Or - connections? What connections? Do they make any sense?
As I explored his site, I saw that Kalsang Dawa, the painter, "has a permanent installation at the Saint Norbert Arts Centre in Winnipeg, Manitoba." So I Googled Saint Norbert's, hoping to find more paintings by Kalsang Dawa. Indeed, there is a web site - with a wealth of material. Little on Kalsang Dawa, but I got lost in the pages describing the history of the arts center, and its former owners. The center is located at the ruins of an old Trappist Monastery, in a building that, fittingly, was the guest house. At some point, I saw a link to a complete photo archive of the monastery.
Well - my Trappist connection is pretty strong: it was through Thomas Merton, a Trappist, that I was drawn into religious life decades ago, and then later into Eastern and Buddhist thought, and I've always felt a strong pull toward everything monastic. So - another click and I was looking at a wonderful collection of old photos of the original monastery in the early 1900's, the monks who lived there (looking fully medieval), and every part of their lives. There are pictures of everything - the church of course - many views, inside and out, groups of monks, individuals, the monastery cheese factory, farm, apiary, the pig sty with its pigs, and even a dog, Gyp. It was quite an establishment.
I returned to the home pages to learn more about the history of the place and discovered that it was connected to another familiar figure. In 1869 there was a serious political conflict over the land where the monastery was later built and it involved Louis Riel - a very scrappy Canadian who is mentioned often in a series of mystery novels I read a decade ago.
What's the deeper meaning in all this? Hmmm. If you figure it out, let me know. But it's a great example of the new way of lateral learning - link, to link, to link.