Welcome to the other side of the end of the world. (LOL) Now that the Mayan Calendar end-of-the-world theory has been thoroughly debunked and we're living at the beginning of a grand new  5,125-year cycle in the history of the man's journey can we finally learn from the past and start building a better world? I wonder.

We have witnessed the "end of the world" scenarios more than a few times in my life-time. We've witnessed calamities that try even the strongest beliefs that man is in essence good…senseless wars and more senseless destruction of human life. None of us has been immune.

But each new day serves as a reminder that life does go on and that there is hope for a better world. Our challenge is to muster the resolve, learn from the past and start building a bright new future.

Here in Chicago it's a bright sunny – albeit cold – day. There's hope and promise everywhere even while the leaf-less trees that line our streets slumber. Winter is here and all around we're reminded that it's time for a little R&R. All will wake again come Spring.

We, too, might capitalize on this time. Set aside the hustle and bustle of the commercialism of the Holiday Season. Reflect and Renew our resolve to work together to make each and every corner of this world a better, safer and more prosperous place for all.

It's a brief three days until Christmas…just nine days until our modern calendar heralds yet another new year. There is plenty of time for celebration. Let's begin today. We have 24 hours to celebrate life. Let's do it!

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