Salesians hit a century in North East India
I am grateful to Barnes Mawrie for his article ‘100 years of Salesian Service to North East’ (ST Jan 13m 2022). This is a reminder to millions in this region who knew them, were associated with them and benefited from their services. I am one of the many beneficiaries and I would like to express my gratitude to them for the services rendered and will continue to render in future.
These sons and daughters of Don Bosco, founder of the Salesian congregation have rendered yeoman services not only to our state, our region (as pointed out by Barnes Mawrie) but all over the world. May the name of Don Bosco be ever remembered ever after in this world and may many more continue to take forward the works of this founder with greater dedication and zeal. I appeal to the sons and daughters of Don Bosco to be more worthy of him.
Consumerism is hurting NATURE
The great scientist of electronics – Nikola Tesla once exclaimed,“If you want to find the secrets of the universe, think in terms of energy, frequency and vibration.” It is perhaps the “ripe time” to take heed at these words from the Serbian-born American genius to heart! From an environmental perspective, the present world is obviously a fearsome place to be in. We have in fact made the worst use of the best inventions. What scientists discovered and gave to mankind have been senselessly abused, thereby setting off the danger alarm. We only listen to what capitalists dictate to us. Moreover, man’s weakness has been “easily” exploited.
We just allow bouncy celebs on booming TVs to entice us into possessing fancy gadgets endlessly! We are virtually tired of cleaning our house by hand which we did with ease till a few decades back. So, we quickly browse for a new dinky vacuum cleaner that does the job in a jiffy. What is worse is we merrily junk away the old gadgets we purchased just a year ago and luxuriate ourselves in a whole range of new gadgets! We have just bought an I-phone 13 months ago, and after a year we impatiently wait for APPLE to announce it’s I-phone-14. We hardly think of the consequences. Every single second we send the smoke up in the production of the colossal number of hard appliances of convenience. We seldom give a sane thought to the fact that this planet might soon run out of fuel.
Meanwhile, the UN frantically convened a series of environment conferences all over the planet in order to educate us on the catastrophic climate change that looms larger. Alas! this has hardly dampened our fascination for consumer items. Unarguably we are squarely responsible for the fast pace of climate change. Our entrenched consumerism and collective delusion have relentlessly depleted the planet’s resources with alarming consequences! The environment that is oscillating in the erratic wavelength has long been sending out the wrong signals. In 2021, the world recorded an “unprecedented” number of bush fires, flash floods, volcano eruptions, earthquakes, cyclones, forest fires, melting glaciers, tornados, and much more. Mother Earth has had ENOUGH of being plundered by humanity, and is now seeking revenge!
Of course, the conscious environmentalists now in desperation try to convince us that the only way out is to lead a frugal life. Switching our elegant motor cars with a humble cycle can alone cheer up Mother Earth. So, get on your knees to mop and sweep. Grow your vegetables in your own backyard and eat organic. Buddha’s wisdom of austerity and abstinence alone helps bring the damaged ecosystem to alignment. But very sadly, amidst the roar of extravagance and exhibitionism, this “simplistic solution” hardly sounds practical.
True, the problem is multi-fold. This calls for serious brainstorming so we may arrive at an ingenious solution. We need to turn around and change our “consumption behaviours”. There is an urgency, nay emergency for shifting our dependence from fossil fuels to green energy. Biogas, solar power, wind power and hydropower could alone hold out a ray of hope. If we want to live longer and see our children happy, we need to listen to what conscious environmentalists tell us. We need to rhyme with the rhythm of NATURE.
US Govt honours Maya Angelou
For the first time in the history of the United States, a black woman’s image has appeared on US coin. What makes it noteworthy is that the image is that of legendary poet and activist Maya Angelou. The US announced that it is rolling out a quarter with Angelou on it. This development assumes enormous significance as racism and social discrimination are rooted in the country’s history and culture. The government’s decision to distribute coins with Angelou’s image sends a positive message to the people of the country as well as people across the world.
The coin depicts Angelou with outstretched arms. Behind her are a bird in flight and a rising sun. These images symbolise the black people’s freedom and hopes. These images were inspired by her poetry and symbolic of the way she lived. Apart from showing the importance of equality of man, the coins remind people of the great contributions of Angelou to poetry. It will motivate people to read and appreciate the poems of Angelou which depict the lives of black women.
Apart from being a world famous poet, Maya Angelou was hailed as an internationally regarded figure for her role as a civil rights leader who fought for social and racial justice. During the Civil Rights Movement, she worked with great people like Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Junior.
The US government’s decision to distribute coins depicting the great personality is commendable. More prominent women will appear on US coins in the future. The legacy left by Angelou will continue to inspire people.