Our Mother’s curse…

 

Published on Times of India on 14th March 2011 –

http://blogs.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/tiger-trail/entry/our-mother-s-curse

 

The unknown, unseen, unsung Mother. The one who transcends space and time, watching, sighing, and lying awake. Without a whimper she withstands our abuse, with stoic reserve she watches. Her temper withstanding, her temperature barely rising, while we bask in her glory and tread carelessly over her comfort zones. And we stamp over her, our feet leaving an impression on her soft body, scarring her forever, scratching her ethereal skin, and peeling it layer by layer. She moans and she groans, but we remain deaf to her anguish. We are blinded by our selfish needs, we lose ourselves to greed and lust, we plunder and we loot her reserves and her affluence. Her wealth should be ours we think, how premature is this thought? Her bounty is hers alone, only when she passes away will it be bequeathed and not to us. So we plan and we plot to murder her.

Slowly and surely, she is dying. But there is a transformation. But, how many are alert to this change? No longer is she suffocating quietly, no longer is she whispering. Her fighting resonance is reverberating through the dark of the night. When her heavy bosom heaves, her defiance moves the tectonic plates beneath her weight, she makes us tremble and she causes destruction of catastrophic proportions. When she cries in agony, her eyes of sea well up, and as the saline waters stream down her cheeks, they crash inland and decimate everything in its path. Her wrathfulness cascades molten lava and when she tries to control her raging inferno, the skies darken and howling gale winds blanket the world tempestuously.

Scathing in the ring of fire, Japan is now at the receiving end of her wrath. Nothing but a curse from her could have caused this staggering form of devastation. A sinister chain of events over the last forty-eight hours has made her children jolt in wretchedness. The tectonic plates beneath the Pacific ocean shifted at a magnitude of 9.1, the oceans swelled, ten metre high tsunami’s crashed inland onto Japan’s Northern territory of Sendai, sweeping everything in it’s path, homes and cars floated like toys, nuclear plants at Fukushima are now exploding and contaminating the already pungent air in the atmosphere. The radioactive explosions are but the harbingers of more bereavement. The country has experienced until now 140 after shocks since Friday and threats of more tsunamis are still imminent, while the death toll continues to rise steadily.

While the world watches the media coverage of the disaster in horror, the chain of events appear surreal and one hopes that this is but a nightmare that Japan can wake up from. We never woke up from the Boxing-day Tsunami that affected our part of the world a few years ago either. The Japanese are determined to rebuild and they have faith in their leadership. And their leadership holds the people together at a time of crisis and organizes rescue and recovery operations systematically. The world watches Japan bleed and extends a helping hand. There are some miracle stories. A sixty-year-old man who was sucked into the open sea nine miles from shore was rescued after floating for two days on the remnants of his home. “I thought today was the last day of my life,” Hiromitsu Shinkawa told his rescuers, according to Kyodo News Agency.

The Japanese, most skilled, well mannered and highly enterprising, try hard to get onto the road to recovery. There are no dramatic scenes of chest beating and wailing. They whimper and cry silently, almost hiding behind a veil of bravado. It is time to reflect on retributions. Did Japan stop to listen to the cries of those countless whales they barbarically bled and killed in the same ocean that has now turned its tide ferociously against it? Not just Japan, but every country is immersed in self-gratification of its capitalistic senses. Does man listen to the ominous signs around him as he selfishly goes about his day-to-day business? There is a law of equilibrium that is centrifugal to our existence here, for every action; there is an opposite and equal reaction. If we treat Earth with disdain and disrespect, then hell hath no fury like a Mother’s wrath.

“There is a sufficiency in the world for man’s need but not for man’s greed.” ~ Mohandas K. Gandhi

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102 Responses to “Our Mother’s curse…”

  1. Sharmila,

    I do have much to say on this.

    Before that, however, I’ll touch upon slightly unimportant aspect of readability.

    The first line of the third para begins to defeat the aesthetic purpose of the first two. There is a linguistic error both in usage and figure of speech where the personified Earth comes in conflict with the metaphor called Japan, where Japan the territory replaces a nation of people that we call Japanese.

    The error is magnified from there on by the second line of the third para where the personified Earth’s rage and wrath is given the ugly expression of a calcuated curse on a selected set of japanese population.

    The words that follow in synch after this give an unnatural effect of a personal sadistic pleasure derived by the writer from the pain and suffering of the people of Japan.

    I know it is not true.

    If you skip reading the third para every thing is perfect. One linguistic error in one line has changed the purpose and impact of the entire post.

    Sharmila, just an observation as a friend on your personal blog. Take it positively.

    Now let me prepare my own response to this poetic post in prose…. 🙂

    • Oops.. I forgot to say what the error is.

      The first line of para three:

      Japan, the land, is a part of the Earth. However, a part of a personification cannot be a metaphor for another subject in the same line.

      Here, Earth is not punishing the land called Japan. It cannot punish itself. It is reclaiming its own part from the occupying forces and doing it with a power and force that has never been seen before.

      The second line of para three:

      Curses are pronounced by weaklings who do not have the resistence.

      In the personified context, the force that has hit the region is the strength of an assured superpower that has lost its patience. Not a crying loser.

      • Here I see Earth punishing her children. It does not matter which land mass they occupy, India, Japan, America. I see Earth different to those who inhabit her. If there was a “soulful” connect, I would not have differentiated. If we were connected to Earth like the Navis, I would not have even believed in any such thing as retribution!

    • Reader – Thanks for your feedback. To be honest I do not differentiate between Japan and Earth either, and neither do I differentiate between Japanese and earthlings. But, I do entirely differentiate between Earth and Earthlings, I see the relationship as that of a Mother and child, the Worshiped and the Worshiper, the God and devotee. I do not believe the purpose has changed if the post was understood like the way I intended it to be. I am even surprised that you thought there was a sadistic note to this post. But, at least 40% of the Readers thought so too, while the other 60% aligned with my thinking.

      And yes, of course I take your feedback positively, the floor is always open for a healthy debate!

  2. Sharmila,

    I think it is a great act of hubris to assume that this earthquake has been caused by anything humans did.

    It’s not all about us.

    • I think sadly it is because of us we are racing towards Doomsday at a faster pace than ever before. The happenings in Japan are seriously almost apocalyptic in more ways than one.

      • This is one way to see it.

        The other would be to learn about the risks we face – and we have -we have a clear understanding of earthquake potentials and this was not really unexpected, even though it was a bit larger than we thought.

        There are many more earthquake zones in the world and we have to stop acting surprised any times any of these very predictable events happens.

        There is much to improve and change in our ways to treat earth (yes, our mother, I agree on that), and if we do, she might reduce the storms, but she will not stop the earthquakes

      • Correction… aarrrgggghhhh

        …surprised every time any of these….

    • The news in India today was how we are gearing up to build a monstrous nuclear plant right on top of a fault line in Maharashtra! This just gets worse and worse. Reader, your views?

  3. I don’t know if anyone is interested, but here is a very clear and rational description of the struggle to contain the nuclear reactors by an MIT scientist.

    http://www.businessinsider.com/japan-reactors-pose-no-risk-2011-3

  4. Sharmila, Renate,

    Lets get objective about this just for a moment. I like the “Motherly” distraction but lets keep it aside for a moment.

    Firstly, a nuclear power plant is not a threat to the earth. It is a threat to the people living in and around that plant. Also, its not a very large threat on a geographical scale. Nuclear reactors do not carry weapon grade fissile material.

    Even the 200TNT Eq atom bomb on Hiroshima left several buildings and structures intact. The city is back to what it was in the ’40s. Much more developed now than it was then. People suffer. Not the earth. The earth knows how to get back in shape. Its too powerful. A child makes a mother cry, but she never cries herself.

    Secondly, atomic explosions, even those of weapon grade material, cause heat and shock waves with ionizing radiation. It kills people and destroys structures on the surface. It is not strong enough to shake the earth’s mantle, tectonic plates or the continental shields. In poetic slang an atomic explosion cannot even change our mother earth’s hair style.

    The crust of the earth has a different configuration as compared to the hot stuff below that till the core. The earth doesn’t give a damn about nuclear tests. India tested nuclear weapons on-shore in Rajasthan. These are insignificant events as compared to the actual abilities of the earth.

    With one hot breath Earth can spew enough lava to create a whole new island or a country. The magma of the earth has the energy of zillions of atomic weapons.

    The ethics of nuclear weapons and power generation units is relevant with regards to its impact on life on earth. I buy that with certain conditions.

    In Germany and Europe it is a threat to the lives of good people. I would insist on the engineers to prove that the technology is safe.

    In Pakistan or similar countries I might say, “Why not?”

    So, I think there is an issue that Sharmila has picked up rightly, which is that of the ethics of how to use Nuclear Energy.

    I do not feel the earth is at risk. The laws of physics cannot be changed by whims and fancies. If a plant is built on a fractured plateau, it will respond accordingly. People will die. Nothing will happen to the earth.

    In short, the earth is here stay. It was here before life began and it will be here long after life is gone, like other barren planets in the universe.

    Lets worry about saving our lives.

    To be definitely continued… Sharmila you got me hooked this time… 🙂

    • Important correction: para 3 last line: A child makes a mother cry, but she never cries herself… should read… A child makes a mother cry, but she never cries for herself.

    • How can atomic explosions over and over not affect portions of the earth crust? Even a small portion of Earth that fractures and ruptures and moves and slides makes us bleed/ I fail to understand this. What happens in the case of sea water being used to cool the reactors being pumped back into the same sea? I am not saying earth is more powerful than mankind, I am saying earth is slowly losing it’s power to forgive and forget, if this makes sense. Remember, we term earth to be an entity, How does a living, breathing, life giving entity not retaliate when being kicked at the same place over and over?

      • http://earthquake.usgs.gov/learn/faq/?categoryID=12&faqID=88

        As the article points out,

        The power of nuclear tests is nothing compared to the several earthquakes which occur globally everyday. In some cases 100 times smaller.

        I think we underestimate the power of Earth. One nuke vs Earth = it’s like one mosquito bite for the planet.

        However, I have to mention that the interior of our planet is least explored area…even lesser explored than space. So, I am sure even the scientists do not know a great deal to prove or disprove theories about nuclear blasts and earthquakes.

      • I agree this may be like an ant bite for earth, but maybe in the same vain, a drop of blood could be a few thousand lives…

  5. Thank you, Reader, you express it much better than I can.

    In my opinion you could have left out the stab of ‘good people’ versus those of Pakistan. But that’s just me.

    Your point about Earth having been here before us and presumably after us is a good one.

    We are not concerned about earth per se and there is no need to, because earth exists independently of us.

    We are concerned about maintaining conditions conducive to life, and mostly our life!

    • Renate,

      The stab was a bit less subtle than I might have preferred. But I am glad you missed the one about Germany and Europe… 🙂

    • we have not made much progress since Galileo’s time. We still think everything revolves around us.

      Even if all possible nuclear and other catastrophes would happen all at one, that would not spell the end of life.

      End of humans perhaps, and all the cuddly mammals we love.

      But life itself would adapt to a radiation-rich environment and evolve many new equally successful forms.

      Only we’d consider them ‘monsters’.

      What or who gives us that right?

      *

      Now before you declare me a monster, let me say that I live as a human in a human world. That’s our lot.

      But we have been given the ability to think abstractedly and we should use it to see beyond our noses.

      • Renate,

        You are deviating from an important point.

        I am moving towards the fact this is not a conflict between life as we see and the earth as we know. A right is not an abstraction. There are no monsters. There is no evil, no matter what logic you apply.

        The bible says, God made man in his own image. Fine with me. Just tell me if Hitler was a man or not.

      • Don’t you see, that’s what I am saying, too.

        Only i go beyond Hitler and all humans by saying there will be life independently of us and it is not monstrous or evil.

        I said we’d call it monsters.

      • Renate,

        I get that.

        I was referring to your question “Who gave us the rights?”

        I am not asking anyone for rights. Just as I don’t ask the priest in the church or temple to pray on my behalf.

      • That was a rhetorical question.

        It’s not a matter of rights or no rights. Things are as they are.

        We humans regard ourselves as the pinnacle of creation. That thinking is what I am challenging.

        *

        But on the other hand, I am a human.

        Living in this dichotomy is not easy for me.

  6. Earthquakes have caused the Himalayas to rise.

    Only back then there were no humans around to complain about the destruction that happened in the wake of those events.

    Now humans look at the Himalayas and find them beautiful.

    It’s all relative, isn’t it?

  7. Sharmila,

    Before I continue, let me reply to your first response to my first comment.

    In March 1971, Mrs Indira Gandhi called on the Director General of Ordnance Factories in Calcutta and discussed the requirements of arsenal in the event of a war for the liberation of Bangladesh (Then West Pakistan).

    My father was working on the production floor in the High Explosives factory at Kirkee, Pune.

    The production was accelerated to meet a winter deadline. People were given special overtimes.

    A massive explosion occurred in the underground magazine of Mercury stephanates and lead azide detonators. 60 people died on the spot.

    The incident occurred at around 1000 hrs in the morning. I was in the garden of our house in the estate playing with a catapult hunting lizards.

    The glasses on the windows shattered. The marigold tree shook and dropped all its flowers. Fruits fell off from the guava and jack-fruit trees. The drum-stick tree leaned on the roof.

    To the east, I could see a plume of crimson smoke reaching the sky. It took me just an instant to realize what had happened.

    I dropped my game and ran bare foot to the factory gates.

    There was a crowd of people waiting in a queue for entry passes. I ran into the security officers cabin. I was all of 7 years old. No one could stop me. The security officer was Mr. Ranganathan. I told him my dad’s name and asked him to let me talk to him on the phone. He connected me instantly. I had never doubted that anything could happen to my dad. I just wanted to know what had happened.

    Dad picked up the call.

    “It’s me!” I said

    “What are you doing here? Go home” he hollered

    “What happened?” I asked

    “There was an accident. In the magazine. Tell your mother I am okay.”

    “I know you are okay” I said

    “Tell your mom, idiot.”

    “Okay” I said, realising that he was upset about the accident.

    The worst was yet to come.

    Dad did not come home that night. He didn’t come home all of the next day and the next night.

    We began to worry. Mom would send me to the factory to check on him and come back with messages.

    “He is saving people.” I would tell her.

    The days were not so bad. The world was visible and everything was okay.

    But the nights were frightening. All sorts of fears and nightmares would take over. All of us would pray quietly and I’d take my father’s dinner to the factory, speak to him on the phone and come home and report. Mother and brothers would wait on the road outside the house for me to come back.

    The nights after a catastrophe are of extreme trauma for children. Fear takes on another dimension.

    Imagine the state of the children in Fukushimo. Nights of complete darkness, the earth shaking every hour, adults terrorized and speechless with fear.

    These children who are wtinessing the events will remember them for as long as they live.

    I would not blame them for being Japanese or killing whales.

    • Reader, nobody says it like you!

      The terror of these events will live in the children – and the adults – for a very long time. Helping them get back to ‘normal’ is one of the greatest challenges Japan faces now.

  8. Sharmila,

    Continuing with the subject:

    I believe Earth is the ultimate Mother. No two ways about that. There is nothing in this universe that is not intelligent. The degrees may vary according to the nature of evolution. But intelligence exists, regardless of form or substance.

    Intelligence should not be confused with accumulated perceptions, concepts, knowledge and wisdom. Those are acquisitions of an efficient mind.

    I am tired… shall continue over the weekend tomorrow from noon… this is a vast subject… I promise I’ll say everything I can…

    • Please do, I am just back on the net. Was a bit tied up today. But, this is by far one of the most sensitive and interesting topics we seem to have touched upon!
      Regarding your Mother definition, you are right, there is this “intelligence” which does exist and makes her stand out as a living person who is also the decision maker. She decides the way we need to live if we do not fall in line.

  9. Aishwarya Says:

    Sharmila,

    Yesterday, a young mom came with her child to the OP. The 4-year-old girl had profound mental retardation and self-mutilating behavior. Being a crowded government hospital OP, they could meet the doctors only after a 3-hour wait. In all that while, the little girl pulled at her mother’s hair, bit her cheeks, and beat her hard repeatedly, while the mother struggled to hold her child close in her arms, protecting her from biting her own little wrists. Not once did she flinch with the pain the child was inflicting on her. She was worried only about her child.

    A mother does everything she can to protect her children. Even when she punishes her children, she probably has a sound reason for doing so. But she never curses…or so I would like to believe…

    I understand your feelings. You care. So do I. I hope the great thinkers and decision-makers do not turn a blind eye to the cries of the people and our planet, and do not callously continue to endanger in the name of progress, power and dominance.

    Aish.

    • Aishwarya Says:

      Correction: Deaf ear.

      What’s a comment here, without a correction?:)

    • Thanks Aish.. wrath, curse or severe punishment? Is there a difference? Yes, there are very few sensitive people left on Earth today. I am glad I am interacting to one beautiful one here, besides a few more..

      • Aishwarya Says:

        Sharmila,

        At a first read, curse feels more…evil…invoking misfortune to befall someone. But I guess if the effect of wrath/curse is the same, i.e. loss of lives…then no, there is no difference.

        I too share the same doubts on the effects of underground/underwater atomic tests in triggering earthquakes, minor ones at first, that can perhaps, as a cumulative effect, result in a massive one later?
        I hope not…

        Thank you for the opportunity to interact. The feeling is mutual…

  10. Kasya nuunam katam asya amrutaanaam manaamahe charu devasya naame |

    Ko no mahyaa aditaye punar daat pitaram cha drheyam maataram cha ||

    … … … Give me an auspicious name for the immperishable divinity |

    … … … Who can restore me back to my original creator ||

    Tan no vaato mayobhu vaatu bheshajam tan maata prthvi tat pita dyauh |

    … … … Be that the air which preserves your life, the Mother this Earth and the Father this Cosmos |

    Rig Veda 1.24.1 and 1.89.4

    Translation Mine.

    ===

    Before I go into the nature of those personifications, here is an update on the Japanese crisis:

    1. Japan is buying LNG to fill up a gap of 33 Gigawatts of power shortage created by the breakdown in nuclear power. Oil & Gas prices are projected to hit US$150-200 this year following a production shutdown in major Arab producers and the increase in demand from Japan.

    The country that will be hit immediately will be the welfare state of UK which depends on the supply of LNG from the ME and that supply is now diverted to Japan.

    UK, which has already got a negative growth of its native population, is likely to see further decline in per capita deliveries. Hopefully we’ll get to write the myth of the Englishman and his empire by 2040.

    Japanese industrial exports will ground to halt in Q2 qnd Q3 this year causing prices of old technologies to remain high or move higher.

    ===

    Okay now back to the Rig Veda quote:

    Continued…

  11. Continued…

    Going back to the first instance of the Earth being referred to as “Mother”…

    Let me re-quote the lines:

    Kasya nuunam katam asya amrutaanaam manaamahe charu devasya naame |

    Ko no mahyaa aditaye punar daat pitaram cha drheyam maataram cha ||

    … … … Give me an auspicious name for the immperishable divinity |

    … … … Who can restore me back to my original creator ||

    Tan no vaato mayobhu vaatu bheshajam tan maata prthvi tat pita dyauh |

    … … … Be that the air which preserves your life, the Mother this Earth and the Father this Cosmos |

    Rig Veda 1.24.1 and 1.89.4

    Translation Mine.

    ===

    The divine status of “Mother” is an aesthetic simile or a metaphor or a personification of Earth. And rightly so. No harm in that.

    However, I cannot ascribe the real emotional intelligence of a human mother to an aesthetic expression.

    Everything in this universe is intelligent.

    Yet that intelligence is not to be confused with perceptions, concepts, epistemology, metaphysics, wisdom and philosophy which are the domain of the efficiency of the mind. The two are entirely different. Nothing in the known universe can beat the efficiency of the mind of a human being.

    Intelligence is something else in this context.

    Mathematics and science fail to define the proactive nature of this intelligence for valid reasons.

    Mathematics has no means of defining an identity. It expresses everything in equations.

    If a = b + c + d,

    Then a, b, c are d are separate identities that have to be defined before writing the equation. A similarity or an equation is not an identity. It’s not a definition. An inference cannot replace a priori existent.

    Science has the same limitation. It measures reactions of an identity and integrates phenomenal observations to generate a definition. There is no way in science to define an identity that has no phenomenal qualities.

    The intelligence of Earth is not in reacting to the physical imbalances of forces. Just as the intelligence of an animal is not in its reactions of fight or flight against a predator.

    The intelligence is also not in the qualities of the earth’s form and features because a quality is not a virtue.

    The earth is not bestowed with a volitional mind like humans. The laws of physics do not permit such choices.

    I speak of the intelligence that is the primary cause of existence in every single atom of this universe. It is the origin of the dynamics that we witness. It occupies every form yet varies in application in every form that it occupies.

    To be continued…

    • Speaking of the law of physics. Lets just take the Newton’s law. what is this law? Where was this defined in the vedas? What is gravity? What is force? What and where did this force originate from? What is holding the earth on it’s axis? Why does earth follow the path in it’s revolution? why does it not stray from it’s axis? Whose rule is it following? What would happen if it does not follow this path? Who punishes it? What is this force makes the earth spin? Where does this force get it’s energy from? And wherever this energy comes from, who or what creates this energy. Is earth the child of the universe? So, is universe then the Mother? Then who is the universe the child of? Is this an unlimited trail?

      • Sharmila,

        Every question that you ask has been answered.

        First of Newtons Laws have been proved wrong. Action and Reaction are Not equal and opposite. If you keep something in space, iut does not kick you back. Instead it keeps moving forever in the direction of your kick. Newtons laws are limited to mechanics.

        The motions of celestial objects in space is hypothesized in the collapse of nebulae which creates stars and the big bang – the lotus theory in the Bhagawatam.

        The earth is the Mother for life on it. The Sun’s energy is the father. The names mother and father in this context are functional.

        It is not an unlimited trail.

        The Brihad Aranyak starts with this simple principle.. In the beginning there was nothing whatsoever.. this nothingness is like the numerical zero on your mathematical number line. You cannot divine anything without the zero – no negative numbers, no indices, no exponentials, no geometry or no calculus, no integration, no differentials, no vectors, no scalars. This nothingness is the beginning and end of it all. You can find another word or phrase for it. There is no rule about naming. But it is what it is.

      • Correction: Second para.. I’ll re-write it again…

        First of all, Newtons Laws have been proved wrong. Action and Reaction are Not equal and opposite. If you kick something in space, it does not kick you back. Instead it keeps moving forever in the direction of your kick. Newtons laws are limited to mechanics in a gravitational frame of reference.

      • Sharmila,

        About Gravity:

        Take a bucket full of water. Turn the water like a whirl pool. You’ll notice every drop of water comes to the edge of the bucket and falls towards the center.

        Now put the water in a ball and spin the ball. The same thing happens. Every drop will tend to move from the surface to the center. That tendency is gravity.

      • Gravity is not a magnetic force. If it had been, a child wouldn’t be able to lift its legs.

        The magnitude of the impact of gravity is by virtue of the mass on which it acts and the mass of the earth.

  12. Continued…

    Life is intelligent in all its forms. Intelligence is the honest existence of a being qua being. It witnesses without prejudice, it senses without intent and it performs without anticipation.

    Each form has its stable state of dynamic perfection. Incidently, deviations from this state occurs only among humans. It is only in humans that intelligence can be corrupted and damaged beyond recognition. Sadly, that is the principle risk in conditioning the capacity of the mind for volition.

    “A Mother’s Curse”, leaving aside the connotative antithesis, also violates the basic principle of a being qua being.

    The earth is what it is. Life is what it is. The two are not in conflict.

    Territorial life is often in conflict with its own type for reasons like space, time and survival. Trees kill trees. Animals kill animals. Humans kill animals. Humans kill humans. And so on.

    “Mother” earth is not struggliing for space, time and survival. By the scale of the inhabitants, she is imperishable. She is a mother who survives her children.

    The drivers of Earth’s dynamics are beyond our strength to control or manipulate. Thats the design.

    • I do not believe she survives her children. Earth was born. She has to die one day.

      • So long is she is potent she will continue to support life.

        She will remain here, like other lifeless planets, even after she loses that capacity.

      • She’ll die no doubt. the imperishable is attributed only with reference to life as we know it. Brhmas life ends with the solar system. A new brahma is born with every sun. The Bhagwatam describes this as the purusha entering the lotus. Brahma is born in the navel of Vishnu – the center of the lotus.

        The big bang appears like a lotus. Lakshmi stands on it. Lakshmi is the wealth that supports life.

      • But life as we know it will be gone long before this happens.

      • Brahma is limited to our solar system?

        There are many Brahmas in the universe?

        The universe precedes our solar system.

        What was there before ‘our’ Brahma then?

      • Renate,

        What do you mean by Brahma?

        Does zero exist in a number? In how many numbers does it not exist? Is it necessary for a number to exist? Is it enough? Is it one zero or many zeros?

        Very complex or very simple?

        Depends on what we are looking for.

        This is Aristotle says:

        In a demonstration one might be thought to be assuming what is at issue, but if another person is responsible for the assumption we shall have negative proof, not demonstration…

        The starting point for all such arguments is not the demand that one say that something either is or is not (for this might perhaps take to be assuming what is at issue), but that one say something which is significant both for oneself and the listener; this is necessary, if one really is to say anything.

        Demonstration will be possible if one grants this; for we shall already have something to demonstrate.

        The person responsible for the proof, however, is not the one who demonstrates but the one who listens; for while disowning reason the person listens to reason.

        Aristotle – Being qua Being (Introduction to Metaphysics)
        ===

        In other words, if I say something where your reasoning has given up, it is for you to test its validity, not for me to prove it.

      • That’s not fair.

        If you make a statement like “Brahma is born with the solar system and dies with it”, yet you also say that Brahma is in everything in the universe, I should be able to ask you for clarification.

        How else am I to understand?

      • I am not clear if you want to understand what I am saying or you want to know what is Brahma. Brahma is not a person. It is the essential source and nature of any creation. Like a zero that is the basis of a number.

        There are two types of skeptic responses:

        1. How can you be right?

        2. Why can’t you be wrong?

        I don’t understand the purpose of both.

      • Renate,

        Allow me to give you an example of what Aristotle has said:

        Suppose you say to your child:

        R: If you stain yellow with a pinch of blue it becomes green.

        Son: You kidding!

        R: No I am not.

        Son: Show me

        R: Do it yourself. I know what I am saying.

        So, he tests your statement and finds it true.

        That is the meaning here. The proof of a statement has to be tested by the person who wants to know.

      • We were not talking about testable concepts.

        And even so, asking for clarifications is not skepticism.

  13. For anyone who feels this is confusing please refer to my translation of the Brihad Aranyaka Upanishad. The text of the Aranyaka is more elaborate than the Hrik.

  14. Reader,

    Where can I find this translation?

    In one of your earlier Veda posts?

    • Renate,

      If you click on the tip of the tiger’s nose in the header above, the face page opens.

      On the right there is column of categories/tags. Click on Readers Digest. The first 4-5 posts are the translation of the Upanishad.

    • Thanks for posting that link earlier Renate! Most interesting.

  15. Thank you, Reader 🙂

  16. I have never been able to understand the philosophy behind creation and destruction. I do not believe as humans we are equipped to. I do not think there is anyone out there ( besides Reader 🙂 ) who understands philosophy and in’s co relation with Science. Or maybe because I do not I assume every one too does not! I tend to remain in awe of this Universe, I respect it. I respect Earth and her forms, I absolutely am aghast when there is no respect, but does. respect and awe come from understanding or non understanding? I think it stems from both. I cannot understand the science or the principles of science based on which this universe is said to have evolved or ultimately even destruct. I prefer treating this universe as an entity, a being with which I am in a relationship with, and I know, that as in any relationship , if there is no respect, it is bound to shatter.

  17. Sharmila,

    I am not claiming any divine powers. I use science as a tool to understand philosophy. Science is the mechanism that makes my understanding of philospohy sensible. I was trained to do that by my parents, brothers, uncles et al.

    My understanding, or whatever extent to which it is credible, creates absolute unconditional love for earth and everything about it; not respect, devotion or subservience.

    I am in a relationship with the creator, not the created. Because I am the created, along with everything there is to know.

    For example,

    During my last visit to Ooty, I hit a person on the streets for something that person was doing and it was shameful. I hit him because I love him and I honor the dignity that goes with being a human being. I don’t know if he had the sense to understand that. But I did.

    This universe is a living entity. The fact that you are able to say it in so many words, makes you greater in the order of intelligence.

    You can decide if you are a follower, disciple or a creative artist – all or one or a combination.

    I would call myself a worthy creation if I can add value to what is created before me. I will not worship it or submit to its force. I will make it more beautiful and efficient than it is. The size doesn’t matter. I will do it on a small piece of farm that I own or in a state or a country.

    I would like to feel that I can make God proud, if there is some God with a volitional mind.

    The means I choose is not through faith, loyalty or worshipping. I do it through testing my own abilities to make things happen.

    Its not necessary that two persons should have the same modes. I am simply stating my grounds.

  18. Sharmila, Aishwarya, Renate, MonaLisa, Anand, Lakshmi, Ninad, Saurabh, Shubha, Melwyn, Muraliraja, Smiles, Sambhavi and all EF,

    Below is a link to the first look of my first book. Releasing shortly (Hopefully by 23rd this month).

    http://haruspical.wordpress.com/2011/03/18/this-is-my-testimony/#comment-1599

    • Aishwarya Says:

      Reader,

      It’s beautiful! Wish you all success.

      BTW, my offer to write the foreword is still open..

      🙂

      • Aish,

        Thank you.

        Your offer is taken for the another one. This one is through.

        I suggest you write the foreward first and I’ll write the book to meet its mood!

        🙂

      • Aishwarya Says:

        Deal.

        I will try to be as subtle as can be…

        🙂

  19. For a short extract of what it contains click on:

    http://thecreatorstestimony.com

    This one also contains the intial pages of my next one on the blog section.

    • I have replied to you on your site. The cover is fabulous, and as plenty say, we can judge this book by it’s cover very confidently!! Congratulations again Reader. Really happy for you!

      • Sharmila,

        Thank you. Replied there too. This is the first time I have ever tried putting my stupidity on sale. I never thought it had market!

        This is indeed inspiring and I hope to do better next time. I working on the entire text of Rig Veda in one volume. Sort of a paraphrase in my own style.

      • Sorry Ma’am,

        That is not my site. That is a chat page entirely dedicated to any subject we want to discuss.

        This remains our site for posts. Reader is not going anywhere.

  20. Sharmila,

    Please delete the one in moderation. The general settings do not allow two links in the same comment box. I have split into two and posted them again.

    • Just logged in, will look into it right away.

    • MonaLisa Says:

      Reader…
      Right..right..! No body is going anywhere…
      That was just a drama to remove some unwanted elements…
      🙂

      • What kind of a mystery is this now? Welcome back ML, where have you been?

      • Sharmila,
        Thanks…
        I wasn’t gone at all…didn’t post any comment lately..thats all..

        I wasn’t the writer of that play…so how would I know..!? However things can be figured out sooner or later.. in this case I knew from the very begining is the fun.. 🙂

        And believe me…It’s no mistery at all…! A kid can figure that out …and I am no kid anymore…I grew up on this blog..
        Thanks to you and Reader… 🙂

  21. Anand Khare Says:

    Reader,

    Congratulation 😀

    Regards,

    Anand

      • That song applies to every one of my well wishers on and off the blog. Their kindness can never be described in words.

        Right here are Yourself, Aishwarya, Renate, MonaLisa, Anand, Ninad, Shubha, MuraliRaja, Smiles, Saurabh, Salman, Sambhavi, Lakshmi, Melwyn and all those have patiently suffered my unending strings of mumbo-jumbo…

        Thank you and lets keep this rolling… 🙂

    • Anand Khare Says:

      Reader,

      Thanks for both the wonderful songs. Reciprocating same feelings,

      Anand

  22. Muraliraja Says:

    Reader,
    Everyone here would agree that mumbo-jumbo of yours is indeed what keeps this comment section rolling! Of course Sharmila gives us enough topics to munch.
    Always a pleasure to read your views 🙂

  23. Happy Holi…

  24. All Holi songs today:

  25. And another rang barse.. Happy Holi Folks! May your loves be more colorful than what it already is!

  26. I meant lives.. oh well could be loves too..

  27. Never seen a more delightful holi song than rang barse..

    • MonaLisa Says:

      Sharmila..
      You bet…! 🙂
      AB is a killer.. in this song… 🙂
      omg…! They pair up so well..!

      Happy Holi to all….!

  28. Anand Khare Says:

    This is my style of holi… evergreen i mean everallcolours…

    Anand

  29. Anand Khare Says:

    Wishing everybody a naughty holi ;:)

    Anand

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