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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Tajinder Singh, 47, a farmer in the North Indian state of Punjab,
applied for a gun license. He told the authorities that he needed a
revolver for self-defense. While tending to his 20 acres of land, he
often had to walk long hours to reach home after nightfall. He wanted to
protect himself from wild animals and bands of armed robbers. Once the
background checks were completed in June this year, Singh was told he
had to fulfill one more condition to get his gun. He had to submit two
photos: One showing him planting 10 saplings on his property, and then
another with the thriving trees one month later.
Emtithal "Emi" Mahmoud writes poetry of resilience, confronting her
experience of escaping the genocide in Darfur in verse. She shares two
stirring original poems about refugees, family, joy and sorrow, asking,
"Will you witness me?
Sister Marilyn Lacey is committed to go where the need is great, which,
in the case of Mercy Beyond Borders, includes South Sudan and Haiti. The
mission of Mercy Beyond Borders is to forge ways for women and girls in
extreme poverty to learn, connect and lead by providing educational,
economic and empowerment opportunities, bringing hope to areas where
there was no hope. This hope is witnessed in the faces of a large group
of girls attending school for the first time. And it is seen in the
light beaming from an 89 year old woman whose dream was to be able to
write her name before she dies, when she fulfills that dream.
If you’re concerned about the humane treatment of migrants arriving at our borders, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. Children separated from their families. Disease spreading rampant through detention facilities. People unable to shower for more than a month. A Border Patrol chief joining a racist Facebook group. And we are now also being confronted with anti-immigrant terrorism. No wonder so many of us feel we can’t process all that’s happening.
Emotionally checking out from human rights abuses doesn’t make you morally deficient. It’s a very understandable response, one probably rooted in our evolutionary past. Since we’re wired to help others in a small group context, it makes sense that we’re overwhelmed when confronted with thousands of suffering people. The more people who are in need, the less likely many of us are to want to help—a phenomenon called compas…
"What does home mean and where do we anchor our belonging in a world of
violent alienation and alienating violence? I use "alien" here both in
the proper etymological sense rooted in the Latin alienus, "belonging to
another," and in the astrophysical sense of "from another planet," "not
human," for the combined effect of a dehumanizing assault on belonging
for those treated and mistreated as alien to a country or a community.
That, and some hint of the remedy for it, is what Toni Morrison
(February 18, 1931 -- August 5, 2019) -- one of the titanic thinkers and
writers of our time, and the first black woman to receive the Nobel
Prize in Literature -- returns to again and again..."
Most of us spend the lion’s share of our waking hours focusing on work. If we’re not at work, we’re thinking about it. We rush off to answer emails after the kids are in bed. Some of us never turn off.
No wonder the workplace loomed large at this summer’s 6th World Congress of the International Positive Psychology Association. From fostering purposeful work to encouraging authenticity in the workplace, the Congress offered research and practical tips on the keys to well-being at work.
Here are some of our biggest takeaways that can help your organization support employees and help us all thrive in our professional lives.
1. Character strengths matter in the workplace We all have our character strengths. Australian organizational psychologist Aylin Dulagil describes them as “innate, malleable, positive characteristics that are enjoyable, come easily, and are energizing.”
One day, San Francisco artist Jane Baker realized something. Now she
operates from a new place -- new, but also very old: "I don't know art
history that well, but it is only in the last few hundred years that art
has been a commodity. Before that, most artists were doing it out of
their love for, frankly, for God or their church. Most of the art that's
been made has not been made for money. So I'm standing with a group
that has been around for a lot longer! It's not a weak, touchy-feely
place. What I've started feeling is that, yes, they really knew what was
right! And it lasted a long time before this particular period we are
all in." Baker has a practice of donating one hundred percent of the
income from sales of her artwork to charities. She shares more in this
Last month, researchers from over 60 countries gathered at the International Positive Psychology Association’s 6th World Congress in Melbourne, Australia, to share cutting-edge insights on the science of well-being.
Their findings added depth and complexity to our understanding of the major keys to a flourishing life. In Melbourne, we heard about when kindness makes us happier—but also when it doesn’t. We learned how the elderly can be meaningfully engaged in helping others. We discovered many concrete ways to boost our sense of meaning in life, and how cultural differences influence the pursuit of happiness. Researchers also addressed modern obstacles to happiness—from the way we’re hooked on technology to a widespread sense of disconnection and loneliness.
However, there were several insights presented at the World Congress that stood out to me as new or surprising. Here are…
"The work of Joseph Campbell and countless others makes it clear that
the destructive aspects of the world, and the knowledge that each of us
will die, has forever been a deep challenge to reconcile with a
celebration of life. It's not getting easier. There's a web of
relationships in a globalized world that make it difficult to live
without being destructive. Even when sincerely striving to be peaceful,
we may still be violent. When trying to help, we can cause harm. The
laptop I use to write about peace runs on Congolese conflict minerals.
Even something as simple as a toothbrush has a vast meaning when we
explore it." So where do we start? Matthew Legge shares more in this
excerpt from his new book, "Are We Done Fighting?"
"I was diagnosed with Parkinson's just over three years ago when I was
50. Receiving the diagnosis from a matter-of-fact doctor was a
traumatizing experience, and I felt that my life and my family's
identity had collapsed. Life was difficult and still is difficult, yet
something amazing is beginning to happen. I have slowly started to shift
my attitude from the anger, fear, and loneliness brought on by the
Parkinson's and the grim predictions of a Parkinson's future to a more
body-based feeling of gratefulness for the wholeness of life as I
experience it second by second. I have discovered not only profound
wonder and indebtedness for the gift of my life and relationships but
also a physical softening in the area of my heart and a growing ability
to feel with my body joy, awe, and the interconnectedness that is hidden
in plain sight all around us." Tim Roberts shares more.