BLACK HISTORY MONTH: Claude Harvard (February 3, 2018)

Claude Harvard was my cousin.  He was a modest man.  He didn’t brag about the amazing things he had done.  Sadly, I knew nothing about his genius and accomplishments until after his death.

~ Joyce Fields

 

Claude Harvard:  Genius Knows No Color

Claude Harvard

For more than half of his life, Claude Harvard fought to overcome the obstacles in his life.  He was a mathematical genius.  But before you think he carried a slide rule with him and was some sort of prosperous preppie prodigy attending a major university, think again.  Claude Harvard was born almost as poor as poor can be.  He was the son of a South Georgia black sharecropper in the years when cotton abdicated its crown as the King of the South.

Claude Harvard was born on March 11, 1911, in Dublin, Georgia.  He attended Telfair School, which was then located on Pritchett Street.  His teacher and school principal, Susie White Dasher, was more than proud of Claude.  Mrs. Dasher related that he was a mathematical wizard and was always at the top of his class.

Claude’s interest in science and technology was aroused around 1921 when he read a magazine article about owning your own wireless radio set.  The first radio station in the country, KDKA in Pittsburgh, went on the air in November 1920.  Georgia wouldn’t have its own station until 1922 when WSB began broadcasting from Atlanta.  Claude was determined to own his own radio.  He saved his pennies and sold salve to raise the money.

By 1922, it became impossible for many black tenant farmer families to survive in the boll weevil-ridden cotton fields of Georgia.  The Harvard family moved to Detroit, Michigan, with hopes of a newfound prosperity.  With his most priceless possession in hand, Claude left the relative tranquility of Dublin for the bright lights of big-city life.

Claude enrolled in a machine shop class in high school.  His teacher observed his talent and recommended him for admission to The Henry Ford Trade School in 1926.  Auto magnate Henry Ford established the school in 1916 to train orphaned children to become workers for his auto plants.  Despite the fact that he was not an orphan, Claude was accepted in the school because of his impressive talents in machining and metal work.  The cards were stacked against Claude at the school where blacks seldom graduated because of the rule against fighting.  The principal figured that Claude wouldn’t make it at the school because there was no way he could finish his classes without getting into a fight with the white kids.  Claude kept his temper and avoided any scrapes.  He excelled in every course at the school.  He was elected president of the radio club at the school. Ten students in the club took a test to become a certified amateur operator.  Claude, the only one of the group to pass the test, became the first African-American in Michigan to receive an amateur radio license.  Harvard, known as “The African Pounder,” worked at the school radio station WARC.  Upon completion of his courses at the Henry Ford Trade School, Claude Harvard was at the top of his class.

Despite the fact that Claude had reached the pinnacle of success at the school, he was denied the automatic right to a union card because of his race.  Harvard later found out that all of his applications for union membership had been discarded in the trash can.  But Harvard’s talents couldn’t be discarded.  The Ford Motor Company hired him anyway and assigned him as the head of the radio department.

In 1934 at the age of 23, Claude was personally selected by Henry Ford to display his ground-breaking invention of a piston pin inspection machine at the Century of Progress Exposition in Chicago, Illinois.  Harvard’s most well-known invention allowed workers to clean the surfaces of auto pistons to 1/10,000th of an inch.  His machine determined the proper hardness of a piston and checked the length and diameter of its grooves, rejecting any defective parts in the sorting phase.  Claude Harvard never forgot the pride he felt at the Exposition.  He was deeply honored by Ford’s confidence in him as well as the pride he felt when other black attendees came to his booth.

Impressed with Harvard’s remarkable abilities, Henry Ford asked Claude to speak on behalf of the company at Tuskegee Institute.  With only one day to prepare the speech, Harvard rapidly researched his topic and presented it to Ford by the end of the day.  The Institute’s iconic scientist, George Washington Carver, welcomed Claude to the school and issued a rare personal invitation to tour his personal laboratory.  As a token of his gratitude, Carver presented Harvard samples of his work and an autographed picture of himself.  Carver remained fond of Harvard and his work and often inquired of him in conversations with Ford.  In 1937, Harvard was again honored by Ford when he appeared in an advertisement in Popular Science Monthly.

While at Ford Motor Company, Claude Harvard patented 29 inventions for the manufacture of Ford automobiles, though he reaped none of the royalties and profits of his genius, all in accordance with a company policy which required employees to relinquish their inventions to the company.  One invention was sold for a quarter of a million dollars to U. S. Steel.  He left the company to establish his own business, the Exact Tool & Die Company.  The initially-successful business failed when white employees of customer companies found out they were doing business with a black businessman.  Claude went to work for the Federal government but soon discovered that he was discriminated against in his pay scale.  An old friend from the Ford Trade School suggested that he take an employment test at the Detroit Arsenal.  Claude quickly solved a trigonometry problem and passed a subsequent civil service exam.  Harvard worked at the Arsenal until his retirement.

Harvard came out of retirement when he began teaching at Focus: HOPE Machinist Training Institute in Detroit in the early 1980s.  The school was organized to teach hands-on training for minority youths.  After two years, Harvard became an unpaid volunteer at the school.  He designed implements and guides to facilitate the production of metal parts.  Harvard maintained that it was the vast experience of himself and other instructors which contributed to better teaching of young students.  Though machine work was controlled by computers, Harvard maintained that the process was still basically the same as it was in the 1930s.  He encouraged his students and all children to study math and to put as much effort into learning as they do into sports.  In a 1997 interview with Otha R. Sullivan, Harvard offered these words of advice, “Have you noticed how kids exercise, play sports and learn dances?  If they treated their brains the way they treat their bodies, they would be great.  If you gave your brain half the exercise you give your muscles, you’d be very smart.  Kids shouldn’t be afraid of mathematics and science.  The subjects aren’t as hard as they look.  I especially recommend that young people tackle mathematics.  It really isn’t that difficult.  Apparently, the teachers just make it seem that way.”

Claude Harvard died in 1999 in his adopted hometown of Detroit.  The young Dublin boy who once dreamed of owning his own radio has been heralded as one of the greatest African American inventors of the 20th Century.  Harvard was philosophical about the impediments of racism in America and encouraged others to aspire to his goals.  In a 1937 interview, Harvard said “The Negro boy who is complaining about the breaks against him should stop squawking and do as this black boy did and make the grade in spite of being black.  I must make the grade.”  In chronicling the early successes of the young inventor, Herbert H. “Hub” Dudley, Dublin’s leading black businessman and a columnist for the Dublin Courier Herald wrote, “Genius knows no color or creed. The world loves a contributor to civilization.”

by Scott Thompson

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AN OPEN LETTER TO THOSE WHO HATE – October 1, 2017

1. How do you think you would feel and respond if you lived somewhere and someone invaded it and claimed it as their own?

2. How do you think you would feel and respond if your wife, mother, grandmother, sisters, nieces and other female relatives where then raped by the invaders?

3. How do you think you would feel and respond if, after fighting to save your land, you lost the battle and surrendered and submitted to “treaties,”—ALL OF WHICH WERE BROKEN by those with whom you signed the treaties?

4. How do you think you would feel and respond if, walking on the way to land that your invaders had “assigned” to you, they gave you blankets that were filled with the germs of small pox and other fatal diseases?

5. How do you think you would feel and respond if you were stolen from your own continent, shipped to another world and sold like cattle?

6. How do you think you would feel and respond if you were forced to witness the rape, beatings, torture, hanging, and other horrific actions against your relatives and friends?

7. How do you think you would feel and respond if you were forced to have sex with your own mother, father, sibling, or other relative?

8. How do you think you would feel and respond if you were forced to fight to the death of another person for the “entertainment” of your “owner”?

9. How do you think you would feel and respond if your mother or any other female gave nourishment from their breasts to those that would grow up and would be TAUGHT to hate them?

10. How do you think you would feel and respond if you had to cook “fine food” for your “owners,” but were given “garbage food” for you and your family?

11. How do you think you would feel and respond if you were told that your children could not be “allowed” to learn to read and write?

12. How do you think you would feel and respond if you were told that you were not “allowed” to vote?

13. How do you think you would feel and respond if you were not “allowed” to live wherever you could afford to live?

14. How do you think you would feel and respond if your people were portrayed in the media mostly as thieves, prostitutes, maids, villains, etc., not as accomplished people.

15. How do you think you would feel and respond if you were the last to be hired and the first to be fired?

16. How do you think you would feel and respond if you knew that others committed crimes at the same rate as you, but were not punished as severely as you.

17. How do you think you would feel and respond if you freely shared your culture only to have it co-opted, renamed, and “owned” by others?

18. How do you think you would feel and respond if you were frowned upon for speaking your own language in a world of many languages—not just English?

19. How do you think you would feel and respond if you NEVER saw your people fairly represented as Fortune 500 CEOs, even though your people were just as intelligent as everybody else?

20. How do you think you would feel and respond if your people were WRONGLY shot and killed by the very people who were sworn to “protect and serve” them?

21. How do you think you would feel and respond if, on “movie night” as a member of the U.S. Armed Forces, you had to sit BEHIND THE POWs to watch the movie?

22. How do you think you would feel and respond if there was a loooong history of law enforcement killing your people and getting away with it—even when they’re unarmed or have a permit to carry a gun?

23. How do you think you would feel and respond if you served your country and came back and were treated like you were less than human?

24. HOW DO YOU THINK YOU WOULD FEEL AND RESPOND IF YOU PROTESTED THE WAY YOU WERE TREATED AND YOUR PROTEST WAS RESENTED AND LOOKED DOWN UPON BY MANY OF YOUR FELLOW CITIZENS?

All of the atrocities listed above (and more!) have been and continue to be perpetrated against people of color—especially black people. Yet, generally speaking, we hold no hatred toward those who hate us because we know that we have done nothing to deserve their hatred, and we also know that hating destroys the souls of those who hate! (Acid corrodes the vessel that carries it.) And hatred is the absolute worst kind of acid to the soul!

The NFL players are not—I repeat, ARE NOT—protesting or disrespecting the flag. Even though, ever since Betsy Ross first stitched it together in May 1776, the flag has disrespected people of color, especially black people!

And they are not protesting or disrespecting the National Anthem, even though it has protested and disrespected black people. Francis Scott Key, who wrote it, was a slaveholder. Obviously, “. . .the land of the ‘free’. . .” did not and could not include slaves!! Additionally, the third stanza of the National Anthem actually celebrates the killing of slaves with this line: “. . . No refuge could save the hireling and slave from the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave. . .”

PEACE AND LOVE FROM JOYCE FIELDS

Feel free to share!

Peace and Love

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ENTERTAINING, PROVOCATIVE EXCERPT: “The Best Way to Keep a Man is to Let Him Go. . .”

In this book, I state that, based on MY experiences and observations, “80% of the success of a relationship rests on the shoulders of the woman.” The book explains why.

Here’s an entertaining, provocative excerpt from

“The Best Way to Keep a Man is to Let Him Go (among other things)”

REMEMBER THAT YOU HAVE FAULTS, TOO

What is a “fault”? Well, according to The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, a “fault” is “Something that prevents perfection.”

When women get together, if the discussion turns to male/female relationships and men’s behavior and faults (and it almost always does), I have never heard a woman make any statement relative to the fact that her man has to put up with her faults. From listening to women, you’d think that females don’t have faults.

Just as women can say, “He would be perfect if it wasn’t for this, and this, and this, and this,” obviously, men can say, “She would be perfect if it wasn’t for this, and this, and this, and this.” We all have faults that can range from slightly funny to downright hilarious, as well as slightly irritating to nearly intolerable.

Many women could learn more about themselves if they would ask their men what they (the men) see as their (the women’s) worse faults. Typically, we can’t clearly see our own. Men or women. It’s all about tolerance and communication—if either of you can’t take living with the other’s faults, you’ve got to talk about it. But remember—it’s not what you say, it’s how you say it.

And you have to give specific examples. I always say that we are obligated to tell each other what we see that we think is not right or not healthy for the person or the relationship. The other person is obligated to listen carefully. But, we have to remember that no one is obligated to change. Many times the behavior will improve because you both are aware and watching. But you can’t get mad if no change is made. You did your part; the rest is up to the other person.

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Want more of this fun, entertaining, HONEST read, written by a woman who has been married for nearly 50 years (with her man for 60 years)?

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Two AWESOME Forewords for “THE VISION. . .”

the-vision-final-cover-031914Here’s what a former prosecuting attorney for juveniles and a Ph.D. college English professor had to say in their forewords for my book,

“THE VISION: Telling Kids That They Can Make the World a Better Place”

FOREWORD #1
The Vision is crafted in such a way that it is the perfect tool for young children to learn about the value of education and for African-American children to briefly witness the struggles of their ancestors in obtaining an education.

The worksheets in the book are a wonderful way to get children to recognize, think about, and discuss the opportunities available to them both educationally and socially. Having the children create goals and sign contracts is a wonderful idea to stimulate enthusiasm and create a sense of accomplishment.

As a juvenile court prosecutor, I saw first-hand how many kids took for granted the opportunities they had to get an education. I think every classroom and courtroom dealing with young children should make The Vision required reading.

Keisha L. Glenn
Assistant Prosecuting Attorney
Wayne County, Michigan

FOREWORD #2
For late elementary and middle-school children, The Vision is all about discovering who they are and how they can make this world a better place. For teachers, The Vision serves as an interactive classroom guide where students examine themselves and the world as they were, as they are and as they want to be. Best of all, The Vision calls for positive action – and leads the way as children set and move toward their own goals.

Immediately, The Vision provides the script for a brief play about a young boy and a young girl, both slaves, whispering in the barn on a southern plantation in 1855. The boy has just been beaten for wanting to learn to read and write. The girl repeats her sister’s visions of the future, a place where all boys and girls in America have an opportunity to learn to read and write as they develop their own skills and enrich the world. Based on her sister’s visions of the future, the slave girl draws the boy (and the audience) into hope and new possibilities for the future.

The Vision provides fun, practical activities that structure and stimulate critical dialog. The creative teacher can use the tools and exercises in this book for a student’s individual self-exploration, for large and small group discussions, for teacher and student interaction and for student discussions with others outside the classroom. In this workbook, students ask questions, record and discuss responses, evaluate themselves, seek feedback, recognize their value and begin to improve themselves and the world.

Motivational home and school contracts encourage students to commit to goals. Students can track and evaluate their own performance. Students will recognize that they are the important people who can continue to learn and grow as they shape themselves and the future.

Carol Carpenter, Ed.D.
Livonia, MI

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“THE VISION: Telling Kids That They Can Make the World a Better Place” is available at GoodShortBooks.com and at Amazon.com for $9.99 (48 pages; ages 8 to 16).

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Books for Christmas –or Anytime!

If you’re going to buy gifts for Christmas this year, books make GREAT gifts, especially for kids!!

Order delightful books from GoodShortBooks.com. We have wonderful books for adults, too!!

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“THE LIMITLESS GOLDEN RULE: 21 Ways to Use the Golden Rule In Your Life” – 43 pages, $7.99

“THE VISION: Telling Kids That They Can Make the World a Better Place” – 48 pages, $9.99

“My 15 Dogs: A 55-Year Journey of Love” – 64 pages, $7.99

“The Best Way to Keep a Man is to Let Him Go (among other things)” – 64 pages, $9.99

“Dear Bully: A Collection of Poems about Bullying” – 52 pages, $7.99

“Mother’s Dozen: An Easy Recipe for Raising GREAT Kids” – 48 pages, $7.99.  Also available in Spanish!

“Line of Serenity” – 167 pages, $12.99

“Jette Black and Her Seven Friends” – 28 pages, $9.99

“My Simple Quotes to Live By” – 90 pages, $7.99

“A Breast Cancer Journey to GREATER Joy: Taking the fear and mystery out of a breast cancer diagnosis” – 60 pages, $12.99

These same books are also available at Amazon.com and PLEASE post YOUR review there!!

We have Kindle, too!!

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ORDER TODAY!!

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GREAT BOOK REVIEWS!!

It’s not THAT difficult to make a happy, loving, peaceful relationship!!

On June 3, 2016, Pap and I celebrated our 49th wedding anniversary!! We’ve been together for 59 years!!

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Pap and JJ

One person, Jeryl Lynne Cox, asked me when I was going to write the book. Well, the book has been out for quite a while. It’s on sale (10% off) on Amazon. It’s only 64 pages, including 21 pages of recipes, and the title is:

“The Best Way to Keep a Man is to Let Him Go (among other things)”

I wrote it because I wanted to share what I had learned. I wrote it for women 18 years and older. I wrote it because I saw so many toxic relationships that could be fixed if BOTH partners wanted it to be fixed. I wrote it because I know that the world is built on relationships, and, if you have a solid relationship, it can withstand just about anything—barring physical abuse!! I wrote it because I want children to see the power of love, kindness, forgiveness, and peace in their homes.

Here’s what Arlonial Stafford said about this book, which she read on June 14, 2016:
“Ladies (and gentlemen), I’ve had the pleasure of knowing the author of this book for many years. This book is just one of her many written marvels. This book is short (64 pages), easy to read and to the point! This is one of the best books I’ve EVER read. I finished it and turned it over and started all over! That’s how good it is! Thank u Joyce Fields for sharing your wisdom. Her books are sold on Amazon.com or her website goodshortbooks.com.”
Then, she told her BFF, Phyllis Beasley-Cobb, about the book. Phyllis has been married for more than 20 years, and she read the book on June 15, 2016! Here’s what she had to say:
“When you told me about this book I was on my way to the doctor’s office. I downloaded it onto my Kindle sat there and read the whole book! (Only scanned thru the recipes) Now I don’t know if that says something about how long my wait was or if it was just that easy and to the point to read. Nevertheless it made me realize I have some work to do in my relationship. Thank you BFF for referring and thank you too Joyce Fields for sharing.”
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MORE REVIEWS
Katherine said:  “This was an excellent book!!!! Short and sweet straight to the point….I could not put this book down. I would definitely recommend. Lots of valuable information I will use to hopefully keep my relationship. I especially loved the recipes in the end.”
Nisha said:  “While having an inside scoop, I have read this book carefully. I have not only laughed, paused in AWE, and tried the recipes to help me “Keep My Man!” Pap and Joyce are truly “ONE OF A KIND”…and the two shall be one. I recommend this book to my sisters and I have shared it with my six-teen year old to help aid her fair weathers relationships. This short-book should be Featured on the next Steve Harvey show, right next to TLLALM. Thank you, Mrs. J for being the voice of the wise (older) woman in my life.”
Milene said:  “Oh My Goodness! I ❤ ❤ ❤ this book. I was going though a relationship in where I was LEARNING that “The best way to keep a man is to let him go” is the ONLY way it will work. This book was literally an instruction manual and I was reading it while going through it. I will read it again and again. Thank you Joyce & Pap for all of your love & inspiration, and also for helping me learn & grow while being AWARE its happening, which made ALL the difference ❤ you :-)”
Ana said:  “I loved this book, great insight on a man’s mind and into a great relationship. It is written in a very reader friendly way, easy to understand and fun to read with little whimsical jokes and anecdotes. Fully recommended for both single and committed ladies that want a meaningful relationship :)”
Get your copy soon, even if you think you have a GREAT relationship. It’s a good read!!
And it makes an excellent addition to a bridal shower gift!!
It’s available here: https://goo.gl/3HBe7D and at GoodShortBooks.com.
Contact me at goodshortbooks@yahoo.com.
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BOSS LOVE!!

It’s not THAT difficult to make a happy, loving, peaceful relationship!!

On Friday, June 3, 2016, we celebrated our 49th wedding anniversary!! We’ve been together for 59 years (since we were 13 years old)!!

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Pap’s 16th birthday (I was 15) – 9/22/1959

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Our wedding day – 6/3/1967

One person, Jeryl Lynne Cox, asked me when I was going to write the book. Well, the book has been out for quite a while. It’s on sale (10% off) on Amazon. It’s only 64 pages, and that includes 21 pages of recipes, and the title is:

“The Best Way to Keep a Man is to Let Him Go (among other things)”

I wrote it because I wanted to share what I had learned. I wrote it for women 18 years and older. I wrote it because I saw so many toxic relationships that could be fixed if BOTH partners wanted it to be fixed. I wrote it because I know that the world is built on relationships, and, if you have a solid relationship, it can withstand just about anything—barring physical abuse!! I wrote it because I want children to see the power of love, kindness, forgiveness, and peace in their homes.

Rasul Griffin (a MAN who has read it) calls the book “a masterpiece.”

 

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Pap’s 50th birthday – 9/22/1993

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Pap’s 65th birthday – 9/22/2008

 

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My 72nd birthday – 2/4/2016

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Our 49th anniversary – 6/3/2016

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Read the preview and order today!!  Makes a GREAT addition to a bridal shower gift!!  They’ll BOTH thank you!!

Here’s the Amazon link: http://goo.gl/pDLCl0.

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BLACK HISTORY: Edward A. Bouchet – March 6, 2016

Black History: Edward A. Bouchet, First African American Ph.D.
Edward Alexander Bouchet (1852-1918) graduated as valedictorian of the Hopkins Grammar School class of 1870.

He was the first African American to graduate from Yale in 1874. (He earned his bachelor’s degree with highest honors.)  He was also the first African American to be elected to Phi Beta Kappa at Yale and the first African American to earn a doctorate from an American university when he earned a Ph.D. in physics in 1876.  His doctoral dissertation was titled, “Measuring Refractive Indices.”

Bouchet was also among 20 Americans (of any race) to receive a Ph.D. in physics and was the sixth to earn a Ph.D. in physics from Yale.

After graduation, Dr. Bouchet’s demonstrated brilliance and credentials did not afford him the opportunities (such as positions in research, or at top universities) typically available to people of his unusually high level of education—undoubtedly due to racism.  He spent the rest of his life as a well-respected teacher.

He taught chemistry and physics for many years at the Institute for Colored Youth, a Quaker institution in Philadelphia.  Later on, Dr. Bouchet taught at St. Paul’s Normal and Industrial School in Virginia, served as principal of Lincoln High School in Galipolis, Ohio, and was a professor at Bishop College in Marshall, Texas.  He also held the position of business manager for a hospital in St. Louis and worked for a short time as a U.S. Customs Service inspector.   He retired from college teaching in 1916 and lived in New Haven for the last two years of his life.

He never married and had no children.

A former student of Dr. Bouchet’s described him this way:  “…He was a fine Christian gentleman, a consummate scholar, one who seemed very knowledgeable in all areas and yet was extremely modest and a person who set a wonderful example of politeness and graciousness for the community. …Certainly it is impossible to assess the far-reaching influence of Dr. Bouchet upon the hundreds of persons whose lives he touched.”

Each year, the American Physical Society bestows the Edward A. Bouchet Award  upon an African American, Hispanic American or Native American physicist who has made remarkable contributions to physics.  The Edward Bouchet Abdus Salam Institute was founded in 1988 by the late Nobel Laureate, Professor Abdus Salam under the direction of the founding Chairman Charles S. Brown.  In 2005, Yale and Howard Universities founded the Edward A. Bouchet Graduate Honor Society.

The 2016 Edward A. Bouchet Award recipient was Pablo Laguna, Georgia Institute of Technology.

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If you’re going to buy gifts, remember that books make great gifts—ANYTIME!!  Get some from GoodShortBooks.com!!  Something for adults AND children!!  $7.99 – $12.99.  eBooks $1.99 – $2.99.

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MOVING THROUGH DARKNESS – February 28, 2016

Moving Through Darkness. . .The Places We Go

~ Author unknown
Often it takes something major to wake us up, to shake us loose from our ego’s grip as it struggles to maintain an illusion of control.

In life, most of us want things to go to the places we have envisioned ourselves going. We have plans and visions, some of them divinely inspired, that we want to see through to completion. We want to be happy, successful, and healthy, all of which are perfectly natural and perfectly human. So, when life takes us to places we didn’t consciously want to go, we often feel as if something has gone wrong, or we must have made a mistake somewhere along the line, or any number of other disheartening possibilities. This is just life’s way of taking us to a place we need to go for reasons that go deeper than our own ability to reason. These hard knocks and trials are designed to shed light on our unconscious workings and deepen our experience of reality.

Often it takes something major to wake us up, to shake us loose from our ego’s grip as it struggles to maintain an illusion of control. It is loss of control more than anything else that humbles us and enables us to see the big picture. It reminds us that the key to the universe lies in what we do not know, and what we do know is a small fraction of the great mystery in which we live. This awareness softens and lightens us, as we release our resistance to what is.

Another gift gleaned from going to these seemingly undesirable places is that, in our response to difficulty, we can see all the patterns and unresolved emotional baggage that stand in the way of our unconditional joyfulness. Joy exists within us independently of whether things go our way or not. And when we don’t feel it, we can trust that we will find it if we are willing to surrender to the situation, moving through it as we move through our difficult feelings.

We can take our inspiration from any fairy tale that finds its central character lost in a dark wood, frightened and alone. We know that the journey through the wood provides its own kind of beauty and richness.

On the other side, we will emerge transformed, lighter and brighter, braver and more confident, for having moved through that darkness.

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If you’re going to buy gifts, remember that books make great gifts—ANYTIME!!  Get some from GoodShortBooks.com!!  Something for adults AND children!!  $7.99 – $12.99.  eBooks $1.99 – $2.99.

“Book Bosses, for Real” Video:

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THE SEED – February 21, 2016

“Over the years, I have read many good pieces that I considered to be profound.  They teach excellent lessons about life.  I saved some of them in a special folder.  Here’s one of them.  I don’t know who the author is, but I hope you enjoy it.” ~ Joyce Fields

The Seed 

~ Author unknown

A successful businessman was growing old and knew it was time to choose a successor to take over the business.

Instead of choosing one of his directors or his children, he decided to do something different.  He called all the young executives in his company together.

He said, “It is time for me to step down and choose the next CEO.  I have decided to choose one of you.”

The young executives were shocked, but the boss continued, “I am going to give each one of you a seed today—one very special seed.  I want you to plant the seed, water it and come back here one year from today with what you have grown from the seed I have given you.  I will then judge the plants that you bring, and the one who nurtured the winning plant will be the next CEO.”

One man, named Jim, was there that day and he, like the others, received a seed.  He went home and, excitedly, told his wife the story.

She helped him get a pot, soil, and compost, and he planted the seed.  Every day, he would water it and watch to see if it had grown.  After about three weeks, some of the other executives began to talk about their seeds and the plants that were beginning to grow.

Jim kept checking his seed, but nothing ever grew.

Three weeks, four weeks, five weeks went by—still nothing.  By now, others were talking about their plants, but Jim didn’t have a plant and he felt like a failure.

Six months went by—still nothing in Jim’s pot.  He just knew he had killed his seed. Everyone else had trees and tall plants, but he had nothing.  Jim didn’t say anything to his colleagues, however.  He just kept watering and fertilizing the soil.  He so wanted the seed to grow.

A year finally went by and all the young executives of the company brought their plants to the CEO for inspection.  Jim told his wife that he wasn’t going to take an empty pot. But she asked him to be honest about what happened.

Jim felt sick at his stomach, it was going to be the most embarrassing moment of his life, but he knew his wife was right.  He took his empty pot to the board room.  When Jim arrived, he was amazed at the variety of plants grown by the other executives.

They were beautiful—in all shapes and sizes.  Jim put his empty pot on the floor and many of his colleagues laughed.  A few felt sorry for him!

When the CEO arrived, he surveyed the room and greeted his young executives.  Jim just tried to hide in the back.

“My, what great plants, trees, and flowers you have grown,” said the CEO.

“Today, one of you will be appointed the next CEO!”

All of a sudden, the CEO spotted Jim at the back of the room with his empty pot.  He ordered the financial director to bring him to the front.

Jim was terrified.  He thought:  “The CEO knows I’m a failure!  Maybe he will have me fired!

When Jim got to the front, the CEO asked him what had happened to his seed.  Jim told him the story.

The CEO asked everyone to sit down except Jim.  He looked at Jim, and then announced to the young executives, “Behold your next Chief Executive!  His name is Jim!”

Jim couldn’t believe it.  Jim couldn’t even grow his seed.  How could he be the new CEO, the others said.

Then the CEO said, “One year ago today, I gave everyone in this room a seed.  I told you to take the seed, plant it, water it, and bring it back to me today.”

“But I gave you all boiled seeds; they were dead—it was not possible for them to grow.  All of you, except Jim, have brought me trees and plants and flowers.

“When you found that the seed would not grow, you substituted another seed for the one I gave you.  Jim was the only one with the courage and honesty to bring me a pot with my seed in it.  Therefore, he is the one who will be the new Chief Executive!”

If you plant honesty, you will reap trust.
If you plant goodness, you will reap friends.
If you plant humility, you will reap greatness.
If you plant perseverance, you will reap contentment.
If you plant unselfishness, you will reap admiration.
If you plant consideration, you will reap perspective.
If you plant hard work, you will reap success.
If you plant forgiveness, you will reap reconciliation.
If you plant faith in God, you will reap a harvest.

So, be careful what you plant now; it will determine what you will reap later.

Sow good things daily into the life of your family!

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“Book Bosses, for Real” Video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VpWF-DkbbK4

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