Posted in Family and Society, Life, Photography Art, Stories Around the World

Danger of Anger

One of the most powerful emotions of man that can have very severe consequences is anger. As time and history has even proven, anger not only causes mayhem but also mass destruction with deadening consequences. What we never realize that the anger is more deadly for the person who carries than it perpetually than one who tries to vent it. To quote Baptist Beacon, “ Anger is an acid that can do more harm to the vessel in which it is stored than to anything on which it is poured.”

As an old English proverb goes,“Anger is often more hurtful than the injury that caused it.” An anger stewed on can grow stronger generating resentment and hatred along with it and eventually fixes itself onto the mind, body and soul echoing in the thoughts, actions and even dreams. Finally it gets fueled by displeasure ultimately swelling and bursting into flames which become irreconcilable and irreversible. When we look back, we wonder what was the need for all of it. “If you kick a stone in anger you will hurt your foot. Korean saying”

As Apostle Paul had taught in Ephesians 4:26,””In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry.” For carrying this burden is tiresome and lonely. With every hour we fuel the anger, we lose twice the precious time of our peace. While certain occasions may feel like anger is justified, it doesn’t bring any solution just creates a negative impact. As William Arthur Ward had said, “It is wise to direct your anger towards problems — not people; to focus your energies on answers — not excuses.”

Hoarding and storing up the anger is like handling a bag of mouldy and stale potatoes. Not only is it irksome, but it also wastes space in the cellar but also spreads the mould and rot to the other edible items. “If you are patient in one moment of anger, you will escape a hundred days of sorrow. Chinese Proverb”

A Bag of Potatoes

The student asked the teacher: “You are so wise. You are always in a good mood, you never get angry. Help me to be like that.” The teacher agreed and asked the student to bring potatoes and a transparent bag. “If you get angry at someone and harbor a grudge,” said the teacher, “then take this potato.” On one side write your name, on the other the name of the person with whom the conflict occurred, and put this potato in the bag. – And it’s all? – puzzled asked student. “No,” answered the teacher. You should always carry this bag with you. And every time when someone is offended, add potatoes to it. The student agreed … Some time passed. The student pack was replenished with several more potatoes and became quite heavy. It was always very uncomfortable to carry around. In addition, the potato that he put at the very beginning began to deteriorate. It was covered with slippery bloom, some sprouted, some flowered and began to produce a sharp unpleasant smell. The student came to the teacher and said: – It is already impossible to carry with you. Firstly, the bag is too heavy, and secondly, the potatoes spoiled. Offer something else.

But the teacher said: – The same thing happens in your soul. When you are angry with someone, you are offended, then a heavy stone appears in your soul. You just do not immediately notice. Then the stones become more and more. Acts become habits, habits – in character, which gives rise to fetid vices. And it is very easy to forget about this cargo, because it is too heavy to carry it with you all the time. I gave you the opportunity to observe the whole process from the outside. Every time you decide to be offended or, on the contrary, offend someone, think whether you need this stone. Our vices are generated by ourselves. Do you need to carry a bag of spoiled potatoes behind your back?

Posted in Family and Society, Life, Photography Art, Reflections

True from Fake

My daughter once asked my mother how to distinguish true love from fake.
“It’s very simple,” the mother replied.
“… because I love!” Is true love.
“I love because …” is a fake.

This little snippet of conversation which I had read in my social pages has a profound meaning in today’s conditional world. These days everything comes with strings attached. With biased opinions and comments scouring the review pages, consumer markets and even job opportunities, nothing seems fair in the world of today. Add to it, relationships are getting soured as each took the other for granted, and forgetting basic respect and humaneness. With the many weddings and “I do” often said, as well as the friendship bonds made, where does “the love” go as time flies.

While we profess our declarations of undying love, when it is followed by “because” it is wise to suppose that this love will not last as the features so loved will change like the weather. For those of us who have our own close knit of friends and family, have you ever wondered about the care and concern of a loved one ? They keep a watch over us, doing things without asking and many a time, forcing us to wake up and move ahead during roadblocks. They never loved us because of our assets of fun, frolic and gaiety or having an eye on the benefits that their relationship with us would bring them in the future. The commitment and care they gave us was because they loved us. They are in the circle that we should fight to protect, cherish and honour as they put actions and deeds above words because they love us. So while we try to ascertain “the real” love, never forget to remember them as the guidelines of what selfless love should be like.

Posted in Daily, Family and Society, Photography Art, Quotes

Enjoy the Wave

“The story is about a little wave, bobbing along in the ocean, having a grand old time. He’s enjoying the wind and the fresh air-until he notices the other waves in front of him, crashing against the shore. “My God, this is terrible,” the wave says. “Look what’s going to happen to me!” Then along comes another wave. It sees the first wave, looking grim, and it says to him, “Why do you look so sad?” The first wave says, “You don’t understand! We’re all going to crash! All of us waves are going to be nothing! Isn’t it terrible?” The second wave says, “No, you don’t understand. You’re not a wave, you’re part of the ocean.” Mitch Albom

One of the constraints of man is we focus a lot on our own issues forgetting that our existence is not by being alone but as a part of a bigger network. We devote our time and energy towards the end goal, little realizing that one day we will all crash just like everyone else. That is why the joy of the ride should be more important than reaching the final post. Although it is imperative to set down life goals for oneself, on the way to achieving them it would be best not to not forget that our journey is one among the billion other journeys taking place. During the intersections and the temporary stops, it would do good to greet others and smell the flowers, for although our destination is predetermined, we never control the entire route or the final stop.

Posted in Daily, Family and Society, Food

Origins of Pain Perdu

“Dip a slice of bread in batter. That’s September: yellow, gold, soft and sticky. Fry the bread. Now you have October: chewier, drier, streaked with browns. The day in question fell somewhere in the middle of the french toast process.” — Tom Robbins

To add on to the quote above, add a little sugar before you fry the bread and with a glass of milk to go, November has come and almost gone.

In the morning chaos, one of the easiest options for a quick breakfast (besides cereal, oatmeal, eggs and bread) is the french toast. French toast is a dish made of bread soaked in eggs and milk, then fried. Alternative names and variants include eggy bread, Bombay toast, German toast to name a few. Yet the name is a misnomer as the recipe didn’t originally come from France. The Apicus, a collection of Latin recipes dating to the 4th or 5th century have the earliest reference to French Toast where it is labelled as simply aliter dulcia (“another sweet dish”) which breaks down the steps of the recipe to “slice fine white bread, remove the crust, and break it into large pieces. Soak these pieces in milk and beaten egg, fry in oil, and cover with honey before serving.” This recipe has been modified and carried to German, England, Nordic areas as well as Italy.

The usual French name is pain perdu translated as “lost bread”, reflecting its use of stale bread. Known for its ease in making and simplicity; sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla can be also added to the mix. Alternatively, the bread may be soaked in wine, rosewater, or orange juice either before or after cooking. The bread is then fried in butter or olive oil until browned and cooked through. Day-old bread is often used, both for its thrift and because it will soak up more egg mixture without falling apart.

“The things that you did with parents, whether it was spending every Sunday morning with your dad and eating French toast and watching Popeye, or decorating the Christmas tree with our mother – these are memories that help you be happy.” ~ Leonardo DiCaprio

All said, bringing breakfast to the table from different parts of the world makes the morning light, quick and interesting; in addition to the fact that the kids will love the change once in a while.

Posted in Daily, Family and Society, Stories Around the World, Work

Scarred by Words

The pen is mightier than the sword or vice-versa as some believe. This ongoing tussle between the pen and sword has been going on for quite some time. Yet there is something that we fail to realize that has an ever bigger presence. Words and Actions, but more importantly words. Words have the potency to cause more harm as it inflects a change on both the listener as well as the speaker. It would be an understatement to mention that many times “we speak before we think, instead of think before we speak.”

“The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks.”  Luke 6:45

Many words that we say are a result of our erroneous tongue and less thinking. Some of us shrug it off and say it was in the heat of the moment or that one didn’t mean it so. While the rest of us may apologize or pretend to forget. Unfortunately, once the words have been said, they linger in the subconscious mind and strike the hardest when we least expect it. Eventually the same words can lead to regrettable actions and irreversible consequences. Although it is true that we should express ourselves honest, take heed to not to say anything in the heat of emotion of either anger, sorrow or excessive joy. For we never know the extent of harm these words can cause or when the same words may bite us back. Once damaged, the dent will stay no matter how minor it may seem.

“Be mindful when it comes to your words. A string of some that don’t mean much to you, may stick with someone else for a lifetime.” -Rachel Wolchin

Nails on The Fence

Once there was one very quick-tempered and unrestrained young man. Then one day his father gave him a bag of nails and punished, whenever he did not contain his anger, to drive one nail into the fence post. On the first day there were several dozen nails in the pole. The other week, he learned to restrain his anger, and every day the number of nails driven into the pole began to decrease. The young man realized that it was easier to control his temperament than to drive nails. Finally, the day came when he never lost his temper. He told this to his father, and he said that this time every day, when his son can control himself, he can pull a nail out of the pole. As time went on, the day came when he could tell his father that not a single nail was left in the pole. Then the father took his son by the hand and led him to the fence: – You did quite well, but do you see how many holes are in the pole? He will never be the same. When you say something evil to a person, he has the same scar as these holes. No matter how many times you apologize after that, the scar will remain.

Posted in Christian, Stories Around the World

Face of Love

Today’s title is based on D. Michele Perry‘s book. She is the founder of Iris,South Sudan; an orphanage where she had devoted her life to change the world. She is an unusual missionary as she was born without a left kidney, hip and leg, yet many consider her to be one of the most joyful people on earth. I had read about her works when a friend of mine had tagged me along with an excerpt from her book in my social network pages. As I read through the article, numerous emotions ran through my mind which reminded me of the love that our Lord has given us. This excerpt is from her book “Love Has a Face: Mascara, a Machete and One Woman’s Miraculous Journey with Jesus in Sudan”.

The story of Ani (not her real name, changed) was a miracle that happened literally in the mud. Through this little girl I understood God’s grace and compassion more than through anyone in my life. Anya came to us at the age of three and a half with two brothers. She was the shadow of a little girl. She did not want to play. She did not allow anyone to touch her. She always looked for the dirtiest and unclean places in the camp. Finding such a place, she lay down in the mud and cried there for hours. If someone tried to lift her, she was twisted and torn again to this place. Most of the moms have already stopped pulling her and just left to lie on the ground and cry. Her roar was especially unpleasant. I wondered how often before, when she cried in the same way, no one heard her or came to her. It had an imprint of the orphan spirit. She was sure that no one loved her and no one wanted her, and to prove it to herself, she made it difficult, as far as possible, for us. “Dad, what to do? How can I love her? “Immediately, an excerpt from Philippians 2 came to me:“For you must have the same feelings as in Christ Jesus: He, being in the image of God, did not esteem the plunder to be equal to God; but he humbled himself, taking the form of a slave, becoming like men, and in appearance becoming like a man” (verses 5–7) Jesus came to where I was. Therefore, I had to go where Anya was. So I did.

I found her lying in the mud and lay down beside her. I did not touch her and did not speak. I did not look at her because I knew that it would only make her scream louder. I just lay down next to her. She knew that I was there. I was just there. The next day I lay down next to her in the same way, but this time I put my hand in front of her eyes. It seemed that nothing was happening. Not accepting disappointment, I tried again. The next time I again found her lying and stretched out my hand. This time her little hand approached mine. Slowly, we joined hands, only to make this scene repeat again and again over the next weeks. Slowly, almost imperceptibly, a miracle occurred in the heart of Ani. She became aware that she was loved and safe and desirable. She deserves to be in the mud for her. She deserves to look foolish for her. She deserves love. She is not alone and not abandoned. Her crying no longer remains unheard in silence.

I will never forget when I saw Anya smile for the first time. Tears flowed out of me, without stopping. Now she is five, and she smiles a lot. She wraps herself in my hem and loves to help younger kids. She plays and laughs and loves to hug. Anya is no longer an orphan. She came home. Traveling with her taught me about the wealth of the Father’s grace. He did not tell me to get out of the mud of my own pain and shame. He did not tell me to get rid of it, and then only to come to Him. Not. He lay in the mud with me. He offered His hand and just waited – letting me see, letting me believe, letting me put my hand in His and then stand together. I understand Anya. The only difference in us is that her pain was visible, and mine was hidden in my heart. God’s love is great. He comes and seeks us in the muddy places of our deepest wounds and dark corners. He loves us so much that he moves the heavens and the earth to show us His great grace. He loves us so much that he hugs us even when we are in the mud. And He loves us so much that He does not leave us there.

Michelle Perry “Love Has a Face”

Posted in Daily, Food, Quotes

Treats like Cupcakes

“The little cakes were iced in white, with golden yellow icing roses on top, and instead of ice cream there was sherbet that was a rainbow of colors in each dish. Jane Louise Curry”

Uniquely suited for the modern food culture, cupcakes are known for its portion controlled size, easy baking, inexpensive, delightful as well as edible art which allows us to splurge on the calories without being guilty. With origins traced to early 19th century, the original cupcakes or fairy-cakes were simple cakes about the size of teacups though the fairy-cakes were made slightly bigger. Although the classic vanilla, chocolate flavoured or chocolate topped icing are standard, flavours as well as the topping designs have become more elaborate, decadent and even weird at times. that followed the basic rule of numbers with measurements as cups.

“In my mind, there was nothing better than a cupcake with a funny little twist. I liked bold pairings of fresh ingredients slathered high with decadent, old-fashioned waves of icing- organic pear and chai tea cake topped with vanilla-ginger buttercream was one of my current favorites. But Lolly St. Clair had more classic taste, and so I’d made an array of delicately flavored Meyer lemon, vanilla, and mocha cupcakes for the benefit.” ? Meg Donohue, How to Eat a Cupcake

There is cup cake and then there are cupcakes. No, both aren’t exactly the same. The “cup cake” refers to a cake whose ingredients were measured by volume (using a standard-sized cup) instead of being weighed. The recipes where the ingredients were measured using a standard-sized cup can also be baked in cups; but they were more commonly baked in tins as layers or loaves. Later as the use of volume measurements was firmly established in the home kitchens, these recipes became known as 1234 cakes or quarter cakes. They mainly have four ingredients: one cup of butter, two cups of sugar, three cups of flour, and four eggs; making them less rich and less expensive than pound cake.

“When you look at a cupcake, you’ve got to smile.” -Anne Byrn

The craze for cupcakes had picked up with the varying varieties available for many occasions besides having them at any time of the day as well as easily portable (remember rushing for the train with cupcake and coffee in hand). A quick office meeting or a tête-à-tête with friends; cupcakes and coffee go well with each having the freedom of their own topping. Elaborate cupcakes have graced receptions, wedding banquets as well as minor celebration parties. For weight watchers and chronic dieters, cupcakes are the answer to prayers for resolving the sugar cravings. Any kids parties, quick desserts or fast baking, cupcakes are life savers and yes, they can be made in pressure cookers too. Not to forget the designs and colours of cupcake toppings an icing, which have launched their own line of food photography art.

Cupcakes are like having life in delicious bite sizes. To quote Laurel Nakadate, “A cupcake is like a great pop song. The whole world in less than three minutes. And it’s impossible to have a bad cupcake. In New York you walk everywhere. So I’m always looking, always on the eternal search for the perfect cupcake. I take them very seriously. It’s like hunting and gathering for me.” As the best things in life come in small packages, cupcakes join my list of sweet delights. This makes promoting the Small Business Saturday with cupcakes worth the time and effort.

“Coffee makes it possible to get out of bed. Cupcakes make it worthwhile.” ~ Unknown Author