The Excess in Our Society, Now is the Shedding Time

A friend sent me link about a new Sony Vaio laptop.

The world’s lightest 8″ notebook, the 1.4-pound VAIO® P Series Lifestyle PC does more than you could imagine–with impeccable style. Email at the airport, IM from the park, or just show it off when you want some attention.

Honestly, who really needs a laptop that is 1.4lb that is mega-expensive? What the F is a person gonna use it for? Throw it like a baseball? It’s not big enough to read and browse and work on it comfortably. It’s not small enough like smart phones, with resembling functions, for you to carry around. If you have trouble carrying around a 4 to 5 lb of very portable laptop, may I say you have a physical condition called weak, and by that I mean, weaker than a 5-year-old.

So in the end, it is all about the last comment — just show it off when you want some attention — that which appeals to the emotional side of consumers. And people will fall for it too, as we have come to adopt the consumeristic lifestyle, which boomed in the past decades. Just maybe less peope will fall for it now, but such things like this laptop are the reflections of the excess in our society.

The lavish lifestyle of the super-rich.
The giant house that’s too big even for a family, let alone just a couple.
The big house that parents insist to buy because they have… TWO kids.
The ultra mega-pixel digital camera, when common users won’t even have practical usage of pictures from a 4MP camera.
The pick-up and SUVs for just-in-case big items.
Uh… Hummer!
Fancy gym memberships that 85% (or whatever large amount) of the people don’t use.
The obsessive of saving this and that, or war on this and that, while each individual has trouble taking care of the self, mastering the self.
Talk shows, reality TVs, game shows.
The amount of lawsuits, blaming, victimizing the self.

And the biggest reflection of excess is… the unhealthiness, both physical and mental, of the general population. Just look at obesity, many terminal illness, depression, people going hay-wired, rising health care cost, general uncaring-ness of each other… I believe are all reflections of the same thing.

The excessive excess we have reflects a general lacking inside. Something is amiss which causes us to be so materialistic, even though it is all about looking inside yourself. Since nobody does that, they never fulfill the lack and continue to chase materials, in the form of money, in the form of a successful career, in the form of owning things. Thus the excess. All the while, without looking at yourself and taking care of the self first, people’s physical and mental condition deteriorate because they only know to chase materials. Thus all the physiological and mental illness.

So until each individual learns to take care of the self and learns to look within rather than without, and thereby shedding the excess, our problems will always be re-occurring, if only in different forms. Look at the past 3000 years. Humans hadn’t really changed. If anything, I think we are in worse shape than ever, despite the entrepreneurship, despite technology, despite all the knowledge and information we possess now.

Originally posted 2009-01-16 01:44:23. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Be Careful of Credit Card Companies Sneaky Behaviors

I use online bill pay for all my bills and manually schedule them each month.

I just finished scheduling payment for credit cards, and I noticed the due date has slowly crept earlier and earlier over last few months. How sneaky of the credit card companies! I am not going to fall into this late-charge-trap.

And I’d like to warn everyone who comes across this post to be extra careful about credit card payment due date (and probably all other bills also). tThis is especially if you make use of monthly automatic payment.

Needless to say, this is credit card companies one of many sneaky behaviors to get more money, not excluding extra/increased finance charges and increased interest rate. Only understandable in this economy, right?

That means it will do us no good to be mad at them, but just that, we, anyone who is a credit card user, are to take care to keep money in our own pockets.

Originally posted 2009-05-10 22:42:40. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

How to Communicate – To Truly Connect

For work or personal relationship, we are presented with the questions:

What does it mean to communicate?
How can we do it well?
Or rather, how do you really listen to the other person?

So then quite frequently, we took classes and lesson. We studied some psychology and philosophy. We are taught tricks and techniques such as…
– say certain phrases
– ask certain questions
– use certain hand gestures
– mirror the other party’s movement and behaviors
– how to process the words coming out of the other person’s mouth

Well, those are all dandy and fine, but I find those can only be effective in so much depends on how well you know yourself (as I often say here) and ultimately, on the basis your realization that, we are all human beings.

The other person is a person, a human being. Just like yourself.

This basic realization is fundamental and consequential.

That is very important because we often let our own and the other person’s identities get in the way and thus lead to both parties being scared, intimidated, distant, defensive, offensive during conversation.

Bosses and employees.
Teachers and students.
Parents and children.
Husband and wife.

We must realize that we are not merely identities.

Part of being present in the moment is this realization. Not that we ignore people’s identities but to have a “non-grasping-ness” with the identities while knowing that are the same human beings as I am. We are fundamentally the same… human beings who are both rational and irrational, with both thinking minds and emotional hearts. We all have parents. We all thrive on a healthy Earth. We… well, you get the point.

A few other details on what not to do in order to allow true communication…

Not wondering about other things in your mind.
Not thinking or preparing what to say next.
And definitely, not lying and saying things to ONLY achieve a personal agenda.

On a last note, these ideas point out a few limitation of communication through the virtual world. In that, when we are not physically together, thus the Internet, our communication relies heavily on the identities we already know of the other people or identities that we claim and establish. In other words, through Internet and text exchanges, we can only see fragments of the other person… rather than truly connecting.

Yes, emails, text messages, and social networks are great convenient tools, but at the same time, I find us making the grave mistakes of over-using it to represent and communicate ourselves as if they can represent and communicate ourselves in totality. Perhaps this is why more people are feeling lonelier than ever? That more people feel isolated than ever? That there are more depressed people than ever?

Something for us to ponder…

This is not so far from us missing the point by mistaking our abstractions of reality as reality. But, this is a topic for another day.

Originally posted 2009-08-31 23:41:39. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Oneness, base on Tao, Zen, Buddhism, etc.

A little philosophy for the day, edited from a comment I left at Life Coaches Blog’s post — Personal Atrophy for Foolish People. I don’t like to over-analyzing things and prefer to keep it simple, so here goes.

Oneness is truth, and truth is oneness. Everything comes forth from oneness.

Oneness entails the interconnected of everything in this world. Truth is the relationships of the opposing/complimentary forces that is part of this oneness. Our reality is just our interpretation of truth. Despite our perception, our judgement, truth is as these relationships are.

Intelligence enables us to obtain knowledge, but wisdom (true knowledge) is where we apply those information and understand the working of the different relationships in this world.

All types of knowledge leads to self-knowledge, where an individual is aware of his relationship working with all the different relationships in the world, and he acts base on that. This is the application of wisdom. This is also when one is aware of the oneness of the world. Acting with self-knowledge and awareness is self-actualization.

As a result, intelligence leads to wisdom, wisdom leads to awareness, and ultimately, awareness gives birth to true courage and true love. With those, one has the power to act, to be honest with oneself and others.

That’s why…

True love comes from oneness because knowing we are all connected, compassion arises.

True courage also comes from oneness because fear arises from unknowns, and it is only unknown when one is not aware of oneness.

That’s also why, all types of negativities in this world occurs as a result of derailing from oneness, and in other words, being unaware of the oneness of the world/universe. Some examples are…

Denial is a refusal to see the relationships of different forces working together (or against each other), or attachment to one’s own perception of truth.

Anger is a result of expecting relationships to go certain way, again, attachment to one’s perception of how things should be.

Separation is when a person is attached to only one aspect of oneness, like being happy. They just want to be happy, but forget the fact that, happiness exists because sadness also exists.

Hence, attachment is the cause of suffering. When you let go, when you detach, you have everything. Being aware, being in the moment, being present to experience things as they are, lead to peace and joy.

To wrap things up, oneness is the principle of Tao, involving the principle of ying-yang, which are the opposing/complimentary forces I mentioned. Awareness from Zen is what lets you understand. And as it turns out, when you understand it, there really is nothing as Tao. Because by saying Tao, you suggest a concept, but it really is not a concept. There is everything, and there is nothingness, as Buddhism suggests the word “Wu” (ç„¡).

Tao, Zen, and Buddhism, and whatever other branches of these, are base on the same “idea”, but yet ultimately, there is really nothing to grasp. Hence it is said that, once you get it and when someone asks you what is Tao, there really is no answer and you can only laugh. It’s good stuff.

Originally posted 2008-12-09 00:43:59. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

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