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Australia’s Youngest Politician is Changing the Future for Local Shops

Australia’s Youngest Politician is Changing the Future for Local Shops

Robert Schmitz Local Shops The start-up sensation taking the future by storm all in the name of supporting local shopping. Look out Amazing here comes the Millenial of the year.

 Anyone can have a good idea…

But making it happen takes a special kind of person. Robert Schmitz is one of these people. This 27-year old boy from the bush may just be Australia’s new Mark Zuckerberg. He has created a website that is set to change the future for local shops and aims to retain human experience in a world that seeks convenience.

Inspiring and highly intelligent, Ponderings had to intverview him. My Local Shopsnot only presents local stores on their own online shopping platform, but the quirky high end market atmosphere is disruptive and revolutionary. If he is to have his way, the haunting sound of small town shop closing will be a thing of the past. Tech + Heart has arrived in Australia and the gutsy move has us truly captivated.

Retail industry futurist, Doug Stephens, predicts that within 15 years, e-commerce will overtake conventional retail sales.

The more we buy online the closer shops come to extinction.

A study conducted by Roy Morgan found that Australians spent a whopping $41.3 billion on online shopping last year.  This is a major concern. Not only are local shops vital for employment and our cities economies. Real-life-shopping is a meditative, social, human experience that awakens the senses. You get to feel the plush pillow, smell the candle, listen to the quality of sound playing through the Harvey Norman headphones. You’re actually required to interact with people! Buying off Amazon is convenient but doesn’t support the local shops that need it.

Schmitz has created the website with the latest tech and algorithms- allowing you to enjoy the time-saving convenience of shopping from the comfort of your home, while still supporting local shops and getting to know your community.

Ponderings Online Magazine Tanya Breen Art Creative

At just 21 years old you became the youngest councillor in Australian politics. What was your motivation behind this?

I thought, instead of moving from my country town, Whyalla, I would find a way to make a positive change myself so that I didn’t have to move.

Now you’ve left politics to pursue My Local Shops; a platform that allows customers to browse and purchase products from stores in their location. How does it work?

The website allows you to type in your location. Then any store in that region that is on My Local Shops will appear with all the stock they currently have in store. This way, if you need something that day, you can find what store has the product you want and order it online. Then you can head straight to the store and pick it up that day, rather than waiting days to receive it.

What are the benefits of using My Local Shops?

For me, it’s a lot of seeing and getting a taste for what’s out there before even leaving your doorstep. Amazon and all these other platforms are convenient, but they’re just not supporting local stores, and they are the ones that need it the most. Browsing on My Local Shops also means you might come across a shop you didn’t know existed.

 

When did you get the idea?

The idea really came together last June and was launched in January, so it’s all happened really fast.

Who can access My Local Shops?

It’s currently being trialled in Whyalla. However, even though it’s only meant to be accessible there, we’ve already had someone purchase a 3.75L cactus drink dispenser from QLD. Due to a glitch in the system, a woman has been able to click on the direct link to My Local Shops and purchase the product from Whyalla, while living in QLD. So now she’s waiting in QLD to have this fantastic party with her cactus dispenser!

What will be the next step?

Well, I was born and bred in Whyalla, so naturally, I wanted it to start there, but it isn’t a hustling bustling shopping community. The Geelong region is geographically ideal with the surf coast and Bellarine Peninsula so close. Ideally, it will expand nationwide, but this comes down to local retailers. E-commerce giants are going to continue to grow and take over bridge and water retail. If retailers accept that they need to be online, we can work together and stop this from happening. How big it gets will also depend on consumers. There needs to be a collective thought that supporting local shops will directly affect your life and your children’s future. It’s not just a ripple in a pond if we all do it!

Leaderboard Ponderings Australia

What is your advice to anyone with an idea?

Don’t procrastinate, action it immediately! Boil it down to its simplest, raw, form, and then make it happen. You’ll never be proud of your very first addition, there’ll always be changes to be made, but I would try a little less for perfection, and more for action to begin with.

About Robert:

Robert Schmitz works with the community anyway he can. He was elected to the City Council of his hometown Whyalla at just 21 years old, making him the youngest Australian councillor ever. 5 years later, the talented tradie, left politics to pursue his next endeavour, e-commerce website My Local Shops.

One Brave Mother And 65 Roses, Geelong Social Media, Geelong Digital Media, Cystic Fibrosis

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The World's Most Influential Young People Inspiring the way for 2019 by Montanna Macdonald for Ponderings Magazine

The World’s Most Influential Young People Inspiring The Way For 2019

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The Healthy Happy Guide To Self Care by Kim Morrison

The Healthy Happy Guide To Self Care by Kim Morrison

Kim Morrison Twenty8 Article Ponderings Australia

When one sits down to write a description about Australian superstar Kim Morrison sticking to a word count can be tricky.

It’s not about waxing lyrical, the woman is quite seriously next level authentically inspiring.

The gorgeous health & lifestyle expert is a keynote speaker, founder of Aromatherapy company Twenty8, a world record breaker for youngest female to run 100miles in less than 24hours, a CAM Therapist ..and we have run out of word count. Seriously. You can imagine our delight when Ponderings got to share Kim’s insights.

We share with you Kim’s Guide to Self Care.

Good health and wellbeing doesn’t happen by itself.

 Sure, there are some people with genetics to die for who seem to be able to eat, drink and do anything they like.

But we all know a lack of self-care soon catches up.

The reality is good health isn’t just about how you look – it’s about how you feel and most importantly having awareness.

With so much overwhelm the key is to keep it simple.

Get back to basics. And above all do not believe everything you read, see or hear.

For example, will a cream honestly eradicate wrinkles in seven days? Does a chocolate spread on white bread really seem like a healthy sandwich for your children? Will eating meat make your baby like Einstein?

To be healthy and happy there are three main areas to address. The mind, the body and the skin. Every small but essential decision you make can affect your health.

For example, it is a known fact that most women expose themselves to over two hundred chemicals a day through their personal care products alone. Frightening when you think about the products you also use around your home, what’s in the environment and the foods you eat.

But regardless of how many fads, diets, ingredients or varied opinions there are some self-care basics that most holistic health therapists, experts, coaches and scientists generally agree on concerning self-care.

The list may seem pretty straightforward, even basic, yet many struggle to adhere to it.

Choose whole, real and natural foods over refined, processed ones.

SLOW eating is not a phenomenon – eat seasonal, local, organic and whole where you can.

Aim to eat a combination of fresh vegetables at each meal.

Reduce your sugar intake, including raw treats.

Drink plenty of clean water each day.

Look after your gut, fermented foods can be a wonder food for many.

Supplement wisely, know what you are taking and what you need it for.

Move your body regularly and include exercise that raises your heart rate for at least twenty minutes, aim for three times a week.

 

Include weight bearing and strength enhancing exercise this could be yoga, the gym, even incidental exercise like maintaining your home with housework and gardening.

Rejuvenate your mental and physical health with good quality sleep.

Manage your stress levels, know when to ask for help.

Practice mindfulness, take a moment at least a few times a day with meditation, being present and awareness.

Practice simple daily self-care rituals using essential oils, like a lavender bath, a lemon and pine inhalation, spritzing with frankincense or diffusing oils like neroli, chamomile, orange and geranium for a stress-free environment.

Let’s face it – being healthy can be simple if you just get back to basics and tap into that incredible innate intelligence that knows what is best.

_________

In summary, eat food as close to its natural source as possible, do some form of functional exercise at least three times a week, make sure you look into those ingredients present in your food and skin care products and most of all practice kindness with daily self-care rituals incorporating essential oils that will help you to switch off and recharge.

For more information about Kim you can visit: https://twenty8.com/kim-morrison/

Kim has recently announced her launch of the  Essential Self-Care Workshops in Australia. These are first of their kind, addressing the needs of busy people in need of so here is your chance to create the space for some much needed – craved – time out!

In these magical weekend workshops you will learn how to:

Eliminate toxins from your environment and use essential oils safely and effectively for health, healing, happiness and relationships. Know which oils are best in times of stress, anxiety, depression, weight-loss and overwhelm. Get educated about foods impacting the ageing process and manage stress so you don’t suffer burn out.

Workshop one is The Larwill Studio, 48 Flemington Rd, Parkville Melbourne 26th-28th April 2019. Click here to book.

Workshop two is at Perricoota Vines Retreat Echuca Moama on the 18th to 20th October. You can book by clicking here, and don’t forget to enter discount code “liz” to get $50 off.

“By lighting that inner spark you can BE, DO and HAVE everything you imagine! And, if you do take the leap of faith, I promise we will help you find your wings on the way down!”

– Kim Morrison

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Are Angels For Real? Insights Into The History of Divine Messengers

Are Angels For Real? Insights Into The History of Divine Messengers

Angels POndeirngs Magazine

 

by Jasmin Pedretti 

 

This week I was asked to write about Angels.

 

 

 

To begin the word Angel derives from the Greek word “Angelos,” meaning messenger.

 

However, they are also described as warriors, guardians and God’s link to humankind. They are believed to be a spiritual, heavenly being, superior to humans that act as  God’s messenger or a guardian for someone on earth. According to the Bible, angels were created before humans and likely earth itself.

 

According to Kimberley C Patton, a professor at Harvard University, the study of Angels and angelic beings from a sociological perspective has been monumental. So much so that the focus on Angels and Angelology is featured in the corpus at Harvard.

 

In Ancient Greece, the angelic ‘form’ was inspired by the Gods Eros and Nike.

 

Classic art from 510 BCE-323 BCE, depicts an adolescent Eros with wings. The popularity of marble sculptures soared during the Hellenistic period (323 BCE-31 CE).

 

Talk with Your Angels By Ruth Trigger

 

Since then, the depiction of angels in famous art has evolved. There has been the medieval ‘ethereal’ example to the Renaissance more ‘earthly’ picture, to the new-classicism beautiful, female figure and flying child holding a bow and arrow. An obsession with angels was at its peak in the 13th century. It was believed that angels could move the stars and govern the planets, seasons, and even the months, days, and hours.

 

Angels are depicted differently depending on the culture.

 

In Judaism and Christianity, they are considered God’s messengers. Angels do not take on a tangible form unless they choose to show themselves. They are neither man nor woman and only sometimes have wings. One thing is for sure, they are mentioned- everywhere!

 

The Islam faith has a slightly different take on angels. Muslims say that each person is assigned four angels, known as Malaa’ika, who tally their good and bad actions. Angels also assign souls to new-borns and are responsible for taking care of the environment. Unlike Judaism/Christianity, it is impossible for angels in the Islam faith to fall from grace or commit sin.

 

Buddha Quote Ponderings Magazine

 

Angels also exist in other religions.

 

In Hinduism, angels are responsible for natural elements like water, earth, and fire. Other lesser known religions believe that each one of us has a guardian angel that shields us from evil and guides us to make the right choices.

 

Ruth Trigger, of “Talk With Your Angels” fame believes we are all spiritual beings that control our destiny. The spiritual guidance counsellor has spent a lifetime studying the interaction of Angels throughout our stories and history. Ruth started Talk With Your Angels, many years ago, after some guidance from a friend about sharing her gifts with others and being able to help them on their own journey. Over the years, she has evolved from helping friends in need to offering her wisdom and advice to a larger audience that includes people from the Melbourne and the Greater Geelong area as well as some from interstate and overseas.

 

“Ultimately, angels are a predominant fixture in art and religion. Their relevance in art has spanned across the ages and their symbolism has remained important in many stories and cultures as well as religions. It is easy to see why this is so, since the idea of a spiritual being protecting and guiding us, is comforting. I believe Angels do indeed exist and are part of a much larger mystical universe of which we may not completely understand” says Ruth.

 

Talk with Your Angels Leaderboard

 

About Jasmin Pedretti Writer: 

 

Jasmin Pedretti wordsmith for Ponderings MagazineJournalism Pre-Grad at Deakin University, Jasmin Pedretti has a collection of passions.  Food, culture, travel, and books spark her joy and this Milan trekking wordsmith would ideally spend time in a Treehouse if she had the choice, eating fish tacos with avocado and mango. Coconut Lattes are her source of life force sustenance along with a good helping of Peanut Butter. With a strong dislike for racists and red Dimetapp medicine, Jasmin adores Bronte and her ability to conjure resentment, happiness, hatred, and love in succession. A gifted writer, we are so pleased to welcome Jasmin to the Ponderings team. Her bright light is a spark invoking joyful wit and laughter, and we are going to call it- this human is going places.

 

 

 

 

 

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The O’Donnell Sisters Guide to Mama’s Survival

The O’Donnell Sisters Guide to Mama’s Survival

The O'Donnell Sister's Guide To Mama's Survival

How has your day been Mama?

Right now, you might have your magnificent offspring on your hip while talking on the phone- stepping over blocks and shooing the dog away from lunchtime spills on the floor. Between ubering, cheffing, counseling, diplomatic rationalizing and smashing the glass ceiling you may well be wiping wee off a toilet seat and mentally preparing a list of everything you NEED to do while pondering Marie Kondo and realising how many things are just NOT sparking your joy… Welcome, you are not alone!

According to research by Griffith University, many women struggle with being time poor and the demands of being a mother, the requirements of being an employee and “getting it all done.” No kidding. I mean, really? “IT ALL” is a broad term to throw into inverted commas people. C’mon already. We are amazing, we are warriors- tell us something we don’t know! But let’s be serious. It can be so hard.

Mother guilt can be heavier than a bag of bricks.

The old phrase “a woman’s work is never done” could not be more ‘en pointe in our western–i-can-do-it-all-because-bras-were-burned-for-me world. Life is busy. Busy women doing many things with as little mistakes as we can manage because the world is watching right?

So, as busy mums how do we lessen the burden and start living our best life? What is this magic that will give us more energy and propel us out of the world of Mombie and into the land of the living and being present?

Now we could sit here and tell you like everyone else to meditate the proverbial out of yourself, however, let’s keep it real. We are modern women with modern needs, and sometimes it’s the little things that put a smile on your face.

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1. DITCH THE GUILT

We are living in a time where women are waving the feminist flag with one hand and holding the washing basket in the other. The load on the mother has increased to include basically EVERYTHING! Working, childcare, home duties, meal prep, bikini waxes or if you are liberated- not- corporate takeovers, Bachelor Degrees in OMG I AM A MOTHER NOW WHEN AM I GOING TO SLEEP AGAIN- to hang on, I love this, this is WORTHY.  Oh and worming the dog.- don’t forget that. Are you Vegan and gluten intolerant or maybe your child has allergies? Put the whiskey down, its ok, we have more… point is- GUILT is too heavy an emotion, it holds a heavy vibration that will zap the energy you are already lacking. So give it a miss and send it on its way. Good vibes Mama, more of this in your life will do nicely.

2: Hire a cleaner!

Good thing I mentioned ditching the guilt first right?!  

Regardless of who does what in your abode, stats from Macquarie University tell us that in Australia 86% of women do the majority of the housework. Would you like some gender inequality with your smashed avo?

Hiring a cleaner may sound like a luxury for some- however, hiring a cleaner even once a fortnight to do the tasks you hate or don’t have time to do (insert scrubbing bathroom grout, the laundry pile, cleaning the oven) is a winner.  By outsourcing, you are giving yourself time to do less obligatory tasks and allow more meaningful moments. Take time for yourself, make memories with your kids (the fun ones!) and the job still gets done. Can’t afford it? Try and work it into your budget by ditching the lattes and takeouts- substituting things in your budget to make life easier may become your next best trick. $35 every two weeks for an hour of those jobs might be a life-changer.


planet spectrum

3. Organisation time

There is no way we can remember everything. Keep an electronic diary on your smartphone with alerts and reminders. Keeping track of events, library day, bills, appointments, due payments. It’s like having a free PA that reminds us of the important stuff. Have you checked out Google Personal Assistant? If not.. do this today!  If you make time to check your phone once a day, you won’t find yourself red-faced in the school car park- it is not Crazy Hair Day and your child is walking around the playground looking like Johnny Rotten.

4. Learn to say NO.

You don’t have to explain yourself to anybody. No is a lovely word when it is used in the right context and when it comes to you Mama, saying No sometimes can be your saving grace. It might be no to catching up, no to attending something, a party, or a favor. You and your children come first. There is a time in adulthood when we need to conserve our energy for the important things. Those moments are when we bravely decide to sidestep the “have to’s” and permit ourselves to opt out. And if you pause and think about it- who deserves the best of you? You. What you take from one bucket you give to another.

Everyone else can wait, and if they don’t understand that it might be time to rethink who your tribe is.

Leaderboard Ponderings Australia

5. Take 10 minutes.

When the kids are asleep, or entertained, take ten. Go outside, put your feet on the grass- adorn your head with headphones playing soothing music and thank yourself for being you. Yoga Nidra meditation is really awesome too. Or….if you wanted to you could put on your old Doc Martins and smash out some interpretive dance to Four Non-Blondes. Your own silent disco. Cool doesn’t have a used by date in your loungeroom.

We will leave you with our parting gift of advice: NETFLIX. Gorging pure escapism for the sake of sanity. We are talking Outlander, no limits, no judgment. Soulfood. Mr. Grey is a thing of the past- we’re talking kilts, rolling hills,  a thick Scottish accent, and a sporran. Did someone just say “Sassenach?”

 The O’Donnell Sisters
One is a celebrated author, mother, and teacher, the other is the black sheep and ratbag wordsmithing her way through life with gusto. Kate O’Donnell and her sister Kirsten can often be found reminiscing and talking women’s business over a peppermint tea (Kirsten’s is often laced with Gin) and knitting. Kate knits, Kirsten does not. Mind you Kate does play a mean steel six string guitar and loves a good Xavier Rudd concert. Her big sister loves popcorn, gardening, Hemingway, quantum physics and is quite partial to a pirouette. She is not certifiably crazy but on the quiet- she thinks she might be the OA.

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I Want People To Know Refugees Aren’t Monsters

I Want People To Know Refugees Aren’t Monsters

Rnita Refugee Council of Australia

My name is Rnita, I’m 28 and I have been living in Sydney for just over three years.

I arrived in June 2015 when my family and I were forced to leave our home country Syria because of the war and the danger, uncertainty and suffering we faced every day. Reflecting on the past year and the ongoing situations in Nauru and Manus, I want to share my story and help people understand what it’s really like to be a refugee.

Life in Syria

There are many reasons I left Syria. My family was part of the revolution against the Bashar Assad regime meaning we lived in constant fear for three years. I was a teacher working at a government school and I left the house every day not knowing whether I’d come back. It was commonplace for people who were against the government to be harassed, arrested or just disappear.

One Spring day when I was in the city doing paperwork, a big bomb exploded just like that. I wasn’t hurt but it was shocking to see first-hand how a split second can change your life.

We didn’t have electricity for days and wouldn’t know when we were next going to see light. There was no phone coverage, no food to buy and no clean water so we’d drink from wells. I now look at the Syrian people as 18 million heroes to live like this day in, day out.

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To make matters worse, my father was in prison where he was beaten and tortured because he was against the regime – he wouldn’t stand for unfairness and injustice. He now suffers from a bad back as a long-lasting reminder of his time there. My brother was an activist and was at risk of being imprisoned too so we needed to leave the country desperately.

First, Lebanon

First of all, we moved to Lebanon where we faced a lot of pressure. The Lebanese people treated didn’t accept us as refugees and treated us like garbage. I started having epilepsy seizures because of the stress and one time when it was an emergency, I was turned away by seven different ERs because I was Syrian.

We applied to move to many countries including America, Brazil, places in Europe and Australia where we had extended family. After months of waiting, we were accepted by Australia. The day we found out, I wept for joy. We felt so lucky.

I held on to my phone for 15 hours a day for two months in case they called back about the next stage of the process! It sounds extreme but these phone calls were life changing for my family and me.

planet spectrum

Arriving in Australia

We arrived in Sydney on 18 June 2015 and coincidently the city was celebrating the International Refugee Day. I actually had a panic attack in the airport after hearing all of the English around me. I only knew three words of the language and was totally overwhelmed.

Once the panic had faded, I felt immense relief. I started learning English after being in Australia for 10 days and was blessed that people accepted us with open arms. I wanted to get a job and start paying taxes to repay the country and the Australian people for their hospitality as soon as possible.

Leaderboard Ponderings Australia

Making a difference

I’m now working for the Refugee Council of Australia in a communications role and am also studying at the same time so I can progress in this type of job in the future. The Refugee Council of Australia is the national umbrella body for organisations which help refugees and asylum seekers, advocating for more humane policies based on consultations with real people about their needs.

It’s great because the voices of refugees are heard and we work to show decision makers that we’re not monsters – we’re just normal people. Personally I would like to see detention centres closed. People are treated as less than human in offshore processing.

Through my journey I have learnt to be strong and resilient and am forever grateful for the love the Australian people have shown me. I’m looking forward to continuing my work with the Refugee Council of Australia in 2019 and truly hope it’s a year for better policy and real change for refugees and asylum seekers just like me.

The Refugee Council of Australia advocates for humane, lawful and constructive policies with and for refugees and asylum seekers. It is a small, not-for-profit organisation which relies on donations from the public. To donate, please visit www.refugeecouncil.org.au/donations

 

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A Buddhist Point of View

A Buddhist Point of View

A Buddhist Point of View Drol Kar Buddhist Centre

It goes something like this;

If you are involved in an inter-religion soccer competition and you have the choice, challenge the Buddhists first, they are the ones most likely to offer you the victory. Intended as a joke it conveys a misunderstanding that suggests that they are the easy beats and, in some way, soft and weak. This misapprehension needs to be addressed so a more accurate understanding that Buddhism is tough may be recognized. This toughness is based squarely on the teachings that prescribe the most searing of investigations into self, framed in the unrelenting reality of the situation of our lives.

The Buddhist study demonstrates what at times appears to be contradictory lessons. How can an enhanced familiarity with death improve the quality of our lives, how can a knowing of impermanence improve our enjoyment and how can the act of giving enable true receiving?

The first teachings of the Buddha are the Four Noble Truths, the first of these speaks directly to the suffering nature of our circumstance.

That we are born, age, and suffer sickness and die, a death that will inevitably occur and that its timing is unknown, therefore we are faced with a fundamental uncertainty. This uncertainty underpins every waking moment and with understanding has the potential to enhance that moment, such that it is valued and truly appreciated. How fortunate are we to have such excellent circumstances?

The second of the Noble Truths speaks to the cause of this suffering and for this we must accept responsibility, that it is our misdeeds that give rise to our unhappiness. This immediately strips us one our most preferred defences, that is blame. The family violence perpetrator blames the victim’s behaviour as the cause, the gambler blames bad luck and the protestor blames the other for all manner of suffering. The acceptance that we are responsible enables the consideration of transforming behaviours to better achieve happiness.

Buddha Quote Ponderings Magazine

The teachings on impermanence is yet another example of how a deeper understanding of the true nature of our circumstance can improve the quality of those circumstances.

To purchase a new item is fraught with misunderstanding, the whole concept of new, a misapprehension. What component of the item is new and how quickly does it cease to be new? Our acceptance that all things deteriorate, a deterioration that commences immediately enables us to appreciate the item as it changes, not to be at some time shocked by its deterioration. The new flash car ceases to be new in the misdirected perspective only when it’s scratched or damaged. Once again, the greater the understanding of the true nature of us and the things we surround ourselves with the greater our capacity to find happiness.

The next aspect for consideration is the insistence that the Buddhist practice is elaborated by introspection, an honest look at self. The self that is self-centred, discriminative and is infused with feeling, such that every awareness registers as happy, unhappy or neutral and our responses to the feeling that can provoke love, consideration or envy, anger, jealousy and a whole range of thoughts, speech and behaviours.

planet spectrum

What makes Buddhism tough is the honesty of looking and adjusting to live in the real world, that sees our reliance on all others and one in which we take responsibility for the consequence of our actions. Working to make the intention of those actions to benefit all others so we experience a more enduring quality of happiness.

by David Mayer

Drol Kar Buddhist Centre

Drol Kar Buddhist Centre was initially established in 1999 by Geshe Sonam Thargye and a group of his students in Geelong. It is a not for profit Incorporated Association with the sole purpose of providing Tibetan Buddhist teachings, dharma practice, meditation and study, in the Mahayana tradition.

Contact:

Drol Kar Buddhist Centre

Telephone: 03 52661788

Email: info@drolkarbuddhistcentre.org.au

Website:www.drolkarbuddhistcentre.org.au

 

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 In December you will receive your special limited Edition Ponderings Anthology Magazine delivered to your home address. Some of the country’s best writers and the stories of of some our bravest, most courageous and interesting fellow humans selected and printed in a high quality eco friendly magazine.

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