This blogger does not adjoin himself to any established groups or intitutions for the views aired here.
The topics here may range from religion, life,politics and to reality.
As a student of religious science, my writings may be related to religion.
The writings related to religions are not based on my belief in any particular religion but as part of studies as an independent student. I am a student of Religion and Political Science. The views owe my personal responsibility alone.
This is an eyeopener which was send to me by my friends and I am uploading out of the social responsibility I feel to have.
Please do respond to this and send the link to your friends and create a media awareness and promote social justice.
Let us feel one with that family.
I acknowledge the courtesy of the matters published to my friends who sent it to me.
Do watch the vedios of the final round and the declaration of the prizes.
To those who are still blind of the reality of chopping the hand of Professor T J Joseph, please read this also.
This is an article found in the magazine Indian Currents (Voice oft he voiceless). The link was sent to me by one of my companions and a good friend with a human heart.
With his due permission and courtesy to Indian currents management, I post this link in my blog.
To all those who criticized me for taking a stand in favour of Professor Joseph, my prayer is just to make you all realize the reality and the spirituality of Jesus Christ. Jesus is more than the Catholic Church or any other churches and no one has the right to guard Jesus from inspiring others.
Read this with a prayer.
O Lord Jesus, let the light shine upon all those who are blinded with the pomp, vigour and might of the so called authorities and allow the simple and sincere faithful to experience God and not religion.
Am not taking a stand similar to CPM. But there is a point to think in what he says. Think not in terms of the Kerala politics and the state of kerala only but also nationally and glabally. Thanks. Please visit the link below.
The reality behind the question paper issue and the condemnable stand took by the Catholic Church,
The sensational news of the chopping of the hand of Professor Joseph who prepared the controversial question paper is a national issue now. Let me first inform you the happenings.
T. J. Joseph, a professor of Malayalam language at NewmanCollege,Thodupuzha, set a question in the Malayalam semester examination paper for BCom students in March 2010. It had a derogatory remark, if interpreted so, against Prophet Mohammed. A group of unknown assailants severed the hand and the right arm of a university professor accused of defaming Mohammed months ago. The execution took place on 4 July 2010 atMuvattupuzhain theKottayamdistrict ofKerala. A neighbour rushed Mr.T J Joseph to NirmalaHospital where first aid was administered, while the severed hand was collected and packed in ice. Joseph was taken to the SpecialistsHospital in Kochiwhere he underwent an operation that lasted 16 hours. Joseph is yet to fully recover from the attack by fundamentalists who chopped off his right hand. The second blow to him came in the form of suspension by the authorities from the College run by the Kothamangalam diocese of the Catholic Church. The third blow to him was when he was dismissed from service on September 1 on the grounds that he had hurt the religious sentiments of a community. .Apastoral lettercondemning the 'irresponsible action' ofProf T J Joseph, for preparing a question paper hurting the religious sentiments of a community, was yesterday read out during theSunday massin 120 parish churches under theKothamangalam DioceseinErnakulamdistrict. This accounts to be the latest blow to him.
Question paper and its reality
In the examination, question 11 asked students to punctuate a dialogue between a character and God. The dialogue was viewed by some as derogatory.The passage was based on a lecture by politician. filmmaker and famous writer P. T. Kunju Muhammedand included in a book –Thirakathayude Reethisasthram (Methodology of Screenplay), published by Kerala State Institute of Languages.Kunjumuhammed had written about the script that he wrote for his award winning movie “Garshom”. He wrote that the scene in which the protagonist of his film talks to God was inspired by a lunatic in his hometown. So the lunatic would call God and God would respond “what is it, you son of a dog“? (I am unsure that “Son of a dog” interprets it’s Malayalam usage “Naayinte mone” well though). The question that came with the narrative was to supply the punctuation.
Prof T J Joseph’s comment
Mr. T J Joseph gave a media interview from his hospital bed, where he stated that he had used an extract from a university-approved book on theMalayalamlanguage, and that his opponents did not give him an opportunity to explain the situation. He said that the naming of the village madcap as Muhammad had been done to represent the original author,P. T. Kunju Muhammed. Joseph's family made a statement that they forgive the attackers.
Professor Joseph further said “I stand by my statement that there was no malafide intent behind framing that question. I had apologised because the question paper was one of the causes of the problems that cropped up later on. However, I had passed the question paper to the principal first. It was the college which took copies of the same and distributed them to the students,’’
Why Catholic Church took this stand?
Meanwhile, the Kothamangalam Diocese issued a circular justifying and supporting the decision of the management of the Newman college for sacking him. The circular was read out in the diocese's parish churches during Mass on Sunday. That was meant to muster support of the believers for the management's decision in the context of the opposition it has invited from various quarters. The circular, issued by none other than Bishop Mar George Punnakkottil of Kothamangalam, repeated all the points stated by the college management to justify the dismissal of the professor. It said Prof Joseph had included the controversial question in the test paper deliberately (which is not true in fact) and knowing fully well that it could hurt the sentiments of Muslims. The stand of the diocese is totally absurd and irresponsible towards a church going faithful. The Bishop said the aggrieved lecturer can approach the court to redress his grievance and the management would abide by the decision.
Let me remind the Catholic Church that the so called pastoral letters cannot blind the faithful so long. The time is near for introspection as I had already written on my wall (Facebook) earlier. Why can’t the church be realistic rather than political? This present stand by the church is not on the basis of spirituality and reality but on the basis of political stand. There is a nexus of communal political leaders (who eye to form the next government) who are controlled by different religious communities in Kerala and this would lead to the division of people and peace among the public.
Regarding the issue of Professor T J Joseph, we should also think in another angle. Here there is a conflict between the powerful few employers (management) and the employees. Management is trying to play safe in this issue, even if there is a mistake. The question paper was submitted first to the principal and it was cross checked and later it was printed by the College. Then who is responsible if the management is accepting of a derogatory reference in the question paper? Let us not forget when we accused government for the Video CD depicting a bishop enjoying the sheep of a poor boy for the dinner. If the government is responsible for a CD approved by a bureaucrat, then the Diocese of Kothamangalam and the management of new Man’s College are jointly responsible for this rather than accusing Professor alone.
Professor, you are not alone.
Senior priests like Fr Paul Thelekkat, spokesman of the Syro-MalabarChurch, had criticized the management for sacking the professor. Talking to newsmen in Thrissur, Education Minister Baby said, "Private college managements have the right to sack teachers under them but there are clearly defined rules and procedures for doing this. In this case, they have violated all rules of the university and the Government," he said. A meeting of the MG University Syndicate had on Thursday unanimously adopted a resolution terming the management's decision a violation of university rules. Teachers’ associations have offered financial assistance to Joseph and plan to organize protests in colleges across Kerala against his dismissal. On Monday, students of the college observed a black day and took out a procession protesting the decision to sack their professor while the faculty stayed off work.The whole nation was offended by the outrage against the professor by radicals, and to beat it, the Christian management of the college has inflicted “ethical homicide” on him, said Justice V R Krishna Iyer. Lending moral support to the professor, the All-Kerala Private College Teachers’ Association has raised Rs 7 lakh towards his medical expenses and is expected to support him should he decide to take legal recourse against the college management. Sr Stella, his own sister, is not happy with the stand taken by the church. The family is 'upset' and 'scared' with the letter being read out in the churches.
The faithfuls’ mind is not totally represented in the pastoral letter. It is the mind of the particular Diocese and not even of the Catholic Church. It has triggered a debate on justice and mercy in Kerala. Because of this one diocese, the whole Catholic Church is facing the flak from different quarters. I would appeal to stand with the victims and against all forms of terrorist ways (verbal and physical) in any religion.
It is still not too late to pull back from not taking strong action against these so-called religious organizations as well as educational institutions which flout the rule book. It is time for the government to intervene, I feel. Time is up for the government to act not the basis of vote bank politics. The state can in no way be seen compromising with those who consider themselves judge and executioner. If the CPI(M) thinks that appeasing these fanatics (‘Protectors’ of Muslim community and the ‘protagonists’ of the Catholic church) will pay political dividends, it is sadly mistaken. People are educated and we started thinking above all caste, creed, language and race. Inaction would invite the fundamentalists to play a role as moral police.
"Teachers open the door. You enter by yourself." (Chinese Proverb).
It’s very special for me to celebrate teacher’s day. Teachers are important and make a difference. Among the teachers I still remember some special ones who cared for me above all my limitations and naughtiness.
My mother was a teacher. I have seen the students’ love and respect towards her. She was sometimes a teacher to me also. I closely observed the life of a teacher first in my mother. Teaching is a tedious job. I am experiencing the same now. According to Comoneius, a famous educationist, in order to make teaching successful, the three things are vitally important. These are Good teacher, Good method and Good books. Indeed, a good teacher plays a vital role in making teachings to the students successful.
My first teacher as I remember was Krishnamma teacher and then another teacher often came home to give lessons. During my days in the RoseDaleSchool, I found that some students were pets to some teachers. I still remember that in my lifetime as a student I could never please a teacher to get some extra marks.
But I still remember one teacher particularly, Miss Renu. She taught me in UKG and she appreciated me very much. Even after passing out of UKG, she used to encourage me very often and used to inquire about my marks. I was never a topper anywhere in the classrooms, neither in academics nor in sports and arts. I don’t remember that I ever entered the stage for a programme at least for presenting a bouquet. Those days students with artistic talents were often the specially chosen ones. But still she smiled and that was enough for me. I was a good student for her. She often said that I can study well. The successful teachers have positive attitudes that aim for their students to love learning. They want their students to enjoy the lessons and discover their own capabilities. Teaching is also a vocation. Thank you Miss Renu.
After joining St. Aloysius High School the study system changed. I still respectfully remember my Principals, Mr.Bastian William and Mr.Rapheal. I remember my favorite teachers were ones that were patient with me, did not yell, and were passionate about teaching children. I specially remember teachers Mr.Mathias, Mr.Bahulayan, Mr.Varghese, Mr.Philipose, Mr.Raymond, Mr.Vishwanathan among all other people who taught me.
I am not going to elaborate on the names. There come several others in my formative years also. The cabinet of my Deutsch Sprache teachers took a special place in my mind.
Now I am a teacher. I have taught students in the school as well as our Philosophy college. I have learned lots of lessons. I have no original idea about how to teach. But I glance my memory and go through all those good teachers who inspired me and I take a style which is a mixture of all. Whenever I encounter a situation in my teaching career I sit quiet and try to remember how my teachers handled it. Then it becomes easy.
I believe that a teacher is not just teaching lessons but life. An American definition of 'Teaching' envisages that ' Teaching is the consistent and effective transfer of appropriate behaviors which lead to the achievement of predetermined and specified results'. The teacher who cannot inspire a pupil in his/her life is not a teacher. The student models him after a teacher. S/he doesn’t create a new pattern but s/he forms one pattern in life which is an amalgamation of all experiences. So the pedagogy is just experience sharing.
My recommendation to a teacher would be that Parents, students and colleagues have to feel that they can approach teacher. You basically must be able to maintain positive and productive relationships with people in this job. Your position as a teacher depends on working closely with others and you must be able to build mutual trust, respect and admiration to be successful. I have constantly reminded myself tolookpersonable. I tried to smile and look at people often when I feel that I am hard. I started observing and evaluating those teachers whom I did not like. I started chipping out all that was disliked by me but later found in me. Now I am very aware of being sure I not only am personable, but I look approachable as well. Bertrand Russel said “No man can be a good teacher unless he has feelings of warm affection toward his pupils and a genuine desire to impart to them what he believes to be of value.”
“The test of a good teacher is not how many questions he can ask his pupils that they will answer readily, but how many questions he inspires them to ask him which he finds it hard to answer.”- Alice Wellington Rollins.
Those scary nights the Srilankan aerial warfare dropped down fire to their homes. The ‘Tamil belt’ in its entirety was blasted to debris in a minute’s time. Lakhs of people were flagrantly exposed to the brutal exchange between army and the militia ‘Tigers’. Crowds in large numbers fled to other countries as fugitives. India turned to be the largest recipient to them. They are settled in almost one hundreds and twenty camps in different parts of Tamilnadu. I claim having a very personal experience with their multitude of torments.
It was pitch dark when I set my foot inside the campground. That night I enjoyed the rare privilege of owning a kerosene lamp. Hundreds of cabins, each accommodating an average of six persons, serves as their homes. They never had eyes to carry the thoughts back to the grey cataclysmic episodes in Sri Lanka. A comprehensive vanishing of their past life occurred as they seldom nurtured the glimpses of destruction of their home town, the merciless slaying of their young boys, the swinish deflowering of their girls ….. Though the partners and estranged kith and kin live in either shores, never they had the joy of meeting even by surface mail. A definition of refugee, which I heard elsewhere, flashed in my mind. “A refugee is the one who is deprived materially, who lost identity, who has limited ways of expressions, bears a wounded dignity and owns a disturbed relationship”.
The absence of lavatory to answer the call of nature piqued me to the nerves, that morning. A land of shrubs was pointed out and said. “The other side is set apart for women”. The ‘I’ in me shattered down to the ground. The lone hand pump served as the only recourse to bathe for more than a thousand people. As men and women shared the same spot as washroom, I was little shy to expose my bare body to that public. In times of eventuality men and women get used to anything. I watched with unconcern and wanted to flee away form those desolate flock. For me fresh air turned to be the dire need of the moment as I felt suffocating as if there is no oxygen but only some fowl smell. As all shared the same necessities, the disparity between beasts and human beings were reduced for the first time in my life I saw the truth of being insecure and unwanted. How those people of high standards crashed down to a state which run short of minimum necessities. Their whole life seemed a tapestry of lost comfort and unwelcome fate.
Molar Devi and her three daughters encountered their first rupture as they boarded a boat in Indian shore. To traverse the sea the number was very high and her husband and sixteen year old boy could not catch the boat, as the preference was laid on women. Now after twelve years she doesn’t feel any frustration to narrate the murder of husband by army. Her daughters have the good expectation of fetching a job in their motherland with all degrees they earned here. Still they await the coupling with their lost brother. They have buds but to flower it in their return to their nation it is not an isolated case but all and sundry in the camp stove hard to pas degrees in Indian universities, as they never wasted their stay in other land. With the fruitful stay of past twelve years in India, they wait for the ample opportunity to step back to their soil. The new generation with vigour and rigour learned and grew comprehensively, leaving no room to doodle in their life. It is their peculiarity that they can only live by glancing at the future.
Occasionally the local mob disallows a free life outside the camp. Even the camp came under stone pelting and threats from local leaders. They are on no occasion encouraged to excel in any field, but still they are not defeated. They suffer for meaning in life. Obvious goals added significance to embarrassment and it serves as an inevitable part of life. Subsistence comprehends in torture. They have in hand the matching outlook of Mohammed Kaif, the Indian cricketer, who, when all the top order batsmen were our chasing a mammoth total in Lords for the Nat West Trophy final, kept cool and led India to cruise the otherwi8se unnavigatable shore of 325 runs. No one can be defeated if she/he has distinctly located her/his goal of consummation. All refugees life for the future and they live, sleep and eat for dreams.
“He who has a ‘why’ to live for can bear with almost any ‘how’”. – Nietzche.
There is a gulf in every person’s life, a vacuum which separates one from that what ought to be accomplished and what one is now. There will be
Tension, misery, persecution, etc. of present days but the one who climbs over this placing her /his dreams as the end will be victorious.
Logo therapy underpins all these definitely. “It focuses on the future that is to say on the assignments and meaning to be fulfilled by the patient in the future. Man is able to live and even to die for the sake of ideals and values”. As per the polls conducted in France quoted in Victor E Frankl’s book “89% of the people polled admitted that man needs ‘something’ for the sake of which to live. Moreover 61% conceded that there was something or someone in their lives for whose sake they were even ready to die”. “The will to meaning is in most people Fact and no Faith.
Israel waited in Babylonia for seventy years before their dream for freedom was actualized. Near the sheep gate in Jerusalem, in one of the porticoes of the river Bethzatha, a paralytic waited for 38 years with the dream of a cure. Its now long years since Lankan guests in our land waiting the dawn of returning, the end of all their nightmares. It teaches a lesson. Gaze at the future and fine a will to meaning in life. Let the present time reduce the vacuum between the colourful future and the days of drought or pain. They reserve no room for retrospection in their life as they have only toils to reminisce. Srilankan Tamils prefer prospection, marching forward and not a retro march.
“Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it, boldness has genius, power and magic in it”. – Goethe
Dreams are my pillows on which I rest my head. I fetch seeds to plant on this ground when my dreams come true. What I gain now be manifested when my future of dreams dawns. – G. F. Xavier
NB: Remember with gratitude JRS (Jesuit Refugee Service) and OFFERR (Organization for Ealem Refugee Rehabilitation) who facilitated this episode of experience. The quotes are excerpts from the book ‘Man’s Search of Meaning’ by Victor E Frankl.
“People are like stained glass window. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is light from within”. – Elizabeth Kubler Ross.
The need of the hour was to engage in cooling. I just trusted me relying on some tried recipe which I have seen others doing deliciously well. The dishes are ready and after having tasted it I came to my senses thinking that there can be another ingredient that could be added or omitted that would make all these more tasty. Trials and errors continued and the persistence and consistency in experimenting the same dishes caused it to reach the other day with a luscious taste. Needles to say that, this tester slowly is turning out to be a chef de cuisine. The salient point is that I could carry this to the seat in the chapel only to apply to life.
We were all a lump of raw material at our birth. To attain a shape there need to be some stewing happening within the self only to be altered into a tall personality. Who can be the chef? No one can claim to have an exclusive apprehension of the other, than the one himself. Descartes’ famous use of introspection in the cogito argument is noticeable. According to him, nothing, not even an evil genius could undermine the evidence of what he is thinking was the prime matter. Meanwhile take not to what happened to Thomas Edison. He was labeled as the slowest learner of the class by his own school teacher. Over his life time he registered a marvelous 1093 patents including the invention of light bulb and the phonograph. Was he comprehensively understood by the teacher? Never. All the more Edison seldom gave ear to it. Les Brown would say “Other peoples’ opinion of you does not have to become your reality”. The greatness in one’s life stems from the time he engages himself to draw an awareness of himself.So stewing the personality is a very personal work.
How determined and bold Anil Kumble was? As he overtook the Windies Legend Courtney Walsh and became the fourth highest wicket taker, he was found as focused as ever. “I am a senior and a key member of the side having played for this long. The pressure is on me to lead the way.” Result of a rare discovery of a self. The self engraves a genius. (Doing easily what others find difficult is talent. Doing what is impossible for talent is genius – Henri Frederick Ameil. After the discovery of the inner self, make the bold steps forward knowing what to be. We can’t act with integrity if we don’t really know what we are.
Search out the ingredients available in our own self, review it and then start cooking a basic recipe. “Cherish your visions; cherish your ideals; cherish the music that stirs in your heart, the beauty that forms in your mind, the loveliness that drapes your finest thoughts, for out of them will grow all delightful conditions, all heavenly environment; of these, if you remain true to them, your world will at last be built” – James Allen. Each time we rework the recipe, it advances in taste. Make it grow as something that is power within, fire within or light within.
We need to respect the potential and uniqueness of every single person as their birth right. Rather than enumerating strategies for making a good person, let us go to encourage the review of the self. When in the innate goodness and wisdom of each person’s special is known by himself. This is the power within, fire within or light within. I humbly quote Anthony Robins, “There is a powerful, driving force inside every human being that, once unleashed, can make any vision, dream or desire a reality”. The inner spirit as the flame that can translate a set or raw ingredients into a final dish and keeps on cooking every time we change the recipe, until such time as we accept that we already are the perfect dish. So I say, take time, know the self better, review it well, chart it out ‘who am I’, and ‘what can I be’? And this is the real light within, fire within or power within. Seneca says ‘when a man does not know what harbour he is making for, no wind is the right wind”. We have to learn to tap into our deepest, most personal resources, only to become all that we truly desire and deserve. The greatness lies in each one striving personally in his own discovered world. It is not what our friends and enemies discover but what we ourselves discover, the review of the self.
The hidden well-spring of your soul must need rise and run murmuring to the sea;
And the treasure of your infinite depths would be revealed to your eyes.
But let there be no scale to weigh your unknown treasure;
And seek not the depths of your knowledge with staff or sounding line