Thursday, January 30, 2014

My Personal Reasons for Liking and Disliking Big Homes !

One of the biggest fascinations of human beings have been their fascination for building homes. In the animal kingdom, though there are a few other species of animals and birds who might be devoting time and efforts for building shelters or homes, human beings are the only kind who devote much time and efforts for building homes for them in sizes and facilities much exceeding their genuine needs. Perhaps the involvement and addiction towards clothing and shelter makes human beings a unique species of living beings different from other species of animals. 

Given the opportunities and the resources, every human being would naturally aspire and desire for making homes for them. Usually the individual who venture in to home making might even try to make such huge homes called palaces or mansions having facilities for sheltering not only for him and family but also for his servants and even for their future generations. The homes people make becomes larger and larger and is an indication of money and wealth the person has at his disposal.

For example, the following is the picture of the Biltmore house built by a wealthy american in the USA some time in the 1890's.

This building is now an american historical monument and a tourist attraction.

In the recent times a successful Indian businessman surprised every one in the world by making the most expensive home in the world in the Indian soil. It is a high rise building having a height equivalent to a sixty storied building built for a family of five and a staff of six hundred. However, the look of this building in the sky line is too ugly. Look at this picture:

Perhaps in another few decades this building too would likely become a national amusement!

I have given just two illustrative examples to make my readers understand more about this human passion with home making. 

Invariably, all human beings would spend huge sums of money for making homes for them. The degree of their passion and obsession with home making is directly proportional to their wealth. But there are some exceptions to this.

For example, one of the wealthiest persons in the world, Mr Warren Buffett, lives in a modest house in the USA. Let us have a look at his house in the image below:

It is indeed a simple house and such homes are common among middle class and moderately rich persons across the globe.

If you ask me about my personal opinion about big homes, my answer would be both in the affirmative and in the negative. I admire the architectural beauty of creativity that is seen in some big houses, mansions, palaces, bungalows, sky scrappers and row houses. But I dislike staying in big houses.

If the moneyed people spend their money to make big homes, let them do it. That way they are providing opportunities for the building architects, engineers, masons, carpenters, plumbers and electricians scope to work and create buildings. In turn many fold economic activities are generated and it is good. These buildings, both good and bad, add up to give some contrasting views of human creativity on our lands. So, it is good. However, if some of these moneyed people exploit their workers in any way as was the practice during the periods of slavery, it is a matter which is repulsive.

Personally big houses are not good for a comfortable living. It generates some kind of a phobia for me. If big houses could give me a comfortable sleep, I could get such a sleep even in the open, the biggest shelter nature has given us!

Big houses prevent privacy. It cannot be maintained by one or two of the family. You have to depend on scores of others having different mindsets living with you in the same building. It is like living in a hotel room. Better own a hotel and keep a reserved room for you always rather than living in huge homes! But those who are driven by passions of  for a royal living let them fulfill those passions.

My home state Kerala is now a place of big houses. High value of foreign currency in India has enabled emigrant workers and businessmen of Kerala to enhance the value of their foreign earnings to enormously high proportions in the home land. They have been passionately making use of this opportunity to make larger and larger homes in their home state.

This has helped many young Kerala based architects to express their creative talents in designing big homes for the wealthy Malayalees. This Kerala Home Design website illustrates this.

But home building is an affair which causes heavy depletion of natural resources such as sand, wood, minerals, etc. Big palatial homes drains these resources considerably and these resources become too expensive for those low income groups to build their small dream homes. And the the practical utility of big homes is very low except that it perhaps elate the ego of the owner for a limited period.

Hence, people with some sensible and saner mind should not build palatial houses for them.

They could use their money for much more sensible things.

But homes are essential and people keep dreaming of having good homes built for them. Home building is indeed a costly affair.

Construction costs keep varying in India across the cities and places due to the cost variations in building materials and labor.

How much money would be required to construct a home? The estimation is a time consuming exercise and most often one may need the help of an engineer or architect for this. There are thumb rules which are commonly known to many who are a bit familiar with this.

But recently I have come across an Indian website which gives many useful information about home construction. This site has a very useful tool which helps people to calculate the approximate home construction costs online with just a few clicks. The site also gives a detailed cost estimation sheet also and one can compare the costs across a few select cities in India. 

This is where you can calculate your home construction cost online.[Click Online Home Construction Cost - Quick Calculation & Detailed Calculation] This site gives the present cost of steel, cement and sand - Click for today's indicative prices! You can also get some essential ideas about the important home construction materials.

In short I would advice all to be a bit careful while planning their home construction. Make it beautiful, useful and modest. That is what sensible people should do.

Forget about those insensible fellows!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Corruption in Private Organizations in India: Something People Do Not Seem to Bother Much !

When it comes to defining corruption, people in India often seem to be concerned with corruption that takes place with government controlled organizations such as the law enforcement organizations, the railways, the revenue and land record offices, the registration and tax offices, etc. Common people in India has accepted corruption by staff of some government departments as a standard practice and an unavoidable evil of the society. Bribe giving and bribe taking in small affordable amounts no more pinch any one so long as they get the work done either out of turn or a bit faster. This kind of corruption may be called the direct bribe tax of India. To make things easy for the bribe tax payer and the taker, now there are even agents who are known faces to both sides. Agents facilitate breaking the ice easier and make things much easier.

It is also in the common knowledge that this kind of direct bribe tax collection system is blessed by the supervising authorities and the top controlling authorities and there are even foolproof systems to evaluate the quantum of bribe tax collected so that the collections are distributed properly to all concerned without much internal disputes. 

Then there is the indirect bribe tax system where policy decisions are kept under an environment of whimsical dynamism by what is known as commissions. In this case the common people are not directly affected but only indirectly by way of price rises, inflation, etc. Common people perhaps know about it only through the exposures made by the forth estate called the media. The manner in which these exposures taking place often compel the common people to doubt on the involvement of the media business in these indirect bribe tax system.

Fortunately for every one, the majority people of India are not so worried about corruption so long as it does not affect them directly. They are also not much concerned with corruption that take place in the private domains of commercial activities whether it is education, communication, transport, real estate, health, insurance and the like.

Why is it so ? To understand that it is necessary to understand the general mindset of the people.

There are three kinds of people. 

The first kind and perhaps the minority kind are the people who are innately honest. They are tuned to their inner voice in such a way that they would not do an act of dishonesty because if they do it, it pinches and troubles them. Such people when employed in any organization would not try to cheat or cause any harm to any one. They follow the rules and the laws not because they fear any consequences, but because their own consciousness would not allow them to do it. They are satisfied with the remuneration or salary what they get as allowed by the rules and would not seek adopt corrupt practices to enhance their incomes by illegitimate means or corrupt practices. The society would benefit much if this kind of people are in a majority. In India, it is generally believed that this kind of people are a minority. Their numbers would be around 10 % or even less.

The second kind of people are the majority and these are the people who do not normally adopt any corrupt practices for their own benefits not because they are inherently honest, but because they do not have the opportunities or are scared of getting caught or punished. The fear of consequences and the lack of opportunity prevent them from adopting corrupt practices. Since they are not innately honest, the removal of fear of consequences or availability of favorable situations may change them completely. A person of this kind who used to appear as honest and has been preaching honesty or fighting corruption could one day become a fully corrupt personality. India which is rated as a nation of high corruption is believed to have a high percentage of this kind of people. Their numbers could be as high as 80%. They are inherently opportunists because they are inherently cowards. They tend to adopt the majority stand and they like to be with the majority. They support the majority voice. They would not like to expose their true nature to any one. What they talk in public may not be the same when they talk in private! They are the fence sitters.

The third type is again a minority and are the dare devils. They are openly and inherently evil and corrupt. They are not honest and they do not believe in such good character attributes of people. They would try to justify their acts of corruption by giving examples of those of the second type who are in majority. They believe everything is right in war, love, politics and business. Fear of punishments do not deter them and they think that they are too clever to over come such silly eventualities. If there are no opportunities, they would try and create opportunities for accomplishing their missions. Since they are not inherently honest, they may also know the art of buttering and talking pleasantly so that others would fall prey to their cunning acts. They are usually a minority and their percentages would be to the tune of only about 10%. But  they are the ones who try to perpetuate evil in a society and their acts influence the second category of people in such a way that more and more of the latter are taken to their fold.

So the people in any society could be divided in three classes as the good ones, the fence sitters and the evil ones. In a country like India which is generally perceived as corrupt their proportion would be 10:80:10. As such the good and the evil ones would balance each other generally. But the majority, the fence sitters make all the difference to the society at any given time. It is the perceptions of the fence sitters which decide the fate of a country or a society at any given time period. As the fence sitters are opportunists, they keep swinging from right to left or from evil to good or good to evil  from time to time.

But when people of inherent good and honesty increases, things would change positively. Otherwise, evil spreads and every one suffers. Ratio of inherently good or bad ones changes considerably only with generation changes. In general, percentage of good people increase (though marginally) with every generation. But so long as the fence sitters are a big majority, this change would not be much perceivable for many generations.

In India, corruption is not limited to public organizations. Private business organizations and religious organizations, non-governmental social service organizations, charity organizations are all affected by it because they all draw their peoples from the general fraternity of people.

In reality, the corruption in the education sector affects more people in India much more severely than any other form of corruption. And education sector in India is now predominantly in the hands of non-governmental trusts and societies, many of them declaring their objectives as religious, charitable or educational or social or all of these. The non social and non charitable corrupt practices they adopt affect the children and their parents severely and they do it as if permitted under the prevailing laws! It is a now common practice now that the managing boards of these private institutions mint money for themselves in the name of charity or educational social work in the guise of their honorary or voluntary works. They also bribe the personnel of the statutory bodies who are supposed to monitor their functions for compliance as per the laws for facilitating them to violate the rules with impunity.   

While it is easy to blame the people associated with the government sector as mostly corrupt, it is not true to assume that the private non-governmental sectors are corruption free in India. It all depends on the type of people they are comprised of. 

Private businessmen in many cases deal with public money. It could be the money of the general shareholders from the public or it could be money lent by the banks. These are public money and hence the business men have to use this money with care. They cannot spend this money for making money for them in any clandestine manner. If they do, it is corruption just the way it is dealt had it been in the governmental organizations or governmental business. 

Unfortunately for the country, and fortunately for those indulging in corrupt practices, India presently does not have suitable anti corruption laws that could give some deterrence in preventing corruption in the non governmental sectors. This has led to the proliferation of non-governmental organizations in India parading for doing social works and actually perpetuating corruption.

People associated with such organizations are fearing the rise of political parties such as the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) because they fear the latter to clip whimsical powers that they have been enjoying  for personal gains.

And it would also be not so easy for AAP to have their organization built up using only the first kind of people!   

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Plutocracy: Know More About this Subtle Economic Evil that is Slow Poisoning this Earth to Catastrophe!

Have you ever heard about this word Plutocracy?

Since you are reading this blog in English, the chances of you knowing about Aristocracy, Democracy, Bureaucracy and Technocracy could be a better possibility. But plutocracy is a relatively a new term and in the 'free market' and 'liberalized' world order of the current times, it is very very important to know more about it, if you haven't known about it earlier.

Plutocracy is the situation when a society is indirectly ruled by a few rich individuals. It is the situation when a handful of the wealthiest people indirectly controls the country or the world and its governments and the people.

If you have the intelligence, capacity and interest you should consider knowing more about this by reading about it in Wikipedia.[ Read about Plutocracy in Wiki by clicking here!] 

Now you should consider reading the research article by the Global Research Centre for Research on Globalization on Global Plutocracy.

Let me quote a few lines from this article which warns us about the modern economic evil called plutocracy:

There is no parallel in human history to the immense concentration of wealth that exists today, nor to the extremes of parasitism and decadence that constitute the “new normal.” Contemporary capitalism—what the ruling class and its political and media flunkies call the “free enterprise system”—has created a world in which every policy decision is dictated by the need to protect and increase the wealth of an infinitesimal portion of the world’s population.
This global plutocracy—by definition, a society governed by the wealthy—generates a huge and ever-increasing portion of the ruling elite’s wealth not from the production of useful products and expansion of society’s productive capacities, but from the manipulation of money, speculation and outright swindling—essentially criminal activities that are destructive of the productive forces.
A few hundred people, backed by an army of bribed politicians, academic apologists, intelligence spooks, experts of all sorts and the repressive force of the military and police, hold civilization by the throat and threaten to destroy it to satisfy their insatiable greed.
This social—or, to be more precise, anti-social—element is virulently hostile to the people, contemptuous of democratic rights, and militaristic.
In its effort to expand its personal wealth, it relentlessly attacks the living standards of the working class—the vast majority of the population. All over the world, governments controlled by the plutocrats impose ever more painful austerity, cutting wages, slashing jobs, dismantling social programs, closing schools, gutting health care. State treasuries are emptied to provide bailouts to the banks and corporations and central banks pump trillions into the financial markets to drive up stock prices, corporate profits and CEO pay. All legal restrictions on profit-making are lifted.
If a few persons are managing the wealth of the nation or the globe wisely, I should not have any problem with that. Rather no one should have and we should be happy. But if they draw their wisdom from evil sources and not as per divine guidance, then they are perhaps becoming agents of  evil forces either knowingly or unknowingly. The end result would be catastrophe or painful destruction and misery. 

When some one becomes a victim of slow poison, it is not very easy to understand its effects immediately. But end result is sure.

How do you know whether you are an advocate of plutocracy? 

You should consider reading this blog too where you can read about the  divine advice regarding management of wealth .

What could be done to prevent plutocracy from slow poisoning our world to catastrophe?

It is time to think!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

A New Indian Mahatma is Emerging and the Demonic Forces Are Panicking !

Yesterday night I was watching the Indian national TV news channels with tears in my eyes and chocking in my throat caused by untold emotion. I tell you, I am not a person of sentiments and emotions in the ordinary manner. But when I see the acts of characterless people getting overpowered or resisted by even in the most insignificant manner by any one who champions the cause of human values, I get emotional. 

This indescribable emotion pervades my mind and senses whenever there is some victory of good in some way in this world now entrenched in the hands of demonic forces in all subtle ways not normally discerned by ordinary souls!

Something big was happening in the National Capital Territory (NCR) of India-Delhi on the 20th January 2014. It was a peaceful protest agitation of an unusual kind. A democratically elected members of the state government of Delhi protesting against the federal or central government of India. 

A group of elected peoples' representatives belonging to the brand new political entity of India, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) were proceeding to lead a peaceful protest agitation in front of the building that houses the home ministry offices of the central government of India. Leading them from the front were the whole members of the cabinet of ministers of the new state government of Delhi marching behind their undisputed leader and their Chief Minister Shri Arvind Kejriwal.  They had only taken charge of the new governmental administration in the capital region of Delhi under compelling circumstances just a month ago.

And this group had a challenging responsibility with them. They had given an assurance to to the people to work against corruption that has engulfed India almost fully in the recent decades that the existing political set up had failed to accomplish. More precisely, the existing political system have become part and parcel of a corrupt system which the people have almost taken for granted because there was no escape route for them. Now on this scene, a new face has been emerging. And he is Arvind Kejriwal, a name that has become well known to most of the common people of India. His rise to popularity was not an easy task, but a saga of sacrifice, dedication and determination.

Kejriwal has been a pioneering crusader fighting corruption from public offices in India. An engineer by training and education from one of the IITs , he quit his enviable administrative job with the Indian government as an Asst.Commissioner of Income Tax to take up a much more important mission that he felt as his prime duty, that is to organize and work for eradication of corruption in India. He first fought to bring about transparency in public administration and was the key player of a movement that caused the Indian government to pass the Right-to-Information Act in 2005. His next movement was India Against Corruption that culminated in the formation of the Aam Aadmi Party in India.  

Arvind Kejriwal is no ordinary soul. He is not from my generation, but one from  a much younger generation of Indians. The time when I began watching this young man and his activities towards initiation of reforms in the otherwise doomed Indian society, instinctively I was realizing that this man is a new saint in the making in my country. A Mahatma. Perhaps even greater than Mahatma Gandhi ji who took the British empire head on to free India from the foreign colonialism of the last few centuries.

Mahatma Gandhi could become successful in his peaceful satyagraha agitation because he was fighting against a system of governance which gave some credence to human values. But Arvind Kejriwal has initiated a struggle against a system that totally ignored human values in practice while deceitfully projecting it as the fundamental law. Undoubtedly, the latter's task was not at all easy when compared to the former. Besides, in the times of Kejriwal, the people for whom he took up the initiative have become a divided , confused and lethargic lot who have lost their basic ability to discern good and bad or to react. 

I have been witnessing the gradual deterioration of my country with the rise of demonic forces in all walks of life in the past nearly six decades. The percentage of good people in the country have been reducing in the leadership positions and the ordinary citizens of the country have been losing their faith in good and have been moving towards evil for survival. The majority having some good still left within them have been losing their strength to resist evil in any manner. They took shelter under many promising leaders in the past only to realize that they were all demons in disguise to cheat and mislead them. The net result was that people like me were losing faith in leaders. There is no one out there who could be trusted. Vested interests ruled the roost. People were entering politics with huge spending only to reap higher personal gains. The political scene of India has been becoming increasingly and perceptibly corrupt with time. While some were reaping the benefits of the corrupt system a majority of Indians have been silently suffering either directly or indirectly. To add to their woes, their elected representatives and their subordinate public servants have been showing a perceptibly higher level of arrogance towards the common man. The situation has been becoming worse than that existed during the days when the foreigners and the local royals ruled the land.

But this is what many people who care the least about good or bad for achieving the end results want. Everything is justified in war and love, they say. Everything is justified in politics, the game people play to gain power and position for personal benefits.

And when you are driven by this attitude, the attitude that promotes an in-compassionate personality development among the citizens, the invisible demonic forces have their objectives achieved! They are getting successful in making the society move away from the blessings of God and getting it aligned towards evil.

So long as the people do not have any good leader, victory of the evil forces remained unchallenged! 

The demonic forces therefore first attempt to destroy any possible good leadership that tried to emerge, either directly or indirectly. If such leaders showed any inclination to get tarnished in error or evil even to the slightest manner, the demons (and also those humans with demonic minds) celebrated. Demons (those who are against God) know extremely well the power of false propaganda and the power of propagating falsehoods mixed with some truths and half truths in making the simple folks confused. 

In other words, in a time has come where good is denounced and evil is praised constantly apparently making it feel the other way to the common people. Good people are constantly branded as evil people by the majority minds pervaded by evil. This kind of a situation would naturally derail even the wise men, what to speak about those who are not so wise!

So naturally, Arvind Kejriwal who took up the moral issue of eradication of corruption as his mission, was naturally becoming an enemy of the evil forces who were all around him. In the beginning they were too confident of their might that they pooh-poohed him. But when they found that more and more of the simple folks are willing to listen to his voice they began to think of clever ways to discredit him. He was trying to make them understand more about the underlying evil called corruption and was trying to motivate them to fight corruption which they thought as impossible earlier.

The confident evil forces were not at all in any mood to listen to the people's concerns on the rising corruption perception in the so-called land of Mahatma Gandhi. But corruption transactions in billions kept happening with ease using the currency notes bearing the image of the Mahatma. They were not at all willing to make any law to punish the evil doers who perpetuate corruption, as demanded by this soft spoken crusader. They denounced him and took umbrage in the power of democracy and told him that they are right as they are in democratic majority. Because, in a democracy, what majority thinks is right, even if it is evil. 

They challenged him to enter politics and fight corruption in the democratic manner. That is the civilized way, they reminded him. They were sure of their positions when they told him so. But he and his supporters took up that challenge and he took the mantles to rule the capital of India in less than a years time to the utter dismay of those forces who were not willing to arrest the propagation of the evil called corruption in the Indian soil.

The time has finally come for them to take this young IITian more seriously. Why should any IITian who could earn millions in the USA  or continued in his powerful class one job and lead a comfy life took to the streets  to make an unnecessary hue and cry over this corruption issue? He could also have made millions silently just as many others like him are doing. Then why all this fuss? Many Indians were finding it difficult to digest. Perhaps he is more greedy and has bigger plans to make it big by entering the dirty political arena of India. Some others argued with their common sense experience they gained from their society.

The evil forces has been trying to hoodwink this frail looking, physically weakened leader with acute cold and cough in the cold polluted weather of Delhi ever since he got elevated to a position of high responsibility under compelling and shameful political drama played by the established political forces of India by all means. Many thought he would succumb to the evil influences. Many have been eagerly watching and waiting him to fall from grace to disgrace. The invisible evil forces have been making all out efforts to bring him down. Some were doing it the way the cat drinking the milk. They kept their eyes closed thinking that no one is seeing (their clever deeds that they kept doing)

I have been watching and reading those small pieces of information and news about the hard testing this innocently looking young man was facing in the political arena of India.

There is a big group of young and dedicated Indians supporting him openly. All their faces reflected a radiance of honesty, innocence and determination to fight the evil. I listened to the common Indians around me. What were they saying about this new leader. To my surprise I found that the hitherto silent Indians are now speaking out their frustrations about the system that has been suppressing them cleverly for all these years. The system so deceptively woven up by clever and intelligent people from their lot who were using it for their full benefits and selfish ends!

Now here is a leader who is not there to take advantage of the system for his personal gains. 

How do you know? It is too early to tell because some of the previous leaders too were like this. Even Hitler too was a pious common man's leader earlier before he became a ruthless dictator!

Of course, power and position corrupt even angels. What to talk about the lowly humans?

But yet, there is some thing different in this man, my mind was telling me. He is not going to be like Hitler or those of that kind. Neither he would be of those deceptive ones who keep talking many things but never do any thing against the societal cancer called corruption. 

He is not there for making some big gains for him. He seems to be honest in his mission of fighting corruption. And that honesty is reflected on his face that is discernible by all who are unbiased.

That instills awe and admiration. 

I prayed to God earnestly to give him the strength of mind that he needs most to withstand all those tacit pressures his opponents have been applying with no sympathies. For them, the cause for which he stood for was nothing. For them people and the country have been just opportunities for meeting their personal agendas and interests. They cared little for the nation in the real sense. But collectively they cared much for themselves. 

The demons know the real threat that could have from any being with some divine blessings! The best way to withstand any divine intervention is to influence any divine messenger to their fold.The practice of converting saints to demons have been in vogue for the past many thousands of years!

But if a saintly person keep refusing to join their ranks, the demons become nervous and showing off their demonic real faces. They then take out the weapons of physical aggression and cruelty, their last weapons in store.

But this determined young leader with a will power stronger than any other leaders that human kind has seen in recent times has been showing a determination to take the demonic forces head on. He has no army and no weapons. What he has is his strength of character and ethics and the motivation of the good mission that he has so courageously took up. He has embarked upon a mission to fight corruption, the deceptive weapon of the demons and the followers of evil, knowing well that the demons could attempt to destroy him with all their might.

They had gifted him the covet position of chief minister-ship  as if as a great favor and expected him to enjoy this 'office of profit' quietly as every others have been doing so far or would have naturally done. They also began to bestow him all the associated facilities and perks. When he declined to accept those, they tried to mock and ridicule him by branding him as a person of high and insatiable greed and ambition dreaming of capturing the highest office of profit in the country- the prime minister-ship! Even the media men who were praising him a few days ago have been influenced to speak against him and tarnish him by using any opportunities that they might get.

Deceptive games were played to instigate this novice chief minister to make moves that could be lambasted as grave errors of incompetency and ignorance. Even forces of physical aggression were paraded against him so that he becomes scared.

But he has been relentless. He has so far withstood all those pressures, an unlikely sight in India in the recent past history. And he was heavily and visibly depending on his moral strength and his conviction of the divine protection and support.

As I watched that display of moral courage that this saintly man has been showing so far, I was feeling proud of this leader. Is he the incarnation of the legendary god of India, Shri Krishna? The famous quotation of Bhagavat Gita began to play back in my mind:

"paritranaaya saadhoonam vinashaaya cha dushkritaam dharma-samsthapanaarthaaya sambhavami yuge yuge" 

[परित्राणाय  साधुनाम  विनाशाय  च:  दुष्कृताम  धर्मं संस्थापनार्थाय संभवामि युगे युगे]

In order to deliver the pious and to annihilate the miscreants, as well as to re-establish the principles of religion, I advent myself millennium after millennium

He is obviously getting some divine protection to accomplish his mission. He is slowly and slowly becoming a divine protegee for a great task to be accomplished for his great nation. He is turning himself to the status of a Mahatma (saint) in the political arena of India. Opposing him are many Duratmas (unholy souls). 

Mahatma Kejriwal ji is asking for a small symbolic gesture of giving some small punishment to a few erring policemen of Delhi now. It is not a big deal any way. But underlying that apparently small gesture is a big issue that the evil forces are scared of. The demonic forces cannot accept that small thing now because they know that would provide this frail saint a big moral victory.

But if the stories of the great Indian epic Mahabharata is any indication, then we should remember that the divine forces normally start their actions from seemingly small mistakes of the demons.

I am not sure whether Mahatma Kejriwalji  is going to win his war of morality that he has undertaken now against the immoral forces that prevail the length and breadth of India, the land of Mahabharata.

But it is going to be the beginning of a big era of changes in this land that the demonic forces are scared of from happening. 

Because I am convinced of the wisdom of the divine administration that pervade in the whole of the universes including our small world earth. Divine forces do intervene in human affairs when things go out of order too much. But they do not do it every now and then, nor they do the work that humans are capable of doing.

Arvind and his team would be able to do that and they would have the divine blessings so long as they follow the divine rules and keep upholding their moral superiority over evil.

If you support the cause of good over evil and the views I have expressed, you should consider sharing this with others for supporting this war of morality that has begun in India.

And that is one of the easiest support that you could perhaps do.

At the least, we should give this saintly leader our moral support when he needs it most.

[Read the full news about the back ground of the latest struggle of India led by Arvind Kerjriwal in this article: Arvind Kejriwal's dharna: Why Delhi Police vs. state govt row is more political than administrative? I would also suggest you to read this interesting article written by Mr Avay Shukla, Rtd IAS officer, giving his analysis and opinion about Kejriwal's Delhi Dharna (agitation of 20-1-2014) ] 

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Do You Allow Philargyria to Overtake You ? Is Your Life A Blessing or A Curse ?

Today I would like to share with my readers two things which have been  in my mind for quite some time, but intermixed with many other thoughts. But two things happened yesterday that caused these to be brought out that I write some thing about these and share with those who might happen to read it.

The first event was attending a small christian convention arranged by the small group of Malayalee Marthoma community of thirty odd families in Ranchi to which I too belong. Such annual congregational meetings arranged for a couple days are part of the routine programs of the Marthoma parishes for keeping the members refreshed of the good teachings of the Bible and giving them an opportunity for re-dedication of their individual lives to live a meaningful life. As we human beings are inherently non-perfect, there is a need for continuing efforts from the side of preachers and teachers for keeping us in the right path always. Even those exposed to such efforts also are not becoming anywhere near perfection is another thing that many others like to debate.

So our parish committee had invited a well known revival speaker from Kerala, who also happened to be an elderly priest of the Marthoma Church. He had come all the way as the main speaker for our spiritual three nights' christian conference and yesterday night we had the first night meeting from 6-30 PM to 9-00 PM at our small chapel located in the premises of St.Thomas School, Ranchi managed by our parish members. 

The opening remark of the speaker was a direct and piercing question to each one of the individuals assembled there including me who are all the so-called Christians. He asked this:

" Is your life a blessing? Or is it a curse?" He continued to expand that theme question further based on what Jesus has been told as taught as described in John 15: 1-17  . This is the famous teaching of Jesus about 'the vine and the branches' where he equates himself as the vine and his followers as the branches commanding his followers to love each other.

Incidentally this is the sum and substance of Jesus' teaching which is stressed again and again in the Urantia Book as well many times. Let me put it the way I understood it:

If God is the creator of humans, then He is the universal father of all human beings (for a moment let us forget all those other beings and things of the universe that He had created.) 

Then there exists a bondage of inherent brotherly or sisterly love among all humans. The fundamental duty of all human beings is to love his creator father God and also his siblings unconditionally. Love here has a different meaning. It means devotion, service and care than what other meanings that we attach with that word in some other context.

As children of God, the fundamental duty of all human beings is to abide in the love of God. And those who are not abiding in that love of nourishment would cease to exist just as the branches of the vine that is cut and removed from the vine.

When me and my wife returned back yesterday night at around 9.30 pm IST (17th Jan 2014) I thought of watching the late night news in the TV. All Indian channels were beaming the news about the sudden death of a glamorous Indian lady, the third wife of an internationally famous Indian and a high profile central government minister of India under mysterious circumstances in a five star hotel suite in New Delhi.

The lady was in her prime middle age and was materially very successful just as her husband.

The news media has been analyzing the cause and consequences of this tragic incident. How could these very successful people could have a life of miseries and sorrows in their private lives while publicly they appeared smiling and happy most of the times?

What went wrong?

How could they become some thing of a curse to themselves and many around them while every one viewed their life with full of blessings?

Were these blissful couple a blessing to others? 

Today morning while I was reading more about them using the internet resources, I chanced to read an interesting article titled : the Biblical Money Code. [It is too lengthy and you should consider clicking the link and reading the whole article yourself. It is worth reading. Book mark this page for a future reading if you do not have the time now.]

It is about the idea of money and wealth which matches with the concepts that I have been nourishing for some time now. It is written by one famous American, named Sean Hyman a successful investor, money maker and money giver. In the article, which perhaps you might have read by now, he is explaining the principles of money and wealth generation successfully in accordance with the teachings of the Bible.

Let me stress what he had stressed in the article: " Love of money is the root of all kinds of evil". But money is not the evil, it is the love for money.

And love for money and material gain is greed. I learnt a new word from Mr Sean Hyman, the humble american pastor who is also a successful investor who claims the use of the biblical money code for his success.

And that Greek word is : Philargyria [fil-aar-gee-rya] : the insatiable greed for money and material pleasures!

But when this philargyria overtakes the divine command we face the danger of being cut off from the nourishing love of God that enables us to live as a blessing to all including we ourselves.

And that is indeed a very pathetic situation.

But yet, it is indeed a puzzle for me that many of us are not able to overcome our greed and love for money, wealth and material pleasures. 

Are you using your knowledge, skills, competence and such other talents for the pursuit of philargyria?

Do you want to end up your life wretched as if entangled in curses for generations even when you had all the so-called genius and talents?

Think it over.

You could still be wealthy and your life could be a blessing to all if you do not allow that greed and love for money to overtake your mind and senses.

Modify your passions and ambitions with character and compassion. While you earnestly do your work and while you gain wealth and money, remember that you do that in accordance with the divine commandments.

We are not supposed to do our works affected by any kind of dishonesty that could deprive or cause some damage to our fellow beings. We have to be compassionate to our fellow beings-children of God- all the while we do our work.

Because we all exist for doing some kind of work which is a service to some others around us and we need to be compassionate to others while we do our part of the responsibilities entrusted to us.

If it is that way we are going to live a life which is a blessing to others. If it is a blessing to others it could no doubt be a blessing to us too!

Let not that type of things similar to the tragic case that I mentioned above happen in our lives!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Sharing Some Advanced Thoughts on War and Peace; Evolution of Government and Civilization!

Primitive humans evolved from animals a million year ago on earth slowly resolved their problems of making a living, at least partially. Their population increased to millions.

They were then confronted with the task of regulating human contacts. 

The development of industry demanded law, order, and social adjustment; private property necessitated government.

On an evolutionary world, antagonisms are natural; peace is secured only by some sort of social regulative system. 

Social regulation is inseparable from social organization; association implies some controlling authority. 

Government compels the co-ordination of the antagonisms of the tribes, clans, families, and individuals.

Government is an unconscious development; it evolves by trial and error. It does have survival value; therefore it becomes traditional. 

Anarchy augmented misery; therefore government, comparative law and order, slowly emerged or is emerging. 

The coercive demands of the struggle for existence literally drove the human race along the progressive road to civilization.

War is the natural state and heritage of evolving man; peace is the social yardstick measuring civilization's advancement. 

Before the partial socialization of the advancing races man was exceedingly individualistic, extremely suspicious, and unbelievably quarrelsome. 

Violence is the law of nature, hostility the automatic reaction of the children of nature, while war is but these same activities carried on collectively. 

And wherever and whenever the fabric of civilization becomes stressed by the complications of society's advancement, there is always an immediate and ruinous reversion to these early methods of violent adjustment of the irritations of human inter-associations.

War is an animalistic reaction to misunderstandings and irritations; peace attends upon the civilized solution of all such problems and difficulties. 

There could be no such phenomenon as war until society had evolved sufficiently far to actually experience periods of peace and to sanction warlike practices. The very concept of war implies some degree of organization.

With the emergence of social groupings, individual irritations began to be submerged in the group feelings, and this promoted intra-tribal tranquility but at the expense of inter-tribal peace. 

Peace was thus first enjoyed by the in-group, or tribe, who always disliked and hated the out-group, foreigners. Early man regarded it a virtue to shed alien blood.

Warfare persists because man is human, evolved from an animal, and all animals are bellicose (ready to fight).

In past ages a fierce war would institute social changes and facilitate the adoption of new ideas such as would not have occurred naturally in ten thousand years. The terrible price paid for these certain war advantages was that society was temporarily thrown back into savagery; civilized reason had to abdicate. 

War is strong medicine, very costly and most dangerous; while often curative of certain social disorders, it sometimes kills the patient, destroys the society.

War has had a certain evolutionary and selective value, but like slavery, it must sometime be abandoned as civilization slowly advances. 

Olden wars promoted travel and cultural inter-mixing; these ends are now better served by modern methods of transport and communication. 

Olden wars strengthened nations, but modern struggles disrupt civilized culture. 

Ancient warfare resulted in the decimation of inferior peoples; the net result of modern conflict is the selective destruction of the best human stocks. 

Early wars promoted organization and efficiency, but these have now become the aims of modern industry. 

During past ages war was a social ferment which pushed civilization forward; this result is now better attained by ambition and invention. 

Ancient warfare supported the concept of a God of battles, but modern man has been told that God is love. 

War has served many valuable purposes in the past, it has been an indispensable scaffolding in the building of civilization, but it is rapidly becoming culturally bankrupt—incapable of producing dividends of social gain in any way commensurate with the terrible losses attendant upon its invocation.

At one time physicians believed in bloodletting as a cure for many diseases, but they have since discovered better remedies for most of these disorders. And so must the international bloodletting of war certainly give place to the discovery of better methods for curing the ills of nations.

Do not make the mistake of glorifying war; rather discern what it has done for society so that you may the more accurately visualize what its substitutes must provide in order to continue the advancement of civilization. And if such adequate substitutes are not provided, then you may be sure that war will long continue.

Man will never accept peace as a normal mode of living until he has been thoroughly and repeatedly convinced that peace is best for his material welfare, and until society has wisely provided peaceful substitutes for the gratification of that inherent tendency periodically to let loose a collective drive designed to liberate those ever-accumulating emotions and energies belonging to the self-preservation reactions of the human species.

But even in passing, war should be honored as the school of experience which compelled a race of arrogant individualists to submit themselves to highly concentrated authority—a chief executive. Old-fashioned war did select the innately great men for leadership, but modern war no longer does this. 

To discover leaders society must now turn to the conquests of peace: industry, science, and social achievement.

[As told by the Urantia Book; Visit Urantia-India Site to know More about it]

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Sharing Some Pieces of Wisdom Thoughts That I Received Today With My Readers !

My friend Prof.Ujjager Singh Kooner has a very appreciable habit of sharing many pieces of humour, wisdom thoughts and interesting information to his friends by e-mail. No doubt there are many such good people in this world who take pains to create such thoughts and ideas in to pleasing visuals and keep sharing these with their friends and followers. 

While many writers and bloggers do things for some material returns and personal benefits, there are a big community of people who do such things without expecting anything in return. 

Whether done for some benefits or not, their services are to be appreciated. Kudos to all of them. 

Let me  share some of those visuals that I received today from Prof. Kooner. I am in full agreement with the wisdom thoughts reflected in these visuals.

[Courtsey: All those unknown creators and publishers!]

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Wild and Mild Animals and Humans!

Humans are evolved from animals. Higher animals and humans have much in common. There are mild animals and wild animals and both become mild or wild from time to time and as per situation. Same is the case with humans too.

All animal and human varieties that we observe today have evolved to become what they are today from inferior living beings at some remote time in the past. But they are no more evolving to other forms any more. The evolutionary changes they all underwent are all events of the past.

While they are not making any drastic changes in their general features by which the biologists could separate out any new species, they are all undergoing some kind of minor changes with regard to their behaviors.

While in animals these behavioral changes may not be noticeable much in a long span of time, in humans such changes are visible from generation to generation.

In general humans are changing from wild to mild, cruel to gentle. 

But such changes are not taking place en mass. Such genetic changes affecting the behavior centers of the brain cells are taking place very slowly as the generations advance.

Yet, the individual change from wild to mild is not perfectly taking place just it happens in the digital world. It is analogous! 

Thus there is a big interaction among wild and mild individuals having varying degrees of mild and wild genes performing within their physical bodies in such a way that every human is unpredictably wild or mild!

In the wild world of the animals, this is more predictable. The nature of wild animals are more predictable with regard to their wild and mild behaviors than in human beings.

This poses a big problem for those humans who have evolved to higher mild natures to live among their lesser evolved cousins.

The milder ones are capable of understanding the problems and also have the physical and mental capacity to withstand the wild atrocities from their wilder cousins. But their inherent milder nature makes them apparently vulnerable.

To withstand the onslaught of wild acts of their wilder cousins, the milder humans might be tempted to revisit their discarded wildness.

In this dilemma, they might feel exhausted, tired and helpless.

But they also get some golden opportunities to find some intrinsic truths from these contrasts.

But mild looking wild animals (and humans) are anyway too dangerous for those mild and unsuspecting animals (and humans)!

The mild ones need not become wild to get away from such threats. They only need to develop the technique of identifying those mild looking ones with wild features hidden deep in their brains!

Even identifying is not enough; they also should know how to get away from getting caught by those wild teeth and claws!

Remember, evolution is not yet a finished process. It is still continuing and in the intermediate stage.

It is going to take much time before every one is finished as perfectly mild!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Thinking of A Modern Non Pinching Taxation Regime? Transaction Tax Could Be the Answer !

Paying taxes to the government is an unavoidable responsibility of all citizens. Taxes paid by the citizens are used for the common benefit of all people. Hence, taxing the people by the governments cannot be avoided.

There could not be much dispute on this. All right thinking people should agree to this fundamental fact of social responsibility. 

But yet many people are scary and worried about taxation. They are annoyed with the governments for creating problems for them in the name of taxation. Governments world over have been in the practice of terrorizing their peoples with many kinds of regressive taxation and taxation laws. In reality, taxation laws are not essentially made with the sole objective of raising funds for the governments to function, but are also aimed for controlling the people with fear inducing whips of taxation laws laden with many kinds of punishments for the defaulters. Many times it is not enough to pay the taxes, but the citizens are forced to submit of file many kinds of reports, called tax returns, to the tax enforcing authorities and keep answering to various kinds of irritating questions from the latter.

This kind of a situation makes the lives of citizens miserable as they are forced to do complex documentation of accounts of  their incomes and expenditures which goes beyond their normal level of understanding and capabilities. The governments in turn are forced to keep a large work force of tax enforcers who simply add to the complexities are eat away the good portion of the taxes that are being collected by way of salaries and perks to this great work force attached to the taxation administration departments. Imagine the situation when the governments are spending the good amount of the taxes collected as costs for collecting the taxes!

The same tax administration then becomes the policy making authorities and advisers to the government and a complex system of regressive taxation gets perpetuates in the society. The citizens are becoming angry over their elected representatives who become more and more helpless to do any kind of creative reforms as they are more and more dependent on certain administrative organisations which had grown over to unmanageable levels with complex rules and regulations over the years. When expenses of the government increases every year, there is no other way than to tax the people more. When people are taxed more with more and more regulations, productivity of the people goes down and the tax collections decline compelling the governments to adopt more regressive laws with bigger administrative set ups. 

A vicious circle is formed in this process and the elected representatives who get in to the top positions of government becomes helpless to do any thing. The chances of the elected representatives knowing about a complex system of governmental finances are rare as they are representatives of the ordinary citizens. They could be good in criticizing a problematic governmental system with their high pitched voices to the full satisfaction of a good majority of the angry citizens. But when it comes to the question of making those very systems corrected the way they wish, things do not happen that way because they really do not understand the way out. Very often, their zealous attempts add up the complexities because of the lack of knowledge and competency that they and their supporting teams have in varying degrees.

As I have mentioned in some other blogs in these pages earlier, it is not very difficult to understand the difficulty one might face when he tries to remove the knots in an entangled web of strings. If he is an expert and knows the techniques, he could easily do it. Otherwise, he would make more knots and make the web more complex making it difficult for others with some expertise to try for some success. It happens in systems of human organizations as well.

In India, and for that matter in many other countries, the taxation laws are indeed regressive as it stands today. The taxation rates are too high and do not encourage honest tax paying. The tax collection costs are high. The collected taxes do not get evenly or justifiably distributed. The laws talks about only punishments punishments only and not of any incentives to any honest tax payer. High tax payers are treated as anti socials. Wealth generators and entrepreneurs  live under constant fear of the authorities because they could be harassed with the tax administration laws and treated like dreaded criminals.

Out of all regressive tax laws the income tax laws in many countries are draconian and do not exhibit any reflections of human civilization or culture. They surely reflect the legacy of the bloody past of the human race when they existed as warring groups with every man antagonistic to every other.

Modern tax laws such as the service tax laws too are becoming harsh and anti people and non-progressive with more negative qualities than positive attributes. 

Could there be any alternative where in governments could get the money they need and at the same time the money collection efforts do not harass the people in general. Could there be any system where in taxes could be collected without elaborate tax collection machinery? Could there be any system where in complex rules and laws are not required to be applied? Could there be any system where tax collection by the government is not very much felt by the people as pinching and painful?

It is possible in my opinion. But the only requirement in that case should be that the government should not think of using the law for the whimsical benefits of those who are occupying the seats of power and governance. They should not think of using the laws against some one whom they want to settle the scores. They should only think of getting the money needed to run the governmental functions smoothly and efficiently and nothing more than that. They should not have hidden agendas of using the laws for personal benefits or for perpetuation of corruption.

If they are honest in this, then tax laws could be much simpler. Tax collection would be simple and non pinching to the citizens. They also would not need huge establishments for tax administration which directly and indirectly cause peoples money to be wasted unnecessarily. All the more, governments and peoples' representatives that form the governments would less likely be treated as anti-people!

It is not that economists and leaders who are knowledgeable in economics do not understand these things. The Harvard educated economist and political leader in India, Mr Subramanian Swamy has favored the scrapping of income tax. Think tanks of major political parties are now realizing the anger of the people of India against the governmental establishments as reflected by the victory and popularity of the Aam Admi Party (AAP) and are seriously considering sweeping changes in the direct tax laws for gaining people's support to their favor. [Read : Can Income Tax Be Really Abolished in India?

As a common citizen who keeps a common sense  interest in the non-academic and theoretical aspects of economics, I do agree with the idea of scrapping the regressive income tax as it prevails in India. If it is done and replaced with some other indirect tax system it would definitely be of advantage to the citizens and the country.

But what type of an indirect tax? Some people have been suggesting expenditure tax. But I would rather suggest some kind of transaction tax for transactions of money done through banks. It could apply to all transactions of money transfer between accounts and could apply to the transactor at a low percentage of say 0.5 % of the amount transacted for any purpose. All transaction tax so collected by the banks should go to the government account periodically. All these accounting of deduction of transaction tax and transferring it to the government account should be responsibility of the banks done automatically through appropriate computer software systems.

This system would be equally applicable to all citizens and it is not so harsh in real terms. For large transactors the amounts would be large but for smaller transactors the amount of transaction tax would be negligible. The more the transactions, the more the tax, just as we have in the stock markets.

Assuming that I have a total income of Rs.1000000 per annum. When I get it I pay a tax of 1000000* 0.005 = Rs.5000. When I consume it by paying others, I pay another Rs.5000 and the government gets Rs.10000/- The more I transact, the more I pay taxes. If I get some interest of Rs.100000, I pay Rs 500 as transaction tax. Imagine the potential of collection of tax by the government and its easiness to implement! It is not going to pinch any one as the transactions are done distributively and the rates of transaction tax is low. When the present income tax is abolished, the whole of the income tax establishment and its maintenance costs could be saved. 

I know that there are those internal experts of the IT administration who might argue in favor of the income tax again by saying that the maintenance cost of income tax administration is much low. They say that it is less than 1%. Even then, is it necessary to harass the citizens in the name of income tax? Or is it prudent only to get the necessary income for the government for its necessary functions?

Of course, the people now associated with the income tax administration may not agree with this and they are very likely to find thousand and one reasons against any such new ideas. It is understandable.

But governments are required to work for the people and not for fulfilling some desires of some of its employees! No doubt, government employees are also citizens of the country. Their jobs need to be protected. But just for that avoiding some better system is not justifiable. Governments of modern civilized worlds should try to transform their functions as real service to its people in letter and spirit and not for ruling the people with their powers in the name of service. And public servants should be service oriented and not oriented dictatorially for each and everything. 

In a society which is a mixture of mature and immature citizens, the percentage of the latter exceeding much above the former, it may not be so easy for government staff to be gentlemanly always. There is a danger of the immature beings taking that gesture as a sign of weakness. Whips do have some pacifying effect on immature beings. But then only mature beings know how to use whips and carrots judiciously!

But in my personal opinion, a time has come to experiment with new systems of taxation. There is a need to change to a system which honors honesty and motivate mature people to function as living examples to those who are not so mature. And taxation laws should encourage people to enhance desirable and productive economic activities rather than discouraging. 

Of course, it would not be easy to discard income tax altogether and introduce a new taxation system such as the transaction tax. This has to be done in phases with proper studies conducted before implementation. But such studies should be done honestly by expert groups and not by any one who come up with their reports under duress and pressure, as usually done in such cases.

All the above are opinions and suggestions from an ordinary citizen of India. An aam admi to be more precise! 

And I know very well that there could be only a few other aam admi s (common people) who could understand and agree to what I have opined and no possible supporters from any of those who are in power positions of decision making!  

Because those enjoying power positions never have any time to listen to the aam admi s. Even otherwise, power positions do block the receptive faculties of human bodies!