Homeownership Among US Millennials At All Time Low

Source: ZeroHedge.com
April 30, 2017

After dropping to an all time low 62.9% in Q2 of 2016, the US homeownership rate rebounded modestly in the subsequent two quarters, before once again taking a step lower according to the latest Census data, released last week, and which showed that the percentage of US homeowners declined from 63.7% to 63.6% in Q1 of 2017, less than 1% from the all time lows in the series history going back to the mid 1960s.

A breakdown of the data by age group reveals that the primary driver for this latest decline was once again the youngest age cohort. While older Americans, especially those 65 and older, have predictably seen only modest declines in their homeownership in recent decades, it was the youngest age group, those 35 and younger, i.e. the Millennials, who once again decided against owning and chose to rent instead.

As shown in the chart below, the homeownership rate for Americans 35 and younger slumped from 34.7% as of December 2016 to 34.3%, in line with the lowest rate reported by the Census Bureau going back nearly a quarter century. Of note: the largest decline in the homeownership rate following the collapse in the house market occurred for households aged 35 to 44, although it appears to be stabilizing in recent quarters.

And since most young Americans are opting not to own, but rather rent, the latest data from the Census showed that in Q1, the median asking rent was flat at $864, just $6 below the all time high recorded one year earlier.

Broken down by region, there has been a sharp spike in asking rents in the Northeast region, which continues to closely compete with asking rents in the West, i.e., California, with the median rent in the two regions approximately $1,100 and well above rents in either the Midwest or the South.

That said, the contribution from owner-occupied households to overall household growth continues to increase, while the contribution from renters has stabilized after falling sharply in late 2015 and through much of 2016. On a year-over-year basis, the four-quarter moving average of renter-occupied households increased 599,000 in the first quarter, while the four-quarter moving average of owner-occupied households increased 441,000. The gap between the increase in renter- and owner-occupied households was the narrowest since the second quarter of 2007.

Finally, Census also revealed an increase of 158,000 households in the first quarter, following an increase of 47,000 in the fourth quarter of 2016. On a year-over-year basis, the number of households was up 1.219 million in the first quarter, up from 804,000 in the fourth quarter. The HVS data can be noisy, so we focus on year-over-year changes in four-quarter moving averages to assess trends in household formation. On that basis, the increase in households in the first quarter was 1.039 million, up from 878,000 in the fourth quarter.

Source: US Census

Advertisements

Stunned researchers discover that the impact of walking dramatically boosts blood flow to the brain, boosting cognitive function

Image: Stunned researchers discover that the impact of walking dramatically boosts blood flow to the brain, boosting cognitive function
Source: NaturalNews.com
S.D. Wells
April 30, 2017

It’s spring time, with summer on the horizon, and many people are looking to get in shape, get back in shape, or just simply get outside and get some fresh air daily. There are several benefits to going for a brisk walk, especially in the morning, some of which you may not realize. Now, even science is proving that your feet’s impact increases blood flow to not only the heart and other muscles, but walking sends pressure waves through the arteries that increase the supply of blood to the brain.

Did you know that walking just two miles daily reduces the risk of death by nearly 50 percent? Walking in the morning reduces that risk even more. Even the risk of cancer is reduced by walking. But wait, there’s lots more walking does for you. Let’s take an inside look at this simple, enjoyable way to increase longevity and cognitive function.

Research presented at the Experimental Biology 2017 annual meeting shows walking dynamically regulates blood circulation to the brain

Researchers at New Mexico Highlands University (NMHU) discovered something amazing. Until now, scientists and health researchers thought cerebral blood flow was only involuntarily regulated by the body, and that changes in blood pressure from exercise did not effect the blood supply to the brain.

Using non-invasive ultrasound to measure carotid artery blood velocity waves and arterial diameters, the NMHU researchers measured cerebral blood flow on both sides of the brain. The effects were contrasted between the 12 healthy young adults while they were standing upright during rest and then while steadily walking about one meter per second. Though the blood circulation effects in the brain are less than those from running, they were greater than cycling, since cycling does not involve any foot impact.

From brain power to self esteem to cancer prevention, a morning walk is proving to be a huge asset for mental and physical health

Get ready to jumpstart your energy for the entire day. You don’t have to join a gym or cycle 10 miles to get in shape and get healthy. You don’t have to “cross train” or run in mini-marathons to lose weight, fight disease and get smarter. When people say, “there’s no easy way out,” they’re wrong, because walking is easy. Daily morning walks can help you regulate your sleep cycle, lower your risk of breast cancer, burn glucose, improve blood sugar levels, improve blood circulation, and increase the flow of oxygen to the brain. Want improved mental faculties? Walk. Want to raise your self-esteem? Walk. Want to reduce stress? Walk.

Taking prescription medications to alleviate “symptoms” of deeper rooted health problems can complicate matters and lead to worsening health conditions. Prescription medications are nearly always made in laboratories with chemicals, and that is why there are so many horrific side effects and “adverse events” listed on the warning labels and reviewed on the commercials on television. There’s always the freedom of choice to eat organic food, consult a naturopathic physician, investigate natural medicine, and choose an easy daily workout that won’t injure your body. Go buy some good walking shoes today and choose to walk. It’s as essential to your health as clean food and clean water.

Other benefits of walking every morning include beautiful skin, better vitamin D absorption by your body, better control of cholesterol levels, increased stamina, increased muscle strength and improved metabolism. Are you ready for some extra energy throughout the day, better mental alertness and psychological clarity?

Drop the gluten, the GMOs, the tap water and the flu shots, they’re just polluting your body. Start walking every morning and experience clarity and longevity, the natural way. Now there’s science behind the “theory” that walking helps your brain!

Read More At: NaturalNews.com

Sources for this article include:

ScienceDaily.com

Science.NaturalNews.com

NaturalNewsBlogs.com

GoodRelaxation.com

How Living More Zen Can Change Your Life

solitude2
Source: TheMindUnleashed.com
Christina Sarich
April 30, 2017

One inch of sitting, one inch of Buddha. Like lightning all thoughts come and pass. Just once look into your mind-depths: Nothing else has ever been.” – Manzan Dohaku (1635-1714)

The Zen culture and daily life practiced in the East is often misinterpreted by Western aspirants. Many think it is nothing more than sitting on a cushion in a Buddhist Zen monastery, practicing Zazen for countless hours a day, perceived as a fruitless endeavor, and an impossible one!  Once you understand more about “Zen living” though, you can truly change the way you experience reality for the better.

The first thing to understand about Zen is that it is a practice in non-being. This doesn’t translate to nihilism, but as an opposite cultural thrust of what we most often do in the West, which is to assert ourselves, often in an aggressive manner.

We are like the adolescent child learning to make his way in the world in the West, but the Eastern philosophies of Zen, Taoism, Buddhism, etc. are more about relaxing into the flow – an unfettered experience of life without any assertion of our will at all, perhaps how we would imagine an old man behaving after he has made his mark, or even like an innocent baby that has not yet learned he will struggle for love, attention, money, success, etc.

For many who have grown up being taught they have to fight, plan, and work themselves to death, this can be a very hard concept to understand.

Zen also doesn’t fit into a neat conceptual package like many Westerns would like it to. You could use a few catch phrases to try to encapsulate it, but this wouldn’t be Zen. It defies doctrinal teachings and can’t even be described accurately through a list of sutras or rules. There are no “commandments,” such as we are used to in the Judeo-Christian religions.

Nonetheless, Zen asks us to give our “natural, or original face” to the world, and not an egoic mask. It is perhaps in learning how to be authentic through and through that we start to realize what Zen really is. Zen even frowns on anyone who has concrete answers to life’s biggest questions – about God, life after death, our own mortality, etc. Zen Master Taisen Deshimaru once said, “It is impossible to give a definite answer to those questions, unless you suffer from a major mental disorder.

The more important focus in Zen is to ask the right questions. The answers are secondary, because these only come, very personally, and uniquely to each person as they quiet their minds and begin to return to their original state of being.

This is a marked difference from the Western viewpoint. We are trained from our earliest years to seek more, try harder, and work as hard as we can to achieve some finite goal. Then, after achieving all the material success offered by the world and the sweat and toil of these endeavors, we discover that we still aren’t happy. Zen would suggest this is because we have erroneously attempted to “add more,” instead of stripping away the artifice.

Zen Mountains Quote

This difference can be demonstrated in the story of Dogen Kigen (道元希玄) who was disturbed by the Tendai concept of “original enlightenment.” He wanted to understand this concept fully – one which was taught by the Buddha himself.

The Buddha believed that enlightenment is inherent in all beings – any sentient creature has the ability to achieve this state. But Kigen wondered why, if all people were already enlightened, then why do they continue to seek enlightenment? He could not find the answer within the Tendai school of Buddhism, so he went looking for it somewhere else.

He ended up studying Rinzai Zen with the famous Zen teacher, Eisai’s disciple, Myozen. Here Dogen became disenchanted with Myozen’s tactic of relying heavily on koans to teach enlightenment. These are mental puzzles meant to force or shock the mind into enlightenment.

Kigen finally ended up in the Soto school (曹洞宗) of Zen, Zazen, or sitting meditation. This practice, Shikantaza, or “just sitting” was the vehicle of Buddha‘s Awakening. It is the essence of Soto Zen. In this practice, there is no goal to be attained beyond the practice itself. Unlike the Western idea of doing more, getting more, or ‘being’ more, in Soto Zen, you don’t do anything but sit.  You only worry about experiencing the present moment fully. You become aware of every action and thought in the here and now. You are acutely aware, you might say.

As Zen Master Taisen Deshimaru once said, “Zazen has no object, it is purposeless, it only brings us back to ourselves.” One doesn’t need to worry about Satori (Japanese word for enlightenment).

Strangely though, in doing less, we experience more. We get to know our “original face” in experiencing emptiness. Westerners find this so difficult to do because there is no goal. We don’t “try.” If anything, we must learn to “un-try.”

As Zen master, Taisen Deshimaru said: “By simply sitting, without looking for any goal or any personal benefit, if your posture, your breathing and your state of mind are in harmony, you will understand the true Zen; you will understand the Buddha’s nature.

Zen practiced in this way returns us to our original condition, and this changes our lives in ways that are almost indescribable.

We learn who we really are, and what we really desire (which is almost never what you think it will be.) We give up cultural, religious, nationalistic, and other presuppositions about who we should be. We are free to experience more joy, because we accept ourselves as we are, not as an artificial person trying to be “worthy” of our parents, our peers, our bosses, our romantic partners, our children, or even our false selves.

Zen maintains that we are “not one” and “not two,” i.e., “positionless position,” where “not two” signals a negation of the stance that divides the whole into two parts, i.e., dualism, while “not one” designates a negation of this stance when the Zen practitioner dwells in the whole as one, while suspending judgment in meditation, i.e., non-dualism – but all of this is only realized in doing less and sitting, in being in Zazen.

We learn that most of the “action” we take in life is busy work. It is movement without cause, and without need. It is wasted effort. We say we don’t have time, but in Zazen we find that to be patently untrue. All we have is now, and in that moment, there is no time. This happens in real ways, not just conceptual ones.

Escape

People magically start solving their own problems because we stop trying to fix them for them. We also stop creating as many of our own problems, because we don’t act from the egoic impetus that forces us out into the world to act in disingenuous ways. We also are less concerned with taking actions to please others’ egos, and learn when to take true action, guided by our higher selves. We get more and more comfortable with allowing life to unfold, rather than having to force it into the tiny compartmentalized sections that make our egos feel they have control.

Zen offers the perfection of personhood. Maybe this brings us closer to our Godliness, or maybe it just means we are less flawed as men and women, but we begin to cherish simplicity and calm, instead of chasing after chaos.  Zazen (just sitting) changes everything.

Read More At: TheMindUnleashed.com

Image: Source, Source, Source, Source, Featured Image: Source