When it comes to hormonal behaviour, unfortunately we often think of women. Indeed, in macho environments such as trading floors, this thinking is probably more prevalent. But in a nice irony, it’s been found that in such environments, men experience major fluctuations in two naturally-occurring hormones: cortisol (stress) and testosterone.
This marketing of products is perhaps one of the biggest reasons many feel uneasy about the modern economy and by extension finance. Are we being induced into buying something we do not want or need? Continue reading “How the Media Changes Our Minds”
I’m at the age when many of my peers have taken to wearing lycra. This is not for fashion, but to enter into triathlon, Iron Man and Tough Mudder competitions. A few have casually mentioned to me that it is quite common for people to take performance-enhancing drugs in amateur competitions. This inspired the below excerpt from my upcoming book: Continue reading “Does Money Corrupt Athletes? (1min read)”
Haruki Murakami is the bestselling Japanese writer. He’s been writing since 1979. Of course, I had heard of him before, but I only read him for the first time a few weeks ago. The book I read was a short one on running called “What I Talk About When I Talk About Running”, which was really a memoir. It revealed him to be an honest, frank and direct writer.
I just finished reading Pope Francis’ new book, “The Name Of God Is Mercy”. It’s a written in the form of conversation with the Vatican reporter and writer Andrea Tornielli. It’s worth reading whatever one’s belief system. At the intellectual level, it gives a sense of which direction one of the largest religious groups in the world is heading, and at the human level, it gives an expression of something unifying. Continue reading “Forgive Me, Pope, For I Have Sinned”
The US is the oft-cited innovator. But upon closer inspection, it seems it is only the technology sector, and more specifically Silicon Valley, where the US is the undisputed innovator. So could China create the equivalent of Silicon Valley? To answer this, we need to understand the roots of Silicon Valley. Continue reading “Can China Innovate? (2min read)”
The official verdict on the 2008 crisis in the US-government commissioned 663-page “The Financial Crisis Inquiry Report” was :
“ While the vulnerabilities that created the potential for crisis were years in the making, it was the collapse of the housing bubble—fueled by low interest rates, easy and available credit, scant regulation, and toxic mortgages— that was the spark that ignited a string of events, which led to a full-blown crisis in the fall of 2008.”
Most of us think more about how to earn money than how to spend it. Implicit within this is the assumption that “the more money I earn, the happier I’ll be”. But there has been extensive research that shows that the way you spend money can make as much, if not more, difference to your happiness than how much you earn. An excellent academic paper from a few years ago summarises the findings as follows: Continue reading “8 Principles Of Spending Your Way To Happiness In 2016”
Even savvy people who see through the above forms of advertising may succumb to more subtle versions. The most prevalent one is the nexus of news, media and advertising. Headlines are taken up by fear-inducing stories of murders, wars in far-off lands and the “despicable” lives of politically-weak sections of society.
Words in their various guises have been thought to be the primal force of humanity for thousands of years:
“In the beginning, there was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God” (Gospel of John, 1:1)
“The Lord said, “If as one people speaking the same language they have begun to do this, then nothing they plan to do will be impossible for them. Come, let us go down and confuse their language so they will not understand each other.” ( Genesis 11:6)
“And He taught Adam all the names…And (remember) when We said to the angels: “Prostrate yourselves before Adam.”(Quran 2:31)
In essence, words create a reality of their own; they set the context to which all will act within. Think about how “freedom-fighter”(eg Mandela) sounds compared to “terrorist” (eg Mandela), or how “entrepreneur” sounds compared to “wheeler-dealer”. Who decides which of the pair is used sets the tone of any subsequent discussion. Continue reading “In the beginning, there was the Word…”