In the words of my beloved friends Ishraat & Prakash (who also made the vision of ruhaatish possible), ‘strange are the ways of destiny’.
Today while walking down the magical streets of Sedona, I visited our friends and owners of the Lotus Gallery in Sedona. This place is like a magnet. It draws you in, and by some invisible force, you stand within the Gallery mesmerized by the art, words, and work of the master creator Nicholas Kirsten-Honshin. His beautiful wife sits quaintly on a delicate chair always surrounded by admirers of her husband’s glorious work. We met a few months ago, by chance….and chance meetings are often the best meetings one will have in life, because they are designed by divine fate.
Our last meeting was deeply touching. I was looking at semi-precious stones in Honshin’s gallery, and suddenly, as if by some unseen force, Honshin presented me with a glistening Opal. In his humble, most subtle voice, he said ‘this is you birth stone’.
I knew that instant that his spirit was One with the Divine.
Now our latest meeting with his lovely wife Krystal was even more amazing. She was dressed in demure fall browns, wearing Native Indian, and Southwest elegant jewelry, and telling us about all the latest wonders her husband is creating in his studio. She came to me, and handed me a 2010 Calendar by Honshin, called ‘Zen Cat’. I was entranced for the second time. She knew in the silent language souls speak, that I adore and love cats. Little did I know that another surprise awaited me within the world of the Zen Cat.
When we left the Gallery, she gifted to me something precious beyond words.
A CD of chants gifted to Honshin by the Dali Lama. Imagine my joy.
Here, I share something that baffles me, involves me, and makes me dig deeper into the meaning of ‘chance meetings’, which are by no mean chance….they are meant to be.
And so the ‘ present life cycle and circle of love & friendships continues’.
My beloved elements are mountains, mists, lakes, and landscape, never forgetting the mystic moon and my friend the cat! All these are symbolically represented by Honshin in the month of October in his 2010 Calendar. Coincidence or Divinity?
In the words of a great master, Honshin himself, this is what the Zen Cat wants to say to the world! Also enter his world by visiting his website in my Art section here. There are so many aspects to the beauty of this calendar. Not only will one be transported into the meditational world of the Zen Cat but the entire Calendar is printed on 100% recycled paper, chorine free using soy based ink.
Using these environmentally friendly printing techniques in the making of the Calendar by www.amberlotus.com , they have saved:
- 1428 fully grown trees
- 520,524 gallons of water
- 988 million BTU’s of energy
- 86, 126 pounds of solid waste
- 158, 784 pounds of greenhouse gases
Paintings and Poetry by Nicholas Kirsten-Honshin
Excerpt taken from ‘2010 Calendar’ by NK-Honshin.
The teachings of the Zen Cat are born in the awakening of awareness and oneness of existence. They demonstrate love that is expressed in the peace, joy, and happiness that unfold in our hearts as we embrace the sacredness, perfection and beauty of all life.
In the Zen Master’s own words, here is the story of the Zen cat as it happened: “While I was quietly reading the Lotus Sutra (teachings of the Buddha), the original Zen Cat, Miss Kitty, climbed up onto my lap. As I continued to read, I became aware that her mind and my mind were becoming one. She wanted me to read aloud to her. So I did. There she sat in intent meditation focused on the teaching as I read. Her appreciation and obvious understanding opened my own mind and heart to the oneness that exists, connecting all living beings in the gentle love and compassion that is in every precious moment. It is my hope that the meditations of the Zen Cat will also bring awareness to all sentient beings”.
The 2010 Zen Cat wall calendar is a meditation in art and words, on the sacredness and interconnectedness of all life. Artist and author Nicholas Kirsten-Honshin uses painting, printmaking, and poetry to communicate a message from the pure heart to the universe- reflected in the grace and humble honor of his painter’s name. “Honshin”, which means “original mind”, or “pure heart”.
“Every breath is gift and a joy golden in its nature”.