The Little Things

Rainy-day-in-lexington-Paul_Sawyier

Little drops of water,
Little grains of sand,
Make the mighty ocean
And the pleasant land.

Little deeds of kindness,
Little words of love,
Make our pleasant earth below
Like the heaven above.

Julia Abigail Fletcher Carney
(6 April 1823 – 1 November 1908)

There are a few versions of Julia’s poem “The Little Things”, but this is undoubtedly the version I love most.

Our little progress daily seems minute, but added up together day after day, it is immense.  Our little acts of kindness and words of love may seem small individually, but if 6 billion of us do kind deeds together, it is a great ocean and a very large difference.

The little acts do add up to create a heaven on Earth!

Image Credit: Paul Sawyier

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Love

Some Quotes on Love…
Hope you enjoy them!

“Love is friendship that has caught fire. It is quiet understanding, mutual confidence, sharing and forgiving. It is loyalty through good and bad times.”  Laura Hendricks

“Love is that condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own.” Robert A Heinlein

“We waste time looking for the perfect lover, instead of creating the perfect love.”  Tom Robbins

“Love is commitment, yet freedom.  We commit ourselves deeply to the person we love, yet free our beloved to reach their dreams (potential).”

“Love is patient, love is kind.  It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.” Corinthians 13:4-8

Image credit: Webdesignhot.com, Creative Commons

Judgement vs Prejudice

We all heard of Jane Austen’s timeless classic, Pride and Prejudice” (see wiki-link).  Many delight at the tale of Elizabeth Bennet and Fitzwilliam Darcy, how they overcame their pride and prejudices, as well as discovered the notion that “Nice” is not the same as “Good”.  What memorable adventures, mistakes and redemption!

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“Elizabeth and Darcy” An illustration by Hugh Thomson 1894

 

Likewise, we have heard of the familiar mantra “Judgement is bad.  Do not Judge”

Definition of Prejudice and Judgement

Is making judgement the same as being prejudiced?  Let us examine the lexicon as defined by Oxford Dictionaries,

Prejudice is preconceived opinion that is not based on reason or actual experience.

Judgemental is having or displaying an overly critical point of view.

Judgement is the ability to make considered decisions or come to sensible conclusions

Other prevalently used dictionaries have similar definitions.

The Common Misconception of Judgement

It is unfortunate that the word “Judgement” is widely mis-used in the day to day, and that the idea of “Non Judgement/Non Discernment” is popular, causing harm to Culture.

A marked distinction exists between “Judgement”, “Prejudice” and being “Judgemental”.

Judgement is borne of deep consideration and sensibility, a key skill required, used sparingly and only when necessary, to protect ourselves, not to hurt. On the other hand, Prejudice is not based on reason or experience, and being Judgemental is doing too much to the point of error (aka exercising all the time to the point of breakdown).

Harmfulness of Prejudice and Being Judgemental. 

Apartheid, reduction of capacity and opportunity on the other hand, are terrible manifestations of Prejudice.  There is also no need to be judgemental e.g. to nitpick over harmless preferences and diversity of others, to over-measure in non relevant areas, to make others feel inadequate unnecessarily or to deprive others of fair opportunity.

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Benefits of Good Judgement

In actuality, there are important times when judgement and measurement is needed:

i) we assess people and situations to protect ourselves e.g. we won’t want to let a drunk person drive us home, and will probably dive for cover when a crazy looking guy whips out an automatic;  

ii) we are wary of anyone who make us offers that are too good to be true, and do extra checks to ascertain background and validity; 

iii) we recognize and differentiate a bully, a thief or a debtor who never repays debt from others, to prevent ourselves from being continually harmed.  At the same time, we may recognize that people can change for the better, and so re-assess at an appropriate time and in safety;

iv) we know when we do not have enough evidence, and stop ourselves from being prejudiced.

etc.

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“Lady Catherine and Elizabeth” Illustrated by C. E. Brock, 1895

The Far Reaching Consequences

By confusing “Judgement” with “Prejudice”, and declaring “Judgement” as evil, we lose the key tools to combat societal ills, ie our willingness to weigh in with reason, and give the fair and neccessary critque.  In the confusion of false Empathy and “Non Judgement/Non Assessment”, highly anti-social behaviour such as admitted extreme selfishness and other harmful behaviour becomes more tolerable, even acceptable, sometimes vindicated and flaunted culturally.  

The confused even lose the ability to know and distance themselves from the recalcitrant, becoming repeated victims. Worse, destroying their own positive world views, and become more easily radicalized.  

Hence, we need good judgement, to distinguish between perpetual blatant offenders and occasional mistakes, and act accordingly.

Conclusion

Let us improve our capacity for humility, apply good judgement where necessary to protect ourselves, but not to hurt, as well as reduce unfounded prejudice .  

By using the correct lexicon, we can rehabilitate the word “Judgenet”, and can reduce the sway of blatant propaganda, flaunting and acceptance of extreme anti-social behaviour through the flawed but seductive defence of “Non Judgement”

Thank you for reading and/or sharing!

PS: Update for 17/11/2015.  This post was coincidentally made hours before the Paris terror attacks by ISIS/Daesh.  Through careful and humble judgement, we are against the mindless violence on the innocent in Paris, and feel sad for Parisians.  At the same time, we do not prejudice most Muslims, who are peaceful and who spoke out against Daesh terrorism.

For those who want to understand more about ISIS/Daesh, please refer to this Wikipedia link,  detailing the ISIS crimes of ethnic cleansing, slavery etc.  The question is not about reprisals for revenge, but more of how to exercise good judgement to solve the root of the Daesh crimes against humanity.  

Image Credit: Davide Restivo

UN: Zero Poverty Goal 2030!!!

The Time to Unite Is Now!

Let’s show the World that We Care!

Put aside Our Differences and Focus on the Goal!

Eliminate Global Poverty for the First Time in History!


Many cite their personal perspective of a dog eat dog world, and point to setbacks in Life and in the News as evidence to support such.  Very often we have also heard “we cannot do anything about it” as a reason to resign ourselves and deny aid to fellow human beings in desperate need.

When faced with difficulty, some become angry and nasty etc especially if they perceived that the world is unfair and selfish.  Moderate tried and tested solutions are abandoned without proper implementation, and some even become gun-toting lone wolves. Reasons are given to be extremists, hurting others, causing a vicious cycle and self fulfilling prophecy, disrupting precious progress.

Reasonable Positivity and the Big Picture

Thought that the United Nations Development Programme video citing progress and new Sustainable Development goals is useful to eradicate false perceptions, and to lend the big picture and true perspective.  Overall, great effort has been made to help the poor all over the world, and progress is at a rate never seen before in human history!

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In summary, extreme poverty has been reduced by half (from 2 billion people) since 1990 (amongst other achievements) and the new target set Sep 2015 is to eliminate Global Poverty by 2030.  A First in the History of Man.

While there is no such thing as completely smooth ride, people need to be reasonably positive to contribute to solutions.  Unreasonable negativity mis-directs people, propagates a cycle of fear and misery, eats up precious resources and impedes good progress.

Never have we lived in an era with more opportunity to do such great things.

http://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/

Let’s do our part to spread the Hope!
Fight Unreasonable Negativity!  

Do not be a fence sitter.
It makes a difference to know we all stand for Peace.

Be part of the historic quest to Zero Poverty,
Sustainable Development and Hope for Mankind!

Thank you for reading and/or sharing!

The Paradox of Choice

Is more choice necessarily better?  More freedom?  More diverse views?

When does choice become too much of clutter?  Even a danger to trip over?

How do you deal with the confusion of too much choices?

Dr Barry Shwartz, a Psychologist, Professor and Author, has this very interesting TED video titled “The Paradox of Choice”, which garnered 10 million views (on TED website and Youtube combined).

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Thinking that the video will be intriguing preview for some of my upcoming posts on “Choice and Latitude”.  It is related to the coming Misconception 6 of “The How To’s of Daily Gratitude”, and other topics such as Empathy/Individuality, Depression and has even has ramifications on Love and Marriage (partly why people are not ready for marriage aka longer bucket lists due to more lifestyle choice).

Hope you find the video enjoyable!

Thank you for reading, watching and/or sharing.

Media Credits: Geralt, TED / Dr Barry Shwartz

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