Welcome to Sharudin Jamal Blogspot

More than two decades ago, I was diagnosed of having a peculiar illness known as Bipolar Affective Disorder. My world as I knew it crumbled; I lost my business, then my job and later my sense of purpose. It was during this dark moments I rediscovered the joy of running and writing. Most of the articles here are about my rekindled pleasure of hitting the tarmac, my coming to terms with the illness and my discovery of the meaning of life.

I always on the lookout for inspirations to write in these three areas with the hope that they will shed new ray of hope to others who are in the same position as I am.

Do keep in touch if you feel connected through these essays.

Saturday, February 13, 2021

>>>#13/2/21 Recapturing the lesson learnt for the week

Kettlebell is great today.  I managed to do a 24 minutes routine.  It feels good after the shower.

I was planning to do 4 sets.  Then again, this is not a race.  As long as I had a decent workout, that is good enough for now.

Same as eating OMAD LCHF and my other exercise routines.  I need to be consistent.  I need to persist and persevere.

Another important thing to consider is I should eat if I feel fatigued throughout the week.  This week for example I eat 2MAD and 3MAD.  It helps much.

I'm going all out with this new regimentation.  It really feels good.


Finally, I found my groove.

I am not going to let go of this new realization.

It dawned upon me that I can only do a few vital things at a time in my life.  I cannot be doing so many things and be good at all of them.  

As it is I am discovering the concept of a man fully functioning.  A man was born to run; anatomically speaking.

“In a good [man] there must first be a good animal.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson 

I need to keep on increasing my VO2Max.  That means  I need to take care of my lungs, legs, and heart.  Then only I can achieve my ambition to be thin and fast; the 2 pillars towards health and happiness.  The building blocks are diet and exercise.  This is based on my personal experience.  

I need to have a runner's physique.  If I look at Sir Mo Farah, at 37 years old, 173 cm, he weighs 57 kg.  The same goes with Fauja Singh.  At 109 years old, 172 cm, he weighs 53 kg.  Running is about weight, not about age.

My Gold Standard is Mark Sisson and the Mens Sana in Corpo Sano medal:

Mark is 68 this year.

A Sound Mind *i[s] (in) a Sound **Bo[]y (Body).

* Hahaha...  I caught Sarah changing the "in" to "is".  OK, I get your point honey; it has to start with a Sound Mind.

** Hey Sarah, this is a much recent intervention. 

My most intimate wish is to be able to run, run and run until I am 117 years old.  I can do this as a statement of direction.  It all depends on my execution for the next 20 years.  Ilchi Lee sure expanded my mental horizon with his idea that humans are capable to biologically live to 120 years:

All these are not for vanity's sake.  Having to deal with a mental illness for the past 21 years makes me realize that unless I change my habits and lifestyle, I will be facing a daunting pandemic worst than COVID-19.  Currently, the world is under siege by obesity, diabetes, and cancer like never before in human history.

I'm not going to let my life takes the turn for the worst knowing that I can win this fight.  Just like I am winning my fight with Bipolar Disorder, this metabolic syndrome can be eradicated with knowledge and action.


The remedy:

Be mindful that what works is what's right.  If things are not working with whatever we are doing then we need to keep on experimenting with new ways to make them work.  Otherwise, it's called insanity.

Have a wonderful Year of the Metal Ox people.

Sine Cera,

Darkness & Ghost
Wood Dragon 1964
Forever (4) Yin (9) & Yang (6) Forever (4)

Happy World Radio Day folks! @saifuddinabd @DrAdhamBaba @KongEu3 @elsDines @djgilbertlive @traxxfmofficial #traxxfm My personal contribution: https://sharudinjamal.blogspot.com/2021/02/13221-recapturing-lesson-learnt-for-week.html Thanks to @Mark_Sisson @Mo_Farah @FaujaSinghJi @drjasonfung @IlchiLee @drchatterjeeuk Vero nihil verius...

Thursday, December 3, 2020

3/12/20 Occasionally there are things even science cannot explain


Synconyx Insignia

Tian Long, the Heavenly Dragon

This article is a tribute to one of my Swedish readers who managed to read my whole blog in one sitting recently.

Just a short update.  I was born in 1964, the year of the Wood-Dragon.  That's why I incorporate my personal insignia, the Synconyx, at the very beginning of this article.  It symbolized the Double Dragons in me.  Those are my cerebellum and cerebrum, my small and big.  My Daisho Set in Japanese signifying the small and big swords.  I call them my Darkness and Ghost.  I was born on 4/9/64.  Hence I am Forever (4) Yin (9) & Yang (6) Forever (4)

Darkness and Ghost, Forever (4) Yin (9) & Yang (6) Forever (4)

Daisho Set, Small and Big

As for the Golden Dragon, I call it Tian Long, meaning Heavenly Dragon in Chinese.  There is an interesting story behind the dragon.  I bought it on 8/11/20 to commemorate the Biden-Harris victory.  It arrived on 10/11/20.  When I ordered it, the dragon was supposed to be a 24 K gold plated pewter.  So when it arrived, I was disappointed to find out that it was rose gold.

I thought I had been duped.  Now, I swear I didn't make this up.  As I was holding it in my hand, it transformed from rose gold to golden gold.  How was it possible?  Gold doesn't oxidize.

Rose Gold

Golden Gold

In my life, I had encountered a few "miracles".  I must say this is the most impressive so far.

According to Hume, no matter what miracles God performs, it is always more reasonable to believe that the event in question has a natural cause and is not miraculous.

I just thought that was an interesting occurrence considering that I am a person who swore by the Scientific Method when comes to dealing with signs and patterns.

Postscript 20/12/20:  Yesterday I accidentally knocked down Tian Long from its place.  As I brought it closer to me, I noticed that it turned to rose gold and when I put it back to its position, it was as golden as it can be.  My most reasonable explanation is that IT IS NOT 24 K GOLD PLATED.   Still, it is pretty impressive.

In this case, it will be pretty outlandish if it is gold plated considering the price I paid for it.  What is more impressive is the fact that it does look like it is gold plated is the real miracle.  I would say that it is the miracle of Made in China; quality con at a very reasonable price.  Much like the imitation Rolex watches that I bought in the past LOL.

So there you go, my latest encounter with a miracle.  

Sunday, November 8, 2020

8/11/20 Productivity need not mean more money

  If that is the case then the rich people of the world are *[the] the most productive.  Not true.  They may have a quality life but they are not necessarily productive.  By that definition, a philosopher or a writer may not be rich but certainly, they are more productive in producing an impact towards shaping the mind of the society.

* Hey, there you are, Sarah.  Now I know you are in favor of time over money.  I miss you, baby...

Take the example of Socrates.  He was not rich in money but certainly, he was one of the most productive people who ever walked the earth.  

Socrates was very fond of the marketplace.  He would go from stall to stall at the Athenian marketplace, stopping every now and then, admiring the goods on display.  But despite the frequent visits, he never bought anything.  A friend asked him why.   

This was what he had to say about spending, "I'm always amazed to see just how many things there are that I don't need."

Mind you, this happened in the year 400 B.C.  If there were already tons of things that people don't need then, you can bet your bottom dollar that there are gazillions of things being sold today that no one needs.

So rather than focusing on extrinsic values of productivity, why not focus on the intrinsic values?  We need to follow the wisdom of the sages to detach from material dependency and start to look at what we can offer from within us.

Basically, we need to look at what are we good at, what we enjoy doing, and what we can offer.  Of course, if we want to we can equate that to what the world needs.  Otherwise, just be happy with what you are passionate about.  This is the concept of Ikigai.

If you tie your productivity to money then you are risking your happiness in lieu of chasing superiority.  Which means you can only feel good if you can only afford to buy more things.  Without those things, you will feel inadequate.

That is a great tragedy.  The sum total of your worth is merely reduced to the things that you own.  Without fancy clothes and fancy cars, you are nothing.  That is pretty shallow, don't you think?  Considering that the things that we hold dear are things that cannot be bought with money.  Things like the air we breathe, our mind, our family and our friends are priceless.

Are our children not the product of our productivity?  Does it cost us anything to produce a baby?  Surely imaginations, dreams, and hopes don't cost a thing.  Do also consider that it doesn't cost a thing to have a loving heart.

What I am saying is, we need to be productive but we need not bend backward to chase after money.  Just be happy with your life and what you have achieved.  All I am saying is live in gratitude.  Instead of asking for more, why not be a generous giver?

That is the name of the game to be happy.  It is living below your means and living in gratitude.

#traxxfm Hi there Alchemist, I am doing some writing while listening to you. I'll give you a run-through when I'm finished. Take care buddy...

#traxxfm Here you go Alchemist: sharudinjamal.blogspot.com/2020/11/81120- The fruit of my labor while I am tuned to you... Now I want to enjoy your show until midnight.

8/11/20 Matters pertaining to technology progress

  When comes to technology adoption, I belong to the late majority and even the laggards.  That's because new technology is subject to trial and error.  Of course, I don't want to pay for the expensive cost of entry.

Most of the time, we don't really need incremental improvements unless there is a technological breakthrough.  Then it is a different case.  Now we are talking about the quantum leap.

Whatever the case may be, incremental improvement is nice to have.  Just like the collision detection and the keyless ignition of my car.  I even consider driverless cars as an incremental improvement.  So I'm not too hot about it.  However, if there is a car that costs cheaper and can go a fair distance using a solar battery, I will highly consider it. 

With that in view, I think I will only see quantum leap technology that I will purchase in the next 15 years.  This is important because any shift in technology means an investment out of my pocket.  I don't want to be spending money on a better mousetrap if the old one can do it at a cheaper price.

A lot of people go for technology for the sake of technology.  In my case, I will always look at the application and practicality of the technology.  That is the reason why I am using a Bluetooth bone-conducting earphone; because it makes sense.  Price is definitely a factor.  I will not pay for technology just because it is there.  Like for example, I will not ride or let alone buy a jet-powered motorcycle as Jay Leno had even if I have the money.

Technology is relative.  Technology will not be considered a new technology if is it already available by the time you were born.  To me the internet is technology but to my 21 years old daughter, it is already part of her life, thus it is a necessity.  Looking from that perspective, then I say besides the basic technology like WiFi, smartphones, and eBooks; to name a few, most technologies are redundant.

One redundant technology in my opinion is the titanium bracelet that supposed to improve your body's energy flow.  What is the science behind it?  So are other things like the massaging chairs and the vibrating belly trimmer.  To a certain extend, I think smartwatches are a waste of money as well.

Taking the lessons from the various technology junks that surround us on regular basis, I say as consumers, we are better off with the attitude of caveat emptor.  Otherwise, we will end up with a neverending spiral of consumerism.  I think the height of this madness is cryogenic technology.  I cannot imagine people are willing to pay a hefty sum of money to freeze their heads and at times their whole body so that they can be resurrected in the distant future.

As a parting thought, let me conclude that with the introduction of new technology, there tend to be disruptions.  In this case, we need to be able to shift seamlessly from the old paradigm to the new.  Be mindful that there is a possibility that when we shift, we might just moving from zero to zero.  After all, technology if not properly managed is a zero-sum game.  Take the case of a computer game.  It is not adding to our collective intelligence.  In fact, it makes us myopic.

    The Thomas Khun Model

8/11/20 Congratulations to Joe Biden and Kamala Harris from Malaysia

OK here are some of my thoughts...

America will rise again under Joe Biden.  Not economically but as a nation who are united in spirit.  Joe is a unifier and a people person.  Welfare will improve among the citizens and foreign relationships will be mended.

It is interesting to note that the strong-arm tactics that Trump used against China are not working.  China is fast becoming the world's first superpower with India following suit.

It is best for America to embrace the world's diversity than try to maintain the pole position as a world leader.  The USA likes it or not is losing that lead.

For the next 4 years, the USA should focus on leading in the area of Altruistic Management.  You should be seen as the champion of good governance amidst the degradation of the democratic system all over the world.  You must be seen as the model of how the power of democracy is helping the people instead of victimizing them as what happened during Trump's administration.

If Joe is to pass the torch to Kamala, it is important that the economic reforms of the USA are done in line with the global sentiment.  It cannot be a close economy as what Trump was doing.  It is important that Americans become global citizens especially within that side of the Atlantic.

Be mindful that America is a melting pot and should continue to be one.  It is not sufficient that the government to address the rural population because the majority is the urban population who are multiethnics.

I personally believe that America should stop feeding their economy based on war campaigns because although it benefits the nation in the short run, the long term effect is the price of education, health, and infrastructure.  Look at you and compare yourself with Japan and Germany.  Even Korea and to a lesser extent Vietnam.  The sooner you get rid of your John Wayne mentality the better.

Saturday, November 7, 2020

I got too much time on my hand - a conversation with Sarah


When I looked back at my podcast interview with Pal, I realized that he had done me a great favor.  I don't think I can do any better than that with anybody else.

Nevertheless, I don't think it will work between us.  We have a different set of values.  His value is money while my value is time.  He is chasing the rainbow while I am already enjoying my pot of gold.  Certainly, it will be retroactive for me to start chasing rainbows again.

What about you Sarah?  What makes you tick?  Are you going after money or time?  Got money no time.  Got time no money.  You can't have both.  It's like squeezing a balloon. It will bulge at a perpendicular angle or if you squeeze too hard, it will pop.

Dr. Laurie Santos mentioned in her lecture that based on research, people who are time affluent are happier than people with money affluent.  That's because more things don't make you happy.  They get old, they need maintenance and eventually, they become junks.  Therefore things are liabilities.  

On the contrary, time is life.  When you are time affluent, your life is rich.  That's because with the time you can create memories and experiences.  These don't become liabilities.  As a matter of fact, they become better as the years go by, hence the term fond memories.

You need to invest in time. Otherwise, time can be fleeting.  However, if you use your time wisely, time is gold.  In Malay, we say that Masa itu Emas literally means time is gold! 

I don't deny that you need money to carry on living.  However, you only need just enough for sustenance.  Beyond that, it is just a figure in your bank statement.  Just like on this island where wealth is measured in rocks.  As the story goes, the wealthiest person is the guy with a very huge rock but the rock is underwater.

Why do you need to hog so much money?  Even if you have billions or trillions, you not going to spend all.  The money ended in the hands of your heirs.  Your kids will be very happy but your generations will be complacent with all the inheritance.

If I am rich, I will spend half on charity and I will live on interest for the remaining half.  I think people who hoard money are people who fear poverty.  The truly rich are generous givers.  Look at Bill Gates and Warren Buffett.  Not only they live decent lives, but they also give away half of their wealth for altruistic purposes.

Oprah Winfrey asked Dalai Lama, "What do you know for sure?"

He replied, "I know that the key to happiness is in giving."

Now, I don't have much money.  Yet, I am still a generous giver.  I helped the needy.  Not necessarily the poor because I think the poor are a bunch of opportunists. 

Brb... Lunch.

Given a choice to make extra money or to spend quality time, I will definitely choose the latter.  Nowadays as a retiree I hardly use money.  I had paid off my house and car.  Therefore I don't have debt.  The beautiful thing about being debt-free is even when I only have ten bucks in my pocket, that money is 100% mine.  I don't need to share it with the bank.  

Most people who have a lavish lifestyle are actually serious debtors.  They are able to service their loans because they are still working.  Who are they working for?  None other than for the things they borrow from the banks.  They are the slaves to their material lust.  What happens when illness or calamity befall them and they, by the luck of the draw can no longer work?  Then they will quickly become poorer than the church's mouse.

When will we learn from the adage that money won't buy happiness?  As long as we are consumers, we are forever tied to money to attain instant gratification.  It doesn't last.  There are people (I included once upon a time) that gets high from buying things,  We get caught up with the hype of buying more and more expensive stuff.  When we actually own the items, the feeling fizzles.  No sooner than using them for a few days, we are already eyeing for the next item to buy.  This is known as the Hedonic Adaptation Trap.  It is a neverending loop.

I have nothing against money and rich people.  Alas, I am not too keen to pursue money and become rich.  I subscribe to Voluntary Simplicity; outwardly poor but inwardly rich.  Because of this philosophy, I am financially independent.  Not because I earn a lot but because I hardly spend my money.

I derive pleasure from listening to songs on the internet (free), reading eBooks (free), watching movies (free), and blogging (absolutely free!).  Well, I do pay for the WiFi, electricity, and the PC but these are negligible compare to if I want to follow the herd mentality.

I seriously hope that this COVID 19 pandemic is a wake-up call for many of us who think that money is the end all be all solution to our malaise.  Money is a means.  Most of us will not get into so much trouble should we choose mindfulness in our spending.  The thing that gets us into trouble is not the hard-earned money we make, but our gullibility in borrowing as if there is no tomorrow.


Thursday, November 5, 2020

5/11/20 A letter to the Former Prime Minister of Malaysia, Mahathir Mohamad

November 2020 Posting

Dear Chedet,
What you said is true. If we look at the SARS and Eboli pandemics, it took 10 years before they were contained. So there is no quick fix to COVID 19. Either we go for herd immunity or immunization.
In the case of herd immunity, we need a critical mass. That is not a bad idea considering the virus is highly contagious but low in fatalities. Immunization will take a bit of time if they follow the proper procedure from animal testing to human testing. Certainly, it will take longer than 4 years. A normal cycle for vaccine production is a very meticulous process.
Therefore countries like Sweden decided to opt for taking the chances with the pandemic. A more sensible action is to improve the immune system. We need a healthy microbiome and plenty of goodnight sleep.
What can I say? When the paradigm shifts there are anomalies. The old paradigm will no longer apply. Time to shift. In this case, it is not survival of the fittest but the survival of the quickest.
If this pandemic is the Greater Depression than the Great Depression, then I suggest those who are sensible to go for Voluntary Simplicity. That seems to work for most people.
All the best with Pejuang, Chedet. Although I think you actually slicing it a bit too thin; if you ask me.
Take care, Sir.
Sine Cera,