Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Clean hands can save lives

Washing hands with soap is one of the easiest and most effective ways of protecting ourselves from common diseases. It is said that if we wash our hands properly everyday, we can prevent more than 50 percent of diarrheal and respiratory illnesses. Yet we often tend to take things for granted and forget to wash our hands before and after carrying out critical activities. Handwashing is perhaps one of the first lessons we have learned from our parents but even today, we hardly care to know how to do it in a proper manner. Since we use our hands in almost everything we do in our daily life, it is important to keep them clean so that infectious germs and bacteria do not find their way into our body.

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

A reflection on death and impermanence

Life is like a burning butter-lamp in the wind. We never know when it will be blown out. Yet we live as though we would never die. We hardly think of death and impermanence in our everyday life. Clouded by our desires, greed, ego, anger and ignorance, we often get carried away by momentary sensual pleasures and materialistic comfort the world provides and forget the very purpose of being born as a human being, the most intelligent and capable species of all. It is only when we are born in the human realm that we have the opportunity to practice Dharma and change the course of our afterlives. No other sentient beings have the opportunity and capacity to seek enlightenment like human beings. This is the main reason why human life is considered so precious in Buddhism.

Saturday, February 1, 2020

The widespread misinformation about the new coronavirus outbreak calls for responsible use of social media

A woman wearing protective mask in Beijing, China. Image source: BBC World News

As the global community is struggling to cope with the new coronavirus outbreak that has originated in China, our social media platforms are overloaded with information that are often misleading. Since the day the news of the outbreak made international headlines, we have been seeing many social media users sharing their own theories about what could have caused the outbreak and how it can be controlled. I feel that it is not only the virus that is spreading across the globe. The rumors and misinformation about the outbreak are travelling even faster, spreading unnecessary fear and panic amongst the general population.