Google has this unrelenting attitude of showing how apathetic and lazy you are. Be it their profits and revenues or their products and services or may be even Gmail’s free storage space.. they are growing.. getting better and bigger everyday!! And where are you dozing off you lazy bum?
This is an excerpt from an address at the Physical Society, Berlin, on the occasion of Max Plank’s sixtieth birthday. The words belong to one of the greatest scientists that ever lived on the face of earth. Any guesses? You can see the entire address by the speaker at this link: Principles of Research
IN the temple of science are many mansions, and various indeed are they that dwell therein and the motives that have led them thither. Many take to science out of a joyful sense of superior intellectual power; science is their own special sport to which they look for vivid experience and the satisfaction of ambition; many others are to be found in the temple who have offered the products of their brains on this altar for purely utilitarian purposes. Were an angel of the Lord to come and drive all the people belonging to these two categories out of the temple, the assemblage would be seriously depleted, but there would still be some men, of both present and past times, left inside…
..now let us have another look at those who have found favor with the angel. Most of them are somewhat odd, uncommunicative, solitary fellows, really less like each other, in spite of these common characteristics, than the hosts of the rejected. What has brought them to the temple? That is a difficult question and no single answer will cover it. To begin with, I believe with Schopenhauer that one of the strongest motives that leads men to art and science is escape from everyday life with its painful crudity and hopeless dreariness, from the fetters of one’s own ever shifting desires. A finely tempered nature longs to escape from personal life into the world of objective perception and thought; this desire may be compared with the townsman’s irresistible longing to escape from his noisy, cramped surroundings into the silence of high mountains, where the eye ranges freely through the still, pure air and fondly traces out the restful contours apparently built for eternity.
The beach reflects the purple sky as the waves wash our feet. I stand, accompanied by myself, watching the infinite expanse of ocean. My friends are playing in the water, small waves breaking surf around their bodies. I am waiting, for the sun to rise, for the fifth element of nature to unite with the rest four in salutation and service to the Human in me and His pleasure.
We are in Mandawa (Mandve), a small neglected town on the Konkan coast, known (or rather unknown) as a mere stop on the passage to Alibaug. People rush past it in a hurry to reach the more popular destinations further South. Yesterday, we took the most indirect route to reach Mandawa from Pune.
Instead of driving straight from pune to Mandawa, we caught a bus to Mumbai and got down at Dadar after relishing the scenic Mumbai-Pune Express Highway. From Dadar we took a local train to reach the Gateway of India, the southern most tip of Mumbai which is separated from Mandawa by just a small stretch of water, part of the Arabian Sea. On a map these two places appear to have frozen midst an attempt to touch each other.
Last night, when we were playing in the ocean, under the moonlight, we could see the lights sparkling miles away in Mumbai. The sea was swollen in the high tide and the waves were rocking us every now and then, but the shore was absolutely inhabited at that time as well. Mumbai’s lights looked like a loud noise desperately trying to reach us, but the silence of the crashing waves shielded us from the disturbance and kept us tranquil in our nowhere. The two shores are frequented by powered boats which ferry people to and fro. We will take another ferry back to Mumbai sometime later today. It will take us barely an hour to reach Mumbai and some more time to return home, back in Pune. But we will take a long time to leave this place (and this place will take a long time to leave us).
We are staying at a small farm house, located a couple of kilometers from the beach. The Cheulkar Farm has all basic amenities and people with a splendid sense of hospitality. The owner of the farm, Mrs. Cheulkar is a gifted cook. Sea food is her forte, and for the first time in my life I regret being a vegetarian. But, I am thoroughly enjoying all her Maharashtrian veggie treats. In fact, eating was our major exertion yesterday. We had left Mumbai at noon, so the mercury was high when we touched Mandawa’s port. But the greenery and the cool breeze from the sea saved our asses. We walked to the farm and died at the swings on the patio.
After quick showers we came back to life at the dining table. We ate as if it were the end of the world and died again in the clean and cozy bedrooms. The food was really delicious and worth a second mention.
We got up real early today, and came to the beach immediately, to see the sun rising. The winding road to the beach is full of natural beauty, the trees and their smell, scores of birds, each chirping in its unique voice. It’s a pleasure to walk through that road, despite availability of auto-rickshaws. Last evening we had taken a wrong turn and drifted to the wrong side of the beach, but we eventually stumbled here. It was different back then, the sun was setting and the sea was rising. We all wanted to soak up in the saline water and played till our bodies ached. But today, all I want to do is to stare at the purple beach, our footprints on the sand and the ebbing sea and wait for the sun to rise. I just want to be in the moment, in an effort to preserve its sanctity and vitality. It is a matter of just few more hours before we go back to the sea of human beings waiting to engulf us and steal our identity.
All six of us who went for the above trip are thankful to Smita Dhavale for suggesting this amazing destination. We are also thankful to Mrs. Cheulkar and the entire staff at the farm for making the trip extra special.
Picasa has this amazing feature that helps you build Collage out of your pictures. Collect the pictures in a picasa folder, hit the create collage button and there you are. There are various styles that can be chosen and customized. The tool can be very frustrating if you are bent on getting that perfect arrangement of pictures.. right location, perfect size.. no its absolutely random. But what the hack, that is the fun. Check what I made using it:
This is an excerpt from the site of Appolo Alliance.. indeed thought provoking.
No man can fully grasp how far and how fast we have come, but condense, if you will, the 50,000 years of man’s recorded history in a time span of but a half-century. Stated in these terms, we know very little about the first 40 years, except at the end of them advanced man had learned to use the skins of animals to cover them. Then about 10 years ago, under this standard, man emerged from his caves to construct other kinds of shelter. Only five years ago man learned to write and use a cart with wheels. Christianity began less than two years ago. The printing press came this year, and then less than two months ago, during this whole 50-year span of human history, the steam engine provided a new source of power.
Newton explored the meaning of gravity. Last month electric lights and telephones and automobiles and airplanes became available. Only last week did we develop penicillin and television and nuclear power, and now if America’s new spacecraft succeeds in reaching Venus, we will have literally reached the stars before midnight tonight.
This is a breathtaking pace, and such a pace cannot help but create new ills as it dispels old, new ignorance, new problems, new dangers. Surely the opening vistas of space promise high costs and hardships, as well as high reward.