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Authentic Happiness

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The University of Pennsylvania under the mission of its Positive Psychology Center has launched a website called: Authentichappiness.org. The goal of this ivy league mission is to formulate studies and emulate the principles that allow individuals and communities to thrive. According to their website Positive Psychology, “…is founded on the belief that people want to lead meaningful and fulfilling lives, to cultivate what is best within themselves, and to enhance their experiences of work, love and play.” The website itself offers free resources to anyone with access to the world wide web, all you need to do it register! There are innumerable sources from online questionnaires that invoke introspection to support groups, books and videos. You can approach your happiness at the individual level and contribute to the greater goal (communal happiness) by taking surveys. Your experience is important! Your life is not insignificant and your outreach matters. You can actually impact a number of psychological studies simply by participating! And you might even learn a little about yourself. Give it a try and explore the different opportunities available to you at org. Call today to see how much you qualify for at Fast Cash Title Loans, 21615 Cascades Pkwy,…

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Winter Holidays

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The end of the year is a time of merriment cross culturally. Not just for the major denominations of the west, but also for a number of minority faiths. The winter solstice marks the longest night due to the tilt of the earth’s axis causing a point in time when the sun is furthest away from us. This period of darkness marked a time of fear for what lies in the unseen. It’s for this reason I believe that the winter is now home to many holidays which encourage merriment and family time. Let’s do a quick review of the major ones I am familiar with just to prove a point. There is Christmas which falls on the same date every year, December 25th, and symbolizes the birth of Jesus Christ—who is the son of God in the Christian faith and represents the messiah. Hanukkah, or Chanukah, is an 8-day Jewish holiday which celebrates the reclaiming of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem after the Maccabean Revolt. The dates this holiday take place can vary from late November to late December as it is dependent on the Hebrew Calendar and not the Gregorian Calendar. (The Gregorian Calendar is named after Pope…

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Winter Solstice

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The shortest day on earth every year happens in the north east towards the end of December. The last one was December 21st 2018 and it’s mostly commonly on the 22nd day of December. It marks not only the shortest day but the longest night and occurs at a specific point in time when the north pole is furthest away from the sun every year. For this reason it happens at the same time every year. According to Mental Floss, “New York City will experience 9 hours and 15 minutes of sunlight, compared to 15 hours and 5 minutes on the summer solstice. Helsinki, Finland, will get 5 hours and 49 minutes of light. Barrow, Alaska, will not have a sunrise at all (and hasn’t since mid-November; its next sunrise will be on January 22), while the North Pole has had no sunrise since October. The South Pole, though, will be basking in the glow of the midnight sun, which won’t set until March.” It’s important to think about as seasonal depression typically comes with the absence of daylight and cold whether. Additionally, you can save on electricity by knowing when you can benefit from natural light. This was an…

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Japanese Robots

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  Recently a video went viral of a woman claiming four robots with astute artificial intelligence were responsible for killing twenty-nine humans. With a little research I’ve come to the conclusion that this is little more than fanatic and fear inducing conspiracy. I did however, come across a more credible source that goes into a tri-fold analysis concerning Japanese robotics. You might be wondering why Japan of all places and it’s because they are the leading nation to use these autonomous mechanical instruments and integrate them in everyday life. They’re at the airport, they’re in department stores, and they even play soccer! It’s estimated that the Japanese market for robotics (whether that be recreationally, or in manufacturing) will increase to $3.7 billion in revenue by 2035 (now it’s about $155 million). Like any and all technological ventures it is important to keep morality in mind. Is it okay to trust our children with robots? How will that effect the job market? On one hand it could eliminate the need for unnecessary human risk and on the other it may require more human risk. Ethics are also circumstantial. Japan’s needs are not universal, but soon service robots may be. For example,…

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Solar Options

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With Earth’s natural resources being used at a rate higher than ever before, people have begun outsourcing their energy needs. Conventional practices still outnumber the alternatives due to efficiency factors, but the need for sustainability looks to be on the horizon. Solar panels are one-way people plan to burn less coal and use less water in producing electricity. There are essentially three options: you can front the capital costs and buy solar panels cash, you can purchase them through a home equity loan, or you can opt for solar leasing. Cash is how to get the best price, but there is a lot of research involved for finding regulations as well as installation packages. Home equity loans are a good option if you need to finance your solar panels. With your home as collateral, the interest rates are relatively low, and interest is tax deductible. The loans can range from a period of five to fifteen years. Virginia isn’t a state with many alternative energy tax breaks, but that could change. The last option called solar loans, is not nearly as incentivizing. The interest is not generally tax deductible and are subject to change annually. This means that if the…

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Self-Driven Morals

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I was in an engineering class the topic of Tesla’s self-automated vehicle technology was brought up. It’s not exactly the technology that’s holding up the process of self-driving cars on the road. It’s the moral issues surrounding their development that are causing delays. How you ask? Think about accidents. There’s a reason they are called accidents because you don’t intend for them to happen. However, computers only do what you tell them to do. That means there would have to be a computerized program deciding the best outcome for a problematic situation. This is easy for “accidents” involving one car and inanimate objects, but it becomes more complicated the more individuals get involved. Unless we change from entirely self-automated vehicles, there will be problems in a world with some cars operated by people and other operated on their own. The World Economic Forum published an article in collaboration with MIT News back in October about the moral components of these computer programs with surveys collected from thousands of individuals in over a hundred countries around the world. This sort of communal or public engagement is an essential part of innovative research as this technology being implanted would directly effect the…

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Love languages

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It’s common knowledge that different things make different people angry. Temperament is something you are born with. Some babies spend more time crying and fussing than other and that can carry over into adulthood. So if that’s common sense, I wonder why people don’t consider the things or phenomena that make people experience other emotions like love. I recently explored a website (link below) that notifies you of your top five love languages. The reasoning behind this is that there are different ways in which people communicate or experience love. It’s called a language because it is open to interpretation. The five love languages are gift receiving, quality time, words of affirmation, acts of service and touch. The last one is probably the easiest to understand, but can change most frequently. Those who experienced abusive relationships in the past may rank this as the least important language of love between themselves and their partner. It could be super important to someone else because they were void of touch for a long time. It doesn’t have to be abuse related or conceivable to the conscious mind either. Words of affirmation pertain to the actual language that is shared between two people—positive…

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Dispute your credit score

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Alright story time. About two months ago my credit plummeted due to an issue with my furniture provider. From them illegitimately charging me I was able to argue my rights as a consumer and receive an upgrade for my furniture for my consumer reputation being compromised. At that point thought the damage was done and it was soon to be a slow uphill battle towards getting a decent credit score again. That was when a dear friend of mine suggested I dispute the TransUnion credit report and that’s exactly what I did. I clicked on the little dispute button on credit Karma and was prompted to explain my case. After about two weeks I received notice that my claim had been investigated and adjustments made to my credit report which increased it 64 points. That’s not even the best part. Due to the new credit score I was eligible for new opportunities. Try free credit check companies and see if you could fix your credit score! Call today to see how much you qualify for at Fast Cash Title Loans, 21615 Cascades Pkwy, Sterling, Va 20166 – 703-444-3840 or 6526 Arlington Blvd, Falls Church, Va 22042 – 702-237-5626 When you…

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Consumerism

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The 1920s in the United States of America is marked by a period of “conspicuous consumption” which is a phrase that was a coined by a Norwegian-American economist and writer back in 1899. Think The Great Gatsby—luxurious cars and leisure as well as flashy accessories. The economist I just mentioned was named Thorstein Veblin, also a sociologist whose work changed the way everyday people were understood. Initially luxuries and flashy items were intended for the wealthy class, but studies show that people with low-incomes invest in less than practical items too. Not only does it assert social class, but it influences the dynamics of power. You may see someone who looks wealthy or poor (whatever those schemas mean to you) and that will change the behavior in which you interact with them—either consciously or subliminally. It’s important to know that, visually, it could merely be an illusion and not an allusion of wealth. It used to be that only those of nobility status could acquire enough precious metal to splurge on the impractical things in life, but with today’s notion of consumerism that is not the case. Another economist by the name of Paul Nystrom theorized that this was a result…

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Korean Pop Music

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There’s been a rise in the Korean pop music industry. In 2012, the first annual Korean wave convention (KCON) was held in Southern California and its present fan base was just a few hundred fans. As of this year it’s reported that the convention is held in eight different countries all over the world with more than one hundred thousand attendees and tickets costing a minimum of $155. How did Korean pop music come to take over the west? The short answer is globalization. With technology allowing more access to nearly every corner of the world international outreach is becoming more and more accessible across a variety of industry—media in particular. Just as Despacito took over the radio waves in the US and influenced many producers to collaborate across cultures, I suspect the same fate for Korean artists. On October 6th a Seoul crew of seven members called BTS became the first Korean group to perform at a stadium in the US (RollingStone). The concert was performed at Citi Field in New York and the show sold out in a matter of minutes. The Winter Olympics were held earlier this year and popular music by the band BTS was broadcasted…

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