Life/Philosophy

John Was More Naked Than Adam

John Was More Naked Than Adam

Hell is not God’s idea, I believe. I also believe that John Abraham and God had an erratic relationship with each other. But then, why the hell didn’t John invest in full the coins that God had entrusted him so dearly ? I first met John when I was a fresh graduate and a culture -vulture apprentice at Kochi. One[Read More…]

August 11, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Ilina Sen As We Knew Her: A Tribute from WSS

Ilina Sen As We Knew Her: A Tribute from WSS

Women against Sexual Violence and State Repression (WSS) deeply mourns the passing away of Ilina Sen on August 9 in Kolkata. Ilina, 69, was a feminist activist, teacher, researcher and writer passionately involved with the women’s movement in India. Be it through activist work or classroom pedagogy, conferences or rallies, Ilina’s  deep engagement with women’s struggles in Madhya Pradesh and[Read More…]

August 11, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Remembrances and Confessions

Remembrances and Confessions

“Life is everywhere, life is in ourselves, not outside.” (Dostoevsky, just after his death sentence was commuted) Vision from the metal cubicle circling over the shores of southeastern Sicily seems to encompass the entire Mediterranean world,  the spatial unity of which world atlases confirm: Sicily, now just beneath us and to the West, Africa fixed to the South, Greece and[Read More…]

August 11, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Rising Binod Culture

The Rising Binod Culture

This morning when I opened Facebook, my newsfeed was swarmed with people sharing the same monosyllabic status update. They were writing Binod, a male given name popular in Asia, and people in the comment section were leaving Binod in the comments. When I switched to Twitter, Binod was trending at number 3. My curiosity was picking up speed. To my[Read More…]

August 11, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Ilina Sen (January 29, 1951-August 9, 2020)

Ilina Sen (January 29, 1951-August 9, 2020)

Why do good people have to suffer? This is a question mankind has been facing for thousands of years. Our Hindu religion has the answer, ‘because of sins committed in the previous birth’. Obviously people like us can not accept this. While the news of Ilina’s death last night brought a host of memories and sadness in me, this question[Read More…]

August 11, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Feeling blue

Rising Suicidal Tendencies Among Teenagers

Suicide is the third leading cause of death among young adults worldwide. Close to 800 000 people die due to suicide every year, which is one person every 40 seconds. Suicide is a global phenomenon and occurs throughout the lifespan. Studies from India consistently document the highest suicide rates in the world, and the majority of completed suicides had been[Read More…]

August 6, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Life & Legacy Of Abdul Bari

The Life & Legacy Of Abdul Bari

   Currently, the impression that things can be made to happen even without the participation of the working class is being sought to be furthered by employers and managements. What to speak of marginalization, it is the evaporization of the worker from public consciousness that is being attempted. Just visualize the surrealistic pilgrim’s progress that we have covered in the[Read More…]

August 6, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The-N- Discourse: In-group and Out-group Debate

The-N- Discourse: In-group and Out-group Debate

Nepotism as a culture is being seasoned in forms of cronyism, favouritism, as it knocks backs calibre and worth and leaves behind a collegium apparatus. We discern nepotism in Bollywood as it is exhibited in the spotlight for one and all to catch sight of. But the existent and the historical process of nepotism that has engendered exceptional levels of[Read More…]

August 5, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Usaa, The Greatest Revolutionary Barber After Upali, Died of COVID-19

Usaa, The Greatest Revolutionary Barber After Upali, Died of COVID-19

Usaa Barber (Uppumavuluri Sambashivarao) (1951-2020)- a well-known social reformer, anti-caste ideologue and anti-brahminism fighter succumbed to COVID-19 on 25th July 2020. He died because of the Indian medical system that could not reach to a stage where it could meet the challenge posed by the new coronavirus. After Savitribai Phule and her son Dr.Yashwantharao died of Bubonic Plague in 1898,[Read More…]

August 4, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Online Classes Are Also Detrimental to Teachers and Neoliberalism Is to Be Blamed

Online Classes Are Also Detrimental to Teachers and Neoliberalism Is to Be Blamed

I completed my primary education from a school that no more exists: Heroes Memorial Inter College. Situated in the capital of India’s most populous state, it was made in the memory of heroes and whoever fits in your definition of one. With about the strength of 400 students—that started to leave the school at a surprisingly exponential rate—the man who[Read More…]

August 3, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Intellectuals as Lumpen Herds in the Universities

Intellectuals as Lumpen Herds in the Universities

Once upon a time, universities were the places, where intellectuals, teachers and students as a community of learners used to reflect on everyday realities, learn the skills to use it in their professional life, discover the knowledge, to understand themselves and dissect the complexities of society. They also used to practise their utopian dreams in pursuit of knowledge for the[Read More…]

August 3, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Teachers in the e-box

Teachers in the e-box

It was only a matter of time that the fire started by Covid-19 would consume all traditional aspects of higher education teaching-learning and reach the doorstep of faculty training forcing it to don the e-avatar. On 1st July 2020 UGC issued directions to all the Human Resource Development Centres (HRDCs) – the institutions responsible for professional development of higher education[Read More…]

August 2, 2020 Life/Philosophy
C Achutha Menon: Communist Aspirations in India

C Achutha Menon: Communist Aspirations in India

A son remembers a life in Indian communism Indian communists have a unique distinction that they normally don’t like to acknowledge: among the world’s communist parties, they have had one of the longest experiences of engaging legitimately with an electoral democratic process. I don’t deny that erstwhile communist parties of Western Europe, such as the French and the Italian, had[Read More…]

August 2, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Should Diamond symbolize happily ever after?

Should Diamond symbolize happily ever after?

About ten years ago, a friend who hadn’t seen me in over two decades, offered me some tips as to what jewelry to wear to lunch when I meet one of my former editors of a Dhaka daily. He came to Maryland on business and to spend time with his family. I was a little nervous about the lunch meeting.[Read More…]

August 1, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Remembering Kamlabai

Remembering Kamlabai

Not everyone with a family is destined to enjoy all the fruits that the family has to offer. Let us take the case of Kamlabai Raghunath Gokhale, or simply Kamlabai, who was a Marathi actress in the early decades of the twentieth century and the first woman to act in films in India. Reena Mohan, who trained in editing at[Read More…]

August 1, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Eulogy or Elegy?

Eulogy or Elegy?

First the words; Eulogy: a speech or piece of writing that praises someone or something highly, especially a tribute to someone who has just died. Elegy: An elegy is a sad poem, usually written to praise and express sorrow for someone who is dead.  But eulogies, Wikipedia assures me, can also be delivered at retirement functions and other such events when a person[Read More…]

July 31, 2020 Life/Philosophy
A strong voice against Hindutva in Greater Vancouver lost

A strong voice against Hindutva in Greater Vancouver lost

The news of Chinmoy Banerjee’s death has greatly saddened the South Asian community in BC. 80-year-old scholar and activist of Indian heritage, Chin Daa, as we affectionately called him, was not keeping well for the past several days. He passed away on the morning of July 29, leaving behind a powerful legacy of tireless activism. He previously taught English at[Read More…]

July 31, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Should Muslims sacrifice cattle on Eid-al-Adha? 

Should Muslims sacrifice cattle on Eid-al-Adha? 

On Friday, July 31, 2020, over a billion and a half Muslims around the world, will be slaughtering millions of goats, camels, and cattle to carry out Abraham’s tradition of sacrificing the symbolic lamb. Is there an alternative to the ritual of slaying animals on Eid Al-Adha, the festival of sacrifice? The answer is yes! Rituals are the pathways to[Read More…]

July 30, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Reality of sacrifice in Eid-al-Azha

Reality of sacrifice in Eid-al-Azha

The companions of Prophet Hazrat Muhammed Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam(Peace and blessings be upon him) asked, “What is this sacrifice(Qurbani)?” He answered that it is the Sunnah of your father Hazrat Ibrahim Alaihissalam(Peace be upon him).” This historic Qurbani incident took place about five and a quarter thousand years ago in “Mina” near “Khana-e-Ka’aba” located in Mecca, a desert region of[Read More…]

July 30, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Woman is looking at a man communicating with her rom a monitor standing on the table before her. Woman has a tablet, potted plant and red cup of coffee are on the table before her. Blank bulletin board is hanging on the wall.

Covid 19 exposes the way we treat our teachers   

“Teaching is not a lost art, but the regard for it is a lost tradition”, said Jacques Barzun. Rightly, did he point this out that ‘teaching’ is no more respected as a profession neither ‘teachers’ are accorded their due share of acknowledgement for the work that they do. This is not to say that teaching has always been a respectful[Read More…]

July 29, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Remember Gandhi

Remember Gandhi

Remember Gandhi.  Practice nonviolence.  Adhere to nonviolence.   Refrain from attacking people as the means to achieve an interpersonal goal.  You seek to change policies and systems that make policies, and attitudes and behaviors implementing policies of injustice and oppression. In opposing pernicious systems and the policies of pernicious systems you bring about change through clarified strategy, organized, and often[Read More…]

July 29, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Lorca And A Certain Left Sentiment

Lorca And A Certain Left Sentiment

About 85 years ago, Spanish fascists murdered Federico Garcia Lorca (1898 – 1936), the most important Spanish dramatist of the twentieth century who said “Spain is the only country in the world where death is a national spectacle.” Some 35 years ago, a young woman named Roop Kanwar was burnt alive by her in-laws and village elders on her dead[Read More…]

July 29, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Mir Syed Ali Hamadani – Founder of Islam in Kashmir And his Model of Good Governance and Justice

Mir Syed Ali Hamadani – Founder of Islam in Kashmir And his Model of Good Governance and Justice

  Kashmir has had many a period of glory before the advent of Islam. It has a long chain of dynasties, Suraj Bansi, Pandava, Maurya, Kushan, Gonandya, white Huns, Karokata, Utapala, and Loharas. Some of the regimes had not only their periods of glory in this beautiful land, but their borders extended deep in South of India and touched the[Read More…]

July 28, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Remembering comrade T. Nagi Reddy (1917 Feb-1976 July 28)- How Indian Is The Indian Bourgeoisie ?

Remembering comrade T. Nagi Reddy (1917 Feb-1976 July 28)- How Indian Is The Indian Bourgeoisie ?

July 28 is the day comrade Nagi Reddy died in 1976, while he was under-ground. He and his comrade-in-arms DV Rao ( 1917 June-July 12, 1984)  are  remembered  in July every year through various  programmes  at different places across AP and Telangana. Thousands of people and activists, led by UCCRI-ML which they founded in 1975, are carrying forward their goals [Read More…]

July 28, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Prof John Weeks Humanised Economics as a Discipline

Prof John Weeks Humanised Economics as a Discipline

Prof John Weeks, widely admired development economist passed away on 26th of June 2020 at the age of 79.  His death is a blow to many friends, comrades, colleagues, students and fellow progressive economists. He was born in Austin, educated in Texas and Michigan, lived and worked most of his professional life in the School of Oriental and African Studies[Read More…]

July 27, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Power of Non-Violence in 1965 and 2020

The Power of Non-Violence in 1965 and 2020

Watching a horse drawn wagon carrying the body of John Lewis cross the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma Alabama one final time is a stunning testament to the power of non-violence in 1965 and 2020. The body of Congressman John Lewis will lie in state in Montgomery and the U.S.capital as an honored American hero, a brave man, a moral[Read More…]

July 27, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Woman is looking at a man communicating with her rom a monitor standing on the table before her. Woman has a tablet, potted plant and red cup of coffee are on the table before her. Blank bulletin board is hanging on the wall.

It Isn’t Just About Online Learning: Broadening the Post-Coronavirus Discussion on Teaching in Higher Education

We live in a time where various technologies are advancing at an exponential rate. This accelerated progress is influencing all aspects of our lives, and inevitably, has a profound impact on the job market. Surveys conducted among employers show that, although knowledge is important, a greater emphasis is being put on skills – specifically “soft” skills, more than ever before.[Read More…]

July 27, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Minutes from Makkah : Hajj 2019

Minutes from Makkah : Hajj 2019

The vast lands of Arafat, the circumambulation around Kaaba, the humongous swarms of humanity at Rami Jamrat, the long, very long queues outside the washrooms at the tent city Mina! The list of memorable moments from our last year’s Hajj is endless. No one in his wildest of the nightmares had dreamed Hajj 2020, would be so contrastingly different. Can’t[Read More…]

July 26, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Samir Amin on Cuba

Samir Amin on Cuba

Samir Amin was one of the great anti-imperialist Marxist intellectuals of the 20th century. I have elsewhere called him a ‘global organic intellectual’ because he drew his conclusions from a wealth of primary data little considered by mainstream academe; namely, the sincere theoretical/political reflections of ‘third-world’ radical intellectuals, with whom he engaged in constant discussions, on seven continents, for over five decades[Read More…]

July 25, 2020 Life/Philosophy
U Sambasivarao : Tribuate to a great Bahujan visionary

U Sambasivarao : Tribuate to a great Bahujan visionary

It was early January when I traveled to Vijayawada to participate in the World Atheist Conference and while returning, I thought to travel to Hyderabad too to meet friends. My dear friend Sujatha Surepally told me that I could stay at the office of Desidasa, the magazine, Usaa Sambasiva Rao garu had started and which she has been the editor.[Read More…]

July 25, 2020 Life/Philosophy
A Nun’s story

A Nun’s story

One of the most widely-known and deeply-admired of all Indian nuns who gave up the habit after receiving the call of liberation theology, is a daughter of Kerala who goes by the name of Dayabai. When she left home at Pullattu Veedu in Poovarani, near Pala in Kottayam district, to become a missionary nun, she used to be called Mercy[Read More…]

July 24, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Agriculturalism And Hindutva

Agriculturalism And Hindutva

In China there was a philosophical school called Agriculturism between 770 BCE and 221 BCE. The main philosopher, who represented this school with a sophisticated exposition of that philosophy, was Xu Xing (372-289 BCE). His main philosophy was that people’s propensity is based on farming than to any other thing. By the third and the fourth century BCE the Chinese[Read More…]

July 24, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Mehmood Gami

Mehmood Gami

I fell in love with the word GAMI so adopted it as my Pen name Mehmood Gami, the 19th century Sufi poet of Kashmir, born at Dooru Shahabad in 1765 A.D and passed away in 1855 A.D. Shahabad, then called Ver Pargana (Verinag), is one of the ancient villages of valley Kashmir. When Mughal Emperor Jahangir along with his wife[Read More…]

July 23, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Celebrity Culture, Propaganda and Capitalism

Celebrity Culture, Propaganda and Capitalism

The triumph of capitalist chimeras based on false propaganda and its criminal follies at the millennium, raises several questions on the rise of celebrity culture of fame and fortune. The celebrity cultures use popular culture and establish its grip over public imagination on different issues in the society, politics, economy, culture and religion. The celebrity culture shapes people’s ideas, interests,[Read More…]

July 22, 2020 Life/Philosophy
ca. 2004, New Zealand, Pacific --- Flock of sheep, New Zealand, Pacific --- Image by © Mula Eshet/Robert Harding World Imagery/Corbis

Revolutionary Group Dynamics: How Minorities Influence Majorities, From Group Complicity To Collective Creativity

Orientation From the macro to the micro When it comes to stereotypes of the masses of revolutionary people, the masses have built barricades that look like forts which they hide behind, armed with guns. But if we trace the behavior of masses back far enough to pre-revolutionary situations, masses become groups. In order to understand how masses of people become[Read More…]

July 20, 2020 Life/Philosophy
John Lewis: The Iconic Civil Rights Leader Dies

John Lewis: The Iconic Civil Rights Leader Dies

FILE – In this Feb. 15, 2011, file photo, President Barack Obama presents a 2010 Presidential Medal of Freedom to U.S. Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., during a ceremony in the East Room of the White House in Washington. Lewis, who carried the struggle against racial discrimination from Southern battlegrounds of the 1960s to the halls of Congress, died Friday, July[Read More…]

July 19, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Colourism: How Different Shades Lead To Differences

Colourism: How Different Shades Lead To Differences

As soon as a child is born, the second question asked is, “gora hai ya kala” as obviously the first being, “ladka hai ya ladki”. We live in a society where being born as a male is already a privilege in itself let alone your complexion, as it doesn’t really matter, but God forbid if you’re a girl, that too[Read More…]

July 18, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Makhan Singh, Who?

Makhan Singh, Who?

            In 2006, I had an opportunity to visit  Zanzibar, a fabled island in the Indian Ocean with which India has had commercial and cultural relations for hundreds of years. Zanzibar is a part of Tanzania where thousands of Indian Africans have lived since long. A few months before I landed in Zanzibar, an important book launch had taken place,[Read More…]

July 18, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Never say die: Disability is not about inability

Never say die: Disability is not about inability

They may be differently abled, but they do not lack in ability. Yes, I am talking about the more than one billion people in the world who live with some form of disability. They could be persons with impaired functions of the senses, mobility, cognition or with psychosocial difficulties. Out of these, an estimated 690 million live in the Asia[Read More…]

July 17, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The situation of Auto Rickshaw Operators of Kolkata

The situation of Auto Rickshaw Operators of Kolkata

Auto rickshaws are a dominated transportation of Kolkata. According to a record of 2018, about a half lakh registered auto rickshaw (and a few thousand unregistered) used to ferry a few lakh passengers daily in different routes of the city before the lockdown. From unlock 1.0, government has been allowed to play auto rickshaw with some strict rules. i.e. regular[Read More…]

July 16, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Lockdown lessons: How Covid-19 fuelled my passion for learning

Lockdown lessons: How Covid-19 fuelled my passion for learning

Covid-19 did the impossible: it changed the concept of time as a finite resource. Type A individuals, like me, were faced with the realisation that we had time on our hands. Therefore, we just had to make it as productive as possible. It sounded like good news. Gone were the dreadful Mondays that spoiled all our Sundays, and along with[Read More…]

July 16, 2020 Life/Philosophy
A Support Group can be your Emotional safety net & lifeline

A Support Group can be your Emotional safety net & lifeline

This morning when I pulled opened the curtains to my dining room window overlooking the neighborhood park, I spotted one of my neighbors (let me call her Lillete) is power walking in the park. She looked radiant and chic in her joggers outfit. She appeared much energized. Looking back a few months ago, I remembered last year’s Halloween night (October[Read More…]

July 16, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Ayudya in Thailand

Monolithic Concept of Ramayana is anti-Ramayana

Nepal Prime Minister, Khadga Prasad Sharma Oli as initiated a debate that what is known as Ayodhya in India is not original and the original Ayodhya of Sri Ram is on the west of Birganj in Nepal. According to him, it is a misunderstanding that Sita married an Indian Sri Ram. But Sri Ram is not Indian and he was[Read More…]

July 15, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Oniomania

Oniomania

When life hasn’t got a swing anymore, people may give in to obsessive oniomanic compulsions, in as much as they are going out of their way to construct a flamboyant life style and change their identity from “don’t- need” to “must-have” consumers, so as to satisfy their gripping buying desire. Erike Pevernagie Man is a creature of instincts, desires, feelings,[Read More…]

July 15, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Feeling blue

Convert Hard Times Into Opportunities- “If winter comes, can spring be far behind”

Do you feel you’re passing through hard times? We may be facing a new health, financial, or relational problems, but more frequently, our hard times arise from our mind. Mental hard time is mostly a wounded ego. In such times, all we need is a shift in our thinking, the way we see and that life. Here are five tips[Read More…]

July 15, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Mitali Chakravarty Interviews Binu Mathew

Mitali Chakravarty Interviews Binu Mathew

Can you interview an online site? You can’t. So, I did the next best thing. I interviewed Binu Mathew, the man behind the award-winning million readers a month or three million-page views a month online journal, Countercurrents. Mathew claims this is not a big thing except that his journal is based on ideology and openness. He calls it a “people’s journal”[Read More…]

July 15, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Politics Behind Changing Curriculum

The Politics Behind Changing Curriculum

“Every major change in the education structure needs to be understood as being intimately connected to a shift in power.” Stuart Hall Ages ago, Hall rightly thought of education as a pursuit of politics ‘by other means’. Today when the Indian government has decided to eliminate certain chapters from school books, we need to see how this step is not[Read More…]

July 14, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Photo by peterme

Tsundoku

          The worst thing about new books is that they keep us from reading the old ones: J. Joubert Book buying like other things is a passion. Academicians and students love to buy books. Students and academicians have natural propensity towards book buying. Everyone of us has a natural and unconditional passion for books. Whether we[Read More…]

July 14, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Comrade DV Rao: Unique Role In  Indian Communist Movement

Comrade DV Rao: Unique Role In  Indian Communist Movement

Prominent communist revolutionary (CR) leader of India, DV Rao (Devulapalli Venkateswara  Rao 1917 June 1-1984 July 12), was  known for his unique role in leading the historic Telangana People’s Armed Struggle (1940-51). Every year  in July he, and his inseparable comrade-in-arms T. Nagi Reddy (TN 1917-1976), who also died in the same month,  are remembered by thousands of people through[Read More…]

July 12, 2020 Life/Philosophy
A Love Story in a Turbulent Time

A Love Story in a Turbulent Time

Egyptian actor Omar Sharif poses for a photograph in 2009. Photo: Reuters. He passed away on July 10, 2015 Egyptian born debonair actor Omar Sharif’s passing on July 10th marks the end of an era. After hearing the sad news, I immediately sent a text to my best friend Maryam (a diehard fan of Omar Sharif). She immediately texted me[Read More…]

July 10, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Elderly and the Culture of ‘Adda’

Elderly and the Culture of ‘Adda’

            ‘Adda’  is a popular culture of Bengalis. Now it has been spread over. It has social, psychological importance in the daily life of almost all ages of the population. But it has no economic productivity. The word, ‘adda’ has been incorporated into the Oxford English Dictionary in 2004. It has been defined as ‘a conversation among members, who were[Read More…]

July 9, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Love, Dating and Relationships in Covid-19

Love, Dating and Relationships in Covid-19

Co-Written by Sritama Chaudhuri  & Dr. Suraj Beri Meghna (name changed) looks anxiously at her phone. She has been one of those ardent “woke millennials”, who would campaign for every right cause on internet. She did the same when lockdown rules where declared for the first time. Hand-wash, sanitizer in bag, mask on face, 6 ft distancing…everything check. Her meticulous[Read More…]

July 6, 2020 Life/Philosophy
We Need Digital Detox

We Need Digital Detox

 Cell phones are so convenient that they’re an inconvenience. Haruki Murakami Technology, as we know, has transformed our life. It has made things easy for us. It has lessened the humdrum of our day to day life through its entertaining tools and gadgets. Because of technological and communication revolution modern man has become a kind of post-human (a person or[Read More…]

July 5, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Important Growth Lessons from Life in Lockdown days…

Important Growth Lessons from Life in Lockdown days…

The World changed in March of 2020. We’ll be able to to tell coming generations of this season we’re living through. We will speak of the pain and the harm. And we will talk of the wisdom and honour that this time has delivered to us and also reflecting on the good that we may find as we stay inside,shelter-in-place[Read More…]

July 5, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Dropping “Fair” from Fair & Lovely: Can we change the mindset?

Dropping “Fair” from Fair & Lovely: Can we change the mindset?

The finest clothing made is a person’s own skin, but, of course, society demands something more than this. — Mark Twain An advertisement for Fair and Lovely, a skin whitening product showing results of before and after use Pico Iyer who writes about cultures converging refers to India as his “stepmother land.” In next to the last chapter of his[Read More…]

July 3, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Exigent-messages, non-existent anecdotes: From Thanedar to Forester

Exigent-messages, non-existent anecdotes: From Thanedar to Forester

For the past some days, whatsapp is abuzz with a news  of a Buzarg ( senior citizen) from Pakistan who has won a court case after 13 years’ long legal battle in a Pakistani court.  The poor man is seen standing in a photo alongside a BBC Urdu News logo & a 5000 rupee Pakistani currency note, conspicuously displayed in[Read More…]

July 2, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Democratic Anarchy will Build the Best Life Possible

Democratic Anarchy will Build the Best Life Possible

Democratic anarchy is a new form of democracy based on the equal rights of people to evaluate others. It will solve social problems and make the best life possible. This article presents how to achieve it, as well as the obstacles facing it.   People are aware of their weaknesses in nature. When they succeed in overcoming their weakness they feel[Read More…]

July 2, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Men wearing protective masks walk as they carry bags, amid concerns about the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Nizamuddin, area of New Delhi, India, March 31,  2020. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

Tablighi Jamat (TJ) Should Focus on Learning Rather than Preaching in the post-Covid-19 World

Soon after independence, when Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru of India saw on Delhi roads thousands of skull-capped bearded men in white robes, worryingly he asked the Director of Intelligence Bureau (IB) to investigate who these people were, and whether there was any threat to the nation from them. After thorough investigation, the IB Director conveyed to him that there is[Read More…]

July 1, 2020 Life/Philosophy
What Did Cedric Robinson Mean by Racial Capitalism?

What Did Cedric Robinson Mean by Racial Capitalism?

Cedric J. Robinson’s passing this summer at the age of seventy-five went virtually unnoticed. Professor emeritus of political science and black studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and arguably one of the most original political theorists of his generation, no major U.S. newspaper determined that Robinson’s passing merited even a single paragraph. Although he deliberately avoided the pitfalls[Read More…]

July 1, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Who is the savage?

Who is the savage?

In 1922, Sir John Maffrey, head of the British Empire’s North West Frontier Province, put this nonchalant query to his superiors about civilian deaths during bombings: “What are the rules for this kind of cricket?” The equally callous response was: “International law does not apply against savage tribes who do not conform to codes of ‘civilized’ warfare. It is the[Read More…]

June 30, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Living the (un)certain

Living the (un)certain

This pandemic has put a question mark on our plans, sureties, certainties and securities. I distinctly remember hurriedly booking my tickets and packing for the next day to rush home (I was certain just for a week or 10 days) as the panic over Covid-19 started to increase, it was 19th March, 2020. After I reached home leaving most of[Read More…]

June 30, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Covid, Leadership, Parenting, Protests

Covid, Leadership, Parenting, Protests

They say a parent or a carer is the hardest job you will love. It is absolutely the most important and challenging leadership role. All grown up children, whether it be daughters or sons are truly anxious today. We cannot blame them. When we were of their age, we were either starting University or doing part time jobs and was[Read More…]

June 27, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Why banning online classes for primary kids isn’t a good idea amidst Covid-19

Why banning online classes for primary kids isn’t a good idea amidst Covid-19

In the midst of isolation crisis, when all educational institutions have been stirred to online teaching and up-scaled teachers’ digital skills through school-based training interventions, few states like Karnataka, Maharashtra, and Madhya Pradesh had placed a restriction on online classes for primary school-going children. Online learning, no doubt is by far the most compelling alternative in the times of Covid-19[Read More…]

June 24, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Feeling blue

Depression: Invincible but not impossible

Recently, the news about the sad demise of renowned Bollywood actor Sushant Singh Rajput at his residence in Bandra apartment in Mumbai on June 14 staggered the whole country and the Bollywood fraternity en masse. Prima facie report revealed the anoxic strangulation by hanging himself to death. Following the news, there were many speculations that would have forced him to[Read More…]

June 24, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Morality, Lies and Truth

Morality, Lies and Truth

One of the most fascinating writers about morality is Lawrence Kohlberg.  I have read lots of his writings. He initially divided up morality into six stages. Some people are stuck on the lower levels or mid levels of his scale. What can be very interesting Is to look at yourself and others who you fairly well know and find out[Read More…]

June 23, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Significance of Protest Against Power for Human Progress

Significance of Protest Against Power for Human Progress

As social, economic and political Darwinism dominates the intellectual debates and discourses to naturalise and normalise capitalist exploitation and inequalities, survival of the fittest is becoming the new normal. The best human qualities based on love, peace, sympathies, empathies and coexistence are becoming the signs of human weakness in the rat race success and survival.  In this process, human beings[Read More…]

June 23, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Sushant, and the Aftermath

Sushant, and the Aftermath

We have witnessed multiple debates on social media over the suicide of Bollywood actor Sushant Singh Rajput in the last few days. The Bollywood ‘fraternity’ reacted instantly after his demise. No wonder- their views are categorically distinct from one another. A group of celebrity suddenly poured their sympathy for Sushant by concerning mental health. Few other celebrities are pointing towards[Read More…]

June 23, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Do Indian educational campuses care for mental health??? My experience with Mental health issues

Do Indian educational campuses care for mental health??? My experience with Mental health issues

With the demise of Bollywood actor Sushant Singh, suddenly whole India has started talking about mental health. There are several poems, stories, and messages which are circulated on social media regarding mental health. I am asking to all fellow citizens that do we need news on famous suicide to talk about mental health? Can’t we talk about mental health in[Read More…]

June 22, 2020 Life/Philosophy
We’re In This Together… or Are We?

We’re In This Together… or Are We?

As we trudge along amidst a global pandemic, surrounded by stories of doom, despair, and death, it is no easy feat to stay upbeat.   Big words are floating in the virtual world, Everybody has something to say. A much public piece of sad news has shaken us, Particularly since the times are so grey.   There are self-determined labels,[Read More…]

June 22, 2020 Life/Philosophy
In search of God: Death by misunderstanding

In search of God: Death by misunderstanding

Amjad Farid Sabri (23 December 1970 – 22 June 2016) Today is the 4th anniversary of the shooting death of Amjad Farid Sabri. He was a majestic and highly revered Pakistani Sufi singer and famous qawwal. Sabri came from a storied family of musicians, a “proponent of the Sufi Muslim tradition.” His musical family is recognized as the “legendary Sabri brothers,”[Read More…]

June 22, 2020 Life/Philosophy
 Photo by Lauren Burke

 Freedom Unmasked

To hell with tyranny! Thou shalt not muzzle me!! I was born to be free!!! Now, here’s the thing… I am not a lizard. I am not a fish. I am a great ape. Since our creation every human being was born to not be completely free and independent. Anyone who raised an infant without regulations and prevention would not have that[Read More…]

June 22, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Unraveling the “I am here for you”

Unraveling the “I am here for you”

Are people with mental health issues ready to open up and are people ready to listen without judgements? Sitting at lunch, swiping through social media and suddenly receiving the grave news of Sushant Singh Rajput dying of suicide, left me in utter shock. I remember discarding the news as fake and checking at least 10 websites before letting it sink[Read More…]

June 22, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Multifarious Hajini and his Discourses

The Multifarious Hajini and his Discourses

  To unpack the personality of Professor Mohi-ud-Din Hajini, the multifarious man, is intractable for a mediocre like me. What to call the man who was larger-than- life and was made of sterner stuff? He was many in one. A genuine Philosopher, a genius Islamic scholar, a real revivalist, an honest translator, an appealing educationist, a great teacher, a staunch[Read More…]

June 21, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Parenting: The ultimate jigsaw puzzle

Parenting: The ultimate jigsaw puzzle

Child psychologists generally believe that parenting style adopted is primarily responsible for the behavior of children. It also affects the performance of the child in everything worth mentioning throughout his life. There has been an intense debate going on regarding the adoption of parenting styles for children’s all-round development. There are diverse opinions about any specific style to be followed[Read More…]

June 21, 2020 Life/Philosophy
 Father’s Day 2020

 Father’s Day 2020

  Father’s Day is a great tradition to celebrate and honor the father. However, it is also a stressful day for many people. I feel the joy and the pain of both groups, here are some thoughts about each group. First of all, my heart goes out to those who did not have a good relationship between father and children.[Read More…]

June 21, 2020 Life/Philosophy
A New Look: 6th International Yoga Day, 21st June 2020

A New Look: 6th International Yoga Day, 21st June 2020

At this crucial juncture,  when all the nations of the world are facing,  perhaps,  the severest challenge to combat the deadly novelCoronavirus,  a new look into the 6th International Yoga Day, being observed on 21st June 2020,  is demanded.  The world has witnessed a death toll of 4,42,770 and has afflicted more than 81,92,261 in just  seventy days.  While United[Read More…]

June 20, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Photo by max.fellner

A Green Memorial For A True Friend

He was the apple of the eye for whom ever met him. It was only after we lost him that every one realised what that usage meant “apple of the eye”. To his mother, K was the baby boy who never ever grew up though he was 6 feet tall and had a striding gait. To his sister, he was[Read More…]

June 20, 2020 Life/Philosophy
 Knowing Comrade Bishnu Rava

 Knowing Comrade Bishnu Rava

Bishnu Prasad Rava is known as a Cultural Icon, one of the triumvirates of Assam along with Jyoti Prasad Agarwala and Phani Sharma, whose death and birth anniversary is celebrated across the state in glittering events.   His thousands of bust and life-size statues can be seen in school and college yards, inside university campuses, and office premises. Auditoriums and parks[Read More…]

June 20, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Poor Mankind !!

Poor Mankind !!

To what standpoint have you raised the happiness of man? Has there ever been an age which has counted so many victims to humanity as the present? Has there ever been an age in which immorality and egotism have been greater or more dominant than in this one? The tree is known by its fruits. Mad men! With your imaginary[Read More…]

June 20, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Unemployment: A Social Challenge

Unemployment: A Social Challenge

           Being un-employed is nothing less than a social stigma in contemporary times. This you can realise only if you are someone who is un-employed or has experienced the same. The modern society has been constructed in such a manner that there exists no existence for the un-employed youth. The community recognizes you only if you[Read More…]

June 20, 2020 Life/Philosophy
 Pathogens, Pandemics, Protests – and The Dialectical Biologist

 Pathogens, Pandemics, Protests – and The Dialectical Biologist

Remembering the science and activism of Richard Levins in the time of corona The resurgence of infectious disease is but one manifestation of a more general crisis: the eco-social distress syndrome—the pervasive multilevel crisis of dysfunctional relations within our species and between it and the rest of nature…It is both a generic crisis of the human species and a specific[Read More…]

June 18, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Undermining Pandemic: A look back

Undermining Pandemic: A look back

Health is one of the basic human rights of a human being. But this has always been undermined by the governments everywhere in the world, even though the UN has proclaimed–Health is a right. Some of the States have incorporated it in their constitution but it stands as a customary one. Majority of the countries don’t guarantee that none of[Read More…]

June 18, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Life without the Hijab: A Woman’s Journey to Freedom?

Life without the Hijab: A Woman’s Journey to Freedom?

I met my dear friend Maryam in the spring of 1980. We studied at the same US University in Rhode Island. She was a couple of years older than me as she was doing her Masters in Sociology and Community Development. The very first conversation I had with her was on a Friday afternoon as all the foreign students were[Read More…]

June 18, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Let’s Talk About It: ‘a HOLE-lot in your life’

Let’s Talk About It: ‘a HOLE-lot in your life’

We’re all mindful about the tragedy which has taken place recently, yes I’m talking about Sushant Singh Rajput’s suicide, I thought even I should talk about the importance of mental well-being here. The news has stunned all of us since at some place or the other we were associated with him even despite the fact that it was through web-based[Read More…]

June 18, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Aspects of Russian Communism And Why Communism in the West Would Be Different

Aspects of Russian Communism And Why Communism in the West Would Be Different

               A civilization reveals itself as fruitful by its ability to incite others to imitate it: when it no longer dazzles them it is reduced to a mere collection of odds and ends and vestiges of former worldly greatness. The successive attempts of Napoleon and Hitler to create a world empire failed, as the United States of North[Read More…]

June 17, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Sushant’s Death and the Idea of Communication: Mental Health, Public lives and Tragedies

Sushant’s Death and the Idea of Communication: Mental Health, Public lives and Tragedies

” I am what time, circumstance, history have made of me, certainly; but I am also much more than that, So are we all” – James Baldwin. With the sad news, which broke on a Sunday afternoon, the pictures of Sushant Singh Rajput were trending all across the media outlets and social media platforms. People from different walks of life[Read More…]

June 17, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Photo by Got Credit

Freedom

Freedom, one of the most mischievous concepts, covers much and many: individual, society, country, class, philosophy, political science, jurisprudence, teacher, student, education-boss, artist, author, singer, worker, capitalist, economic, political, ecological, cultural, ideological, conscience, thought, expression, association, press, plunder, exploit, appropriate, expropriate, dominate, protest, resist, revolt, overthrow domination. In cases, opposing positions arise. The positions clash regularly, and invariably. With varied[Read More…]

June 16, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Loss of a Diamond in a Coal Mine: Sushant Singh Rajput

Loss of a Diamond in a Coal Mine: Sushant Singh Rajput

  “I’m a trained engineer, so I’m conditioned to come up with a right answer to a difficult question, but when it comes to art, there is no definite answer because it’s so subjective.” Talented young actor Sushant Singh Rajput is now no more with us. The boy from Patna who left a career in Engineering to pursue acting, will[Read More…]

June 16, 2020 Life/Philosophy
#Minnesota, Sketch by Dustin Pickering

Chipping Away At Time’s Edifice

“…history is potent enough to deliver, on time, in the medium to long run, most of the possible scenarios, and to eventually bury the bad guy.” Nassim Nicolas Taleb, Fooled by Randomness This essay assumes a personal and historical tone during time of global unrest. It is my response to the murder of George Floyd and seeks to re-imagine what could[Read More…]

June 15, 2020 Life/Philosophy
 Virtual Teaching: A New Normal

 Virtual Teaching: A New Normal

With the outbreak of COVID-19, educational institutions had to change their mode of teaching. Though virtual teaching is not something new, but doing it on a daily basis has made it a new normal.  Educational institutions started an online mode of teaching to recommence the studies. Now when teachers and students get ready in the morning, it is to gear[Read More…]

June 12, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Long Live The Memory Of Comrade Gananath Patro

Long Live The Memory Of Comrade Gananath Patro

The Staunch FighterFor The Communist Revolutionary Cause The UCCRI(ML) condoles the passing away of Comrade Gananath Patro, a prominent Communist Revolutionary leader hailing from the State of Odisha. He breathed his last at 4.50 pm on Saturday 6th June 2020 at his home in Rourkela, Odisha. With advancing age and suffering from various ailments he was bedridden for the last[Read More…]

June 11, 2020 Life/Philosophy
In Conversation with Binu Mathew, Editor, Countercurrents.org

In Conversation with Binu Mathew, Editor, Countercurrents.org

For the last eighteen years Countercurrents.org has emerged as truly as the voice of the diverse set of activists working on human rights, freedom of expression, climate change, nationality questions, caste and race questions, gender discourse. It has emerged as the voice of the oppressed and all those denied rights. It emerged as a true alternative media. The force behind[Read More…]

June 11, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Curse to the Winter

Curse to the Winter

             Winter is the cruelest season of all the season. Cruel like a tyrant or an oppressor.  It kills what is green, deforms what is beautiful and dethrones the pleasurable seasons. No mercy it shows to the old, kids, women and men-all are tortured by its harshness, barbarianism and its ruthlessness. Tyranny knows no gender,[Read More…]

June 10, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Niggas!!!

Niggas!!!

In Gary Pomerantz’s recent book on Bob Cousy, ” The Last Pass”, he relates a story about the Boston Celtics All Star as to race relations. This was from 1950, when most of our nation was even more segregated than we (still) are now. Cousy was a rookie that year and roomed with the team’s only black player, Chuck Cooper.[Read More…]

June 9, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Echo chambers , Post – Truth Era and the Fear of  Missing Out: A millennial’s tale

Echo chambers , Post – Truth Era and the Fear of  Missing Out: A millennial’s tale

“I am a millennial. We invented social media. So I should be really good at this” – when Emma from the popular web series starts narrating her tale, it sets my mind on fire. Infact millennials are the  early adopters of social media and have embraced these platforms widely as a main form of communication. It was during my bachelors that Whatsapp started[Read More…]

June 9, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Un-bracketing the Locked Down/Up Selves under the Quarantine: A Response to (im)possibility of Solitude

Un-bracketing the Locked Down/Up Selves under the Quarantine: A Response to (im)possibility of Solitude

Co-Written by Bikash Sarma & Shruti Sharma Rousseau in Solitude. National Endowment for the Humanities.  neh.gov. Catherine Malabou’s recent reflections on the ‘psychic space’ under the lockdown makes one wonder about the socio-spatio-temporal nature of the very quarantined state as well as of quarantining oneself within it. The quarantine – that we have been dwelling in now for sometime –[Read More…]

June 8, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Identity Politics: A Progressive Re-configuration

Identity Politics: A Progressive Re-configuration

Identitarian politics has always been a topic overladen with mixed and inchoate views. Some perceive it as a positive phenomenon and others comprehend it as atavistic and socially detrimental. Its positivity lies in the fact that it can embolden a particular marginalized community to initiate minority politics or indigenist politics like the one occurring in Latin America which possesses transformative[Read More…]

June 8, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Photo credit: Mickey Z.

Welcome to a Pandemic of Collective Grief

  “I could not count the times during the average day when something would come up that I needed to tell him. This impulse did not end with his death. What ended was the possibility of response.” (Joan Didion) From their initial pairing in 1927, Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy made up one of the 20th century’s most beloved comedy duos. Upon[Read More…]

June 8, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Feeling blue

COVID 19 and Mental Health

Co-Written by Hemraj P Jangir & Mamta Yadav   It has been more than four months but the whole world is still grappling with the pandemic. Every day we are getting distressing news and images on social media. The COVID-19 has brought many changes in our daily lives. These changes have not only been of staying at home, dining at[Read More…]

June 7, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Convention of Mikhail Bakunin and Legacy

The Convention of Mikhail Bakunin and Legacy

Even the most wretched individual of our present society could not exist and develop without the cumulative social efforts of countless generations.-Mikail Bakunin Michael Alexandrovitch Bakunin was born on 30th May, 1814, in the Russian province of Tvar. He was the eldest son of a retired diplomat, who was a member of the ancient Russian nobility. Young Michael passed his[Read More…]

June 6, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Photo by rorris

Our Tryst With Mortality

Death! It has always been around. Ever since we began understanding the world a bit, we knew death was a phenomenon; something, which happened only to others, mostly to the old. Of course, occasionally it happened to a few young also, in tragic accidents or illnesses, or in wars. Sadly, very often to the poor though, who had neither food[Read More…]

June 6, 2020 Life/Philosophy
 Onset of Mental Health Crisis: Changing the Conversation in Pandemic times

 Onset of Mental Health Crisis: Changing the Conversation in Pandemic times

Co-Written by Jitamanyu Sahoo & Syed Mujtaba Hussain The current pandemic situation across the globe has accentuated the pre-existing trend of mental health issues to the global forefront.  What is more alarming is most of the world is under complete or partial lockdown and people living or developing mental health issues are unable to access the basic treatment. The emergence[Read More…]

June 4, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Challenges in Seeking Health Care amidst COVID 19 Pandemic: Experiences of Cancer Patients

Challenges in Seeking Health Care amidst COVID 19 Pandemic: Experiences of Cancer Patients

Co-Written by Akhter Hussain Bhat &  Noorain Batool Khan The novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has become a worldwide threat and a major healthcare concern. Since its outbreak in China, the virus has so far affected more than 5.72 million people with over 3.56 lakh deaths globally causing widespread concern, fear, anxiety and stress. Owing to the severe infectious nature of[Read More…]

June 2, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Self-reliance and the Continuous Cycle of Exploitation

Self-reliance and the Continuous Cycle of Exploitation

On May 12, 2020 the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi in his address to the nation announced the ‘Aatmnirbhar Bharat Abhiyaan’— ‘Self-reliant India Mission’. He mentioned this pandemic can be changed into an opportunity to develop the nation and help the world.  Addressing to the nation he said that today there is a ‘will and way’ both, to become[Read More…]

May 31, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Woman is looking at a man communicating with her rom a monitor standing on the table before her. Woman has a tablet, potted plant and red cup of coffee are on the table before her. Blank bulletin board is hanging on the wall.

Digital Divide: Obvious and Clear Between Haves and Havenots

Co-Written by Abass Rather & Aqib Yousuf Government’s announcement to switch over from physical class room to virtual class room during the Covid 19 Pandemic lockdown period seems to be a digital revolutionary step. It seems that govt is in no mood of compromise on the issue of education. Students should not suffer due to the outbreak of covid 19[Read More…]

May 31, 2020 Life/Philosophy
One Life, One Love, 300 Children

One Life, One Love, 300 Children

Keith Lyons writes of Tendol Gyalzur, a COVID 19 victim, a refugee and an orphan who found new lives for many other orphans with love and an ability to connect. This story is about how one person found joy and happiness, not in accumulating material possessions or going viral on social media, but in finding her purpose through doing service, and[Read More…]

May 31, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Lives In Education

Lives In Education

Human history as cultural history We need to reform our teaching of history so that the emphasis will be placed on the gradual growth of human culture and knowledge, a growth to which all nations and ethnic groups have contributed. A new freely downloadable book I would like to announce the publication of a book which presents the history of[Read More…]

May 30, 2020 Life/Philosophy

COVID-19: Zafrullah Chowdhury, Women, and the Dot Blot Kit

A valiant freedom fighter and an indomitable spirit during the liberation war and afterwards, Dr. Zafrullah Chowdhury is a known figure in the sub-continent. With a larger than life persona he does not need a grand introduction. On Sunday night, the last thing that I had read before going to bed is that Zafrullah Chowdhury has tested positive for Covid-19.[Read More…]

May 29, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Passing Behind Our Backs

Passing Behind Our Backs

I never met the great basketball player, Bob Cousy, the man known as “the Houdini of the Hardwood,” yet he somehow influenced my life in ways I never knew, or to be more accurate, in ways I didn’t reflect upon except in superficial ways.  He was the guy who brought professional basketball into the modern era with his bag of[Read More…]

May 29, 2020 Life/Philosophy
What You Kill When You Kill Someone

What You Kill When You Kill Someone

When you kill a person you kill more than just another body. You kill a brain, a soul, a congealed set of experiences, emotions, and connections. You kill loves, wants, thoughts, desires, ideas. You kill futures and pasts. You kill loves ones’ hopes and calm. You kill sleep. You kill joys and laughs. You kill all the books read, all[Read More…]

May 29, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Responsibility of the Intellectuals and Indian Burden

Responsibility of the Intellectuals and Indian Burden

Just after the end of World War 2, American writer and political radical Dwight Macdonald wrote the essay Responsibility of the Intellectuals in 1945, in which he strongly criticised the war. He was depressed of war efforts and its horror, the bombings and destruction of cities. He asked the question: ‘To what extent the German or Japanese people were responsible[Read More…]

May 28, 2020 Life/Philosophy
It is Time to Learn from Lenin instead of Denigrating him

It is Time to Learn from Lenin instead of Denigrating him

Recently, I came across an article in The Indian Express by writer, teacher and social activist Apoorvanand. It was rejoinder to some article. Initially, it appeared to me to suggest that there is no need to imitate Lenin’s model of revolution in India. But when I went through the whole piece, I was astonished and highly disappointed. He not only[Read More…]

May 27, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Adieu, My Adenium

Adieu, My Adenium

Last Bloom, April 2017 Early 1998, I visited Bhopal for some work. Bhopal has a lot of plant nurseries and supplies them to many places in India. I also decided to buy some plants. I knew little about exotic plants then. A friend of mine helped me select some nice plants and one of them was a small sapling of[Read More…]

May 27, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Retrieving the True meaning of word Jihad

Retrieving the True meaning of word Jihad

Words Jihad and Jihadi have been in abundant use for the negative purposes from last two decades in particular. They have been closleyl linked to the word terrorism and violence, done by section of Muslims here and there. This global use of word is particularly a post 9/11 phenomenon. Just to recapitulate after the WTC was hit by two aeroplanes;[Read More…]

May 26, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Online examinations: towards educational genocide of students of School of Open Learning

Online examinations: towards educational genocide of students of School of Open Learning

It is circa 2020 and we are in the middle of a declared pandemic and a nation-wide lockdown. In the current extraordinary circumstances, university students have been simply asked to concentrate on their studies, and now, be ready to appear for open book examinations in several leading universities. Of course, it is presumed that the poorest of the poor students[Read More…]

May 24, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Woman is looking at a man communicating with her rom a monitor standing on the table before her. Woman has a tablet, potted plant and red cup of coffee are on the table before her. Blank bulletin board is hanging on the wall.

Education in the time of Pandemic

The coronavirus pandemic is seen as a ‘useful crisis’ in which to transform the economy. Yet the university system has not received any such ‘stimulus’ of fresh ways of thinking about education. While exams do play a role, they are being fetishized as the return of ‘normalcy’ even as many students have been left to themselves in the face of[Read More…]

May 23, 2020 Life/Philosophy
To Be A Dissident

To Be A Dissident

What does it mean to be a dissident? At its simplest, it means to critically engage with and seek to change the material and the ideological structures of the society in which you find yourself, whether local, national, regional, or global. It means the ability to say “no” to those in power, even if the immediate opportunities for real change[Read More…]

May 23, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The ‘Vayye-Vayya’ society: Morbidity and medicalization in Kerala

The ‘Vayye-Vayya’ society: Morbidity and medicalization in Kerala

A lot had already been written about the high morbidity conscious Kerala society and especially what was being called in the early eighties as the ‘Kerala Paradox’. This essentially is a conceptual complex which meant that  the morbidity rate was very high in Kerala compared to the low mortality and it also meant that the state could achieve better  health[Read More…]

May 23, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Tribute to Dr Vijayam, renowned humanist

Tribute to Dr Vijayam, renowned humanist

Dr Goparaju Vijayam or popularly known as Dr Vijayam, passed away, in the morning today at his home at the Atheist Center in Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh. The loss is tremendous as far as the humanist movement in India is concern as Vijayam Garu was one of the pioneers. He was also the Executive Director of Atheist Center founded eighty years[Read More…]

May 23, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Soul Shall Rise             

The Soul Shall Rise             

  The soul shall rise from the deep depths of darkness. The darkness that has layers after layers, hence exists in many forms. The manyness of this darkness, its different shades, blurs the realities and forces the soul to leave the search for the truth and negotiate with the environment- dark indeed. The force of darkness is so mighty that[Read More…]

May 22, 2020 Life/Philosophy
90 Years of Martyrdom of Bhagwati Charan Vohra: Revolutionary, Visionary and Mentor to Bhagat Singh

90 Years of Martyrdom of Bhagwati Charan Vohra: Revolutionary, Visionary and Mentor to Bhagat Singh

Co-Written by Prabal Saran Agarwal, Harsh Vardhan Tripathy & Ankur Goswami  “We find many ardent youth contending themselves with distributing grain among the poor and nursing the sick all their life. These men are noble and self-denying but they cannot understand that charity cannot solve the problem of hunger and disease in India and, for that matter, in any other[Read More…]

May 21, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Learning During The Pandemic

Learning During The Pandemic

India has started Lockdown 4.0 with dismal numbers. We are already over 1 lakh cases, and as much as NITI Aayog would predict otherwise, the slump in cases is yet to come. A large part of the country’s 1.3 billion population has been at home since over 50 days now; I say a large part because it excludes the homeless[Read More…]

May 20, 2020 Life/Philosophy
No Tea, Only Talk: The ‘Missing’ Interactions in the Digital Space

No Tea, Only Talk: The ‘Missing’ Interactions in the Digital Space

The unprecedented situation that the global community faces in the wake of Corona induced pandemic and the fear, panic, isolation and uncertainty that it has brought with it, has left many wondering about the future of the world in general and their lives in particular. We, and I am sure I can say this for almost the entire world population,[Read More…]

May 20, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Online Double-bind

The Online Double-bind

The trap was set at least twenty-five years ago and the mice jumped at the smell of the cheese.  I am referring to the introduction of the computer as a mass necessity and the Internet that followed. I was slow to enter the trap, “forced” finally in 2007 by the college where I was teaching. Up to that point I[Read More…]

May 18, 2020 Life/Philosophy
 Thinking about the “Power of the Powerless”

 Thinking about the “Power of the Powerless”

“There are things which are worth suffering for” wrote the Czech philosopher Jan Patočka shortly before his death which was caused, in part, by the treatment he received from the Czechoslovakian secret police in March 1977. My first admittedly cynical response to this rather Christian remark is: Really? What things exactly? And how much suffering? In Václav Havel’s famous essay of[Read More…]

May 17, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Photo by John Vetterli

The Dawn

            It’s always darkest right before dawn. In this dark time, which is the most frightening experience for a lot of people, we must find our strength to go on. The Coronavirus pandemic is going to be over one day and we must try our hardest to make it. Many have been lost and many are fighting for their life.[Read More…]

May 17, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Lesson 3: Life Skill Education

Lesson 3: Life Skill Education

Lockdown Series 5 As lock down moves to 50 days, there is a “new normal’ emerging. Human beings have the amazing and scary capacity to adapt and endure in myriad ways to crisis and tribulations maintaining the minimum “ business as usual” attitudes”. The days of lock down and Corona scare have brought out this fortitude and coping strategies of[Read More…]

May 17, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Gandhi’s talisman is best guiding light to reform public health

Gandhi’s talisman is best guiding light to reform public health

Dr Sandeep Pandey, Shobha Shukla and Bobby Ramakant Mahatma Gandhi’s talisman is perhaps the best guiding light to reform the public health system in the wake of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic: “I will give you a talisman. Whenever you are in doubt, or when the self becomes too much with you, apply the following test- “Recall the face of the[Read More…]

May 17, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Weeping Cherry Tree

The Weeping Cherry Tree

Jamal Uddin had lived an ordinary and extraordinary life at the same time. His life story is about hard work, determination, and resilience in living the life of an immigrant in New York City. “Mr. Uddin was born in Chittagong, Bangladesh, where the Karnaphuli River flows into the Bay of Bengal. He was not poor, but he knew what it[Read More…]

May 17, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Covid-19 pandemic and religious life

Covid-19 pandemic and religious life

Co-Written by Dr. Rahul Kumar & Anshu Kumar The world has witnessed another pandemic covid-19 and triggered the churning of a plethora of ideas concerning the rescue plan. The curve of Corona affected people is ever rising followed by the deaths in thousands. In India the spread of Coronavirus and subsequently constant lockdown has put the people under tremendous stress[Read More…]

May 16, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Online Teaching in the Wake of the COVID-19 Pandemic: Some Concerns

Online Teaching in the Wake of the COVID-19 Pandemic: Some Concerns

The Corona virus outbreak has presented unprecedented challenges to different areas of public life, especially the   education system. Due to the pervasiveness of a novel virus, the closure of educational institutions and rebooting of learning, educational institutions are accompanied by frantic efforts to accomplish  the  syllabi in some or the other way. In this desperate situation, online education has been[Read More…]

May 15, 2020 Life/Philosophy
A reader’s love note: tribute to RV Smith

A reader’s love note: tribute to RV Smith

It is rare to come across a person like Ronald Vivian Smith these days. The message of his ill timed demise during a state of widespread anxiety and impoverishment has come like a jolt of thunder. It feels as if a close family member has passed away into oblivion with all the precious stories still buried deep inside his youthful[Read More…]

May 14, 2020 Life/Philosophy
My solemn tribute to journalist Fakhre Alam

My solemn tribute to journalist Fakhre Alam

Farkhre Alam of Bangladesh was not just a journalist, but also a poet and writer. He never speaks, but tells stories. In fact, when he speaks he talks as if he is telling stories. He was a contemporary journalist. He wrote smoothly with colloquial Bangla language, for which he have had his own style. I met him at his Chansra[Read More…]

May 14, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Lesson 2: An Experience – Lockdown Musings 4

Lesson 2: An Experience – Lockdown Musings 4

Little Chinchu was in the much loved space of her grandparents home in a city far away from where she and her parents lived. She had come here two months back for the birth of her baby brother born a month ago. By the time words like COVID, Corona and Lockdown were household names. Chinchu was intrigued by the anxiety[Read More…]

May 14, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Role of Psychiatrists in a Pandemic Social Emergency

The Role of Psychiatrists in a Pandemic Social Emergency

I am sure we will recognise that there are some things in our society, some things in our world to which we should never be adjusted. There are some things concerning which we must always be maladjusted if we are to be people of good will.  We must never adjust ourselves to religious bigotry. We must never adjust ourselves to[Read More…]

May 13, 2020 Life/Philosophy
On Mother’s Day: A Daughter’s Words of Love

On Mother’s Day: A Daughter’s Words of Love

Mother’s Day will be celebrated on May 10 this year. On this day, people celebrate motherhood and mothers in their families. We mothers are remembered and pampered and we simply love it. Mothers are thanked profusely for their efforts, sacrifices and children make this a special day for the mothers. Our children send us handmade or store bought gifts, flower[Read More…]

May 10, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Why I feel ashamed of being a journalist

Why I feel ashamed of being a journalist

Since my childhood I wanted to be a journalist. I began my journey with an Urdu newspaper. Some of my first articles were about cricket. I wrote on cricket after watching it on TV and playing it with friends. Soon, I started working as a correspondent from my home town Raxaul. After coming to the field of journalism, I realised[Read More…]

May 8, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Is religion a strong motivator of ‘giving’?

Is religion a strong motivator of ‘giving’?

For Muslims this is the month Ramadhan, the dawn-to-dusk fasting month, a month which is not merely about fasting but also a reminder to all Muslims of a key obligation of Islam – ‘giving’! For that matter, ‘giving’ as a religious duty is an integral component of every religion. In some religion ‘giving’ is compulsory and in others it is[Read More…]

May 8, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Death: A Simple Idea with A Powerful Punch

Death: A Simple Idea with A Powerful Punch

Since death is one idea that has no history except as an idea and not a reality any of us have experienced, it is the most frightening idea there is and also quite simple. It is the ultimate unknown. It has always haunted human beings, whether consciously or unconsciously. It lies at the root of war, violence, religion, art, love,[Read More…]

May 8, 2020 Life/Philosophy
On The Moral Graciousness of Fatalism

On The Moral Graciousness of Fatalism

Time held me green and dying Though I sang in my chains like the sea. Dylan Thomas “Fern Hill” Fate show thy force, ourselves we do not owe What is decree’d must be, and be this so Shakespeare from “Twelfth Night”   I often catch myself doing semi-conscious automatic things (such as needlessly refreshing my email web page, repeatedly touching[Read More…]

May 8, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Alluri  Sitarama Raju, Unique Revolutionary, Remembered On His Death Anniversary

Alluri  Sitarama Raju, Unique Revolutionary, Remembered On His Death Anniversary

May 7th 1924 was the day Alluri Sitarama Raju (1897 July 4– 7 May 1924), a unique revolutionary involved in the Indian independence movement, was killed by the British armed forces. He was one of the few Indian revolutionaries, who had developed a mass base and a mass movement, that culminated in a sustained armed struggle (1922-24), and adopted guerilla methods and[Read More…]

May 7, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Lesson 1 : Endure

Lesson 1 : Endure

Lockdown Series 3 Little Aadi is always  most happy when his father and grandmother stayed home not going to the “office”,  which is where they both vanish early morning long before he wakes up. He has tried many tricks in his books to stop them from going which includes hiding his father’s bag, his granny’s footwear and purse and so[Read More…]

May 6, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Helping Others

Helping Others

Let me, please, remind you that I am legally a white, blue eyed, blond Kenyan.  And the Masai, my clan, are now dying off from the virus. I’ll remind: Humans have always fought the natural world to bring it into conformity with their wishes whether by slaughtering wolves that would eat them, killing off poison ivy or other means. I[Read More…]

May 4, 2020 Life/Philosophy
 Where the world has not been broken…

 Where the world has not been broken…

To dream of uniting mankind, pieced and classified into multiple nations, religions, sects and sub sects is a mammoth, impractical and ideologically impossible task — but this time a little virus has taken it on and united us with its virulence. It was interesting to come across an imagined interview with the virus, in which the interviewer questioned the virus[Read More…]

May 4, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Virtues, Morality and Philosophy of World Politics

Virtues, Morality and Philosophy of World Politics

All humans are subjected to political life and no one courageous to live without political behaviour. Because as rational actors of the society people involved with political activities in everyday life with or without their comprehension. As a result of the reciprocal connection of humans and politics, many scholars, philosophers did their research on politics and provided many theories on[Read More…]

May 4, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Another Day In Paradise: Lockdown Musings -2

Another Day In Paradise: Lockdown Musings -2

There are times when a darkness sets in your mind that is associated with lack of contact with your loved ones, with sharing of ideas and dreams, a poem or experience not just virtual but actual. As I write this that these 2 apparently similar sounding words are so far apart in their meaning and impact. The small invisible microorganism[Read More…]

May 4, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Religious Contention

Religious Contention

I was raised in a Quaker household. Quakers are considered Christians, although that is a stretch as far as I am concerned since there are atheist Quakers and other permutations. In addition, they can be subversive in exemplary ways. For example: All of my closest Quaker friends of CO (conscientious objectors to killing in wars) status worked in an insane[Read More…]

May 2, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Source: Getty Images

A Recipe on the Plate: Pandemic and the Art of Social Media

Co-Written by Pratisha Borborah & Cihnnita Baruah Media plays a multidimensional role- it acts as a source of information, entertainment, news and public opinion, influencing perceptions, choices, attitudes and behaviors of individuals among others.  Among this multifaceted role played by media one such role is that of articulation of identity. An important part of identity construction is how one identify[Read More…]

May 2, 2020 Life/Philosophy
E.M.S : A Nostalgic Note

E.M.S : A Nostalgic Note

This is a reminiscence on EMS Namboothirippad who served as the first Chief Minister of Kerala state in 1957–59 and then again in 1967–69 by the veteran journalist Neelan. EMS was a towering Communist leader and intellectual  I joined Asianet , the first cable and later satellite channel in the country , at Trivandrum in 1993 , after working as[Read More…]

May 1, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Rishi Kapoor Beyond Films

Rishi Kapoor Beyond Films

There was no escape from acting as it was in his blood; he did not struggle for fame and fortune as it came with his family lineages, Rishi Kapoor wrote in his memoir. Acting was not a profession for him. His passion for life was embedded within acting. He was undoubtedly one of India’s finest actor. He inherited not only[Read More…]

May 1, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Many Debts We Owe to Lenin

The Many Debts We Owe to Lenin

‘The workers’ and peasants’ government… calls upon all the belligerent peoples and their government to start immediate negotiations for a just, democratic peace. By a just or democratic peace, for which the overwhelming majority of the working class and other working people of all the belligerent countries, exhausted, tormented and racked by the war are craving [we mean] an immediate[Read More…]

April 30, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Irrfan Khan: The Actor Who Explained Life on Cinema Screen

Irrfan Khan: The Actor Who Explained Life on Cinema Screen

As the sun sets in the gloomy sky, I sit down to write my scattered thoughts and shattered feelings after reading the death of one of my favourite actors in contemporary times. Mr Irrfan Khan’s death justifies the poetic prediction of T. S Eliot; April is truly the cruellest month in memories and desires of life. It is death that[Read More…]

April 30, 2020 Life/Philosophy
On the eve of the 60th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, Greenpeace volunteers fly Peace Doves, bearing messages of peace, "No More Hiroshima", "Yes to Peace",  "No to Rokkasho" in Japanese and in English, beside the A-Bomb Dome Memorial in Hiroshima. 
Greenpeace renews their calls for peace and make this anniversary a message to world leaders to make real their commitments to nuclear disarmament, including the Japanese government to abandon plans to produce nuclear weapons.

 Of Friendship and of Politics

Although it is somewhat banal to say, it should never be forgotten how the First World War traumatized the political and cultural life of Europe, especially in the German speaking world. Heidegger’s, Jasper’s, Freud’s, Junger’s, Hesse’s (not to mention Hitler’s) inter-war works are unthinkable without this bloody caesura in European history. In a profound sense, the inter-war period in Germany[Read More…]

April 29, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Photo by John Vetterli

COVID-19 Is Time To Reset Our Mental And Social Lens

At no stage in modern Indian history have Muslims been put to such a hard test. Every action of theirs is being viewed with a suspicious lens and even their positive contributions are being viewed in negative light or are being deftly airbrushed as insignificant. The mainstream narrative is being so orchestrated as to pigeon hole the entire community into[Read More…]

April 29, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Days from Hell

The Days from Hell

I know all about these days. And, no, I am not self-pitying over them. Instead I see them as part and parcel of being alive. We all have to endure them and go through rather than around them. After all, all that we have is effort and can’t guarantee outcomes. We can’t change outcomes in general, although can do so[Read More…]

April 28, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Ramadan: The Spiritual Nectar laced with mercy

Ramadan: The Spiritual Nectar laced with mercy

Ramadhan comes as the 9th month of Islamic Calendar and brings with it infinite mercy of Almighty on humanity. Mercy in the form of divine guidance, spiritual nourishment, compassion, and moral training. The Islamic calendar is purely a lunar calendar. Ramadan starts when the new crescent moon is first visible in the night sky. Month-long fasting ends with the celebration of Eid[Read More…]

April 27, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Eklavya and Karna: An Understanding of Discrimination of Marginalised in Indian Education System

Eklavya and Karna: An Understanding of Discrimination of Marginalised in Indian Education System

Mahabharata and Ramayana are considered as biggest epics (Mahakavya) of India are again in popular discussion with the repeat telecast of serials on Doordarshan amid Covid-19 crisis. Those who have access of television are watching the serial with great interest and rising TRPs of Doordarshan are proof of it. Coming to Mahabharata, the authorship of the great epic is accredited[Read More…]

April 27, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Another Day In Paradise

Another Day In Paradise

Lockdown Musings Series 1 As the reality about Corona related Lockdown and Stay indoors deepens and intensifies, the social and political atmosphere around one acquires a rarefied feel with each and every moment bearing subtle and powerful insights and realisations. The experiences and real life stories that one comes across throws light into the fragility of human existence in a[Read More…]

April 27, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Srinivasa Ramanujan: ‘The Man Who Knew Infinity’

Srinivasa Ramanujan: ‘The Man Who Knew Infinity’

Remembering Great Mathematician Srinivasa Ramanujan ( 22 December 1887 – 26 April 1920) on his hundredth death anniversary –Team Umang Library It was the year 1913 when Srinivasa Ramanujan, then an ordinary clerk in Madras Port Trust, drafted letters to Prof G H Hardy, then a leading mathematician at Cambridge University, containing his mathematical theorems. The rest as we know[Read More…]

April 26, 2020 Life/Philosophy
A Beacon In The Deep Hinterland

A Beacon In The Deep Hinterland

In the last two decades, the gender landscape in rural India has been greening, and women are now on the cusp of a powerful social and political revolution. The harbinger of this change is a unique policy experiment in village-level governance, the Panchayat Raj Act, which has brought transformative results for the weakest of the weak: the village women. In[Read More…]

April 25, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Woman is looking at a man communicating with her rom a monitor standing on the table before her. Woman has a tablet, potted plant and red cup of coffee are on the table before her. Blank bulletin board is hanging on the wall.

COVID-19 and Online Teaching: Challenges for the Inclusion of Disabled Students in Higher Education.

Co-Written by Afaq Ahmad Mir & Zaraq Jahan It is a time when people from every section of the society are talking of a single discourse known globally as Covid-19. This pandemic has spread all across the globe and is contaminating humans, filling societies with fear, anxiety, horror and creating a new social stigma. Meanwhile, organizations from diverse backgrounds are[Read More…]

April 25, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Evergreen Heroes Of The SHG Revolution

The Evergreen Heroes Of The SHG Revolution

The self-help group movement has been one of the most powerful incubators of female entrepreneurship in rural India. While there were several young semi-literate women who had homegrown skillsets, absence of capital and regressive social norms prevented them from taking a full plunge and setting up their own independent business. A membership of a self-help group, however, enabled these women[Read More…]

April 24, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Capitalism and Slop

Capitalism and Slop

Someone sent me a nasty email that put a vituperative comment about Planned Parenthood selling blood or something related to abortions. A right-winger religiously and otherwise, he seemed irate about it. However, I deleted his message without reading it. It didn’t shock me as it had, apparently, done to him. Besides, he hates all abortions, it seems, even when women[Read More…]

April 24, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Katsaridaphobia & COVID19

Katsaridaphobia & COVID19

I have to admit I suffer from acute katsaridaphobia — My Kastaridaphobia is stronger than my fear of COVID19 or cows. While COVID is being kept at bay with isolation, masks, lockdowns and quarantines and cows can be kept at bay by gates in India and can only be seen in restricted areas in Singapore, creatures that cause Katsaridaphobia cannot[Read More…]

April 23, 2020 Life/Philosophy
 Intellectual emancipation in the times of Corona

 Intellectual emancipation in the times of Corona

It has so come to pass that we only impart religion to our little bundles of joy while abandoning them almost exclusively to the not-so-innocent hands of schools for their ‘secular’ education. While there has always been a debate about how much state propaganda is really thrust down the throat of malleable minds at an early age to destroy their[Read More…]

April 23, 2020 Life/Philosophy
A Seafarers’s Ordeal And Triumph Over Maritime Capitalists

A Seafarers’s Ordeal And Triumph Over Maritime Capitalists

What about my family…my daughter…their future… These are the very first thoughts that pierced through my slowly fading consciousness as I tried to keep my eyes open, worrying that closing them would mean closing them forever. It was that fateful night of October 10, 2014, an unforgettable experience. The accident It was just an ordinary day.  My job, as a[Read More…]

April 23, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The ‘2 Rupee Doctor’ Struck Down By COVID-19

The ‘2 Rupee Doctor’ Struck Down By COVID-19

The beloved Dr Ismail Hussain of Kurnool of AP is no more but he leaves behind a rich legacy of philanthropy Thousands of people regretted having had no occasion to grieve their beloved doctor. Had it been an ordinary day, a lakh of people might have thronged the funeral. Dr Ismail is a household name among the poor of the[Read More…]

April 22, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Lenin, Today

Lenin, Today

Lenin, today, April 22, on his 150th birth anniversary, teaches lessons crucial in this capitalism-ravaged world, a world that witnesses murder at mass scale with the cloak of a pandemic. And, this pandemic is one of the direct consequences of capitalism, the system that slashed public healthcare for decades in countries, sold out public healthcare to private capital, enslaved science[Read More…]

April 22, 2020 Life/Philosophy
An Interview With Rory Fanning Of Haymarket Books

An Interview With Rory Fanning Of Haymarket Books

Rory Fanning, following two deployments to Afghanistan with the 2nd Army Ranger Battalion, became one of the first U.S. Army Rangers to resist the Iraq war and the Global War on Terror. In 2008–2009 he walked across the United States for the Pat Tillman Foundation. Rory is the author of Worth Fighting For: An Army Ranger’s Journey Out of the[Read More…]

April 22, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Ramadan: Everything you always wanted to know about

Ramadan: Everything you always wanted to know about

The Spirit, Politics, and Rituals of Ramadan are the three main topics of this article. Ramadan is pronounced Ramzan in the Subcontinent, Iran, Turkey, and the Central Asian Republics wherever the Persian linguistic influence exists, elsewhere in the world, it is Ramadan. In the Arabic language, “Z” is “D” and hence Ramadan. About 50 Random pictures of Ramadan around the[Read More…]

April 22, 2020 Life/Philosophy
We need Sufi’s Legacy of ‘Communal Harmony’ and not Communalism during the COVID-19 

We need Sufi’s Legacy of ‘Communal Harmony’ and not Communalism during the COVID-19 

Co-Written by Badre Alam Khan & Dastagir Khan   It is to be noted that South Asia  is the  land  of  several  Sufis and Saints (like, Hazrat Nizamuddin, Amir Khusro, Dara Sikoh and Kabir, etc,) who taught us human and universal values like love, devotions, compassion, brotherhood, social equality and of course spread out the message of communal harmony among religious[Read More…]

April 22, 2020 Life/Philosophy
 Lenin: The Rock of Compassion

 Lenin: The Rock of Compassion

Marx was the first to criticize capitalism in a concerted way, but Lenin was the first to topple it. In the Tsarist snow, he planted the seed of socialism, and it grew into the enormous Eastern bloc; a canopy over a third of humanity that plunged some into eternal darkness, but many into the light of a new dawn. Now[Read More…]

April 21, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Lenin is even more relevant today in an era of growing repression

Lenin is even more relevant today in an era of growing repression

It was the summer of 2018 when I was vacationing in Moscow with my family. One of the most memorable parts of our trip was a tour of Red Square, especially the tomb where the towering leader of the communist revolution rests permanently. Lenin, who led the Bolshevik revolution of 1917 that changed the course of world history, was never[Read More…]

April 21, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Muslim renaissance! A distant possibility

Muslim renaissance! A distant possibility

From being accused of separatism, unresponsiveness to change, and even of corona spread, Muslims find themselves in impossible situations in one part or the other of the world. History is witness that from the 7th century till 17th century Muslims had some stake in worldly affairs. After that, they have been sidelined and gradually eclipsed. There are economical and socio-political reasons[Read More…]

April 21, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The TB Paradox

The TB Paradox

     What causes much more death and tragedy throughout the world, for several decades than Covid-19, but does not cause panic and hysteria, and, is not considered an emergency? It’s TB Folks! Tuberculosis Tuberculosis – or TB, as it’s commonly called — is a contagious infection that usually attacks your lungs. It can spread to other parts of your body, like your brain and spine.[Read More…]

April 21, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Blood Donation Camp set up by volunteers during COVID 19 restrictions

Notes from Balochistan: Volunteers for humanity

Pakistan, like many parts of the world, has announced a lockdown in most of the country. In some of the cities, however, there is a partial lockdown. The district Kech in Balochistan is partially locked down (from morning till five in the evenings with essential services still open like groceries, vegetables, banks, medical stores etc). However, all of the educational[Read More…]

April 19, 2020 Life/Philosophy
What history can teach us?

What history can teach us?

Tolerance and dissent are two indispensable characteristics of stable state and societies. From the past State and empires have flourished while, developing the character of dissent and tolerance within their spaces. The present State of affairs throughout the world are a worrisome concern for everyone keeping the approach these states depict towards different communities. History as a discipline has much[Read More…]

April 19, 2020 Life/Philosophy
One Fate, One Humanity: Lessons From Corona Virus

One Fate, One Humanity: Lessons From Corona Virus

The corona virus pandemic has spread in more than 210 countries and disrupted social and economic life across the globe. It has changed our working, playing and learning style: schools are closed, online homework is given and parents are asked to supervise their kids, offices are shutdown, sports leagues have been cancelled, and many people have been asked to work from home. Lockdown[Read More…]

April 18, 2020 Life/Philosophy
 Myths and Reality Opposed?

 Myths and Reality Opposed?

Here’s a quotation from “Trump Rex” by John Feffer at https://countercurrents.org/2020/04/trump-rex: “Athens survived the plague, though its democracy was compromised by war and disease. America, too, will live on. But it will have lost some further measure of its greatness thanks in no small part to the man who, however cynically, wanted to make it great again.” Well, in relation, I’m[Read More…]

April 18, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Corona Prayer

Corona Prayer

My God the Almighty! I tender my sincere praises and thanks at your feet for having created a beautiful space of communication between you and me, through the crisis of Corona pandemic! Many believe that it is you who have allowed this pandemic. Some others think that it is your wrath. The common perception is that you are punishing the[Read More…]

April 18, 2020 Life/Philosophy
 “State Is The March Of God On Earth”: Re-examining Hegel In Times Of Corona Crisis

 “State Is The March Of God On Earth”: Re-examining Hegel In Times Of Corona Crisis

Famous German philosopher G.W.F. Hegel was the first philosopher who linked social science and natural science by applying the principle of Thesis, Anti-Thesis and Synthesis. He effectively separated State and Religion while allowing them to function in their separate spheres. and advanced the scientific thinking of modern world. In these times of coronavirus war on humanity, we must understand his[Read More…]

April 17, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The ‘alien’, the ‘self’ and the ‘other’ in times of a pandemic

The ‘alien’, the ‘self’ and the ‘other’ in times of a pandemic

“When I described the tumor in my esophagus as a “blind, emotionless, alien,” I suppose that even I couldn’t help awarding it some of the qualities of a living thing. That at least I know to be a mistake: an instance of the pathetic fallacy by which we ascribe animate qualities to inanimate phenomena.” – Christopher Hitchens, Mortality The world,[Read More…]

April 17, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Babasaheb Ambedkar’s Relevance to the Indian Muslims?

Babasaheb Ambedkar’s Relevance to the Indian Muslims?

Why Ambedkar means to me? Chauvinistic never realised the contribution of his vision and works toward the progress of Dalit Bahujan. Baba Saheb fought his entire life for the protection & upliftment of Oppressed classes and that is why today Dalits, Tribes, Labour, Women progressing or able to live with rights & dignity. Babasaheb is the one who is still[Read More…]

April 16, 2020 Life/Philosophy
 Coronavirus Pandemic: A Postmodern Condition

 Coronavirus Pandemic: A Postmodern Condition

The acronym COVID-19 is derived from ‘Coronavirus Disease 2019’ was firstly reported in humans in Wuhan, China in late December, 2019 emerged as a rapidly spreading pandemic with its unprecedented outbreak.  Within 100 days of its birth, it has attacked 14,31,973 people, of which 82,096 were lost their lives.   Its unimaginable eruption reached 202 nations and every person in the[Read More…]

April 15, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Relationships in corona quagmire

Relationships in corona quagmire

As the world passes through the unchartered territory of the present corona pandemic, everything seems turned topsy-turvy. Immediate and prolonged lockdown has affected each and everybody in some way or the other. Stress resulting from the different daily routines with the drastically different working conditions has taken a heavy toll on individual well-being. The most subtle effect is on direct[Read More…]

April 15, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Education Crisis Must Not Be Forgotten In A Health Crisis

Education Crisis Must Not Be Forgotten In A Health Crisis

Special spittoons… “not to spit inside public buildings or outdoor spaces”…was never been the regular behavior of an American until the War on Tuberculosis impacted the community at the end of 19th century. Crisis always stimuli actions and responses, it alters society not sometimes but often for its good by creating better habits and practices. Many infrastructural developments and healthy[Read More…]

April 14, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Pursuit Of Fundamentals

The Pursuit Of Fundamentals

The Indians are witnessing a psychological split like never before, forming the trails of episodes of communal aggression. In the meantime, every gathering of peers or relatives has formed into mushrooms of public spheres wherein the two binary categories are engrossed advocating leftist or rightist ideology. This might have installed a robust miniature democracy in every household but nevertheless, it[Read More…]

April 14, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Reflections On Celebrating Easter

Reflections On Celebrating Easter

Am I a Christian? Well, the answer all depends on one’s loose or rigid definitions about what it means to be Christian. I know some people who would say that I am not so since I don’t follow their own particular Christian religion. They also express views that they dislike people of color living in slums in the US, as[Read More…]

April 12, 2020 Life/Philosophy
How a rural woman helping poor to be safe during COVID 19 by making face-masks at reasonable price

How a rural woman helping poor to be safe during COVID 19 by making face-masks at reasonable price

Sambalpur, Odisha: What can be the better way to describe how women do better off than men in many fields , by telling the story of a village woman who came forward to help poor people during the lockdown due to COVID 19 and produced masks for poor people in cheap rate in her locality in Sambalpur district of Odisha.[Read More…]

April 12, 2020 Life/Philosophy
 The Economy, Lemurs And Us

 The Economy, Lemurs And Us

The underlying human horror and destruction from the nearly worldwide coved-19 disease is truly daunting. Not to undercut the seriousness of the devastation, but this type of happening is hardly new. For example, consider the Black Plague that wiped out half of Europe and the fact that many British people are immune to Smallpox unlike many Native Americans whose ancestors[Read More…]

April 11, 2020 Life/Philosophy
 The Truth in the Garden

 The Truth in the Garden

The night was still… so very silent… ominous for that matter. It seemed at first, or rather smelled, the similar essence of any evening in Spring. The air had about it that perfumed scent of the garden, the trees and the flowers, now so awake and alive by the sun’s departure hours earlier. Night ruled the sky, with only freckles[Read More…]

April 11, 2020 Life/Philosophy
On Passion

On Passion

I have been fascinated by the word and concept of ‘the Passion’ for more than 50 years. I first came across it in the early sixties, in Beyond Desire (1956), a biographical novel of the German musician Mendelssohn by Pierre La Mure. The central theme of the novel is the discovery of the scores of Bach’s St. Matthew Passion (1727)[Read More…]

April 11, 2020 Life/Philosophy
As Satish Bids Farewell, Unseen By Anyone

As Satish Bids Farewell, Unseen By Anyone

               After the demise of C.Sarathchandran, Satish has reached almost all People’s struggle fronts in Kerala with a small handycam for the past 10 years. He has documented all of these. Though he was unable to systematically convert them into documentaries,  this was a huge parallel documentation. But the floods of 2018 ravaged and destroyed all these valuable documents from[Read More…]

April 11, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Walter Benjamin, the Jewish Question and Theses on the Philosophy of History

Walter Benjamin, the Jewish Question and Theses on the Philosophy of History

                       Reading Hannah Arendt’s Introduction to Benjamin’s Illuminations German-Jewish intellectuals, the alienated hommes de lettres of early twentieth century German-speaking Central Europe, constituted a class within that complex and multi-layered Jewish society against which a few of them rebelled, a rebellion which however could not prevent the dark disaster awaiting[Read More…]

April 10, 2020 Life/Philosophy
“Chemical Shower, Bareilly, Covid 19’ by DeepankarGohain

Making brutes of us all: Rule by dehumanizing

In his scathing critique of Gandhi in “What Congress and Gandhi Have Done to the Untouchables”, Ambedkar takes on Gandhi´s views on technology, arguing that Gandhism is suited to a society which does not believe in democracy, and hence will lead to a situation where human beings “must keep on toiling ceaselessly for a pittance and remain a brute”. For[Read More…]

April 10, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Survival of the unfittest?

Survival of the unfittest?

                                                Extinction is the rule. Survival is the exception.  Carl Sagan Survival in the trying times becomes a matter of concern and ponderation both for the rich and the poor. The Corona pandemic has nudged the mind of the whole world about the[Read More…]

April 8, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Countdown to Lockdown: Fear and Loathing in the Trolley Race at the End of the World

Countdown to Lockdown: Fear and Loathing in the Trolley Race at the End of the World

If I had to choose a place to be to sit out the coronavirus pandemic sweeping over the globe, there are probably few places better than the South Island of New Zealand. A significant number of the world’s super-rich have invested in the Southern Hemisphere nation, some even buying residency through a controversial and secretive ‘Investor Plus’ scheme. Tech startup[Read More…]

April 7, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Reproductive health services are essential services, including during pandemics like COVID-19

Reproductive health services are essential services, including during pandemics like COVID-19

The recently released Asia and the Pacific SDG Progress Report 2020 shows that Asia and the Pacific region is not on track to achieve any of the 169 targets of the 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs), including those around ensuring universal access to sexual and reproductive health services. Despite commitments made by governments, inequality in the region is growing and[Read More…]

April 7, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Seeds of a More Equal, Equitable and Environment Friendly Society In Coronavirus Threat Lockdown

Seeds of a More Equal, Equitable and Environment Friendly Society In Coronavirus Threat Lockdown

The coronavirus threat has forced governments to impose a disruptive change in our life styles, which may seem very inconvenient and irritating to us in the present circumstances, but it may be worth considering to continue with some of these changes in the interest of society, economy and environment. The modern economy involved unnecessary travel, both long term long distance[Read More…]

April 6, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Living With Type 1 Diabetes

Living With Type 1 Diabetes

Living with something like this requires a great amount of motivation, positive mindset and a healthy living. Struggling with diabetes or any disease in fact is not easy and it breaks you at many points of your life because you loose hope and the desire to live. It is important to not give up and accept your body with the[Read More…]

April 6, 2020 Life/Philosophy
 Romance of Fire: The life of Ernest Mandel

 Romance of Fire: The life of Ernest Mandel

Aside from Tony Cliff (and the ‘old man’ himself) few can claim intellectual leadership of the Trotskyist movement like Ernest Mandel can. He was not only the pillar of the Fourth Internationale but also the most widely published Belgian author since Georges Simenon. He gave the prestigious Alfred Marshall lectures at Cambridge in 1967, and produced books, articles, and pamphlets[Read More…]

April 5, 2020 Life/Philosophy
If n-Coronavirus Passionately Falls In Love With Me, This Is What I’ll Do As A Medical Doctor With Fifty Years Experience

If n-Coronavirus Passionately Falls In Love With Me, This Is What I’ll Do As A Medical Doctor With Fifty Years Experience

Into the seventieth year of life and having survived a life-threatening heart attack in January 2017, I’m fit as a fiddle – thanks to Mother Nature – and do my bit as an activist along with co-workers in Delhi. Were n-Coronavirus to take abode in my body and I develop mild symptoms like ‘flu’, I’ll quarantine myself strictly at home.[Read More…]

April 5, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Notes from Myanmar: Humans versus Viruses

Notes from Myanmar: Humans versus Viruses

A reflection on Covid-19 virus outbreak by San Lin Tun Birds are at ease, showing no worries, looking down at the helter-skelter of humans, struggling and striving to survive under this ruthless virus’ attack. Before that, birds caused flu and migratory birds could not be seen easily. That time, people hated birds; they stopped bird watching for the fear posed by[Read More…]

April 4, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Covid-19 – Postlude Human Life on Planet Earth ?

Covid-19 – Postlude Human Life on Planet Earth ?

If the warfare against each other and Planet earth continues, the Cosmic experiment with human life, which in principle could support its  harmonious and joyous flourishing existence far into the future, could soon come to a premature end. This would be one of the supreme tragedies of the universe. Our Biological Vulnerability The Pandemic Covid-19 as it builds in intensity[Read More…]

April 4, 2020 Life/Philosophy
There’s Class Warfare and The Rich are Winning

There’s Class Warfare and The Rich are Winning

Co-Written by Thomas Klikauer and Norman Simms Even since investment billionaire Warren Buffet told us, There’s class warfare, all right…but it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning, we have known three things: firstly, there is a class system under capitalism; secondly, there is also class war between the two classes – the working class and[Read More…]

April 2, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Tribal Intolerance

Tribal Intolerance

Judaism, Islam, Christianity, Hinduism, and many other religions groups could be considered tribes; a social division within a society consisting of groupings of individuals having commonality, in this case, their religious views. These tribes share very similar high moral values; love of family, looking out for the poor and downtrodden and obedience of their religion’s dictates. Yet there seems to[Read More…]

April 1, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Life under Shelter-in-Place

Life under Shelter-in-Place

Last night, the above picture image with a hopeful message, I sent to my older brother, on his birthday. Of course, there was also a personal message where I wished him well. I got his reply this morning where he said, “Thank you! Stay safe and stay calm. This is a challenging time for all. Best, Sjbhai” Time in the[Read More…]

March 31, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Leadership in Corona Times

Leadership in Corona Times

The word “Leadership” has been diluted to the point of being water-logged; so I hesitated to write this article lest anyone compare what is needed now to the scenarios that usually impel the term to be used. Business-speak is the culprit here, the cause of the dilution. We use the term to describe any decision-making that leads to profit or[Read More…]

March 30, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Not our crowning glory

Not our crowning glory

Is it funny that every time Man thinks that he has it all figured out, Nature (or fate if you like to call it) just jolts him back to reality? Like Will E Coyote and his spanking new latest invention from ACME Corporation, it just falls flat and blows right on his face again and again, and Roadrunner always goes[Read More…]

March 30, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Jatin and Me

Jatin and Me

One of the most stupid platitudes, an old adage, that I have ever heard is “Whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” With a sarcastic tone of voice in my head, I think, “Yeah, right.” My friend Jatin lost both of his children through separate ways. The saying is certainly not applicable to him and what about me? Well, I[Read More…]

March 30, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Why You Need to Pay for Digital Content NOW!

Why You Need to Pay for Digital Content NOW!

Why do we Balk at Paying for Digital Content? Some years ago, I wrote a piece called Paying for nothing is Paying for Something in Countercurrents.org. The premise of the article was simple: The aversion for paying for digital content is short-sighted and ultimately very damaging to the overall quality of content produced, to journalism (especially investigative journalism), and to[Read More…]

March 30, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Civilized, Barbarians, Savages

Civilized, Barbarians, Savages

23 Mar 2020 – A civilization or culture is defined as a set of customs, traditions, ethics, values, language, music, dance, gastronomy, clothing, religion, and social and political organization of a people, ethnic group, tribe, or nation. British scholars of the 19th century classified the peoples and races as Civilized, Barbarians and Savages, based on their respective “evolutions.” Such classification[Read More…]

March 28, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Disease Distancing, Not “Social Distancing” | Kancha Ilaiah Shepherd

Disease Distancing, Not “Social Distancing” | Kancha Ilaiah Shepherd

Ever since the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, announced national lock down on March 24, 2020 to fight Covid–19 and declared that “Social Distancing” is the only solution to save India from the Corona Pandemic, all Chief Ministers are also using the same coinage in  India. We must use ‘Disease Distancing’ not Social Distancing because India is a country of social[Read More…]

March 28, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Rehabilitation Center Life: The Good And The Bad

Rehabilitation Center Life: The Good And The Bad

My favorite parts of being in a a rehabilitation place were fivefold: First, I loved helping hurt others. What a blast it was after learning to walk again at the facility. One of my acts included helping a man, Robert, whose short term memory was deficient. So I wrote instructions and phone numbers for him to find his car, his[Read More…]

March 28, 2020 Life/Philosophy
How To Save The Nation Sitting At Home | Kancha Ilaiah Shepehrd

How To Save The Nation Sitting At Home | Kancha Ilaiah Shepehrd

We are all house arrested now because of Coronavirus for our own safety. We do not know how to live like this. In India and in many countries during lock down period people do not know how to spend time at home and use it for personal and community benefit. The famous American astronaut Scott Kelly who spent one year[Read More…]

March 27, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Am I not good enough?

Am I not good enough?

Being a 90s kid was way different than being a kid of today; I mean when I see my 4-year old niece, I feel like how the definition of fun and games have evolved and changed over the years for kids – we used to be the ones playing in the mud, climbing trees, fighting for our turns on the[Read More…]

March 25, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Hope in Troubling Times

Hope in Troubling Times

My college is closed, classes are off and examinations have been deferred. We need to go in only if and when there is a need. It is not a holiday as I keep telling all my students, it is a shutdown, done for the sake of social distancing and isolation.  It is difficult convincing all about the seriousness of it[Read More…]

March 24, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Mystic Mash …..looks like dog food, tastes like heaven!

Mystic Mash …..looks like dog food, tastes like heaven!

It’s a fair question: could a culinary offering be seen as “mystic”? I did consider the question utilizing all dimensions then active in my mind when naming the within recipe “Mystic Mash”. So here’s why, as an adjective “mystic” connotes “feeling”, something inherently born in consciousness. As a sceptic person, I am loathe to accept “food” is devoid of consciousness.[Read More…]

March 24, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Historic Paris Commune Day Greetings To The Working Class

Historic Paris Commune Day Greetings To The Working Class

Today, March 18, is a red letter day for the working class and all true friends of the workers in the country and throughout the world. For, on this day, one hundred forty-seven years ago, in the municipality of Paris, in France, the Parisian workers garnered a historic greatest achievement. Their proletarian revolution triumphed and established the first working class[Read More…]

March 21, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Nāad: A Call in Waiting

Nāad: A Call in Waiting

A stranger in a strange land, Bushra Punjabi reflects on the condition of being away from home and at home within the confines of memory. In such a mode, she reflects on what it means to be Kashmiri in an uncertain present, between an imposing past and an impending future. In this quagmire of time, the writer and sociology researcher[Read More…]

March 20, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Remembering Ghulam-ud-Din Khan

Remembering Ghulam-ud-Din Khan

Some people meet their maker after receiving a worldly commendation for every good they do. However, some meet their end without coming into public notice although they also contribute to society considerably. Truth be told, popularity is meaningless to great men. From a spiritual point of view, neither popularity elevates anyone’s status nor does concealment diminish it. But when a[Read More…]

March 17, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Mir Syed Ali Hamadani (R.A.) and advent of Islam in Kashmir

Mir Syed Ali Hamadani (R.A.) and advent of Islam in Kashmir

Religions are part of human lives with people having affiliations to different and particular religions. They are an integral part of human lives and preach the same message of peace and brotherhood. Islam is also one of the monotheistic and major religion in the world having an enormous following of 1.8 billion Muslims in the world. Prophet Muhammad (SAW) is[Read More…]

March 14, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Care For Your Kidney

Care For Your Kidney

The human body is a compound, well-developed machine consisting of many parts, each for a specific vital function. Among these parts, the Kidney constitutes a ‘life-sustaining organ’. Kidneys, two in number are bean-shaped organs located against back muscles in the upper abdominal area. Kidneys have an important role in our physiology. In addition to cleaning blood, kidneys maintain salt and[Read More…]

March 12, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Revisiting Past And Intentions Ahead

Revisiting Past And Intentions Ahead

Failure will never overtake me if my determination to succeed is strong enough.Success is the result of perfection, hard work, learning from failure, loyalty, and persistence.Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts..!!! Today I’m writing about my struggle and challenges which I have faced in my life. This scholar turned executive[Read More…]

March 10, 2020 Life/Philosophy
My good town

My good town

I live in a stable neighborhood. It has single family homes, one multiple family home and two homes for two families as far as I know. Many of the homes date to the 1800’s. One neighbor loaned his second family space to a financially poor mother and her child who had fled an abusive man in anther town, the child’s[Read More…]

March 9, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Walking Machine

The Walking Machine

Last time when I was travelling for a seminar, I was surprised at the kind of crowd in Bangalore airport. It was usual for people to stand waiting in at least 5 queues before you reach your seat. At the security, as usual I also had to place my hand bag, mobile phone, laptop and other things. These days they[Read More…]

March 8, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Remembering Clara Zetkin on March 8

Remembering Clara Zetkin on March 8

Clara Zetkin, one of the daughters of the working classes, is as bright as ever in the annals of working people’s struggles for rights – rights to life and dignity. Clara, an epitome of proletarian struggle, steadfastness and courage, always stood for the proletarian people, and never confused the women question with a bourgeois worldview. Clara (July 5, 1857-June 20,[Read More…]

March 8, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Writings in the Northwest Wind: The Poems of Zhou En Lai

Writings in the Northwest Wind: The Poems of Zhou En Lai

Zhou En Lai was a man like any other; with hopes and dreams; failures and successes. In his heart beat the throb of humanity for a better world; under strain it tilted to temptation; in death-bed it mourned mistakes and milestones alike. On this, 122nd anniversary of his birth; it might behoove us to look into a little known side[Read More…]

March 7, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Importance of Critical Thinking

The Importance of Critical Thinking

You can fool all the people some of the time and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time. The saying resembles a logical syllogism in structure, but it isn’t. Taking it apart in thirds, it’s doesn’t follow that “you can fool all the people some of the time” because it’s[Read More…]

March 7, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Katie Hill’s tell-all book: “She Will Rise”

Katie Hill’s tell-all book: “She Will Rise”

Katie Hill, then a Democratic Party candidate from California’s 25th Congressional district, in 2018. Former congresswoman,Katie Hill, a Democrat from California may have been down but not gone. In the eyes of the world, her political career had ended as a first-time junior congresswoman in the fall of 2019, just after ten months of taking oath of office. A promising[Read More…]

March 6, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Universal access to sexual and reproductive health services is a human rights imperative

Universal access to sexual and reproductive health services is a human rights imperative

The Asia Pacific region is home to more than half of the global population and many low-income countries. While the region is witnessing rapid economic growth, gender inequalities persist and sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services are far from being available to all. In the lead up to this year’s International Women’s Day and the forthcoming 10th Asia Pacific Conference[Read More…]

March 6, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Profile of a predator

Profile of a predator

I have tried to provide a warning to others about their staying away from psychopaths. Of course, it is impossible in some circumstances, such as my sister and my knowing four of them while growing up. (Imagine a brother trying to have sex with you since you were thirteen years old. Imagine him continuing this behavior when you are old,)[Read More…]

March 6, 2020 Life/Philosophy
 The kleptomaniac

 The kleptomaniac

Watch out, I recommend, for narassistic psychopaths in your life. Often they are kleptomaniacs, who do everything to destroy others and gain something for themselves. I should know since my mother’s side of the family has included males with this dreadful affliction since the 1600’s. Indeed, my sister and I, unbeknown to each other, started investigating this disease at the[Read More…]

March 5, 2020 Life/Philosophy
“No stepping out” is the life-influencing message of breast cancer survivor

“No stepping out” is the life-influencing message of breast cancer survivor

International Women’s Day special I was born and brought in a happy family in New Delhi. I had a twin sister and a younger brother.  Both my parents were working. I graduated from Hindu College, Delhi University in 1977 and went to Peoples’ Friendship University in Moscow (erstwhile USSR) for an integrated course in Geology. Finally, back home again, I[Read More…]

March 4, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Communist Manifesto Remembered-Part 3

Communist Manifesto Remembered-Part 3

Top 10 Goals in the Communist Manifesto, Accomplished in America So says a report, in recent years, By Joe Jarvis (May 05, 2018) in thedailybell.com. Notwithstanding its anti-communist venom, lies and sarcasm, besides its own interpretations, the interesting if not curious report, extracts of which are given below, is worth noting. How profound is the perceived influence of the Manifesto,[Read More…]

March 2, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Is the economy to blame for woes of some?

Is the economy to blame for woes of some?

 I know information about several neighbors. Here in a small nutshell are three of them. Neighbor one supports himself by selling and laying down pesticides. It is a subject about which he knows job-wise. He also knows that he is dispensing poisons that contaminate the air, soil and water supply. Indeed when spraying, he wears protective gear that makes him[Read More…]

March 2, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The God Brings “Godless World” to Its Knees!

The God Brings “Godless World” to Its Knees!

Over seven billion is the current global population. Total death toll by coronavirus is roughly 3,500 over the past 2 months. For the sake of simplicity, I have reduced the world population from 7.7 billion to 7 billion; and doubled the coronavirus fatalities number to 7,000. So if we divide 7000 by 7 billion, we get this: 0.000001%. Even that[Read More…]

March 1, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Reciprocal Altruism

Reciprocal Altruism

   Treating others with trust and happiness, and hoping for their self-realisation seems to be natural behaviour that follows natural laws. 2500 years ago the Buddha had to leave his sheltered home and venture into the alleyways and bye-ways of Greater Magadha to learn about common sense and natural laws. The habit of treating others with trust and affection is[Read More…]

February 28, 2020 Life/Philosophy
How we stay blind to the story of power

How we stay blind to the story of power

If one thing drives me to write, especially these blog posts, it is the urgent need for us to start understanding power. Power is the force that shapes almost everything about our lives and our deaths. There is no more important issue. Understanding power and overcoming it through that understanding is the only path to liberation we can take as[Read More…]

February 26, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Democracy: from Athenian Origins to 21st Century America

Democracy: from Athenian Origins to 21st Century America

I will not write much here.  Those who read me often hear enough of my words and have become familiar with my convictions and concerns.  What I am doing instead is putting together a series of quotations from African-American philosopher Cornel West, from his essay Putting on Our Democratic Armor from the book, DEMOCRACY MATTERS (1).  Dr. West committed these[Read More…]

February 26, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Big Tech’s Inevitable Reckoning

Big Tech’s Inevitable Reckoning

Though unpopular in many circles, Karl Marx wrote passionately about the inherent contradictions of capitalism. While his arguments were complex, some of the pillars can be simplified to suggest that these contradictions are created by capitalism’s constant need to grow. In different economic circles- much more popular than the Marxist circle — growth is synonymous with what’s good and right.[Read More…]

February 25, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Language and democracy

Language and democracy

Languages, connected to economy including market, trade and commodity, are in conflict and in collaboration with contending class forces. Thus, in general, and not taking into consideration stages society passes, languages are [1] inseparable question of democracy, and, in particular cases, of democratic struggle, and [2] a tool for subjection. The two contradictory positions depend on conflicting classes using it[Read More…]

February 24, 2020 Life/Philosophy
FILE - In this Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2011 file photo, Sacramento County inmates watch television at the Rio Cosumnes Correctional Center, in Elk Grove, Calif.  Counties across California are taking steps to increase jail capacity or found alternatives to incarceration to deal with the increase of offenders who will be their responsibility under a state law that took effect Oct. 1. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File)

The new informal Jim Crow

Here is Jim Crow when I was a child in Florida. Blacks couldn’t go to white restaurants, motels, gas stations or bathrooms. They had something called The Green Book when traveling in the South of the USA. It showed where they could go. I wish that I were making this information up. Yet I can’t to save my life. It’s[Read More…]

February 23, 2020 Life/Philosophy
What Would You Do If?

What Would You Do If?

Fred: OK. So you’re a pacifist. What would you do if someone were, say, attacking your grandmother? Joan: Attacking my poor old grandmother? Fred: Yeah, you’re in a room with your grandmother and there’s a guy about to attack her and you’re standing there. What would you do? Joan: I’d yell, “Three cheers for Grandma!” and leave the room.”  Fred: No,[Read More…]

February 20, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Discussion on dealing with adversity

Discussion on dealing with adversity

  I wrote to a friend: I want to tell you about two of my fights that infect my bad dreams. One involves a heritage apple farm in my neighborhood. On the plus side Boyleston botanical hill took slips from the trees to keep the genetics going. On the negative side, the farm owner, after the old guys who’d owned[Read More…]

February 19, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Labeling, an awful occurrence

Labeling, an awful occurrence

I was taught in teacher training classes never to label children. It can usually only cause damage. I didn’t need to learn that message. Often it is a form of bullying and abuse that I had already seen as a child. Tina Tonkel a classmate of mine was repeatedly shunned and ridiculed at school by her peers. Indeed she had[Read More…]

February 18, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Bonbibi deity

Nature, Bonbibi, American cetologist in the Sundarbans

To find answers about how to define the idea of nature, French anthropologist Philippe Descola went to the depths of the Amazon to find the Achuars, an indigenous tribe of the Ecuadorian and Peruvian descent. He was interested in finding why they lived remote from others, isolated in their respective groups, under the domination of nature. In the process, he[Read More…]

February 17, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Tithing And Religions

Tithing And Religions

I have nothing against any religious views unless they face off against my values. Then watch me fly at the wrong that I see. After all, how could I take away a religious view that someone believes that brings comfort and joy? How wrong would be that? So this Christian lady, who I met in a grocery store, told me[Read More…]

February 16, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Humanity Means Being Humane

Humanity Means Being Humane

Humanity means *“the quality of being humane, benevolent”, it also meansbeing kind, compassionate, understanding, sympathetic, empathetic, gentle and generous. But weseem to have forgotten what humanity really means. To us, nowadays, humanity only means that we are human i.e. bipedal primate mammals. Not only that, we ridicule those do have humane character traits and consider them impractical misfits. We think they[Read More…]

February 15, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Modern Childhood’s Shortage of Honest Inspiring Adults

Modern Childhood’s Shortage of Honest Inspiring Adults

Most would agree that happy, healthy, bright children are an ideal goal and a wonderful outcome, but kids also need genuinely good and sensible adult examples and inspiration and instruction. Outstanding adult mentors ought to be commonplace, prolific. Such is not the case now in the so-called ‘western world’. Integrity has been marginalized, and a mad matrix based on deception[Read More…]

February 14, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Tribalism

Tribalism

Tribalism is rampant on both the micro and macro scale. Whether in contentious actions by individuals or entire nations, it kicks into play as a survival mechanism by biological evolutionary roots. This because through it, people ensure that their own group gets the power, territory and goods. So of course there is going to be racism, casteism, hatred of people[Read More…]

February 12, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Celebration of Sant Guru Ravidass Birthday

Celebration of Sant Guru Ravidass Birthday

On 9th Feb, 2020, Dalits across India celebrated Sant Guru Ravidass birthday with pomp and show. I had the opportunity to see a huge gathering of people on the streets of Jalandhar(Punjab). People across all Dalit communities marched together happily. It was good to see a wonderful spectacle on the streets. Shops were set up alongside the main road from[Read More…]

February 10, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Unlikely Confluences:  Sarah Bernhardt, Nikola Tesla and Swami Vivekananda

Unlikely Confluences:  Sarah Bernhardt, Nikola Tesla and Swami Vivekananda

            In one of those obscure, seemingly unlikely, yet epoch-making encounters in the grand pageant of human interactions, the paths of three trailblazers of contemporary history- the divinely graceful French actress and singer, Sarah Bernhardt, the Yugoslav inventor-genius par excellence Nikola Tesla, and the Indian cyclonic monk and firebrand Vedantist, Swami Vivekananda, came together in ostensibly mysterious ways towards the[Read More…]

February 3, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Hovering in Cyberspace

Hovering in Cyberspace

We live in a fabricated reality where the visible world became nearly meaningless once the screen world became people’s “window on the world.”  An electronic nothingness replaced reality as people gleefully embraced digital wraparound apparitions.  These days people still move about in the physical world but live in the electronic one.  The result is mass hallucination. This is the fundamental[Read More…]

January 30, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Serving Others And Sometimes Facing Repercussions

Serving Others And Sometimes Facing Repercussions

A friend of mine sent me this entire article. He prefaced it with: Spot on. S…. The appalling vanity of Western feminists who think Margaret Atwood writes about them | The Spectator Imagine a country where women have no jobs, no rights and are valued only for reproductive success. Imagine a country where girls aren’t taught to read in case[Read More…]

January 30, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Not in Gandhi’s Name -The Importance of Reading Gandhi as a Philosopher of Dissent

Not in Gandhi’s Name -The Importance of Reading Gandhi as a Philosopher of Dissent

  The irony of the ruling party’s appropriation of Gandhi comes undone time and again by its antithetical practices. What else captures the irony better than the fact that the government which is celebrating Dandi March across its various cultural organs for his 150th birth centenary is also simultaneously, not only disallowing or overlooking democratic protests but unleashing brutal repression[Read More…]

January 29, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Humans Love Violence: Gandhi and the World Economic Forum

Humans Love Violence: Gandhi and the World Economic Forum

As we approach the 72nd anniversary of the assassination of Mohandas K. Gandhi on 30 January 1948, it is worth reflecting on one simple fact that he did not realize. His efforts to teach humanity that conflict, including violent conflict, could be resolved without violence were based on one fundamentally flawed assumption: that at least some humans were interested in,[Read More…]

January 28, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The lure of American green card and elderly parents

The lure of American green card and elderly parents

How much is an American green card and ultimately a naturalized citizenship worth to elderly sub-continental parents? A lot! How many more do you think would be willing to give up their independence and the comfort of their own cocoon to immigrate to America? Many parents would happily give up living their retired lives in the sub-continent in exchange for[Read More…]

January 14, 2020 Life/Philosophy
A Karmayogi In Suicide Country

A Karmayogi In Suicide Country

   Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.  – Margaret Mead A highly welcome and discernible sign on the Indian development landscape is that many bright brains from the best of universities are foregoing high salaries to commit themselves to development issues such as[Read More…]

January 12, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The “Silence” of Polite Company

The “Silence” of Polite Company

As we usher in 2020, there is only one resolution to avoid- silence. For many, the New Year is a time of reflection, of calm deliberation. That’s all fair enough in placid circumstances. In such times- such that they exist-everyone has a right to stop, to think, to consider, to audit the soul. To indulge. But we must do so[Read More…]

January 4, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Searching Life and Enigmatic Death of Albert Camus

The Searching Life and Enigmatic Death of Albert Camus

“Everyone wants the man who is still searching to have already reached his conclusions.  A thousand voices are already telling him what he has found, and yet he knows he hasn’t found anything. Should he search on and let them talk?  Of course.” – Albert Camus, “The Enigma” in Lyrical and Critical Essays Albert Camus’ search ended sixty years ago[Read More…]

January 4, 2020 Life/Philosophy
Why the award of the 2019 Physics Nobel hearkens back to Meghnad Saha

Why the award of the 2019 Physics Nobel hearkens back to Meghnad Saha

  The Nobel Prize in Physics 2019 was awarded “for contributions to our understanding of the evolution of the universe and Earth’s place in the cosmos” with one half to James Peebles “for theoretical discoveries in physical cosmology”, the other half jointly to Michel Mayor and Didier Queloz “for the discovery of an exoplanet orbiting a solar-type star.” It recognised[Read More…]

January 4, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The existential crisis of teachers in the age of technology!

The existential crisis of teachers in the age of technology!

            For many of us, a university is (was?) a critical place for the interpretation and making sense of everydayness; a place for envisaging a just society; an important site where ideas and ideologies are debated and developed. Freedom of criticality and liberty of creativity were always remained the core and central to university teaching-learning processes. The ideas on education[Read More…]

January 4, 2020 Life/Philosophy
The Making of a Teenage Genius

The Making of a Teenage Genius

  Child prodigies have been with us since early times. But over the epochs, many of them have had their genius questioned—mostly as to whether or not a parent or a mentor was behind their amazing skills. It is only when their talents were authentically established that people around them could acknowledge them as teenage wonders. Nagpur’s Shreenabh Agrawal is[Read More…]

January 2, 2020 Life/Philosophy
A Liberatory Liberal Arts Education for Those in Prison: A Review of the College Behind Bars Documentary 

A Liberatory Liberal Arts Education for Those in Prison: A Review of the College Behind Bars Documentary 

Co-Written by James Anderson and Katy Anderson A few years ago, one of us rode handcuffed in the back of a cop car from Bond County Jail to Logan Correctional Center in Lincoln, Ill., which would become a near-living hell of a home for two months (prior to a transfer to Decatur Correctional Center). Before getting to Logan, you have[Read More…]

December 31, 2019 Life/Philosophy
A Middle Class Professional Could Joyfully Consume Less, Comfortably Save More, Share Liberally & Be In Activism. A Lived Experience

A Middle Class Professional Could Joyfully Consume Less, Comfortably Save More, Share Liberally & Be In Activism. A Lived Experience

Early this year it was learnt that after 17 years of its existence Countercurrents.org (CC) – which has performed a stellar and useful role – was on the verge of closure. There was said to be a shortfall of Rs. 4 lakhs (USD 6000/- approx.) for its minimal requirement of Rs. 10 lakhs (USD 14,000). And that, too, just for[Read More…]

December 28, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Confronting Paradigms- Karl Marx And Sigmund Freud

Confronting Paradigms- Karl Marx And Sigmund Freud

HISTORICAL PARADOX Freudo- Marxism, historically has been identified as a tradition dedicated to or rigorously attempting to synthesize the works of Karl Marx and the Psychoanalytic theories of Sigmund Freud.  The first attempts of synthesis were made during 1930 to 1945 in the wake of rise and fall of Nazi flush in History. It was also a process of retreat[Read More…]

December 28, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Why Rama is not everybody’s hero

Why Rama is not everybody’s hero

The immediate provocation for this article is Bibek Debroy’s essay “Being Fair to Rama” that appeared in The New Sunday Express Magazine on November 24, 2019. Debroy’s central plea – to be fair to Rama, and to read the Ramayana for what it is – is, ironically, situated amid the mounting of a brazen fascist agenda by the Narendra Modi-Amit[Read More…]

December 26, 2019 Life/Philosophy
When I Turned 40

When I Turned 40

When I turned 40, my friends threw a party for me. We had great food, drink, and music. Several good friends read messages about me aloud. It was touching. I remember thinking how lucky I was to have such a loving family and such caring friends. I also remember the enormous guilt I felt when I made it to 40.[Read More…]

December 18, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Christmas in America

Christmas in America

  Deck the halls with boughs of holly, Fa la la la la, la la la la Tis the season to be jolly Fa, la la la la, la la la la In a collection of multiple surveys from the past decade, PEW finds that 65 percent of American adults now call themselves Christian. People of Christian faith celebrate the[Read More…]

December 17, 2019 Life/Philosophy
A Totalitarian Republic?

A Totalitarian Republic?

Faction: A number of citizens, whether amounting to a minority or majority of the whole, who are united and actuated by some common impulse of passion, or of interest, adverse to the rights of other citizens, or to the permanent and aggregate interests of the community—James Madison The executive of the modern state is but a committee for managing the[Read More…]

December 15, 2019 Life/Philosophy
1964 was a Good Year

1964 was a Good Year

On the left, Farrukh Mirza and on the right; myself. I have known Farrukh since we were both 5 years old. We went to school together. He is now a Doctor in California. Not bad for 2; 56 year old Asian Uncles from the East. This picture was taken in South London when we met up after many years. Both[Read More…]

December 14, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Colonialism and Academic Knowledge Production

Colonialism and Academic Knowledge Production

Colonialism and knowledge production: Colonialism is much more than establishing colonies in the non-western world to exploit raw materials for the western metropolitan centres. It is a system of hegemonic power and domination of the colonized by the colonizers, economic, physical as well as psychological. Colonialism is a product of ‘western’ civilization who is obliged for its internal reason to[Read More…]

November 20, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Impeachment: What Is At Risk

Impeachment: What Is At Risk

Today, as the public phase of impeachment hearings are underway, I am watching while reading from the Life of Frederick Douglass.  Sadly, I admit to not trusting the American people as much as I might to see clearly, think honestly, and do what is right.  I would welcome being mistaken in my skepticism. However, I am certain not to trust[Read More…]

November 15, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Poisoning Your Children

Poisoning Your Children

Do you have the right to screw up your children’s lives by poisoning them against fellow humans, in our case, fellow Americans?  If you are biased towards others, that is entirely up to you, but you have the choice to free yourself and enjoy the rest of your life or carry it to your grave or crematorium. A doctor kid,[Read More…]

November 7, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Dear Son….

Dear Son….

Dear son, You must be aware of the many happenings in Kerala, including the arrest of young men in recent days. As sleep evaded me and I lie awake at midnight, I felt like sharing some thoughts with you. These are my dreams and hopes for a person like you with intense thoughts and stances in life. I am aware[Read More…]

November 6, 2019 Life/Philosophy
 Prelude to a Socioeconomic Class Analysis of/in Academia (as a Precursor to Classlessness)

 Prelude to a Socioeconomic Class Analysis of/in Academia (as a Precursor to Classlessness)

Lately, in an Introduction to Cultural Studies class I’m teaching at the University of California, Riverside, in between oral surgery and putting in work for lecture duties at another institution, I’ve been discussing socioeconomic class on – and as satirized as well as normalized by – The Simpsons. For this multi-part lecture focused on the class dynamics of everyone’s favorite[Read More…]

November 6, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Understanding Autism through a TV mom’s eyes

Understanding Autism through a TV mom’s eyes

A few nights ago, I watched a poignant and slightly heart wrenching Bengali drama on YouTube that shines a light on disorders like autism. It was the first time that I saw a drama script was written to raise awareness about autism in a developing country like Bangladesh. The 2014 drama showcases what parenting a child with special needs is[Read More…]

November 6, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Open Letter to Yale University Authorities – Don’t Steal/Hijack/Subvert the Collective Work of ABVA, New Delhi, India.Scrap Brudner Prize 2019

Open Letter to Yale University Authorities – Don’t Steal/Hijack/Subvert the Collective Work of ABVA, New Delhi, India.Scrap Brudner Prize 2019

It has been brought to our notice that the official website of LGBT Studies, Yale University states that the Brudner prize 2019-20 is being awarded posthumously to Siddhartha Gautam(SG) for his invaluable contribution to the LGBT struggle in India. SG joined AIDS Bhedbhav Virodhi Andolan (ABVA) briefly for about two years and worked with six other co-authors of Less than[Read More…]

November 3, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Attitude

Attitude

“Can we change their attitude?” “No.” “Can they change their own attitude?” “Yes.” “So, what is our goal? To change their attitude, or to convince them that they need to change it themselves?” “That is challenging, difficult, will take sweat and tears……….do I really want to even try it?” “Ah! We are now at the root of the problem and[Read More…]

November 2, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Dirty Hands

Dirty Hands

“You should therefore know that there are two ways to fight: one while abiding by the rules, the other by using force. The first approach is unique to Man; the second is that of beasts. But because in many cases the first method will not suffice, one must be prepared to resort to force. This is why a ruler needs[Read More…]

October 29, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Ground zero: Frontline champions lead the fight to #endTB as global meet opens in India

Ground zero: Frontline champions lead the fight to #endTB as global meet opens in India

It was indeed a humbling experience for me to interact with a few frontline healthcare workers who are courageously fighting the #endTB battle on the ground in Hyderabad, India (the venue for the 50th Union World Conference on Lung Health). My day began with meeting G Swamy Reddy, project officer at Lepra Society in Hyderabad. He has been involved with[Read More…]

October 29, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Are we forgetting that TB prevention is better than cure?

Are we forgetting that TB prevention is better than cure?

Without infection there is no disease: Nip the TB infection Prevention of new infections of TB bacteria (Mycobacterium tuberculosis) and their progression to active TB disease is critical to reduce the burden of TB disease and to achieve the goal of ending TB by 2030. Around 587 million (35%) of the total estimated 1.7 billion people infected with latent TB[Read More…]

October 28, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Bhagat Singh was for liberation from exploitation

Bhagat Singh was for liberation from exploitation

“Bhagat Singh”, writes Professor Chaman Lal, “was searching for the ultimate ideology of human liberation from all kinds of oppression and exploitation, he had almost become a committed Marxist through his contacts with Kirti group of Ghadrite revolutionaries of Punjab.” Professor Chaman Lal discusses the revolutionary in the “Introduction” of his The Bhagat Singh Reader (HarperCollins Publishers India, Noida, Uttar[Read More…]

October 24, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Marx on Religion

Marx on Religion

Many people keep quoting Karl Marx, as “Religion is the opiate of the masses.” But he never used that exact phrase.The exact quotes from the essay on Hegel’s Philosophy of Right, published in 1844 in “Deutsch-FranzösischeJahrbücher”, during his stay in Paris, are: “Religious suffering is, at one and the same time, the expression of real suffering and a protest against[Read More…]

October 24, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Academia and the Need for Disorientation

Academia and the Need for Disorientation

Around a month ago, a workshop intended to address the gender gap in the sciences called Pressing for Progress 2019 was held at the University of Hyderabad (UoH). Early this October, Telangana Today reported that the UoH Vice Chancellor Appa Rao Podile addressed the attendees, sharing with them his thoughts on the conference and its aims. I read this with[Read More…]

October 23, 2019 Life/Philosophy
The Soul of Vivekananda: Hinduism, Not Hindutva

The Soul of Vivekananda: Hinduism, Not Hindutva

The idea of picturising Vivekananda just as an old school master of Hindutva is where we commit the mistake. Forever it has been said that Vivekananda established the road to Hindutva just because the right wing brigade uses him to establish a monopoly over Hinduism in the name of Hindutva. The roof of Hinduism has been interpreted in a very[Read More…]

October 21, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Speed is not enough, accelerating progress is key to end TB: new WHO report

Speed is not enough, accelerating progress is key to end TB: new WHO report

  Global fight against tuberculosis (TB) is making modest gains, although largely not yet on track to end TB. 2019 Global TB Report of the World Health Organization (WHO) launched on 17 October 2019 gives hope, not despair, because sustained efforts have yielded some significant results. Only European region is on track to meet 2020 targets of 20% reduction in[Read More…]

October 18, 2019 Life/Philosophy
In Conversation with Prof Kevin Brown: The Essence of African – American Culture Is Resistance Against Racial Oppression

In Conversation with Prof Kevin Brown: The Essence of African – American Culture Is Resistance Against Racial Oppression

by Vidya Bhushan Rawat & Prof Kevin Brown Prof Kevin Brown is an African American, who teach law at the Indiana University, US and who is inspired by Dr Ambedkar’s struggle for the untouchables and other marginalized sections of society in India. He has been a regular visitor to India bringing the African American, Hispanic, religious minorities in United States[Read More…]

October 17, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Another victory for the disabled

Another victory for the disabled

Through persistent struggles, the differently abled have achieved access to crucial jobs in society. The number might be small but they have proved that ‘disability ‘ is not hindrance to performing important productive tasks in society. Significant achievement Pranjal Patil , the young woman who battled great odds to become the country’s first visually challenged woman IAS officer took over[Read More…]

October 17, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Revisiting Sir Syed In The Contemporary World

Revisiting Sir Syed In The Contemporary World

 “It is the first and foremost duty of all the well wishers of the country to strive for the welfare of all people irrespective of their caste or religion. For, just as human life and its health is not possible without the soundness all the organ of the body, the prosperity of a nation also is not possible without all[Read More…]

October 15, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Celebrate Dr Baba Saheb Ambedkar as hero of India’s greatest nonviolent revolution after Buddha

Celebrate Dr Baba Saheb Ambedkar as hero of India’s greatest nonviolent revolution after Buddha

It was a massive gathering that had jolted many hearts but brought a new hope in the lives of millions who thronged the venue which today is called as ‘Deekshabhumi’, in Nagpur. The impact is so much that no other political or spiritual leader in the history of post-independence India has that much of following as of Dr Baba Saheb[Read More…]

October 15, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Vidya Bhushan Rawat in Conversationwith Dr. R M Pal

Vidya Bhushan Rawat in Conversationwith Dr. R M Pal

Dr. RM Pal (July 17, 1927 – October 13, 2015) Dr. RM Pal was the principal of the Rajdhani College in Delhi who actively worked with the human rights organization People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL), gave lectures on secularism and issue of Dalits and minorities at various government institutions including police academy and other such places. He was an[Read More…]

October 12, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Human Violence: Pervasive, Multi-dimensional and Extinction-threatening

Human Violence: Pervasive, Multi-dimensional and Extinction-threatening

  Violence is pervasive throughout human society and it has a vast range of manifestations. Moreover, some of these manifestations – particularly the threat of nuclear war (which might start regionally), the climate catastrophe and the ongoing ecological devastation, as well as geoengineering and the deployment of 5G – threaten imminent human extinction if not contained. Separately from these extinction-threatening[Read More…]

October 12, 2019 Life/Philosophy
 Lal Bahadur Shastri: The Forgotten Gandhian

 Lal Bahadur Shastri: The Forgotten Gandhian

Every year, India celebrates 2nd October in shape of the birth anniversary of the two great personalities – Mahatma Gandhi and Lal Bahadur Shastri – who have an irrefutable contribution to the independence of our country from colonial power. We often less remind the birth anniversary of Shri Lal Bahadur as this date is profoundly chosen to remind our beloved[Read More…]

October 12, 2019 Life/Philosophy
NOW-WAR and the SAKE of LIFE

NOW-WAR and the SAKE of LIFE

“the wound of possibility” Soren Kierkegaard Earth is our home; Earth is our origin.  There is not now any more than there has ever been a single, sane human being who can or could have claimed otherwise. Over billions of years, Earth has been in the process of evolving into a robust, living planet—a life place, abundant with intricate interweavers[Read More…]

October 11, 2019 Life/Philosophy
A Brief History of Politeness

A Brief History of Politeness

From political speech to social media tirades, for half a decade or more now, the use of rude language, gestures and threats has become ubiquitous around the globe. The complete absence of politeness – along with (or because of) growing economic woes, political turmoil and ecological destruction –  seems to be the chief characteristic of our times. Politeness emerged in[Read More…]

October 9, 2019 Life/Philosophy
An Envoy of Hope

An Envoy of Hope

The little boy smiled charmingly through the evening just before the surgery.His young parents were dumb with fear about the impending operation the next day when his tiny pelvic girdle would be realigned to enable his almost atrophied limbs to move. With bright lovely eyes that focussed on your face and an ever willing capacity to smile and respond, he[Read More…]

October 6, 2019 Life/Philosophy
On Democracy: 10 Unpalatable Reminders

On Democracy: 10 Unpalatable Reminders

1) Democracies often behave like little children: reluctant to take their medicine—unless irrationally coerced. 2) A democracy’s great weakness is its vanity. The people’s vanity. A mortally dangerous tendency that is constantly in need of assurances that it is the world that is at fault rather than it. 3) In a democracy, it is often the most unpopular president or[Read More…]

October 5, 2019 Life/Philosophy
The Rise of the Right: Interview With John Bellamy Foster

The Rise of the Right: Interview With John Bellamy Foster

by John Bellamy Foster and Farooque Chowdhury [The following interview of Monthly Review editor John Bellamy Foster, completed on August 5, 2019, was conducted by Farooque Chowdhury for Kolkata’s famous socialist weekly Frontier and has appeared this month in their special Autumn issue. It was thus originally intended for a non-U.S. audience. Monthly Review is publishing it as well because[Read More…]

October 2, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Bapu Kuti: A Candle To The Gandhian Flame

Bapu Kuti: A Candle To The Gandhian Flame

“My aim is not to be consistent with my previous statements on a given question, but to be consistent with truth as it may present itself to me at a given moment. The result has been that I have grown from truth to truth ….” — The Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi Vol. 90 Eighty kilometres to the east of Nagpur[Read More…]

September 29, 2019 Life/Philosophy
21st Century Belongs To People Of Vision

21st Century Belongs To People Of Vision

 ‘No matter what views one may hold, the 21st century shall belong only to a people of ‘vision’ and those who care for future,’ wrote Satish Chandra Seth, (1932-2009) the futurist and former civil servant. A science education administrator, Satish is internationally known for inventing a method of assessing the futurist thinking, called Satish-Harva method of scenario building. He was[Read More…]

September 29, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Bhagat Singh, the revolutionary with the goal Socialism

Bhagat Singh, the revolutionary with the goal Socialism

[On Bhagat Singh’s 112th birth anniversary, this article, 1st part of a series, introduces Bhagat Singh Reader by Professor Chaman Lal] The Tribune’s lead informs execution of Bhagat Singh, and Rajguru and Sukhdev, his comrades. Bhagat Singh. The revolutionary. The visionary. The ideological warrior. The organizer. The voice of the exploited. The perspective was this sub-continent, brutalized, tormented, muzzled, appropriated[Read More…]

September 28, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Photo by MarioGuti / iStock.

Tale of the Perfect World

The article below is a reflection on the perfect world, on perfection and ways we perceive perfection. It also directs on how one should move towards the perfect world one desires. Today, I remembered that negative strokes create more impact than positive strokes. This thought itself made me to dwell in fathomless inquiries. People forget what good you do as[Read More…]

September 28, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Gandhian way of changing corporate politics

Gandhian way of changing corporate politics

1.             With the announcement of results of Lok Sabha elections of 2019, deep concerns were voiced by numerous comrades expressing anguish as to what would Narendra Modi’s victory portend for the Constitution and the democracy. During the last five years we have often heard from secular and progressive friends that we are wading through dark and bad times. The[Read More…]

September 21, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Khalsa Aid India: A Journey of Serving the Mankind

Khalsa Aid India: A Journey of Serving the Mankind

Co-Written by Varinder Singh & Ishfaq Majid Khalsa Aid International which is popularly known for its humanitarian relief charity and human saving efforts, is serving the common masses from 1999. Khalsa aid is a non-profit UK based organization that provides relief to the people who are facing any kind of distress. Not only this, Khalsa aid is also popularly known[Read More…]

September 20, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Today’s Imperative: Gandhian Values

Today’s Imperative: Gandhian Values

Third Shambhu Dutta Memorial Lecture, Organized by Transparency International India at IIC, September 9, 2019. Preface to the Lecture I am grateful to Transparency International India for asking me to deliver the Third Shambhu Dutta Memorial Lecture. It is held in the memory of Shri Shambhu Dutta (1918-2016), the founding father of Transparency International India. He was a well-known Gandhian[Read More…]

September 17, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Comparative Political Leadership: Gandhi vs. Contemporary Leaders

Comparative Political Leadership: Gandhi vs. Contemporary Leaders

On 2 October 2019, it will be the 150th anniversary of the birth of Mohandas K. Gandhi in Gujarat, India. I would like to reflect on the visionary leadership that Gandhi offered the world, briefly comparing it with some national leaders of today, and to invite you to emulate Gandhi’s leadership. While Gandhi is best remembered for being the mastermind[Read More…]

September 10, 2019 Life/Philosophy
World Systems and Capitalism: Immanuel Wallerstein’s Legacy

World Systems and Capitalism: Immanuel Wallerstein’s Legacy

“The dead albatross that hangs around our neck is our legacy of arrogance, racism.  And we must struggle to atone, to reconstruct, to create a different historical system.”  So wrote the late sociologist and thinker Immanuel Wallerstein in unequivocal tones of repentance on Europe’s legacy, its “oldest disgrace.” Wallerstein was one of those refreshing types in an increasingly restrictive academy,[Read More…]

September 5, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Out of Luck: The Corrosive Culture of Sports

Out of Luck: The Corrosive Culture of Sports

In an earlier article in Medium, I wrote about a corrosive sports culture that brings out peoples’ baser instincts- from applauding violence to replacing a plural view of humanity with elemental tribalism. In the piece, I also discussed sports-obsession as an example of the abdication of affirmative citizenship, given the time, money, and mental energy people spend on sports versus civic[Read More…]

September 4, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Parallel Lives: Jose Antonio Roman, Jr., Ernest Hemingway and the FBI

Parallel Lives: Jose Antonio Roman, Jr., Ernest Hemingway and the FBI

There is a fact about Hemingway that few people know, and that is that for most of his life  he was surveilled by the FBI. As people have come to realize, that surveillance, along with other factors such as injuries to his head, years of heavy drinking, and his feeling that he had “lost it” as a writer,contributed to the[Read More…]

September 3, 2019 Life/Philosophy
On the Day of my Birth: Witnessing Desperation, Celebrating Triumph

On the Day of my Birth: Witnessing Desperation, Celebrating Triumph

It was my birthday and I was both sad and glad for myself. I had lived a long life, filled with difficulties of every kind one can imagine. I had spent a good portion of it struggling to survive in the face of poverty and want. I had struggled to raise three children, mostly alone, in the midst of that[Read More…]

August 31, 2019 Life/Philosophy
The Faces of Communism in Russia Today

The Faces of Communism in Russia Today

I am taking a long Sunday walk when I come upon them handing out leaflets in front of Kentucky Fried Chicken, in Perovo, the region of Moscow in which I reside. There are four or five of them altogether: young teenagers or those in their early twenties – handing out leaflets. They try to hand me one, and I, assuming[Read More…]

August 28, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Questioning Democracy

Questioning Democracy

Equality. Freedom. Justice. Secularity. Rights. Federalism. People’s government. That’s the general view of democracy we have in our minds. Democracy promises to incorporate all these values while administrating the institutions of society, economy and polity. To be specific, what democracy is to people is what a sickle is to a farmer- a tool to bring good days. But, despite all[Read More…]

August 27, 2019 Life/Philosophy
A Dialectical Materialist Response to “The Metaphysics of Revolution”

A Dialectical Materialist Response to “The Metaphysics of Revolution”

I use a simple formula, perhaps too simple, to teach my students the different categories of philosophical thinking. It is difficult to explain without a visual, but I will try. To begin with there are the two polar opposite ways of thinking, the Metaphysical and the Materialist, or, if one prefers, the Religious and the Scientific. The Metaphysical seeks explanations[Read More…]

August 24, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Holier Than Thou:  A Response to Dan Corjescu’s “On the Persistence of Religion”

Holier Than Thou:  A Response to Dan Corjescu’s “On the Persistence of Religion”

I have yet to find the time to sit down and write a thorough response to Dan Corjescu’s last piece “On the Metaphysics of Revolution”, which was, to my mind, a gross misinterpretation of Socrates in particular,  and on the evolution of revolutionary thought in philosophy in general.  However, on the appearance of this, his second piece, I promised myself[Read More…]

August 22, 2019 Life/Philosophy
The ‘Ayurvedic’ Supervisor: Remembering Biswamoy Pati

The ‘Ayurvedic’ Supervisor: Remembering Biswamoy Pati

My candid association with Dr. Biswamoy Pati began somewhere around 2012 when I eventually settled down for social history of health and medicine as my research theme for MPhil/PhD which was met by an equally enthusiastic and generous response by Dr. Pati. Although he had taught us earlier the paper on Social History of Modern India during post-graduation, the deplorable[Read More…]

August 21, 2019 Life/Philosophy
On the Persistence of Religion

On the Persistence of Religion

We feel that even if all possible sci entific questions be answered, the problems of life have still not been touched at all —Ludwig Wittgenstein Tractatus Recently I received an angry note about the persistence of religion in the modern world as proof of the world’s ongoing irrationality in response to some of my comments in my lately published article[Read More…]

August 21, 2019 Life/Philosophy
The Metaphysics of Revolution

The Metaphysics of Revolution

Socrates was the first revolutionary. He opened up with a legendary oracular search the inner space from which the individual, as we understand him today, would eventually emerge. His “daemon” was that which spoke the necessary freedom and autonomy to become what we are. His was the first lesson. His student, Plato, brought on the second movement. He postulated the[Read More…]

August 20, 2019 Life/Philosophy
The Quest For an Ideal Teacher

The Quest For an Ideal Teacher

The best teacher is the one who suggests rather than dogmatizes, and inspires his listener with the wish to teach himself. ~ Edward G. Bulwer-Lytton Ideal teacher could be somebody who has empathy, understanding, patience and the ability to provide the knowledge of what student seeks in a comprehensive manner by helping him to liberate his mind. Unfortunately not many[Read More…]

August 20, 2019 Life/Philosophy
The Life and Legacy of Samir Amin

The Life and Legacy of Samir Amin

August 12th 2018 marks the first anniversary of the death of Samir Amin, a man who, in my view, was the first, and perhaps the most prolific, global organic intellectual in history. He quite literally traversed the seven continents, meeting with local lefts wherever he could find landfall, participating in their discussions, and building from them some of the most[Read More…]

August 16, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Remembering the late historian Prof. Mushirul Hasan’s ‘Secular Legacy’ on the special occasion of his 70th birth anniversary

Remembering the late historian Prof. Mushirul Hasan’s ‘Secular Legacy’ on the special occasion of his 70th birth anniversary

         It is to be remembered that the late Prof. Mushirul Hasan who was born on 15th August 1949 and passed away -after four years of his serious accident- on 10th December 2018 at Delhi.  At the outset, let me admit that Prof. Hasan had cherished and epitomized the rich heritage of India’s secular and plural legacy. Prof Hasan’s academic[Read More…]

August 16, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Disabled in a capitalist society

Disabled in a capitalist society

Since the major aim of capitalists is to see that maximum production can be extracted from labor, exploitation of workers becomes a key factor. Ordinary workers, thus, face constant harassment, humiliation, misery and burden of work. Disabled, in addition, face alienation and abuse both from the employers as well as society. The Merriam Webster Dictionary offers two definitions of disability.[Read More…]

August 16, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Questioning the Extremely Online

Questioning the Extremely Online

This essay is in regard to a crime that too often goes unmentioned when the conversations turn towards political analysis, the contemporary journalistic scene, and broader social critique: the crime of being extremely online. What does it mean to be extremely online? It mostly is as straightforward as it sounds. Generally, activities such as spending too much time on the[Read More…]

August 15, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Indian State post-1947 Served Imperialists and Strengthened Landlord Base

Indian State post-1947 Served Imperialists and Strengthened Landlord Base

Distortion of Com.T Nagi Reddy’s views is not the way to pay real homage to him How fragile is India’s Constitution, and how illusory are its claims of sovereignty, independence, democracy, secularism and socialism has been noticed repeatedly over the last 70 plus years after 1947 August. RTI and Article 370 were the most recent shocks to some people who[Read More…]

August 13, 2019 Life/Philosophy
What’s your Worth?

What’s your Worth?

Many years ago, in the 1970’s I remember seeing a Russian tractor. India used to have a bilateral trade agreement with the USSR by which we bought all kinds of goods from Russia and paid for them in Indian Rupees, whereby we were able to conserve our meagre foreign exchange. You can read more about that agreement here http://www.commonlii.org/in/other/treaties/INTSer/1953/16.html Russia bought[Read More…]

August 10, 2019 Life/Philosophy
When Comedian Dick Gregory Tried to Bust the Word 

When Comedian Dick Gregory Tried to Bust the Word 

One afternoon in New York City in the spring of 1964, I marched at the head of a small civil rights demonstration, one of the few white people in the group. I was carrying a watermelon. It was a Dick Gregory joke. To say the least, not everyone liked that joke, but I thought it was hilarious, a jab by[Read More…]

August 9, 2019 Life/Philosophy
The Russian Revolution in Retrospect

The Russian Revolution in Retrospect

One may ask why we still think it important to understand the theories and practices of those who came to power in Russia in 1917 and those who have governed for some three quarters of a century with falsehood marking the entire course of the regime’s rise and demise – November 7, 1917 to December 26, 1990.  It matters vitally[Read More…]

August 7, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Remembering the veteran communist leader Tarimala Nagi Reddy on his death anniversary!

Remembering the veteran communist leader Tarimala Nagi Reddy on his death anniversary!

July 28 is the death anniversary of the of veteran communist leader Tarimala Nagi Reddy, known and called by comrades as com. TN. He was a lifelong fighter for the revolutionary program he has committed and dreamed of. In the state of Andhra Pradesh, he attracted hundreds of cadres towards the Communist movement in the process of carrying out his[Read More…]

August 6, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Women We Are Fighting For

Women We Are Fighting For

 There are stories that are unrelated to the news, but can explain much better than many combat reports, why people like meare fighting against the Empire and imperialism, with such determination and vehemence. Not all stories are ‘big’ or ‘heroic’; not all include famous people or iconic struggles. Not all take place onbattlefields. But they ‘humanize’ the struggle. Once in[Read More…]

August 6, 2019 Life/Philosophy
The Walls that Spoke

The Walls that Spoke

In times when the nation treats the public universities as liabilities, we should be crystal clear in demarcating: what is a university and what it is not? A university is not a factory that processes raw materials and brings out finished products. It cannot be reduced into a laboratory that conducts experiments to come up with the desired result. It[Read More…]

August 6, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Try

Try

Judgement by Anonymous Before God’s footstool to confess A poor soul knelt, and bowed his head; “I failed,” he cried. The Master said, “Thou didst thy best—that is success!” It was December 1980. I was sitting on the veranda of my house in Guyana. It was about 9.00 pm, dark, balmy evening in the tropics. As usual on most days in[Read More…]

August 5, 2019 Life/Philosophy
TB is preventable & curable: Zero new infection & zero deaths must become a reality

TB is preventable & curable: Zero new infection & zero deaths must become a reality

TB is preventable, treatable and curable. Science shows how can we effectively prevent, accurately diagnose, treat with effective regimen, and eventually cure TB. But are not we failing to translate scientific wisdom in public health gains? How can we explain over 10 million new cases of TB and 1.6 million TB deaths (including 300,000 TB deaths among people living with[Read More…]

August 5, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Preventing TB is rooted in medical ethics and human rights

Preventing TB is rooted in medical ethics and human rights

With quarter of world’s population infected with latent TB (not active TB disease), and in the light of scientific fact that every new case of active TB disease comes from this pool of population infected with latent TB, the writing on the wall is clear: we cannot put TB prevention on the blindspot anymore if we are to eliminate TB[Read More…]

August 3, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Critique of Paresh Chattopadhyay’s “Twentieth Century Socialism”

Critique of Paresh Chattopadhyay’s “Twentieth Century Socialism”

Paresh Chattopadhyay once visited me at my rented residence after we launched our party, the World Socialist Party (India) here in Calcutta (now Kolkata), 1-3 March 1995. He listened to my long speech via audio cassette of Bishnupur public meeting and highly appreciated it. After a detailed discussion he agreed to send articles in the event we published a journal[Read More…]

August 3, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Lives In Economics

Lives In Economics

Their lives can help us today I would like to announce the publication of a book describing the lives of some of the people who have contributed importantly to economic thought. Their lives can help us today, as the world faces a crisis that has both economic dimensions. The book can be freely downloaded from the following link: http://eacpe.org/app/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Lives-in-economics-by-John-Scales-Avery.pdf The[Read More…]

August 2, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Remembering Asma Jahangir : A Legacy to Cherish

Remembering Asma Jahangir : A Legacy to Cherish

It is now more than a year since Asma Jahangir left us. As August 14-15 approaches, one cannot but recall her, for she was someone who worked tirelessly for human rights as well as better and smoother, peaceful Indo-Pakistan relations. People like her (characterised as an icon and a crusader) and the work they do retain their relevance for not[Read More…]

August 1, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Photo by MarioGuti / iStock.

David Bohm’s “darkness in the human brain.”

It was David Bohm’s thesis that the ignorance of humanity is a matter of closedmindedness. He considered closedmindedness the “darkness in the human brain,” a darkness closing access to the Universal Mind; so defined as a supreme intelligence that communicates through the mode of insight. In this essay we will describe the evolutionary origins of the darkness in the human[Read More…]

July 31, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Is the Indian School Education system prepared for the future?

Is the Indian School Education system prepared for the future?

With the increasing pace of technological advances and globalisation rapidly taking over, India is all set to become the next hub for economic growth. Adding to this is a young population with an average age of 29 years, which puts India at an advantage. But is India’s human capital prepared to face the challenge? The role of education is crucial[Read More…]

July 31, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Taming the activist within: Role of Indian society, media and education

Taming the activist within: Role of Indian society, media and education

Most of us are not stoics yet. Injustice caused to us evokes strong reactions and whenever we feel empowered enough to effect a change in our circumstances, we do. The critical element here is the personal nature of the impact of such an injustice; and this is the key focus which I address in the situations of social movements. Our[Read More…]

July 31, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Is Universal Health Coverage an opportunity to end AIDS and TB?

Is Universal Health Coverage an opportunity to end AIDS and TB?

At the United Nations General Assembly in September 2019, a special United Nations High Level Meeting (UNHLM) will be held on Universal Health Coverage (UHC). 193 countries have promised to deliver on UHC by 2030 by committing to Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). But will push on UHC alone deliver on the promise of health for all where ‘no one is[Read More…]

July 31, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Unwarranted Hysterectomies : A Growing Health Scandal     

Unwarranted Hysterectomies : A Growing Health Scandal     

A study commissioned by the National Health Authority (NHA) of India has recently (Economic Times Report dated July 22, 2019) red-flagged claims made for hysterectomies conducted in private hospitals in at least six states, under the Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY) scheme. It has sought more caution and tighter scrutiny of such claims under the Modi government’s flagship programme[Read More…]

July 30, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Psychology Behind Protest Responses

Psychology Behind Protest Responses

The Milgram experiment conducted by a Yale University psychologist of the same name, has perhaps gone on to become one of the most famous human behavioural experiments to have ever been conducted. It was conducted during the 1960s, when Nazi war criminals including Adolf Eichmann were being put on trial. The basic question was this: were the criminals really at[Read More…]

July 30, 2019 Life/Philosophy
A tale of two positives attracting each other

A tale of two positives attracting each other

I met the two of them at the Clinica Condesa Iztapalapa, in Mexico City, where I had gone to attend the 10th IAS Conference on HIV Science (IAS 2019). Was it a mere coincidence that they had many things in common – they share the same surname; they speak fluent English; they neither drink nor smoke nor are on drugs;[Read More…]

July 29, 2019 Life/Philosophy
The Sacrifice of Ishmael or Issac – A Debate

The Sacrifice of Ishmael or Issac – A Debate

I am a Structural Engineer and I am NOT an Islamic Scholar. But sometimes I do get curious about certain practices among Muslims like Animal Sacrifice and Ritualistic Sacrifice and want to open a debate whether it has sanction of Quran and Allah. In a few days from now millions of Muslims all over the World will be slaughtering animals[Read More…]

July 29, 2019 Life/Philosophy
When Warriors Become Saints

When Warriors Become Saints

As I sit on the small balcony on the top floor of an old house in the working class neighborhood of Alfama in Lisbon, Portugal, it is early evening, the time for wine and voices wafting on the fragrant breeze through the twisting cobble-stoned streets.  The National Pantheon (Panteao Nacional)stares me in the face.  I stare back, and then look[Read More…]

July 27, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Parliament house in New Delhi on July 24th 2015. Express photo by Ravi Kanojia.

What Is ‘Good Governance’, And What Is Not

“Good governance is about the processes for making and implementing decisions. It’s not about making ‘correct’ decisions, but about the best possible process for making those decisions.” goodgovernance.org.au Good governance is the art of looking at problems, diagnosing them and finding solutions through collective decision making. It is the process of decision making with the participation and consensus of all members of society.[Read More…]

July 27, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Writing’s on the wall: No #endAIDS without #endTB

Writing’s on the wall: No #endAIDS without #endTB

TB and HIV both are preventable, but cutting the chain of transmission of HIV and TB is proving to be a daunting task. Treatment exists for both TB and HIV but disease-burden and deaths every year are indeed alarming. With countdown on towards TB and AIDS elimination targets for 2030, the writing on the wall is clear: business as usual[Read More…]

July 27, 2019 Life/Philosophy
The Dialectic of Artificial Intelligence

The Dialectic of Artificial Intelligence

Our struggle to survive hasbeen a relentless drive towards self-destruction.  Sigmund Freud identified two basic human impulses:  Eros, the drive to  survive and reproduce, and Thanatos, the drive towards death and destruction.  However, dialectically speaking, these are not two separate and opposing forces, but a unity of polar opposites which grow out of the same expenditure of energies, exist in[Read More…]

July 26, 2019 Life/Philosophy
The Difference Between Being a Liberal and Being a Progressive

The Difference Between Being a Liberal and Being a Progressive

The difference between liberalism and progressivism is ideological. Historically, liberalism started with John Locke, whose philosophy was superbly summarized, explained, and referenced to its sources, here; but the following will instead quote directly from those sources: Locke (as the commentator said) “praises money as probably no one prior and after him,” because Locke’s 1689 Second Treatise on Government, Sections 49[Read More…]

July 26, 2019 Life/Philosophy
When Donating Blood Broke The Barrier

When Donating Blood Broke The Barrier

You all know my butler Bastian who I have written about earlier. Bastian like most of his tribe spoke ‘Butler English’ and was very snobbish. My wife used to speak to him in the same way to make it easier for both to understand what was going on. So sometimes I would come in to hear, ‘Bastian, tomatoes got, not[Read More…]

July 26, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Santosh Rana: A Rebel with a Cause

Santosh Rana: A Rebel with a Cause

Death has finally overtaken Santosh Rana, the prominent activist-cum-intellectual and one of the foremost leaders of the historic Debra- Gopiballabhpur peasant struggles that attracted attention throughout West Bengal in 1969-70. He died on 29th of June after a prolonged fight with throat cancer at a private hospital of South Kolkata. Hailing from a poor peasant family of West Medinipur, he[Read More…]

July 24, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Achieving 100:100:100 + zero HIV transmission is must to #endAIDS

Achieving 100:100:100 + zero HIV transmission is must to #endAIDS

It has been 38 years and 1 month since the first case of HIV infection was detected in 1981, reminded Dr Anthony Fauci, Director of US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) at the 10th IAS Conference on HIV Science (#IAS2019) taking place in Mexico City. Dr Fauci is a recipient of Robert Koch Award and US Presidential[Read More…]

July 24, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Comrade A. K. Roy – A Memoir

Comrade A. K. Roy – A Memoir

Comrade A. K. Roy, the legendary trade union leader of coal miners in Dhanbad region died on July 21, 2019. With him an era of trade union movement has come to a close. He and later Comrade Shankar Guha Niyogi of Chhatisgarh were pioneers of a new trade movement that came into being in the early 70s and became vigorous[Read More…]

July 23, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Preventing TB is a critical cog in the wheel to #endTB and #endAIDS

Preventing TB is a critical cog in the wheel to #endTB and #endAIDS

Every case of active tuberculosis (TB) disease comes from an individual with latent TB infection. And every new case of latent TB infection is a sign of failing infection control, as someone with active TB disease transmitted the bacteria to an uninfected person. Quarter of world’s population has latent TB. TB continues to be the most common opportunistic infection among[Read More…]

July 22, 2019 Life/Philosophy
The Claimants of Sheila Dikshit’s Delhi!

The Claimants of Sheila Dikshit’s Delhi!

Delhi is the ancient city of India. The city’s history bears testimony to settlements and also to ruins. This order of settling and deserting of the city has been going on since the Mahabharata period. In the medieval period, this city enjoyed eminence as a centre of power and this eminence endured for a long time. It is hardly surprising[Read More…]

July 21, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Marx’s alternative  

Marx’s alternative  

                                                       “It is true that Marx did not believe in drawing up recipes for the cookshops of the future, but he did describe the basis of the society he thought was going to replace[Read More…]

July 19, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Planet of the Surreal – Turning 75 in the Age of Trump

Planet of the Surreal – Turning 75 in the Age of Trump

As I turn 75, there’s no simpler way to put it than this: I’m an old man on a new planet — and, in case it isn’t instantly obvious, that’s not good news on either score. I still have a memory of being a camp counselor in upstate New York more than half a century ago. I was perhaps 20[Read More…]

July 18, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Chharas of Gujarat : ‘Stealing’ the show

Chharas of Gujarat : ‘Stealing’ the show

  As we get closer to India’s 73rd Independence Day on 15th August this year, I realized that we have not yet achieved ‘Sampoorna Swaraj’ or complete and absolute independence. Independence for each and every citizen of the country is still a novel concept for many. Freedom to – live, laugh, speak, work and entertain is not yet a gift[Read More…]

July 16, 2019 Life/Philosophy
DV Rao on The Question of Nationalities -Part-2

DV Rao on The Question of Nationalities -Part-2

(DV Rao’s Death (July 12, 1984)  Anniversary is observed in July every year. His views  on the Problem of Nationalities in India are relevant and useful for students of politics , more so of democrats and revolutionaries. Hence this write-up. Part-1 was published on July 11, 2019. This is Part-2  of the two-part article.) ‘Indian nation’ and nationalism have been[Read More…]

July 13, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Problem of Nationalities in India: DV Rao’s views

Problem of Nationalities in India: DV Rao’s views

(DV Rao’s Death (July 12, 1984)  Anniversary is observed in July every year. His views  on the Problem of Nationalities in India are relevant and useful for students of politics , more so of democrats and revolutionaries. Hence this write-up.) ‘Indian nation’ and nationalism have been under intense discusssion in recent past, including in the latest elections. Those who are[Read More…]

July 11, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Lives In The Peace Movement

Lives In The Peace Movement

I would like to announce the publication of a book describing the lives of some of the people who have contributed importantly to the peace movement. The book can be freely downloaded from the following link: http://eacpe.org/app/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Lives-in-the-peace-movement-by-John-Scales-Avery.pdf I hope that the lives of these women and men can inspire us as we work together to abolish the institution of war. [Read More…]

July 10, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Communism, Socialism: Any Difference?

Communism, Socialism: Any Difference?

In this book, we, like Marx and Engels, have used the names “communism” and “socialism” to mean the same relation of production. Marx and Engels had used the two names alternately to signify the post-revolutionary democratic world system of “cooperative”, “communal”, or universal ownership. Why they preferred communist identity at the beginning of their studies and organization whilst socialist at[Read More…]

July 10, 2019 Life/Philosophy
The Limited Mind: Why Fear is Driving Humanity to Extinction

The Limited Mind: Why Fear is Driving Humanity to Extinction

I have previously written many articles describing one or more aspects of the dysfunctional nature of the typical human mind, together with an explanation of how this came about and what we can do about it. See, for example, many of the articles republished in ‘Key Articles’and the source documents ‘Why Violence?’ and ‘Fearless Psychology and Fearful Psychology: Principles and[Read More…]

July 9, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Remembering Baba Hardi Reshi

Remembering Baba Hardi Reshi

One of the most popular Sufi orders in Kashmir is the Rishi Order. It is the indigenous Sufi order that has originated in Kashmir itself. Many saints belong to this order and all of them are held in high esteem by the people. One among them is Baba Hardi Reshi (R.a) who is adoringly known as ‘Resh Moul’, which means[Read More…]

July 6, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Road-Map To Socialism -Democracy is the road to socialism

Road-Map To Socialism -Democracy is the road to socialism

Win the battle of democracy Do away with private property Abolish the wages system altogether End employment to end unemployment Achieve abundance for all and inscribe on the banners: From each according to their ability, to each according to their needs! An association, in which the free development of each is the condition of free development of all   “Communism[Read More…]

July 6, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Doddi Komarayya : A visualized drawing  (no photo is available)

Telangana  and Martyrdom of Doddi Komarayya

July 4 is the day martyrs of  armed struggle  of Telangana are remembered. That was the day, in 1946,  of martyrdom of Doddi Komarayya, a young man from a poor peasant and shepherd family of Kadivendi village of the then Nalgonda district. (Now it is in Warangal district of Telangana state, TS.)  He was  the first  among  4000 communist and[Read More…]

July 4, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Why I did not renew my driving license?

Why I did not renew my driving license?

Because I realized (better late than never) that it is government’s responsibility to provide safe, convenient, affordable, accessible and humane ways of commuting for all its citizens. When governments fail on its duty then it hides behind the market forces, and co-opts itself in corporate agenda, enticing citizens to own, borrow, rent and use private vehicles to commute. Forcing people[Read More…]

July 2, 2019 Life/Philosophy
The Impossiblist’s Way

The Impossiblist’s Way

“There are but three ways for people to escape their wretched lot. The first is via the liquor-store, the second is the path of the temple; but the third is by way of the social revolution.” – Bakunin In a land of 1.3 billion, an organisation of a dozen or so members  which has never contested an election, based in[Read More…]

July 1, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Falling Into Good Hands

Falling Into Good Hands

                                                      I can never forget or fully recollect that morning when I was taken in a trolley to the Surgical Out patient section of the Thiruvananthapuram Medical College famed for its exemplary service since[Read More…]

July 1, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Vanishing Voices

Vanishing Voices

The cultural damage of homogenising language I am, among other things, a literary translator. When people ask me what I do, I tell them that I translate from Spanish to English. From one language to another. Which is, already, only a half-truth. What I mean – what I don’t say – is that I translate from many Spanishes: from Peninsular[Read More…]

July 1, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Truth Takes Time: Robert Caro’s “Working”

Truth Takes Time: Robert Caro’s “Working”

There is one way- and one way only- to read Robert Caro’s books. Of this, I am certain. For best results, gather provisions, find a nice room, lock yourself in, and turn off your cell phone. You must take all of these steps, not just a few. The reasons are: You must honor Caro’s dedication to political biography and investigative[Read More…]

June 30, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Capitalism vs. The World

Capitalism vs. The World

The love of money is a sin…the root of all evil. Judeo-Christian biblical tradition – O believers Do not devour one another’s wealth by evil means except through trading by mutual consent. Islamic tradition – Sharing wealth is a divine duty, but wealth gained and spent for one’s behalf is evil. Hindu tradition – Is our toleration of the dominating[Read More…]

June 29, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Last Men or New Men? Nietzsche in the Global Age

Last Men or New Men? Nietzsche in the Global Age

Does Nietzsche have anything important to say to us, we the current inhabitants of a global age? Nietzsche speaks of spiritual health as a result of the superabundance of the life force, of a Dionysian affirmation of ones existence of ones process of becoming what one is. The courage of laughter is called for. A profound laughter that is in[Read More…]

June 27, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Marta Harnecker, presente!

Marta Harnecker, presente!

The international left has lost one of its most lucid intellectual, pedagogical educators and determined activists with the passing of Marta Harnecker on June 14, aged 82. Marta will forever be remembered as one of the most influential and prolific writers on the Latin American left, having written almost 90 books covering a wide array of topics and debates on[Read More…]

June 22, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Innovative MACH gives hope for multi-disciplinary global health response

Innovative MACH gives hope for multi-disciplinary global health response

Although 193 governments adopted UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which warrant an integrated and multisectoral response to deliver on those promises, the progress has been lackadaisical in the past four years. A recent UN report has set an alarm on uneven progress on some SDGs and slipping on a few of the Global Goals in Asia Pacific region. Coordinated multisectoral[Read More…]

June 20, 2019 Life/Philosophy
America’s Medical Apartheid

America’s Medical Apartheid

By Richard Gale and Gary Null About a decade ago, my late colleague Dr. Martin Feldman and I were invited to be keynote speakers at a conference on anti-aging and alternative medicine in Chicago. The hall was packed with several thousand clinicians, physicians, medical professors, scientific researchers and doctors of non-conventional medical disciplines who were interested in the latest anti-aging[Read More…]

June 20, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Ch. Kondeswara Rao Passes Away

Ch. Kondeswara Rao Passes Away

Ch. Kondeswara Rao  was an active leader of Andhra Pradesh Teachers’ Federation (APTF), one of the oldest and leading organizations of teachers, with a progressive outlook,  and  worked in it in several capacities  for decades. For several years, he was the AP State President, before bifurcation of the State. And he was, for several years, the Editor of Upadhyaaya Pragati[Read More…]

June 19, 2019 Life/Philosophy
New milestone for improved treatment for children with TB

New milestone for improved treatment for children with TB

(CNS): More and more children around the world are now benefitting from fixed dose combination (FDC) of child-friendly medicines to treat drug-sensitive TB, thanks to the untiring efforts of TB Alliance (Global Alliance for TB Drug Development) and its partners including World Health Organization (WHO), for making these drugs go from development to delivery stage. TB Alliance proudly announced at[Read More…]

June 18, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Marta Harnecker, The Fighter

Marta Harnecker, The Fighter

Comrade Marta Harnecker has passed away. Comrade Marta died on June 15, 2019, of cancer in Canada. A relentless fighter, comrade Marta Harnecker (1937 – 2019) made valuable contributions in the areas of theory related to revolution for socialism in the broader Latin American perspective. Her struggle was for a humane world. Marta Hernecker’s was not an adventurist-head and not[Read More…]

June 17, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Girish Karnad: When a Star Left the Earth to Become a Star in the Sky

Girish Karnad: When a Star Left the Earth to Become a Star in the Sky

Girish Karnad did not die. Standing as a tall pipal tree kissing the sky, he was an inspiration for many. He lost his breath now. The bodily departure has taken place. But a tradition that he got involved with in Karnataka is still alive even with his absence. And playwrights of the future in Karnataka cannot avoid the smell of[Read More…]

June 10, 2019 Life/Philosophy
The Great Slide

The Great Slide

“So, how did things get so bad?” I am sure you must have heard, asked or thought about this yourself. So have I. Many times, over the years whenever I saw a badly-behaved child being fed with the help of an iPad, a spaced-out teenager who seems lost in his electronic world where Facebook friends are more real to her[Read More…]

June 10, 2019 Life/Philosophy
 Message from ET: Leave Me Alone!!

 Message from ET: Leave Me Alone!!

Here’s a thought: What if alien civilizations want to be left completely alone? Listed below are some of the unspoken presumptions underlying our nascent interstellar expansionism: We know what “universal intelligence” means. (Our most celebrated scientists usually equate this with “technical control over nature”— all “aliens” wash their hands before dinner and watch sitcoms) Closely tied to assumption number one[Read More…]

May 30, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Bringing Up Morally Sound Children

Bringing Up Morally Sound Children

From time immemorial, Kashmir has been enjoying recognition all across the world as ‘Resh Waer’ – Abode of Sages because the sages, savants, and saints from different parts of the world have visited this place. Some of them stayed permanently here and some had a transient stay. Also, there is a significant number of native godly and spiritual personages who[Read More…]

May 28, 2019 Life/Philosophy
The Timeless Wisdom of the Pagan Understanding of Nature  

The Timeless Wisdom of the Pagan Understanding of Nature  

(A response to Dr. Lubna Sarwath’s “Abhorrence for Wastefulness and Exhortation for Moderation inThe Qur’an”) As any thoughtful person understands, and as every Pagan knows, the destruction of our world is our destruction and our self-destruction, which is not just sad or wrong, but is a Mortal Sin, A Sin of the First Order committed Against the Gods who are[Read More…]

May 24, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Shahir Amar Shaikh and his Contributions to Working Class Culture and literature

Shahir Amar Shaikh and his Contributions to Working Class Culture and literature

WHY AMAR SHAIKH? In today’s hubbub, the collective voice of descent of working masses appears to have melted away and ‘organizational strength’ of toiling and working masses is in retreat. Under such a chaotic situation, we are inevitably reminded of an eloquent popular voice, a poet and troubadour of the working class in India! — the Historic, mountainous and unique[Read More…]

May 20, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Accumulation of Slaves

Accumulation of Slaves

Co- written by Meer Abass and Aarif Peer Modern education is about producing workers to perpetuate the secularized, capitalist system; it is not about producing thinkers. Thinkers change systems and shift paradigms, and so modern education is as careful as it can be to avoid producing too many people who are capable of sustained critical thinking. How a particular stuff[Read More…]

May 14, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Interview with Sanjukta Basu, feminist writer and polymath

Interview with Sanjukta Basu, feminist writer and polymath

Ms. Sanjukta Basu is a writer, photographer, analyst, blogger, fervent microblogger, freelance journalist, commentator, academic, an avid traveller, a social crusader, and a feminist scholar. She’s a TED Fellow and Founder of Samyukta Media, a pioneering social media dissemination, and outreach organisation. She’s one of the first women in India to extensively write on politics, and avant-garde issues, both in[Read More…]

May 11, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Remembering Socrates: His Days and Times

Remembering Socrates: His Days and Times

  Introduction Of all the famed names of ancient Greece, that of Socrates is surely the most extensively known. His reputation does not derive from his writings, for he left none. Most of our understanding of him comes from dialogues written by Plato, who was deeply influenced by him and developed his own ideas in such a way that it[Read More…]

May 10, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Needs finally explained

Needs finally explained

We need food, clothing, and shelter to secure our existence. It gives us the basic pleasure of living. People are also social beings. Joined in society, they improve their lives significantly and get more pleasure. The most substantial progress comes from the cooperation between free people which may bring the greatest power to satisfy their needs. It may also bring[Read More…]

May 8, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Robert Owen, Worker Cooperatives, and Democratic Socialism

Robert Owen, Worker Cooperatives, and Democratic Socialism

Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) – and its two predecessor organizations, the Democratic Socialist Organizing Committee (DSOC) and the New American Movement (NAM) – had their origins in the early 1970s, at the beginning of a long-term rightward shift of United States and global politics. This shift to the right – from the 1980s of Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher[Read More…]

May 7, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Between Yes and No, Heaven and Earth with Albert Camus on a Spring Morning

Between Yes and No, Heaven and Earth with Albert Camus on a Spring Morning

“To give up beauty and the sensual happiness that comes with it and devote one’s self exclusively to unhappiness requires a nobility I lack.  However, after all, nothing is true that compels us to make it exclusive.  Isolated beauty ends in grimaces, solitary justice in oppression.  Anyone who seeks to serve the one to the exclusion of the other serves[Read More…]

April 26, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Nations and Forest Fires

Nations and Forest Fires

It was 1984. The second and last formal employment of my career was in the tea plantations in the Anamallai Hills in Coimbatore District of Tamilnadu. I worked there for seven years, one of the most enjoyable and instructive periods of my life. Fires and estates are companions. Not surprising given the combination of people who smoke and don’t always[Read More…]

April 25, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Tackling the ‘Impossible’: Ending Violence

Tackling the ‘Impossible’: Ending Violence

Whenever, in ordinary circumstances, the subject of violence comes up, most people throw up their hands in horror and comment along the lines that it is ‘in our genes’, ‘nothing can be done about it’ or other words that reflect the powerlessness that most people feel around violence. It is true that violence is virtually ubiquitous, has a near-infinite variety[Read More…]

April 24, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Are we on track to #endmalaria?

Are we on track to #endmalaria?

This year’s World Malaria Day theme, “Zero Malaria Starts With Me” re-energizes the fight to eliminate malaria which, despite being preventable and treatable, still kills over half a million people every year. While incredible progress has been made in the past 15 years (with over 7 million malaria deaths averted and about 40% reduction in malaria globally), the fight against[Read More…]

April 23, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Sameness And Difference

Sameness And Difference

The famous physicist David Bohm wrote, “To be confused about what is different and what is not is to be confused about everything.” (Wholeness and the Implicate Order, 1980) There is confusion in the Public Mind, in which it is generally trying to make different what is not different and make what is not identical the same. The 1% who[Read More…]

April 22, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Photo by llee_wu

Mary Metzger – An American Babushka in Moscow: On Arriving at One’s Otherness.

If there were an adjective that would describe my personality for most of my life it would be “intense”. My old grandmother who raised me dealt with it by letting me explode out the door with the dog and cat in the morning, and then sitting or standing nearby watching me as I ran across the fields and through the[Read More…]

April 19, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Mirza Yawar Baig-Influencing without authority

Mirza Yawar Baig-Influencing without authority

One of the areas of my responsibility was the Commissary. This was the company owned department store from where you got your weekly supply of food and practically everything else you needed. It had a small frozen foods section, rough wooden shelves with rice, flour, lentils and other groceries stacked on them, farming tools, alcohol and beverages, tea, sugar, condiments[Read More…]

April 18, 2019 Life/Philosophy
KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA

Mirza Yawar Baig – Committing matrimony

What are the characteristics of a happy marriage? Truth, Caring, Mutual respect are what I call my three Cardinal Principles of happy marriages. Please notice that I am not using the word ‘love’. Love comes out of these three things. What is called love is usually physical desire. The shape or size of someone’s body is not the inspiration for love; it can[Read More…]

April 15, 2019 Life/Philosophy
Guyana, cross cultural boot camp

Guyana, cross cultural boot camp

“So, Comrade Baig, you have been living here for two years. What are your impressions about our country?” The interviewer was from Guyana Chronicle, the main English newspaper. I was being interviewed because I was there. Comrade was a gender-neutral term used to address anyone because Guyana was a socialist (communist) country ruled by an iron-man with an iron fist,[Read More…]

April 13, 2019 Life/Philosophy