Does it really matters who offers help?

I was quite taken aback when I read Susan Abulhawa’s review of Corasanti’s book, “The Almond Tree.” I recall similar accusations and conversations taking place during the Civil Rights and Anti War Movements of the 60s. The arrogance of thinking there’s only one correct way to see things is still very much alive. This is […]

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An Awakening

I have been a seeker of truth for a long time except I did not know it at a conscious level. I had health issues and began to look for healing using alternative therapies. Along the way I found books and tapes from many different spiritual teachings and masters. No single teaching satisfied my seeking. […]

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Happiness is here, now.

I was walking in the woods with my dog yesterday. The wind had whipped the grey away leaving patches of blue sky. It’s funny how the heat from the sun in the autumn feels so good.

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Holy Communion

When I lived in Rhode Island I sailed with a friend of mine. Harold had a 22 foot sailing boat. A blue hulled day-sailer with which we criss-crossed Narraganset Bay. Winds could be stiff and we loved skimming through the water heeled over so hard water streamed past the combing, inches away. It was a […]

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The duck and the mind

The Duck This is a silly story but I think it illustrates perfectly the melodramatic mind which causes us so much suffering. There is a big pond in the back yard. Over the last few years many visitors have come and gone. Ducks of all shapes and sizes, herons and of course it’s full of […]

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Happiness, where is it to be found?

My Tai Chi teacher used to say, “What happens when you push a ball under the water with one finger? It spins out and rises to the surface again. Live life like that.” This is to live life from the still centre. The poet TS Elliot referred to it as “the stillpoint of the turning world.”

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Awareness. Michelle Corasanti’s “The Almond Tree.”

The Almond Tree is one of the most moving and powerful novels I’ve read. It’s the kind of book that takes the reader into another world, a world of poverty and war, brutality, sorrow and love. And in the process we become aware of ourselves as human beings; the beauty and the horror we create.

What a ride. Man’s inhumanity to his fellow creatures is appalling, countered only by a deep sense of justice, compassion and a love for the truth whatever it is.

Corasanti shines the light of awareness into the shadows of our ignorance and draws our attention to a deep injustice knowing that awareness gives rise to understanding and understanding to change. This conflict, this oppression, will not be able to continue in the light of awareness.

Obama recently spoke to Jewish students. He said, “Put yourself in their shoes — look at the world through their eyes. It is not fair that a Palestinian child cannot grow up in a state of her own, and lives with the presence of a foreign army that controls the movements of her parents, every single day.”


So little of the history and ongoing events are known by Westerners. We’re ignorant and can’t afford to be! We have great wealth and power at the moment but it cannot last when we don’t give to others what we want for ourselves.

And what do we want? Is it not to live at peace with our neighbors, to make a living, to care for our families and raise our children with a roof over our heads, clean water. food, fairness and justice.

Life has its own way, and if we refuse to share what we have with others we won’t have it either.

Corasanti’s story will move you, it will present you with a dilemma. No longer will you live in ignorance of the ongoing Palestinian/Israeli conflict and it is that shared and growing awareness that will in the end halt the destruction of the Palestinian people and restore compassion and justice to the Israeli soul.

Colin Mallard

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Smell This Rose

Months had come and gone, monotonous, dreary months, no home, no work, no friend. Then suddenly the sun had emerged one morning over a surprised, rain soaked city.

Now, as I watched, that same sun prepared to make its departure as it balanced precariously on distant peaks, backbone to the island forty miles distant. Sitting on a bench at the edge of time I watched as the great orange orb flared a silent goodbye. Great shards of light illuminated the western sky while overhead the first eager stars winked suddenly on.

Around me giant firs, silent cedars, and the gaunt arms of the cherry, maple and beach trees provided black silhouettes against an ocean of heaving gold…

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