Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Tempting the Devil in the Name of God - Amazing Title, Amazing Book

Through this blog I'm invited to review books from time to time, and on the vast majority of occasions I let them pass.  But sometimes I'm hit with a title that peaks my interest, such was the case with Howard Beckman's book, "Tempting the devil in the Name of God". 

Hot and cold, sun and moon, darkness and light, on Earth as it is in Heaven, as above so below.  Life is often a study in contrasts.  To truly appreciate peace it helps to have known chaos, joy results from having known sorrow, and understanding abundance can only come from having known want.  

''Tempting the Devil in the Name of God'' is an autobiography of one man's life that speaks exceptionally well to this duality of existence.  From the depths of drug dependence and lengthy stays in prison, to the re-awakening of a spiritual journey.  The author provides insights that can help anyone seeking to find peace, contentment and the road back to the Divine that resides within us all.

I would venture to say that everyone has faced challenges in life, has had obstacles to overcome.  I hope that for most it hasn't been anything as devastating as a heroin addiction, or incarceration in a Thai prison.  But even if your challenges aren't as severe or the obstacles aren't as harsh, it helps to know that incredible odds can be beaten.

This biographical work reads like a novel, starting out near the end in Thailand just before the author is incarcerated for heroin possession, having fled bail in the United States.  The result is a protracted stay in a Thai prison described in lurid detail, with the author eventually being thrown into a "hole" like dungeon, solitary confinement.  It then retraces his life, from his involvement with the Hare Krishna movement to experimentation with marijuana and heroin through to dependence and drug dealing.  

I don't wish to give too much away, but knowing that eventually the author would be released I was turning pages, anxious to learn of his rebirth.  It was that part of the story, learning how Mr. Beckman put his life back together that had me anxious to get to the end.  Rediscovering his spiritual path, travelling to India to learn about Eastern traditions and Vedic astrology, expanding on the knowledge already gained from his early days in the Krishna movement before it became corrupted.  

I'm convinced this book can serve as inspiration for anyone seeking to find peace, for anyone looking to put past troubles, issues behind them, for anyone seeking a spiritual path. 

I have had the good fortune to connect with Mr. Beckman both by email and over the phone. The author is 13 years my senior, but when speaking with him I was amazed at how energetic and youthful he sounds. I've known so many bitter people, those who can't let things go no matter how far in the past events may be, and they age before their time.
Reading this book has already helped me deal with the stresses in my own life. We all have stress, but a book like this can provide that wonderful but often elusive element we all need, perspective.

If you are looking purchase a copy of the book you can find it at amazon.com:

Or you can order the book directly from Mr. Beckman's website:

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Calling on all 'Old Stock' Canadians to put an end to the Muslim problem....A Modest Proposal

Canada is the only country standing up to the problem of the International Muslim. Who is the International Muslim? The International Muslim has no allegiance to his country, be it Canada or any other. The International Muslim is seeking to take over countries like Canada and subject Old Stock Canadians to his religion. We must make it easier to remove the International Muslim from our midst, by deporting him to other countries, even if he was born and raised in Canada.
But we cannot stop there, the International Muslim has declared war on Canada and only Old Stock Canadians under strong leadership can stop him.
Deporting the International Muslim will, at times, be difficult. Our liberal courts and other politicians will put up barriers, their bleeding hearts will cry out in the liberal press about human rights. They don't realize the threat posed by the International Muslim. That's why Old Stock Canadians must do all they can to assure we have leadership in this country that will tackle the problem head on.
The International Muslim is not to be underestimated, he is sly and clever. Already he has infiltrated and converted some of our own citizens, blending in with cultural camouflage. We must take this camouflage away and make the International Muslim visible to all. A large red coloured letter 'M' should be worn by all Muslims and displayed openly on their clothing.
But that will not be enough. Already the International Muslim has become, in many ways, indistinguishable from other Canadians. The International Muslim will try to hide among us, like a Trojan Horse.
We must create Muslim sections in our major cities. To solve a problem like the International Muslim you must know where he lives. Gated and controlled sections or our metropolitan areas should be cordoned off as Muslim only.
This is just the start, but to do these things....to strip the International Muslim of his Canadian citizenship and more we need strong leadership in this country. We need leadership that recognizes the problem of the International Muslim, leadership that will confront it head on.
Old stock Canadians must band together and ensure nothing stops such a government from being elected on October 19th.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Calling Bell Canada, 310 Bell...and reaching the Philippines

Its been months since I've written anything here, but today I feel the need to get my rant on.  

I am a Bell Canada (or is it Bell Philippines) customer for both satellite television and wireless internet.  Until September I was only subscribed to the satellite TV service, but then added internet.  I called, got the "bundled" package, and instructed them to continue billing me as they had been previously, pre-authorized to my credit card.

Pretty simple right?  Wrong.

Today I received a collections call from Bell because my Bell Internet account was in arrears.  I live in Quebec, so the call was in French, but the script is the same.  "Make a payment now".  I'm a suspicious type so I told them I'd call THEM back.  Instead of calling the 1-800 number I was provided, I called 310 BELL instead and I proceeded to rip into the very pleasant young lady on the other end of the line....Christina I believe was the name.

A little history.

It turns out my "bundle" wasn't a bundle.  Shortly after signing up for the internet service I received what looked like a suspicious email claiming to be from Bell asking me to arrange pre-authorized payments on my account.  "I've already done that", I said to myself, sensing a scam.  I called 310 BELL and was told that yes my account was already pre-authorized and that they'd received a lot of calls about this email.  I was told to delete it and not to click on anything, which I did.  

Well it seems that Bells TV Satellite service and their Wireless Internet service, it doesn't seem they talk to each other.  I was continuing to be billed for Television, but they didn't include the internet portion on my bill.  Yes I should have checked my credit card statement more carefully, but I saw that Bell was indeed billing me each month so I figured all was as it should be.  

They never sent a paper bill for the internet service.  

Anyway....to make this long story just a bit longer, I was told by the CSR that the issue could be resolved and that the billing could indeed be bundled and paid by a single pre-authorized debit to my credit card, but first I needed to bring the internet account current.

Ugh....okay.  But I didn't have my wallet with me, it was locked in the car.  The nice CSR said no problem, she could wait.  While fetching my wallet it occurred to me that this young lady on the other end of the line, that it isn't her fault that she works for such a messed up company.  And I have worked in similar roles before myself and I know the stress that can come from dealing with outraged customers.

When I came back on the phone I apologized for being so surly (how very Canadian of me eh) and that I wasn't mad at her, I was mad at her employer.  I told her professional and courteous phone manner was appreciated.  I'd also noticed that she spoke with accented English and asked her what her native language was.  She told me it was Filipino.  "Really", I said...."Well I guess I should say como esta mar-ay".  That's a general greeting to a female in Tagalog (which is the native language in the Philippines.  

Christina (if I recall correctly) was quite taken back.  I told her I also knew como-esta par-ay (greeting to a guy) and salama (thank you).  She said it was great to talk to someone from Canada who speaks "my language".  

That struck me as odd.  Speaking to someone from Canada???   Isn't she in Canada???  Nope.  She told me that she worked in the Philippines.  

I realize the chances of this coming to light through mainstream media is pretty small given the amount of advertising Bell does and the fact that they own CTV among numerous other broadcast properties.

It looks like Bell will be losing a customer however.  Any suggestions.  I want to engage the services of a company that will employ people here in Canada and not ship jobs overseas.  

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Les raisons pourquoi un anglophone va voter pour le PQ

J'habite à Québec pour une bonne boute, mais j'ai jamais essayer d'écrire en français...donc svp excusez me plusieurs fautes pendant que j'explique les raisons pourquoi un "tête carré"  va voter pour les pésquistes.

La première chose à confronter c'est la question d'un referendum. Philippe Couillard joue la politique de peur en disant que la journée suite à une victoire pour le PQ Pauline Marois va commençer de préparer pour un 3e referendum.  Je ne le crois pas.  

Peut-etre une journée il y aura un autre vote sur la separation, mais pas cette année et même pas l'année prochaine.   Jamais? Moi, je ne sais pas...si ça arrive ça arrive.  Le Québec, c'est une societée democratique, et si les citoyen(ne)s décide qu'ils veut un 3e referendum dans les années qui viennent, ça c'est leur doit.

Juste pour soit cent pour cent clair, si il y aura un referendum demain, je voterai non.

Donc, pourquoi voter PQ?

Parce que j'aime tellement la langue et la culture française-québecoise et de mon avis, ce n'est que le PQ qui va le protéger et le promouvoir.  Est-ce qu'il y a un bésoin?  Quant à moi, oui.  Le centre commercial de Québec c'est Montréal, et il est arrivée à moi de trouver des gens qui parle pas français dans les coffee shops et les dépaneurs.  Récenement je suis allée dans un dep à Montréal et j'ai demandé.  "Vendez vous les timbres".  La reponse?  "Sorry, I don't speak French".

Comment ça?  Dans la ville de Montréal, à Québec en osti!!!  C'est pas grave pour moi, un anglophone....mais imaginez un(e) Québecois(e) unilangue, dans un commerce de sa propre nation....pas capable d'avoir la service dans sa/son propre langue....la seul langue officiel de Québec.

Il y a d'autres raisons aussi.  Moi, je suis pas un idéologue.  Je suis pas gauchiste, ni sur le doit.  Et je trouve que le gouvernement PQ récent, ils essayent de faire le ménage sur les finances publique. Ce n'est pas un job façile car il n'y jamais assez de l'argent pour tous les bésoins.  Les commissions scolaires font des plaintes sur les coupures, mais c'est les choses ce qu'il faut faire pour nettoyer le portefeuille publique.  

Meme avec l'exploration pour l'huile sure l'ile Anticosti.  Est que ca va marcher?  Je ne sais pas, mais c'est pas un billet de lotto, comme disait M. Couillard, c'est un investisement...et avec des investisements il y des risques.

Quant aux plusieurs sondages M. Couillard serai le prochain PM de Québec, mais moi....je crois de moins en moins dans les sondages.

On va voir.