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A Holiday Wish from Our Founder James Vena

Posted Sunday November 22, 2015 4:45:10 PM EDT

As we embark upon the 2015/2016 Holiday Season, please know that my first wish is that this message finds you and your loved ones in the very best of health and happiness.

 I genuinely hope that this past year has provided you with "enough" of the things you needed for yourself, while granting you an abundance of the things that you wished to have in order to share with others. I consider the holiday season as a two-fold event.

It begins with “giving thanks” and sharing a meal with family and friends, and for many, is the unofficial start to the Christmas season, and it ends with the celebration of ending a year and starting another. I found this short poem that I believe is apropos to the “giving thanks” part of this season

“Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire, If you did, what would there be to look forward to?

Be thankful when you don’t know something For it gives you the opportunity to learn.

Be thankful for the difficult times. During those times you grow.

Be thankful for your limitations Because they give you opportunities for improvement.

Be thankful for each new challenge Because it will build your strength and character.

Be thankful for your mistakes They will teach you valuable lessons.

Be thankful when you’re tired and weary Because it means you’ve made a difference. It is easy to be thankful for the good things. A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who are also thankful for the setbacks.

GRATITUDE can turn a negative into a positive. Find a way to be thankful for your troubles and they can become your blessings.” ~ Author Unknown

Coined in song as “the most wonderful time of the year”, this is a time for both reflection and anticipation. It is now that start to contemplate the things we wished we had done in 2015 while considering our resolutions to achieve new personal goals in the 2016.

Ringing in a new year is always exciting as it spreads an unspoken energy, along with the hope of better days. One common thread, is that most seem to desire a new year to be one where we are better people, improve our environment and improve the lives of others while hoping to become a small part of the perpetual dream of creating a better world for our planet and our future generations.

 Unfortunately, the dream of attaining global peace for our children is elusive mostly due to the never ending manipulation of irresponsible leaders that wish to conquer by division, and invariable impede human progress and global peace for self-serving gain. As Robert Kennedy once told us, progress and positive change has its enemies.

 “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.“ - H. L. Mencken

Year after year, the people of planet earth, make it clear that global peace, comprehensive equality, and a safer planet it’s children, is the most sought after of all wishes. Just look at any holiday card and you’ll see what the people desire is abundantly clear. Peace on Earth. 

Maybe this coming year will be the year that we start our journey to achieve what we want by sharing, practicing tolerance, cultural awareness, understanding and a little thing that I call intellectual humility.

Knowing what you don’t know, is often more important than knowing what you do, when it comes to becoming a better person and a change agent for a better planet. Having a thirst for knowledge is indeed a beneficial trait, as it is a knowledge is the natural enemy of ignorance. Ignorance, is the accelerator of all things evil.

 Listening to everyone, is always better than listening to too few. Listen to those who have completely different views than you. It is often said that true intelligence is the ability to hold opposing thoughts in one mind. In my view such ability also creates a fantastic foundation of understanding the difficult, in order to accomplish what would otherwise seem impossible.

Cicero told us a couple of thousands years ago of the "six mistakes mankind keeps making century after century". Those six mistakes were, and STILL are:

 1) Believing that personal gain is made by crushing others;

 2) Worrying about things that cannot be changed or corrected;

 3) Insisting that a thing is impossible because we can't accomplish it;

4) Refusing to set aside trivial preferences;

5) Neglecting development and refinement of the mind;

6) Attempting to compel others to believe and live as we do.

If you want proof that Cicero was right, please take a moment to watch and share this video. I share it every year as a reminder of what makes one to be ashamed to be part of a human race that continually ignores or tries to justify this destruction of our most precious resource, human life.

Happy XMAS (WAR IS OVER) : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yN4Uu0OlmTg

Above all, I wish for you all that your right hand is always be extended in friendship and never in want.

With my Warmest Wishes from My Family to Yours

James Vena

Twitter - @jamesavena

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