Tag Archives: nature

READ u DUMB@SS

Im sorry… not really. Wanna see how small you are?

  • If the human race = 1
  • You = 0.00000000014285 (thats 9 zeros)
And as you read this article, that number will only keep getting smaller, and smaller, and smaller. (due to the rising world population)

Which leads 2-2 questions…

  1. How can I stand out?
  2. How to make lots of $$$?

WARNING – this is not a Facebook trip, or Twitter frenzy, or Gossip toilet. This is LIFE. If you are not in a “thinking” mood, close this article NOW. Skimmers not welcome.

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How can I stand out? Is it by being different? Nope, unless you want to end up all ____ing crazy like Gaga. To stand out you have to BE yourself, and to BE yourself you have to ACCEPT yourself (not cover yourself in rotting beef )

STEP #1 – ACCEPT

For better or worse, you are not white… or maybe you are. You dont have a Colgate smile… or maybe you do. Curly hair, crow’s feet, wrinkle valleys… these are all part of  YOU. I wish… don’t wish, accept. I don’t like… don’t reject, embrace. Accept yourself 100 %. Not 80%. A hundred percent. By accepting your external looks, you achieve inner peace. I’m at peace with my body, are you?

STEP # 2 –  SMILE

Smiling is the universal human sign of happiness. A light that shines constantly when we are kids, but starts to grow dim as we get older. Nobody tells us to smile less, yet for some reason, the older we get – the less we choose to smile. Jesus once said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them; for it is to those who are childlike that the Kingdom of the Heavens belongs.”

And while having a good sense of humor helps, it is not a requirement to be happy. Being compassionate and helping others, is a great way to cultivate smiles. Acknowledging the beauty that sorrounds us (trees, stars, sunsets, animals, life, love, family) is another path to smiling. Curving those lips more often, also has its health benefits.  Smiling is the perfect drug (free & healthy) : )

STEP # 3 – SOCIALIZE

When you accept yourself, you are confident. When you smile, your happiness attract others towards you. When you are confident, happy and attractivethe social world becomes your own “sandbox”. A place of limitless possibilities and connections waiting to happen.

The most important part of socializing, is being able to “listen”. In a frenzied society where everyone screams and wants to be heard, very very very few people have the ability to actually shut up and listen. And like any other art, the art of listening requires practice. (for starters, avoid “filling in” words or interrupting others in mid-sentence) A master listener not only hears the message, but also understands the messenger.

Another way to “stand out”, is to literally STAND OUT. A straight body posture shows confidence and good hygiene demonstrates you are disciplined/caring. Speaking loud and clear, denotes that you are person worth hearing. But these are just details… and NO, having 5,000 Facebook friends doesn’t count as socializing. Go out there and socialize in the real world.

How can I stand out?

  1. By being an ASS ( accepting , smiling , socializing )
  2. By turning U into Ü

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Stay tuned, for next week’s – How to make lots of $$$?

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Filed under Inspiration

The Aztec way of Life

Aztec, a +1000 page book, is the culmination of 12 years of historical research by its author Gary Jennings. First published in 1980, the book narrates the adventures of Mixtli, an aztec native, before & after the arrival of the Spanish conquerors in Mexico. The book serves as a window into a distant time, into an Aztec Empire capable of great beauty and cruelty. But most of all, Aztec demonstrate the unique philosophy of life and way of living of the aztec people.

Tenochtlitan - The Capital of the Aztec Empire

Aztec reminds of us of a time  where everyone believed in “fate”, a place where men coexisted peacefully with nature,  and a society in which money wasn’t the most important thing in the world.

Every time a aztec baby was born, his umbilical cord was cut off. If the baby was a girl, the umbilical cord would be wrapped around a piece of wood and buried under the house. (this should help the girl develop good household skills – the aztecs would say) If the baby was a boy, the umbilical cord would be wrapped around a small wooden shield and given to a warrior. The warrior would then proceed to bury the “shield” in a battlefield. (according to aztec tradition, this would give the boy the courage he needed to be a great warrior) This piece of buried umbilical cord was referred to as an aztec’s “tonali” or fate. The common aztec believe that their human fate was tied to their “tonali” and the will of the gods.

Like many ancient cultures, the aztec’s religion was deeply interwined with the elements of nature. The aztec gods manifested their will through meteorological and astrological acts. Just like the early Christians, the aztecs believed that man and nature where subject to the direct power and intervention of the God(s). But unlike the Europeans of the time who disdained nature, destroyed countless forests and abused of the Earth’s resources; the aztecs lived sorrounded by nature.

Unlike in today’s capitalistic society, money wasn’t  everything in the aztec world. As there was no official currency, the aztec’s often traded using gold powder, copper chunks, jade rocks, and chocolate beans. Honor, prestige, war and power – were more imporant than money. And the aztec tradesmen were members of a guild, known as the Pochteca, and always traded in the name and for the well-being of their Empire. (And unlike those working at Wall Street, these ancient traders would have never allowed their greed to destroy their nation)

And finally... the topic of human sacrifice

Why did the aztecs perform human sacrifices?

According to Aztec folkore, the world and its human inhabitants has been destroyed four times. The first time the entire human population was devoured by jaguars. The second time, destroyed by tornadoes and hurricanes. The third time, by a rain of fire. And finally, by a massive flood like Noah’s (but without survivors). According to aztec religion, these four destructions were sent by the gods because they were not pleased. The gods demanded a more constant supply of human blood, or else they would grow thirsty and destroy. From the aztec point of view, being sacrificied was an honor: they were giving their life for a good cause. Protecting the human race from further divine destruction.

Henceforth the problem: how can you sustain an Empire that constantly requires war prisioners for sacrifice?

The answer is easy: make “fake” wars. During times of peace, the six central Aztec nations would wage their own war simulation, called “Florid Wars”. Every year, 3 Aztecs nations would face off against the other 3 Aztec nations in an open field. The objective of these “Florid Wars” was not to kill the enemy, but to disable and capture prisoners. These “fake” wars would last several days, until all of the generals decided they had captured enough prisioners. Each army would then return to their own nation and commit massive “Florid Sacrifices”. And the gods were pleased.

MEMORABLE QUOTES FROM THE BOOK

Yes, at your age you expect a lot. You can go in any direction you choose. You can go alone or with company. Your companions might travel with you a short or long distance. But at the end of your life, no matter how full your wanderings and days have been, you must learn what everybody eventually learns […] No man has ever lived more than one life, which he himself as choosen and for the most part lived alone.

I believe that memories are the only treasure that humans can ever hope of owning forever.

We had wasted love, which is the most unforgettable waste of all. Time and love are the only two things in the world that one can’t buy, only spend.

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Filed under Books, History

10 Small Things that made Big Impact… Part 2

This is the second entry to a remarkable list of 10 innovations, laws and inventions that changed everyday living forever.

They appear in order of importance, with 1 being the most influential.

7th Place: All of King Solomon’s riches in your wallet

No wonder Casanova always got what he wanted

Forget long journeys, forget armored caravans and fleets. With the invention of the credit card in 1920’s man made business transactions a whole lot faster and easier. Long ago, being rich almost always meant that you had to protect your own gold (using a vault) and transporting was always a “heavy problem” since gold weights alot. Transporting money was always a delicate process that usually involved some losses due to variety of factors (pirates, raiders, incompentence)

Then came paper money, cash checks – these new innovations helped lighten the load of one’s money, but each had their own flaws. Large quantities of paper money still take up some space (suitcase, a trunk) and cash checks are not the most realiable form of payment due to fraud.

Thank God, then came the credit card. Which allows the user the ability to carry a fortune of money in their pocket and buy anything from anywhere through the internet. Then again, as far as safety is concerned, no paying method in history has ever been 100% burglar-proof.

Pirates stole gold.

Bandits stole money.

Identity thieves steal credit cards.

6th Place: Nature as a Commodity

Where did all the green go?

Yeah… were did all the green go?

Is the first question a New York citizen from 1700’s would ask. New York City stands on what used to be a forest area spanning the island of Manhattan and all it’s sorroundings, but now that forest is no more. Thankfully, Central Park stands as a monument of the importance Nature still has in our concrete society.

I guess you can say… human beings have always taken nature for granted. Our ancestors grew up around it, labored it and learned from it. They would spend countless afternoons marvelling at the horizon and wondering what life had in store for them. All that reflection, amusement and joy that nature brought them and still bring us.

It’s not until you lose something that you truly miss it. Well, we are losing nature. It’s happening all around us and sadly there isn’t much we can do to stop it. Just by sitting down and watching a sunset, the stars, or the beach one can’t stop marvelling at the beauty of it. We come from nature… so why are we parting ways? Why are we being unnatural?

Besides oxygen and food, Nature provides us mental tranquility and a mystical sense of wonder. Since nature used to be so abundant, all humans used to get these benefits and much more for free. But we are in the 21th century, now many of us live in cities or suburds. We live our own hectic civilized lives. Even if we have nature at our disposal, we don’t take the time to enjoy it.

Thus, nature has become a commodity that only those with money…. or time can enjoy.

5th Place: Windows of Past Times

Only takes one second with a Canon

What is a photograph if not a window of a past time. A moment in time and space visually recorded for future generation to observe.

Photographs have changed art. The “realistic” branch of art that once focused on making drawings as realistic as possible has greatly dwindled. Family portraits take a flash and couple seconds to create, not an artist and several months. Paintings used to be only accesible to those who were wealthy and could only be made by those who had artistics skills. Now everybody owns hundreds of pictures, and can take as many pictures as their 60GB camera allows them to.

Photographs have changed history, take Vietnam for example. A couple of raw photographs were powerful enough to turn a whole country agaisn’t the decision’s of its own goverment. Who could have expected that a couple glimpses into a foreign land could spark such massive protest and civil unrest.

Photographs have also changed human behavior. From those who always carry a camera and are constantly taking pictures, those who avoid “picture time”, those who need to be in every picture…. but most importantly those who are constantly looking at pictures. What else does one do on Facebook? Look at pictures.

The countdown continues next week Thursday, 26 of August.

Till then… have a pleasant evening!!

Manuel
baezfoto.com
mbaez15@gmail.com
70.45.12.10

I was blown away by the movie Avatar! Specially all the scenes in that took place in the forest. I was mesmerized by the scenery and all the creatures. It made me wish I could live there. The funny thing is we do! Our planet earth is not so different. Where do you think all the inspiration for that movie came from? We just take it for granted.
I love to go diving every time I get the chance. Last time I realized that live in the coral reefs beats by far what I saw on that movie. Our world is full of wonders, we just have to discover them!

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Filed under Culture, History