Are You A Highly Sensitive Person?

22 November, 2014 at 12:06 | Posted in Body & Mind, books, Culture, health | Leave a comment
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Do you have a keen imagination and vivid dreams?  Is time alone each day as essential to you as food and water?  Are you “too shy” or “too sensitive” according to others?  Do noise and confusion quickly overwhelm you?  If your answers are yes, you may be a Highly Sensitive Person (HSP).

For those people who have a keen imagination, are labelled too shy or too sensitive, who perform poorly when being observed even though they are usually competent, have vivid dreams and for whom time alone each day is essential – this is the book to help them understand themselves and how best to cope in various situations. Highly sensitive people are often very bright and creative but many suffer from low self esteem. They are not neurotics as they have been labelled for so long. However, high sensitivity can lead them to cease to engage with the outside world.

In The Highly Sensitive Person, by Elaine N. Aron, you will discover:
* Self-assessment tests to help you identify your particular sensitivities
* Ways to reframe your past experiences in a positive light and gain greater self-esteem in the process
* Insight into how high sensitivity affects both work and personal relationships
* Tips on how to deal with overarousal
* Informations on medications and when to seek help
* Techniques to enrich the soul and spirit

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Reading Maxim Leo’s Red Love: The Story of an East German Family

9 July, 2014 at 15:50 | Posted in books, Culture, Society | 3 Comments
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Interesting review about people living in a communist country…

Angelina Hue

I just finished reading Red Love: The Story of an East German Family by Maxim Leo. What a compelling, intense and poignant journey this has been.

The moment I started reading Red Love, I was drawn into the inner dynamics, turbulent emotions and revealing stories of Leo’s family. The latter included his grandfathers’ experiences during the Second World War and the effects which lingered throughout the three generations.

Red Love examines the relationships between Leo’s family members as well as each individual’s connection to the German Democratic Republic (GDR). This is more than just a family memoir; it is also a journey through the history of the short-lived sovereign state, seen through the eyes of someone who was born into it, grew up in its shadow and saw it vanish overnight.

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Leo brings the reader back in time by piecing together the narrative of his family through intimate interviews, old photographs and letters, diaries as well as surveillance files…

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3-Year-Old Remembers Past Life, Identifies Murderer and Location of Body

22 May, 2014 at 10:03 | Posted in beyond science, books, Science | Leave a comment

By Tara MacIsaac
Epoch Times

The universe is full of mysteries that challenge our current knowledge.In “Beyond Science” Epoch Times collects stories about these strange phenomena to stimulate the imagination and open up previously undreamed of possibilities. Are they true? You decide.

A 3-year-old boy in the Golan Heights region near the border of Syria and Israel said he was murdered with an axe in his previous life. He showed village elders where the murderer buried his body, and sure enough they found a man’s skeleton there. He also showed the elders where the murder weapon was found, and upon digging, they did indeed found an axe there.

In his book, “Children Who Have Lived Before: Reincarnation Today,” German therapist Trutz Hardo tells this boy’s story, along with other stories of children who seem to remember their past lives with verified accuracy. The boy’s story was witnessed by Dr. Eli Lasch, who is best known for developing the medical system in Gaza as part of an Israeli government operation in the 1960s. Dr. Lasch, who died in 2009, had recounted these astounding events to Hardo.

The boy was of the Druze ethnic group, and in his culture the existence of reincarnation is accepted as fact. His story nonetheless had the power to surprise his community.

He was born with a long, red birthmark on his head. The Druse believe, as some other cultures do, that birthmarks are related to past-life deaths. When the boy was old enough to talk, he told his family he had been killed by a blow to the head with an axe.

It is customary for elders to take a child at the age of 3 to the home of his previous life if he remembers it. The boy knew the village he was from, so they went there. When they arrived in the village, the boy remembered the name he had in his past life.

A village local said the man the boy claimed to be the reincarnation of had gone missing four years earlier. His friends and family thought he may have strayed into hostile territory nearby as sometimes happens.

The boy also remembered the full name of his killer. When he confronted this man, the alleged killer’s face turned white, Lasch told Hardo, but he did not admit to murder. The boy then said he could take the elders to where the body was buried. In that very spot, they found a man’s skeleton with a wound to the head that corresponded to the boy’s birthmark. They also found the axe, the murder weapon.

Faced with this evidence, the murderer admitted to the crime. Dr. Lasch, the only non-Druze, was present through this whole process.

To read more of Hardo’s stories, read his book, “Children Who Have Lived Before.”

ALSO SEE: Boy Remembers Wife and Killer of Past Life, Finds Them Again

via 3-Year-Old Remembers Past Life, Identifies Murderer and Location of Body – The Epoch Times.

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Where the Fragrance Becomes a Shimmer and an Outstretched Hand a Moment of Love

11 February, 2014 at 10:53 | Posted in books, Culture, quote of the day, Spirituality | Leave a comment
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I have moved in their footsteps as in a waking dream where the fragrance from a full-blown
peony is no longer a fragrance but a shimmer; where the deep red color of a maple leaf
in autumn is not a color but a privilege; where a country is no longer a place but a
lullaby. And where an outstretched hand is no longer just a gesture, but
a moment of love that continues into sleep,
into awakening, into everyday life.

~ Kim Thuy


(This is my translation, I’ve read her book Ru and these lines are just so beautiful. I guess that if you want the exact translation you have to read her book. And that is not a waste of time…) 🙂

Book Review: ‘Tiger Woman on Wall Street’

28 January, 2014 at 07:00 | Posted in books, China, Culture, Economy, Society | Leave a comment
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Junheng Li writes about her journey from China to America, shattering conventional wisdom along the way

By Valentin Schmid
Epoch Times

For a China skeptic, reading this book is like listening to a sermon. For a China bull, it will start ringing the alarm bells. For anyone interested in how the world’s second-largest economy works, this book provides a great overview, neatly packaged within the life story of a remarkable and interesting woman.

“My father’s quintessential tiger parenting ultimately resulted in an American success story built with Chinese strengths,” Junheng Li tells us about her upbringing in the suburbs of Shanghai in the 1980s, her American college experience in Vermont in the 1990s, and her successful Wall Street career in the 2000s.

Having lived in both cultures and having experienced both education systems, Li offers her insights on the differences between China and America. She builds a compelling case for why the mainstream perception that “China will rule the world” won’t come to fruition in the near future, and why America, despite its problems, is better equipped for a long-term contest.

“Until the software—the quality of its citizenry and society—matches the government-led hardware of infrastructure buildup, China is far from constituting a credible threat to America,” she writes.

Drawing on her experience as a Chinese citizen and an American businesswoman—Li now runs a boutique investment research firm specializing in Chinese companies—she sheds light on deep issues such as declining moral values in a communist state, and more practical matters like the risks hidden in the Chinese banking system.

Although the subtitle, “Winning Business Strategies from Shanghai to New York and Back,” over-promises a little, specific investment and real-life examples, as well as many Wall Street anecdotes, illustrate her main points.

As a result, the narrative never gets too dull or technical, so the book remains accessible to the average reader. In addition, most investors, whether professional or not, can learn a few things from Li’s contrarian methods.

Drilled for Success

For Li, education is the determining factor in her personal life, and in how China and America compete. In what she refers to as “tiger parenting,” Li’s father drilled her to be successful from a very young age.

She had to complete arithmetic exercises while kneeling on a rugged washboard with sharp edges. Her dad threw her in a swimming pool as a toddler with a small flotation device so she would learn how to swim.

“It was the only way his daughter would gain an edge in China’s highly competitive education system,” Li writes, adding she knew he was doing it for her, so she could be successful later in life.

She writes that the basic rigor of learning mathematics and grammar as a child is an asset she would use for the rest of her life. However, the Chinese system is based mostly on memorization, whether it is mathematics or Communist Party propaganda. Independent thinking and innovation are not taught.

“The [regime], represented by the Ministry of Education, still holds onto Marxist and Maoist teachings because it is afraid to part with the bygone era—parting with it would mean reform, and the party inherently fears reform,” Li writes.

This is a major flaw, which constrains the full potential of the country’s citizenry, according to Li. Rampant cheating in high schools and universities explains why Chinese companies have been successful mostly by working hard and copying others, fielding few innovations of their own.

Thanks to her father, who never believed communist propaganda and was an avid Voice of America listener, Li got inspired by the American classic movie “Gone With the Wind,” and set her sights to move to the United States.

After another round of hard work and memorization, Li aced her Chinese university and the TOEFL English exams, and got a scholarship for Middlebury College in Vermont.

In America, it wasn’t the academics of her economics course material, but rather the way education was approached in the United States that baffled Li.

“The hardest changes lay in the social and ethical rules that governed the campus.” She writes about the relaxed supervision, yet strict code of ethics at her college. Students were expected to complete their work independently and honestly, something she had never heard of in China.

According to Li, this approach of accountability, as well as risk taking and independent thinking in class and group work is a cornerstone of American innovation—a big advantage it has over China.

“China’s education system has failed to produce either an honorable or an innovative society,” is Li’s shattering verdict.

An Honor Code

Ultimately, the differences in the two countries’ education systems reflect a different moral code, which also translates into business practices.

“It [seems] counterintuitive. China had delivered impressive economic growth since I was a child. One would think that as a country gets richer, its people would no longer need to fight for their livelihoods. Shouldn’t they therefore hold themselves to higher moral standards, like the honor code we had at Middlebury?” Li asks.

Apparently not. Li then astutely analyzes this moral dilemma: Having robbed the Chinese nation of its spiritual beliefs by persecuting religious believers and indoctrinating the masses with atheist communist ideology, the Chinese Communist Party replaced a noble code of ethics with money worship and belief in the Party itself, which cares for nothing but power.

According to Li, solely caring about profit and outdoing others are the direct reasons for China’s creativity-stifling education system, slew of corporate scandals, widespread official corruption, and destruction of the environment, all of which Li documents with numerous examples.

“Social values remain weak because the system does not encourage citizens to believe in a power higher than the state—and given the personal tragedies and inequalities that many Chinese have witnessed in the last 30 years, the state is hard to believe in,” she writes.

Poised for a Crash

All of these factors have played a role in creating a lopsided behemoth economy that is ripe for a huge adjustment.

“Many people living in China, from the top leadership in Beijing to corporate executives to average citizens, believe the country is nearing an inflection point that will force it to reflect and reform.”

For Li, the command nature of the economy, the lack of morality, and the problems in the education system have left the Chinese economy with a one-size-fits-all solution of exploiting cheap labor and massive debt expansion, mostly for infrastructure investment and real estate.

She argues that while the export model of manufacturing cheap goods was successful in lifting 500 million people out of poverty during the past 30 years, it has now hit its limits as wage growth has surpassed the level of productivity growth.

Advancements in productivity are limited by an education system that fails to promote innovation, and therefore prohibits the progression toward more value-added products and services.

According to Li, the second wooden leg of the Chinese growth miracle is its massive debt expansion and investment in unproductive projects. Because the Chinese regime is obsessed with growth, when growth threatened to slow as part of a normal economic adjustment, it always forced banks to expand lending.

This prevented the occurrence of smaller cleansing cycles and created one massive debt super cycle, which has to come to an end sooner or later. More money funneled into unproductive investments by state decree will not result in more value creation. Instead, it looks like the whole economic system is poised for a crash—sooner, rather than later.

“The country’s trajectory seems similar to that of an athlete on steroids. As with most athletes on steroids whose temporary outperformance is inevitably followed by a long period of underperformance, the truth will eventually find its way out,” she writes.

The astute analysis found in “Tiger Woman on Wall Street” goes far deeper than the hyped-up numbers of Chinese GDP growth, currency reserves, or self-made millionaires. Li’s accurate and vivid description of China’s cultural fabric and its economy makes this a must read for anyone interested in the country’s economy and its people.

“Tiger Woman on Wall Street” is available from the McGraw-Hill Companies in print and in Amazon Kindle format.

via Book Review: ‘Tiger Woman on Wall Street’: photo 2

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