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Thinking Like Kanye West Just Might Make the World a Better Place.

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Did I hurt somebody by saying that ‘I love myself?’ -Kanye West

Have you ever been in a situation where you’ve been asked what you want to do with your life, yet, you hesitated on answering honestly in fear of telling small minded people your big dreams? The sad reality of this situation isn’t uncommon, and you’re not the only one.

According to the National Center for Health Statistics, the rate of antidepressants used amongst American teens and adults (people ages 12 and older) increased by almost 400% between 1988–1994 and 2005–2008.

Prescription drugs combating mental illness and depression seem to be at an all time high. Why is this the case? Is it because we currently have more people on this earth which is naturally leading to more cases of mental illness? Or is it because the society we are being raised in and the culture we are promoting isn’t synonymous with personal happiness? Young children and adults alike strive for material goods in hopes to satiate a need for validation. Be it designer clothing or a luxury car, this need for approval from others manifests itself in many different ways.

In a motivational compilation video edited by Riaz TV  featuring Kanye West, the commentary on low self-esteem and need for validation is prominent. In the video, West expresses his thoughts on how our need for validation typically stems from low self-esteem. He talks about how most people either don’t believe they can change their perception of themselves, or they don’t even realize that their perception and low self-esteem is holding them back and bringing them down. If your case happens to be the former, click here for our article on perception.

Video Below:

West, who is no stranger to the concept of self love and high self-esteem, in a way embodies perhaps the exact opposite of our current culture. Contrary to popular belief, it would seem as evidenced by this video, that West is more concerned with people loving themselves, than he is with them loving him.

That’s what people are controlled by, their perceptions of themselves… it seems like the world is all based off of people being taught NOT to think highly of themselves, and by you not thinking highly of yourself, you think less of other people. You end up marginalizing yourself, and the people around you. – Kanye West

Simply put, if you are able to fully accept, appreciate, and love yourself as an individual, despite recognizing your personal flaws, you will actually be able to transfer the same love and acceptance to the individuals around you (as West suggests). If you possess high self esteem, it won’t matter what people think or say about you. Instead, you will recognize that they are most likely unhappy with themselves, otherwise, they wouldn’t care enough to bring you down or promote any sort of negativity in your world. This concept works similarly to the ‘pay it forward’ concept. Show the world this mindset and promote not just your own, but their self esteem also, and the world will naturally become a happier place.

You don’t hurt anybody by thinking highly of yourself. We are all flawed individuals, but we are all worthy of both love and acceptance.

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Wakanda IRL — What Could Go Wrong?

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Apparently a lot.

We’re all coming out of Marvel’s latest release on a high. Yes, Black Panther was an amazing movie. Yes, the soundtrack was lit, and yes, it would be really cool if a place like Wakanda actually existed IRL!

Well it does…kind of.

The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DR Congo) is lush with resources of cobalt. It’s not the vibranium that was used to make Captain America’s shield, but it’s important nonetheless. The sometimes forgotten metal plays essential roles in our day to day lives. Smartphones, laptops, and electric cars all run off of lithium-ion batteries, all of which use cobalt as a key component. From uses in cancer treatments to the construction of alloys for aircraft engines, we have taken this metal and integrated it into many everyday uses.

Which is great, a little different from Wakanda, where the stores of vibranium were a well kept secret from the rest of the world, despite all the amazing creations that it led to. However, Wakanda as a country was also better off then the DR Congo has ever been.

Colonization by the Europeans in Congo began in the late 15th and early 16th century. From the exploitation of their natural resources, to suffering years of civil unrest, the people of Congo have constantly suffered from times of turmoil. Genocide, slave trading and child labour, are but a a few of the horrors the country has been forced to face. Since 1998, five million people from the DR Congo have died from war or disease. In an article released by The Guardian, it was stated that children as young as the age of seven were being forced to mine for the cobalt that gets used in most household brands today.

As more awareness is created and the realities of the situation in the DR Congo are brought to the forefront, we can only hope that those with the power to make a difference step forward. Apple, Sony and Samsung, all companies that require sources of cobalt for their products, have made claims to take steps against any supplier that violates human rights.

The world was given a chance to get this right the first time. With bountiful resources, a beautiful country with even more beautiful people, the ‘real life’ Wakanda had started off with much opportunity and potential. It took an unstable government, vicious dictators, and unethical capitalists to bring the DR Congo to the state it has now become. Black Panther’s Wakanda paints a radical vision for all of us, of what it could have been.

unsplash-logoChen Hu

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The World Mourns the Loss of a Great Mind: Stephen Hawking

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On March 14th, 2018, the world had to say goodbye to one of the greatest mind’s of our generation, Stephen Hawking.


“It would not be much of a universe if it wasn’t home to the people you love.” – S. Hawking

Professor Stephen Hawking was diagnosed with a rare case of motor neuron disease at the age of 21 and was only given two years to live. Despite the continual deterioration of his condition, he was able to live out his life to the age of 76 and continue to do the work that he so loved.

Author of renowned A Brief History of Time, and known for his work on relativity and black holes, Hawking was able to take his research to new levels despite being wheelchair bound and forced to use a voice synthesizer to communicate.

According to his official website,

“Professor Stephen Hawking ha[d] thirteen honorary degrees. He was awarded CBE (1982), Companion of Honour (1989) and the Presidential Medal of Freedom (2009). He [was] the recipient of many awards, medals and prizes, most notably the Fundamental Physics prize (2013), Copley Medal (2006) and the Wolf Foundation prize (1988). He [was] a Fellow of the Royal Society and a member of the US National Academy of Sciences and the Pontifical Academy of Sciences.”

All of his award and acclaims notwithstanding, Hawking was also a loving father to three children who gave the following statement following the passing of their father,

“We are deeply saddened that our beloved father passed away today. He was a great scientist and an extraordinary man whose work and legacy will live on for many years.”

The world lost a great mind yesterday and as his close friends and family gather to mourn their loss, hopefully it gives some comfort to know, that he will not soon be forgotten.

unsplash-logoKyle Gregory Devaras

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