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OUR LIMITED TIME ON EARTH

February 17, 2020

Most of us tend to think of time as linear, absolute and constantly “running out” – but is that really true? And how can we change our perceptions to feel better about its passing? While becoming 66 already, I use think about my age. Yes, it's only a number. I know.  “Time” is the most frequently used noun in the English language. We all know what it feels like as time passes. Our present becomes the past as soon as it’s happened; today soon turns into yesterday. If you live in a temperate climate, each year you see the seasons come and go. And as we reach adulthood and beyond, we become increasingly aware of the years flashing by.   While keep on thinking about age and its consequences, I came along with Claudia Hammond, author of Time Warped: Unlocking The Secrets Of Time Perception. She wrote that although neuro-scientists have been unable to locate a single clock in brain that is responsible for detecting time passing, humans are surprisingly good at it. If someone tells us they’re arriving in five minutes, we have a rough idea of when to start to look out for them. We have a sense of the weeks and months passing by. As a result, most of us would say that how time functions is fairly obvious: it passes, at a consistent and measurable rate, in a specific direction – from past to future. Of course, the human perspective of time may not be exclusively biological, but rather shaped by our culture and era. The Amondawa tribe in the Amazon, for example, has no word for “time” – which some say means they don’t have a notion of time as a framework in which events occur. (There are debates over whether this is purely a linguistic argument, or whether they really do perceive time differently.) Meanwhile, it’s hard to know with scientific precision how people conceived of time in the past, as experiments in time perception have only been conducted for the last 150 years. Physics tells a different story. However much time feels like something that flows in one direction, some scientists beg to differ. In the last century, my very favored Albert Einstein’s discoveries exploded our concepts of time. He showed us that time is created by things; it wasn’t there waiting for those things to act within it. He demonstrated that time is relative, moving more slowly if an object is moving fast. Events don’t happen in a set order. There isn’t a single universal “now”, in the sense that Newtonian physics would have it. It is true that many events in the Universe can be put into sequential order – but time is not always segmented neatly into the past, the present and the future. Some physical equations work in either direction. Here, I strongly agree with Claudia Hammond. One aspect of time perception many of us share is how we think of our own past: as a kind of giant video library, an archive we can dip into to retrieve records of events in our lives. But psychologists have demonstrated that autobiographical memory is not like that at all. Most of us forget far more than we remember, sometimes forgetting events happened at all, despite others’ insistence that we were there. On occasion even the reminder does nothing to jog our memories. Several years ago, I started writing my biography. With Beethoven under palms. The great German composer and me under palms. Wow.  Meanwhile, I found out: as we lay down memories, we alter them to make sense of what’s happened. Every time we recall a memory, we reconstruct the events in our mind and even change them to fit in with any new information that might have come to light. And it’s much easier than you might think to convince people that they have had experiences which never happened. The psychologist Elisabeth Loftus has done decades of research on this, persuading people they remember kissing a giant green frog or that they once met Bugs Bunny in Disneyland (as he’s a Warner Bros character, so this can’t have happened). Even recounting an anecdote to our friends can mean our memory of that story goes back into the library slightly altered. So we shouldn’t curse our memories when they let us down. They’re made to be changeable, in order that we can take millions of fragments of memories from different times of our lives and recombine them to give us endless imaginative possibilities for the future. Thank you very much Claudia Hammond. I changed my opinion when it comes to time. My limited time on earth. +++ Email: doringklaus@gmail.com or follow me in Facebook, Linkedin or Twitter or visit my www.germanexpatinthephilippines.blogspot.com or www.klausdoringsclassicalmusic.blogspot.com .

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CAN YOU STILL ...

February 17, 2020

... ROAR WITH LAUGHTER? "If I only knew how!" A friend of mine contacted me yesterday after watching the news and read his daily paper. Another said, "This is hardly the time to do so." Understandable, if I consider his very personal situation. Anyway, it seems we have no more time and no reason for laughter. That can wait until tomorrow, or better until the day after tomorrow. Anticipation is better... . Sure, the today's new really don't allow us even to smile... . But keep in mind: our enemies laugh up their sleeves, and most of the time we miss to recognize the fortune still smiling at us. But hold on: he who laughs last laughs longest. Remember? American neurologist Henri Rubenstein says, laughter lowers high blood pressure while aiding digestion and fostering sleep. Well, give me even a simple smile and believe in what  experts say: "Good humor can help the gravely or terminally ill to hear their ordeal". Of course, if we look around us these days, we might really don't roar with laughter or split our sides laughing. Or even more then this! Have you heard about the incident at the Danish Imperial Theater in Copenhagen/Denmark sometime during the 1980's, when a spectator dropped dead of heart attack while watching the movie "A Fish Called Wanda" starring John Cheese of my favorite Great Britain's Monty Python Comedy Team? Sure, a heart attack is indeed not funny, and honestly, I still love to watch this movie on VHS. Well, even if we think we don't have reasons to laugh,we should try to express mirth spontaneously, and we should try to be merry or gay. We still have reasons to start with the softest form of audible laughter - the vocalized smile. This is what I learned and experienced from the first moment on while travelling in Asia since 1978, and being an expat living in the Philippines since 1999 for good. Keep smiling - even you are overloaded with huge problems. Experts also say,  good humor works because it helps people feel easier in mind. The French psychotherapist Sylvie Tenenbaum stressed, that, in her patients, laughter often signals the dawning of a wholesome awakening to reality. Gallow humor might be dubious in the eyes of others. But try to sing out loud, try to cry, but try to laugh! As a devote Christian,  I do love reading the bible. Ecclessiastes 3:1-4 say: "There is a time for everything ... a time to be born and a time to die ,,, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh!" Worth to think about it - even in times like now! +++ Email: doringklaus@gmail.com or follow me in Facebook, Linkedin or Twitter or visit my www.germanexpatinthephilippines.blogspot.com or www.klausdoringsclassicalmusic.blogspot.com .

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WEARING MASKS

February 15, 2020

The present Virus illness keeps each one of us in a  panic mood. Very understandable while following innumerable news at the moment 24/7. But nowadays, wearing masks has another reason ... .  Before Ash Wednesday, one can experience in my home country Germany people wearing masks of faces like animals, horrible human faces or the devil. Why all these masquerades? Actors and actresses on stage or in movies wear also masks. They pretend to be what they are not. They play a role. Hence, in Greek they are called "hypocrites". In our life, we always wear masks. Please think about.  You  and me will understand, that we do not want to show to people our real  selves because of the fear of rejection or displeasure of other people. In society, they call it public relation. Men and women would go out smiling and greeting politely other people with a set of purpose: to win them to their business or organization. But the more important point is: should we always wear masks in our daily life? Can we not put these masks aside and be our true selves? Should we be always afraid to show to people in our surroundings what we are before God, who sees everything? Maybe we could look back on what William Congreve (1670-1729) wrote in his "Preface to Dryden": 'No mask like open truth to cover lies as to go naked is the best disguise'. But let's remember, even Jesus Christ, the Son of God, wore the mask of being human. "And the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us!" Later, people thought he was a lawbreaker, an impostor, claiming to be God, a seducer of the people. "I have hidden my face from them and they did not recognize me!" Let's try to put our masks aside from time to time, especially, if we are together people we can trust. On the other side, today's global illnesses shows us different ways of how to move on. +++ Email: doringklaus@gmail.com or follow me in Facebook, Linkedin or Twitter or visit www.germanexpatinthephilippines.blogspot.com or www.klausdoringsclassicalmusic.blogspot.com .

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Equal Access hosts youth peace summit in Cag. de Oro

February 3, 2020

            Cagayan de Oro-Over 500 peace influencers all over the country  gathered here last Thursday that culminates on Saturday (February 1) for a Peace Summit dubbed as: Our Mindanao Peace Summit 2020 with the theme, “Turning the Loop: Bridging Generations of Peace Influencers”.             The three-day summit was organized by Equal Access International Philippines (EAI-Ph) that offers an opportunity to discuss the role of collaboration, communication, and coordination to push for sustainable peace and co-create a shared vision of a better Mindanao.                 Over 20  speakers across 8 summit events lead in discussions across 3 unifying themes: transforming violent extremism, youth empowerment, and positive alternative messaging,said EAI-Ph Country Director Salic Sharief Jr in an interview.               Also to discuss the impact of violent extremism in Mindanao and share working practices on how best to transform this growing concern, the summit will bring in key experts, development practitioners, and peace influencers through the Honest Conversation of peace forum and Messaging Hub Convergence,she added.                  Also tapping into the creativity of young people to help provide solutions to concerns in their community, the summit  also featured innovative peace projects from the inaugural batch of Peace Promotion Fellows; convene the "PNP-Student Action Force to create the first ever Mindanao-wide General Assembly"; and award the very first "Olive Peace Prize" to one outstanding program alumnus for their exemplary efforts in peace-building in the culminating day.                  Moreover, recognizing the power of positive alternative messages to promote peace and development, the summit brings in 5 hard-skill experts in storytelling for the Master Classes; a Panel Discussion that  brings forward innovative solutions to address challenges on youth, women, and good governance; and a series of Peace Contests for junior and senior high school students and the public where they produce essays, speeches, and music videos about peace.                  The Summit 2020 will conclude with the reading of the manifesto created by peacebuilders and peace actors in the region to signify the Mindanao Declaration of Peace, Sharief concluded.

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Gil Macaibay joins Apple Tree Resort’s pre-loved sale

February 3, 2020

              NORTHERN Mindanao’s prince of haute couture Gil Macaibay III joined the pre-loved sale for Taal held at Apple Tree Resort and Hotel over the weekend.                     Macaibay said he is happy that his collections will benefit some of the 6,000 families displaced the sudden eruption of Taal Volcano in the past weeks.     It can be learned that Macaibay is one of the leading apparel designers in this part of the country and has amassed recognitions in various fashion shows abroad.     The rummage sale for Taal was an initiative of Apple Tree Resort and Hotel as part of its social responsibility efforts while they were celebrating their 12th anniversary last February 1.                              According to manager Bjanesha Emphasis, it is ATRH’s way of giving back to the community for constantly patronizing their establishment.     Emphasis said to expect more outreaches in the future even as she revealed that each month, Apple Tree Resort and Hotel will erect a themed display at its lobby catering to local products. This is indeed another thing to look forward to at ATRH which is located by the beachside in scenic Opol, Misamis Oriental.

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PayMaya firms up most rewarding wallet with Balikbayad campaign

February 3, 2020

       New ‘BalikBayad’ campaign highlights perks and rewards going cashless Teen Royalties Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla push more rewarding payment experience to Filipinos nationwide       Digital financial services leader PayMaya intensifies its campaign to encourage more Filipinos to embrace the cashless lifestyle through the PayMaya app, firming up its leadership as the country’s most rewarding mobile wallet today.         Following the success of its Don’t Pay Cash. PayMaya! campaign in 2019, PayMaya has launched its BalikBayad campaign follow-up initiative featuring top young actors Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla, which highlights the many cashback that users can get whenever they pay with PayMaya.            “The response to our Don’t Pay Cash. PayMaya! campaign last year has been overwhelming, and we’re glad that more Filipinos are discovering how easy, convenient, and ‘joyful’ it is to pay using PayMaya. As we work to bring even more features and services to PayMaya we’re excited to introduce the most rewarding mobile wallet in the Philippines today to even more users nationwide with the BalikBayad (a creative transliteration of “cashback”)  campaign,” said Mark Jason Dee, Head of Growth and Marketing of PayMaya.             In February alone, PayMaya users can get as much as P6,000 in cashback when they participate in the mobile wallet’s various promos for bills payment, buying load, paying for goods and services via QR, online shopping, and sending money, among many others.             PayMaya has also expanded the list of merchants and establishments under its PayMaya Preferred program, which gives additional cashback to users who scan to pay with PayMaya QR on top of the regular cashback that they usually receive.              Among these new partners are Landers Superstore, Mercury Drug, KFC, Robinson’s Department Store, Total Alabang and Valenzuela, and Toys ‘R Us.           These cashback help more Filipinos easily learn and experience the cashless lifestyle with PayMaya, which can help the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) attain its goal of increasing the share of digital transactions in the country up to 30% by the end of 2020. Bringing back time and convenience              But aside from getting monetary rewards in the form of cashback , users are also able to make more time and experience greater convenience when they use PayMaya.  With PayMaya’s virtual card, for example, users can instantly gain access to a payment card which they can easily use for online shopping and other digital payments for a faster, more efficient payment experience.              PayMaya also recently introduced the ability to transfer money from users’ PayMaya account to other bank accounts, eliminating the need to physically wait in line at banks. “PayMaya users can definitely look forward to even more features and services that will give them more convenient ways to pay as well as awesome rewards in the months to come,” Dee added.          Instant Rewards Revel in a more rewarding cashless lifestyle by downloading the PayMaya app for FREE on Google Play or App Store and use the code PAYMAYAKATHNIEL to get a welcome reward. Sign up for an account today so you can take advantage of PayMaya’s great deals, promos and offers. To know more about the BalikBayad campaign and how you can get all of these exciting perks from PayMaya, visit www.paymaya.com/balikbayad or follow @PayMayaOfficial on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.            PayMaya is the only financial technology company in the country that offers end-to-end payment solutions with the widest on-ground branch network. It is the first to give millions of Filipinos an e-wallet that allows them to pay cashless transactions at any time of the day, anywhere in the world, and from any device.

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