Photographer’s art forms message of unity, peace

By Mona Shadia, Staff Writer @

REDLANDS – There are the piercing eyes of the young Indian girl posed with her hands pressed together as if in prayer.

And there’s the Indian man holding a pan of cement above his head as he climbs upstairs.

They’re images that 23-year-old Ryan Berk of Redlands can never forget – nor can many who view his photographs and read short stories about his travels abroad.
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The Pursuit of Happiness

By Jacob Baron, The Dartmouth Staff

We Americans work a lot. A 2005 study by the Families and Work Institute found that two-thirds of Americans are either “highly” or “chronically” overworked, and it shows in our faces and sighs. All American workers face the basic conflict between material comfort and leisure time. Why can’t we have a lot of both? The immediate answer is our market-driven economy, which ensures that punishment for slacking off is swift and dire. The deeper answer is the interaction of two inconveniences fundamental to humanity: hedonism and narcissism.
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A little while ago I added the “Free Hugs” video (which can still be seen in the Videos section of this blog) and today, just now, saw this other great story. I recommend you all to check it out and support what they are doing. Little by little, we can change the world, one hug at a time!

Caleb Shikles has passed on, as you will see when you click the links, but his grandson John Halcyon is carrying on with the effort that Caleb began.

Click here for the Hug-Nation website

Or here to read the story and watch a video from Yahoo News

Few words, many smiles.

I don’t have many words either, and I was smiling nearly the whole time. The best way to describe this video is inspiring! Take 3 minutes and thirty-nine seconds of your time, please, and watch! Very good music to listen to, as well as the story playing out on the video.

The band is called Sick Puppies (don’t let that scare you, they’re quite mellow) and the song is “All The Same”. The story playing out is one man’s mission to give free hugs to those who want them. Amazing!

Changing jobs and…

… a couple other things. First, I updated the videos. Added a couple from Lama Surya Das, one of the leading Western Buddhist teachers. Also added an interview that I really enjoyed. It is with Noah Levine, author or “Dharma Punx” and “Against The Stream”. So why not take a few minute and drop by the videos section and check them out.

Second, I finally got a different job, and it’s doing exactly the thing I love to do, work on computers. Not hardware or anything, but design (layout design) and building/maintaining websites. For the past year I’ve been a salesman with print company, on hopes that one day I would get back into the world of creating rather than selling. So I am rather happy to announce it, the job will be great. The company is up and coming, has only been around for a little under 3 years now. They’ve got some great clients and with some contacts I’ve made hopefully we’ll get really busy and make a bigger impact.
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