Posts Tagged ‘cats’

un gato en una ventana

February 19, 2016
un gato en una ventana

un gato en una ventana

I saw this adorable cat in a window a couple of night´s ago.

And today early afternoon, I see again.

Cat drinking water from a tap

October 17, 2015
cat drinking from a tap

cat drinking from a tap

In the Temple of Zeus, several stray cats and dogs.

One cat, drinking water from a tap.

Dotted around Athens are drinking fountains. They lack a basin at the foot for cats and dogs and other animals to drink from.

Cat taking a drink

May 27, 2015
cat taking a drink from a dripping tap

cat taking a drink from a dripping tap

girl turns on tap for wild cat

girl turns on tap for wild cat

One of the many wild cats roaming around, taking a drink from a dripping tap.

A girl wtaching, then turned on the tap for the cat.

Spring day in the garden

April 20, 2015
bluebells

bluebells

bluebells

bluebells

From dawn, the sun shining, clear blue sky. The sun warm, but air temperatire cool.

At this time of year, the sun as intense as mid-August. We tend to forget as the air temparture is cool.

Grass mowed. A little digging.

Bluebells are not always blue.

Feline friend paid a visit.

garden path

garden path

garden visitor

garden visitor

garden digging

garden digging

garden visitor

garden visitor

Reading to cats

September 7, 2014
8 year old Mattighan Pagan loves to read to the cats

8 year old Mattighan Pagan loves to read to the cats

Isabel is trying to read a story

Isabel is trying to read a story

Cheyenne Boyle stopped in to read to the cats

Cheyenne Boyle stopped in to read to the cats

A few weeks back, Stephen Fry had a discussion on reading out a book out loud. Either to yourself, or to a gathered group.

We think of reading a book out loud, is something we do for children, we read to them, or something forced to do in front of a class.

Read Dickens, and it can be seen something that was quite common place, friends and family would gather round to be read to.

Romans also gathered to be read to.

But reading to cats?

The mind boggles that cats gather to be read to, but apparently they do.

Book Buddies is a programme where children are invited to do just that. They are invited to bring their favourite book to a cat rescue and read to the cats.

I now see what I am doing wrong when I am sat in my garden reading a book and a cat sits nearby. He or she is waiting for me to read to them.

Guilty cat

August 30, 2013

This is what cats get up to when you are not looking, rifling through your drawers.

Unbelievable guilty expression on the cat’s face when it realises a camera is watching what it is up to.

The importance of the cat in meditation

January 21, 2010

Having written a book about madness (Veronika Decides to Die), I was forced to wonder how many things we do are imposed on us by necessity, or by the absurd. Why wear a tie? Why do clocks run “clockwise”? If we live in a decimal system, why does the day have 24 hours of 60 minutes?

The fact is, many of the rules we obey nowadays have no real foundation. Nevertheless, if we wish to act differently, we are considered “crazy” or “immature”. Meanwhile, society continues to create some systems which, in the fullness of time, lose their reason for existence, but continue to impose their rules. An interesting Japanese story illustrates what I mean by this:

A great Zen Buddhist master, who was in charge of the Mayu Kagi monastery, had a cat which was his true passion in life. So, during meditation classes, he kept the cat by his side – in order to make the most of his company.

One morning, the master – who was already quite old – passed away. His best disciple took his place.

– What shall we do with the cat? – asked the other monks.

As a tribute to the memory of their old instructor, the new master decided to allow the cat to continue attending the Zen Buddhist classes.

Some disciples from the neighboring monasteries, traveling through those parts, discovered that, in one of the region’s most renowned temples, a cat took part in the meditation sessions. The story began to spread.

Many years passed. The cat died, but as the students at the monastery were so used to its presence, they soon found another cat. Meanwhile, the other temples began introducing cats in their meditation sessions: they believed the cat was truly responsible for the fame and excellence of Mayu Kagi’s teaching.

A generation passed, and technical treatises began to appear about the importance of the cat in Zen meditation. A university professor developed a thesis – which was accepted by the academic community – that felines have the ability to increase human concentration, and eliminate negative energy.

And so, for a whole century, the cat was considered an essential part of Zen Buddhist studies in that region.

Until a master appeared who was allergic to animal hair, and decided to remove the cat from his daily exercises with the students.

There was a fierce negative reaction – but the master insisted. Since he was an excellent instructor, the students continued to make the same progress, in spite of the absence of the cat.

Little by little, the monasteries – always in search of new ideas, and already tired of having to feed so many cats – began eliminating the animals from the classes. In twenty years new revolutionary theories began to appear – with very convincing titles such as “The Importance of Meditating Without a Cat”, or “Balancing the Zen Universe by Will Power Alone, Without the Help of Animals”.

Another century passed, and the cat withdrew completely from the meditation rituals in that region. But two hundred years were necessary for everything to return to normal – because during all this time, no one asked why the cat was there.

Paulo Coelo posted this story on his blog. I first came across it in Like a Flowing River

We tend to be dictated to and imprisoned by the prevailing social norms. Few tend to question or challenge.

Like Paulo Coelho, I never wear I tie. The only occasions I can recall was a formal dinner at the House of Lords and tea with the Queen, and one of those occasions it was a bow tie.

When questioning something we are told it has always been done that way, as though that somehow justifies bad practice.