Humanity is more important than money — it’s time for capitalism to get an upgrade

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Comments Off on Humanity is more important than money — it’s time for capitalism to get an upgrade July 20, 2018

How we could all be billionaires?

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-The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) estimates that about 795 million people in the world, one in nine people, suffered from chronic undernourishment in 2014-2016.-

In 2014 Jason Silva launched the #RedefineBillionaire campaign. He aspired to motivate individuals to address our current world problems and simultaneously give a new meaning to the word ‘billionaire’.

Silva suggested that billionaires of the future could be anyone “who will positively affect the lives of a billion people”. Silva invited anyone to solve unnamed global issues by embracing technology and using it in new transcendental ways.

Before this, John Kluge wrote how we should redefine what a successful billionaire looks like in terms of the quantifiable good they do in the world. Jack Sim continued the conversation by asking us to “redefine the meaning of success based on relevance rather than the amassing of money”, and asked us to hold up Nobel Laureate Malala Yousafzai as an example of what can be achieved on a global scale without money being the driving factor of success. Although impossible to accurately quantify her humanitarian influence, it’s safe to say that she’s touched the lives of a billion people in a positive way through her advocacy and activism for the equal educational rights of women.

But a billion is a lot of people. There are currently over 7.4 billion of us on the planet and counting! It means that to achieve this new billionaire status, you need to have an effect on over 13% of the global population.

Impossible? Perhaps you’ve already started…

Before the Internet, news travelled slowly and was really only focused on what happened in our local vicinity, which could be reported in a reasonable amount of time.

Fast forward to 2016 and we have global news and information being constantly streamed to most people with a mobile device, a total of 5.4 billion people will have mobile phones worldwide by 2020. The impact of what is happening around the world and the impact on the lives of billions of people is instantaneous. In a world where knowledge is power, does increase in awareness bring with it a need for increasing responsibility?

The Internet gives so many of us a voice (not always a face). Crowd funding for charity is a powerful example of the gratifying impact of the sum of individuals.

There’s a need to recalibrate our brains. We need to leap forward from thinking about what occurs in our local vicinity to thinking ‘big’ – on a macro scale – about what the impact of our actions could have on the rest of the people we share the planet with.

Our actions all have ‘reactions’ and by thinking of our own interests at the expense of the person beside you (or the other side of the world from you), you consign yourself to disaster because if everyone else acted in that way, then you too could become vulnerable.

We are the creators of today’s emergent technologies that shape our future, and with the fluidity of today’s social realms, we need to consider the sentiment behind what we create and what we give a voice to. This is what we will become tomorrow.

There are so many ‘billion people’ problems to solve…poverty, hunger, climate change, drought, education, equitable health and equal opportunity. The list goes on, but they all have one commonality: thinking ‘big’ is the first step toward tackling each of them.

Today, our interconnectivity has allowed us a far better understanding of consequential impact. Simply by acting with a conscience, you are acting to help enhance a billion people’s lives every day. And, if we all did so, we could all take a share in this new ‘billionaire’ status.

*This post originally appeared on JustImagine blog.

Add a comment January 14, 2017

Knowledge VS Wisdom

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Comments Off on Knowledge VS Wisdom June 4, 2016

Why Character Matters

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     The Greek philosopher Heraclitus said it simply: “Character is destiny.” Character shapes the destiny of an individual person. It shapes the destiny of a whole society. “Within the character of the citizen,” Cicero said, “lies the welfare of the nation.”

Transmitting values, as the essayist Lance Morrow points out, “is the work of civilization.” A glance at history reminds us the civilizations do not flourish forever. They rise, and they fall. They fall when the moral core deteriorates-when a society fails to pass on its core virtues, its strengths of character, to the next generation. The historian Arnold Toynbee observed, “Out of twenty-one notable civilizations, nineteen perished not by conquest from without but by moral decay from within.”

More than a century ago in a lecture at Harvard University, Ralph Waldo Emerson asserted, “Character is higher than intellect.” Writes the psychiatrist Frank Pittman, “The stability of our lives depends on our character. It is character, not passion, that keeps marriages together long enough to do their work of raising their children into mature, responsible, productive citizens. In this imperfect world, it character that enables people to survive, to endure, and to transcend their misfortunes,” “To do well,” Stephen Covey says, “you must do good. And to do good, you must first be good.”

All of us who are parents naturally want our children to be successful. But we know in our bones that success without character–qualities such as honesty, a sense of responsibility, kindness and determination in the face of difficulty–doesn’t count for much. The novelist Walker Percy once said, “Some people get all A’s but flunk life.” In living a life well, as a proverb puts it, “An ounce of character is worth a pound of intelligence.”

Source: Why Character Matters: How to Help Our Children Develop Good Judgment, Integrity and Other Essential Virtues

Comments Off on Why Character Matters January 12, 2015

How you spent your dash?

Mistakte-quotes-Learn-from-the-mistakes-of-others.-You-can-never-live-long-enough-to-make-them-all-yourself.

The Dash

I read of a man who stood to speak
at the funeral of a friend.
He referred to the dates on the tombstone
from the beginning…to the end.

He noted that first came the date of birth
and spoke the following date with tears,
but he said what mattered most of all
was the dash between those years.

For that dash represents all the time
that they spent alive on earth.
And now only those who loved them
know what that little line is worth.

For it matters not, how much we own,
the cars…the house…the cash.
What matters is how we live and love
and how we spend our dash.

So, think about this long and hard.
Are there things you’d like to change?
For you never know how much time is left
that can still be rearranged.

If we could just slow down enough
to consider what’s true and real
and always try to understand
​the way other people feel.

And be less quick to anger
and show appreciation more
and love the people in our lives
like we’ve never loved before.

If we treat each other with respect
and more often wear a smile,
remembering that this special dash
might only last a little while.

​So, when your eulogy is being read,
with your life’s actions to rehash…
would you be proud of the things they say
about how you spent YOUR dash?

by : Linda Ellis (1996)

Comments Off on How you spent your dash? September 17, 2014

Internal or External Beauty-You Decide!

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There is a saying “Never judge a book by its cover” but unfortunately in today’s world, the first impression is the last impression. Looks count and money speaks the loudest these days. However, we really need to sit back, relax, and wonder if external beauty is so important. There is no doubt that beautiful faces and bodies definitely attract your attention but the life of such beauty is short-lived.

Very often, you find two people getting infatuated with each other and getting into a relationship, only to break up on getting familiar with each other’s mannerisms and attitudes. The adage “Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder” holds true in every context. That’s probably the reason why a child believes that its mother is the most beautiful woman in the whole world and its father is the strongest man in the universe.

While beautifying oneself externally is quite easy, thanks to our beauticians and medical brethren in the fields of cosmetic surgery and dentistry, developing one’s internal beauty is a Herculean task because virtues are being overshadowed by vices nowadays. Speaking the truth, fighting for justice, caring for all living beings, being dutiful, acting responsibly, living a disciplined life, avoiding bad habits and addictions, and developing one’s spiritual side are all considered to be down-market values or fragments of middle-class mentality.

All said and done, at the end of the day, what eventually matters is not how many people complimented you for your appearance, but how many people’s lives you touched positively. You would rather have someone you can depend on for love and support in life instead of a person who is more or less a status symbol for you. Would you prefer to return home to a spouse who dotes over your kids, respects your parents, and thinks the world of you or would you like to partner a selfish, self-centered, and arrogant person who’s got the looks? It’s your decision; so, make it wisely!

 

 

 

Source : Healthizen

Comments Off on Internal or External Beauty-You Decide! July 8, 2014

“Anyway”..Poem by Mother Teresa

Peace-Quotes

People are often unreasonable, illogical and self centered;
Forgive them anyway.

If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives;
Be kind anyway.

If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some true enemies;
Succeed anyway.

If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you;
Be honest and frank anyway.

What you spend years building, someone could destroy overnight;
Build anyway.

If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous;
Be happy anyway.

The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow;
Do good anyway.

Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough;
Give the world the best you’ve got anyway.

You see, in the final analysis, it is between you and your God;
It was never between you and them anyway.

PS. God to me is Nature (Mother Nature) or the Higher Power that controls the world’s mechanism.

Comments Off on “Anyway”..Poem by Mother Teresa April 15, 2014

Inspiring Change-International Women’s Day 2014

Mom and Baby 2_0-Grameen Foundation

– Want to Walk a Day in a Poor Woman’s Shoes? Click here

As a Grameen Foundation’s volunteer and the International Women’s Day is just around the corner, I would like to share these stories from Grameen Foundation with you.

Everyday, countless women face the challenge of living on less than $2.50. Grameen Foundation works to empower these women to lift themselves out of poverty. Empowered women will save lives, improve their families’ income, and help the poorest countries build stronger economies.

March 8, 2014 is International Women’s Day. The theme this year is “Inspiring Change”. We work with women who inspire us every day, women like Milena in Bolivia. After a long illness, Milena had lost all of her savings and found herself homeless, with two daughters to care for and only about $10 to her name. But Milena didn’t give up. Soon she was able to restart her business with the help of a small loan.

There’s Chanda in India, who for the first time was able to open a savings account. There’sYvonne in Ghana, who was finally able to give birth to a healthy baby because she gained access to health care information on her mobile phone. And there’s Alice in Uganda, who now works as a Community Knowledge Worker, using a smartphone to help the farmers in her village get the information they need to make a better living. These are just a few.

This year, you can make a difference by joining “Team Grameen” as we raise funds to bring more of these innovative solutions to poor women around the world.

By taking the Grameen Foundation $2.50 Challenge you’ll commit to living on just $2.50 for one entire day. Then, get your friends and family involved by asking them to donate to your cause. The more people, the better! The money you’ll raise will change the lives of poor women who face this struggle every day.

If you hate poverty and are looking for a way to make a meaningful difference, this is your chance. For more information, please visit Grameen Foundation.


Did you know?

♥ 85 richest people are as wealthy as poorest half of the world (the so-called “global elites” share combined wealth of $1.7 trillion).

 3 billion (out of 7 billion) people on the globe live on $2.5 (or less) a day.

 2.5 billion people or 34% of the world’s population don’t have bank account and never access to any financial institutions.

♥ Among those 10 countries in Southeast Asia (ASEAN), Thailand is the 2nd largest economy with $400 billion GDP. 3 richest people share 25% of the Thailand’s GDP while 40 million (out of 67 million) of Thai population are farmers and majority of them are in poverty.

Anyway, in my opinion, it’s not a matter of money. But “the means” we make and spend money..that matter!

“Man must know how to use his youth, wealth and knowledge at the proper time and place and in the proper way, for his own benefit, as well as the benefit of others. If he misuses his privilege, it will only cause him downfall. Man must be strong enough to know when he is weak, brave enough to encounter fear, dignified and having moral courage in honest defeat, humble and gentle in victory.” – Ven.Dr.K.Sri Dhammanda from his book, Happiness and Materialism

Comments Off on Inspiring Change-International Women’s Day 2014 March 3, 2014

My City of Angles–Bangkok..The world’s most visited city in 2013!

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        I’m so trilled to learn that my beloved Bangkok, is the worlds’s most visited city in 2013, according to Forbes:)!

This’s the “first time” that an Asian city is in the top rank since its first launch in 2011 (Paris and London usually competed each other for being in the top rank). However, actually, Bangkok had been ranked 3rd or 2nd for many years.
 
Well, my most favorite attraction in Bangkok is Wat Arun (click the link to learn more about this place). Whenever I go there, I’ll climb to the top of the temple’s tower as I really love the magnificent view over the old district and the Chao Praya River. I love the blissful feeling up there as well. This made me recall my trip to Wat Arun in February this year with a friend of mine. This friend is an American diplomat working for the American Embassy in Ho Chi Min City, Vietnam. As he’s a Taiwanese-American who grew up in the US, I guess, it might be too far away for him to learn about my (small) country, he didn’t know much about anything here. It’s his first time visited Thailand ever and he’s really fascinated by the breathtaking scenery! In fact, many things in Bangkok fascinated him, not only the temple. He even said to me that he really didn’t want to get back to Vietnam :). 
 
Before coming here, he didn’t think that Bangkok would have been that great. Because of his great impression and admiration for my country, we ended up discussing a lot about Thai cultures, values, politics, diplomacy issues., etc. We finished our memorable day after having a delicious dinner in China Town. 
 
I’m so happy anytime I see that people who have come here for the first time, especially someone who has negative views on this country before coming, gain great (and positive) experiences back home and I leave them beautiful memories. I always feel that it’s my mission to make visitors and the people from other countries learn about our Thai culture and values. And it’s also my mission to make my fellow Thai people learn to appreciate our own culture, values and everything about our mother land–that many of them usually take for granted! Although I realize that there’re many things that we need to improve to make us better and happier country, I really feel grateful that I was born in this abundant and prosperous land! 
 
As I’ve said before (in my previous post), I wish that one day, I (we)’ll make “Thailandization” possible:)!! (By bringing out the best in us to the world, of course:)!!
 

PS: I’m so glad that Thailand was the champion of the 27th South East Asian Games (SEA Games) 2013 in Myanmar with 107 Gold Medals, 94 Silver Medals, and 81 Bronze Medals–which finished yesterday Dec 22th, 2013. Actually, most of the time, we’re the champion of SEA Games. But for the world’s class sport competitions like Olympic Games, it’s still a long way for us to reach to the top! Although we achieved the huge success in the Sea Games, we decided that we left it in Myanmar and brought only beautiful friendships we’ve established during the games back home:).

Comments Off on My City of Angles–Bangkok..The world’s most visited city in 2013! December 21, 2013

Compassion for others can lead to happier, healthier life

Compassion pic

Helping others succeed by acting compassionately toward them can benefit you both mentally and physically, a UA professor told a Tucson audience at a lecture on happiness Wednesday night.

“The best way to pursue happiness for yourself is to work for the happiness of others,” said Dr. Charles Raison, an associate professor of psychiatry and family and consumer sciences at the University of Arizona.

“There’s increasing evidence that people who feel socially connected, loved and cared for have lower levels of harmful immune chemicals in their body. They live longer. They’re healthier,” he said.

Raison spoke about his research on the health effects of cognitively based compassion training (CBCT) at the Fox Tucson Theatre as part of the Happiness Downtown Lecture Series. UA’s College of Social and Behavioral Sciences sponsors the free series.

CBCT, developed by Raison’s collaborator Geshe Lobsang Tenzin Negi, is based on the Tibetan Buddhist tradition of lojong, or cultivating compassion through mind training.

The training, which incorporates mediation, instruction and discussion, is founded on the core concepts of equanimity and empathy, Raison said.

Raison suggests cultivating feelings of empathy, starting with people we do like, and then for people we do not like or whom we see as enemies.

We are evolutionarily wired to label people as friend or foe, Raison said, referring to this tendency as the “tribal mind.”

If we use these labels, however, we end up fighting the wrong enemy.

“In the struggle for happiness,” Raison said, “the real enemies are not the people who oppose us, but rather the anger and hatred we feel toward those people.”

Compassion training can counter the negative effects that anger and stress have on the immune system. People who participate in CBCT tend to see the world as less threatening and release fewer stress chemicals, Raison said. That, in turn, leads to feelings of happiness and can reduce health risks, such as heart disease,depression and even cancer, he says.

Raison has studied the effects of CBCT training on different groups of people. He found that children in elementary school made more friendships after compassion training. Foster children and at-risk youth reported lower levels of stress and more feelings of hopefulness, he said.

Our happiness and success depend on how we choose to relate to others. “Generally, we think about things being competitive, as if there’s a zero sum game in life, so that my gain is your loss,” Raison said. “But for almost everything, and with very few exceptions, in the real world there’s not a zero sum, so people that foster the good of others are often very successful themselves.”

*PS.Thanks to Arizona Daily Star, Oct 25th, 2013

Comments Off on Compassion for others can lead to happier, healthier life October 30, 2013

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