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Archive for the ‘Things that make me go “MM”’ Category

life-imprisonment

 

” The lotus has its roots in the mud,
Grows up through the deep water,
And rises to the surface.
It blooms into perfect beauty and purity in the sunlight.
It is like the mind unfolding to perfect joy and wisdom “

 

 

For a Buddhist … attaining Nibbana – Enlightenment … is discontinuation of suffering.

This poem speaks of a Lotus … and that’s our MIND. If you have seen the flower Lotus … you’d agree it’s such a beautiful creation of Mother Nature. Here, The Lotus symbolizes MIND … and it says, the Lotus grows deep rooted … in mud. Which means … even though we were born in to chaos and surrounded by evil (represented by mud) … we’ve had a MIND … which’s pure and beautiful … at Birth.

Then we grow up … its similar to the Lotus grow up through deep water … our pure MIND get exposed to forces such as malice, distress, aversion, indulgence … etc etc… until we get maturity in thoughts. And it’s been compared to the Lotus rising up to the surface. But you see … it’s still not in full bloom as yet. This lotus … requires Sun light, just as our mind requires Wisdom … for fulfillment, to have purity … once again.

And as per teaching of Lord Buddha … we’ve been given guidelines (NOT RULES) … on how to purify our thoughts … as thoughts leads / turns … in to actions. I’d say, as his follower, Buddha for us, is our SUN and his teaching is the Sun light for our MINDs.

 

 

So we learnt;

 

 

1. Right View  –  The right way to think about life is to see the world through the eyes of the Buddha–with wisdom and compassion.

2. Right Thought.   –  We are what we think. Clear and kind thoughts build good, strong characters.

3. Right Speech.   –  By speaking kind and helpful words, we are respected and trusted by everyone.

4. Right Conduct.  –  No matter what we say, others know us from the way we behave. Before we criticize others, we should first see what we do ourselves.

5. Right Livelihood.  –   This means choosing a job that does not hurt others. The Buddha said, “Do not earn your living by harming others. Do not seek happiness by making others unhappy.”

6. Right Effort.   –  A worthwhile life means doing our best at all times and having good will toward others.  This also means not wasting effort on things that harm ourselves and others.

7. Right Mindfulness.   –  This means being aware of our thoughts, words, and deeds.

8. Right Concentration.  –   Focus on one thought or object at a time. By doing this, we can be quiet and attain true peace of mind.  

 

 

Buddhists … do not need to be judgmental of others … as we were taught that;

 

 

” The kind of seed sown
will produce that kind of fruit.

Those who do good will reap good results.
Those who do evil will reap evil results.

If you carefully plant a good seed,
You will joyfully gather good fruit
”  ~~ Dhammapada ~~

 

 

Although I’m not perfect … I’m still a Buddhist … therefore I’m sure I’d never be the first … or the last … to “throw a stone” at someone … for being a SINNER. We have no rights (being SINNERS ourselves) … to judge and punish someone else s’ acts … no matter how sinister or heinous their deeds are, most of all decide their fate?? I don’t believe it’s correct.

Apart from the LAW OF THE COUNTRY we live in, Buddhism doesn’t speak of any ‘LAW’ … any ” Buddhists LAW ” for Buddhists to abide by …. or allows or approves ONE SINNER judging ANOTHER SINNER s’ acts … and ONE SINNER punishing ANOTHER SINNER  in such a way … where we’d accumulate MORE SINS in our lives … according to Buddhism our actions have its’ own results so it sounds stupid and hypocritical to me anyway.

 

 

Five Precepts;
1. No killing  ~  Respect for life
2. No stealing ~  Respect for others’ property
3. No sexual misconduct  ~  Respect for our pure nature
4. No lying  ~  Respect for honesty
5. No intoxicants  ~  Respect for a clear mind

 

 

These are our daily promises, to live by, although most Buddhists (including me) at times fail to keep up with (oh but … we’re still laymen … we have a good excuse), still … we won’t be JUDGED or PUNISHED … by another mere mortal … another IMPERFECT human … who’s full of sins … errors … and misjudgments … never … IN THE NAME OF BUDDHISM. There won’t be beheading, chopping off arm / legs or stoning to death … because … we were taught, our OWN SINS … will bring the best suited punishment upon us … in due course and we were taught … KILLING  or HARMING another living being … is a SIN.

Rizana … I’m heart broken, yes … you were born poor … I feel terrible, yes … you had to start looking after your family at such a young age … but the God you worshipped … his teaching and his followers … glorify killing and punishing the sinner … and you were beheaded, for an accidental death of an infant …  how I should be feeling, the rest of us be feeling … I sincerely wish, you were born in to a different faith … where your religion would shine upon you … like THE SUN … shining on the LOTUS.

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Humans … well … aren’t we a funny bunch.

 

We (think we) are ‘oh so intelligent …adoptive … creative … civilized … and surely powerful’ among ‘the rest of the species’ who walk on earth… aren’t we? Oh, did I say ‘powerful’? hmm sure I did… well what do you know …  for us humans … it isn’t enough being powerful over the less intelligent who share the earth with us … oh no no sir, not enough. We want more … we need ‘Power over fellow humans’ … aah isn’t that’s the real deal? … Isn’t it what every nation s after? …. every one of us is on this so called ‘Power game’, in one way or the other… ‘Dominating nature of us humans’ you’d say… Over the generations, how many cruelties done by those ‘power hungry humans’… how many of humans endured pain and destruction over commotion … it’s beyond comprehension.

Humans … oh, what a silly bunch we are.

 

 

I suppose the capacity of our ‘Power’ over ‘things’  being tested over time … and perhaps we came out winners most of the times … sure … but there s one thing … still to take control of … literary you could say “all hell broke loose” during the past couple of months … all over the world … in almost all the countries … devastation hit humans … whether it’s a ‘Powerful nation or no’ … simply because of this one thing humans failed to take control … Nature! … Landslides … floods … earthquakes … killed millions and displaced thousands … ‘mighty powerful humans’ eh? … yeah right …

 

 

 

 

By all means people … go ahead and enjoy natural resources … because everyone loves ‘change’ … loves ‘comfort’ … loves to be ‘big and powerful’ … yeah yeah … so go ahead … and create this and that … use whatever your invention while you are breathing … oh forgot, but of course … make money too (if destroying nature and making money can buy you a longer life, make more of it please) … after all, how on ‘earth’ are we to know how long we’ll be occupying here?

 

 

For most of us who think, ‘ hey it’s a short life’ and ‘we are entitled’ to ‘have fun while we can’, it’s indeed hard to come to terms with certain universal truths … but who are we kidding? … we are just one tiny part of nature, people … not as mighty and powerful as we think … until we say ‘another one bite the dust’ we roam … that’s all about it … how on ‘earth’ did we come up by this ‘notion’ of being ‘powerful’ over others? … Silly humans …

 

 

Take a reality check … best way to refresh our thoughts is … to go back … back in time … in to our class room … where we learnt all about ‘geography and science’ … this ‘cycle’ looks familiar …

 

 aaah yes …  “the Cycle” and don’t you dare change it!

 

“We say we love flowers, yet we pluck them. 

We say we love trees, yet we cut them down. 

And people still wonder why some are afraid when told they are loved”

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Man InThe Mirror

 

 

Some things in life I must say – never would change. Reproduction is one such thing. From the perspective of science or even of religion; we believe; being born is endless. For human species to continue surviving, it is essential that mature adults who are capable of producing fertile offspring, to continue for the existence of the species, and pass on genetic information from generation to generation.

 

 

 

Having said that, questions remain, those logical justifications we have, on having kids, do they really reveal the truth behind our decision to have them? Why really, do we need children in our lives? Even for a moment, does the continuation of human existence or continuation of our generation cross our mind when we plan for a child?

 

Or – do some of us have our own pathetic, selfish reasons?

 

 

 

Kids – what would happen, if some one decides to have a kid, just for the sake of having a kid? Perhaps some children are being considered “an accidental thing”, yet does any one realizes what follows with such a thought? Isn’t it decisive of the future of that particular human being? Or – what will happen if some of us are just trying to follow a trend – “Oh they are having a kid, why not we too do the same”-  thing?  Or- is it because we need them, just so we could use them, to (re) live our selves through them? Or – should we have them because we sure might need some one around, whom we could call our own, on our dying day?

 

 

 

It’s not quite clear why this particular mother and father had to have their children, not just one or two kids but a several, controlled them with high and mighty fists, made them live their lives through such a folly to make their egoistical dreams come true, not willing  or supporting them full fill their own unique dreams. At the end, they were really successful creating a few ominous souls, but surprisingly one of them happened to be an accomplished entertainer of all times ….. yet, couldn’t escape of being a pitiful entity. It utterly disgusts me when I think some are capable of betraying their own flesh and blood. Why not having a farm; instead of having children; raise some hens, cows and goats, so you could still sell them, don’t they too bring you dough? if not prestige? People like them should do just that. Then at least, you are not violating basic human ethics, oh god, this is definitely a weird world.

 

 

 

It’s some how too late, by now every one knows the story. It’s all I read about these days, one of the most tragic deaths of Showbiz and the reasons led to that untimely death. It’s not a remarkable thing to criticize a dead person on his living years, why do it now? If we must, then we should have done some constructive criticism in his living years and it could have probably bail out a few more years of his life. Momentous this is, if we could grasp a few lessons, probing a tragic life and it would serve the living ones good.

 

 MJ KIDS

 “They are lost without the only person they’d trusted”

Now once again returning to the nix, why did he ever want children of his own in his life, if he meant to fail them like this, a similarly thing, what his parents did to him long time ago?  May be he never thought of bidding good bye so soon yet I have a forlorn feeling, imagining them growing up among such contempt kin.

 

 

So does that mean you fell through?… seems you never recognized the “Man in the Mirror” … you just couldn’t, hence never knew your worth.

 and worse … you left them, unsafe, in a bizarre world!

 

 

Sadness … envelopes me …  & here comes Death … “The inevitable” … so I’d say R. I. P … there’s non to hurt your soul now !

 

All Things will Die
BY
Lord Alfred Tennyson

 


All Things will DieClearly the blue river chimes in its flowingUnder my eye;
Warmly and broadly the south winds are blowingOver the sky.
One after another the white clouds are fleeting;
Every heart this May morning in joyance is beating Full merrily;
Yet all things must die.
The stream will cease to flow;
The wind will cease to blow;
The clouds will cease to fleet;
The heart will cease to beat;
For all things must die.
All things must die.
Spring will come never more.
O, vanity!

Death waits at the door.
See! our friends are all forsaking
The wine and the merrymaking.
We are called? we must go.


Laid low, very low,
In the dark we must lie.
The merry glees are still;
The voice of the bird
Shall no more be heard,
Nor the wind on the hill.


O, misery!
Hark! death is calling
While I speak to ye,
The jaw is falling,
The red cheek paling,
The strong limbs failing;
Ice with the warm blood mixing;
The eyeballs fixing.


Nine times goes the passing bell:
Ye merry souls, farewell.
The old earth
Had a birth,
As all men know,
Long ago.


And the old earth must die.
So let the warm winds range,
And the blue wave beat the shore;
For even and morn
Ye will never see
Through eternity.


All things were born.
Ye will come never more,
For all things must die

 But it came all too soon for you  MJ !

 

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-1196188/Michael-Jacksons-life-long-confidante-J-Randy-Taraborrelli-I-saw-eyes-dying.html

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framed-inspirational-poster

 

My mother used to tell me, if she ever wanted to calm her young baby (her eldest daughter); all she had to do was to play the radio …… The radio? ? Not lullabies?? Yep …… the radio …… She had no worries after wards she says; whether the baby s awake or not it made no difference, she could get on with her other work at hand because her baby was at peace listening to all the beautiful sounds the Radio made. So her home is always full of beautiful tunes …

The baby she was referring was me …… I still wonder if that was one reason why my life is inseparable from Music.

When I was a kid, the love I had for music, took me to a world so colorful. I yearned to learn, to learn a few notes and I did, I play a few instruments like; Drum, flute, key board and piano. I was afraid; thought I won’t grow up with a pleasant voice and there ……  I learnt how to sing too.

Where did my inspiration come from? Surely it started because of the Radio and then I came across personalities the whole world loved and I learnt how dedicated they were for what they loved. I thought I should dedicate a special post …… for those conquered the world, not with weapons but with sweet melodies …… and their heart stopping voices!

Legends of My time – PART I

Lata Mangeshkar  – (Marathi: लता मंगेशकर; born September 28, 1929) is a singer from India. She is one of the best-known playback singers in the Hindi film industry. Mangeshkar’s career started in 1942 and has spanned over six and a half decades.

She sang in over 980 Bollywood movies and has sung songs in over twenty regional Indian languages, but primarily in Hindi. Lata is the second vocalist ever to have received the Bharat Ratna, India’s highest civilian honor. Mangeshkar was featured in the Guinness Book of World Records from 1974 to 1991 for having made the most recordings in the world. The claim was that she has recorded no less than 25,000 solo, duet, and chorus-backed songs in 20 Indian languages between 1948 to 1974 (30,000 songs between 1948 and 1987, according to 1987 edition). Over the years, while several sources have supported this claim, others have raised concerns over its veracity, claiming that Mangeshkar’s sister, Asha Bhosle, had more song recordings than she had.

Lata Mangeshkar was born in a Marathi speaking family in Sikh Mohalla, Indore, which then used to be in Central India Agency and is now in the State of Madhya Pradesh. Her father, Pandit Deenanath Mangeshkar, was a classical singer and theater actor. Her mother Shudhhamati, who was from Thalner, was Deenanath’s second wife.

The family’s last name used to be Hardikar; Deenanath changed it to Mangeshkar in order to identify his family with his native town, Mangeshi in Goa. Lata was named “Hema” at her birth. Her parents later renamed her Lata after a female character, Latika, in one of her father’s plays, BhaawBandhan. Lata is the eldest child of her parents. Asha, Hridayanath, Usha, and Meena are her siblings in sequence.

Lata took her first music lessons from her father. At the age of five, she started to work as an actress in her father’s musical plays (sangeet naatak in Marathi). Her father’s recitals and lessons left a strong impression on her, as did the songs of K.L. Saigal, who was her favorite singer and idol. Her formal education was limited to one day in the school. On the first day in the school, she started teaching songs to other children. When the teacher stopped her, she was so angry that she stopped going to the school. Other sources cite that she left school because they would not allow her to bring Asha with her, as she would often bring her younger sister with her.

 

Enjoy her melodious voice:  

 

Whitney Elizabeth Houston (born August 9, 1963) is an American recording artist, actress, and fashion model. A relative to several prominent soul singers, including her mother Cissy Houston, cousin Dionne Warwick, and godmother Aretha Franklin, Houston began singing at her New Jersey church as a member of a junior gospel choir at age eleven.

Her first solo performance in the church was “Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah”. When Houston was a teenager, her parents divorced and she continued to live with her mother. She attended a Roman Catholic single-sex high school, Mount Saint Dominic Academy, where she met her best friend Robyn Crawford, whom she describes as the “sister she never had.”

While Houston was still in school, her mother continued to teach her how to sing. In addition to her mother, Franklin, and Warwick, Houston was also exposed to the music of Chaka Khan, Gladys Knight, and Roberta Flack, most of which would have an impact on her as a singer and performer.

During the 80s, MTV was just coming into its own and received harsh criticism for not playing enough videos by black artists. With Michael Jackson breaking down the color barrier for black male artists, Houston did the same for black female artists. She became one of the few black female artists to receive heavy rotation on the network following the success of the “How Will I Know” video.

Following Houston’s breakthrough, other African-American female artists such as Janet Jackson and Anita Baker were able to find notable success in popular music. Baker commented that “Because of what Whitney did, there was an opening for me… For radio stations, black women singers aren’t taboo anymore”. Mary J Blige commented that after Houston invited her onstage during the highly rated Divas Live show in 1999, that it “opened doors for [her] all over the world”. Years later, Blige would have her biggest commercial success.

Enjoy her mind blowing performance:

 

Asha Bhosle (Marathi: आशा भोंसले) (born September 8, 1933) is an Indian singer. She is best known as a Bollywood playback singer, although she has a much wider repertoire. Her career started in 1943 and has spanned over six decades. She has done playback singing for over 1100 Bollywood movies and sold many records. She is the sister of the equally accomplished Lata Mangeshkar.

Bhosle is considered one of the most versatile South Asian singers — her range of songs includes film music, pop, ghazals, bhajans, traditional Indian Classical music, folk songs, qawwalis, Rabindra Sangeets and Nazrul Geetis. She has sung in over 14 languages including Assamese, Hindi, Urdu, Telugu, Marathi, Bengali, Gujarati, Punjabi, Tamil, English, Russian, Czech, Nepali, Malay and Malayalam.

Asha Bhosle’s first big success was B R Chopra‘s Naya Daur (“The New Age”, 1957). Her duets with Rafi like Maang ke saath tumhara, Saathi haath badhana and Uden jab jab zulfein teri, penned by Sahir Ludhianvi and composed by O. P. Nayyar, gave her recognition. Asha and O P Nayyar had worked earlier as well. But it was the first time that she had got to sing all the songs for the lead actress. B R Chopra, the producer of Naya Daur recognized her talent and got her to sing in many of his later films including Waqt and Gumraah, Humraaz, Aadmi Aur Insaan, Dhund etc.

In 1980s and 1990s, Asha went globe-trotting, staging concerts in Canada, Dubai, UK, U.S. and many other countries. In 1989, during a world tour, she performed in 13 US cities in 20 days. Immediately after this, she had an already sold-out concert scheduled in Stockholm, Sweden.

Due to the stressful schedule, Asha suffered a massive attack of colitis, together with fever, cough and weakness. In Stockholm, a pre-concert crisis meeting was called, attended by Asha’s son (and manager) Anand and the sponsors. It was decided that the orchestra will play many instrumental tracks, the accompanying singers like Suresh Wadkar will shoulder the load, and Asha will make a small appearance. But Asha rejected all such proposals, and sang at the concert with great difficulty, in a not-so-good voice. Her first set of six Bollywood songs did not receive any response from the audience, which consisted mostly of Indian and Pakistani expats. Before the start of the second set of songs, a fan in the crowd requested her to sing a Marathi song. Asha obliged and sang Naach-naachuni ati mi damale (“I’m very tired of this endless dancing”). When the song ended, the auditorium erupted with claps and the encores started. After the concert, Asha was in bed for a month, recuperating from overexertion.

Take it away Asha:

  

To be Contd ……

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gun

I t was not long ago …..

ALABAMA

“Authorities say at 10 people have been shot and killed in two southern Alabama towns, including the gunman.

The Alabama department of safety says at least four shootings by a single gunman left at least nine people dead before he killed himself.

The department says in a statement that the shootings began late yesterday afternoon in Samson. The shooter killed five people in one home and one each in two other homes. The gunman then shot at a state trooper’s car, striking the vehicle seven times and wounding the trooper with broken glass.

Police pursued him to Reliable Metal Products just north of Geneva, where he fired an estimated 30 rounds. The statement says the gunman then went in the business and shot himself.

GERMANY

A CRAZED teenager taunted his victims after he gunned them down at a school yesterday. Tim Kretschmer asked the wounded as they lay on the floor: “Are you not all dead yet?” In a murderous rampage which killed 15 people, he blasted classrooms with semi-automatic gunfire.

But he returned three times to one room and on his last visit uttered the chilling words – his first since marching into his old school. Kretschmer, 17, claimed 12 victims in the school in a suburb of Stuttgart and three more as he fled.

He died later in a police shootout.

Eight of the nine pupils killed were girls and two of the three teachers who died were women, sparking speculation that the killer had a grudge against females. Kretschmer had never had a girlfriend, according to former schoolmates. Brave teachers sacrificed themselves to save their pupils from the fury of the boy they knew from his schooldays as a troublemaking bully.

One of the victims, a female student teacher, flung herself over a young girl as Kretschmer took aim at her. The killer, in black combat gear similar to that worn by German Special Forces, shot the woman, who had been at the school only four weeks, in cold blood with his high caliber Beretta semi-automatic pistol.

As his victims lay dead and wounded, Kretschmer, the son of a wealthy businessman who kept an arsenal of weapons at home, went on the run, claiming three more lives. Police tracked him down and there was a gun battle. It is believed he killed himself after being wounded.

Former friends said last night trainee salesman Kretschmer had become “quite peculiar” and kept a collection of thousands of horror videos in his bedroom, along with a number of air rifles. Shocked witnesses spoke last night of the corridors and classrooms running with blood as other pupils and teachers were hit. Seven of the wounded were female pupils.

One classroom – 10D – seemed of particular interest to the gunman. Kretschmer, who left the Albertville high school in the rural suburb of Winnenden last year, went in and out of room 10D – which some sources said was his old classroom – three times.

It was on his final visit that he asked coldly: “Are you not all dead yet?” It is believed the classroom was being used by pupils aged 14 and 15. Police said the killer walked calmly along corridors and through classrooms, shooting his victims in the head as children ran and jumped from windows to escape him. As they jumped, there were screams of: “He’s killing everyone.”

Pupil Eileen Toraman said she had lost a friend in the tragedy. “I think his leg was broken and he was unable to run away,” she said. “Another friend broke her leg jumping from the third floor. I don’t understand why this happened.”

Rapid response officers, alerted by a panicked call from a pupil’s mobile phone, arrived at the school as shots were still ringing out and began to climb up the stairs. But Kretschmer opened fire to keep them at bay before running away. Regional police Chief Erwin Hetger said: “He went into the school with a weapon and carried out a bloodbath. I’ve never seen anything like this in my life.”

After his two-minute rampage, inside the school, Kretschmer headed away from the campus, which houses two other schools. He gunned down a passer-by, believed to be a gardener at a psychiatric clinic, before disappearing for about two hours. At about noon, two-and-a-half hours after storming into the school, Kretschmer hijacked a van, telling the driver: “Get me out of town”.

As they approached a police checkpoint, he forced the terrified man to swerve off the road. But when the car left the road, the driver escaped and Kretschmer ran off into an industrial area 25 miles from Winnenden. The driver rang the police, who arrived as the gunman escaped on foot into a shopping centre.

He shot the owner of a car showroom and one of the customers before trying to escape across the parking area. A police spokesman said: “He shot at almost everything that was there in that industrial area. He was shot in the leg by our officers, he fell, got back up, picked up his gun and a short while later he was found dead. It appears that he shot himself.”

Two police officers were seriously wounded in the gun battle.

Police had already swooped on his home as stunned survivors emerged in tears from the gates of the school, which has more than 1000 pupils. All of Winnenden, described as an “idyllic” area, was locked down while the gunman was at large. More than 1000 police and commandos flooded into the area. Other schools in the region were closed and drivers were warned not to pick up hitch-hikers.

Police seized 15 legal weapons from the gunman’s home, where his family kept a “small arsenal” of rifles for hunting. But a Beretta semi-automatic pistol was missing from the collection, along with a cache of ammunition. Frank Nipkau, editor of a local paper, said: “He went in there and started shooting immediately.

“We are told it is a gruesome sight.”

Meanwhile, former teachers and other locals said Kretschmer never stood out at school. Heribert Rech, the interior minister of Baden-Wuerttemberg state, last night refused to speculate about whether the gunman was targeting women.

He added police did not yet understand why Kretschmer turned killer. “We don’t have any clear indications this rampage could have been foreseen or prevented,” he said. “The motives at this point are very unclear.”

Jurgen Kiesl, the mayor of a nearby town, said he had twice awarded keen table tennis player Kretschmer prizes for his sporting achievements. “I can’t understand what could have brought this young man to do such a thing,” said Kiesl.

A former acquaintance, Dustin, said: “He got nearly everything he wanted. He had friends, but not many. They were interested in him only because he had money.” One former classmate said: “Timwas always very withdrawn.

He never just came up and talked to you. He just used to play ball games.” Another classmate said Kretschmer, an only child, used to get “very frustrated”, and hadn’t passed his exams last year.

The death toll is one fewer than Germany’s previous worst school shooting in 2002. Chancellor Angela Merkel said: “This is a day of mourning for Germany. It is unimaginable that in just seconds, pupils and teachers were killed – it is an appalling crime.”

Meanwhile, another classmate could only say the family had seemed perfectly normal and trustworthy, an average family.

“The only thing which stands out,” he said, “is that Tim was always very good with weapons.” “

Germany it is said, already has some of the strictest gun laws in the world. Handguns are only on sale to those aged 18 or over, with heavier weapons restricted to those over 21. No weapon can be purchased legally without a firearms ownership license, which is only available after personal checks.

It is unlawful to sell, give, lend or deliver a handgun to any person under 18, or to a person whom the seller has reasonable cause to believe has been convicted of a crime of violence, is a drug addict, a habitual drunkard, or of unsound mind – says the Alabama ‘GUN LAW’.

Why does one need a Gun … for self protection?  If it so does it really work that way? I have many queries … what good does it do when any criminal have more ways to lay their hands on guns than we do … can we fight all of them? every where?

Hence I read … I’d love to learn how …

“Criminals make use of weapons to control their victims to ensure a high success rate. In many cases the criminals have more firepower than the local police and unfortunately the threat of coming face to face with an armed criminal is not diminishing, in fact it is increasing.

More and more people are looking into reality based type training to address real situations they might encounter in the streets of today. CombatCoaching.com is changing the way people are learning self defense, from beginners to specialized security and safety personal. We believe that when it comes to your life and lives of your loved ones, you should make the commitment to train as realistic as possible preparing you to protect and survive the streets of today. The key element for a civilian to be able to defend him/herself during a street encounter is in his or her training.  The training must be realistic and closely related to the type of situations you might encounter     ‘One fights like one trains’

One of the most common weapons used in violent crime today is the handgun. Buying illegal weapons on the black market is as prevalent as the drug trade. Don’t think for a moment that the government can keep weapons out of the wrong hands, because they can’t. Criminal make use of handguns for several reasons:

  1. Effective and deadly
  2. Low maintenance
  3. Easy obtainable on the black market
  4. Easily concealed
  5. Very intimidating

Three attributes make a handgun an ideal personal defense weapon for civilians and security personal.
– It is compact
– Easy to carry
– Brought into action very quickly and effectively at close range.

If you do not own a firearm why would you want to learn how to use one?
First of all if you want to learn how to defend yourself against a specific weapon or threat the best way to do so is to study the weapon/threat or enemy. Learn how a firearm works. Know what the pros and the cons are of this lethal weapon. This way you will have a better knowledge base to draw from to structure your training on how to defend yourself against a firearm. Secondly, you might land up in a life or death struggle with your attacker and he looses control of his weapon and drops it. If you are able to pick it up surely you will use it to control the situation in your favor? If you have never handled a firearm before picking it up could count against you. If you find yourself in a self defense situation wherein you disarm a gang member, it would be wise to know how to use that weapon – especially if other gang members are present who will harm you.

It has been found that most of the situations involving handguns i.e. pistols as defense weapons take place at very short distances, usually in low light conditions. Of course, there is no guarantee at what range one might have to defend oneself with a handgun but, although pistols can shoot accurately over quite long distances, they are designed as close range weapons. All gunfights are situations where one is either launching an ambush, or responding to it (sometimes by preempting it). Gunfights never look like those in the classic western movies where the two antagonists face each other at opposite ends of the street and fast draw against each other. Sadly, this model is what the training of many shooters is based on. There is also the bottom-line issue that the fight deals with both shooting and getting shot. It is far more important not getting shot than shooting well (at the expense of getting shot).

Being able to just shoot against a stationary cardboard target does not translate well preparing oneself for an urban shootout. You need to take your training to the next level and this is where airsoft training takes the lead. The airsoft gun allows the student to learn and train a specific technique and test it in a ‘real’ situation with an adversary not all willing to allow it in the form of scenario training. In other words you can place the student in a scenario where he actually has to make tactical decisions under pressure while being shot at simulating an urban shoot out, home invasion, hi jacking etc. As a large percentage of violent crime occurs during the hours of darkness, the ability to shoot accurately at night or bad light is very important. Unfortunately, this aspect of defensive shooting is sadly neglected, largely due to the difficulty many shooters experience in finding suitable facilities for night shooting. Nevertheless one can become proficient in lowlight shooting by just using an airsoft gun which can be used in almost any environment. The amount of light that will be available in low light shooting varies. It is recommended you prepare yourself as comprehensively as possible and train in as many conditions as possible from where the target is totally visible to where it is barely visible.

 

Basic Tactical Firearm Training guidelines:
– Make sure you expose yourself to all the ranges and aspects of fighting. This means to prepare yourself as comprehensively as possible to deal with almost anything and everything. This includes factors such as improving your fitness, dealing with attackers in various ranges including close quarter combat without your firearm. Also to take into consideration the various environments and conditions you could be dealing with.
– Next is the concept of the Observe – Orient – Decide – Act cycle first codified by the late Col. John Boyd. This cycle describes how men process information in combat, we all Observe the enemy. We Orient ourselves in accordance to the situation, as well as with what we observe. We make a Decision based on the prior two steps, and finally we Act upon it. All of these steps take time, and as short as that time may be in a fight, there are gaps in the timing and chinks in the process that can be identified and exploited. By understanding this, and being able to exploit its process, one can turn the tables on an attacker very quickly and decisively. By understanding this and organizing your fighting responses in accordance with it, one can turn a predator into prey. 
–  Move, Don’t be a target! It’s imperative to move off the line of force, or as some say, “Get Off The X”. This basically involves moving off the assailants aim, or evading the direction of his gun muzzle and learning to shoot while moving. – – –
–  Accessing your weapon under pressure. It just as important if not more  than actually taking the shot to being able to access your weapon under pressure. Accessing your weapon doesn’t just mean from your holster or somewhere concealed on you. Accessing also incorporates being able to get to your firearm effectively at 3am if it is locked away in your safe. Accessing is also learning how to deal with an ambush attack in a close quarters situation and then being able to access it. Placing yourself in a tactical better position may seem like a small matter but it is a crucial item of study. Your movement off the line of fire may save you from the first shot, but the ability to return fire as you keep moving will save you from his second and subsequent shots. 
Train to use combative sighting. During an urban shootout you will rarely get the opportunity to make use of the sights on your firearm. So how do you aim then? Urban combat shooting uses mainly the concept of point and shoot. The general idea is making use of ones fingers to point to the suspect. You will quickly experience the pressure when someone is shooting back at you in a well set up training scenario. You rarely find time to take aim or to use your sights. As long as the gun is surrounded by the target  and you use your full peripheral vision and not closing an eye you stand a good chance of hitting your target.
– Keep shooting until the attacker is no longer a threat. We know the resilience of the human body and especially when it is under adrenaline. We also know the deficiency of small calibers (anything less than a rifle is a small caliber). So you are not about to trust that limited shooting will solve the problem, you shoot until it is in fact solved. 

When training students in firearms we follow the following 8 basic rules. These rules are used when we train with airsoft or the real McCoy. Because most students can go to a real shooting range everyday and fire live rounds we treat the airsoft sessions the same as with live fire. This way the students get even more quality training in and do not need to adjust when shooting live rounds.
1 – Treat all firearms as if they are loaded and ready to fire
2 – Always point the muzzle in a safe direction
3 – Keep shooting finger indexed to avoid negligent discharge
4 – Alchohol, drugs and/or medication and firearms do not mix
5 – Make sure the weapon is clean and clear of obstructions
6 – Never point a weapon at someone, unless you intend to shoot him or her.
7 – Know the laws
8 – Keep handguns away from children. Lock them up to avoid criminal and civil liability

In conclusion. If you are serious about self defense or personal protection, your training has to include firearms. Whether you like them or not, many violent criminals carry them and use them in the commission of their crimes. It doesn’t matter whether you live in a ‘gun culture’ like South Africa or in country with strict gun control – criminals have guns. At CombatCoaching.com we don’t just offer self defense training against firearms but also on how to tactically use firearms. Part of the training is also focused on scenario training where you are exposed to actually tactically applying yourself in a life death situation, giving you a better chance surviving the streets of today! The self defense/Personal protection practitioner must train with replica firearms against live human adversaries in situations replicating those he or she is likely to face in a real confrontation. Right now your enemy is preparing how to take your life. Don’t let him do it when you meet. Train hard, stay sharp – stay alert and always be ready. Your final exam may come at any moment – God willing we will get to train again soon.”

 

mmm …so criminals have guns … what if you didn’t have time to react … if you don’t have time to put all your training in to action? You might happen to be at the wrong place at the wrong time… Does this weaponry training any use if you just don’t have a heart to harm another … shoot another … looking in the eye… cos all of us are not criminals … we … don’t think like psychopaths … but knowledge & being alert will definitely save lives …

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snow-storm

If you’re yearning for the good old days, just turn off the air conditioning.  ~ Griff Niblack.

For me, the quote has many meanings. I thought it‘s the best one I could use for today s blog. We humans, love to ‘discuss’, discussions on this, discussions on that. Weather has been one of the topics for many of us. But who’s really truly bothered I wonder. At least about one s own surrounding? I guess “saving our own environment” is limited only for discussions. If not then the conditions we face now wouldn’t be there, right? …Money, another topic we discuss every day but we smart ones, find numerous solutions to money matters don’t we? Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. said A man is usually more careful of his money than of his principles”, at a speech in Boston, 8 January 1897. I cannot disagree. We can talk big, show off our intelligence (of course, “Human, the most intelligent creature on earth”) but mind you, we are not above the law of nature, destroy the simplest things belongs to Mother Nature and she will bring you destruction unimaginable.

Note the examples, read the following, if one thinks one can challenge a storm and beat it … very well.

 Cold, dark nights ahead in wake of deadly ice storm

From staff and wire reports: USA Today.

 

More than a million households remain without power after snow and ice slammed the country from Texas to Maine, disrupting hundreds of flights and forcing Kentucky state troopers to use four-wheelers to find stranded residents.

 

Warmer weather Thursday was proving to be both a blessing and a curse, as sections of eastern Oklahoma and northern Arkansas began the grueling process of recovering from the latest ice storm.

 

Sid Sperry, a spokesman for the Oklahoma Association of Electric Cooperatives, said warmer conditions will help crews accelerate the restoration process but the warmth could also lead to more outages.

“It’s a double-edged sword,” he said. “Anytime the weather warms up above freezing and the ice melts off power lines, it causes them to bounce, so you may have a few more outages.

“Another downside is that as the roads begin to thaw, rural roads are not paved, so they become difficult to drive through. Warmer temperatures have a negative and positive effect.”

There were about 20,000 households without power in Oklahoma as of Thursday morning. The numbers soared into the hundreds of thousands from northern Arkansas through Kentucky, where as much as 1 to 2 inches of ice burdened trees and power lines.

In Arkansas ‘ northwest, Bentonville, Fayetteville, Rogers and Springdale got more than an inch of ice. At Wal-Mart Stores headquarters, work continued, but a lot of employees had to take Wednesday off. The Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department said most north Arkansas highways still had ice and travel was slow in many places. All major routes were open by Thursday morning.

Kyle Brashears and his family fled their home in Mountain Home at 3 p.m. Tuesday because he was afraid of sagging branches from the oak trees that surround his house. Brashears, 33, returned that night to find his fears confirmed. The trunk of a thick oak split down the middle: sending half of the ice-heavy timber crashing onto his roof.

“It caved the roof in and ripped the gutter off, although it didn’t penetrate inside,” he said. “I was walking around outside until about 1 a.m., and it was just a non-stop medley of tree limbs cracking off.”

Brashears and the family headed to his father-in-law’s house where there is a gas fireplace to keep them warm. They used butane burners to cook their food and bundled up to stay warm in the house.

In Kentucky, the snapping of utility lines cut off phone service and even e-mail, said Kentucky State Police Sgt. David Jude, commander of media relations. Even cellphone service was being disrupted, Jude said.

More than a half-million customers in Kentucky remained in the dark. Many of the people had no heat and no working phone service to call for help.

“We have places across the state where even state police can’t get their cruisers working and they’re out in their own four-wheel-drive vehicles,” Jude said.

It could take a week or more for utility operators in Kentucky and Arkansas to restore power to everyone.

Late Wednesday, President Obama signed requests from Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear and Arkansas Gov. Mike Beebe for federal emergency declarations. Crews, even the National Guard in Kentucky, worked around the clock to resurrect power lines downed by thick ice in both states. Officials in states from Oklahoma to West Virginia fought to do the same.

In Ohio, passengers on an AirTran Airways flight were held up to 10 hours before finally taking off. Travelers in Columbus boarded Flight 373 for Orlando at a little before 7:30 a.m. Wednesday. Passengers say it took more than four hours for the plane to push out of the snow at the gate, then were delayed even more when deicing wouldn’t work as freezing rain and snow fell.

People were allowed off the plane at lunchtime, then got back on board and sat for several more hours until AirTran gave up on the deicing and brought in another plane, passenger Tiara Berger said. AirTran spokesman Tad Hutcheson said the flight probably should have been canceled, and that the passengers will receive free roundtrip tickets.

Kentucky added two to the weather-related death toll, bringing the total to 24. A woman died while an ambulance on the way to her was blocked by impassable roads, and a woman fell on her basement stairs while she was retrieving a kerosene heater. A woman in Indiana died while shoveling snow.

 

‘Extreme heat’ interrupts Australian Open

Wednesday January 28, 2009  : Weatherzone reports

Australian Open organisers were forced to interrupt the tennis tournament for the first time today as temperatures rocketed to a sizzling 41 degrees Celsius.

The women’s singles quarter-final between Serena Williams and Vera Zvonareva was halted for about 45 minutes as organisers enacted their “extreme heat policy” and closed the roof on Rod Laver Arena.

Doubles matches on the smallest of the main stadiums were moved to Hisense Arena, which also has a roof.

The move comes a day after Novak Djokovic pulled out of his quarter-final with heat-related problems, the first time a defending champion has withdrawn in the Open era.

On Monday, Belarus’s Victoria Azarenka became ill and staggered around the court in tears during her last-16 match with Williams, which was also played in baking heat.

Spectators on Rod Laver Arena fanned themselves, sucked ice lollies and held up signs saying “Thank you for closing the roof!” as the policy came into effect.

 

“The human spirit needs places where nature has not been rearranged by the hand of man”

 

Global Warming: A Primer

By Larry O’Hanlon –  Discovery

 

In the simplest terms, global warming is just what it sounds like: the worldwide rise in surface temperatures. The National Academy of Science has put the rise at 1 degree F over the course of the 20th century, but measurements from satellites of both land and sea surfaces are showing that the rate of warming is increasing sharply.

It’s more than just surface temperatures that are going up, however. A lot of research into temperature changes in the upper layers of the atmosphere, as well as the deep oceans, is showing warming. Then, there are the more obvious signs: the rapid retreat of glaciers in Greenland, Alaska, the Himalaya, the Antarctic Peninsula and on high tropical mountains; the thinning and disappearance of sea ice in the Arctic Ocean during summer; the melting of permafrost in Canada, Alaska and Siberia; and the rise of sea level and an increase in extreme weather.

The cause of global warming is what’s called the “greenhouse effect.” That’s shorthand for the ability of gases in the atmosphere to slow down the release of heat into space at night. Some gases are better at this than others. Carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide are the top three “greenhouse gases.” They are very good at absorbing sunlight and converting that energy into heat – rather like a rock does just sitting in the sun.

Surprisingly, the greenhouse effect isn’t a bad thing. It’s essential for life on Earth – when it’s not too vigorous. If not for the greenhouse effect, the temperature on the surface of Earth would be like that of the airless moon – swinging wildly from 225 degrees F (107 C) during the day to -243 degrees F (-153 C) at night. Not a good place for life.

The greenhouse effect is only troublesome when it gets too strong and warms things too much. And that’s just what scientists say has happened over the last 150 years or so as the people of industrialized nations have extracted Earth’s vast buried stores of fossil fuels and burned them. Since the start of the Industrial Revolution the atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide has increased nearly 30 percent, methane has more than doubled, and the nitrous oxide concentration is up about 15 percent. All those extra greenhouse gases mean more and more solar energy is being trapped in the atmosphere, exacerbating the greenhouse effect and making things warmer.

The result: 2005 was Earth’s warmest year in a century, according to NASA climatologists. The years 1998, 2002, 2003 and 2004 were the next four runners-up. The year 2005 was also a record-breaking year for Atlantic hurricanes in which the coastal city of New Orleans – made all the more vulnerable because of sea level rise – was almost wiped off the map by Hurricane Katrina.

Of course, because the effects of global warming on local climates are very complicated, it remains to be seen exactly how different regions will feel the heat.

“Global warming is a term that’s extremely useful when you’re running a planet,” says John Cox, author of the book Climate Crash. “But it’s regional change that affects people. It’s the wet and cold and hot and dry.”

That’s why climate modelers are constantly refining their simulations, and climate scientists continue to refine our view of past climate changes to create a better idea of what to expect.

http://dsc.discovery.com/convergence/globalwarming/interactive/interactive.html

http://dsc.discovery.com/convergence/globalwarming/interactive/interactive.html

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the-end

Celebrities; what are they, why are they here? Are they here just for our entertainment or to manipulate some of us a little?

Why should one encourage a Celebrity to control other s’ life? So, does that mean media has an equal responsibility of the publicity they receive over their bad behavior?

 

One can argue it’s their right to conduct their private life the way they desire; being famous, do they really have a so called private life anyway?

Is it really them, them only? We parents, do we have more responsibility over the disastrous lives our teenagers end up with?

High time to look for answers…

Poll Shows Adults Worried Celebrity Party Girls A Bad Influence On Young Girls

 By Judy Faber (CBS)

Are images of party girl celebrities like Britney Spears, Paris Hilton and Lindsay Lohan harmful to young girls?

In a recent Newsweek poll, 77 percent of respondents said that these celebrities and others have too much influence on young girls. Eight-four percent of those polled said sexuality plays a bigger role in American popular culture than it did 20 or 30 years ago and 70 percent say this is more of a bad influence on young people today than a good influence.

“Our kids are being bombarded by images of oversexed, underdressed celebrities who can’t seem to step out of a car without displaying their well-waxed private parts to photographers.”

Kathleen Deveny, Newsweek

“Our kids are being bombarded by images of oversexed, underdressed celebrities who can’t seem to step out of a car without displaying their well-waxed private parts to photographers,” writes Newsweek assistant managing editor Kathleen Deveny with assistant editor Raina Kelley in a cover article in this week’s issue.

The news isn’t all bad though. “Teen pregnancy, drinking and drug use are all down, and there is no evidence that girls are having intercourse at a younger age,” they add.

Yet, a study published last year in the journal Pediatrics found that kids respond to a repeated exposure to sexual content in television, movies and music.

“Specifically, the study found that 55 percent of teens who were exposed to a lot of sexual material had intercourse by 16, compared with only 6 percent of teens who rarely saw sexual imagery in the media,” the article says.

Photos: Britney Spears
Photos: A Year Of Lohan
Photos: Fashion’s Hall Of Shame

The best defense may be a good offense: parents must realize that they are ultimately the moral compass for their children.

“So watch your behavior; don’t gossip with your friends in front of the kids and downplay popularity as a lifetime goal,” Deveny and Kelly advise. “Parents need to understand and talk about the things that interest their kids—even if it’s what Paris is wearing—without being judgmental.”


Are Hollywood’s Bad Girls a Bad Influence on Teens?

Parents Should Take Advantage of Teachable Moments, Expert Says – abc News

 

Hollywood’s “It” girl Nicole Richie was arrested on charges of driving under the influence. It’s just the latest in a string of scandals and potentially deadly behavior by celebrities whose every move is watched by kids.

So what kind of lessons are they learning?

Young celebrities influence the way teenagers; girls especially, dress, eat, and see the world, according to child experts. “Every parent worries that [their] kid is going to want to be like this idol that they have plastered all over their room,” said “Good Morning America” parenting contributor Ann Pleshette Murphy.

Police say Richie was arrested alone in her car driving the wrong way on a California highway at 4 a.m. to the alarm of onlookers. At 5 feet 1 inches and just 85 pounds, she failed a field sobriety test. Police say she admitted to smoking pot and taking the prescription painkiller Vicodin.

With recent polls showing that so-called bad girls are the envy of school hallways, news of Richie’s arrest spread fast. “She got arrested this morning, I think,” one girl told ABC News. “It was all over the Internet.”

Like most American teenagers, the girls who talked to ABC News already seemed to know every detail about the latest celebrity girl gone bad. They agreed that the celebrities were teenagers’ role models today, but that what they were saying to teens wasn’t good.

This all has some parents concerned.

“It’s so outrageous,” Toni Ann Rinaldo, a mother, told ABC News. “You just hope as a parent they’re going to take what you say and do the right thing.” Richie is following in the high-heeled footsteps of other fallen teen queens.

Lindsay Lohan has been scolded by Hollywood co-stars for partying too hard and working too little. Paris Hilton was arrested on a DUI charge in September. And, of course, Britney Spears has been leaving two kids at home to celebrate her newfound freedom

So with all that glitz and glamour to compete with, what are parents to do? “Whenever anything happens in the news that becomes what we call a ‘teachable moment,’ we really need to take advantage of it,” Murphy said. “It becomes an opportunity to really share your values with your kids.”

Most research finds that drug and alcohol use among kids from eighth grade to 12th grades has fallen from 10 percent to 25 percent, from the peak usage years of the mid-1990s.

Pregnancy, a high risk for teenage girls, has also declined overall.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in 2005 that the teenage birthrate was the lowest in 65 years of record-keeping and marked a 35-percent drop since 1991. However, it appears that the long, steady decline in teen smoking has come to a standstill, worrying health officials.

A report released by the CDC in June found that around one in four teens said they smoked, the first time that the percentage of teen smokers had actually risen.



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