Social Media Fast – How It Started

Disclaimer –

The following is based on personal experience and personal observation of trends. While some of notes at times will be supported by data or some research, it is personal and will not apply to all. Cultural factors and beliefs my make this experience irrelevant or odd. If you are reading keep that in mind.

Social Media Fast – How It Started

            I started this blog 2011 and it has been dead before it was even alive. The reason for that is because I started sensing other motives to the blog other than just spreading the word. While this sense was way less than my original reason for it, I became very aware of it and that helped me through all that you will be reading over the next period reading the notes about this fast.

This is not going to be a “ 5 Steps Towards Healthy Social Media Life”, “10 Things to Do Have Social Media Balance”, or “How to Unplug” type of articles or reads. If you continue and follow reading these notes you will notice that I find these reads are part of the problem we face. Instant fixes do NOT work. We got so used to instant gratification that we now expect the knowledge for growth to be summed up in ten bullet items. Making it the expectation for anyone that want to contribute with information, this results in everyone thinking that he/she is an expert on the topic because those 5 or 10 steps that can be followed. This instills the urge the follow all these trends on social media because one will feel that he/she is an expert in many topics just by reading those posts/articles. I don’t want to go on tangents because I will touch on each of my observations in details when time comes. I don’t have a particular plan on how I will lay out my notes. So bear with me and be part of this process as it shapes as you might be a part of shaping it ISA.

Here we go! First:

Let me start by this. You do NOT need social media to survive as a social species. You do NOT need over 300 personal connections to be connected to the world.   While as a human being your neurological advances allows you to do so, you do not need these connections all at once everyday to survive or add value to your life.

I have discovered that the first step to understanding people is to understand self. To be completely in-tune with self is to be able to identify flaws so well to a point when you know exactly the purpose of your actions and what it serves. Sounds easy right! No, most people will be in denial and will find a 100 reasons for actions that serves nothing of true value (when it comes to ideal standards) and those same actions will contribute to the growth of same flaw. One will be in denial, even with self, and will try to find those beautiful excuses with righteous intentions. They will sound great to self and others. One will walk out of a situation thinking he/she is a saint after making the case, especially to self.

Well, this is not the case if you want to truly discover the reason to your additive pattern to social media. Let’s get real please.

What I did! Two full weeks of just observing people post on social media:

That was about 6 years ago (one may need more than that to discover and make conclusions) Never posted back. Did not reply to anything. Just forced myself to be silent and sometimes literally held my fist really tight not to comment. Notice that you need to watch to notice your active patterns that you can’t act upon in this period.

You may notice this:

  1. I have the tendency to post anything and everything I come across.
  2. I have the tendency to post anything that looks controversial.
  3. I have the tendency to post things based on the title without reading the whole piece.
  4. I have the tendency to post what seems like breaking news (notice your source).
  5. I have the tendency to post articles from a particular discipline.
  6. I have the tendency to post what is trendy.
  7. I have the tendency to like or comment more than post or vise versa.

For two weeks, or more, continue being active, not interactive. Notice the pattern of what you would’ve done if you were interactive. Even if you are one that puts thoughts on your post or repost prior to the action, notice your thought patterns. What are the questions that I usually think of before your cautions actions to be interactive? How are your questions or actions related to other people’s thought of you? Keep track of it. Keep notice if you need to.

I will post my notes and my conclusions next ISA.

Stress we face as children stays with us

Very nice article.

“The stress pathway is developing during childhood. The stress system needs time to grow and become fully functional. The same goes for the reward system, the pleasure pathway which responds to high-fat, high-sugar foods. So you’re right, we are one of the most adaptive animals, but we also take a long time to develop and it is during that period of development when we want to protect our children. And unfortunately that is eroding, in terms of children who have to live with all kinds of adversity.”

http://thechart.blogs.cnn.com/2011/12/07/stress-we-face-as-children-stays-with-us/?hpt=he_t5

Props to Dr. Oz

Despite the questioning and attack on Dr. Mehmet Oz research findings that apple juice have elevated level of arsenic back in September 2011, he remained solid to his statement and urged more research from the FDA to investigate further.

Dr. Richar Besser questions Dr. Oz on ABC

Today the FDA made a statement that:

“…. By the same token, a small percentage of samples contain elevated levels of arsenic. In response, FDA has expanded our surveillance activities and is collecting additional data to help determine if a guidance level can be established that will reduce consumer’s exposure to arsenic in apple juice…. ”

FDA Full Statement

Though the FDA still finds that most of the apple juice available the US has safe levels of arsenic I find this event a step forward in the arena of public interest and safety.  Thanks to Dr. Mehmet Oz and many individuals like him that can stand strong.  I hope him an many others will continue and be able to continue to make a change.

See Full Story Here

 

Time For You to Learn About Monsanto!

I’ve tried to write about Monsanto for a while, but I haven’t had the time with the kids crazy summer schedule and celebrating Ramadan.  My concern is growing more by the day and here is why:

For some reason I thought that many people knew about Monsanto and their food revolution in the making..  It turns out that many don’t.  Monsanto was established 1901 and one of well know products is “Roundup” a pesticide that you can find in any gardening sections in many stores.   Now they are famous for  biotech seeds or as widely known Genetically Modified Organism “GMO”.  Those biotech seeds are Roundup Ready, meaning that they don’t need to be sprayed anymore they just kill weeds/insects on their own.  Monsanto, DuPont, and Syngenta (another 2 major GMO producers) joined own 47% percent of the global seed market with Monsanto alone controlling 90% of that.  Monsanto controls 80% corn seed supplies and 93% of soybean in the US.  I’m sure you know what that means … 80% of corn and 93% of soybean in the US is GMO.   That is not the only threat! This year 2011 Monsanto was granted permission to self regulate, don’t ask me how is this possible, it is beyond me to explain. Still that is not the only threat yet! GMO food doesn’t have to be labeled anymore. Wait it gets better, after the FDA approved that Alfalfa doesn’t need to be labeled as GMO now the possibilities of contaminating organic farms with Alfalfa pollen are more than certain.   Whole foods already admitted that its organics contains GMO. All this happened under the Obama administration, which is disappointing.

Monstano used to claim on their website that they provide healthier alternative for food and preserves nature, the air, the rivers.   They were attacked by many environmental activists until they changed what they do on their website to something like we help farmers produce food with fewer resource and pesticides.  I remember very well my shock when I first learned that almost all US potatoes are GM.  Potatoes receive genes from bacteria that would kill insecticides making it independent and freaky enough not to need any pesticide.  Despite the fact the insecticides are a threat to food but they have a role in balancing nature.

Though the effect of GMO on who consumes it is not clearly known yet but many scientists in any related fields assures its danger and negativity.  What worries others and me the most is – Who would be able to stop these fast growing empires like Monsanto when the danger is clear? They are monopolizing the seeds industry and GM seeds will become the only option for farmers at one point.  Is altering nature that earth managed to balance from the beginning of time clear and unavoidable? How would nature balance itself again in the case we alter its nature?

I can go on and on about this, but to stick to the scheme of this blog “short and to the point” hoping that I was able highlight the important facts and links that would give some awareness of the growing GMO Empire.

Take Action “Millions Against Monsanto” on World Food Day

On the Debt Ceiling Crisis

The American Dream fathered the past generations.  The current generation is just trying to keep it alive.  If we don’t find the means and tools to keep it alive it will be dead by the time our kids are ready embark adulthood.  While many still have glimpses of the American Dream we still see failed politics, systems, and injustices pulling it down to its near death.

http://www.cnn.com/2011/POLITICS/07/12/debt.talks/index.html?hpt=hp_t1

My Great Meat Dilemma

As a Muslim I celebrate Eid Al Adha every year.  I remember going with my Uncle to buy the sheep and feeding it days before it was time for it to be slaughtered.  The sheep was to be slaughtered, cut, and divided amongst the poor, relative, and my Uncle’s household.  I remember one Eid when my father helped slaughter it and was there, for what seemed to me like hours, skinning it as if he was performing surgery.  I was told that the sheep knew and sensed its near end.  The first time I saw this happened I looked at its eyes, before I shut mine, and I felt its pain and it seemed to me as if it was almost tearing.  This is something I witnessed every year as a child, maybe starting at 8 years of age till I was 14.  Sharing this experience with some of my friends who were born and raised in the US as if I’m sharing a horror scene from SAW. I get the “Oh NO!! My God and you eat it after that” and yes, I did eat it after that and how do you think your meat gets on your table.  I can’t help but notice that people today are not interested with what goes on behind the scenes as long as you have a good clean-cut picture.

The issue of a young person witnessing such an act is disturbing to many.  However, I see a distinctive view to it.  I find it to be a moral guide to true appreciation to one of many blessings we are granted as humans.  The fact that we are allowed to slaughter animals to feed ourselves makes me not only realized that great blessing but my role and responsibility as a human allowed to do so.   God granted us the right to slaughter certain animals to feed our families and ourselves.  Now do we, supposedly the civilized creatures, deserve that right?  Human have taken this granted right way too far.  Learning how those animals are treated and handled troubles me intensely.    I don’t know what happened to the human’s heart to treat a poor defenseless animal with such cruelty and brutality.  That is not the only thing that troubles me.  As far as human’s history it is full of such cruelty but the great trouble lays within the increasing number of such action and the how we are becoming desensitize to it.

People hear and read about the inhuman way those animals are treated but still go to the market and buy the meat.  Hearing is not like seeing and that brings me to my first story where I witness an animal slaughter and how it makes me realized the importance of having rules to treating those animals, slaughtering, handling, cooking, and even eating it.  Thanks to the movie industry and the great hard-working people in it that try as much as they can to bring those pictures to our eyes and wake our sense.  I do recommend (with view discretion) you watch at least one of the below motion pictures to get an idea of what is becoming of us human.

Food, Inc – www.foodincmovie.com

What the meat industry doesn’t want you to see –  http://www.meat.org/

I refuse to be that consumer that unwillingly promotes such cruelty by consuming this meat.  I do eat Halal slaughtered animals  (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halal) because it is part of my faith.  I believe Halal definition shouldn’t be only on how to slaughter.  It also includes many rules on how the animals are treated, raised, and attended too.  This is taking me to a whole different level as far as meat consumption.

  1. Finding a local farm that accommodated all my requirements.  Which are:
    •  Halal slaughtered of course
    •  Grass-fed – http://www.mercola.com/beef/health_benefits.htm
    • Treated organically for the most part (no hormones, antibiotics … etc)
    • Cage free
    • Well treated
    • Butchered according to my needs
    • Wouldn’t cost as much as mortgage for a month supply

    If you find that please let me know J It is still a struggle for me.  I found grass-fed but not Halal slaughter.  I found Halal slaughtered but corn-fed and donuts-fed (yes they were feeding the sheep and goats donuts) It’s like cholesterol eating cholesterol and by eating it I would be the mother of all cholesterols.

  2. Having a personal relation with the farmers raising the cattle in recognition and appreciation to what they do.  They are going against the norm by doing right by those animals.  Some farmers I spoke to where planning to just sell their farms and end all businesses that has been in their families for ages because it is not worth it anymore.
  3. Eating the right amounts.  In some countries eating meat/poultry is some type of luxury.  Here in America we eat meat/poultry everyday twice or even sometimes 3 times a day.
  4. Never waste any meat/poultry and make use of every part of this animal after it’s slaughter.  Make this slaughter worth it.

Death of an Enemy

Yesterday the US announced the death of Osama Bin Laden.  Despite years of anticipation I had nothing to celebrate once I heard it.  Watching news on TV all day of how people all over the world are celebrating and rejoicing a death brought some sadness to my heart.  At one point I started feeling strange and even guilty for not sharing those feeling.  Neither people’s reaction nor my feeling was of any surprise to me.  But still it brought some gloom to my day.

“I mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy. Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that”

— Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Though relieved after the news I realize we need to know terror will never be over just by killing the terrorists.  Many things in our world, societies, even homes need to change to end terror.  While a soldier’s  job is to eliminate a terrorists, our role is to uproot it so it never grows.

Organic Matress – Is this going overboard?

I’m sure at one point of your life you wake up with a sever neck pain and you had a stiff neck for about 24 hours.  Yes, you know what I’m talking about 🙂 I do that often because I sleep wrong and I decided to go buy a memory foam pillow to help me sleep better.  It did help my neck pain but every night I smelled this artificial smell that I couldn’t bare and started the search about what it is made of.  This is when I realized that even the mattress and the pillows we sleep on are toxic (please refer to very few attached links you will find plenty more).   This was about 5 years ago.  It was really hard to replace anything at the time.  Simply such a thing as an organic mattress or pillow hardly existed.  I remember going to IKEA 3 years ago thinking it is a European store and they are usually a step ahead of us here in the US.  I asked about cotton-felled pillows (not even organic cotton) the lady laughed at me and said, “I don’t think they make these”.  I had my aunt get me one when she was visiting from overseas for my son to use.  A year later there was a bloom in the market of cotton-felled pillows and they were so accessible, even sold in Wal-Mart.  I was able to replace my sons’ pillows from http://www.gaiam.com with a very nice organic cotton-felled-cased pillow.  Now it is time for a mattress for them.  They are really costly and the one I’m interested in needs a doctor’s prescription because they don’t have the fire retardants and that’s a US regulation.  So, I’m still searching and because it is a big investment we are really careful.

Some might think I’m going overboard with this.  After reading this article <www.babysake.com/analysis.htm> I don’t think I’m.

http://www.babysake.com/analysis.htm

http://articles.sfgate.com/2005-03-02/home-and-garden/17363416_1_retardant-fire-safe-mattresses-technical-bulletin

http://www.losethebackpain.com/blog/2010/07/01/memory-foam-mattress-dangers/