Wednesday, 1 April 2020

Sunday, March 29th, 2020

Toronto, Ontario

About Animals and Me

Now I was raised on a small farm. We had—on this ten acre piece of land—a house, barn, sizeable front yard, a garage for two vehicles, and an orchard to accommodate some apple, peach, plum, pear and mulberry trees, and in stock—some animals. Oh, and I forgot the chicken coop in the barnyard. There was a family milk cow, chickens, pigs, a goat, a pony, pheasants and peacocks.

My dad was good with the animals like he was with the veggies (oh and we also had a plentiful garden).  But there came a point where some of our livestock went up for slaughter. The animals were trucked away, and a little extra money came our way to support a family of eight.

When it came to the chickens, well, we had to do the (dis)honour ourselves. My dad handed me a hen one day, and the hatchet, and like he had done in the past, he expected me to perform the execution. I couldn’t come around to doing that. “I was chicken!“ as they say. So we came to a compromise. I would pluck the (stinky) feathers after he beheaded the poor thing. It was hard to hold my nose when two hands were needed. It was always difficult to be at the dinner table when one of our former pets became our meal. I won’t judge my father. He really was a Super-Dad and in so many respects. Anyway, I eventually became an easy convert to vegetarianism.

The difficulty with humans taking the lives of animals, as a livelihood, is always a problem, and now we see that with the meddling of bats, monkeys, birds etc., we humans are paying the price. Mankind is haunted by viruses.

There are alternative lifestyles. We need to go there.

May the Source be with you!
4 km

Saturday, March 28th, 2020

Toronto, Ontario

Some Pacing, Some Zooming

I only did some pacing in our temple room today, and chanted on my beads during that time. I kept myself grounded. The wet, gray weather of the outdoors didn’t necessarily beckon me. Besides, I was at the mercy of my service which required indoor attention.

Most importantly was the broadcast on “Zoom” (Zoom Cloud App-free from your App Store) delivering my message, and answering questions to members of the KCS (Krishna Consciousness Society)who are all young men starting off their careers. I would say the bulk of the interview centred on the walking I do. 

Parama G. was the coordinator. He initiated the questions, with one of the first being: “Please tell us about a significant impressional moment on one of the walks.“

And so I told of the encounter of the grizzly bear in Crow’s Nest Pass. “My support person and I were almost toast until the massive lorry came by and scared the furry—possibly 300 kg—mammal away. It was a very close call.“

There were questions about spiritual life, and how to effectively walk that path. And the answer to that is keeping good company. In fact, I could not have trekked roadways and forest paths, successfully, without having a good companion nearly to support me. I invited the listeners to join me on the Bruce Trail this spring. I will recommend tracking that footpath (Canada‘s oldest) sometime in late April or early May; and of course, only when this coronavirus has blown over.  Then all will be welcome!

May the Source be with you!
2 km (inside)

Friday, March 27th, 2020

Toronto, Ontario

The Tree Fight Club

For the longest time, three raccoons were at each other in a vicious fight, clasping onto the flimsy branches of the huge tree outside my window. It was nighttime and this was before I retired for sleep. They snarled, growled, whimpered and screeched in opposition to each other.

I first of all saw them from below, at street-level, watching them and happy for them—happy for them being healthy and alive. They kept up their noises of battle way into the wee hours. I could hear their persistence while I was trying to sleep.

Meanwhile, in the world of humans, there is major combat against the silent, invisible virus, corona. I will refer to it as the ‘ coron-asura’. Asura means antagonist: a mean adversary.

People naturally hold a fear for this little demon, but to put an interesting twist on the current pandemic, we might look at the positive side. Nature is merely lashing out at our mistreatment of the biological world. We are having to learn to experience sense control by watching our movement, keeping our distance, and staying in a kind of quarantine. We must reflect on our own folly.

I am confined to my building, the temple/ashram, but I must get out for a short time every day, while also being cautious about closeness to others.  I must have some sun, wind and air. I’m keen to build up my immunity. It allows me to love nature more.

Although I do feel stress, with some people I believe there’s probably less fighting with each other.  It’s not time for petty differences. 


May the Source be with you!
7 km