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Why one nation takes a higher ground or falls back leaving room for another doesn’t arise solely from the nations themselves. In such a case superpowers mean that they have come to their position of power by means that they cannot justify themselves. In such a case if they throw their weight around what do they mean? Is it not that they justify rule of the might? The mighty keeps their position unchallenged by the way they can silence opposition.  Their governance is a show of their superiority and laws are one-sided to protect their lawlessness and punish those who are client states and the governed.  One need only look at England’s role in the opium wars in China during the Manchu dynasty. In the present post let me show how England responded to the great famine in India (1876–78) when Lord Lytton was the viceroy.
His uncompromising implementation of Britain’s trading policy is blamed for the severity of the famine, which killed up to 10 million people. (The relief workers were paid a reduced wage on the curious belief that any excessive payment might create dependency among the famine-afflicted population! The mindset of superpower creates its own rationale and the minions who run the colony see to that no protest against their lawlessness is heard outside.)
The Great Famine was to have a lasting political impact on events in India.
The British administrators in India who were unsettled by the official reactions to the famine and, in particular by the stifling of the official debate about the best form of famine relief, were William Wedderburn and A. O. Hume. Less than a decade later, they would found the Indian National Congress and, in turn, influence a generation of nationalists such as Dadabhai Naoroji and Romesh Chunder Dutt.
A superpower in short shortchanges principles of equity and justice at so many levels.

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Théophile  Gautier himself no mean writer has left this account of Balzac’s attempt to write a play. Hard pressed for cash the celebrated author Honoré de Balzac got the advance for a play, which was to be on Vautrin, a character from Père Goriot. Hartel, the manager of Porte-St.Martin Theatre, as luck would have it was in need of a play. Père Goriot was already a success and M. Hartel agreed. Frédérick Lemaitre(who figures in the film Les Enfants du Paradis-1945) was to play the title role. Gautier and a few others were roped in to hear the reading of the play.
At last they assembled on the premises of the tailor Buisson, in the rue de Richelieu where a room was furnished for the purpose.
‘So here is Théo at last!’  Balzac cried,’Lazy and late as ever. You should have been here an hour ago…I’ve got to read Hartel a five act play tomorrow.’
‘And you want our opinion?’ we asked setting ourselves in our armchairs with the air of men preparing for a long session.
Perceiving from our attitude Balzac said with perfect simplicity: ‘It isn’t written.’
‘For Heaven’s sake!’I exclaimed, ‘In that case you’ll have to postpone the reading for six weeks.’
‘Not a bit of it. We’re going to knock off this dramorama and raise the wind. Just now my arrears are pretty heavy.’
‘But we can’t do it between now and tomorrow. There won’t be time to copy it.’
‘This is how I arranged it. You’ll do one act, Ourliac another, Laurent- Jan the third, de Belloy the fourth and I’ll do the fifth-and I’ll read it by midday tomorrow as agreed. One act of play is only four or five hundred lines and anyone can write five hundred lines of dialogue in a day and night.’
‘Well, if you’ll tell me the subject and give me the scenario and let me know something about the characters, I’ll get to work,’ I said not a little alarmed.
‘Oh Lord,’ he cried, with a look of superb astonishment and magnificent scorn, ‘if I’ve got to tell you what it is all about we shall never get it done!’
Needless to say it was not done in time.
Compiler: benny(  Prometheus: the life of Balzac by André Maurois)

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Antonio Salieri (1750-1825)

Leopold Mozart, father of the composer called him ‘a scheming egotist,’ which perhaps was right. The kapellemister of Joseph II and the younger composer became quite friendly towards the end of Mozart’s life.

Salieri was highly regarded  as a teacher and his pupils include Hummel,Beethoven,Schubert and Liszt.

selected from Mozart,the man,the musician

by Arthur Hutchings


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Even when Disraeli was young he lived by the maxim:’To govern men you must either excel them in their accomplishments or despise them.”Dizzy hated every bodily exertion and everything his contemporaries were passionate about. While at Malta he happened to remain in the galley watching English officer at a game of tennis. Ever at pains to play a dandy he picked the ball which flew and stopped by his side. While the player waited for the ball to be thrown back he gingerly picked it up. With exaggerated affectation he asked the one near to him for the ball to be forwarded to the court. His excuse was that he had never thrown a ball in his life.
Disraeli Contests
In 1832 Disraeli stood for High Wycombe as a radical. From the portico of the Red Lion he spoke with flourishes and verve for one and a half hours. Winding up his speech to the electorate he declaimed pointing the head of the lion above,” When the poll is declared I shall be there,” and pointing to the tail he continued,”my opponent will be there.” The mob applauded him warmly but the Corporation and burgesses who controlled the election consigned him to the tail.
After many futile attempts to enter the House of Commons Disraeli managed to enter the House on 1837. On Dec.7 he rose to make his maiden speech, following Daniel O’Connel whose Irish Party gave the Whigs their majority. His elaborate sentences and stylish manner were to the radicals, like red flag waving before a bull. They had not forgotten his attacks on O’connel a few years ago. They laughed uproariously as he began and despite his persistent appeals to gain a hearing he was booed at. Nevertheless he persisted and he was barely audible. He said,”I am not at all surprised at the reception I have experienced. I have begun several things many times, and I have often succeeded at last as they had done before me.”More hubbub. Upto this point he had appeared unruffled and good humored. But now in a voice almost a scream he shot out,”I sit down now, but the time will come when you will hear me.”
compiler: benny

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In 1975 Charlie Chaplin summed up his astonishing career in films as follows,”I went into this business for money and art grew out of it,”


George Orwell author of ‘Animal Farm’ and ‘1984’ once told an interviewer that the prime reason he wrote books was his old fifth grade teacher might see his work and be remorseful that she had misjudged him.


Asked what was needed to make a successful piano vituoso, concert pianist Oscar Levant replied,”Talent,imagination,energy,determination,-and a very rich wife.”


When world heavyweight champion Rocky Marciano was asked who had hit him the hardest during his career,he shrugged,”That is easy-the tax collecter.”


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Green algae form the basis of Arctic food chain. The March sun that filters through the Arctic Sea helps their growth and they form the staple diet for the Arctic carp; ring seals survive the extreme Arctic cold by feeding on these carps. Polar bears survive in turn by preying upon the seals. It is possible only because of an order that drives each life form to run on predictable lines. Such a certainty is the basis for the food chain.

This order is created because of material nature: each species express it and in that process have also acquired an ability to anticipate events.
How these species connect to one another in terms of survival is drawn from wisdom and power, a finite aspect of Cosmic Mind.

Oneness is in all and through all: so much so every life form is of same weight with reference to it.
How we limit purpose or usefulness of other species speaks more of our ignorance than truth.

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In the medieval India there lived a mystic on this side of River Godavari. Before he became the teacher of Truth he was called Gampa Guru. He grew up among ordinary folks, all weavers belonging to same community. In Kothipalli of course one knew his place and the weavers were almost at the bottom, a cut above the untouchables. As a boy he knew one who had changed all that. He was  Mahirshi Shoonya to whom kings and the poor alike gave respect. Naturally the folks of Kothipalli made much of the sage and his great gifts. He was a devotee of Brahma, the creator and he settled himself at the foot of the Himalayas below a shrine that was dedicated to Shiva, the destroyer. Shiva is in the Hindu pantheon of gods, a manifestation of the Trinity. To every pilgrim who passed him  to do obeisance to the image of him in the form of a Shivalinga, Maharshi Shoonya would say, ‘Remember Brahma, the ultimate principle!”
“But we have come to worship, Shiva the destroyer!”
“Just the same mind Brahma. Will you?”
All the pilgrims took him for one with special gifts, touched by gods meaning that he had lost his marbles.
Once young Gampa Guru alias Paramartha, went to the Shrine in the company of his father. Mahirshi as usual called out to them to mind Brahma. “I have come for neither, Mahirshi” Gampa Guru replied,” I have come to show respect to you?”
“If so why visit Shiva? Brahma is the one you ought to worship.”
The boy asked,  “Pray what is your name?”

Shunya as in Punya.” ( Nothingness as in Holiness )
Turning to his father, the boy whispered, ”See him, father the one who sits there?” “That mad Mahirshi who tries to distract all to worship Brahma instead?”
“He isn’t against Shiva! “ the boy said seriously,” He says consider the seed of Life, consider the creator!” The old Mahirshi who overheard him came to him and told the father of the boy,” He ought to sit there instead of me.” His father was surprised beyond words.
*The whole universe is spun out of opposites. We approach Life in order to be swallowed by Death. We gather wealth and prestige while we lose something else in the bargain. Matter is of material nature that allows our senses to make some sense out of it. Whereas every matter comes with its abstract nature as well. When we speak of God or light as ideas we are also setting up Satan or Darkness by the same token.

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