Archive for the ‘Gyaan’ Category

Darwin

Posted: January 17, 2012 in Gyaan

Is it necessary to have high percentage of poverty in a country for its people to remain ambitious and competitive? Case in point: welfare societies where the State provides for the needy. Everyone is almost equal here: you have the well-off, the rich and the super rich. The super rich and rich class innovate (and remain so for generations, as a result), while the well-off get taken care of by doing their jobs well- or even getting by so-so. Whereas in developing countries – there is the super rich, the middle class and the super poor and here, people think of every innovative method to save a penny or make one.

One would argue that if basic needs are not a struggle, the mind is open to think innovatively. On the other hand, does this providing take away the appetite to compete for meagre resources? Which is better to ensure better evolution of human race for adapting to adversities: letting the mind expand in a secure atmosphere or keeping competition for survival fierce?

The flaw with first argument is – it presumes (in good faith) that human mind is always put to constructive work if struggle for existence is minimal. In reality – especially in welfare economies, unless people´s abilities are groomed and channelled towards innovation as a conscious effort, this could not be the case. Does this automatically mean creating a needy society that uses its time contriving methods just for basic survival? NOO!!!! This would create more competitive, meaner individuals – but a broken, disunited, selfish society with weaker morals: hardly an example of how we want mankind to evolve.

Belief

Posted: October 25, 2010 in Gyaan

“I believe in the supreme worth of the individual and in his right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. I believe that every right implies a responsibility; every opportunity, an obligation; every possession, a duty. I believe that the law was made for man and not man for the law; that government is the servant of the people and not their master. I believe in the Dignity of labour, whether with head or hand; that the world owes no man a liking but that it owes every man an opportunity to make a living. I believe that thrift is essential to well ordered living and that economy is a prime requisite of a sound financial structure, whether in government, business or personal affairs. I believe that truth and justice are fundamental to an enduring social order. I believe in the sacredness of a promise, that a mans word should be as good as his bond; that character not wealth or power or position – is of supreme worth. I believe that the rendering of useful service is the common duty of mankind and that only in the purifying fire of sacrifice is the dross of selfishness consumed and the greatness of the human soul set free. I believe in an all-wise and all-loving God, named by whatever name, and that the individuals highest fulfilment, greatest happiness, and widest usefulness are to be found in living in harmony with His Will. I believe that love is the greatest thing in the world; that it alone can overcome hate; that right can and will triumph over might.”

John D. Rockefeller Jr.

As one wiseman said,

Posted: October 7, 2010 in Gyaan

I’ll Forgive Them For Their Ignorance, But I won’t forget what they did or said. I’ll be nice and I won’t tell them “We told you so but you wouldn’t listen.”

Sage-speak

Posted: October 4, 2010 in Gyaan

Vision paves way to goals. Goals pursued with passion yield results.
It is not the acheivement that makes one great but the decision to take that journey with relentless perseverance.

Ban on Burkha

Posted: July 24, 2010 in Gyaan

The French government, supported by 70% majority votes in favor, bans the burkha in public places within France, with fines upto 150 Euros (and/or) jail terms for those who uphold the practice. What is wrong with that?

Media and some of my enlightened Western friends, who have always seen the best side of freedom and choice, argue it is an infringement on human rights. So do some bourgeois friends from my own part of the world – their argument being victimisation of members a certain faith.

I don’t agree.

In my view, neither is it a violation of human rights, nor is it intended to be an anti-Islamic wave of any sort. If anything, it is a bold attempt by the French in shedding all political correctness and an honest attempt to integrate the French society.

To elaborate,

(A) As for “freedom of speech and expressions” and “violation of human rights”, every nation-state has the right to decide (with mandate from its citizens in majority), how they want their culture shaped in the short and long run. This could be in simple, practical terms such as attire – leading to acheiving a bigger vision in attaining an integrated society. In Saudi, the burkha is madatory even for non-muslims (which by the way no one contests)- a research will show similar/different intolerences (small and big) in other countries too . Why should France then be the victim of its own liberal values? Even if individual freedom is infringed upon, in this sense, it is a small price to pay for the vision the state has set out for itself- a unified France with all societies integrated into the mainstream. If someone does not like the vision or the mandate, they are free to go elsewhere where they are allowed to live the way they want. It is that simple.

(B) Another argument given is secularism. There are many ways to look at this word. One country may allow all religions to be practised under its flag, without favoring any particular religion. Another may simply ask its citizens not to wear their religion in public and put national identity ahead of religious identity. Again, one may argue why the state wants to dictate one’s priority, to which the answer given in (A) applies.

Like it or not, countries are marked by their national identity. Religion, attire, languages, cuisine, ethnic origins etc come secondary. As long as these contribute to diversity and provide intellectual stimulus and inspiration to the populace, they are welcome. But if they seek to divide, close minds and pose a threat to the existence of the very State that has fed and nurtured them, we are better off without them.

One cannot have one’s cake and eat it too. It will be hypocritical of the citizens to live in the closed shell they have created for themselves, at the same time claiming the benefits the State has to offer, without being a part of it psyhologically.

Vous voyez, mon cher ami?

I take back everything I said in my previous post about why India should not nuke Pakistan.

This is why.

Declare a security emergency in the country, give the command to the armed forces and wipe out that grin from every sneering Paki face.

French revolution in a democracy

Posted: December 4, 2008 in Gyaan

It comes as no surprise that despite issuing a lot of growls, the Indian government never intended to react in a serious way to Pak´s tact support to militant heads inside the state.

But what is even more shocking is a very many of us Indians still do not see the point that attacking Pakistan now is not a good move in both short, and long terms (not that New Delhi ever had the balls, even when in a higher power position – be it with China, or even Bangladesh and Nepal – but I dither).

For one, we play right into Pakistan´s hands of international impression management – there are not many Madeleine Albrights voicing out what Pakistan really stands for, internationally. At this point, like it or not (even as thousands die a year in terrorist attacks), we are not Israel that can missile-fire into Palestine and get away with it – atleast not as of today.

Second, if the current government even makes a semblence of any kind of aggression, it will be nothing more than an election gimmick for the upcoming polls. The media brain-washing is enough to portray these unplanned, inconsequential tactical-level attacks, as “at last action has been taken”. The rest will be forgotten in blissful euphoria until the next attacks happen.

Third, this will take the focus away from the long-term overhaul of not just security, but the character of the nation and things will get back to square one.

The question is not whether Pak had a hand in this or any terrorist attack in India – that is a rhetorical question. The question is, how much more the common man is ready to ignore and has learnt to accept. Poverty? We can live with it; No development? no problem!; Corruption? Bring it on. Petty divisionism? We have lived with it for centuries. But dying on the streets for no fault of mine? No sir! I draw the line there.

With great difficulty, there is a unanimous dissent on the state of affairs in the country giving a glimmer of hope for change. Assuming it is kept alive, this should hopefully make us the country it deserves to should be after 60 years of independence.

The energy spurting out now should be productively engaged in flushing out the enemies within – the bleeding hearts and vested interested be damned. In this information age, we the people can come together and atleast have a say in running the system.

In a warped sense, it took an incident (and many more) of this colossal scale to shake up a laid-back populace that was busy with in-fighting and more interested in the bollywood releases of the week.

Gibran

Posted: November 18, 2007 in Gyaan

The first time I heard it, I was bowled over. The same way I was, when I read Kipling’s “If” in the school anthology (damn the English teacher who borrowed the anthology and never returned it – a habit I hate with people) and Abe Lincoln’s letter to his son’s teacher published in Young World. I still have both the hardcopies in my personal diary I started as a 9th grader.

Few years down the line, something on similar lines struck me as spectaclar – the lines mouthed by my then roomie. Years later (now) I recollected some of it but could not track it in full. So I had to ask my roomie again and she was sweet enough to send me the whole para. Thanks sparrow. You do not even know that you are figuring here – but I will acknowledge your contribution nevertheless 🙂

On Children – Kahlil Gibran
“Your children are not your children. They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself. They come through you but not from you, And though they are with you yet they belong not to you. You may give them your love but not your thoughts, For they have their own thoughts. You may house their bodies but not their souls, For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams. You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you. For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.

You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth. The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite, and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far.Let our bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness; For even as He loves the arrow that flies, so He loves also the bow that is stable.”

Hope I will remember this at the right moment – whenever it comes.

Independence Day is here!

Posted: August 14, 2007 in Gyaan

Time to send those mass mailers on “Happy Independence Day!” and urge them to be forwarded (to atleast 10 people) to prove one’s patriotism, foist the national flag in your car/house/garden/any place that can…, time to listen to Anu Malik’s “East or West, India is the best” desh bhakti songs on your computer while guzzling Coke/Pepsi and friendshiping on Orkut, time to abuse the conspiracy-workers who want to stop India at all costs and feel good about having done something worthwhile in life.

After that, its life as usual.