SHORTLY AFTER 2020’s presidential election, I was struck by a squirrel image while scrolling through the hubbub of my social feed. It’s important to note that my feed is usually filled with members of the Rodentia order, so a squirrel itself was not surprising. What caught my eye was that this furball seemed striped in wide swaths of alternating red and blue. After watching endless hours of election graphics carving the United States up into categories of these two colors, I thought the resemblance was uncanny. I wanted to know more about this zany-looking critter.
Malabar Giant Squirrels, also known as Indian Giant Squirrels, have a stunning multicolored body and can grow up to three feet in length. Their underbody and front legs are tan and their head brown or beige. Between their ears a white spot often appears, giving them the hint of a third eye. The color of the rest of their fur varies by subspecies.
Admittedly, without Instagram filters the Malabar Giant Squirrel is more maroon-reddish and blackish than red and blue, but light sometimes seems to illuminate just what you need to see.
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You’ve envisioned it for ages—escaping for a retreat with a group of dear friends. You’re laughing together in terry-cloth robes and mud masks. Or maybe your gang is at a wilderness retreat, journaling around a fire pit. Perhaps your group is together deepening a faith practice, experiencing a festival, or traveling in an exotic locale. But getting your squad off on a retreat can easily become a logistical challenge (ever heard the term herding cats?). Here are six secrets for turning a “maybe someday” dream into a concrete, and pleasurable, reality.
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The rustic, historic property once offered hot mineral soaks in private rooms with big clawfoot tubs and one of the best and largest wood-burning saunas in the States. Days frolicking between the steaming hot mineral baths, a cold creek, and the sauna—and nights spent without phone or wifi in a simple cabin in the woods. Hot tea, a warm fire, and a cool stack of magazines: My kind of bliss.
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FLASHBACK: It’s December 31, 1999. Flushed from dancing, I’m perched on the steps of the Hilton Addis Ababa in Ethiopia, filled with anxiety about Y2K and the chaotic world around me.
STAYING IN FOR A VIRTUAL RETREAT?
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Women & Spirituality
MIRABAI BUSH is the author of Working With Mindfulness, co-creator of Google’s “Search Inside Yourself” program, cofounder of the Center for Contemplative Mind and Society and a founding board member of the Seva Foundation. She teaches contemplative practices, and has facilitated retreats, workshops and courses on spirit and action for over 20 years. To commemorate International Women’s Day, Mirabai spoke with PURNIMA RAMAKRISHNAN on March 6, 2021.
AUSTRALIA PLANS TO SPEND $417M ON HYDROGEN, CARBON CAPTURE
Australia’s prime minister has proposed spending an extra 539 million Australian dollars ($417 million) on hydrogen and carbon sequestration projects, seeking to burnish his government’s green credentials ahead of a climate summit to be hosted by President Joe Biden.
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China, India, and the U.S. are vying to influence the selection of the next Dalai Lama
An Exclusive Interview With Nandakumar Narasimhan
The Little Red Train
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YOU KNOW YOU’RE SOMEBODY WHEN YOU’VE APPEARED ON AN INDIAN DANGAL POSTER — IN OTHER WORDS, IN A WRESTLING ADVERTISEMENT.
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I was happily married, happily employed, just plain happy. Until the accident