Category Archives: Educational affairs

Thought on the birthday of an encyclopaedia

I have always been interested in the “what, how and why” of things and wanted to find out more about certain things or events.

Stimulated by the subjects we had in our formation as dancers, we had a class for each subject: history of ballet (or theatrical dance), history of music, history of culture and history of costumes. Though the practical classes were the most important, I loved those courses and later in life I also went studying anthropology.

Whilst I was a dancer I was interested in what went on all over the world and about ballet or theatrical dance (musical, classical and contemporary ballet or dance) I collected dance magazines and newspaper cuttings which after some years became the basics for my Dance Archive, which I gave out of my hand after my serious car accident in 1987, to the Flemish Theatre Institute.

When I was made redundant and I had to go into retirement, I was forced to find another job to provide for my family. In addition to this paid work, I continued to work (unpaid) for my church community and focused on tackling different topics on several blogs.

But by getting older, I noticed that my brain was failing me and that I had to resort to encyclopaedias even more than before to verify facts and dates.

Encyclopaedia means a system or classification of the various branches of knowledge, and whether under the name of “dictionary” or “encyclopaedia” large numbers of reference works have been published and are luckily at my disposal.

A lot has changed since the first alphabetical encyclopaedia was written in English in a work of a London clergyman, John Harris (born about 1667, elected first secretary of the Royal Society on the 30th of November 1709, died on the 7th of September 1719), Lexicon technicum, or an universal English Dictionary of Arts and Sciences, London, 1704, fol., 1220 pages, 4 plates, with many diagrams and figures printed in the text. Such alphabetical order makes it so handy to search for things.

Hannah Ashlyn (or Hanashlyn) Krynicki also looks at such works that function as a second brain for us. She writes:

The Encyclopaedia is basically like the internet. It is a slave that reminds me of random useless things and keeps track of all the details that I would otherwise forget.

What should I do with this epic battle scene that didn’t make the cut? Encyclopaedia. Where did I record the laws of succession for Agran? Encyclopaedia. How much older was Sardar than Elkay? Encyclopaedia. {Why I Wrote an Encyclopaedia (and Maybe You Should, Too)}

This 1921 advertisement for the Encyclopedia Americana suggests that other encyclopedias are as out-of-date as the locomotives of 90 years earlier.

Regarding the dance, I had a huge deck of cards with thousands of cards arranged alphabetically. Everything was easy to find in there. But now that all those files have been removed from the house and are accessible to the general public in a specialised library, I have to start my search again at home.

Because everything changes so quickly, some dictionaries and encyclopaedia had to be replaced (or better: supplemented) by more recent contemporary editions. Otherwise, we will very quickly become out of date and unable to keep up with all the new inventions and events.

For lots of writers it is a blessing that we now have the internet to do searches, but to save time we need still those dictionaries and encyclopaedias.

Krynicki her encyclopaedia saves her from having to re-do the same research over and over or scramble through a heap of sticky notes to find where she wrote my main character’s birth year.

Having all the information written down and organized in a place where I can easily find it allows me to focus on writing the actual novel. {How to Stay Organized as a Writer}

This way we, who want to write, need to have our own system next to the provision of printed reference works, dictionaries and encyclopaedia.

Please find out how I find my way in this world of so much printed and published material on the net. > 253 years ago the first edition of my favourite encyclopaedia was published

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MoonDay Musings: the magic of storytelling

In a certain way it is a shame, the tradition of telling about the past of the family, does not exist anymore.

Probably, for some time, the Boom generation is the last generation where the youngsters sat on the lap of their grandparents listening to those very interesting stories of the past as well as to the many fairytales and fables.
As kids we could dream about wonder tales involving marvellous elements and occurrences, bringing us in dreamland. Charles Perrault and the Brothers Grimm ( Jacob Ludwig Carl and Wilhelm Carl Grimm) , were daily food for many of the generations born before 1960, who also grew up with several fables or parables.

In many industrialised countries there is no time given anymore to public storytellers or to public poets .It would not be bad to have again a bearer of “old lore” (seanchas) or have again recitals by bards, to bring the past back to life.
We may not forget that by telling about the past we can learn for the future and find ways to strengthen ourselves.

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Additional reading

  1. To relive that what happened in the past
  2. Stories of the beginnings, and one Main book composed of four major sections
  3. The flood, floods and mythic flood stories 6 European myths
  4. Dia de Los Muertos – Day of the dead
  5. Allhallowtide with Halloween, All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day

Inner Journey Events Blog

Photo by Nong Vang on Unsplash

We learn history in many ways — from school textbooks, non-fiction scholarly works, novels, television, documentaries and films, the nightly news and more — and some of those sources may even be accurate. 

But what of cultural lore and traditions, and family history?

In the past, these stories were shared at family gatherings, at times of celebration such as festivals like Samhain and Bealtaine, but also on special days for individuals such as births, birthdays or naming days, weddings, and —yes — deaths, as families gathered to celebrate the life of a loved one who had passed. 

In ancient Irish traditions — and many other cultures and places with strong oral traditions — families, villages, clans and tribes honoured the role of the story teller.

These were known as the fílidh (pronounced fee-lee) in Druidic and Celtic traditions, poet-seers who learned hundred…

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Rules to Teach Your Son

 

My Good Time Stories

Photo by Jonas Mohamadi from Pexels

I recently discovered a terrific collection of some guidelines / rules that every parent should teach their son(s). We can ALL learn something from the following list…

Rules to Teach Your Son

  1. Never shake a man’s hand sitting down.
  2. Don’t enter a pool by the stairs.
  3. Always treat your girlfriend like a queen.
  4. In a negotiation, never make the first offer.
  5. Request the late check-out.
  6. When entrusted with a secret, keep it.
  7. Hold your heroes to a higher standard.
  8. Return a borrowed car with a full tank of gas.
  9. Play with passion or don’t play at all.
  10. When shaking hands, grip firmly and look them directly in the eye.
  11. Don’t let a wishbone grow where a backbone should be.
  12. If you need music on the beach, you’re missing the point.
  13. Carry two handkerchiefs. The one in your back pocket is for you. The one…

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Be it in May or September: Run the race

The last two academic years have been very weird with many restrictions. September is here again and soon it will be October, the month when everybody is back at work or back in school. Once more we faee a new academic and church year. Once more we are reminded we have work to do on this earth. We have our obligations and we have to strive to get some results in what we are supposed to do.

In Belgium, last year, sports were more a thing for one person on his own, because no group events were allowed. Everyone had to stay in isolation and contact sports were not allowed. The text underneath normally was to be published in May, when we had the underneath ‘prayer theme’ for the month, but we got somewhat behind with a lot of work, because other matters, like taking care of people, providing food to isolated people and help for those in need, certainly after the floods, required our attention.

In the Covid period it might not have been easy for many. Now it could well be that this year may be a year of transition, for becoming back to normal.

Jane Edwards has a look at what happened mostly in May. In her country that is the time the sun starts showing herself more and more attention is given to outside sports. She then thinks of the race which we have to finish.

Be it May or September, each day we are confronted with a lot of matters. Every day of the year, we have to get on and continue our way.

°°°

Run the race

When I was at school, the month of May meant only one thing…..
Practicing for Sports day.
Today, children are encouraged to just take part, and they are all winners. Helping others along the way to finish together.

When I was at school, it was all about the winning!
Who could run fastest.
Who could throw furthest.
Who could jump highest.

Winners were winners, and losers were just that – losers.
Winners received prizes, losers were scorned.

There were cheers, and plenty of boos.

I hated Sports day. Whilst I enjoyed hockey and netball – team games, I hated the one against one competition of Athletics – mainly because I was rubbish, and not really built to run!

We are told in the Bible in Hebrews 12 that we need to ‘run the race’ , but we are also told that ‘bodily exercise profits little’ in 1 Timothy 4v8 – which is correct?
Of course we need to exercise.
For our hearts and minds exercise is good, but too much can become an obsession – and take us away from other activities that matter.
So, what race do we need to run?

Of course, this is the race to the Kingdom. This race is much better than the ones I failed miserably at school. This race, (perhaps more apt to call it an Obstacle Course) makes everyone a winner!
It’s about getting to the finish line – some may reach that before others, but everyone has a chance to finish and win… and have help from others along the way.
And the prize – eternal life!
No boos, but cheers from the Heavenly Hosts.
As we watch our children on Sports Day, or think about exercise for ourselves, let us remember the most important race of our lives.

 

 

 

Dear Lord,
Please be with us as we run the race to your Kingdom.
Some of us may be slower through lack of faith, anxiety, and fatigue.
Give us the encouragement and strength needed to make it to the finish.
Please help us to help others to the end,
giving them encouragement as you have to us.
Amen

 

Jane Edwards

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Preceding

Race and Grace

The race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong

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Additional reading

  1. Life is like a ten-speed bike.
  2. The high calling of God in Christ Jesus
  3. We are redeemed; we are “bought with a price”
  4. Followers with deepening
  5. Troubles testing your faith and giving you patience and good prospects
  6. Matthew 20 Are you willing to work for Jesus?
  7. Today’s Thought “There is laid up for me the crown of righteousness” (May 27)
  8. Every athlete exercises self control
  9. Running the battle
  10. A race not to swift, nor a battle to the strong
  11. Run for the Everlasting Cure
  12. Atonement and the race been bought
  13. Being of good courage running the race

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Related

  1. “Fit In!”
  2. Just Keep Going by Bridget A. Thomas
  3. A Crown Beyond the Sun
  4. Running The Race
  5. Running The Race by Tara Randel
  6. Running This Race Called Life
  7. How do you stay strong in the midst of change
  8. ending well
  9. Leaning On The Father
  10. Running the Race of Holiness: DON’T give up
  11. Catching up to the Win
  12. Old and Heavy
  13. The Race
  14. It’s Friday…Run With An Eye For Nothing Less
  15. One Thing I Know
  16. With “Blinders” of Grace!
  17. The Surrendered Disciple!
  18. The Funneling Effect!
  19. With Reverence, Returning…
  20. Reawaken the Redeemed!
  21. Saved from Self’s Strainings!
  22. The Second Hand’s Moment!
  23. Sunday Morning 7/25: Unit 34, Session 4: Running the Race
  24. A Cloud of Witnesses
  25. The Fool’s Boundary!
  26. The Piper’s Promised Peace!
  27. Keep the Focus
  28. Choice Intersections!
  29. Faithful to the End
  30. Wholeness…in Him!
  31. Running the Race

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University of the Taliban cabinet

The Taliban’s founder Mullah Muhammed Omar, the one-eyed reclusive cleric-warrior who sheltered Osama bin Laden, is being linked to what was called ‘the University of jihad’ but has become now‘the University of the Taliban cabinet,”

Flanked by adoring supporters, one of whom crouches on the floor kissing his legs, Maulana Hamid Ul-Haq jokes about the nickname given by critics who have repeatedly labelled the school a hotbed of radicalisation. This is because its alumni include some of the Taliban’s most powerful and feared leaders, many of whom are on global wanted lists and are now in their new cabinet after the group swept to power in neighbouring Afghanistan last month.

The biggest names from the notorious Haqqani network, a US-designated terrorist group linked to the Taliban, have been taught there, including its founder, Jalaluddin Haqqani, and Khalil Haqqani, now the Taliban’s minister for refugees. The Taliban’s spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid is also a graduate.

Read more in light of its links to several well-known jihadis, the head of Darul Uloom Haqqania is trying to change its image following the Taliban victory: ‘We’re no longer ‘the University of jihad’ but ‘the University of the Taliban cabinet’: inside Pakistan’s notorious madrasa

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In Afghanistan and Pakistan can people trust the Taliban and find some good education

In 2015 there was a wave of outrage, crossing Pakistan’s national borders. The Taliban created a bloody rampage in a school in the province’s capital, Peshawar, killing 141 people including 132 uniformed children in what is being billed as the group’s single deadliest attack to date,

In their war against western, secular education, which the group has denounced as “un-Islamic”, the Pakistan Taliban have destroyed over 838 schools between 2009 and 2012, claimed responsibility for the near-fatal shooting of teenaged education advocate Malala Yousafzai who spoke out publicly against the prohibition on the education of girls that was imposed by the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP; sometimes called Pakistani Taliban). This Taliban issued numerous edicts against the right of women and girls to receive proper schooling. And today, notwithstanding their promises, it seems they are going to ban again any formal education for girls. Though they say it is only for a short period until they will have found out how to organise an education possibility for female Afghanis.

It may be strange to our ears to hear several Afghanis now want to cross the Pakistan border to find more safety. But perhaps they do know much better the intentions of the Afghan Taliban than we can ever imagine.

Young girls may also find some possibility to study in Pakistan, where the country isin a better condition than five years ago and where alternatives to terrorism and militancy bore some good fruits.

The Citizens Foundation (TFC), a local non-profit, busied itself with a pledge to build 141 Schools for Peace, one in the name of each person who lost their life on that terrible day.

“We dedicate this effort to the children of Pakistan, their right to education and their dreams of a peaceful future,”

said Syed Asaad Ayub Ahmad, CEO of TCF,  in an email launching the campaign.

“With the formidable challenges facing the nation, we passionately believe that only education has the power to enlighten minds, instil citizenship and unleash the potential of every Pakistani,”

he added.

While armed groups and government forces answer violence with more of the same, the active citizens who comprise TCF want to shift focus away from bloodshed and onto longer-term solutions for the future of this deeply troubled country.

The charity, which began in 1995, has completed 1,000 school ‘units’, typically a primary or secondary institution capable of accommodating up to 180 pupils, all built from scratch in the most impoverished areas of some 100 towns and cities across Pakistan.

The 7,700 teachers employed by the NGO go through a rigorous training programme before placement, and the organisation maintains a strict 50:50 male-female ratio for the 145,000 students who are now benefitting from a free education, according to TCF Vice President Zia Akhter Abbas.

In a country where 25.02 million school-aged children – of which 13.7 million (55 percent) are girls – do not receive any form of education, experts say TCF’s initiative may well act as a game changer in the years to come, especially given that the government spends just 2.1 percent of its GDP on education.

“Our job is to ensure that wherever we have our schools, there are no out-of-school children, especially girls,”

Abbas  said.

“We believe the change in society will come automatically once these educated and enlightened children grow up into responsible adults.”

Of the 25.02 million school-aged children who are not receiving a proper education, 13.7 million, or 55 percent, are girls. {Credit: Zofeen Ebrahim/IPS}

He added that the schools are designed to

“serve as a beacon of light restricting the advance of extremism in our society.”

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Healthcare Workers: Heroes of the modern world???

The true heroes, who are usually forgotten by society, are those who work for others without expecting anything in return. All over the world, we are fortunate to find such people volunteering for work that would otherwise be unaffordable and impossible to accomplish. Then there are the teachers and health workers, to whom society should give much more respect and recognition.

 

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Preceding

National Heroes Day Message of Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda

Your Nurse Marry

When I was young, I used to idolize a lot of characters in the movies I watched, especially those people who portrays act of kindness and heroism.

The COVid-19 pandemic that started in the year 2020 had made a drastic and devastating change in the lives of all people globally. The horrible effects of this virus spread abruptly from one country to another.

In today’s modern world, where new and innovative technologies are present and where new strains of unforeseen biological enemies arises, real heroes stood up and are continuously fighting the battle to help, care and protect all the people in world.

Medical facilities are continuously struggling to support all the people afflicted by the virus. Healthcare providers, nurses, allied health workers and other staff working in the hospitals are trying to offer the best and quality healthcare services needed. With full efforts, they devoted their time to give…

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The Fall of Kabul: The Return of the Taliban

To remember:

  • Mohammed Omar Afghan mullah (cleric) and mujahid commander who led the Taliban and founded the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan in 1996.
  • Kandahar, Afghanistan’s second largest city after Kabul, located in the south of the country on the Arghandab River, at an elevation of 1,010 m (3,310 ft).
  • 2001 destruction of two giant Buddhas in Bamiyan by the all male group Taliban = lack of respect by the Taliban for historical &  cultural heritage of Afghanistan.
  • February 2020, Trump administration + Taliban signed historic deal in Doha, Qatar > 14-month timetable for America & NATO allies to withdraw all of its forces from Afghanistan. > Taliban agreed not to allow al-Qaeda or any extremist group to operate in the areas they control.
  • Since 2001 the war forced 2.7 million Afghans to flee their homes mostly to Iran, Pakistan and Europe.
  • United States of America Defense Department states > war- fighting costs over the years in Afghanistan total $815.7 billion; from food for troops to fuel; to Humvees, weapons and ammunition; from tanks to amoured vehicles to aircraft carriers to airstrikes.
  • Taliban = not strong in area of human rights or women’s right. impose strict limitations on women’s bodies & their human rights + women treated as possession of men
  • women are not allowed to dance in public, => bachas (boys), as young as 12, usually orphans or from very poor families, can be made to dance in women’s clothing + they are often sexually abused = bachabaze = playing with boys
  • Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) = second largest inter-governmental organization after the United Nations, + collective voice of Muslim world to ensure & safeguard their interest on economic socio and political areas

waykam

“Victory has a thousand fathers, but defeat is an orphan.”- John F. Kennedy.

We have all seen the stunning and alarming images on our television; hundreds of Afghans both men and women running alongside a U.S. Air Force C-17 transport plane as it moves down a runway of the Hamid Karzai International airport in Kabul, Afghanistan. The script was not supposed to end like this. The Taliban have moved with fighting speed to control Afghanistan. The United States of American trained Afghan security forces hardly resisted the Taliban. This military maneuvering by the Taliban has led many to wonder whether or not the United States and her allies miscalculated the capacity and capabilities of the Taliban. Many will view the surrender of Kabul as well as the other provinces in Afghanistan with some suspicion especially since the former president Ashraf Ghani fled before Kabul fell to the Taliban. A significant…

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Afghanistan — What It Tells You

We may not forget that the ultraconservative political and religious faction that emerged in Afghanistan in the mid-1990s following the withdrawal of Soviet troops, protected and hid Osama Bin Laden, who was responsible for the 9/11 attack on the U.S.A.. Them also enforcing a strict interpretation of Sharia, or Islamic law, and wanting to have that Sharia being practised all over the world, they were a threat to the entire Western democratic world.

The Taliban already gave our Western world a picture of what would happen when they would govern all the world. During their rule from 1996 to 2001, the Taliban and their allies committed massacres against Afghan civilians, denied UN food supplies to 160,000 starving civilians and conducted a policy of scorched earth, burning vast areas of fertile land and destroying tens of thousands of homes. In several countries where those conservative Islamists take power, we can witness how they banned activities and media including paintings, photography, and movies if they showed people or other living things (?!?), and prohibited music using instruments. In all countries where those religious activists took power, women were oppressed and could not study or take a proper job. Except in the medical field because male doctors were prohibited from seeing women, and therefore a few women were allowed to treat females under certain circumstances.

The whole affair is not a comedy of errors, but more a tragedy of errors.

Henry's Views

What the fall of Afghanistan to the Taliban tells you about the limits of American power is that we can’t change the ethos of other countries — that is well beyond our capability. We can’t take a deeply conservative, male-oriented, and archly Islamic country and make it over into our image of a Western democracy with equal rights for everyone and freedom of religion. And we shouldn’t try to. It’s bound to fail.

They are all now blaming Biden for this defeat, but, to be honest, he was a very late player in this comedy of errors. The initial error was to expand our enemies list from al-Qaeda to the Taliban. The Taliban never attacked the US; al-Qaeda did.

Another Vietnam?

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Afghan filmmaker Sahraa Karimi

Noted Afghan filmmaker Sahraa Karimi has penned an open letter calling on the world to wake up to the impact of the Talibans swift takeover of Afghanistan. She calls for protection for filmmakers and for women in general against the brutal militants who have overrun the country amid the final US withdrawal of forces.

Karimi, who previously directed “Hava, Maryam Ayesha,” a film about abortion that appeared at the Venice festival in 2019, says that despite the slick public image, the Taliban’s agenda is brutally feudalistic, paternalistic, and involves turning the clock back on women’s rights.

“(The Taliban) will strip women’s rights, we will be pushed into the shadows of our homes and our voices, our expression will be stifled into silence. When the Taliban were in power, zero girls were in school. Since then, there are over 9 million Afghan girls in school. Just in these few weeks, the Taliban have destroyed many schools and 2 million girls are forced now out of school again,”

said Karimi.

“Everything that I have worked so hard to build as a filmmaker in my country is at risk of falling. If the Taliban take over they will ban all art. I and other filmmakers could be next on their hit list,”

she said. Karimi is also head of state-owned Afghan Film.

Karimi says that the Taliban’s agenda targets the suppression both of women and the liberal arts.

“In the last few weeks, the Taliban have massacred our people, they kidnapped many children, they sold girls as child brides to their men, they murdered a woman for her attire, they gouged the eyes of a woman, they tortured and murdered one of our beloved comedians, they murdered one of our historian poets, (and) they murdered the head of culture and media for the (now deposed) government,”

her letter asserted.

Khaled Hosseini, author of the book “The Kite Runner” which was later adapted as a film, called the Taliban takeover a nightmare.

“The American decision has been made. And the nightmare Afghans feared is unfolding before our eyes. We cannot abandon a people that have searched forty years for peace. Afghan women must not be made to languish again behind locked doors & pulled curtains,”

he said on Twitter.

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