Off-beat perceptions and life tips of the world and all its players.
Keep it clean, keep it honest and as a great friend told me, keep swimming!
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Kahlil Gibran, writer, poet, and visual artist, offered parents sage
advice on understanding the role of a parent who brings life into the
world. In a world that too often overlooks the tenderness and simplicity
of children, Gibran reminds us that children are a gift. They do not
belong to us as possessions nor do they live to fulfill our dreams. In
his great book The Prophet, Gibran says, "You are the bows from which
your children as living arrows are sent forth." Read on for more of
Gibran's inspiring thoughts on the journey of parenting.
Steven Spielberg is dyslexic but did not know this as a child. He struggled in school and lagged behind academically, but found that he could communicate through movies rather than words on a page. His talent to share stories and touch people’s imagination and hearts through film was born, in part, from his dyslexia. He credits the love of his parents and their support of his passions as key factors in his success.
Tim Howard has had a stellar career as a professional goalkeeper in the USA World Cup Soccer Series, as well as for the Everton Club in the U.K and Manchester United (he played with David Beckham). He encountered many challenges growing up with OCD and Tourette’s syndrome, but they didn’t deter his amazing career. While most kids got bored with soccer practice and would give up, Howard became an internationally celebrated goalkeeper by taking advan…
It’s time to celebrate a leap in progress that most of us are a part of, and barely know it. Savvy consumers are rewarding companies that care about their impact and the most remarkable things are happening!
Have you noticed there is a “gratitude economy” evolving?
More and more of us are making consumer choices based on the reputation that companies have for making the world a better place. And when we are proud to be part of something bigger than ourselves, our gratitude starts a feedback loop that’s pretty hard to beat. A more authentic kind of CSR — Corporate Social Responsibility — in companies may be what moves us all to a new level of economic progress!
The quilters of rural Gee's Bend, Alabama, many of whom are descendants
of slaves, learned to quilt from their mothers and grandmothers. They
also learned, sitting under the quilting table as small children,
valuable life lessons, and the hopes and dreams their families had for
them. Their brightly colored quilts speak of love, peace, joy, and the
value of hard work. Like their mothers and grandmothers before them,
they sing and pray, sharing their life stories, as they work together.
Their quilts have been recognized as valuable forms of art and exhibited
in museums. Books have been written about them and their quilts. And
yet they are most proud when "you can feel the love" that is sewn into
every one of these quilted masterpieces.
In this thought-provoking piece, George Prochnick, author of "In Pursuit
of Silence", calls on us to examine our relationship with the sounds,
or their absence, around us. Drawing on the wisdom of Herman Melville,
Henry David Thoreau, and others, Prochnick proposes that by shutting
ourselves off to the noise of our surroundings, we shut ourselves off to
the world, effectively losing our place within it. "At some point the
inability to 'hear oneself think,'" he argues, "becomes the inability to
think at all." Read on to learn more about how we can achieve a greater
balance between the variety of naturally-sourced and man-made sounds we
encounter and the interludes of stillness and silence that beckon our
Many of us want to be "good ancestors"; to give our children and
succeeding generations a better world, more opportunity, more abundance
than what we enjoyed in our lives. But the course humanity is on does
exactly the opposite. For Pete Gang, architect, educator and reluctant
climate activist "it just feels so wrong to me to be depriving future
generations of at least a liveable planet". Listen to this in-depth
interview from Nonviolent Radio and consider how you might better
steward the planet for those who will come after.
While governments seal borders and erect walls, ordinary people are
offering support and shelter. These nine inspiring stories of solidarity
will encourage, uplift and incite you to action. Migrant offshore Aid
Station rescues migrants along the central Mediterranean route from
Libya to Italy. Miksaliste helps as many as 1,000 refugees a day in the
heart of Belgrade. Lawal Dan Gashua, the Chair of a bakers' association
in the northern city of Maiduguri, houses and provides a home to
refugees fleeing Boko Haram with no support from the government, but as
his responsibility. Meron Estefanos has saved over 16,00 lives fleeing
Eritrea's despotic regime by communicating the co-ordinates of boats in
distress to the coastguard. These stories and others are highlighted in
this article by Hazel Healy of the New Internationalist.
The complex meanings of a serious story or novel can be understood only
by participation in the language of the story itself. To translate them
into a message or reduce them to a sermon distorts, betrays, and
destroys them. This is because a work of art is understood not by the
mind only, but by the emotions and by the body itself.
Why do we laugh at movies like Office Space or shows like The Office? What’s so funny about work?
For one student in the GGSC’s online Foundations of Happiness at Work course, humor is found in everyday faux pas. Steve from California shared, “During a meeting, my boss complimented our colleague…saying how handsome he is. The team felt awkwardly surprised, until our boss corrected, ‘No—it’s great how hands-on he is!’ Everyone laughed, easing the tension from the meeting. ‘Well, he is handsome, too!’ I defended jokingly, and we all laughed again.”
Work may seem like a serious place. But, according to research, introducing some laughter into work life can contribute to our well-being and productivity. In fact, finding humor is one of the practices we teach students in our online course. The funny stories they shared remind us that a little playfulness goes a long way toward a more enjoyable work life.
Many of us have had the experience of tossing and turning at night, wishing we could sleep, watching the minutes tick by on the clock by our bedside. In fact, one-third of Americans say they lie awake at least a few nights a week.
You may have tried counting sheep or listening to a bedtime meditation to help you fall asleep, but according to a new study, there’s another practice you could consider instead: forgiveness.
Researchers asked 1,423 American adults to rate themselves on how likely they were to forgive themselves for the things they did wrong and forgive others for hurting them. The participants also answered survey questions about how they had slept in the past 30 days, how they would rate their health at the moment, and how satisfied they were with their life.
The results suggested that people who were more forgiving were more likely to sleep better and for longer, a…
When the 2022 Special Olympics USA Games organizers set out to design a
logo for the event, they began in the traditional way of hiring a design
firm. But in the process, they both realized something crucial was
missing from the logo: the input of the athletes themselves!
In an age when the fate of the world is unknown, George Prochnik makes a
case for uncertainty as a form of faith and hope. Restoring a sense of
the unknown requires unlearning, calling into question our way of life.
In uncertainty, reason fails whereas love guides. This love can be
exemplified by those who spend hours practicing arts and handicrafts
with no concern for real-world application, but which may give the
skills and imagination necessary to envision and resurrect what war and
disease have destroyed. In dark times, hope can emerge from a religious
sensibility that proclaims, "I do not know what happens next." Faith can
emerge when we ask questions until the context deepens and evil is
transformed. Faith, hope and love of service can be the beginning of
Where do compassion and empathy come from? What makes life sentient? This summer, as they have the past several years, professors from across
the United States and elsewhere are traveling to three major Tibetan
monastic universities in Southern India to train monastics in the
philosophy of science, physics, biology, and neuroscience. Tibetan
Buddhist monks and nuns have grappled with these questions for centuries
but, for the first time in their history, they are using science to
help find the answers.For monks and nuns, the program organized and
operated by Emory University is the most far-reaching update to their
curriculum in 600 years. And for scientists who usually reduce complex
systems like the human body into smaller parts, the program is a window
into a way of thinking that emphasizes the interconnectedness and
cyclical aspects of nature.
You can find plenty of practical information out there about pregnancy and parenting, but what about the emotional rollercoaster and identity shift that occurs for many women and their partners when they have a child? We don’t talk much about it—and if we do, it’s usually in the context of postpartum depression.
In the book, Sacks and Birndorf seek to educate readers about the stage of life called “matrescence,” which is the developmental transition to motherhood. Just as a baby transitions to toddlerhood and a child transitions to adolescence, matrescence is a natural but distinct period of lif…
The transcendent artistry of Green Renaissance Films allows us to enter
into the life of a young man who has journeyed through mental disorder
and arrived at a place of wholeness with an openness to the chaos of
life. He has come to realize that he does not need to hold fear at bay
by trying to order his world, controlling everything. Rather he embraces
the chaos and unpredictability of daily living as the magic of the real
world, allowing more beautiful things to happen, a world full of
possibilities. The beauty of the film's location in South Africa adds an
even deeper dimension to this young man's profound insights.
Middle school can be tough on an adolescent’s self-esteem. Social comparison often becomes fierce, leading to feelings of unworthiness that can have negative consequences in years to come.
How can a parent help? New research suggests that one great answer is to encourage your kids to participate in the arts—or, better yet, to join them in some creative pursuit.
“Initiatives to promote arts engagement in children may provide a practical and efficient way to improve children’s self-esteem,” report Hei Wan Mak and Daisy Fancourt of University College London. Importantly, they found that kids didn’t have to be good at their chosen creative activity for these positive effects to blossom.
The research, published in the Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, features 6,209 youngsters from the United Kingdom Millennium Cohort Study. The kids were born in the U.K. around the …