Tuesday, June 10, 2008

THE SIN

He kept to the shadows

And walked across the meadows

Head bent, belly spent

Down the barn past the taunting primrose.

 

They say he’s a blackguard

And that, all must be on guard!

In the valley and the gully

For he’s sure to slice us without regard!

 

It seems he took the life

In fishy circumstances, of his wife

She’d pleaded ‘n’ even conceded

But in the end nothing got off the strife.

 

‘He’s crazed,’ they wail

‘Can’t be trusted’; ‘He should be in jail,’

None dare argue on this issue,

They brand him ‘no good’ and there’s none to bail.

 

My neighbour says it isn’t fair

For the man couldn’t hurt a hare

‘It’s a frame up they’d set up’

Now he’s hunted ‘n’ his kin is in despair.

 

They promptly sit on judgement

On others’ pathetic predicament

‘A sacrilege!’ they cry and ‘the man has to pay!’

And then walk off for a nefarious commitment.

 

In the dark, silhouette foreplay

The phantoms grin malicious and gay

Their eyes glow red like an eagle’s beak in blood

While he sat concealed hoping for another day.

 

Another fine day

It never came, they say

They led him to the gallows across the meadows

Alas! Dead and stiff, in silence he lay.

 

* * * * * * * * * *

 

A sin it became

A curse they couldn’t tame

Their family broke up; their judgment turned a joke

And they repented in shame.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Science and Man

Science and modern life are irretrievably interlinked. Today’s world is unthinkable minus science and technology. As we have stepped into the twenty first century, all our functions, our work procedures, our scope of entertainment- even our very existence are all highly influenced by modern science and technology. As we celebrate this year’s scientific day, let us examine the modern life and the progress we made thanks to science and technology.

Ostensibly, science has been instrumental in the quantum leap in our development and has played pivotal role in giving us a comfortable life. If human creativity is one side of the coin responsible for what we are today, science has rendered a catalyst for change. The synergy has given our creativity a momentous spurt. As we gaze into the TV viewing a myriad of entertainment soaps or we surf on the internet getting a kaleidoscope of visual experience or we travel in a jet half way over the world we thank our scientists for making our life more meaningful. Whether it is medicine, communication, industry and architecture or entertainment, education, meteorology and environmental protection, scientific researches and studies have spread its helping tentacles and touched common man’s life. What he used to do in a month’s time can now be done with fluid efficiency in a matter of 24 hours or even less. Thus, we live much more than our counter parts a decade or century ago. I take this opportunity to discuss here, ten of the most important achievements in science.

Agriculture was perhaps one of the crucial endeavors that made revolutionary changes in our social system. Agriculture was the only area of scientific study for tens of thousands of years. Green Revolution, seed technology, genetics, White Revolution and innovation in farming practices have now led to the transformation of agriculture from a mere ‘country job’ into a sophisticated industry.

Electricity, when discovered, made a humble beginning, but eventually turned out to be the most significant of the discoveries. We just can’t figure out how our world would be without electric current. Our whole life is integrated around this mysterious force. Thomas Edison’s life was a continuum of scientific pursuits and he is by far one of the most successful scientists of yesteryears. The inventions of such stalwarts had a far reaching affect on the humanity. Electricity has now become an interface platform on which several branches of science depend.

As we sit here and discuss about the scientific advancement, people travel millions of kilometres going from one part of the world to another! Travel has become instantaneous as flights constantly move right across time barrier and sometimes we can reach yesterday when we start tomorrow! The crazy dream of Wright Brothers had magically produced supersonic jets a century later.

While aviation was a distant dream automobiles were a reality, but the cars and contraptions have become speedier, safer and profoundly efficient in today’s world. Today cars work on renewable energy, produce zero pollution and works for healthier tomorrow.

In medicine, Joseph Lister’s antiseptic surgery, Alexander Fleming’s accidental finding – the penicillin, John Salk’s polio vaccine and Rongton’s X-rays have all saved innumerable lives and got our future generations healthier.

Such a discussion wouldn’t be complete without a mention of Charles Babbage’s prodigy. From the Eniac that he created as purely a calculating machine to the modern pocket PCs the development in computers has envisaged a rapid and mind boggling advancement. In this field, unlike any other scientific field, the rapidity continues unabated. Every breath we take has a software innovation coinciding.

Holding a 4 inch by 2 inch mobile we talk, chat, brows the web, send and read emails and get ourselves entertained. We are getting ourselves seen and heard in far corners of the world. We enrol in universities, do transactions from virtual banks, engage in e- commerce and business, using web browsers. If you are an entrepreneur in the Bahamas getting suntanned, no problem – you could teleconference and run your empire by remote mechanism. All these thanks to inter-net and cell phones

Many detractors and critics of science blame science for the environmental cataclysm and us living on the brink of safety. To them I ask: did you travel today by bus? Did you wake up to the cool breeze of your ceiling fan? Did you switch off your lights before leaving home? When you have become so dependent on science how could you criticize it so thoughtlessly? Look at Western Europe. It is the model of safe living. Not long ago its cities were as polluted if not even more polluted than perhaps India or Philippines. Charles Dickens immortalized the black hand of industrialization. In the next 200 years or so, science itself found effective solution to redress the problem and subvert the situation. We cannot blame science for our irresponsible behaviour and inadequate planning. Eventually we have to go back to science to find a remedy to the problems caused by human error.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Opportunism

Today we are proudly masquerading as free Indian, but we wouldn’t have got our freedom without the highly principled freedom fighters under the leadership of Mahatma Gandhi sacrificing their lives for a lofty goal. The Mahatma was a person who lived, persevered and died holding his principles high. Every year the whole nation remembers this great son of India. We feel proud to inherit his legacy.

We do remember our Harshad Mehthas and shudder and cringe inwardly at the very thought that he was one of us. He did gain his momentous glory, but did it last?

As we stand on the threshold of 21st century, our priorities have become ‘high living and low thinking’. Our success is measured in our possessions, bank balances and the amount of dowry ‘Social Bigwigs’ pay. Successive compromises and incursion of western ideology have given a crushing blow to the Indian life style paved on integrity, instead we are seriously thinking of flouting principles and justifying! Bharath, the land of great epics Mahabharat and Ramayana, which has symbolically shown us the unprincipled go to their certain downfall, has a unique culture based on principles! Yet we are here thrashing out this issue of unprincipled behaviour. Who ever dreamed up the unprincipled ‘float’? Of course they may float on some rivers as unfortunate pieces of history!!!!

Have you heard of the fox that tried to drink the blood dripping from the goats’ foreheads when they were furiously bumping their heads? The opportunists can never be complacent for moment, because if they become they will have the fox’s fate. If one is an opportunist he will succeed only if the majority of the others are principled. It will only be a matter of time before someone like him/ her comes along and knocks him over.

Proponents of opportunism may say that it is much easier to forget our principles and ‘make hay while the sun shines’. I do agree it is easy to be unprincipled, but can they really have such an easy time? Majority of us are idealists; we can’t think of others being selfish, greedy and inconsiderate, neither can we tolerate when others throw integrity to the wind, but when it comes to our own self the criticism disappears, instead we just compromise and say ‘never mind’. It may be true that it is difficult to uphold the lofty principles in this unscrupulous world.

Yet we have our Mahatmas whose ideology we are a part of.

Twist of Life

Life has twists and turns and scores of surprises and shocks in store. For a person to have started a career in Hospitality services and ended up as an Admin. Manager in a Projects Company is merely by chance may be a tall claim, but that is the truth. People like me will always be carried by the tides of twists and turns and face a lot of shocks. On the other hand, those with a scheme in front an ambition to fulfill will move in a single stream with a definite goal and destination.

 

But, what the hell!! Both get on with their lives with a moderate level of achievement. Well, that might depend on what you consider achievement. Even so, I feel my path is ok, because we don't need to be on guard and have any goals whatsoever. Also one doesn't have to be stuck to the same routine always. I for one enjoyed being a squeeky smart travel executive for the time I was employed thus. Then there was a longer stint as marketing / sales executive, which too gave me lots of thrill and greater chagrin to many others. For a decade I worked as a teacher and now this.

Looking back I feel I have learnt a lot of trade, tricks of the trade and never got bored by the monotony. I don't think many will share my enthusiasm.