Monthly Archives: February 2009

Zentraveler on Nirvana!



Where is this place Nirvana? Is it a place to reach for? Is it a city worth visiting? Is it a state of mind? Is it an illusion? Is it a catchy phrase for religious seekers or is it something we need to be aware of?

When people are asked what are you searching for?.. they often often answer Nirvana? Can you purchase Nirvana on Ebay? Can you live a great life by always using levels of consciousness that are benefical to the entire world? Can you acheive Nirvana simply by meditating?

These are some of the questions that people have had over the years trying to grab and hold onto something as illusive as Nirvana. First of all the great Buddah would tell you never try to hold on to anything. The best you can do is to let go and practice some of the ancient rituals that would allow you to reach the state of Nirvana. Clear your mind of earthy cravings and you are on your way to a state of Nirvana. Don’t look for anthing outside of yourself… Nirvana remains inside and it’s up to you to find Nirvana.

In most cases it is our ego craving that keeps us away from Nirvana and keeps us in a perpetual state of anger, craving, wanting, sensual desires, and our almighty ego that would arm wrestle you to the ground if it found out you are trying to drop your ego motivated lifestyle. The ego will fight you tooth and nail to keep its illustrous position in your life and add to the entire suffering syndrome that most of us humans fall under.


“This, truly, is the Peace, this is the Highest, namely the end of
all formations, the forsaking of every substratum of rebirth, the
fading away of craving: detachment, extinction-Nirvana.

Enraptured with lust, enraged with anger, blinded by delusion,
overwhelmed, with mind ensnared, man aims at his own ruin, at
others’ ruin, at the ruin of both parties, and he experiences mental
pain and grief. But, if lust, anger, and delusion are given up, man
aims neither at his own ruin, nor at others’ ruin, nor at the ruin
of both parties, and he experiences no mental pain and grief. Thus
is Nirvana immediate, visible in this life, inviting, attractive,
and comprehensible to the wise.

The extinction of greed, the extinction of anger, the extinction
of delusion: this, indeed, is called Nirvana.

And for a disciple thus freed, in whose heart dwells peace, there is
nothing to be added to what has been done, and naught more remains for him to do. Just as a rock of one solid mass remains unshaken by the wind, even so, neither forms, nor sounds, nor odors, nor tastes, nor contacts of any kind, neither the desired, nor the undesired, can cause such an one to waver. Steadfast is his mind, gained is deliverance.

And he who has considered all the contrasts on this earth, and is no
more disturbed by anything whatever in the world, the Peaceful One,
freed from rage, from sorrow, and from longing, he has passed beyond
birth and decay and has reached Nirvana!” adapted from

So there you have it! According to ancient texts anyone can reach Nirvana simply by living a life free of ego-attachment and searching within.

QUOTE: “I reached in experience the Nirvana which is unborn, unrivalled, secure from attachment, undecaying and unstained. This condition is indeed reached by me which is deep, difficult to see, difficult to understand, tranquil, excellent, beyond the reach of mere logic, subtle, and to be realized only by the wise.” —Buddah

THINGS YOU MAY NOT KNOW: How to cast a powerful spell? Casting a spell may sound like witchcraft to you but that’s just because of the TV show “Bewitched!” In reality, a spell is any blessing or curse. To put this into context, in India, the Sanscrit for spell is “MANTRA.”

Surprised? We speak mantras and cast spells all day long. We do so in our sleep and in dreams. The only difference between a Master or Wizard (same word once again) is that Wizards cast spells intentionally. The rest of humanity wastes their CHI or Qi or Ki and what little Spirit or Energy (again, Qi means Spirit means Energy) they have left, gets cast in a destructive spell.

So, the first step to learning how to cast a powerful POSITIVE spell is to have mastery over your mantras. Master your words. To do this, for the next 30 days, reverse all your critical expressions into positive matras or spells. Some examples are:

I am an idiot, I’m soo stupid, I’m no good with names, I’m no good with math, You are a ass —-, You are a ———–, F— You,
You suck at —–.

Turn them into: I am a wizard, I am so perceptive, I’m remember names perfectly, I am a numbers guy / girl, You are a considerate person, You are a —-, Bless you, and you excell at:————

Try this for 30 days. Then you may be ready to learn some Mantras. Or Powerful Spells. The first step to changing reality with your words, is to be able to change your words. …

THINGS YOU MAY WANT TO SAVE: Good Karma! Afterall you wouldn’t want to return as a fire ant or a comodo-dragon would you? I went to ebay and couldn’t find a Karma cleaner, but as we evolve through the techno-age who knows what lies ahead. And if you don’t have much good karma to save it’s never too late to start building some good Karma Credits. Why not tell every single person you see today how much you appreciate them and while you are on a karma roll, why not feed at least one hungry person…..your Karma bank will start compounding the credits like 150 deriviatives out.

ZENTRAVELER SAYS: Yes grasshopper Nirvana is possible even in this lifetime. Better hurry before our earth burns and the oceans dry up.

From here to Infinity is a relatively short ride! The next leg takes eons and eons as you fly through the Barycentric Dynamical Time Zone! …and on and on and on.

Follow the Zentraveler Blog often for Travel, Health and Zen-like stories and such. Where else can you get a three in one blog for the price of free?

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Zentraveler on the Mango fruit!



We have all seen these delicious looking fruits showing up everywhere in the fruit markets and they are indeed delicious to eat… mix into pancakes, add to a mango shake or a mango smoothie. I am currently residing on Bantayan Island in the Philippines where Mangos grow abundantly throughout the island and have learned to incorporate these kings of fruit into my daily diet.

“One of the most delicious and most fattening fruits, mango is truly called the ‘King of Fruits’. A tropical fruit, it comes in as many as 1000 different varieties, each of them totally delectable. Though native to Southern and Southeast Asia, the fruit is now also grown in Central and South America, Africa and the Arabian Peninsula also. Apart from being high in calories, mangoes are also rich in a large number of nutrients and hold great nutritional value. Infact, they have been known to have positive effects in case of a number of ailments. Included in this blog are numerous health and nutrition benefits of eating mangoes.

Nutritional Value of Mango
One medium sized mango comprises of:
Calories – 107
Protein – 0.84 g
Carbohydrate – 28 g
Total Fat – 0.45 g
Fiber – 3 g
Vitamin A – 6425 IU
Vitamin C – 45.7mg
Magnesium – 18 mg
Potassium – 300 mg
Calcium – 20 g
Cholesterol – 0 g
Saturated fat – 0 g
Traces of manganese, selenium, iron, sodium and phosphorus

Health & Nutrition Benefits of Eating Mangoes: The Mango, being high in calories and carbohydrates, is good for those who are trying to gain weight. The phenolic compound found in mangoes has been found to have powerful antioxidant and anticancer properties. Being high in iron, mango is said to be very good for pregnant women as well as for people suffering from anemia. Mango is believed to be effective in relieving clogged pores of the skin.

The vitamin A (beta-carotene), vitamin E and selenium present in mangoes provide protection against heart disease. Mangoes have been found to be quite helpful in treating acidity and poor digestion. It is being said that the Vitamin E present in mango helps hormonal system function more efficiently and thus, boosts sex life. The anti-inflammatory properties of mango might help alleviate asthma symptoms. Other Benefits Mango has been found to be beneficial for people suffering from the following ailments: Bacterial Infections, Constipation, Diarrhea, Dysentery, Eye Disorders, Hair Loss, Heat Stroke, Leucorrhea, Liver Disorders, Menstrual Disorders, Morning Sickness, Piles, Prickly Heat, Scurvy, Sinusitis, Spleen Enlargement, and Vaginitis …..adapted from

Mangoes would be a great item for anyone to use as a daily or weekly fruit.

Disclaimer: The information provided here is for informational purposes only and is not medical advice. Individuals wishing to use supplements or alternative medicine therapies should consult with their doctor beforehand.

QUOTE: “Whatever is material shape, past, future, present, subjective or objective, gross or subtle, mean or excellent, whether it is far or near — all material shape should be seen by perfect intuitive wisdom as it really is: “This is not mine, this I am not, this is not my self.” Whatever is feeling, whatever is perception, whatever are habitual tendencies, whatever is consciousness, past, future, present, subjective or objective, gross or subtle, mean or excellent, whether it is far or near — all should be seen by perfect intuitive wisdom as it really is: “This is not mine, this I am not, this is not my self.” Zen Quotes by Buddha Gautama (born 563 B.C.)

THINGS YOU MAY NOT KNOW: Earth is the only planet NOT named after God.

THINGS YOU MAY WANT TO SAVE: Photos: From a millennial perspective, photography is an art form in its infancy.

In 1839, two processes for capturing images and transferring them to a medium evolved. The Daguerreotype, named after Louis Jacques Daguerre, created a “unique, unduplicatable, laterally reversed monochromatic picture on a metal plate,” as described by Naomi Rosenblum in “A World History of Photography” (Abbeville Press). The other process produced a reversed image on paper that was then placed in contact with a chemically treated surface, exposed to sunlight, which resulted in a picture with a normal image. This process was named a Talbotype after its inventor, William Henry Fox Talbot.

The European and American culture of the 19th century had a craving for greater representations of reality. This appetite had roots in Renaissance painting and increased with developments in science and industry. Samuel F. B. Morse, inventor of the electromagnetic telegraph, was an early publicist and experimenter with the daguerreotype. His work with scientist John William Draper spread the knowledge of this early art, teaching famed Civil War photographer Matthew Brady.

Today, millions of photographic images are produced everyday. The age old aphorism “seeing is believing,” if written today, would include the addendum “but confirmed with a photo.” Every photo is but a fool’s image of ourselves, but it is good to recognize the fool within us. … credit… fiftythingsworthsaving website.

ZENTRAVELER SAYS: Eat a mango a day to improve your health! Plus they are so so tasty!

From here to Infinity is a relatively short ride! The next leg takes eons and eons as you fly through the Barycentric Dynamical Time Zone! …and on and on and on.

Follow the Zentraveler Blog often for Travel, Health and Zen-like stories and such. Where else can you get a three in one blog for the price of free?

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Zentraveler Bantayan Island, Philippines

It’s been said that if you have “Island Fever” you may be incurable. Why not visit the country that has over 7100 islands where you can travel until the cows come home and you still haven’t even touched the hundreds and thousands of discoveries that ARE JUST WAITING FOR THAT ADVENTUROUS SPIRIT.

After arriving in Manila for some dental work I visited an Internet Cafe and learned from the original Bantayan Island website ( owned and operated by Paul James about an island in the north of Cebu providence that was laid back, peaceful, had many white sand beaches, and had very reasonable accommodations … and best of all not very touristy by any standards.

When you visit Bantayan Island you can find Paul James working on various photography projects at the Hard kock Kafe. He has valuable information on his website and will be glad to chat with you on any subject. Click on his website to find weather updates and questions and answers on Bantayan Island. It’s invaluable information and will save you many steps by researching his website… plus he’s a great fellow to learn to know.


To reach Bantayan Island you simply take the bus from the north bus terminal in Cebu City going to Hagnaya for 80 pesos about three hours… then take a ferry to Bantayan Island a little more than an hour for 120 pesos and you can begin to see the palm trees outline the resorts as you come into the port of Santa Fe.

As a landmark on the north side of the pier is the Santa Fe Resort with it’s main building and restaurant and individual beach huts. From the pier you can take a tricycle for about 25 pesos per person and head along the beach toward the center of Santa Fe town which revolves around a central market and a street with several places to stay including the Hard Kock Kafe. If you want beach resorts directly on the beach you have many choices which include: Tristans, The Marlin Beach Resort, Kota Beach Resort, Budyong Resort, Yooneek Resort. Ogtong Cave Resort and if you head north of the pier you can stay at The Ticketyboo Resort and the Saint Bernard.

If you want a longer stay or like the comfort of an airconditioned room you should check into the Sante Fe SeaView Apartelle with seaviews located on the main road in Santa Fe and owned and operated by a Filipiino couple Mr. and Mrs. E Ybanez. From this location it’s just a short walk to the beach, the central market and the restaurants.

You have an excellent choice of restaurants which include The Blue run by a Swedish x-pat Andy, D’Jungle run by Robert German x-pat, The Rock Cafe run by Swedish x-pat Henry and the Yooneek bar located directly on the beach… and a good place to end the day by sipping a cold beer and watching the incredible sunsets.

If this isn’t Jimmy Buffet enough and you can either swim out to The Floating Bar located just off Yooneek Beach or be rowed out like royalty and spend the afternoon taking in the sun and splashing into the water for a cooling dip. And just maybe you may discover this is your own country and all you need is your flag of choice.

There is also the newly opened Moby Dick run by John US -xpat which serves excellent oven baked pizzas, The Oasis which has excellent Portuguese food and a new restaurant run by Belgium-French owner Dennis named Zenith. As you stroll up the street past the two churches you will come to a Restaurant named Balikbayan which has excellent decor with fresh flowers, birds, native rocks, and a live fish aquarium not to mention a nice local menu.

There are also many local eateries where you can grab a fast-food hamburger, barbecued chicken, fried bananas and one local restaurant that stands out named Arjaymay operated by Jerry Tan that serves fresh seafood grilled to perfection and comes with a healthy salad all for about 200 pesos or 4 us dollars. Located just across from the central market.

Bantayan island offers the tourist good swimming on white sand beaches, excursions to other islands, motor scooter rental …where you can tour the entire island in one day by going south to Bantayan City and then heading north to Madridejos where you can shortcut back to Santa Fe.

The island is vibrant with many festivals, schools, and church activities. It also exports crabs from Madridejos, and is nicknamed the egg basket of the Philippines because of all the chicken farms located throughout the island. If you are not used to hearing the rooster crow: “cock-a-doodle-do” your senses will be stirred at sunrise from almost every point on the island.

It is an excellent island to meet new travelers and foreign x-pats and is easy to get around either by walking, using the tricycles or for a longer trip you can use the motorized tricycles. A German has a resort near Bantayan City called Maia’s, which he carved out of the coral and would be worth a visit.

There is only one ATM machine which is located at Allied Bank near the Bantayan City town square and takes about 30 minutes on tricycle for about 25 pesos. While in Bantayan City you can visit the wet market and bring back the highly prized Lapu Lapu fish and have any number of restaurants fix it the way you like it.

So there you have it… an island of friendly people where you can live like a king on a modest budget and if you are not careful …you like so many x-pats from before might just call Bantayan Island your home.


QUOTE: “Not to be bound by rules, but to be creating one’s own rules–this is the kind of life which Zen is trying to have us live.”
– D. T. Suzuki

THINGS YOU MAY NOT KNOW: A father Emperor penguin withstands the Antarctic cold for 60 days or more to protect his eggs, which he keeps on his feet, covered with a feathered flap. During this entire time he doesn’t eat a thing. Most father penguins lose about 25 pounds while they wait for their babies to hatch. Afterward, they feed the chicks a special liquid from their throats. When the mother penguins return to care for the young, the fathers go to sea to eat and rest.

THINGS YOU MAY WANT TO SAVE: Penguins! They is so cute little fellows in tuxedos. Dig in your wallet and begin help saving the planet. It will come back a thousand fold.

ZENTRAVELER SAYS: This is the year to either volunteer your time or loosen your wallet. What are you waiting for—grasshopper?

From here to Infinity is a relatively short ride! The next leg takes eons and eons as you fly through the Barycentric Dynamical Time Zone! and on and on and on.

Follow the Zentraveler Blog often for Travel, Health and Zen-like stories and such. Where else can you get a three in one blog for the price of free?


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