Dear Alchemist,


Dear Paulo Coelho, would it be a nice of me to designate you as “Sir” or would it be a disgrace when I call you “Sir”. I have no idea with what designation I should be recalling you, citing you and adoring you. After much brainstorming, I find myself ending with this short piece of word which sounds to me profound to designate your name with because of what you have left in me with your book, as a reader. But, apart from that bewilderment, I never had to cogitate twice to pronounce your name and I had therefore taken this chance to call you our “Alchemist”.

So, dear Alchemist, I know you don’t know me – that is quite obvious and understandable. You might have millions of readers and thousands of followers or even more who might be just like you or might just want to follow you to achieve at least even a motley of what you have done and achieved so far.

By now, you might have already understood, that I am one of your millions of readers but I am not sure whether I fall in those thousands category who are your followers. I do not say that I am a writer, because writing few words and few paragraph doesn’t make anybody a writer and it would be inane to say that even without starting anything significant. I am not even saying that I am an avid reader, but I can assure at least that I am an avid reader of your books, but a mediocre reader of else.

Out of your all master pieces, “Eleven Minutes” is the one that I read first completely unknown to your image and your contribution in the literary world. Soon after finishing that book, I was already following you and that had left in me an immense impact of your writing ability and your folkloric ability which is found in just countable from those thousands of writer.

Your dictum, your ideas and your philosophy has left me with no choice than to select your another masterpiece and start reading it right away. This book has been proved to be a major turning point in thousands of readers who have taken it literally and now they are something that they had never imagined they will ever be. They have gained power in themselves and enlightenment to achieve the one that use to be thought as impossible.

I have got just one lesson from your this book (THE ALCHEMIST). We should not give up because of fear, and we should not lose our hope for achieving the best. If we want to achieve our dreams, our destination, we must overcome our fear at the first place because just as you said, “Fear of suffering is worse than suffering itself”.

I have no words to say, but to thank you for your masterful and profound enlightenment in real life.

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Our words


How ironical does it sounds when we say, “Words are insignificant, yet valuable”. With time everything has changed and we have ourself experience some motley of those changes in our life as well. Everything changes most and with unceasing pace, but the language, the words, the sentences and its uses. The words and the language that pops out of our mouth is so beautiful, yet so ugly – yet another sets of ironical thing.

It  takes years before there is an official change in the structure of a sentence or it take couple of years or yearly before a new word is added to the dictionary. So, now we can guess how significant it is when it comes to adding new vocabulary and sentence and structure in our language (irrespective of what language we speak). When it comes to adding it appears significant and more valuable, while it does really sound little bit quirky and insignificant thinking that something that has already been incorporated needs extensive amendments and approvals before it gets accepted – In this case, it sounds really insignificant to even think of changing or going after those sorts of things.

These simple, insignificant words that we use in our daily life might be insignificant to us mostly, but they hold greater meaning to our life in what we speak and how we materialize it in our personal life. Those are just simple words which are capable of bringing fortunes and misfortunes in our life. We, therefore, have to choose it very wisely and with astuteness.

Knowingly or unknowingly we are making mistakes upon mistakes and amassing them, but we hardly notice it by ourself unless somebody points it to us. Those are also our words which is taking nasty course of action because of what pops out of our mouth. But, we take it as for granted sometimes to appease ourself rather than feeling a sense of remorse for what we have done because of our words. Some of our words of excuses includes, “oh! common, we are friends, right?”, Oh! dear, we are family, you should not be minding these things”, Hey! we are classmates, everything is okay, don’t take it seriously”………… and the list goes on.

We should not just be concerned with our words, but in fact, should be solicitous. Our messages, our good wishes, our letters, emails, snail-mails, everything are nothing more than just words. This is what creates fear, anger, remorse, envy, love, caring and all sorts of feelings (either good or bad). One of my friend use to say, “People are different, so we should present ourself according to them and not what we are”.  Everybody is special and they wants to be treated special and for that reason we have to change ourself. Because the way we might be talking to somebody might be bringing them closer to us while at the same time from the same group it might be pushing somebody away from us. But, the problem is how can we use the words suited for everyone. That is the fact, and we can’t control it. Because there is saying, “I am responsible for what I speak, but not what you understand”. And, also, “If everybody loves us, there must be something wrong, because we can’t please everybody at the same time”.

It is our words which help us to get respect, honor, and value and it the words again which will put us in grave danger. Words might be insignificant for a moment for the speaker, because usually we speak and we forget. But the story never ends there! There might be somebody who might be taking it by heart, it might be someone who is getting offended and it might retain with them for years to come or even till their whole life. So, its better to find the right words than to find excuse.

Our words are something that defines us inside out. It just do not only define us but it covers our lineage, our society from where we belong and in the family where we have been brought up. It is our words which defines our family and not just us. We are representing our family more than we are representing ourself in any society when we keep on moving. 

Our choice of words might appear to us as excursive to us, but using those words we are just excursing ourself but we are still trying to put the person in track with whom we are dealing at that moment – which is more important.

 

Money can buy happiness!


It might just be another one of those co-incidences that I have just finished watching movie “INTO THE WILD” and just recently and in parallel finished watching a TED talk by Michael Norton on about “Money Can Buy Happiness”. In fact, both of these things have just one thing in common – exploring the true nature, beauty and the meaning of being happy and finding the source of happiness. But, what is uncommon in these two things is the source of happiness.

It is really difficult to define the true meaning of happiness precisely and understandably, because the meaning changes with the situation, perception of the people and their individual circumstances. Mr. Norton believes that the true happiness lies in helping others and being philanthropic in our attitude and our deeds. Helping others will make us feel more good then helping ourself for some motley  and insignificant things. An act of selfless attitude is the one simple gateway to ultimate feeling of pleasure and salvation. And, this fact concedes with the theological understanding in almost all cultures, religions of the world – “What you give is what you will get in return”.

I am hereby just summarizing the main points from these two sources. So, finally, the true meaning of happiness is about helping others with what you have, but not at the cost of your own life or shavings. Share what you can without hampering your and your family life, share things with the people who really understands what its mean to be sharing and being happy, make less friends and stay tight depending on the situation and in the environment you are.

Spend money wisely and not like a spendthrift. Being spendthrift might be a momentarily pleasure, but after that you will have some real tough time – this is where money buys happiness. There is saying, “If earning bring happiness, then saving is an earning”. Money has fettered us all somehow. People say that its our stomach that we earn for, but what I say is that if it would have been just for the stomach, how would a fat-wealth just accumulates with somebody. Why aren’t they like just some other ordinary people? Earning too much and accumulating too much wealth brings misfortunes than fortunes while spending too much also does the same thing.

If we say that money buys happiness means its not about giving a gift to your loves one but to buy a new life for someone who is not your loved ones. The meaning of bigger happiness is not just being confined within our family making each other happy, but to share your fortunes with somebody who are completely destitute. Sometimes, I wonder, and get lost in my own world of imagination that what would be this world like when we would not have to shut our doors for safety, no money to buy foods, no thieves and no wealth to loose, no feeling of envy and no traces of enmity – just like a Kingdom of Heaven. We created money over gold and silver and those things over the things older civilization use to use to exchange things. We have made it valuable.

Share things with whom you think are your real honest friends who knows nothing more than your friendship – so be choosy and be parsimonious in this case because this is where you will cost more if you fail to choose things that you are suppose to over what you are not supposed to. The gist is people these days don’t listen to you, they just hear you. They will never listen what you really mean but they will listen what they want to hear – this is very dangerous situation.

When we were young, we use to hear that the then scientists have that huge salary that they do not have to think about their family and the money they will need to meet their basic needs. In fact, their salary are something that will deter them from even thinking about their family so that they can concentrate more on their research work then something else for better productive results. This is where we can say that money can buy happiness.

So, what we can summarize from all these is that money can truly buy happiness, but the essence of happiness lies on what we choose to do with the money – are we going to spend on ourself or we would like to spend it on somebody else, do charity work and help the needy who will understand the true value of that money and the happiness it brings to their life. 

 

 

Pedagogy and Brain


The world has changed quite a bit more, and so does our life style and the way we use to do things, to something more tangible and more perceptible in a way. Over time we have become more sophisticated, more learned, and more practical in our things. The way we use to handle things have been changed to something we never ever dreamt of. The more important issue here is the art-of-teaching or in one simple word we can say, “Pedagogy” – this is what that makes real sense than to protracting it like a rubber. In dictionary meaning, it is called “teaching methodology”.

Since the beginning of my writing blogs, I have been more engaged in discussing things particularly on two things: first, technology which has always been one part of my fascination which keeps me glued to it, and secondly, the politics and ongoing changes which has been fettered with the political influence and interference. Interestingly, these both things bothers me at some point of time, which is why the idiom: “Excess of anything is bad!” applies quite logically in the instances like these.

Over the time, technology has developed with leaps and bounds and so has the trend of pedagogy. But, the difficult part of this puzzle is on demystifying this issue on whether we have really developed and also whether technology has helped us through this acclivity to this level, is still there. In fact, what I personally believe is that we have unwittingly become the slaves of the technical era. The thing is we are just like handicapped when it comes to even calculating simple things without getting our hands on our computer or calculator.

Because of our dependency on computer and other gadgets we have become so unyielding in our intellect that we can’t even do simple computing – simply, enough, we have forgot the simple method of multiplication we use to study in our primary school. Calculator and computer for computing mathematical equations and calculations, computer for checking spelling mistakes and vocabulary – everything has changed over time. Though, these technologies have made our work smoother, I feel like if everything would be doomed all of a sudden, I think there won’t be any creature on this earth as pathetic as human beings and its all because of the dependency we have cultivated in ourself.

Till high school students in our country (Nepal) are not allowed to use calculator – not even in the board exam and even that is strictly prohibited. And, in case, if somebody is find using calculator in their board exam, they are simply liable for restriction from that particular subject exam or even for other further exams – leaving no choice for the student than to wait for another one year, and even more worse that they will be labeled for ever in their life time as the student who have been restricted once in the board exam – which is really really very fetal for the carrier ahead, though, not a completely the only last determining factor for being eligible for things ahead.

Dependency on technology has barred us from using our mental agility. Our brain needs exercise just like our body. Restricting using our brain will make it numb over time. Putting our brain under stress of learning more , grabbing more, understanding more, using logical ideas and solving difficult problems without any dependency on technological things, solving mathematical problems is just like a marathon for Olympics, a study shows. Which means, the more we use it, the better it becomes gradually over time. It’s like generating stamina to its root.

The pedagogy of chalk-and-talk method have gone and forgotten, though still used in some remote districts of Nepal, and we have migrated from over-head-projector to slide-method and PowerPoint study. In fact, we all know that chalk-and-talk method is the best way of teaching, not just because it will help student to learn better and understand better, but because it will also help teacher and tutors to prepare themselves better before coming to class. The good part of chalk-and-talk method is that the process goes slowly and it is more extensive then the slide-based method. One reason is that in slide-based method we are restricted in our thoughts and ideas in explaining things because we see what is coming next which prevents us from thinking and elaborating the one we are discussing right at that moment. While in case of chalk-and-talk method, the process goes bit slower, as a result even the students who are slower in grasping things will understand things better before the tutor proceeds to the next topic.

These days our study is not determined what we understand and grab from our class and by the time we finish our exams, unlike in past, but it is rather being judged by the time. Time is the limiting factor now!This is not about whining what we have incorporated, nor does it mean that we should completely abhor it and stop using the technology completely. I think that will not definitely be a good idea in this competitive world, but we can definitely curb using technology, and using our brain more on the things than using technology, if we can and if it feasible. Because the changing trend of pedagogy is good for a university, college, school and institutes as a whole in their overall development, but at last we are being victimized of this system – our brain, our agility is going downhill. At least somebody have to sacrifice for the development and to reach the apex of development in competitive world!

Think about it!

 

 

 

 

Pornography, Social Media and the Society


In today’s context, the world is truly changing in every front including our social status, our achievements, quality of life, education, health sector (most importantly the millennium development goal Nepal has unprecedentedly achieved), technology and communication and our perspective and perception towards things – specially the one which use to be considered a social taboo (sex, pornography, sexuality and things connected to it), and in most part it is still considered when it comes to Asian and Middle-East countries.

The big question today is, “Whether have we really developed in terms of our thinking perspective and way of visualizing things it has to be or is it just in some twisted form?”, “Have we really become pragmatic in our views, ideas and our morality or have we just incorporated the things of so called western society and western world?” In fact, it is difficult to answer and it might take ages before we find the real answers to these questions. And, this is not because it is really difficult to find, but because we have not really developed that level of so called sophistication in our thinking ability, agility to perceive things that easily – in fact, overtime, we have become more hidebound, sulking in our attitude and our thinking and insular in our thoughts, but sadly enough we are still pretending that we have changed and we are in the process of evolution.

I have just come across a debate program in NDTV (http://www.ndtv.com) which talked about our morality as a human being, and whether or not it is fair to be called things we see today in the sexual world as nudity and porn – or in a simple meaning – defining PORNOGRAHY. What I finally figured out from the program by the time I finished listening to debate was that the perception of general public regarding sex, profanity and vulgarity is still hazy and it is really difficult to make a demarcation line which is infinitesimally thin when it comes to defining the nudity, pornography, porn and finally implementing law against to limit the context and content.

Though, across the world countries are trying to limit the use and access to the profane websites, it’s the internet in itself which is making it hard for them to get control over the content on the web. The thing is, it is limitless and secondly it is the most lucrative business in the world surpassing any business net profit leaving it the best business in the world garnering the highest net profit. This has become even more dangerous and deleterious than the drug itself – the reason is it is more easily accessible. And this has become one of the mental-addictions of the current generation and the generation to come.

It is really commendable the way Nepal has developed in IT and communication sector in this last decade. Today, our country (Nepal) is buckling up to thwart the use of internet for these things and strengthening the laws against it to create a moral society. But, the measures taken is still not enough to tap these things – it has just proved to be futile and unyielding. When we search something on the Google, we all will not get the same results (If you want to try your hands then convene in a place with your friends with different internet and different computer or mobile devices and try to find it) – the reason is Google provides us the information based on what we have searched over time; depending on our track record it has heaped over time – IT-engineers term it has a search-bubble. The Google makes individual search-bubble on those records, so that whenever we try to find something it will always provide us with the information which we always care about on our preference basis.

This is the general concept, and I guess the world knows about it as the internet and technology has become customary for our society today, and I also don’t think that Nepal’s Ministry of Communication and Technology is filled with goons. So, then on what basis Nepal’s Ministry of Information and Communication had blocked just 150 of those prone sites on internet in 2010? I think, there is just some kind of mistake or might be a communication gap  that has lead to this information. Whatever it be, finally, the measures government has taken is simply not enough and now they are going for some other alternative ways to tackle this problem through awareness program, fines for misusing computer and internet to pass profanity, misusing computer for destroying the database and information in some other computer, getting access to information through hacking and so on.

We all know that we can’t even imagine today’s world without internet, but limiting its use has just simply become a major serious problem today for the world. Got to be serious about it now or else we will have a completely skewed society in the days to come.