October 28, 2011

Steve Jobs (1955 - 2011)

In a commencement speech at Stanford University in 2005, Steve Jobs said:

Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma - which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.
Here is the full commencement speech on Youtube:

Here is a link to the transcript of the speech.

And here is a link to a beautiful eulogy held by his sister, Mona Simpson

October 23, 2011

The Million Dollar Dog

Hong Dong or Big Splash
photo: www.telegraph.co.uk

This is not about Slumdog Millionaire - but about the Million Dollar Dog. Actually, Hong Dong - or Big Splash as it traslates to English - a Tibetan mastiff dog, was bought by a multi-millionaire Chinese coal baron for 1.5 million dollars. I guess he doesn't know, but he is the most expensive dog in the world.

Some people might scoff at the super rich for spending such money on a dog. However, I think if I were a multi-millionaire and were going to burn off a million and a half dollars - I would rather do it on this dog than on a new house or yet another car. I think the coal baron invested with his heart. By spending time with Hong Dong his heart might grow bigger and softer and gain more perspective. Perhaps, after some Hong Dong Therapy, the coal baron will be transformed to the point where he thinks: I must do something better than this! Life is more than earning money! Come on, Hong Dong - let's go make this world a good place to be!

Or something like that.

October 17, 2011

The Stockholm Metro - The World's Longest Art Museum

Stockholm Metro     
photo from thisarchitecture.com

I received a beautiful work of art (see powerpoint below) in the mail from one of my brilliant readers and was stunned by what I saw: A very unique subway system. The Stockholm Metro has been called the World's Longest Art Museum. Looking at the images really made me think about how we could make our lives so beautiful with some more imaginary solutions to design in public spaces. Have a look and see what you think. I recommend to blow it up to full screen and then adjust it with the arrows below the screen to get the perfect viewing.


October 14, 2011

Gandhi: I am a Muslim, and a Hindu, and a Christian, and a Jew - and so are all of you

Mohandas Gandhi  (1869- 1948)  photo: AP

Let's return to the topic of peace. 

There was one man who never received the Peace Prize; one who was nominated several times, but never won. This man was Mohandas Gandhi, also known as Mahatma Gandhi. He led the non-violent movement that culminated in India's independence from Great Britain in 1947. 

In 2006, the Secretary of the Norwegian Nobel Committe, Geir Lundestad, said:
The greatest omission in our 106 year history is undoubtedly that Mahatma Gandhi never received the Nobel Peace Prize. Gandhi could do without the Nobel Peace Prize, whether Nobel committee can do without Gandhi is the question.
I have chosen four snippets available on Youtube from the wonderful movie Gandhi, directed by Richard Attenborough. 

This first snippet is from Gandhi's time in South-Africa where he worked as a lawyer. He stands up against the South-African apartheid laws:

The second video is from a scene before the partition of India into India and Pakistan. Hindu fundamentalists have gathered outside Gandhi's home and are shouthing Death to Jinnah; Jinnah is the leader of the Muslim population in India. The mob is trying to stop Gandhi from proceeding with talks with Jinnah. In this scene, Gandhi confronts them.

The third video is taken from a scene where Gandhi is fasting in order to stop the fighting between the Hindus and the Muslims:

And here, the final video:

October 7, 2011

Peace Prize

From broken-silence.webs.com

It happens every year the first Friday in October in Oslo. The presentation of the recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. At 10.45 this morning I sat down in front of the TV to watch the announcement. At 11 o'clock sharp the chair of the Norwegian Nobel committee, Torbjørn Jagland, walked up to the microphone and in his charming Norwegian English:

The Norwegian Nobel Committee has decided that the Nobel Peace Prize for 2011 is to be divided in three equal parts between Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Leymah Gbowee and Tawakkul Karman for their non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women's rights to full participation in peace-building work. We cannot achieve democracy and lasting peace in the world unless women obtain the same opportunities as men to influence developments at all levels of society. 
Congratulations to three very worthy candidates!

A Song of Peace

This is my song, Oh God of all the nations,
A song of peace for lands afar and mine.
This is my home, the country where my heart is;
Here are my hopes, my dreams, my sacred shrine.
But other hearts in other lands are beating,
With hopes and dreams as true and high as mine.

My country’s skies are bluer than the ocean,
And sunlight beams on cloverleaf and pine.
But other lands have sunlight too and clover,
And skies are everywhere as blue as mine.
Oh hear my song, oh God of all the nations,
A song of peace for their land and for mine.

May truth and freedom come to every nation;
may peace abound where strife has raged so long;
that each may seek to love and build together,
a world united, righting every wrong;
a world united in its love for freedom,
proclaiming peace together in one song.

                                Lloyd Stone, 1934