Monday, July 28, 2014

Choking under Pressure

Sunday Morning Sermon - July 27 2014

Choking under pressure is defined as performance decrements under circumstances that increase the importance of good or improved performance. Leaders of corporations, governments, and individuals typically make decisions with the expectations that the outcome will be beneficial. However, when faced with a crisis there is always the possibility of knee jerk reactions surfacing and thereby making the situation even worse. Panic, is one of the factors that usually initiates the process of chaotic decision making. Delegation, action, and a conformity to the prevalent contingency plans is the next step that requires implementation under a well controlled and managed mindset.

While the decision maker has in mind the immediate need for correct action to alleviate the issues being faced, he also has the long term repercussions on how his decisions and actions will be seen and critiqued to worry about.

In any emergency situation it is always the victims on the ground who need the first response in order to take them out of danger into a safety zone after which the next steps will follow. Human life is the highest priority in this regard. Property, equipment, data protection and prevention of further disaster to the location and environment comes next.

Contingency plans, based on risk management exercises, need to be effectively executed by knowledgeable and trained staff under the strict control of a predefined marshall for such situations.

Fire, flooding, earthquakes, rocket attacks, crashes, etc are the common forms of emergency situations encountered by large groups of people across the globe.

A key factor in managing such situations is to keep ones cool well above the panic levels that usually can cause total havoc if not under control as quickly as possible.

Risk Management is a vital cog in any form of national, business and even domestic environment. People need to understand the meaning of risk and the  basic steps that must be in place to mitigate them whenever encountered.

Many have been the situations when life has been lost, property destroyed, and hardship caused due to the lack of professionally developed and established contingency plans.

Its always safe to 
be prepared
 as the
​ boy​
 scouts would say.


Thursday, July 10, 2014


sent in by email by SS

What Is Solitude?

Loneliness is marked by a sense of isolation. Solitude, on the other hand, is a state of being alone without being lonely and can lead to self-awareness.

By Hara Estroff Marano, published on July 01, 2003 - last reviewed on November 21, 2013

As the world spins faster and faster—or maybe it just seems that way when an email can travel around the world in fractions of a second—we mortals need a variety of ways to cope with the resulting pressures. We need to maintain some semblance of balance and some sense that we are steering the ship of our life.
Otherwise we feel overloaded, overreact to minor annoyances and feel like we can never catch up. As far as I'm concerned, one of the best ways is by seeking, and enjoying, solitude.

That said, there is an important distinction to be established right off the bat. There is a world of difference between solitude and loneliness, though the two terms are often used interchangeably.
From the outside, solitude and loneliness look a lot alike. Both are characterized by solitariness. But all resemblance ends at the surface.

Loneliness is a negative state, marked by a sense of isolation. One feels that something is missing. It is possible to be with people and still feel lonely—perhaps the most bitter form of loneliness.

Solitude is the state of being alone without being lonely. It is a positive and constructive state of engagement with oneself. Solitude is desirable, a state of being alone where you provide yourself wonderful and sufficient company.

Solitude is a time that can be used for reflection, inner searching or growth or enjoyment of some kind. Deep reading requires solitude, so does experiencing the beauty of nature. Thinking and creativity usually do too.

Solitude suggests peacefulness stemming from a state of inner richness. It is a means of enjoying the quiet and whatever it brings that is satisfying and from which we draw sustenance. It is something we cultivate. Solitude is refreshing; an opportunity to renew ourselves. In other words, it replenishes us.

Loneliness is harsh, punishment, a deficiency state, a state of discontent marked by a sense of estrangement, an awareness of excess aloneness.

Solitude is something you choose. Loneliness is imposed on you by others.

We all need periods of solitude, although temperamentally we probably differ in the amount of solitude we need. Some solitude is essential; It gives us time to explore and know ourselves. It is the necessary counterpoint to intimacy, what allows us to have a self worthy of sharing. Solitude gives us a chance to regain perspective. It renews us for the challenges of life. It allows us to get (back) into the position of driving our own lives, rather than having them run by schedules and demands from without.

Solitude restores body and mind. Lonelinesss depletes them.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Peace begins in the human mind

Sunday Morning Sermon July 6 2014

Peace Begins in the Human Mind

"Individuals have international duties which transcend the national obligations of obedience. Therefore, (individual citizens) have the duty to prevent crimes against peace and humanity from occurring."
~ Nuremberg War Crime Tribunal, 1950

The concept of a “golden rule” in which we do to others only what we would want others to do to us, can be found in one form or another as far back as the civilizations of ancient China, Babylon, Egypt, Greece, and Rome. It has been called an “ethic of reciprocity,” and can be found in all cultures, and in all world religions as well as in the philosophies of humanists and existentialists. It is, in short, an ethical code that most all of humanity can agree on. 

Why then do we find ourselves here in the 21st century inhabiting a world that is dangerously polarized, with a growing imbalance of power and wealth among the ever-increasing number of people on the Earth, with continuing wars that ravage populations and waste resources, with massive genocide and terrorist atrocities that endanger us all? 

How is it that we find humankind facing the terrifying possibility of environmental catastrophe? These questions confront us with a greater urgency than ever, and it is these questions that have led us to the human mind and the human thought process — the great possibilities of compassion that lie within each human being —  to identify a solution.
​Unless we put our minds to good use and make decisions and conclusions using common sense and reality this plamet of ours will never have the peace it deserves.