Sunday, 12 October 2014

I AM THAT: Nisargadatta Maharaj

This book consists of the conversations between Nisargadatta Maharaj and various seekers. Nisargadatta didn't know English; had very meagre education. He was a very ordinary looking man who lived in Bombay India in the twentieth century. Maurice Frydman edited and translated Nisargadatta Maharaj's tape-recorded conversations(which were in Marathi language) into the English-language book I Am That, published in 1973. 



This book is a work of an absolute genius into reality. The book contains real solutions to all fundamental problems. This is a masterpiece for every spiritual seeker. Eckhart Tolle, the celebrated writer of The Power of Now highly recommends this book. 


Nisargadatta did not fit into conventional Guru image. He was against the emergency syndrome and suggested rather to inquire into our dream worlds to wake up. You wonder how could a person who had no formal education at all be such an absolute genius into reality. It was solely because he was awakened because of his sadhana. The book is in a questions-answers format and Nisargadatta never leaves any seeker disappointed. He points to the right direction for everyone. This book is one of my all time favorites and I highly recommend it to ever earnest seeker and meditator for contemplative reading. 

You might also read following book recommendations on this very weblog:

Tao-Te-Ching
The Power of Now
Guru Nanak--Jairam Mishra 


image source: here

   



Star Trek: Into The Darkness

This is a sequel to 2009 science-fiction flick. It's a great sequel to a great film. There is not much twist or substance in plot but action and thrill are at their peak. The special effects  just elevate you into another dimension. This movie has an arch-villain like the previous one.



 Beautiful soundtrack and a lot of emotional dialogue along with lots and lots of breathtaking action make it a great conventional space odyssey film. It never gets boring after first few minutes despite its length. It has good actors and great camera-work. The other day I was watching BBC's Sherlock Holmes and it was just fitting to see Benedict Cumberbatch  as a superhuman dark arch-rival of captain Kirk. Science fiction movies are getting better day by day with advances in technology. The same rate of progress is not obvious in mystery movies in my opinion. 

My experience with Facebook and Google+

I am not a very social person. I have just 170 friends on Facebook. I also published a post on How to Lose Friends and Estrange People on my blog. those who feel they have too many Friends on Facebook might have a looksee. Well, Friends on Facebook are not actually all friends. They are acquaintances, friends, family and co-workers. I have just 38 people in my circles and I think almost similar number of them are having me in theirs at Google+. 




Having introduced my lack of societal inclinations and connections let me further add: I have not been on these platforms for very long. I opened accounts on Twitter and Pinterest but for some reason or the other they did not really work for me. Now let me come to the point:


I feel I liked Facebook in the beginning and indeed there was no Google+ then--but I don't like Facebook as much as I did earlier. Now I like Google+ more. There are many reasons for this methinks and they are all subjective.

1. Ideas versus Faces:

I think Facebook is more about faces than ideas. Google+ is more about ideas than faces. I hardly find any Selfies or family-photos on Google+. It might well be because people prefer Facebook as a more personal platform than Google+. I often observe a lot of quotations, articles, informative videos and graffiti and active discussion groups on Google+ than I do on Facebook. Facebook is more like family-neighborhood gathering whereas Google+ is more like a discussion group or leisure club gathering you participate in. 

2. Friends versus Circles:

You have to send a request to a person on Facebook before you start sharing information with him or her. At Google+ you can simply add a person into your circles and start following him or her. Facebook also started offering a Follow button but it doesn't look as simple as Google+ circles do. It's really relatively very easy to befriend new people on Google+ than on Facebook. 

3. Advertisements Annoy:

The reality might bite some of us but social world is indeed a market-place. Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and other social networking sites serve for building potential customers for advertisers. However, because of the competition, there are some of the platforms which offer you services with less annoying advertisements. At Google+ I feel that I am not annoyed much by constant news trends, Apps and advertisements. No matter how many times you try to cancel out all of them on Facebook they persist. They are similar to those malwares on your system which stick and just don't accept getting lost. 


Facebook is old and Google+ is younger. Facebook is outdated and annoying and Google+ is entertaining and new. Still, you find most of your real-life(that might be a moot point: what is real?) acquaintances on Facebook yet--that might be because of its leverage. Google+ is catching up very fast though. Google+ is more interesting for those who want to share ideas than whereabouts. 

When I open Facebook and Google+ windows I see that Facebook has whopping 4 stripes on screen whereas Google+ has just 2. I love seeing a lot of space because too much informations jams my system up. Facebook is really too congested a platform right now with almost no space. It's like a crowded market-place. Google+ is like a trip to a foreign place or another state where you see many new ideas and find a fresh breeze of air. 

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Timecrimes

It's a mind boggling movie. It's a mystery thriller involving a time-loop. There are many movies with time-travel themes but I would talk about only movies which are very similar to this one. It's quite similar to Groundhog Day, Triangle and Edge of Tomorrow etc. I think Triangle comes closest to this one and since Triangle was a later date movie it must have been inspired by this one up to an extent. You notice many similarities indeed but both of them are fun to watch even if you have seen one of them. This movie is a masterpiece like memento in my opinion. There are layers after layers of mystery which open-up in a sequence before the audience.


The movie is similar to aforementioned movies only in that it has a time-loop but it's also unique in every sense. Here time-loop is smallest. Movie  is unpredictable. The movie is amazing in the sense that it has just 4 faces on-screen. There is an hour long time-loop in which a man enters mysteriously and accidentally and he is compelled to make choices which lead to a crime. I think there is only one crime in the movie, I wonder why it's named Timecrimes. I think it's because I am speaking from the viewpoint of the protagonist whereas in the totality the same crime is repeated infinite number of times.


The movie remains unpredictable till end and it's similar to the Triangle because we notice that there exist three Hectors(main character is named Hector) simultaneously. But in Triangle you see three of them simultaneously whereas in this movie you see only two of them at once but you're aware of existence of all three simultaneously.


Like all great mystery movies, this one is also open-ended. The climax leaves you boiling with many questions like: What happens to the Hector 3 afterwards? Does he face the criminal charges? Does he go and kill the scientist? Are there other copies of Hector like Hector 4 and 5 who are already aware of other copies? This is an open to interpretation climax and very thought provoking indeed. This is undoubtedly one of the best mystery movies ever and you will enjoy watching it. 

This is a great science fiction film with a very intelligent script and fine editing. You don't see many special effects and yet you're witnessing a great deal of game being played. You often feel that why does protagonist make same choices despite being aware of all that is going to happen? What if he does nothing at all? I think that this is an underrated movie. I would give it a 8 out of 10.   

image source: here