Sunday, October 19, 2014

"Child labour is rampant in the informal sector"

"Child labour is rampant in the informal sector"
Updated: Oct 19, 2014 11:21 AM , By Vidya Venkat | 0 comments 
We must understand that child labour, illiteracy and poverty form a triangle of curse for children, says Kailash Satyarthi. File photo
We must understand that child labour, illiteracy and poverty form a triangle of curse for children, says Kailash Satyarthi. File photo
I have been partially successful in the paradigm shift from the notion "children are subject of pity" to "every child has rights and dignity."
On October 10, Kailash Satyarthi, founder of the Bachpan Bachao Andolan, was named the joint winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, along with Pakistani teenager Malala Yousafzai. The award is in recognition of his campaign for over three decades against child labour. In an e-mail interview with Vidya Venkat, while travelling in Europe, he discussed his difficult journey in asserting the rights of children and his future plans.


How difficult has your journey to eradicate child labour been these 34 years?
Mahatma Gandhi had predicted the journey of ordinary people like me several decades ago: “First they ignore, then they laugh, then they fight and finally you will win.” I started at a time when child slavery and child labour were non-issues; so there was nothing to learn. It’s difficult to find new roads but even more difficult to make your own road levelling the rocks and mountains. My fight was against the ignorance, the neglect, the mindset, the greed that encouraged lack of respect for children and the vested interests of organised criminal gangs, corrupt officers and politicians. In my early days of work, I lost two of my colleagues. My office was ransacked and gutted several times, the last one being our Delhi office in 2010. My home was attacked. The Nobel Peace Prize, therefore, is a ray of hope for millions of marginalised children trapped in exploitation and slavery across the globe.


What are the sectors in which child labour is still prevalent in India?
Child labour is rampant in the informal sector. One must have the eye to spot it and speak up against it.


You have worked in India and abroad. Many people in India are unfortunately not aware of the extent of work you and the Bachpan Bachao Andolan has done …
My biggest success is giving visibility to forgotten children. Today, thousands of organisations and hundreds of thousands of individuals globally are not only marching on the path I paved but are also taking up the cause of child rights on their own, doing even better than me.
Secondly, I have been partially successful in the paradigm shift from the notion “children are subject of pity” to “every child has rights and dignity.” For example, we free children, educate and rehabilitate them. Bachpan Bachao Andolan has created hundreds of child-friendly villages, where all children are freed from exploitation, abuse, risk of trafficking and child marriages; are enrolled in schools; and are taking part in development-related decision- making by forming Bal Panchayats and Gram Sabhas to work with them. Our Mukti Caravan — an awareness campaign on wheels — has traversed thousands of villages.
Our long marches from Kanyakumari to Kashmir have built socio-political momentum in amending the Constitution and making education a fundamental right. We made the most of the existing legal and judicial mechanisms in India and secured landmark judgments and orders on bonded labour, trafficking, missing children, etc. The Bachpan Bachao Andolan, along with others, has succeeded in getting missing children and human trafficking defined in the statutes.
Our Global March against Child Labour travelled across 103 countries and over 80,000 kilometres and was joined by millions of peoples and scores of heads of States earlier in 1998. It resulted in creating a global civil society against child labour and unanimous adoption of a concrete new international law to eradicate the worst forms of child labour. The Global March against Child Labour is the biggest civil society coalition actively working in over 100 countries.
Another significant intervention was to transform the natural compassion for children to consumers’ action and corporate responsibility. This initiative in the carpet industry led to the first social labelling mechanism Rugmark (now known as Good Weave) that gave better opportunities to children by offering jobs and livelihood to their parents and other adults in their place. It was a pleasant alternative for the industry and gave choice to consumers for responsible buying.


It is said that the Indian government has not been very supportive of your efforts to rescue child labourers. Please share examples of the hurdles you faced from the bureaucracy in the course of your work. Do you have any requests to government officers regarding cooperation in rescuing child labourers. What kind of an attitudinal shift do you want to see?
I have dealt with several governments in the States and at the Centre. The taste has been sweet and sour. I am thankful to sensitive politicians, bureaucrats and officers. However, their support remained unnoticed, but a handful of the corrupt who tried to harm and malign were able to make a bigger noise. Indian bureaucrats are the best brains in the world and I always try to awaken their hearts and souls. We definitely hope for the better in the changed scenario. I applaud the Prime Minister’s vision and courage to embrace the most untouched social challenges that multiplies optimism.


Despite progressive laws such as the Right to Education Act and those against child labour and schemes such as the Sarva Sikhsha Abhiyan, universal primary schooling is still a distant dream in India. How do we change this scene?
We must understand that child labour, illiteracy and poverty form a triangle of curse for children. We must break it collectively as a nation. The State, ordinary people and faith leaders must act hand-in-hand. I would especially call upon the most vibrant and ideal youth of my country to lead. All of us have the responsibility to work together to integrate and converge education, labour protection and social safety net coverage in the best interests of children. Needless to say that more investment on protection and development of children is absolutely necessary. Both the government and corporates have an important role to play in it.


How do you explain the persistence of child labour and lack of universal primary schooling in India? Is the caste system to blame?
Caste system is one of the factors that creates a stereotypical exclusion mould for a particular section of society and keeps it away from the growth story. Owing to the caste system, a big and most important segment credited for prosperity and productivity remains left out and is unable to match the pace of socio-economic progress. The entire education system should be re-hauled and made friendly to all children. I strongly insist on zero tolerance for discrimination in education.


How do you plan to put your Nobel prize money to use?
I humbly dedicate every single penny of the prize money for the freedom and education of trafficked, enslaved and abused children, particularly girls.


The award of the Nobel Prize to a child labour activist is viewed in some circles as a western conspiracy to project India as “backward.” Your take?
I have been repeatedly saying and practising over three decades that India may be a land of a hundred problems but definitely is the mother of a million solutions too. It is up to you whether you want to see the problems or seek solutions. I have unshakeable faith in the Indian judiciary and democracy to address this issue.
On October 10, Kailash Satyarthi, founder of the Bachpan Bachao Andolan, was named the joint winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, along with Pakistani teenager Malala Yousafzai. The award is in recognition of his campaign for over three decades against child labour. In an e-mail interview with Vidya Venkat, while travelling in Europe, he discussed his difficult journey in asserting the rights of children and his future plans.
How difficult has your journey to eradicate child labour been these 34 years?
Mahatma Gandhi had predicted the journey of ordinary people like me several decades ago: “First they ignore, then they laugh, then they fight and finally you will win.” I started at a time when child slavery and child labour were non-issues; so there was nothing to learn. It’s difficult to find new roads but even more difficult to make your own road levelling the rocks and mountains. My fight was against the ignorance, the neglect, the mindset, the greed that encouraged lack of respect for children and the vested interests of organised criminal gangs, corrupt officers and politicians. In my early days of work, I lost two of my colleagues. My office was ransacked and gutted several times, the last one being our Delhi office in 2010. My home was attacked. The Nobel Peace Prize, therefore, is a ray of hope for millions of marginalised children trapped in exploitation and slavery across the globe.
What are the sectors in which child labour is still prevalent in India?
Child labour is rampant in the informal sector. One must have the eye to spot it and speak up against it.
You have worked in India and abroad. Many people in India are unfortunately not aware of the extent of work you and the Bachpan Bachao Andolan has done …
My biggest success is giving visibility to forgotten children. Today, thousands of organisations and hundreds of thousands of individuals globally are not only marching on the path I paved but are also taking up the cause of child rights on their own, doing even better than me.
Secondly, I have been partially successful in the paradigm shift from the notion “children are subject of pity” to “every child has rights and dignity.” For example, we free children, educate and rehabilitate them. Bachpan Bachao Andolan has created hundreds of child-friendly villages, where all children are freed from exploitation, abuse, risk of trafficking and child marriages; are enrolled in schools; and are taking part in development-related decision- making by forming Bal Panchayats and Gram Sabhas to work with them. Our Mukti Caravan — an awareness campaign on wheels — has traversed thousands of villages.
Our long marches from Kanyakumari to Kashmir have built socio-political momentum in amending the Constitution and making education a fundamental right. We made the most of the existing legal and judicial mechanisms in India and secured landmark judgments and orders on bonded labour, trafficking, missing children, etc. The Bachpan Bachao Andolan, along with others, has succeeded in getting missing children and human trafficking defined in the statutes.
Our Global March against Child Labour travelled across 103 countries and over 80,000 kilometres and was joined by millions of peoples and scores of heads of States earlier in 1998. It resulted in creating a global civil society against child labour and unanimous adoption of a concrete new international law to eradicate the worst forms of child labour. The Global March against Child Labour is the biggest civil society coalition actively working in over 100 countries.
Another significant intervention was to transform the natural compassion for children to consumers’ action and corporate responsibility. This initiative in the carpet industry led to the first social labelling mechanism Rugmark (now known as Good Weave) that gave better opportunities to children by offering jobs and livelihood to their parents and other adults in their place. It was a pleasant alternative for the industry and gave choice to consumers for responsible buying.
It is said that the Indian government has not been very supportive of your efforts to rescue child labourers. Please share examples of the hurdles you faced from the bureaucracy in the course of your work. Do you have any requests to government officers regarding cooperation in rescuing child labourers. What kind of an attitudinal shift do you want to see?
I have dealt with several governments in the States and at the Centre. The taste has been sweet and sour. I am thankful to sensitive politicians, bureaucrats and officers. However, their support remained unnoticed, but a handful of the corrupt who tried to harm and malign were able to make a bigger noise. Indian bureaucrats are the best brains in the world and I always try to awaken their hearts and souls. We definitely hope for the better in the changed scenario. I applaud the Prime Minister’s vision and courage to embrace the most untouched social challenges that multiplies optimism.
Despite progressive laws such as the Right to Education Act and those against child labour and schemes such as the Sarva Sikhsha Abhiyan, universal primary schooling is still a distant dream in India. How do we change this scene?
We must understand that child labour, illiteracy and poverty form a triangle of curse for children. We must break it collectively as a nation. The State, ordinary people and faith leaders must act hand-in-hand. I would especially call upon the most vibrant and ideal youth of my country to lead. All of us have the responsibility to work together to integrate and converge education, labour protection and social safety net coverage in the best interests of children. Needless to say that more investment on protection and development of children is absolutely necessary. Both the government and corporates have an important role to play in it.
How do you explain the persistence of child labour and lack of universal primary schooling in India? Is the caste system to blame?
Caste system is one of the factors that creates a stereotypical exclusion mould for a particular section of society and keeps it away from the growth story. Owing to the caste system, a big and most important segment credited for prosperity and productivity remains left out and is unable to match the pace of socio-economic progress. The entire education system should be re-hauled and made friendly to all children. I strongly insist on zero tolerance for discrimination in education.
How do you plan to put your Nobel prize money to use?
I humbly dedicate every single penny of the prize money for the freedom and education of trafficked, enslaved and abused children, particularly girls.
The award of the Nobel Prize to a child labour activist is viewed in some circles as a western conspiracy to project India as “backward.” Your take?
I have been repeatedly saying and practising over three decades that India may be a land of a hundred problems but definitely is the mother of a million solutions too. It is up to you whether you want to see the problems or seek solutions. I have unshakeable faith in the Indian judiciary and democracy to address this issue.

All work, no play

All work, no play
Updated: Oct 19, 2014 09:49 AM , By Ramya Kannan | 1 comment 
It is hoped that the Peace Prize will raise the stature of child rights as an issue. Photo: R. Ragu
It is hoped that the Peace Prize will raise the stature of child rights as an issue. Photo: R. Ragu
No happy faces. No innocence. Instead, millions of children out-of-school, and working to make ends meet is what we witness. This, despite laws prohibiting the employment of children. The Nobel Peace Prize for child rights offers hope.
Ray of hope
Forget, for a moment, the raucous discourse surrounding the award of the Nobel Peace Prize. Let’s blot out every argument, the nay and aye-sayers, some of them maybe relevant elsewhere, but not here. The Nobel Peace Prize, in recognising Malala Yousufzai and Kailash Sathyarthi, has given, in no small measure, a huge fillip to the cause of child rights in this subcontinent.
“There seems to be an instrumental approach to the issue of child labour in the way they [Nobel committee] made the statement. It should have been a more ethical voice; child rights are an end in themselves, not a solution for conciliation between nations. A prize of that stature must have invoked us to transcend all identities and end child labour once and for all,” says Shanta Sinha, former Chairperson of the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights.
Ms. Sinha is a recipient of the Ramon Magsaysay Award for her work in the area of child rights. “It is a very important award that deserves to be highlighted. It is recognition for those who are working to end child labour and promote education for all,” she adds.
Much of that work, however, remains to be done. Children interviewed by The Hindu correspondents across the country show those in the age group of 5-14 working as domestic helps and in brick kilns and firecracker factories; trafficked as commodities for labour and commercial sex; and begging on the streets.
A childhood of labour
Anumeha Yadav reports from New Delhi:
On September 2, 13-year-old Gupi* arrived at the Bokaro station from Delhi by Purshottam Express, accompanied by the police. A few minutes later, the tribal girl, who had worked as a domestic worker in Delhi, boarded a bus to Ranchi and then to Gumla, her home district. In Gumla, she was produced before the Child Welfare Committee where her testimony was recorded, and hours later, she was sent back to her village.
It is a routine that repeats every month. Since January, 140 children, almost all of whom had worked as domestic workers, returned to Jharkhand. Diya Sewa Sansathan, a non-governmental organisation (NGO) that has been operating a missing children helpline with the Jharkhand Police since October 2013, say it has recorded information on 220 children, mostly tribal children, missing from 22 districts. Of them, 100 have been traced back, with 70 rescued or having fled from domestic work in Delhi.
Twelve-year-old Sabi (name changed) escaped from the room in which she would be locked in for the night in a house in Delhi, jumping from the room’s window into the building staircase.
“Uncle, aunty lived in the house with a Bhaiya, Didi and their infant. I took care of the baby. They gave me roti usually in the evening. At night, I had to massage aunty’s feet and apply oil and only after she slept, I could sleep. Then Bhaiya would lock me in my room,” she recounted.
She said it had been a year since she had spoken to anyone in her family. She had been beaten with a rolling pin and once with a hot tawa. She said she fled from the house after the woman in the house she worked in cut her hair without asking her …
Among children who have returned to Jharkhand after working as a domestic help is nine-year-old Sabita, whose family in Khunti district, on being traced, refused to take her back. “I lived with my maternal uncle. A woman came to the village and took me with her after asking my uncle. The family I worked with were all right, but they cut my hair saying I had lice. The grandmother in the house would scold me often and hit me saying I had stolen food from the fridge. But I hadn’t. I ran out of their door till I reached the road,” recounted Sabita, now staying in a shelter home run by the Bhartiya Kisan Sangh (BKS).
“Some of the children do not speak at all for days. Some of them, including those younger than 13, recollect how their employers told them that they have been bought for Rs. 10,000-20,000. They say they understood hum bichwa gaye hain (we had been sold to them),” said Budhmani Oraon who teaches children at a shelter home run by the BKS in Chanho on the outskirts of Ranchi.
“The Jharkhand government has prepared an action plan delineating the responsibilities of various departments — labour, home, women and children — when a child is rescued, but there are no clear directions on rehabilitating children, placing them in good residential schools,” said Rishikant of Shaktivahini, an NGO.
A life spent amid trash
Kathakali Nandi reports from Kolkata:
For 13-year-old Bikash, early morning is a busy time. He is usually jolted awake by a police patrol and has to flee in time or else get beaten up for sleeping near the subway close to the Howrah station complex. Bikash and other little boys then have to wait for an opportune time to enter the station complex in search of plastic bottles which they will sell to the shops located opposite the station.
As hundreds of other boys, Bikash is a rag-picker and his life revolves around the Howrah station complex.
“I fled from my home in Paschim Medinipur [district] and came to Kolkata five years ago. Ever since then, I have stayed here,” says Bikash adding that he has rarely gone home in the past five years. He claims he was a pickpocket before the police caught him and beat him up. A “better job” beckoned — rag picking.
Business, however, is on the decline for rag-pickers near the Howrah station complex. Their entry has now been prohibited by the Railway Police Force, reducing their earnings substantially. While Bikash would earn about Rs. 600 daily as a rag-picker, he now ends up earning half of that.
On the streets
Vinaya Deshpande reports from Mumbai:
For Akash Hiwale, it was a life he was not prepared for. He ran away from his house in Jalna in central Maharashtra around five years ago, to escape his abusive father. But he did not know how difficult life outside the confines of home would be. Five years after he criss-crossed the country to beg on different trains to feed himself, he now feels like going back into the arms of his mother. He wants to play with his younger sister again, he wants to study, and become a police officer one day.
“I remember my house,” he could barely speak as his voice choked. Talking about the family brought tears to his eyes. So he changed the topic.
“My father never allowed me to study. He never sent me to school. I wanted to learn, but he wanted me to go to the fields and earn,” Akash slowly opened up. He said the day his father beat him up for not going to work, he ran away.
Since then, he has begged and got addicted and was abused. He does not know his age. But the look on his face shows that the adolescent has lost his innocence too early in his life. “I don’t know which all places I visited. I used to hop trains and beg,” he said. He admitted to have been addicted to cigarettes, gutka, tobacco and whitener.
Baking bricks
Amarnath Tewary reports from Patna:
Hundreds of thousands of poor children migrate from Bihar every year to work in the unorganised sector. One favoured area of employment is brick kilns, where children can be found working along with their families.
Raja, 13, works for nine hours to earn between Rs. 200-300 every day at a brick kiln on the outskirts of Patna. His work starts at 5.30 in the morning and ends at dusk. Working along with him are Sonu, 11, and Shiv, 6. They work for eight months at a stretch — from October 15 to June 15 — as the work at kilns is halted during the four months of rains. In the south, the situation is the same, except that the rainy season shifts to October.
“I was born at a brick kiln in Gopalgunj district. Since then, I’ve been seeing my parents working at brick kilns. So it has come naturally for me to pick up the work,” he said.
There are thousands of such children who could be found working at any of the total 6,477 registered brick kilns in Bihar. “There are over 50 brick kilns on the river bank near Patna stretching from Khajekalan to Kachi Dargah,” said a brick kiln owner preferring anonymity.
Children are employed in brick kilns from an early age and each family is expected to make around 1.5 lakh or more bricks during a specific period, mostly to repay loans taken from the labour contractor who often operates as the middleman between the labourers and the owners.
Playing with fire
S. Sundar reports from Sivakasi:
Poverty has forced many children to take to work at a young age in Sivakasi. Though the firecracker manufacturers of Virudhunagar district, the hub of fireworks in the nation, have declared the industry “child labour-free” years ago, it is not hard to challenge the claims made by employers engaged in this business of over Rs. 2,000 crore.
Though it is hard to find children working in a licensed fireworks shop floor, the unorganised fireworks sector that has flourished as a cottage industry and functions from homes employs children.
In Sivakasi town, this correspondent met a school dropout who was “mainstreamed” by the National Child Labour Project, but discontinued his education in Class 7. Having started his career in a paper tube-making unit at a daily wage of Rs. 60 two years ago, the boy now gets Rs. 120 daily for working nine hours at the unit. His salary helps the family of six to run a hand-to-mouth existence in a single-room rented house.
Several children like him continue to work in the hazardous fireworks industry. Even as the industry continues with its denials, in February this year, the Sivakasi tahsildar rescued three children in the age group of 11-15 who were involved in making crackers in an illegal unit.
***
It is hoped that the Peace Prize will raise the stature of child rights as an issue, and that attendant benefits will follow for the millions of children, such as those profiled above, who have been forced to work in order to survive.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Cast off by outer and inner worlds

Cast off by outer and inner worlds
Oct 11, 2014 06:30 PM , By VANDANA GOPIKUMAR 
Alone... Photo: Thulasi Kakkat
Alone... 

These men and women were born in homes like you and me. They aspired for a bright life like you and me. Somewhere down the line, their lives changed, as they were deprived of what you and I continue to enjoy — life, health and personhood. And then their narrative changed.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Energy Creates Its Own Discipline - JKOnline Daily Quotes


Posted:
To seek reality requires immense energy; and if man is not doing that, he dissipates his energy in ways that create mischief, and therefore society has to control him. Now, is it possible to liberate energy in seeking God or truth and, in the process of discovering what is true, to be a citizen who understands the fundamental issues of life and whom society cannot destroy?You see, man is energy, and if man does not seek truth, this energy becomes destructive; therefore society controls and shapes the individual, which smothers this energy. And perhaps you have noticed another interesting and very simple fact: that the moment you really want to do something, you have the energy to do it. That very energy becomes the means of controlling itself, so you don't need outside discipline. In the search for reality, energy creates its own discipline. The man who is seeking reality spontaneously becomes the right kind of citizen, which is not according to the pattern of any particular society or government. - Krishnamurti, J. Krishnamurti, The Book of Life

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

The Interval Between Thoughts - JKOnline Daily Quotes


Posted:
Now, I say it is definitely possible for the mind to be free from all conditioning, not that you should accept my authority. If you accept it on authority, you will never discover, it will be another substitution and that will have no significance.The understanding of the whole process of conditioning does not come to you through analysis or introspection, because the moment you have the analyzer, that very analyzer himself is part of the background and therefore his analysis is of no significance.How is it possible for the mind to be free? To be free, the mind must not only see and understand its pendulum-like swing between the past and the future but also be aware of the interval between thoughts.If you watch very carefully, you will see that though the response, the movement of thought, seems so swift, there are gaps, there are intervals between thoughts. Between two thoughts there is a period of silence that is not related to the thought process. If you observe you will see that that period of silence, that interval, is not of time and the discovery of that interval, the full experiencing of that interval, liberates you from conditioning or rather it does not liberate 'you' but there is liberation from conditioning. It is only when the mind is not giving continuity to thought, when it is still with a stillness that is not induced, that is without any causation, it is only then that there can be freedom from the background. - Krishnamurti, The Book of Life

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

DAILY NEWS

. 6 year old girl raped in a bangalore school.

. Malaysian Airlines plane MH17 with 298 passengers shot down in Ukraine.

. Ordinary man, extraordinary heart....Dashrath Manjhi, constructed a 360 feet long, 30 feet high and 25 feet wide passage through Gehlour hills with a hammer, chisel and nails working day and night for 22 years from 1960 to 1982. His feat reduced the distance between Atri and Wazirganj blocks of Gaya district from 75 km to just one km, bringing him international acclaim.

. Palestinian death toll crosses 1000 in Gaza, mostly innocent victims consisting of women and children.

. Iraq: Shia shrine blown up.

. Ordinary man, extraordinary heart.....tracking one man’s journey into the land of giving.....When M.S. Bagai’s wife Sudhira died in 1980 of cancer, Bagai decided to support the drive for early detection of cancer in slums and urban outbacks. He began the Sudhira Bagai Charitable Trust with just Rs. 500. Bagai has since raised money to educate the children of a paraplegic soldier, provide milk to children living in the shelter of Safdarjang Hospital in New Delhi, buy medicines and milk for sick sadhus, and for a dozen other causes in a list that keeps growing.

. U.S. evacuates Libyan embassy amid clashes.

. Ordinary man, extraordinary heart....Jorge Munoz is a school bus driver by day and an angel by night. Every night for more than 5 years, he has gone home and cooked food for hundreds of people on his old stove. He then goes to a street corner in Queens, New York and feeds those that are hungry. He does this with his own money because "it's the right thing to do".

. Taliban kill 15 in Afghanistan.

.
Last letter home by James Foley

Dear Family and Friends,

I remember going to the Mall with Dad, a very long bike ride with Mom. I remember so many great family times that take me away from this prison. Dreams of family and friends take me away and happiness fills my heart.

I know you are thinking of me and praying for me. And I am so thankful. I feel you all especially when I pray. I pray for you to stay strong and to believe. I really feel I can touch you even in this darkness when I pray.

Eighteen of us have been held together in one cell, which has helped me. We have had each other to have endless long conversations about movies, trivia, sports. We have played games made up of scraps found in our cell… we have found ways to play checkers, Chess, and Risk… and have had tournaments of competition, spending some days preparing strategies for the next day's game or lecture. The games and teaching each other have helped the time pass. They have been a huge help. We repeat stories and laugh to break the tension.

I have had weak and strong days. We are so grateful when anyone is freed; but of course, yearn for our own freedom. We try to encourage each other and share strength. We are being fed better now and daily. We have tea, occasional coffee. I have regained most of my weight lost last year.

I think a lot about my brothers and sister. I remember playing Werewolf in the dark with Michael and so many other adventures. I think of chasing Mattie and T around the kitchen counter. It makes me happy to think of them. If there is any money left in my bank account, I want it to go to Michael and Matthew. I am so proud of you, Michael and thankful to you for happy childhood memories and to you and Kristie for happy adult ones.

And big John, how I enjoyed visiting you and Cress in Germany. Thank you for welcoming me. I think a lot about RoRo and try to imagine what Jack is like. I hope he has RoRo's personality!

And Mark… so proud of you too Bro. I think of you on the West coast and hope you are doing some snowboarding and camping, I especially remember us going to the Comedy Club in Boston together and our big hug after. The special moments keep me hopeful.

Katie, so very proud of you. You are the strongest and best of us all!! I think of you working so hard, helping people as a nurse. I am so glad we texted just before I was captured. I pray I can come to your wedding…. now I am sounding like Grammy!!

Grammy, please take your medicine, take walks and keep dancing. I plan to take you out to Margarita's when I get home. Stay strong because I am going to need your help to reclaim my life.

Jim

Thursday, July 3, 2014

We think we relate.........and there is the unexplored world beyond words


"We  are relating only as abstract. Complaining against a particular act in a relationship is meaningless, as it is the abstract which acted, not the person. Abstract cannot be different, as that is its structure and it can act only that way. All the problems in relationships are of this nature only. It is action of 'the abstract', not the individual person"

In every relationship, it's only functioning. We think we relate. Its only the abstract. That's why there are problems. Does it mean that only abstracts are relating and no relationship beyond that?

The underlying factor is physical. But the operational part is abstract. It is abstract 'me' interacting with another abstract. Most of the time, the physical initiate the process, it is abstract which is operational, as that is our only functional tool. The physical is your son,  daughter, father, husband, wife, but the abstract is not. That's why it is in to all kinds of nasty, stupid actions.

We gather information about a person we meet,  store it in memory.  That information directs our interactions with him and also by the information freshly gathered. So, we are relating with that information, not with the person sitting across. If this is understood, even in the limited space of profession and business,  relating will be devoid of anguish and disappointment. We are engaged mostly with thoughts which is an abstract. We go by abstract state and don't live in feeling state. ("I mean by that word feeling, not sentiment, not emotionalism, not mere excitement, but that quality of perception, the quality of hearing, listening, the quality of feeling -a bird singing on a tree, the movement of a leaf in the sun. To feel things greatly, deeply, penetratingly, is very difficult for most of us because we have so many problems. Whatever we seem to touch turns into a problem."-K).

We live in a massive universe of unimaginable proportion. The abstract world we live in is minuscule. Almost all relating is abstract. Even though started being in physical,  all our relating is in abstract, whether it is with a son or a daughter or a husband or a wife. We start from being in physical, once we start talking/thinking, we slip in to the 'abstract verbal' subtly. WE LIVE IN ABSTRACT almost all the time. It is astonishing.......the full impact of it.....but beyond the abstract, possibility of different relating is there...you would have seen that also many a time....the unspoken acts....

Getting upset with spoken words/shoutings....those are from the abstract of the person....also to the abstract of a person.....all relating is abstract....all professional and business acts are abstracts...but beyond the abstract, possibility of different relating is there...you would have seen that also many a time....the unspoken acts....

Lost myself almost, lost a dear-one nearly, come across the whole world burning in selfish pursuits all the time. No communication possible and every past contribution, good deeds are forgotten in the milieu of present abstract engagement. Then why am I still engaging in abstract conversations? And what am I waiting for? If what's happening to me are messages, worser things could happen, are happening. When there is no tomorrow, why can't I live in the present? Is it rocket-science to see that thinking is behind all the anarchy and violence around us? Is it rocket-science to see, no thinking there is no violence? Is there violence in a mother's love or a father's responsibility? Is it true that we exist only moment to moment? Is it true that each nano part set the next?

The 'particular', being material, makes movement necessary. The 'restlessness', the insecurity of being alone  in an unfamiliar environment,  the utter necessity to be 'safe', 'under control' situation, being restless till the situation, environment is under complete control is the basic building block of the 'me'. That restlessness only seeks companion of a tv, movie, book, cigarette, time-pass food, etc.

Communication is a problem.  Even a casual civilized conversation is a problem on an issue.  The moment it's an issue,  we are alert to be defensive and the casualness goes. Its obvious as our living is in abstract. Then why try? Don't.  Just act. Don't talk.  When there is need for verbal communication, just communicate, don't try and have an elaborate discussion. To have order in day today living, establish practices which will take care of it.

Relating happens only in non-verbal communication...in a space which is beyond words...Why don't we look at the real being in our interactions? Directly relating to the energy.

This will be aided by just going about work without any thought about results. As long as my work takes care of my need, why should i worry about my assumed-reward?

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Freedom from the Self - JKOnline Daily Quotes

Freedom from the Self - JKOnline Daily Quotes


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To free the mind from all conditioning, you must see the totality of it without thought. This is not a conundrum; experiment with it and you will see. Do you ever see anything without thought? Have you ever listened, looked, without bringing in this whole process of reaction? You will say that it is impossible to see without thought; you will say no mind can be unconditioned. When you say that, you have already blocked yourself by thought, for the fact is you do not know.So can I look, can the mind be aware of its conditioning? I think it can. Please experiment. Can you be aware that you are a Hindu, a Socialist, a Communist, this or that, just be aware without saying that it is right or wrong? Because it is such a difficult task just to see, we say it is impossible. I say it is only when you are aware of this totality of your being without any reaction that the conditioning goes, totally, deeply;which is really the freedom from the self. - Krishnamurti, J. Krishnamurti, The Book of Life

All Thought Is Partial

All Thought Is Partial - JKOnline Daily Quotes


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You and I realize that we are conditioned. If you say, as some people do, that conditioning is inevitable, then there is no problem; you are a slave, and that is the end of it. But if you begin to ask yourself whether it is at all possible to break down this limitation, this conditioning, then there is a problem; so you will have to inquire into the whole process of thinking, will you not? If you merely say, "I must be aware of my conditioning, I must think about it, analyze it in order to understand and destroy it," then you are exercising force. Your thinking, your analyzing is still the result of your background, so through your thought you obviously cannot break down the conditioning of which it is a part.Just see the problem first, don't ask what is the answer, the solution. The fact is that we are conditioned, and that all thought to understand this conditioning will always be partial; therefore there is never a total comprehension, and only in total comprehension of the whole process of thinking is there freedom. The difficulty is that we are always functioning within the field of the mind, which is the instrument of thought, reasonable or unreasonable; and as we have seen, thought is always partial. - Krishnamurti, J. Krishnamurti, The Book of Life

Remain with a Feeling and See What Happens

Remain with a Feeling and See What Happens - JKOnline Daily Quotes


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You never remain with any feeling, pure and simple, but always surround it with the paraphernalia of words. The word distorts it; thought, whirling round it, throws it into shadow, overpowers it with mountainous fears and longings. You never remain with a feeling, and with nothing else: with hate, or with that strange feeling of beauty. When the feeling of hate arises, you say how bad it is; there is the compulsion, the struggle to overcome it, the turmoil of thought about it.Try remaining with the feeling of hate, with the feeling of envy, jealousy, with the venom of ambition; for after all, that's what you have in daily life, though you may want to live with love, or with the word love. Since you have the feeling of hate, of wanting to hurt somebody with a gesture or a burning word, see if you can stay with that feeling. Can you? Have you ever tried? Try to remain with a feeling, and see what happens. You will find it amazingly difficult. Your mind will not leave the feeling alone; it comes rushing in with its remembrances, its associations, its do's and don'ts, its everlasting chatter. Pick up a piece of shell. Can you look at it, wonder at its delicate beauty, without saying how pretty it is, or what animal made it? Can you look without the movement of the mind? Can you live with the feeling behind the word, without the feeling that the word builds up? If you can, then you will discover an extraordinary thing, a movement beyond the measure of time, a spring that knows no summer. - Krishnamurti, J. Krishnamurti, The Book of Life

Do Not Name a Feeling - JKOnline Daily Quotes



What happens when you do not name? You look at an emotion, at a sensation, more directly and therefore have quite a different relationship to it, just as you have to a flower when you do not name it. You are forced to look at it anew. When you do not name a group of people, you are compelled to look at each individual face and not treat them all as a mass. Therefore you are much more alert, much more observing, more understanding; you have a deeper sense of pity, love; but if you treat them all as the mass, it is over.If you do not label, you have to regard every feeling as it arises. When you label, is the feeling different from the label? Or does the label awaken the feeling?If I do not name a feeling, that is to say if thought is not functioning merely because of words or if I do not think in terms of words, images, or symbols, which most of us do, then what happens? Surely the mind then is not merely the observer.When the mind is not thinking in terms of words, symbols, images, there is no thinker separate from the thought, which is the word. Then the mind is quiet, is it not? -not made quiet, it is quiet. When the mind is really quiet, then the feelings which arise can be dealt with immediately. It is only when we give names to feelings and thereby strengthen them that the feelings have continuity; they are stored up in the center, from which we give further labels, either to strengthen or to communicate them. - Krishnamurti, The Book of Life