Challenging Extremism in Pakistan

Beygairat Brigade, or ‘a Brigade without Honour’, are 3 young guys from Pakistan challenging the military, religious fundamentalists, and anti-American conspiracy theorists with songs like “Aalu Anday” (“Potatoes and Eggs”) that I posted below. If you watch the video, stick around to the 2 minute mark and the metaphor starts to make sense.

The song rues the fact that killers and religious extremists are hailed as heroes in Pakistan, while someone like Abdus Salam, the nation’s only Nobel Prize-winning scientist, is often ignored because he belonged to the minority Ahmadi sect. – New York Times

The song is catching fire in Pakistan where there’s a surprisingly large but often quiet liberal population. I’m inspired by how these guys are changing their society with just a video camera, a song, Youtube and a lot of courage.

Snorkelling in the Molokini volcanic crater

Sonja and I caught a boat ride this morning to Molokini Island for a few hours of snorkelling. We didn’t see anything big but we were serenaded by humpback whales the whole time — If you listen carefully you can hear them in the video. They sounded so close Sonja wanted to swim out and find them.

The Molokini Crater is a partially sunken volcanic coldera off the coast of Maui. It’s also a marine reserve and, apparently, one of the best dive sites in the world.

The end times are near

It was only a matter of time before someone saw the recent mass deaths of cows, birds and fish as a sign of … neuro-toxic pollution? Severe weather shifts bringing unsurvivable cold or heat? The new media’s hyper-connectivity giving rise to the cognitive linking of similar but otherwise unrelated phenomena? Nope: something much more simple and obvious: the end of the world. “Are you serious? Could this be real? Are you serious? Yes!”

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Heads up: Does the Death of 200 Cows in Wisconsin Confirm Biblical Prophecy?

Fallen: An animation about Life, death, existence

The quote that drew me to check out this video:

When people ask me how I can be at peace without belief in god or an afterlife, now I can just show them Fallen and save myself a lot of time and effort.

I don’t think we can really know what’s beyond, or even what existence means, but I appreciate the sentiment: if this is all we have, it’s more than enough.

The one radical tactical shift

When I encounter a seemingly insurmountable obstacle, I have 3 choices: try harder, give up, or make a radical shift in how I think about it so it no longer appears insurmountable, or even an obstacle. In rock climbing, I face this choice all the time. The third choice almost always seems to be the right one.

Here’s an inspiring video by Lewis Pugh about how he made this choice while attempting to swim across a lake on Mount Everest.