Friday, 29 June 2018


I work hard to escape misfortunes in my life after becoming consciously aware that most misfortunes we experience in life is by our own hand.

This enquiry into why my life was experiencing so much misfortune, in particular - health wise. Leading me to the study of ZEN. In many of its cryptic teachings and riddles combined with self observation of my inherent nature. I learnt a great deal of wisdom.


I do not embrace the spirit of ZEN as a religion, a science or a philosophy although many do.

I choose the essence and spirit of ZEN because the wisdom and understanding of the simple practices has made me independent, requiring no mentor or instructor. Focusing on learning and improving my existence.

It started with the desire and craving of beauty and inner peace. I consciously stopped being the victim of my circumstances. This leads to the accepting of the mind and a grateful heart.

View from my office window

Learning to find oneself enables one to lead a serene existence no longer being blown about by the storms of circumstance. Self discipline and a study of oneself and actions - is all that is required. ZEN is often described as an abstract meditation, it is the study of existence beyond the mind.

This abstract style of meditation is based on your individual experience and not based on written instruction. Therefore ZEN is not packaged and sold as a one size fits all. It caters to YOU. Your perfect individualism and your essence. You are stripped of all the worldly preconceptions and expectations from the outer world. Similar to a boutique dress shop which caters just for your physical size, shape and colour. ZEN fits our natures by focusing on the inner world of the individual.

ZEN is concerned totally with the inner life of the individual. By studying one’s own nature you come to understand yourself and know - “What is I and what is not I”

You discover and learn that each experience in your life is the direct result of a previous choice. If you take a moment to reflect back over a misfortune or experience, you are not fond of. You will see a pattern emerge of the choice or choices you made leading up to that experience. This leads you to make better choices and change circumstances that seem to repeat on a regular basis or pattern. There is no blame associated with this thinking. It is an awareness of the domino effect based on individual choices we make subconsciously which are not in our best interest for peace and serenity.

Inner peace is obtained through proper control of our thoughts and emotions. Developing one's character through experience and this style of meditation. This discipline eventually leading to freedom of thought and emotions without stress and tensions. This is also described as QUIETUDE… a peace and sereneness in one's life.

The study of ZEN leads to proper control of reducing the powers of external factors to disturb the inner life.

For me, if it means not watching the news on television
 for a week or more, then this is what I do.

I value my peace and serenity above the chaos and humdrum presented everyday on the news.

I have found true happiness and peace of soul as a result of complete acceptance of the universal laws of nature. Self will and self purpose leads to a more truthful reality.

All that is required, is a quiet determination and being attentive and persistent. This right mindedness as it is often described, leads to complete mental freedom. Releasing ourselves from the harsh and unfair thoughts and emotions - hence resulting in more happiness. The realisation that:-

By choosing to live badly
We choose to suffer
If you don’t want weeds in your life
Become diligent at pulling them out
Don’t be neglectful and use lack of time as an excuse.

Zen does not use the concept of time as in yesterday or tomorrow these concepts enslave us. The practice of Zen encourages us to focus on the NOW. By focusing on the NOW it is neither yesterday nor tomorrow it is timeless and always present. By focusing on the NOW you are always present in your life.

Remember yesterday or the past is only a memory of NOW. This may be a different concept of how we look at situations and circumstances in our life. If you make the PRESENT right in your life, then the flow of life becomes easier.

This has lead to an acceptance and eagerness in improving myself, and I can only write about my own experiences. The study of ZEN has lead me to acting with simplicity and untangled from complications I do not want in my life.

It has granted me solving powers to the problems life presents to me, all I need is solitude to practice my quietude. Some people value these qualities more than others, therefore needing more solitude than others.

Stay Strong!


Friday, 22 June 2018


This week's posting is short and sweet...BUT...if you sit and reflect upon these profound words. 

Taking the time to be totally honest with yourself and how happy and at peace you are in your life. Sometimes we need to stand back from the intensity to gain perspective.

The personal power and strength to create, lies absolutely and totally with you!

(Note: "He" is interpreted as HUMAN BEING)

Stay Strong!


Saturday, 16 June 2018


(Inner reflection this week...!)

What a fascinating and interesting week it has been looking at the multitude of personal views and viewpoints!

No one's view point is right or wrong, it is an accumulation of life and experiences each person has faced on their journey through life. To grasp and grapple with their current belief system, on what stacks up and what viewpoint is thrown out as useless or redundant, as their experiences change through life.

I stopped to assess.. How Well Do People Know Me?

I may have a common viewpoint or an experience; similar to someone I am talking to. BUT… delving deeper do they know the real you?

They don't have to! It is a condition by a society which makes us feel acceptable or unacceptable.

We are hidden under layers of traditions, religions and customs from various countries and backgrounds. To add another layer  -family members repeatedly remind us, that we show common traits or mannerisms, like a grandparent, aunt or uncle.  These qualities or labels are handed to us every day - by other people.

I agree, many of the social norms are unifying such as a courtesy, table manners and respect. But the personal judgments about a person’s style of hair, trend in fashion, talking with arms flying around in the air. How is this judged? Is it more a reflection of the person doing the judging? Are they not accepting of themselves due to careless criticisms by others, therefore they become more critical?

At what age do we finally come to terms with whom and what we are in life? Learning to love and accept ourselves with all the imperfections and flaws other people see in us? And just let it be?

Not taking ownership of them is a whole different ball game. Learning to accept our differences or mannerisms, which are judged by someone else as pleasing, or non conforming sets us up to view ourselves and cast unfair judgments upon ourselves.

We gradually learn to understand ourselves and why we react in a particular style or way as we journey through life. Not feeling as though we have to explain why…. is also a barrier we learn to overcome. Some people mature early, and others do not grasp this truth and do not accept themselves right up till the day they die.

Right or Wrong?
Good or Bad?

These perceptions and questions I give thought to. Everyone as they travel through life uncovers many profound truths about themselves. Some are beautiful and some a just plain ugly. If you don’t like the ugly, then spend some time on yourself and change the behavior, or just accept yourself for who you are.

I have done many affirmations on behaviors or responses; I didn’t like about myself. Finally, learning to love and accept myself and stop judging myself through others eyes.

If you believe you are perfect and everyone else is flawed, this 

viewpoint is something you are also entitled to hold on to.

Perceptions in life are like looking at the glass half full or half 


Only the person holding their glass can judge it as being half empty or half full.

How full is yours?

Stay Strong!


Sunday, 10 June 2018


There came a time many years ago, after the cyclone in my life had at last started to settle, and I had moved to the maintenance diet. Also, the shutters were gradually coming off the windows, where I was hiding away from the outer world, and I felt well enough to venture outside and uptown.

In the town where I live, we have this wonderful interior decorating shop which also offers scones and pots of various flavored teas. Seeing as I love the French Provincial interior design and decorating, how could I find a place more conducive to my happiness and wellbeing than a shop like this?

The beautiful colours and the wonders of all the lovely lamps, chairs, and china worked a treat.… THEN to sit down and enjoy the ginger scones and a cup of Monk Pear Tea, especially when shared with a friend.. hence the term The Divine Shelf in My Life became a reality and not just in my minds eye.

These ventures every 3-6 months were a treat and one I looked forward to and savored. It was a haven and a beautiful one.

I hope each and everyone of you, has discovered their own divine shelf in life. A place where you can place beautiful memories and experiences of places, you like to hold on to when things get dire, or challenging.

Many treasured memories, I have gathered since then, are placed on my divine shelf of life to be remembered and savored. I bask and glow in this space. It evokes relaxation, and a feeling of goodness and positivity. A real treat for the sensations! (not to mention… giving me a break from my restricted diet)

I hope you don’t expect me to write anything more after I have just written and transported myself to this place?

Yep.. you guessed it Karen has left the building!

Stay Strong and Enjoy Life!


Saturday, 2 June 2018


Winter is usually the time of the year; my herb garden is weeded and restocked. Living in the tropics it is the only time I can get the plants to grow without an infestation of thrips to attack the plants. Crushed garlic is usually sprinkled around the plants. (I have found this also helps.)

So far this winter I have restocked the parsley, and for my Epsom salt bath, I have purchased an Eau De Cologne plant. Picking a few leaves to crush and hang in a bag over the bath tap to release the scent. This is so relaxing.

Eau De Cologne 

Wearing socks on my feet most of the time and keeping warm is important. It is much easier to prevent chills or colds than it is to get rid of one.

For years I cut up an onion and put beside my bed or on my desk where I am working. If I have been in an environment where someone has had a cold, or if I sense the slight tickle in the throat which often is the first warning sign.

Japanese menthol is another plant I ensure I have growing when winter comes. Placing crushed leaves in a steaming bowl to inhale the vapors is another favorite.
Japanese Menthol

You may have your own little tips and tricks you have forgotten and maybe reading my words, you will recall a remedy your grandparents have passed onto you.

A nice warm tumeric drink before going to bed is another nurturing and thoughtful task for your wellbeing, there are many recipes and combinations available. Find one that suits you.


As well as the garden this week. I am reminded of winter with the snappy cooler weather. It reminds me of setting boundaries where some are needed with the changes in my life and also to re-evaluate boundaries I may have set earlier in regard to relationships or varying aspects to ensuring my health and wellbeing.

Resetting boundaries and what is and is not acceptable with peoples behavior toward me is another way I protect myself. Especially people who work in large companies, they become haphazard in their dealings with people in the public, and will ride rough-shod over you if you let them get away with it. Time to reset the boundaries and clearly state what boundary or treatment will not be tolerated.

The time I re-evaluate my boundaries on what I will and won't accept in my life anymore, is when another's behavior toward me evokes a feeling of worthlessness or like I am an insignificant person. I ask myself why I am feeling this way? If I am being unreasonable, then this is what I correct in myself. If however I feel they are being unreasonable, then I will state my boundaries.

Establishing Boundaries is often changing old habits.

I have listened to many people who - similar to me many years ago. Their feelings of self worth were so low, they have let people run rough-shod over them to the extent of domestic violence to bullying in the workplace.

No one deserves to feel unworthy nor insignificant. Knowing your own self worth is a good starting point. Having the courage to maintain that inner strength, comes with discipline, and being aware of your environment. Not becoming complacent and slipping into the old behavior's and habits or don’t pull people up when they are unaware or thoughtless with their actions.

These are my thoughts for this week.

Stay Strong