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Contemplation Photographs by Ira Gardner


Photographs by Ira Gardner

God writes the gospel not in the Bible alone, but on trees and flowers and clouds and stars. Martin Luther

A human being is part of the whole, called by us “Universe,� a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty. Albert Einstein, 1950

Observe always that everything is the result of change, and get used to thinking that there is nothing Nature loves so well as to change existing forms and make new ones like them. Marcus Aurelius

Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon, and the truth. Buddha

To understand the heart and mind of a person, look not at what he has already achieved, but at what he aspires to. Khalil Gibran

I love you when you bow in your mosque, kneel in your temple, pray in your church. For you and I are sons of one religion, and it is the spirit. Khalil Gibran

As a professor, I don’t like this, but the cerebral virtues curiosity, love of learning are less strongly tied to happiness than interpersonal virtues like kindness, gratitude and capacity for love. Martin Seligman

When the teapot is ready it will whistle like a train, and sometimes when I am alone I let it continue to blow and interrupt it rhythmically, playing it like a frantic flute, letting the sound fill the empty house and penetrate the chamber of my chest and move through me like a scream I wish I could utter. I don’t scream. As the pot subsides I settle into a calm state and meditate as the leaves steep. Ira Gardner

We need to find God, and he cannot be found in noise and restlessness. God is the friend of silence. See how nature - trees, flowers, grass- grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence... We need silence to be able to touch souls. Mother Teresa

When you enter a grove peopled with ancient trees, higher than the ordinary, and shutting out the sky with their thickly inter-twined branches, do not the stately shadows of the wood, the stillness of the place, and the awful gloom of this doomed cavern then strike you with the presence of a deity? Seneca

Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise; seek what they sought. Basho Matsuo

The appearance of things changes according to the emotions; and thus we see magic and beauty in them, while the magic and beauty are really in ourselves. Khalil Gibran

Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished. Lao Tzu

To find the universal elements enough; to find the air and the water exhilarating; to be refreshed by a morning walk or an evening saunter; to be thrilled by the stars at night; to be elated over a bird’s nest or a wildflower in spring these are some of the rewards of the simple life. John Burroughs

Let religion be to us the wonder and lure of that which is only partly known and understood: An eye that glories in nature’s majesty and beauty, and a heart that rejoices in deeds of kindness and of courage. Vincent B. Silliman

If the sight of the blue skies fills you with joy, if a blade of grass springing up in the fields has power to move you, if the simple things of nature have a message that you understand, rejoice, for your soul is alive. Eleonora Duse

God is the experience of looking at a tree and saying, “Ah!” Joseph Campbell

And Joy is Everywhere It is in the Earth’s green covering of grass; In the blue serenity of the Sky; In the reckless exuberance of Spring; In the severe abstinence of gray Winter; In the Living flesh that animates our bodily frame; In the perfect poise of the Human figure, noble and upright; In Living; In the exercise of all our powers; In the acquisition of Knowledge; In fighting evils ... Joy is there Everywhere. Rabindranath Tagore

About the Photographs In these photographs I have attempted to reveal a state of grace that exists when we can let go of words of doubt, fear, and anger and see the world with gratitude, joy, and love.

Published by Gardner Media Group Š 2012 All Rights Reserved


This is a small book filled with images of quiet beauty and timeless words of wisdom that are inspired by nature. Our life is what our thou...


This is a small book filled with images of quiet beauty and timeless words of wisdom that are inspired by nature. Our life is what our thou...