics - "Alexandra Leaving"

Suddenly the night has grown colder.
The god of love preparing to depart.
Alexandra hoisted on his shoulder,
They slip between the sentries of the heart.

Upheld by the simplicities of pleasure,
They gain the light, they formlessly entwine;
And radiant beyond your widest measure
They fall among the voices and the wine.

It’s not a trick, your senses all deceiving,
A fitful dream, the morning will exhaust –
Say goodbye to Alexandra leaving.
Then say goodbye to Alexandra lost.

Even though she sleeps upon your satin;
Even though she wakes you with a kiss.
Do not say the moment was imagined;
Do not stoop to strategies like this.

As someone long prepared for this to happen,
Go firmly to the window. Drink it in.
Exquisite music. Alexandra laughing.
Your firm commitments tangible again.

And you who had the honor of her evening,
And by the honor had your own restored –
Say goodbye to Alexandra leaving;
Alexandra leaving with her lord.

Even though she sleeps upon your satin;
Even though she wakes you with a kiss.
Do not say the moment was imagined;
Do not stoop to strategies like this.

As someone long prepared for the occasion;I
n full command of every plan you wrecked –
Do not choose a coward’s explanation
that hides behind the cause and the effect.

And you who were bewildered by a meaning;
Whose code was broken, crucifix uncrossed –
Say goodbye to Alexandra leaving.
Then say goodbye to Alexandra lost.

Say goodbye to Alexandra leaving.
Then say goodbye to Alexandra lost.

So it is bye for now.

dark night

I could not sleep the night two days ago because of guilty conscience. So I was thinking about different things – about evil too. Am I really evil deep down? – I don’t think so. But nevertheless something bad happened because of me. I regret that happening I would do everything to turn back the clock. Get my legs chopped off if that would help. Yeah. Well, now I will live with that I guess. I have no choice really except to tell the truth to the one involved and hope for understanding and forgiveness.

I tried to think about something else that night too. My little town … made me think about Truman Show movie.

Here he is – Truman Burbank – in the perfect little town surrounded by phoney people – actors (well chosen for their roles). His little life is directed in every detail without him knowing it. Of course he does find out about the plot at some stage and plays along till the time comes to break free. The escape is kind of dramatic but controlled by “the guy above” Christof (played by Ed Harris) who lets him go in the end.
Obvious but funny enough – it is a movie within a movie. There is one director on the inside – Christof – and one director on the outside – Peter Weir. Actors’ performance is double – they play in the show directed by Christof and in the movie directed by Weir.

Christof controls whom Truman may see or may not meet - look up the keywords: girl from the library and Fiji. Christof decides who enters the set.

What am I getting at here?

Well, rule of directing does not apply in my little town. Anyone can enter “the set”. Anyone can leave who does not like it. And anyone here can meet anyone else. I won’t be looking ;-) I just hope you will enjoy your stay however short or long it may be.

But back to that idea TS movie gave me that night about directing … Is it the same with my life and yours as well? Is my life directed in every detail and I have no control over what happens? Or do I have that control and freedom of movement and the evil arises when I forfeit that freedom? When mind is asleep, demons awaken (my free translation). There is such a painting

by Francisco de Goya :

The sleep of reason brings forth monsters

So anyway my mind fell asleep some time ago and some demons crawled from deep abysses. I was not in control any more even though I heard a voice telling me to stop. I did not listen. Somehow I could not and I am still pondering it. Why? My mind is awake now and the demons asleep. But it is too late now.

Now it just makes me want to turn to

William Blake

He is dark enough but there is still some strange hope twinkling in his writings. Explanation may lie in his sketches. I mean the hope of understanding human nature of course. Explanation of evil. Fight between good and evil as well. I will post an update if I find some answers but it may take some time.

Just before I leave – an image by WB:


why Baile Beag.

Why Baile Beag as a name of my blog?

It may be for many reasons really. Or maybe it is just for no reason at all. Well a blog has to have a name just like a newly born baby is named. I must say I just liked that one and I also like to think of my life as a little town. It may be very local but here in the virtual reality it can also be quite global. Well in a certain sense my life has been quite global too.

Well, the following could be one of the reasons if anyone insists.

Baile Beag

My little town here is also a little bit magical. It is mythical too. And some goddesses are inevitably going to live here.
It is bordering town and countryside as well just as my life is in a way.

This town can also be old – old enough to have a very nice charm. Well just like me ;-) – a nice charm though I would not call myself old yet in any way.

It may remind some visitors of Brian Friel’s

Translations

Here is a picture from the play staged by the Company …




Courtesy of
TalkinBroadway

The name may remind you of many other things. So let me know what about if you want – I am curious.

Well I don’t want to divert you too much here. You are welcome to visit Baile Beag any time and if coming in a virtual car, you park almost anywhere you want. There are few double yellow lines here and even if it is packed here in peak times hope you will find your own space too ;-)

Where I live in reality it is quite tough to find a free park space unless I could park on the roof J But there is no roof car park yet.

Tuesday, January 2, 2007

Manifestations of Earth Goddess

Hi. Am at work and it is a bit busy here. Just want to add as a quick comment: inevitably that passage pictured below and any other passage related to Earth Goddess reminds me of the way my body is built. Or any other woman's body for that matter. Well, it is not a revelation here just a statement. But nevertheless.
I will try to write something more soon and to post another photo but this time a pic I took myself. A few years ago I managed to capture naked Earth Goddess myself ;) On a different continent but it was worth the travel. So that's that for now.

Sheela Na Gig - Pagan Spirit

The feminine side of the Earth.





Sheela Na Gig

as a reference, try:

spy art

No spy ever admits being one or discloses a source of information.