Wednesday, 24 December 2014

Ego

This morning,
Silence all around.
A good time for reflection

I often feel I have not a good control over my ego.
It wants to be important and goes on hurting sometimes people to achieve its aim
Please my soul, take over.
Please my God forgive my lack of control over my ego.
I wish peace and soul control for all my friends and all on earth.

Ignorance

It was Ghandi who said that one of the worst kind of violence is poverty.
I am not sure whether he meant only physical poverty.

Ignorance of the basic principles of life is quite bad
Basic principles
like that honesty brings peace of mind
that kindness is the chief recipe for happiness
that success without peace of mind is no success
that we do have a choice on how look at things
and so on,

I risk to be called a dreamer
but I am quite sure that this ignorance cannot last much longer.
I am pretty sure about a huge upcoming wisdom revolution in which selfless service to one another becomes the most understood and most practiced source of happiness throughout the world.
If humanity would miss out on this, humans may just destroy their own existence as a species.

The greed Zombies will not disappear at once

Monday, 22 December 2014

Giving

A very famous saying: it is in giving that we receive.
When I was younger I thought this was just a clever paradox
Now I see it is so much more than, a simple but giant truth.

If we selflessly give,
we get immediately a superb peace of mind, so big,
not even a little bit comparable to the peace of mind
that we get when we receive something precious

If we selflessly give
we will become friends with like minded people
who if we are in need will selflessly help us too.

Saturday, 20 December 2014

Refection 159 (language)

Today our last day in Istanbul, Turkey.
The land of Ataturk, Erdogan and a lot of taxi drivers

I was surprised that so many taxi drivers in a major capital with so many tourists do not seem to understand even simple English.

My friend, Tan Sri Ani Arope, who is no longer among us since this morning, used to always praise people who know many languages and he was proud of his own wide range of language skills. It is so true, such a valuable lesson of the wise late Tan Sri: a language you know gives you a supreme advantage throughout your life. The more languages you know, the more job opportunities, the better your chances, the more interesting your life.

It is never too late to learn a new language. Five new words per day give you vocabulary of 1500 words after one year. Keep on practicing, keep on learning, we never know enough.

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Reflection 158 (a few centuries ago)

While on a holiday in Turkey we visited the blue mosque, the Hagia sophia and the adjacent Topkapi palace. A mixture of Byzanthyne and Ottoman influences, Christianity and Islam, cathedrals converted to mosques and then into a museum with signs of both religions overwhelmingly present.

Visiting the musea attached make you aware that times were not easy, but humankind survived the most rough circumstances, managed to erect wonderful buildings and a huge body of wisdom emerged from those times gone by.

With candle light and feathers as pens, some of the sages from old were penning their deepest feelings into amazing poetry and reflections.

Sometimes I wonder when all the true wisdom and beauty from old and from anew will engulf the world and take it over completely destroying the stupidity of greed, jealousy, hatred and anger.




Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Reflection 157 (heart)

People do not always need advice
Sometimes they need just a hand to hold,
a pair of ears to listen to them and 
a heart to understand them

I found this wonderful quote  on facebook (in French) and promptly translated it and shared it.

An understanding heart is much valued.
As St. Francis said: Lord, let me try to understand
rather than to be understood.
If we try more to understand than to be understood
we will make a real positive difference in the world
and what else brings us greater peace of mind
than making a positive difference

Many of us hunger much more for appreciation than for food.
Likewise let us try to appreciate more than being appreciated
to console rather than be consoled
to love rather than be loved
Appreciation, consolation and love will land on our hearts
like butterflies on flowers


Monday, 15 December 2014

Reflection 156 (dream)

I am feeling sleepy
Soon I will go to bed
I anticipate a comfy sleep
I want to dream
I want to dream about my mother
I want to dream about my father
I want to dream about both
my mother and my father
They are no longer here on earth
I want to meet them tonight
in my dreams

Saturday, 13 December 2014

Reflection 155 (teaching)

Teaching should be thoroughly enjoyable
For both the students and the teacher

This means a big responsibility for the teacher
But with a dose of empathy for the students
And a bit of teaching skills that can be readily learned
It can be achieved
If the teacher manages to truly enjoy the session
Chances are high that the students will enjoy too

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Reflection 154 (bulldozing your garden)

Fighting for or about religion is like
bulldozing your garden because someone stole a flower.

A small explanation:

Peace is such an important part of religion,
that giving up peace is like destroying your religion
No person can hurt an omnipotent God
Only people with limited belief will feel the hurt
They will start a fight and destroy the image of their religion in the process
by violating the principles of the huge universal driving force representing Love and Peace

Peace to all.

If our belief is really strong, it is like a garden filled to the brim with wonderful flowers
Others may try to pick some of the flowers or even step on them but the garden will be basically untouched, flowers growing back much faster than anyone could destroy them

Peace to all.

Reflection 153 (love and God)

Love and God

Not so long ago I wrote a small poem, titled Y.... Have you seen love  (click-able)

Love cannot be seen, it cannot be heard, it cannot be touched and yet if we ask anyone, does love exist, they will answer, sure it does. We have no problems believing in love since we can feel it. One could ask: but love is created by humans, without humans there would be no love? Quite a superfluous thought, no one knows whether love would exist without human existence; there are so many humans in the world.

Similarly to love, no one can see, hear or touch God. And even though this is not different from love, many more people will take this as a reason not to believe in God. This is logical for those who have never felt the presence of God. People who consciously or unconsciously exclude spirituality from their lives and choose to a live a life purely based on 5 senses actually miss out on a whole dimension of life and true enough they do not experience God. Those who choose to lead a spiritual life or make spirituality part of their life will experience God and the existence of God becomes as tangible as the existence of love.... I think I am explaining too much here, perhaps we should let poetry speak for itself ... 


For those believing only in our 5 senses, these 5 tend often not to be too reliable: think about rainbows, horizons, wet streets on sunny days, etc. Read also the transcendentalist by RW Emerson.

Sunday, 7 December 2014

Reflection 152 (getting real)

Getting real


We say that our Creator is the most gracious
Let us say it again and feel it
Really feel the grace and love of our God

We say that our Creator is the most forgiving
Let us say it again and feel it
Really feel the forgiveness of our God

Let's feel it. Let us be filled, feeling Love
He filled our hearts with Love and kindness at birth
So freely to share with all around us, all the world

Free refills, whenever our love reaches a soul,
when a smile adorns the face of a child
Free refills at every prayer, every thought of God

We used to say thanks to God for He created the world
Let us say it again and feel it
Feel the thanks, the gratefulness deeply in our hearts

Feel the gratefulness for our wonderful senses
Feel the gratefulness for all the things we have
But most of all for that enormous Grace and Love

Let's feel the grace, Let us feel the forgiveness
Let's thank from truly within
Let us feel it,

Let us feel it with our mind,
Feel it with our heart
Let us feel it with our soul...

Reflection151 (waking up)

Waking up

When we wake up and we rejoice in the prospect of going to work...
When we wake up and we dread the prospect of going to work...

We do have a choice.
It doesn't mean that if our previous day was dreadful, today will be so too
No matter what the past, we can always to choose to rejoice in the new day

I am sure everyone can fill up the ... in the opening two lines
Let us make the right choice tomorrow morning.

Thursday, 4 December 2014

Reflection 150 (nature)

After being away for the three past days, home again.
This morning I spent 2 hours in pure nature and pure it was
When spending time in nature I feel I am truly myself
No caution, free flow of thoughts, pure delight for my eyes
I just love it.
I will stop typing here immediately and off I am
to nature...
Bye

Reflection 149 (write)

The sky is so vast
The universe so wide
Nature so nice
How can we not-write

Each of us should write out our soul
Write out our heart
Write out our thoughts

Let us all write
Write something that leaves behind
something really valuable of ourselves
for posterity
If not just for your self

Write a quote, write few verses, write a short essay, one paragraph, a short story, a novel anything, a poem, a work of proze.
 Just take the pen or that keyboard, and write

Saturday, 29 November 2014

Reflection 148 (caring society)

Caring Society

Today I really felt taken care off by a person I don't know very well.
It went like this:

The battery of my car broke down. Luckily there were some friends around who immediately helped me to connect the starting cables to the battery of another car and my car was soon running. That was nice and caring but "the cream on the cake" had yet to come. I asked around where there was a shop in the neighbourhood at which I could find a new battery as we had to go to another place about 1 hour away. I was given some real good advice. I went on the way and about half an hour later I get a call from a female friend. Her husband was wondering whether we had found a battery shop to replace our battery. Now that call really touched my heart.

I felt the man and the friend were really caring for us. It are these small attentions that are really on the increase and that make me firmly believe that our society heading in the right direction. We ARE moving towards a CARING SOCIETY. And that will be so nice to live in.

I rejoice whenever I think about the future. !

Friday, 21 November 2014

Reflection 147 (kaizen)

Kaizen

Kaizen means small incremental improvements.
It is amazing how much has been achieved throughout history and throughout a variety of areas with small incremental improvements. This morning I read an amazing story.

In a residential area, the residents were asked to put a small poster with the message, please drive safely, in the left lower corner of one the windows at the front of their house. Almost all residents agreed. Two weeks later they were asked whether they would agree to put up a billboard in front of their property with a similar message but this time the billboard was quite huge and not very attractive. More than 70% agreed. In another residential area no small posters were used but people were asked from the beginning about the billboard. Less than 30% agreed.

I think in our personal life, at our workplace, if we want to make a positive change, it may be worth to start rather small. 

Thursday, 20 November 2014

Reflection 146 (complex)

Life is so complex. Science is really complex.
And then there are the people;
the people who are really complex themselves,
but they like, oh, so much to compartmentalize

I am working for a university
and there are the grants for knowledge transfer
and there are the grants for community engagement
and there are the grants for research

Each of course have their own merits and limits. But the sad thing about this is: some of the people controlling the grants want to recipient of the grants only to address the scope within their own field

I think it is quite essential for everyone to see that if we want to embark on any of the above, we have to embark on all three. Based on that we could ask the recipients of the grants to have the main focus on one or the other but not to have the ONLY focus on that. People who manage to integrate the three (knowledge transfer, community engagement AND research) can deliver results for the community not just 1+1+1= 3 but1+1+1, making three hundred.

Sunday, 16 November 2014

Reflection 145 (understanding mercy)

Understanding mercy

There was a man in Napoleon's army who had done something so terrible, that it  was worthy of death. The day before he was scheduled to appear before the firing squad, the mother of the man went to see Napoleon, to ask for mercy. Napoleon replied that her son did not deserve mercy. 
The mother replied that she knew that. If he deserved mercy it would not be mercy.

The above story was adapted from Alice Gray's book, stories for the heart. and under it she had the following quote from an anonymous author:

Some of God's attributes are too wonderful to understand
but even if they remain darkness to the intellect
let them be sunshine to your soul.

After reading this, I got this very warm feeling deep inside my heart.
I was thinking of the mercy of God,
I hope you experienced something like that too.

Love and mercy and lots of peace to you.

Saturday, 15 November 2014

Reflection 144 (together)

Together

I read this wonderful story in a book, titled stories for the heart:

A man got lost in the jungle. After about half an hour he met another man who asked:
"Can you please show me the way out of this jungle?"
The man responded:
"No, I cannot show you the way out of here, but if you walk with me we could find the way together"

Thursday, 13 November 2014

Reflection 143 (why is my soul so quiet)

Why

I often wonder why my soul is so quiet
It has to be so silent for me to hear my soul's voice
I often wonder why my ego is so loud 
My ego's shouts are heard, even in the loudest of noise

Perhaps the answer lies in the inherent nature
The inherent nature of ego and soul
Perhaps the inherent nature of soul is stillness
and that of ego is not quiet at all

It would be easier to live a life full of love
Surely if our soul a bit louder would cry
But it may well be that love without silence
would not be true love; perhaps that's why...?
 


Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Reflection 142 (replacing the in)

In love versus love

Being in love, how beautiful, how amazing, how all encompassing!
The subject of our "in love" means everything and we are truly convinced that it will be for ever.
For ever and ever. At least that is how our fairy tales end: and they lived happily for ever after.

Life however is no fairy tale. Being IN love does not last forever.
It was nature that provided us with the ecstatic feelings of being in love
It was nature that connected to it the invariable feeling of being forever and ever.
It was nature that wants to ensure our species does not end in this generation
that is why we get the extraordinary feelings, and that is also why it connected it to forever-ness


The want for forever-ness is there for a good reason.
Our children may greatly benefit from parents with a stable relationship.
Somehow a stable relationship is not only benefiting the children but equally the partners inside it.
Humans need affection, support, love and where else is a better place to get these things than within the harmony of a family and the coziness of a real 'home'.
But what do we humans make of it?

Love is not the same as 'in love'.
While the one with the 'in' comes spontaneously as an infatuation that is invariably only temporary, the one without the 'in' does not come spontaneously. It requires effort. People in successful marriages sometimes make this effort at a subconscious level and manage to replace the in love with love. But far more often we try to cling to the infatuation. We lose the infatuation but try to bring it back. Sometimes we can temporary bring it back but it is still infatuation and tends to fly away as fast as it comes. If we fail to make the effort to replace the infatuation with love (without the ín) we either end up in broken marriage or unhappy relationships. We can make this effort consciously!

To love with effort seems to go against nature.
But that is what humans are endowed with and are capable of doing.
We can achieve much bigger things than through just following our natural instincts.
Our nature urges us to indulge in sweet and excessive food, we can choose a healthy diet.
Our nature urges us to relax and rest so we have enough energy for the next fight or flight response, but we can choose a healthy life style with regular excercise
Our nature urges us to be lazy, but we can choose to live a life with purpose bringing us great peace of mind and elevate us to higher level of thinking, a higher level of awareness.
Our nature urges us to fall in love and then fall out of it, but we can replace the in love with true love bringing us a life with lots of harmony, support and a real home for us and our children.

Which efforts are we talking about? Just doing simple loving things, saying simple loving words, creating a unique lovely name (darling and honey are not very unique), probing each other's interests, being 100% trustworthy, assisting in each other's growth, mental, emotional and spiritual growth that is. Once love, true love is growing, romance will come back with another delightful dimension. Being 100% trustworthy (not a single lie) is perhaps the single most important one

I have reached an age where many of my friends of similar age are struggling with the so called midlife crisis. Midlife crisis is an ego problem. Our children are bigger, our jobs often quite established, our wives growing older. Our ego starts to doubt our outer worthiness and gaining the heart of a much younger girl seems a ready solution to please the ego enough and convince it we still have "ït".

Giving in to this means we have not managed to create true love within our marriage in the first place. Embarking on another infatuation followed invariably by falling out of the infatuation is not a solution. Can you just imagine how your middle aged wife must feel about you having a young girl? First let me tell you it is not a big achievement to lure a young girl, even if she is beautiful into a relationship if you are middle aged. The most ugly men of middle age can usually lurk through sweet talk young ladies quite easily. So nothing to be proud off. But every thing to worry about. First put yourself in the place of your wife! Even if your religion allows a second wife, think for a while how the one who has delivered your children must feel. A little bit of empathy. Surely if you think about a second wife you have failed to establish love, to make the efforts. You have missed out on this wonderful human achievement, but then did you also lose all forms of empathy?

It is truly never too late to make the efforts to create a loving relationship with the mother of your children. Some marriages really do not work out, but if we all put perfect honesty and so many other good values to work within ours, the number of marriages enjoying true harmony may increase sharply.

How about the religion? 'It is allowed, Mohamed had multiple wives'. That was in a time when women outnumbered men by huge multiples since men were dying in wars and huntings. Now we are living in a different era. While it could be considered a noble and good thing to take care of a widow and multiple women in the year 400, this does not justify in any way a lust-driven instinctive poor and selfish solution to an ego driven selfish midlife crisis. The much better solution to midlife is to make some of efforts, simple efforts to find true love with your wife, respect her more than anybody else in the world and not let her suffer in silence because of a misplaced male ego problem.

Reflection 141 (aim)

Focus on aim

(inspired by R. Sharma's the monk who sold his ferrari)

I like the part of Alice in Wonderland where Alice asks the rabbit which way she should go. The rabbit responded that it depended on where she wanted to go. When Alice said she did not know where to go, the rabbit responded that then it did not matter which way she would take.

If we have no aim in our life, we may just drive around in circles and 10 years from now, we may be at exactly the same level of achievement that we are now.

So important to take on and of some time and think about our aim in the short term, medium long term and long term. Best to write it down. Why to write it down?
1. It will allow us to get focused
Think about a few rays of sunlight. If not focused they give a little bit of warmth.
If focused through a magnifying glass: can light up a flame
Focus can convert our aim in to small flame that may give us light and warmth
2. If we  write down and read our aim, it will tell our subconscious mind that this thought is more important than the other 59 999 thoughts we think in a day.

Sunday, 9 November 2014

Reflection 140 (the sky)

The sky

How many days go by
that we do not see the sky?

This evening I came back from work and it was almost getting dark.
Usually I go out of the car and straight into the house.
But today, i took a small walk in the garden and noticed the sky.

Amazing
Glorious
Wonderful
.               These were the words that came to mind
 
Tomorrow I plan to take a few minutes in the morning
a few ninutes in the evening, just to watch the sky.
I think I have missed too many amazing clouds
I think I have missed too many glorious colours
I think I have missed too many wonderful skies

If today you have not taken a few moments to look at the sky
Please stop reading now, walk outside and take a look.
it may be breathtakingly beautiful

Saturday, 8 November 2014

Reflection 139 (what I know for sure)

What I know for sure

This is the title of a book by Oprah Winfrey.
In her foreword she states that during an interview she was asked the question and was so surprised by it, that she really had no answer. Can you imagine, Oprah at a loss of words! Afterwards however she gave it a lot of thought and over her life time she has encountered so many situations that made her sure about quite a variety of things.

Of course it is a very relevant question: What do I know for sure?
If someone would ask me, the immediate thing I would come up with would be that kindness is the fastest way to peace of mind and happiness. That is perhaps the thing I am most sure about  in my life. I am sure that I will die.
If I would be allowed to think for much longer I could come up with quite a number of other things I am sure about.

I am curious what others are sure about. If on the spot without lots of thinking you can come up with things you are sure about, please write them in the comments section of this post. No need to register or put your name or address.

Friday, 7 November 2014

Reflection 138 (fear)

`Today I read a religious magazine.
It had an article about women going to hell
There were plenty of articles about sin

How do all these writers know so much about who will go to hell and who not?
As a matter of fact they do not know at all.
They are just threatening people with something completely beyond their knowledge.
They try to instill fear and as such try to control the minds of followers
while love for our Creator is what encompasses the essentials of our religion.

This "If-you-do-not-follow-what-I-believe,-I-can-guarantee-you-hell" mentality is so desperately outdated and completely narrow minded. It is blocking any progress in spirituality or thinking or emotion or anything else not only for the one claiming this nonsensical statements themselves but for every unwitting follower they may have inadvertently gathered.

Let us leave as far as possible this abominable mentality as soon as we can for ever and ever and ever.

Thursday, 6 November 2014

Reflection 137 (Peck and Freud)

The road less traveled

Recently I started (again) the book with the title: "the road less traveled" by Scott Peck.
In the first chapters, he fully blames the parents for children's and later adult's deviant behaviour.

Of course he is a psychiatrist and sees among the most extreme behavior problems and a number of them are truly related to poor parenting practices. But to use the Freudian dogma that all problems results from childhood is going a bit overboard, no matter how strongly the psycho-analysts believe that is true. If they were right, they would be able to cure virtually everyone with their psycho-analysis. But not so.

Surely parenting is very important but it is perhaps the most difficult task thrown on the shoulders of young adults (who just underwent parenting from their own parents :) ) without any formal training. If you ask, who is more important for a child's well-being: the parents or the paediatrician. For the huge majority of children, it will be the parents. No way anyone can become a paediatrician without extensive and thorough training spanning over more than one decade. Parenting however, it comes to you, expected or unexpected but most often without any experience or training. And for educated and uneducated people alike, the tasks of parenting seem as daunting and challenging or much more daunting and challenging than our own profession or job.

I have read many books on parenting, but none seems to fully agree with the other. If you read ten books on how to give a good PowerPoint presentation, nine will tell you the same essential things. If you read ten books on parenting nine or ten will be tell you almost completely different things.

I think the most prominent common thing in good advice for parents is the factor, named love. Almost all parents will claim to love their children very much. How can we not love a baby? Still many young adults do not love babies. Among the majority who loves babies, quite a number get easily tired of caring for them. Babies demand so much, they change your life style, your life completely. Then toddlers challenging authority, how do we discipline them. Of course many say with love. How much love do parents use in disciplining? How strongly can we control our own emotions? And the example we put up as a role model. The axiom of children will follow what we do and not so much what we say. True enough.

An common problem, also is the parents projecting their own wishes on the children's future. These parents tell themselves they love their children but limiting the freedom of the child to choose their own path in life is often more a reflection of the parent's self-love and need for pride than real love  and respect for the child.

While many psychiatric problems may indeed have a firm origin in childhood and in "wrong" parenting, for most adolescents and later adults it is a complex interplay between the personality, intellect, emotional and spiritual status of the adolescent/adult and the parenting. So true, parenting styles affect us life long but it is by far not the only thing. A lot of adolescents with major problems have siblings who do not have such problems, even though they had the same parents. Sure enough parents do not treat all siblings the same way but the role models stand.

I'd love to conclude that parenting is a very important task. It deserves a lot of thought and reflection and effort to make the right choices as parents. But as adults and even adolescents, we cannot blame all of our problems on our parents. The choices we make are ours. Whether or not our children become successful is the result of an extremely complex interplay between parents, children and any outside influence. 

Monday, 3 November 2014

Reflection 136 (praise)

Praise

Many of us think we have to praise our God because our God will be angry if we do not.
What a mistake, do we think we are so great, we can make our God angry?

But still it is so good to praise our God
Not because God is vain and will bask in glory while being praised
God is not like human kings or sultans who demand and thrive on protocol

We were given prayer as a gift, as a present.
Praying and praising our Creator  sincerely from the heart
elevates our heart and brings our soul a bit closer to Him.
Praising our God is something that brings us peace of mind
Peace at heart, peace of soul.

It puts us in a state of gratefulness, thankfulness,
A thankful heart is a gift.
A gift from our God to us

Try to say sincerely thanks and see if it ever can make you feel bad?
Not so, it is truly a wonderful gift.
If we understand this, praying will never again be a sacrifice
It will be just delight, a present, a gift.
Not a gift from us to God,
A gift from God to us.
A pleasure, a joy
A pure delight
 


Sunday, 2 November 2014

Reflection 135 (today)

Today

This morning I wanted to be the sunshine
in the life of everyone i'd meet

Now at night, I am not so sure
Not sure if any rays have shone

Sometimes small gestures or a kind word
can make a difference in someone's life

I hope I had some of these today
'cause of big good deeds I am not aware

Perhaps the small talk with my son
or here or there a hi or smile

I still hope that my day  has meant a thing
for here or there a soul, a heart or mind

Friday, 31 October 2014

Reflection 134 (child-like)

Child-like

This morning my nephews and nieces were visiting.
I had a really good time with them, making jokes and laughing.
How nice is it to laugh together with (not at) children!
Sometimes I feel that if the world would be a bit more child-like.
it would be sooooooo much better.

Child-like does not mean childish.
Child-like is just thinking simple like a child does
Liking simple things, being able to laugh at simple jokes

Let us make it our aim for today to be a little bit child-like

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Reflection 133 (listening to books)

Books

Books are something so valuable to many people
But still, to a majority, that overwhelms the book lovers in great numbers,
books are not fully appreciated.

I love books, I love to read books.
But recently I also fell in love with audio-books.

Audiobooks are books read out aloud and recorded.
The voice is often the author and with voice (s)he can often give an extra dimension to the text.
When I drive I cannot read, not even a short SMS message from my wife, but I can listen to an audiobook.

I generally drive every day 30 minutes to my work and 30 minutes back. This means one hour of audiobooks. Truly enjoyable.

For everyone who had not yet discovered the joy of audiobooks, I recommend them warmly.
Audiobooks could help our youth as well to get exposed to a variety of written materials.
It may be a solution for our dyslexics. True enough, we have to help our dyslexics to be able to read but they may never enjoy reading books. Audiobooks may be of great help.




Monday, 27 October 2014

Reflection 132 (teach)

Let's teach

Let's teach our children 
Not the history of conqueror-mass murderers
but the glory of humble servants to humanity

My heart worries if I see award giving ceremonies
for children achieving excellent results in school

The all important scoring of As
Maybe we have to stop the madness

Let us stop and think for a while what we want most for our children
Any reasonable parent would answer:
I want them to be first and foremost happy people, if possible happier than myself.


But there are so many unreasonable parents out there who give a wicked twist to the above into:
I want my children to be first and foremost high achievers, achieving higher aims than myself. (and higher aims means more money, more power, more influence, something for parents to be proud of). There is nothing noble about ignoring what the talents and true ambitions of your children are. I have met medical students who were not interested in Medicine at all. Some of them dreamed of becoming movie directors but were pushed in medical school by their enormously egoistic (or/and unintelligent) parents

Let us stick to the happiness ideal for our children.
Happiness is so closely linked to basic values.
Let us teach them values first before we teach them that being first is all that's valued

Let's teach our children
the long lasting happiness that lies in humbly serving
Let us put that as priority number one.
to be able to help and serve in an optimal way they may need to work hard, to achieve

Let us teach them to serve and help friends along the way and never make achievement a lofty aim by itself...

Saturday, 25 October 2014

Reflection 131 (success)

Success

In so many books about success we read the stories about the poverty stricken students performing not very well in school and still becoming superb billionaires. These heroic stories put up quite a distortion in the concept that we want to impart in to our youths about success.

True enough Bill Gates and Warren Buffet rank among true huge successes among the human race. But the huge problem with examples of super rich and famous people lies in the definition of success.
So many super rich and famous have committed suicide. Do we count them in as successes? So many are on drugs; are they among the successes?

Let us stop hanging up picture of people achieving exceptional wealth or fame to define success in our world.

Almost every child has the potential to be truly successful in his or her life.
By true success here, I mean the achievement of enough peace of mind to lead a happy fulfilled life.
Isn't this a better more realistic definition?

Peace of mind, happiness, fulfillment. Every ordinary human has the capacity and talents to achieve this. Each in their very own special way. Imagine how the world would look like if the primary purpose of our educational institutions would be that and schools would be assessed based on how their ex-students fare in these terms rather than based on how many A's are produced.



The largest happy community


The largest happy community

This reflection starts with a real story:

There was a woman
She had a disabled child.
Taking care of the child was extremely stressful, tiring.
The husband could not take it any longer and just left.
The woman was alone, alone with her very abnormal child.

The woman had financial problems. She had no income.

The husband did not bother to pay anything, she herself had no job
Luckily she had some land on her name, which she could sell.
But the sale of the land took a very long time. No money
She had borrowed from most friends. Grew desperate.
Prayed so hard for help from our God

On a scheduled visit to the doctor of her child,

the doctor inquired about  the family and the social problems
She broke down in front of the doctor and sobbed bitterly
While tears were flowing, she explained she had borrowed about 2K
2K from loan sharks who were now threatening her.
The good doc organized a blitz collection among his colleagues 
and was capable of giving her the money she needed so badly

She thanked all who contributed profusely

and expressed her commitment to pay back 
as soon as the land sale was done.


Her prayers had been answered.
Our God had softened the heart of so many
The good doc had prayed in the morning to be a tool of our God's peace.
His prayers had been answered too.
Our God is answering prayers through people.



You think the Woman was happy?
Bet she was
You think the good Doc was happy?
Bet he was
You think the colleagues donating were happy?
Bet they were.

If we can create a community of people sincerely asking every morning to be made a tool of our God's peace,  I think every member will be able to the see and act on at least one one of the many opportunities that present to each of us every single day to help people. When we are used by our Creator to answer someone's prayer, we can find a deep peace of mind. Let us create the largest happy community in this world by just joining a group of people who pray every morning to be able to HELP.  Put your daily stories in the comments section of this blog and help the community grow fast.


The above story is not yet finished.

One of the docs who helped and had received 
the thank you message with the promise to pay back, 
had responded:
Please keep the money as long as you need it.
If you are comfortably capable of paying back, 
please do not pay to me but pass on the favor 
to someone praying to our God for help....