Archives for category: Going Green / Eco-friendly

There are times when the pain is so overwhelming that it fries our emotional system and we are unable to process new stimuli.  When people break our hearts unthinkingly then casually contact us after as through we are ‘on call’ and that nothing of significance has occurred, we might find ourselves at a loss as to how to respond–and we don’t.

In a manner of speaking, we are called to compartmentalise this event which does not compute and carry on with other aspects of our lives.  The contradicting actions of others may cause our system to be unable to comprehend what the intent is and we may feel confused as to what the other person intends with the connection.

It would be extremely insensitive of them to presume that becoming friends without so much as breaking a stride from the time that they have rejected us.  We might need some time to recover from the pain and assess whether we are comfortable with the notion of remaining friends with someone who has taken us for granted and abused our kindness.

It is not too much to ask of people to be clear about their romantic intentions in order to avoid leading people on inadvertently.  If they proceed in a manner which allows us to believe that they fancy us in the same manner, then without as much as blinking switch gears to a lukewarm or even cold treatment, we may understandably feel slighted.

We might want to clarify whether we are on the same page and if they brush us off with fluid evasiveness thinking that it would maintain their innocence in the whole interaction, it would betray their callousness and expose how little they think of us.  It should eventually dawn on us that it might not be healthy to pursue a connection with a person who lacks basic human decency–and there are many who merely adapt the appearance of being civilised.

When they pop up casually and resume interactions or communication in a manner which belittles the gravity of their actions, we may find ourselves frozen and our circuits fried enough to not be able to respond in any manner because the mixed signals might be way too much for our brains to handle.  Perhaps it means that, for our own wellbeing, we must merely let the matter drop and not bother figuring it out and move forward without hesitation.

(c) Niconica 2013

It cannot be denied that life is increasingly more intricate and complex now than it has been before. Inasmuch as we enjoy the benefits of the connectivity of social media and the quick information access on the Internet, it has become that much harder to thrive in a dynamic and complicated world. It would be narcissistic to assume that we can survive and excel individually in our careers.

One cannot possess all the necessary skill sets to excel in every facet of our endeavour and it would greatly benefit is to be humble enough to recognise this truth and consider collaborating with different experts in their fields. Contrary to the previous beliefs that collaboration might take away the integrity or our creations or take away the spotlight from us… True collaboration can only make everything richer–that is if we fortunately find like minded and compatible individuals or groups to collaborate with.

There is a delicate balance between standing our own ground and being able to relinquish control where it is required and it is this skill which we must learn to develop in order to experience the richness of being able to benefit and enjoy other’s perspectives together with our own. The growth this experience provides for our souls is amazing if we dare give it a try.

(c) Niconica 2013

Societal expectations honed by historical or traditional beliefs may not be quite apt for present circumstances. It has always been assumes that the chief purpose of marriage is to create a family through procreation. It would seem that simply being a married couple does not suffice in the long run through society’s eyes unless children are added onto the equation and it is by virtue of having offspring that a couple then can say that they now have a family. However this notion is quisling and should be reexamined.

I believe that a couple can be considered to be a family too–though people would prefer to label it as “a childless family” if we were to insist that the childless couple is a family. It is unfair for people to arbitrarily designate such labels based on the ability or willingness to procreate.

When we marry someone, we invite them to be our family and it in itself should be valued for what it is–a sacred partnership without the additional pressure of requiring them to procreate for the sake of being considered “normal” or “acceptable” because the ability to mate and conceive should not be the defining factor of a couple in a permanent partnership.

The world is sorely overpopulated and it would be refreshing if people honestly assessed the ecological effects of yet bringing another being into the world as well as the sacrifices and responsibilities which come with it. And if a couple is unable to or do not want to have children, their eco-friendly decision should be respected.

It occurs to me that abortion is abhorred by religious disciplines because it is seen as akin to mirder and that mere human beings should not be the ones to decide the snuff out a human life but on the other hand, artificially creating life through test tube babies and in-vitro fertilization is widely accepted or even encouraged. If it is the province of God to create or destroy life, and by this respect. We are strongly discouraged from playing God through taking away a life whether it be via murder, suicide, or abortion. Yet it is strange that we feel that it is acceptable to play God and create life artificially.

It is al all well and good if a couple decide to have children and are able to conceive their own or alternatively adopt children yet this should not be what a couple is judged by or expected to do. There is and should be more to marriage than simply raising children and ensuring the continuity of one’s own gene pool. It should not be the case that simply because people possess reproductive organs that they should be compelled to use it to to create.

There should be room for respecting different view points and ways of life and couples who choose not to procreate or adopt should not be made to feel that there is something wrong with them. It is better that they are self-aware of their preference and love happy lives rather than giving into societal pressure and creating children towards whom they might not be worthy parents.

(c) Niconica 2013

Now that people are getting used to reading newspapers and books online or on e-readers or their smartphones, it begs the question whether paper is on the way out. Watching a documentary on the History Channel featuring the huge newspaper printing press, I can’t help but wonder whether this invention pioneered by Gutenberg all those years ago would go the way of the now barely seen or used typewriters.

Would there come a time that the huge building which houses one of the biggest printing machines which churn out the dailies instead come to house huge computer servers which would hold the data for the daily events uploaded onto the e-newspaper? There is undeniable pressure from the eco-friendly movements to stop chopping down trees to make paper and as the populations keep growing, there is just so much recycled paper that can go around.

What about the huge logistics network for distribution of printed dailies and magazines? What’s to become of them? I think we stand at the brink of huge and progressive changes in the landscape of printed media and its related industries as we balance increased demand for speed of information delivery with our reading habits while considering the long term ecological impact and repercussions.

(c) Niconica 2013

For the longest time I’ve wanted to be vegetarian and thankfully I was successfully able to commit to it this year. I don’t take commitments lightly which accounted for my delay in becoming vegetarian. I was simply unsure whether I would be able to live up to resisting my previous favorite dishes. I was not sure whether I would be strong enough to let go of my attachments to consuming meat and seafood and whether I would be able to overcome my desire for the delicious dishes I have been so accustomed to ingesting.

I have now been vegetarian for almost four months and was flexitarian for a couple if months prior to that and had for almost 10 years not taken any red meat. As a creature of habit who enjoys food very much, this life change is not an easy decision to make and really required serious motivation to do so.

I’m still adjusting to it and do feel energetically lighter, though I get hungry more easily because digestion is quicker. As someone who is into spirituality and metaphysics, I feel that vegetarianism is a worthy lifestyle though it needs to be entered into with careful nutritional consideration and perhaps the support of food supplements to be able to meet all the body’s nutritional requirements.

Just like all commitments, it’s not always blue skies… There are ups and downs along the path and I suspect there would be more realizations and adjustments along the way but I am glad to be able to be on this path which creates causes for long life.

Ingesting corpses of other living brings includes ingesting the energy of their distress upon being slaughtered for their meat. The toxins they release upon their passing cannot be good for our health, even if it tastes good. However, being able to overcome our desire for delicious food is not an easy feat and a constant renewal of our commitment to being vegetarian becomes the challenge during this initial period. All change requires a period of adjustment and as long as we keep our eye on the rewards of being vegetarian, it is ultimately worth the effort.

(c) Niconica 2012

Going vegetarian is definitely not without its challenges. It has been my aspiration to turn vegetarian for around a decade already and apart from giving up consumption of certain meats gradually, I had not made the big leap until recently and even then I initially had second thoughts as to whether I would be able to make the commitment to continue being vegetarian.

In my case, motivation was key. It was essential that I have the right motivation in being vegetarian, otherwise there would be a very real probability that I would succumb to my old habits of consuming my favorite foods which include meat. There were psychological withdrawal symptoms in the first few weeks and I almost thought that I would not be able to make the shift.

It was very difficult to outgrow the habit of craving for my favorite dishes in my favorite restaurants. This was compounded by the fact that there were very few restaurants which carried vegetarian dishes in their menu except for a few nominal salads or sautéed vegetables–hardly enough to make vegetarianism appealing. This took some joy out of socializing or eating out since there would often be not enough vegetarian options, much less appealing ones on the menu.

On the home front, it took a bit of adjusting but it was easier to make the personal switch in one’s grocery buying habits and eating options than when one goes out for meetings and/or socializing and come across the sad fact that one may not be frequenting one’s favorite restaurant anymore because they don’t have a decent selection of vegetarian dishes. It can be quite frustrating to realize that the vegetarian segment of the population is often overlooked or disregarded when people open their restaurants and plan their menus.

This, of course, leads to some shuffling about of restaurant options when dining with friends. It would be so much easier if there were more vegetarian friendly restaurants and not necessarily just pure vegetarian restaurants because when dining with family and friends, different diets would have to be considered and it would be good if regular restaurants would take vegetarians into consideration so that dining with non-vegetarian friends, family, and colleagues would be even more enjoyable.

It’s lovely to discover pure vegetarian restaurants too here and there because they have a more extensive or comprehensive selection of items to sample.

I feel qualitatively lighter (not necessarily equating to body weight) since I’ve turned vegetarian and I’ve continued including vitamins and good supplements in my daily intake to be able to make sure that The essential vitamins and minerals my body requires will be complete. I am mindful that being vegetarian is not as simple as giving up eating meat, it has to be done in a nutritionally acceptable manner so that we maintain and improve our health.

I’m still in the adjustment period of my new vegetarian lifestyle and I’m still reading up on it and learning more about it. In order to keep up with my commitment to be vegetarian, I am still constantly renewing my motivation which includes compassion for all living beings and not wanting to consume their flesh which carries residual traces of their energy.

Having said this, I would have to admit that I do still sometimes get tempted by the smell or even the thoughts of my old favorite dishes which I am not able to partake of anymore. I am not immune to remembering delicious smells and tastes from the past. I do realize that this new chapter simply indicates that it’s perhaps time that I discover and develop new favorite dishes and restaurants. I’m not partial to change so it won’t be a walk in the park but I’m looking forward this new adventure and discovering vegetarian or vegetarian friendly restaurants/institutions/establishments.

I am quite pleased to have finally become vegetarian, after years of aspiring and attempting to do so. Being able to meet all the body’s nutritional needs notwithstanding, I am also curious as to how being vegetarian would affect me qualitatively.

May the new chapter begin.

(c) Niconica 2012

Every once in a while we meet a personage so great and so inspiring that it makes us examine our lives and if we are lucky we realize how frivolous we are and we reflect on our personal accountability to the well-being of the world at large.

It shouldn’t be simply myopically about ourselves and our selfish and trivial wants and needs. If we really want our lives to mean something then we have to make it matter through taking steps to be able to benefit all the beings populating our world.

We are accountable to our fellow human beings with how we use our mind because every single thought we harbor affects the fabric of reality and contributes to increasing positivity or negativity in the world. And when these energies increase we reach a critical mass, the results manifest consistently with the nature of what as been accumulated. Positivity produces miracles and blessings while negativity produces disasters and catastrophe.

Every single thought repeated in one’s mind repeatedly and habitually crystallizes and affects the quality of our mind and consequently the quality of our mind affects our words and actions and our words and actions can make or break another person’s feelings and the chain reaction continues until if affects more and more people and eventually the world at large.

We must hold ourselves accountable for what we produce with our body, speech, and mind because they matter and our faculties should not be employed recklessly without concern because we are all accountable to what happens to the world and it is beyond simply surviving and achieving temporary rewards.

(c) Niconica 2012

There is much talk about going green and being eco-friendly in the context of recycling and as much as people are aware that it’s ‘good’ to go green, this campaign talks about a more distant future and lacks the immediacy which would appeal to more myopic and self-focused beings such as ourselves.

We complain about the air being polluted and epidemics going around–even if it is as common place as the cold or the flu, yet we continue to dispose of our waste unthinkingly, knowing that the lower echelons of society would be going through the trash bins and exposing themselves to the rotting food and bacteria just to salvage some recyclables (bottles, plastics, paper) which they can sell.

We are inconsiderate of what happens to our rubbish after it has been removed from our premises and we think that it would not affect us in any solid way except for perhaps some flooding which happens every few weeks or months due to the clogged sewers and yet we have become so immune to this that we don’t think of it as our problem or even so, it’s always the responsibility if the city government.

It is precisely this sort of thinking which escalates the problem and it manifests more concretely as disease which we complain about should our loved ones especially our children get sick from contagious viruses even as ubiquitous as the common cold or flu.

If we just took a few minutes to think about it and think back to the people we see around the neighbourhood or the city scouring the rubbish for what items they can sell for a pittance, disregarding the risk to their health… We can further realise that these people wander around quite a bit and do come in contact with many people on the street in many parts of the Metro and whatever bacteria or virus they might have come across can easily be transmitted to the commuters and pedestrians who may happen to be neighbours or relatives with people we come across daily or even just randomly in malls and this, ladies and gentlemen, is how disease spreads and affects us.

Granted, it may not be the Ebola virus but anyone who has had their schedules altered or their body debilitated even for a few days by the common sore throat, flu or cold will agree that it is not a pleasant experience, adding to the fact that it is even more unpleasant to watch our housemates or family catch these common illnesses after we do.

It’s not to say that vitamin C and B-complex will not help boost our immune systems, but when we are more responsible with disposing our rubbish and recyclables, we create less causes for disease to spread. We cannot prevent people from going through the rubbish because poverty is quite rampant here and the few pesos they get from selling the bottles, plastic, or paper might mean the survival of their families.

What we can do is to rinse out used sardine/tuna/canned goods cans, plastic containers, and bottles, let them dry on our dish racks and then place them in a designates big black (or whatever coloured) garbage bag together with empty medicine bottles, boxes, paperbags, paper leaflets, newspapers which can be recycled too and give it to people in the neighbourhood who would benefit from selling them.

It can be as simple as selling the recyclables at the local junk shop, or of we are feeling more altruistic, I’m sure we know people in the neighbourhood who would be willing to take the clean recyclables and sell them.

We need not be insensitive to the others while we help them. It is not considerate to think that they will be selling it so it’s their responsibility to deal with the almost decayed food or unhygienic possibly recyclable garbage after they have been unthinkingly mixed with biodegradables since they would be accessing the rubbish long after the waste items are fresh.

They are fellow human beings too and deserve our consideration, but if this line of reasoning does not appeal to our more self-centered fellow human beings, then the health scare and possible diseases to be communicated should be enough reason for everyone to hygienically recycle and separate their recyclables from the biodegradables.

Properly cleaning, drying, separating, and disposing recyclable materials is in your best self-interest. (Benefitting others by preventing the spread of disease is a good bonus/motivation). Start doing it now–today.

(c) Niconica 2012

Go Green! Use Old Magazines for Gift-wrapping


Go Green! Recycle! Wrap Your Gifts in Old Magazines!



On the subject of new year’s resolutions and grand plans we might have for the year: it might be a good idea to consider our gift wrapping habits and switch from mean to green.

Instead of buying new gift wrapping paper and bags, we might pause and consider the impact that our paper and/or plastic consumption is having on the world and turn our gazes towards the piles of our old magazines and decide to recycle them as gift wrapping paper – they’re glossy and pretty too.

After all, we do want to keep the planet as healthy as possible for a longer time.

(c) Niconica 2011