Saturday, 28 April 2012

A Heart that Forgives

This is a brilliant music video called 'A Heart that Forgives' that I really wanted to use as part of last week's post (What is forgiveness?) but didn't want that post to be too long.

It's only 5 minutes and has such beautiful lyrics, showing some relevant life scenarios related to forgiveness. It brings to mind some of the comments made in the previous week's post. I really hope you enjoy it as much as I do.

You can enlarge the video screen by pressing square next to the word vimeo

Kevin LeVar - A Heart that Forgives Music Video from Feature Productions Inc. on Vimeo.

What do you think?

Friday, 20 April 2012

What Is Real Forgiveness?

Forgiveness is typically defined as the process of concluding resentment, indignation or anger as a result of a perceived offense, difference or mistake, or ceasing to demand punishment or restitution (Wikipedia).

Ceasing to demand punishment I say in a coy voice. This is a real tough one for me.

I know that in the past I have truly forgiven people for causing me great offence but I now wonder if, after looking back at the matter, I really ceased from demanding punishment. I kept them out of my personal life and space permanently. Out of sight and out of mind. 

Furthermore, I recently began to think, was it right to have nothing more to do with those people? Don't get me wrong on this, how could you ever trust them again? What's the point in playing games with people and wasting one's time? Isn't that the purpose of having this thing called a memory, so that you don't forget? Are we not told, that 'those who do not know history are condemned to repeat it', so why put yourself back in the firing line, then complain that you got shot? After all, losing your memory is seen as a bad thing, so why deny it's use? 
I fully understand that some relationships need to be severed for safety's sake and for peace of mind, but I was severing on a different level. 

I have in the past tried to continue offended relationships, but it always ends in resentment, anger and bad thoughts against that person. I have no problem being polite and saying hello when I bump into them, but anything more would simply make me feel like a hypocrite, pretending to enjoy their company when all I'm really thinking about is how they might 'stab me in the back' again. You see, I don't like 'living in the grey'. I like to know where I stand, so trust and honesty are very important factors in the people I have around me. Sever it, and I'm done. 

With all that said, does it mean therefore that I have not truly forgiven them, because if I had, wouldn't I be willing to give them a second chance? That's my dilemma and this is what has been bugging me for a number of weeks now.

So, my big questions are:
What does it really mean to forgive, and can you share your stories of real forgiveness with us? 
Should you forget what was done to you and move on as if nothing happened?
How many chances should you give someone before you call it a day? 

Friday, 13 April 2012

Organ Donation - Do they deserve a second chance?

Do you believe that people who continuously abuse their bodies through excessive drinking, smoking, drugs, alcohol, over-eating and many other harmful behaviours should have an unfettered right to an organ transplant? And God forbid, should the first transplant fail, should they then be put on a waiting list to receive another organ?

This is where my aggravated annoyance kicks in. We only need visit a hospital to see just how many sick and dying people require donor transplants. Donors are hard to come by. Not everyone who dies donates their organs, so there is not an abundant amount of them available. It is then up to the specialists to decide who gets them first.

Should the donated kidney be given to Mr Obesity, who knew he was at critical point but refused to exercise, refused to eat a balanced healthy diet, and carefully sneaks a chocolate bar into the cupboard beside his hospital bed? Or should the kidney go to someone who would benefit more from it?

Should the  donated lung go to Mrs Smoker, who can hardly breathe, barely able to walk, wearing a dressing gown, with one hand holding the stand of the hospital 'drip' whilst the other grasps a cigarette. She puffs away in the hospital gardens, fumigating all and sundry. I have seen this on many occasions and it saddens yet sickens me. 

Most people will have heard of George Best, a famous footballer in England. He was an alcoholic who died in 2005. He had a liver transplant in 2002 via the National Health Service. In 2003 he was caught drinking again (not to mention his drunk driving episodes). George openly continued to drink before and after the transplant.  It was like kicking sand in my face. Alcoholic cirrhosis is just one of the biggest reasons for requiring a liver transplant. The organ he received could have gone to someone more deserving. 

With such a history, is there a possibility that he was deemed to fit the criteria because he was famous? Just one of my wild thoughts again. 

What about all the thousands of others on the waiting list? Most of them will die waiting for a heart, kidney or liver. They chose to live a healthy life but found themselves in unfortunate situations, such as being diagnosed with an illness, having a severe accident or even the effects of medication through no fault of their own. Why weren't they shoved to the front of the queue? 

Bloggers and guests:
What is your honest opinion about donation of organs to people who have clearly abused their own bodies?
Would you consider donating parts of your body after death or even donating your whole body to science?
It would be great to hear your views.

Friday, 6 April 2012

Immigrants - In or Out?

What is it about immigration that sends us into a tail spinning frenzy? Why is it that we hate to share our country with others? 
From where I stand, a high majority of British people that I know, are against immigrants. This is because they see them as coming into this country and claiming benefits when they have never worked here. They feel they are using up our free National Health Service without first contributing to it. They feel immigrants are getting their housing needs met instantly, when others have been on a waiting list for accommodation for years. They blame immigrants for taking our jobs when there is already such a high rate of unemployment, especially during this economic downturn. 

I really began to look around me and this is what I saw. 

Yes, there is a high unemployment rate, but when you look at some of the immigrants who are employed, they are the ones doing the low paid jobs that most of us don't want to do. Look at the cleaners, yes, those that clean the public toilets after you have used them. Look at the dustbin men who pick up your litter and clean our streets, sometimes when we are tucked up nicely in bed. Look at the foreign labourers on building sites, the ones who are building our future homes, the homes those immigrants may never be able to afford. Let's not forget the ones who work on the buses, the underground systems and who drive our mini-cabs. Without them, London would be at a stand-still. When was the last time you ordered a take-away? Who delivered it? I honestly cannot recall right now the last time a take-away driver was not foreign. 

Let's take a look at the asian shop-keeper. Everyone loves to complain that there is an asian shop owner on every corner, and they are open all hours of the day and night and they are 'taking over'  Why shouldn't they be, in a sense?
If British people don't want to work all those hard hours for mediocre pay, then don't begrudge the man who does. If British workers don't wish to work 7 days a week with hardly any holidays each year, then don't begrudge those who do. 

There are so many jobs that many people just won't do as it is 'beneath them'. So when a immigrant who is grateful to earn a penny to put food on the table for his family does, why do we make such a fuss?

Immigration is a serious concern without proper border control and laws in place. If we don't want them to claim benefits, then blame the government and parliament, to get the rules changed and not the person who is making a legal claim. We are also at liberty to vote, to lobby parliament and so forth. 

If we don't want them in our country then take some time and think about the following: 

The clothes you are wearing, what country did it come from?
The foods you are eating and the coffee you are drinking, where were they produced? I bet the majority of those lovely strawberries you see at wimbledon tennis tornaments were picked by immigrants!
The gas or electric you are using to keep yourself warm, where did that come from?
I don't believe any country in this world is totally self sufficient. We need each other in order to survive. 

If you are one of those who hates immigrants then be true to yourself and have absolutely nothing to do with them. You'll end up cold, naked, hungry and very lonely indeed. 

Got a beef with immigrants? Then let me have it. You can always post anonymously if concerned. Remember the rules folks. 
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