Haitian Vodoun Perspectives on Death and Dying

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I chose to explore the culture of Haitians who practice Vodou, a religion also known as Voodoo, Vodun, Vodoun, Voudun, and Yoruba Orisha.  I have just returned from a vacation in the Caribbean (Punta Cana, Dominican Republic), which shares an island with Haiti. While there, I met a man from Haiti and was reminded of a bizarre experience I had in 1998 when I was ridden by an orisha (loa) during an inner-city Christian church service. Thus, I thought this would make an interesting subject for this assignment. To make things simpler in this essay, I will refer to this group simply as Vodou or Vodoun.

Introducing Vodou and Haitian Culture

Vodou is a Caribbean religion blended from African religions and Catholic Christianity. Long stereotyped by the outside world as “black magic,” Vodoun priests and priestesses are also diviners, healers, and religious leaders, who derive most of their income from healing the sick rather than from attacking targeted victims.

Vodou comes from an African word for “spirit” and can be directly traced to the West African Yoruba people who lived in 18th and 19th century Dahomey. However, its African roots may go back 6,000 years. Today, Vodou is practiced most commonly in the country of Haiti and in the United States around New Orleans, New York, and in Florida. Today over 60 million people practice Vodou throughout the Caribbean and West Indies islands, as well as in North and South America, Africa, and Britain.

During days of slave trade, this religion fused with Catholic Christianity. Therefore, in this current century, children born into rural Haitian families are generally baptized into the Vodou religion as well as in the Catholic church.

Those who practice Vodou believe in a pantheon of gods who control and represent the laws and forces of the universe. In this pantheon, there is a Supreme Deity and the Loa-a large group of lesser deities equivalent to the saints of the Catholic Church. These gods protect people and give special favors through their representatives on earth which are the hougans (priests) and mambos (priestesses).

The Loa (also Lwa or L’wha) are spirits somewhat like saints or angels in Christianity. They are intermediaries between the Creator and humanity. Unlike saints or angels, they are not simply prayed to; they are served. They are each distinct beings with their own personal likes and dislikes, distinct sacred rhythms, songs, dances, ritual symbols, and special modes of service.

Rituals, Behaviors, and Practices Associated with Death and Dying

Haitians who adhere to Vodou do not consider death to be the end of life. They do believe in an afterlife. Followers of Vodoun believe that each person has a soul that has both a gros bon ange (large soul or universal life force), and a ti bon ange (little soul or the individual soul or essence.)

When one dies, the soul essence hovers near the corpse for seven to nine days. During this period, the ti bon ange is vulnerable and can be captured and made into a “spiritual zombie” by a sorcerer. Provided the soul is not captured, the priest or priestess performs a ritual called Nine Night to sever the soul from the body so the soul may live in the dark waters for a year and a day. If this is not done, the ti bon ange may wander the earth and bring misfortune on others.

After a year and a day, relatives of the deceased perform the Rite of Reclamation to raise the deceased person’s soul essence and put it in a clay jar known as a govi. The belief that each person’s life experiences can be passed on to the family or community compels Haitians to implore the spirit of the decease to temporarily possess a family member, priest (houngan), or priestess (mambo) to impart any final words of wisdom.

The clay jar may be placed in the houngan’s or mambo’s temple where the family may come to feed the spirit and treat it like a divine being.  At other times, the houngan burns the jar in a ritual called boule zen. This releases the spirit to the land of the dead, where it should properly reside. Another way to elevate the ti-bon-ange is to break the jar and drop the pieces at a crossroad.

The ultimate purpose of death rituals in the Vodoun culture is to send the gros-bon-ange to Ginen, the cosmic community of ancestral spirits, where it will be worshipped by family members as a loa itself. Once the final ritual is done, the spirit is free to abide among the rocks and trees until rebirth. Sixteen incarnations later, spirits merge into the cosmic energy.

Here are some other common behaviors associated with death in the Haitian culture:

·        When death is impending, the entire family will gather, pray, cry, and use religious medallions or other spiritual artifacts. Relatives and friends expend considerable effort to be present when death is near.

·        Haitians prefer to die at home, but the hospital is also an acceptable choice.

·        The moment of death is marked by ritual wailing among family members, friends, and neighbors.

·        When a person dies, the oldest family member makes all the arrangements and notifies the family. The body is kept until the entire family can gather.

·        The last bath is usually given by a family member.

·        Funerals are important social events and involve several days of social interaction, including feasting and the consumption of rum.

·        Family members come from far away to sleep at the house, and friends and neighbors congregate in the yard.

·        Burial monuments and other mortuary rituals are often costly and elaborate. People are increasingly reluctant to be buried underground. They prefer to be interred above ground in an elaborate multi-chambered tomb that may cost more than the house in which the individual lived while alive.

·        Since the body is thought to be necessary for resurrection, organ donation and cremation are not allowed. Autopsy is allowed only if the death occurred as a result of wrong doing or to confirm that the body is actually dead and not a zombie.

Like many Western Christian religions that use a figurative sacrifice to symbolize the consumption of flesh and blood, some Vodoun ceremonies include a literal sacrifice in which chickens, goats, doves, pigeons, and turtles are sacrificed to celebrate births, marriages, and deaths.

Vodou Beliefs about Afterlife

Practitioners of Vodou assume that the souls of all the deceased go to an abode beneath the waters. Concepts of reward and punishment in the afterlife are alien to Vodou.

In Vodou, the soul continues to live on earth and may be used in magic or it may be incarnated in a member of the dead person’s family.

Communion with a god or goddess occurs in the context of possession. The gods sometimes work through a govi, and sometimes take over a living person. This activity is referred to as “mounting a horse” during which the person loses consciousness and the body becomes temporarily possessed by a loa. A special priest (houngan) or priestess (mambo) assists both in summoning the divinities and in helping them to leave at the termination of the possession.

The gros-bon-ange returns to the high solar regions from which its cosmic energy was first drawn; there, it joins the other loa and becomes a loa itself.

Variations

Each group of worshipers is independent and there is no central organization, religious leader, or set of dogmatic beliefs. Rituals and ceremonies vary depending upon family traditions, regional differences, and exposure to the practices of other cultures such as Catholicism, which is the official religion of Haiti.

Some Haitians believe that the dead live in close proximity to the loa, in a place called “Under the Water.” Others hold that the dead have no special place after death.

Burial ceremonies vary according to local tradition and the status of the person. Some families do not express grief aloud until most of the deceased’s possessions have been removed from the home. Persons who are knowledgeable in the funeral customs wash, dress, and place the body in a coffin. Mourners wear white clothing which represents death. A priest may be summoned to conduct the burial service. The burial usually takes place within 24 hours.

Conclusion

Westerners, or so-called logical people, might find Vodoun a strange and exotic mixture of spells, possessions, and rituals. Like any other religion, its purpose is to comfort people by giving them a common bond. Vodoun meshes surprisingly well with Catholicism, the official religion of Haiti. With a supreme being, saint-like spirits, belief in the afterlife and invisible spirits, along with the protection of patron saints, Voodoo isn’t that different from traditional religions. 

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Source by Yvonne Perry

Facts About Betty Kresin, Eminem’s grandmother

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Betty Kresin, Eminem’s grandmother from the maternal side , got married at the age of 14. She got six children from 3 different marriages.

She first married Bob Nelson. She gave birth to her daughter Debbie in 1955.She accuses her first husband, Bob Nelson, of being verbally abusive. Both moved to Warren, Michigan, to be closer to Betty’s stepmother .Despite the problems the couple experienced, she gave Bob two more sons, Todd and Steven.They divorced in the early 60’s and Betty came back to her hometown St Joseph, where she met Ron Gilpin, her second husband.She had two more children with him. One of them is Betti Schmitt (Eminem’s aunt and Debbie’s half sister), who is still in touch and in good terms with Eminem. Ron Gilpin was an alcoholic who used to beat up his whole family. Violence was part of their daily life. Ron left his family in 1968.Dramas surrounded Betty’s family. In 1991, Todd Nelson killed his brother-in-law, Mike Harris in self defense case. He was sentenced to jail for 8 years.Betty ‘s sixth child from a third marriage, Ronnie Polkingharn, was Eminem’s uncle and closest friend. He committed suicide in 1991.

Eminem grew up for a while at his grandmom’s home. She talks about his harsh conditions of living in Detroit :

« It was a poor school and they wanted his shoes. He was one of the only white children going to this segregated school. And one time they took the shoes off his feet and he had to come home in a snowstorm with no shoes on. But the story people keep asking me – “he was unconscious and almost died and all these doctors…”, now I know nothing about this and I’m his grandmother. »

People should think twice before calling Marshall a racist.

Betty was angry with Marshall because he never attended to Ronnie’s funeral. In fact, Marshall went depressive and swallowed a bottle of Tylenol and survived to another suicide attempt. He was unable to go to Ronnie’s funeral, his pain was too immense.But Betty didn’t know what happened during this period.

“I was kind of bitter about him writing about my dead son, because the last five years of my deceased boy, Marshall had not even seen him. Marshall – Eminem – and my son Ronnie were very close. He idolised Ronnie and Ronnie loved him. He never even came to Ronnie’s funeral and he has never put the first flower on Ronnie’s grave. He doesn’t do anything – he won’t go near the grave. The chain that Marshall wears around his neck, the dog-tag – that was Ronnie’s. I gave him the dog-tag, he makes duplicates, he sells them now, and that really broke my heart because this is something sacred to me that I gave the boy. If my son could speak to you today from the grave he would say, “Marshall stop some of the garbage, make up with your family, life’s too short”.”

Marshall had a good relationship to his granny until he wanted to use Ronnie’s voice on a tape. He intended to do this as a tribute to his deceased uncle, but Betty thought he was disrespectful towards her son. In 2002 , both reconciled.

Betty Kresin is currently writing a book on her grandson which shall be entitled « The Tie That Binds ».

Betty says she’s proud of her grandson and that she stands on his side.

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Source by Isabelle Esling

Forensic Handwriting Analysis – Getting Writing Samples

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When crime scene investigator’s (CSI’s) come across a document that is part of a crime, a forensic handwriting analyst must determine if the writing is consistent with the person who is suspected of writing it or if the writing is a forgery.

To make this determination, the handwriting examiner will require several standard handwriting samples, or standards as it is called, in order to gain some insight on the person’s writing style and ascertain whether or not that person wrote the questionable note. To make matters worse, standard writing samples may have been created with a different writing instrument and under different events surrounding the document. Therefore, making comparisons of a questioned document to a known writing sample on another document may be an impossibility.

If no usable nonrequested standard handwriting samples, existing writing samples known to be authentic, are around, the forensic handwriting analyst then asks the suspected author to provide a writing sample while using a pen or pencil and paper similar to the questioned document so that the forensic investigator can establish what is known as a requested standard handwriting sample.

Nonrequested standards are advantageous for several reasons. The most important reason is that the nonrequested samples disclose the writer’s true writing style and disclose words and phrases that the writer uses on a regular basis. This can be used as strong evidence against the writer. For instance, old documents and letters may contain keyword phrases that are consistent with the ones used in a suicide note. The major disadvantage of nonrequested standard handwriting samples is that they too must be authenticated. If they can not be directly linked to the author, they do not have much value to the criminal investigator.

It is a fact that handwriting styles change throughout our lives. Therefore, examiners try to get writing samples from documents written by a suspected writer that are consistent with the time when a questioned document is apparently written. Let us pretend that an examiner is requested to ascertain whether a 15-year-old, handwritten document such as a will is authentic and was really written by the apparent writer. The forensic handwriting analyst will require examining other documents written by the apparent writer from 15 years ago because those documents will be consistent with his writing style of that time period when the will was prepared.

The biggest advantage of requested handwriting samples is that they are already authentic. The forensic handwriting examiner visually inspects the person write his name. The investigator also can request that the person write out a specific sentence similar to one found in a questioned document so that the examiner can make comparisons between the two sentences verbatim. Sometimes the questioned document contains information that the examiner does not want to disclose to the suspect. In this case, the examiner requests the suspect write out a sentence containing keyword phrases that were used in the questioned document.

Requested handwriting samples are not without their disadvantages too. Some people become nervous and therefore concentrate too hard on providing a writing sample. This can yield uncharacteristic abnormalities in the manner they normally write and sign their names. For this reason, minimal changes are presented that make it difficult to make an accurate comparison.

The suspected author may also knowingly attempt to disguise his writing style so that his handwriting sample does not match the writing on a forged check, will, or some other questioned document. It is unfortunate for the handwriting examiner that the suspect is successful in changing his writing style such that getting a consistent match is difficult.

One way to circumvent this problem is to have the suspect write a great deal of content over several pages. Even though changing your style is easy when writing short phrases, the more you write over several pages, the more your cognizant changes give way to your normal manner of writing. Verbally repeating the same content to the suspected writer several times is another trick that handwriting analysts use to stifle anybody’s attempts at disguising his normal handwriting style. With each attempt, the suspect is more likely to use different styles. A keen examiner then discovers the hidden elements of his writing style and the devices that the perpetrator used to hide them within the requested writing before the comparison is made.

Criminal investigators are not worried about a suspect’s reluctance to provide a handwriting sample. One might think that providing a handwriting sample will violate the Fifth Amendment which states that a person has the right not to incriminate himself. According to the U.S. Supreme Court in a case, Gilbert v. the State of California, handwriting is part of the identifying physical characteristics that are not protected under the Fifth Amendment. Therefore, the court can order a suspect to provide a handwriting standard even if he is reluctant.

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Source by Fabiola Castillo

Easy Ways to Improve Guest Accommodation

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High quality guest accommodation needs to offer a homely welcome to paying guests. Styling guest accommodation is all about understated decorative finishing touches, like colourful cushions, bath mats throw-overs and shams. You don’t need a big budget to make a difference. A few canvases or well framed photography of local beauty spots make interesting focal points for the walls and a talking point over coffee and croissants.

A well equipped kitchen not only makes your self-catering accommodation stand out from the crowd, but careful choice of practical accessories can save you time and money in the long run. A bread bin, storage canisters and breadboard saves your worktops and tables from damage when the guests attack the pain rustique. And an easy wipe-clean chopping board comes into its own when the guests want to slice your home grown beetroot and vine ripened tomatoes for their salad.

You’re not operating a continental budget hotel so why not make the whole dining experience special for your guests? Leather-look placemats and coasters are stylish and practical protecting dining tables and wooden furniture.

A really welcoming touch (one you’re certain to employ already) is a beautifully arranged bunch of flowers and foliage, perhaps from your garden. Or if you cater for winter visitors, cluster attractive evergreens and vibrant berries to make a statement.

You could spend hours wandering about your local shops looking for inspiration and co-ordination. But wouldn’t you rather enjoy a glass of the local vin, vino, vinho or wein and browse for ideas on your laptop? All those essential finishing touches can be delivered to your door in France, Spain, Germany and Portugal for just €5 from Littlewoods Europe. Even the wine glasses…

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The Importance of Father-Daughter Relationships

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In Today's busy world, Pathhers find very little time to get involved in the nurture and development of their children. "Pathhers bring a unique presence, a special strength to raising children," says a clinical psychologist Ray Guarendia, in her book "Back to the Family."

How true this is in the bringing up of daughters! Just as there is a special bond between mothers and sons, the relationship between fathers and daughters is unique. Pathhers therefore can not afford to remain remote characters in the lives of their daughters. Parenting is a joint venture, with fathers just as active participants as mothers.

There are various reasons why paternal involvement becomes limited.

o Ambitious and over worked Dads put their jobs before the welfare of their families. They come home too tired to spend quality time with their children. Often the children are sleep when they return, and leave for school before Dads are wake.
o Absentee Dads: Those with traveling jobs like airline pilots, sales representatives, businessmen or long distance truck drivers may be away from home frequently, sometimes for long stretches.
o Divorced Dads with limited visiting rights also can not spend sufficient time with their children.
o False notions that girls are to be brought up exclusively by mothers or women in the house, make men distance themselves from their daughters. They feel awkward to show affection, and so miss out on the little intimacies that they could share with their daughters.

The word "Dad" is of a universal nature. It conjures up qualities of responsibility, protection, love, and discipline. Being a father can be a rewarding job, and a man who abdicates his responsibility is falling short of his God-given role. John Rosemond a Family Counselor, wrote in one of his articles that a father must not only be present but be 'actively involved' and 'a vigorously interested participant' in the child returning process.

Jawaharlal Nehru the first Prime Minister of India, spent long spells in prison during the struggle for Indian independence. He sorely regretted his separation from his beloved daughter Indira, but he kept in contact with her through letters, which were later compiled into a book "Glimpses of World History." These letters express his deep love for her and the ease with which he expressed it.

"Priyadarshini, dear to my sight but dearer still to my heart ….."

"I think of the day when we shall all three meet again, and the thought of it lightens and cheers my heart."

In spite of being absent, he kindled in her an interest in World history, Science and Politics, which contributed in no small measure to the molding of her character.

Or who can forget Dad William Jackson Smart who raised six children single handedly in rural Washington and his daughter Senora Dodd, who fought for Fathers' Day, as a dedication to dads like him.

To be a good father, one must needs be aware of a few essential requirements.

o Show Love. No father should feel embarrassed to show affection to his daughter. A touch, a hug, a special smile, and three little words "I love you" are tangible ways of communicating love. She learns to reciprocate that love. This is her first male-female relationship with her father, and will influence her behavior with her husband in later life. The earliest reflection of herself as female comes from her dad. How does he regard her? Does he accept her without reservations? Or does he treat her as inferior to her brother? When he shows respect she feels worthwhile as an individual. When he ignores her or is too critical, she begins to feel that she is worthless.
o Show love and respect to her mother. A good and loving relationship between parents is the foundation for her evolution into a happy, well balanced child. It gives her a sense of security, and a good opinion about marriage.
o Shared Activities: A good father will show interest in his daughter's activities. He will make her feel good about her abilities and achievements. He will find something to praise. A father should be his daughter's cheer leader. Doing things together like reading, walking, playing games is time well spent. He will also learn to see things through her eyes as she walks him through her wonderland. Time is a very precious gift.
o Communication: Listening and paying attention to what a daughter says is a way of showing love. What may seem silly to an adult may beothersome to a child. She should be encouraged to talk of her school problems, peer pressure, studies or any other conflict situations. A good father will help her find solutions to her problems. He will teach not blame. She will be free to voice her opinions and be open to advice.
o Respect: A girl child is to be considered as a person and not as a possession. Her right to privacy and her space to grow must be respected.
o Honesty: Being honest with his child will make a father trustworthy in her estimation. Her questions should be answered sensibly. She should be taught to distinguish between right and wrong, honesty and dishonesty. She should not be forced to do what she does not want to do by offering inducements, or threats or emotional blackmail.
o Discipline: "Discipline is one of the most loving, durable gifts a parent can give to his child," says Gaurendi. It should be consistent, fair and administrated with love. When training a child in the way she should go, the father should make sure he goes that way himself. The task of parenting is overwhelming. It is exciting to see men who take family responsibility seriously, and are caring and compassionate. The way a father speaks, the words he uses, the tone of his voice can be encouraging or discouraging. Dependability and Integrity which she learns from her father will prepare her for 'the school of hard knocks' she must pass through on her trek towards adulthood.

The relationship between father and daughter reaches a very delicate phase when she is in her teens. This period must be negotiated with tact and efficiency. She must be assured that he values ​​her as an intelligent and independent person. Becoming aware of his daughter's sexuality makes many a father uncomfortable. Suddenly he feels demoted in her list of priorities. So far, he was the center of her universe. Now her eyes begin to rove and get focused on other boys. She wants to dress differently and behaving differently. Some fathers can not handle these changes well. They may react by being overprotective or overbearing.

o Overprotective: In a society which does not value modesty or sexual purity, Dad becomes afraid that his precious girl may go astray. He feels it is his duty to impose rules about dating and what she will date, or how she will dress, or what company she will keep. This 'paternal neurosis' is unwelcome. The girl feet restricted. On the one hand it may make her feel insecure, as though she is incapable of taking care of herself. On the other hand, she might want to escape from this 'smother love' before it stunts her emotional growth.
o Overbearing: Daughters tend to rebel against dictatorial fathers. When rigid rules are imposed which she thinks unnecessary, when he restricts her activities she might begin to fear him or hate him. There is a distinct inclining to rebel. A father must be sensitive to the growing needs of his daughter and make allowances appropriately. He should negotiate fairly, allowing her to gain confidence and pride in her choices. But he must also impress upon her that choices have consequences.

A daughter considers her father a gauge by which she will estimate the worth of other men. If he is well behaved, dependable, honest and loving, she will look for those qualities in other men. He must be a praying father too as he reflects the unconditional love of God our father. Child psychologist Phyllis Bronstein says that while a mother teachers nurture and caring, a father teachers physical competence, self confidence in asserting opinions, and adventurism. Children with good fathers get on well with other people and are achievers. Whereas those who are neglected by their fathers show lower IQ, poor performance in school, and delinquency.

When fathers are abusive, hot tempered, irresponsible or alchoholics, this too has an adverse impact on daughters. They look for similar enrollments in husbands or lovers. Irrespective of the damage it does to them physically, psychologically and emotionally, this 'father hunger' compels them to seek such men, hoping that ever things will change. One father said, "If I screw up, she will spend the rest of her life with a 'screw up.' I do not want that to happen. "

Too much of molly coddling is unhealthy and can lead to 'father fixation.' This kind of wrong parenting can be the cause of the Electra Complex – a psychological term for a girl's romantic feelings towards her father, and anger towards her mother. Carl Jung called it the "Female Oedipus Attitude." This could even lead to incestuous relationship between father and daughter.

An anonymous poet has this advice for fathers:
"Take stock of yourself and consider your child,
Your time and your thoughts are her due;
For how would you answer the Lord if he requests
What kind of a father were you? "

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Source by Eva Bell

Writing Captivating Leads

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The most important paragraph in any article is the first. If the reader is not associated by what is in it, he is not likely to continue reading. The first paragraph has to "grab him by the scuff of the neck" and hold him until he is well into the article, and to do this it needs a "hook" – something that draws him in and keeps him reading.

Writers sometimes leave the most interesting and exciting material to the third or fourth paragraphs, or later, but they should not. If the first paragraph does not draw the reader in, he will never get to the third or fourth paragraph. The first, of lead, paragraph must captivate him; it must be so intriguing that it's almost impossible for him to put it down. And indeed, there are several types of leads that are particularly effective in this respect. They are:

  • The anecdote or story story lead. This is a short story that makes a point and is somehow related to the subject of the article. In many cases it involves a person with a problem, and shows how he solves it. It is one of the most popular types.
  • The startling statement or shocking fact lead. If an article began with either of the following sentences, it would immediately get your attention. "The world's economy is doomed. We will not pull out of the present recession for at least five years." "There is now proof that the world has been visited by aliens." Admittedly, they sound like Tabloid headlines, and you might not want to be so blunt. But they do the trick. They entice the reader to read further.
  • Question lead. In this case you start off by posing a question, and of course it has to be provocative or important enough to perk the readers interest.
  • Action or conflict lead. This is, of course, closely associated with the anecdotal lead. The major difference is that there is explosive action or conflict in the first few sentences. And, of course, this indicates that the rest of the article will be just as action-filled.
  • Mystery lead. Presenting a mystery in the first few sentences and hinting that it will be solved, can be quite effective.
  • The shocking moment lead. It is closely associated with the action lead, but usually only contains a thought, and no action.
  • An appeal to our emotions. This may not be as dramatic as some of the others, but it can be quite effective. Think of emotions such as love, hate, fear, pity, strong feelings, and so on.
  • The mood-setting lead. This is usually more difficult to pull off effectively, but it is used occasionally.

Good leads are also helpful to the writer in another respect. Starting off with a good lead will help him write the rest of the article. It creates flow and momentum. It's like starting a ball rolling at the top of a hill. Once you get it going it will continue to roll on its own; in fact, it quickly speed up. So if you start with "something exciting" you should be able to write the rest of the article much faster.

A question that people sometimes ask in relation to leads is: how long should they be? There's no rule for this; the best answer is: as long as they need to be to get the job done. In most cases a paragraph is enough, but do not assume that once you've got their interest you can slacken off. You may have a little breathing room, but you still have to make sure the next paragraph carries them into the third and so on.

Leads are important in both articles and books. In books, the lead will be the first paragraph of each chapter. So pay attention to how you start each chapter. It should re-captivate their interest. Also, make sure the end of the chapter entices your reader to continue on to the next chapter. The beginning of a new chapter is the most likely place he will stop and put the book down, and of course, you want him to continue reading as soon as possible. So make sure you hint at what is in the next chapter and make it intriguing.

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Source by Barry R Parker

ICT Outsourcing Definitions and Types

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ICT outsourcing can be said as one of the current trends for companies around the world to do their business processes. It is estimated that ICT outsourcing starts in the early 1990s where Kodak uses external partner to handle its ICT resources. As Kodak does not have the expertise in ICT, they hire another company to help them handle the ICT resources. This phenomenon occurs because companies would like to concentrate their core business functions among other benefits. After merely 20 years, outsourcing is now needed by a lot of companies mostly at customer support and also back-office processes and this affects Malaysia as well. Currently, Malaysia is known as a main outsourcing hub for the world, where it is currently ranked third globally behind China and India in the outsourcing industry. This shows how significant outsourcing is to developing countries in Asia.

Outsourcing Definition

Outsourcing is defined as a concept of contracting out part of the organization’s business process to a third party that has the specific skills and services. The third party must have the skills needed by the organization so that the outcome of the outsourced job is as expected. Outsourcing can also be explained as the movement of one or many business functions of a company including its assets to an outside service provider who gives a defined service for an agreed duration of time and payment on a written agreement.

From these two definitions, we can see that outsourcing can be defined with the following characteristics:

1. A company transferring one or many business process to a third party.

2. A third party has the skills and services required for the business process.

3. Has an agreement or contract between the two parties on the price and expected outcome.

Types of Outsourcing

Outsourcing can be separated into two types, namely total outsourcing and selective outsourcing.

The first one is total outsourcing, where the IT budget being used to pay the external vendors is approximately 80% or more than the total. For outsourcing activities that only took less than 80% from the total IT budget, it will be called as selective outsourcing. It is named as ‘selective’ because the company will select only one or several IT functions to be outsourced to a third party.

Aside from these two main outsourcing types, there are also other types of outsourcing that are usually the sub-division from these two main types like insourcing and transitional outsourcing.

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Immobilienmakler Heidelberg
Der Immoblienmakler für Heidelberg Mannheim und Karlsruhe
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Source by Amir Rahimi Azami

7 Do-It-Yourself Last-Minute Halloween Costume Ideas

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Halloween is nearing, and if you still haven’t thought of costumes for the upcoming scare-fest, you might be wracking your brains for ideas that can’t be beat. Unfortunately, many of us are really busy. As much as we would like to focus on Halloween costume hunting, there’s such a thing as real life, and we all have to attend to work, chores, and errands. So when your kids come knocking at your bedroom door begging to get a Halloween costume on the morning of October 31st, you know you’re in for it.

Fortunately, you don’t have to worry too much, as there are literally hundreds of Halloween costume ideas that you can DIY for yourself or your kids on a short notice. What’s great is that you don’t even have to break the bank doing it. Here are a few ideas.

1 – The Athlete

Surely you have someone in your family who has played ball. You don’t have to be the star quarterback or the pointguard. You just have to look the part. If your kids are into sports, then why not suggest that they go out trick or treating as a team-complete in their athletic uniforms. This also goes for cheerleading attires.

2 – The Ghost

You’ve seen it in the cartoons, so why not try it in real life. Get an old white sheet and cut out eye holes. You’re a ghost! The getup is not complete without moans and groans, so practice your moaning and groaning before midnight. You can add chains for that tormented soul effect.

3 – Ninja

Get a ski mask and wear an all-black attire. If you have a toy sword (or maybe even a decorative sword), then wear it on your belt. Now what makes you a ninja is not only your attire. Try to move stealthily around all day. Move against walls and don’t get caught in plain sight of people. When you cross the lawn, don’t walk. Tumble!

4 – Mad Scientist

Wear an old white lab coat and eyeglasses. For effect, mess up your hair and set it with mousse or gel. Bring test tubes and beakers wherever you go. Think of Dr. Emmet Brown from Back to the Future. Now that’s a crazy costume idea.

5 – The Backwards Person

Wear your clothes all backwards. Wear your shirt and pants backwards, complete with belt and necktie. You can even wear sunglasses or eyeglasses at the back of your head for effect.

6 – The Corpse

Wear your best formal attire. Make it so formal it would seem you’ve come straight out of the coffin. Now apply very pale makeup and wear very dark lipstick. Apply thick, black eye shadow. To complete the effect, act the part. Walk slowly-as if you haven’t used your joints for decades.

If you haven’t got the time, don’t sweat it. You can rummage around your closet and maybe you’ll find something that will look scary or novel enough to be your Halloween costume. If you can find an outfit from the 80’s, now that’s something to scream about:

7 – The 80’s Guy or Gal

Sure, the 80’s are making a comeback. But the 2010’s 80’s are different from the real thing. Maybe you still have some leftovers from the past few decades sitting at the bottom of your closet. Wear skinny jeans and a white T-shirt with rolled-up sleeves. Wear high-cut sneakers. Get yourself a thick headband and try to wear your hair as if you had a mullet. If you have long hair, you can curl it like crazy. Bring along a big boombox on your shoulder to complete the effect. Now, that’s scary!

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg
Der Immoblienmakler für Heidelberg Mannheim und Karlsruhe
Wir verkaufen für Verkäufer zu 100% kostenfrei
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Source by Shauna Milton

Euthanasia – Insight on End of Life Decisions

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Twice in my life I have watched the health of a loved one deteriorate until their body could no longer support life on its own. It's like watching someone drown while holding a life preserver in your hand, except the victim has made a legal choice to refuse your help. In each case, a precarious but necessary decision was made-whether or not to allow euthanasia.

There are two types of euthanasia. Passive Euthanasia, which involves "not taking action" to prevent death, (when doctors refuse from using life support to prolong the life of a terminally ill patient) and active euthanasia, which requires an action on the part of a doctor or medical practitioner to "pull the plug" or administrator a lethal injection to bring about the pending death of a critically ill patient.

Life support replace a failing bodily function. When patients have treatable conditions, life support may be used temporarily while the condition is stabilized and the body is able to resume normal functioning. At times though, the body never regains its ability to function without life support. My grandmother refused to be placed on life support or be revived if he was code blue. My uncle, on the other hand, was placed on life support and suffered day after day while confined to a hospital bed for almost a year. Connected to tubes that fed him and machines that breathed for him, he could not talk or do anything for himself-things a healthy person would take for granted. Both my grandmother and my uncle were dying a slow death. My grandmother refused the life preserver. My Uncle accepted a life raft with a slow leak in a sea of ​​sharks.

Some people believe that it is not wise to circumvent the dying process. The late psychiatrist and famous author, Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, shared that her experience in working with thousands of dying patients and their families convinced her that euthanasia was wrong even for patients with terminal illness. She believed that euthanasia (which she called suicide) cheats people out of the opportunity to complete their unfinished business. The unfinished business she referred to is the contemplation of the ultimate meaning of one's life. She felt the "end of life" period is a time for resolving old disputes, mending relationships, and coming to a final recognition and appreciation of all the good things that have been a part of one's life. Personally, I believe we need to do this daily! Dr. Kubler-Ross believed that, despite their compassionate motives, those healthy bystanders who encourage or even assist in euthanasia are stealing the last precious moments of these patients' lives. I understand her theory, but I believe that every person's unfinished business must eventually come to an end. If one is unable to live without life support, and feels his business is complete, it would be cruel to force them or their family to suffer needlessly.

USA Today has reported that, among older people with terminal illnesses who attempt suicide, the number suffering from depression reaches almost 90%. Even Jack Kevorkian, the notorious "suicide doctor," said at a court appearance that he considers anyone with a disease who is not depressed "abnormal." Kevorkian and others who argue in favor of physician-assisted suicide believe that even though depression is treatable; the disabling disease is not. Treating depression in critically ill patients will help to alleviate some of the emotional despairs, but it does little to relieve physical symptoms. The patient will still lie on "death row" until the grim reaper comes.

My grandmother was diagnosed with emphysema fifteen years before his struggle to breathe confided him to his climate-controlled bedroom. Much of the last year of his life was spent in a hospital. The non-stop care for his declining health was beginning to take its toll on my family who never left his side. My grandfather knew that he would not be able to recover from his illness and lead a normal life. Therefore, he signed a document in which he requested that he not be resuscitated or placed on life support in the event of cardiac or respiratory arrest. I remember talking with him in his final days. I asked him if he was ready to die. "I believe I am," he affirmed. He passed peacefully in the hospital without the assistance of life support.

Every person has a right to choose and no one should be denied the God-given power of free will. I believe a person, who is kept alive by machines against his / her will, becomes a victim of someone else's choice.

We have more compassion for our pets than we do for our dying family members. We will euthanize our sick and dying dog, but we will allow our loved one to suffer to the end. I'm not trying to pin guess on anyone about any end of life decision they may have made for someone, I am simply making an observation in hopes of helping others avoid the end of life trauma that my uncle ended.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg
Der Immoblienmakler für Heidelberg Mannheim und Karlsruhe
Wir verkaufen für Verkäufer zu 100% kostenfrei
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Source by Yvonne Perry

10 Ways to Beat Irritability During Perimenopause

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What’s really going on when you find yourself snapping at the cat for no real reason, or wildly impatient with the slow checkout girl – more than usual, I mean!!

If you’re in your 40s or early 50s, it might it be menopause. Or it might not. Up to 50 percent of all perimenopausal women experience disturbances in mood, including irritability. In fact, it can be one of the first signs that you are perimenopausal!

Your hormones may be off-balance and cause extra irritability as estrogen levels decline. It could feel like PMS on steroids!! A study involving menopausal and post-menopausal women found that irritability with others was associated with increased levels of Folicule Stimulating Hormone (FSH) and Lutenizing Hormone (LH), hormones that are markers of ovarian aging and menopause.

Being irritable and intolerant with those around you, including your spouse, children and pets has consequences and none of them contribute to personal peace. Expressing irritability can alarm and upset loved ones and make you feel guilty for being miserable to those who don’t deserve such a generous expression of your wrath! And that’s not all, at this time of your life you may examine your past and future and decide to put all your relationships under a microscope to determine whether they’re worth the energy it takes to maintain them.

Irritability symptoms may include:

  • Feeling stressed during a ‘regular’ day
  • Insomnia
  • Feeling ‘on edge’
  • Lasting out in anger or frustration or screaming with rage
  • Less tolerance with people and events
  • Reduced patience
  • Over-reaction to something that wouldn’t have bothered you in the past
  • Irritability is a general symptom with many explanations.
  • Your irritability may have nothing to do with menopause. It could be connected to psychological and lifestyle factors including stress, major life changes, a history of depression or mood disorders, physical inactivity, excess consumption of caffeine, alcohol or drugs, or poor diet.
  • Physical causes can include drug withdrawal or reaction, cancer, headache or migraine, head trauma, anemia, viral infection, diabetes and hypoglycemia.
  • Irritability can be a side-effect of chronic diseases such as hypertension, cardiac disease, diabetes or thyroid disease.
  • Irritability can be caused by caffeine, hunger and poor nutrition.
  • Your irritability may be the result of lack of sleep from another menopause indicator: insomnia.
  • Other menopausal symptoms, such as hot flashes, loss of libido, vaginal dryness, and more, can cause or contribute to irritability.
  • Hormone imbalance yes, but the greater change is occurring in your brain which is rewiring during perimenopause. New growth of the myelin sheath, the coating that insulates nerves and speeds up the connection between nerve cells, is happening in the part of the brain responsible for emotional learning. These changes create greater clarity and help us shift from caring for others to more self-nurturing activities. Hence the irritability when asked to do things (e.g. help with homework, making meals) that you might have done in the past without thinking.
  • Irritability and relationship-housecleaning at mid-life may be the result of reaching the breaking point for tolerating an unsatisfactory relationship that’s gone on for far too long. That’s probably a good thing! It may surprise you to know that many years of simmering, unresolved emotions may also be related to various ‘dis-comforts’ or ‘dis-eases’ in your body. This is what’s known as the ‘mind-body’ connection to disease. Do you have toxic emotions or resentments that are negatively affecting your quality of life? Do you have negative feelings about important people in your life that are overshadowing your good feelings? These feelings need to be resolved – now.

How can you beat irritability? Self-nurturing is the key!

  1. Take time for yourself; either alone or with positive, kind people.
  2. Pursue pleasurable calming hobbies such as beading, knitting, gardening or other activities such as listening to your favorite music, having an Epsom salts bath or change your routine and learn new things by taking a class.
  3. Learn and use stress-reduction techniques including relaxation breathing exercises, yoga, meditation, tai chi, visualization and get more fresh air and sunshine – every day!
  4. Make a commitment to nourish and love yourself by eating healthier foods. Consider the benefits of nutritional cleansing to help you reach your wellness goals! (See my blog “Healthy Affordable Weight Loss Through Nutritional Cleansing” for more information.)
  5. Be sure to get enough B-vitamins, calcium, and magnesium every day.
  6. Keep alcohol and caffeine to a minimum.
  7. Get regular exercise – a universal healing tool – it provides benefits for just about any condition you can name. Hate exercise? Consider getting a top-of-the line rebounder exercise machine – trampoline – so you can ‘hop on’ any time of the day to change your energy and get blood and oxygen flowing to your brain!
  8. Take an honest look at what’s going on in your life and ask yourself if the situation is serving you now. If you had to do it over again, would you? Is it better to let it continue, or have short-term pain for long-term gain? Your answers may help you to decide to renegotiate your relationships with family and friends. This could include changing ‘unwritten contracts’ with your spouse and/or children that have in the past made it OK for them to make last-minute requests that rob you of your down time, or expect that you’ll do all of the cooking or housecleaning. This can be challenging and take time to get everyone in the family on board, but you’ll feel respected and empowered as you stand up for yourself and eventually get your needs met.
  9. Share your life and problem-solve with trusted friends and relatives, or a good therapist. It’s worth being vulnerable with the right people. Try it and see.
  10. Learn and use an easy, simple procedure called Emotional Freedom Techniques (a.k.a. EFT or ‘tapping’) at www.EFTUniverse.com! This amazing procedure helps you release long-standing stress and is a tool for finding greater personal peace. EFT has been used for 20 years by doctors, therapists, coaches and holistic practitioners all over the world! You can learn it in 3 minutes and you can use it on yourself with great success! While some issues require repeated tapping and/or the help of a therapist who will bring objective eyes to your issue, EFT has been known to permanently resolve long-standing physical and emotional symptoms within minutes! When you’re ready to release the root cause of what’s holding you back in one or more aspects of your life, if, you’ve ‘tried everything’ and nothing has helped, you can find permanent relief with EFT to resolve issues of anger, irritation, fear, anxiety, and more. Take a few moments to imagine how it would feel to set down a 50-pound weight you’ve been carrying everywhere for years. That’s how I feel when I let go of garbage from my past and no longer allow it to control what I do now.

There’s no urgency to change most of what goes on in our lives, except for the urgency we give it – usually based on how much we want things to change. You deserve to feel good about yourself and the world around you. The sooner you take the first step that feels right to you, the sooner your life will get back on track. You’ll have shifted the energy and will soon find yourself feeling calmer and more like the eye of the storm than the hurricane!

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg
Der Immoblienmakler für Heidelberg Mannheim und Karlsruhe
Wir verkaufen für Verkäufer zu 100% kostenfrei
Schnell, zuverlässig und kompetent


Source by Wendy Vineyard

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