A Spectacular Marvel Of Nature: #CraterLake

The magnificent Crater Lake

I have seen many lakes – from the breathtaking Tshangu lake in Sikkim (India) near Chinese border to the amazing Pangong lake in Leh near Ladakh in the Himalayas, Dal lake, named as the “Jewel in the crown of Kashmir,” the finger lakes in Buffalo (New York) and many more.

None could elicit as speechless a response from me as the one I visited last week. None could inspire me to share my ethereal experience of being mesmerized by its view.

I have been looking for words to describe the beauty of Crater Lake ever since I set my eyes on this spectacular marvel of nature but words seem to fall apart…should I say exquisite…magnificient or a spiritual delight?

When I looked at it, the first word that came to my mind was WOW! Its pristine glory, its tranquility and its wondrous aura captivated me beyond words. I stood rooted to the ground, frozen, not by the gusty winds and sleet that welcomed us but by its celestial beauty.

“Crater Lake must be seen to be appreciated properly,” said Thomas J. Williams, former superintendent of Crater Lake National Park, “photographs simply cannot depict the majesty of the lake in its setting, the depth of the blue.”

The words of Author, Jack London that I happened to read at the Visitor center at Park Headquarters really resonate with me, “I thought I had gazed upon everything beautiful in nature as I have spent my years traveling thousands of miles to visit the beauty spots of the earth, but I have reached the climax. Never again can I gaze upon the beauty spots of the earth and enjoy them as being the finest thing I have ever seen. Crater Lake is above them above them all.”

Created out of fire, lava and smoke, this unique lake took many years to come to its present form. A caldera was formed when Mount Mazama (a volcano in south-central Oregon) collapsed. Lava eruptions created a central platform, Wizard island and Merriam Cone. Eventually the caldera cooled, allowing rain and snow to accumulate and form a lake.

Wizard Island in Crater Lake
Wizard Island

We watched a 22-minute film about the park’s violent past and its present grandeur. It is shown at the Steel Visitor Center at Park Headquarters.

We drove around the east rim of the lake the day we arrived (many thanks to our amiable hostess who told us)  because it was to be closed to vehicular traffic the next day for repairs. Rim drive, which was built in 1930s, is a 33-mile road that encircles Crater Lake. It offers ‘dramatic views’ of the lake and the park’s volcanic scenery.

Sun and mist played hide and seek and erased the deep blue color of the lake. Sunsets in the park are said to be amazing but we couldn’t savor them. A hushed desire to go again simmers within my heart.

Undeterred by sleet and rain, we hiked to Sun Notch to view The Phantom Ship, an island in the lake, that seems to be sailing away. From easy walks to challenging hikes, Crater National Park, which was established in 1902 has something for everyone – boat tours, trolley tours, camping, fishing, sky gazing, sunsets, wildlife viewing, food and dining in Crater Lake Lodge and even swimming in the ice-cold water of the lake!

Phantom ship & Rhyodacite dome
Mist is trying to hide the Phantom ship & Rhyodacite dome in the lake

We couldn’t enjoy all the activities due to early snow and bad weather on the day we chose to visit but the memories that we carried are permanently etched on our minds.

The drive through the park was a little scary but very beautiful, with thick forest on both sides of the road. We were caught unawares by a sudden snowfall when we decided to drive to Annie’s Restaurant for dinner and had to return empty stomach! But there were no regrets because we had had a sumptuous lunch at the Lodge restaurant and could drive through the thick snow on the slippery road.

The Pinnacles
These pinnacles were formed by volcanic eruptions, another marvel of nature, well preserved!

Thank you for reading this. Please add your valuable reflections, they are much appreciated.

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Balroop Singh.

 

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How To Pick Up Positive Vibes

Positive vibes
Have you ever experienced blissful joy in the lap of nature? Does your heart flutter with the butterfly or the hummingbird? Do you feel exhilarated at the first showers of rain? Does your heart leap at the sight of full moon?

If yes, then you certainly possess the EQ (emotional quotient) to catch positive vibes, which float all around us. Our emotions get a boost when positive energy touches us.

Positive vibes can be picked up from the environment, people around us and even the animals but we need emotional quotient to grasp those vibes and absorb them.

Nature generates positive vibes in the form of colorful hues all around us…the flowers, the butterflies, the trees laden with fruit in the fading light of the sun, the colors of setting sun emit those vibes…all we need is a warm heart to welcome them and let them radiate around us.

Have you ever felt that you like some people just by intuition; just their coming into your life adds some cheer to it? You are happier in their company, you like to hang out with them and you wonder why do you like them, without actually knowing them.

They make you smile; they add sunshine and laughter to your life. These are the people who emit positive vibes, which you can pick up if you have them in you.

You can also train your mind to recognize those vibes:

  • Look at the smile. If it is genuine, it will pass on positive vibes and soothe your heart. You may even feel connected.
  • Make an eye contact with the person who smiles. Eyes speak volumes; they emit vibes – positive or negative will be defined by your perception, your emotional quotient.
  • Notice the tone of the voice, it carries a vibe too.
  • Listen to the words…and pay attention. You have to be alert enough to pick up the vibes.
  • Notice the body language of the other person. Positivity exudes itself through body posture, movement of hands or shoulders.

Positive vibes can reach you faster as they are more powerful than the negative ones.

Then there are those people, whom you dislike just with your first look, you loath their company, they seem to be a burden and you long to banish them out of your life. These are the people who give out negative energy and if you detest it, you would be uncomfortable in their presence.

How to send positive vibes:

    • Develop a positive mindset.
    • Smile with an open mind to send positive vibes.
    • Create an aura of happiness around yourself.
    • Be determined and optimistic.
    • Be generous in appreciating others.
    • Approach all the problems with a positive attitude.
    • Deal boldly with negative situations.

Positivity“A positive attitude causes a chain reaction of positive thoughts, events and outcomes. It is a catalyst and it sparks extraordinary results.” – Wade Boggs

Positive opportunities come to you if you have learnt to handle your emotions with a positive mind.

Positive vibes resonate with love, vigor and enthusiasm. They add happiness, solace and security to our lives.

Read more about emotions and their connections.

Do you value positivity? Could you pick up some positive vibes from this page? You are welcome to share your thoughts.

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Balroop Singh.

My Muse Almost Got Strangulated

 

words my muse loves
In love with words

She has been wandering around too much, meeting strangers, expecting appreciation, gloating at her beauty and intellect as she reclined leisurely in the glorious sunshine, having abandoned the shadows recently.

Having emerged from her poetic alleys, she got bolder and her escapades with young adventurers almost throttled her as she refused to wear modest garments…some of which seemed incandescent to her new friends. They tried to impose their opinion on her, telling her not to push people away with her ‘excessive alliteration’ and ‘lengthy’ words, guiding her to be humble and simple.

It was too much for the one who has never been snubbed, who likes to boss around, considering herself to be a spontaneous charmer.

She came home disappointed and has been sulking.

‘I hate you’, she looked me in the eye and scowled. I just smiled, which agitated her further. She threw all she had in her pockets at me and scampered away.

Yesterday I saw her, sitting by her favorite creek. I continued my walk, pretending obliviousness but she followed me, igniting new ideas in my mind. I invited her to sit down to have a healthy conversation. She agreed nonchalantly.

‘Would you like a cup of tea,’ I tried to diffuse the situation.

‘I don’t like judgmental people. What do they know about me? How could they condemn me?’ She often blurts like that and I was well prepared to calm her down.

I nodded most lovingly and tried to explain that we don’t have any control over the demeanor of people. She shot me a dagger like glance and espoused her view: ‘why can’t you use the word ‘behavior,’ which such people understand better.’ That’s what they want. That’s why they criticize me.’

‘Critics add another dimension to our personality. Take it in a positive manner. We don’t need to change our style just because others want us to. Let’s bless our critics, as we owe gratitude to them for being our readers.’

Discerning my sermonizing mood, my muse chose to step into the realms of dreams.

Inspired from Diana’s disciplinarian muse. Thanks dear friend.

A poet quote

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Balroop Singh.

 

 

I Am Not Homeless

Old woman and respect

She haunts me all the time
I close my eyes
And her battered image
Looms large before me…

Unkempt hair, soiled clothes
An eerie, emaciated figure
Always at the bottom of stairs
Sweeping the floor with her stole.

Always cleaning…
Cleaning the dust from the footwear
Kept outside the Sikh temple,
I visit sometimes.

Never does she enter
To pay obeisance
Never does she miss that, though
Never pays attention

As she rubs her forehead
At the bottom of the stairs
Again and again…
A thousand times, it seems.

I look at her each time
A thought reverberates…
Who is this lady…
Why is she so desperate?

I sit at the bottom of stairs
To attract her attention
She looks at me
With empty expression!

I mustered all the courage
To ask: are you homeless?
She muttered, under her breath
I have two sons!
© Balroop Singh. (2010)

Inspired from a real life incident, I wrote this poem to calm the turbulent emotions within me.

My culture nurtures and upholds strong family values. Anyone who doesn’t respect and care for parents is looked down upon. The responsibility is often handled by the sons but daughters too have taken up this task since they are becoming economically independent and traditionalism is giving way to modernisation.

Thanks for reading this. You can click on Sublime Shadows of Life by Balroop Singh to read more such poems. If you are a poetry lover, Emerging From Shadows would inspire you to read more!

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Please share your valuable reflections, they are much appreciated.

Why Some Relationships Remain Shallow?

Dealing with Shallow Relationships

Some relationships never grow beyond the ordinary. Why? This question may seem a little prickly but the answers remain within our reach.

My observation seems to suggest that arrogance and hypocrisy are the two major malefactors albeit their tentacles spread wider than we can comprehend.

If Indifference doesn’t bother you, if neglect has crept into your relationship, if you seek perfection, if you remain frozen in time, seeking change, if you expect your partner to change …no miracle can save you.

Have you ever tried to catch a butterfly? If you haven’t, I beseech you to try! Patience and perseverance that you would learn while trying to catch those winged whizzes would add another dimension to your personality. Connections that are made with heart go beyond immeasurable depths.

Relationships grow if they are nurtured with trust. “Secrets are festering parasites to a relationship, devouring their hosts from within, leaving behind a empty hollow husk of what once was.” – Mark W. Boyer

Do you repose all-embracing trust in each other?

Lack of trust is an offshoot of arrogance. Those who keep secrets within their heart just because they can’t trust their partner completely fail to understand the significance of this value. Probably they consider themselves better or suffer from their internal struggles. Some insecurities gnaw at their heart, which can never be dispelled if they do not share them.

Do you keep the channel of communication open?

Lack of honest communication creates chasms that keep growing wider. When we share our weaknesses, our failures, our thoughts about day-to-day activities, when we bare our heart honestly, we can expect the same from our partner. Some persons are intuitive enough to understand while others have to dig deeper to tell their introvert partners to speak out.

Do you try to dominate?Shallow people quote

Control and dominance has no place in a good and healthy relationship. Any such attempt by either partner would lead to confrontation, thereby resulting in conflicts. While conflicts are an imperative part of decent relationships, anybody who tries to control our thoughts, smother our personality, impose his/her desires or manipulate us ingeniously falls below the expected level of reverence. Such a person can never earn it back.

Do you hold silent grudges?

Passive aggression can cause unimaginable harm to relationships. People who are passively aggressive hold a lot of negative energy within themselves and it molds their thoughts. Since they choose to withhold all those feelings of anger and resentment within their heart, wearing a mask of pretended goodness, it cannot reach anybody.

Do you pretend to be truthful?

Lack of truthfulness trivializes the solemnity of relationships. One lie leads to another, one broken promise manifests itself into growing resentment and disillusionment slowly gives way to doubts, which keep mushrooming and clouding our mind. A true confession, an honest apology and forgiveness may cement a wobbly trust.

Do you look into the eyes of each other?

Digital world has robbed us of intimate moments. With eyes on their digital devices, preferring to text than talk, giving half attention to your partner prevents deep conversations. How rightly has Erik Pevernagie observed: “When there is no interaction in the neural network and no breakthrough into the mind but only a shallow skin experience, living together might be very torturous. If a heartfelt bond has not been molded, nothing can be broken and thus nothing needs to be fixed.”

Shallow minds can not think beyond their own desires and diktats. If you are struggling in such a relationship, it is time to introspect and break free before it gets too late.

Thank you for reading this. Please add your valuable reflections, they are much appreciated.

If you have liked this post, please share it at your favorite social networks.

Balroop Singh.