Friday, June 30, 2006

Is God Male?

Temple authorities in Kerala are planning legal action against actress Jayamala for committing sacrilege at the Sabarimala temple. Young women are banned at the temple's most sacred part where the actress claims she entered and touched the idol of Lord Ayyappa in 1987. LINK

Whatever the mythological claims may be, If men can touch the 'idol' 'made of stone' why can't a woman? How does this constitute Sacrilege?

The Khadims, of the Sufi shrine in Ajmer have decided to ban women from the dargah at the time of prayers as they purportedly distract men. LINK

We have the second largest human population in the world. Yet, Men have to get distracted even when they pray?? Why can't they stop coming instead?

The Vatican issued a sweeping condemnation recently of contraception, abortion, in-vitro fertilization and same-sex marriage, declaring that unless abortion is punished as a crime it will be seen as a "banal" act. LINK

Such attitudes make you wish the fiction in 'The Da Vinci Code' were actually facts!

Without exception all major religions discriminate against women and treat them far inferior to males. This issue is often masqueraded as a moral controversy. Although at it's roots, it's only about sex and power. It's about whether women will be allowed to keep striving for an equal place in society or confined, as much as possible, to the kitchen and the nursery.

If God did create men and women. He meant them to be equal. Just as he meant the whole human species to be equal. The world will be a much better place if these supposedly 'learned' & 'knowledgeable' leaders of religions realize this.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Socca Fever

The group stage is over, so is the round of 16. Unlike last time no upset eliminations or pretenders in the final stages. A calm before the storm, the clash of the 8 best football teams on the planet is set to begin in a day. After long, I've time to Blog and am not just glued to my TV.

For a guy who probably never watched a full football match before in his life, this month has been lots and lots of football. I wanted to see what one billion people on the planet were watching and got hooked up myself! Our Cable operators' last minute largesse meant, I get to watch all the football matches and FORMULA ONE RACING on ESPN and Star Sports for free in spite of the set top box imposed embargo.

After sitting up all night watching the Messis and Ronaldinhos, they're all over the papers next morning... Front page... last three pages. They're there on numerous football based programs on all news channels. They hog the limelight on all regular news bulletins too. With so much media generated 'frenzy' around the football world cup, it's odd if you're not watching it!

For a guy who cares little about Cricket and none about Football. I was left found wanting for info on what was going on in the India vs WI test match. News Channels that earlier had entire programs dedicated to cricket were showing 10 minutes of football in every bulletin and relegating cricket to the fag end, then too, hardly any details. Formula one who? What?

The media has actually gone over board and has once again proved that they broadcast only what they want to and NOT what we want to see.Most news Channels actually had discussion shows and 'Questions of the day' asking if Football has replaced Cricket as the number one sport in the country! If any of them in the media had any doubts or such preposterous ideas... the polls showed them how wrong they were...

Once this one month of madness is over this cricket crazy country will be back to idolising the Dhonis and the Tendulkars and ignoring and ruining every other sport. But, till then it's Socca Fever all the way!

My money's on a show down between Brazil vs Argentina at the Grand Finale. May the better team win.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Hypocrisy #09 - Tamil Nadu B.S.

We have also become the only nation in the world where people fight to be called backward
- N R Narayana Murthy, Infosys

In the state of Tamil Nadu:
  • Number of Backward Castes according to the first population Census 1883 : 11
  • Number of Backward Castes according to the first Post-Independence Census 1883 : 270
  • Number of Backward Castes according to the current government policy 1990-2006: 434
  • Almost 93% of the state's population fall under these 474 'Backward' castes
YET
  • Birth-rate per thousand 2003 : 18.3
  • Death-rate per thousand 2003 : 7.6
  • Infant Mortality Rate/1000 Live Births 2003 : 43
One of the Best health Indices in the country!
  • Sex Ratio (Female / 1000 Males) : 974
  • Literacy Rate 2001 : 73.45
  • Per Capita Income in (Rs.) : 25965
One of the Best Socio-Economic Indices in the country!

Tamil Nadu has the most number of enterprises in the country 10.56% of the national total!!
Tamil Nadu has the second highest Foreign Direct Investment in the country!
Tamil Nadu has the second highest Human Development Index in the country!
Tamil Nadu has the third highest number of jobs in the country 9.97% of the national total!!

Tamil Nadu is also the MOST HYPOCRITICAL Society in the Country!

In spite of having one of the best indices in the country, 93% of the population considers itself and is considered by the government to be backward.... backward enough to require reservations in jobs and educational institutions to progress!

I suggest to the wise politicians of Tamil Nadu. Please change the name of Tamil Nadu to Tamil Nadu B.S. (like Washington D.C.) Tamil Nadu -Backward State

Of all the posts I've made on Hypocrisy so far.... Tamil Nadu takes the prize! This is Hypocrisy at it's very best!

More posts on Hypocrisy

Sources:
Census India - 2001
Tamil Nadu Government - Statistics
Fifth national Economic Census
Falling Over Backwards : An Essay On Reservations And On Judicial Populism - Book by Arun Shourie, former Union Minister

Saturday, June 03, 2006

How Pandi became Peter, watched The Da Vinci Code and lost Faith!

Three days of noise later, the world has a few Hindus lesser...
Of course, not before several thousands of rupees changed hands.
I've not seen such a mass exodus from Hinduism in the slum near my home in quite a while now...

Just a day after the bill to repeal the
The Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Forcible Conversion of Religion Ordinance was introduced and barely a few hours after the bill got passed nullifying the ordinance several Hindus realized that their faith has been misplaced all these years... So Pandi became Peter and Janani became Joyce and at least Rs.20,000 richer!

Three days of unpalatably crude translations of gospel...
Three days of demonstrations and tales of miracles...
Three days singing, chanting and hysteria...

These three day programs are called 'Freedom meetings' I'm not sure if they mean freedom from Hinduism or Freedom from faith altogether! How can people who change their religions because of the lure of money ever have any 'true' faith in their 'new' god?

A Catholic Priest and one of the leaders of the catholic church of India recently remarked that "The Da Vinci Code will make Christians question their own faith... So the film should be BANNED in India"!

Neither the film nor the book were banned in any of the Christian nations, Why India a secular nation with a minority of Christians even consider banning the movie for these 'faithless' fools among the christians?

A few days back the Tamil Nadu state Government banned the release of The Da Vinci Code based on
complaints received from the Christian community.... For a few extra votes, obviously!

Why should we who have our faith intact watch movies on pirated DVD's just because a few fools don't have faith in what their own religion says?
Are any of these fools going to watch the movie at all?
If these fools do watch the movie are they going to start questioning their 'new' faith?
Quite probable... If a few thousands can change their faith, so will a 3 hour movie!


Related story:

This articles delves into the luxurious lives of a few multi-billionaire Indian 'Men of God' like K.A.Paul, D.G.S. Dinakaran, Paul Dinakaran. It outlines their rags to riches stories of these 'conversion specialists', their Flamboyant life styles, crores worth of property, limousines and personal Boeing 747s!!!
New Indian Express article published on 21.05.2006