International Day of Happiness

The International Day of Happiness (known as Happiness Day) is celebrated on the 20th of March. It was founded by United Nations adviser Jayme Illien on June 28, 2012, when all 193 member states of the United Nations General Assembly unanimously adopted UN resolution 66/281 The International Day of Happiness, following a multiyear campaign initiated in 2011 by the Illien Global Public Benefit Corporation. The first International Day of Happiness was celebrated and launched in 2013 with Ndaba Mandela, grandson of the late President of South Africa Nelson Mandela and Chelsea Clinton, daughter of US President Bill Clinton and US Senator and Democratic Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton at the TedXTeen conference in New York, NY. The United Nations and the United Nations Foundation also held ceremonies and celebrations.

The second International Day of Happiness was promoted by Pharrell Williams in 2014 and the United Nations Foundation with the world’s first 24-hour music video to the song “Happy”. Global citizens around the world were called upon to make their own music video to the song to make the first ever globally crowdsourced 24 hour global music video. The third International Day of Happiness was promoted by Pharrell Williams, in 2015 by the United Nations and the United Nations Foundation among other global campaigns. Pharrell Williams made a speech at the United Nations General Assembly where he proclaimed “Happiness is your birthright” and asked for action on climate change. Google created a home page takeover which received more than 3.5 billion impressions. Google also initiated a campaign where Pharrell would pop up at random and dance in their google hangouts feature.

The International Day of Happiness was Founded In 2012 The International Day of Happiness Resolution 66/281 was the result of the effort of United Nations adviser Jayme Illien, who conceptualized the idea for a U.N. Resolution that would recognize the pursuit of happiness as a human right and a “fundamental human goal.” Jayme Illien, founder of the International Day of Happiness, and Illien Global Public Benefit Corporation, gained the support for the idea of the new International Day of Happiness from the President of the UN General Assembly and United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, as well as all 193 UN member states to draft and adopt a new UN resolution to create the new international day, the International Day of Happiness. Jayme Illien authored UN resolution 66/281 and campaigned for its adoption by consensus of all 193 member states. Thirty two years before founding the International Day of Happiness, Jayme Illien was an orphan rescued from the streets of Calcutta India by Mother Teresa’s International Mission of Hope charities. Jayme Illien was later adopted by a then forty five year old single white American woman named Anna Belle Illien. After agreeing to adopt Jayme, Anna Belle Illien founded Illien Adoptions International, Inc, a 501 c non for profit child social welfare and international adoption agency based in Atlanta, GA.

Jayme Illien served as Adviser to the United Nations. Jayme Illien is United Nations consultant and representative for Economists for Peace and Security, a United Nations ECOSOC accredited NGO with special consultative status. Economists for Peace and Security achieved notability for exceedingly distinguished and thought leading economic community. The Economists for Peace and Security Board of Trustees has seventeen Nobel peace prize laureates in the prize for economics, including Joseph Stiglitz, Amartya Sen of Harvard University, Lawrence Klein, Óscar Arias, George Akerlof, Kenneth Arrow, Daniel McFadden, Roger Myerson, Thomas Schelling, William F. Sharpe of Stanford University, Robert Solow, Franco Modigliani of Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Sir Clive Granger, Wassily Leontief, Douglass North, Jan Tinbergen, and James Tobin of Harvard University and Yale University. Other notable trustees include Former US Secretary of Labor Robert Reich, Former Prime Minister of Greece George Papandreou, Former US Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara.

UN Resolution 66/281: International Day of Happiness’s adoption in 2012 marks a new historical milestone in humankind’s ultimate quest for happiness, which dates back to the time of ancient sages and philosophers such as Bhudda, Socrates, Confucius, Aristotle, Plato, Epicurus, Mencius, Abu Hamid al-Ghazali, and religious figures like Jesus, Abraham, Moses, and the prophet Muhammad – all of whom theorized about the purpose and meaning of life, the definition of happiness, and how to achieve it. On April 2, 2012, the United Nations hosted the first High Level Meeting on Happiness and wellbeing: Defining A New Economic Paradigm. At this meeting of Heads of State, Ministers and High Level delegates from over thirty countries and intergovernmental organizations like the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.The resolution also celebrates a modern legal and constitutional history of humankind which recognizes happiness as a human right and goal.

Happiness Development Initiatives include

In 1972 Bhutan’s King introduced the Gross National Happiness (GNH) philosophy and its four development pillars at an international conference. In 2005 The International Institute of Management introduced second generation GNH (GNH 2.0), the first GNH Index and the first Global GNH Index Survey
In 2006 The Genuine Progress Indicator was updated from a green measurement system to a broader concept that included quantitative measurement of well-being and happiness.bThe new measure is motivated by the philosophy of the GNH and the same notion of that subjective measures like well-being are more relevant and important than more objective measures like consumption. It is not measured directly, but only the factors which are believed to lead to it.The International Institute of Management also published a policy white paper calling for the implementation of GNH philosophy in the US and inviting scholars to build upon the GNH Index framework.

In 2007 Thailand released Green and Happiness Index (GHI) and the. Illien Foundation for Children, Inc. launches an initiative to find “new economic models and means to reduce poverty, empower youth, and promote sustainable solutions to human happiness.”
In 2009 In the United States, the Gallup Began the happiness survey collecting data on national scale. The Gallup Well-Being Index was modeled after the GNH Index framework of 2005. The Well-Being Index score is an average of six sub-indexes that measures life evaluation, emotional health, work environment, physical health, healthy behaviors, and access to basic necessities. In October 2009, the USA scored 66.1/100.
In 2010 The Center for Bhutan Studies further defined the original four pillars with greater specificity into eight general contributors to happiness—physical, mental and spiritual health; time-balance; social and community vitality; cultural vitality; education; living standards; good governance; and ecological vitality. The Bhutan GNH Index.
The Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative OPHI at the University of Oxford in UK, launched the Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) for the United Nations Development Programme, (UNDP). Similar to the GNH Index of 2005, OPHI promotes collection and analysis of data on five dimensions including Quality of work, Empowerment, Physical safety, Ability to go about without shame, Psychological wellbeing.
In 2011 UN General Assembly Resolution 65/309, titled “Happiness: towards a holistic approach to development” was adopted
The United Nations released the World Happiness Report
Canadian Index of Wellbeing Network (CIW Network) releases The Canadian Index of Wellbeing (CIW). A leading Israeli newspaper Haaretz, also published an article suggesting that western GDP economics is an incomplete development model and called for the adoption of Bhutan’s GNH philosophy and Jones’ GNH Index in Israel.
In 2012 a report prepared for the US Congressman Hansen Clarke, R, Researchers Ben, Beachy and Juston Zorn, at John F. Kennedy School of Government in Harvard University, recommended that “the Congress should prescribe the broad parameters of new, carefully designed supplemental national indicators; it should launch a bipartisan commission of experts to address unresolved methodological issues, and include alternative indicators.” They proposed that the government can use the survey results to see which well-being dimensions are least satisfied and which districts and demographic groups are most deficient, so as to allocate resources accordingly. The report list the Gross National Happiness Index and its seven measurement area as one of the main frameworks to consider.
Professor Peter T. Coleman, a world-renowned director of the International Center for Cooperation and Conflict Resolution at Columbia University, suggested that Jones’ GNH Index initiative could inform the Global Peace Index Initiative GPI.
South Korea launched Happiness Index citing the GNH Index framework.
The Government of Goa, India published a strategy for socioeconomic development citing the GNH Index as a model for measuring happiness.
The city of Seattle in Washington, launched its own happiness index initiative, emphasizing measures similar to the GNH Index.
UN Adviser and CEO of Illien Global Public Benefit Corporation Jayme Illien brings the idea of creating the International Day of Happiness to the United Nations, drafts UN Resolution 66/281: International Day of Happiness, campaigns for its adoption by consensus of all 193 UN Member States, and gains support of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. In 2014 In Vietnam, the prime minister Nguyen Tan Dung has ordered by decree to organize the International Day of Happiness every year across the country.

HappinessDay.org,the official website of the International Day of Happiness, managed in partnership with the United Nations and through the charitable contribution of UN Adviser Jaymen Illien, who founded the International Day of Happiness and Illien Global Public Benefit Corporation, has served as a hub and central hosting platform for the International Day of Happiness resolutions since it was founded in 2012. The mission of HappinessDay.org is to promote happiness as a fundamental human right and goal through preserving the values and principles of the UN happiness resolutions, including happiness as a human right and goal, “Gross Global Happiness,” and the Global Goals for Sustainable Development. HappinessDay.org manages a year-round continuous campaign into perpetuity with the sole purpose of serving the public good through promoting Article 2 of UN Resolution 66/281: International Day of Happiness, which invites all Member States, international and regional organizations of the United Nations system, as well as civil society, including non-governmental organizations and individuals, to observe the International Day of Happiness in an appropriate manner, including through education and public awareness-raising activities. HappinessDay.org supports the leadership of other charitable organizations, social media campaigns, NGOs, governments, individuals, partnerships and other programs to implement the appropriate observance of the International Day of Happiness.

Each year since the day’s inception the charity Action for Happiness has coordinated an international campaign to coincide with day, bringing together a coalition of over 60 organisationsbto promote positive social action to help create a happier and more caring world. In 2015 their campaign, titled ‘YOUR HAPPINESS IS PART OF SOMETHING BIGGER’, focuses on the importance of human connection in the context of the epidemic of loneliness and isolation in modern societies. Beyond running one of many Day of Happiness websites, they have organised happiness flash-mobs in 12 cities across the world and promoted the sharing of positive messages on social media on the hashtag #internationaldayofhappiness. SpeakHappiness.com offered two free workbooks to all visitors: last year’s International Day of Happiness workbook, “One Day of Fluent Happiness” and this year’s workbook, “Happiness in the Workplace Every Day,” acknowledging that unhappy workers cost companies more than $350 Billion a year in lost productivity and seeking solutions to counter that.

Happiness 1st Institute vows to celebrate International Happiness Day by providing free seminars with tips and tools to increase happiness and awareness of the benefits of happiness each year. Happiness 1st Institute and the International Society of Happiness Professionals challenge other happiness professionals to provide free happiness increasing and awareness information on International Happiness Day in the spirit of greater happiness for all the worlds people.

Happy Newcomer Inc. in association with The Bolivian Center for Research in Positive Psychology also organized a campaign for the International Day of happiness by developing a web portal where people can share events and activities planned for this day.
Happiness International is encouraging people to make a “Happiness Day Resolution” by choosing one action supporting their happiness to continue developing over the coming year. To help people select the best action to match their needs for happiness, they are offering free access to their science-based online Happiness Planner™.

International Astrology Day

International Astrology Day (most often observed on either March 20 or March 21) is an annual observance/holiday celebrated by astrologers and astrology enthusiasts. It is seen by astrologers as the beginning (first day) of the astrological year. It is the first full day of the astrological sign of Aries and thus marks the beginning of the tropical Zodiac. International Astrology Day is celebrated/observed depending on the exact day that the Northward equinox actually occurs. This varies year to year between March 19–22, though it usually falls on March 20 or March 21.

The date of the holiday occurs at the same time of the Iranian new year (Norouz), which is celebrated in many places throughout the Middle East and Central Asia. It also corresponds with the beginning of the Bahá’í calendar, which is celebrated as Bahá’í Naw-Rúz. Other holidays occurring around this time include Ostara (amongst neopagans), Chunfen in China, and Vernal Equinox Day (a public holiday in Japan), among others.

World Storytelling Day

World Storytelling Day is a global celebration of the art of oral storytelling. It is celebrated every year on the March equinox, on (or near) March 20. On World Storytelling Day, as many people as possible tell and listen to stories in as many languages and at as many places as possible, during the same day and night. Participants tell each other about their events in order to share stories and inspiration, to learn from each other and create international contacts. The significance in the event lies in the fact that it is the first global celebration of storytelling of its kind, and has been important in forging links between storytellers often working far apart from each other. It has also been significant in drawing public and media attention to storytelling as an art form.

World Storytelling Day has its roots in a national day for storytelling in Sweden, circa 1991-2. At that time, an event was organized for March 20 in Sweden called “Alla berättares dag” (All storytellers day). The Swedish national storytelling network passed out some time after, but the day stayed alive, celebrated around the country by different enthusiasts. In 1997, storytellers in Perth, Western Australia coordinated a five-week-long Celebration of Story, commemorating March 20 as the International Day of Oral Narrators. At the same time, in Mexico and other Latin American countries, March 20 was already celebrated as the National Day of Storytellers.

When the Scandinavian storytelling web-network, Ratatosk, started around 2001, Scandinavian storytellers started talking, and in 2002, the event spread from Sweden to Norway, Denmark, Finland and Estonia. In 2003, the idea spread to Canada and other countries, and the event has become known internationally as World Storytelling Day. Starting around 2004, France participated with the event Jour Mondial du Conte. World Storytelling Day 2005 had a grande finale on Sunday March 20. There were events from 25 countries on 5 continents, and 2006 saw the program grow further. 2007 was the first time a storytelling concert was held in Newfoundland, Canada. In 2008 The Netherlands took part in World Storytelling Day with a big event called ‘Vertellers in de Aanval’ on March the 20th; three thousand kids were surprised by the sudden appearance of storytellers in their classrooms. In 2009, there were World Storytelling Day events in Europe, Asia, Africa, North America, South America and Australia.

World Sparrow Day

World Sparrow Day is observed annually on 20 March by the Nature Forever Society of India in collaboration with the Eco-Sys Action Foundation (France) and numerous other national and international organisations across the world, to raise awareness of the plight of the house sparrow and other common birds in urban environments, and to raise awareness of threats to their populations.

The Nature Forever Society was started by Mohammed Dilawar, an Indian conservationist who started his work helping the house sparrow in Nashik, and who was named one of the “Heroes of the Environment” for 2008 by Time for his efforts. The idea of marking a World Sparrow Day came up during an informal discussion at the Nature Forever Society’s office. The idea was to earmark a day for the house sparrow to convey the message of conservation of the house sparrow and other common birds and also mark a day of celebration to appreciate the beauty of the common biodiversity which is taken so much for granted. The first World Sparrow Day was celebrated in 2010 in different parts of the world. The day was celebrated by carrying out different various kinds of activities and events like art competitions, awareness campaigns, and sparrow processions as well as interactions with media.

World Sparrow Day also has a broader vision to provide a platform where people who are working on the conservation of the house sparrow and other common birds can network, collaborate and exchange conservation ideas which will lead to better science and improved results. It aims to provide a meeting ground for people from different parts of the world to come together and form a force that can play an important role in advocacy and in spreading the awareness on the need of conserving common biodiversity or species of lower conservation status.

Carl Palmer (ELP, ASIA)

English Drummer and percussionist Carl Frederick Palmer was born 20 March 1950. He is credited as one of the most respected rock drummers to emerge from the 1960s and is a veteran of a number of famous English bands, including The Crazy World of Arthur Brown, Atomic Rooster, Emerson, Lake & Palmer, and Asia. Palmer began taking drum lessons as a young boy, travelling to Denman Street, Piccadilly. His first band, with others from the Midlands area, was originally known as the King Bees, but changed its name to the Craig. They made their first record, “I Must Be Mad”, produced by Larry Page, in 1966; the flip side was “Suspense”. Palmer also did session work, playing on the song “Love Light” by the Chants, a group from Liverpool. In 1966, he was invited to join Chris Farlowe and the Thunderbirds.

Carl Palmer was recruited as a replacement drummer for the Crazy World of Arthur Brown, after the original drummer Drachen Theaker abruptly left the band during a U.S. tour in 1969 becoming a permanent band member until he left with Vincent Crane, the keyboard player with the Crazy World of Arthur Brown, to form Atomic Rooster, with vocalist/bassist Nick Graham, and their first album was released in early 1970. Meanwhile, Palmer received a call from Keith Emerson to audition for a new group and left Atomic Rooster in the summer of 1970.

Palmer met up with two other young English musicians, Greg Lake, and Keith Emerson. Emerson had most recently been a member of the Nice, and Lake was in King Crimson, and both wanted to further expand their musical creativity. After auditioning several drummers, including Mitch Mitchell, they felt an “immediate chemistry” with Palmer, and by the summer of 1970 they had formed a band. In naming the new group, the trio chose their surname|last names alphabetically – Emerson, Lake & Palmer, also shortened to ELP. The band has been the most successful of his career, and he remained with ELP until they first disbanded in 1980. They developed a sound that merged art rock, jazz, electronica, pop rock and classical music and found fans within their peers and the public alike. During that time Palmer released only one single as a solo artist but went on to develop a solo career, alongside ELP and his other future bands.[citation needed] During the latter part of 1981, Palmer played drums on the Mike Oldfield album Five Miles Out, including the song “Mount Teide”. Other recordings that Palmer did with Oldfield, such as “Ready Mix,” remained unreleased until 2001. Emerson, Lake & Palmer subsequently reunited in the early 1990s and played the progressive rock circuit, especially in outdoor summer concerts. Following the deaths of Emerson in March 2016 and Lake in December 2016, Palmer is the only surviving member of Emerson, Lake & Palmer.

Following the first break-up of ELP in 1980, Palmer formed PM with Texas blues rock guitarist John Nitzinger for one album before joining John Wetton and Steve Howe in early 1981, who had been brought together to form a new super-group. They were later joined by Geoff Downes to form Asia. Palmer left Asia in 1991 to join the ELP reunion. After several personnel changes the four founder members of Asia including Palmer reunited in 2006. Palmer was inducted into the Modern Drummer Hall of Fame in 1989.

Palmer has performed a series of drum clinics across the UK, Europe and United States. Highlights of Palmer’s live drum solo over the years have included the use of both gongs and tambourines. Palmer is also a patron of the British ‘Classic Rock Society’, which promotes Progressive Rock concerts. In 2006 Palmer reunited with the original line-up of Asia to celebrate their 25th anniversary. They have since released four new studio albums, Phoenix, in 2008, Omega in 2010, XXX (30) in 2012, and Gravitas in 2014. A live album and DVD from the 2006 reunion tour, entitled Fantasia was released by Eagle Rock Records. In 2013, Palmer embarked on a world tour that included shows in South and North America, and Europe with him on drums and percussion, guitarist Paul Bielatowicz and bassist Simon Fitzpatrick. In 2014 Carl Palmer appeared on the second annual Moody Blues Cruise, on the cruise ship MSC Ship Divina Performing instrumental versions of many of ELP’s hits. He also embarked on “The 2014 Rhythm of Light Tour”, a 19-date North America tour billed as “Carl Palmer’s ELP Legacy”, and in2016 Palmer embarked on “Carl Palmer’s ELP Legacy Tour 2016”, a 25-date North American tour. As of 7 December 2016, following the death of Greg Lake, Palmer is the only surviving member of Emerson, Lake & Palmer.

Vernal Equinox

The March equinox or Northward equinox is the equinox on the Earth when the subsolar point appears to leave the southern hemisphere and cross the celestial equator, heading northward as seen from Earth. In the Northern Hemisphere the March equinox is known as the vernal equinox, and in the Southern Hemisphere as the autumnal equinox. On the Gregorian calendar the Northward equinox can occur as early as 19 March or as late as 21 March. For a common year the computed time slippage is about 5 hours 49 minutes later than the previous year, and for a leap year about 18 hours 11 minutes earlier than the previous year. Balancing the increases of the common years against the losses of the leap years keeps the calendar date of the March equinox from drifting more than one day from 20 March each year. The March equinox may be taken to mark the beginning of spring and the end of winter in the Northern Hemisphere but marks the beginning of autumn and the end of summer in the Southern Hemisphere.

The March equinox is one point in time commonly used to determine the length of the tropical year. The mean tropical year is the average of all the tropical years measured from every point along the Earth’s orbit. When tropical year measurements from several successive years are compared, many slight variations are found which are due to a variety of phenomenon, including nutation and the planetary perturbations from the Sun. the mean Tropical year lasts 365 days, 5 hours, 48 minutes, 45 seconds.

The point where the Sun crosses the celestial equator northwards is called the First Point of Aries. However, due to the precession of the equinoxes, this point is no longer in the constellation Aries, but rather in Pisces. By the year 2600 it will be in Aquarius. The Earth’s axis causes the First Point of Aries to travel westwards across the sky at a rate of roughly one degree every 72 years. Based on the modern constellation boundaries, the northward equinox passed from Taurus into Aries in the year −1865 (1866 BC), passed into Pisces in the year −67 (68 BC), will pass into Aquarius in the year 2597, and will pass into Capricornus in the year 4312. It passed by (but not into) a ‘corner’ of Cetus at 0°10′ distance in the year 1489. On the day of an equinox, the Sun’s disk crosses the Earth’s horizon directly to the east at dawn—rising; and again, some 12 hours later, directly to the west at dusk—setting. The March equinox, like all equinoxes, is characterized by having an almost exactly equal amount of daylight and night across most latitudes on Earth.

Due to refraction of light rays in the Earth’s atmosphere the Sun is visible above the horizon even when its disc is completely below the limb of the Earth. Additionally, when seen from the Earth, the Sun is a bright disc in the sky and not just a point of light, thus sunrise and sunset can be said to start several minutes before the sun’s geometric center even crosses the horizon, and extends equally long after. These conditions produce differentials of actual durations of light and darkness at various locations on Earth during an equinox. This is most notable at the more extreme latitudes, where the Sun may be seen to travel sideways considerably during the dawn and evening, drawing out the transition from day to night. At the north or south poles, the Sun appears to move steadily around the horizon, and just above the horizon, neither rising nor setting apart from a slight change in declination of about 0.39° per day as the equinox passes.