International Day of Happiness

The International Day of Happiness is celebrated worldwide every March 20. It was adopted in 2012 to mark 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.

The International Day of Happiness was founded by philanthropist, activist, statesman, and prominent United Nations special advisor Jayme Illien to inspire, mobilize, and advance the global happiness movement. It began In 2011, when Illien brought the idea and concept of creating a new global day of awareness, the International Day of Happiness, to senior United Nations Officials and successfully campaigned to unite a global coalition of all 193 United Nations member states, and secured the endorsement of then Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ban Ki moon, to support the concept of establishing a new official international UN calendar day of observance known as the International Day of Happiness.

Illien authored UN resolution 66/281 “International Day of Happiness”, which was ultimately adopted by the unanimous consensus of all 193 UN member states of the United Nations General Assembly on June 28, 2012. Jayme Illien chose March 20 for its significance as the March equinox, a universal phenomenon felt simultaneously by all of humankind, and which occurs the moment when the plane of Earth’s equator passes through the center of the Sun’s disk. On September 17, 2012, Secretary General Ban Ki moon emphasized the importance of the new international day of happiness in his closing remarks to the 66th session of the UN General Assembly, “Mr. President, during your tenure, the General Assembly also instituted a new observance on the UN calendar: the International Day of Happiness. Let us hope that through our work, including in the new session that begins tomorrow, we can turn that aspiration into reality.”

The first ever international day of happiness was celebrated on March 20, 2013 and now Every March 20 since 2013. Founded June 28, 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.” He gained the support for a 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.

The International Day of Happiness has surprisingly humble beginings. In 1980 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 has served as an Adviser, 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. The United Nations hosted the first high-level meeting on happiness and wellbeing in 2012: 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 Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki moon stated:

“We need a new economic paradigm that recognizes the parity between the three pillars of sustainable development. Social, economic and environmental well-being are indivisible. Together they define gross global happiness.”

This UN resolution marked the modern historical milestone of globalizing the Happiness Development Movement that started in 1972. The resolution also celebrates a modern legal and constitutional history of humankind which recognizes happiness as a human right and goal. Today the International Day of Happiness is celebrated in 193 UN Member states, 2 observer states, and 11 territories.

More International and National Holidays and events happening on March 20

Earth Equinox Day
International Astrology Day
Ostara in the northern hemisphere, Mabon in the southern hemisphere. (Neo-Druidic Wheel of the Year
Sun-Earth Day (United States)
Great American Meatout (United States)
International Francophonie Day (Organisation internationale de la Francophonie), and its related observances:
UN French Language Day (United Nations)
Extraterrestrial Abduction Day
French Language Day
Great American Meatout Day
National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day
National Ravioli Day
Proposal Day
Snowman Burning Day

James Herbert OBE

Prolific English Horror writer James John Herbert, OBE tragically died On 20 March 2013, at his home in Sussex at the age of 69. He was born 8 April 1943 in London He attended a Catholic school in Bethnal Green called Our Lady of the Assumption, then aged 11 won a scholarship to St Aloysius Grammar School in Highgate. He left school at 15 and studied at Hornsey College of Art, joining the art department of John Collings, a small advertising agency.He left the agency to join Charles Barker Advertising where he worked as art director and then group head.Herbert lived in Woodmancote, near Henfield in West Sussex. He had two brothers: Peter, a retired market trader and John, an insurance broker.

His first two books, The Rats and The Fog, were disaster novels with man-eating giant black rats in the first and an accidentally released chemical weapon in the second. The first print run of The Rats (100,000 copies) sold out in three weeks. Herbert wrote three sequels to The Rats; Lair which deals with a second outbreak of the mutants, this time in the countryside around Epping Forest rather than in the first book’s London slums; in Domain, a nuclear war means that the rats have become the dominant species in a devastated city. The third sequel, the graphic novel The City, is an adventure set in the post-nuclear future. Unfortunately In 1979 Herbert had to pay damages when it was ruled that he had based part of his novel The Spear on the work of another writer, The Spear of Destiny by Trevor Ravenscroft.

With his third novel, the ghost story The Survivor, Herbert used supernatural horror rather than the science fiction horror of his first two books. In Shrine, he explored his Roman Catholic heritage with the story of an apparent miracle which turns out to be something much more sinister. Haunted, the story of a sceptical paranormal investigator taunted by malicious ghosts, began life as a screenplay for the BBC, though this was not the screenplay used in the eventual film version. Its sequels were The Ghosts of Sleath and Ash. Others of Herbert’s books, such as Moon, Sepulchre and Portent, are structured as thrillers and include espionage and detective story elements along with the supernatural. The Jonah is in large part the story of a police investigation, albeit by a policeman whose life is overshadowed by a supernatural presence.

His novel The Spear deals with a neo-Nazi cult in Britain and an international conspiracy which includes a right-wing US general and an arms dealer. The novel ’48 is an alternative history novel set in 1948 in which the Second World War ended with the release of a devastating plague by the defeated Hitler and, like The Spear, features British characters who sympathise with the Nazis. Others narrates the story of a physically deformed private detective. Herbert had previously tackled the theme of reincarnation in his fourth novel, Fluke, the story of a dog who somehow remembers his previous life as a human being. Rumbo, one of the characters from Fluke also turns up in The Magic Cottage. Once… includes another reference to the character of Rumbo (along with an in-joke of elven folk having names of reversed titles of Herbert’s previous novels; ‘Hanoj’, ‘Niamod’, ‘Noom’ etc.).

Herbert’s next novel Nobody True continues the theme of life after death, being narrated by a ghost whose investigation of his own death results in the destruction of his illusions about his life. Nobody True features The character Joe Creed, a cynical, sleazy paparazzo who is drawn into a plot involving fed-up and underappreciated monsters. Herbert described this novel as his Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein

Herbert’s next novel The Secret of Crickley Hall, is about a haunted country house in England, and examined the relationship between religious zealotry and child abuse. One of the characters in this novel is named after a real person, who won the honour by having the winning bid in the 2004 BBC Radio 2 Children in Need Auction. Herbert released a new novel virtually every year from 1974 to 1988, he wrote six novels during the 1990s and released three new works in the 2000s. Herbert’s final novel has an eerie political edge. ‘Ash’, imagines Princess Diana and her secret son as well as Lord Lucan, Colonel Gaddafi and Robert Maxwell living together in a Scottish castle.

Various biographical and critical pieces by and about Herbert have also been collected in James Herbert: By Horror Haunted, edited by Stephen Jones, and also in James Herbert – Devil in the Dark, written by Craig Cabell. So far His books have sold 54 million copies worldwide, and have been translated into 34 languages, including Chinese and Russian. In 2010 Herbert was honoured with the World Horror Convention Grand Master Award, presented to him by Stephen Kink and was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2010 Birthday Honours, presented by Prince Charles. Many of Herbert’s novels including The Fog, have also been adapted for film amd television.

Carl Palmer (Emerson, Lake and Palmer)

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/Earth Equinox Day

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.