Πέμπτη 28 Φεβρουαρίου 2013

Daily Love Ritual: Show Some Passion

Express your enthusiasm

Passion is something you must be willing to express if you want to inspire others.  
You can gain a lot of influence just by publicly expressing that you are excited and passionate about a topic.

  Expressive passion is contagious because of the curiosity it stirs in others.  You’ll get people wondering why you love what you love so much.  Naturally, some of them will take the time necessary to understand what it is about the topic that moves you.

 And we ALL can do that. In small and big ways. None may be better or more important than another !

Τετάρτη 27 Φεβρουαρίου 2013

Wednesday Story: The Atheist and the Bear

This story is not mine, just a nice old joke I thought I'd share here;

The Atheist and the Bear

An atheist was taking a walk through the woods. 'What majestic trees! What powerful rivers! What beautiful animals!', he said to himself. 
As he continued walking alongside the river he heard a rustling in the bushes. Turning to look, he saw an enormous bear charging towards him. 
He ran as fast as he could up the path. Looking over his shoulder he saw that the bear was closing in on him. His heart was pumping frantically and he tried to run even faster. 
He tripped and fell on the ground. He rolled over to pick himself up but saw the bear raising his paw to take a swipe at him.
At that instant the atheist cried out: 'Oh my God!...'
Time stopped.
The bear froze.
The forest was silent.
It was then that a bright light shone upon the man and a voice came out of the sky saying:
'You deny my existence for all of these years, teach others I don't exist and even credit creation to a cosmic accident.
Do you expect me to help you out of this predicament? Am I to count you as a believer?'
The atheist looked directly into the light.
'It would be hypocritical of me to suddenly ask you to treat me as a Christian now, but perhaps, could you make the BEAR a Christian?'
'Very well, 'said the voice. The light went out, and the sounds of the forest resumed.
And then the bear lowered his paw, bowed his head and spoke: 'Lord, bless this food which I am about to receive and for which I am truly thankful, Amen.'

Τρίτη 26 Φεβρουαρίου 2013

Daily Love Ritual: How to Be More Charming

Here is the secret to being more charming:

 Stop caring about what other people think of you!

Everybody is already judging you anyway. People are always making judgments about you!So be it. Can you control this? Hell, no! Well, some may think that if they keep obsessing over it, they might eventually be doing the ‘right’ thing. You cannot do the ‘right thing’ by others all the time.
Sometimes, you may just happen to annoy people accidentally. It happens to everybody. No-one is immune to this!
For some, no matter WHAT you do, they’ll just choose to hate you anyway. And it has nothing to do with you. It has everything to do with them.
In effect, if you don’t want to be judged, just do nothing! Strive for nothing! Be nothing, and think nothing. Just be completely useless! But guess what, people will judge you for that, too!! Surprise! 
If you know other people’s judgments ultimately don’t make a difference to what you do, then you’re well on your way to becoming charming.

Κυριακή 24 Φεβρουαρίου 2013

Daily Love Ritual: Read Something Inspiring

“Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at 20 or 80. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young.” Henry Ford

You should regularly be reading things that inspire you to take that extra step, Find some bloggers that inspire you and fill your mind with bright ideas and thoughts every day. Discover what you may stumble upon when you StumbleUpon!

Whenever you want to fit something into your life that you’d like to do but never get around to, it’s worth scheduling it..At the start of this year I made a decision that I want to commit to myself to reading something inspirational every day for an hour. I’m already a bit of a nerd, so this wasn’t really an alien concept for me, however I quickly realized that in order for me to make inspiring myself a priority in my life – I would have to make it into a daily habit.

Go read something inspiring! Make your brain a cool place to hang out!

Daily Love Ritual: Peace

Nothing can bring you peace but yourself


How do you define peace? 

- Peace is hearing the soft click of my camera as I snap away.  

-Peace is curling up on my couch, with fuzzy socks on and a big flannel blanket draped around me in the dead of winter.

-Peace is reading a book on weekend mornings, huddled in my bed.

-Peace is mixing butter and sugar together, feeling the ingredients cream together.


Now your turn. What's your definition of peace?

  Tell yourself, “I am doing the best I can with what I have in this moment.  And that is all I can expect of anyone, including me.”  


Be proud of everything that you do, even your mistakes.  Because even mistakes mean you’re trying.


 Be your own peace of mind




Σάββατο 23 Φεβρουαρίου 2013

Daily Love Ritual: Let Go

Take a deep deep breath and let it go

Every moment is a chance to let go and feel peaceful. 

-Let go of frustrations with yourself and your life.

 -Let go of anger and bitterness over a past event.

-Let go of a past relationship.

-Let go of stress about an outcome that's important to you.

Just let it go....

Παρασκευή 22 Φεβρουαρίου 2013

Πέμπτη 21 Φεβρουαρίου 2013

Daily Love Ritual: Make a Wish

-Wish on the right time of the day
Make wishes on your birthdayYes, your birthday comes only once a year but did you also know it comes twice a day? Like say your birthday is May 23 you would make a wish at 5:23 am or 5:23 pm. If it's August 15 it would be 8:15. So make sure you know which number your birthday month is. January is the 1st,

  -Wish on anything and everything!
This means from shooting stars to a piece of chocolate

    -Write it down on paper
The more clearly you can define the wish, the more likely you are to get it. Write it down in ful and keep it somewhere safe

  -Forget about it
and wait for your wish to come true

Τετάρτη 20 Φεβρουαρίου 2013

Wednesday Sory; The Fairy And The Rainbow

Once upon a time
There was a beautiful little fairy who lived alone in a beautiful garden.
She was in charge of the flowers there;
protecting them, nourishing them,
giving them their beautiful colours in summer,
putting them to sleep in winter.
She had a bed made of flower petals
she bathed in the morning dew,
she sang with the larks and chatted with the bees and the butterflies.
She embraced her garden with her love
 and the garden returned the favor by emracing her with equal love.

One day, the little fairy gazed at the sky
And saw a rainbow
hanging gracefully among the clouds in all its colourful splendor.
"Such a gorgeous sight!" The little fairy thought.
And kept gazing and gazing at its beauty.
Trully, it was a sight worthy of a fairy's attention,
for it satisfied all her longing for beauty and magic.
She started playing with her rainbow,
bathing herself in his glittering arches,
taking onto her transparent wings all his colours one by one.
She had so much fun,
she could hardly believe her luck.
But the rainbow did not last forever…
After the little fairy woke up from her afternoon nap, her rainbow was gone....

"Oh sky, oh trees, oh flowers and bees,
where did my rainbow go?" The little fairy moaned.
She abandoned everything and started a journey,
Searching for the rainbow all over the nearby meadows.
She travelled beyond the horizon
To  places she never knew or heard of before
Days waxed and waned
but the little fairy continued on with her longest journey
She hardly ate…
Or slept…
Or rested….
And soon the little fairy collapsed
Little of her strength remained for her to move…
To go on…
or to live...

Even the wind, who was watching the little fairy all along,
 became worried and came to her to help.
"Beautiful little fairy," He said.
"You who once knew happiness and joy. Why are you so sad?"
The little fairy whispered wearily.
"Because I miss the rainbow"
"The rain has moved and the rainbow now shines on another land.
"But he will return." said the wind
"I could not live without the rainbow! I would rather die."
"You would rather die because the rainbow is gone?"  asked the wind
"Y-Yes." The little fairy stammered.

"Is the rainbow a wicked beast that turned you to this?"asked the wind again.
"No, the rainbow was not a wicked monster,but an incredible sight to behold!"
"If that is what you believed in, little fairy,
then do not turn the rainbow into a wicked beast
that siphoned your life." pleaded the wind.

''Your life did not wither because the rainbow is missing.''
And your life did not wither because of his graceful love either''.
"What you're truly missing and withering from is the love for yourself!"
''Dear beautiful little fairy. As long as you live,
the rainbow shall return once and many times more.''
"You must stay alive, little fairy,
 for you must wait for the rainbow's return and welcome
him with the smile of your true happiness."

With that, the little fairy realized that her weakened state was her own fault.
She picked herself up and stood up.
She slowly flew back to her garden…
And rested…and ate...and took care of her flowers again...
For she did not want the rainbow she loved
to be nothing but the evil being that came to end her life.

She slept in her bed made of flower petals
she bathed in the morning dew,
she sang with the larks and chatted with the bees and the butterflies.

…And smiled, watching the sky changing color.

Some day, the rainbow will return
As long as the little fairy still breathes
She will live to see the beauty of the rainbow many times
and perhaps she will live to see it forever after.

Τρίτη 19 Φεβρουαρίου 2013

Daily Love Ritual

Please repeat after me:

 I am a lucky,plucky, amazing, blazing genious!''

Yes, you are.You are, you are.   Now repeat until you believe it.

                            Love, peace and genius


Δευτέρα 18 Φεβρουαρίου 2013

Daily Love Ritual

Forgive yourself. Then forgive 3 more people today

Forgive yourself for 3 things .

We all make mistakes. Oftentimes, through our actions, somebody gets hurt.

Forgiving yourself is an important act of moving forward and releasing yourself from the past. It's also a way of protecting your health and general well-being.Forgiving yourself is far more challenging than forgiving someone else because you must live with yourself and your thoughts 24/7

Know that despite your flaws, you are okay as you are. Your flaws, rather than making you “less” of a person, are what make you who you are. What you think of as a defect actually makes you far more interesting to others.
You are not perfect. You make mistakes.
But you are also on a path of growth. Your mistakes and failures help you improve. As flawed as you may be, you must accept yourself, flaws and all, if you are to make progress in your life.

 Forgive 3  people today

For every person who has been hard on you, remember that someone was hard on them. Break the chain of harshness by forgiving them. There is a frequent misunderstanding that forgiveness equates to forgetting or condoning. This misunderstanding can lead a person to feel that it is not right to forgive someone because in the process of doing so, it's akin to an act of forgetting or condoning the past wrong. If this is the factor preventing you from forgiving others, keep in mind that forgiveness is a process of remembering in which you continue to remember what happened and you do not condone something that was "wrong" as suddenly "right. 

Τετάρτη 13 Φεβρουαρίου 2013

Wednesday Story: The Wolf And The Vixen


A lonely howl
of pain and despair.
A lonely howl
upon the midnight air.
Drawing closer,
ever near.
We open our eyes
and find a tear.
As we turn to peer
it is suddenly clear.
It was not he who made the sound,
but rather thee that shook the ground.
A tear drifts down
his ebony fur.
He heard us shout
and call him "Cur!"
As the night turns into day.
Each in turn will walk away.
Poem by: Kim Lane

                                            The Wolf And The Vixen

Once apon a time, in an ancient forest there lived a lone wolf in his prime with thick grey-black fur,uptight ears, sharp, pointed muzzle, massive shoulders, ruffs of long hair framing the sides of his faces like sideburns, strong jaws and intelligent, inquiring eyes.

The lone wolf of our story hated being part of a pack and he would rather live and hunt alone. Once he'd grown into an adult wolf, he left the pack he was born in and started wondering alone in the woods. He chose to do so mainly because he hated following the rules of a pack, its hierarchy meant nothing to him. He didnt wish to be the alpha, dominant male but he wouldnt submit to any other male either. He loved hunting alone for food, preying on smaller animals but he also loved the occasional sweet berry and fruit of the forest and so he never went hungry.

Also, he was known for making friends, or even mating with, the most unlikely of campanions, not just outside his pack but also outside his species. He was known to have befriended animals that could have been his prey, such as beavers or deer, to mate with domesticated dogs, with bitches that were too lonely and too eager for his mating services, to steal the alpha female from an alpha male wolf or mate with wildcats that would normally try to tear a wolf to pieces and vice versa.

Then one day the lone wolf was out hunting for his supper for that night because he had not eaten in many nights. He would usually hunt for large animals like deer or mouse, as they could keep him full for many days but today he was so hungry that even a mouse seemed like a good idea. He was horny too, for it was mating season. The smells and the inviting calls from far-off bitches on heat would drive him crazy day and night.

The snow fell softly on his grey ears and his raven hair. "So…Hungry…" He grumbled as he walked along the snowy path. Then he stopped, sniffing the cold, crisp air. His superior nose had located a smaller animal. ''"Dinner!" The wolf mentally jumped for joy. ''Around a mile from here. I can smell blood too and that creature isn't moving, so obviously it's injured. Ha! That's my lucky day! I won't even have to chase my food!''

He chose a path that was easy to follow, taking the same trail as his pray before him, but it was still some time before he reached the injured animal, as the snow was deep and he had to be careful to stay upwind and out of sight of his prey. Lying in the middle of the road was a female fox, a vixen, one of her hind legs trapped in a leg-hold trap, bleeding profusely. She must have been there for quite some time because her red tail and ears were soaked with muddy snow and she seemed too weak to even be alerted by the wolf' s presence. She must have fought hard and long to get her leg out of the trap, but to no avail, so she had given up hope and lain there, awaiting her fate.

Now there was this unwritten law of the forest that stated  that if ever a wolf was to encounter a fox within the forest, that wolf is to kill and eat the fox. If ever a fox was to encounter a wolf in the forest he is to outsmart the wolf (hence all the folk fables about the two).

The wolf drew closer, sniffing the vixen. A beautiful female , luxurious coat of red-golden hair with black tips on her ears and paws. He could sense fear oozing out of every pore of her body, but she neither put up a struggle nor pleaded for her life, as some of his prey would do under such circumstances. She just lay there, heaving up, fixing him with her intense stare, with eyes that had already taken on a feverish glare from losing too much blood.

''It wouldn't do to kill her'', thought the wolf to himself. ''True, I am famished, but I am still a wolf, not a pathetic jackal. I do not prey on the dead, the ill or the injured. Her leg looks infected already, if I eat her, I'll get infected too. I supposed I can mate with her,'' he added to himself, for he was still as horny as hell,  ''but I don't enjoy mating with dead meat, either''.

He was about to turn around and leave, but something in the vixen's stare held him there, transfixed. ''Maybe I can bring her back to health before I feast on her'', he thought again, not wanting to admit that something about this fox made him want to help her . ''If I leave her here, she is as good as dead, because another predator will get to her sooner or later''

He firmly grabbed with his teeth the metal claw that held the vixen's leg, pulled it up and released her. Then he grabbed the fox by the scuff of her neck and started on his homeward journey. He had to cover a 5 mile distance to get to his den and the bleeding fox was heavier than he thought. He usually devoured his victims on the spot or dragged them to a safer spot,but this time it was different. Before reaching his den he had to swim across a considerable stretch of a lake to wash off any scent of the bleeding animal so that other predators wouldn't get to them. He was a keen swimmer and very comfortable in the water, but the lake was almost frozen and his load made it even more difficult to wade through icy water.

At last, tired and frozen to death, he made it to his den, at the end of a long and narrow tunnel at the foot of a rock. It was warm and comfortable there and the wolf put down the vixen and immediately set to work. He tenderly licked the blood from the injured animal's leg and put a special haemostatic herb on the wound to stop the flow of blood.

The vixen looked up at him, surprised.

- ''Aren't you going to eat me?'' she asked.

- ''Why would I want to eat you?'' he answered.

- ''Because you're a wolf and wolves prey on foxes''

- ''Who says I am a wolf?''

- ''You smell like a wolf and you look like a wolf''.

- ''But do I speak like a wolf? ''he asked, in her own language (he was very proficient in other animal's languages, due to the aforementioned fact that he liked making friends with many of them).

- ''Also, wolves are known to hunt in packs. Did you see anyone besides me in the forest?'' he asked her again. ''Not to mention the fact that if I were a wolf , you'd be dead in my belly by now.''

- ''If you are not a wolf, what are you then?''

- ''I am a cross between a dog and a fox'', he lied.

- ''There is no such thing''.

- ''Indeed there is and he is standing right before your eyes, miss vixen''

- ''Where did you learn to disarm a trap like that?''

- ''I once had a hunter's little daughter as a friend''.

The vixen's eyes grew wide open. Befriend humans! Who could ever do that!

- ''What happened to her?'
- ''She grew up, got married and forgotten all about befriending wild beasts like me'', said the wolf, licking the vixen's auburn coat, nibbling gently with his teeth to remove the bloody and muddy notches off it. The vixen was weak and feverish, too weak even to stand up or walk, but after a while she felt warm and comfortable, covered her nose with her long nail and fell asleep.

 Then the wolf slipped out of his den to hunt.

He returned early in the morning, a dead beaver hanging from his mouth.

- ''Eat this, it will make you better,''.He hovered the dead animal in front of the vixen's mouth.

- ''I can't eat'',she protested, head between her paws.

- "Geez, stubborn…" The wolf chewed some beaver meat in his mouth then leaned down to the vixen.

- "You will get better" He grumbled before he forcibly opened the vixen's lips with his mouth  and gave her the food. After a while, the wolf, exhausted, fell asleep curled up next to the vixen. But it wasn't long before he woke up with a jolt. The vixen was  trying to drag herself out of the den and up the tunnel, apparently with little success, as she was still too weak to walk.

- ''Where do you think you're going?'' growled the wolf.

- ''Let me go!'' cried the vixen. ''You dont understand! I have to go now!''

- '' If you tell me why, I'll let you go''.

- ''I ...I have cubs.... an eight mile distance from here...they'll die of hunger if I don't bring them any food..''

The wolf sighed. This creature was too much trouble, it seemed. For a moment he was tempted to let her go. He had done his good deed for the day, she would have to fend for herself now. But the thought of never seeing her again was somehow too painful. He wearily stood up.

- ''I'll carry you there, vixen. You can't even stand up properly, let alone walk an 8-mile distance, not to mention that all those predators around here will be on your scent in no time.

So he draped her over his shoulders and tiredly carried her up to her den, where two very hungry and scared cubs greeted her with shrieks of joy. Then he went hunting again and returned several hours later with two dead rabbits for the hungry cubs.

''Thank you, stranger Fox-Dog'',said the vixen. ''God bless you for your kindness to me and my cubs''.

-'' I'll be coming back to check on you'', promised the wolf and true to his word he would return every couple of days to make sure the vixen was getting better, bringing along food for the little family''.

Within a week the vixen could resume hunting for her family but the wolf still kept coming back to her.

 Even after her cubs grew up to be young foxes themselves and left to seek a life of their own. The two of them, the wolf and the vixen, became close friends, often lying by each other's side, grooming each other and talking about their day, or playing it rough, shouldering one another, bumbing bodies together, flopping tails over each other's backs, leaping up each other's necks.

They both grew very attached to each other. There was only one thing that the wolf wouln't even want to hear about: hunting together with the vixen. No matter how she pleaded with him, he wouldn't have it. '' I hunt alone, little one,'' he would tell her. ''Don't ask for more than I can give you''.

The vixen grew suspiscious and decided to follow the wolf around in one of his nightly hunts.

 It was a beautiful night, lit by a glorious full moon. The wolf set out to hunt, unaware of the fox who kept herself downwind so as not to make her presence felt. After a while several shadows approached the vixen's friend. Five sturdy wolves greeted him.

-Good evening brother,'' said one of the strangers. ''We have located a herd of deer not too far from here. There is plenty of food and fun to be had for all of us. Are you game for it?''

-I'll gladly hunt with your pack tonight, brothers!'' said our wolf. ''Let's go!''

The vixen, appalled, watched all of them, her friend included, throw back their heads and howl to the mood in a true wolf manner.

-''He is a wolf! He lied to me'', wept the vixen. ''How could he? I thought we were friends...''

She tried to find some excuse for his lies, but she couldnt.

The more she thought about it, the more outraged she became.

She even followed her wolf around on a second night just to make sure and she saw him befriendind a wiesel.

''I am not a wolf,'' she heard him tell her. I am a cross between a dog and a wiesel.''
''You smell like a wolf and you look like a wolf'', replied the unsuspecting wiesel.'But do I speak like a wolf? ''he asked, in the wiesel' s own language.

- ''Also, wolves are known to hunt in packs. Did you see anyone besides me in the forest?'' he asked her again. ''Not to mention the fact that if I were a wolf , you'd be dead in my belly by now.''

-''The son of a bitch!'', cried out the vixen, choking with indignation. ''He goes about duping stupid animals like me into believing all sorts of nonsense about him, heaven knows for what reason...''

The next day the vixen confronted her friend.

-''You lied to me'', she accuseed him, eyes blazing with anger. ''You are a wolf, a predator of foxes! Did you honestly think I wouldn't eventually find out? Get out of my sight and never ever set foot on my side of the forest again. I don't want to set eyes on you again for as long as I live....''

She would have none of the wolf's explanations. She sent him away and sat under a tree, weeping miserably.

An owl hooted overhead.

-''Why are you crying, little fox? ''she asked.

The vixen, happy to be able to confide to someone, told her the whole story.

-''Αm I not right to be angry with him? ''she concluded.

The owl shook her head.

-''You think too much with your brain and too little with your heart, vixen.
You are keen on judging people's words, not actions.
True, he lied to you.But wasn't he the one that saved your life? The one that restored you back to health? The one that provided for youand your cubs when noone else would? Being ungrateful is a sin worse than lying.....''

-''But once a wolf, always a wolf! What if he wakes up one day and decides to tear me apart? After all, it is in his nature to do so! ''

-''Life is full of surprises, both good and nasty ones,'' replied the owl. ''You never know what awaits you around the corner. Today might be your last day in this forest. It that were the case, who would you rather spend it with? Replace fear with love and you'll know what course of action to take''.

Time passed but still the vixen could not find it in her heart to trust the wolf again.

Then it was mating season again and the vixen was in heat. Several interested foxes starting frequenting the area around her den and the ancient animal courtship dance began in full swing.

As the vixen stood amidst her suitors, boringly observing their courtship advances, she heard a distant and yet oh-so-familiar growl echoing through the woods. Her heart leapt with joy.

-''My wolf is coming to me'', she enthused.

Within minutes the wolf's intimidating growls and overwhelming presence scattered her fox suitors away. The wolf and the bixen stood there, facing each other, the wind howling through the woods. The wolf ran his tongue along the smaller one's bottom lip. The female mewed to the other's touches and he draped his paws over her shoulders. Their tongues meshed with each other until none of them could control it any longer.

-''We are not supposed to mate,'' said the vixen, breathless as the wolf flopped her on a bed of soft fern.''It is against the laws of nature for two animals of different species to mate''.

-''Says who?'' whispered the wolf in her ear, as he leaned himself over her.

-''Everyone...'', moaned the vixen.

-''Tell them to shut up and watch...'' whispered the wolf again, as he grazed lightly  the silken ,golden fur on her napewith his teeth , to which she replied with a playful bite of her own.

That very night the two of them moved to a secluded part of the forest, where no one would ever find them. Even though the war of the foxes and wolves still remains to this day, the wolf and the vixen of our story stayed together and lived happily ever after.

Oh and if you go up to the forest and walk along the over grown path you will find the cottage they once lived in..

Note: Injured wolves are indeed taken care of and intensely groomed by other pack members, providing both physical and mental comfort to the injured animal.

Τετάρτη 6 Φεβρουαρίου 2013

Wednesday Story: The Island

η ιστορια στα ελληνικα εδω

Once upon a time there was a big beautiful island sourrounded by the vast blue ocean.

There were several villages of local tribesmen along its shores and a thick, tropical forest that covered it almost at its entirety, as well as a tall mountain with an inactive volcano on top.

Nobody would dare go near that mountain, for there was a ferocious,big, evil dragon that lived in one of its caves. And a real, fire-spitting dragon it was, as ancient as the mountain, as evil as devil himself.

That ancient creature would go out to hunt once a week, fly over the villages of the forest and feed on humans or wild animals. But he was getting on in years and he was not as strong, quick or agile as he used to be.The tribesmen would throw fiery arrows at him whenever he ventured near their villages and as for hunting in the forest it was too daunting a task because smaller animals would hide so efficiently that they were practically invisible to him. And beasts like lions or elephants that were part of a pack or herd would attack him all at once whenever he got near any of them.

Yes, feeding was becoming increasingly difficult for the old dragon. Sometimes a month would go by without his having any success in his hunting game.He was constantly hungry and miserable.

One day after he had thought long and hard  about his situation, he decided that it was time for more drastic measures.

He called a meeting with the snakes of the forest with whom he was affiliated with brotherhood ties.

He told them : 'Brothers, you and I are of the same blood. We are reptiles and all warm-blooded creatures are our enemies. You are loathed and feared by them as much as I am. Although we are clever and more worthy than they are, we have to tolerate their stinking presence and dominance over this island. Let us put an end to this. Help me be the master of the forest, and I promise to let you rule over your enemies along with me.

So he explained to them the plan he had conceived.

The forest was governed by a pack of lions who were thought of-by consensus of opinion- as the worthiest of this title because they were in charge of protecting the forest from intruders of all kinds. So the snakes succeeded in arranging a meeting between the lions and the dragon. A few days later a very meek and harmless-looking dragon stood several feet away from a very suspiscious and  quite nervous pack of lions that listened to what he had to say.

'My friends', said the dragon,'I come to you in peace, seeking  to sign a pact with you. I am offering you my protection, guardianship and help in exchange for your friendship. I will be helping this forest thrive. There will be more food for everyone. I will be keeping humans, your worst enemy, away from here. In exchange for my protection, all I am asking of you is to trust me an let me drink water from your river,as the spring in my mountain has gone dry.

The lions promised to think about it. They discussed the dragon's proposal amongst themselves. Several lions voiced their concerns over this pact, stating that  throughout history no dragon was ever up to any good. But those doubting lions were in the minority, plus most of them were found dead -snake poison, some said- over the next few days and the dragon's proposal was voted for and approved of.

For the first time in the history of the island there was a pact between the dragon and the animals of the forest.

At first everything worked out fine, even better than most animals had anticipated.

The dragon started frequenting the forest and his frightening presence drove all huntsmen away, as none of them would dare venture near the forest.

The creatures of the forest breethed a sigh of relief. By getting rid humans, of their worst enemy, life became so much easier for them. What was more,the dragon, true to his word, would regularly come down to the forest, flap his enormous wings over the trees and shake their foliage so that fruit and seeds fell onto the ground like mana from heavens.

The animals had never experienced such abundance of food before. The entire forest ground was covered with food for the herbivorous animals which grew so fat and heavy that predators, in their turn, would not even need to chase them ,their prey would practically fall into their mouth by themselves.

Yes, life became so much easier for all animals ever since they made the pact with the dragon.

Everyone would say so,and of course the snakes were hard at work convincing them of this, crawling around and hissing the dragon's praise to everyone that would listen. The dragon's presence grew to be familiar and comforting to the animals, as he would go about his business carefully dragging his enourmous tail among the trees in the forest.

Then one hot and dry summer's day the dragon set fire to the forest.

He made sure the fire spread evenly throughout the woods by blowing hot blasts of his fiery breath in all directions. When the whole place started resembling a hell's pit, he sat quietly in a corner and waited. As he had anticipated, the lions hurried panting to him.

-'Help us, brother!' they pleaded with him.'You are the only one strong enough to put out this fire! If you don't hurry to our rescue, the whole forest is going to burn down in a matter of hours.'

The dragon was in no hurry to answer.

'You are such careless, worthless creatures', he said. 'You cannot be trusted to be on your own even for one hour without my protection and guidance around here. Yes, I can put out the fire for you. But in return for saving your lives I want to be able to hunt in the forest every day from now on.

Upon hearing this some of the lions stepped back in horror, knowing only too well what this meant. But there was no other option left. If they refused, their forest would burn down and they would all die of hunger. Reluctantly, the accepted the deal.

Then the dragon swallowed gallons and gallons of water from the nearby river and poured it over the fire until it was put out.

The animals breathed a sigh of relief again. And again the snakes were out singing the dragon's praises:  'If it weren't for  him, we'd be all dead. We  owe our dragon our lives, all of us. He is our savior'.

So a new era begun for the animals.

Having the dragon hunting in the forest every day meant a couple of very nasty things for its residents.
For one thing, the dragon's appetite was enormous and he needed a crazy amount of food to satisfy it.Sometimes he would eat an entire herd of antilopes before he felt full. His constant feeding meant that the population of the smaller animals started dwindling dramatically.

This in turn meant that food became scarce for predators as well, not only because of the decrease in the numbers of their prey, but also because no animal felt safe venturing out to hunt any longer and would rather hide -and starve- in their nests. An atmosphere of terror and gloom was constantly looming all over the forest.

The presence of evil was even felt by trees and plants.Due to the fact that the dragon was constantly eating, he needed enormous quantities of water to quench his thirst and so the level of the river in the forest fell dramatically too. As a consequence, plants and trees suffered from lack of water. That, in turn, meant even less food for the animals.

Every living thing was starving. Flocks of birds would migrate to other islands in search of food. Some animals tried to do the same by swimming across the ocean, but most were drawn by the strong currents.

The lions asked to see the dragon again.

'The entire forest is starving', they said. 'We need more food'.

The dragon laughed sarcastically.

'It seems to me that you are not fully aware of your nature, lions', he told them.
'You are predators, just like me. You feed on pathetic, weaker animals who are your prey specifically because they have neither your strength nor your cleverness. Survival of the fitterst, my friends. You are stronger than them, so they end up in your belly.

I am stronger than all of you lions combined, but I will let you live. I will be giving you a daily portion of my prey, on one condition. From now on, you and everyone in this forest must accept me as your lord and master, the sovereign ruler of this entire place, with powerof life and death over each andevery one of you. Everything and everyone here will belong to me now and forever.'

A few lions growled, outraged at such a claim. But again, they were in the minority... Most lions were only too grateful to secure some food for their hungry bellies, so they promptly turned over the entire forest to the dragon's tyranny .

Some time later a group of famished animals consisting of a panther, a bear, a wild boar, a couple of hares, a wolf, a fox, a beaver and a mole had a secret meeting of their own in the middle of the night. The big black panther was presiding over the meeting.

'You fools!' growled the panther.'You dont need any more meetings with the lions to convince them to negotiate with the dragon for better living conditions. The lions are sold over to the dragon. And the dragon is your real enemy, not your savior. He was the one that reduced you to this in the first place. He wants you all dead in his belly. Once he exterminates all of you, he'll fly over to other islandsto do the same there, if they let him. We need to get rid of this monster, or else we are all doomed, you understand?'

'The dragon is strong, much stronger than all of us and we are weak and famished', said the beaver. 'He'll slaughter  us in no time if we try to overcome him.'

A deep, guttural growl came out of the panther's throat.

'Can't you see that you are already dead and done with?

'Whether you physically die tomorrow or in a few months from now makes no difference, because you are aready dead inside! The life you are now leading is not worth being called a life.

You are famished, hungry and thirsty and scared to death all the time, hiding away your shame and fear and cowardice in your nests. This life of yours is worse than death itself, because you are dying a hundred deaths every day. Either you risk to die fighting to get your lives back or go on dying each and every dayuntil it is your turn to be eaten by the dragon and die a dishonorable and miserable death. The choice is yours.'

The black panther ceased talking. Silence fell among her listeners.

The animals were looking at each other. You could tell that the panther's words were working miracles in their hearts and minds.

Then the bear spoke, on behalf of everyone present:

'We are all in. Let us think of the best way to go about it.'

H Ι στορια της Τεταρτης: To Νησι

the story in english here

Μια φορα κι εναν καιρο υπηρχε ενα μεγαλο κι ομορφο νησι καταμεσις του ωκεανου.

Το νησι ηταν ευφορο και πλουσιο, ντυμενο μ'ενα πυκνο, καταπρασινο δασος απ'ακρη σ'ακρη, οι παραλιεςτου ηταν χρυσες κι αμμουδερες και κατα μηκος τους ειχαν χτισει οι ιθαγενεις τα χωρια τους. Υπηρχε κι ενα ψηλο βουνο μ'ενα σβησμενο ηφαιστιο στην κορυφη του. Εκει ζουσε  ενας κακος και μοχθηρος δρακος με φτερα που ξερνουσε φωτια και ειχε μια ψυχη κακια και μοχθηρη, διαβολος ιδιος.

Το αρχαιο αυτο ερπετο εβγαινε για κυνηγι μια φορα στις επτα μερες κι αρπαζε κανενα βοδι ή ανθρωπο ή κανενα αγριο θεριό για να χορτασει την πεινα του. Αλλα δρακος-ξεδρακος, ειχε αρχισει πια να γερναει, η οξεια οραση του και οι φοβερες δυναμεις του τον εγκαταλειπανε καθε μερα και περισσοτερο ( οχι ομως και η κακίατου και η πονηρια του). Οι ιθαγενειςδεν τον αφηνανε σε χλωρο κλαρι, μολις εκανε να πεταξει πανω απο τα χωρια τους, μαζευοντουσαν ολοι μαζι και με αγριες κραυγες, βρισιες ,πυρακτωμενες πετρες και δηλητηριασμενα βελη τον διωχνανε οπου φυγει-φυγει. Κι ουτε που του ηταν πια ευκολο να κυνηγαει μεσα στο δασος, αφου τα μικροτερα ζωα κρυβοτανε τελεια μεσα στις πυκνες φυλλωσιες ενω τα μεγαλυτερα οπως οι ελεφαντες και τα λιονταρια που κυνηγουσαν σε κοπαδια, οταν τον  εντοπιζαν, του επιτιθονταν ολα μαζι σαν ενα σωμα με αποτελεσμα να κινδυνευει ακομα κι η ζωη του.

Ναι, το κυνηγι ειχε πια καταντησει μαρτυριο σωστο για το γερο-δρακο. Υπηρχαν φορες που εμενε βδομαδες ολοκληρες θεονηστικος κι ειχε καταντησει-τι ξεπεσμος!- να τρωει θαμνους και πουρναρια. Μια μερα αποφασισε πως φτανει πια, ηταν καιρος να παρει πιο δραστικα μετρα. Καθησε κατω κι εβαλε το μυαλο του να δουλεψει κι υστερα συγκαλεσε συσκεψη με τα φιδια του δασους με τα οποια διατηρουσε ανεκαθεν δεσμους φιλιας κι αλληλεγγυης.

'Αδερφια μου,' τους ειπε ο δρακος. 'Ξερετε βεβαια οτι εσεις κι εγω εχουμετο ιδιο αιμα. Εμεις τα ερπετα ειμαστε πολυ πιο εξυπνα κι αξια πλασματα απο ολα τα υπολοιπα βρωμερα θερμοαιμα οντα που λερωνουν τη γη με την αθλια υπαρξη τους. Μας φοβουνται και μας σιχαινονται επειδη μας ζηλευουν κι εμεις ειμαστε υποχρεωμενοι να ανεχομαστε την αλλαζονεια τους. Ηρθε ομως πια η ωρα να παρουμε τη θεση που δικαιωματικα μας ανηκει σ'αυτο το νησι. Βοηθηστε με να γινω ο αφεντης και κυριαρχος του δασους και σας υποσχομαι να συγκυβερνησετε μαζι μου.'

Αφου ετσι εξασφαλισε τη βοηθεια των φιδιων,ο δρακος τα διεταξε να καταφερουν να ορισουν μια συναντηση αναμεσα στον ιδιο καιτα λιονταρια του δασους.

Τα λιονταρια κατα γενικη συναινεση ηταν οι αρχοντεςτου δασους λογω δυναμης και  αξιοσυνης και μεσα στα καθηκοντα τους ως αρχοντες περιλαμβανονταν και η  προστασια του δασους απο καθε ειδους εισβολη.

Η συναντηση κανονιστηκε κι ενα μεγαλο κοπαδια απο ανησυχα κι ολο υποψια αιλουροειδη μαζευτηκε στον ορισμενο τοπο και χρονο για ν' ακουσει οσα ειχε να τους πει ο δρακος.

'Φιλοι μου,' εκανε εκεινος με υφος βαρυσημαντο κι ολο γαλιφιά, 'ερχομαι κοντα σας με ειρηνικες προθεσεις για νας προσφερω την φιλία και την προστασια μου. Σας προσφερω συμμαχια μαζι μου, το δυνατωτερο πλασμα του νησιου αυτου, και σας υποσχομαι να προστατευω το δασος σας απο καθε κακο, να φερω ταξη, ηρεμια και, κυριως, μπολικο φαγητο. Το μονο που σας ζητω σαν ανταλλαγμα ειναι καπου-καπου να εχω προσβαση στο νερο του ποταμου σας, επειδη η πηγη στο δικο μου βουνο κοντευει να στερεψει.'

Τα λιονταρια ζητησαν χρονο για να το σκεφτουνε. Μερικα απο αυτα, τα πιο θερμοαιμα, βραχνιασαν να προειδοποιουν οτι συμμαχια με δρακο δε μπορει ποτε να βγει σε καλο. Αυτοι ομως οι αντιρρησιες ητανε η μειοψηφια, άσε που ενας προς εναν βρεθηκαν ψοφια μεσα στις επομενες μερες -καποιοι μιλησαν για δηλητηριο φιδιου- κι ετσι η προταση του δρακου ψηφιστηκε και εγκριθηκε κατα πλειοψηφιαν.

Ετσι, για πρωτη φορα τα πλασματα του δασους κλεισανε συμμαχια με τον κακο δρακο...

Στην αρχη ολα πηγαινανε ρολόι.

Ο δρακος, πιστος στο λογο του, περιπολουσε τακτικα γυρω απο το δασος κι ετσι οι ανθρωποι δεν τολμουσαν πια να ερθουν να κυνηγησουν εκει.

Απαλλαγμενα απο εναν απο τους μεγαλυτερουςεχθρους του, τον ανθρωπο, τα ζωα ζουσαν πολυ πιο ηρεμα και ασφαλη. Επιπλεον  ο δρακος ερχοταν τακτικα πανω απο το δασος, χτυπουσε με τις τεραστιες φτερουγες του τα κλαδια των δεντρων κι εριχνε στο εδαφος ολους τους καρπους και τα φρουτα , σαν μανα εξ ουρανου, για να τραφουν τα μικροτερα ζωα.
Τετοια αφθονία δεν την ειχαν τα ζωντανα ματαδει.Tα χορτοφαγα εβρισκαν καθημερινα το εδαφος στρωμενο με καθε λογης καλουδια και τρογανε μεχρι να σκασουν, μεχρι που γινανε χοντρα και νωθρα απο την καλοπεραση.Tα σαρκοφαγα, με τη σειρα τους, αρκουσε να κανουν εναν απλο γυρο και η λεια τους επεφτε, αποβλακωμενη απο το πολυ φαγητο, σχεδον απο μονη της στο στομα τους,

Ναι, η ζωη ηταν πια καλυτερη για ολους, αυτο το λεγανε ολοι, οχι μονο τα φιδια που γυρναγανε καθημερινα στο δασος κι αλλη δουλειαδεν κανανε απο το να ψελνουνε δεξια κι αριστερα τα καλα της ζωης με το δρακο.

Κι ενα αποπνικτικα καυτο απογευμα του καλοκαιριουο δρακος πηγε κι εβαλε φωτια στο δασος.

Φροντισε κιολας να τη σκορπισει καλα-καλα προς ολες τις κατευθυνες φυσωντας τις φλογες με την πυρακτωμενη του ανασα κι οταν το δασος αρχισε να μεταμορφωνεται σε πυρινη λαιλαπα εκατσε κατω ησυχα ησυχα και περιμενε.

Οπως το ειχε φανταστει πολυ γρηγορα μια αντιπροσωπεια λιονταριων ηρθε ασθμαινοντας να τον βρει.

'Αδερφε, καιγομαστε! Βοηθησε μας, μονο εσυ εχεις τη δυναμη να σβησεις τη φωτια', τον ικετεψαν.

Τα ματια του δρακου αστραφταν απο κακια καθως τους απαντησε ηρεμα-ηρεμα:

'Ειστε τα πιο ανοητα κι ανικαα πλασματα που εχω ποτε συναντησει.Δε μπορειτε ουτε μια ωρα να μεινετε μονοι σας χωρις εμενα διχως να τα σκατωσετε. Ποιος σας φταιει που ειστε αμελεις κι απροσεκτοι κι αφησατε να συμβει κατι τετοιο? Ναι, μπορω να σας σνβησω τη φωτια. Αλλα γι'ανταλλαγμα απο δω και περα θα κυνηγαω κι εγω στο δασος καθε μερα''

Καποια απο τα λιονταρια που αντιληφθηκαν το φρικτο νοημα των λογων του πισωπατησαν εντρομα ακουγοντας τον.Μα δεν εμοιαζε να υπαρχει αλλη επιλογη. Η φωτια κινδυνευε να αφανισει ολοκληρο το δασος. Ετσι δεχτηκαν και παλι την προταση του δρακου.

Το τεραστιο θεριό ρουφηξε εγαλες ποσοτητες νερου μεσα στα απυθμενα σαγονια του κι υστερααπο καποια πηγαινε-ελα καταβρεξε ολο το δασος κι εσβησε τη φωτια.

Τα ζωα ανασανανε  με ανακουφιση που γλυτωσανε το τομαρι τους. Και τα φιδια πιασανε παλι δουλεια να υμνουν τη μεγαλοψυχια του δρακου, που ''ειναι ο σωτηρας μας, αν δεν υπηρχε αυτος θα ειχαμε ολοι καει ζωντανοι.''

Ετσι ξεκινησε μια νεα εποχη για το δασος, η εποχη της 'εποπτειας' του δρακου, οπως την αποκαλουσε ο ιδιος.

Το να εχεις ομως ενα δρακο να κυνηγαει στο δασος σου δεν ηταν υποθεση παιξε-γελασε κι ειχε φοβερες κι απροβλεπτες συνεπειες για ολους. Kατ'αρχην η ορεξη του δρακου ηταν το ιδιο τρομακτικη με τις ποσοτητες φαγηρτου που καρταναλωνε σε καθημερινη βαση για να τραφει. Kαθως κυνηγουσε πια ενομποδιστος μεσα στο δασος, αφανιζε ολοκληρα κοπαδια ζωων μεσα σε μια και μονη μερα. Κανεις δεν ενοιωθε πια ασφαλης . Τα ζωα αρχισαν να κρυβονται ολημερις μεσα στις φωλιες τους για να σωθουν απο τον αδηφαγο 'συμμαχο'. Ολα αδυνατισαν κι αποδεκατιστηκαν συστηματικα.

Τα σαρκοφαγα εμειναν κι αυτα χωρις φαγητο καθως η λεια τους δεν εβγαινε απο την κρυψωνα της ουτε για νερο. Ασε που οι απιστευτες ποσοτητες νερου, πραγμα που με τη σειρα του εκανε τη χλωριδα ολοκληρου του νησιου να υποφερει με αποτελεσμα ακομα λιγοτερη τροφη για ολους. Μια βαρια ατμοσφαιρα τρομου και φρικης ηρθε κι εγκατασταθηκε πανω απο το αλλοτινα χαρουμενο δασος.

Oλοκληρα κοπαδια πουλιων αρχισαν να μεταναστευουν σε αλλα νησια.Μερικα ζωα προσπαθησαν να κανουν το ιδιο κολυμπωντας αλλα τα περισσοτερα πνιγηκαν απο τα ισχυρα ρευματα του ωκεανου.

Τα λιονταρια πηγανε παλι να βρουνε το δρακο.

''Χρειαζοματε φαγητο', του ειπανε. Ολο το δασος πεθαινει της πεινας. Βοηθησε μας.'

Τα ματια του δρακου στενεψανε απο κακια καθως γελασε χαιρεκακα.

''Tι ειδους αρπακτικα εισαστε εσεις? Δεν το καταλαβατε ακομα οτι εδω ισχυει ο νομος της ζουγκλας? O ισχυροτερος επιβιωνει, ο αδυναμος κρικος γινεται η τροφη του.Oπως κανεις σας δε λυπαται το θυμα του οταν το καταβροχθιζει, ετσι ουτε κι εγω μπορω βεβαια να σας λυπηθω, μια που ειμαι ο δυνατωτερος ολων σας και στην κορυφη της τροφικης αλυσσιδας. Ωστοσο, ειμαι διατεθειμενος να σας λυπηθω και να σας κανω μια καλη συμφωνια:  Θα δινω σε σας τα λιονταρια ενα μεριδιο τροφηςγια να μην πεθανετε της πεινας οπως ολοι οι υπολοιποι.. Κ ιεσεις θα με αναγνωρισετε ως απολυτο κυριαρχο, αφεντη κι εξουσιαστη του δασους με δικαιοδοσια ζωης και θανατου πανω σε καθε ζωντανο κι αψυχο πλασμα απο τωρα και για παντα'.

Καποια λιονταρια βρυχηθηκαν αγανακτισμενα μπροστα στην προταση της εσχάτης προδοσιας, μα και παλι βρεθηκαν στη μειοψηφια. Τα περισσοτερα πηδηξαν απο τη χαρα τουςπου θαειχαν την ευκαιρια να σωσουν το αθλιο τομαρι τους κι ετσι παρεδωσαν αμαχητι ολοκληρο το δασος στην τυραννεία του μοχθηρου δασους.

Λιγο καιρο αργοτερα μια παραξενη ομαδα απο απισχνασμενα ζωα πυ αποτελουνταν απο enan panuhra, μια αρκουδα, εναν αγριοχειρο, ενα λυκο, μια αλεπου, κανα δυο λαγους, εναν καστορα κι εναν τυφλοποντικα συγκαλεσε μυστικη συνελευση εν τω μεσω της νυκτος.

Ο μαυρος πανθηρος μιλαγε με παθος:

''Aνοητα ζωα, αυτο που χρειαζομαστε δεν ειναι να πεισετε τα λιονταρια να διαπραγματευτουν με το δρακο για καλυτερες συνθηκες διαβιωσης. Ο δρακος ειναι ο εχθρος μας, οχι ο σωτηρας μας και τα λιονταρια εχουνε πουληθει σ'αυτον. Kι αυτος δε θα σταματησει να σας κυνηγαει μεχρι να καταληξετε ολοι σαςστην κοιλια του. Μολις σαςαφανισει ολους, θα πεταξει σεαλλο νησι, για να κανει κι εκει τα ιδια, αν τον αφησσουν.Πρεπει να βρουμε τροπο να τον βγαλουμε απο τη μεση, αλλιως ειμαστε ολοι καταδικασμενοι''

Μιλησε ο καστορας:

''O δρακος ειναι πανισχυρος, τι μπορουμε να κανουμε εμεις τα αδυναμα ζωα μπροστα του? θα μας κανει μια χαψια πριν προλαβουμε να του κανουμε κακο.''

Ο πανθηρας εβγαλε εναν βρυχηθμο αγανακτησης.

''Μα ειστε ηδη τελειωμενοι, φιλοι μου, τελειωμενοι και ψοφιοι εδω και καιρο.Το αν θα πεθανετε στ'αληθεια τωρα ή λιγο πιο μετα δεν εχει σημασια, επειδη η ζωη που κανετε δεν αξιζει να λεγεται πια ζωη. Εισαστε θαμμενοι νεκροζώντανοι στις σπηλιες σας και τρεμετε το αυριο, περιμενοντας ποτε θα ερθει η σειρα σας να σας καταπιει το τερας. Μονο αν ριψοκινδυνευσετε να χασετε τη ζωη σας για να κερδισετε πισω ο,τι σας εκλεψαν θα μπορεσετε να νικησετε. Νικειστε το φοβο και την αδρανεια σας ή μεινετε να περιμενετε το ατιμωτικο σας τελος! Η επιλογη δικη σας.'

Ο πανθηρας σιωπησε. Το ιδιο και τα ζωα.

Μεσα στην απολυτη σιωπη ομως ενιωθε κανεις τα λογια του πανθηρα να απεργαζονται θαυματα στο μυαλο και την καρδια ττων εξαντλημενων ζωων.

Στο τελος μιλησε η αρκουδα εκ μερους ολων.

''Ειμαστε ολοι μεσα. Ας οργανωθουμε''