Blessing must arise from within your own mind. It is not something that comes from outside. When the positive qualities of your mind increase and the negativities decrease, that is what blessing means. The Tibetan word for blessing … means transforming into magnificent potential. Therefore, blessing refers to the development of virtuous qualities you did not previously have and the improvement of those good qualities you have already developed.
― Dalai Lama XIV
The seat has been Republican for a generation, but a Democratic surge against President Trump could change that. It’s being watched as a sign of what’s in store nationwide. We’ll have live coverage as the results come in.
Mike Belleme for The New York Times
2. Do Senate Republicans have the votes to pass a health care bill?
That’s the question of the hour, since they could try as early as next week. Republican senators have been meeting behind closed doors to draft their bill to repeal and replace Obamacare. We took a look at where key G.O.P. senators stand on the issue.
The Trump administration has not said whether the government will continue paying subsidies to keep costs down for people with Obamacare. If it doesn’t, middle-income people could see their rates jump.
Lonnie Carpenter, above, a self-employed roofer, said it would have been “tough to survive” without his insurance after a back injury.
Three other Americans are still imprisoned in North Korea. President Trump condemned the North for its “brutality,” but he and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson stopped short of announcing fresh sanctions.
U.S. Navy, via Associated Press
4. The bodies of seven American sailors were flown home as the U.S. and Japanese authorities ramped up their investigations in the fatal collision of a cargo vessel and the U.S.S. Fitzgerald off the coast of Japan.
Iraq’s second-largest city had been controlled by the militants for two years. The soldiers we followed were greeted as liberators by residents. One family even named a newborn after the unit’s 33-year-old commander, Major Sajjad al-Hour, above.
Ben Solomon, who shot the video, describes the experience in this essay.
Patricia De Melo Moreira/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images
7. In Portugal, more than 60 people were killed in a raging wildfire this week. Our correspondent drove into the countryside to interview survivors and firefighters, passing burned-out cars and melted road signs on his way.
Deadly blazes have become increasingly severe and routine in Portugal, spurred by poor land management and hotter, drier summers because of climate change.
Dmitry Kostyukov for The New York Times
8. There’s an opera renaissance underway in Paris.
The Opéra Comique, one of the city’s oldest performance sites, is hoping to attract new audiences by reimagining what modern opera could be.
Its latest production, the Baroque opera “Alcyone,” hasn’t been performed in Paris in 246 years — and the new version includes avant-garde staging, and even acrobats.
9. For those of us in the Northern Hemisphere, summer begins at 12:24 a.m. Eastern on Wednesday.
That’s the summer solstice, when the hemisphere will dip toward the sun, basking in its warmth for longer than any other day.
It offers the perfect opportunity to ponder the explosive ball of plasma that makes our very existence possible. Above, last year’s solstice in Santa Monica, Calif.