Photos Oxford mid-May


Sunday morning is a good time to take photos. I wanted this bus to disappear and take the bridge with just nature. But, in the end, the splash of red in the distance gives the photo a bit more interest, contrasting with the various shades of green from the trees. Continue Reading →


Digital detox and camp grounded

I was interested in this new project in the US, Camp Grounded. A place where Americans pay over $500 for a weekend of digital detox. Participants pay the money to have their phones, watches, computers and electronic devices taken away from them for a few days. Instead, participants are given a feast of activities, such as camping, arts and crafts, star gazing, meditation, home cooking, typewriting. The aim is to recreate the joy of life without the distractions and addictions of modern-life. Also, participants are not allowed to talk about their profession, so people can’t define themselves by the work they do.


photo from race in Wales.

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Shakespeare jokes

William Shakespeare is having a grand celebration for the 400th anniversary of his death. Shakespeare is literally every where at the moment, and it’s not just in the hundreds of words he helped push into the English language. We have Shakespeare’s Guide to Poisoning Plants,  Shakespeare’s Guide to Parenting and even Shakespeare’ Guide to winning at Scrabble.


I wish I could write a serious post sufficiently literary to mark the occasion, but in the world of Shakespeare I am a bit of a failure. The only Shakespeare I read was Macbeth and that only because it was on the GCSE English reading list. My thoughts at the time of reading Shakespeare was probably something along the lines of: “He has a good turn of phrase every now and then, but I think sometimes he could express himself a bit more clearly”

I took up Economics, I was no loss to the department of English Literature.

I do like the odd Shakespeare joke though. I hope William would approve, apparently he had quite a sense of humour, but many of his jokes are lost on modern audiences because of changes in the English accent. Probably a good job because some of his jokes could be a little ribald for a GCSE English class.

One of my all time favourite joke. Probably because I heard it told by Peter Kay, with his typical infectious enthusiasm.

William Shakespeare walks into a pub, but the landlord says “Get out, you’re bard!”

Knock Knock Jokes

Knock, Knock.
Who’s there?
Noah who?
Noah’s the winter of our discontent. Continue Reading →


Photos of Oxford in May

Oxford in May is beautiful. After a long grey British winter, in late April and May there is a real transformation as trees come into leaf and blossom covers many of the streets. The city’s architecture is complemented by nature’s beauty. There is also a great feeling of newness because of the tremendous greenness, which is very vivid. I particularly notice it after coming back from New York in April. There are few countries, which see such an intense green – in UK, we like to complain about the weather but the rain does help the colour and freshness.


I love these daises which grow in wildflower verges by the side of many roads.cutteslowe-park-1-may

May is also the month when we hold Sri Chinmoy Races at Cutteslowe Park, north Oxford. It is a great time to be in the park, which has quite a few areas of natural wildlife

Late flowering Apple Blossom on Marston road.cycling-to-exams
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Non-violence and the problem of slugs and snails

I have a dilemma. This year I’ve taken more interest in gardening, and have bought a few plants. The problem is that there has been an explosion in the population of slugs and snails. The garden is being decimated by these small creatures.


You wake up in the morning and new plants and old daffodils are mere shreds of their former selves, slugs greedily leaving a trail of their feasting.

It presents me with a dilemma – what to do about the slugs? Continue Reading →


Trinity College Gardens May


I was postering for some upcoming meditation classes in Oxford. Visiting Trinity College on the High Street I poked my head around the garden and there was a wonderful wildflower meadow – carefully managed to give a wonderful naturalistic style of planting.buttercups

When it is good in Oxford in May, it is very good. This felt like a scene from the Elysian fields.buttercups2

Buttercups and daisies, with dark velvet tulips in the background. It was around 11am, so the light wasn’t ideal – a bit strong.
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Photos Yorkshire Dales


I was cycling in the Yorkshire Dales. Sometimes you would go around a corner or over a hill and a new vista like this would open up. It is beautiful or as they would say in Yorkshire ‘reet good ‘un’


Fleet Moss. The road was closed to cars so I had it all to myself. Continue Reading →


New Address for Self-Improvement blog


“Everything in life is a choice.”

– Sri Chinmoy

For a few reasons, I’ve moved my ‘self-improvement‘ blog to a new address. It a blog based on the personal experience of moving through life and trying to work out a slightly better ways of living. The latest post is dealing with personal difficulties or more accurately ‘how to deal with that annoying work colleague’.

Photo top: Bolton Abbey Bridge April 30, 2016.


The Dance of Life by Sri Chinmoy

When I joined Sri Chinmoy’s path (back in 1999), I read poetry series like the Dance of Life and didn’t always appreciate them. I preferred reading question and answers, and talks like ‘Everest Aspiration‘. Many years later, I dipped back into the poetry series Dance of Life and, at this point of time, the poems seemed to hold much greater understanding and resonance. Sri Chinmoy said he never wrote an autobiography, but in many of these early poems, I feel he wrote autobiographical incidents about his life. These autobiographical incidents were also visionary – in that many seemed to occur and develop after he wrote them in 1973.

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If you have inner peace



I received this through the post today from a friend. A nice surprise.

“If you have inner peace, nobody can force you to be a slave to the outer reality.”

Sri Chinmoy [1]



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