Don’t drop litter, or else!

 

It seems there will always be people out there that don’t care about the environment. How can you reach these people better than through a funny video that will encourage them not to drop litter? Here is a video that went viral on the social networks.

 

 

 

 

10 ways to improve your life

 

 

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In the world today you have the feeling that things get worse and worse.You turn on the television you hear only about crimes and corruption, you listen to the radio, you basically hear the same thing. When you meet your friends or relatives, most of them will complain about something. If you feel that everything and everyone is giving up and just complaining, here is a list of things that can make you feel better about the world and about yourself.

 

1. Visit only positive news websites or sites that encourage your passions ( for photography,

travelling, designing my favourite is Pinterest)

 

2. Cook your own food!

That means cook it from scratch! You know what ingredients are going to be in your food comparing to the ready meals you find in the supermarket( of course, not horse!)

 

3. Grow your own food! 

If you don’t live in a house with a garden, there are options out there. You can rent an allotment ( visit your local council website, they must have info there or ask at the council about renting an allotment). Or you can grow some herbs in your flat ( parsley, mint, basil – I’ve grown my own)

 

4. Get out!

Get out of the house, take a walk, take your camera with you, get out of the city and go into a green area. This has been demonstrated as helping the spirit! Better yet if you can find some friends to go for a picnic or a football!

 

5. Try a new hobby!

You never know when you try something new that you might fall in love with it. If you don’t have much money or time to go to a painting class or climbing class you can try cheaper hobbies as knitting. For ideas for other hobbies check this site here, for a list of 100 hobbies.

 

6.Volunteer!

Sounds like all work no pay? Think again. Volunteering might offer you with work experience in a field that you actually enjoy. There are all types of volunteering out there- from working in a charity shop to being a photographer, being a teacher, organising events, singing at charity concerts or running for marathons.

 

7. Get physical!

It’s been demonstrated that sport helps the mind and the body. The cheapest sport that you could enjoy is jogging or running. If you feel that it’s too boring, you can get into an organised group that runs every week.  Here’s where you can check where your local running club is in England. If you are in another country you can also organise a running group. Put some posters, make a Facebook page and you’ll be up and running!

 8.Travel!

Whether you can afford to go to China or just to the next village, travelling widens the mind and it gets you out of your normal surroundings and makes you see the world different (I had my best travelling experience when I visited a close town to my home during a local festival).

 

9. Educate yourself

The world is rich in knowledge. Whether you read literature, politics or visit a local museum, knowledge will open your mind and give you the opportunity to view the world from other people’s lives. If you feel lazy with reading, I recommend watching  TED , short video lectures with ideas indeed worth spreading, from a wide range of subjects- from ecology to photography, crime detective stories and visual effects.

 

10. Start to think positive!

Law of attraction- thinking in a positive way, will bring you positive things.

Here’s Matthew Ferry advising on positive thinking

 

 

 

 

 

People unite against corporations- a small step for activists, a big step for mankind

Yesterday, 25.05.2013 an international march against Monsanto corporation took place.

Traditional media was silent and even reporting superficial weekend news, news that just fill in the space, the type of “ monkey plays the banjo” news. However, social media was full with Monsanto news, people were sharing pictures, video and information about the march and Monsanto. From Twitter we found out that in over 400 cities around the world people were marching peacefully in the streets. You could say that good things are under way, people start to be aware of what is happening around them and they start to take action.

Now if you don’t know much about Monsanto, you can Google it, however there is a lot of information out there that might confuse you.

On one hand Monsanto claims that they revolutionise agriculture by inventing all types of hybrid seeds that will bring you faster and richer crops, they will give you special chemicals to kill the bad seeds that affect your cultures.

On the other hand, if you look into their history you find out that they have been involved in:

– quite a few lawsuits, involving especially independent farmers, for claiming for seed patent violations,

-they’ve been involved in lawsuits regarding polluting the environment and affecting people’s health (Alabama, 2003, Wales, UK, 2011),

-with bribing government officials in relation to genetically modified cotton ( Indonesia 2005).

Monsanto was also involved in several lawsuits in Argentina, Brazil, China, Haiti and India ( where crop failure brought farmers suicides) and has been reported to have several connections to officials in governments.

If the international marching will bring changes internationally is unknown, however one good thing will bring and that is awareness.

Muslims – breaking stereotypes

Whenever you hear about Muslims in the media, there is always a negative  image that comes with it. It is always a negative story that is associated with. Whenever something good happens, the religion of the person is not mentioned.
Why is that important to mention religion? When an average person does a crime and he or she is not a muslim but a Christian, atheist or Buddhist, why does the media not mention it? Imagine the headline- “Christian man stole a purse” . If this headline came in the daily newspaper people would find it weird and discriminatory. And it would be, wouldn’t it? Than why people are comfortable with seeing the word Muslim in the headline? Why is religion important? Is it because it is not about religion but about a media agenda of vilifying Muslims and keeping up with the stereotypes? Is it that media fed us with this image that now we see it as normal?
But what is the image of the Muslim in the media?
If you read just a few articles online or watch a bit of t.v. this is what you would find and this is what you will think:
  1. All Muslims are Arabs
  2. All Muslims are terrorists
  3. Muslim women are sexual objects
  4. Muslim people hate western people
  5. Muslim people believe in a different God
  6. They are all extremists
There are plenty other stereotypes that can be found on the Internet, however it is quite hard to find articles that combat these images. Still, from the information that was found, here is the conclusion :
  1. Not all Muslims are Arabs.  88% of Indonesia’s population is muslim. And there are plenty of Muslims also in China, India and Russia.
  2. They are all terrorists? With 1.6 billion Muslims around the world is a bit hard to categorise it like that, isn’t it? It’s like confirming all stereotypes around the world. Think about yourself. Do you have the same behaviour and tastes as your brother, sister, mom, uncle or neighbor?
  3. Muslim women are all sexual objects. This is a long hard debate about women issues. While women around the globe still struggle with issues, whether it is having equal pay or equal opportunities, you simply cannot generalize. But for a more in depth analysis, check out Queen Rhania’s speech about Muslim women issues here.
  4. Muslim people hate western people. Europe alone has got 8% of Muslim people, which might be Arab, Indonesian, western and it has been reported that also western people turn to Islam so to say that they hate the West it would mean they hate themselves.
  5. Muslims believe in a different God than Christian people. Actually Muslims do recognize Christianity, the Bible but they see Jesus as a prophet. They also see the Christian God as Allah. So, yes, it’s the same God.
  6. They are all extremists. There is a number of extremists among Muslims, but then there are a few among Christians, Budhists and other religions or among atheists.

For an interesting view of how Muslims are stereotyped in Hollywood movie, there is a series you can follow on Youtube

 

When good things happen to bad places

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If the world around you makes you despair and you believe that the future looks bleak, much like the “ Idiocracy” movie and that we will be drowned in a sea of garbage in the much nearer future, despair no more!

Good things are happening to bad places. Specifically, if you watch the good news sites. It appears that recently a bad place received a good makeover and was transformed much to our delight.

The Mucking Landfill in Essex, England used to be one of those nightmarish places where trash from six London Boroughs was brought for 50 years. It was one of the biggest garbage landfills in Europe. A 3.8 million dollar project was proposed and applied and so this area was transformed in a wildlife park that now hosts mice, orchids and attracts even rare birds such as the skylark.

It has been noted that another similar project will be realised also in UK in Grimsby in the near future. Hopefully, these two projects will give ideas to the rest of the world.

You can see a video of the project here.

 

Don’t worry be happy…about the news

Whenever the evening news comes, as a viewer you start to get the impression that the whole world is in crisis: crimes of all sorts, corrupt politicians, pollution, you start to get the impression that life really is not worth living or that the end is near.
But is it all bad news? One can wonder if only bad things happen in the world. Some good things might happen, too.  You don’t just go outside and everything starts to fall apart. You can see good things happening around you every day, so why don’t they end up in the news?
Maybe because what attracts people to watch the news is the sensationalism- crimes, celebrity, outrages behaviour. Is it our fault, though? According to this article, negative news can lead to depression and you can’t really escape from it, even if you ignore them, because now it’s following you even in the social media.
However, there is still hope if you don’t want to avoid getting depressed about the world today. There are websites that specialize only on the good side of things. Here are some of them:

In English

http://positivenews.org.uk/

http://www.dailygood.org/

 

Arabic

http://www.alejabiya.net/

 

German

http://www.gute-nachrichten.com.de/

 

Spanish

http://noticiaspositivas.org/

 

Italian

http://www.buonenotizie.it/

 

Romanian

http://stiripozitive.eu/

 

Africa – challenging stereotypes

If you are normal citizen that enjoys watching tv in the evenings or rainy afternoons, you cannot notice the charity advertisement.  They always show you something to impress you. Nothing wrong about that, they do need money to help, so what would they show you, some happy people running through a field full of flowers or some lions enjoying their lives peacefully? They somehow are forced to show you something to impress you. As a viewer I do not have anything against these commercials, except for one type of commercial. The ones about Africa. Oh yeah, and there’s always the line – every 5 minutes in Africa someone dies of something or something happens. It gives you a sense of an urgency (to reach in your pocket).

Now of course Africa does have its issues like any other part of the world, but I believe these images just contribute to the stereotype of Africa and its people- poor to the point of subnutrition, suffering from diseases and violence. This is the image that is shown to us, Europeans.

However, is it all true? What do you think when you think about Africa? Lions, giraffes, huts and people hunting in the bushes? Or do you think cities with skyscrapers, business men, fashion and restaurants?

These are the stereotypes that can be taken from the internet and television:

1. Africa is one country ( people tend to forget that Egypt or Morrocco is situated in Africa),

2. Africa is poor, the population is suffering from poverty, starvation, wars, violence

3. There is no civilization in Africa

4. It is all a big jungle with the occasional small village.

Challenging the Africa stereotype

However, if you do some research or travelling you will find out that actually Africa:

1. The continent of Africa comprises 53 countries

1. Its economy is developing

2. Africa is not that poor as we imagine, having the fastest growing middle class in the world.

3. It has got a rising urban population (so yes, there is a civilization there with malls, cinemas and everything)

But the best ones to challenge the stereotype are the people of Africa. Here is a video that was made with this purpose.

For more information about Africa, check out his link.

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