Sunday, January 27, 2013

Like the beat of my art

Now where did I read that quotation which goes something like 'art makes life more bearable..."? It made me think of the posts I placed on this blog that delved on art, and here are some of photos I unearthed. Quirky art!

An interesting flower vase, but I think it can stand on its own and light up a corner even without the pretty blooms. See more of Curlin Reed Sullivan's art here.

This looks yummy but then it's not ice cream. In fact, it's not edible at all -- it's soap! You can see more yummy inedibles at Soapylove!

Fawna on your fingers... in sterling. Figs & Ginger is a husband-and-wife team and more of the couple's work is available at their Etsy shop.

Let me share some new finds I made, which I hope you'll enjoy:

Paper typewriter by Jennifer Collier

I saw some really charming pieces when I walked into a store called Heima at Cubao Expo a couple of months ago, and this telephone lamp was one of them.

Magnificent castles (though this one looks more like a cathedral to me) demonstrating the beauty of paper craft, by Wataru Itou.

* * * * * * * * * * *

Cartoon animation is one of my favorite forms of art, so I decided to add this one, which I find quite engaging:

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Where woman and child are cared for

Till recently, the only things I associated with Ireland were U2, St. Patrick, the four-leaf clover (I'm not sure why), and The Corrs. Starting around four or five years ago, however, my regard for that nation has changed. Why? Because I learned about the importance that the Irish place on family and children -- so much that it's the only other country I know besides the Philippines in which the people see abortion for what it truly is -- murder -- and thereby persistently defend the right of every human being, including babies still in the womb, to live. They care about everyone.

I learned from a friend living in Ireland about a pro-life march/rally just hours before it was due to start. The Vigil for Life held on January 19 drew some 30,000 people -- all demanding the country's leader and the ruling party to keep abortion out of this very life-loving nation.

Here are a couple of videos I've watched several times already!

The Irish people rock!!

Among the organizers of the huge event were Youth Defence, Life Institute, Pro-Life Campaign, and Precious Life.

* See more photos and additional coverage on the Vigil for Life Facebook page 

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

The real thing

I love this ceramic cup one of my sisters gave me for a Christmas gift. It's so pretty and dainty that I hesitate to use it lest the delicate surface be corrupted over time from too much washing. For now I'm simply admiring it for its Victorian charm.

It's amazing how things come into focus more when weighed against something else or regarded against the bigger picture. I don't want to read too much into this or I might see something that isn't really there. But bottom line -- the more I take time to notice the flowers blooming in our yard every few days, the more I appreciate all that is real. Images can be so attractive and wondrous, but they pale in comparison to the real thing.

Authenticity -- its richness can be truly amazing.

Friday, January 18, 2013

They're not keeping silent -- for the silenced

I was link-hopping and all set to do a "Around the world in 8 headlines" kind of post, all pertaining to culture of life news -- but really more like culture of death since most of the news items I was seeing were astonishingly about cases of people with no terminal illness being euthanized, laws being changed to accommodate suicide as a form of medical treatment (!), Planned Parenthood cutting back on health care to devote more resources to abortion, and other such updates. It is a crazy world.

Who wants to read about such atrocious developments? Not me, and at least not today. Dwelling on the dwindling moral sanity in other parts of the world can wait. Right now, what I have below are short videos that I find fun to watch as they let me hear what young dudes in America have to say about the issues surrounding what's being marked every year in Washington DC around January 22. I must say it is refreshing to listen to these mostly teens and twentysomethings express their thoughts on such a vital issue.

The first and second video culled interviews and footage from the March for Life in 2011 and 2012 (and perhaps previous years), while the last one, titled A Nation Rises - March for Life, was made to make people today realize the irony in the US President's words as they relate to the wholesale killing of unborn children -- and to urge more Americans to stand up for life and freedom and to take part in the upcoming March for Life.

Can't ever forget those words uttered by Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life:

"We don't adapt to injustice; we oppose it."

* March for Life 2013, which marks 40 years since the Roe vs. Wade decision, takes place on January 25, with loads of other activities on the days before and after it (see the link). Walk for Life West Coast -- another annual event -- happens on January 26.

* Photo from Stand True

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Ladies and gentlemen

"Women possess a unique power to shape cultures. Men look to you to learn how you wish to be treated. When women, as a culture, expect to be treated with dignity, something remarkable happens: Men discover that they'll have to become gentlemen if they wish to enjoy the company of women."

- Jason & Crystalina Evert, "How to Find Your Soulmate without Losing Your Soul"

Saturday, January 05, 2013

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Pep talks on the battlefield

Movies that revolve around sports are rife with scenes of pep talks. It's the same with flicks with plots that involve a teacher and wayward students. There's always bound to be one big scene in which the mentor will deliver some speech meant to push the mentee to give his all and defy his limits.

Have you ever heard such a speech in any movie that has the mentor talking about how convenience and comfort are the path to success? That commitment and sacrifice are better off forgotten? That aiming high is for losers? How about "Do whatever catches your fancy, and throw integrity, service and hard work out the window"? No, such lines and ideas sound more like what the enemy, the bad guy, the traitor would say to his minions or an apprentice he's training for life on the dark side.

Movies about basketball or football games may be worthwhile viewing for such plots and scenes, and though they're just movies, they may reflect slices of  real life. For instance, one lesson that's repeatedly conveyed in such films is that attitude is instrumental in a person's road to success or descent to defeat. And in this case, it's all about a basketball game, or a football championship, or a shot at a college education (if it's one of those maverick teacher - "dead-end future" students scenarios) that's at stake -- petty compared to, say, if it's the future of Middle Earth, the survival of Jedi Knights, or diplomatic relations between powerful countries hanging in the balance.

Think of the movies about wars and battles you've seen, and you're unlikely to remember any motivational speech given by the leader of the good guys that puts vice on a pedestal and downplays virtue, that doesn't tell the men to rise to the challenge or get out of their comfort zone. Right now I'm thinking of Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King since I saw parts of it today on TV.  Aragorn's speech outside the gates of Mordor is striking and rousing, one that men of valor would need to hear when up against evil (and seriously grotesque) opponents and they feel they are on the losing side. I couldn't help but liken the situation these men were in to that which we in the Philippines are currently confronted with. We had just lost a battle of sorts, and though it is merely part of a war, the loss has temporarily disheartened some young and tired souls. During such times it can be easy to forget that there is always hope and that the wisdom of God is infinitely beyond that of man.

I'm sharing two videos below: one is of Aragorn giving that speech at the Black Gate, and the other is the scene from Rocky Balboa in which the Rocky opens his son's mind about some things. Both are inspiring, but the second dwells more on a personal level as it imparts words of wisdom from a father to a son.

Attitude -- it can really spell the difference.

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