Reveries

A mishmash of spirituality, human relationship, adult and children's literature, news analyses and anti-road-rage tirades

Time to Read(?)

Photo Credit: Wikipedia

Mortimer Adler in 1988 Photo Credit: Wikipedia

When I was in the tenth standard, the following essay by Mortimer Adler had a lasting impact on my mind. It was a part of our English curriculum in the form of a textbook, Learners’ English. Years later, I am still fascinated by its relevance to the current times, more so when the good, old habit of children’s reading books is in its way to the coffin, what with the advent of e-books, intensive study-packages, et al! I am thankful to him (whom I wished I could meet one day; but alas, he left for his heavenly abode in 2001, much before I could afford to visit the U.S.!) and M/s Sawpon Dowerah (who also served as my teacher for sometime) and T. C. Baruah for having included this piece in their anthology.

Please click on the following link to download a PDf document and read: What is a Great Book?

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Filed under: Children's Literature, General Awareness, Philosophy, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Compromise, Thy Name is Life. Do You Agree with It?

 

Below is an essay which I wrote sometime back for a special occasion. Let me share this small yet interesting essay with you:

Strong and self-confident people, like you and they, may not agree to the aforesaid line. So did Napoleon Bonaparte, Hitler and many others. But, all, at one time or the other, have agreed to the diktat—”Compromise, thy name is life”. And I agree with it.

Life, at every point; from the lazy mornings, when you curse your office for having been the reason for your such a miserable life, to the cozy sweet-doing-nothings of mid-night, when you curse your wife for being such a bad partner; is full of compromises. You don’t like the kaamwali (maid-servant) for being such a frequent absentee, but you compromise and accept her as happily as you are accepted by your wife! Else, she would have left you by now. You, don’t like the government’s ban on AXN’s World’s Sexiest Commercials, but you compromise with a smile, lest your wife, or for that matter, your little son should call you an old, immoral psychopath! You don’t like the long never-ending queue of vehicles, burping and blowing at the busy crossing on your way to office, but you compromise by mouthing a few chosen adjectives at the system, or at the hefty, bald man, who overtakes his vehicle just in front of yours and makes his way! You compromise, because you just can’t reach out to the system and shout at it for its follies, you just can’t get the better of the hefty, bald man and rough him up.


So to say, there is a zillion of examples to prove the fact that, we all are the preys to Compromise and at some point or the other we keep on compromising. But, nevertheless, we must keep on fighting with all our might, not to cut a sorry figure in front of compromises. Because compromises keep on teaching us the lessons of patience and perseverance.

Filed under: Philosophy, , , , , , , , , ,

How far is Ayurveda relevant to modern lifestyle?

Not all people in India repose faith on Ayurvedic system of medicines. A section of advocates of Allopathy (or the modern system of medicine) consider Ayurveda and some of its sisters like Unani medicines and Homoeopathy as a pseudo-science and a system best followed by quacks and the illiterates.

True, Allopathy is the single uniformly followed system of medicine across the world due to its accuracy and speed. But an exceedingly great number of people are now looking for alternative form of medicines like Ayurveda and the like for their obvious “only-effects-no-side-effects” advantage. And for over 5,000 years now, Ayurveda too has evolved and become more organised.

At least in India, love it or hate it, knowingly or unknowingly, generations have been subscribing to Ayurvedic products or procedures some way or the other. To put it simply, Ayurveda can not be detached from the Indian household.

Even doctors have been prescribing such Ayurvedic preparations asLiv.52 for healing liver damage (cirrhosis,) Neeri for preventing and curing kidney stones, Janma Ghunti for helping digestion in babies orBoro Plus for curing cracked lips and nipples. We have heard our grandfathers pushing us to eat Neem leaves for eliminating worms in our stomachs. All these testify the role Ayurveda has in our lifestyle.

While allopathic treatment requires you to visit a registered medical practitioner even for common ailments like fever, cold, headache, etc.,Ayurveda, on the other hand, teaches you to be your own doctor. Any thing that is easily available in or around your home such as herbs, vegetables, fruits, spices, grains or oils, can be used as a home remedy, unlike in the case of Allopathy. Simple home remedies can be very effective in relieving symptoms, and preventing further development of a disorder. More importantly, these home remedies may also support treatments prescribed by a physician.

Since, Ayurveda is so ingrained in our daily life; it is foolish to ignore the benefits of Ayurveda. We can, of course, choose a two pronged approach: for common ailments we can follow Ayurveda and save ourselves from a thousand of side effects; and for diseases which demand elaborate procedures like invasive techniques or surgery we can accept the boon from modern medicines.

Filed under: Ayurveda, , , , , , ,

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