29-Jan-2009

A few thoughts

I know it has been a long time since I blogged. I had a busy three weeks. I have quite a few things to discuss and talk about. First, the movie Slumdog Millionaire...
I watched the movie and loved it. I really think it's a very well shot movie and the human spirit has been captured really well. Now, a lot of people think that showcases India in a bad way, with the slums and poverty and riots and the police extravagance. But I wish we would realize a few things. You don't see Americans protesting if a couple of movies show drugs and prostitution. It doesn't mean that America is only about drugs and prostitution. I really wish we would stop being this insecure country that wants the world to see only the economic growth, the development and bollywood. India is a complicated, different, difficult and young country. Just as the economic growth and prosperity is a side of India, so is the rampant poverty , the rioting, the police excesses.. Perhaps instead of hiding it, we accept it and do what we can to change things.
I think we ought to look at the movie for it actually is. A triumph of human spirit. That is it.

Now moving on to something completely different. A few days ago, Gautam and I were discussing India. This country is such a miracle. a land of contradictions.
Sometimes we wonder how anything works here and yet there seems to be a system running and running quite effectively. A lot of people are cynical about India and it's future. Constantly comparing ourselves to China does not help either. We must realize a couple of things.
First and most importantly, we are a democracy. Political freedom is a privilege that must be valued. Sure it creates a few roadblocks, sure it slows us down but it works.
The freedom to criticize and point fingers at a government when it does not work and change it when we can is a great great privilege and responsibility.
Second, we are not a homogeneous country like China. Every Indian is different form the next. Our diversity is our greatest strength but also makes governing a little difficult. Perhaps we need to understand that first.

Over the last two days, I have been terribly saddened by the incident in Mangalore. Molesting and beating up young women in the name of culture is distasteful, disgusting, and disturbing. The political reaction to it is just as bad. Why is it that when people try to impose any kind of so called "moral" code, it is alsways women who pay the price. Rules of conduct and morality are pushed down our throats first. besides, who defines morality? Who has the right to tell individuals what is right and what is wrong? Who defines Indian culture? What is this rubbish about the quinttessential Indian Woman? Bharatiya Nari? Why do our movies and serials go on about Indian women? Indian women are like women everywhere else. They have dreams, desires and hopes. this incident has shocked me and scared me.

05-Jan-2009

New Year

A very happy new year to all of you. I'm back after a pretty long break.
I celebrated new year's eve at my sister's place. We had a lot of fun there. Went out with friends for a very nice dinner on the 1st of Jan. Every year I make new year resolutions and try my best to follow them. so far I have been quite successful. This year I still haven't figured out what my resolutions will be. When I figure them out, I shall definitely share them with you.
During this break I have made a few observations.
I had gone to crosswords, a popular book store and most of the books in the self help and non fiction sections were on how to be happy.... i really did not know that so many people need help in being happy... I thought that our very purpose in life is to be happy and when you are happy, it is to continue being happy. I believe that all of our actions are related to this singular purpose in life.
Of course, we all derive happiness in different ways. Some people help others to be happy, some are happy when they are successful and others are happy when the people that matter to them are happy.
For a lot of people it is the balance of all these.
Is it so difficult to achieve happiness? After all it is about thinking of what makes you happy and then doing that. If the things you do, don't make you happy, stop doing them.
So my prayer for the new year will be that all you succeed in being happy.

I used to have a low self esteem problem a couple of years back and a lot of people who know me now and people who have known me over the years will find it very hard to believe but I really did struggle with low self esteem 3 years back.
I think low self esteem is a root cause to most of our problems. So i have decided to share with you how I helped myself get over it...Watch this space for more:)

Once again I hope we all have a very happy 2009. I pray for peace and prosperity.