Thursday, July 28, 2016

About Inner Beauty

You often hear, "what you feel on the inside translates to the outside." The beauty that flows throughout you relates to how you carry yourself. If you are feeling fabulous, it shows through your smile and carries through to your posture.

I never used to wear makeup before, but I do now. When I was going through chemotherapy and radiation, I felt terrible. One day, a few of us ladies went to a makeup session given by the local hospital; the American Cancer Society furnished the makeup for cancer patients. I felt terrible, but just putting on a little bit of makeup made me feel so much better about myself. The other women and I shared stories and laughter, and it was truly an uplifting experience. It would have been so much easier to just pull the covers over my head and lay in bed, but I forced myself to go, and I'm so glad I did.

Beauty is what you feel; sure we can enhance our beauty by expressing ourselves through different styles or by simply putting on a favorite fragrance. Ultimately what you feel on the inside will shine through on the outside. Beauty lies in all shapes, sizes, colors and nationalities. There is not one standard for beauty. Beauty is a state of being; it is how you feel inside portraying on the outside. The color of your skin is your beauty, the size that you are is your beauty and the way you carry yourself is your beauty.

You don't have to spend a lot of money to be beautiful; you are enhancing the beauty that you already have. You have to be comfortable with who you are as a person and that beauty will shine through.

Beauty on the inside goes hand in hand with the beauty you reflect on the outside. If you feel kind of blah, you can put makeup on and wear a nice outfit and it will make you feel better because you look better. Putting on your favorite shoes or adding the perfect accessories to your outfit will put a big smile on your face. You are enhancing the beauty that you already possess.

Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder. There is beauty everywhere and in everyone, it is up to you to see it. As a society who is obsessed with beauty we tend to stray away from natural beauty. We sometimes tend to examine ourselves so thoroughly that our list of flaws continues to grow. They are not flaws; it is the body that God gave us and he made all of us different. Appreciate the body you are given, nourish it, keep it fit and it will last a long time. Some will run out and have an operation to fix something while others are fine with the same thing. It is a personal choice and it all reflects on how we feel about ourselves. There is no right or wrong, it is about what makes you happy.

My name is Tami Principe; I created my website, http://www.WomensRecreation.com, as a source of hope and encouragement to others. I am a Motivational Speaker, Author, Blogger, Radio Talk Show Host, and a Breast Cancer Survivor. I am also the author of four books, "Walk in Peace," & "My Soulful Journey," & "The Wishing Well," and "The Green Rabbit." My radio show is http://www.BlogTalkRadio.com/womensrecreation, feel free to listen to the archives.
 

Saturday, July 23, 2016

The Psychology of Beauty

On the different theories of beauty and the role of perception in the judgment of beauty.

The psychology of beauty is complex not just because the concept of beauty is as yet undefined but also because it is largely true that beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder or how individuals perceive other people or things. Beauty can be attributed to everything that appeals to our senses and all objects that are compatible with our personal preferences. Beauty as we perceive it is largely a projection of our needs and beautiful objects or persons simply cater to our idealizations or fancies and reflect our natural need to relate to all that is appealing. Human beings are controlled by the senses and we tend to repeat processes or experiences that appeal to the senses, that are harmonious and have structure and form. Beauty appeals to our sense of sight so there is a preference for repeating the experience of beauty.

But how do we perceive beauty and why are some people or objects considered more beautiful than some others? Psychological tests have considered symmetry and proportion as extremely important in the perception of beauty. Beauty is also more holistic than specific as a beautiful object is judged as a whole package that is appealing rather than judged on the basis of its parts. Freudian or psychoanalytic explanations of beauty are scarce but psychoanalytic concepts could be used to consider our judgment of beauty as a projection or wish fulfillment so people attractive to us are typically ones who we admire or who in some way represent our own desires and fancies. Psychoanalysis can also be compatible with the idea that beauty is preferential perception when there are similarities with a parent. 

Most people are also considered beautiful when they have baby-faced features or a particular innocence in their faces. Beauty can also be culturally motivated so in certain eastern cultures women with beautiful feet are considered attractive whereas in the Victorian era in England, women with elegance and grace were the ones with smooth neck and tiny waist and modern western women are judged on the basis of their breasts, bottom and lips. The perception of beauty can change and studies have found that women may prefer softer features of men during particular times and more masculine features at other times depending on the stage of their reproductive cycle. So there are actually several theories of beauty which are discussed here one by one.

1. Beauty as Symmetry and Proportion - As you might have noticed in case of ancient architectural marvels, symmetry was extremely important. Whether it was the great pyramids in Egypt or the architectural wonders in Greece, symmetry and perfect dimensions played an important part in the history of aesthetics. This whole idea of symmetry also applies to every other object or person that we perceive so a person with perfectly symmetrical face would also be considered as an epitome of physical perfection. Perfectly shaped and sharp features are attractive to most people and the most beautiful faces are the ones which have very proportionate features. The same applies to the body and the low waist to hip ratio giving a curvy lower part of the body in women is considered more attractive than a straight shape which usually does not indicate fertility. 

As human beings are finally looking for evolutionary advantage women with a curvy shapes are considered more fertile and are thus more attractive to men. Similarly men with athletic and muscular bodies are attractive to women. However many men might not prefer extremely voluptuous or curvy women just like many women may not prefer extremely muscular men. This suggests that proportion is also about moderation or maybe human beings are more comfortable with certain moderation in what they perceive rather than excess and that way the perception of beauty may even depend on some sort of social programming.

2. Beauty as a whole rather than parts - When we consider something beautiful, we usually try to take a broad holistic view. Thus when we consider a rose as beautiful, we are less attentive towards each petal and consider the symmetry of the flower as a whole. In a similar manner, when we consider the face of a man or a woman, beauty is the composite quality that seems to represent the entire face of the individual rather than the parts or particular features. Our senses prefer a holistic view and perception of things and thus a person is considered attractive or beautiful only when all features add up to something really pleasant to the senses.

3. Beauty as projection and wish fulfillment - The perception of beauty is not only a mental process but also a deeply personal one. If say your lover has blonde hair, you might find other blonde haired people very attractive because you tend to project your inner fancies on to other people. The 'he' looks like my lover or 'she' looks like my lover is a common syndrome in our perception of beauty and people who are remotely similar to our mates are suddenly more beautiful to us than others. 

The same projection applies in case of selecting a mate who resembles a parent. If a man looks like your father or a member of the family he is obviously far more attractive to you than to others. The wish fulfillment theory is also equally true and when we want to be like someone in terms of talents or certain qualities, we naturally consider that person as absolutely perfect and beautiful. Some teenagers may idolize popular actors or actresses and the need to be like them also determines their own perception of beauty.

4. Beauty as innocence and charm - No one can deny that a charming personality with social confidence can be far more attractive than a dull personality. A person who has the inherent ability to attract individuals with the sheer force of personality and presence is considered highly attractive. In some way there may be an association between good looks and social confidence and sometimes individuals with good looks are also socially most accepted and thus more confident. Individuals with baby-face features with high or defined cheekbones and certain innocence on their faces are usually considered very attractive by both the sexes. 

Beauty is advantageous in social adaptation and good looking people are thus socially successful as well, as they get support and positive assessment from other people. However the opposite in also true and sometimes good looking women and even men can become extremely self-conscious and fail to develop adequate self confidence. Good looks can in certain cases become an impediment as good looking women who are also intelligent may be judged more on the basis of their looks rather than their intelligence and this is sometimes a sad fact in modern society.

5. Beauty as a product of culture and society - This is an accepted fact. The concept of beauty seems to change with time as society changes and the perception of beauty varies in different cultures. Dark skin is considered very attractive in Western societies and whiter skin is considered as attractive in Eastern societies, because of the element of novelty in both the cases. Feet and hair of women are important features in Eastern cultures whereas in the West, the woman's lips, and hips are considered important. The breasts of women are important indicators of beauty in all cultures and men's body and chin or jaw and certain masculine sharpness are also considered as attractive. 

Studies have indicated that women however tend to prefer dominant looking men during the first follicular stage in their reproductive cycle but prefer men with softer more feminine features when they are in their menstrual and ovulation stages. This may have some evolutionary advantage as men with feminine soft natures and faces are considered as more stable and more family oriented than men who have extreme masculinity or a sort of raw appeal. This is however too generalized and there are individual differences as well.

Finally, beauty is about how we perceive the outer world and how we integrate our needs and project our wishes on what we see in the external world. 'Beauty in the eyes of the beholder' in completely correct from a psychological viewpoint as our own preferences change with time and so do our desires, aesthetic sense and perception of beauty.

Reflections in Psychology - Part I - by Saberi Roy (2009)
http://www.lulu.com/content/5865445
 

Friday, July 22, 2016

A Magickal Attraction Primer - The Basics of Beauty Spells

You may have run across them by accident or in your spiritual searches - beauty spells. Spells exist that promise to do everything from clear your complexion to increase your overall sex appeal. While you should be wary of some magickal claims (i.e. a beauty incantation promising to change your eye color is just as unrealistic as a money spell promising to make a huge stack of cash appear in front of you), you should also remember that beauty magick is a very real, powerful addition to an individual's spiritual arsenal. If you've ever wanted the skinny on beauty spells - what they are, how they work, and how to select a good one - this is the place for you.

The history of beauty spells


Typically when we think of ancient magicks we think of curses and enchantments for power. This is facilitated by Hollywood and magick in popular culture, which often depicts individuals seeking an ancient book or magickal recipe designed to bring power, fame, fortune, or disaster. However, beauty spells are historically some of the oldest charms available. Incantations for beauty and attractiveness are found throughout literature from the Middle Ages. Papyri and clay fragments with supernatural attractiveness remedies have been dated to ancient Greece, Rome, and Egypt. Prayers and rituals for beauty are also found in every major world religion. The need for sex appeal, and the magickal means to get it, seems to have been a facet of human existence for as long as history has been recorded.

What are beauty spells and how do they work?


A beauty spell is, broadly, any charm, incantation, invocation, or glamour that is used to enhance the physical attractiveness of an individual. A spell that increases sex appeal as well as one designed to enhance breast size (yes, these really exist and work) would both be considered beauty spells. Even an invocation cast to increase a person's social marketability would be considered a beauty spell. The category of attraction-boosting magicks is therefore a broad one, but one that encompasses physical attractiveness and overall appeal. Charms of allure can work in a number of ways. The most direct manipulates the attractiveness of a person, what I'll call physical beauty charms. Another is a spell that alters the demeanor or appearance of a person, or characteristic beauty spells. Finally, there are perceptive beauty spells, or charms that alter external perceptions of a person. Allow me to cover these in more depth.

Physical beauty spells


As mentioned, physical beauty magick directly changes a person's physical characteristics. For example, a spell designed to rid a person of acne would be a physical beauty spell. Another example, mentioned above, would be magickal breast enlargement. Spells that lighten skin complexion, cause weight loss, increase facial symmetry, and more are all types of physical attractiveness invocations. The existence of physical beauty spells may seem fanciful to the uninitiated, but they are very real. These spells have a long historical record of success - they have been used by people for centuries upon centuries with strong results. While a physical incantation won't radically alter your appearance, it will alter it enough to produce beneficial and noticeable changes in the way people approach you. A beauty spell could therefore mean the difference between being ignored or asked out for a date.

Characteristic beauty spells

Characteristic beauty spells are those which change or alter an overall characteristic of the individual. For example, a magickal work that makes a person more pleasant to be around would be a characteristic beauty spell because it is influencing a personality trait. Alternately, a spell that increases the overall sex appeal of an individual would also be a characteristic sex evocation. These spells don't influence a single physical trait, but work on the person as a whole. As you may have deduced, characteristic beauty spells are the most powerful.

To illustrate this, compare a physical charms, such as clear skin, to a characteristic charmsl, such as high sex appeal. If someone finds you irresistibly sexy, they are probably going to overlook a bad complexion. However, just having clear skin alone isn't going to make you sexier overall. The broad, pervasive transformation that occurs with characteristic beauty spells makes these some of the most powerful spells in existence. However, this is not a rivalry or competition between spells. Remember that beauty magicks work together. You could combine two beauty spells; let's use the clear skin and increasing sex appeal examples above. When casting beauty charms, I always recommend that a physical spell and a characteristic spell are combined for the maximum effect.

Perceptive beauty spells


Perceptive beauty spells are unlike the other two types because they don't actually work on a person to make him or her more beautiful. Rather, perceptive these alter peoples' perceptions of you. Rather than actually making you more beautiful, perceptive magicks instead make other people perceive you as more beautiful. This has its pros and cons. If you just want to be more attractive to others, this is typically a sound way to go and has the same results as the other types of beauty spells. However, because perceptive magicks don't actually alter any characteristics about yourself they don't really make you more beautiful per se. Instead, they just make others see you as more beautiful. In a way, this is a sort of illusion cast not on you, but on the third party perceiving you.

The mechanism behind this makes perceptive beauty spells more difficult to cast, which is arguably a con. However, a pro is that because the charm is not affecting you, but a third party, itl will be more powerful. The third party looking upon you will see you as more beautiful more often, rather than making a judgment based on your physical appearance or physical characteristics. This makes perceptive beauty spells the favorite of people with a specific target, such as an ex-lover. When attempting to make you more attractive to a specific person, perceptive magicks are some of the most powerful options out there.

Where can I find real beauty spells?


There are dozens of websites on the internet which purport to have beauty spells you can cast yourself. However, this approach should be discouraged. Beauty spells should only be cast by someone with professional training and experience. You don’t want to risk your beauty and attractiveness with magickal experimentation. Instead, you should find a trained witch to cast real beauty spells for you.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Beautiful Skin At Any Age

I am fast approaching thirty. That isn't old by anyone's standards but I am still aware of the gradual changes to my skin that are taking place. No matter how young you are, it is never too early to make changes to your lifestyle which will set up a good foundation for the ageing process. Your older self will thank you for it.

Stay hydrated - Water is quite literally the elixir of life. Your body is approximately sixty percent water and it plays an essential role in many of the processes that happen within your body. It will also help to keep your skin clear and assist your body with flushing out toxins. With that in mind, you need to stay properly hydrated in order to look and feel your best. Official guidelines state that you should be drinking six to eight glasses of water per day for optimum health but don't forget many foods such as fresh fruit also contain water. Many people drink hot water with a slice of lemon but bear in mind that this is a very acidic drink and will erode your teeth when drunk on a regular basis. Alcohol and caffeine are dehydrating so it is a good idea to drink some plain water each time you consume a drink that contains either substance.

Eat well - Genetics and heritage determine how your skin looks, behaves and ages but you can do much to assist the process by improving your lifestyle. As well as staying well hydrated, another way to do this is by eating a good, well balanced diet to give your body the nutrition it needs. The most beneficial vitamins for your skin are A, C and E. These are found in abundance in fruits and vegetables so try to include at least five portions each day. Other beneficial foods for your body include beans, dairy, eggs, fish, nuts and whole grains. Remember that the nutritional benefits of eating the right foods will always be better for your body than consuming them in pill form.

Protect yourself from the sun - Never underestimate the damaging effects of the sun on your skin. A golden tan may look attractive in your twenties but when you are in your fifties and have wrinkled, sagging skin peppered with moles, it will not look quite so appealing. And of course, too much sun exposure can cause skin cancer. Many skincare and make up products contain a sun protection factor (SPF) so keep a look out for these when you are shopping for supplies. Also use a sunscreen with a minimum SPF of 15 and avoid midday sun when UV levels are at their strongest. Don't forget to wear sunglasses, constant squinting in the sun will help to give you the dreaded 'crow's feet' wrinkles around your eyes.

Exercise - Most of us are aware of the health benefits of exercise but of course it can benefit the way we look too. As well as helping to build a slim, toned physique, all of the sweat you produce when you exercise will help to bring impurities out of your skin helping to keep it clear and fresh. As you get older, as well as keeping your body healthy, exercise will also help to manage your weight. As you age, your metabolic rate (the rate at which your body burns calories) decreases leading to an increased likelihood of weight gain.

Get into a good beauty routine - As well as the lifestyle factors that will play a part in maintaining the beauty of your skin, getting into a good routine with skincare will also help. Look after your skin by moisturising daily, exfoliating weekly and use face masks depending on your skin type. Normal moisturiser formulas are often too rich and heavy for the delicate skin around the eyes and can cause puffiness. Make you use a specially formulated cream for eyes. As we age, our skin produces less collagen and so skin loses it's elasticity and becomes less firm. If you have mature skin, look out for products containing peptides and retinoids which will help your skin to build collagen and appear firmer. Also try to avoid formula foundations that are too dry as they will settle into wrinkles. Keep your skin well moisturised and use a moisture rich foundation formula.

Stop smoking - I used to have a twenty (sometimes thirty) a day habit so I know how hard it is to stop. But with self belief and sheer willpower, you can stop. You will look and feel so much better for it believe me.

Remember, it's never too early to begin thinking about preserving your skin for the future.

Thank you for reading. If you have enjoyed this article, please check out more of my friend work on her beauty blog at - https://lulabellesomers.com/

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Beauty is Everywhere

As I look out into the world, I see so much to be grateful for. Surrounded by beauty, I am left in no doubt that we live in a spirit filled world that is becoming more authentic in the beauty that it is able to appreciate. For so long we have come to define beauty on a superficial level, but as we grow, so will our ability to appreciate beauty grow within us.

With this, understand that only can we recognize and appreciate what is truly beautiful when we have unified with the essence of our own beauty within ourselves. So many struggle to find the beauty in the world when they look outside. Fearful of what they will encounter, they see a world filled with anger, hostility and ugliness, and because this is what they see, this is what becomes real for them, and they continue to live as their self fulfilling prophecy would have it be.

Neglecting their own beauty, they have swallowed a nightmare pill which alters dramatically the world in which they see. Turning away from the spirit, they have chosen to embrace the ego, which sees things always in a distorted light. With power and strength to gain for itself, the ego is devoted not to searching for beauty, but to finding that which can build it up in the eyes of the world. Concerned with the physical world and pleasing those within it, it is not at all interested in the wisdom of the spirit.

Not wanting to be the protagonist in its own demise, the ego has a vested interest in keeping the true source of beauty from your eyes. Not wanting you to experience the awe that beauty inspires, it seeks to keep you in a state of boredom where you ask no questions of life. Asking no questions, you cease to interact with life, and you deprive yourself of the answers that God wants to give to you. This is what it means to be reactive to life, and to suffer in the process.

Called to be proactive, we do not grow in our experience of life, if we have closed ourselves off to what it seeks to teach us. Wanting to show us the beauty in the world and in ourselves, it is a willing teacher, but a teacher has no role to occupy without a student in attendance. This is why we must be open-minded in beauty's presence. With much to give, there is much to learn about the beauty of God which manifests itself in all things.

It is said that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. What this means to me is that each of us has the capacity to find beauty in different things. What some label beautiful, others might label ugly, and vice versa. But does it really matter what verdict is passed on whether something is pleasing to the eye or not? What matters absolutely is the seed of beauty to be found in all things that God has created. With the beauty of the creator pervading each of his creations, that beauty is definitely there to see. The question then becomes what is the quality of the vision of the observer?

Many are capable of seeing the beauty in all that surrounds them, but even more are not. Selective in what they ascribe the label 'beautiful' to, these people have chosen to honour the mind above the heart, which is all to discriminating. Seeing more than the mind is capable of seeing, the heart knows that it is futile to judge, because it realizes that judgment passed on that which appears in a diminished light is falsely condemned. Seeing only a portion of the whole, much is misunderstood; and embracing only a part, much is rejected as irrelevant. See in this, the dangerous game that we play when we choose to have the ego's eyes be the filter with which we view the world.

Seeing only fragments of beauty that it has contaminated through its own judgment, much is discarded, and even less honoured, for God cannot be seen by that which despises his presence. Wanting you not to see him, the ego will lead you to label as ugly, much that is beautiful in appearance and substance.

Intense in its loathing, the ego is not always rational in its judgment, and even in its certainty, it misses much to be appreciated. See in this how the ego's arrogance often leads it to abandon that which could otherwise serve it. Cursed in its blindness, it makes not for wise counsel to the one who searches for a deeper experience of life.

Wanting to experience love, one must consult the heart, being the centre of beauty inside the self. Being not separate from God, it is the gift that God has given us to enjoy the world. Blessed with much, we can find much joy when we look upon the world with spiritual eyes. Hindered not by that which are the ego's shortcomings, we can see the love behind the barriers, and the distinctions which make the miraculous commonplace.

Blessed in spirit, we must not take for granted that which is capable of teaching us who we truly are. Endowed with wisdom, all of God's creations are capable teachers, and assuming not a separate identity from him, they are models to be emulated. With this, learn that beauty is distorted as the separation is affected. So as you travel far from him, so will your ability to experience beauty diminish in strength.

Concerned primarily with attaching labels in the moment, what eludes you is the beauty inherent in entering the moment. To enter the moment, is to join with God in your heart, and see what he sees in the physical world. With all that he created being good, you are then able to see the love that pervades everything in the light of the spirit. Appreciating everything just as it is, you understand that it is enough and that the ego does not have to be invited to enhance what is complete in itself.

Complete, the gifts of God are holy in what they hold and what they deliver. Endowed with beauty, they bring to the lost man, much that is invaluable. Longing for God, those who are lost, suffer in their desperation. Convinced of their own ugliness, the memories of their eternal beauty slip into the past. But the past is not lost forever, for every illusion stands to be corrected, and as a partner with eternity, it will not fail to reveal itself in a touch that the moment has in store, for the child who sees clearly now, not yearning for more.

One of the most memorable times that I recall beauty touching me deeply was in Florence when I went to see Michelangelo's David. I had heard from many people how wonderful this classical piece of sculpture was, but hearing a second hand account doesn't really prepare you for the effect that it has on the soul, when you see it in person. To say that I was taken aback by its beauty would be an understatement. I was left absolutely speechless! To think that one man saw this masterpiece in that block of marble and saw it as his purpose to bring it to life for all to enjoy is awe inspiring to me.

But as I was standing there, just gazing up at the masterwork, I knew not the distraction of thought that attempted to persuade my mind to intellectualize how the work was brought to life. This allowed me to centre myself and let the profound beauty that emanated from the shiny white surface, move my spirit powerfully in the moment. And as I just allowed the moment to touch me, I felt for a moment just how Michelangelo must have felt with the chisel in his hand and the spirit in his heart, for as I am not alone with my pen, he was not alone with his tools, for with every incision had God's hand revealed itself so gently and lovingly.

All in all, I spent about an hour in the company of David, listening only to the silence which was my teacher. And as I meditated on what had greeted my senses, I felt a deep sense of appreciation begin to emerge, and as my eyes began to well up with tears, my constant companion placated my fears that I would miss something, a moment, which taught me who I am, not alone in war, but beautiful and fair.

To know Michelangelo must have been to be in the company of a great lover. Here was a man who made it his life's purpose to serve the world by making manifest in physical form, the love that he carried inside. How else can you explain it? To look into the eyes of David is to know without a shadow of a doubt that he was conceived in love, and because it was this love that filled Michelangelo's heart, the conception was inevitable.

With this, understand that love never leaves beauty unexpressed, for that is not love's way. And in the same way that love will never leave beauty unexpressed, so will it never leave the witnesses to that beauty untouched, for the heart that was inspired to bring the beauty to life, is in no way separate from the heart of the witness who has seen in that beauty a clear image of themself revealed.

See in this, how all embodiments of beauty carry a reflection that is not one dimensional. If you were to observe a rose, you would be moved by the beauty of that rose, but what has moved you is not limited to the petals, stem and thorns which make up that rose. What you receive from that rose is an experience of the beauty of nature which is in no way separate from all that the rose is, because nature is the essence of its being. And as it is with the rose, so it is with you, because nature is the very essence of who you are. As God has breathed life into the rose, so has God breathed life into you, and in it you get a glimpse of not only its glory, but your glory as well, which is a stranger not to the glory of God.

Endowed with all that is beautiful, do not doubt what is yours to give, and as you awake from your slumber, so will your brothers and sisters enjoy a more peaceful rest. Not tormented by their hideous nightmares, a new joy will emerge in the form of a dream that is not isolated in how it comes to bless them. As beauty multiplies, so does its visions, in the mind that has unified itself with the heart.

Filled with this love, joy replaces sorrow and gratitude replaces judgment, for as the Lord has spoken, you need not open your mouth to speak. Speaking in glorious tongues, you are left in no doubt that what he has to say is real. Beautiful in its composition, it is undeniably powerful in its resonance. Teaching your heart, the mind finds rest, subsumed by the grace that has cradled it, and when it awakes, immense beauty awaits it, in both its relationship to the physical and the infinite which know no divide. Being what beauty has conquered, love has done its work, through the eye of the spirit that cannot be blinded to the world's worth.

L.C.Duperouzel - http://lcduperouzel.wordpress.com/