SEALNet so far

 

After a hiatus that lasted more than a month long, I finally managed to seize some time to get back to my old, classic habit, in which I poured down my ideas and my experiences, through every single type, while sitting inside an approximately five-by-five-meter space that used to be my childhood compartment. First thing I have to confess before I start the note is my mind was in excess of topics, argumentating seriously inside my head on what to write about. I was considering writing about a ‘special’ relationship between presidents and occult power, while on the other hand, another topic that circulated around my consciousness was plastic surgery among South Korean celebrities, while again, the notion of Indonesia’s exaggerative subordination on imported products, the treacherous, hair-raising thought on scientific methods towards living forever, criticism of vegetarianism, the dangers of driving in Indonesia, and dominant minorities worldwide, pullulated me, throwing me out with all the mish-mashing of all the combined ideas.

Instead of singling out one of them to be the main topic of this note, which perhaps may unconsciously trigger more helter-skelter in my mind, I resolved to write about SEALNet’s progress so far. I’ve never jemmied it for so long that the chaps and bags in United States had no ideas what we had been progressing here, exactly in Medan.

Throughout the first semester, the workshops, as I could admit, was of part success and part failure. They did really savor the part where we asked the mentees to mention as many bizarre, out-of-the-box purposes as possible about the items they had been discussing altogether. They also quite reveled the ‘problem-solving’ part, though they had less inclination to doing presentation. Getting tedium through endless presentations, I laid the idea of having them to do business – one of the most basic methods in practising leadership skills. But, throughout the workshops from November to December, the workshop was, I had to tell you, a total flatness. The main res behind such occurrence was that we were totally lackadaisical in terms of preparation of the material. It was only during the D-day that we began to discuss what we were going to teach. Worse, we communicated our ideas only through Blackberry group chats, which may, in some times, set off technical errors, like my message was not received by another Blackberry member. Another problem was half the members do not use Blackberry, which meant they were lackadaisical on what I was planning to ask them to do and worse, albeit they managed to own them, they did not participate in the discussion (Claristy later admitted that they refused to do so because of my overtly domineering position), so it could be said, between 2 and 3 workshop sessions, we delivered them half-baked, or best described, stale material. Many also criticized me for being too centralized, as though I were the only one to control the whole workshop and outreach, that it heavily burdened my head. Perhaps because of overpressure, my emotion bursted out. I snapped at some of the mentors, and all the mentees were there when it took place, while the workshop was taking place. I didn’t have any captor to stop my buoyant anger from exploding. And I wept afterwards.

I was lost up there. Fortunately, there were considerably hearty friends of mine, like Evando, Nico, Toni, Vincent, Yansen, Steven, etc, who showed full indorsation on me. The night after the incident, I was up in my bed, contemplating of all the wrongdoings I had accidentally committed that made everything ended up so severe. The other acting president, Claristy, had told me that as a leader, I had been too much fixated on my own potential, while albeit I fully accepted others’ ideas, there was tendency I did neglect them. Some time later, after fully discerning her thoughts, I concluded, ‘yeah, she’s quite right. There’s something wrong with our organization, and were my mentality too subtle to say, ‘yeah, it’s my fate, and I’m not destined for this’, I might have disenchanted so many people. Our previous mentors, those guys in America, our principal who staunchfully supported this extracurricular program (my first-grade friends once even ran towards me, and exhilaratingly shouted that he had asked students – during the weekly school ceremony – to get involved in more leadership and social service skills), our supervisor who, despite the bustle, still managed to assist us by giving ideas for better workshops (some of which we did fail to implement), some teachers who had expressed full support for the establishment of the chapter, and particularly, all the mentees who had been willingly to spend some time to be here. To provide me with more consolation, I attempted to assure myself, it’s just the first year, and it’s always the hardest in the beginning, and unless we manage to consolidate well, our SEALNet chapter will just simply be a name that ‘used to’ exist. It still has tremendous potential yet to be explored, and looking at it with deeper perspectives, we can contribute myriad ideas through this body. It’s not simply about workshops and outreach, workshops and outreach. We can do something, in accordance with the potential that we all possess, to solve problems (although I am myself a believer in theory that ‘no best solution does exist in the world to eliminate problems, because it’s always solution that triggers problems, and it’s an unending relationship’). Further, another mentor of SEALNet, Mauren, still places her Panglossian trust on its future. She cited the entrepreneurship project that we did as a ‘moderate success’, although it’s still structurally messy. Many mentees confessed that the part they liked the most was doing this sort of project. And because of this, SEALNet’s cash managed to experience soaring growth – more than 300% – from previously 2.1 million to more than 8.6 million rupiah (as of January 2012). The money itself grew after we had consensus with mentees who were willing to donate some of the money they earned to fund our activities (and it’s non-obligatory, for sure).

But, actually, the main riddle behind all this mess was of my not knowing the keyword of ‘team-building activities’. It was only after browsing Google, that I discovered this keyword had tremendous effect in determining the success of either our workshops, outreach, or even projects. The keyword, as it turned out after I typed it on Google, resulted in more than 200 million pages or so, an overabundance of sources we could utilize for our next workshops in the second semester. Every webpage that I accessed had itself come out with more than 100 out-of-the-box ideas, many of which might be utterly interesting for the mentees instead of endless cycles of brainstorming, structuring, and presenting. All these ideas are not only commodious during the workshop sessions, but also during the outreach, and it, in the long run, helped my mind to launch multitudinous ideas for the projects to be done next year. One of my ideas – that might sound irrelevant, was my plan of donating 1000 or more second-hand books to 5 orphanages which founded it very critical and rudimentary to obtain such Baedeker. Many of my friends were opposed to this notion, because firstly, the target itself was set too high, while secondly, there was also another similar program going on, in which one of Medan’s social entrepreneurs, Dr. Sofyan Tan, proposed another more avant-garde project, by persuading hundreds of companies, institutions (including our school, SMA Sutomo 1 Medan) and distingue figures to contribute. He had set his mind that the ultimate goal of this project was to accept 1 million (that is 1000 by the power of 2) second-hand books to be donated to so-called ‘taman bacaan’, or small-scale libraries throughout North Sumatera, by which Medan is the designated capital. Lastly, not all students would donate their books for the second time, because they had previously done so in the former. At first, I was overtly enthusiastic about this dream, but later on, I consoled myself, ‘the future is still a long way to go. Perhaps we can set even larger targets in the future. Don’t get disappointed.’

Throughout the meeting we held on 24th of December, 2011, we decided that on the second semester, we managed to organize only 5 sessions of workshop, with methods taken from the webpages I had accessed in Google (using that miraculous keyword). The first session would be about negotiation (still remember about the house’s prices? Read ‘The days I had in SEALNet’), while on the second, the mentees were asked to promote – like the way those people do in heavily-dramatized TV ads – chocolate bars we had bought in the nearby canteen in which we recorded their performance. On the third workshop, because it’s really adjacent to Valentine’s Day, we divided the mentees into pairs, and every pair had to design Valentine’s Day greeting card as creatively as possible, utilizing the carton papers we had bought in the school’s co-operative. On the fourth, mentees were divided into groups, and were asked to structure a story as they liked, and presented it in front. Lastly, on the fifth, it would be reflection. In the long run, all the mentors agreed to do so. Afterwards, as soon as the holiday was over, we started to implement all the ideas. In general, all the mentees did really enjoy the sessions better than those in the first semester, particularly in the second and third workshop. They even considered the second one as the craziest part ever, in which they were faced to a situation where they had to act as though they were really promoting in the TV ads. Meanwhile, on the third workshop, all the cards designed were truly beyond what I had previously imagined. They were truly so gorgeous! Some did write very awesome quotes, while others modified the carton papers by putting some beads, or trying to make some folds to make them really look like greeting cards. The best cards that we assessed were published in our bulletin board (and if you have time to visit Medan, please take a look at it). Insofar, things got up better, but the only thing that was totally distinct from the plan we had set out was on the last session, in which instead of doing the reflection, we played game altogether. (for ELDS – our school’s English debating program – members, you do still remember Yakuza game, the trick-or-treat derision, don’t you?)

 

 

 

In addition, we also paid a visit to Tzu-chi’s branch office in Medan, largely thanks to my Mandarin tuition teacher, Miss Jennifer, who also serves as a full-time Tzu-chi member, after long-grueling appointment in which our schedule was repeatedly postponed (not procrastinated, thoroughly) from supposedly beginning of November, to end of November, to the beginning of December, to mid of January, before it was decided that the schedule be held on 5th February, 2012. At first, I thought we might be introduced to sophisticated recycling technology, or to a lesser extent, having tutelage on how to recycle newspapers or plastic bottles. My conclusion was a mistake, indeed. While all of us were brought to the waste depot exactly behind the branch office, I just commenced to realize that it was not a recycling center at all. I asked one of the staff, and he responded that this place was instead utilized as a ‘waste-sorting’ center. There’s quite much unrecyclable waste here, as such, styrofoam and plastic bags. Instead, as an alternative, we listened to their seminar – the main topic was about global warming, climate change stuff, but I found it was more centered on vegetarianism. Supposed to begin at 1 and conclude at 4, it was contrawise prolonged from 1.30 to 5.30 pm (you know the Gummizeit habit of our people, don’t you?) Much of the time was concentrated on promoting vegetarianism, while one staff, serving as a host, claimed that it’s much better, environmentally, for a full-time vegan to drive a sedan car, than a cyclist who eats meat. Most of the mentees said they were really inspired, and truly gobsmacked, at all the surprising facts about global warming and climate change and healthy living. I did, too, but only for the first two parts, while I myself discovered a striking dichotomy between healthy living and healthy planet. To be honest, this was originally my intended topic. But, never mind about that. I’ve been scribing this article for more than 2000 words.

 

 

 

Aside from that, I needed to inform you that we had again made mistakes. This time, they were truly fatal lapsus. We realized the errors after we had 94 certificates (80 for mentees, and 14 for mentors) printed, and only after our school’s principal signed a snatch of our certificates: his position in the certificate was placed instead 2nd after that of our supervisor, not the 1st. Another fatal mistake was identified: we simply put down the abbreviation, incomplete with its real name. He refused to continue signing them, something which made us lose 940 thousand rupiah in vain. And, lastly, we thought that by having our supervisor to examine the certificate’s prototype was okay enough. And it turned out to be a mere partial okay, because the principal hadn’t seen it. This meant we had to prepare another 940 thousand for new certificates.

Nevertheless, for whatever reason, it seemed like we were on our luck at that time. The company accountable in printing our certificates offered us 25% discount, meaning that we didn’t have to pay that exorbitant. Instead of 940, we were charged 705. After two times of printing, we do still have almost 7 million rupiah left in cash.

Within 3 or 4 or 5 months, let’s see what surprises will come out next.

What we fear about when we fear about 2012

 

Accept it or not, all of us have now officially abandoned 2011. There was much painting-the-town-red celebration held over thousands of cities and towns worldwide. We saw fireworks dazzling over the night sky. We heard sounds of triumph. Trumpets were played. Laser lights were set off, in accordance to countless patterns of iconic images we perceive in our daily lives. Vehicles, from motorcycles to private saloon cars, were all rushing in to the nearby city centers as the drivers were impatiently waiting for the momentum to take over. Unlike the previous 364 nights, we commemorated the last night in 2011 with glimpses of hope and anxiety, making up to the hotch-potch of feelings we stared with full awe when the fireworks were launched, step by step.

 

 

As usual, I and my family would solemnize it at our hearthstone, our very own home sweet home. We would order pizzas, salad with thousand island sauces, and fettuccinis, to be shared altogether. My dad sometimes bought some cans of beer as an additional bonus. We ate, and we drank, at the same time we were watching Hollywood movies in television. At the same time, I saw that some of my friends were celebrating it overseas. A Blackberry contact of mine even spent time in Singapore together with approximately a dozen of her classmates. Another one was in Orchard Road, together with her family. Meanwhile, some others had just been back home. Some also spent time broadcasting Pollyannaist messages of encouragement and inspiration for more success in the coming year of 2012. I did, too. But I don’t expect much success. It doesn’t matter whether a singleton would have achieved more success than failures or vice versa, as long as one can afford to truly understand and appreciate oneself and is happy with it, that’s all.

In a brief spasm, a thought flashed on my mind like a comet on its way to strike a planet.

 

 

While everyone’s on seventh heaven, deeply seduced in exhilaration as they were watching the pulchritudinous fireworks being set ablaze above the cities’ skyline, did they still keep it in their mind vividly about the so-called ‘end of the world in 2012’? You know, what you have eavesdropped from someone’s conversation, or read from someone’s blog, or seen from the disaster movie, that it is so cocksure, simon-pure, that the apocalypse will shatter us to bits? It must have been a terrifying experience for some people after they were shown Roland Emmerich’s spine-chilling vision of the Armageddon, whose box office revenues also raked in the cash in spine-chilling ways, as well. (As a matter of fact, the movie itself grossed almost 700 million US$ worldwide, far exceeding its astronomical budget which was rumored to be between 200 and 250 million US$) Los Angeles in less than an hour ended up like pieces of birthday cake being cut off. Las Vegas all in a sudden fell deep into the core of the Earth. Himalaya was flooded with tsunamis measuring out thousands of meters high. And, briefly a few seconds before the movie faded to black, if you noticed it in full details, Indonesia was no longer seen. So were most of the land swaths in India. While some thought this might be too formidable, especially for the youngsters (that’s why MUI, or as in Indonesian, Indonesian Council of Ulemas, issued a fatwa, declaring it verboten for everyone to watch such a ‘morally bent’ film), I just found it to be too adventurous, and in some cases, hilarious. The scenes of how the protagonists (sorry, I’ve forgotten all their names) tried to escape from the torn-apart Los Angeles, while skyscrapers were falling down and colliding against each other, reminded me of those I’d seen in Transformer movies. There was excessive maelstrom, exaggeratedly CGI-ed explosion and destruction and blow-your-head-off performances, and one more hilarious thing: protagonists, in 99% of all films I’ve ever watched, no matter how severe, how wounded, and how hopeless they have been, do always survive, albeit sometimes they do in illogical ways. After getting out of the cinema, I simply told my friends, “It’s not as frightening as the trailer has originally unfluxed. I even found it, much of the time, laughable.” Emmerich’s imagination works pretty much like that utilized in any of Michael Bay-directed films (trust me, most of his films often involve hyperbolic pictures, perhaps that’s also why most of his films often succeed with flying colors, with aggrandized box office income, and embroidered critic bombs.)

Human’s imagination seems to have never stopped exploring and exploiting the invisible borders of the apocalyptic vision itself. Roland Emmerich’s 2012, and many of his notable films, particularly Independence Day, Godzilla and The Day after Tomorrow, have demonstrated how apocalypse might look like, as a result of secret neutrinos getting entrapped deep in the Earth’s core ready to explode, or false miscommunication between humankind and an unknown alien civilization billions of light years away, or because of a top-secret military experiment gone wrong, or unjust changes in global climate. But, for sure, that’s not how apocalypse might exactly appear like. That’s how Emmerich envisions his own versions of apocalypse, and implements them through his on-Queer-street scenarios he penned often by himself. He’s an artist, and he needs money, anyway. But it doesn’t mean there’s absolute impossibility that these doomsdays might ever happen. They may ‘someday’ take place, but for sure, the probability rate is comparable to a rare asteroid which collides with a giant planet billions of times the size of Jupiter.

 

 

Throughout my own life, my almost 3-year equivalent spent in browsing the Web for information and information, I have read and copied so many nouvelle about how the world might possibly end, perhaps in 2012, or perhaps in November 2010 (forget that, if that were to happen, I might have never written this post anymore), or someday in the future. Someone in the Web wrote down like this: by the time 21st December 2012 has come (the day the Mayan calendar officially ends), a giant red planet named Nibiru will appear, whose visibility is as clear as the Sun, and the planet’s climactic equilibrium will soon experience massive changes. It is estimated that two-thirds of the global population, say the least, will have perished, and other two-thirds of the remainding survivors will have succumbed as a result of long-term consequences implicated by the arrival of Nibiru, and the gravitational chaos it causes to the Earth. Another scenario might be like this. When the Nibiru has arrived, still on the same date as of the former, an extraterrestrial life form, a very advanced civilization whose technological progress is no match with that of human, who themselves have been colonized by smartphones and Facebook and Twitter, named Anunnaki, will come to ‘enlighten’ us. During the ‘enlightenment’ process, it is estimated that as many as 90% of humanity will be obliterated, or to be more courteous, eliminated. But once the process is over, there will be a new epoch of spiritual transformation among human beings, where humankind may be able to interact with countless, inter-galactic civilizations with better spiritual understanding.

Before you end up gobsmacked and dumbfounded, there is at least something I need to clarify up here. Nibiru is a mythical homeworld for the gods of Sumerians, so-called Anunnaki. While the 21st December 2012 is the day the Mayan calendar officially ends. What kind of cultural co-operation is this? Sumerians lived in territories we now officially recognize as Iraq more than 4000 years ago, while Mayan civilization’s acme only achieved its apex as far as 1500 years ago. They only extended their political influence as far as Central America, and had no idea what Middle East really was. But that doesn’t mean it’s impossible if, who knows, either the Sumerians or the Mayans had in secrecy co-operated with certain very advanced civilizations to invent time machines, so they could trade their stories with each other. Although the probability ratio, as I can suggest, is 1 to 100 billion trillion. (that’s a conceivable estimation of number of Earth-like planets, within the 13.5-billion-light-year radius of our universe)

 

 

Another scenario is like this: United Nations, known to be an evil superbody controlled by super-genius, and super-evil Jews (don’t compare me to John Galliano or Charlie Sheen for these anti-Semitic remarks, I’m just summarizing down what I’ve once read), is currently devising a secret program which is aimed to eradicate 90% of the population as far as 2012. Named Codex Alimentarius (Google it), and implemented by FAO and WHO, which has co-acted with thousands of multi-national corporations worldwide, namely Monsanto, they are distributing food which have been, unbeknownst, genetically manipulated, with aims to generate permanent genetic defects on humanity. By doing so, it is expected that human population will decrease as far as the target they have set. I tell you, if this effort were really made, it would have turned out to be a double-edged sword game for United Nations, and particularly, all these MNCs. Let me figure out the facts at first. From Afghanistan to Zimbabwe, as I list the world’s countries in alphabetical order, close to 100,000 multi-national corporations are executing their daily business operations. Excluding other 100,000 national corporations, but this time, omit the ‘multi’ word. If combined, all these 200,000 corporations employ more than 2 billion ranks and files. That’s already similar to more than one-third of the world’s population. If they were all eradicated with this way, tainted with secretly poisoned food you and I perhaps are right now eating, where and how will they discover their own source of income? By asking Harry Potter to convert banana leafs into money?

But, for sure, the probability is high that the world’s population may have exceeded 10 billion some time in 2050. That might sound like a piece of good news for economists, but not for environmentalists. (because of the carbon footprints they will inherit)

 

 

2012, as mellifluous as it sounds, turns out to be a catchphrase for many so-called ‘apocalyptists’. And the militant supporters of vegetarianism seem to have made a virtue of necessity from this number, as well. It is a-dime-to-a-dozen task to find out posters, with features including a blonde-haired Asian woman who seems to be a quinquagenarian, and multitudes of words erected beside her posture. There, it concludes: global warming becomes increasingly difficult to solve. Be a pure vegetarian. Help save the planet. By: Supreme Master. There, it is also written like this: unless governments take actions to halt the acceleration of global warming, all the ice caps of North and South Pole would have melted, commencing in … 2012. Be a vegetarian, eat plants, and save the planet. It is true that there is tendency that this rara avis is on its path towards acceleration. It is also true that, still, out there, many governments have failed reaching consensus upon the frameworks needed to initiate global actions to combat global warming as lately as 2020, as have been seen from the final conclusions of the latest UN Conference on Climate Change held in Durban, South Africa. (before that, it has repeatedly failed in Nusa Dua, Bali, Indonesia and Cancun, Mexico) But it is, as for me, excessively rapid if the ice caps have to melt by the end of this year. No matter how deteriorating the situation is, we would still be able to see penguins strolling in the Arctic Circle or polar bears hunting in the Antarctica, until as late as 2030, after further analysis on how fast-paced the melting process will be was made by scientists (not Supreme Master).

Furthermore, what will happen to the whole world if the entire earthlings were commanded to be ‘full vegetarians’? Aren’t we taking other animals’ rights for granted that we grab their source of food, at the same time? (this inquiry can get you stoned by any pro-vegetarianism activists) Doesn’t this also mean that we will disrupt the global food chain system, in which we let all the chickens, ducks, swans, turkeys, pigs, cows, lambs, and many other kinds of poultry or any other domesticated animals to overpopulate the entire planet? Won’t we be overwhelmed by not only their omnipresence, but also abundance of faeces they produce, which in the end will release large amounts of ammonia, which will entrap more solar heat in the end, which means we are actually deteriorating the global warming itself, as an unintended consequence?

 

 

I found it even more frolicsome when our form teacher, while I was a student of Senior High School First Grade, showed us a PowerPoint presentation regarding to global warming. At first, we were shown pictures of recent disasters taking place throughout the first quarter in 2011. Floods claimed myriad lives in China, Pakistan, Brazil, and soak our beloved hometown, Medan. A 9.0-magnitued earthquake ravaged east Japan, which in the end instigated a deadly tsunami, which in the end caused a nuclear leakage. Earthquakes also took place in geologically active countries, like New Zealand and Haiti. Afterwards, we were shown that all these kinds of pandemonium had correlation with global warming, and 40% of CO2 emissions which cause global warming itself is caused by livestock-related activities. Then, it directly came into a conclusion: it’s all because we eat meat too much! What’s more, the author had even made his own prediction, which left me scientifically doubtful about the real authenticity: unless we begin to reduce our meat consumption, the total amount of ammonia gas released may contribute a drastic increase to the sea level as tall as 75 meters, which will be overwhelmed by CO2 and ammonia, that will convert the water into ‘seas of raging fire’. In the end of the presentation, we were promoted to watch Supreme Master TV. How Emmerich-esque, I concluded. Even if all of us decided to be full vegetarians, won’t it be the same thing that we will still contribute to the emissions of ammonia gas? Unless you believe it, try to loosen your bowels this night. I bet, the faeces won’t ever emit oxygen, even if the Sun all of a sudden rotated in reversed direction.

Vegetarianism might not be the only ultimate solution, as it turns out. Won’t it be a better crinkum-crankum if this is added with continuous and expansive process of converting the faeces into either fertilizer or biogas?

 

 

I recalled, 2 or 3 years backward, when I was skimming through a blog post, written by an Indonesian blogger whose website I had been oblivious with, about so-called New World Order (Novus Ordo Seclorum), which is scheduled to reach its acme, again, in this 2012. Google it, and you can equate the creator behind this story with John Galliano, or any anti-Semits else. Known to be a very top-secret project (the plot versions depend on which blog sites you pay a visit to), it is a clandestine project conducted by Freemasonry fellows – and super-genius Jews, as it turns out, again – to rule the whole world in Stygian darkness and enslave the entire mankind. One version relates it with secular service clubs like Lions International and Rotary International, which if combined, have a 2.5-million-strong membership structure. These organizations are often accused of spreading Freemasonry thoughts, which turn out to be subjective allegations by religious fanaticists or bigots. Another version informs that the world’s most powerful businesspeople, allegedly including Bill Gates, are funding the construction of a gigantic underground city in a top-secret location in Antarctica, to anticipate the Nibiru disaster. Another version again mentions that those suitable to populate this city are tantamount to members of Lions and Rotary clubs. Another variant calls for the destruction of Dajjal, a one-eyed beast scheduled to be born in Israel, who will one day be the ‘eternal dark leader of the whole world’, and the one who will lead the Freemasonry to achieve its glory. And all these scenarios are scheduled to take place in 2012.

 

Snopes.com needs to check whether this is simply a Photoshopped picture or not.

 

Hold on a second. Rumor has it that the whole world’s governments, incorporated into the United Nations, are currently constructing a gigantic starship, miles down the Area 51 (in which President Obama leads all the project), which can accommodate in maximum 1% of the world’s population (that is to say, 70 million human beings), at the same time the rest, the 99%, the abandoned – which is why it becomes the slogan for Occupy Wall Street demonstrators – will have to be crucified when the 2012 apocalypse has come. The starship itself reportedly costs the whole world, particularly United States and European Union, over tens of trillions of dollars in debts (because they are the main shareholders, together with all these corporate giants), which actually is the main contributing factor to the global recession that is taking place, aside of subprime mortgage and financial deregulation which turns out to be decrepit. I recognize this tattle-tale more as a piece of applesauce. Because I myself invent up this story. Just leave this paragraph. And I bet you (won’t) believe easily in it, as long as your logic remains working.

It turns out that the rapid outflow of information through the Web has accelerated the contagion of fear among human emotion. As things become increasingly accessible, especially after the introduction of smartphones (which in the end colonize our brains to keep holding on the trackballs), it becomes easier and more effortless to obtain knowledge and information, almost everywhere you are. But, often, more knowledge does not always indicate we become wiser than before. As the whole world becomes more complicating and more inter-connected, it also turns out increasingly difficult, often, to differentiate which information we should really believe as facts, and which we should really believe as hoaxes. Things are often subject to cognitive biases. Perhaps what Socrates has once said 2500 years prior is correct: true knowledge lies in the fact that we know nothing. Here we are, fellow beings, we have to recognize our main Achilles’ heel: we often think that we know we know it.

 

Socrates

 

What about all those scenarios mentioned above? They may be correct, but the probability is very low. Psychologists have estimated that out of all sorts of fear we have envisioned in our own minds, only 10% do really come true. Meanwhile, the rest, the 90%, simply remain our own illusory stupefaction. Moreover, often those fears emerge in ways beyond our own ability as human beings to imagine how their occurrence might be. Perhaps the real apocalypse, as the universe has itself designed, might be numberless times much more terrifying than those previously written above. What will happen in 2012, nobody knows. Even if apocalypse were to take place, it does not always mean the end of the world; it might just simply be ‘the end of the mankind’. The world will still be out there, even if Earth has perished. True knowledge lies in the fact that we know nothing.

Just relish every single moment in your life, as long as you’re still alive. There are too many good things in life you can afford to do. That’s why we could still devour the pizzas voraciously throughout the New Year celebration, or watched the fireworks through the windows, with full fascination.

But still, always prepare yourself for the unprepared. Nothing is ever impossible.