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Letters to the Editor

Letter: Easy steps for cannabis legalisation

Dear Editor, The Cook Islands Government said the more they look into legalising medicinal cannabis the more problems they come across. This should not be the case, they are overthinking and complicating what is a simple task.


Ruta Mave: Reduce stress: Lower your expectations

One way I find to reduce stress levels is to reduce my levels of expectation. For the most part people don’t know or see the difference between very good and perfection in the production of goods and services, writes Ruta Mave.

Social media rules in global change

How has the wider world suddenly become so polarised?


Calling govt to task on spending

Often announcements by the government are met with scepticism.


Your rights when it comes to opinion

Have you noticed how uptight people get when someone or an organisation has an opinion published in the public arena asking questions about them that they don’t want discussed or exposed to the light of day regarding something to do with their behaviour?


How you can triumph over 'the fight inside'

A Native American story tells of a Cherokee grandfather speaking with his grandson: “Son, inside me are two wolves having a terrible fight. One is evil. He is anger, envy, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.” He continued, “The other is good. He is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, charity, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith. The same fight is going on inside you – and inside every other person, too.” The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather: “Which wolf will win?” The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.” This story has great meaning for those of us on a spiritual path, open to the continual learning and growth for which we were created. It also speaks to parents and teachers, who have the power to shape the lives of children by the way we see them, speak to them, and treat them. For our own sake and that of our children, we need to realise that there is another version of the two wolves story, one that tells us to acknowledge both wolves. I believe we must have compassion for our human frailties, because to ignore our humanness or fight too hard against it merely increases its pressure to be in control. It will hide behind every corner waiting for a moment of weakness, to pounce, sink its teeth into us, and drag us down. So, if we are on a new health regime, choosing to eat healthy, and a longing overcomes us for that greasy burger (with cheese and chips) or that ice cream covered in chocolate sauce, ignoring it will force it to dominate our dreams. Best we indulge occasionally, using moderation as the tiller of our boat. In this way we can eat anything and still lose weight, as long as it is controlled and not gone wild from deprivation. Greed, one of the worst qualities of the evil wolf, begins early. I’ve noticed that when I give my young grandchildren a special treat, such as a lagoon cruise or dessert at a restaurant, they immediately ask when it will happen again. The key is not to blame their greed, or even to name it, but to focus on their gratitude. Telling them, “This was special, and you need to show your gratitude,” calls on the good wolf to take the lead. If I were to say, “Don’t be so greedy,” I would be giving too much attention and power to the bad wolf. Shaming disables inner strength. Naming a virtue empowers it. Even addicts, such as alcoholics, who find they must avoid drinking altogether in order to heal, need to have compassion for themselves. Guilt alone destroys the will to change. One reason it is terribly harmful to spoil and indulge children to expect treats and cheap toys every time they enter a shop is that you are feeding the worst kind of entitlement, teaching them: “If I whine enough, I get whatever I want.” That is feeding the greed, rather than making gifts a special experience to be savoured and enjoyed. I believe that this early learned behaviour leads to binge drinking, a scourge of greed in these islands; as well is infidelity – the pursuit of pleasure at the cost of faithfulness, love and loyalty, qualities of the good wolf that are harder to practice. Moderation, self-discipline, contentment, and gratitude are the soul food we need. Our health improves, our mood lifts, joy increases, and love thrives. We also need to have compassion for our self-pity, our weaknesses, even our greed, and decide if and when to feed it every now and then. I hope you will join the Rarotonga Baha’i community celebrating the 200th Anniversary of Baha’u’llah’s birthday, with an all-day “open house” on Sunday October 22, starting at 10am at the Baha’i Centre, with presentations by local Baha’is, children’s activities, a film at 4pm and kaikai. At 3pm I will present “My Baha’i Faith”, about my own faith journey.


Youth problems, and some solutions

I found the article in CINews on Wednesday October 11 relating to a visit to Atiu by Rebecca Buchanan and Mereana Taikoko very interesting.


Issues of national consciousness

I am a dual citizen, in that I have both a New Zealand and an Irish passport.


Domestic violence: The sad facts

CI News contributor “Unionist” this week turns his attention to a social problem that sadly, has become a major issue in the Cook Islands – that of domestic violence. He says the statistics paint a grim picture of intergenerational abuse in this country.


The UN, independence, and us

I’m going to be the devil’s advocate here.


Be the change you wish to see

My first thought, when I learned of the recent tragic mass shooting in Las Vegas, was a prayer, “Please, God, don’t let it be a black man.”


Government fails to address youth issues

Just last week, a large number of people came to our shores to discuss youth issues.


Helping the young help themselves

His faced was emblazoned on our screens this week: Another young life caught up in bad decisions and now on the run from a bench warrant, pursued by the police and public till his capture I saw on social media this morning.


Bishop 'horrified' at water baptism opinions

“I was somewhat shocked and horrified by the rambling thoughts and blatant mockeries made upon the Word of God in CI News on Monday by a local pastor, preacher and teacher of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.



Now that there's some spare money...

In view of the Finance minister’s recent announcement that we are flush with money and “we are in a good position to be able to advance our priorities”, may I suggest to the Health minister, Nandi Glassie and his ministry, that this is absolutely the right time to be applying some real pressure on his colleagues in Cabinet to deliver the facilities and services contemplated by the Ministry of Health (Mental Health) Regulations 2013.


Virtues caught, more than they're taught

Thinking back to your childhood, can you remember how it felt to be you?


Justice ministry faces huge problems

For the next two weeks the Land Court will be sitting to hear various applications.


When your number's up, get healthy!

Fifty-one. Glaring back at me in luminous blue was the number 51.


Good start PM, now the next move...

Last week, we read of prime minister Henry Puna doing a great deed.


Making order out of chaos

At this season of my life, I have a longing for order and simplicity.


What I know about being a unionist

People have asked me what I know about being a unionist.


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