What we can learn from the day the US burned to death 100.000 women / children

Redwood Forest


Red Ice Creations
redicecreations.com|By Henrik Palmgren


2015-03-12 20:25

From: stopwar.org.uk


“America’s needless firebombing of Tokyo in 1945 is one of the ‘good war’ myths used to justify the endless war policies of today.

March 9, 2015 marked the seventieth anniversary of the American firebombing of Tokyo, World War II’s deadliest day.

More people died that night from napalm bombs than in the atomic strikes on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. But few in the United States are aware that the attack even took place.

The lack of ceremonies or official state apologies for the firebombing is unsurprising considering that many Americans see World War II as the “just war” fought by the “greatest generation.” These labels leave the war and the atrocities Americans committed during it largely untouched…

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Walk the Talk: The 90-Day Program (02)

I hope it is clear to you by now why you need to work on some changes. If not, I suggest you take some time to gather your thoughts; of how important it is to you. Again I tell you, it’s not going to be easy.

It was some time in October 2014 when a friend of mine introduced me into a program, which he himself had undergone. Although I instantly noticed the dramatic physical changes in him (which is really great given his age), I was not very optimistic then nevertheless.

03 Nov 2014This photo was taken on 03 Nov 2014, the day I enrolled in the program. Also was the day my first picture was taken.

To be honest in that time, I really didn’t think that I need the program, that I’m really that FAT after all (I bet many others think this way also). Mind you, I was a very big fan of McDonald’s back then. I never missed a day without grabbing something from the popular fast food chain, practically anything from Vanilla Sundae to BigMac. But I still have the guts to pretend to myself that I was doing okay, that I’m not that FAT, just a bit heavy. Talk about some form of self-conceit.

So my friend and I set up a meeting to learn more about the program. To my surprise, he was also introducing it to others who are much more on the “heavier” side than me. From that point, I realised that he’s into something big, something more than the money. He is helping people find a solution to their chronic weight concerns. I admired his position from then. Thinking of the background I have, I said to myself that once I got through the program, I will also share his work, his passion, and try to tell as many people as I can about it; so that they may know a proven way of getting healthier.

But there was the problem. The problem was, I forgot that I also had to pay to enrol on the program. My friend noticed the sudden reluctance in me as we discussed the enrolment, and so the ball was on my court. Trying to think it over, I remembered my stats taken earlier in the discussion:

Total Bodyweight: 72.3 kgs

Body Fat: 27.5%

Visceral Fat Index: 10

Body Mass Index (BMI): 25.9

Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR): 1619

Body Age: 40 Years Old

Skeletal Muscle: 30.7%

From this point on, it dawned on me that I was heading into trouble if I don’t do anything (that is if I’m not yet into one). I was deeply bothered, especially with my body age. I just turned 26 years old a month before that yet, my body age registered at 40 years old! Suddenly, I remembered my dad. Could it be that when he died at age 43, his body age was in the 60’s or even 70’s? I somehow relented. But still I was not able to completely convince myself that I badly needed to take action. To make thing easier, I had to think of my reasons thoroughly.

First, I know that facing the risk of going through life with the potential health issues, i.e. heart disease; far outweigh the cost of starting the program soon. What have I got to lose then? Should I first risk going through, say a heart attack before I make changes? Unfortunately, many people choose to go through it before making changes with their lives. I think it’s too much of a price to pay – the emotional toll of the uncertainty of life and death situation. Plus, if I get healthier over time, it would be priceless. I think the answer is common sense.

Second, which I think the more important reason is that, I was month away from getting married during that time. It means, I will be starting a family soon after that. I also happened to know that my wife (my fiancée back then) and I are the very first example for our children. And with regard to eating habits, I realised how terrible an example I will make. How can I possibly tell them to eat fruits, vegetables and avoid the fast food chains while I stuff myself with BigMac and French Fries? I resolved that this is out of the question. This is not about me anymore. Again, I think the answer is common sense.

I mentioned in the previous article a bit of my background and family history, yet you can see that I still had my weaknesses in me – those poor eating habits. Without these EMOTIONAL reasons, I might still be stuck today in that state of self-conceit, thinking that I’m not that fat, that there’s nothing wrong with me. Today, though I am still a fan of McDonald’s, I learned to handle it in a proper way nonetheless.

As they say, “There’s no such thing as free lunch. Everything has a price.” Personally, I believe in this statement. Although not all price are paid in terms of money. Most people are conditioned to think of money when they hear the word price. It could mean time and other non-tangible stuff. The 90-Day Program I embarked on kick-started the process of a transformation towards a healthier lifestyle. But again, there was a price I had to pay, one in money and ultimately, in TIME and DISCIPLINE. I believe I just had a bargain; for all these are a lot cheaper than days inside an ICU or a lifetime of “maintenance” drugs.

Walk the Talk: Introduction (01)

So how did it all start? Let me first share to you my background…

As you may know with my professional background, I was trained as an engineer. I don’t work in constructions sites. I started a career in a large consulting firm in which I spend most of my time of the day SITTING. Fast forward today, I still work in an office, although at times it’s in my home office. But as you see, nothing much has changed. I still sit for long hours. My lifestyle is just like that of the majority out there, it’s sedentary. If it’s also you, I’m giving you a glimpse of hope.

Now here’s the catch. On some days, I go to the gym to lift weights; typically, thrice a week. I did this since 2009. At the beginning, I also used to do some cardio until some time in 2011 when I completely dropped cardio in favour of solely strength training. But as you see, I’m neither big nor bulky. So I also like to refute the idea that lifting weights will automatically make you big and bulky, especially for women. I’ll discuss this in detail later in the series.

In the middle of 2012, I was introduced to the health and wellness industry, totally unrelated to my professional background. But since then, I somehow become an enthusiast in the industry. I get to broker information and sell some supplements along the way. Working in the industry, I somehow walked away from the doctor’s office and started not to believe most of them.  To my mind, the medical industry is primarily the study of DISEASE.

Now, you might get curious as to why. Why strive to get fit? Why choose the H&W industry? Why not simply focus only in engineering? While there is this notion that H&W industry is the TREND and the next BIG thing, I have my personal reasons. The reason in fairly simple; it’s called FAMILY HISTORY.

The fact is, I think I’m not lucky enough to be blessed with very wonderful genes. Now, don’t be surprised. My grandfather died at age 44, long before I was born. The cause of death is a heart disease. I don’t know much of the details since I’m not around yet. The story gets worse when my dad died at age 43, five years ago, and a year shorter of my grandfather’s age. Now you may guess the cause. Yes you’re right, it’s also heart disease.

MedalThis photo was taken sometime October 2009, almost 3 months before he died.

I may not be able to get a trace longer that two generations since you see, their lifespan is quite short. It’s sad. But to look at the bright side, I somehow knew where I stand. Good news is from the study of Harvard School of Public Health on obesity: “Genes Are Not Destiny” (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/obesity-prevention-source/obesity-causes/genes-and-obesity/). I’m not that familiar with the correlation between obesity and heart disease but I know somehow they are related. This gives me an idea that I need to make DRAMATIC changes in my lifestyle.

It should be clear to you by now why there is seemingly a passion behind my words and why I chose to get involved in the H&W industry. On the other hand, you might be skeptically saying: “Why bother?! I don’t want to worry about my conditions. I am perfectly fine and don’t feel anything bad. Besides, we are all going to DIE anyway. I’d rather drink and be merry.” If that’s your point, maybe you don’t need to read further. I sincerely thank you for your time. But for me, I’d like to take my chances rather than do nothing at all. I suggest let’s deny ourselves the dignity to fight for what we believe in.

I completely agree that death is the common destination we all share. There’s nothing we can do about it. But as I see it, the idea of death is exactly what makes life more wonderful. As what Aerosmith says: “Life’s a journey, not a destination. And you just can’t tell, what does tomorrow bring” That is simply the nature of life. After all this makes the process more important than the goal.

I say this to you to find your reason(s) why you need to change. Because I tell you now, it’s not easy. In fact, I advise you not to read further if these are all unclear to you yet.

Walk the Talk: My 12 Weeks of Fitness Journey

As I mentioned in my Facebook Status Update, I am going to write all the stuff I have been through within the twelve (12) weeks of my “transformation”. This is for all my relatives and friends who are very keen to pick up some ideas. While there are people who are passive with their health conditions, I know that there are others who are struggling to keep a healthy weight and stature.  I hope this might also help them in some way. So, I would try my best to give you a walkthrough of what was it like to fight for your weight, stature and fitness goals.



Many of you might expect that I will put this through in one sitting. I’m afraid it’s not going to work that way. Although it is possible that I would simply write the “step-by-step” plan, I bet in the end, you will tell me: “I tried, but it didn’t work!”. Trust me, it does not work that way. As I have said, much of it is a MIND game. Any clear plan or system will not help you in any way if you do not have the proper mindset. It is of utmost importance for you to understand this; the earlier, the better.

Again, I warn you. This is not an entertainment. Please, do not expect to read what you want to read. I will tell you what I think you need to read. Why should you proceed then? Maybe you’re wondering if I really know what I’m talking about. Here is a thing from Donald Trump: “You ask a Baker how to make bread. You ask a Billionaire how to make money.” In a similar manner, you ask a fit person how he gets fit and you ask a FAT person how he gets FAT. It is common sense.

As for the structure, I’m breaking this into parts. I will be sharing with you a series of articles from my journal in the coming months. Starting with the introduction, which I think will be the MOST important part of the series. Here I will layout my reasons why I started in the first place. After such an introduction, I will dwell on the practices I have had during the twelve weeks of my journey –the actual plan. On the last part, I will include some ideas which I am currently experimenting upon. It has only been three (3) months and I believe I did not accomplish much (thanks to my high standards). So I still give myself another three (3). I also encourage the readers to put their thoughts in as well, so as to have productive discussions.

So, let’s stay in touch for the next few months and I sincerely hope that you would learn some ideas and apply them along the way.



People, Are People

How hard would it be, if things have gone differently?

This is one of the questions I ask myself in quiet times. It is in these moments when I get to confront myself and be able to answer tough questions.

As an engineer, I was trained to work with numbers, patterns, logic and relationships. This enables me to design and create systems. Had these thoughts not crossed my mind, much of my time might still be confined in stuff that only has to do with engineering.

I understand that we all have to fill different roles in society in order to make progress. Different people do different things. As I observed, we all, ultimately, do the same things but we tend to operate in different mindset and perspective. It bothers me to think that most of us spend the big chunk of our lives perfecting our craft, our profession or whatever it is we do. Quite in the contrary, certain areas of our lives require us to function in a more flexible and general fashion.

I wonder. If we spend much of our time in understanding people, in understanding how we interact with one another, maybe we would get to see a better life. It is quite stunning that most of us tend to devote their lives in the study of the objects of the world; learning about computers, animals, plants, even the heavenly bodies, but not about people, as human beings, with whom we spend our entire life with. I wonder how different would it be.

As I ponder through these thoughts, there’s a certain subject that I have in mind – Relationships.

I said earlier that I’m an engineer. I work, using the laws of science and nature, to design and create systems. The wonderful thing about this, is I get a certain degree of control and somehow I could predict the results. I call the shots.

I wish I could say that the same is true for relationships. So when the time comes that they have to end, we could easily have them ended just as how beautifully as we intended them to be, in the beginning. But I guess they are not, and I’m afraid they could never be. We hurt, we lost but somehow we trust and ultimately, we love. Relationships, unlike engineering, are not governed by exact science. When some series of events happen, natural or otherwise, one after another, relationships could end up severed, in a dead-end. In some cases, it is too late to be saved; although personally, I don’t close doors on people.

As human beings, we all have hopes and wishes; frustrations and regrets. At one point or another, we bet on people to be there for us, with us, as part of our future. But for certain reasons, they cannot or for others, we simply cannot. When we dwell deep inside to look for the right reasons and for the seemingly good answer, it is there where we find how hard it is to let go, or how hard it is to believe that it isn’t worth to give up.

As they say, all things must pass and all things inevitably come to an end. It is right there where I am certain: in every ending, there are thoughts, feelings and words which never found their way toward expression…

So, how hard would it be, if things have gone differently?


A Confession of a Young Man

I know I have done things which I am not supposed to; in a similar manner that I did not do things that I should’ve done.

I know the world would never wait for me; but it’s just really a delightful feeling knowing that I am going through the process – that I am still in the process despite all the hard hits that I took from life. And I know life would continue to hit me as hard as it could. It doesn’t matter so long as I could pick myself up.

Yes, I learned a lot of things and there are much more to learn; but there is so much even more to UNLEARN.


School taught me that it is bad to make mistakes, that there is only one answer to certain questions. It gave me a lot of questions and it tested me if I could find the right answers. Whenever I got it right, I feel good about myself. Now I know that life doesn’t work that way. Life gives you tests before it gives you its lessons – that is if you think you’re not “too smart”.

The words: “Experience is the best teacher” is very much understated. We learn so much from making mistakes. While I had some winning moments in my life, they only taught me one thing: to be proud of myself; and nothing more.

I am no longer afraid to fail for I think I already failed number of times. And it is with those times that I learned a lot about life, most especially about myself. I learned how to treat people better. That is never about the title they give you. College graduates and other professionals often think they are smarter than those who never went to college. These guys even go back to school to fool themselves that they will become even smarter than their peers. On the other hand, some of those who never went to school feel they are inferior and outcast.

The more you feel smarter, the more you fear to fail; until you lose your will to try anything new. Then you start wishing and hear yourself saying “if only”. So there you go, living a life of quiet desperation. It’s very disheartening. Don’t let this happen to you. Stand up and fight for your dreams. It could always be better – we could always get better.

Most of us have that fear of poverty and being broke. Why should I? At age 25, I’ve been broke a couple of times. It doesn’t hurt so bad except my pride.

Now, I am working on the courage to let go of the life based on other people’s expectations. A remnant of the values school taught me. I need not afraid of what other people might say. Once I’m done with this, I know nothing can stop me. So, go on and continue to flap your mouths. If you cannot take care of yourself and you’re too afraid to face your own life, carry on. But let me tell you that you could never fix yourself in destroying others, ever.

Yes, I am ambitious and sometimes maybe completely out of my league. That’s because I have BIG dreams. I always believed God has all these for me. At least, I have the courage to go out and chase them; the courage to find out what I am made of.  And these are waking me up in the morning; not an alarm clock.

One thing I know for sure, the security-driven employment is fine for some people but not for me. If I am raising a family, that’s not the type of values I would want to pass on. No matter what happens, I am never coming back.

My story.

Yours Aye,

Money Or Happiness? Does It Really Have To Be “OR”?

How many times have you heard the statement: “Money can’t buy happiness”? I bet a hundred if not a thousand times. It already became a cliché. Perhaps, a person hears it, tells it to another crowd and another person from it tells it to another crowd then tells it to another and so on; until it becomes a part of every conversation in town. That “wise men” are conditioned and expected to say it, just like saying “hello” whenever someone answers the phone. So there you go, money can’t buy happiness – monkey sees, monkey does.


Where it all started, I don’t have any way of knowing. But quite sadly, such opinion has taken away most people without even asking questions. By simply accepting that money can’t buy happiness, a person subconsciously chooses happiness over money or material things. Certainly, this person will easily let go of any opportunity for money or material gain in pursuit of happiness. In his mind, the other one is inferior and eventually discarded.

To me, this is RIDICULOUS. Money and happiness are two irrelevant subjects in the first place. But with such statement, the mind is forced to choose between them. You CAN be both happy and unhappy when you’re broke. (Trust me) And you CAN be both happy and unhappy even when you are rich. Funny, those whom I hear say that money can’t buy you happiness often are those who are poor, unhappy, dissatisfied and regretful.

I came across a passage from Napoleon Hill’s Think And Grow Rich which I would like to share with you:

 “If you are one of those who believe that hard work and honesty alone will bring riches, you can forget it. It is not true. Riches when they come in huge quantities are never the result of hard work alone. Riches come, if they come at all, in response to definite DEMANDS based upon the application of definite principles and not by chance or luck.”

If it is true that there is no compromise between poverty and riches, material or otherwise, then we are all in poverty. (Unless you object with this, I’ll be more than happy to meet you and discuss how you were able to beat poverty.) And we therefore shall demand upon ourselves the necessary decision and action to wield us out of this situation, lest, we will find not just ourselves but also the sons of our grandsons and the generations to come, still trapped in poverty. As others say, poverty is a curse.

So, why bother to write about this Money-Happiness feat? Let’s just say that millions if not billions of people around the world spend almost their entire life working for money, yet fail to seek happiness at the end of their journey. They spend their most valuable resource – TIME, in exchange for a penny. Besides, it is fair enough to say that in today’s society, money is important in sustaining life.

We are not in this world merely to survive, work, eat, sleep or maybe even multiply. We are all more than these. These are the functions of other animals lower than us which are driven by instinct alone. We are not here for the 8 to 5 scheme and a 40-hour work week. We are not here to look forward to weekends, holidays, breaks or vacations and travels. We are not here for the forty years of job security and a retirement pension and other benefits. We are not here just for the status quo.

We are not clamshells who are simply swept by the tide or “fate” whatever. We are privileged to be given the right to freedom – to choose and to decide. We are not monkeys who simply do what they see. We are human beings. Nature endowed us with the ability to think and to reason.

Life does not merely happen to us. We create it as we live it. Thus, we are all responsible for CREATING a meaningful and fulfilling life. Not dictated nor limited by the opinion of others no matter how well-meaning they may be.

The world has more than enough riches and abundance for nations to be poor. Happiness, just like riches is a matter of choice. It is a decision that is ours to make. It is never evil to nourish the body nor it is holy to nourish the soul alone. We all live through body, mind and soul. In the ultimate pursuit of happiness, none is better than the other. All are of equal importance.

Happy New Year and let’s all look forward to a more abundant and more meaningful life.

Make it happen.

As Always,