Friday, June 27, 2014

Test on Global Warming, True or False, 25 items)

Global warming is the concern of each and everyone of us. 
Dr Abe V Rotor
Paaralang Bayan sa Himpapawid with Ms Melly C Tenorio
738 DZRB AM, 8 to 9 pm, Monday to Friday

 Depiction of Global Warming, painting in acrylic by AV Rotor

1. Biofuels are healthy to the environment and economy especially in underdeveloped countries.

2. It is wise to store carbon waste such as from CO2 emission and coal waste deep into the earth; anyway fossil fuels have been kept the bowels of the earth for millions of years.

3. Methane has higher impact in global warming than CO2 emission, which means that animal husbandry is a major generator of global heat.

4. Greenwashing is the practice pf making environmental promises favoring hype over substance, a disparaging term usually applied to corporations such as automakers that tout new hybrids but still peddle gas-guzzling SUBS and lobby against increased-mileage requirement.

5. The ozone hole is getting bigger above the equator because of increasing heat while the ozone above the poles remains intact.

6. The hottest in household energy savings is the replacement of conventional incandescent light bulb with Compact Fluorescent Light bulb (CFL)

7. Compact Fluorescent Light bulbs may cost 2 or 3 times more than conventional light bulbs but consume only one-fourth of electricity; besides they last very much longer.

8. Planting trees, scientists tell us, is not a wise measure to curb global warming, because trees absorb the heat of the sun.

9. It is the light of the sun – not its heat – that is used to covert water and CO2 during photosynthesis to produce sugar and O2.

10. The US alone contributes 50 percent of the total annual CO2 output which is 32 billion tons.

11. The ozone hole is getting bigger above the equator because of increasing heat while the ozone above the poles remains intact.

12. China’s economy has been growing steadily at an average rate of 10 percent in the last decade, thanks to its fast growing industrialization.

13. Today’s CO2 in the atmosphere which is 379 ppm in 2005 is higher than anytime in the past 650,000 years.

14. Of the 12 warmest years on record, 11 occurred in the last 20 years, mainly from 1995 to 2004.

15. There is a new law in Japan that at least 20 percent of rooftops of buildings are made green in the like of a high rise garden – similar to what we can aeroponics.

16. Total water on earth as ice and glacier is around 2 percent.

17. Chlorine, methane, ammonia, hydrogen sulfide contribute to acid rain. Acid rain and global warming have no connection to each other.

18. Asia is the last region to clean up its cities – Orientals are not as meticulously clean as Americans and Europeans.

19. It is now accepted unanimously that industrialization is the culprit of global warming.

20. Global warming has something to do with the disturbance of the tectonic plates leading to more frequent and stronger earthquakes, tsunamis and volcanic eruption.

21. The effects of global warming are the concern of governments and big corporations because they have the power and resources to curb its effect. We, ordinary citizens, are but by-standers, but we should be willing to abide by the rules they set.

22. Penguins and white bears are drowning in the Arctic region because of the melting of ice.

23. Converting corn into ethanol requires more energy in the process than the net energy output/ produce.

24. The name Rachel Carson rings every time we talk about pollution, a subject in her book, “Silent Spring”.

25. An Inconvenient Truth is based on Earth in the Balance: Ecology and the Human Spirit , an international bestseller written by Al Gore, former vice president of the US.

Our living planet, once a Paradise, can be restored by no one but each and everyone of us.  

Test Global Warming ANSWERS:1F (competition with food and nutrition),1T, 2F, 3T, 4T, 5F, 6T, 7T, 8F, 9T, 10F (one-fourth, 11T, 12T, 13T, 14T, 15T, 16T - 1.90. Of the total freshwater (2 %), glacier and ice make up 78.19 %, 20.58 %groundwater, and 0.82% rivers and lakes, soil 0.41%; 17F, 18F, 19F (There are doubting Thomases.), 20T, 21F (It's a concern of every citizen of the world.), 22F(Penguins are found at the Antarctic), 23T(We have yet to perfect the technology; ethanol from sugarcane is more efficient.), 24T(Pesticides killed the birds that herald spring.), 25T.


24 – 25 outstanding
20 – 23 very good
16 – 19 good
12 – 15 pass

Below 11 - Listen to Paaralang Bayan sa Himpapawid and do more research.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Life's Beginnings: Functional Abstract Art

The evolution of art goes with the evolution of thought, it rides on theories how wild they are, it soars with the imagination virtually without limit. The biggest obstacle and therefore challenge  to the artist is to capture the essence of an abstract subject and give it a form in a manner that his art becomes a functional one for its understanding by the viewer and reader. 

Experimental paintings Dr Abe V Rotor

Early transition creatures from the dawn of life, referred to as protobionts were not living cells as we know them.  They probably had few of the characteristics of living cells today. The mechanism for the emergence of the first protobionts called chemical evolution, was originally explored by Aleksandr Ivanich Oparin. 
Oparin suggested that collections of molecules were continually coming together in a probiotic soup, and that tthe ones that persisted the longest would come to predominate.  Somehow the chemical evolution led to the first self-replicating entities, or protobionts, and once this had happened, biological evolution took over.
But what cannot be explained up to now by scientists, even with countless experiments conducted in the laboratory, is how these collection of chemical molecules evolved into living cells - much more into living organisms.  This will certainly remain as the greatest mystery of life.  What makes a living cell? 

What makes cells as living organisms themselves in the likes of monerans and protists? And cells becoming organized into complex organisms in unimaginable diversity that compose the living world today. Here is a representation of a protonucleus, evolving from non-nucleated cell into protoplasm that has a defined nucleus, scientifically called prokaryote and eukaryote, respectively.

What is missing in the chemical evolution scenario must have been provided by the master of the evolutionary process, Charles Darwin.  What scientists tried to establish with Darwin's biological evolution is the link between the two processes, that can be tested and therefore set some rules. The necessity for Darwinian mechanisms becomes vividly apparent when we consider how different protobionts were from the nonliving collection of molecules around them. (The Spark of Life : Darwin and the Pimeval Soup, by Christopher Willss and Jeffrey Bada 2000)  

How are these protobionts characterized?
1. They were able to approximate replicas of themselvess.
They were able to ssurvive inder savage environmentalcomnditions.
3,They were somehow able to draw energy from that uncompromising environment
4. Death must have put in an early appearance - death is insseperably associated with life.
Death, like reproduction, i an essential part of Darwinian evolution. 

It took a long, long way for life to reach the stage when life is ultimately associated with thing things, diversified as they are, we seem the least care to bother were life came from and how it began. Indeed life today is so tenacious and omnipresent on the Earth that it is difficult to imagine the planet without it . 

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Control coconut beetle by broadcasting sand into the leaf axils.

Silica penetrates into the delicate tissues of the insect. As a result its injury leads to dehydration and infection, and consequently death.
Dr Abe V Rotor

Rhinocerus beetle (Oryctes rhinocerus) is a scourge of coconut,drastically reducing production, if not killing the tree at any stage. Right, a healthy tree can produce up to 50 nuts every two month.   
Mode of attack by both the larva (grub) and the adult characterized by boring into the very heart of the crown destroying the unopened bud leaves.  Right, damage bud after emergence. Heavy infestation results in the decapitation of the standing tree.  
Noticed that coconut trees growing along or close to sandy shores are seldom attacked by coconut beetle - Oryctes rhinoceros, a scourge of coconut whose larva and adult burrow into the bud and destroy the whole top or crown of the tree.

Farmers broadcast sand into the leaf axils of coconut trees in their early development stage until they have grown too tall to be reached.The scientific explanation to this practice is that sand (or silica, the raw material in making glass) is very sharp. Under the microscope each particle is a glass shard which can penetrate without difficulty the soft joints (conjunctiva) of the insect's armor. This is the insect's "Achilles heel," so to speak.

As the insect moves, the silica penetrates into the delicate tissues of the insect. As a result its injury leads to dehydration and infection, and consequently death.

If you have young coconuts growing at home and you find signs of the pest, scoop some sand and sprinkle it in between the leaf stalks - or axils. This is safer than using chemical insecticide. And you practically spend nothing, except work and patience.~

Palm Sunday is a nemesis to the coconut trees, and to the coconut industry, the mainstay of the Philippine economy in coconut-based areas. Thousands of trees are sacrificed for their young leaves made into paslaspas during Palm Sunday (Holy Week).  Young trees are killed for the bud leaves as well as for the the core or ubod which is made into fresh lumpia, a popular delicacy.

Coconut tree stripped of their young leaves for palaspas are easy target of the coconut beetle. The inflicted wound attracts the fecund female rhinoceros beetle to lay eggs, and the wound serves as entry for the newly hatch grubs which ultimately will bore and destroy the tree. Adult beetles are likewise lured to attack wounded trees.  Analogous to this is that, after a typhoon, infestation rises sharply.  Weakened condition of wounded trees exacerbate the damage which leads to premature death.  Coconut trees are known to live productively for fifty years,and even longer.  
Today there's a serious pest of coconut - Scale Insects (Aspidiotus destructor). Several provinces particularly in Region 4 have been placed under emergency. Harvesting young leaves of coconut for handicraft, culinary, palaspas, and the like, further predisposes infested coconut trees to succumb.  The young leaves are the ultimate defence when the older leaves are heavily infested with the scale insect. 

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The backyard as science laboratory and workshop (2)

The case of a river eel that has survived confinement subsisting only on algae for three long years - and going.~   

Dr Abe V Rotor
How long can a river eel survive in captivity?

Come rainy season and the rivers are abundant with freshwater eels. It's their breeding season and soon the tiny glass (transparent) eels take the characteristic shape and form of the common eel - elongated like snake, and slimy to catch which is true to its vernacular name, palos, a term given to a person who can evade capture and escape from confinement.

That is why of the half a dozen eels Celing, who lives near a creek, gave us, only this one in the photo survives to this day after three years of captivity in a glass aquarium. What I found about the river eel may not be found in the books.
1. River eels are extremely shy, they seldom get out of their dark hiding place, especially,   during the day. They hang up to watch now and then and retreat at the slightest disturbance.

2. Gregariousness is incidental to their confinement, given freedom they move separately on their own.

3. They are not the voracious predators as claimed. Sword tails and guppies live for sometime with them in the same aquarium.

4.River eels do not eat commercial feeds, bread or meat. They subsist only on algae or lumot growing on limestone, and on the bottom and sides of the aquarium. That's why sunlight is very important for the algae to produce biomass and oxygen which are vital to life. 

5. The limestone rock (CaO), releases calcium to neutralize acidity of the water, while it provides an abode to the eels, hiding them from view and light. 
6. They don't need aerator or filter.  Simply add water to maintain water level. Excess algae and accumulated detritus however, must be removed as necessary. 

We kids in our time believed in a huge eel hidng below an overhanging kamatchile tree along the Bantaoay river in our hometown.  "Don't go near its cave!" We were warned every time we go fishing. Well, I grew up with this rich imagination and never saw themonster.

Then in the early sixties, a huge eel was caught in a flood tunnel under the Public Market in Sampaloc. It must have come from the fish market and grew up with plenty of food from the wet market.

It was then that I connected the two giant eels -  the one in my childhood, and the one twenty years after. Tales are true after all.

And I am adding to this tale the fact that here is a eel that has survived in confinement subsisting on algae alone for three long years - and going.~   

Giant mottled eel.  Angler Seishi Hagihara (Sulawesi Island, Indonesia ) with a Giant Mottled Eel (Anguilla marmorata) caught in Poso Lake.

Maori legendary eel, New Zealand; giant eel lurking from its nest (Australian Museum). Acknowledgement: Internet Images,Wikipedia for photos.  

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Children, Children - Four Scenarios

Dr Abe V Rotor 
Living with Nature - School on Blog
Paaralang Bayan sa Himpapawid with Ms Melly C Tenorio

738 DZRB AM, 8 to 9 evening class Mon to Fri
There seems no sense of hurry, and little of duty
    for these kids to be in school, to read and write;
living more in the past than today or tomorrow,
    spending their childhood fully and bright.
Curious these children are, a helicopter alighting in their midst,
    this big bird, airplane or Superman, they see in the sky;
Flash Gordon is true after all, so with astronaut Neil Armstrong,
    setting dreams of adventure that they will someday fly.

Signs the hands tell us, the language unspoken, 
    faces full of smiles, and all the icy world broken;
wait till they become grownups and learn to frown,
    like us now wishing our younger days are reborn.   

They have learned life early with a little of everything,
    yet 'round a bowl of rice fullest is their joy and hale;
wish there were seven loaves of bread and some fish
    that once fed a multitude - and know the prayer as well,
that unlocks the power, that no one shall miss a meal. 

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Sta Monica Church Roxas City: Old Walls of Faith

Dedicated to the late Rev Msgr Benjamin Advincula 
Dr Abe V Rotor

Crowned windows with garland,
and sealed by time,
while faith ruled over the land
once in its prime.   

Stand tall, oh tower, and taller still,
the faithful gazes forevermore,
for heaven by wealth cannot fill
the vacuum of the poor. 

Don't sleep, and never doze;
have presence, 
for faith behind walls may lose
its essence.   

Silence in these walls is deafening,
You can hear your breathing;
But if peace reigns in the Being,
You won't really hear a thing. 

Acknowledgment: Rev Msgr Benjamin Advincula, Episcopal Vicar for the Clergy, Archdiocese of Capiz, and Parish Priest of  Santa Monica; Rev Msgr Vicente F Kilata, Rev Fr Vic Bendico, Fr Anthony Bautista, Fr Mark Granflor, Fr Nonoy Abalajon, Fr Noel Abalajon, Fr Robert Alba, Bro Ray Bofill et al

Monday, June 16, 2014

Computer Addiction Leads to Vices and Drug Use

Children die young with Computer Addition because it leads to Caffeine-Alcohol-Nicotine-Drugs (CAND). Please don't allow your child to be a CANDidate, please. Your child is the most precious thing on earth. It is through your child that you can change the world.

 Dr Abe V Rotor 
Living with Nature School on Blog Paaralang Bayan sa Himpapawid (People's School-on-Air) with Ms Melly C Tenorio738 DZRB AM Band, 8 to 9 evening class, Monday to Friday
Did it ever occur in your mind that vices and drug abuse are connected to computer addiction?

Secret of Pep Drinks

People, especially the young – children and adolescents - who sit before the computer for hours every day – even before they start using drugs, are already potential drug users. This is a thesis which I shall try to present and defend in this article.

These are premises of my contention. Computerizing whether for school assignment or just entertainment consumes precious time and energy. Time for hobbies, rest, reflection, exercise, socialization, or for quiet and peace. In short we have disturbed regular time management – the way our predecessor in pre-computer time made use of 24-hour cycle – so with 30-day monthly cycle and longer. In other words the computer has not only reset, but tinkered with, our biological clock.  

What does this mean? We do not follow our regular sleeping habit, because the computer demands no strict time limit or schedule. Imagine also that a favorite program on TV is on the computer, especially DVD programs. Computer addicts may become night owls. Others have developed cat napping which can compensate partly lost sleep. Not following regular sleeping habits may lead to insomnia. Many drugs today are for insomniacs. Abuse of sleeping pills is reminiscent of some prominent victims; among them was Marilyn Monroe who died of overdose.

The ever increasing features of the computer making today’s state-of-the-art in computer shades the 1960 predecessor a hundred folds more proficient. Pretty soon we will be groping and grappling with artificial intelligence like dealing with a university professor, and a genius at that. Already chess games with the computer are like playing with Karpov or Kasparov. War games need the intelligence and skills of Napoleon Bonaparte on land, and Horatius Nelson at sea. The computer does not only trace the campaign of Alexander the Great who attempted to create the largest empire on earth, but continue to trace the campaign even after his death.

Entertaining, isn't? Definitely yes, but at what price? Hour-after-hour uninterrupted concentration. Irregular meal substituted with fast, if not junk, food. Strained eyes (and also ears). Sustained suspense leading to cold hands and feet, and increased pulse rate and heart beat, while the muscles contract – an antithesis of balanced exercise. Soon you need a drug to calm you down, such as Valium and Prozac.  Headache and therefore, you take analgesic. Hallucinations in your sleep lead to insomnia

So what is the preoccupation of the young today? It appears to be a syndrome instead, a syndrome of five components, namely: 
1. Decreased Mental Concentration,.
2. Social Detachment,  
3. Physiologic Imbalance, 
4. Time Waste, 
5. Indeterminate Purpose

Pose for a moment after reading this article and imagine yourself a victim of this modern day syndrome which can turn into a plague. ~

Acknowledgement: Photos from Internet

Give Me the Sky

Dr Abe V Rotor
Give me the sky symbolizes more than freedom, the realization of life's meaning, and beauty of living, humility and reverence. It reminds man of his role as guardian of creation. 

Skyview through the roof of Callao Cave, Peñablanca, Cagayan

Cirro-stratus cloud formation under an Aratiles Tree

Give me the sky and I'll conquer darkness,
      even only a shaft through the rock;
Give me the sky and I will follow the sun
      from morn to evening and back.

Give me the sky and I'll watch the moon
      grow full and old and reborn;
Give me the sky and I'll chart the stars,
      the future and coming storm.

Give me the sky and I will ask the clouds
      to fall into rain and the fields green;
Give me the sky to greet the birds in flight,
      where they go, where they've been.

Give me the sky and I'll soar into space
      beyond the limits of the earth;
Give me the sky and I'll see from there
      the magnificent place of my birth.

Give me the sky and I'll keep it clean -
      the river, the lake and stream;
Give me the sky and I'll fly the biggest kite
      to lead a child to his dream.

Give me the sky, and lead my spirit
      from the earth to far beyond;
Give me the sky that I may know You `
      through the goodness of Your Son. ~

Takong - the Nest-Building Sow

Dr. Abe V. Rotor

Crossbred offspring shows traces of its native parent - the domesticated wild pig

When I was a farmhand I watched Takong – mother pig, build a nest. She gathered dry banana stalks, rice straw, leaves, and if there were clothes or blanket on a sagging clothesline, they would likely end up as nesting materials.

Takong was a native pig and carried much of the features of baboy damo or wild pig. Her fangs were long, protruding and curved outward, resembling amulets. Her snout was long, her skin dark gray and loose, her hair wiry. She was seldom without caked mud over her body because she loved to wallow. She strayed on the farm, subsisting on rice bran, fruits and vegetables, or whatever leftovers there were after threshing or milling.

“Our sow is ready to give birth,” my dad announced. Takong had been in her nest and if it were not for her gray color, heaving and grunting, you would dismiss her nest as a mere pile of rubbish. That night I heard grunting and squeaking. Our sow was giving birth. The piglets came out at intervals.

As the first rays of the sun peep through the den, I cautiously searched how many piglets our  sow had delivered. There were ten piglets in all! But none was wholly black like the mother. They had shades of white and gray, their snouts were shorter and upturned. Their father was of a foreign breed, stocky and bigger than Takong with snub nose and flappy ears. Takong laid on one side and obediently nursed her litter, each taking possession of a teat. "Just don't get too close." my father warned.

Father knows that even if animals have been domesticated, they still carry the evolutionary gene designed to protect their young against any enemy they perceive - which may include their own masters. Animals are most dangerous at nesting time and after giving birth until the young are ready to be weaned. Another warning my dad emphasized is that never touch the young, more so to take them away from the nest or litter.

We can't resist picking up newly born animals, like kittens and puppies, because they are lovable. Their mother can easily sense our intrusion. She may abandon the poor cute thing, or even kill or eat it. Or she takes the whole litter away to a safe place.

In the wild, animals can sense danger that may threaten the whole litter, if not the whole herd. According to sociobiology as proposed by Dr EO Wilson, altruism and sacrifice are actually part of behavioral instinct which is important to the survival of the species, to the extent of sacrificing its individual members. Murder and cannibalism among animals may be explained with this theory. So with sudden attacks on people by pets, by animals in zoo and circus.

Takong's offspring soon reached weaning time. Dad sold them as growers, leaving one to become our next sow. It bore less features of the mother than the father. " It got more blood from her father," said Anding, our caretaker. I named our future sow Turik, meaning multiple spots. We built a pen for Turik to protect her from the sun and rain, and from other animals. Feeding and watering troughs were made for easier work. Twice the local veterinarian came to give Turik immunization.

I missed Takong, I never saw a sow build a nest again.


Sunday, June 15, 2014

The Lighter Side of Life - Slip of the Tongue

Dr Abe V Rotor 
Living with Nature School on Blog 
Paaralang Bayan sa Himpapawid (People's School-on-Air) with Ms Melly C Tenorio
738 DZRB AM Band, 8 to 9 evening class, Monday to Friday                                            
Dolphy, Philippine legend in comedy

Charlie Chaplin, pioneer in cinema comedy
  • Chairs! I mean Cheers!
  • How are you to die? You mean, How are you today?
  • How do I love three, let me count the ways. (From a favorite English poem by Robert Browning). You mean thee. Wrong spelling may be fatal.
  • It was raining cats and dogs, and there were poodles in the road. Puddles, you mean.
  • Joseph, the Dreamer came all the way from Canada. Canaan, you mean.
  • "Name two pronouns." Inattentive student: Who? Me?
  • Genetics: Cross an elephant with a fish. Swimming trunk. HehHeh!
  • What are your parents' name? "Papa and Mama." Baby talk.
  • A quorum is a place to keep fish in. You mean aquarium.
  • Elizabeth Aye, Aye Aye! You mean, Elizabeth III.
  • Socrates died from an overdose of wedlock. Of course not; it was hemlock, a poisonous plant. Respect the fodder of philosophy. Again, please - father.
  • In mathematics, Persia gave the dismal point. It would be dismal indeed without the decimal point.
  • William Tell invented the telephone. Of course, not. It was Graham Bell. And the bell was invented long before him.
  • Home wasn't built in a day. So with Greece.
  • "Here lies my captain, fallen cold and deed." You may perfect in reciting "Oh, Captain! My Captain!" yet fail to get the audience accolyte just for one mispronounced word. Accolade, sorry.
  • A good reader should not rob the people who erected him. (A Japanese commenting on leadership).
  • "Ako'y palopalo, burakrak naman ako." Chinese and Japanese mixed up in singing a popular Philippine song. [I am a butterfly (paroparo); and I am a flower bulaklak)]
  • All about corn: Mais (mother corn), corny (baby corn), pop corn (father corn), maestra (teacher corn)
  • Spouse is not the singular of spice, but mouse is to mice. Child – children; chicken-chickens. Queer English.
  • Capillary is a little caterpillar. Parasite is a kind of umbrella. Collective noun – garbage can
  • I liquidate you from all blame. The marriage was illegible. She dresses very auspicious. She is related to me by animosity.
  • Who likes history? Do you have a copy of “Caesar’s Garlic Wars?” Louis XVI was gelatined. (Gaelic, guillotined). Feminine of history – herstory. Women’s Lib!
  • An enthusiastic chef to customers: “Try our new menu. It is a real threat.”
  • “I hope I don’t protrude.” A fellow who knows little English was apologetic on learning only ladies were invited to a party. He is, but the right world is intrude.
  • A minister wanted to sell six second-hand organs which had just arrived from Germany in order to raise fund for his church. So during the homily he announced, “I have sex organs. They are slightly used…” He didn’t sell any.
  • Elderly teacher: "Pedro, I am beautiful - what is the tense." Looking at his teacher innocently, "Past tense, ma'am."
  • "Spell egg." "E-egg-egg."  Necktie? N-e-c-ki-ti-hi-he  Elephant?  "e as in elephant, el as in elephant, e as in elephant again, .... I forgot ma'am"
  • "Chemical formula of water?" "H2O, ma'am." Teacher to inattentive pupil: "What is H2O?"  "HIJKLMO, ma'am."  
  • Psychologist: "Please tell me, it looks like you depressed?"  Patient: "No Doctor, I am the priest."
  • And here are some overused double bladed words. noisepapertongressmandemocrazy "Government off the people, buy the people and poor the people."
References: Living with Nature 3, AVRJokes, Quotes and One-Liners for Public Speakers, Prochnow HV and HV Prochnow Jr, 1897, 1931

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Are you tired? Bored? Hug a Bunny

Dr Abe V Rotor

If you feel blue, drained, or you just lack pep - hug a bunny, real or the stuff thing (like Mr. Bean). It is therapy.

If you are sick, bunny shares your pain and discomfort. It calms down your tension. Its gives you company and comfort. It never argues. It creates a quiet ambiance.

Bunny and Bunny Doll at home.

Bunny demands nothing from you but tender, loving care - TLC, the very things which you actually give to yourself.

And you are back to your feet and face the real world again.


thepensieve said...
I used to not like bunnies, but after seeing the pictures and reading the article, I have developed a new sense of liking. :) The bunny looks sweet, and yes, it might really be a friend when you`re utterly depressed.

SEMANA, Clarissa

Friday, June 13, 2014

50 Verses of Meditation

50 Verses of Meditation
Dr Abe V Rotor
For class reading with background music of Meditation (From the Thais), by Massenet. Teacher sets the sequence in meditative mood.

Fr Miguel Benavides, founder University of Santo Tomas (1611)

1. When the skies cry and tears fall,
The grass is greener, so with the soul.

2. The rain pelts on the faces of children
Turned heavenward. Look my brethren.

3. Walks he alone in the rain singing,
Whether the wind's cool or the sun peeping.

4. If I'm responsible for what I tame,
Would I have a choice of only the lame?

5. A gentle breeze came through a lid;
Where's the window when the wall's solid?

6. Pray, but if Thor holds back the lightning bolts,
We may not have mushroom and the jolts.

7. Hush! Suddenly the world became still;
Gone is the lark or the raven on the sill.

8. Saxon wall, each turret a guard-
Now empty, lonely is war afterward.

9. Radial symmetry starts from the center,
That balances an outside force to enter.

10. What good is a lamp at the ledge?
Wait 'til the day reaches its edge.

11. In seeing our past we find little to share,
If the past is the present we're living in.

12. In abstract art you lose reality;
How then can I paint truth and beauty?

13. Brick wall, brick roof, brick stair,
Glisten in the rain, dull in summer air.

14.What's essential can't be seen by the eye
Like the faith of Keller and Captain Bligh.

15. Similar is rainbow and moth in flight
When you see them against the light.

  A slice of rainbow

16. From respite in summer fallow,
The fields start a season anew.

17. From green to gold the grains become
As they store the power of the sun.

18. Not all sand dunes for sure
Ends up on empty shore.

19. One little smoke tells the difference,
Like a faint pulse is life's reference.

20. It's collective memory that I'm a part
To write my life's story when I depart.

21. Lost time, lost opportunity and lost gain,
like passing wind that may not come again.

22. Who sees silver lining of clouds dark and bold
seeks not at rainbow's end a pot of gold.

23. A clenched fist softens under a blue sky
like high waves, after tempest, die.

24. When a flock of wild geese takes into the air
a leader must get ahead to break the barrier.

Swallows on wire. Florida Blanca, Pampanga

25. Even to a strong man, a little danger may create
the impression he's small or the problem is great.

26. In the doldrums or during sudden gusts,
the ship is much safer with a bare mast.

27. Wind, current, and keel make a perfect trio
only if they have one direction to follow.

28. You really can't tell where a sailboat goes
without keel, but to where the wind blows.

29. The sound of a yes may be deep or hollow,
and knowing it only by its own echo.

30. Walk, don't run, to see better and to know
the countryside, Mother Nature and Thou.~

31. We do not have the time, indeed an alibi
to indolence and loafing, letting time pass by.

Sun on a hazy day

32. As we undervalue ourselves, so do others
undervalue us. Lo, to us all little brothers.

33. Self-doubt at the start is often necessary
to seek perfection of the trade we carry.

34. What is more mean than envy or indolence
but the two themselves riding on insolence.

35. The worst kind of persecution occurs in the mind,
that of the body we can often undermine.

36. How seldom, if at all, do we weigh our neighbors
the way we weigh ourselves with the same favors?

37. Friendship that we share to others multiplies
our compassion and love where happiness lies.

38. Evil is evil indeed - so with its mirror,
while goodness builds on goodness in store.

39. That others may learn and soon trust you,
show them you're trustworthy, kind and true.

40. Kindness and gladness, these however small
are never, never put to waste at all.

41. Beauty seen once breaks a heart,
Wait for the image to depart.

42. Being right and reasonable;
Black or white, and measurable.

43. She's coy who speaks soft and light;
Smoke first before fire ignites.

44. Every promise you can't keep
Drags you into a deeper pit.

45. To endure pain of hatred,
A leader’s wisdom is dared.

46. Make believe prosperity;
Sound of vessel when empty.

47. Take from the ant or stork,
Patience is silence at work.

48. Good wine grows mellow with age;
Good man grows into a sage.

49. He finds reason for living
Who sees a new beginning.

50. Beauty builds upon beauty,
Ad infinitum to eternity. ~

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

How Deep, How High!

Dr Abe V Rotor
"As deep as the ocean...", acrylic and oil, AVRotor
Deep as the oceans the mountains be,
Buzz the bees as many a flower there be;
Dreams high, high up as the heavens be,
Or a kite, soaring high, the eye can’t see;
Yet deeper the mind only the heart can see,
And the soul goodness could bring to Thee.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Scenic rural Iloilo landscape from the air

Photos and Verses by Abe V Rotor

Biggest spotlight - the sun - reveals a typical farming community, the fields
 basking with the golden color of grain  and color of the earth after harvest.  

  Geometric parcels of farmland in parallel formation apparently 
   show diversified farming and system of crop rotation. 
It's the peak of summer, and the rains have not arrived.  Green patches are fields irrigated from shallow wells.
Residential houses huddle on one side of a creek (left); farms 
undergo fallowing, a resting period in summer.
Misty air  looms over the dry landscape - a prelude to monsoon
This fringe of land appears to have a sub-climate of its own influenced by the surrounding sea, while the rest of the island undergoes the normal dry season. 

  The uplands were once covered with forests and grasslands, 
now converted into agriculture and settlements.  
A wisp of smoke greets the lazy morning air from among 
the trees  that line a creek appearing like a miniature forest.  
A unique symmetry created by a natural waterway crowded with trees that form a natural windbreak and  sanctuary of surrounding organisms specially in summer. 

Take me for a moment away from you, Mother Earth,
higher than the highest mountain, the tallest building,
that I may view life whole and solid and unabridged
in a perspective beyond details, and without stirring:

I see clouds shrouding you from the sun and blue sky,
in cumulus like giant mushroom on the horizon, rising,
and released into nimbus, becoming heavy, falling as rain
in the accompaniment of wind, thunder and lightning.

I see rivers swell and lakes fill to the brim in monsoon,
flooding fields and pasture, spilling through the valley,
meandering, roaring over waterfalls and boulders,
resting in swamps and estuaries, then flowing to sea.  
I see farmers in the field, women and children, too,
and work animals pulling the plow and the harrow;
I hear singing and laughter and joyous conversation,
barking of dogs, cackling  of fowls trailing the furrow.

I see harvesters gather the golden grains by hand;
drying shocks in the sun, and building  haystacks;
I see flocks of pigeon and native chicken gleaning,
women and children, the sun setting on their backs  

I see the fields scorched, a smoke here and there - 
bush fire! when the grass dries up bursts into flame
spreading all over, burning anything on its path - 
what a waste! but it is nature's work and game. 

I see poor harvest, good harvest, where and why,
crops early or late, and fields never planted at all;
I see farming a way of life, farming as a business,
and farm life in all seasons, happiness is its goal.

I see children flying kites of various makes and colors,
beside them grownups cheering, coaching, flying
their own kites too, oh, they have not forgotten
the art of their childhood, so do I, reminiscing.

I see children playing patinterotrompo and sipa,
games of old folks when they too, were children;
games of beetles and spiders as gladiators;
palo de sebo and pabitin can not be forgotten.   

I see tourists, I see balikbayan, I see old and young;
familiar and unfamiliar faces, sweet, shy, and bold;
I see children going to school, housewives to market,
people of all walks of life, always on the move. 

I see the hills and mountains, to me they're the same,
but where have the forests gone, the pasture?
I see the rivers, the lakes and ponds old as they are,
I have always loved all of these as I love nature.  

I have seen enough, let me return, Mother Earth,
to my home, sweet home, on the farm, to my family;
and tell them of what I've seen in my short sojourn, 
down below I see my friends, my neighbors, and me. ~