Tag Archives: Hollyhock BC

Beauty in the photographs details: Hollyhock Chair Boat

There is so much in this photograph that I love.

The place itself I love. It is the Hollyhock Retreat center on Cortes Island in British Columbia, a beautiful, remote, and Magical, Transformative place, especially in the summertime. I first went there in 1978 And attended a 13 week long Resident fellow program with a different workshop each week. I attended a dream workshop where I learned that I was Dan, Dan, The rainbow man, a healer and a teacher. And for the last 45 years, I’ve lived being a Healer and a teacher. I learned about Quan Yen (or Kuan Yin),The bodhisattva of compassion. I learned it from John Blofeld, that Very British China convert, Who wrote so beautifully about Quan Yen (or Kuan Yin), and also  translated the I Ching. John Blofeld so enjoyed his afternoon tea :). I learned about the I Ching, and Tarot cards. And I learned from the wind, the trees, low and high tides, I learned from the lapping of the water, BJ, Whiskey and orange juice, early morning sunshine, the wonderful gardens, and even more wonderful vegetarian meals. I learned by working with Bill Glackman, now a lifetime friend, doing handyman work around the then COld Mountain Institute.

But what do I love about this picture! I love the early morning light, with the side-light and long shadows. I love the empty chair and the empty boat, both waiting for us/me/you.

I can feel myself sitting in that chair, with my eyes closed, warm, with the sunshine on my face and arms in the cool morning, and ever so gently, I feel a slight breeze. With each breath, I breathe in the light, salty smells of the sea. I hear the gentle lapping of water on the beach. I hear the bird calls of morning,  welcoming the new day. That chair is a place to simply be, mindfully and appreciatively.

The empty boat, red and white and waiting, Is not about mindfulness. The empty boat is about adventure awaiting! Come,Let us row away to adventure! Morning is the time for both contemplation and beginning of adventures! I love that in this photograph.

I love the colors, the greens of the grass and the tree. I love the shades of blues in the sea, and in the mountains across the sea.  I love the bands of lighter color blue on the water.

I love how small I am in that early morning light, And how big that quiet sea is,  and how the shrouded mountains are at the top the photograph.

I love the lines of the small waves, lapping towards the shore.

I love the juxtaposition of the living Green tree, the stump, and the wooden chair. Three stages of existence?

I love the variations between the rocky shore, The tidal zone with it’s small rocks and mud , and the two big rocks In the nearby shallow water.

When I look at this picture, I feel gratitude, the hopes of a new morning, The beckoning of mindfulness and adventure, and the sheer beauty of it all: colors, bands of blue and green, and waves, sea, trees, shore, chair, boat, and distant mountains… and ME!

Sacred Places: Hollyhock Cortes Island, British Columbia

Hollyhock Institute, Cortes Island, British Columbia, Canada.

For me, this is a sacred place located on a small, Isolated Island in British Columbia. I came here first in 1978 for a 13 week long resident fellow program that helped shape my life. Each week was a different workshop, I attended an I Ching workshop taught by John Blofeld, who translatedthe  I Ching into English. I attended a dream workshop, where I learned that I was a Rainbow Man, a healer and a teacher. I attended 10 more workshops where I learned more about who I was as a human being and as a part of this beautiful world. I worked outdoors and in the gardens and in the kitchen. I heard the wind in the trees, the coming and goings of the tide, and that faint feeling of those who had lived here so long ago, on this shore, in these woods, for thousands of years before I came. I knew that I, too, was part of them.

Favorite Photos: Hollyhock B.C. Tree, Empty Chair, Sea, Boat, and Me, and 3 others!

Hollyhock Tree, Empty Chair, Sea, Boat, and Me

Today, February 1, 2015 is my 66th Birthday. I can think of no better favorite photos to celebrate my Birthday than these four from one of my favorite holy spaces/learning centers/ and retreat Centers in the world: Hollyhock Retreat/Learning Center on Cortes Island in British Columbia, Canada.

I first attended when this sacred beautiful place was called Cold Mountain Institute and I spent 13 weeks there are as a “resident Fellow”  in 1978? working on the retreat center and taking weeklong workshops on everything from “Tarot Carots” to “Kuan Yin: Goddess of Compassion” to “Dreams” and the “I Ching.”

My favorite photo for Birthdays and other new beginnings is my “Empty Chair, Sea, Boat, Tree, and Me” photo. The empty chair and empty boat wait for me (or you), in sunshine as tides turn and gentle waves lap gemtly to the shore in early morning sunshine. Beckoned.

Graceful, slow moving, herons in the early morning, with low tide and such blue waters, and forest, and mountains in the distance; these provide peaceful meditative moments that help make this place sacred and healing.

The gorgeous twisting shapes of trees silhouetted against blue incoming seas, and nearby islands, and the wooden deck where I, and many others, have laid nude in the summer sun over these many years. These bring back soft, warm, breeze memories,  and memories of the sounds of water lapping to the shore.

The poppies, one in sunshine one in shade, yings and yangs of colors. Parchment thin colors, beauty. They dazzle me quietly with their sun opened color and brilliance.

Holy Hollyhock, Holy Cold Mountain. Thank you for helping shape me with your nature, and your beauty.


Favorite Photos: Poppies Light and Dark

Poppies Light and Dark


This photos is from the beautiful Hollyhock B.C. Gardens, where I’ve been attending workshops since it was called Cold Mountain Institute in 1980 and I was there for a full summer of workshops that influenced my life.

The flower beauty shared of being in the light and being in the shadow. Petals unfolding into the sun, layers of symmetry,  yellow petal halo yellow center, red poppy shadowed  in background beauty.

New poppies folded, all around waiting, not knowing, that they too, shall bloom into the light.

This is a photo I just like looking at. Gives me peace.

Favorite Photos: Hollyhock’s Blue Flower Yellow twirling Center and Blurred Fence

Favorite Photos: Hollyhock’s Blue Flower Yellow twirling Center and Blurred Fence

The delicate overlay of blue yellow gorgeous petals, the swirling yellow center, my blurring the edges, the matrix fence behind, all take my breath away in wonder!