Shine the Divine:

Creativity IS a Spiritual Practice

When we see through our hearts, we recognize that every single one of us is infused with creativity. Divine Sparks are embedded in everyone and everything. It's up to us to be courageous, to look and listen deeply, to find the sparks, gather and release them back into the universe, transformed into something new. Join me as we wake up to the sacred-ordinary blessings waiting to greet us each and every day.

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Friday, February 22, 2013

Esther





Esther Ishtar morning star poised
on the edge of chaotic black night
rising fear meets softening
smudge of blue dawn awakening

pulsing pushing boundaries
winter’s tight fisted ice prison
dissolves as her courageous heart
reveals the light hidden within
palace walls

Hadassah petals open wide
star shaped myrtle blossoms emit
a fragrant invitation to joy








These beauties greeted me with joy in the forest Friday morning. My spirits are lifted tremendously. I feel deep gratitude for the privilege of living in a place filled with such wondrous surprises. Thank you everyone for the outpouring of kindness in celebrating five years of blogging. To all of my Jewish friends and family Chag Purim Sameach... and to everyone everywhere, may JOY continue to increase, a little more each day :-)


Here are some interesting articles about the holiday of Purim: 
Purim this is about the holiday, the story, the customs
Purim  this is more about the mystical levels of the holiday and how it is relevant to us. 

You might also want to sit with the meditation podcast I recorded this week for the holiday. I think the essence of the teaching is relevant to everyone regardless of our many religious/spiritual beliefs.

And for the silly aspect of the holiday here are two photos of my dog Ellie, doesn't she look ominous in the first image? And then well, you can see she's a total poser when you see her up close.




linking to:




108 comments:

  1. Chag sameah Laura! ~love Becky

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  2. Definite poodle luv!!! Now I am going to go find that meditation. Your photos are wonderful!

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  3. Lovely photos as always. I think I can smell hamantashen!

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  4. oh your photography is stunning as always and makes me itchy for spring... sending love your way, Laura... xox

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  5. Lovely composition!
    Great using B&W!
    Well done!

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  6. The blessed duality and contrast of who we are and what is. So glad you were able to get out and enjoy your morning. xoxo teri

    I LOVED this line from the link you includedp

    "it is an escapism not from reality to fantasy, but from our fantasies of stability to the reality of chaos."


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  7. I am proud to be, at least referentially, linked to the trio of Esther, Judith, and Ruth. Thank you for the Purim lessons.

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  8. Divine photography of nature's gift ~ Favorite, of course, for me is your dog ^_^

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  9. Yes, delicious photos with an exquisite combination of light and color. Pure visual poetry.

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  10. Oh my, what a beautiful post. Thank you for sharing. Your dog is really cute too. Have a great weekend and thank you for stopping by pret-a-vivre.

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  11. I love the contrast between the orange leaves and the lively blossoms. Your B&W shots of your dog Ellie are cool too. Blessings!

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  12. oh! what a treasure to find this little bit of early spring. Your dog is a poser, I think it's in the breed. My friend has poodles, those BIG personalities!

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  13. I smiled all the way thru this post....thanx

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  14. Beautiful photographs and words.

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  15. Interesting sounds and word choices. I like pulsing, pushing boundaries. Beautiful pictures.

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  16. I looked forward to spring more and more each year.--I can understand your excitement :)
    Love the photos of your dog!

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  17. Laura...
    You do the same thing every day...
    You open up your heart( petals) and your energy reaches out and embraces us all
    Loved your Spiritual 55
    Thank You for thinking about the Friday gang
    Have a Kick Ass Holiday
    Shalom...Love.....G

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  18. ah you paint it lovely in your words....and love the pics as well....

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  19. The second shot is my favorite. Great detail.

    Thanks for stopping by.

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  20. Lovely photographjs.
    Have a blessed day.
    Mormor

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  21. Ellie is adorable and those shots of the perfumed flowers just amazing! So beautiful.

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  22. I love your pictures very much! Best regards, Lotta.

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  23. Nice pictures you show in B & W :) Hanne Bente

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  24. Great B&W clicks!
    http://amitaag.blogspot.in/2013/02/old-world-charm.html

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  25. I loved your Esther poem, it touched me somewhere deep, and what treasures to be found in the woods ~ love. x

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  26. One can really see and feel God's work in your post. Thanks for wonderful words and awesome pictures.

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  27. Your photos always have me in ooh and awe... you show us all how wonderful nature (and life!) is... thank you! Enjoy your weekend

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  28. I like that first photo of your dog - excellent lighting!

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  29. super tes macros avec cette lumière sur la feuille

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  30. So gorgeous, Laura. I especially like:

    winter’s tight fisted ice prison
    dissolves as her courageous heart
    reveals the light hidden within


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  31. Great post Laura and an even better finish with the "poser"!

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  32. This is such a sweet post. Thanks for sharing.

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  33. our baby girl is called Esther - after her grandmother, her great-grandmother, her great-great-grandmother... i love that her name means 'star' in persian, and i love your purim poem :) thank you x

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  34. The ice photo and then showing the beauty of the budding...next is amazing...Then cute Ellie to end with a smile

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  35. Such beautiful photos, and how wonderful that you have a little blossom already. I can't wait to see little buds and shoots here!

    Thanks for taking part in the Nurture Photography Challenge!

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  36. Ellie is lovely! Happy Critter Day!

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  37. Another lovely post, Laura! Ellie is a cute dog!

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  38. Great shots! Love the one with Ellie at the top of the stairs.

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  39. vad roligt att den blommade så fint och för mig tidigt.
    Du visar oss många fina bilder idag
    Ha en fin helg
    Kram Meta

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  40. Wonderful series! I love the first one and your poodle! :-)

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  41. Ellie looks quite perplexed, like 'what are you doing?'

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  42. You have some lovely photos. Thanks for sharing!

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  43. Oh my goodness, Laura, Ellie is just beautiful.
    Wonderful photographs with such beautiful light in each one.
    Happy weekend to you!

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  44. Thank you for sharing on Weekly Top Shot #71!

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  45. Dear Laura, thank you for sharing your incredible photography with us and for linking to Today's Flowers. Ellie is a sweet little dog and poses beautifully, and your header photo is also stunning. I love how the light shines through the leaf. I shall also enjoy reading the links. Great post!

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  46. Beautiful post.
    I love the pictures of Ellie!

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  47. oh my....it's hamentachen time...it always sneaks up on me! so nice to meet you! thank you for stopping by my place and saying hello...i'm adding you to my reader now!

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  48. Love those icy close ups, and Ellie is adorable! You're right, that first photo of her looks like something straight out of a Hitchcock film. Creepy! :)

    Thanks for stopping by my blog.

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  49. very cool shots of your pup! the first is really awesome!

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  50. so lovely flowers! thanx for sharing with us :)

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  51. Spectacular myrtle blossoms. It looks like a button sewn in the middle and I love the leaf elegance.

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  52. Congrats on blogging for 5 years...that is a big accomplishment!! Ellie is a doll baby...love her.Thanks for the encouragement and light you spread here.

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  53. Chag Semeach Laurie - Always enjoy the warmth of your spirit that glows even through ice and sparkles in the sun :)

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  54. Hi there - I really like the ice on the branch. I'm not really that much of a fan of pet pictures - but the first image of your dog is really different - I like it.

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

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  55. Beautiful. Your seventh photo is my favourite.

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  56. Laura ich mag die Art WIE du Bilder zeigst ..toll :D

    LG vom katerchen

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  57. The white flower is pretty special to me. Love the fringes.

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  58. I love all the flower shots!
    But I love the one of Ellie the best ;-)

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  59. Beautiful dog, like the photos!

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  60. I love the blue dawn awakening...and your pet is beautiful ~

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  61. I loved your photography. YOu have a way of looking at things and seeing beauty from every angle. You gift the reader with the joy of the 'up close and personal.' Oh, and I love your dog pictures. Ellie looks like a sweet presence in your life. Happy holiday to you, Laura.

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  62. Lovely shots and your words are full of hope.

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  63. Beautiful words...beautiful photos! Also, thank you for visiting over at my blog :)

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  64. Wonderful photos. Hope you'd find time to visit my entry.

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  65. Glorious!
    The photos the words....
    Swoon...I have to read it again!
    <3 yours
    and Ellie is so cute :D

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  66. Perfect words for some beautiful pics.

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  67. I'm so glad I made my way here... such a lovely poem and I accept the invitation to joy! The photos are beautiful. And I'm so happy to have seen your link to the Buddha Chick magazine... triple blessings on this lovely Sunday morning! Thank you.

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  68. What joy to find those branches announcing spring's imminent arrival!

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  69. Chag Sameach to you too!! And - what a surprise to find those spring blossoms!!!

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  70. Oh those yellow flowers are so cheerful, they do bring joy indeed. Happy 5th year of blogging :)

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  71. A mystical, beautiful poem on this holiday.

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  72. a beautiful post : the pictures and the words ...

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  73. Really beautiful macro work!
    ~Linda

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  74. Beautiful pictures and lovely poem. Thank you for sharing. ;D

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  75. Magical words with beautiful pictures...

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  76. thinking of you, today... (love those shots of your ellie)

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  77. not sure if my comment posted, but just wanted you to know i'm thinking of you today (and love the shots of ellie :)

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  78. Learned something new about the Jewish culture today (being in India, I have not had much exposure to Jewish customs and festivals). Beautiful words, lovely pictures.. a great start to the week! Thanks for posting this :)

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  79. Our preacher preached on Esther just yesterday!

    Have a good Blue Monday, Laura.

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  80. Fantastic shots ! some of them could be a painting !

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  81. Great poetry, and I just LOVE the pictures of the flowers!

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  82. The forest pictures are beautiful. Thank you for sharing the poem and information --

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  83. Wonderful shots. I played too. Mine are here and here.

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  84. Beautiful nature pictures Laura! Ellie is so adorable and is quite the poser :-) Wishing you a wonderful week.

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  85. Olá,
    A terceira foto ficou graciosa por demais!!!
    Bjs fraternos de paz

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  86. Beautiful shots and poetry, they really do pose for the camera don't they, yours is adorable.

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  87. "an invitation to joy" is lovely... and rubbing those poodle ears between my fingers is a great start to my morning (have you ever seen a photo of my Golden Doodle? He look like a standard poodle ... with a bit more "heft" and a long Retriever-like tail. Lovely forest photos... I love your early morning photography.

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  88. Beautiful images! I love the colour series.

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  89. A great looking dog! I love the silhouette at the top of the stairs...wonderful!

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  90. Simply outstanding.Otherwise,just amazing.:-)

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  91. The shots you took in the forest are so beautiful!
    Thanks for your visit and kind words in my blog.
    Sorry for my absence. So many things to be done and so little time to do everything!

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