Just for funsies, here are some of the things that help me find what I need within myself to get through some of the challenges I need help with during whatever difficulties come up as I do this dying thing. Not sure if this is a shrine or an altar or what-- I guess when I used it to burn incense and such, it was an altar, but my wife became sensitive to incense in the house, so now I guess it's more of a shrine since all I do is light the candle now and then. πŸ˜‰

Disclaimer: None of this is meant as any sort of proselytizing! I don't think I'd actually recommend my religion to anybody; it takes FOREVER to figure out how to wade through what is and isn't fraudulent about it. And there's plenty that's based on bald-faced lies, sorry to say. Don't get me started on Hui Neng and Shenhui and the Platform Sutra; just don't. πŸ˜†

Plus, if you're of the bent that goes towards Mayahana Buddhism, you've already figured that out by now, and wouldn't need any prodding from me. πŸ˜‰

Yeah, that wall looks like it needs either some cleaning or maybe a drapery, but I don't think I care all that much at the moment.

I'll start on the left and do a separate post for each of the "plot points," as it were. I should mention that none of this is about worshipping anything-- each statue is used more like a mirror to find its purpose and meaning within myself.

Instead of prescribing me a regular old standard inhaler like the rest of the world uses, my doctor insisted I use one of these attachments. The idea is that you press down the little canister like normal, release, and then inhale from the big honkin' tube. Ladies and gentlemen, I present my ALBUTEROL BONG.

I was flipping though the photos on my phone to track down a photo I wanted to send somebody, and happened across this one I'd forgotten about. It's a local cicada from their last big outbreak here a couple of years ago.

It's on my front porch, hence the detritus on the surface. The standard Zippo lighter is for scale.

Handsome, colorful beasts, ain't they?

This is the radiation machine I've had 30 dates with so far. (Not all at once; it was 10 days, 15 days, and 5 days at different times. Each was for a different part of the body.) Doesn't it look friendly, with its arms reaching out for a hug?

It uses shaped and focused X-rays. There's one of the fancy ultra-modern proton beam ones a couple of hours from me in Scottsdale (Mayo), but my oncologist explained to me how I'm best served by this one. And this one is about a mile from my house. πŸ˜ƒ In fact, everywhere I need to go for illness--related stuff is about a mile away in one direction or another. How lucky is that!

Speaking of Iron Age, I read a history of India a few months ago (not the whole book, just from the beginning up to about 100CE or so) that mentioned the most common style of ceramic during what was probably the Buddha's time-- something called Northern Black Polished. I doubt that's news to you, but wanted to pass along this piece I found when looking for examples:

Maybe a bit random, but what the hey. As I was doing my usual seasonal snuffbox changeover (I use different flavors at different times of year), I thought to myself "Hey, maybe somebody out there would be interested in seeing these!" So I guess I'm about to find out. πŸ˜€

All three are sterling and hallmarked, so it's easy to pin down the dates they were made and by whom. All three are from makers in Birmingham, England. The top one is from 1901 and was made by Charles Horner. The middle one is my most prized due to its age, shape, and condition-- it's a Samuel Pemberton, dated 1810. And the bottom one is from James Walter Tiptaft, in 1899. I'm pleased and surprised that nobody ever put their initials on the cartouche on that one; that's really unusual to see.

The vest-pocket curve on the Pemberton fits the watch pocket on my jeans as though they were designed to work together, so that one gets the heaviest use as it goes out and about with me. The other two mostly live on one desk or another at home.

Well damn. Printing this last "Cessation" document means I need a size upgrade to my official Jayarava folder. Silly me, thought I could get away with a 2" binder. πŸ™„

The only non-you material in that binder is the famous Nattier article.

(I like to print them so I can scribble little notes about things I want to get more info on. Probably be questions forthcoming on this one!)

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