Racially, religiously, ethnically, culturally or nationality mixed couples, all face challenges. Ultimately, it is an issue of cultural norms and attitudes.

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Source: Pexels

Ethnicity is defined as a category of people who identify with each other on the basis of a common language, ancestry, history, society, culture, nation, race or social treatment. Race on the other hand is mostly defined and determined by physical characteristics. However, there is no gene cluster that determines or differentiates between the black, Asian, white or any other race. For this reason anthropologists assert the notion that “race is a social construct” hence, it is an identity assigned based on rules made by society.

Most Americans Are of Mixed Ethnicity

Although the US Census only recognizes seven racial or ethnic categories: white, black, Hispanic, Asian, Amerindian/Alaska native, native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander, and mixed ethnicity, the reality is a little different. …


Now referred to as new religious movements (NRM), cults are tight-knit groups often led by a charismatic leader who claims to be everything from God on Earth to the Messiah who will save humanity. Cult followers are often abused mentally and sexually as well as exploited for their labor.

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Rajneesh greeted by sannyasins on one of his daily “drive-bys” in Rajneeshpuram, circa 1982 — By Samvado Gunnar Kossatz, Attribution, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=3001538“Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh” by agreste3000 is licensed under CC BY 2.0

“Cult” Etymology

Derived from the Latin “cultus,” meaning care, cultivation, reverence or adoration. In the 1600s used as “worship,” “homage,” or “a particular form or system of worship.” In modern times, the word cult has evolved to take on a connotation of extreme beliefs and excessive devotion.

Religious Cults

We have all heard the story of the anguished parents who try to rescue children who they feel have been stolen by a cult. Or perhaps the middle-aged children who complain their elderly parents have been turned into “zombies” by a religious group which has totally taken over their lives. …


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By Cybercobra at English Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Influenza pandemics have affected the world’s population, its economy, political and cultural perceptions.

Introduction

Influenza virus symptoms are described in texts as early as 2,400 years ago. The first real evidence of the disease goes back to 1580 Russia, when a pandemic surged through Europe and Africa. In Rome, the pathogen killed 8,000 people and nearly destroyed several cities in what is now Spain.

In recent years, globalization has made the spread of a disease such as COVID-19 difficult to contain. However, at the same time, international cooperation and advances in research and medicine have made it less likely a repeat of the death toll experienced during the Spanish flu will happen again.

Nonetheless, it’s important to continue learning about disease control and treatments, as well as staying vigilant while funding research and development in medicine. …


Creative

An unbelievable true story of an amoeba who reached the highest level of existence, only to drop down a couple of notches.

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Meet Trix — The reincarnation of Richard Nixon. Will he move up to a higher level of existence? Only if he is a good kitty. By JC Scull

In a Parallel Universe, Millions of Years Ago

Millions of years ago, in a parallel universe in which our laws of physics do not apply, and where animal and plant life advance through reincarnation rather than evolution, one particular soul came into existence in the body of an amoeba. When it exactly happened, is unknown. Suffice it to say that after its creation, it endeavored to work its way through the hierarchy of beings in search of higher levels of existence. This with the approval of a universe, which in its infinite wisdom, realized the potential of the quiddity that lay within it.

After thousands of years of deaths and rebirths, it came into existence as a female snake. This soul gained favor by guarding her eggs with extreme jealousy. It procreated with vigor within an ecosystem perpetually searching for balance. …


Learn about the literary devices and concepts that make novels great.

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Photo by Eugenio Mazzone on Unsplash

Many of us love to settle into an easy chair, open a book from one of our favorite authors and immerse ourselves into the wonderful world of fiction. We typically allow the author to take us on a journey of discovery, fantasy and dreams; excursions of mental flight we often remember for the rest of our lives. We especially love when the words of a good fiction seem to magically transform themselves into mental images just as if we were watching a movie on an old fashion silver screen.

In many cases, we do not want to know what concoction of word and imagery alchemy the author has constructed. Instead, we want to be led into that world of make-belief living within the pages of the story we are reading. Soon, we find ourselves not only captivated by the story, but somehow part of it. When this happens, the author’s magic has worked. …


Mystics, mysticism and neurotheology: your brain on God

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Photo by Agnieszka Kowalczyk on Unsplash

Mysticism, Mystics, Religion and Science

The belief in and the desire to connect with a supreme being, god, or deity that controls the universe have been around since the dawn of man. In many ancient civilizations, normal occurrences such as thunder, rain, earthquakes, and volcanic activities were attributed to unseen supernatural entities who held the strings of the universe and could manipulate the world at will.

These phenomena, which today we fully understand, gave way to shamans, healers, sorcerers, and mystics who were either able to not only interpret them but also bring comfort and solace to those who sought their help. Mystics of ancient times were able to accomplish these feats due to mysterious or occult powers they claimed to hold which would allow them to transcend beyond their normal existence and communicate with a god, divinity, or deity. …


This article will help you weigh various options to better decide which college might be best for you or your child

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Andrey Zvyagintsev at Unsplash

Choosing a college is one of the most important decisions you or your child can make; perhaps as important as which field of study to pursue. This decision will have a lasting impact on the student’s personal and professional life and it’s one that goes beyond an undergraduate diploma, as it is also important for those seeking a post-graduate degree.

Unfortunately, colleges are frequently chosen based on emotion rather than a set of well-thought-out criteria. High school students in some cases choose universities in order to stay close to friends, perceived prestige of an institution or parental pressure. …


The differences between East and West are plentiful. Social and family structures are perhaps the areas exhibiting the greatest differences. This article will show one aspect of the Chinese family structure in which grandparents play an important role in raising children.

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Photo by sklei from Pexels

The phenomenon of children being raised by their grandparents creates challenges and offers benefits to families and society. In this article, we are going to look at how this cultural experience unfolds and how it affects the people in China.

The article is divided into the following sections:

  • Extended Family
  • Advantages of Living in Large Cities in China
  • Children in Rural Areas
  • Left-Behind Children
  • Grandparent Care
  • Top-Down Structure

Extended Family

One of the major differences between individualistic and collectivist cultures is the importance of the nuclear family versus the extended family. Individualistic cultures stress self-reliance, the rights of individuals to make their own decisions, and the right to a private life. …


Halloween is almost here. But did you know other countries celebrate other spooky holidays also?

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Photo by Seema Miah on Unsplash

The Day of the Dead, the Hungry Ghost Festival, and Halloween

This article takes a look at el Dia de los Muertos, (Day of the Dead) in Latin America, the Hungry Ghost Celebration in Asia, and Halloween in the United States, Canada, and some other Western countries. All three celebrations are representative of how humans deal with the subjects of death, spirits, deceased ancestors, and the unknown. More importantly, these festivities open a brief window into the cultural diversity present in our world today. Amazingly, these celebrations exhibit many similarities despite the geographical distance between the cultures that practice them. This shows that we are not all that different after all.

Dia de los Muertos in Latin America

El Dia de los Muertos goes back at least 3,000 years to the days of the Aztec and Mayan civilizations when the celebration took place in the ninth month of the Aztec calendar (the beginning of August) and continued for an entire month. …


Be healthier and happier by being creative

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Learn how to increase your creativity — you’ll be happier and healthier. — Source: Joanna Kosinska, via Unsplash

How Can I Be More Creative?

In this article, we’ll explore:

  1. The definition of creativity
  2. How the creative process works in the brain
  3. How and why creativity is good for our mental and physical health
  4. Five methods for boosting your creativity
  5. Seven tools you can use to be more creative
  6. Over a dozen projects to help you further your creative skills

What Is Creativity?

Albert Einstein once said, “Creativity is intelligence having fun.” …

About

J.C. Scull

I write about culture, international trade, and history. Taught international business at two universities in Beijing, China. https://hubpages.com/@jcscull

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