Potato Highly Defective (PhD)

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Having been a PhD student not so long ago, I remember spending countless nights wringing in anguish worrying about rejected papers, research plans, the shrinking job market in academia as well as research labs in the US for pure computer science researchers , the dreaded “our research interests do not align with yours” letters of rejection and ruing how the specialization of my PhD had woefully restricted the positions I could apply for. At the same time that I tossed and turned in agony, Masters students from the same department were juggling multiple overtly generous offers from the big hotshots for “product development” type jobs. However, I did not let that get to me in any way and instead told myself and my similarly anguished fellow-PhD-candidates in the way of consolation: “Well they will never be able to define their own work. And most importantly they will never be able to put a PhD after their names”.

Yes I firmly believe that when these fat-cat Masters speed by on their Lexuses wearing non-Walmart clothing, thinking of the health of their stock options, and look at me on the street kicking the bumper of my worn-down 94 Honda as I try to get it to start, they feel a sensation of emptiness in the pit of their stomachs, awash with the realization that, paraphrasing from Deewar, “iske paas maa hain”.

Or in other words, a PhD and a level of academic independence.

My PhD-pride, never in short supply, brimmethed over when a few months ago I learnt that Shilpa Shetty can, like me, put a Doctorate before her name—-with her degree having been given by the Leeds Metropolitan University in honor of a significant body of work in the areas of anti-racism struggle, butt-thrusting, navel exposing and “UP Bihar lootna”. Or as the eminent university official Mr. Kumar succinctly put it: ” for making a difference to society and using all her talents to the full.”

Yes the talented Ms. Shetty. I recollect making conference presentations, early in the morning, to somnolent audiences slumping in their chairs , with the only ones excited being the ones who felt I had not cited their work. And then when I see the way Ms. Shetty packages her research presentations making the audience go wild with excitement even when all they hear is “Chiki chiki chiki ta chiki ta”, I realize why Ms. Shetty is now Dr. Shetty. If any further proof was ever needed of her sagacity it was when after the Richard Gere kissing controversy she compared herself to Lord Shiva saying if He could have swallowed poison so shall She (it was not clear if Gere’s saliva was being referred to as poison here) thus revealing a defining characteristic of a good PhD: thinking oneself to be God.

Of late, I believe that someone should hood the new Shilpa Shetty-wannabe Rakhi Sawant, if only to cover her fake bouncers up, because that self-martyring lady has it in her to be a good PhD. For starters, she has opinions on everything—from how Sonu Nigam should deal with man-love, to what should be done to make the Indian cricketers to perform better (make their wives and girl-friends sit in front row taake unki aankhein idhar udhar na bhaatke) not to speak of worthy mongraphs on topics like how “kaapre utaarna koi asaan baat naheen hain sir”(Link no longer present: source Prabhu Chawla interview) which translates to “It’s not easy taking of one’s clothes”. I specially like the fact that she tries to explain everything in the world with her own pet theory , a common trait among researchers who develop a theory and then try to solve every problem, sometimes forcibly, with it. This silver bullet theory in question—-simply that Rakhi Sawant is very hot and everyone wants her, which is how all her soundbytes end whether it be on cricket, society or the Grand Unification Theory.

But I should point out that a PhD is not for everyone. And I would strongly oppose any attempt to give Rakhi Sawant-wannabe Mona Chopra (or as she know calls herself Sheryln Chopra) a PhD, despite her most sincere attempts. Let me explain why. One of the things professors hate is that “generic” mail from prospective PhD candidates which follows the following template “Sir, I am interested in networks and have, ever since I was toilet-trained, wanted to work with you”—they hate it even more if the professor concerned does not works in networks. Receiving a mail like this means a few things—1) this guy is sending this mail to hundreds of professors saying the same patently false thing 2) this guy has either not read the professor’s webpage or has no idea of what networks is or what the professor does for a living.

A similar mistake is made by Mona Chopra in this exchange. (link courtesy Bongopondit and may be quasi-unsafe for work)

Q:Would you like to act in a porn flick?
A: It depends on who will be directing it. I like Martin Scorsese. If he is the one, then I’d go to any extent for him.

Now as we all know that Martin Scorsese does not make porn flicks nor has he ever expressed any inclination to do so. (and no the movie is called “Gangs of New York” and not “Gangbangs in New York”). It is obvious that Ms. Chopra has not done any research and has just mentioned the biggest name she could think of (like many desi PhD prospectives mention “networking” because they have been told its “hot”). Even if she had said “C”-cup-olla I could understood but Marty?

Unfortunately this horrible mistake ruins the rest of her application which had some positives like a clear statement of past work(especially in the domain of multimedia streaming), experience with using analysis tools for self-satisfaction and even some quantitative data (the ratios 1:3, 2:4 etc) —something that attests for experience in a field of interest much more than glorious declarations of intent.

This post, like my thesis, has become quite verbose and runs the risk of being read about the same number of people who read that dense tome. Which is why I shall stop here and remind readers that no matter how much those Masters and Bachelors earn or go up the corporate ladder they shall never have what a PhD has— a mark of excellence, a recognition of superiority.

Kind of like the “Export quality” label that they used to put on my box of Bapi baniyaan.

[This post was written in response to a mail I got long ago from a reader asking me to write a post on advice for prospective PhD students]

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115 thoughts on “Potato Highly Defective (PhD)

  1. Quite charming and lucid read this one is, as your other posts. Some points: PhD may be tougher to get but it’s an unavailing comparision between Master/Bachelor degrees and PhD. Both have inherent level of difficulties and strengths. PhD means your work becomes very selective & directed in a singular domain. In corporate world employees are increasingly encouraged to have throughput equalling our great old Vinci . Should you be an expert “who know more about less things” , or you should become great (and not excellent) on most things?

  2. Brilliant, typical GB post !! 🙂 Right now, I’m at a very confused stage, having completed my Masters in Economics vacillating between “to PhD or not to PhD” !! Thanks to this post, I now have a clearer perspective 😀 .

  3. gosh, now you’ve put me in a dilemma! i don’t have a masters let alone a phd and neither do i have what shilpa shetty and rakhi sawant do. so what is my standing in this universe???? lord shiva – please help and no i will not drink poison! that was a fun read. 🙂

  4. Ei tyo guru, ekei bole “ostaader maar”. Kotha hobe na, you made my day!! Thank you very much for the post.

    I have been paining myself a lot the past few months going over this dilemma whether it was the right thing for me at a stage to not quit after my Masters & alternately take the plunge to PhD. Needless to mention that I convinced myself all of the above reasons you cite. Added with it are ofcourse the temptation of pursuing the highest degree a person can achieve & the challenge to live through the very terrifying phase that one usually associates with a graduate school experience (atleast speaking in North American terms). Undoubtedly, a degree that is given after countless mental & physical exhaustions (read years of slogging, scooped research, failed experiments, advisor phobia, near social isolation, insecurity, disillusionment & frustration) – that better be worth every sweat of it!
    Having interacted with scientists & faculty since the past couple years, some very near their end of career too, everybody agrees almost unanimously that a PhD is not the ball game you wish it were. It is the transition from someone who reads to someone who is being read. Needless to mention that comes with a lot of costs, not something to be given away without having to pay the price for. And not surprising, it presents challenges as well as opportunities
    So when in many an unguarded frustrating moment I stop to think – which of my friends is buying a flat or driving a BMW to work and “wtf” I am doing sacrificing my youth, I think of the pleasure that comes with it. The independence of molding my life the way I want to, the only time when people are paying me to learn, of dwelling in the world of the elite, of being a proud nerd in a community that respects being such. Yes,a PhD is not for everybody, it is for only those who brave to achieve it.

    To get Piled, Higher & Deeper!!!

    PS: I had heard of this phrase Potato Highly Defective from my sister who was then a Physics student at the University of Calcutta in the late 90s. Never heard it ever since but presumably that’s what most Bengalis would refer it to, right? In college ofcourse, this was a derogatory slang for “Alur dosh”.

  5. >>One of the things professors hate is that “generic” mail from prospective PhD candidates which follows the following template “Sir, I am interested in networks and have, ever since I was toilet-trained, wanted to work with you”

    err..how about not even figuring out if said professor is sir or madam? that works!
    BTW one of my professors used to drive around in some very cool white BMW (at least all the boys said it was very cool, i had no idea), but then he was like 65 years old and had just bought it. 😦

    interesting take on the Phd!

  6. @GB,
    The whole PhD vs Master’s thing… it kind of comes in with CS and Electronics. When you do biotech/biochem, a PhD is like the lowest qualification permissible. Specially if you want to work here

  7. Arnab, I will soon be following your footsteps and getting into a PhD program in CS following my MS. I think the clincher would be if they invite Ms Shetty as the guest of honor for the commencement. 🙂 Some real advice on grad student life, please!

  8. Interesting and funny.

    But it is fairly clear now that it does not pay to do a PhD in India, at least not in any other stream than pure sciences. Even that has to be done from an IIT or something because others are not considered big deals. As for the Arts and Commerce related subjects. it is just idiotic to aspire for a PhD. The only people who go for a PhD, say, in English, are a) those who want to study , and later teach in colleges for the love of it and do not have any financial problems (read: Dad has lotsa dough), and b) who have accidentally gone and already wasted a few years in that mess and now can’t get out.

    No one who has an objective to earn and support a family can afford to complete that thankless degree in India.

    Add to that the fact that illiterate morons like Shetty and Lalu Prasad and sundry politicians are granted PhDs everyday – and you know that the degree is sullied beyond salvage.

    @Sh: If you are not sure about a PhD, there is another interim, equally useless degree you can try. It’s called an MPhil. That mercifully gets over in 2 years. Of course, it does not guarantee a job either..but that’s neither here nor there… 🙂

  9. “Q:Would you like to act in a porn flick?
    A: It depends on who will be directing it. I like Martin Scorsese. If he is the one, then I’d go to any extent for him.”

    I guess you didn’t see the level of smartness in her reply. As Martin Scorsese doesn’t make any porn flick (she might be well aware of this fact), its a different way of saying that I won’t act in a porn flick 😀

  10. Very nice post with a garnishing of wry humor. Seriously, your strange post has put a lot of people, including me about perusing a PhD. Mona Chopra actually tried to do a post doc before writing her Phd qualifiers. But I am not surprised at all by her remark. After all Scorcese has won the Oscar last year and hence its cool to mention his name out of context!

    Also, even if Scorsese ever went back to his cocaine addiction days and in a momentary lapse of reason saw 76’s Jodie Foster (Taxi Driver) as todays Mona (Jodie is lesbi and Mona is quad- straight, lesb, muti ratio bi and maybe animals too); he would probably film her nudity with a solitary long tracking shot where more is obfuscated than revealed. Also, and this is my pet theory- that FF Coppola likes only a particular type of knockers. So Mona can keep her aspirations between her legs. Nobody can do their Postdoc before PHd- the glorious exception being S. Stone in 1991.

    Maybe she eavesdropped on him with Coppola in Union Square, where he said inaudibly, a bit like in the famous scene of that great movie “The Conversation”, “She will kill me if I don’t give her the role for my porn flick…Jack Tar hotel…Mona maybe…Mona definitely.”

  11. @Shan
    The last I heard was that an MPhil is required as a prerequisite for going for a PhD in India. My sister is presently working on her PhD and she had to do an MPhil first and then a PhD. All her friends opting for the PhD had to go through the MPhil first after finishing their Masters. She had the PhD in Geography, which inicidently is an Arts subject in North India. Correct me if I’m wrong.

    Furthermore, I tend to disagree in a minor way with you. I understand the general worthlessness of doing a PhD in India, but is it really worthless? There are some govt positions which can be attempted only if you have a PhD, that too from a good college/guide. I mean govt. positions high up in the hierarchy (Finance Commission, Economic growth etc)I agree, that the time spent in doing the PhD may not be worth that effort, but people aspiring for PhDs don’t really care for that. As you pointed out, its the love for the subject/topic and the aspiration to get a coveted position.

    What a coincidence GB coming out with an article on PhDs. Was seeing a Flop Show (Jaspal Bhatti) video on youtube on the fate of PhD students. Many of you will remember it.

    Interesting to see some full forms for PhD. I add a few to them..
    Please Help, desperate
    PHinally Done
    Passed Having Difficulty

  12. @Mrinal Mukherjee: M Phil is a prerequisite for a PhD in some Indian universities, not in all.I believe that both Delhi University and Kolkata University have done away with it. I guess they’ve realised that those two years, supposedly a practice session for the PhD proper, was quite a waste of time.

  13. @Sayon
    Just had a quick talk with my sis about this. Seems you are right, DU has done away with Mphils. She did it from JNU, delhi. There you got to do the MPhil first. She however commented that at the end of the day, you take the same time to finish the PhD. In other words, the MPhil is taken as a time spent doing the PhD (provided you don’t change your subject/topic).
    I stand corrected. Thanks!!

  14. I can understand how it outrages your sense of achievement when filmstars and politicians are handed Doctorate degrees as if they were mangoes from their own backyards. The immense pride and prestige associated with the degree is sheepishly belittled by these acts and no one ever raises a voice of dissent.

    Of course its all right to invite Laloo Yadav to Harvard and quiz him on his profit-making policies for the Railways, but awarding him an honorary MBA degree would summarily dwarf the standards of the institute. Good, that they didn’t succumb to such an temptation.

    Power to the (real) educated !

  15. @Mrinal Mukherjee:

    I don’t doubt the intrinsic value of higher education or a PhD, just the practical value, especially in the Humanities. However, I agree there are some (read: very few) high paying jobs for Humanities PhDs, but they are almost always in the Social Sciences areas, that too with foreign funded NGOs or organizations. Also remember that there is no guarantee of a job or a stipend while you are completing your PhD, unlike in the States.

    I can definitely speak for college lectureships in Maharashtra, having aspired for a PhD at one point in the distant past. I joined MPhil (Pune university requires one) and quickly realized that the jobs available were ALL reserved and that only temp teaching jobs paying Rs100 or so per lecture were available. I decided that there was no future there, quit MPhil. and moved as fast as I could, luckily to the corporate world.

    The high posts in the Government you mention are also too few and far between, and almost always “reserved”.

    So while I would have loved to complete higher studies, it was just not practical in India to do so.

  16. Back then, the joke in the IIT-Madras Mandakini hostel used to run something like this (on the Bachelor’s, Master’s and Doctorate degrees that desis dreamed of pursuing in the USA):

    B.S. = Bull Sh*t

    M.S. = More Sh*t

    PhD = Permanent Head Damage

    For those of us who have been there and done that, can anything be truer than such pithy, wicked acronyms? 😉

    – Hujur

  17. @ anon : “Nobody even talks of a PostDoc, there is nothing beyond that”.

    Actually, there is such a thing in certain European countries. It is called ‘habilitation’, & is the highest academic qualification in those countries.

    It has to be earned after a doctorate, & like the doctorate dissertation, requires applicants to complete another dissertation to be scrutinised by an academic committee

    In USA, UK & most other English-speaking countries, a doctorate will secure a Uni faculty post. However, for those European countries, only ‘habilitation’ers can supervise doctoral candidates.

    In Germany it’s called Privatdozent. In France it’s Habilitation des recherches. It also exists in Austria, Bulgaria, Czech Rep, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Switzerland, & ex-USSR nations.

  18. Arnab, when I look back what really made my degree worth it and equal to the one possessed by the venerable Ms. Shetty and the awe-inspiring samosey-mein-aloo Lalooji is all the free booze and “conference travel” (read – Europe junket) it provided access to.

    The highlight of my entire time in graduate school was one evening spent bar hopping with a couple of professors and fellow students after a particularly boring and tedious day at a conference in France. That made academia seem rather interesting as a career choice, but only for a moment.

    If I could go back in time will I do it all over again – absolutely! (I’d be more focused though).

  19. @GB: If they gave out PhDs in sarcasm, you would certainly have one. And I for sure, would love to do some research under you, albeit Ekalavya style vis-a-vis Dhrona.

  20. Pingback: reason# 32423 at staying.cool

  21. “Yes I firmly believe that when these fat-cat Masters speed by on their Lexuses wearing non-Walmart clothing, thinking of the health of their stock options, and look at me on the street kicking the bumper of my worn-down 94 Honda as I try to get it to start, they feel a sensation of emptiness in the pit of their stomachs, awash with the realization that, paraphrasing from Deewar, “iske paas maa hain”.

    Or in other words, a PhD and a level of academic independence.”

    Brilliant!! Absolutely wonderful.

  22. I would just like to comment (not that I have anything positive for Mona Chopra) that when she said that name, she meant (may be) that the director is so good that she would work even in a porn flick to work with him.

  23. PhD’s P is associated with being poor always, but Potato Highly Defective acronym PhD is the funniest ever. As for me, I very often envy the primary care physicians in this country. If you ever get to visit a Pediatrician or a OBGYN’s office ( by you I do not mean YOU personally) you will know what I mean. They do very routine jobs and carry hefty paychecks! I do wish I could switch my profession, err no, my paychecks with them.

  24. I thought a Ph.D. was all about knowing more and more about less and less.
    Where does it all fit with Ms Shetty?
    Then it hit me.
    ( ) more
    )( less
    ( ) more?
    If you are willing to agree with my interpretation, I am sure our very dear Rakhi Sawant should straight away get a Privatdozent degree

  25. “Yes I firmly believe that when these fat-cat Masters speed by on their Lexuses wearing non-Walmart clothing, thinking of the health of their stock options, and look at me on the street kicking the bumper of my worn-down 94 Honda as I try to get it to start, they feel a sensation of emptiness in the pit of their stomachs, awash with the realization that, paraphrasing from Deewar, “iske paas maa hain”.”

    So all the master and bachelor students working for Google .. Yahoo ..and all the MBAs working for Goldman and Lehman, when they drive by in their *Lexuses* to their respective Monstrous apartments ..should leave their jobs and get a PhD…

    Wonder how many times did

    – Bill Gates wanted to go back to school and get a PhD.. or even a Bachelors
    – Linus Torvalds while working on his “Master’s Project” decided .. fuck Linux … lemme get a PhD ..
    – or how many time did Sergey Brin decided to go back and finish his PhD or
    – Larry Page deciding ..fuck Sergey and his search engine ..lemme just get my PhD ..
    or countless others who did not get PhD and but now employ them in hordes ..

    Not saying PhD is not relevant ..am saying do whatever makes you happy .. I see you are somehow trying to justify your decision to pursue PhD by ridiculing those who did not “Want” to .. I believe more than 99% of Master students dont want to pursue PhD ..coz they dont want to .. and not coz ..they cant.

  26. @S.Pyne: Thank you herr Doktor.

    @Nanga Fakir: Six months into PhD and you are already Nanga Fakir? Say goodbye to a kidney as you approach thesis defense.

    @Naman: Yes that was my point—-doing a PhD does limit your options and your employability. I have no illusions as to the worth of PhDs—trust me.

    @Sh: Good !

    @Rishi: So what did you do your Masters in?

    @Mala: 🙂

    @Thinkingcap: The “potato highly defective” isnt something I made up it is, as pointed out by Oliveoyl derived from “Aloor dosh” which means men with a roving eye.

    @OliveOyl: Hmm..

    @KBPM: Good point. I know a few famous rich professors who are giants in their field and yet most MS grads with 2 year experience make more than them.

    @Akasuna na Sasori: Yes I understand. My perspective is solely a CS/EE one.

    @Nishit: 🙂

    @Abraham: 🙂

    @Sriram: He is?

    @AP: Yes I know

    @Sudipta: Well at least you wont fall asleep.

    @Shan: Hmm

    @An Ideal Boy: For another day 🙂

    @Surendra: Very subtle.

    @Yourfan2: Postcoc oh sorry postdoc yes

    @Greatbong Admirer: Thanks

    @Mrinal: Funny have not seen that Jaspal Bhatti…

    @TheQuark: Noted.

    @Whatisinaname: It gives these universities some good publicity thats all…after all education too needs to be sold if only to finance the real researchers.

    @Skp: And people want more !

    @Hujur: 🙂

    @Anon: Well as pointed out, there actually is.

    @Thalassa: Oh yes my all-expense one week trek in Switzerland, visits to Copenhagen, Vienna, Barcelona—–but Thalassa I was fortunate as CS theory conferences take place in Europe. I had some friends who got trips to fine cities like Cincinnati, Detroit etc..

    @ArSENik: Thanks

    @SD: Thanks

    @Sourabh: Yeah right. 🙂

    @Suzi: Marrying poverty like monks.

    @Swati: Priceless visual.

    @Desi MS Grad works for Facebook and drives BMW:

    Maybe somewhere between your hubris at working for Facebook and in driving a BMW, you forgot to read the piece a bit carefully and “get” the sarcasm.

    “So all the master and bachelor students working for Google .. Yahoo ..and all the MBAs working for Goldman and Lehman, when they drive by in their *Lexuses* to their respective Monstrous apartments ..should leave their jobs and get a PhD…”

    Actually I say the *exact* opposite.

    I would have liked to explain to you how genuinely trivial I consider myself even with a PhD certificate in comparison to drivers of BMWs as yourself and that I am under no obligation to justify my career choices on my blog but I am sure you already know that.

  27. GB wrote:
    Rishi, So what did you do your Masters in?

    @GB
    Industrial Design

    @Desi MS Grad who drives a Benz and works for orkut.
    I have a lot of friends who did/do Phd. It takes a different kind of determination and eye for details, to do a Phd successfully. Many people maybe very successful out in the industry, but may not have what is required to do a Phd.

  28. Somehow this Desi Grad Student who works for a social networking site and drives a BMW reminds me of the famous “Proud Indian Producer” from the Rang De Basanti post both in terms of intelligence and in terms of the “garmi” of supposed wealth. This comment also shows how people like this BMW guy take self-deprecation literally perhaps because they themselves are incapable of it.

    Since GB cannot or will not say it, let me point out that GB with his sterling publication record does not need to justify his PhD. More importantly his publications are his legacy to the scientific world, quite unlike your BMW which really means nothing to the rest of us.

    GB, great post.

  29. Pingback: On PhD’s | DesiPundit

  30. @Desi Grad Student: Wah guru, maan gaye! I vaguely remember a post by GB about Kanti Shah’s brain being part of the Wonders of the World. I want to personally place yours next to his. Either you are really shana and want to create an uproar here by inciting us ‘innocent’ (the quotes are necessary for sarcasm blind souls [soles] such as yourself) commentators, or Bavarian Motors has run out of imported German engine oil for your rusted brain. Something tells me it’s the latter.

  31. My Apologies to all .. that I didnt get the sarcasm… am not a frequent reader here, a friend sent me the link and since he too misread I guess I got a lil influenced by him. .. and I had free time to kill 😛

    @Rohan
    I never questioned GB’s publication record, my point was PhDs are not a different breed .. they are what ‘Ann Coulter’ wud say ..’Perfected’ MS grads minus the ridiculous pay .. I just hate the fact that some PhD candidates think they are better than Bachelor and Master students .. you just have to goto to my alma matter to look at certain PhD TA’s and Profs to know exactly what I am talking about ..

    @Rishi
    I drive a BMW .. not a Mercedes 😀 ..

  32. GB, Great post. You know mine started with loads of erotic literature, erotic terracota plaques, database of fertility gods, ‘insteresting’ rituals, love charms and then one day they all culminated to this 200 pages….long fertile journeys taken for the right delivery. Or the wrong delivery. Who knows? But when I was declared a PhD for that moment I thought of Gulzar ‘Yeh lamha filhaal ji lene de…’ Will never have BMWs or anything..and as u say, so unimportant and insigificant….
    Do, char, che, ath, dus. Bas”

  33. Dont know abt Orkut, but my friend who used to work for Myspace tells me .. its not the same as it was once IAC took over … 🙂

    Btw, Jaguar is much better than BMW and its too damm pricey 🙂

  34. @Desi MS Grad turned Angel: OK man. Sorry, I think that was a little mean on my part then, now that you have offered to hug and kiss and make out, I mean make up with everyone here.

  35. I just quit my phd coz a company agreed to pay me loads of money 🙂
    P.S – Dr. GB, I’m a student at UMD, Colllege Park. Hope to see you here sometime

  36. @Desi MS Grad works for Facebook and drives BMW:

    You quoted Ann Coulter!

    No one who quotes Ann Coulter deserves a PhD really (or deserves being read/listened to), so I guess you are exactly where you deserve to be.

  37. @Desi Grad- Do you see the fallacy in your argument? All those names that you have mentioned are entrepreneurs. Are you one? I am not saying you are not smart or intelligent, but you seem to be so ensconced in your success that you miss the big picture. If technological breakthrough helps business, then business will pay. Say a breakthrough in the field of Abstract Algebra may not help businesses too much. The scientist in question may not get rewarded financially, but will still have the intellectual satisfaction. Yet somebody may want to do a PhD in Abstract Algebra because of his inexhaustible curiosity for the subject. A particular PDE by Black, Scholes and Merton literally changed the financial industry. As opposed to the Algebra phD, the Quant PHd gets rewarded much more. PhDs who can code C and have a good knowledge of options and interest rate theory can get salaries as high as 700k. The reason Wall Street pays that kind of money is because these people make tons of money for them. Similarly, as a very basic explanation, its your skill set and its relative scarcity which makes Face book want to pay you the amount which defines your lifestyle. This was the exact reason why so many developers made lots of hay under the Dot Com sun.

    You and most masters graduates are neither entrepreneurs nor innovators. Thats not saying that all PhDs are the same or all entrepreneurs are equally successful. Ultimately it boils down to what makes one happy. Sometimes, an interesting paper can bring you as much happiness as what you get by squeezing the ass of that sexy gold- digging bitch who spreads her legs for you on the bonnet of your BMW under the golden California sunshine. You are a successful person and you have every right to have pride in what you have achieved. You have not taken into consideration the earnings of “intellectual satisfaction”, and I have just given you an example of some kind of PhDs who earn money that Masters grads can only dream of. But an entrepreneur is different. He can be a high school grad, a bachelor, masters, PhD or even beyond. I can give you at least scores of names who are Phd businessmen just like there are thousands of MBA grads who did not achieve anything. Tom Anderson of Myspace didn’t go to B school, he went to film school.

    Money can be earned by being a good investor, or through being an established drug baron, or through a 1000 other ways. In any case, you have to bust your ass off. I am not saying that you don’t do that, but you are like the brilliant horse on the race track. Your owner takes pride in you, but you are not the jockey. At the end of the day, you eat only as much as your jockey gives you. Sure you can switch jockeys, but you are not ‘independent’. Do you now see what Arnab was talking about? Don’t misconstrue me- I am all for big businesses and I respect successful businessmen – say like Sam Walton. I just luv Walmart. But when I read in NYT that MS is buying 1.6% of Facebook, I see the photo of Dustin Moskowitz, not Desi Grad who drives BMW. 🙂 Maybe you can get some new idea and start your own business. Maybe you will remain happy with you are doing. Maybe someway along the line, you will try to transform from yourself from the horse to the jockey (see Ray- Company Limited).

    Lastly, I will ask you to read this brilliant article to fully appreciate Arnab’s viewpoint-
    http://monod.biomath.nyu.edu/index/people/dragonslayer.pdf
    Do read it.

  38. Hi Boss,
    Regular reader, not a critic. Me that is.
    Post started with a typical GB aplomb. Brilliant at the Lexus vs Old Honda stage. Dr Shetty was a fantastic idea. Rakhi a bit repetitive – one more film personality in this blog, Rakhi in yet another blog – but still fitted with the general idea, but by the time you reached Mona (?who), I think the chewing gum had been stretched way too far & the blog stopped living upto its expectations raised in the first paragraph!
    I don’t belong to the group of theorists who say that the great bong is losing consistency regularly, but I think this is because of the great malady that afflicts all successful people: deadline!
    I hope you will not have to beat similar hasty retreats at the end of any more blogs. And let not your ArdentFanMail lull you into complacency
    Care

  39. @ swati : “I thought a Ph.D. was all about knowing more and more about less and less”.

    No, that’s just growing up !!!

    “Where does it all fit with Ms Shetty? Then it hit me.”
    ( ) more
    )( less
    ( ) more?

    It’s actually
    🙂 Ok. It’s not her knowledge of Milton I crave
    .OO. Just right
    ).( I think its ok. As long as its not [ . ]
    x Folically challenged preferred
    OO Definitely not more

    Appendages are academic. At least for my purpose.

  40. Pretty cool GB but like the venky dude methinks perhaps the Mona Chopra bit was a bit far out……

    Anyways being from Aus, what is it with pHDs in the US, does it help in further job oppurtunities or visa extension etc

    One would think an MS would be enough to grab a great job and by the same logic a pHD should make the career prospects even better, enlighten the classy masses

  41. @Desi MS Grad works for Facebook and drives BMW

    I was reading all the comments…some with a chuckle and some accompanied with a slight shake of the head. And then came your reply to GD’s comment and I almost fell of my chair. What DESI is his/her right mind would even think of Ann Coulter as a person let alone use it’s quote as a reference.

    You not only mistook the tone of GB’s post, but you are plain dumb. Ann Coulter…..of all the things you could have quoted ….*scoff*

  42. How many will second me when I say that
    1. As thickheadedness goes GB & Desi MS with his fancy car represent reeeallly the extreme ends of this blog site
    2. The masterpieces created by Mr Desi are a very close second to the blog by GB in hilariousness
    Care

  43. First of all, awesome post! I have always been a reader here, and let me tell you that on a gloomy day it brings a chuckle anytime I visit your website:D

    Now I feel so relieved that I chose to leave my studies after my Post-bac and went to look for a job. I should show this gem to my mom 🙂
    She still gripes about my ‘stupid’ decision.

  44. @Hara hara bom bom
    If other people have enriched cyber-script by inventing emoticons, we can take credit for ushering in the use of alluring descripticons.
    Can we patent these?

  45. Hello Arnab-da!!! Gathered the experience of a life-time watching ‘No Smoking’ in a theater. I am sure you will find ” Jaani Dushman” 10 times more enerigisingly entertaining than this mind-sapping crap!!!! If u havn’t seen it already, I implore u not to. And even if u do, I would wait with all eagerness to read your take on it. I have my review posted on my blog. Time -permitting if u cud have a ‘say’ on that ‘eulogy’ by yours truly……I would be more than glad.

    Regards.

  46. nanga fakir:

    “I should’ve read this post six months ago! Probably that would’ve saved me.”

    clarification maangta hai! do you mean to say that – had you read this post six months ago – you would not be nanga today or you would not fakir today, or you would be neither today?

    – s.b.

  47. “Bangalis” or “Bongs” are the worst hypocrites in this world. Visit the state and you’ll find that a society which allows more than half of it’s people to live and die in utter deprivation and filth will get indignant and shout obscenities if a dog poops anywhere around their “lofty” dwellings. They don’t think before throwing leftover food out on the street “to feed the poor dogs and cats”, but they will spit paan everywhere and pee wherever. You see, man urinating is so much more noble than a dog urinating. They pretend to be intellectual even though they cannot even speak the national language, Hindi. They are inward-looking, opportunistic, petty, pseudo-intellectuals and animal haters. Great Bong finds it strange that puja pandal organizers are sued for violating intellectual property rights but he seems to be completely ignorant that in Calcutta, his beloved hometown, a man who raises several species of birds in his house is sued by his neighbours for, Oh My God!, “excessive noise” and “disturbance of peace”. Ignorance is bliss, they say. Bongs put it into practice, that’s why.

  48. You would have done a great service to your blogging mate and occasional admirer (esp. on the Khairlanji story) Gaurav Sabnis if you wrote this about a year back. 😀

  49. Ihateall bongs “.. I hate all Bongs”.

    Hmmm. Quite a forceful tirade. Calm down, dear, it’s only a blog.

    I share your frustration with many aspects of Bengal, but not your despondency. Do bear in mind that :

    1. During the daytime, the population of Kol exceeds 3 crore. Even if 1 crore of them are outsiders (who support a family base of 4), that means Kol provides livelihood for 2 4 = 6 crore people. One city thus supports the equivalent of the entire population of France.

    2. Most of those in deprivation as you claim are not living in ‘real’ deprivation, but squalor. Anyone can come into Kol from any part of India & Bangladesh, bring their horde of broods, live on the streets, set up any venture (sell rotis, fuchka), defecate on the roads, break tubewells for water, pay no tax, and thus make their modest but sufficient living.

    These ‘deprived’ people of yours are thus not Bengali, but from outside Bengal. The real ‘deprived’ people are the Bengali “non-Sudra (sic)” middle classes, driven to extreme relative poverty and unable to find decent jobs because of reservation and dirty politics. But they bear their pain with equanimity and get on with life.

    3. Kol supports a hinterland of unbelievable poverty : Nepal, Bhutan, Orissa, Bihar, Jharkhand, and Bangladesh. Vast swathes of their poor people throng to Kol to make a living.

    4. “but they will spit paan everywhere and pee wherever”
    Actually, these are not the Bongs, but more the Biharis & Bangladeshis.

    5. “They pretend to be intellectual even though they cannot even speak the national language, Hindi.”
    That is why Bongs are intelligent, silly !! 🙂

    6. Ignorance is bliss,
    If so, you must be on cloud nine. How is it up there?

    7. “They are inward-looking, opportunistic, petty, pseudo-intellectuals and animal haters. “

    Hmm. Sad to say partially true. They weren’t like this always, though. Horrific cleavings & genocides (1947, 1971), mass murder of millions under contrived colonial famines, a continuous mass exodus of many millions in 1930 (Bihar earthquake), 1947 (Hindus from Bangladesh), 1971 (Hindus from Bangladesh), 1947 to 1971 (Muslims from Pakistan), 1971 to 2007 (Muslims from Bangladesh), all have played their part in grinding the state down.

    Bongs cannot abdicate their responsibility in this. The ugly Naxal movement, the treacherous communist movement that betrayed nationalists, are at heart as Bengali as a succulent white rasagolla.

    But so is Aurobindo, Vivekananda, Ramakrishna, Rabindranath, Shyamaprasad, Bankimchandra, Ashutosh, Vidyasagar, Rashbehari, Bagha Jatin, CR Das and Netaji. Each a giant in his field. Not wishing to sound supercilious, no other state in India can bask in the glory of such a complement of luminaries.

    Of course this is the past, and Bongs have failed miserably in the present. As the basic character of Bengali (Hindus) is one based on knowledge, culture and intellect, the future is definitely going to be bright.

    Cheer up. 🙂

  50. @ i hate all bongs :
    The language and tone of your comment reveal clearly the despicable being that you are . You spew out absurd allegations against Bengalis in a manner suggesting a consummate lunatic having gone madder with rage . One cannot help nursing the idea that one of the following might have happened to you :
    1) you were defeated in some kind of competition by a Bengali.
    2) your romantic aspirations were thoroughly crushed by some Bengali girl , on account of your uncouth and uncultured nature ( as evident from your comment).

    Regarding Hindi :

    Please understand that Hindi is not the national language – it has got the status of official language. It is a despicable conspiracy by cow-belt-BIMARU-belt-Hindi-chauvinists that has tried to project Hindi as national language. Even then , people from other regions of India have every right to thoroughly reject Hindi.

    Regarding Language-proficiency of Bengalis:
    There is no reason why bengalis should take special trouble to speak perfect Hindi. Most Bengalis can understand and make themselves understood in Hindi. This is because most Bengalis(specially those in Kolkata) have Hindi-speaking friends( Kolkata having sizeable Hindi-speaking population / Hindi-speaking families residing in Kolkata for generations ).
    one should rather try to :
    1) Try to master atleast the very basics of all major Indian languages ( tamil/marathi/urdu) etc.
    2) Try to learn foreign languages like French/German/Spanish. Bengalis do have a lot of interest in learning at least these three languages.

  51. @ abhirup ganguly : “Regarding Hindi : It is a conspiracy by cow-belt-BIMARU-belt-Hindi-chauvinists to project Hindi as national language. people … have every right to thoroughly reject Hindi”.

    Whoooah there, my old chum. We should certainly move the pendulum from ‘I hate all bong’s’ extreme position, but we should not swing it to the other extreme.

    For better or for worse, we need one national language, even as a token, to present to the world. It is a symbol of unity. Hindi fits that bill nicely. At least for North India, it occupies the middle ground of the linguistic variations that span its vast geographical expanse.

    The current system works nicely for me, & I hope for most Indians as well (South Indian problem duly noted) :
    – I can speak, read & write basic Hindi (thanks to Bollywood & not my school) – 1/5.
    – I can claim proficiency in my native Bengali – 5/5
    – I am reasonable in English – 4/5
    – I possess a smattering of German – 1/5

    Why would I need to learn even the basic words of Marathi or Tamil, unless I would like to delve in to those cultures in more depth?

    It is thanks to Hindi that we can appreciate the unparalelled mellifluousness of Kishore, Lata, Mukesh & Rafi.

    I for one am for maintaining (note not strengthening at the expense of other languages) the nominated and token paramountcy of Hindi.

  52. abhirup ganguly:

    Your language and tone epitomises the utter madness of a Bong who hits the roof in defensiveness at any comment against them or Saurav Ganguly. I congratulate Hara hara bom bom for having replyed to my allegations in a sane manner rather than become rabid like you. Probably you are a big follower of Mamata Banerjee who specialises in these kind of histrionics instead of rationality. Let me clarify to you:
    1) I have beaten a lot of Bongs in all competitions I have participated.
    2)I never even thought of courting a Bong.

    As for your excuse for not a language that has been given the status of being the common currency(however unworthy YOU might consider it to be! In the last sixty years or so, no one has corrected that mistake), is foolhardy. It is a thinking typical of a frog in the pond. Calcutta boasts of being a metropolitan city. Go to the other metros, including Ahmedabad, Pune, Bangalore or Kochi and you WILL find people able to understand and speak basic Hindi. But that does not happen in Kol. Not everyone in this world is a Bengali and if you belong to the school of thought that non-Bongs should not come to Kolkata, then please continue with this line of thinking.
    For those who drop names like Aurobindo, Vivekananda, Ramakrishna, Rabindranath, Shyamaprasad, Bankimchandra, Ashutosh, Vidyasagar, Rashbehari, Bagha Jatin, CR Das and Netaji at the drop of a hat, you need to step out of the past and live in the present. Cal is a grand old city, but just take a short trip around and what do you find….it is decaon the outside but inside too. A bong does not trust a Marwadi. A bong does not trust a Muslim. Marawadi doesnot trust a Bong. and muslims don’t trust either one.

  53. Oh and before I forget, Dear Mr. Abhirup GAnguly, you REALLY need to get a job. I mean, to actually take the time out to reply to someone’s rant, whom you most definitely consider below you, considering you are unnecessarily burdened with the knowledge of big english words, which you you cannot coherently put together…..what a waste of time!! Obviously you are one of those people who use office computers to do all this. As for me, I am jobless. I’m a housewife. 🙂 So, you see, I proved you wrong on both your charges.

    You choose to single out one sentence in the whole paragraph and blabber incoherent nonsense, but you miss the others. Why didn’t you get so worked up on the charge of “animal-haters”. Or may be you think that’s not true, because fish is an animal too!! Isn’t it?

    “strange that puja pandal organizers are sued for violating intellectual property rights but he seems to be completely ignorant that in Calcutta, his beloved hometown, a man who raises several species of birds in his house is sued by his neighbours for, Oh My God!, “excessive noise” and “disturbance of peace”. Ignorance is bliss, they say.” I’m not the one who’s being ignorant here. I don’t rail about the preposterousness of one and stay ignorant of the other in my backyard. It’s time to check the incongruity in thinking. Huh?, gentlemen?

  54. @ Hara hara bom bom
    ” but we should not swing it to the other extreme….For better or for worse, we need one national language, even as a token, to present to the world. It is a symbol of unity.”

    I absolutely fail to see how my position can be labelled as an extreme one. I have proposed equal importance of all regional languages . Extremism/fundamentalism is a way of thinking/doing that tries to force one idea over others without providing any proper grounds – hence the idea to let Hindi have a superior status compared to Marathi/Tamil/Bengali/Urdu is a form of mild extremism.

    WE ABSOLUTELY DO NOT NEED ONE NATIONAL LANGUAGE.
    India’s identity should be based on harmonious diversity and there is absolutely no need to have banal tokens like national languages when so many equally powerful/important/developed languages are there. If one wants to select one language it will offcourse have to be forced over others. We do not have a need to have a single national language like the German/french etc. people. We can stay completely different.

    SHOULD HINDI BE THE NATIONAL OFFICIAL LANGUAGE ?
    Thanks to powers-that-be-Hindi-fundamentalists Hindi is now the national official language. However , a official language should be chosen only based on practical reasons. Various practical reasons suggest english should be the official language.
    1) For many Indians Hindi is effectively as foreign as english.to master writing skill reqd. for official work one has to undergo as much effort to learn english as Hindi
    2) If english becomes official language many Indians would automatically have a better grasp over English – which is the Global Lingua franca practically – this has practical benefits.

    LEARNING OTHER INDIAN LANGUAGES:
    this proposal is consistent with my view that India’s identity should be that of harmonious diversity. I dont say it is possible to get even a smattering of all major indian Languages. I mean to say one must have this mindset that as an Indian one has a kind of moral duty to try , if possible , to get an idea of major Indian Languages. Also, there has to be easy ways of doing this. The Maharashtra tourism board , for example has a Marathi tutorial at their website.

    GERMAN:
    glad to know of a German language aspirant. Me too currently struggling through its tricky grammar.:-)

    @ ihate…
    The rabid outburst in the first part of my comment is totally justified considering the way you started abusing Bengalis. For, I am a firm believer in giving one his due. Your comment did not suggest a sane personality who would listen to reason . Though you sound saner in this second comment yet comments like ‘A bong does not trust …. muslims don’t trust either one.’ , which are totally devoid of any supporting reason and are said for the purpose of sheer abuse clearly show that the way of replying that I used in the first part of my comment is what you mostly deserve.

    ‘who hits the roof in defensiveness at any comment against them or Saurav Ganguly’
    Well, I thought every normal self-respecting person would defend oneself against absurd allegations. Although , now I begin to have a doubt whether one should take any notice of the lunacy-laden comments of a consummate cerebrally-bankrupt.

    ‘Calcutta boasts of being a metropolitan city. Go to the other metros, including Ahmedabad, Pune, Bangalore or Kochi and you WILL find people able to understand and speak basic Hindi.’

    who has ever heard such a preposterous idea that the sign of a metropolitan city should be that people will be able to understand a north-Indian regional language ?

    ‘belong to the school of thought that non-Bongs should not come to Kolkata,’

    As I have earlier said that Bengalis do know hindi because they mingle with a lot of hindi-speaking people. This clearly shows that I am rather proud of the way Bengalis welcome everybody .

  55. @ I hate ….
    I am a student . I use my PC for commenting.
    I fail to see where have I used difficult english words that are usually considered aracane.

    Posting comment with reference to and by quoting sentences from original blog post/another’s comment is a long standing practice in GB’s blog.

  56. @abhirup ganguly

    Finally someone who shares my view. I dont know whether its a conspiracy but it still rankles me that most people think that it is a sin to not know hindi.

    @hara hara…

    I disagree with your view point . Token symbolism is not going to work.

  57. @ I hate bongs “For those who drop names like Aurobindo… at the drop of a hat, you need to step out of the past and live in the present”

    Alas, what can I do? It is because the list of present names is blank that I resort to personages past at auto-response. 😦

    The name list of 2015 will be more encouraging. The natural talent of any Bong (any Indian for that matter) is to ascend. A host of reasons (historical, social, external, internal etc) have held us all back. Time is allowing us to realize our goals.

    “Cal is a grand old city, but it is decaying on outside & inside “.

    Pranayama cures the innards & the outtards. 🙂 Don’t be too despondent. Kol looks the way it does as it single-handedly supports the population base of France. It can improve. It will improve.

    Besides, there is a growing number of nice places. Salt Lake (esp Sector V), Rajarhat, Bhowanipore.

    “A bong does not trust Marwadi. Marawadi doesnot trust a Bong”

    Alas, this is painfully obvious. There is too much distrust and disunity among us Indians. This was more pronounced in the previous generation, when the race for scarce resources was restricted to Indian bounty. With a wider horizon at our disposal (new economy, globalization), I hope crass competition will develop into healthy competition among us.

    From personal experience I can say that inter-state marriages are rising, slowly but surely. I don’t know if this is true at a national level, but if it is, it will help promote a pan-Indian identity.

    “A bong does not trust a Muslim…”
    Thank God. No one should. 🙂
    Actually, Bongs do :-(. Time after time after time. And suffer for it.

    “(Abhirup), obviously you are one of those people who use office computers to do all this”.

    Actually, you are describing not Abhirup, but me in that description. At office, and now home PC too. My poor wife is getting more and more exasperated at this !!

    @ Abhirup “I absolutely fail to see how my position can be labelled as an extreme one. I have proposed equal importance of all regional languages”.

    I basically mean :-
    (a) the baby (Hindi) has been nominated as the token darling of the house for 60 years (its a somewhat aged baby)

    (b) one extreme is making the baby (Hindi) rise to rule the household.

    © The other position is kicking the baby off the gaddi it held for the last 60 years forthwith.

    This is what I mean by extreme. Forcing Hindi off the billboard.

    “We absolutely do not need one language. India’s identity should be based on harmonious diversity”

    I think Hindi does contribute to gluing the country together. Also, Bollywood exerts a powerful influence over Indian masses. Let Hindi stay as the national language; it is a largely ceremonial post anyway.

    “There is absolutely no need … when so many equally powerful/important/developed languages are there.”

    Actually it is because there are so many powerful regional languages, that we need a weak language like Hindi to be the flagship. It is so feeble, that it cannot ever threaten to erode the hegemony of rich regional dialects.

    “We do not have a need to have a single national language like the German/french etc. people. We can stay completely different”.

    It does contribute to external perceptions of our identity. Harmony in diversity is all very good, but there must be certain areas (national security, economic policy, internal law and order, foreign policy) where our presentation must be consistent. And having a national language contributes to this.

    “However , a official language should be chosen only based on practical reasons. Various practical reasons suggest english should be the official language”.

    I think national pride can override practicality here. If pure practicality was the sole yeardstick, then there would be no language left in the world apart from English. In 50 years time, I think that is exactly what will happen.

    Thus the discourse on Hindi’s assigned veneration is purely academic. We shall witness the withering away of all non-English languages in out lifetime.

    “GERMAN: glad to know of a German language aspirant. Me too currently struggling through its tricky grammar.”

    Ore baap re baap !! German grammar? Who said anything about grammar? I am talking about basic nouns, basic verbs, and counting up to 20!! If you are learning grammar, you are zwanzig steps ahead of me !! 🙂

  58. ‘I think Hindi does contribute to gluing the country together’
    ‘It does contribute to external perceptions of our identity’

    -I don’t think that to glue a country together a single language is needed. This is true obviously for European countries , but we are completely different , european countries , more or less , have one strong/developed language being spoken throughout , in most cases. The case is completely different for us – many equally strong languages exist together – we should not hence at all try to think in terms of single-language-hence-unity theme.

    ‘External perception’ – In our case it has to be completely diff. E.g : We view Germany as a nation of predominantly German speaking people – does that automatically mean that Germans must also view us as a nation of predominantly Hindi-speaking people , when the actual situation is quite drastically different ? Is it impossible for , say , Germans to view us as a country of Hindi and Marathi and …. speaking people ? As i said , the kind of identity is going to be totally different.

    Regarding english as official lang and national pride : But Hindi , similarly , undermines regional pride. Hence we have to go on purely practical basis. our case is completely diff. from other countries – where the question of regional pride is mostly absent. Hence, our strategy and way of thinking also to be completely different

  59. @ hara hara bom bom: Mumbai and Delhi support a population base larger than that of Kol, but they definitely look a shade better. You should do a little Pranayama yourself to clear your head, since you are a bigot and not just a cheap stake who misuses office property (which by the way is very common among Bongs!)who advocates mistrust towards another religious community and since you seem to be happily unaware of the fact that Bongs are widely mistrusted by a lot of people. Don’t agree. Read this….http://www.telegraphindia.com/archives/archive.htm
    Your stand just proves my hypothesis that Bongs are a lot who pretend to be intellectual when they are actually very shallow.
    Not to mention the fact that you are completely wrapped up in one tiny part of the argument while missing the central point……which is, “animal-haters”.
    You should also take classes in Reading Comprehension along with Pranayama, which will help you spot the central theme of an argument and not get carried away by incidental and supplementary points.

  60. @ abhirup: Defensiveness by it’s very definition, is not a healthy trait. Talk to any psychologist and you’ll know why. I don’t have the time or inclination to explain to a small mind like yours. Dearie, a “common currency” is not the same as national language, it is just a common language for communication, just like computers use protocol. Otherwise we would have the same situation as that experienced when they were making the Tower of Babel. Hindi happens to be spoken by, in simple arithmetic terms, a majority of Indians, and therefore enjoys that status. And if you think that having a national language means that regional languages are thrown out of the window, you are illogical and irrational. It’s like saying that mechanization will make human labor extinct. Since you are so puerile so as not to be able to comprehend this simple fact, I’m explaining it to you. And Since you are incredibly stupid enough to propound the propagation of English, here’s a news-flash for you. The English script and spoken language is alien to a majority of Indians. It DOES NOT come naturally or automatically to Indians other than those brought up in English speaking households. You just need stand outside any reputed school at admission time and talk to the parents to get a glimpse of the truth.
    If you think Bengalis mingle with a lot of Hindi-speaking people, you’re mistaken again. Your friend circle cannot be considered a balanced, significant sample size for this conclusion.
    Your stand , as exemplified by your comments, is based on very little knowledge and a whole lot of delusions, not to mention, prejudice. You remind me of a third-rate-MBA-school-grad who talk bullshit without having done proper research or knowing ground realities, but who has a very high opinion of himself because he is an MBA.

  61. @Ihate…

    my arguments against having a national lang are already clearly stated . As to English being alien to many Indians – so is Hindi ( South India / East India ). I am not a MBA , and finally , it is impossible to reply any more ,with reasons, to your illogical vitriol.

  62. Bengalis and animal haters? Or is it animal EATers? Bengalis don’t hate fruits, flowers, animals, birds and fish, on the contrary we love them all! Just take a look at our plates: from the flower of the jackfruit tree to the majestic ilish…….This discussion is almost as good as Himesh!

  63. @ ihateallbongs “Mumbai and Delhi support a population base larger than that of Kol, but they definitely look a shade better”.

    Surely not Dharavi, largest slum in Aisa?

    “You should do a little Pranayama yourself to clear your head, since you are a bigot and not just a cheap stake who misuses office property (which by the way is very common among Bongs!)”

    Hey, I don’t have enough knowledge in my head in the first place to clear. 🙂

    Don’t worry about my office “misue” of resources. It’s in my break times. Besides, I am so efficient that I finish my tasks in half the time of my non-Bong peers 🙂

    “who advocates mistrust towards another religious community and ”
    And you are accusing others of bigotry with your inexplicable love for all things Bengali? 🙂

    “since you seem to be happily unaware of the fact that Bongs are widely mistrusted by a lot of people.”
    Not that I am unaware. Just that I don’t care. Thats why I say there is no use in hating others. 50% of them dont know that you hate them. The other 50% know, but don’t care. 😉

    “Don’t agree. Read this….http://www.telegraphindia.com/archives/archive.htm

    Couldn’t read that. Did you write it?

    “Your stand just proves my hypothesis that Bongs are a lot who pretend to be intellectual when they are actually very shallow”.
    I apologise unreservedly for the sins of my commuunity. Those fellows, Chaitanya, Ramakrishna & Vivekananda. All very shallow.

    “Not to mention the fact that you are completely wrapped up in one tiny part of the argument while missing the central point……which is, “animal-haters”

    Now why did I miss that. Oh, because it was because your comment did not make that very clear to begin with. I apologise to you on your behalf as well. 🙂

    “You should also take classes in Reading Comprehension along with Pranayama, which will help you spot the central theme of an argument and not get carried away by incidental and supplementary points”.

    I should also win one lottery. God knows I’ve been buying tickets for 7 years. 😦

  64. @ihateallbongs

    It IS nice to have you ‘enlivening’ the discussion.
    There was this Raj –a Narendra Modi FAN–, then there were aliases of Kishor (only his home loan got approved and he turned into a much nicer person with southern inclinations).There was Shadows and Sayon hurling engg. text books and psillium ovata at each other. And of course, there were and are the legions of HIMESH ROKZ kind of fans.

    Have you tried Bengali cuisine? It comes a close second to Kishor’s preferred gastronomic delights.

  65. It’s a pity ihateallbongs is not a cannibal. Cannibals love all of humanity because they taste soooo good.

    But seriously, is it time for me to peddle some more psyllium ovata? Anal retentiveness seems to be on the rise!

  66. @Arnab and others:

    The most interesting thing is that both HHBB (who sounds saner in THIS POST ONLY, that too in comparison) and the frustrated housewife Ihateallbongs are actually very similar to each other.

    One despises people on the basis of their community; the other despises people on the basis of their religion.

    BTW, HHBB actually wrote this (brace yourself):

    “Thats why I say there is no use in hating others.”

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    Hara Hara Bom Bom says there’s no sense in hating others!!!!!!! Man, this must be some parallel universe from the one I usually read his other posts in. Can’t think of any other explanation.

  67. Hi Shan,

    I didn’t know you were following every single comment of mine with religious devotion. I regret to say I treat yor comments far more casually. 🙂

    When you say I despise Muslims, this is false; I don’t despise anyone. As you are hanging on to every word I say with rapt attention, you will have noted that I quoted ‘Hinduism needs Islam as much as Islam needs Hinduism. Likewise Xtianity’.

    The ‘essence’ of Islam provides the moral fibre and discipline required for salvation. The ‘essence’ of Christianity provides the catholic liberalism required for intellectual ascencion. And Hinduism provides the spiritual techniques and mystical knowledge required for salvation. Any one without the other two is incomplete.

    All faiths, in addition to their benevolent essence, have abberations and evils, some accumulated (jehad, sati, inquisition), some ab initio, even propagated by their initiators (Islamic sectarianism, Christian exclusiveness, Hindu caste discrimination). The spiritual test for a faith is to recognise and shed the baggage of sin, even if the founder laid it down.

    Hinduism has progressed a long way in achieiving this. Christian nations have partially realised this (seperation of state from religion, advancement of science). Islam has hardly begun, and until it does, it remains a serious threat. We should all be extremely careful that we are not swamped by the fanatic part of their idealogy and their overwhelming population. It is for the sake of Muslims too that I advocate the saving of Hinduism from Islam.

    One aspect of Islam is a spiritual tenet, the other aspect is an historical fact. They are distinct, and I will not compromise the veracity of the latter in fear of harming political correctness towards the former.

    “this must be some parallel universe from the one I usually”

    Jawohl. I’ve maintained all long that pseudo secularshave been inhabiting a lala-land parallel universe to the one normal people living in historical reality inhabit. 🙂 Thus Gandhi could say to raped Hindu women “think of your (Muslim) rapists as ‘brothers’, and then the problem disappears” (or somehting along those lines). Can you in all sincerity say this approach is correct?

    If you are interested in parallel universes, there is a lot of research going on wrt astral travel. There are some fantastic books by William Buhlman & Raymond Moody. Many of the findings mirror the samadhi experiences narrated by Hindu sages of yore. This is also the case with near death experiences. There is a very good website hosted by Kenneth Ring on this, which I welcome you to visit (just type in ‘Kenneth Ring’ & ‘NDE’ in google). I hope you enjoy it; it brings a new dimension in spirituality.

  68. @hhbb

    ‘Hinduism has progressed a long way in achieiving this. Christian nations have partially realised this (seperation of state from religion, advancement of science). Islam has hardly begun,’

    Can you further clarify ? I do think Hinduism has even now a lot of evils.

  69. @HHBB

    That is off course not to say that other religions do not possess evils . Organised religion , one can not help feeling , always has the evil purpose of furthering the ruling class’/priest class’ interests. It is true that some people will, through their ability manipulate situations to get their interests furthered – nothing wrong in that . But I do feel organised religion furthers some peoples’ interest by kind of hoodwinking others. Offcourse , an atheist like me can not perhaps appreciate properly the question of spiritual need.

  70. @HHBB:

    All the Googling of terms irrelevant to the main thrusts of others’ comments to prove your own erudition will not convince me that you are understanding and tolerant of other religions. Sorry boss, your sudden and new found moderation will not fly. In fact it sounds just like Modi’s “I’m not communal” comment in the HT summit.

    Not withstanding your silly self important digs about others “religiously” following your comments (while you, of course, treat others’ casually), the fact remains that you are touchy enough to respond to short comments with a 500 word incoherent, irrelevant tome on alternate universes and religious ethnography. And you do that each and every time. Treating comments casually indeed. Ha!

    In fact most of the other readers (except 2 or 3 obvious empathisers) actually take your vituperative rants with a lot of hilarity garnished with several pinches of salt. But then, please know that you are not alone in that situation of not being taken seriously. Most right wingnuts (fortunately) are in your corner.

    You will notice I have avoided commenting on religion etc. That is because unlike you, I am trying to avoid repeating myself in every thread, every post, every opportunity ad nauseum.

  71. Hi Abhirup,

    I’ll answer a question with a question. What do you think the major evils in Hinduism today are?

    Even wrt the caste system, ‘Hinduism’ has & continues to advocate strong steps against it. Vivekananda did yeoman wrok in advocating uplifment of the depressed classes. The Shankaracharya of Kanchi was doing sterling service to increase the profile and dignity of dalits.

    It is the anti-Hindus, who have a vested interest in keeping caste burning cherfully, that proceeded to frame false charges against him.

    Also, it iwll be very disingenious to claim female infanticide etc are ‘Hindu’ sins. Hindusim has along spoken against it. It is a social evil, which arose for many historiocal reasons, external and internal, wich Hinduism has been trying to eradicate.

    Islamic evils today include :
    – sectarianism (leading to) bigotry (resulting in) fanaticism.
    – global terrorism
    – destruction of the ‘other’ (either immediately by force, or slowly through demographic choking)
    – consistent state of warfare
    – mass overpopulation
    These are not ‘social’ evils, but ‘religious’ ones, as they are actively encouraged from the pulpit, often with full Koranic validation.

    I’m interested to view your list of similar Hindu evils.

  72. you know i completely skipped this comment thread with PhD’s reminiscing about their experiences as waaaaaay over my head. the collective IQ on the page then could have sent a mission to mars.

    then came along our frustrated housewife.

    you know i really enjoyed HHBB placating a person on a total rampage. the shoe was on the other foot for a short while!

  73. @ Shan : “All the Googling of terms irrelevant to the main thrusts of others’ comments to prove your own erudition will not convince me that you are understanding and tolerant of other religions”.

    Why exactly is it to prove my erudition? It is more to apprise of an exciting new field. Nothing to do with ‘tolerance’ or ‘erudition’, just communication.

    “Sorry boss, your sudden and new found moderation will not fly.”

    Hey, don’t be sorry. I have not changed my prior belief, even by an iota, which is perfect parity in treatment for all faiths. I refuse to cringe like a sycophant at the obviously dangerous and evil aspects of any faith in fear of offending their sensitivities … and scabbards.

    Gandhi did that. Chamberlain did that. Look at the calamity they visited on millions.

    “Not withstanding your silly self important digs about others “religiously” following your comments”

    Actions speak louder than words. There is a reasonable gap between your comments (even your hilarious ad hominess) and when I deign to respond. Yet you once responded to my comment at break neck speed. As if you were lurking in the shadows, ready to pounce.

    I found that hilarious. And a bit sad.

    “you are touchy enough to respond to short comments with a 500 word incoherent, irrelevant tome on alternate universes and religious ethnography.”

    Incoherent can mean non-comprehensible, or disjointed. If incomprehensible, which portion?

    If disjointed, which portion? You will note that my points are made in clearly divided paragraphs. The first line of the para gives it away. If you don’t like it, don’t read the rest of the para.

    The main reason for the length is that I fill my comments with a plethora of facts, figures and dates. Facts that are not just conveniently, but contrivedly omitted by the Hindu-hating press press.

    “In fact most of the other readers (except 2 or 3 obvious empathisers) actually take your vituperative rants with a lot of hilarity”.

    How do you know about other readers? Are you in correspondence with them? Are you a mind reader? Do you read Tarot cards?

    I could respond by saying “other readers deem you as a sad buffoon, especially after your fervent imagination morphed ‘oil for diyas’ in to ‘lubricating oil for sex’. I can say that all readers cringe at the image of a leering Shan with a jar of lubricating oil in his hand, and the other hand around … well, let’s just say it’s not a diya.

    However, I will not say that, as I have no way of ascertaining it.

    “please know that you are not alone in that situation of not being taken seriously”.

    Again idle speculation. But note the point that I am not courting popularity from the Shans of this world. I am interested in reminding, and apprising people of facts to appreciate the horror that may engulf us if we are not careful. Horrors that have devastated us many times in the past.

    People who speak uncomfortable truths are not always popular, but they are right nevertheless. It takes a short sentence to talk rubbish (Golwarkar hated Jews). It takes a para to refute it. It takes a page to expose the hypocrisy of those accusing Golwarkar.

    “You will notice I have avoided commenting on religion etc. That is because unlike you, I am trying to avoid repeating myself in every thread, every post, every opportunity ad nauseum”

    Don’t worry, you don’t have to quote religion in your comments. It has no affect on whether they are dreary, repetitive and abysmal quality nevertheless.

    Hmm. Till later.

  74. @WTF “then came along our frustrated housewife. you know i really enjoyed HHBB placating a person on a total rampage. the shoe was on the other foot for a short while!”

    Hmm. WTF, I hope you appreciate the distinction between the two scenarios.

    The ‘housewife’ ranting at Bongs is a joke. I have taken it exactly at that. It is possible that our ‘housewife’ is a Hindu-hater living off state benefit & thus with a huge amount of time on hands to dress up as a Dravid one day, a housewife the next, and sprinkle rancour on Hindus. I have witnessed a lot of this in my 10 years of surfing.

    My ‘rants’ as you call them discuss serious issues. They concern the life and death of millions, and whether we can continue to exist as a viable community in the near future.

    Though we may not be able to affect the outcome, IMHO, it is important we are aware of where we stand.

    I hope you appreciate the distinction between the two scenarios. I seriously do. If you don’t, then as a community we are steeped in such deep denial, that we have no hope.

  75. abhirup – U r fully right, Hindi sux big time. Id accept Urdu over Hindi. Hindi = lingo of peasant, not befit grand country like India. English fine. Why not admit English as national lingo as all educ8d ppl speak it neway.

    H2B2 – U wanted a Hindu evil? Here is 1
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/south_asia/7080326.stm

    Do u not think worship of medical freak as goddess is evil?

    We have manyx2 things evil in our faith. Ur h8trd of Moslem cant hide that.

    Shan – If u have ne point 2 make, make it. Otherwise spare us belt up.

  76. @Yahooooo:

    I see you have been going through each post and adding your two bits to each comment thread. Lots of time eh?

    But maybe a spell checker will help?

  77. @ HHBB
    I am under no illusion like you that religious evils can be put down point by point in a short and sweet list as you have done . Also , as I think that all religions are total crap anyway , all of them possess many evils , I do not maintain lists of Hindu evils , Christian evils etc. Yet , to justify my earlier statement I will say a few things . It is also necessary to oppose your fanatic vilification of Islam and Muslims . ( Not that I am an apologist for the evils of Islam and the evil acts by some Muslims but common sense suggests to me that Islam is as bad a religion as any other in this world and Muslims/Muslim clerics , on the whole , are as bad or good as any other people/clerics of any other religion in this world. )

    HINDU EVILS :
    Caste system – the fact that some people have spoken against this does not mean it is not an evil . It is very much a burning issue . It contributes to as diverse events as that of lynching of Dalits to that of thwarting of possible love-marriages.

    Women – Most religions are anti women . hinduism is no exception. the whole doctrine of Tantra is about sexual exploitation in name of religion . Female infanticide is off course a religious evil as the social attitude which leads to this is a contribution of continuous subjection of women by religion . Manusmriti to top it all .

    Rituals – From animal sacrifice to rituals requiring harming of one’s body for pleasing a God.

    All this evils are also present in other religions of the world also.

    MUSLIM EVILS :
    About caste system you named its opposers – in every religion there are persons who have opposed its evils so there must be people who have opposed all this. Please do not ask me to name them as we Indians are usually taught about the bibekanandas from our childhood and not Islamic reformers . To find a list would be an arduous Googling job 🙂

    Also , mass overpopulation point seems absurd because I have never heard of countries like Pakistan/Malaysia facing population explosion ( Although , I confess that I am not a specialist on census data of these countries and have not googled on this either 🙂 )

    BIBEKANANDA ?
    I confess I have not read Bibekananda’s works but ratinalist Prabir Ghosh has , in his book Aloukik noy , Loukik ( Vol 5 page 116 ) quoted some of Bi’nanda’s letters which really cast a doubt on how sincere he was indeed in mitigating the caste problem.

    Also , Bi’nanda said ” jibe prem … ” but was supporter of animal sacrifice during Durga puja in Belur Math which was stopped by Ma Sarada.
    And talking about Ma Sarada – It is indeed one of the most ridiculous aspects of religion that is the way This lady is worshipped as somewhat of a Goddess ! Come on , all she did whole life is cooking etc. Although you may find good sayings by her these profoundly ordinary pieces of wisdom could have been uttered by any Tom-Dick_Harry!

  78. @ hhbb:

    of course your views are way more educated and important.

    pardon me but sometimes you do tend to sound a little hysterical while making your points. and however justified, many times they do pour vitriol on another religion. so its funny to see you patiently arguing the case of humanity against another hysterical person.

  79. @ abhirup : “I am under no illusion like you that religious evils can be put down point by point in a short and sweet list as you have done”

    It may be because it is easy to highlight the obvious evils still pervading the religion of love, while the same cannot be listed for Hinduism.

    “It is also necessary to oppose your fanatic vilification”

    With all due respect, I define the chain of fanaticism as follows : Sectarianism breeds bigotry resulting in fanaticism.

    I am not sectarian. I believe in equal rights and responsibilities for all cultures. If a genie boons me the power to “make the whole world Hindu”, I will shudder away from it. Where’s the fun in that monotony? Let all faiths exist in love and peace, no one overcoming or overwhelming the other.

    And this is the basic Hindu stance. However, the very basis of Islam is rooted in spreading Islam by any means possible, the charitable with the book, the profane through population explosion, the evil ones through the sword. This is the very basis of their faith.

    Can you deny this?

    If I vilify, I have ample reason to justify it. If you wish me to cloak it in sugar-coating, it will be more palatable, but the facts remain unaltered.

    “Caste system”
    You have said ‘some people’ have spoken against it in Hinduism. From time immemorial, ‘all’ great Hindu personages have spoken against it. Adi Shankaracharya, Madhavacharya, Ramdas, Tulsidas, Mirabai, Chaitanya, Ramakrishna, Vivekananda, Sai Baba, even the modern Shankaracharya. These are not a few people. This is the entire gamut of personages we define Hinduism by.

    Manu is not a religious personage. It is a loose amalgamation of multifarious and often contradictory pronouncements at different points of time. The Manusmriti does not equate to the Koran.

    That is why I say caste is a social problem, not a religious one. Thus a purely religious solution to it has failed. The religion does not need to change. The society does.

    The same cannot be said of the extreme exclusiveness preached in the religion of peace. That is a religious problem. The religion needs to be corrected.

    “Tantra”
    I am surprised you define Tantra as pure exploitation. I can recommend a good book that will help you know more about it.

    Tantra is a dangerous path, using a glut of sex as a process to finally overcome lust. Thus it is highly open to abuse, and thus Hindu saints advise serious caution against it.

    Seriously, Tantra does not pose the same menace as jehad.

    “Reformers in other faiths”
    You have cited reformers in other faiths. Of course they are worthy of admiration. The distinction is in Hinduism, reformers nearly always manage to remove the ossified errors that have crept in to the faith. In other faiths, they are put to death and forgotten about.

    “Bibekananda – Meat eating”
    Yes, I accept that I do not understand Vivekananda’s stance on meat eating either. One reason may be that vegetarianism breeds higher love and tolerance, whereas meat infuses a bit of toughness and assertiveness. The need of the hour (subjected nation, famine murders) was manliness and opposition to a greater evil than meat eating. This is only my opinion, and not a justification.

    Besides, Vivekananda, thorugh Nirvikalpa Samadhi, saw the Ultimate Univerrsal Truth face to face. This is why he is great. Not for his dietary preference.

    Further, you will note that leaving Vivekananda aside, Hinduism in general considers vegetarianism to be a great virtue. This is a religious strength of Hinduism you have cited.

    “Sarada ma is worshipped as somewhat of a Goddess” !

    What do you mean as goddess? The Indian term is devi, divine one. She lived a highly spiritual life, abstaining from the temptations of the flesh, and yet inspiring others with her wisdom. She was a beacon of hope for Ramakrishna’s disciples after his early passing. She is definitely worthy of our reverence, and of a higher level of spirituality than us. Thus she is divine.

  80. @ WTF : “i dont know whether you misunderstood my point or were again showcasing your knowledge for our benefit”.

    Showcase knowledge? Low blow. Ouch, that hurt. Please appreciate that my intention is definitely not to ‘ showcase knowledge’, but communicating my thoughts with others, and eagerly learning from others too.

    “i never called Gowalkar an anti-semite (stating specifically that he supported the creation of Israel).”

    I didn’t say you did. There was a comment by someone else on Golwarkar earlier in this thread, so I thought I’d pen my thoughts on this. That’s why I addressed point 5 alone in your name (Jesus – Pilate).

    The fact that my whole comment got mangled as (I pressed send before editing) has added to the confusion. Sorry about that.

    “since you raise the rather bloody nature of the bible, i would like you and mr. khujur to consider how this reflects on dutch christains or belgian christains. i hope you understand what im getting at.”

    I do not get it. Are you talking about the pacifist nature of Dutch & Belgian Christians in spite of their divergent allegiances? Well Dutch Christians at one time waged exceptionally bloodthirsty campaigns :

    (a) Against Spain (they burnt down Antwerp Cathedral & slaughtered Catholics. Thus Philip of Spain sent in the brutal Count of Alba to suppress the rebellion.

    (b) During the 30 Years War (1618-1648), they were heartily engaged in one of the cruelest and intense blood-letting the world has ever witnessed.

    (c) They took this opportunity to wrest entire colonies away from Portugal (which had been subsumed in to Spain, the antagonist of Holland in the conflict). They wrested the Indies, attacked Portuguese colonies in Bengal (I think, Chinsura?), took South Africa, snatched North Brazil, and even stormed the heavily guarded famous Portuguese fort of El Mina in East Africa.

    (d) Their horrific treatment of poor South Africans and Indonesians is a result of this barbarity.

    As far as Belgian Christians go, Belgium is too small and recent a country to be involved in religious conflicts. It arose after an exhausted and effete post-Napoleonic Europe and Holland acceded to the Catholics of southern Holland seceding without bloodshed. In reality, there was nothing Holland could do about it.

    Even then, the treatment meted out by their king, Leopold (ok, a German) on the poor Congonese is nothing short of outrageous.

    I referred to the Bible (in context of your points on Jews killing Jesus) as I am not sure we can resort to the New Testament uncritically as historical evidence.

    “pardon me but sometimes you do tend to sound a little hysterical while making your points.

    Ok, fair point, I shall try being more reserved in future.

    Please do note that some of my more colorful comments were contrived theatrical antics rather than genuine histrionics. They were intended for specific commentators who had abused Hinduism (like the wit who linked to a website listing the ugliest aspects of Hindu mythology). However, other readers have no way of ascertaining that the comment is tongue-in-cheek, and may take genuine offense.

    “and however justified, many times they do pour vitriol on another religion”

    Its not that I want to ‘pour vitriol’ on any faith, but day by day, people are being forced to admit less and less charitable things about the ‘religion of peace’.

    The UK tried desperately putting a brave face on the growing terrorist menace that was spreading in its midst for decades, in spite of Hindu organizations cautioning authorities. Now they are being forced to change their stance every day.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/7078712.stm

    As people who live in the UK know, the real number is 20 times higher than the admitted one of 2,000. But anyway, 2,000 is a start, and watch this media number-bite multiply massively in the next few months.

    But I take your point on the need to measure some of my comments. I accept it.

  81. @WTF

    you know i completely skipped this comment thread with PhD’s reminiscing about their experiences as waaaaaay over my head. the collective IQ on the page then could have sent a mission to mars.

    then came along our frustrated housewife.”

    REALLY? Mission to Mars huh?

    I don’t think PhD’s are any more smarter than your average frustrated housewife. In fact many of them ARE the average frustrated houewife!

    I think its a huge misconception to consider a PhD any more intelligent than average, or to assume that they have a higher IQ than normal. That is like calling a mechanic “smart” because s/he can tell you things about your car you never knew, or calling a carpenter smart cuz he can do things with wood that you wouldn’t dare to (like attach himself up on a cross with nails to give you a guilt trip).

  82. @ h2b2:

    in an extremely lame gesture i was trying to imply that despite the bloody nature of the bible and its inspired violence, the dutch and the belgians (they did some hardcore stuff in africa in the name of christainity), they are relatively benign countries today who mean well for everyone.

    so the same may be said for islam- that some day, some where in a galaxy far far away our muslim brothers will not be radicalized by their crazy leaders. it happened with the christains. its happening with the sikhs too.

    i dont know about other people but i enjoy being bombarded by your encyclopedic posts.

  83. @HHBB
    “It may be because it is easy to highlight the obvious evils still pervading the religion of love, while the same cannot be listed for Hinduism.”

    What i meant when i spoke about inadequacy of ‘lists’ is that discussion of religious evils must necessarily be detailed discussions as this is a very involved topic. Reducing to “list” is , in a way , offcourse possible but that can not escape oversimplification. And I am fully convinced that the same can be done for Hinduism as well as any religion in this world.E.g: Caste system, Attitude to women , multifarious rituals , Godmen like Saibaba … ( a sample list for hinduism ).I am fully convinced that a person who is as eager in vilifying Hinduism as you are in vilifying other religions will be able to provide a longer list . I am not one , even then i have a ‘List’:-)

    “And this is the basic Hindu stance. However, the very basis of Islam is rooted in spreading Islam by any means possible, the charitable with the book, the profane through population explosion, the evil ones through the sword. This is the very basis of their faith.

    Can you deny this?

    If I vilify, I have ample reason to justify it.”

    You may think hinduism is unique in tolerating all religions but there are historical allegations of Hindu persecution of Buddhists. Also , different religions will have different kinds of evil. Caste system is , for example an evil typical to hinduism. Whether intolerance towards other religions is a greater evil or dividing society into four castes is a matter of personal opinion. To me, all religious evils of all religions are equally despicable.I do not claim to be an Islam-scholar and can not say what is the basis of their religion. However , I am fully convinced that someone else can provide equally strong/stronger arguments to convince that the basis of islam is something apart from what you are claiming. Such arguments will be as Good/bad as yours. Even if I accept what you say , then this is a evil typical of Islam and i have already said all religions have typical evils and weighing which is a greater evil is a matter of opinion. I personally find all religions to be evil.

    ” we define Hinduism by.

    Manu is not a religious personage. It is a loose amalgamation of multifarious and often contradictory pronouncements at different points of time. The Manusmriti does not equate to the Koran.”

    If you define Hinduism by persons mentioned by you there is no reason why one can not include manusmriti in his defination. Also manusmriti not = Koran is only a way of seeing .Manu = koran is equally valid. actually it is not possible to find texts of exactly equal importance in a corresponding manner in two religions – ascertaining importance is arbitrary choice.

    “That is why I say caste is a social problem, not a religious one. ” – caste system originated from religion only. With full validation by texts . even to this days only brahmins perform rituals – I do not think bibekananda ever stopped this in his organisation – correct me if i am wrong.

    Tantra – I will obviously like to know more so please name a Eng/bengali book abt it. However , i already have rudimentary ideas abt it – i know it claims to conquer lust thru lust etc. I do not have to accept this claim – I may still , with valid reasons , think that all this doctrine was framed by few shrewd people to exploit – offcourse they will have to justify but accepting that is matter of opinion. Do refer the book please.Again , whether framing a whole doctrine to sexuallly exploit is more or less or equally diabolical to jehad or not is matter of personal opinion.

    “in Hinduism, reformers nearly always manage to remove the ossified errors that have crept in to the faith. In other faiths, they are put to death and forgotten about.” – perhaps not true – Sati is still practiced , caste system is very much alive. Please give a few instances of other faith reformers put to death and forgotten – will be edifying for me – you obviously possess a lot of info on these issues.

    ” Vivekananda, thorugh Nirvikalpa Samadhi, saw the Ultimate Univerrsal Truth face to face. This is why he is great.
    ” – i think bibekananda was certainly a man of great ability – to be able to set up RKM like charity org is grt. However , i think samadhi etc. are only kinds of states of delusion and do not find anything grt in it.

    “Hinduism in general considers vegetarianism to be a great virtue. This is a religious strength ” – i do not think there is anything great in vegetarianism . Also , many hindu sects , i.e Tantra ( matsya and mangsha are two of pancha ma of tantra ) do not support vegetarianism. However , the way ritual sacrifice is carried out is certainly diabolical – bibekananda supported this.

    Sarada ma – I do not think her rejection of temptation( i would say natural physiological demand ) of flesh was her decision . Not that i think this kind of rejection is particularly admirable yet ability to undergo any sacrifice is admirable to me , although whether rejecting nat. physiological demands should be admirable is debatable. I think it was Ramkrishna’s decision – you may cite quotes by her claiming it was her decision but i do think ramkrishna was a much poerful personality who would be able to force his decision. Also , kind of hardships she underwent are underwent by many women , her kind of wisdom also had nothing profound abt it. I do think she was a quite ordinary person in all respects.

  84. Pingback: IPL 2.0 Snippet I at Random Thoughts of a Demented Mind

  85. Awesome comments Abhirup. The guy you argued with didn’t post any reply , proving the stupidity of his kind. Cheers for Prabir Ghosh (Writer of Aloukik noy Loukik , the book you mentioned).

  86. Pingback: reason# 32423 | staying.cool

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