If You Did Receive It, Why Do You Boast As If You Did Not?

Summary:

The assertion from the literary world in the examples given provide a preamble to examining the paradigm of fate. All that is presented is justified by establishing endoxa, going through aporias and proving that human fate is an ontological fact, aligned with Latin saying: Ducunt volentem fata, nolentem trahunt.

In the play Hrvatski Faust [Croatian Faust] by Slobodan Šnajder, a Croatian contemporary dramatist, the artists move on the stage like marionettes hanging on threads held by someone hiding high up above the stage.

In the stage comedy The Marriage of Figaro written by Pierre-Augustin Carone de Beaumarchais in the 18th century, the main protagonist speaks to Cherub the following words: You came into this world without your knowledge, and you will leave it against your will.

In the 1st Epistle (to Corinthians) (4:7) by St. Paul the Apostle, we can read the following message: Didn’t you receive all what you have, and if you did receive it, why do you boast as if you did not?

All the three messages turn our attention to a transcendent, supernatural, and incomprehensible dimension of every human existence; as we cannot choose to come or even not to come into this world, we cannot choose to come into this world as male or female, stupid or intelligent, beautiful or ugly, tall or short, healthy or sick, we cannot choose to receive the talents to use them during our lives; therefore, we are not given power to solve aporia by trying to put together these concepts despite absolute freedom of action given to us within the framework of our existence, which is eo ipso lack of freedom, the absolute freedom not only subdued to our conscience given to us as a gift to act according to the Truth, because the only ontological foundation of every human being, even whole Nature and all visible and invisible World, arises from the only possible Substance where the Truth is the only measure in every matter, leading to the invisible threads of Providence described in Latin saying: Ducunt volentem fata, nolentem trahunt, that is all end up where the inevitable fate leads them, so that every attempt to change fate shall be fruitless and futile because no one’s life can have good ending if one would be successful healing from one’s self.

If it is so, and it is, then the only possible answer to the most important question a human being can ask throughout her/his life is always positive – that this world is not disorderly concept originated by chance, that is to say Chaos, in which any rational and moral reasoning would be inevitably and consequently impossible, but this world is a meaningful and orderly concept, therefore Cosmos, which has its Creator, therefore God is, what with the ontological proof of His existence, which gave St. Anselmo of Canterbury, points to the simple fact that of all the countless possible ways that could shape every single human life, and overall human history, all happens in the only way that remains permanently inscribed in our memories.

All this reveals how about the unspeakable can only be spoken as an outcome of inconceivable inspiration, which is exactly what happened to our author Vinko Vrbanic, who, like the other great writers who have spoken about the unspeakable as the absolute abstraction by using specific human earthly, material words when writing about concrete human destinies and events, constantly, successfully and consistently points to what is hidden from the material eye, and that is, how in Furmani [Furmans] as well as in Sokolov let [Falcon’s Flight], all-present transcendent dimension of human and universal existence, which can neither be reached nor explained, irresistibly evoking Cioran’s speech (Cioran, Emil: Tears and Saints) about suffering being the essential human trait, solitude being the only befitting form, as well as the paradigm that before we die all must be killed in us, or otherwise the sorrows beyond the time and the happiness beyond the history will remain beyond our reach, which again all points to the fact that this world is nothing more than envisioning sorrow, and ontological and cosmic, that is to say eschatological, primordial, and fundamental principles of existence.

It does not matter what kind of self-destruction you choose – as if the protagonists in Furmani – Sokolov let [Furmans – Falcon’s Flight] say conscious of inevitability of their ontological and eschatological destiny, which they by no means want to change, but they accept it with joy of their own and peculiar optimism.

Someone buries herself/himself in the library, and someone in a suburban tavern – they would say – the result is the same. The starting point is always that of futility, and the ultimate goal is destruction, which leads to self-destruction of all that restrains them from the total immersion in their own suffering and the pain of their own existence, from which arises directly that worthlessness of life has a meaning of the higher order of existence, because only if you deliberately and passionately grieve over the consolations of darkness and participate with your spirit in their annihilation, you would put yourself above other forms of life and lives of other people. In this case, you will reveal Death, which, when we have a closer look as Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart wrote in a letter to his father, is the true and only goal of our existence as the key that opens the door leading to our true happiness.

Like Mozart, our heroes are not afraid of death, on the contrary, they know that they must accept their destinies with joy and passion, whatever they may be, and I am convinced that Djuro [George], the hero of Glasovi u šumi [Voices in the Forest], at the time of his death, unlike Mozart’s Don Giovanni in the final scene of the opera, accepted the offered hand from beyond the other side, and a request to repent so he repented, realizing at the time of his death that salvation is the only true purpose of every human existence.

Source by Ivo Zuric

The Benefits of Cultural Events at College

Cultural events today are a dime a dozen in educational institutions in India and abroad. A college education experience offers the student, not only academic and social opportunities, but also a variety of other experiences Lectures, seminars, get-togethers, cultural festivals, social campus events, volunteer/community activities, conferences and career fairs, are some opportunities available to students today to network and create opportunities for themselves. These events further result into social and professional relationships with their contacts from the cultural event so that both can forge a win-win relationship among them.

At college, most parents expect their wards to work hard at their studies and do well in their exams. This is more emphasized if the exam is a career defining one like the 12th standard exams. Not many parents encourage their children to network through such social and cultural events at colleges, as they feel that these events are a waste of time for both the students and the colleges, but that is not the case. Invariably parents feel that the child’s attention will be diverted from studies if they take part in cultural and social events in their college.

However, the benefits of such events are many. There are five main reasons why students should take part in social and cultural events at college. These reasons are:

– They allow the students to connect to the resources available in their schools, tap the available resources to their benefit, as the onus of tapping on to college resources for their betterment and growth rests with the students. This can only be possible by becoming involved in cultural and social events held in college.

– It helps them build the community: Being involved in such events compels students to leave their families and at times their friends behind, work with a new set of people, who may later become their friends.

– It allows them to discover their passions and strengths: Taking part of getting involved will allow the students to gauge their passions, their skills, their opportunities, strengths and weaknesses. The knowledge of all these would help them decide their career after the college education.

– It’s a resume builder: Taking part in such events will add to the resume, that is to say, the student’s contribution will be written down in the resume as an extra-curricular activity, and it will be an achievement if he wins a prize at the event.

– Sometimes, busier kids do better in all areas: This largely depends upon the individual student and cannot be generalized for all the students, but it has been found that more free time does not always equal better grades. Being involved will involve some time management by the student, which will help him in managing bigger activities in his professional life.

Finding out one’s niche on campus can be easier said than done. However, it is only by doing or getting involved in various events and activities as participants or as volunteers can the students benefit both professionally and spiritually.

Source by Harish Desai

Is There an Afterlife? 9 Astonishing Facts That Prove the Afterlife is Real (No Bull!)

Is there really an afterlife? Does life truly continue after my physical body is no more? And is there any scientific “proof” that we actually CAN (and do) survive our physical demise? In this article we tackle the tough terrain of the afterlife and see what many different sorts of REAL phenomena may have to say about where YOU are going when this life is over… and it’s NOT necessarily what our religious teachers or textbooks tell us!

The Weight of The Evidence is Overwhelming That Life Goes On… and On…

Any individual story, anecdote or experience is really proof of nothing. But the overwhelming evidence for something, EVEN when science turns a blind eye, often is.

What do I mean? Well… when you look at the individual elements of facts that “support” an afterlife, it’s often easy to dismiss and fantasy… or wishful thinking. But when you ADD all of them up, and look at them as a whole, they are amazingly evidential that something truly extraordinary happens at the moment of, (and after) physical death.

Some examples?

  1. Near Death Experiences: (people who have extraordinary experiences while “clinically” dead, often with no vital signs or brain activity for many minutes)
  2. Out of Body Experiences: (people who leave their bodies, and see things happening many miles away that are later validated – often called Astral Projection, which is usually thought of as the INTENTIONAL experience of learning to leave one’s body, rather than it happening spontaneously)
  3. Crisis Apparitions: People who appear to others in “spiritual” form at the moment of death, or severe trauma. Many of these cases have been reported in wars, or when someone is struck with an unexpected trauma like a sudden heart attack or car accident… and “appears” to others many miles away to say goodbye
  4. Death Bed Visions: People who report seeing loved ones at their death beds, often “invisible” to others in the room (although… NOT always..:-) who have come to help them “transition” to the other side
  5. After Death Communications: (or ADC’s) Very simply, these are more commonly thought of as “ghosts” – when someone who is LONG dead appears after their demise to you in physical, or energetic “form” to communicate something. (often is important… and other times can be trivial and re-assuring)
  6. Mystical Experiences: The personal process of having something extraordinary happen that leaves NO doubt in your mind that you are NOT your physical body alone. Very powerful, very personal, and very transformational. (many religious leaders, icons, prophets and other figures throughout human history have based their entire theology on the mystical experience – Moses seeing the “burning bush” in the Old Testament being a textbook example of it’s power to change lives)
  7. Reincarnation & Past Life Research: The compelling cases of people who remember past lives in incredible and fascinating detail, speak foreign languages they’ve never heard, play musical instruments they’ve never seen, and do all sort of other amazing things that science can NOT explain under currently accepted “laws” of how things work
  8. Mediums and Psychics who Talk to the Dead: Yes, many are con’s, charlatans and money making scams… but MANY mediums are genuine, authentic and do AMAZING things that simply cannot be explained by conventional means. They SAY they are talking to the dead… and some of the most amazing cases would suggest that the dead most CERTAINTY are talking back!
  9. ITC and EVP: Basically, electronic voice phenomenon or communication from the other side that’s “captured” using modern equipment like a basic voice recording from the “other side” or more sophisticated stuff like images and even phone calls from beyond. Don’t laugh… they are MANY compelling cases of this sort of thing, and some of the GREATEST scientific minds studied this with vigor, zeal and a FIRM belief that something truly transcendent was happening. (including great scientific luminaries like Tesla, and Thomas Edison, who was working on a device to “talk” to the other side prior to his death)

The bottom line?

In total, the evidence ALL supports that life is a continuous affair… and your soul has a lot more to say after this life is over..:-) Is this GOOD news? I think so! And a good reason to live a life that you can be proud of, and focus on the sort of stuff that’s TRULY forever. (the relationships you forge in this lifetime MAY last a lot longer than you believe..:-)

Source by Danny Fredricks

What is a Line Cook and the Responsibilities That Come With the Job?

Fire, a term used to get ready to starting an order that the waiter just placed in. The guest have probably been waiting for at least ten minutes from the time that they first sat down at their table, and are now waiting for that meal that the kitchen staff will prepare.

The front line in the kitchen is where most of the food is fired. It is divided and usually consists of a saute section, a broiler, a grill, a deep fryer, a salamander, cold reach-ins or drawers, and hot water wells. One that works on this line, which may consist of 2 to 3 even 4, depending on the size of the restaurant or the menu, are called line cooks. Sometimes the chef likes to get in on the action.

As a line cook you need to be prepared, you need to know the menu, all the different recipes, have all your tools on hand, have all your ingredients in the menu on the line, and of course you need the skills of cooking.

Being mentally prepared, by far, is one of the most important ingredient a line cook should have. One must be able to concentrate on the task at hand over all the hustle and bustle in the kitchen. the chef would be calling out orders, waitstaff are asking all kinds of questions, you maybe working on maybe three or more things at once, and timing is crucial, everyone on the line must be in sync. With all these distractions one must keep his composure. Getting stressed, or angry doesn’t help but it does happen. Waitstaff asking you how much longer, chef telling you to fire one more thing from another order, your saute cook is a little behind, it’s been almost an hour since this chaotic mess started and your wondering when will it end. Temperatures rise on the front line and I don’t mean the burners.

After all is said and done, there are no complaints, no one waiting long for their meal, guests are happy, a few compliments, waitstaff got their tips, line cooks getting ready to clean the line, and making a list of the prep that needs to be done when they return the next day. Everyone gets a pat on the back, job well done. That is the reward and one of the goals of the front line cook.

Guest satisfaction is the priority of the front line cook. The quality of the meal is your number one concern along with presentation. All the ingredients must be fresh, every cook must be on the same page as far as the recipes go, there needs to be consistency making sure that what you cooked today, will taste the same tomorrow or next week. This is what brings in repeat customers, this is what a restaurant focuses on and depends on. The line cook along side the rest of the kitchen staff strive to do this daily. As a line cook you need to take pride in your job, because if you do, that pride will certainly reflect on the meals you prepare.

Source by Debra Llacuna

12 Mother’s Day Gift Ideas for Church

As a women’s ministry director, it can be challenging to come up with ideas of gifts to give to the mothers in your church. Here are 12 ideas to help you with this decision:

1. A beautiful flower. This can be a rose, a carnation, a peony, a lily etc.

2. Chocolate. There are all kinds of options with this one, depending on your budget. You could present the mothers in your church with a chocolate rose or truffle(s) or other gourmet chocolaty treats.

3. A chef’s apron. This is a practical gift that will be appreciated by the busy mothers who spend a lot of time in their kitchen doing any kind of messy food preparation (frying chicken, baking cupcakes etc).

4. Perfumed hand or body lotion- if it’s a small bottle, you could put it in a tulle bag with a few chocolates and tie it with a pretty ribbon.

5. A stylish tote bag. This is another practical gift- great for trips to the library, or the beach, or going to soccer games.

6. Framed art, photo or scripture. If you have some images that you like, you could get them printed professionally and frame them yourself.

7. Girls Day Out. Celebrate Mother’s day as a group. Make plans to do manicures, pedicures, watch a movie, eat desserts or anything else the women would enjoy doing as a group.

8. A beautiful picture frame. She can use it to display the latest family photo or Mary’s latest artwork or even a treasured Mother’s Day card.

9. A quality (but pretty) pen. This is a handy gift, as she can use it to write shopping lists, make out checks, mark dates on the calendar etc. There are many styles available. How about choosing one with an inspiring message.

10. A beautiful notebook, journal or magnetic notepad and coordinating pen.

11. Mug or cup. How about filling it with a few gourmet tea bags, hot cocoa mix, chocolates or other candies. Wrap it with cellophane and a pretty ribbon and you are all set.

12. A gift certificate for a free drink and dessert for two, at a local coffee shop. Make a note suggesting that she invite a friend to go out with her.

So there you have it, 12 ideas of gifts to give away to the mothers in your church on Mother’s Day. Adapt these ideas to your own particular situation.

Source by Lorene Troyer

High School Wrestling: 10 Tips to Help You Succeed

Wrestling, like every sport, has certain rules. However, in this article I want to discuss some “unwritten” rules that may help you in your quest to become a champion.

If wrestling is your sport, these are the rules.

1. You will receive a certain amount of innate, God-given talent.

Some wrestlers have tremendous amount of natural talent. Some have less. I had a fair amount of wrestling talent in my competitive days. Wrestling came naturally to me. I understood the rules, the moves, the timing, the leverage needed in different situations, and other aspects of wrestling. However, I cannot play the piano. I don’t have the talent like Mozart. I can’t play basketball. I don’t have the talent like Michael Jordan. But, wrestling always seemed right. Guess what, though? I could get better at playing piano and at playing basketball. I would never be great, but I could definitely improve. A person can always improve their skills. That is why practicing and drilling is so important in wrestling. Even if you don’t have a lot of natural talent, you can always improve your skills. In addition, I have seen wrestlers with less talent beat more “talented” wrestlers on several occasions. Practice your skills a lot, make sure that you are in excellent physical condition, practice mental toughness, and don’t worry too much about how much so-called talent you possess.

2. You will learn moves.

Wrestling is considered to have seven basic skills. Theses skills are stance, motion, level change, penetration, lifting, back step, and back arch. However, wrestling has thousands of moves and techniques. You should learn as many moves as possible. You will learn a lot in practice. You can also learn a lot from books and videos. By watching videos you can access the knowledge of phenomenal wrestlers like Dan gable and John Smith. The Granby School of Wrestling has many great videos available. There’s no reason not to learn several moves, counter moves, and techniques. Technique is number one in a wrestling match. No matter how strong physically and mentally you may be, if you don’t have good technical skills then you will get beaten. Learn each move and then practice your moves religiously. You won’t use all of them, but you should learn several moves and counters to those moves if you expect to be a great wrestler.

3. You will receive feedback.

Your coach will, of course, give you feedback. Your teammates will give you feedback. Your family and community members may even give you feedback. Make sure you listen to them. They may be wrong, but have an open mind and at least hear them out. You will also receive feedback by simply observing how well you do in practice and in matches. Whether you win or lose, you are receiving feedback. Tony Robbins likes to say, “There is no such thing as failure. There is only feedback.” In other words, you can learn from every experience, including losing a wrestling match. The inventor Thomas Edison once said, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” He also said, “Results! Why, man, I have gotten a lot of results. I know several thousand things that won’t work.” Eventually, Edison would find ways that did work. You will too. Make use of the feedback you receive while engaged in the sport of wrestling and in life in general.

4. Drilling is important.

Drilling involves performing a skill repeatedly so you learn it thoroughly. You want to perfect your skills. You need to immerse yourself in drilling moves and techniques, so that they become second nature. A wrestler’s goal should be to have his skills become deeply engrained through hard drilling. Drill intensely. If your coach gives you two minutes to drill a double leg takedown with your partner, how many repetitions can you do in that time? Drilling is common in sports, the military, and many other areas of life. General George Patton had this to say during a speech to his troops in 1944, “All through your Army careers, you men have (expletive) about what you call “chicken sh*t drilling. That, like everything else in this Army, has a definite purpose. That purpose is alertness. Alertness must be bred into every soldier. I don’t give a (expletive) for a man who’s not always on his toes. You men are veterans or you wouldn’t be here. You are ready for what’s to come.” You also need to be ready for what is to come in every match. Make sure you drill.

5. You can always improve and learn more.

As I mentioned earlier, you can always improve your skills. You can often improve your conditioning level as well. There must be hundreds of ways to set up a single leg takedown. You can always learn new moves and new ways to set up moves. In addition to your coach, you can learn from camps, clinics, books, and videos. Champion golfer Seve Ballesteros said, “To give yourself the best possible chance of playing to your potential, you must prepare for every eventuality. That means practice.” Practice is incredibly important. Always be striving to improve and to learn more.

6. You must be mentally tough.

Being physically tough is only part of the equation for producing success. You need to be mentally tough as well. You need to be focused on winning your match and on nothing else. Do you get nervous, intimidated, or distracted? You can train your mind just as you train your body. Practice visualization and positive self-talk before a match. Have a plan before you step onto the mat. What moves are you planning to use? What is your strategy? If your opponent is good in the top position then you don’t want to get caught in the down position. Make sure you can stand up and escape. If your opponent likes to cradle wrestlers then you need to prepare for that. Believe in yourself and your abilities and you will do well.

7. Show respect and be respected.

Display honor, dignity, integrity, and good sportsmanship. Confidence is good, but cockiness is not. Overconfidence can be a danger as well. I had a teammate who was in a match and just stood there. He wasn’t aggressive. He didn’t respect his opponent and he thought he could just stand there and see what his opponent did. I’ll tell you what his opponent did. His opponent took him down repeatedly and soundly defeated him. Respect your coaches, your teammates, opponents, and rival schools. If you give respect, you will often receive respect. Some great wrestlers have lost matches and yet maintained their dignity by shaking hands with their opponent and then working hard to improve for the next match. Respect is important in sports and in life.

8. Success is your responsibility.

Be a self-starter and a role model. No one can make you work hard. No one can instill within you the desire to win. You have to push yourself in practice. You have to want success. Do you need to be constantly prodded by your coach? If your coach didn’t show up for practice, would you take the initiative to get practice started on your own? Or, would you just leave and forget practice? Do whine or complain in practice? Don’t. You need to be a good role model for your teammates. Nobody will simply hand you a gold medal. Nobody can practice, drill, and work out for you. Success is your responsibility.

9. Learn from others.

As I stated earlier, you can learn from coaches, camps, clinics, books, and videos. Perhaps you have a teammate who is exceptional at a certain move. Watch him closely. Ask him to show you how he does it. You can also learn much from non-wrestlers. I’ve learned new conditioning ideas from powerlifters, boxers, and mixed martial artists. I’ve learned about mental toughness from different kinds of athletes as well as from sports psychology books. I have learned from psychology, philosophy, literature, and other areas of study. I have learned things from military personnel and motivational experts. There is a wide range of people and places that can teach you much.

10. Spirit and heart are crucial to success.

Having “heart” involves displaying perseverance even when faced with difficulties or challenges. Wrestling matches are intense. Wrestling matches can be demanding physically and mentally. Do you have courage, determination, and desire? When your legs are tired and your lungs are burning in an overtime match, can you dig deep and push yourself to win? Have you ever simply given up in a match? Does fatigue crush your motivation and keep from going hard in practice? Do you want to win no matter what the obstacles you may face? Do you love wrestling or is it just an activity to pass some time? Are you motivated? Are you enthusiastic? Are you ready to put in the hard work it takes to become a champion? Boxing great Evander Holyfield said, “It is not the size of a man but the size of his heart that matters.”

I hope that these ten “rules” can help you in your quest for success.

Source by Tharin Schwinefus

Distance Education: Then and Now

People are gradually waking up to the realization that high school degrees aren’t really what they used to be and getting a job based on that isn’t going to cut it as it once did. This has prompted them to explore options such as distance education that are being touted as the future of our education system. Whether it’s a college application or a promotion you’re gunning for at work, online learning platforms offer you the best possible solutions in terms of flexibility and convenience when you’re looking for an opportunity to get ahead academically. Participants have the option to schedule their classes as per their own convenience and in different formats depending on their personal needs. This in turn, allows them to work around their own schedules and vary the pace of their learning process according to their own learning capabilities. With technology revolutionizing our lives in unimaginable ways, maybe it is time to accept online schools for the boon they really are.

The amount of time and money one can save on traveling is another reason why distance education is slowly being adopted as viable alternatives across the nation. These avenues also provide parents with the option to regularly monitor the progress of their child at their own convenience without the hassle of constantly having to visit their child’s teachers. Teachers for their part too, have the freedom to interact with parents via online modes of communication, thereby making frequent communication a lot more economical as well as feasible. Overall, online schools have certainly provided us with more viable alternatives to help achieve a better work-life balance without compromising on the vital aspects of education. Enrolling with an accredited school that offers you great online classes will certainly improve your chances of garnering a college education and move on to better opportunities in the future.

Although distance education is slowly being integrated into our education system, we still have a long way to go in terms of exploring the true potential of online learning environments. Ensuring the online school you enroll with has all the required accreditation such as those from the Southern Association of Colleges & Schools Council on Accreditation and School Improvement (SACS CASI) and The National Council for Private School Accreditation (NCPSA) can certainly make all the difference when pursuing higher education and employment opportunities. The course curriculum at online school has been aligned and articulated to the Common Core State Standards and the Next Generation Sunshine State Standards.

Source by Chris James

Why the Africans Live in Huts

Whenever one sees a picture of a hut, one thinks of Africa. Indeed, huts have been the defining architectural hallmark of Africa, and throughout the continent, they have been the preferred building style.

Huts are a form of living space. Huts are usually round, with a peaked roof. They are usually made of mud or clay, with a wooden structure to support the building, and a single wooden pole in the centre, which supports the grass-thatched roof.

Many critics of Africa claim that Africa can boast no great cultures south of Egypt. By that, they often mean that there is no architectural evidence of greatness south of the Pyramids. Indeed, architecture or architectural remains are the accepted calling card of the so-called ‘great cultures’.

While most of Africa can boast no such fossil evidence, there is reason to believe that the architectural choices made by the Africans thus far are neither as accidental nor as simplistic as they may seem.

For one, most of Africa is warm to hot throughout the year, without an extended winter period. The most uncomfortable climatic period is the long rains, during which it rains a lot, mostly every day. However, in most of Africa, it showers, rather than rains. That means a quick and voluminous period of precipitation, unlike rain in Europe for example, which may be a slight but continuous precipitation. In addition, most of Africa, which lies at the equator, experiences almost equal twelve-hour periods each for night and day. This is in contrast to for example Europe, where in winter, darkness may be up eighteen hours long.

As such, most of life in Africa is lived outside. A shelter is needed only for the night, against the cold and as shelter from wild animals. There has never been a need to invest as heavily in shelter as has been done in Europe for example. Strictly speaking, there was rarely a situation in Africa where lack of shelter would have been life-threatening. In many African cultures, nomads, hunters, warriors and messengers were often away from home for long periods without having shelter.

Huts are often small, and made of the readily available mud or river clay, plastered over a skeleton of branches. They were completely inexpensive in both materials and labour. In many cultures, the women did the plastering, while the men did the thatching of the roof. Among the Maasai of East Africa, the woman builds the whole structure, which is referred to as a manyatta.

Because of this relaxed philosophy to shelter, the Africans were not enslaved by the acquisition of shelter as is often the case in the modern world. In today’s globalised world, buying one’s home is a lifetime liability that forces one to live chained to a mortgage, under the Damocles sword of a foreclosure. The exploitation of this fear in the U.S.A. contributed to the current worldwide financial crisis.

It is also worthy of note that almost all the famous architectural monuments of the great cultures were built by employing slave labour, forced and semi-forced labour. That has never been necessary in Africa south of the pyramids. In fact, shelter was so inexpensive that the nomads could walk away from their huts at a moment’s notice and walk off into the savannah – the epitome of freedom.

It also meant that no family was ever without shelter because shelter was unaffordable, unlike in today’s world where many families become homeless if they experience a financial upset midway through their mortgage.

In many parts of Africa, the huts were renovated and renewed once a year, after the harvest season and before the next rains. This was the period with the least work and was like a holiday. The harvest was in, and next agricultural season had not yet begun. The women renovated the walls of the huts by plastering with a new layer of mud or clay. White or ochre-coloured river clay was used as a cosmetic finish inside and outside the hut, as well as on the floor. Communities that had no access to river clay used a mixture of cow-dung and mud, or ash.

A good African housewife took this duty as seriously as caring for her own body. A capable wife could be identified by her impeccably-kept hut(s). The regular renovation also served an important hygienic function: river clay is a very clean and wholesome material that discourages the breeding of insects and other pests. Both clay and dried cow dung are similar to ash in this respect. Cooking-fire ash from non-poisonous burnt wood is pure enough to be used as an alternative for toothpaste.

Renovation also gave the woman a creative outlet: she could paint whatever motifs on her walls that she wished. The men re-thatched the hut(s), using grass, such as elephant grass which was mostly cut by the women. Among the Masaai, the women did the renovation work as the men were often occupied with the full-time job of protecting the tribe from lions and other dangers lurking in the savannah.

A very satisfying effect of this yearly renewal was the psychological effect. There was an atmosphere of renewal every year; of new life, of a fresh start, of soul cleansing and a doing away with the past. Every year. This is a very healthy psychological perspective. Festivals featuring dancing and feasting also accompanied this period.

In today’s world, acquiring a home has such a finality to it. A sense of being rooted and captured by one building for one’s lifetime.

Because they were low-cost, huts were also very flexible. One could build a homestead of huts: one for cooking, another for sleeping, another for receiving visitors, and so on. Every time one needed a new hut, one simply built one. Adolescent boys were given a piece of land where they could build their own huts, a distance away from the rest of the family. Their privacy was assured, and their activities within their huts were nobody’s concern. A lot of adolescents today would appreciate the idea of having one’s own hut.

Huts are very comfortable and exactly right for many parts of Africa. This is mainly because of the building materials used. Both clay and grass are good insulators, but are porous, and so allow a free flow of air. It is often very hot during the afternoons in Africa. The hut remains cool and is a welcome resting place. At night, when temperatures fall, the hut retains its daytime temperature, keeping the inhabitants warm.

Huts are also very low-maintenance. A well-renovated hut only needs to be swept once a day with a straw broom. There was no need to wipe, polish or dust. Accidents with liquids were undramatic because the liquid was simply absorbed into the earth. The only real danger was fire, since the thatched roofs could burn very quickly, trapping the people inside.

Recently, an architectural team in Switzerland has ‘discovered’ the virtues of clay as a building material. Clay is a strong, durable material that is easy to work with. Applied correctly, it can be used to build structures that are stable, durable and aesthetic without necessitating the use of paint and cement. Most important of all, clay is healthy. It has now been proven that clay filters out toxins from the environment. Modern building materials like cements, paint, fillers and metals release toxins that compromise human health and well-being. A building made of clay or mud is completely eco-friendly, provided the initial source was safe.

The Africans knew that a long time ago. Huts, made of natural ‘earth’ materials, fitted in with their basic philosophy of drawing on nature for all their needs, and only in the amounts that were needed. For example, calabashes and gourds were used as containers for milk, water, local beer, porridge, honey or any other liquid. Cooking pots were made of clay, as were water pots. Cooking sticks were made of wood.

Water stored in a clay pot has a pleasant, natural coolness, and smells of earth. Drunk out of a calabash, it has an additional woody flavour. Food cooked in a clay pot over a wood fire retains an inimitable earthy aroma, especially fresh beans or meat dishes.

Sleeping mats or sitting mats were woven out of rushes or made of animal skin, as was clothing. Some people constructed a raised clay platform covered with animal skins or rush mats to act as a seat or a bed. Stools were made of wood or woven from rushes. Women wore jewelry made from bone, horn, wood, stone, clay, beads or woven rushes. Foodstuffs were carried or stored in woven rush baskets or clay pots.

This philosophy of living in harmony with the bounty of nature led to zero garbage, since everything was biodegradable. Indeed, until the advent of modernity and urbanisation, Africa was a continent of natural beauty preserved in its entirety.

Sadly, present-day Africans are jumping wholesale onto the bandwagon of expensive homes built of derived materials, which require a lifetime to pay for and a fortune to repair and maintain. The materials used in modern buildings trap heat, smells and moisture and are often derived using procedures that harm the environment. The houses lack the wellness effect of sitting in a hut built entirely out of the earth. They are in keeping with the modern day trends of inflated consumerism, self-definition through possession and a careless disregard for the planet.

Happily, some are rediscovering the enchantment of huts. They have been re-designed in some cases to be much larger, with large windows, or combined in intersecting or interconnecting structures. A famous hotel in Nairobi, Kenya is built using this concept, with treated straw used for thatching.

Indeed, more and more people are re-discovering why Africans lived in huts.

Source by Lamaro Schoenleber, Ph.d

What Is the Side Effect of Drinking Too Much Ionized Alkaline Water?

“Over-alkalinity” is the most common question I face in my years of dealing in the ionized water industry. I saw a news article in the paper last month that a young doctor claims that we human do not need to drink alkaline water. He says that our body has the natural ability to regulate the body pH through urination, breathing, and sweating.

Yes! He was right that our body has the natural ability to get rid of the excess acids in the body, but he forgot that we are no more living in the natural environment. Almost all the foods in the market now are processed with ‘high tech’ methods in order achieve maximum commercial return. And our diet has changed greatly from mainly plant based to animal based. Human has become a carnivore.

Human body is not designed (or evolves) to process high consumption of protein and refined carbohydrate, these foods are the main cause of acids build up in the in the body. Obesity, gout, diabetes, hypertension, cancer and all other so-called “modern diseases” are actually not diseases. All these are just symptoms that the body is undergoing serious acidosis.

There is a Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) practitioners say that alkaline is “Yang” which means hot sun and consuming too much of alkaline will ‘burn’ the person down. How ironic! At first, he was comparing alkaline water as if it is a herb and then he said that alkaline water is ‘inorganic’ saying it is just dirt and rocks.

I have been drinking ionized alkaline water (everyday at least 3 Litres) of the highest alkalinity for the past few years and I am not burned to ashes yet. On the contrary, I feel much more energetic and healthy since I started to practice alkaline lifestyle. I seldom fall sick. I have never visited to any clinic or hospital to get a so-called medical consultation since the past 8 years after I learned the importance of keeping the body pH in balance.

The only reason that some health practitioners, be it traditional or conventional doctors, produced that kind of rubbish articles to prevent people from drinking ionized alkaline water is because they do not want people to become ‘sickless’ as the result of alkalizing the body. Well, if there is less and less people get sick, these medical professionals will be out of business soon and they will end up eating their own herbs or pills for breakfast, lunch and dinner. They are the ones who are going to eat dirt and rocks when everybody starts to drink ionized alkaline water regularly.

Herbs and pills are effective in certain ways, but the fact is that almost all medicines, herbs or pills, are poisons! You can use medicine to treat emergency conditions such as food poisoning or a snake bite. There is popular Chinese medicine proverbs – ‘yi du gong du’ which means use poison to deal with poison. But the fact is that all those modern diseases are not caused by poisons, they are caused by acids. Simple Science cures everything.

Source by Hemen Ee

How to Hire the Best Structural Engineer

There are many structural engineers in the industry but it can be difficult to hand pick the best one. You may have abundant choices, but selecting a structure engineer can be a tough task. Here are some handy tips that will help you take the right decision while hiring a structure engineer.

What You Must Look For?

Typically, you must look for quality assurance, accreditation and association. This means that the consulting engineers should be ISO certified, and they must be associated with the state association of engineers. For instance, in Ireland the ACEI and CPD govern the laws. The company that you hire must be an accredited company. Apart from that, they must offer different types of services for projects such as commercial, residential, infrastructure, educational, heritage and landscape.

The structural engineer should also be an expert in fire safety engineering, and BER certificates and audits. Disability access is another area that should not be ignored. Besides, a structure engineer must offer a host of services. Given below is a checklist of the services that construction engineering should offer.

Services

Design and approval: This aspect includes the preliminary design and detailing of a building. The building could be a house, apartment, office, retail shops, outlets, industrial units, factory, hotels, refurbishments, warehouse, and heritage building and so on. Typically, the service provider creates an aesthetic design with cost-effective structure. A structural engineer will undertake design on different types of building elements like foundation, floor, beam, columns, walls, roof, basement and so forth.

Structural surveys and reports: A structural survey is conducted on an existing structure or a new property. Some of the elements checked in a survey would include critical and non-critical items like subsidence, settlement, wall and floor cracking, damp, fire damage and much more.

General engineering reports: Engineering reports may be required on a variety of different situations. Some of the situations include legal disputes with building contractor, damage to your property, monitoring property, party wall disputes and similar others.

Certificate of compliance: This aspect of a structural engineer has provision for certificate of compliance with planning and building regulations and certificate of exemption from planning. The construction engineering company must comply with all of the above.

Project management: This service will guide you from the inception to the completion of your project. The service provider will liaison between you and your contractor, offer cost control on project, check quality, offer technical advice, and provide product advice and much more.

Property defects surveys and reports: The service provider will provide subsidence, settlement, wall and floor cracking, damp or mould, water leakage, fire damage, interior or exterior wall, insulation, heat loss, poor workmanship, to name a few.

Heritage development: A structural engineer will also look into structural surveys and reports, protect structures, design works to protect heritage buildings, monitoring the behavior of heritage structure during adjacent work and a lot more.

These are some of the factors that you must consider while hiring consulting engineers. These services will ensure that your project is carried out effectively and smoothly without any obstacles. Besides you can also get a BER audit done, and upgrade the existing property to meet the expectations of environment safety.

Source by Jone Jimmy