A call to arms: for peace; for love; for unity

I’ve been reading the news these days with a sense of increasing alarm. Everywhere you look, all you see is hatred and anger and vitriol. The spread of fake news and fake paranoia has gripped not only India, but the rest of the world too.

This series of tweets this morning have forced me to speak my mind. Please, tell me that I am not the only one who feels my heart shatter into a million pieces each time we demonise a group of people as “the other”.Continue reading

In pursuit of passion: India’s first DIY woodworking instructor

I have written before against the popular trend towards quitting your day job to follow your passion, and about defining success on your own terms. But behind this clarity, as is always the case, was a lot of confusion. Books helped a lot when it came to finding my answers, as did long discussions with the husband, who is uniquely qualified to talk on the subject. He is a living, breathing example of someone who has always followed his passion.

His first passion – for sports, and more specifically tennis, he converted into his day job. He’s been teaching lawn tennis since over 25 years, so he is intimately familiar with both the ecstasy and the agony of making your passion into your day job {which is possibly a post for another time!}Continue reading

#MondayMusings: Thoughts on the far-reaching social impact of the Trump Presidency

As a general rule, I don’t write about politics on the blog. No matter what my views may be and what arguments and debates I may have in real life or online, I keep all of that away from this space.

But the recent election results in the US have shaken me to the core. And though they have no direct bearing on me, there is no denying the wide-spread social impact of a Trump presidency.

I also think that the time is now ripe to have multiple conversations about righting wrongs – about inclusion and diversity, about the fact of a changing global order, changing race and cultural dynamics, and a shift in the old patriarchal systems and beliefs. And I believe this is a conversation that we need to have globally.
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Imagine a world without words

Among the many worlds that man did not receive as a gift from nature but created out of his own mind, the world of books is the greatest… Without the word, without the writing of books, there is no history, there is no concept of humanity. And if anyone wants to try to enclose in a small space, in a single house or a single room, the history of the human spirit and to make it his own, he can only do this in the form of a collection of books. – The Magic of the Book, Hermann Hesse

Imagine a world without the written word. Without a way to easily access and share humankind’s collective knowledge. A world where books were not a thing, where reading and writing were unknown. What would such a world look like? Continue reading

In defense of a child free life

Motherhood. It’s a biggie! It’s a life-altering, soul changing decision. You bring a new life into this world, an innocent little life that you are responsible for.

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Society would have you believe that as a woman, it is your “duty” to have a child. That your life will be “meaningless” without one. That you will “regret” your decision when you are “old and alone with no one to ask after you”.

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The insidious landscape of rape: it’s rise, possible causes, and probable solutions

English: Statue “The Rape of Persephone” in Ve...

Violence against women is a common theme in mythology. Statue “The Rape of Persephone” in Vechelde, Lower Saxony, Germany (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I am an ostrich when it comes to news on rape. I prefer to bury my head in the sand and not read or hear about it. But even for this ostrich, it’s become next to impossible to do so. After the shocking gang rape in broad daylight in Mumbai – because Mumbai is supposed to have been one of the safe cities for women, dammit – I heard about the brutal rape and murder of a nine-year old child in Gurgaon.

This makes me sick. Disgusted. Afraid. And I’m forced to take a closer look at the issue to try to make sense of the moral depravity that seems to have gripped this country.

But surely, India isn’t the only place where rape is a common occurrence. It happens across the world – in both developed and developing economies.

There’s the Stubenville High School rape case in the US; the brutal gang rape and murder of Anene Booyson in South Africa, where gender violence is “systemic” nationwide; rapes in conflict zones; in Brazil, where an American tourist’s boyfriend was forced to watch as his girlfriend was gang raped

And that makes me think – why?Continue reading