Blessed Chinese New Year in 2015
Wishing all my Chinese readers a very blessed and happy new year. Depending which part of Asia you come from, a sheep or a goat is depicted as representative of 2015 in the lunar calendar.
The enormity of our world's needs are overwhelming, and without a compassionate heart, distressing news can appear to be just black and white. Hopefully, by raising a few of these intractable issues here would encourage us to pray, and if necessary, to act.
M57: The Ring Nebula.
Credit: Composite Image Data - Subaru Telescope (NAOJ), Hubble Legacy Archive;
Processing and additional imaging - Robert Gendler.
Except for the rings of Saturn, the Ring Nebula (M57) is probably the most famous celestial band. Its classic appearance is understood to be due to perspective - our view from planet Earth looks down the centre of a roughly barrel-shaped cloud of glowing gas. But expansive looping structures are seen to extend far beyond the Ring Nebula's familiar central regions in this intriguing composite of ground-based and Hubble Space Telescope images with narrowband image data from Subaru. The glowing material of gaseous shroud represents outer layers expelled from the dying, once sun-like star at the nebula's centre. Intense ultraviolet light from the hot central star ionizes atoms in the gas. Ionized oxygen atoms produce the characteristic greenish glow and ionized hydrogen the prominent red emission. The central ring of the Ring Nebula is about one light-year across and 2,000 light-years away in the northern constellation Lyra.
The De’ang are a small minority that lives primarily in mountainous and semi-mountainous areas and are descendants of people that have lived in the Yunnan for 2,000 years. The grow both wet and dry rice and have grown tea for centuries. The De’ang speak a Mon-Khmer language, have no written language and practice Theravada Buddhism.
The flag of Kiribati is red in the upper half with a gold frigatebird flying over a gold rising sun, and the lower half is blue with three horizontal wavy white stripes to represent the ocean and the three groups of islands: Gilbert, Phoenix and Line. The 17 rays of the sun represent the 16 Gilbert Islands and Banaba Island. The new flag was hoisted during the independence day celebrations in the capital, Tarawa, on July 12, 1979. The frigatebird symbolises command of the sea, power, freedom and Kiribati cultural dance patterns, the blue and white wavy bands represent the Pacific Ocean, which surrounds Kiribati and the sun refers to Kiribati's position astride the Equator.
The health notices and travel advice mentioned above only indicate the most recent announcements. To see the complete lists, click on the respective government department’s heading.
The latest research shows that the brain’s memory capacity is a quadrillion or 10 to the power of 15, bytes. Astoundingly, this is about the same amount needed to store the entire internet!
The Nefertiti Bust is a painted stucco-coated limestone bust of the Great Royal Wife of the Egyptian Pharaoh Akhenaten. The work is believed to have been crafted in 1345 B.C. by the sculptor Thutmose, because it was found in his workshop in Amarna, Egypt. A German archaeological team led by Ludwig Borchardt discovered the bust in 1912. It is one of the most copied works of ancient Egypt and Nefertiti has become one of the most famous women of the ancient world, and an icon of feminine beauty. Despite doubts over its authenticity, various testing and analysis of the bust have proved it to be authentic. It is currently on display at the Neues Museum in Berlin.
If you have not acquired complete non-attachment to money and the things of this life, do not aspire to be entrusted with economy (with looking after these things and managing them in the monastery), lest you become their captive; and, instead of being rewarded for your labour in serving the monastery, are condemned for theft and sacrilege. If you had been forced by the abbot to undertake this work, do it as though you had to deal with burning fire. Banish the very first suggestion of misappropriation by confession and repentance and, through the prayers of your abbot, you will remain unharmed.
REFUGEES RETURNING TO AREAS DECIMATED BY ISIS. Click on the image to access more information.
Click on the image for further information at Facebook's ICHTHUS page.