Sunday, October 26, 2014



Bonfire Of The HATO Alliance

One of the advantages Narendra Modi enjoys is that his silly political opponents and the HATO (Hammam Associates Treaty Organisation) in media are permanently busy in lampooning him and calling him names. They forget that the man is one of the shrewdest politicians to walk the Indian political scene. He is the man responsible for asking the ShivSena to go take a walk and refuse to tolerate their tantrums. There are many who are unaware of the history of the SS. This party was once what the AAP today is – a clone of the Congress disguised as an independent party. Later when BJP emerged as a Hindutva warrior the Sena changed colours. I don’t have to write the whole story. Fortunately, someone has written it here and I recommend a read.

In the LKA-ABV era of BJP, the party was pussy-footing in taking on the fake Gandhis directly. That’s all gone and the Gandhis are now exposed as the worst political performers. Both Sonia and her dumb son Rahul (or even the Jenny-come-when-I-want Mrs Vadra) have disgraced themselves for not taking responsibility for any of their recent string of defeats. Their disgrace extends to condemnable behaviour of not even congratulating the winner. Such a party is destined for the dustbin unless they throw up new leadership. The media indulges in wishful thinking hoping somehow the Congress will cobble up some victories and stop the Modi march. I find it amazing that the media, who should be a mere witness and reporter of events, is so angry at a party faring well in elections. To dent the BJP many of the media poodles even went to the extent of sucking up to the SS and Uddhav Thackeray, a man with zero leadership skills and zero charisma. Therefore, post the results of Maharashtra and Haryana (and even before it) the media was busy trying to spin the results as a defeat for Modi.

My first post on January 1 this year was about the victory of good over evil. Most people could read the public mood. The victory of good over evil in our politics was inevitable. It is only our media scumbags who wanted evil to win. It is fun to look back on some of the worst of these in our media who are still unable to come to terms with the reality of their own destruction. Here is Kumar Ketkar, senior dirty-lingerie manager of the Congress, whose filth will be permanently etched along with the name of the party:

This pimp Ketkar and his co-pigs even claimed the Congress did well in Maharashtra because some stupid polls predicted they will get only 2o seats while they actually got 40 seats. Effectively, these morons would have people believe the Congis have exceeded performance expectations by 100% and have therefore wonwhile the BJP languishes in defeat. If I lose a cricket match; as a bad loser I would probably tell you what you played wasn’t cricket but foozeball. Well, that’s exactly what the greatest moron Maharashtra ever produced had to say about democracy:

As the MahaMoron says; if BJP wins an election India does not remain a democracy anymore. This is the same MahaMoron who also once claimed middle class people of low IQ vote BJP. My cup of joy runneth over. There is this ‘eminent distortian’ Ram Guha, who has grovelled before every institution of the Nehru-Gandhi clan for crumbs for survival who suddenly discovers the most pernicious lie that Modi perpetrated:

Naturally, people on SM are smarter and quickly pointed to the lies that our media crooks survive on for their daily bone. I’m no distortian and not very well-versed in that art but I’m certainly good at spotting pigs who find their way to garbage without any help. I can easily tell Ram Guha is one of those pigs. He’s not alone. Tulsi Gabbard has been a Hindu since her childhood. She took her Congressional oath on a Gita she cherished from her teenage years. She gifts that particular copy of the Gita to Modi. So what does Pig-in-chief of media Barkha Dutt ask her? She asks Gabbard if she is going to stick to Hinduism. Islamic Bimbo in action! Not just that, little piglet Barkha later claims she was adoring Tulsi and letting the world know how she came to embrace Hinduism as if it’s some new story like that of Julia Roberts. I wonder why Barkha Dutt who sucks up to Shashi Tharoor so often never asked him if he was going to stick to his third wife (she could have been oh so providential too) or she herself would hypothetically stick to a third husband.Bonfires are in order! This stupid line of questioning is only reserved for those who adopt the Hindu way of life as the Tweeter below rightly asks:

There’s another HATO member whose propensity to produce filth has dramatically increased since Modi became PM. That this pig hates Modi is one thing but he doesn’t stop there. He wants America to hate Modi too and writes a whole article warning the American govt to be wary of Modi. What kind of pig wants others to hate the PM of his own country? I give you the ugly, terrorist-looking filth calledHartosh Singh Bal (Bal is one who abuses anything Hindu but is too ashamed to sport his own religion and like a coward chopped off his goldilocks):

If you heard the constant weeping of this HarBal’s guitar, you’d think he is some George Harrison and Modi is some Eric Clapton who ran away with Layla. There are still others who are permanently in denial about the nature of India’s democracy and election patterns who have now devised a new way of measuring electoral wins in our democracy. They claim unless you’re voted by 786% of the electorate you have no right to be the PM of India. Well, these are the very same people who were fine with and were constantly giving certificates of honesty to a “publicly unelected-came through the bathroom window PM” like MMS. To street thugs like Rajdeep Sardesai who have now turned media into a violent art, my message is simple; get out:

If all that was fun then it isn’t over yet. The media pimps have such an urgency for orgasm that they can’t even wait to verify a story for accuracy or checking first with their target before publishing. Imagine a pig’s delight when it falls into a heap of garbage. That’s like a dog delighting when it falls over a huge mound of sand:

The art of “LIG BIG, retract small” took another major leap with liars like Economic Times, Business Standard publishing the bogus story about Modi’s PMO staff-strength. Given their lead, all the Congress mongrels on social media jumped in delight to relay the fake story only to realise that “Fair & Lovely” couldn’t quite hide their pig-face. What a waste. In the end, there is hope. Good does win over evil. Pigs too have their fill of garbage but eventually end up as pork. Some of these HATO members want a cracker-less Diwali too. Yeah alright! Have it your way. Diwali isn’t quite like Holi but a bonfire of the HATO club in flames is a satisfactory outcome for me. I love the thought.

The thought crosses my mind all the time. I can picture these evil characters burning in their own hate-filled existence. The flame that illuminates and educates the rest of the world also burns the hate-mongers’ characters to death. The flame of truth that routinely kisses us every single day also gives them heartburn. That flame lights up truth unfailingly, despite the attempts of these hate-mongers to spread lies. And that’s how we win.

A HAPPY DIWALI TO ALL… Posted by Ravinar at  10/22/2014 05:00:00 AM 41 comments 

Saturday, October 25, 2014




Eroticism and flaky spirituality

Human life has different dimensions. Hindu scripture gives them a specific time of the day: religion (dharma) at dawn, lucrative work (artha) in the daytime, erotic pleasure (kama) in the evening. All civilizations have tried to give each of these a proper place. But some people aren't satisfied with this division, and want to unite and fuse these different dimensions. I think there is no need for this, and that it can't work anyway. In particular, the fusion of spirituality and sex is a mirage.

In the "natural healing" centre in the town where I live, courses are being offered in "Tantra". This is advertised as a way to enlightenment through sex. In my Indology studies I have had to spend some time reading the Tantric tradition, and of course it turned out to be rather more complicated than what it is made out to be in the lifestyle magazines. A demythologization is in order, and I'll make a modest beginning here.

Let us clarify first of all that there is nothing mystical about the Sanskrit word tantra. It means "weaving-loom", with warp and woof, hence a multi-dimensional system, something complex and its explanation, hence a manual or simply a "text", a "book". This is the same derivation as that of text from Latin texere, "weave". The Tantra-s are a class of medieval religious texts focusing on ritual and symbolism. In some cases, the sex act is also a symbol-laden ritual, which is why some Hindu and Tibetan gods and goddesses are depicted as copulating, in a dignified seated posture.

In the June 2009 issue of the quarterly EnlightenNext (Dutch edition), the well-known thinker Ken Wilber, who calls himself a "defender of the Dharma" and an "intellectual Samurai", grapples with the issue of sex as a purported way to Enlightenment. With approval, he summarizes the position of the Tantric tradition thus: it says to neo-Platonists and Theravada Buddhists and other ascetic traditions that "you can focus on consciousness and rise to the top of integral unity etc., but you know what... you can also do the same through sex. And sexually it's a lot more fun!"

Oh well, if there's a lady out there who knows the secret of realizing enlightenment through sex, I am willing to learn from/with her. But so far, I don't believe that there really is such a thing as " for enlightenment", though people are at liberty to try. No dour moral rejection of the whole idea, this, just skeptical that it is even possible. Not on empirical grounds, I can't say I've tried the experiment, but on logical grounds.

In the Buddhist concept of enlightenment or "awakening" (bodhi), the goal of the path is technically defined as "blowing out" (as of a fire), "extinction" (nirvana). This means in particular the extinction of desires ("thirst", trshna), which the Buddha calls the cause of man's ultimate problem, viz. suffering (duhkha). In Upanishadic doctrines of "liberation" (muktimoksha), the focus is more on the conquest of "ignorance" (avidya), the self-forgetful absorption of the Self in its objects of consciousness; but the need to still the noise of desire is never absent. Enlightenment is, as a minimum, a state of peace, of freedom from desire. It is by definition a state that cannot be bettered by anything that is more desire-fulfilling or, to use Wilber's phrase, "more fun".

Meditation is exclusive of any focus of the attention outside, not even on a dearly loved partner, nor on the sensations accompanying the sex act. In Patanjali's Yoga Sutra, the goal of yoga is "isolation" (kaivalya), viz. of consciousness from its objects, so that consciousness is exclusively focused on (or "resting in") itself. These objects from which consciousness must be turned away are everything that is not the neutral, empty, purely observing state of consciousness itself. They include sensory perceptions, memories, imagination, reasoning, interpersonal concerns, dirty desires as well as noble feelings, anger as well as love. Whatever the value of those things in human life may be, they have by definition no place in meditation leading to enlightenment.

Incidentally, the Sanskrit term kaivalya, "isolation", seems to be etymologically cognate to the Latin words coelebs, whence "celibate". We should not make too much of etymology, and this one should not be taken as proof of any necessary connection between celibacy and enlightenment. Quite a few traditions do think that celibacy is a necessary precondition for serious progress in meditation, others are more generous. At any rate, the term kaivalya in this context does not speak out on the matter. The isolation indicated by it is not that of man from woman, but that of consciousness from its objects. This term merely says that true meditation is a state separate from any and every kind of mental involvement in anything.

After meditation, after "coming down" into ordinary consciousness of and interaction with the world, your experiences may undergo a quality change, and I suppose even sex will not be the same as before. In that sense your sex life may benefit from meditation, but it cannot constitute meditation nor replace it as a method for enlightenment. By all means, make your partner happy, in bed and elsewhere, that's already a mighty contribution to a better world; but please don't delude yourselves that this is enlightenment. The fun of it is good enough in itself and has no need of being labeled "spiritual".

This is really pretty obvious, and it's a bit silly that I have to articulate something so self-evident. Only a spoiled generation like our own could think up this fanciful idea of sex as a way to enlightenment.


This is an example of what happens when no uniform official guidelines and protocols are offered to all international airports, and well designed comfortable quarantine quarters are not constructed. The exposed individuals need to be treated with utmost respect and not like criminals (more so those health care professionals who have already placed their life on line by volunteering to work with Ebola victims, they all need to understand the necessity of quarantine for the public good.) See the previous posting on Ebola e-Control vs. Ebola Ebullience.

By Jonathan Allen
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Illinois joined New York and New Jersey in imposing mandatory quarantines for people arriving with a risk of having contracted Ebola in West Africa, but the first person isolated under the new rules, a nurse returning from Sierra Leone, strongly criticized her treatment.
Under a policy introduced on Friday, anyone arriving at John F. Kennedy International Airport or Newark Liberty International Airport after having contact with Ebola patients in Liberia, Sierra Leone or Guinea must submit to a mandatory quarantine for 21 days. Three weeks is the longest documented period for an Ebola infection to emerge.
Kaci Hickox, a nurse, was placed in quarantine at Newark after returning on Friday from working with medical charity Doctors Without Borders in Sierra Leone.
Hickox, who was transferred from the airport to a hospital where she was placed in isolation, described a confusing and upsetting experience at the airport and worried the same treatment was in store for other American health workers trying to help combat the epidemic.
"I ... thought of many colleagues who will return home to America and face the same ordeal," Hickox wrote in an article published on Saturday by The Dallas Morning. "Will they be made to feel like criminals and prisoners?"
"I am scared that, like me, they will arrive and see a frenzy of disorganization, fear and, most frightening, quarantine," she said in the article, published on the paper's website.
The state quarantines were imposed after a New York City doctor was diagnosed with the disease on Thursday, days after returning to the city from working with Ebola patients for Doctors Without Borders in Guinea.
Dr. Craig Spencer, now being treated at Bellevue Hospital Center in Manhattan and described as in stable condition, was the fourth person to be diagnosed with the illness in the United States and the first in the country's largest city.
His case, and the fact he was out and about in the city in the period before his symptoms emerged, set off renewed worries in the United States about the spread of the disease, which has killed thousands of people in West Africa. The concern over Ebola has become a political issue ahead of Nov. 4 congressional elections.
Illinois will also require a mandatory quarantine of anyone who has had direct contact with Ebola patients in those countries, Governor Pat Quinn said in a statement on Friday.
His announcement did not explicitly discuss it, but the new measure was likely aimed at people arriving at Chicago O'Hare International Airport.
The airport is one of five U.S. airports where health screening is in place for passengers whose journeys originated in the three West African countries that have borne the brunt of the worst Ebola outbreak on record. Such passengers are now obliged to route their journeys into the United States through those five airports.
Quinn's office and local health officials did not respond to requests for further comment.
Health officials in Virginia, where Washington Dulles International Airport is located, said the state is reviewing its quarantine policies. In Georgia, where the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport is located, officials were not immediately available for comment.
The mandatory quarantines imposed by states exceed current federal guidelines, although the Obama administration is discussing similar measures.
President Barack Obama urged Americans on Saturday to be guided by "facts not fear" as they worry about the spread of Ebola. "We have been examining the protocols for protecting our brave healthcare workers, and, guided by the science, we'll continue to work with state and local officials to take the necessary steps to ensure the safety and health of the American people," he said in his weekly radio address.
Ebola has killed almost half of more than 10,000 people diagnosed with the disease -- predominantly in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea -- although the true toll is far higher, according to the World Health Organization.
The virus is spread through direct contact with bodily fluids from an infected person. It is not transmitted by people who are not showing symptoms, but the quarantine measures in New Jersey, New York and Illinois were prompted in part by the fact that Spencer traveled around the city between arriving home and developing symptoms on Thursday, including riding the subway, taking a cab and going to a bowling alley.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said he was not consulted in advance of the new screening rules.
"The state has the right to make its decision, just like the CDC does, and we're going to work with them," he told reporters after visiting a sandwich shop where Spencer ate earlier in the week. The shop was briefly closed on Friday before health officials allowed it to reopen.
Asked if he thought Dr Spencer had behaved irresponsibly by going out around town, de Blasio said, "I think that's a really inappropriate characterization ... Here is a doctor who went into the medical equivalent of a war zone. This is no different than a soldier that goes into battle to protect us."
Hickox's account of her treatment echoed concerns of critics of the mandatory quarantines who say they could discourage Americans from going to help control the epidemic in West Africa.
New Jersey's health department said that Hickox, the quarantined nurse, broke into a fever soon after being quarantined and was taken to University Hospital in Newark. She later tested negative for Ebola.
But Hickox disputed that account in her article. She said her temperature was normal when tested orally at the hospital, but showed a fever when she was tested using a non-contact forehead scanner, reflecting the fact she was flustered and anxious.
Doctors Without Borders also criticized Hickox's treatment, saying she had been issued an order of quarantine but it was not clear how long she would be held in isolation, in uncomfortable conditions in a tent set up outside the main hospital building.
"Doctors Without Borders is very concerned about the conditions and uncertainty she is facing," the group said in a statement.
(Additional reporting by Natasja Sheriff and Yasmin Abutaleb in New York; Writing by Jonathan Allen and Edwin Chan; Editing by Frank McGurty and Frances Kerry.

click for topic page

Enhanced Ebola Screening to Start at Five U.S. Airports and New Tracking Program for all People Entering U.S. from Ebola-affected Countries

New layers of screening at airports that receive more than 94% of West African Travelers

Press Release

For Immediate Release: Wednesday, October 8
Contact: Media Relations
(404) 639-3286
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Department of Homeland Security's Customs & Border Protection (CBP) this week will begin new layers of entry screening at five U.S. airports that receive over 94 percent of travelers from the Ebola-affected nations of Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone.
New York's JFK International Airport will begin the new screening on Saturday. In the 12 months ending July 2014, JFK received nearly half of travelers from the three West African nations. The enhanced entry screening at Washington-Dulles, Newark, Chicago-O'Hare, and Atlanta international airports will be implemented next week.
"We work to continuously increase the safety of Americans," said CDC Director Tom Frieden, M.D., M.P.H. "We believe these new measures will further protect the health of Americans, understanding that nothing we can do will get us to absolute zero risk until we end the Ebola epidemic in West Africa."
"CBP personnel will continue to observe all travelers entering the United States for general overt signs of illnesses at all U.S. ports of entry and these expanded screening measures will provide an additional layer of protection to help ensure the risk of Ebola in the United States is minimized," said Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson. "CBP, working closely with CDC, will continue to assess the risk of the spread of Ebola into the United States, and take additional measures, as necessary, to protect the American people."
CDC is sending additional staff to each of the five airports. After passport review:
  • Travelers from Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone will be escorted by CBP to an area of the airport set aside for screening.
  • Trained CBP staff will observe them for signs of illness, ask them a series of health and exposure questions and provide health information for Ebola and reminders to monitor themselves for symptoms. Trained medical staff will take their temperature with a non-contact thermometer.
  • If the travelers have fever, symptoms or the health questionnaire reveals possible Ebola exposure, they will be evaluated by a CDC quarantine station public health officer. The public health officer will again take a temperature reading and make a public health assessment. Travelers, who after this assessment, are determined to require further evaluation or monitoring will be referred to the appropriate public health authority.
  • Travelers from these countries who have neither symptoms/fever nor a known history of exposure will receive health information for self-monitoring.
Entry screening is part of a layered process that includes exit screening and standard public health practices such as patient isolation and contact tracing in countries with Ebola outbreaks. Successful containment of the recent Ebola outbreak in Nigeria demonstrates the effectiveness of this approach.
These measures complement the exit screening protocols that have already been implemented in the affected West African countries, and CDC experts have worked closely with local authorities to implement these measures. Since the beginning of August, CDC has been working with airlines, airports, ministries of health, and other partners to provide technical assistance for the development of exit screening and travel restrictions in countries affected by Ebola. This includes:
  • Assessing the capacity to conduct exit screening at international airports;
  • Assisting countries with procuring supplies needed to conduct exit screening;
  • Supporting with development of exit screening protocols;
  • Developing tools such as posters, screening forms, and job-aids; and
  • Training staff on exit screening protocols and appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE)
Today, all outbound passengers are screened for Ebola symptoms in the affected countries. Such primary exit screening involves travelers responding to a travel health questionnaire, being visually assessed for potential illness, and having their body temperature measured. In the last two months since exit screening began in the three countries, of 36,000 people screened, 77 people were denied boarding a flight because of the health screening process. None of the 77 passengers were diagnosed with Ebola and many were diagnosed as ill with malaria, a disease common in West Africa, transmitted by mosquitoes and not contagious from one person to another.
Exit screening at airports in countries affected by Ebola remains the principal means of keeping travelers from spreading Ebola to other nations. All three of these nations have asked for, and continue to receive, CDC assistance in strengthening exit screening.