Showing posts from October, 2010

Happiness Is Impossible?

We think that we deserve to be happy. There’s actually nothing wrong in wanting to be happy. However, happiness eludes us when we seek it for the wrong reason. 

In his “Ethics for Everyone: Moral Wisdom for the Modern World” blog, moral philosopher Michael W. Austin, an associate professor of philosophy at Eastern Kentucky University, wrote,“Happiness is impossible, if we’re engrossed by self-love… Happiness is impossible if all I want is my own happiness.”

Austin explained that “happiness is a product of the satisfaction of particular desires for other things. For example, my desire that my child learn, grow, and develop morally is satisfied when I see these things occur. But I must care about the child’s welfare to truly want these things for her. Then I obtain happiness because I have a desire for something apart from my own happiness. If all I cared about was my own happiness, it would be impossible to be happy, because I’d literally have nothing to be happy about.” (Ibid)
In other w…

The Jesus T-Shirts

During the rescue of the 33 Chilean miners, CNN editor/producer Wes Little noted that most of them were wearing tan t-shirts over their green coveralls. According to CNN, “the green coveralls were designed to help absorb the sweat as they ascended to the top.” (Source: But, curiously the t-shirts have the Jesus Film project logo on the left sleeves. In front of the t-shirt are the words, “‘Gracias Senor’ – ‘Thank you Lord.’”

What’s the inside scoop about those t-shirts? After rescuers discovered that the miners were still alive 17 days after the mine collapse, Christian Maureira, Campus Crusade for Christ Int’l (CCCI) country director for Chile, immediately got in touch with family members of one of the miners. CCCI got to send MP3s (audio versions) of the Jesus Film and the Spanish New Testament through the shaft . CNN noted,“The Jesus film explains that the New Testament t…

The Rescue

When the gold and copper mine far north of Chile caved in, all 33 miners thought they were doomed already. About 700,000 tons of rock blocked their way out. “Descending for 4 miles (7 kilometers) below the Atacama desert, the mine has been giving up copper and gold since 1885, leaving it honeycombed and unstable. The miners said it felt like an earthquake when the shaft finally collapsed above them, filling the lower reaches of the mine with suffocating dust. It took hours before they could even begin to see.” (Source: Yahoo! News) Knowing that they were in for a long haul, shift foreman Luis Urzua strictly rationed their 48-hour food supply, stretching it to last as long as possible. “They only had 10 cans of tuna to share… the tuna amounted to about half a capful from the top of a soda bottle — and that the only water they could drink tasted of oil.” (Ibid) For 16 days the miners thought people on the surface have finally given up on them. “But rescuers found them 17 days later with…

Twitter Defines Success

If numbers are the success yardstick, Twitter definitely measures up. (For those who still think that I was talking about stereo speakers, Twitter is actually a social networking website where users can send 140-character ‘tweets’ or messages to his network of friends.) Since its 2006 launch, it skyrocketed to 160 million plus users. What caught my attention while reading a news item about Twitter is this statement by its co-founder, Evan Williams: “Growing big is not success, in itself. Success to us means meeting our potential as a profitable company that can retain its culture and user focus while having a positive impact on the world.” (Source: Inquirer.Net) That’s a great definition of success.
I think pastors and churches ought to learn from it. Of course, numbers matter to God, too. (There’s a book in the Bible with that title. Also, just read the book of Acts.) Yet, to borrow from the title of a book by Ruth Tucker, when we feel “left behind in a mega-church world,” we tend to…

Till Prenup Do Us Part

A US$1 million signing bonus? No, that’s not the windfall of a hotshot football player for jumping to another team. It’s a stipulation in a prenuptial agreement (popularly known as prenup) between an engaged man and woman. Linda Lea Viken, president-elect of American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML), negotiated the said prenup. “My client was giving up her career as an accountant to marry an up-and-coming basketball star. Of course with a basketball star you are going to be moving around a lot—we call that lost economic opportunity. So I said I wanted a signing bonus”.(Source:
So now marriages are defined not just by passion but also by the purse. The AAML noticed the increase in such prenups in the last five years among middle-class couples which before were confined only among the wealthy and the well-known. According to Marlene Eskind Moses of AAML, “Sometimes people put in conditions like the amount of sex the…