Showing posts from April, 2016

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Sri Sri and the Art of Revolution

A thought on the recent proposal made by an Indian spiritual leader and his willingness to become a middleman and resolve the crisis between the armed groups of Manipur and the government of India

Last year (in June 2015), Sri Sri Ravi Shankar made news when he extended his hand to solve the chronic problem of militancy in Colombia. He had brokered between the government of this Latin American country and its antagonist, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia–People’s Army or the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia–Ejército del Pueblo, which is more popularly known as the Farc.

Breathing In

A peace delegation from Colombia had praised Ravi Shankar and his ideas generously: ‘Without humanism, social projects fail. We agree. Human values should be elevated to the highest peaks of dignity and the crucial value is that of life. And for us to achieve decent living conditions for all, i.e. the full realisation of rights, we need peace. ...Hatred and revenge, the law of retaliati…

When Mary Kom Throws Her Hat into the Ring

I have been so great in boxing they had to create an image like Rocky, a white image on the screen, to counteract my image in the ring. America has to have its white images, no matter where it gets them. Jesus, Wonder Woman, Tarzan and Rocky.
- Muhammad Ali

It is a matter of joy and pride when someone from our own folk achieves a certain level of success. A few pun lovers note that success is relative: the more success you have, the more relatives you get! The case of Mangte Chungneijang Mary Kom is becoming no different for many people. Not many people knew her even after winning the World Amateur Boxing champion five times. All’s history though; and today, she is one of the most recognised celebrities in India and her popularity is still on an exponential rise that ascended five to six years ago.

These days she is also donning newer hats; the latest of which is becoming a member of the Rajya Sabha / Council of States or the upper house of the Indian Parliament. After her nomination …

Masters & Slaves

The unpreparedness of the educated classes, the lack of practical links between them and the mass of the people, their laziness, and, let it be said, their cowardice at the decisive moment of the struggle will give rise to tragic mishaps.
― Frantz Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth

Suppose that you have been a software engineer for the last ten years; and suddenly an economic crisis hits the market that costs you your job. Now you are trying to find a new ‘platform’ to get work with some luck or without. Again, say, the market is adverse and you have been sitting like an immobile desktop at home for the last six months. So you turn to a job placement service provider for help. How would you feel when a job consultant, instead of lending a hand, starts questioning not only your professional credentials but also your very existence? Worse, s/he doubts your experience and does not even believe you were ever a software engineer. What then?

Let us come to the main point. Manipur existed as …

riot lines

alter and imagine should i
rivers flowing from east to west
all perish the north-to-southers

now i see anything no more
all the butterflies and giggles
all those have gone down the shit-drain

as the rivers glides out of tune
let the leaders’ heads be hunted
time and state are insubstantial

Are You the ‘Stay’ or the ‘Stray’ Type?

When quantity is not different from quality: A consideration on issues relating to cultures, marriages, monogamy and polygamy

What do you think about monogamy and polygamy? As someone puts it: do you believe in ‘staying’ in or ‘straying’ away from the socially sanctioned institution of marriage? Many people, especially Westerners, are convincing when they argue that polygamy is more natural and it is rather monogamy that is more open to question. However, that’s just the tip of an iceberg.

It makes sense if we look into the records from the Ethnographic Atlas Codebook, which listed 1,231 cultures, out of which 84.6% are classified as polygynous (one husband, multiple wives), 15.1% as monogamous and 0.3% as polyandrous (one wife, multiple husbands). For details, refer to the Eclectic Anthropology Server, School of Social Sciences, University of California Irvine).

For now let’s ignore the nitty-gritty of human behaviour and personality types and the forms of male-female or same-sex lov…

Bertolt Brecht 101

Bertolt Brecht (1898–1956), or Eugen Bertolt Friedrich Brecht, occupies a crucial space in the world of literature. He wrote plays, produced them and he was as well an acclaimed poet. Brecht blended music and drama and employed the techniques of theatrical alienation (or verfremdungseffekt); the latter which he had polished with the revolutionary concept of epic theatre. Influenced by Marxism and the Chinese theatre, he endorsed that alienation is necessary before the desire for change can arise. Pragmatically, ‘a play should not cause the spectator to identify emotionally with the characters or action before them, but should instead provoke rational self-reflection and a critical view of the action on the stage’ (Source: Bertolt Brecht - Theory and Practice of Theatre). This modernist German playwright has been appealing to me for his straightforward views on the relationship between the personal and the political.

Inside Book Covers: Arambam Somorendro’s Plays

This graphic series is a collection of the titles of plays written by Arambam Somorendro

Post on Arambam Somorendro:
A Life of Poverty Is the Life of Misery A translation of Arambam Somorendro’s Lairaba Awabagi Punsini Somorendra’s Chaaikhre Ngasi Nangi Loubukta (originally written in 1989) translated by Arambam Sophia (April 2015) Time! The Arambam Triumvirate

Saturday Scheme 2: The Sixth Column

A ‘fifth column’, according to Encyclopædia Britannica, ‘is a clandestine group or faction of subversive agents who attempt to undermine a nation’s solidarity by any means at their disposal. The term is credited to Emilio Mola Vidal, a Nationalist general during the Spanish Civil War (1936–39). As four of his army columns moved on Madrid, the general referred to his militant supporters within the capital as his fifth column, intent on undermining the loyalist government from within.’ Their modus operandi is ‘the infiltration of sympathisers into the entire fabric of the nation under attack and, particularly, into positions of policy decision and national defence’.

However, a specific situation demands a specific solution and hence the sixth column.

Saturday Scheme 1: How to Yell ‘Hoirong’ in Different Fonts

Hoirong in different fonts in a rare proverbial manner!

Repost from Dec 2012:

The Tyranny of Technology


Known as the Unabomber, Ted Kaczynski was an American mathematical prodigy but now a prisoner. He was involved in a series of bombings across the United States for almost two decades (1978–1995), which he claimed was a part of his crusade against modern technology. In his much publicised manifesto, Industrial Society and its Future, he wrote in the first line: ‘The Industrial Revolution and its consequences have been a disaster for the human race’. (Read the 35,000-word manifesto on this page)

Kaczynski’s wild speculation resulted in the formation of a new school of thought: anarcho-primitivism, which primarily criticises the origins and progress of civilisation. The Unabomber had also redefined the concept of neo-luddism, which is an anarchist philosophy that opposes modern technologies and advocates rewilding, which again implies going back to the wild or natural state in a sort of Alexander-Supertramp way.

In a perfectly ideal world, …

How to Describe ‘Nonsense’ in Graphs

When producers want to know what the public wants, they graph it as curves. When they want to tell the public what to get, they say it in curves. - Marshall McLuhan

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