“Because we all share this planet earth, we have to learn to live in harmony and peace with each other and with nature. This is not just a dream, but a necessity.”  ~Dalai Lama XIV


At this time of year, I am reminded of what this holiday season is all about.  After seeing the Dalai Lama this past fall, I think the meaning of this season has had an even more profound impact on me.  While I have always loved the message the Dalai brings, there is no better time to internalize his message then during the winter solstice; a time when we celebrate many holidays with expressions of peace and light.

His most recent message is one of how we have become people who are too self-centered (centered on “me” not “we”), judge others out of fear and do not act enough out of compassion.  As I think about his words, I am reminded of recent events in the world; the wars that continue, the way we treat one another and the reality TV programs that are so popular all seem to reinforce his observations.

When Thanksgiving this year was interrupted by early Christmas shopping, it about sent me over the edge.  Really??!!  We would rather shop at ungodly hours to get a deal on something we think we need instead of celebrating our thanks with those we love.  I don’t know anymore.  But I guess instead of judging these behaviors maybe I need to try harder to model the Dalai’s idea of peace and love.

The Dalai’s message is not just about humanity.  It is all encompassing including every creature which is something we cannot forget.  I am worried about our planet.  And my concern for our planet is one of the reasons I decided to garden for wildlife using native plants.  It is something I can do to give back to the earth.  Recycle, reuse, conserve- I try my best, but sometimes it doesn’t seem like enough.

Many native cultures say that each of us is responsible for future generations, and whatever you do affects the next 7 generations.  That is a great responsibility that I take seriously.  And what better way to positively affect the future, than to share my plot of land with all who inhabit it, and do no harm (or as little as I can control) to the earth.

“We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give” ~Winston Churchill

The Dalai’s  message is not new.  It is one I have heard from teachings in the Bible and other holy books.  It has been spoken by wise men, great prophets and compassionate leaders for thousands of years.  Simply put it says:

Instead of acting out of fear, act out of love.  Understand that it can’t be about me, but about us and how “me” affects “we”.  What I do has a ripple effect, and what do I want that effect to be.  It doesn’t matter if you are religious or what faith you practice if any.   It matters that you act for the good of all.

So during this holiday season, I am giving you an olive branch of peace.  One that I hope you will take and pass along for many years.  No, we will not change the world overnight, but it does start with each of us.  As I find myself having negative thoughts and actions, being judgmental,  I will instead try to understand where those feelings come from, release them with love and replace them with kindness and understanding for those still acting out of fear, still stuck in the “me mindset”.

We each must make our own decisions about what we think we can do.  And I have found it is best not to wait for others to change before we decide to change our behavior.  We can only hope others will come along eventually as more of us model these words of kindness and love.

During this most special season of peace, I leave you with some more contemplations from the Dalai Lama.  My wish is for more kindness and love in the world through each of us this holiday season and beyond!



A new way of thinking has become the necessary condition for responsible living and acting.  If we maintain obsolete values and beliefs, a fragmented consciousness and self-centered spirit, we will continue to hold onto outdated goals and behaviors.

― Dalai Lama XIV


“This is my simple religion. No need for temples. No need for complicated philosophy. Your own mind, your own heart is the temple. Your philosophy is simple kindness.”
― Dalai Lama XIV



**All pictures were taken while visiting family in Arizona at Thanksgiving.  Most were taken on a visit to an olive mill.  You can get the meanings behind each picture by holding your cursor over the picture. 


No matter what is going on
Never give up
Develop the heart
Too much energy in your country
Is spent developing the mind
Instead of the heart
Be compassionate
Not just to your friends
But to everyone
Be compassionate
Work for peace
In your heart and in the world
Work for peace
And I say again
Never give up
No matter what is going on around you
Never give up
― Dalai Lama XIV


Next up on the blog:  Wednesday will be my last native plant profile for 2012 as I join Dozen for Diana and Wildflower Wednesday.  Monday is time to unveil my plans for the coming New Year; personally, professionally and in the garden.

I hope you will join me for my posts once a month at Beautiful Wildlife Garden. See my most current post now.

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All original content is copyrighted and the sole property of Donna Donabella @ Gardens Eye View, 2010-2012.  Any reprints or use of content or photos is by permission only.




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