Achieving Greatness

The Tao-te Ching is fundamental to the Taoist school of philosophy. It is a gift to the world from ancient China.

About achieving greatness it says the following:

Plan for what is difficult while it is easy, do what is great while it is small.

The most difficult things in the world must be done while they are still easy, the greatest things in the world must be done while they are still small.

For this reason sages never do what is great, and this is why they can achieve that greatness.

The above words written thousands of years ago still hold true. Keeping in shape is easier than loosing loads of weight. Saving early and regularly is easier than waiting for that one big injection of money!

Bullets and Pillows

While I was waiting at the roadside today morning I had a very strong insight about life which I want to share with you.

We all, sometimes, crib about life being tough and there being issues.

I realised that life is not tough. We make it tough by resisting it.

We expect life to be like a pillow. In reality we have to be like a bullet. A bullet offers minimum resistance to the air, it is hard and goes through stuff.

So be a bullet. Don’t resist life and at the same time be tough so that you have the power to go through things that come in the way!

Terrorism: A Failed Concept

Terrorism is being defeated. Step by step. Blast by blast.

Earlier the targets were important locations and people. Bombs were hidden in briefcases, cars and often carried by terrorists on their person.

Now targets are common places and the general population. Bombs are hidden in garbage bins.

This shows how terrorists are unable to target those in power. So now they target those being controlled by the people who have power. If you can’t attack the masters then attack the slaves.

What they don’t realise is that the slaves have enough problems. Another few people being blown to bits is not going to affect them. As a friend said: ‘People have to work so that they can earn money and feed themselves and their families’.

India is not a welfare state where people have the option of living of the state. So people have developed thicker skins. They need to go out and struggle every day. If that involves dealing with killer Blue-line buses, corrupt Government machinery, pathetic hospitals or toxic ground-water then so be it. Add to that a terrorist bomb… who cares!

A terrorist bomb can kill you once. Bad water kills you day by day. Bad electricity supply creates stress minute by minute and the slow machienary of the Government grinds any left over life to bits over a lifetime.

Who need to fear the terrorists the most? People who are not struggling out there. People in power. People sitting on a pile of money which was earned under the table.

A friend of mine asked me (in anger): ‘Why should we be killed by a terrorist bomb?’

In my view the only way you can decide how you will die is if you commit suicide. Then also not all methods of commiting suicide are failsafe.

Terrorism is a mental disease. You have to be insane if you can kill innocent people. Like some diseases it can be cured. Like other diseases it can kill. 

In the end life goes on. Nothing can stop it. That is why terrorism fails especially in a country like India. Nothing grounds to a halt. The Americans, in the biggest act of terror, to date, dropped nuclear bombs on Hiroshima AND Nagasaki (in Japan) resulting in large number of civilian casualties. Today Japan is one of the most advanced countries out there.

That is one thing the terrorists have understood. That is why terrorism is a failed concept.



Nuclear Energy

The Nuclear Deal is through. The deal took something like three years to go through. There were problems, both internal and external. But it went through.

One has to admire what money can do. Impossible odds become high probability happenings. It is after all a $40 billion market!

What next people will ask. Will this make the politicians richer? Will it improve the overall power situation in India? Will it lead to radioactive waste polluting the already polluted Indian countryside?

I don’t think it will make politicians richer. One interesting thing to note is that Atomic Energy is not handled by a Goverment of India ministry. It is handled by the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE). The DAE is under the direct control of the Prime Minister even though it comes under the Ministry of Science and Technology.

It is under the administration of one of the most important people in India’s nuclear energy setup: Dr Anil Kakodkar. Most of the power plant construction is going to be carried out by private companies. Finally since it is going to have a lot of international involvement the room for small players is limited.

What the UPA government has done is kept the nuclear energy department as separate from rest of the Government of India (GOI) machinery as possible. I think that is why the opposition parties were hopping mad. It neutralised their control/influence on the deal.

The drama that was played out in the Parliament over the nuclear deal shamed the whole nation. It also shows how greedy our politicians can get when it comes to money.

It should also improve the power situation but not in the near future. India plans to add increase nuclear power generation from approx 4200 MW (currently) to 52,000 MW by 2020. But 2020 is a long way down the road. Plans can change and then change again in 12 years.

The effort towards getting thorium-based nuclear power plants up and running (India has one of the highest reserves of thorium in the world) will be one of the most important measures of success of this deal looking at it from the point of view of India.

Nuclear waste and saftey will remain a big issue. India is not known for good saftey records when it comes to industries. But entering into international agreements will ensure that the Indian nuclear power plants come under international safeguards.

Next 5 years will tell the true story of the nuclear deal. The Indian public and the World will know what the signing that deal really meant.


Good luck to India and Good luck to the citizens of India

Desires and Expectations: Q&A with myself

What are desires? What are expectations? How are they different? Is it possible to do anything in a perfectly objective manner, without any desires?

Wise men say free yourself from desire and you will be at peace.

I believe that expectations are good. Desires are bad. But how are they different?

Desires result in a deep hunger in your heart and mind. Expectations produce a warm glow. It is difficult to live with desires but very easy to live with expectations.

It is possible to do things without a desire?

Yes it is!

Is it possible to get rid of expectations?

No it isn’t!

When you worship god, you may not have any desires. But expectations are always there. There is an expectation of positive feedback.

Learn to differentiate between desires and expectations, wants and needs. You will always be happy!