Here is a beautiful and interesting blog

I just discovered this blog. It looks looks like a real winner with a promise of being very helpful.

Click here: https://shortwisdom.wordpress.com/

There is treasure here!

Questions to think about (3): Love now

“One day, you are going to hug your last hug, kiss your last kiss and hear someone’s voice for the last time, but you never know when the last time will be. Live every day as if it were the last time you will be with the person you love.”

Does this quote speak to you? Is the message prompting you to do something, right now?

Author of quote unknown to me

Rule based answering 1.1

When answering a question identify a general rule that can guide you.

Example

Q: Your Bank phones saying they are checking their records. They ask you to confirm your account number. How should you respond?

Note. As a general rule Banks do not communicate this way. For this reason a “red flag” should go up and you should not give the information. It is quite probably a scam.

So. bearing in mind this general rule, you might answer as follows:

A: Thank you for calling. As a general rule I do not give this information over the phone. Goodbye.

This is a very simple example but it has wide application. I hope to expand on it in 1.2. which will explain the important role of context in some answers.

Hot tip: Watch how White House Press Secretary Jennifer Psaki answers difficult questions from the press. It is a master class.

Sunlight and Free Speech

The sunlight of free speech is the best disinfectant against the darkness of irrational beliefs.

Photo by Rajiv Bajaj on Unsplash

Based on a metaphor in Free Speech by Andrew Doyle

Reflection and Commitment

Reflection and commitment

If you commit without reflection you are a fanatic. If you reflect but never act you are of no practical use.

The secret to the instant clear communication of an argument

The secret is the top down sequence.

First state the question and in a few words explain the context.

Second, state your conclusion.

Third, state how many reasons you have for your conclusion.

Fourth, say what each reason is about and then give details.

Fifth, repeat your conclusion.

For example:

“The question is whether the house on 6th Street should be demolished.

My view is that it should be.

I have two reasons for this.

First, it is a health hazard: The walls are broken. The roof is beyond repair. The building is infested with rats.

Second, It is a fire hazard: The rooms are full of rubbish, broken wood and other flammable material. Vagrants light fires in the ruin.

Consequently, my view is that the house should be demolished.”

Note:

  • The hearer is immediately knows what the communication is about.
  • The hearer is immediately told the conclusion.
  • The hearer is told there will be two supporting reasons.
  • The hearer is given a warning that a reason is coming, is told what the reason is and then is given details.
  • The hearer is again told the conclusion.

Watch Lord Jonathan Sumption using this way of arguing. Lord Sumption is regarded as one of the cleverest people in England. Click here.

The top down approach is similar to the Pyramid Principle taught by Barbara Minto. Her book is on Amazon. Click here. Please note this is an affiliate link. This blog post was prompted by my listening to Lord Sumption

Chinese Ink vs. Memory

Put all important communications and contracts in writing, Later it makes it easy for you to prove what was communicated or agreed.

Good advice. Why? Memories fade away. A written record lasts much longer.

A saying attributed to China explains it this way:

The faintest ink is more powerful than the sharpest memory

The Sacred Call of the Sea

NB: There is a picture below the post.

It was the English poet John Keats who wrote:

On the Sea

It keeps eternal whisperings around
Desolate shores ….
….
Oh ye! whose ears are dinned with uproar rude,
Or fed too much with cloying melody—
Sit ye near some old Cavern’s Mouth and brood,
Until ye start, as if the sea nymphs quired!

Keats suggests that if we have had enough of this noisy world, we should go to a quiet place by the sea and sit “near some old Cavern’s mouth and brood”. Suddenly, out of the silence we may be startled to hear choirs of sea nymphs singing.

We are being called to go back to nature and to allow her to gently embrace us in her healing arms.

This sacred call of the sea is exquisitely captured in the beautiful photograph below. Be still. Can you hear the call?

Photpgraph: Mariska Spoormaker

A big thank you to Mariska Spoormaker for permission to use her beautiful photograph. Mariska took the picture on the Sacramento Trail near Port Elizabeth in South Africa.