Discovery of a Fossilized Rainforest

27 04 2007

This is a rather amazing discovery – a fossilzed rain forest going on for miles and miles. It makes one wonder what amazing discoveries await us right beneath our feat. Paleontology is full of surprises, isn’t it? Here is the link to the story and here is an excerpt.

That’s where coal miners working south and west of Georgetown have unearthed, chunk by fossilized chunk, what has revealed itself over the past few years to be the remains of a fossilized rain forest.

It covers about 15 square miles, all more than 200 feet below ground, and probably is the largest intact rain forest from that period ever studied, according to Scott Elrick of the Illinois State Geological Survey.

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Why be yourself when you can be someone else?

25 04 2007

This is the question that the modern man and the modern woman has to ask themselves if only they get time from their busy routine. The modern man and woman is too busy running after his or her goals and mechanically executing their daily routines that they have seldom time to reflect on the activities that they are doing. Hence people do not have time to be themselves and feel better off by merging into the crowd. This is one of the quintessential question that has been raised by many existential thinkers starting from the father of Existentialism himself, that is takes courage and going against the flow to be oneself. Now those who go with the flow can ask such people “Why be yourself when you can be someone else?” Such is the paradox of life.





The Muslim Daughter

24 04 2007

We can pretend all that we want that women are accorded a high status in Muslim cultures but how does one make sense of the following when a Muslim women upon hearing about at the birth of a male child says, “God has saved them from the calamity of a girl.” How is one supposed to interpret this statement? Is it happiness on the birth of the male child or does it show that the woman in question knows how much a woman has to go through just to survive or is it both? Thus the dichotomy contiues in Islam (or is it with Muslims?) between theory and practice. Bernard Shaw may be been right, Islam may be the best religion but Muslims are not the best of followers.





A Muslim Candidate for a Christian Party

24 04 2007

Another example of why one cannot paint the world black and white – A Muslim candidate for a political party with an overt Christian leanings. Many conservative Muslims share a lot of values with their Christan counterparts, the same applies for liberal minded Muslims. As John Stewart once said about the Muslim and non-Muslim Europeans, “May be we are not that different after all.”





The Illusionist (01)

22 04 2007

There are many way to read and many lessons to learn from Eisenheim the Illusionist, this is one. Eisenheim returns after many years to get the thing that he covets the most. He has patience, skill, conviction and a strong belief in his cause. Eisenheim triumphs in the end because he has a plan. What everyone see and hear is an illusion but that is secondary to the pursuit. What matters is to find a cause which one can devote one’s energies to and live for it. This is the story of Einsenheim the Illusionist.





Tragedy in Virginia Tech

18 04 2007

This is to commemorate the sad and tragic event that happened in Virginia Tech the day before yesterday. Our heards, minds and prayers go to the victims of the tragedy. Here are some links which have more information on the tragedy.





The Man known as Vonnegut

17 04 2007

People have already written many things about Kurt Vonnegut, one of the iconic writers of our age. Now that Mr. Vonnegut is gone. He was one of those rare individuals who believed in human decency. Many people have put their faith in technology and that it will solve all of our problems without realizing that without proper ethics and self-policing people are likely to use it for wrong ends. An incident that left a lasting impression on him was the bombing of Dresden and although a soldier in WW II, the theme of absurdity and futility of war permeates his work, most famously elaborated in Slaughterhouse Five. He equally criticized the tendency of some religions to manipulate people and was even the honorary president of the American Humanist Association. Some sort pessimism about the human race also permeates his work. Time and again the human race has fell short of its moral standards. “So it goes.”