Author Archives: archert

Rich Dad Poor Dad

Just finished reading this book in the last two days, easy words, but it provides some deep thoughts. I knew the existence of this book for years, but the name of this book really gave me an impression that it aims for some mindless idiots who crave for nothing but money. Well, I had to admit that  after so many years, I finally realize that I am in that category.

It turned out my financial IQ is low, I have no idea of how money works, so I hope for the next few months, I could learn something about accounting at least.

Some of the quotes below are those I found thought-provoking:

  • The avoidance of money is just as psychotic as being attached to money.
  • Remember the golden rule. He who has the gold makes the rules.
  • It is said that the fear of public speaking is a fear greater than death for most people. According to psychiatrists, the fear of public speaking is caused by the fear of ostracism, the fear of standing out. the fear of ridicule, and the fear of being an outcast. The fear of being different prevents most people from seeking new ways to solve their problems.
  • You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.
  • That’s the most common form of laziness: laziness by staying busy.
  • “Guilt is worse than greed, for guilt robs the body of its soul.” I think Eleanor Roosevelt said it best: “Do what you feel in your heart to be right — for you’ll be criticized anyway. You’ll be damned if you do, and damned if you don’t.”

The day we stop learning the day we die. I know that long time ago, but like most of us if not all, I need to be reminded constantly.

Some Hypothetical Questions

Q1: Do we need a God?

A1: It depends. If it is a good God, probably yes. But goodness is not an essential part of God by my definition. Besides, what does good mean anyway.

Q2: If we do need a good God, does it makes God to be true?

A2: Of course not. What you desires, no matter how strong it is, has nothing to do with the truth value.

Q3: So does God truly exist?

A3: I really don’t know. But I just occasionally bothered by this ultimate question. I live my life on the assumption that He doesn’t exist or He has no interests to interfere my life. Until now, I lived quite content with such ideas bearing in mind.


Promise to me, is an empty word. Whether you wish to keep or break that promise, has nothing to do with those seemingly divine words you said or wrote down. It’s something carving deep down in your mind or heart. So whatever you want to do or not, just carry on. You don’t have to speak it out, and even you did so, it’s not necessary to be bond to it. Things are always changing, the time when you made the promise won’t be the same when you want to break it.

I don’t take anyone’s promise seriously, and I am not easily make ones, though I have done that in my younger time. My moral standard is that if I’m going to break a promise for good, I will do it. Of course, even that standard can be changed some day, who knows.

Anyway, time will ultimately prove everything, so why bother to make promises, dumb ass?

The Spectrum of Probabilities about the Existence of God

Where does your belief lay?

  1. Strong theist. 100 per cent probability of God. In the words of C. G. Jung, ‘I do not believe, I know!
  2. Very high probability but short of 100 per cent. De facto theist. ‘I cannot know for certain, but I strongly believe in God and live my life on the assumption that he is there.’
  3. Higher than 50 per cent but not very high. Technically agnostic but leaning towards theism. ‘I am very uncertain, but I am inclined to believe in God.’
  4. Exactly 50 per cent. Completely impartial agnostic. ‘God’s existence and non-existence are exactly equiprobable.’ Lower than 50 per cent but not very low.
  5. Technically agnostic but leaning towards atheism. ‘I don’t know whether God exists but I’m inclined to be sceptical.’
  6. Very low probability, but short of zero. De facto atheist. ‘I cannot know for certain but I think God is very improbable, and I live my life on the assumption that he is not there.’
  7. Strong atheist. ‘I know there is no God, with the same conviction as Jung “knows” there is one.”

via Richard Dawkins, The God Delusion

Mine swings between 5 and 6. Don’t know if it will change after reading Richard Dawkins’ “The God Delusion” or maybe the Bible? I always struggle about the idea of God. Even if I can accept the concept, I think it’s definitely far from the description of the Bible.

Some Thoughts about Religion

The following arguments are barely my own opinions, as these thoughts are not mature enough, I may change my view in any given time.

I suppose faith is a very personal stuff, it’s not concerned on right or wrong, it’s only about what you want to believe. If anyone truly stick to his/her inner voice, then no matter how ridiculous others may assume, we should respect him/her. That’s my principal, at least. Therefore, I will never mock on people’s faith if his/her solo aim to demonstrate it is not show superiority  over others.

As for me, I still will say  that I don’t favor the religion ideas. There are several reasons for me to draw this conclusion, yet I’ll focus on only one aspect, SELF-IMPORTANCE. For example, Christianity. Yes, in Christian’s idea, human being are all sinned and Jesus is our only Savior, thus we shall humble ourselves and worship him. Which seems Christians don’t see themselves as self-importance, that’s both right and wrong. For those devout believers they genuinely devote themselves to the Almighty and not think much about themselves, especially the bodies, which is very touchy if not completely convincing . But how about seeing the big picture. Why God created us? Why He made us in his image? Why the Lord appointed us to rule the animals? All I can see here are man-made self-importance, even Christians always say that we’re all sinners not worth to be mentioned in His glory. Look at the universe, from there our planet is all but a pale blue dot. Human being’s existence could be merely a coincidence, hence anyone who think our race must be bestowed some blessings and carry a divine mission may turn out to be a false idea or illusion. What if life has no purpose? Just think of that makes me painful. But truth is not always sweet, on contrary, it stings for the most of time. We don’t know the truth about life’s ultimate purpose yet and I doubt we ever will, but if you can get through the worst (let’s say, bear the miserable life span without knowing whether all you have done is meaningful or not) then none will frightened you. It’s my approach to deal with the feeling of emptiness anyway, though it’s not effectual all the time.

Carl Sagan’s words moved me more than the verses of Bible, and I’d like to share it with you if the article happened to be read by someone like you.

That’s here. That’s home. That’s us. On it, everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every superstar, every supreme leader, every saint and sinner in the history of our species, lived there… on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam. The Earth is a very small stage in a vast, cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors, so that in glory and triumph they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner the this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner. How frequent their misunderstanding, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds. Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great, enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment, the Earth is where we make our stand. It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we’ve ever known.

If He’s really there, I hope He can forgive these offend words.

A Mysterious World

When I was a little boy, about the kindergarten age, I found a world of my very own. At that time, I always liked to attach my head to a desk, and there would be some vague voice come from the inside of the desk. It sounds like remote radio signals, unclear, but definitely meaningful. I would enjoy the sound for quite a long time, to figure out what they were really talking about, or think about how to get to their world. It was quite fun for me, besides I kept this as a secret, such a huge discovery should not be shared. Yeah, at that age, what else can you expect a boy do?

When it comes the day that I suddenly realize this is not a mysterious world, it’s simply the real world with some altered sound. I was very disappointed, the feeling is like a long-known friend who stabbed your back without any warning. All the fantasies faded away.

I suppose those are the growing pains.

My Childhood Playground

No matter how many pictures you take, you can never find back your childhood. Your shadow lingered in that place, you can see it vaguely, but you cannot touch it in the least. These were my childhood playground, my imagined battle field. They are quite different now, along with my friends. Apparently my childhood was already dead, I am no longer and can never be the same. What also made me feel ironic is I spent no more than an hour for cycling to check through all these areas. When I was a little boy, I thought that’s my whole world.

Artificial Limbs Project

This weekend I attended the Artificial Limbs Project as a volunteer to help to hand out the limbs.

I met Gerie and his two lovely children, Benjamin and Fiana, at 22:45 in front of the South Square, Shanghai Railway Station. And then came Lyvia, Joel, Louis and Emily in sequence. Gerie gave me the ticket, and I found it was booked by my passport number, I once afraid that I couldn’t get into the station, since I only brought my ID card with me. Of course, the moments of panic turned out to be O.K. in the end.

I changed my ticket with Gerie for he wanted to accompany his two children. I was with Louis in the same room, then Emily came in to join our talk. Another person in our room is an international student, sophomore who just came back from Wollongong, Australia. He is majored in engineering and willing to talk with us. So a group of four people began the chat restlessly in the mid night. One of Emily’s friend happened to be come from Wollongong too, so she insisted to acquire the contact information of the boy. And she kept saying her friend is very charming and very interested in making friends with international students. To me, she’s quite like a match-maker, ^-^. One thing is particular interesting that the boy misunderstood the word “faith” to “face”. And he kept talking with the wrong topic and the other two audience didn’t spot it. As for me, I asked Emily about the relationship between Jesus and Santa which obviously appeared to be a good opening thread. The talk ended at maybe 1:30 am, but I couldn’t fall asleep easily because I find it was difficult to get used to the jolt as the train travels.

The next morning we arrived Suzhou, Anhui at about 07:00 am. A mini bus took us to the breakfast. The restaurant provides everything but coffee, which made our foreign friends groan. Fortunately, Louis took two pack of instant coffee with her, and she finally decided to share with us all, ^-^. Professor Joel, Mexican, tall and with a loud voice quickly took out some sugar and added to the coffee, and murmured “I’m sweet than that”. We all got puzzled why a man would bring sugar without coffee with himself, the professor then took another bottle of lemonade and explained he could never live without lemonade, but sometimes he need some help from the sugar.

After the breakfast, we went to our final destination. Unfortunately, I don’t where it is. When we arrived there, the artificial limbs were packed in three big boxes and just be there waiting for us. Not too many things for us to do, we carried the limbs to a room with the help of other people, sorted them out and get ready to distribute these limbs to their new owner. I had to admit that the process was not so exciting, it’s quite like a routine. You gave the limbs and they said thank you, then the next. But after that, I was with Louis to talk to some of these disabled. They shared their stories and I felt the smiles on their faces are genuine.

The local government treated us in the noon. Nothing special, except that Joel taught us the tricks of two magic played by poker, very impressive.

When the trip ended, all of us need to pay 100 rmb. Apparently that because the SCF has subsided the trip. I gave 200 in the end, of course it cannot cover the cost of the trip, even for myself. But I don’t know how much that others would give, so I have no intention to embarrass the rest. Anyway, I could donate proper amount of money to the church in the future.

The link below is all the photos I took, really not a big fan of photographing, I already tried my best.

p.s.: Little Fiana is so so so cute!

Cruel Nature

Just some rough ideas.

From the nature’s perspective, the mission of the creatures in this world is to spread genes. Whoever performs the task better, which means do the job faster and more efficient, will always gets the reward, SURVIVE. But I think the natural probably doesn’t care about the life quality of any simple individual.

For example, the men who live on earth now proves that their ancestors are more successful in spreading genes. They must had more sex partners and may possess the intuition to commit rape. It’s simply because doing so can increase the chance to have more offspring. But here comes the problem. If you get many sex partners, it’s very difficult to deal with the relationships. Hence you may live in a life full of quarrels, even fights, everyday. For most people, it’s like a torture both physically and mentally. And if you commit rape, it maybe good for your flesh and blood, since they get the chance to be born. But it’s definitely bad for you. I know there are so many rapes that have not been reported, still if you committed it, you are more likely to be pursued by the law and get punished, even death penalty can be applied depends on what period of history you lived. So why bother? I think the answer is we’re all slave of the nature and nature makes us the slave of our intuition. Whoever can be more adapted to the world, no matter what manner he takes. Whoever against this rule simply gets vanished from the earth. That’s the reality, such a cruel nature.

Europe Unplugged, July 17th, 2014

The very first thing you should know is that I strongly recommend this trip and this travel agency which I took and travel with this summer holidays, Europe unplugged and Topdeck. Don’t be shy to at least take a look, click here (the itinerary has already changed a lot bit).

Second thing, it’s quite a common wish that we can keep the good and vivid memories through writing dairy, otherwise we easily failed the mission. I am just doing that.

It’s all begin at July 17th, 2014. We got to our meet point at Clink 78 Hostel in London very early. Simply find our tour guide and checked in, then sit on the steps before the hotel to wait the coach coming. Lena said she preferred a male tour guide, compared to a female one she had met, because he was more enthusiastic and had a loud voice. Things always fail to meet our expectation, our tour guide is an Italian named Catherina, usually we call her Cate. Lena confirmed her speculation since she doesn’t used to her accent.

The other thing I remember was a man called Ryan, I didn’t know his name at that point. A beggar asked money for him, and I think he used some dirty words to drive him away. The beggar “politely” replied, “Thank you and fuck you too”. That’s very interesting, because I never seen such thing before.

We arrived Dover at about noon, got our passport stamped and ready to take the ferry. We put our luggage one a trolley and suppose to take them back when we get to the other side of the channel. Lena seemed anxious to leave our stuff in such a unsafe way.

Dover is a beautiful place. It’s famous for its white cliffs, but I am sure it would be more beautiful from another perspective when we take the ferry back. Actually, I’m quite looking forward to that.

The ferry is very luxurious, but I forgot her name. In it, you can almost find everything you want. Lena spent much time on inspecting everything in the shop to make sure which ones to purchase on our way back. It’s inevitable. Because we all had to prepare some presents for our friends. But still I felt a little boring, I know I would rather stay on the top board than to be refrained in the small shop. So I bought two bars of chocolate to cheer myself up.

The voyage was rather short, I didn’t realize the time escape so quickly. We jumped off the board and stand still to see where our luggage be dragged to. Before the trolley arrived, our team members had plenty of time to know each others’ names and exchange ideas. I have never been good at talking. So it’s always Lena to break the ice. This time we knew Cameron and Julia, who comes from Australia. And thank them, I got some new knowledge that New Zealander gets the nickname kiwi, but it’s not because of the kiwi fruit which is also famous, but a kind of lovely and also flightless native bird.

It was very hot that day, and we waited a long time to get our luggage back. But now it turned out that we had to wait for our coach in a custom building. And our group randomly chose a place and sat on the ground, some began to sleep, some began to chat. This time, we got the name of a girl from Uganda who is a student. And we knew that not everyone in this tour has the same itinerary, some got fewer days than we did.

The coach found us finally, and now we acknowledged our “chauffeur”, a proud Irish, Sean. I have to admit I had a great difficulty to recognize those word came from his mouth, they didn’t sound like English very much. And we also met our on-road-chef, Tobin, a former DJ. We found that out later, and we all puzzled why he had quit such a cool job.

The scenes were so pleasant, I saw a lot of signs indicates that there are some deer nearby. OMG, you should know I am a crazy animal-lover. But I didn’t have enough luck to see one on that day.

I didn’t remember what happened on coach, but I did take a picture of the lovely “What’s on” sheet which Cate draws every time on our way to a new place. Apparently I cannot compete with her for tour guide on this aspect.

Then we were divided into two groups, each had its mission. I was in the group manage to set up the cooking tent while Lena’s job was to do our own tent. I have never done that before, even set up a net troubles me so much. But Tobin showed us how to do it properly, and it turned out to be such a piece of cake.

And our own tent was not so difficult too. But Lena is a perfectionist, she wants everything to be perfectly well if not awesome. She kept asking Cameron, Tim and anyone within her grasp if our tent got anything wrong.

The first time I laid on the air mattress and took a rest under the tent build by ourselves was so wonderful.

That night we took the coach for a “Night Light Tour” around downtown area of Pairs! We passed the Louvre, some square which seemed holding a live concert, a golden roof palace (King Louis IV or VI), Napaleon’s Tomb, Military School and Eiffel Tower, of course; on our way back we drove along the River Seine. We learnt that the center of Pairs originate from that small island really. We saw the old city hall and old royal palace (used as prison later) stand on that island which have several bridges to connect the mainland. One of the bridge is full of locks which we know as love bridge. It’s still arguable which one is the original, but it’s may not a good idea. Just couple weeks ago one bridge was collapse because it cannot bear the weight of so many locks. So sad to know that. And I stubbornly hold the idea that those who want show the world of their love usually break up in the end. The thing is if you are confident of your significant other, why bother?

One thing really interesting happened on this tour. Cate cannot stand for the young fellows interrupt her speaking. It makes some sense, I do understand some people cannot keep the speech if he/she receives any disturb. Sean also offered the help to hush the audience. But as a tour guide, one should certainly know emotions would be better keep at bay, otherwise you ruin the tour. Some boys are naughty, but still there are quite a few who want to enjoy the introductions of the city. Poor Cate, so easy to jump into temper though in a very quiet way. Anyway, for me it’s such a cute disposition.

The first night was too exciting for sleep, but we all tired. Some young fellows were so energetic, they stayed up late, talking, drinking, laughing. It’s wonderful to be young which I think me and Lena are still in that category..