04 May 2016

Artificial Intelligence is no match for Natural Stupidity




Artificial intelligence is no match for natural stupidity.




Albert Einstein often remarked, "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."

Stupidity the word comes from the Latin verb, stupere, meaning to feel numb or astonished, and related to the word stupor.

Looking around what does one observe?  
Driven by economic exploitation and facilitated by political and religious strife, people are increasingly being drawn into a vortex of stress and fear, experiencing loss of sustenance, dignity and freedom.

It is plain to see that instead of becoming an impediment, stupidity has increasingly become a formula for success, particularly in the high visibility professions of entertainment, religion and politics. Who is at fault for this ridiculous situation? 

Of course the public. People  like us, we back and follow such leaders, priests, and vote for these politicians. Look at the election campaigns in India and America, politicians make great  promises and provide so much entertainment. Is it any surprise that so many businessmen, entertainers and 'religious' persons become social and political leaders and even heads of State?

Human intelligence lies within the brain, addressing memory, logic and thought processes. Scientists are continuously working on a sort of substitute for the brain called artificial intelligence, which has provided marvellous gadgets and systems, even robots to improve the quality of human life. 

However our emotional well  being, happiness and contentment comes not from intelligence but from human consciousness, which scientists cannot address by artificial intelligence. 

Artificial intelligence which uses mind processes, cannot address the abundantly found human quality of natural stupidity, which is born from a lack of consciousness.

We may be denied material prosperity or freedom, but no one can take from us our birthright to possess and awaken our own spirit. The world needs more spiritual healers who can help awaken the divine within lies dormant within each one of us.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has exceeded our humanity." - Albert Einstein.

"Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power. We have guided missiles and misguided men." - Martin Luther King Jr.


13 April 2016

I love Neera


One of the first conditions of happiness is the link between Man and Nature shall not be broken.


 -Leo Tolstoy



Nature provides us everything we need in abundance. Eating and drinking natural things and to behave naturally. 

It is no secret that living in harmony with nature helps promote good health. Yet we seem to increasingly live unnatural lives. 


Synthetic lifestyles and processed foods, hamper our natural bio-rhythms, and makes our body and mind toxic, cause various illnesses thus playing havoc with our well being.


Using many harmful chemicals, most food processing is carried out by large multi-national companies. They use highly automated plants, and employ very few people. They employ a bevy of scientists to help maximise taste and get the maximum profit from product. Unfortunately they often indulge in sourcing, processing, manufacturing, and marketing practices that are increasingly questionable. 

Let us take the case of aerated cola drinks produced by various multinational companies. The product costs only 10% of the selling price to manufacture. The products are considered unhealthy (loaded with refined sugar, full of chemicals, some of which are considered harmful). They deplete surface and groundwater resources, provide very few jobs and livelihood to people. All the income these companies generate are remitted out of the country back overseas to enrich other people at great cost and little benefit to local economies and communities.



On the other hand we have many natural juices and beverages, sugarcane juice, fresh lime sherbet,etc. A wonderful local beverage is 'Neera'. Neera is produced by small local farmers, working in cooperatives to produce a healthy naturally cooling refreshing drink. The cooperatives benefit hundreds of thousands of farmers whose products are gathered, checked, distributed and  sold through authorised street vendors to customers at an attractive price. 

                                      

A nation becomes impoverished rather than wealthy when some large multinational organisations increase GDP by getting local people to buy unhealthy products at ridiculously high prices. The very high profit margins these companies generate benefit just a handful of people, most of them foreigners. India can be better off by providing healthy products at low prices which benefit millions of people and supports local communities.
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The amazing story of the production, marketing and distribution of Neera is a story of community growth and a win-win proposition for everyone involved. 

Neera, or palm nectar, is a sweet tasting sap extracted from  toddy palms. Extracted  before sunrise, the translucent oyster white coloured, neera is a very refreshing drink. Neera is widely consumed in India, Sri Lanka, Africa, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, and Myanmar.

The drink is popular, has high nutritive value, delicious taste and agreeable flavor. Its production requires neither mechanical crushing, as in the case of sugarcane, nor leaching, like beet-root; 

Neera is rich in carbohydrates, mostly sucrose, and has a nearly neutral pH.
Neera contains a number of minerals, salts and is high in protein.

The various Indian state governments of Maharashtra, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Bengal and Orissa have worked to encourage local populations to grow palm trees, employ tappers, help with marketing and distribution and thus help small farmers, transporters and vendors. 

The amazing concept has the potential to create employment of an additional million jobs over and above the 600,000 currently employed in just production and sale of Neera.

In Maharastra and Gujarat, the entire production and supply chain is managed by the stakeholders themselves called The Neera Palm Product Cooperative Society. It  has set up small kiosks to sell neera alongside almost every roadside in most cities areas.

In Karnataka where there are abundant Coconut trees the Neera is being taped from coconut trees. In Tamil Nadu, neera is called as "Padaneer" in Tamil.

Seek out natural beverages in your local community. Sugarcane juice, lemon juice etc. You will save money, and enjoy feeling refreshed.

Live naturally, be healthy, and happy, and support your local economy. Try a refreshing glass of neera. 

05 April 2016

Following the Followers



I must follow my followers, for I need to know where it is that they want me to lead them.

- Gurvinder Singh    (untitled work)


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A leader is someone who leads. Conversely leaders need followers. 
People however need to be motivated, to follow. Leaders resort to two primal motivating forces, fear and greed.

Nothing moves people better and faster than fear. Fear is born out of our need for survival. Fear in most cases is manufactured and induced by leaders.

Greed is fed by inducement or some sort of rewards, we could even call it a bribe. Rewards could include money, property, sex, rank, power, even heaven and paradise in the after-life.

Military, political, social, religious, business, philosophical, fashion, etc, Leaders can be of all types. Whatever the field, leadership is a lonely job, with the leader inevitably setting the agenda and getting people to follow.

Politicians in democracies make possibly the worst leaders. The followers are whimsical and opportunistic. Politicians have be even more opportunistic than the electorate, because the time window to act is extremely short. They see which way the wind blows and then they move in that direction. They are compelled to lead the mobs by following them. 

Following the followers benefits only a small group of the people, and achieves little for the vast majority, hence the frustration with democracies. Three thousand years of history reveal, that every democracy continuously decays and eventually descends into a dictatorship.

If a people are fortunate, there emerges amongst them a breed of politicians called 'statesmen', they look at the next generation not at the next election. 

Winston Churchill said "I have nothing to offer you but blood, sweat and tears", and the people of Great Britain rallied behind him. In spite of his numerous shortcomings and his cruel treatment of the people of the British colonies especially India he is considered a great leader if you consider the British view point.

There are many types of leaders but how do we judge them?
* A poor leader is someone who has to draw on rank, title, position etc to keep on announcing that he is the leader. People are always dismissive of such a leader.
* A leader is worst when his people despise him. 
* The best leader is one who the people do not even notice he is there. He or she creates an environment that makes people move as if it is their own agenda. They work on principles, beliefs and often through a self regulating constantly improving system. 

Beware of the leader who follows the followers.

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Adapted from the quote by Mahatma Gandhi
“There goes my people. I must follow them, for I am their leader.”





Art is not an object







Art is an experience, not an object.

 - Robert Motherwell

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I spent almost a lifetime trying to understand art. I read many books and spoke to many experts and I still did not understand it. I eventually realised, that this was a good thing. 

If it is art, it will stimulate. Otherwise it is just some colours, noise, an assembly of inconsequential objects or just movements of the body.

When we look at something objectively we use the mind. The mind feels nothing for its a cold analytical thing. Art touches our being, and that is a matter of the heart. Matters of the heart cannot be understood, merely experienced.

What a dreary place our world would be without artists.