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Lunar New Year prayers with the masses for 2012 January 19, 2012

Posted by @Karen_Fu in change, Chinese New Year, faith, human quality, Singapore.
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Went to ‘The Jade Buddha Exhibition’ at Ngee Ann city and praying with others for universal harmony despite I knew very little of formal Buddhism as far as mantras were concerned. But I learn from visuals and see how things around me operate in a highly orderally manner that often always teach me precious lessons, which words cannot portray fully. The event was a very meaningful one for the forthcoming year.

I know very little about chants and by no means a Buddhist. But I thought I would just happily join in with the thousands who were there to sponsor the jade Buddhas and offerings. I followed the crowd, and the written chants pasted near the deities, passing from one ritual to another. Actually I didn’t quite know if I did it correctly but I enjoyed the process of getting my palms together, and made a few wishes. I even wondered if the deities understood me.— It wasn’t sanskrit, it was certainly not tamil, it was in mandarin with bits of English because there wasn’t a perfect translation for that few words. Couldn’t do them in German or even with a smattering of French, but it was more of an instinctive communicative and intuitive way of getting around language barrier to just use pure common sense in my modest prayers. I thought it should come from the heart. So I just did what I understood.

As I was offering my humble pack of rice, I prayed with the thousands for a peaceful and prosperous year of the dragon. The packs of rice will then be given to needy homes in the country. Then I started to ponder why so many people needed the staple when there are many who waste their food. Surely the terribly rich and the very poor are more than miles apart and that itself could set another separate topic about equality in wealth.

The thousands of bags of rice came in within hours and all the Jade statues were fully sponsored into the tens of thousands of dollars meant to go the construction of The Great Stupa of Universal Compassion in Melbourne, Australia.

The whole ceremony was about giving, sharing and remembering what others have sacrificed for us. The late Teresa Hsu was a live example of courage whenever Buddism came to place.

Teresa Hsu DTC

An Idol who forgot how much she had given.

She left the human world without her ashes collected was an act itself that showed her faith and definite courage. In Buddhist rites, bones are to be collected and kept properly. But she didn’t allow even that last rite to be done.

She feared nothing but I still am not fully recovered from the fact she left her ashes uncollected. It was a very unusual thing to do though it was a very courageous act on its own. It could be deem to be almost petrifying to think the remains were ‘unwanted’ especially when she was a pure real 1100% Buddhist. I wouldn’t hesitate to say she was willing to give her all at death to save people. Since she couldn’t, her last words were to tell people not to spend a minute of peoples’ lives to collect her remains. A drastic contrast to what many would have fought for their rights of every minute kind.

The remains of the day would be a life lesson learnt that she sacrificed for sentimental beings all big and small, both great and ungreat. That could even include the despicable. She didn’t mind what she was going to have or not going to have, she simply gave all. I thought she should have given some bit to her own when I saw how some people could eat up others alive for their own merit. In a material world where fame and fortune is power, such people like her are rare gems.

A leader of this might could instantly solve all problems but realistically speaking, few will do it in the kind of world we are now living in. On the positive front, those who did anything less than sincerity and honesty always pay in due course, either via the revenge of similar beings who were being mistreated or via nature through health woes. They will pay. And the price will be hefty. The crazy thing is that these people don’t even know they are paying for it though they know they are suffering from it.

On a grey scale of 10, we must aim to purify the partial hues and in the same time improving ourselves. 2012 will spell a year of transition when more people will realize why and how we have the economic woes of inflation, unemployment, physical pollution and metaphysical pollution all snowballed into a gigantic mix of chaos.Health problems that were used to be for the aged now exist in young people. The levels of mental psychological disorder increases due to rampant bullying and being bullied. Diseases arise from animals that we shouldn’t eat. Plants get contaminated because of the selfish desire to expand urban areas , and worse still, to use name of sustainability to promote their goods when they do not really mean anything healthy in the real sense. The power then will be laid in the masses of the common people to control what they want to change.

Thankfully there are three things that gives us hope with the freedom to voice. Consumer sovereignty, democracy of the people and the sheer natural law of sustainability do not allow the ills to propagate.

For the many who think the bad still get their reward, observe carefully that they live with worry, anger and fear behind the ill gained status. You hardly see them smile. Nor do you see them simple minded, which gives the absolute clarity of thought for peaceful living.

So in the real sense the new year is a year for the commoners. Those who fail to listen to these voices will flop miserably. And it is high tide that 2012 will belong to all who are kind and industrious.

Happy Lunar New Year from the equator. 🙂

Karen Fu

Steve Jobs 1955-2011 – belated eulogy on life design January 4, 2012

Posted by @Karen_Fu in change, life challenges, real power.
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He was more than able to design his products and services. We all know his power to transform the world in the way we live and the way we interact with one another in life. But he failed to design his own life. This video, which I got it via Majid on facebook, was to me a reminder of how we should live our lives.

The world is what and how you view and make it. Steve Jobs is  a solid lesson for us. At the same time, his life told us to stay put and spare time for our loved ones because it doesn’t pay to put 110% in your career all the time. To me, he paid his life like 1100% on his career that was ultimately took his life away. He is a legend. We admire for his dedication for the Mac, iPads, iPhones, iPods and his staunch determination to be the forefront of technology.  But he could have spared some bit more time for his wife, his kids and simply for himself.

To me, that’s tragedy, though it didn’t come in as any kind of surprise for the way he worked was going to shorten his life.

When I read the news on twitter last October, I was shocked though I was somewhat expecting his death due to the way he devoted his life at work. It was a very sad moment for a genius had gone. Surely his sense for words for his rivals are very different from his tone for the masses. I guess that is the way to survive in the real world, for that I don’t exactly seem to fully understand why we should be at loggerheads so many times.

Then again, this wasn’t the ordinary person by any means. He is a lengendary innovator, someone who had put his soul into his work and had risen from a disadvantaged class to the top. My first encounter with Apple was not a pleasant one. As a Singaporean, I would have first defend a local product before a foreign one. But he made me stand up straight before his products that shine through nothing short of exemplary.

My first purchase was a 3rd Generation iPod touch. I had bought it because I found my PDA was not working properly and I wanted something that had a touch screen. I lost it after about 2 years’ of use. At that point of time, I realised how much my iPod touch has twinned into my life. The schedules and notes I’ve made and the little ditty stuff that I put into my iPod. It was literary my life twinned into it. I was upset. I do not agree that much with the battery life as being a green technology as it is way too short-lived especially for the iPhone. But I do agree with the material use and all. The software architecture is brilliant and so is the concept of apps in his definition. I think what really hit me hard was that I see  him as a hard fighter. I do not think that being born to an unwed couple and then raised by adopted parents was a pleasant process. The growing pains and struggle must have been there at some point. To start an enterprise and to have left it due to business politics is another. Certainly with his tough determination, he returned and knocked all the walls down to build what Apple is today. I have also noted the kind of people he hires, of whom many have modest upbringing but are outstanding in their own merit. Innovativeness can only come from minds that are big and receptive, and tougher than all the obstacles in the universe that is out there; with the keen eye for detail and an industrious mind that works for as long as your breath takes you.

Steve Jobs has done it to his last breath. That is the kind of character that I admire. I think perhaps in the business world, you’ve got to be aggressive because you’ve got an array of different people out there to handle and get things done. However, as far as innovation goes, this guy has huge lessons we all need taking in: ‘You need to learn how to fight and to suffer. Together with your wits, humour and determintation; and a creative gift of wonder before you can shine’.  I salute Steve Jobs for all that —- A legendary Innovator, A Voice for Change.

May he rest in peace and that his legend continues. — Karen Fu

2011 in review – my second report card off from WordPress January 2, 2012

Posted by @Karen_Fu in New Year, wordpress report card.
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The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2011 annual report for this blog.

Click here to see the complete report.