Monday, September 11, 2006

It ain't so deadly but yeah....

Bomb blasts in Malegaon. It's news nowadays if a day passes without any bomb blasts or terrorist attacks. In between there are serious questions. If the blasts occur in a temple or inside a railway carriage, it's a terrorist attack. But if the same bomb goes off near a mosque, killing muslims, why should everyone start singing communal tunes? How does it become a plot to create communal tensions in the country? Why should everyone jump up and start placating the minorities--whoever they could be?

If hindus and others die in bomb blasts we begin to estimate how fast the city sprang back to its routine, how people helped each other, etc. But if Muslims are blown apart everyone's concerned about communal tensions. How come?

I remember Wit wrote an interesting article once on our double standards and hypocrisy regarding muslims and I had linked to it. It's worth reading over and over.

Who's a hacker? Someone who breaks into secure computer networks and steals data? Someone who decrypts passwords and siphones off money from bank accounts? Eric raymond doesn't think so. He says, hackerdome is an attitude--a very positive attitude as such. Anyone who finds creative solutions for difficult situations in a playful way is a hacker! Interesting and highly readable articles here.

When I'm thinking about hacking in this context, I find a place where there are hacks for a hundred and one things, most of them unusual. Hacks for creative writing, for communication skills, for leadership.... Worth a deeper dig.

I realize in shock and mild horror that certain things I'd pushed under the carpet, thinking that I'd get rid of them, have not only stayed there but have grown and expanded. You can't wish away things, you can't hide from the negativities deep within. A friend's advice comes to mind--'If you find danger, step into it. At the least, step aside or step over but never step back'!

The time has come to face my fears squarely and surge ahead. No more sleep. No inertia.


  1. Thank you for the link to the “Terrorism and Islam” post. For the most part, I agree with him. At the moment I am working on a post with the hypothesis that only Muslems will be able to end Islamic terrorism—that other nations and peoples will be fighting Islamic terrorists for generations or until the Muslims themselves decide to deal with their own fanatics.

  2. I wish you courage and all good things to face up to your fears squarely! Go for it!

  3. Thanks val. Maybe after a while I'll laugh at my fears and the unnecessary anxieties I'd to face, but when it's there in the moment, it's a real one.

    Nick...Agree with you. Problem is, it's difficult to say who's a fanatic and who isn't. When the root itself is poisoned, you can't expect a better fruit. You've to sit inside a madrassa or listen to the preachings in mosques to know how the negativity is injected gradually yet forcefully.

  4. Vishwa, I wish there were some easy way to deal with zealots. I fear there isn’t. A professor at a Louisville seminary wrote a book several years ago entitled “The Masks of God.” A few of his observations hit me when I first read them and I believe are still relevant, such as:

    “When religious beliefs go wrong, there is nothing on earth that is more evil.”

    “’To hate ones neighbor’ is not a teaching of any of the world’s great religions.”

    “If, as I believe, God loves an atheist as much as a Christian, why is that Christians cannot love one another?”

    Another Kentuckian, Wendell Berry, who used to teach at a school in a church that I pastored, wrote:

    ” If some Christians make it an article of faith that it is good to kill heathens or Communists, they will sooner or later have corpses to show for it. If some Christians believe, as alleged, that God gave them the world to do with as they please, they will sooner or later have deserts and ruins in measurable proof.”

    I wish there were some easy way to deal with zealots, but I fear there isn’t.