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thínking of christmas

Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
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Well-Known Member
Feb 27, 2004
First of all, I wish you a Merry Christmas!!! I would like to share some thoughts with you about this special time of the year. What I want to express is, in a nutshell, we should take a little time to reflect ourselves.

I complain about not having money to buy useless christmas presents, not having money to take the next plane to the Maldives, or worst: not having money to pay for a useless doping test, but I have so much money and luxury and with it so much power, that I must, in a way, be ashamed of my behaviour. It doesn’t really matter that my bank account is always empty, I still have enough money to travel around the world to hold my breath.

I can’t accuse people who waste their money in millions. I can’t accuse people who wear clothes that cost 10000 $, own cars that burn fuel of
10000$ a month and much more - I am not any different! I am as criminal as they are. I secure myself a front seat in the cinema, I pay 15 Euros for a delayed video return and I book flights to Nizza to hold my breath. It makes me sick when I see these talk shows where our youth talks about which brand to wear and how much money to spend on a playstation. There is no talk about buying food for hungry children or saving some lives with money. But then I think of myself and remember that I am one of those people.

Taking into consideration how many people really suffer in this world and how many people have real problems, I feel guilty of inhumanity. I can say everybody is responsible for himself and go on with “moneyburning”, but I want to try my very best to change my behaviour and take some responsibility for those who don’t know how to survive another day.

“Why does Tom post something like that in our freediving forum?” I am writing this because it is Christmas. Christmas is the celebration of love! I don’t want to do any advertisement for any particular relief organizations. The only purpose of this post is to remind you all of the meaning of Christmas and our responsibility for the world as it is. What does it cost us to save a life? Nothing that would harm us. There are organizations who help by collecting 2 dollars a month. Just google “relief organizations” or something similar and you will find many trustworthy institutions - isn’t that worth thinking about it?

Although I feel quite sick when I am thinking about this issue, because it reminds me of my fatal inactivity, I don’t lose my hope and I still think that we can make this a better world. Most of the people I have met in this freediving community are very kind and have a good heart, please guys, keep being that nice and don’t forget about the power you have. I am happy if just one of you spends a minute to think about what I have written. Hope I could inspire you… One people, one love! Yours sincerely, Tom Sietas

P.S.: And now go, train and set some Records!!!!

you can be happy because you sure got me thinking......
I too feel sick when i see people wasting money and acting like they are the most important things to ever happen upon the earth, and i too realize that many times I am also one of those people. I think this is because it is easy to see the wrongs people do and realize that is is selfish and wrong, but it is much harder (at least for me) to actually make a sacrifice and go out in the world and help. Granted i am only 16 years old, but i feel that i am being a hypocrite when i judge other people for what they do, when i do some of the same things myself.

It takes comments like yours to remind people to make a commitment and help out in the world in one way or another, and it has reminded me, so thank you:) Everyone else that reads tom's post should also take a minute to think about the subject - im sure you will realize thathelping at all is still helping, and theres no reason not to do it.

Hi Tom,

I did think of what you said, more than 1 minute though.......and I can't agree more. A lot of us are always busy worrying about details, the ones who really need help can not even imagine that those details exist. In the Netherlands there has been a very impressive project in the past week: 3 radio-dj's were locked up in a glass house without food and made 5 days of radio for money. You could request a song for money.....they raised more than € 700.000 for the people in Darfur, very impressive!!

We can not all help others in a financial way all the time, if you can't: make some time to think about what worries you: is it really that important? By the way same goes for people (even very close to us) that are sick. They could have the money of the world but not fix their troubles. When you think of this: we hold the world in our hands although our bank-accounts may be empty!!

Wish you all a very nice christmas and let 2005 be a year of inspiration for all of us!!
Dear Tom -

I was quite touched by your message, and as everybody who is acquainted with me thinks, that is quite remarkable as I am a guy who thinks of Attilla the Hun as a girlie-man.

I want to say three things to you.

First, you are not a criminal, and niether are other people who wish to enjoy whatever wealth they have earned, inherited or won in the lotto.

Second, my admiration for you as a man went through the roof when I realized you did not once propose redistribution of wealth at the point of a gun. You know, taxation. Instead, all you talked about was redistribution of wealth at the beat of the heart. I think you and I can do a far better job of applying our modest resources to improving things than can some coffee-soaked bureaucrat.

Third - the trick is to figure out how to help. I think it has become pretty clear that simply forking over money to poor people does more harm than good. Here in the States, several TRILLION dollars into President Johnson's so-called Great Society program, we've now got the fourth and fifth generations of families whose profession is collecting government checks and subsidies. The only contribution these folks have made to our society that I'm aware of is certain advances in urban handgun combat techniques, which, while not totally without value, would not have been missed if instead they'd produced kids with degrees in medicine, engineering and I guess even law.

I think you are very wise, at your tender age, to understand that a thoughtful citizen selecting a sound charity is a zillion times more effective than forking over taxes to some narcoleptic twit in a government office.

Well said, Tom. I think the guy who advocated teaching poor men to fish would have approved.
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Reactions: DeepThought
I usually jump on people who get off topic, but today seems like a good day to temporarily abandon the rule on " no politics, religion, etc. on DB" that has served us well.

Everybody capable of participating in this forum is blessed with physical things far beyond what we deserve. All of us should consider how we can spread our blessings to others less fortunate, and act on that consideration. There are many ways; each to his own. But, don't beat yourself up about it. Enjoy the blessings you have been given and spread them around.

A plug for my favorite charity, Hiefer International, been around a long time and works on the "teach a man to fish" principle. They give away livestock, farming stuff and the knowledge to use it effectively and sustainably.

Nice words Tom and very appropiate.

We all have an area of influence and we can work within that area to see what more we can do to make this world a better place. I think that inside, each of us knows if we are doing as much as we could be doing.

Our actions now will determine that when we leave this life, in those last moments, or seconds, we can say to ourselves "Yes, I have done the best I could."

The "best", being of course, the goals and desires we have for ourselves and our world. For me it is about helping people and gaining inner peace. If we can say "Yes", then we will be leaving with a great smile for the next step of our evolution, and it would have made our life worth living.

With all the best wishes for a better year,

All good thoughts I hear.
Guilt is as destructive as greed and stems from the same source: take care of yourself in all ways and you will be a better helper for the world. The people you are worried about would glady step into your situation with all the benefits of modern civilisation that we take for granted: would they feel guilty too?
Be happy....better yet, just BE!
Erik Y.

Excellent words and thoughts for the Holiday Season!

We often forget during this season of over-indulgence and celebration, that there are people out there who are struggling to survive. I am heartened always that there are people out there that try to help - from the ordinary person who gives up their time and/or money to help the homeless, to the pop stars who re-record the "Do They Know It's Christmas" record to help the millions in Africa.

My best wishes for the season and the new year - let's hope we can all make a difference no matter how big or small.
Merry Christmas Everyone!!!

Words well said Tom! Hopefully they will move from words to action!

Every baby is a new creation, but Jesus Christ existed from eternity, He was not only born,but He "Came into the world" ( John 3:17)

Acording to Isaiah 9:6 ,the Child was born ( His human nature) and the Son was given ( His divine nature) ,what a Savior!

What a different it makes in our lives that Jesus Christ came and die for our sins!

Jesus is the difference between light and darknees ,life and death He is also the difference between joy and sorrow. freedom and bondage- As you wait for His return, be sure the government of your life is on His shoulder.Let Him be to you all that His names proclaim,for every name that He bears is a blessing that He Shares.
Happy Festivus! Start the airing of grievances!
Erik Y.
Adrian said:
We all have an area of influence and we can work within that area to see what more we can do to make this world a better place. I think that inside, each of us knows if we are doing as much as we could be doing.
I agree. Not all help has to be financial, and I think it is very important to help the people around us. The freedivers I train with now are the nicest people I have ever met, and I seriously mean that. They are always willing to help me, even when it makes things more difficult for them, and even to rescue me if necessary. :duh

I am so grateful for all they have done for me, and I will help in any way I can.

In the past when I have been in trouble people have told me to go somewhere and ask for help, to a counsellor, priest etc. This seemed to me to be very unfair considering that any of us could need help at any time, and we hope to be supported by our friends, not to be seen as a burden that has to be passed on to someone else.

This subject is a difficult one for me, because a few years ago I had an operation which went wrong and I nearly died. (Nothing to do with diving accidents!) I thought that if I survive, I have to repay by being good. That made me think about my purpose, and what I can do to make my life useful.

Once again, a big thankyou to all my dive buddies. You are the best! :king

Great words Tom. I'm often reminded of my own laziness or greed and am ashamed.

I agree that guilt is a bad thing but I also believe that there is a certain thing called conviction. The conviction of knowing that we haven't done enough.Sometimes it's hard to know the difference but as Adrian said earlier, it's not hard to look into your heart (or maybe it is and that's why I avoid it.) and see if you are doing all you can.....I know I'm not. Yet will I do more? I don't know....I hope.
Thanks again Tom for the reminder.
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