WRITTEN BY R. NANJAPPA                        

Post No. 8465

Date uploaded in London – – – 7 August 2020   

Contact –

Pictures are taken from various sources for spreading knowledge; this is a non- commercial blog. Thanks for your great pictures.


R. Nanjappa


of us come from the great middle class. We lead small, insignificant lives! We have to study something – we do not have much choice, especially if we belong to the so called ‘forward ‘ communities! Then hunt for jobs. Here too there is not much choice! One has to take what comes along. And stick to it.

In recent years, the expanding IT sector offered job opportunities. But these jobs do not constitute a steady career, as in the old days. There is much job-hopping and mid-stream changes. Plus the constant pressure of keeping abreast of changes and learning new tricks. Happily, the youngsters have learned to live with such phenomena. But no one can say how long these trends will last, given the furious pace of technological change. 


The need to get some govt approved qualification and get a job weighs so heavy on the minds of youngsters that they have forgotten to dream and develop any greater vision! They have to choose subjects and select courses that have immediate market relevance. How many can afford to dream of being artists, poets, writers, inventors? Our educational system, still largely following the colonial contours, is directly linked to the job market; yet, it only delivers clerks! We still think of employment, not enterprise! And yet, surveys say that 50% of our graduates, including engineering graduates, are not employable!

The situation is made complex by the social changes that have taken place in the last 2-3 decades: especially the disintegration of the joint family which acted as a social safety net. Today a person cannot take for granted the support of an elder sibling or an uncle or other member of the extended family, till he is able to stand on his own. 

Employment is not everything

Even if one has a steady, high paying job, one has to retire and then all the accumulated knowledge and so called experience count as nothing! When one looks back on a career of even 3+ decades, what can one count as one’s big achievements? Those working in a hierarchy can hardly out-perform the system. Exceptionally good things will be appropriated by bosses or stolen by others, or simply suppressed. In bureaucratic hierarchies, creativity will often invite trouble. It is safe to run with the pack. See what happens to our Administrative services: attracting so called bright people, it turns into a buffalo service- hard to move! As the famous Peter Principle states:

In a hierarchy every employee tends to rise to his level of Incompetence.

Hierarchies nourish mediocrity, foster incompetence, crush creativity. 

What people with middle class background fail to realise is that no matter how high they rise in a hierarchy, they can hardly call anything their own in their working space!  They are basically time servers- one day they will be out! Official life is only a part of their total life, and for many these days, the retirement years can be quite long! They will feel an emptiness around them, in them, if they have failed to develop other aspects of their life and personality. Big sounding official designation is not the mark of true greatness or real achievement.

How we lose dreams

Most normal persons have dreamt of big things at some stage while young. Most of us have felt we are good at something sometime or other. But we become our own critics and dismiss them as unrealistic and unattainable. We race with time, anxious for quick employment, and settle to a routine as the system will shape or allow.
While a job can often be an immediate necessity, it need not be a killer of dreams! We are under no orders to show quick results as for realising our dreams! While the job is for the belly, our dreams can be pursued to nourish our soul!

We may not all of us dream of becoming industrial tycoons or Narayana Murthys. But we are surely good at something? We surely love a subject? We do like an art or literature? What prevents us from pursuing these interests life long? 


Most self-help and motivational books focus on the short-run, the quick results, offering quick-fix solutions for success here and now. But how many great people did really achieve their greatness in such quick fashion?


Tom Butler-Bowdon has written a fascinating book dispelling the myth of quick success or short cut to greatness.

[Book cover shown here for purely educational purpose.

Published by Virgin Books, 2014. (Random House Group company.)Photo of my personal copy.]

The problem with modern life is the sense of urgency, haste or hurry that is forced upon us from all corners. Tom  Butler-Bowdon quotes Richard Koch:

” Most people overestimate what they can achieve in a year, but underestimate what they can achieve in a decade.”

In fact, most of us in regular employment do not think of any achievement at all except playing the hierarchical musical chair!

image of Tom Butler

                                  ***                          to be continued

Tags – Never too late, Tom butler, books, to read

Books Indians Should Read, Chapter – 1 – Part 2 (Post No.8435)

WRITTEN BY R. NANJAPPA                        

Post No. 8435

Date uploaded in London – – – 1 August 2020   

Contact –

Pictures are taken from various sources for spreading knowledge; this is a non- commercial blog. Thanks for your great pictures.

Books Indians Should Read, Chapter – 1 – Part 2
    The Clash of Civilizations

R. Nanjappa

Post cold war: new powers

In the post-cold war age, Huntington notes 6 powers that will dominate: America, Europe, China, Russia, Japan, India. But behind them are the civilizations! [Sinic= Chinese-Confucian, Hindu, Japanese, Islamic, Orthodox Christian, Western, Latin American, African] Though the Muslim nations do not act as a bloc, they do wield considerable influence.

The Cold War as it was known before the collapse of the Soviet Union might have ended. But Russia and China are now big powers on their own, challenging the West. The ideological war might have ended, with all countries adopting capitalist methods in varying degrees, but political differences are significant. Behind them is the pull of civilizations.

West and Islam: undying antagonism

There are some basic conflicts. What we call the “West”- the US, Canada, Western Europe, Australia, New Zealand share certain characteristics: separation of church and state, democratic representative bodies, predominantly market economies, rule of law, individual freedoms, secularisation of life and admission of social and cultural pluralism. These  are all emphatically opposed by the Muslim countries! In the Islamic state, everything has to be ordered in the name of Allah: there can never be the separation of religion from the affairs of the state! This is not just an extremist view, but  the very normal Islamic position according to sane and sober Islamic judgement. Hence, the conflict between the West and Islam can never be reconciled. (The conflict between Christianity and Islam is another matter.) This is seen in the increasing social tension created by the influx of Muslim refugees (immigrants) into Western Europe! The problem is not due to Islamic extremism, but the very nature of Islam itself!

Western politicians simply ignore this basic fact. The basic animosity between the secular West and Islam cannot be reconciled or wished away. 

It is to be observed that though there are several big Muslim countries, no one is in a position to speak as “the Muslim” country or for all Muslims! This makes the situation rather dangerous for world peace. Muslim demographic growth is also extraordinary, and is leading to large scale immigration! But it is all to non-Muslim countries and not to other Muslim countries! This poses its own problems. This reveals the basic ethnic tensions among the Muslims!

Western countries are experiencing slow economic growth, decline or stagnation in population growth, debt burden due to big government and a lifestyle involving consumerism and low savings. The Asian economies are experiencing an upswing at the same time!

Neither the Muslim countries, nor all the other non-Western countries including former colonies have  accepted all the features of the West, though many of them have generally adopted Western ways in the name of modernisation! 

Rising world powers

The following map makes clear the divisions which can be easily perceived:

By en:en:User:Kyle Cronan and en:en:User Olahus in /

Buddhism has been an important religion, but according to Huntington, it has not been the basis of a large civilization. 

China: giant of Asia

China is sitting as the giant of Asia. It is in a position to virtually overrun the whole of Asia. It has already swallowed Tibet, a Buddhist country. No other Buddhist country in Asia can stand up to China, which has a large ethnic presence in several countries!

                                                                         to be continued

tags – to read, books