doakonsult

Consulting.Philosophy.Travel

  • There are three types of people in the world, those who don't know what's happening, those who wonder what's happening and those on the streets that make things happen.

Archive for August, 2012

Go ahead, make my day!

Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 31, 2012

The RNC last night was nothing less than a grand, grand show. But what stood out for me, and for millions others was when Clint took the stage. Yes, he brought along a bashing style that didn’t go down too well with the leftists and the “moral” police. He attacked O with a tenacity that many pundits find abhorring. However, what he said was profound. His message not only enthused the Republicans but will go a long way in swinging a lot of independent vote towards the GOP. He left an impact. A Sudden Impact!

“They were saying, I just thought, this was great. Everybody is trying, Oprah was crying. I was even crying.  And then finally — and I haven’t cried that hard since I found out that there is 23 million unemployed people in this country.”

A great dig at what herd mentality and collective emotions can lead to. In 2008, the message of hope and change brought about a voting pattern that disregarded policies and principles. Playing with people’s emotions and leveraging them works wonders in winning an election. But soon, facts emerge. Rationality prevails. Clint highlighted this point beautifully.

” But you thought the war in Afghanistan was OK. You know, I mean — you thought that was something worth doing.  We didn’t check with the Russians to see how did it — they did there for 10 years.”

Clearly attacks the tendency of the present government to not consult others with regards to policies that matter. The O government has been regularly criticized for neglecting bipartisan politics. Well, if the democrats don’t care to ask the republicans about legislations, why would they even think of asking Russia about how they messed up Afghanistan.

” Of course we all now Biden is the intellect of the Democratic party.”

Great tactic to bring Biden into the picture. Too often the VP gets lost in campaigns even though the VP’s thought process and role is absolutely vital in the government. If the VP is crazy, its a great idea to bash the crap out of him. Go after the weak links in the oppositions armor.

“I think attorneys are so busy — you know they’re always taught to argue everything, always weigh everything, weigh both sides.”

If there is one thing that O has lagged in during his term, it is decision making. Yes, it is a good thing to discuss matters with a diverse set of intellectuals. However, late action in many cases equals inaction. O has developed an image of being exactly that and a clever ploy that Clint used against him.

“It is that, you, we — we own this country.”

This line should go down in history as the one that wakes up every single citizen. “We own this country”. And you know what a big government does? It takes that ownership away from you. Huge debts translate into foreign sovereigns owning American assets. I wouldn’t be surprised to see how much of the U.S is currently owned by China and Saudi Arabia. Like they say in mortgage, you do not own a house until you have paid off the whole debt. So it is with national debt. You do not own your country with such a huge national debt. How comfortable does that make you feel?

Clint’s message was for all. He did not delve into sensitive issues but addressed general concerns that should unite the entire nation. He came, he saw, he conquered!

 

 

 

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Why Iraq will be won and Afghanistan lost

Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 30, 2012

“…principalities of which one has record are found to be governed in two different ways; either by a prince, with a body of servants, who assist him to govern the kingdom as ministers by his favour and permission; or by a prince and barons, who hold that dignity by antiquity of blood and not by the grace of the prince. Such barons have states and their own subjects, who recognize them as lords and hold them in natural affection. Those states that are governed by a prince and his servants hold their prince in more consideration, because in all the country there is no one who is recognized as superior to him, and if they yield obedience to another they do it as to a minister and official, and they do not bear him any particular affection.

The examples of these two governments in our time are the Turk and the King of France. The entire monarchy of the Turk is governed by one lord, the others are his servants; and, dividing his kingdom into sanjaks, he sends there different administrators, and shifts and changes them as he chooses. But the King of France is placed in the midst of an ancient body of lords, acknowledged by their own subjects, and beloved by them; they have their own prerogatives, nor can the king take these away except at his peril. Therefore, he who considers both of these states will recognize great difficulties in seizing the state of the Turk, but, once it is conquered, great ease in holding it. The causes of the difficulties in seizing the kingdom of the Turk are that the usurper cannot be called in by the princes of the kingdom, nor can he hope to be assisted in his designs by the revolt of those whom the lord has around him. This arises from the reasons given above; for his ministers, being all slaves and bondmen, can only be corrupted with great difficulty, and one can expect little advantage from them when they have been corrupted, as they cannot carry the people with them, for the reasons assigned. Hence, he who attacks the Turk must bear in mind that he will find him united, and he will have to rely more on his own strength than on the revolt of others; but, if once the Turk has been conquered, and routed in the field in such a way that he cannot replace his armies, there is nothing to fear but the family of this prince, and, this being exterminated, there remains no one to fear, the others having no credit with the people; and as the conqueror did not rely on them before his victory, so he ought not to fear them after it.

The contrary happens in kingdoms governed like that of France, because one can easily enter there by gaining over some baron of the kingdom, for one always finds malcontents and such as desire a change. Such men, for the reasons given, can open the way into the state and render the victory easy; but if you wish to hold it afterwards, you meet with infinite difficulties, both from those who have assisted you and from those you have crushed. Nor is it enough for you to have exterminated the family of the prince, because the lords that remain make themselves the heads of fresh movements against you, and as you are unable either to satisfy or exterminate them, that state is lost whenever time brings the opportunity.” – Niccolo Machiavelli, The Prince

In Iraq,  Saddam Hussein, along with his ministers ruled with a heavy hand and ruthless authority. Saddam’s reign over Iraq was total and complete. To topple him, the U.S relied solely on the might of its own alliance. It is evident, that people of Iraq, once they settle their own sectarian issues, will be more ready to accept American presence and dominance in their country. As Machiavelli suggested, Iraq is America’s for the keeping.

Image Courtesy Mikhail Evstafiev

Afghanistan, is equivalent to the “Kingdom of France” in the quotes above.The central Asian republic has always been an unnatural co-existence of several different tribes being ruled by their respective warlords. Every occupation of Afghanistan has been achieved by bribing these warlords towards oneself. The Soviets did it, and the U.S is doing the same. It is evident in the form of government which they have put together. It is a coalition of tribal leaders that helped the U.S fight the Taliban. Beyond this, the leaders have nothing in common. It is a state of affairs that is bound to collapse and Afghanistan, thanks to some medieval curse, is going to return to becoming what it always has been, the land of the dead.

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Quote Road: 10 Quips that Ease the Pain

Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 26, 2012

When I travel, I love doing so by public road transport. Buses, shared cabs, over packed three-wheelers and barely existent roads extend friendship requests to my arse. The latter responds in kind with a quick acceptance, knowing very well that its health status is going to end up becoming complicated very soon.

Traveling on Indian roads is an extreme adventure. When the chicken crossed the road, it wasn’t in India for sure. Yet, it is a feast for the eyes. View from the passenger seat of a bus lets you make the most of a fleeting moment. It allows you to closely experience the hustle bustle of the places you pass on your way to your destination. And sometimes, you come across one-liners on road signs or car windows that remind you: You made the right choice!

Here are the Top Ten quips I have come across on my recent back breaking affairs with the road:

10) Outside a Paramilitary Training Camp: The more we sweat in peace,the less we bleed in war

On a Car Window:

9) Behind Every Fortune is a Crime!!!

8) Poverty is often a by-product of Wealth

Road signs:

7) Live your today, drive for your tomorrow

6) Safety on road is safe tea at home

5) Reach Home in Peace…not in Pieces

4) This is a Highway; not a Runway

3) Home is where you hang your Hat

2) Earth is borrowed from our children, not inherited from our ancestors

And my favorite,

1) Love thy neighbor, but not while driving 🙂

 

 

 

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Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 25, 2012

Very few opinions on the US elections are supported by facts. This is part of my effort to share OBJECTIVE Election 2012 posts. I am a neutral observer 🙂

DamDems

I was listening to Lou Dobbs (Fox News) yesterday and he talked about #nobama has been touting that he has deport more illegal aliens than any other president in history, claiming 240K since 2009.

Except there is some fuzzy math going on with these states, in fact that number is much lower but here is how they make the claim. In fact it’s estimated about 19% lower than the numbers reported and what the president is saying in campaign speeches today. The numbers may be even much lower (down to 160K) but this conjecture can’t be confirmed due to the fuzzy math that we are hearing from this administration.

There is a new agency (yet again more government) that has create a program called ATEP (Alien Transfer Exit Program), what they are doing is counting deporting illegal’s out of a state, or area, but here is the obfuscation of these

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The Company That Can Never Collapse: Universal Bailout

Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 25, 2012

 

Many of us hate its founder’s guts. A lot of us dislike its aggressive tactics. Several mocked its IPO pricing and many more have a grin when they look at its current share price. A few million are ruing the fact that they bought into the fairytale story, a bunch of analysts are earning their livelihoods bashing the company day in and day out.

 

Tons have played with the idea of removing themselves from the company’s inventory, another million have tried an alternate, but realized that nothing matches the real deal.

 

It is a company that bundles our thoughts, our life patterns and interests into a beautiful product and sells it to advertisers who in turn wish to sell us more things. The only company that gets its raw material free of cost and spends a pittance in processing it into a finished good.

 

And yet, Facebook is a company that will never collapse, we won’t let it. It is too important for the well being of humankind. Without it, we would suddenly be filled with extra hours in our days that we wouldn’t know what to do with. We would come face to face with friends and not know how to deal with them. We wouldn’t know what to do with the scores of digital images on our cameras. Auxiliary industries worth billions of dollars will face extinction. Life as we know it would cease to exist.

 

The Armageddon will unite the world in bailing out the company that can never collapse!

 

 

 

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Raped, pregnant and ordeal not over: Shauna Prewitt

Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 23, 2012

This article deserves to be shared on blogs around the world. Unlike many other opinions, Shauna Prewitt’s take on recent discussions surrounding the Akin gaffe, is both touching and objective. She highlights facts that I have not come across in several op-eds. What are your thoughts on it?

“When I was in law school, my criminal law professor introduced us to the crime of rape by reading us a quote from Lord Chief Justice Sir Matthew Hale, a 17th-century English jurist: “In a rape case it is the victim, not the defendant, who is on trial.”

It was not merely a history lesson. I had lived it.

While a student in my final year of college, at age 21, I was raped. I have dissected that moment — the horrifying moment that I became a “victim” — from every possible angle. I have poked and prodded, examined and re-examined. Regrettably, I have even suspected myself in a desperate, ultimately futile attempt to understand how I became a victim.

But blaming myself was neither my idea nor my first inclination. I thought such 17th-century notions were long dead. I was wrong. People who did not even know me were quick to comment or speculate on my rape. What were you wearing? Did you scream loudly? Did this occur in public?

As my history lesson said, I found myself on trial, facing the most fierce judge and jury: ignorance.

Eight years after my rape, I find myself on trial against ignorance again. Rep. Todd Akin’s recent comments that “legitimate rape” rarely results in pregnancy not only flout scientific fact but, for me, cut deeper. Akin has de-legitimized my rape.

You see, nine months after my rape, I gave birth to a beautiful little girl. You could say she was conceived in rape; she was. But she is also so much more than her beginnings. I blissfully believed that after I finally had decided to give birth to and to raise my daughter, life would be all roses and endless days at the playground. I was wrong again.

It would not be long before I would learn firsthand that in the vast majority of states — 31 — men who father through rape are able to assert the same custody and visitation rights to their children that other fathers enjoy. When no law prohibits a rapist from exercising these rights, a woman may feel forced to bargain away her legal rights to a criminal trial in exchange for the rapist dropping the bid to have access to her child.

Continue Reading…

 

 

 

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Gangsta Rap had a Soul too: Of Rappers and Philosophy

Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 22, 2012

“…Death ain’t nothing but a heartbeat away, I’m living life, do or die, what can I say
I’m 23 now, but will I live to see 24, The way things are going I don’t know…”

Coolio, Gangsta’s Paradise

The song won a Grammy, but this line from Gangsta’s Paradise is as deep as it can get. “Death ain’t nothing but a heartbeat away..”, if every person accepts this truth and lives by it, Kingdom of Heaven will manifest itself right here and right now. Enjoy every moment because it could be your last. Make every second count, before time runs out.

~~~~

“…Life is a b***h and then you die, still trying to get a piece of the apple pie…”

Coolio, Fantastic Voyage

Another great metaphorical illustration of the futility of blindly fulfilling one’s greed. The apple pie represents bliss which resides within us. However, our lives are spent seeking it without, an eternally doomed endeavor.

~~~~

“…Bury me smilin’, with G’s in my pocket
have a party at my funeral, let every rapper rock it…”

Tupac, Life Goes On

Am I the only one who wants to go away smiling? Live a life so fulfilled that your journey to the other side is celebrated and not mourned.

~~~~

“My only fear of death is coming back, reincarnated”

– Tupac, Only fear of Death

Reminds me of my post Why I don’t want to believe in Rebirth

~~~~

“There are no words that can express how I feel, You never kept a secret, always stayed real
And I appreciate, how you raised me, And all the extra love that you gave me
I wish I could take the pain away, If you can make it through the night there’s a brighter day
Everything will be alright if ya hold on, It’s a struggle everyday, gotta roll on
And there’s no way I can pay you back,But my plan is to show you that I understand You are
appreciated.

Tupac, Dear Mama

I haven’t come across a more touching verse to express gratitude to one’s mom. There is absolutely no way you can pay your parents back for all that they have done for you. The only thing that you can and must do is tell them you are grateful for it. It means the world to them.

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(Dis)United States of I-N-D-I-A

Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 21, 2012

Non-kashmiris cannot buy land in Kashmir.There is 90% probability that you and I will have troubles acquiring 100% ownership of land in many districts of Himachal Pradesh. To visit Mizoram, non residents need to apply a permit from the Mizoram House. A permit of 15 days is given to visit the state. Same is the case for Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh. Infact until 5 years back, a permit was required to visit any of the North-Eastern states. On the flip side, the residents of these states have no restrictions whatsoever when it comes to mobility and ownership in the rest of I-n-d-i-a.

Where are all the ”intellectuals” who ridiculed Raj Thackeray when he proposed a permit like system to be implemented for Mumbai?Either it was a case of sheer unawareness or convenient ignorance for their utter disregard for this suggestion. The argument that cordoning off Mumbai is against the constitutional ethos falls flat because it exists in several parts of India.

Lets imagine a scenario where all the states of I-n-d-i-a develop a non porous border. Which means that a person from state of Orissa will need a permit to enter the state of Maharashtra and vice versa. In order to do so, he will have to prove what value addition he brings to Maharashtra.

The consequence of such a scenario is pretty evident. The system will ensure,that very few residents of sick states of I-n-d-i-a will have an option to leave their state.This will force the local populace to fore go the escapist attitude that they presently harbor. In doing so, they will be compelled to work on their own soil and hold their local government accountable for the poor condition of their state. Bad governance of the local representatives will no longer be forgiven since the populace will be left with no outlet that they currently enjoy in the form of developing states like Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu etc.

A system as corrupt, infested and hollow as the one in most I-n-d-i-a-n states can be cured by nothing less than a revolution.To instigate a revolution, generation of profound resentment and anger in the people is a must. Putting a cap on the immigration outlet that people have access to, will build a pressure cooker like situation that, with time will explode into a revolution and bring about the change these states need.

In absence of such controls, we will only end up with suffocating and ailing metros/cosmos that will be fed on by parasites because an immunity system was not built in time.

Walled states could hence result in turning India into a collection of individually rich states. A united I-n-d-i-a is a classic example of an organization where de-merger of its 28 departments(states) could yield a better enterprise value than that of a merged entity slowed down by its size and weight.

Disunited States of I-n-d-i-a may not be a bad idea after all.

 

 

 

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God.Philosophy.Science.Reconciled.

Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 20, 2012

English: Richard P. Feynman

Richard P. Feynman (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Here is an extract from Richard P. Feynman’s “Six Easy Pieces”. It is a text that creates wonderful harmony between  Gods, Philosophy and Science.

“What do we mean by “understanding” something? We can imagine that this complicated array of moving things which constitutes “the world” is something like a great chess game being played by the gods, and we are observers of the game. We do not know what the rules of the game are; all we are allowed to do is to watch the playing. Of course, if we watch long enough, we may eventually catch on to a few of the rules. The rules of the game are what we mean by fundamental physics. Even if we knew every rule, however, we might not be able to understand why a particular move is made in the game, merely because it is too complicated and our minds are limited. If you play chess you must know that it is easy to learn all the rules, and yet it is often very hard to select the best move or to understand why a player moves as he does. So it is in nature, only much more so; but we may be able at least to find all the rules. Actually, we do not have all the rules now. (Every once in a while something like castling is going on that we still do not understand.) Aside from not knowing all of the rules, what we really can explain in terms of those rules is very limited, because almost all situations are so enormously complicated that we cannot follow the plays of the game using the rules, much less tell what is going to happen next. We must, therefore, limit ourselves to the more basic question of the rules of the game. If we know the rules, we consider that we “understand” the world.”

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Bringing Walls to Life: Community Project in a Village

Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 19, 2012

Earlier this year, my wife Appu volunteered to add color and life to the walls of a Village Community Center. The villages are located on the west coast of India and have some of the most pristine beaches in this country. What began as an individual effort soon translated into a great community project with children and youngsters of the village joining her in this noble endeavor. The images below tell the story of art driving social upliftment.

Kundapur in Karnataka, India is a beautiful destination and I strongly recommend it for those who love the sea. Turtle Bay Beach Resort is the place to stay at and is run by a wonderful host, Abraham Chacko. Here is the link to the resort.

 

 

 

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Travel Diary: Slow Down People!!!

Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 17, 2012

Ever wondered why as soon as your plane lands,the very moment the front wheels touchdown, a continuous sound of unfastening seat belts fills the aircraft? No matter how many times or in how many languages the air stewardess pleads, there will always be a few smart alecs that free themselves from the shackles long before the flight has come to rest.

And if this was not enough, you will always have that middle aged person/s make a call to his or her eager relatives while the taxing is still on!!! “Yeah, I have just landed.The plane is taxing.” Will somebody please tell them that we could die because of their stupidity!!!

Thats not all.Now that the aircraft has come to a standstill and the passengers on the window seats have shut their cameras (people are always obsessed with video recording a landing!!!), a sudden storm erupts around you.Everyone dashes out of his/her seat to be the first to remove their baggages from the cabin (relax,no one is going to steal it). And then, you realize that since the exit door is going to take some time to open, a long queue of senseless travelers standing in the most awkward positions forms.

God save you if you are on the aisle seat and are calm enough to not mind being seated till the doors open. The glaring, questioning eyes of the middle and window seat passengers will send you to the death row. I have always been made to feel guilty about not being in a hurry. And people, the transfer shuttle is not going anywhere till every square inch of space has been occupied in it. And please, as soon as you board the bus, don’t just stand there, move to more open spaces within the bus so that more of us can get in. At this point it might help to remember that the person who boards the bus last is often the first to alight :)

Even after this race has been won, the time it takes for a traveler to leave the terminal is directly proportional to the time it takes for their luggage to show up on that God forsaken baggage claim belt; which needless to say is every traveler’s worst enemy.The most beautiful girl in the flight always gets her baggage first and leaves.All you are left with is an opportunity to admire every make of luggage manufactured in the world while wiping off the sweat arising out of fear of the airline misplacing your bags!

So next time you travel, relax. Take a minute to admire the complex operations that take place on the tarmac. Glance around to appreciate the newly built terminal.Say thank you to the bus driver who ferries you from the flight to the terminal…Smile :)

P.S: Not applicable to the lucky few amongst us, the business class travelers.

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Political Diary: How to Exploit Herd Mentality Trick 1

Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 16, 2012

Overview:

This is an Electronic Voting Machine (EVM) that India employs for casting votes. The voter must press the blue button next to the name and symbol of the candidate he or she wants to elect.

Requirements:

3 to 5 loyal supporters at every voting booth in the constituency.

Modus Operandi:

1) On the day of the elections, station 3 to 5 of your loyal supporters at every polling booth in the constituency.

2) Give them strict instructions that they should be among the early birds in line when the polling begins.

3) Just before standing in the line, the perpetrators smudge their forefingers with blue ink.

4) When they press the blue button with their forefinger, they must do it in a way that some of their ink mark gets imprinted on the button and some on the white area around the button. This will be visible in the form of a hazy fingerprint.

Outcome:

When people get to the EVMs to cast their vote, the undecided and the not so strongly decided voters will see the finger imprints on the blue button next to your name and symbol. Their immediate reaction will be to press the same button because they would want to go along with what they have been tricked into believing is public opinion.

Effectiveness:

I have heard varying claims as to the increase in votes this trick brings to a candidate. However, in an election every vote is priceless. I have not studied the difference in its impact in rural and urban constituencies. I would imagine that herd mentality is more prevalent in the countryside but seeing the growing level of stupidity in city folks, I won’t be surprised if I’m wrong.

Limited Scope:

Once more than one candidate starts using this chicanery, the method loses its utility.

Disclaimer:

I do not subscribe to or encourage use of such deception. What I have stated above is what I have seen and experienced in real life elections. I strongly support educating the electorate of ways crooked politicians employ to play with their vulnerable psyches.

Featured Image courtesy of Winky from Oxford,UK

 

 

 

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Travel Diary: Erotic Sculptures of Khajuraho

Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 12, 2012

Deep in the heart of India lie the beautiful temples of Khajuraho, known around the world for their depiction of erotic art in the form of sculptures. The temples were built over a period of 300 years circa 950 AD and fortunately faded into obscurity that saved them from the wrath of the Muslim conquerors of India. Several interpretations exist of their essence but the one I like to believe in is the call to shed all sensual desires before entering the temple to be one with the deity.

The small town of Khajuraho is very tourist friendly, with local guides speaking fluent English, Spanish and French. Its a great place to explore using a bicycle. Enjoy the images 🙂

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Making My Life Public: Of Astrology,Gods and Karma.

Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 10, 2012

If you believe in astrology then you would agree that sharing one’s astrological chart is equivalent to sharing one’s entire life. So why am I going ahead with it? Because instead of spending hours seeking answers, I hope that someday an enlightened astrologer will stumble upon this post and be kind enough to foretell my future.

Belief in Astrology serves as a good subject to study contradictions. On the one hand we pray to Gods and are convinced of their abilities to change our fortunes. Conversely, we look to stars and planets to read a predestined fate. Well, if fate is predestined by the position of planets and stars at the time of our birth, then how do Gods have the power to change that fate!

However, Astrology and Karma are two schools of thought that compliment each other fairly well. Karma holds one accountable for his actions by creating a future or next life based on their righteousness. This forms the basis of a predestined fate designed around a person’s karmas. So depending upon the nature of your past life karmas, Gods decide the date,time and place of your rebirth in a way that your next life fortunes (based on planetary positions at time of your birth) conform with the predestined fate accorded to you.

Belief in Karma and Astrology strips Gods of their powers to change your state of being. Which side are you on?

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Reliving A Great Celebration: Soccer World Cup In South Africa

Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 5, 2012

While the world is gripped by Olympic fever, I thought it a good idea to step back for a moment and relive the great celebration of success that was the FIFA World Cup in South Africa. While the football did not live up to its expectations, SA surely delivered what it takes and more.

The country is blessed with some of the most remarkable landscapes and scenery. While Durban is a melting pot of cultures, Cape Town takes your breath away. I was pleasantly surprised by the warmth and elan the residents of the host nation welcomed us with, and it was amazing to see the level of engagement that every citizen felt with the tourney. South Africans proved that they do know how to host a great party!

Look forward to hearing from fellow travelers who were fortunate enough to be there too 🙂

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Of Happiness Ch.3: Varying Degrees of “Absence of Happiness”

Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 5, 2012

The condition “Absence of Happiness” consists of 5 levels listed below in ascending order of their fulfillment of instinct driven desire.

  1. Indifference
  2. Pleasure
  3. Joy
  4. Bliss
  5. Supreme Transcendence (ST)

Since ST is the highest form of the “Absence of Happiness” condition, it must be the result of an act or thought that fulfills a desire that comes closest to satisfying the instincts determined by the need to survive and multiply. One such act is that of coitus or sexual union where the brief moment of orgasm reflects this state.

Some define Nirvana as an escape from the cycle of birth and death, some as a detachment from mind and soul. It might be a good idea to seek Nirvana within life itself and in the acceptance of natural instincts and desires of human beings.  Maybe Nirvana manifests itself as ST.

Related Posts:

Of Happiness Ch.2: Desires and Wants

Of Happiness Ch.1: Decoding The Condition

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Of Happiness Ch.2: Desires and Wants

Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 4, 2012

Desire is an urge to possess, act, or think determined by instinct which in itself is slave to the need to survive and multiply. Want is the expectation to see an event unfold in a way that would fulfill a desire or an ego.

Fulfillment of a desire leads to a condition I have earlier called “Absence of Happiness” while that of a want gives root to “Happiness”. Both these conditions have scales and are not unique points. The degree of “Absence of Happiness” depends upon the importance of the instinct that determines the desire that has been fulfilled. Similarly, the degree of “Happiness” depends upon the degree of desire or ego fulfillment that results from the realization of the want.

Illustration:

Scene: The Big Bang Theory Season 2 Ep. 16

Sheldon: You’re sitting on my spot……..zero zero zero zero…..

….Penny: Fine. Happy?

Sheldon: I’m not unhappy.

By getting out of Sheldon’s spot, Penny has satisfied his want that she ‘gets off his spot’. The realization of this want results in the fulfillment of not his ego, but of his desire that stems from his instinct of possession and identity. Since the end result is the fulfillment of a Desire, Sheldon feels a state of “Absence of Happiness” and not the condition of “Happiness”. Hence the statement “I’m not unhappy”. The degree of “Absence of Happiness” that Sheldon experiences is mild because his possession of his spot does not in reality serve to a large degree the need for survival and multiplication.

Read Chapter 1

Read Chapter 3

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Of Happiness Ch.1: Decoding The Condition

Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 2, 2012

D1. I will not define the substance of Happiness, truth be told: I cannot. I have spent enough energy on it and failed miserably. What I can state though is only its nature of being; Happiness is a condition. And since every condition must have an origin, I will attempt to explore the origin/s of Happiness.

D2. I treat Happiness as a standalone condition that has no bearing on other universal phenomenons like Nirvana, Enlightenment etc. My subject here is Happiness itself and not its correlation with other conditions.

D3. From D2 it follows that the negative of Happiness is not “Sadness” or “Unhappiness” but it is “Absence of Happiness”.

D4. Negative does not mean Opposite. Negative denotes the lack of a condition. While opposite denotes presence of a condition that produces effects with opposing characteristics. Hence, “Absence of Happiness” is NOT the Opposite of “Happiness”; It is the Negative of “Happiness”.

P.1. One of the origins of Happiness that I experience is ” Fulfillment of One’s Own Want”. To comprehend this and exploit it to the fullest, lets look at the other other side of the coin. It is equivalent to studying darkness to better appreciate light. So in our case, lets look at “Absence of Happiness”  for a moment.

If the above stated origin holds true then it follows that,

  • Fulfillment of something that is NOT a want = Absence of Happiness
  • Fulfillment of something that is SOMEONE ELSE’S want = Absence of Happiness
  • No Fulfillment of one’s own want = Absence of Happiness

The condition of “Absence of Happiness” can easily be confused with “Happiness” in real life experiences . Many people wonder why they do not feel Bliss even though they have several experiences of Happiness. Assuming that “Bliss” is strongly correlated with “Happiness”, the answer may lie in the fact that what they believe to be experiences of “Happiness” are really experiences of “Absence of Happiness”. In many cases it becomes difficult to differentiate between a condition and its negative.  The 3 criteria mentioned in P1. can help people differentiate the condition of “Happiness” and “Absence of Happiness” better.

Read Chapter 2

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Boom Boom Boom Boom Boom in Gandhi’s Land..3 Reasons I’m Mad as Hell!!!

Posted by Raunak Mahajan on August 2, 2012

This post comes in the wake of 5 serial blasts that rocked my city Pune this evening. Details are slowly pouring in but it seems that miraculously no one got hurt. The perpetrators weren’t skilled enough in bomb making I guess. Does that make me calmer? No. It pisses the hell out of me even more! And why is that more upsetting?

Reason 1: Because these home grown terror cells reflect a complete failure of our intelligence agencies. Terror attacks are now being carried out by amateurish and isolated cells and not by organized global networks.  A bunch of novice idiots have the guts and the ability to carry out such heinous acts. Makes a complete mockery of our political system and will. We are governed by a group of retarded politicians who don’t even have the acumen to stop these locally planned attacks. And we trust them with our national security!

Reason 2: The Pune Police just released a statement that this was not “terror” but “mischief”. Are you out of your Godforsaken mind? How can you label something like this as MISCHIEF!!!! What dimwit authorities do we have? So they mean to say that if they catch the perpetrators the only thing they will be charged with is Mischief?

 Reason 3: I pray that the casualty figures remain nil. However, knowing that the value of life has reduced to nada I am scared that a no casualty scenario will fuel the apathetic indifference from the authorities that we have grown so used to seeing.

And this is exactly why I do not want to believe in Rebirth!

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