The Tigers are vanishing

After having interviewed a WWF representative recently, it was brought to light, the dwindling population and situation of our beloved cats here in Asia.
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The Amur Tiger, also abbreviated as the Siberian Tiger were once often found roaming throughout the far east of Russia, northern China & along the Korean peninsula. Hunting had been the sport for the ruthless poachers who bloodthirstily seeked game. The poor tigers were driven to the brink of extinction…Today, with gratified thanks to Russia, it’s becoming of the first country of the world to grant the subspecies full protection, had been caringly boosting the numbers back up from a mere 40. The population of the ‘Panthera tigris altaica consists of roughly 540 cats, having them often weighing in around 396-660 pounds.

Forests habitats are at risk due to logging, conversion to agriculture, urban expansion, mining, road construction, fires & inadequate law enforcement. The ferocious felines have been restricted to the Sikhote-Alin range in Primoski and Khabarovsk provinces of the Far East. These tigers actually own the largest home range of any tiger subspecies, having to roam far and wide because of the low-prey density in the area. They currently represent the largest unfragmented tiger population in the world.
It goes to show there aren’t really many of these pussycats around anymore.

Amur_Tiger_8.14.2012_Threats_Section_Image_XL_257585Deforestation occuring to make way for illegal logging industries. // Photo(s) courtesy of WWF.

Did you know that tiger bones and teeth are used for human facial products & medicine?

Tiger skin is often sold off and traded for carpets, rugs & furniture.

Every week, a wildlife ranger gets shot in action thanks to poachers hunting for game.

World Wildlife Foundation is doing everything possible in their power and means to put a halt to humans endangering other land animal species on our still vibrantly life harbouring planet.
Monitoring populations. Protecting habitats. Increasing Tiger prey. Advocating for improved legislation. Raising Public awareness.

If you wish to make a one time donation to our cause or support the WWF on a monthly basis, you may use the following links:-
https://support.worldwildlife.org/site/Donation2?df_id=12670&12670.donation=form1&s_src=AWS1706OQ18316A01355RX&_ga=2.103224384.1778495705.1517114360-143845139.1517114360 // https://thysymposium.com/help-fund-the-site

Article sourced from Worldwildlife.org
Written by Yoji Amashiro

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Musk accidentally tweets his phone number to 16.7m folllowers

Recommended by https://www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/ATSF9uvMfqM

Elon Musk gave his 16.7 million Twitter followers what he meant to send to the chief technology officer of virtual-reality company Oculus: his phone number.

“Do you have a sec to talk? My cell is …” Musk wrote from his account to John Carmack, the CTO of Facebook-owned Oculus. The Tesla chief executive officer quickly deleted the post.

A call placed to the number that Musk tweeted went to voicemail and played a message from the video game God of War.

“By the Gods you’ve done it,” the message intones. “Somehow you’ve found your way here to me. I offer you my congratulations and my respect.”

READ MORE:
Elon Musk promises travel to anywhere in the world, in under one hour
Geek fight! Musk says Zuckerberg naive about killer robots
Elon Musk launches company to merge human brains with computers

The tweet invited speculation that Musk, 46, may have been trying to recruit Carmack or was seeking ways for Oculus to cooperate with any of the many businesses he runs.

Those include the electric-car maker Tesla, rocket company SpaceX, artificial intelligence researcher OpenAI, brain-computer interface developer Neuralink and tunnel digger The Boring Company.

Elon Musk quickly deleted the post which included his phone number.

MARK BRAKE/GETTY IMAGES

Elon Musk quickly deleted the post which included his phone number.

A Facebook spokeswoman said Carmack doesn’t plan to leave the company. Representatives for Tesla and Space Exploration Technologies didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

Virtual and augmented reality are playing significant roles in the development of autonomous cars. Engineers for companies including Alphabet’s Waymo are turning to simulation platforms to test and train their self-driving systems that are being primed to navigate vehicles as well as – or ideally better than – human drivers.

Before diving into virtual reality, Carmack built a company that attempted to make a craft for suborbital space tourism.

After spending millions, he shuttered it in 2013. Still, he’s maintained an interest in the sector and has interacted with Musk over Twitter before.

Truth in Fiction

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We must become the change we wish to see in the world.” – Mahatma Gandhi.
One of the many wise quotes from a distinguished leader of the Indian Independence movement in British-rule India in the 1940s. Gandhi led India to independence and inspired Civil rights movements and freedom across the World.

 

“We can change the world and make it a better place. It is in your hands to make a difference.” – Nelson Mandela. He was the first elected Chief Executive of South Africa, in a fully representative democratic election. With his leadership, his government focused on demolishing the legacy of the system of segregation or discrimination on the grounds of race, through tackling institutionalised racism and fostering racial reconciliation.

 

These are the people who we have looked towards for some form of leadership, in the past, to ignite changes within systems that are flawed. There are many more in the past that have risen to the occasion and have made an impact on our current lives and reality. Yet, there is still a disparity that lies hidden within the unseen cracks of our current economic systems and governments. The leaders we have currently tend to be modest in the changes that are put forth compared to those in our history books. Mostly within the subject of economic and military growth. Below are some known examples of our current leaders’ speeches on growth:

 

1. President Obama elaborating on his budget and inviting people to take action.

2. Prime Minister of the United Kingdom speech on transforming British economy.

3. Speech by the Prime Minister of Singapore, Lee Hsien Leong, at the Economic Society of Singapore Annual Dinner.

4. Vice-Premier Zhang Gaoli delivering a speech at the conference, vowing to push forward with China’s “New Formal” growth model.

 

As you can see, these speeches are mostly about the economy and the country’s growth. So why is economic growth so important to us?

 

Economic growth has been presented to be essential for each and every one of us surviving in this current time. It has been deemed important to acquired more wealth accompanied by the growing consumption everyone has in most countries. This allows businesses and corporations to grow and prosper exponentially. This relates to growth in the output of the economy as a whole. Currently, growth is measured as the difference or change in the gross domestic product of a country over a year. However, good economic growth does not equate to a better standard of living as always intended.

 

I live in Singapore, a small country located in the southernmost region of the continental Asia, which has no natural resources besides its people. Since their independence in 1965 from British rule, Singapore has grown to be a global commerce, financial and transportation hub. In 2014, Singapore was crowned the most expensive city in the world according to the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU). With such luxury like casinos, “low” crime rates, multi-million dollar properties, ever-green parks and a great Business district skyline, many expats and foreigners have resided in this small country which has tremendously impacted and increased the cost of living for the average Singaporean. Despite the high cost of living, I lead a happy, thriving life. I can safely say that with a slightly over-average income, I am able to have a home, water, electricity and some simples vices that makes living here tolerable. However, I cannot say the same for part of the population that work just to survive this increasingly expensive place. Recently, a study has shown that the ‘working poor’ in Singapore are not getting sufficient pay or salary to make ends meet. ‘Working poor’ is defined as a working individual whose income per household member is less than half of the national median per capita household income of Singapore, which stands at SGD $1,920. A survey done on poverty attitudes by the National University of Singapore (NUS) Social Work Department presented that those who need money want to work and that there are jobs available for them. However, it has been reported that there are more than 300,000 Singaporeans and permanent residents who earn less than SGD $1,500 a month (excluding employer CPF contribution) despite working full-time. Read more on this 2013 article here. Here is an article from the Guardian by Warwick Smith on his opinion on economic growth.

 

Simply put, quite a number of people do not prosper while the economy does. It is quite simple. We have been conditioned by our monetary and economic systems, that supports and purports greed rather than growth, to want and yearn more. To have more of something is the societal norm that has encompassed the mind of every individual that has lived in these past years, and will live in the years to come, as these ideas and concepts are built and incorporated into our education system. Competition has been put in place within the structures of growth rather than collaboration or cooperation. We have been made to judge and dream about the redundancies of the materialistic world. We promote greed and jealousy in our advertisement to grow consumption and thus the economy.

 

There are other possibilities of a far better economic and social structures that have been researched and also presented to the world which will abolish war, hunger, poverty, debt and unnecessary human suffering. One of them is called the Venus Project. This was created by an organization that created a feasible plan of action for social change towards a peaceful and sustainable global civilization. It outlines an alternative to strive toward where human rights are no longer a paper proclamations but an actual way of life. They have presented us with many different solutions such as a world economy that is resource based. With this, it utilizes existing resources, rather than money, and provides an equitable method of distributing these resources in the most efficient way, to the entire population. This system requires no use of money, credits, barter or any form of debt or servitude. Other solutions include housing, transportation and energy. The founder, Jacque Fresco, a futurist, inventor and industrial designer, uses the frontier of science, technology and imagination to create an intelligent application of what is available to us. The only limitations are those which we impose upon ourselves.

 

Think of all the human suffering that can be eradicated. Think of all the unnecessary famine, war, deaths and destruction that undoubtedly follow in our current plans for economic greed and power. The Venus project alone shows the very possibility of a new way of life. Rather than just to survive, we can thrive and develop a new world where every single individual can live and prosper. However, we need to change our current mindsets and some parts of our beliefs that have been instilled to indoctrinate us to the current structures of society and culture. We need change on an individual level first before the world can change. We need people to explain and lead us forward and inflict creativity and open-mindedness, towards these changes that will have to take place in order for each and every one of us to thrive.

 

Where are these people or leaders?

 

They are available anywhere, but do not look for them in the next political campaigns or in the current government. These ‘leaders’ are nothing but fictional characters that are invented by creative people to address the rising conflict between truth and lies within our reality. With many mainstream media and entertainment industries being owned by corporations, information tends to be exaggerated and sometimes, even fabricated to present the population with only the truth of what these powers want you to believe and not. It seems that politics and mainstream media are more about fiction than facts. We live in the age of technological advancements and with the easy access of information available to the common man, we hold the ability to research on a certain subject. With all these information available in an array of platforms and avenues, the truth is just an accepted perception of the conscious mind. In today’s context, fiction has become a primary point on which the journey towards truth will start. In many books, TV series and movies, truth has been portrayed as a kind of camouflage that can only be detected by the curious mind. Below are some examples of truth in fiction:

 

1. Known by most as “the most honest 3 minutes in television history”, this is an HBO TV series called the ‘Newsroom’ starring Jeff Daniels. The character Daniels plays is Will McAvoy, a news anchor. In this scene, he answered a question asked by a student, “Can you say why America is the greatest country in the world?”. Great answer!

 

2. The Matrix. This movie provides a great representation of exactly what we are to the Elite of the world; batteries. It also shows the possibilities of an individual once they have awakened and escape the matrix. Your mind is the only limit.

 

3. Lord of War is a movie, starring Nicolas Cage, about an arms dealer confronting the morality of his work. It shows the Government’s prominent role in the distribution and sales of weapons and how they cover up the distribution and uses it to promote violence and fear throughout the world.

 

4. Blood Diamond is a movie that sheds light on the hardship and corruption incurred in a certain part of the world to provide trivial luxuries to people in developed countries. It also shows how the truth is being kept and hidden from people who keep the diamond industry intact through value and praise.

 

Well, it may not be hard facts, but there are some truths in them. Do not even get me started on the symbolism that are found in these shows. The best part is, there are many more just waiting for you to search on or stumble upon. Remember to always be wary and keep an open mind on the meanings and hidden messages in these shows. The most important thing you can do is to share these information. Share your opinions and comments with others so we can learn different perspectives that will ultimately lead us to unveil the real truth. Below are some of my favourite finds of great videos that will intrigue, fascinate and motivate you to strive for truth and change.

 

1. George Carlin – The American Dream

 

2. V for Vendetta – The Revolutionary Speech

 

3. My ultimate favourite, The Great Dictator (1940) – The Greatest Speech Ever

 

Written by Fariq Yusoff
Image sourced from Flickr

How to become a Peaceful Warrior

4268569D-EEEE-466C-9D6D-326E10D0FE2CThere are a variety of different movies that teach us about awareness, consciousness, life and truth. These movies are found to have the power to change perception, beliefs and the level of awareness towards seeking truth.  I recently finished a movie titled “Peaceful Warrior” starring Scott Mechlowiscz and Nick Nolte. One of the movies from that list. This movie was based on a book by Dan Millman, Way of the Peaceful Warrior, which was based on true events. It is an enlightening movie about a college gymnast whose meeting with a stranger changed his life. As I listened vicariously to the teachings and quotes by the characters in the movie, I felt a sense of understanding which has awakened a part of me inside. These words suddenly gave me a new perception of understanding of myself and Life.

There is a peaceful warrior inside each and every one of us. As explained by Dam Millman, all of us living on Planet earth are in training to be a peaceful warrior. We all strive to have peace and happiness for ourselves. However, life just seems to have the upper hand on affecting us to a point of confusion and hopelessness. There are times when all you wish you had was a warrior inside you to do what you think you cannot. I have been there. I have felt lost and overwhelmed by the happenings around me that have left me depressed. It felt that I was not heading anywhere in my life and how my life just cannot kick-off to what I perceive it should be like. Have you ever felt this way? To feel that you are lost in place, and everything just seems to not make any sense at all. A feeling that you were meant to do something with purpose but yet, it is still not happening as what you intended.

“If you don’t get what you want, you suffer; if you get what you don’t want, you suffer; even when you get exactly what you want, you still suffer because you can’t hold on to it forever.”

“The birth of the mind is the death of the senses”

“everyone tells you what’s good for you. they don’t want you to find your own answers. they want you to believe theirs.”

“The secret of happiness, you see, is not found in seeking more, but in developing the capacity to enjoy less.”

“I had lost my mind and fallen into my heart.”

Do not despair. The harder it gets, the wiser you will be. It all comes down to perception and awareness of your life. It took me years to understand this concept but I managed to be, as I am now.
Initially, my perception was changed in a very pivotal moment of my life, of what I see and how I felt about my past, through a kind of workshop called Asiaworks Basic and Advance Training. Asiaworks Training is an organisation that addresses the personal growth and self-awareness, organisational commitment, leadership, teamwork and effectiveness of the attendees. Read more about them here. This is where I came to make peace with my past and understanding the beliefs that I have attained on certain things like my parents, family and fate. “I, like god do not play with dice” – V from vendetta. It was an eye-opening moment that suddenly had me seeing my life’s journey to be of purpose. I stood there in that room filled with emotions that I have never felt before, and that made me feel more human than I have ever been for the past 18 years. It made me feel that I was in the right place, at the right time. That my life’s road was and is on course no matter the difficulty and obstacles I had faced. I came out with an affirmation that I am an honest, kind and loving person. Somehow, it created a higher level of awareness towards myself and my surroundings. It opened up many opportunities that had me feeling that life will never be the same.

“It is better for you to take responsibility for your life as it is, instead of blaming others, or circumstances, for your predicament. As your eyes open, you’ll see that your state of health, happiness, and every circumstance of your life has been, in large part, arranged by you – consciously or unconsciously.”

“. . . Action always happens in the present, because it is an expression of the body, which can only exist in the here and now. But the mind is like a phantom that lives only in the past or future. Its only power over you is to draw your attention out of the present.”

“Enlightenment is not an attainment, it is a realization. And when you wake up, everything changes and nothing changes.”

“A warrior doesn’t seek pain, but if pain comes, he uses it.”

“The earth isn’t solid. It is made of molecules and atoms, tiny universes filled with space. It is a place of mystery, light, and magic if you only open your eyes.”

Years have passed from that moment but memories tend to fade and practice, forgotten. This harsh reality had made me trapped within the cages of my mind. Fear and uncertainty envelop me with the ever-changing cycles of forced responsibilities and greed. Insecurity has made me doubt and question my every action to the preference of others. It made me sway off course a few times but it was never difficult to reflect and understand. It just took time. It was difficult to be aware of yourself when this reality has put forth a yearning for more. Yearning to earn and seek more. When circumstances changed, we tend to change as well. It only depends on the actions you put forth with or for that change. Fast forward to the second pivotal change of my life, it was of deciding to my wife. We had been in a relationship for almost 10 years but it seems that it was not working out for both of us then. No matter, I felt a deep sense of loss when we decided to walk away from each other. I could not find the words for it but I knew deep within that my life could never be, without her in it. This is the moment I realised that there is no past that has the power to keep me and there is no future that can be depended on to be exactly what I wish it would be. There is only now. And now means doing.

“There are no ordinary moments.”

“The journey is what brings us happiness not the destination.”

“A warrior does not give up what he loves, he finds the love in what he does”

“The warrior is Here, Now.”

“Everything you’ll ever need to know is within you; the secrets of the universe are imprinted on the cells of your body.”

I found that to be a peaceful warrior, it takes hardship and grief. It takes difficulty and sometimes impossibility, as these moments will only define who we are as a person. Look at the choices that you have made before and reflect if that was out of fear or living. Now is the only important moment in Life. It will take time for you to have the highest level of awareness in your life to the point you understand that every circumstance does not define you. The choice does. The only way to ascend towards being a peaceful warrior is to practice it frequently. Practice humiliation, reflection and kindness. Start by letting go and cleaning the mess that is hindering you to live. Clear the doubt, insecurity and uncertainty. Love! Life is full of circumstances and it is you who will need to decide who and what will be your teachers. Do it monthly, daily, in moments and soon enough you will realise that a peaceful warrior is never the destination, but the journey of which you have taken part in.

“A fool is ‘happy’ when his cravings are satisfied. A warrior is happy without reason. That’s what makes happiness the ultimate discipline”

All quotes in italics are obtained from the following site.

Origination: Book titled ‘Way of the Peaceful Warrior’ by Dan Millman

Links http://www.collective-evolution.com/2012/01/05/ce-list-movies-with-truth-or-consciousness/
Links http://www.peacefulwarrior.com/faq/becoming-a-pw

 

Photograph taken by Yoji Amashiro

Written by Fariq Yusoff