Sunday, December 30, 2007

My Confession by Ben Stein call this forwarded mail a phoney but whether it's real or not, it is a worthwhile read. Father Mario Sobrejuanite used it on one of his homilies. It really delivers a provocative message regarding our relationship with God and its effect on our society.

"My Confession:

I am a Jew, and every single one of my ancestors was Jewish. And it does not bother me even a little bit when people call those beautiful lit up, bejeweled trees Christmas trees. I don't feel threatened. I don't feel discriminated against. That's what they are: Christmas trees. It doesn't bother me a bit when people say, 'Merry Christmas' to me. I don't think they are slighting me or getting ready to put me in a ghetto. In fact, I kind of like it. It shows that we are all brothers and sisters celebrating this happy time of year.

It doesn't bother me at all that there is a manger scene on display at a key intersection near my beach house in Malibu. If people want a creche, it's just as fine with me as is the Menorah a few hundred yards away.

I don't like getting pushed around for being a Jew, and I don't think Christians like getting pushed around for being Christians. I think people who believe in God are sick and tired of getting pushed around, period. I have no idea where the concept came from that America is an explicitly atheist country. I can't find it in the Constitution and I don't like it being shoved down my throat.

Or maybe I can put it another way: where did the idea come from that we should worship Nick and Jessica and we aren't allowed to worship God as we understand Him? I guess that's a sign that I'm getting old, too. But there are a lot of us who are wondering where Nick and Jessica came from and where the America we knew went to.

In light of the many jokes we send to one another for a laugh, this is a little different: This is not intended to be a joke; it's not funny, it's intended to get you thinking.

Billy Graham's daughter was interviewed on the Early Show and Jane Clayson asked her 'How could God let something like this happen?'(regarding Katrina) Anne Graham gave an extremely profound and insightful response. She said, 'I believe God is deeply saddened by this, just as we are, but for years we've been telling God to get out of our schools, to get out of our government and to get out of our lives. And being the gentleman He is, I believe He has calmly backed out. How can we expect God to give us His blessing and His protection if we demand He leave us alone?'

In light of recent events...terrorists attack, school shootings, etc. I think it started when Madeleine Murray O'Hare (she was murdered, her body found recently) complained she didn't want prayer in our schools, and we said OK. Then someone said you better not read the Bible in school. The Bible says thou shalt not kill, thou shalt not steal, and love your neighbor as yourself. And we said OK.

Then Dr. Benjamin Spock said we shouldn't spank our children when they misbehave because their little personalities would be warped and we might damage their self-esteem (Dr. Spock's son committed suicide). We said an expert should know what he's talking about. And we said OK.

Now we're asking ourselves why our children have no conscience, why they don't know right from wrong, and why it doesn't bother them to kill strangers, their classmates, and themselves.

Probably, if we think about it long and hard enough, we can figure it out. I think it has a great deal to do with 'WE REAP WHAT WE SOW.'

Funny how simple it is for people to trash God and then wonder why the world's going to hell. Funny how we believe what the newspapers say, but question what the Bible says. Funny how you can send 'jokes'through e-mail and they spread like wildfire but when you start sending messages regarding the Lord, people think twice about sharing. Funny how lewd, crude, vulgar and obscene articles pass freely through cyberspace, but public discussion of God is suppressed in the school and workplace.

Are you laughing?

Funny how when you forward this message, you will not send it to many on your address list because you're not sure what they believe, or what they will think of you for sending it.

Funny how we can be more worried about what other people think of us than what God thinks of us.

Pass it on if you think it has merit. If not then just discard it... no one will know you did. But, if you discard this thought process, don't sit back and complain about what bad shape the world is in. My Best Regards.

Honestly and respectfully,
Ben Stein

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Life Metaphors

I have amassed a collection of life metaphors. Some were personally authored by me, and some I obtained from the net and other sources. The comparisons of life to things and objects are very intersting to note and if you have other ideas please free to add one. Thanks. Have fun reading!

Life is like a seed. It will never grow unless planted and nourished.

Life is like a river. With all its bends and rapid falls, one must follow the right path or else you'll lost your way to the sea.

Life is like a box of chocolates. You'll never know what you're going to get.

Life is like a bagel. It's delicious when it's fresh and warm, but often it's just hard. The hole is the middle is its great mystery, and yet it wouldn't be a bagel without it.

Life is like eating grapefruit. First you have to break through the skin; then it takes a couple of bites to get used to the taste, and just as you begin to enjoy it, it squirts you in the eye.

Life is like a banana. You start out green and get soft and mushy with age. Some people want to be one of the bunch while others want to be top banana. You have to take care not to slip on externals. And, finally, you you have to strip off the outer coating to get at the meat.

Life is like cooking. It all depends on what you add and how you mix it. Sometimes you follow the recipe and at other times, you're creative.

Life is like a jigsaw puzzle, but you don't have the picture on the front of the box to know what it's supposed to look like. Sometimes, you're not even sure if you've got all the pieces.

Life is like a maze in which you try to avoid the exit.

Life is like riding an elevator. It has a lot of ups and downs and someone is always pushing your buttons. Sometimes you get the shaft, but what really bothers you are the jerks.

Life is like a room full of open doors that close as you get older.

Life is like a puppy dog always searching for a street full of fire hydrants.

Life is like a poker game. You deal or are dealt to. It includes skill and luck. You bet, check, bluff, and raise. You learn from those you play with. Sometimes you win with a pair or lose with a full house. But whatever happens, it's best to keep on shuffling along.

Life is like a novel. You are the author and everyday is a new page.

Life is like photography. We develop from negatives.

Life is like money. You can spend it any way you wish, but you only spend it once.

Life is like an onion. You peel off layer after layer and sometimes you weep.

Life is like a whisper. If you only try and stop wailing you'll suddenly realize that it is there.

Life is like a pencil. You can be sharpened, you can correct mistakes, and you can leave a mark.

These last two are not really metaphors but kinda love including them in the list. I figured I don't have anywhere to post them but here. They are just spurt of the moment ideas...

Life is crazy, but only for those who have no plans for it.

Life is unfair if you don't have the wisdom to understand it.

Click here for more Life Metaphors...

Sunday, December 23, 2007

A Faithful Drunk

Jack wakes up with a huge hangover after attending his company's Christmas Party. Jack is not normally a drinker, but the drinks didn't taste like alcohol at all. He didn't even remember how he got home from the party. As bad as he was feeling, he wondered if he did something wrong.

Jack had to force himself to open his eyes, and the first thing he sees is a couple of aspirins next to a glass of water on the side table. And,next to them, a single red rose!

Jack sits up and sees his clothing in front of him, all clean and pressed.

He looks around the room and sees that it is in perfect order, spotlessly clean. So is the rest of the house. He takes the aspirins, cringes when he sees a huge black eye staring back at him in the bathroom mirror.

Then he notices a note hanging on the corner of the mirror written in red with little hearts on it and a kiss mark from his wife in lipstick: "Honey, breakfast is on the stove, I left early to get groceries to make you your favorite dinner tonight. i love you, darling! Love, Jillian"

He stumbles to the kitchen and sure enough, there is hot breakfast,steaming hot coffee and the morning newspaper. His son is also at the table, eating.

Jack asks, "Son...what happened last night?"

"Well, you came home after 3 A.M., drunk and out of your mind. You fell over the coffee table and broke it, and then you puked in the hallway, and got that black eye when you ran into the door.

Confused, he asked his son, "So, why is everything in such perfect order and so clean? I have a rose, and breakfast is on the table waiting for me??"

His son replies, "Oh THAT!... Mom dragged you to the bedroom, and when she tried to take your pants off, you screamed, "Leave me alone bitch, I'm married!!"

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

A Moving Message

Monday, December 17, 2007

Everyday notes to enjoy life (10)

Today is our 3rd wedding anniversary. As one of my presents to my wife, I especially composed a poem for her. It's just a simple one but she holds it dearly to her heart because it came from mine.

I am not really much into poetry and maybe so are you. But if its for someone who is very special, someone you really care about and someone you love very much, you'd form the words and rhymes from your mind and heart right away.

So don't let those wonderful thoughts just linger in your minds and just drift away, write and mould them into beautiful poems. They are the perfect gifts for someone you care.

Dumbing down our kids

I got these 11 very provocative rules from an author, Charles J. Sykes who has this title for a book, Dumbing down our kids :Why America's children feel good about themselves but can't read, write or add. These rules really speak for themselves very well and are based on real life and not the usual mumbojumbo "who says so" type of advice. The list have been sometime attributed to Bill Gates but in reality, these are not his works.

Rule 1: Life is not fair; get used to it.

Rule 2: The world won't care about your self-esteem. The world will expect you to accomplish something before you feel good about yourself.

Rule 3: You will not make 40 thousand dollars a year right out of high school. You won't be a vice president with a car phone until you "earn" both.

Rule 4: If you think your teacher is tough, wait till you get a boss. He doesn't have tenure.

Rule 5: Flipping burgers is not beneath your dignity. Your grandparents had a different word for burger-flipping; they called it opportunity.

Rule 6: If you screw up, it's not your parents' fault so don't whine about your mistakes. Learn from them.

Rule 7: Before you were born, your parents weren't as boring as they are now. They got that way paying your bills, cleaning your room, and listening to you tell them how idealistic you are. So before you save the rain forest from the blood-sucking parasites of your parents' generation, try delousing the closet in your own room.

Rule 8: Your school may have done away with winners and losers but life has not. In some schools they have abolished failing grades, they'll give you as many times as you want to get the right answer. This, of course, bears not the slightest resemblance to anything in real life.

Rule 9: Life is not divided into semesters. You don't get summers off, and very few employers are interested in helping you find yourself. Do that on your own time.

Rule 10: Television is not real life. In real life people actually have to leave the coffee shop and go to jobs.

Rule 11: Be nice to nerds. Chances are you'll end up working for one.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

What I've Learned from my Superheroes

Here are 17 items that I've learned from my superheroes.

1. You don't need to be super to become a real hero. You only need to care.

2. You don't need costumes or disguises to help anyone who is in need. You only need yourself.

3. A lost battle is not a lost war.

4. Revenge doesn't count but justice is.

5. Even if you can fly, keep your feet on the ground. Learn to be humble.

6. Everybody has a weakness. Learn it, outwit it.

7. Even a hero needs rescuing.

8. No matter how hard the task is, be committed to it and accept responsibility.

9. You can never please everyone.

10. You may be invulnerable to bullets and wrecking balls and laser beams, but not to harsh words. It's a good thing because that feels very human.

11. The bigger they are the harder they fall.

12. With great power comes great responsibility.

13. Sometimes your archenemy can be your greatest ally.

14. Never underestimate your enemy.

15. The real job of a hero is not to fight but to save and protect.

16. Strength is good but most of the time wit is better.

17. You can always learn from your enemies.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

The Paradoxical Commandments

by Dr. Kent M. Keith

People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered. Love them anyway.

If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives. Do good anyway.

If you are successful, you win false friends and true enemies. Succeed anyway.

The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway.

Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable. Be honest and frank anyway.

The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds. Think big anyway.

People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs. Fight for a few underdogs anyway.

What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight. Build anyway.

People really need help but may attack you if you do help them. Help people anyway.

Give the world the best you have and you'll get kicked in the teeth.
Give the world the best you have anyway.

Mother Theresa is thought to have her own version of these commandments which were written on the wall of Mother Teresa's home for children in Calcutta.

People are often unreasonable, irrational, and self-centered. Forgive them anyway.

If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives. Be kind anyway.

If you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies. Succeed anyway.

If you are honest and sincere people may deceive you. Be honest and sincere anyway.

What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight. Create anyway.

If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous. Be happy anyway.

The good you do today, will often be forgotten. Do good anyway.

Give the best you have, and it will never be enough. Give your best anyway.

In the final analysis, it is between you and God. It was never between you and them anyway.

Christmas in our Hearts

Christmas season is in the air. The weather is colder. Daylight is shorter. Carols are everywhere to be heard. And people has been thronging to malls causing the usual December traffic. In the Philippines, Christmas comes in very early. As early as September in fact. We call it the "ber months". As soon as September hits the calendar, Christmas carols can be heard from radio stations. And early bird customers go promptly to markets to avoid the bargain fever come November. This could last up to the early weeks of January the following year where the season ends with the celebration of the Three Kings. That's how we Filipinos love the season so dearly. And this is what our fellow Filipinos abroad miss. True, we will never experience the spectacle of a white Christmas but we surely don't want it to be blue either.

Our own celebration is so joyous that you can feel the warmth and spirit of true Christmas. The spirit is not only within our own homes and families but to total strangers. The beauty of it is that, we only not spend it with our families but also with our friends, officemates, godchildren and oftentimes the less fortunates, the sick and inmates. We do exchange gifts, kris kringles, visit the orphanages, hospitals and prisons and hand donations and gifts instead of spending it on lavish Christmas parties. It's a time of great spending. But most of the time it's not for ourselves but for others we care about. That has been part of our traditions ever since.

My former officemates, together with my wife and I are planning this simple event of sponsoring a Christmas party for street kids this season - a group of simple rank and file employees. If this pushes through, it would be a most heart felt celebration not only for us but for the kids.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Everyday notes to enjoy life (9)

Laughter is the best medicine so they say.

I envy the kids. They live in a world of games, and plays and laughter. A world virtually free of problems and stress. A world of fun and a world of dreams. How I miss my childhood days.

The world is full of irony. When we were young we want to grow fast and pretend to be adults. And now that we are all grown-ups, we want to go back being children. I never grew tired watching cartoons or playing games. It's fun being a kid at heart. Now that I have a child, I can play every kid's game that I want. And it's so much fun, fooling around specially with your own kid. True, stress and work have eaten up our adult life but never be ashamed to admit that we want to be children again. So be a kid again and be unmindful of the things around you, play around and laugh out loud.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Go Gently with the Flow

If the sky above seems cloudy,
And you're left out in the rain,
If you're searching for a rainbow,
But the colors bring you pain...

If your world is not revolving,
And there is no end in sight,
If you're looking for the sunshine,
But all you see is night...

If all around are smiling,
But all you can do is frown,
If you are tired of all this living,
When life just brings you down...

Then look beyond your teardrops,
At the wonders of this land,
The beauty of a flower,
Like velvet in your hand.

Feel the air around you,
The smell of new mown hay,
Laughing children in the park,
The innocence there at play.

Imagine floating with a butterfly,
As she flutters between the trees,
Or the whispers of the ocean,
On warm hot summer's breeze.

Think of the taste of candy floss,
As it melts upon your tongue,
Or the melody of morning birds,
As they greet each day with song.

Remember words of beauty,
Told in your mother's embrace.
Feel the gentleness of her touch,
As she softly kissed your face.

Seek the good within you,
Cast the Clouds out from your sky.
Don't look toward the pavement,
But hold your head up high.

Think not what life owes you,
But at all you have to give.
Forget about tomorrow,
Then you can start to live.

So Bless this age your are living,
With the gifts you can bestow.
Don't disregard the stream of life,
Go gently with the Flow!

~ Author Unknown

Be Free

If you are quick to take offense, then you'll be under the control of those who you find offensive.

If you are easily angered, then your actions will be dictated by those who anger you.

If you are obsessed by what other people think, then you will be imprisoned by their thoughts.

If you yearn for easy answers and quick solutions, you'll fall prey to people who offer you nothing but promises.

If you find the truth too difficult to bear, you'll be enslaved to those who tell you what you want to hear.

When you have the courage to think for yourself, the strength to accept what is, the commitment and discipline to make a difference, then you are free.

You are truly free to live with purpose, joy and fulfillment.

Let your life be defined, not by reactions to what others do, say, or think but rather your own unique vision.

Raise your eyes above the pettiness and follow the path of the greatness that is within you.