Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Book Review: 151 AMAZING MONEY SECRETS

'151 AMAZING MONEY SECRETS - What the Rich Know About Money and Their Secrets to Success & Prosperity!' by NJ BRIDGEWATER. The purpose of this book is to share 151 quotations from great thinkers of the past, which contain the essential keys to building wealth and prosperity in the modern world. I haven’t included quotations from all of the top businessmen of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Much wisdom from both classical and more recent sources, and quotations about Bitcoin, as well as a few about gold. Chapter 1 is about the mindset, the idea of abundance, and the sense of opportunity that one needs. Next chapter is filled with quotations, introducing the nature of different investments like gold, bitcoin, etc. Which is followed by one containing the definitions of the important variables of making money, like, wealth, savings, talents, etc. A chapter about building one's business, which present quotes about finding one's niche, advertising, marketing, and other aspects is followed by one about the need to focus. And a few more ones about the ultimate success of a gentleman's quest brings the book to a close.
I found this book a light, enjoyable read. Quite motivating, many of the words are, and, given that they are from the best of the brains, these force one to pay attention. A good collection of meaningful 'quips' indeed.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Random smiles

Expecting the world to treat you fairly because you are good, is like expecting the bull not to charge because you are a vegetarian.

Show me a sane man and I will cure him

Contradictions do not exist. Whenever you think that you are facing a contradiction, check your premises. You will find that one of them is wrong

I don’t want to achieve immortality through my work. I want to achieve it by not dying

My mum told me I should never talk to strangers. I said, It's alright mum, I don't know any

I learn from the mistakes of others who have taken my Advice.

People shouldn't worry about the world ending. It's already tomorrow somewhere in the world!

Why do women like men who are smart, goal orientated and have a sense of humor?
Because opposites attract.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Why there are more theists than atheists?



Why there are more theists than atheists?
For an answer, let us visit the history of theism.
What is theism? What led us to theism? 
The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary says that theism is “belief in a deity or deities, as opposed to atheism.” There are also other definitions that focus on more specific matters. Theism as a belief not in deities but in God that is different from deities. This is a much less universal phenomenon than supernaturalism/superstition. It has a historical particularity; in the Judaeo-Christian-Islamic tradition, we can more or less see where Theism begins. It begins with the writing of the first chapter of Genesis, where the author introduces us to Yahweh, who is not just another heavenly being like the sun or the moon, but the sun and moon’s creator.
“First we should distinguish theism from mere belief in the supernatural. The latter, illustrated by ghost-stories, tales of second sight, rituals and sacrifices to prevent the failure of a harvest or a navy, the consulting of the sacred geese, and the throwing of the salt always over one’s left shoulder, is a human universal, and was known even to our Pleistocene ancestors. A more hostile name for this is superstition.” I don’t think this can be right. These observances are now termed superstition, based on certain arguments which are of significance only now. This is as much a matter of faith as the belief in god presently is. Theism is also is nothing but the belief in the super-natural, except that the nature of the supernatural may mark a change.
This should have been clear to anybody with average intelligence or more.
The difference between Theism as belief in God and theism as belief in deities is that the latter can easily be just another variety of supernaturalism. Especially where the deities are small and local enough, there seems little difference in principle between believing in such deities and believing in fairies or ghosts: think of nature-gods like Iris the rainbow-goddess, or Freya/Persephone of the harvest, or Thor the thunder-god. The classical pagan gods were very frequently of this sort, as were the deities of pagan Norway and Britain and Mexico. In another common pattern, pagan deities arose by apotheosis – by the route from being a human hero to occupying yet another alcove in the cluttered and haphazard pantheon of (say) the Rome of late antiquity. This was a route, indeed, that mortal Roman emperors regularly trod. Even Greek generals sometimes took it too.
Further evolution in this manner could have resulted in the present nature god, the creator of both heaven and earth, a close associate of which being Christianity. Not only that the biblical god became huge, despite his anthropomorphism (humankind was created in his image), it was possible for him to become a metaphysical god. Identifying closely the human, passionate and protective character, the gigantic scale of the Judaic god also allowed him to take on the role of the founder and creator of the cosmic order. 
Besides this ‘gigantism’, it was the “human, passionate, and protective character” of the god that continued to work in theism’s favor, notwithstanding the changes felt everywhere.  This brought in a new meaning to all gods, an absolute and eternal entity that was not a mere principle but a great living being, in short making it very easy to be a theist.

For an answer, let us visit the history of theism.
What is theism? What led us to theism? 
The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary says that theism is “belief in a deity or deities, as opposed to atheism.” There are also other definitions that focus on more specific matters. Theism as a belief not in deities but in God that is different from deities. This is a much less universal phenomenon than supernaturalism/superstition. It has a historical particularity; in the Judaeo-Christian-Islamic tradition, we can more or less see where Theism begins. It begins with the writing of the first chapter of Genesis, where the author introduces us to Yahweh, who is not just another heavenly being like the sun or the moon, but the sun and moon’s creator.
“First we should distinguish theism from mere belief in the supernatural. The latter, illustrated by ghost-stories, tales of second sight, rituals and sacrifices to prevent the failure of a harvest or a navy, the consulting of the sacred geese, and the throwing of the salt always over one’s left shoulder, is a human universal, and was known even to our Pleistocene ancestors. A more hostile name for this is superstition.” I don’t think this can be right. These observances are now termed superstition, based on certain arguments which are of significance only now. This is as much a matter of faith as the belief in god presently is. Theism is also is nothing but the belief in the super-natural, except that the nature of the supernatural may mark a change.
This should have been clear to anybody with average intelligence.
The difference between Theism as belief in God and theism as belief in deities is that the latter can easily be just another variety of supernaturalism. Especially where the deities are small and local enough, there seems little difference in principle between believing in such deities and believing in fairies or ghosts: think of nature-gods like Iris the rainbow-goddess, or Freya/Persephone of the harvest, or Thor the thunder-god. The classical pagan gods were very frequently of this sort, as were the deities of pagan Norway and Britain and Mexico. In another common pattern, pagan deities arose by apotheosis – by the route from being a human hero to occupying yet another alcove in the cluttered and haphazard pantheon of (say) the Rome of late antiquity. This was a route, indeed, that mortal Roman emperors regularly trod. Even Greek generals sometimes took it too.
Further evolution in this manner could have resulted in the present nature god, the creator of both heaven and earth, a close associate of which being Christianity. Not only that the biblical god became huge, despite his anthropomorphism (humankind was created in his image), it was possible for him to become a metaphysical god. Identifying closely the human, passionate and protective character, the gigantic scale of the Judaic god also allowed him to take on the role of the founder and creator of the cosmic order. 
Besides this ‘gigantism’, it was the “human, passionate, and protective character” of the god that continued to work in theism’s favor, notwithstanding the changes felt everywhere.  This brought in a new meaning to all gods, an absolute and eternal entity that was not a mere principle but a great living being, in short making it very easy to be a theist.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Last Days of Democracy?



With the number of liberal democracies in the world now stagnating; with many third wave democracies deteriorating in their actual democratic performance; with human rights abuses persistent and even increasing, it is time to introspect. 
Why did democracy fail?
Did democracy fail? Well, the evidence in the affirmative appears to be mounting. If we look beyond the form of democracy—a form that is increasingly expected by world culture and organizations—we see erosion and stagnation offsetting liberalization and consolidation. Liberal democracy has stopped expanding in the world, and so has political freedom more generally. If we take the liberal content of democracy seriously, it seems that the third wave of democratic expansion has come to a halt and probably to an end. 
We may or may not see in the coming years the emergence of a few new electoral democracies, but a further sizable increase seems unlikely, given that democratization has already occurred in the countries where conditions are most favorable. In the coming years movement to electoral democracy also seems likely to be offset by movement away from it, as some fledgling electoral democracies in Africa and elsewhere are either blatantly overthrown (as in Gambia and Niger), squelched just before birth (as in Nigeria), or strangled (more or less slowly) by deterioration in the fairness of contest and the toleration of opposition (as in Peru, Cambodia, and some of the former Communist states). Even in established democracies like USA, India, or UK, undemocratic deviations are being tolerated widely. In these circumstances more and more countries may seek to satisfy ritually the expectation of ‘democracy’ through its most hollow form, some type of pseudo-democracy.

When expansion in the number of democracies and the overall level of democratic-ness in the world halts for a sustained period (say, five to ten years), it seems reasonable to conclude that a democratic wave has come to an end. At least, this marks the end of a ‘short wave’ of democratization. 
Why?
I think we all need to look at the decisions, or conclusions we drew in the past. On all matters that can be examined objectively, namely, physical science, medicine, etc., each one of the principles, theorems, or explanations, we used to hold is high esteem is turning out to be incorrect. Why can't we think that on all other matters we are not able to observe such ambiguities only because we are not able to make an objective assessment? Had we been able to, we would have found, just like the erroneous notions of physical entities, which we are now correcting often, we are holding on to wrong ideas in other areas like governance, which we now need to set right.
When governments fail, or when unsuitable leaders take over control of countries, rather than pointing to certain specific causes like external interference, or a temple, we need to understand that as another sign of the imminent failure of democracy.
It is known, the presence of many nonmagnetic atoms (even the strongest magnet won't have 100% atoms, magnetic), cannot prevent the magnet from acting as one.


Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Book Review: Life

'Life' by Laurentiu Mihaescu briefly chronicles the journey of Matter, Evolution, Consciousness, and Intelligence.
"It was a very long journey", the book says, "It all started with the granular fluid and its special mechanics, with those hydrogen atoms that filled the space about 14 billion years ago" and tries to answer some of the pertinent questions, one may have.
Are we able to offer coherent answers to some specific questions related to our existence, such as:
Where do we come from?
Who are we, the humans, in fact?
Are we a unique kind of life form?
What is the purpose of our existence?
The author's perspective is very clear on these matters and involves just the fields of reason and science.

It formulates our exact "address" in the Universe as: Planet Earth, Solar System, Orion Arm, Milky Way Galaxy, Local Group, Virgo Cluster, Laniakea Super-cluster, and goes ahead with the definition of life. Here it asks a question that I myself found relevant. "Can we, the humans, analyze and understand our own life?"
Further chapters examine Evolution and adaptation, followed by Principles and rights, where the follies committed by the human race since time immemorial are recalled. "We have paid a great price because of the animal that existed within us, because of our initial ignorance. The evil things done over thousands of years by the religions and their fairy tales, the crimes made by the followers in the name of their "faith", all of these will be forgiven and forgotten, and the humanity will take the path of normal, pure scientific knowledge, which only involve the human reason." The book also propose a desired path for human race to progress further. Like the following three principles.
"1. The surrounding environment is purely material, at any scale it would be regarded. All structures, alive or not, and all their interactions bear the unique feature of materiality.
2. Human knowledge is simply possible, to any extent. We have no other objective limitations, beside the well-known ones: the space and time.
3. The good can be identified with the prosperity of each human, with the perpetuation of our species in general, with its growth and peaceful development up to the cosmic scale."
The book hopes that our race could travel even farther, on the way to the starlight, leaving behind all their inner contradictions and becoming a normal, real cosmic civilization.
I liked the book, it asked certain questions that is pestering me often, and is resulting in many of my books. Unlike all those who dwell on these topics, the author has successfully avoided abstract discussions.


Sunday, December 3, 2017

Book Review: They’re Coming For Your Internet

'They’re Coming For Your Internet' by Nate Levesque discusses the issue of net neutrality, a hot topic these days. In six heads, namely, Beginnings, The ISP Problem, Profit and Control, Second-Class Data, Traffic Control, and If the Internet Falls, the relevant issues are touched upon. That this isn't a problem with the Internet as a whole, while the backbone of the Internet is fairly competitive, the relatively few companies control the last-mile (the connection from you to a backbone provider) networks. 
Tracing the origins of high speed communication networks to Samuel Morse and telegraph, the book tells us how, in the initial days itself, communication made its presence felt -  by swinging the presidential the election due to careful control of what news about the candidates spread. Next, the book talks about the Internet landscape. How acquisitions have folded many service providers into a few large regional and even national providers, leading to the network becoming centralized again. Also, of the threat faced by established companies from disruptive innovations, which the upstart, smarter companies will adopt quickly, leading  the big players to look for fresh ways to secure their position. That all these put net neutrality in jeopardy, one can easily see.
What will happen if net neutrality is repealed, the book asks. The answer is also ready. The 'on-line' is in for a change. ISPs, who are already violating neutrality by selling low caps, zero-rating, and throttling as solutions to imagined network congestion shall get emboldened. They may also push for legislation to prevent cities from building their own Internet providers—called municipal networks—which usually offer better, faster, and cheaper service. Many more imaginative throttles to independence of net communication are then discussed.
I liked this book. It opened my eyes to many things I had no inkling of. The book issues a real warning. Our ability to be informed, to express ourselves, and to run a healthy democracy hang in the balance. It’s hard to imagine a company interfering with an election as Western Union once did in the case of the above mentioned presidential election. Even with the necessary safeguards, there are many instances where the suspicion is on media manipulation. It may become a real threat, the possibility of ISPs take control of what’s available on-line is too dangerous to be ignored.


Saturday, December 2, 2017

Random Quotes..

DEEP- ROOTED customs, though wrong, are not easily altered, but, it is the duty Of all to be in form for that which they certainly know is right - JOHN WOOLMAN.
HE often acts unjustly who does not do a certain thing; not only he who does a certain thing - MARCUS ANTONINUS.
EVERY duty we commit obscures some truth we should have known - JOHN RUSKIN

Sunday school class. The topic for the day: Easter Sunday and the resurrection of Christ.
“What did Jesus do on this day?” There was no response, so here ia a hint: “It starts with the letter R.”
One boy blurted, “Recycle!”

If nobody likes your selfie, what is the value of the self?

Which is it, is man one of God’s blunders or is God one of man’s?

“Any man who is not a socialist at age twenty has no heart. Any man who is still a socialist at age forty has no head.” 
"On the sixth day God created man. On the seventh day, man returned the favor.

God creates faulty humans and then blames them for his own mistakes. 

Answer wrote by one little  Negro  schoolgirl  wrote  when  asked  by  the  teacher  to  write an  essay  on the  punishment, Hitler should be subjected to:  “Dress  him  up  in  a  black skin  and  make  him  live  in  the  United  States.” 

Featured post

All my Books and all my Hubs

Sometimes I wonder , how is that each one of my friends happen to be so memorable a character? One among them, who is also a little mor...