Scientific Evidence Thoughts & Intentions Can Alter The Physical World Around Us

The title says everything.

Dr. Emoto Masaru, a Japanese researcher has given the world a good deal of evidence of the magic of positive thinking. His experiments demonstrate that human thoughts and intentions can alter physical reality, such as the molecular structure of water. Given that humans are comprised of at least 60% water, his discovery has far reaching implications…

The rice experiment is another famous Emoto demonstration of the power of negative thinking (and conversely, the power of positive thinking). Dr. Emoto placed portions of cooked rice into three containers. Then, everyday for one month he said “thank you” to one of them, "you're an idiot" to the second one, and ignored the last one. By writing the above words in a label for each container, he then instructed school children to say the labels out loud everyday when they passed them by.


Watch the video below to see what I mean.

Is this proof that consciousness and intention can affect the physical world around us?

"The Global Expatriate's Guide To Investing" by Andrew Hallam

Some time ago I read a very interesting book which I would like to introduce to you. Its title is The Global Expatriate's Guide To Investing, and it's written by bestselling author Andrew Hallam.

Yes, as you might expect by reading the title, it is about money, and if you are an expat like me, you should definitely read it.

Our world is becoming more and more global everyday, and the proof of that is the incredible number of 200 million expats who make their living in a foreign country.

Living in your home country might save you a lot of trouble when it comes to managing your money, investing, or even planning your retirement. But when you are an expat, there are many other things which you cannot do in your home country. And that's why thinking about how to make the most of your hard-earned money is of an extreme importance.

In this book, Andrew Hallam explains how the world of investment works. And what you should do about that if you want to be successful in your life.

The book is very interesting and it will even amaze the most skeptical, as it has a really concrete and detailed approach to every field, be it how much you need to invest to reach your retirement goal, or how much did the Canadian stock index varied along the years. Yes, the numbers are there.

However, I'm going to break the standards. I want to share with you, the phrases that got my attention - and there were a lot -, the ones that despite not having numbers in them, "show" a little of our world, and how we live in it.

It's a little long, but here they are:

- Gaining experience (...) is more fulfilling than acquiring possessions.

- When figuring out how much money you'll need, focus on your own lifestyle and need, not somebody else's.

- The first step toward planning your retirement is realizing what you spend today.

- When it comes to money, caution is cool.

- Even with a solid eye on the economy, human sentiment moves stock prices in the short term, not government policies or economic data.

- Many people hire advisors to guess. But speculating is silly (...). Instead of rolling the dice with a soothsayer, trying to predict which market will outperform, it's better to diversify money across every sector at the lowest possible cost.
  Unfortunately, many global expatriates fail to do so. And their retirements pay the price.

- People get nothing for their money from professional money managers.

- Spreading assets among a variety of markets and asset classes increases safety. We shouldn't try to gamble that a recently scorching fund from a specific geographic region or asset class (gold, oil, commodities, etc.) will continue to blaze, just because it did so recently.
  But that's how most people invest.

- Thousands of years ago, a couple of your ancestors pushed their way through jungle foliage looking for their next meal. A tiger attacked from being and ate one for lunch. The survivor told other villagers. (...) So the villagers realized a pattern. Giant cats eat people. Better avoid them.
  Another time, your ancestors discovered which berries were poisonous, which caused diarrhea, and which they could safely eat and enjoy. (...)
  Humans are hardwired to seek such patterns. But while good for survival, these same pattern-seeking tendencies make us lousy investors. We figure if something is rising in price, it will keep rising. And if something drops in price, it will keep falling. But the stock market isn't a tiger or a jungle berry.

- Predicting stock market movements, even with the benefit of hindsight, is next to impossible.

- When something sounds too good to be true, it usually is.

- Many myths were once accepted: The earth is flat. Touching a toad will give you warts. Gold is a great investment.
  I hope the last one caught your attention. Because gold once served as a trading currency, many people think it's a great moneymaker.

- Come on, admit it - you're better looking than the average person, right? If you drive a car, you probably think you drive better than most behind the wheel. Chances are you also think you're smarter than average. (...)
  Likewise, many people overestimate their ability to manage a portfolio of index funds. Don't get me wrong. It's a simple thing to do. But most people can't do it effectively.

- Consider how much time you spend cutting your toenails each year. (...) Anyone spending more time maintaining an index fund portfolio is doing something wrong.

- Document your costs. They'll start dropping. You won't have to strain yourself with a household budget. But set a monthly savings goal. (...)
  Whether you choose to repatriate, vagabond, or reside in a foreign oasis, your older self will thank you. After all, you're a custodian for a senior. So do yourself a favor. Plan for your retirement.

I think these quotes speak for themselves. That's the power of this book. It has a very easily understandable language.

I'm no more than a newborn Portuguese expat living and soon working in Japan, so there is still A LOT I don't know about "how money flows". But one thing is for sure: I'm someone who likes to think. To think a lot. Sometimes it may be a poisonous trap, but that's not because of thinking, that's because of overthinking.

This said, this book opened my eyes to the society, and it gave me a clear and concrete vision of something that can save people a lot of trouble. Even for those that think it's too early to think about our own life in, let's say, 10, 20, 30 years, well, that doesn't mean we shouldn't spend a few minutes imagining, throwing ideas into the air, or asking older people for advice that might save us later.

And that's why I'm glad to have read this book!

Guest Post: Five Fun and Free Things to Do in Japan

---> The Rising Sky is and will always be open to Guest Posts! <---

Today I present to you a post on "Five Fun and Free Things to Do in Japan" brought by our avid reader Jess Signut! She's a long term expat who has spent the last years traveling around the world! She writes about her adventures in her blog at, so if you're a travel lover as well, don't forget to visit her blog and leave a comment!

Enjoy her article below!


If you’re looking to go to Japan, you’re spoilt for choice as far as where to visit. Take a trip to the capital city, Tokyo, and revel in its magnificent and modern life. Or take a trip to historical Kyoto, which is home to many important older sights. Or visit Mount Fuji, which many people recognize from pictures. Eat Japanese food, see some wonderful theatre, and explore this beautiful country—but you don’t have to break the bank to do it. Here are five fun and free things to do during your visit:

Learn About Traditional Japanese Arts
Japan is a country deeply rooted in traditional arts and crafts. Learn about the ancient Japanese tradition of origami at Tokyo’s Origami Kaikan, where you will be able to watch free demonstrations on how to make, dye, and decorate origami paper. You can also take classes to learn how to fold origami, but know that you’ll need to pay about $8-17 for a one or two-hour class (depending on how difficult that day’s design is).
Another option would be to visit the Japan Traditional Craft Center, where you’ll be able to learn about and often view demonstrations about Japan’s ceramics, bamboo-works, and other traditional aspects of the country’s crafts industry.

See Historical Architecture
Unfortunately, a lot of the older architecture in Japan was wiped out by the extensive bombings that happened during World War II, but even their reconstructions keep true to the original designs and will give you a feel for traditional Japan. If you’re really looking for impressive buildings, try heading from Osaka out to Himeji Castle or heading to Kyoto, which was once the capital of Japan and which still retains a lot of impressive edifices for you to explore.
In Kyoto, beyond the historical architecture, you can also check out the three Geisha districts, where Geishas continue to entertain wealthy people—just stroll down the streets and you’ll be able to see Geishas moving from building to building. You can also visit Kyoto’s imperial palaces and villas, although you’ll need to fill out an application at the Kyoto Imperial Household Agency Office first and it may take a couple days in processing.

Explore Modern Japan
Part of the modern side of Japan has to do with the widespread bombings that occurred during World War II, but part of it is due to the fact that Japan—and specifically Tokyo—is home to the headquarters of some of the most important electronics companies in the world. Many of these companies offer free showrooms where you can check out their latest gadgets or try out some of their unreleased gizmos. Try the Sony Showroom or the Panasonic Showroom in Tokyo.
If you’re really interested in trying out any sort of electronics—or in buying them—check out Akihabara Town in Tokyo, where you can try out various electronics even before they’ve been released in most countries, as well as purchase electronics for cheaper. If you need to do more research about the products you might purchase, know that you’ll be able to find free Wi-Fi access at most Starbucks and 7-11 locations, although you’ll have to sign up for these networks (using Wi-Fi) before you’re able to use them. Remember that you may first want to set up a VPN to protect your private information, first!

Check Out a Festival
The country of Japan is home to many festivals. The festivals are too many to name comprehensively—there are estimates that there are roughly 200,000 festivals in Japan during the course of a year!—but you can check out a list here. The most popular festivals are the Cherry Blossom Festivals in the spring, the traditional Gion Matsuri Festival held in Kyoto every July in Japan, and the Sapporo Winter Festival where you can ski or snowboard some great powder as well as see intricate snow sculptures of Japanese architecture.

Think About the Past
If you’re at all interested in recent history, your visit to Japan shouldn’t lack a visit to Hiroshima, site of the World War II atom bomb explosion. Here you have a couple options for free things to see, including the Peace Memorial Park and Museum. The park is free, and although the museum charges an entry fee, the price—roughly $0.50 US—is nominal. In Hiroshima, you can also visit the Flame of Peace, which has burnt since the mid-‘60s and will do so until all nuclear weapons are destroyed.

Although travelling can be expensive, your trip to Japan doesn’t need to be. During your time in this beautiful country, visit the temples, visit the museums, visit the local sights—but save a little money for your souvenirs! Maximize your sightseeing by visiting as much as you can as cheaply as possible. You’re guaranteed to have a fantastic time.

Dulcinea Quartet - Back to Japan!

Remember this name?

Their fundraising campaign was a success, and as a result, their 2015 Japan Tour has been scheduled! Here are the concert dates:

March 29
March 30
April 5
April 7
April 8

Also, there is information below (Japanese only) on their first concert which will take place in Yaesu Hall, Tokyo, starting at 16:00 (opens at 15:30).

They are also performing a piece together with a shamisen (Japanese instrument) player! It sounds quite interesting and I'm thinking of going myself as well! :)

If you're not sure about the place, check on the map below! (It's close to the Yaesu exit of Tokyo Station so it should be easy to get there!)

(Rehearsing for their children concerts in Japan, and with shamisen player Hibiki Ichikawa!)

Enjoy a piece from one of their concerts in Japan, as well as an audio track from their official website!

Culture Point 19: Table Manners

Japanese food, called “washoku” in Japan, has been registered as a UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage, but you didn’t need an official declaration to know that it is absolutely delicious. But while enjoying Japanese food, many people commit complete etiquette crimes. Take a look at the following rules for eating Japanese food and save yourself some embarrassment while enjoying a traditional Japanese meal.

Cherry Blossoms 2015 Forecast!

For anyone planning to enjoy cherry blossoms in Japan this year, here is the forecast by region, and the map below (Japanese, announced today)!

LocationOpeningEstimated Best Viewing  
TokyoMarch 26April 1 to 9
KyotoMarch 26April 2 to 10
KagoshimaMarch 25April 1 to 9
KumamotoMarch 21March 29 to April 6
FukuokaMarch 21March 28 to April 5
HiroshimaMarch 25March 31 to April 8
MatsuyamaMarch 23March 29 to April 6
TakamatsuMarch 26April 1 to 9
OsakaMarch 26April 2 to 10
NaraMarch 27April 2 to 10
NagoyaMarch 25April 1 to 9
YokohamaMarch 27April 2 to 10
KanazawaApril 3April 7 to 15
NaganoApril 11April 15 to 23
FukushimaApril 9April 12 to 20
SendaiApril 12April 17 to 25
AomoriApril 24April 28 to May 6
HakodateMay 2May 5 to 12
SapporoMay 5May 7 to 14