Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year

Happy New Year to all those of you celebrating our move into 2009.
I have written an article on the Essence Of Life website about the New Year http:// which I hope you may enjoy.
A new beginning is a chance to start afresh and also to let go of that which no longer serve us, like negative thought patterns. Even though times are hard with a global recession, raging conflicts and difficult climates, our Essence Of Life writers believe it is possible to rise above challenges and fears, and to find the sun hiding behind the clouds http://

We welcome you to our site http:// and hope that you will find inspiration throughout 2009 at Essence Of Life.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Happy Holidays!

As our wonderful forum manager Ela Forest reminds us in our EOL forum, there are many holidays going on in December - like Hanukah, Christmas, Diwali, Kwaanza and Eid Al-Adha. Personally I like to celebrate them all - eating doughnuts at Hanuka, having an eco Christmas tree in my home, giving sweets to friends like in Diwali and wishing all my Arabic friends happy holidays too.
The way I see it is that we teach each other and learn from each other simultaneously - in fact everyone and everything is my teacher
Even when something seemingly bad happens in my life - a relationship ending, a loved thing becomes lost, sickness, disappointment, a world tragedy (oh the list is endless!) I have learnt from my time at Essence Of Life to accept 'what is' and to see 'what is' as a lesson in my evolution. http://
And because I believe in love and that everything is for my greater good, though my teachers sometimes seem unfair and cruel, I know that the lessons that come my way are sent to make me a better person. To encourage me to be more gentle and kind, to release toxic emotions like anger, guilt and envy, and to know patience, trust and optimism. http://
And with a New Year just around the corner, let us pray that 2009 will be a year in which humanity will see that the only way to improve our lives is to put all our focus on loving and caring for each other, no matter what holiday we do or don't celebrate, no matter what we do or don't know, no matter what we belive or don't believe...we are all one world!
Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

We Create Our Own Reality

Have you ever wanted to achieve something and felt that it was impossible? Just the other day, my singing teacher said to me that I would never be a professional singer and that I was born unable to hear notes. Well, funny enough, I have had singing lessons before in which I managed to sing scales and songs in perfect pitch. So when this singing teacher told me i would never be able to sing on my own in tune, I didn't believe her. Rather I realised that she was unable to teach me. And i remembered one of our Essence Of Life values - we have the power to create our own reality. Our website, http:// is full of articles about people realising their dreams:
and overcoming difficulties, even life threatening diseases, to live life fully
Life is about the attitude that we have, and if really believe and focus on what we want to be, there is nothing that can hinder us. You could say "But what about the blind man or woman who can never see? " But even with the limit of not having physical sight, a blind person can achieve just as much as a sighted person. Take a look at our article A New Angle On Seeing which shows the fantastic photography of a group of blind people:
So as we approach a New Year and make New Year wishes and resolutions, just remember that which your heart desires is within reach. And if like me you are wishing for world peace and unity, then, no matter how the world is behaving, make that your reality!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Facing The Worst With The Best In Ourselves

Hello. It's been a difficult week especially with the news of the bombing in Mumbai. My heart goes out to all those innocent people who got hurt and are hurting.
It is at times like this, that some people would say...Is there a God? Where does spirituality and good vibes get us, if in a moment terror can strike? Will our planet ever experience universal peace and unity?
I for sure can not give up feeling that the our essence is love and by believing in love, it does reduce the level of hate that could exist in the world. I am not alone in my thoughts. On our site Essence Of Life,, we have writers from all over the world sharing their conviction in the power of love.
Zainab Salbi is a woman who is well known for the help she gives to women in war torn countries and reading about her is inspiring. Writer and therapist Bala Jaison suggests ways for conflict resolution and believes that there need not be only one winner in a conflict. And we also have words written by HRH the Dalai Lama about the value of love, compassion and tolerance. Recently I read that the Dalai Lama is the most popular world leader. So there's hope. For he is a man who despite losing his homeland, refuses to be aggressive or violent in any way but rather extends compassion and loving kindness to all people.
Writer Kent Keith suggests facing the worst in the world with the best in ourselves. And in this wonderful article provided by New World Library he asks why we cannot be deeply happy?
All human beings have virtues and we are all God's children with a divine spark. Let us forgive those who trespass against us and never give up the hope that we may all find the peace within that is the first step to world peace.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

We Are All One

At our site Essence Of Life,, we believe in unity. That all of us are separate individuals and we have our own unique identity and role on this planet, but we are all part of a greater whole.
Through unity we can bring about the healing that our world needs. To reflect this belief in unity, our articles span so many different cultures, religions, voices and generations. For example we have Zen and Jewish stories, Hindi myths, Sufi fables, writers who are young, old, male, female, single, married...and from every continent!
Recently we went with Buddhist monk Geshela to Jerusalem for the day and we made a movie in which he speaks about Buddhist ideas like serving others and finding peace through love for all humanity
We also have some great written articles from Rabbi Ohad Ezrahi who was recently in a Rainbow Gathering in Turkey getting to know his Iranian brothers and sisters
And here's a link to one of my favourite Hindi stories about Shiva and Parvati, and a link to a Sufi fable about a woman searching for a needle. The idea being that we need to go within ourselves in order to find ourselves.
No matter somebody's belief system, we are all human beings, striving for the same goals of happiness and well being. And right now whether the sun is shining or you are facing wind and rain, whether you are preparing for Christmas, Hanukah or Eid Al Haba, we can all find the peace within that will bring us closer to peace in the world.

Onwards and Upwards as they say at New World Library (who also have many articles on our site...)

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Clean, Green and Serene

Every week on our English site, Essence Of Life, we publish on the homepage positive news about what's going on in the world. Sure there is alot of disturbing and unpleasant news happening all the time - especially in the damage being done to our environment - but we hope the good news may inspire us to remember that we are all responsible for strengthening the relationship between individuals and the community and nature.

And there is plenty of good news like eco aware companies turning waste into green energy, the World Bank increasing funding for green energy, power plants discovering that they can run on chicken manure, and the UK setting the goal for carbon neutral housing by 2016.

At our site,, we have a category called Ecological which features articles about how we can be in harmony with our environment and how by caring for the land, sea, air, natural resources and animal world we can improve the quality of our lives.

Guerilla Gardening is an inspiring article about an underground movement happening all over the world to bring nature to disused urban spaces
Dancing With The Moon reminds how nature can have a positive effect in our lives if we open to her:
Cleaning Up Your Trash is just one of many articles about being responsible for our waste, recycling and generally taking care of our precious planet:

Would love to have your feedback on these articles or any others at our site.
Until soon,
Blessings from Nicola

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Acceptance Of What Is

Elections in USA are coming up and it's got me thinking about new beginnings. In my own life, I find myself on the brink of a new chapter - personally, having just broken up with my long distance boyfriend, and at work, I am busy building a new English Essence Of Life site (it will be ready by 2009.) And above all else, a new month and a new season begins. Here in Israel, I am experiencing the first days of Autumn - first rains, socks in the night, and a very cold sea.

Whether we mourn what has gone or get excited about the new to come, I remember that life is constantly and night, birth and death. And I try to remain detached from the highs and lows of life because life's events are like a wave - one moment sadness, the next happiness.

Here's an article from our site that is based around a lovely Jewish story which reminds us not to label experiences as good or bad but simply to accept what is.
And also a Zen story about not reacting to life's events because what may seem like bad luck may actually turn out to be good fortune

So whether the man you vote for becomes president or not, whether you're experiencing the beginning or the end of a relationship and whether you welcome or don't welcome the new season, the best we can do is to accept what is and with a smile. Here's a quote that I would like to share with you:

A smile costs nothing but gives much. It enriches those who receive without making poorer those who give. It takes but a moment. but the memory of it sometimes lasts forever.