Wednesday, December 9, 2015

My Answers to Some of the Pertinent Questions that You Have in Your Mind: Question-3 About Heaven and Hell!

Your Question: Several prominent religions teach about the existence of heaven and hell. What is your view on the basis of your learning of your favorite book of life guidance, the Urantia Book? What happens to humans after death?

My Answer: Before reading what I have to say about your question, I would suggest that you have a look on the answer that I had given some time ago sharing my thoughts on doubts that people may have about the existence of God.

Now coming back to your question. You wanted to know my thoughts about the existence of heaven and hell. You also wanted to know what happens to humans after death. I am glad that you wanted to know about these on the basis of my learning of the Urantia Book. Since you had shown some inclination to know about this book, I would also suggest that you take your own time to read my blog articles based on the Urantia Book.

Belief in some kind of existence after death is one of the common characteristics of all religions. Many believe in the existence of heaven and hell, though they may not be so sure about those. Adding to the confusion is the modern day science which reject all such spiritualistic postulates! Yet it gives some consolation to simple humans to believe in the existence of heaven-the post mortal abode of good people and hell-the post mortal torture place for all bad people and sinners!

The idea is more or less the same in all religions, though they may differ widely in finer details. Heaven is the seat of God while hell is the seat of Satan or Devil or the Yama.

While the concept is much simple in religions like Christianity or Islam, the concept becomes a bit complex in religions like Hinduism. Certain other religions like Judaism or Buddhism do not support the concept of heaven and hell as some futuristic abode for human souls after death, though they recognize their existence as the abodes of the immortal non-humans.

Hinduism teaches about countless rebirths for all bad people before their souls get finally purified for ultimate dissolution with the Supreme Soul who is the source of all life. 

While Christians and Muslims believe in life after death with the human personality survival for a better everlasting life in the heavens for all the good people and for an everlasting punishment for all the bad people, the Hindus do not believe in personality survival. For Christians, merely being good does not necessarily ensure an everlasting life in heaven; they also need to accept Jesus Christ as their savior and redeemer for ensuring their passage to the heaven.

The Muslim teachings are apparently the best in this context. All those who are real Muslims (slaves of God) who follow all the religious commandments strictly reach heaven after death for an everlasting life full of merry and happiness with the angels doing all kinds of assistance for that life full of pleasures and joys! On the contrary, those who lived the other way on earth will be judged for everlasting punishment in the hell of fire and torment.

All these teachings may appear as okay for the simple kind of peoples who do not have the mind strength to question any kind of authority. They are content with what they are taught. It would be very difficult for them to think differently from what had been imprinted in their minds from childhood by authoritarian parents and religious elders.

But for the intellectually keen people who cannot digest apparent falsehoods or thoughts that do not align with their logical minds, there could be some problem. Either they get confused or they simply run away from the religions and the spiritualists. They prefer to channelize their mental energies in other kinds of pursuits! At the fag ends of their human life, they fall in line with the religious thoughts and practices of their ancestors as it is the simplest and safest thing that they can do then! Yet some others though active in their minds with their own convictions and findings, prefer to be silent on these matters as they do not wish to antagonize their lesser evolved fellows around them!

I know, I have not yet answered your question directly. I would try to do it as simple as possible now. Let me confess one thing. All our religions have some truths in them. But they have enough untruths as well. Certain kinds of clever untruths are difficult to be separated and discarded by human logic alone! And that applies to what I say too. In other words, when I say some teachings in some religion as untrue, the other side can easily retaliate with the same argument!

It is really tough. But for those who are guided by the invisible divine guidance, it may not be always difficult.

The Urantia Book teachings are very elaborate. Let me try to put it as simple as possible.

The will of the Supreme God is behind the creation of all in this universe including human beings of earth. But human creation is not by any direct act of God. The human creation is by an indirect act which may be considered as a process of divinely administered and controlled evolution. The human creation on earth (or for that matter in any other planets in the universe) is not an accident, but it is with some divine plan and purpose.

The material body mechanisms of humans got developed by the controlled evolutionary process. Micro-organisms, plants animals got in to existence prior to humans. A single-celled bacteria could be termed as the original ancestor of all humans! This explanation is in line with modern scientific conclusions. The only difference here is that our scientists are not-so-willing to agree to the process of the divine control in evolution, though many of them privately agree to that concept now.

While the human creation is through the divinely controlled evolution, it is important to understand that this is not the only process by which life is created by the agencies of God in accordance with the divine mandates!

Humans are advanced kinds of animals and the principal difference is that they have an advanced brain that is capable of embedding certain divine thought mechanism within it. The human brain mechanism also has the capability to respond to certain universal communication channels  in a vague manner. The most important difference of the human mind residing in the human brain, as compared to its animal cousins, is its ability to recognize the existence of its creator! Yes, human mind has an inbuilt mechanism that draws all humans of sound mental health, towards God.

At the same time, human mind is not created with any slavish submission to its creator. Human mind is divinely mandated as free-willed. Humans are capable of rejecting or accepting divine guidance!

Human body is not immortal. Inherently, humans and all material living beings are mortals. In other words, they are with material bodies that has an end. Its life span is limited. Every human has a unique personality and this personality is both inherent and acquired. Personality has several characteristics. Both personality and life are unique gifts from God-the supreme source of everything.

Human personality can potentially survive material death under certain conditions. Thus all human personalities do not survive after their death. Plants and animals have certain limited functions on earth. Those humans who do not survive death are also similar in nature.

Human mind becomes immortal soul with a unique personality when the human mind fully fuses with the god-fragment that resides within the human mind as a separate entity. This god-fragment is that enables the human personality to survive death and live again in another phase of existence. But the fusion of human mind and the god-fragment within can happen only when the human mind is decisively oriented towards God's will. 

Whether a human being is potentially a survival candidate is not determined by the individual concerned. It is a function of certain universal agencies of God. A human mind with potential fusion capability with its god-fragment need not get aligned for fusion very easily. This process might take much time and might undergo several mind polishing processes. Such minds may be allowed to take re-births in different bodies till the mind polishing is complete.

Thus re-births are a fact. But all humans do not undergo re-births. Again, re-births for a man or woman on earth would not be on earth again. It would be in another planet or planets far away in the cosmos. Such a planet is a kind of heaven because these kinds of dwelling places are not evolutionary planets like earth. They are specially made planets for polishing and upgrading humans of survival potential after their initial material life and death on earth.

Even while having their new lives in those heavenly planets of marvelous creative beauty, some human minds may refuse to align with God's will which prevent their personality fusion with the god-fragment. In this case they may not face with death again, but face another situation. They fail to progress to higher levels of perfection and universal adventure. They remain where  they are. Eventually, it might be like prisons for them. Such places of detention in the universe are the so-called 'hells'. 

Aligning with God's will and surviving physical death for advancement in the universe career of everlasting life and adventure is not much difficult provided humans are sincerely willing reject evil  ways of living and adopt life that is essentially in accordance with divine mandates.

Divine way of living essentially means a sincere desire to be god-like by enhancing godly qualities of love, compassion, honesty, creativity, patience, humility and above all with a desire to love the invisible Supreme God of all creations as a parent. A perpetual and willful rejection amounts to an evil way of living!

Fusion with the Universal Soul (Param Atman) and going beyond consciousness for achieving what is known as ' Moksha' or salvation is an erroneous concept. If that could have been the desire of God, there was no point for Him to create intelligent humans! Essentially, by creating humans through the process of controlled evolution, God has been attempting a unique creative method to develop extremely useful beings for universe administration. That is the creation of time-tested experiential beings who are required for certain kinds of universe administration.

Humans on earth and similar earth like planets elsewhere in the universe are essentially immortal beings under the process of creation! When their creative development go wrong, they cease to exist or their further development is curtailed. Otherwise they develop fully to become time tested immortal beings of remarkable utility for God.

I hope you now understand what happens after death to some extent. I also hope you could better appreciate the teachings of our existing religions as well.

[This blog is the 500th blog article of this blog site!]

Monday, November 23, 2015

When Does Democracy Become Demon-cracy?

Before I go to explain my views on the question in the title of this blog, I would like to tell you a small real life experience that I had some time ago.

It was the time when the city where I lived during those days was on the verge of beginning a real estate bloom for the first time. It was not a metro, but a booming tier-2 city with a population nearing about a million.

Since plenty of farm land was available around the urbanized areas, lateral development was not much of a problem. The city planners had been pretty liberal in approving land diversion from farm land to housing plots. Land for building independent bungalow type houses was not very expensive.

Things got changed as the lateral expansion of the city reached its limits due to mismatches in the infrastructural development with regard to roads and public transport. Then the real estate businessmen of the area came out with new housing offers in the form of apartments and flats.

Many people, who did not want to get in to the problems of roads, water, electricity, transport, safety, etc that plagued the independent houses offered by the colonizers in diverted farm lands, thought the multi storied buildings which contained the flat type houses would be better. I too was one among them.

The purchase and getting in to the hotel type living in the flat were not much of a problem. For us it was like living in the heart of the city in a large hotel by spending much less. Initially, the flat owners and residents hardly felt any problem as the apartment complex was kept managed by the builder. The resident owners of the flats were a happy lot because they hardly realized the hardships of administering the complex!

There were security guards who saluted us at the gate, cleaning staff who cleaned the vitrified tiles of the corridors and the parking areas better than we ever imagined, staff who collected the wastes from our doors and others who did pretty odd jobs for the owners without any hue and cry. The water supply in our taps inside our flats was a neat 24 x 7 and so was the electricity. The lifts worked smoothly to take us up and down from all the floors! And all these things happening in the heart of a busy city! It was marvelous and totally enjoyable!

Our joys did not go like that for ever. A couple of months later, the general manager of the real estate company invited us to their office for some important discussion. There we were informed that our honey moon days are over and we, the flat owners are now of our own. We were told to take over the day to day management of our apartment complex. The responsibility of the builders was over, we were told. We were reminded to read the fine prints in the sale deeds to which we were all signatories when we signed up for making those deeds registered in our names.

Nothing to worry, though. They re-assured us. All we have to do is to form a democratic association of the owners, register it, get it equipped with an elected management committee in accordance with the laws of the land. We have to form a registered society of owners with its own bye-laws and an elected committee of our own representatives who did the management of our apartment complex in accordance with the law of the land.

Many of our co-owners resisted the move. No-no! This is injustice. We do not have time to do all these things. We do not have the expertise for this. Had this been the case, we would not have purchased this flat. Is this the way it happens elsewhere? 

As the majority group opinion was against, we simply moved out without any action plan. We were typical citizens who liked to enjoy all facilities but not with those thorns of responsibilities!

But the builders went ahead as they had told. One fine morning the security guards and the staff were all withdrawn from the premises of our large apartment building.

All of a sudden there was great anarchy. There was no security, no cleaning, no water and the stench of the filth accumulating became nauseating!

I was too surprised to find the ignorance of the educated upper middle class house owners in these matters. All the rules of the game were given to us well in advance and we all had all documents to make us aware of the situation. But none of us bothered to know. The majority of us were neither willing to accept any responsibility nor had the enthusiasm to enhance our basic knowledge in these matters so that we could responsibly act for our own sake.

I also remember the pains I had taken to gather a few like minded flat owners, educate them with the consequences and the action plans to mitigate the problems that we suddenly got into. I remember the pains I had taken to draft the bye-laws of our society and the joint efforts some of us took to get it registered and take over the day to day management of our apartment complex from the builders. It was one of the first of that kind of acts in that city at that time! I was one of the founder members and one of the office bearers of our society. I had to spend much time and efforts to manage the day to day maintenance of the building complex by doing the honorary service as an office bearer.

Now being directly involved in the day to day management of our residential apartment building, I learnt certain things. 

For me personally, it was not a difficult task. But I experienced that this otherwise simple administrative task could  turn out  pretty bad and embarrassing  unless I honestly do my honorary service with sincerity ensuring cooperation with others in the management committee.

The service you do and the decisions you take on behalf of others are much more difficult than similar things you do for your own.     

It  is not so easy when you have to do your service or take decisions in a democratic atmosphere. You are bound to be criticized or opposed even for those things that you consider as the most appropriate and desirable! 

If there are ten people, there would be at least ten opinions and preferences. Your fellows will not agree with you for many things unless they too have the same understanding level as you. When your fellows all seem not liking your ideas or when you have to devote much time to convince your fellows for your wise decision to get implemented you are bound to become frustrated! More than thinking and adopting the best administration for every body's good, the requirement now demands some thing else. You have to manage your fellow beings 'cleverly' for a good administration to set in. 

Thus it would become important for you to adopt the game of politics for managing the day to day administration! 

The game of politics thus becomes an important necessity when democratic administration is implemented. Democracy is rule by the people. But when the people are a mix of individuals with varying degrees of mind development, they can be considered as good and bad all at the same time! 

You realize that you and your fellows are all with two opposing qualities built in one. All are essentially demonic with some divine qualities  incorporated within their minds.

The good and bad traits are not equally distributed, but are in varying degrees. In many groups now, the root mean value is obviously trending towards bad or demonic. So when demonic qualities predominate, democracy becomes essentially a tricky game of politics making it demon-cracy!

In other words, democracy is the best when the root mean quality of the concerned group of people is essentially good. Otherwise, democracy tends to become demon-cracy and the demonic game of politics becomes its integral part!

And in the game of politics, every thing is right or there is nothing termed as wrong.

But the game of politics in demon-cracy slowly does wonderful things for the people. Its gaming experiments enhance the experiential mind capacities and slowly make the people recognize the desirability of  adopting good over bad. In simple terms, this means the era when people naturally seek goodness or divine qualities rather than slipping in to the darkness of those bad and evil attributes of the demons!

Divine goodness is superior to demonic evil. All evil and bad things will vanish and good things only prevail  as things get forward in the evolutionary progress.

The only hitch is that it, the evolutionary progress, takes long time spanning several generations!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Being Hindu and Being Christian in India: Posts by Two Indian Ladies!

A couple of days ago, my cousin sister, Ms.Annie Cyriac*, shared something that she has written on Whatsapp. 
[* See Note at the page bottom]

While reading her Whatsapp post, I could gauge her anguish over certain social issues that have been eroding the ethos of our great nation. The same Indian values and culture on which we have been proud regardless of our religious or social status or political outlooks!

But more than being an independent expression of thoughts, her writing in reality was a spontaneous response to the thoughts posted by another young lady some time ago on her Facebook page which has become a so-called 'viral post' on the internet. Obviously, thousands of Indian net savvy citizens mostly representing 'Young India' have been liking her post and sharing it wide to make it viral.

That information came from my daughter which her aunt, Annie, confirmed later. 

That made me to search and find the original 'viral post' titled 'Being Hindu' posted by Ms.Anurita Anupam who introduces herself in her post as a 'confused Hindu'. I also found references of her post on site like this ! I read this confused lady's post too carefully and realized the importance of the response made by my non-confused sister. 

Anurita , in my opinion, has only made a passionate expression of thoughts arising out of her mental confusions. But her writing has the taste of some deep rooted frustration and more interestingly, her attempt to find the the root cause of her frustration, created more frustration. That was what I felt by reading her post.

But the disturbing fact is that there exist thousands who share similar confusions in their minds. That explains the main reason for her post becoming  very likable to many and becoming viral.

No nation can neither progress nor attain peace when it has so many confused minds. It reflects warning signals about the onset of societal illness. It is essential that all right thinking citizens do some thing to mitigate such illnesses before it develops to some thing more vicious!

In Annie's response, I visualized an honest effort in that direction. But it is like a preventive medicine and cannot invade the minds of those already infested with the viral thoughts, unless they really want to get rid of those.

Yet with the permission of Annie, I am making an attempt to make her thoughts too in the public domain for those interested in knowing the other side. The following is Annie's response to Anurita's viral post:


[A recent post I read about a confused Hindu has prompted me to write this!]

I am an Indian. I am a Christian. I am not confused. But I fear for my countrymen who are confused.

I was born in Mumbai and I have loved to celebrate Diwali with my neighbors-lighting lamps, bursting fire crackers, and gorging on the Indian sweets.

Christmas was just as exciting- singing carols and sharing home made cakes with our neighbors.

At the Catholic school we attended, the school prayer was chanted in unison irrespective of whether we were Christians, Hindus or Muslims. As kids, religion didn't matter. 'Secularism' was just a word in our social studies text book. It was what we unknowingly practiced.

Later on when we shifted to Gujarat, religion was not an issue at all. All the families in the colony lived in harmony. During Navarathri festival, my cousins and I would look forward to donning our new glittering attires and dance the 'garba' late in to the night. It saddened my heart to read that recently non-vegans (read non-Hindus!) in Gujarat were forbidden from participating in the festivities.

As a child I have also lived abroad in a non secular Muslim country. I would roam around the vicinity with my local Arab friends. They'd communicate with me through gestures and broken Hindi. I thought it fun to cover my head and mimic their ways as they kneel for 'namas'. Neither language, nor religion nor nationality mattered then.

I do not believe that all hell would break loose if a school run by a Hindu Trust in a Christian dominated area sang verses from the Gita or the Mahabharat. We cannot expect them to quote the Bible in any case; can we?

I recall my Hindu friends chanting 'Rama-rama' in the adjacent prayer room while we Christians said our evening prayers along with the nuns at the convent hostel we stayed during my teens. At present I work in a Hindu run school and each morning when the prayers are recited, the few Christians teachers there, do bow their heads in respect!

Christian churches are open to all. They don't get defiled if a person another religion or caste enters it. Christians and Muslims don't go to a temple for fear of insulting the sentiments of some Hindus who consider it as an act of defilement. Remember how even Indira Gandhi was once refused access to the famous Guruvayoor temple of Kerala? I had once innocently entered the Thirunakkara temple with my insistent Hindu friends without really realizing the implications during my college days. I now realize that it was indeed a great folly from my part as it could have caused a great uproar had the Hindu temple authorities had known my religion!

I do not refuse the 'prasad' given to me by my Hindu friends after they come back visiting their temples. For me, all food come from God and my conscience is not shaken. The Bible says that 'food will not commend us to God' and we are no better if we eat or not any food that is passed on from the temples or Gurudwaras or the Mosques! The important thing is to live in harmony with all and not to cause your brother or sister (from whatever faith system) to fall.

I do not care if my tax money goes to subsidize some of my country men's Hajj pilgrimage. Every year I gladly contribute to the temple festivals near my home and school. 

If St.Stephens (college in Delhi) gives preference to Christian candidates, thousands of other private institutions in India give preferences to candidates of their own religious choice.  There could be an equal number that do not do it that way. For that matter my own daughter had to pay a donation to get a seat in a Christian run college in spite of her having high marks! There are institutions (run by people from all religious affiliations) who follow the rules meticulously and those who violate those rules occasionally or frequently.

If a mosque is not allowed to be built higher than the St.Paul's Cathedral in a Christian dominated nation, is that really torturing of Muslims? What then should we say about the burning of 11 churches in north India in the past 18 months? And what about the demolition of the Babari Mosque on the 6th December, 1992?

In the Christian faith, marriage is a sacrament. For a marriage to be conducted in a church, it is essential that both the bride and the groom to be Christians, just as it is compulsory for a Hindu to take a dip before entering in a temple. I have witnessed inter-religious marriages taking place in the church with either the groom or the bride from another faith  simply willing to declare as embracing the Christian faith for the sake of getting the marriage ceremony conducted in the church only to satisfy the other side! It is needless to say that they do it later in a temple or any other such place of their choice, again for the same purpose!

It really did not matter in India with its secular standing!

I am not for polygamy or for reservation (of government jobs on the basis of religion or castes). I do not welcome the beef ban nor do I welcome the beef party! But I have the sense enough to realize that the latter that happened here and there was not to mock any religion, but was only a kind of protest as beef eating is not yet a constitutional violation in this country. I am only alarmed a bit when someone rake up this issue as if it is against the Hindu religion because I have read the Hindu sacred texts that justify meat and beef eating! I do understand the compulsions of some in a democracy trying their best in raking up or making issues like this touching the soft senses of some people  desperately hoping that they make political gains!

I encourage my children to read the Bible. But I also encourage them to read other religious texts. I do not consider that their religious faith would be at stake if they read other religious books!

For that matter how may of us have an in-depth understanding of our own religions or their true teachings? In reality most of us claim to be Christian or Hindu or Muslim not because of our real faith or convictions, but because of being born to parents branded in any of those religions! Most of us are 'nominal' Christians, Hindus, Muslims or Sikhs!

Again can any one become true Christian or Hindu or Muslim or Sikh by compulsion? If I say tomorrow that I am a Hindu, does that make me a Hindu? What difference it would make even if I give it in writing?

Recently a woman writer was asked to step down from the dias just  to please a Hindu seer who refused to sit beside her. Can we blame our intellectuals for protesting against such a growing intolerance in a progressive nation of the 21st century?

I am an Indian woman. I am a mother and a teacher. I teach my children that the world is a global village. But now whe I hear the students saying ' all Indians are my brothers and sisters' in our school assembly, I fear for the future of these innocent kids who have to grow up in an era where stray dogs are given more importance than human beings, where communal political parties proceed with their agenda, where drug pedaling is not a big crime and where lynching and rape are nothing very big!

I am not a confused Christian. My faith stands firm. I also have faith in my friends-Hindus, Christians and Muslims. They are my brothers and sisters and India is my mother land just as theirs. A mother cannot be partial; no matter if her children are dark or fair, smart or stupid.

Secularism is not just a word meant to be confined to the Social Studies text book, it should be ingrained in the hearts of every Indian.

When in need for blood, will the gender, religion, caste or creed really matter for the recipient patient?

Don't say that the Hindu blood is different from a Christian or Muslim blood!

I do not know whether Ms. Anurita or any one of her followers would ever happen to read the above. If they do, I hope they really come out of their confusions.

And truly, there are nothing to get so confused!

As Annie puts it: let us truly strive to be worthy Indians! Our roots and bloods are the same! 

[* Annie Cyriac is an English language teacher working in Amrita High School Mooledom in Kerala. Her husband is Dr.Jenu Alex. Her daughter, Rebacca incidentally got media attention while casting  her first vote together with her grandmother and candidate, Mrs. Thankamma Alex  in the recently held elections in Kerala (Image above shows Malayala Manorama e-paper  Kottayam edition  report dtd 6-11-2015 in p-4). Annie had been a teacher in Maldives some years ago. Her life experiences can be read in her blog site titled  'Notions']

Thursday, November 5, 2015

തെരുവു നായ്ക്കളെ സ്നേഹിച്ച് സായൂജ്യം തേടുന്ന മനുഷ്യ ദ്രോഹികള്‍!

മനുഷ്യനും മൃഗവും തമ്മില്‍ പലകാര്യങ്ങളില്‍ സാമ്യം കാണാന്‍ കഴിയും. മനുഷ്യന്‍ മൃഗ തുല്യന്‍ ആയി വരാമെങ്കിലും മൃഗം ഒരിക്കലും മനുഷ്യ തുല്യന്‍ ആകില്ല. അവിടെ ആണ് മനുഷ്യനും മൃഗവും തമ്മിലുള്ള വ്യത്യാസം പ്രകടമാകുന്നത്.

ചിന്താശക്തിയും ദൈവിക ബോധവുമുള്ള മനുഷ്യന്‍ ശരീര പ്രകൃതികൊണ്ട്  ചില മൃഗങ്ങളെ പോലെ ഒക്കെ ആയിരിക്കുന്നത് മൂലം മനുഷ്യനും മൃഗവും തുല്യര്‍ തന്നെ എന്ന് ചില ബോധ വൈകല്യമുള്ള മനുഷ്യര്‍ പറയാന്‍ ഇടയുണ്ട്. എന്നാല്‍ അത് അവരുടെ ബുദ്ധി വൈകല്യത്തിന്റെ ഒരു അനന്തര ഫലം  മാത്രം എന്ന് ബുദ്ധിഭ്രമം ഇല്ലാത്ത സാധാരണ മനുഷ്യര്‍ മനസ്സിലാക്കി പ്രതികരിക്കാതെ ഇരുന്നിരുന്നു.
stray dogs in cubbon park_0_0_0_0
തെരുവിനെ സംരക്ഷിക്കുന്ന ഇന്ത്യയുടെ അഭിമാനമായ നായ്ക്കള്‍!

എന്നാല്‍ ഭോഷികളുടെ അഭിപ്രായങ്ങള്‍ക്ക് പ്രതികരിക്കാത്ത സാദാ മനുഷ്യര്‍ക്ക്‌ ആ നിസംഗത ഇപ്പോള്‍ വിനയായിരിക്കുന്നു.

സമൂഹത്തില്‍ ഭോഷികള്‍ കൂടി വരുന്ന അവസ്ഥാ വിശേഷം സംജാതമായിരിക്കുന്നു എന്ന് വേണം കരുതാന്‍. ഇത് മനുഷ്യ കുലത്തിനു വിനയാകും എന്ന്  ചിന്താ ശേഷി നഷ്ടമായിട്ടില്ലാത്തവര്‍ക്ക് സ്വല്പം ആലോചിച്ചാല്‍ പിടികിട്ടാത്ത കാര്യമല്ല.

ഭോഷികളുടെ പ്രവര്‍ത്തികളും അഭിപ്രായങ്ങളും അവര്‍ പ്രതികരിക്കാത്ത സമൂഹത്തിനു മേല്‍ അടിച്ചേല്‍പ്പിച്ചു കൊണ്ടിരിക്കയാണിപ്പോള്‍. ഇന്ന് നടക്കുന്ന പലതും അതാണ്‌ സൂചിപ്പിക്കുന്നത്.

പലതും നിസാരമെന്നു തോന്നാവുന്ന കാര്യങ്ങള്‍. എന്നാല്‍ ഭവിഷ്യത്തുകള്‍ നിസാരമല്ല താനും.

കേരളത്തില്‍ ഇന്ന് വര്‍ധിച്ചു വരുന്ന തെരുവു നായ ശല്യം തന്നെ എടുക്കുക. കേരളത്തില്‍ മാത്രമല്ല ഇന്ത്യ ഒട്ടാകെ തെരുവു നായകളെ കൊണ്ട് നിറഞ്ഞിരിക്കുന്നു. ഈ നായകരില്ലാത്ത നായകള്‍ അപ്രതീക്ഷ സമയത്ത് നിസഹായ മനുഷ്യരുടെയും മറ്റു വളര്‍ത്തു മൃഗങ്ങളുടെയും മേല്‍ ആക്രമണം നടത്തുന്നു. പിടി പെട്ടാല്‍ ദാരുണ മരണം ഉറപ്പായ പേപ്പട്ടി വിഷ ബാധ പെരുകുന്നു. പേപ്പട്ടി വിഷ പ്രതിരോധ മരുന്ന് കമ്പനികള്‍ മരുന്നിന്റെ വില വര്‍ധിപ്പിച്ചു കോടികള്‍ ലാഭം ഉണ്ടാക്കുന്നു. അവരില്‍ നിന്നും കോഴ കിട്ടാന്‍ വഴിയുള്ള ചിലര്‍ക്ക് തെരുവു നായ സ്നേഹം പണ്ടത്തെക്കാള്‍ പല മടങ്ങ്‌ വര്‍ദ്ധിക്കുന്നു.

ഈ അവസ്ഥ വന്നാലത്തെ സ്ഥിതി ഒന്നാലോചിക്കൂ! 
[ചിത്രം അഴിമുഖം ഡോട്ട് കോം ലേഖനത്തില്‍ നിന്ന്. 
ലേഖനം വായിക്കാന്‍ ചിത്രത്തില്‍ ക്ലിക്ക്‌ ചെയ്യുക!]

അപ്പോള്‍ തെരുവു നായകളുടെ കടി പിടിയെക്കാള്‍ വലിയ ഒരു കടി പിടി മനുഷ്യരുടെ ഇടയിലും സംജാതമാകുന്ന കാഴ്ച കണ്ടു സാധാരണ ജനങ്ങള്‍ അന്തം വിടുന്നു. തെരുവു നായകളെ നശിപ്പിക്കാന്‍ ഒരു പഞ്ചായത്ത് അധികൃതര്‍ ശ്രമിക്കുന്നു. അപ്പോള്‍ അതാ  കേരള പോലീസ് പാഞ്ഞെത്തുന്നു- പഞ്ചായത്ത് അധികൃതര്‍ക്ക്‌ സംരക്ഷണം കൊടുക്കാനല്ല, പിന്നെയോ, പഞ്ചായത്ത് മേധാവിയെ പിടിച്ചു ജയിലില്‍ ഇടാന്‍- ഇന്ത്യയിലെ മൃഗ സംരക്ഷണ നിയമ ലംഘനത്തിന്റെ പേരും പറഞ്ഞ്!

തെരുവു നായ ശല്യത്തില്‍ രോഷം പരസ്യമായി പ്രകടിപ്പിക്കുന്ന  ഒരു മലയാളി വ്യവസായി-
ശ്രീ കൊച്ചൌസേഫ് ചിട്ടിലപ്പിള്ളി! [വാര്‍ത്തയ്ക്ക് പടം ക്ലിക്ക്‌ ചെയ്യുക!] 

കോടതികളും  തേരാ പാരാ വിധി ന്യായങ്ങള്‍ എഴുതി വിടുന്നു. ഒന്ന് ഒന്നിനെതിരെ എന്ന് മാത്രം. കോടതി വിധികള്‍ എടുത്തു കാട്ടി മന്ത്രിമാര്‍ കൈ മലര്‍ത്തി നില്‍ക്കുന്ന കാഴ്ച കണ്ടു ജനം സ്വന്തം വിധിയെ ഓര്‍ത്തു തലയില്‍ കൈ വച്ച് കരയാനും ചിരിക്കാനും പറ്റാത്ത അവസ്ഥയില്‍ എത്തി നില്‍ക്കുന്നു. 

ചിന്താശേഷിയുള്ള മലയാള സിനിമാ നായകന്‍ 
മോഹന്‍ലാലിന്റെ പ്രതികരണം 'കടിക്കുന്ന പട്ടിയെ പോറ്റുന്നവര്‍' ആദ്യ പേജ് മുകളില്‍!
പൂര്‍ണ്ണ രൂപം വായിക്കാന്‍  അതില്‍ ക്ലിക്ക്‌ ചെയ്യുക!

ആര്‍ഷ സംസ്കാരമേ! കേരള ജനമേ! എന്ത് പറ്റി? പട്ടികള്‍ കടിച്ചാലും വേദന അറിയാത്ത നിലയിലേക്ക് ശരീരത്തിലും മനസിലും കുഷ്ഠരോഗം പിടിപെട്ടോ? 

ഇതൊക്കെ ഈ നിലയില്‍ എത്തിച്ച ചില മനുഷ്യ കുല ദ്രോഹികള്‍ അവിടവിടെയായി ഇപ്പോള്‍ ചിരിച്ചു രസിക്കുന്നുണ്ട് എന്നോര്‍ക്കണം. അവരെ കാര്യം അറിയാതെ പിന്താങ്ങി ഗോഗ്വാ വിളിക്കുന്ന പല ഭോഷികളും അങ്ങും ഇങ്ങും ഉണ്ടെന്നും ഓര്‍ക്കണം.

ഈ അവസ്ഥയ്ക്ക് എന്താണൊരു പരിഹാരം? ഭോഷരും അഭോഷരും ഒക്കെ ചേര്‍ന്ന് നിയമ വ്യവസ്ഥയെ കെട്ടഴിക്കാന്‍ പറ്റാത്ത ഒരു ഊരാ കുടുക്കാക്കി വച്ചിരിക്കുന്ന ദേശത്തു നേരെ വാ നേരെ പോ എന്നാ രീതിയില്‍ ഇതില്‍ നിന്നും പരിഹാരം പ്രതീക്ഷിക്കുന്നതു മറ്റൊരു മണ്ടത്തരം ആകാനാണ് സാധ്യത കൂടുതല്‍. 

എന്നാല്‍ കേരളത്തിലെ ജനങ്ങള്‍ ബുദ്ധിപരമായി ഇങ്ങനുള്ള പ്രശ്നങ്ങളെ നേരിടണം. ഭോഷികളുടെ ഗോഗ്വ വിളി കേട്ട് നിന്നാല്‍ അങ്ങനെ നില്‍ക്കയെ ഉള്ളൂ. അവരുടെ അഭിപ്രായങ്ങളും മാനിച്ചു നിന്നാല്‍ ഒന്നിനും ഒരു പരിഹാരം കാണാന്‍ കഴിയില്ല. ഉച്ചത്തില്‍ കൂവി വിളിക്കുന്നത്‌ എപ്പോഴും വിവരദോഷികള്‍ ആണെന്നും മറക്കാതിരുന്നാല്‍ എല്ലാവര്ക്കും ഗുണമാകും! വലിയ വായില്‍ കൂവി വിളിക്കുന്ന അല്പസംഖ്യരുടെ കൂടെ പോയാല്‍ അന്തിമ പരാജയം എന്ന് ഓര്‍ക്കുന്നതും ചിലര്‍ക്കൊക്കെ ഗുണമാകും!

എന്നാലും ഈ നിലയില്‍ കാര്യങ്ങളെ എത്തിച്ച ഭരണ കൌശലത്തിനു കൈയടി കൊടുക്കണോ  എന്ന ആലോചനയില്‍ എന്റെ ബുദ്ധി കെട്ടുപോയിരിക്കുന്നു!

[This is a Malayalam language blog article about the stray dog menace of India, especially Kerala that has become a serious problem for the people due to the administrative complications arising out of many contradictory and conflicting laws coupled with too many vested interests! What should be the limit for our stray dog love?]

Monday, October 12, 2015

Gionee Elife E8 Smartphone: The 24 Megapixel Camera with A Smartphone Attached!

For those of you who are smartphone and smart camera enthusiasts from India, there is an exciting news. The news is about the launch of the smartest smart camera phone by Gionee, the Elife E8 today in the Indian markets by the company through online retailer Snapdeal.

The product is being launched at a price under Rs.35000/-

(Waiting to be launched anytime with effective from 12th October 2015 in India)

Technology is fast moving forward that cameras and phones of the past are getting obsolete and replaced by superior combos which combine smartest lenses with smartest phones operated through smartest microchip computers.

As customers are looking for convenience and higher functionalities, the manufacturers are designing and producing products that satisfy the tech savvy consumers.

Twenty-five years ago, I remember purchasing a desktop computer with Cathode Ray Color tube of 14 inch size with a hard disk capacity of 4GB and the super fast Celeron processor which clocked a speed of 450 Megabytes per second by spending a sum that was not affordable to many. It costed Rs.45000/-! But I considered it as a windfall gain at that time because some of my friends had purchased PCs with black and white monitors having a processing power one fourth of that at costs that was three times higher just some months ago.

But we had seen technology progressing faster over the years. In these years, tremendous changes have taken place. Even the toddlers are computer savvy now-a-days! It seems that they learn the tricks while still in the mother's womb!

Now these are not any thing surprising now, but we have assumed technological advancements as a matter of routine. A time has now come that we get annoyed when the technology giants are not innovating on a monthly or yearly basis!

The Chinese company, Gionee,  had launched this product in China in June 2015 with a price equivalent to about Rs.41000/- and the Indian arm of the company is now launching it in India at a lesser price for the Indian enthusiasts of cameras and phones.

The noteworthy feature of the Gionee Elife E8 is its 24-megapixel rear camera.  With a matching software this phone camera can stitch pictures together and produce images up to 120 megapixels in resolution. 

Gionee is claiming that the E8 has a six-element lens with sapphire glass, optical image stabilisation, lossless zoom at up to 3x, 4K video recording, a dedicated camera button, dual-tone LED flash, and phase detection auto focus for speeds up to 0.08 seconds. The smartphone also has a ‘biological’ fingerprint reading feature on the back panel, and an 8-megapixel front-facing camera.

The Elife E8 runs Android 5.1 Lollipop-based Amiga 3.1 operating system, and is a dual-SIM 4G smartphone. 

This smart slim phone is with a 6-inch QHD (1440×2560 pixel) Super Amoled display with a pixel density of 490 ppi. Powered by a 2 GHz octa-core MediaTek Helio X10 (MTK6795) system on chip (SoC) coupled with 3GB of RAM, it comes with 64GB of inbuilt storage without expandable storage. 

The smartphone is powered by a 3520mAh battery, and it supports fast charging.

Those interested in procuring this phone may also like to get other accessories for this phone as well from SnapDeal. That could be easily done by using the search facility given in this online shopping page which could also be used to find other smartphone models including those of Gionee as offered by Snapdeal, flipkart and Amazon.

In case you are not inclined to spend too much money for your Gionee Elife E8 smartphone I would recommend you try any one of the following smart camera phone models instead. These too are technically superior and available for around Rs.10,000/- from the online shops such as Snapdeal (Click the links to see the details and order online!):

Intex Cloud Swift 4G 3GB RAM/16GB ROM- Buy from Snapdeal

Samsung Galaxy Grand Max 16GB- Buy from Snapdeal!

iPhone 4S 8 GB Black-Buy from Snapdeal!

Samsung Tizen Z3- Buy from Snapdeal

Mi4i 16GB- Buy from Snapdeal

Friday, October 9, 2015

Nathaniel and Thomas: the Two Disciples of Jesus Associated With India!

The St.Thomas Christians of India generally believe that it was St. Thomas, the disciple of Jesus, often called the ‘doubting Thomas’ who preached Christianity for the first time in the Indian sub-continent.

But my favorite book of life guidance clarifies that Thomas never reached India. He died in Malta and it was Nathaniel, son of Bartholomew, who did it instead.

In the Bible there are a few references about Nathaniel. We read in the Gospel of John chapter-1 verse 45  like this: 

Philip found Nathaniel and said to him, “We have found him of whom Moses in the Law and also the prophets wrote, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.”

In the same gospel, in chapter 21 we find the name of Nathaniel again. He was among the small group of desperate disciples who had just decided to go back to their original fishermen's profession after the crucifixion and death of Jesus. But the resurrected Jesus appeared to them to restore their confidence and their work towards preaching what he taught them about God's kingdom. Interacting with the resurrected Jesus indeed helped them to believe in the teachings of Jesus more firmly than before. They gained the confidence to face threats and deaths to preach the good news to the ignorant but egoistic mankind.

For sure they now believed about the invisible but real worlds of the divines. They now realized Jesus as a living divine being and not one of the kinds of those mortal prophets. As a human he moved with them some time ago and died miserably in the hands of his egoistic humans who took pride in temporal powers of human authority and never really believed in the existence of God though they did all they did in the name of God!

From the assurance received from the resurrected Christ, the disciples moved to all nations to preach about the good news about God, the heavenly father and about the His divine kingdom. And Nathaniel moved first to Mesopotamia and from there he reached India.

But these are all histories of the past and recorded evidences of all these are difficult to find, though not impossible. But the mismanagement of history by the latter generations of human beings made historical evidences difficult to find and interpret without ambiguity. There are many learned historians who have their own interpretations. Mr. T.V.Philip's book is an example.

But to me the nitty-gritty of historical details are not of much relevance. It does not make any difference if it was Thomas Didymus or Nathaniel Barthalomew who preached Jesus's teachings in India 2000 years ago. But one of the disciples of Jesus, indeed, came to reveal the good news to the Indian descendants of Andon and Fonta and also the later descendants of Adam and Eve that existed as a great humanity occupying the Indian subcontinent! 

We do not know much about the personality traits of these two disciples of Jesus from the literature that had been in existence for centuries. But now my favorite book provides much insight about this which I would like to share with my readers.

Nathaniel was known among the other twelve disciples as 'honest Nathaniel'.He was an associate of Philip and it was Philip who brought him to Jesus. He was on the way to meet John the Baptist that he was diverted to meet Jesus. When he was initiated as one among the twelve, he was the second youngest of the group having attained twenty five years of age. He was unmarried and hailed from Cana. He was the youngest among seven of his siblings.

Nathaniel's greatest virtue that Jesus admired was his sincerity and honesty. His weakness was his pride about his family, his hometown, his reputation and the Jewish nation. He was also well educated just as Judas Iscariot. In many respects, he was the genius among the twelve disciples. He was a philosopher, a practical dreamer, a humorist and a story teller among the lot. Jesus greatly enjoyed Nathaniel talking about various topics, both serious and humorous. He came to the grip of the teachings of Jesus only slowly.

Except Judas, all other disciples loved and respected him for his  knowledge and honesty. Nathaniel was also a troubleshooter and a helping hand to all. Whenever there was a problem in the families of any one, it was Nathaniel who was deputed to help and resolve the problem.

Nathaniel respected Jesus most for his tolerance and open mindedness. Among the twelve, it was he who noticed the remarkable quality of generous sympathy of Jesus towards all people and admired his master for that..

After Jesus had gone to his heavenly abode, Nathaniel preached in Mesopotamian regions and later in India. He died in India while doing his mission of sharing the teachings of Jesus to the peoples of India in the later part of his life. 

While Nathaniel was the sixth disciple of Jesus and was one who was directly chosen by him, Thomas Didymus was the eighth apostle. He was chosen to be in the group by Philip. Thomas was not much educated but possessed a very keen, reasoning mind. He was the true analyst among the twelve! His parents were excellent people hailing from Tiberias, but having a difficult married life. That caused Thomas to grew up as a quarrelsome young man. He was married but his quarrelsome nature had remained to a greater extent. For his wife, Thomas was a pessimistic and suspicious husband and when he decided to follow Jesus as a permanent companion, his wife was too happy about it.

By deciding to join the group that followed Jesus, Thomas got the great opportunity to come in to contact with the noblest human being on earth at that time, Jesus. The direct association of Thomas with Jesus brought remarkable changes in the mind of the latter.

He was under great depression when Thomas came and joined the group that followed Jesus.But his problems began to vanish as he began to comprehend Jesus. Jesus loved Thomas and was always interested in talking to him. Thomas had the highest intellectual understanding and personality appreciation of Jesus.

Thomas was always cautious and his attitude was to give safety the first priority. But when the group decided on something, it was he who moved out first fearlessly to implement the decision. Sadness was another characteristics of Thomas. It was because he had lost his twin sister while he was a boy of nine. When Thomas became moody and sad, often Nathaniel helped him to overcome his melancholy with his humorous talks.

When the news of Jesus' resurrection from the miserable death on the cross came, it was Thomas who refused to believe it, only to  become a firm believer of Jesus later when his doubts got removed.

As my favorite book's superhuman authors point out: 'Thomas is the great example of a human being who has doubts, faces them and wins'.

Thomas was a logical thinker and he was the acid test of Jesus and his fellow disciples. If the work and teachings of Jesus had not been genuine, it could not have held a man like Thomas from the start to the end. Had he noticed even a speck of fraud, Thomas would have left the group!

Modern human scientists may not fully understand all about Jesus and his work on earth, but there lived and worked with him a man whose mind was truly scientific and it was Thomas. And Thomas believed in Jesus, after clarifying all his doubts logically and scientifically!

He doubted the news of the dead Jesus rising up again as a living personality. He got the opportunity to quench all his doubts. Once done that, he became the true messenger of for the teachings of his master to all people.

Many historians believe Thomas reaching India while many others do not support this. But Nathaniel and Thomas both had contributed to spread the good news of Jesus to India and the far east either directly or indirectly a few decades after Jesus' mission on earth.

Would you like to share your views?

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Why Do I Consider Frequent Rate Control Exercise By the Reserve Bank Not Good?

I presume that you have some idea about the basic functions of a central bank in any economy or country. In India it is called the Reserve Bank of India or RBI while in the United States of America it is called the Federal Reserve System and in the United Kingdom it is the Bank of England. There is no standards as to how a central banking organization of a country is to be named and these institutions are known differently in different countries or economic regions.

Essentially, the central bank functions more or less independently and its main function is to control or direct the country's economy properly with various monetary measures or policies adopted from time to time. The central banking system though may be called independent of the government, it is not practically so always. The government does have influence on its functioning, though exercised by indirect means and methods.

The central banking system uses its powers vested on it by appropriate legislation or laws for framing and implementing the monetary policies of the country. Just as individuals deposit money in commercial banks or take loans from them, the central banking system functions as a banking system for the banks. In other words, banks can maintain an account with the central bank and they get an interest for their deposits and they are charged for any loans they take. 

The interest rate at which the central bank lends money to the commercial bank is called the Repo Rate while the interest rate they obtain on their deposits is called the Reverse Repo Rate. The central bank can mandate how much money that the individual banks need to deposit with it at any time. This is called the Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR). Thus the Repo Rate, Reverse Repo Rate and the CRR are often used by the central bank authority for exercising controls on the economy by changing those appropriately. These are like the accelerator, brake and steering of a car!

A car driver can use the pedals and the steering for controlling the speed and direction of the car the way he wants. In a similar way, the head of the central bank ( e.g. the governor of the Reserve Bank of India) can use the control tools for giving direction and speed of the economy.

But a passenger sitting on a car may not feel comfortable when the driver uses his pedals and steering quite abruptly or irrationally or too frequently. We call such a driver a novice who does not know how to drive properly. The car drive could be chaotic and may even prone to accidents. The passengers would be scared for their lives by sitting in such a car. The behavior of such a driver becomes too unpredictable when he happens to drive in a crowded place with narrow roads. His chaotic drive becomes too panicky if he happens to have a master who scolds him too often.

Same applies in the case of the head of the central bank as well. The economy becomes chaotic and unpredictable when such a head cuts rates or enhances rates abruptly or too frequently. The people who happen to be in such an economy become too panicky and confused not knowing what to do next. They may curse the fellow who creates this mess or may even try to jump out of the economy.

When a novice driver starts behaving unprofessionally, there appears many bystanders who cries out various instructions to the driver from the outside for various reasons. Some want to see the fun. Some wants to see and accident taking place. Some may even want to make some money out of the chaos by crooked means.

In a similar way, when an economy starts behaving chaotically under the chaotic policy steps too frequently implemented by the head of its central bank there could be outsiders who start giving directions from outside for their own vested interests. They may be the media, the representatives of business entities, the politicians or even the general public!

When an economy is in an unsteady equilibrium its dynamics becomes unpredictable. In such a situation some people make windfall gains while the majority make huge losses. It is always the uninformed masses that suffer the most. When an insane driver drives the car in a crowded place, it is always the innocent bystanders who get affected adversely!

In short, such a situation takes out the confidence of the people in the economy and the policy makers that drives the economy. More than the certified driving skills, it is the confidence of the passengers that makes a driver more desirable!

And public confidence is the most important thing for a stable and progressive economy. Public confidence comes when the economy is in a steady state of progress that is more or less predictable. Measures taken to control inflation might cause deflation too quickly in an unpredictable economy and frequent happenings of these situation further worsens the situation. Peoples' confidence in monetary policies deteriorates and people begin to bypass the governmental systems in their own manner. And that is not good for any nation!

When an unsteady behavior sets in for an economy, any quick action to set it right could further enhance the instability. That is the general rule for any control system, applicable for the economy as well.

The way the RBI tries to control the Indian economy is causing worries though the media bystanders are extending all praise. ( News-1 / News-2/ News-3

My worries are on account of the following:

1. The Indian stock market cannot ensure safety of savings of the majority public as the Foreign Institutional Investors can suck out public money at periodic intervals of their choice making the uninformed public helplessly watching their savings evaporate suddenly without any notice. Stock market investments are subject to risks and therefore there should be dependable investment options with reasonably good returns such as the bank fixed deposits. The monetary policy makers should not do their acts without addressing this issue.

2. The government has washed its hands from the responsibility of paying pensions to the retired people. Neither the government nor the private organizations now has any guaranteed pension scheme which offers some reasonable income to the retired population. Even the present savings linked pension plans are mere brainwash systems which are too poorly managed causing great sufferings to its members. When pension funds are invested in equities, the same money sucking by the FIIs keep happening which the government nor the RBI can prevent. What the people want is guarantees to their savings!

3. A growing economy in paper with macro economic data do not necessarily safeguard the interests of the individual citizens. When jobs or incomes from employment are proceeding towards the no guarantee mode, how can people take long term loans from banks? If long term loan EMIs to work, it is essential that long term fixed deposits with guaranteed returns also should work simultaneously.

4. Floating point interest system is essentially a cheating system. It is not market driven or based on ethical practices. Once the people understand it well, the confidence in banking system would diminish. It is neither good for the banks nor for its customers in the long run.

5. Unsteady monetary policies help only some individuals to make huge money by way of corruption and it does not ensure good governance.

6. Indian business houses that make huge profits from low interest regime do not pass on the benefits to the general public or even its employees. Neither they do any thing to enhance employment opportunities.

Let me stress this once again. Confidence in the economy and its monetary policies are more important and that cannot happen when the policies change too rapidly and too irrationally without due consideration of ground realities of the nation.