Thursday, August 24, 2006

Take this Quiz

This is one of the very many forwarded mails that keep spamming my internet Inbox. To the people who are reading this the 2nd, 3rd, 4th ... nth time, enjoy it once more! The questions are as follows:

1) How long was the 100 yr war?

A) 116 B) 99 C) 100 D) 150

2) In which country are the Panama hats made?


3) In which month do the Russians celebrate the October Revolution?


4) Which of these was King George VI first name?


5) The Canary islands, in the Pacific Ocean, has its name based on which animal:


If u think you are indeed clever and laughed at these seemingly stupid questions, then please check the answers below:

1) The 100 year war lasted 116 years from 1337-1453

2) The Panama hat is made in Equador

3) The October revolution is celebrated in November

4) King George's first name was Albert. In 1936 he changed his name

5) Puppy. The Latin name is INSULARIA CANARIA which means islands of the puppies

Hope you enjoyed taking this little test :)

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

The Dream of Freedom & the Freedom to Dream

Today is the 15th of August 2006. It's been 60 years since India won her independence from the British rule. We now have the freedom of thought, speech and action - no one can challenge us, none to rule over us. Sadly, we take this freedom for granted. We do not realize the significance of BEING FREE to THINK, to SPEAK and to DO as we please; maybe because we were 'born free' so to say. We do not know what it is like to be under continuous suppression, to be unable to speak our mind and to be flogged like slaves throughout. We only know how to enjoy, how to please ourselves, hardly thinking whether our actions are causing others trouble. We must realize that being free not only means that each individual has his or her own set of rights, but also that these are limited by the rights of the community as a whole. We must be responsible for our words and actions, causing no one any hurt. We must not indulge in activities that inconvnience others, just because we have the right to those activities. It's only if we think for ourselves AND the world around us - that includes not only the people, but also our environment and Mother Nature - that India can make real progress.

Our forefathers dreamt of free a India and made their dream a reality. They dreamt of freedom and gave us the freedom to dream. Let us together dream of a free India once again - India free from poverty, corruption, casteism and terrorism. Let us dream of a free India - an educated, self-sufficient and happy India where everyone is entitled to dream and to turn their dreams into a reality. Let us contribute to this cause in our own little way and help make India what our forefathers wanted her to be.

Here are two of my favourite poems on Freedom. Think over what they have to say and join me in making India a better place for you, me and everyone else.

From "GITANJALI" by Rabindranath Tagore

Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high;
Where knowledge is free;
Where the world has not been broken up into fragments by narrow domestic walls;
Where words come out from the depth of truth;
Where tireless striving stretches its arms toward perfection;
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way into the dreary desert sand of dead habit;
Where the mind is lead forward by Thee into ever-widening thought and action;
Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake.

"Freedom " by Safdar Hashmi

What does 'Independence' mean
to him and her and you and me?
What does it mean to all of us?
What does it mean to be free?

Freedom is to do what you wish,
to hunt the birds, to kill the fish.
To break, to burn, to fight, to hit
take a hammer and smash a dish.

No! That is NOT being free! That is horrible and sillee!
Then what is it, if not all this?

To be free is not to fight,
not to scratch, not to bite.
But to learn to read, to learn to write,
to draw and paint, and dance and play.
To be good friends,
All be good friends
all night, all day.

To be a friend to every tree,
of every bird and flower bee.
To look at the bright and blue sky
as the clouds go floating by.
To watch the birds sing and fly
To know the insects crawling by.

Never to scratch, and never to bite,
To stop those kids who quarrel and fight.
Never to push, and never to shove.
To laugh, to smile, to help to love.

And so dear friends,
Freedom means to love and share
To be helpful and to care.
Not to be afraid and not to fear,
To love the people everywhere.