Trust- Given or Earned?

How easily do you trust other people? What is it that determines your ability or inability to trust certain individuals around you? Do you feel people need to earn your trust? Or are you willing to extend trust ‘unearned’?

Indian Fusion

An Edmonton, Canada,  restaurant is gaining international attention for its efforts to help feed those in need. Indian Fusion is a small, family-run restaurant with fewer than ten tables, but it’s making a big difference for the homeless. This is no publicity stunt. They trust people understand their motives.

It’s giving back to the community, it’s part of community spirit. We need to all look after each other,” said Greg Pyra. “It’s not just about profit and making money.Continue reading Trust- Given or Earned?

The case of the unpaid prize

It can be instructive, as well as mildly entertaining, to review legal cases of yesteryear, as I have occasionally  on this site ( The Tichborne Claimant).

victorian court

In 1898, an English journal, the Rocket, had offered a prize of £1000 to anybody who could predict the exact number of male and female births, together with the number of deaths, in London for the week ending December 11th. Continue reading The case of the unpaid prize

Recovery from Colon Cancer – Diet, Herbs, Detoxification and Cellular Regeneration

This article by Teresa Tsalaky, first published in August 2003, can be accessed at Positive Health online. It is important not simply because of the implications for overcoming cancer, but the extraordinary lengths that interested parties go to with the apparent attempt to silence him. I am publishing his story here without promoting his or any particular course of treatment, that is a personal matter best made with the advice of a professional healthcare practitioner and your own research.

David Walker wanted to live long enough to see his children graduate from high school. He asked his oncologist if he’d make it that long. The doctor hung his head and said Walker had no more than three to five years before the colon cancer would take his life.David Walker

Nearly a decade later, Walker is cancer free. Thanks to his training as a biophysicist, he was able to decipher a biochemical riddle that enabled him to cure himself. He created a treatment protocol that consists of herbs, enzymes, phytonutrients, detoxification and a bio-resonance therapy that recharges depleted energy in cells. He then shared his knowledge, helping hundreds of other cancer patients successfully treat the disease.

Continue reading Recovery from Colon Cancer – Diet, Herbs, Detoxification and Cellular Regeneration

Leonard Eric Grogan, 1903 – 1989

During his retirement, my grandfather wrote some notes about his life, family, and memories of his work as a barber and tobacconist, and some of the people he knew in Bristol. Some of his material I have recorded here.

Leonard, myself and sister around 1965
Leonard, myself and sister around 1965

Reflecting back upon my life, I often light upon some incident or detail, which is then as soon forgotten. So it was that I resolved to write them down as I could, ‘for the record’.

Regarding my maternal ancestors, I have only vague information. My grandparents were Yarnalls, Tewkesbury born and bred, and conducted a very successful Ironmongery, corn and forage business in Barton Street, occupying two shop premises. Continue reading Leonard Eric Grogan, 1903 – 1989

Helplessness: On Depression, Development and Death

Rating: ★★★★★

Helplessness: On Depression, Development and Death (1992)

This book has consistently influenced me for many years. It highlights the importance of our need for control, real and perceived,  over our environment. I first read it in connection with my work, but have found the theory of great personal benefit also. It may appear daunting if you are used to self-help books of a lighter tone, but deserves to be better known in the UK.  I think this quote might explain its purpose. ” Learned helplessness refers to three things: First, an environment in which some important outcome is beyond control, second, the response of giving up, and third, the expectation that no voluntary action can control the outcome. The book gives many of the famous studies of behavioral psychologists who worked with animals, with analysis of how they may shed light on human behaviour. Below, I quote from pages 174 to 183.

Continue reading Helplessness: On Depression, Development and Death

Hoarding and Possessions

Budapest, Hungary, Oct 1944: Jews being deported by German troops
Budapest, Hungary, Oct 1944: Jews being deported by German troops

Early in the Second World War, a young man in a small Hungarian town, along with a number of other Jews, started to prepare against a German invasion. It eventually happened on 19 March 1944. They survived, because they faced the challenge by loosening ties to their jobs, possessions and a normal life; moving in anonymity from city to city. The man was unable to persuade other members of his family to go with him. At some risk to himself, he returned at least three times to plead with his relatives, pointing out to them the growing persecution of the Jews, and later, transportation to the concentration camps had already begun. He could not convince these Jews to take action.

Continue reading Hoarding and Possessions

Belief and Disbelief, (Part 2)

"A familiar landscape of almost magical richness"
“A familiar landscape of almost magical richness”

In this second article, on the same general theme as Belief and Disbelief , material is based largely upon G R Elton’s The Practice of History, and Huston Smith’s Forgotten Truth: The Primordial Tradition. Brief biographical information is at the conclusion.

“The study of History amounts to the search for the truth”

Today it is almost taken for granted that man cannot be certain what is truth. Continue reading Belief and Disbelief, (Part 2)

Fantastic Mr Fox (2009 DVD)

Rating: ★★★★★Fantastic Mr Fox [DVD] [2009]Fantastic Mr Fox [DVD] [2009]

"Just buy the tree!"
“Just buy the tree!”

In the beginning  the dashing, non-conformist  Mr. Fox (George Clooney) and his wife Felicity (Meryl Streep) raid a squab (pidgeon) farm. After they get ensnared by a trap, Felicity makes her husband promise he’ll give up thievery if they make it out alive. After this alarming wake-up call, he takes up a steady job as a newspaper columnist, but he can’t suppress his wild leanings for long. Against the advice of his lawyer friend Badger (“You’re borrowing at nine-and-half per-cent, no fixed rate, and it’s in a neighbourhood totally unsuited to your species”), he moves the family into a large tree on a hill with a view overlooking Boggis, Bunce, and Bean’s farms, and soon sets about stealing and antagonizing them. This sets off a full-scale war that drives Mr. Fox, his family, and all the other neighbourhood animals deep underground.

Continue reading Fantastic Mr Fox (2009 DVD)

‘How to run a company with (almost) no rules’

Interviewing Ricardo Semler of Semco Partners, for TED.com.  Technology, Entertainment and Design, is a clearinghouse of  knowledge from the world’s most inspired thinkers.

Ricardo Semler montage

Ricardo Semler advocates revolutionary stuff that only a handful of companies worldwide practise. He dismisses as corporate window dressing ‘mission statements’ and ‘employee consultation’ and points out how far we claim to defend democracy, but practice Eastern bloc centralisation in our workplace.

He encourages people to start where they are and affect the few people under them, instead of moaning that it’s impossible. He notes how many business schools and consultants preach empowerment, but run autocratic, tightly controlled organisations themselves.
He writes about how he works constantly to pull back from being placed in the role of a guru with the Midas touch, how he wants the business to be sustainable through the efforts of all employees, not only the one with a reputation.

Continue reading ‘How to run a company with (almost) no rules’

Unlimited Vacation-time Policies Work

 

vacation timeAt most companies in the United States, vacation starts in the most un-relaxing way possible: filling in a permission form. Accruing enough time to go on vacation then having to go and ask for permission felt more like a school field trip than a grown-up getaway. Worse, many companies insist employees take vacation time before a year-end deadline or lose out.  Is there a better way to care for every companies greatest resource – their employees?

At HubSpot , they designed a progressive policy that allows employees to build their work around their life, not the other way around. They are part of a growing trend, now around 3 percent of US companies.

Continue reading Unlimited Vacation-time Policies Work