[last-minute insertion] TaN: Sorry, I forgot but that is because I do not celebrate New Year anymore nor Christmas, since I have no idea when Jesus Christ was born. As for the New Year, there are so many inanities that have been hijacked and are being peddled and pushed by Big Business in order to maximize profit.
Take the case of the stupid, nonsensical, and ridiculous belief of having or ensuring there are twelve kinds of ROUND fruits in the house to bring or usher in good luck and good fortune. If one really and seriously ponder on it, one will realize that: (1) almost all fruits are round, in one way or another; (2) luck or good fortune is of our own making and not dependent on chance; and, (3) the promise of prosperity and good fortune is only for the vendors and Big Business because they earn from the gullible masses when they buy into the idiotic belief.
Frankly, New Year’s Eve and Day are just another night and next day in the cycle of yearly living. I have better ways of spending my time in more meaningful ways than to throw away my hard-earned money, get hammered, inhale all the toxic pyrotechnic fumes, endure the ear-splitting explosions, and pollute the environment with the remains of spent pyrotechnics.
TaN: Once, a young lad asked a wise man (I think it was Confucius): Master, when is the best time to teach? The master answered, When you begin to ask questions. The wisdom here is that teaching is a two-person, two-way activity. The recipient of the knowledge (or wisdom) must be open to learning, otherwise everything is an exercise in futility.
When one is not ready to receive a lesson, no amount or effort of teaching will succeed because the recipient’s mind is not open — to suggestions, to advice, to anything. Asking questions is a sign that the mind is ready to receive, which makes it the best time to teach and introduce a lesson.
Today, education is causing great turmoil, trauma, stress, and discomfort because people, especially children and the youth, are being “force-fed” information that they are either not ready or interested to learn. This causes anxiety and anguish because there is resistance from the side of the learner. In the collegiate or tertiary level (where students decide on which career they would like), many a student take a certain course due to insistence or prodding of the parents. This adds to the stress and anxiety.
The greatest impact (or damage) is done at the first level, where the child gets the first taste of “force-fed” education. This is when the child is not yet ready to learn but, since it has come of age, the parents feel they are obligated to subject their child to the rigors of the established formal educational system. The child gets its first experience of having to memorize and master fundamental standardized educational materials instead of having its curiosity peeked — for curiosity is the btest and most powerful motivator of learning because the mind is ready and willing to accept knowledge.
The first impression of a child determines and defines how future experiences and encounters with lessons will be perceived and taken. A bad experience may cause the child to adapt an adverse or hostile stance and (subconsciously) resist learning, especially when the lesson is not in line with his/her interests.
Never mind if people will perceive or opine that your child is “slow”; what is important is that early childhood learning experiences be interesting, pleasant, and wanted. The problem with most parents is that they want their child to be looked upon as “advance for his age” (or genius), which is normal but is not good for the child — putting pressure on the child to perform often beyond his/her capabilities. Take heed from: A Child Learns What He Lives (try URL: http://www.noogenesis.com/pineapple/Kristone.html).
TaN: A major cause of today’s both global and domestic conflicts is “the building of walls instead of bridges”. The recent spate of mass actions arose as a reaction to the court verdicts that was perceived to be terrible iscarriage of justice — especially when the accused is a white policeman and the victim is a black or non-white.
Since facts about the cases are scant — from where I am — it is difficult and would be unfair for me to pass judgment as to the rightness or wrongness of the verdict or the mass actions. Nevertheless, given the meager facts available to me, there is enough to at least say that the police were out of line in using overwhelming force and means in the performance of their sworn duty. However, the mass protestors should have some kind of self-policing among their ranks to ensure that they stick to the issue and observe proper decorum and respect public property as well as other people’s rights — and not have vandals, looters, and the like take advantage of the situation.
Instead of trying to understand the other side, we embark on a dangerous path of racism, prejudice, hatred, and labeling — this is building walls that separate us from others instead of bridges of uncerstanding, compassion, and cooperation to bring us closer. Racism differentiates “us” from “them” (so there is separation or building of walls); prejudice taints one’s perception and opinion of others and this often undeserved and even when it is favorable, it would still often be undeserved; hatred automatically puts up a wall, a barrier between the hater and the hated and any good in the hated is totally ignored or overlooked; and, labeling is (somewhat) similar to racism because it categorizes people in a biased manner — although it can go either way, since labeling can likewise be used to identify (mind you, not profiling) people so that we can better understannd and possibly appreciate their being different and distinct from us.
To make matters worse, we have to contend with those who pretend to be building bridges when they are really building walls — we must see through their veiled attempts and many are very cleverly disguised, much like what infomercials are doing and the altruistic/philanthropic activities that are really sly techniques of marketing. In fact, one of the most devious is the advocating and providing of free vaccinations under the guise of extending assistance to the poor when, in truth, the vaccines are tainted with cocktails of toxins that are in line with the depopulation agenda of global eugenicists.
Another case would be the latest issue on immigrants and refugees who are being used and exploited for political ends.
TaN: A monster is neither judged nor determined by his/her appearance but by his/her actions and behavior — this I accidentally picked up from an anime one morning the other week. How true. Just like in the saying, It is not (about) how long you lived but (about) what you did with your life.
We are so easily tempted to take the easy route — basing our judgments and opinions on the superficial (and external). We choose to look only on the surface and the trivial rather than underneath the surface and spend (precious) time learning and knowing the true nature and personality. And this is very dangerous because laziness (to spend time studying and learning beyond or deeper into the substance rather than just the surface) can lead to deception (where people are fooled into thinking what is not) and likewise is external or physical beauty — remembering that Lucifer, aside from being the most powerful and most intelligent of all angels (of God) was also the most beautiful (and there is no greater monster).
And this is not limited to personalities. We likewise see this in government and business — like when government chooses to raises income tax rates when it is trying to increase revenue or when business opts to increase prices to raise revenue or profits instead of lowering and improving production cost. The opting of making it more difficult for consumers for the purpose of just increasing revenue or profits instead of taking on the challenge of improving the efficiency of the cost of production is a form of monstrosity. This is most evident in many mega corporations, especially those who employ aggressive public relations and marketing campaigns, that try to project a clean and wholesome and trustworthy image in an effort to cover up unethical business practices and worthless — or, worse, harmful — products and services.
It is frequently risky and many times even outright dangerous to put one’s trust or to base one’s judgment on superficial, easy, and trivial externalities or physical appearances. How many times have we heard of people being victimized by unscrupulous charlatans and scam artists and pyramiding-networking vultures? And these are just the ones that we hear of, so one can just try to imagine how many go unreported.
In all, one should be too hasty in jumping to conclusions, especially when the conclusions are based on half-baked or even totally unfounded information. And, as far as monsters are concerned, they are everywhere and in a myriad of forms, sizes, shapes, and guises. It is said that it is better in the jungle because, at least, animals do not pretend and deceive us, and they are not monsters since they are just being true to themselves and their nature.
TaN: Probably (and hopefully) last rejoinder to earlier TaNs regarding today’s god — Mammon. It is truly Mammon that is god today. One of the most common situations today regarding governments and nations is, despite exchanging barbs and even threats, economic and trade relations remain.
Some of the prime examples are: (1) the dispute between the claimants of the islands and islets in the southeast Asian seas where not only were there accusations and acerbic statements exchanged but even outright physical skirmishes and clashes both in the high seas and in front embassies and (2) the conflict between Russia and the United States of America.
Moreover, whenever there is an issue regarding rights of labor(ers) where it is clear and evident that labor is at a disadvantage, Big Business will still get its way (often through government enforcement) by threatening loss of profit, closure and/or transfer/relocation of business, and retrenchment or downsizing (among many others more). And, as expected, labor folds or is pressured into submission under legalities.
Finally, the mere fact and confirmation of the observation that, as time passes, the rich get richer while the poor gets poorer and the middle class disintegrates and gets pushed down to join and bloat the ranks of the poor masses. Mammon is god of this world.