Category Archives: Opinions

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

Wonderful Wednesday

This is a homey, light-hearted piece from April’s blog “April’s Perspective” about being grateful for some of the little things we take for granted e.g. security, medical care, freedom of expression, privacy etc, versus those who are not so fortunate.

A grandmother and volunteer, her short anecdotes and re-collections/comparisons of her parents’ time sets down some notes of time, change, place. Particularly of interest, the spot on how frightening polio, measles, mumps, and rubella were not so long back, and the improvements to medicine since (modern medicine is still not perfect of course).  

A personal account! 🙂

Image Credit: Beau Considine, Autumn Temptations

April's Perspective

Its another Wonderful Wednesday and time to be grateful for how darned spoiled I am.

It is a beautiful summer day, and listening to NPR this morning, I heard stories of the struggles of Syrian refugees.  Here I am in the land of plenty, and taking full advantage.  I live in a home where I feel completely safe.  I feel no need to be armed.  I feel no fear to walk down the street, not even at night in most neighborhoods, in most anywhere in the country.   I can say whatever I want and express any opinion no matter how many others disagree with me, I don’t even have to be particularly nice about it.  Being nice helps if you want people to stay and listen, because where I live we can just walk away and stop listening.   These rights extend to social media, where I have blocked several…

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Morning Coffee Reflections and The Fool’s Prayer

I came across a beautiful piece written by Carol recently.

“Morning Coffee Reflections” is a narration of Carol’s childhood memories as a 3rd grader who chose to recite Edward Rowland Sill’s poem “The Fool’s Prayer” in class, as well as her journey and thoughts on openness, truth and social nature.

The Child Clown

The poem’s protagonist was the court jester.  When required by the King to provide frivolous entertainment in the ill-suited form of a prayer, the Jester prayed aloud for forgiveness of his own follies and mistakes, while alluding the same foibles to the Court.  It follows that at the end of the day, instead of taking offense, the King chose to quietly heed wise counsel.  The contrast is subtly intimated in Carol’s recollections: Carol’s teacher was less amused by her 3rd grader’s thought provoking poem, and subsequently banished her from future participation in class.

The point?  We have much to reflect on to better ourselves, yet there is room for improvement when it comes to being positive to enlightening truth / a mirror.  Like the King perhaps, we can learn to listen to/follow a wise critic, “like we would, a map to hidden treasure.”, and  like the Jester, we can have the courage to convey the facts when required (albeit gently).  

Happiness is a state of mind, but pass basic contentment, it does help additionally if we become better people and our surroundings improve through truth and consideration..

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“Fool” Training School

I have reproduced the “The Fool’s Prayer” below, but I profess I am wanting of Carol’s great skill to delight with her elegant weaves, light touch and vivid imagery.  Hence, a visit to her blog “Voices from the Margins” to savour the treat and peruse the original emphasis is much warranted (it differs slightly from my more general view re humility, courage and consideration), and highly recommended.

Do enjoy the reads and interesting opinions!

The Fool’s Prayer
Edward Rowland Sill (1841 – 1887)

The royal feast was done; the King
Sought some new sport to banish care,
And to his jester cried: “Sir Fool,
Kneel now and make for us a prayer! 

The jester doffed his cap and bells,
And stood the mocking court before;
They could not see the bitter smile
Behind the painted grin he wore.

He bowed his head and bent his knee
Upon the monarch’s silken stool;
His pleading voice arose: “O Lord,
Be merciful to me, a fool!

“No pity, Lord, could change the heart
From red with wrong to white as wool;
The rod must heal the sin: but, Lord,
Be merciful to me, a fool!

” ‘Tis not by guilt the onward sweep
Of truth and right, O Lord, we stay;
‘Tis by our follies that so long
We hold the earth from heaven away.

“These clumsy feet, still in the mire,
Go crushing blossoms without end;
These hard, well-meaning hands we thrust
Among the heart-strings of a friend.

“The ill-timed truth we might have kept –
Who knows how sharp it pierced and stung?
The word we had not sense to say –
Who knows how grandly it had rung?

“Our faults no tenderness should ask,
The chastening stripes must clense them all;
But for our blunders – oh in shame
Before the eyes of heaven we fall.

“Earth bears no balsam for mistakes;
Men crown the knave, and scourge the tool
That did his will; but Thou, O Lord,
Be merciful to me, a fool!”

The room was hushed; in silence rose
The King, and sought his gardens cool,
And walked apart, and murmured low,
“Be merciful to me, a fool!”

Image Credits: Pan-American Coffee Bureau, Katherine Kirkland, Richard Elzey