ESSAY WRITING-- a few short essays
BACKWARDNESS IN INDIAN VILLAGES
Nearly Seventy per cent of Indians live in villages. The backwardness of Indian villages means, therefore, the backwardness of India itself. Village uplift is a Himalayan task. The problem has been made more difficult and complicated by the uncontrolled increase of population. There is too much pressure on land. Backwardness of Indian villages means absence of education and economic well-being.
Every village should be connected with the other villages and larger towns and cities by metalled roads. Most villages are so far away from markets that village trade has become almost impossible. Given roads and quick and cheap communication, our villages can grow money crops and also sell other products many miles away. Electricity, cheap and abundant, will enable our villagers to run power-driven cottage industries. We are very poor in power economy cattle dung is used up as fuel. If in every village cooking was done in every cottage by gas and electricity, cowdung could be in every cottage by gas and electricity, cowdung could be used as manure and per acre production of crop could go up.
There should be a network of canals all over India. Flood control and river valley projects, and also the supply of cheap artificial manure, would be instrumental in removing the backwardness of Indian villages. Poultry-keeping, cattle-breeding on sound scientific lines, bee-keeping, fish culture, fruit orchards, and the destruction of pests could do a lot in removing the backwardness of Indian villages.
Every village should have a school and a playground, a library and a reading room. Also, there should be one hospital for every three or four villages. Family planning and population control are necessary conditions for removing the backwardness of Indian villages. Co-operative farming has not made much headway. Then, there is over-fragmentation of land. There is an alarming amount of wasteful and expensive litigation. Crime is also on the increase. May our people and our Government succeed in the years to come in tackling the Himalayan task of the removal of the backwardness of Indian villages.
Mountains, rivers and oceans form a combined trinity and unity. Rivers take their rise in mountains as a result of the melting of ice. And every river’s final home is the sea. Rivers are nature’s blessed gift to the earth. They are a symbol of the river of life. They represent the flux and flow of the living world. When I think of the rivers of our country it seems as if mother India has unfastened the huge knot of her hair and her locks fell about her in flowing, rippling tresses.
Civilization had its birth and grew on the banks of the rivers. Even today most of the great cities are situated on or near river banks. Most of the smaller cities and towns have a river running nearby. What so? Because wells and tube-wells or canals came later and water for irrigation and a thousand other purposes could only be supplied by rivers to millions of people. Secondly, movement of men and merchandise on small and big boats was easier, swifter and cheaper by rivers than by land. The rivers and river banks became cradles of civilization.
Try to imagine the earth without rivers. Your consciousness will feel a sense of check as if the flow of life had suddenly come to a stop. Human imagination has pictured rivers flowing in heaven. The galaxy of stars known as ‘the milky way’ is beautifully called in our language as Akash Ganga. The music born of the murmuring sound of water carriers with it, as it were, in a secret language, the message of life. It is nature’s jal-tarang. Life on this planet originated in water when, as the scriptures say, the spirit of God moved on the waters. The legend of the tortoise-god and the fish-god, Kachh and Machhavatars point to the rise of life from water.
Fishes of many varieties, snipes, wild ducks and geese, other water fowls, turtles, crabs, lobsters and oysters supply considerable amount of food and nourishment to millions of people. In France and some other countries frogs and considered a table delicacy. The crocodile has its home in rivers. Extremely beautiful and durable articles are made of crocodile leather. Even the sand on river banks has it uses. And a panda (priest) makes money out of religious-minded bathers. There is also vegetation in the rivers which supplement the fodder needed for our cattle. River bathing, swimming and boat-races have their own charms and excitements. In Budhwa Mangal is celebrated on boats. Rivers have become parts of our life and habits. India has the distinction of paying its tributes to rivers in the form of its world famous bathing festivals at which we feel that rivers and float earthen lamps life so many flaming boats on the rippling currents of rivers.
The music born of the murmuring sound of flowing rivers is supplemented with the pictures of houses, temples of houses, trees the sky, the flying birds, the sun, the moon and the stars mirrored in the crystalline stream of rivers. Rivers are wonderful photographs.
But God help us when rivers are angry. Storms and floods strike terror in every heart and take a big toll of life and property. Rivers create in everyone of us a sense of mystery. They attract us, the children of the earth, as a mother’s lap. The very sight of a river has a soothing and a tranquilizing effect. Some of the greatest secrets and truths of life were discovered by our sage and seers meditating on river banks. Rivers have a purifying and sanctifying effect on all of us. What beautiful names have men in all climes given to rivers. Ganga, Yamuna, Sutlaj, Jhelum, Ghagra or Saryu, Brahmaputra, Godawari in India and Neel (The Nile), the Mississippi, the Danube, the Thames, Dajla and Faraat in other lands. We pronounce these names affectionately. The very names are music to the ear. They seem to be echoes of eternity. Every river can claim with Tennyson’s Brook.
For men may come and men may go,
But I go on for ever.
In water and from water was all life born. And the Hindus complete the last lap of their journey on the earth on funeral pyres on the burning ghat of rivers. From the mother’s lap to the mother’s lap.
SCIENCE AND WORLD PEACE
Wars break out not as a result of a single cause but as a result of a combination of causes. World peace also depends on a combination of factors. Scientific advancement could not prevent the first world war. More scientific advancement could not prevent the second world war. The development of nuclear weapons has created an altogether new situation. A nuclear war will mean the destruction or the near destruction of all countries and all continents. America and Russia possess enough nuclear weapons to destroy the whole world many times over. England and France also have atomic bombs. China and some other powers are not far behind to produce their own atomic bombs. The world situation has become extremely explosive.
If the third great world war breaks out there will be no victory for any power. It will not be a war between governments or between armies only. It will be total war. It will be a universal blood bath. The human race, nay, civilization itself, will be wiped out. Atomic weapons being the deadliest imaginable weapons are, therefore, the greatest deterrent to war and a guarantee of world peace. Nothing short of madness can lead the nations of today to a nuclear war.
What about wars with conventional weapons? Even after the invention of atom bombs and hydrogen bomb, wars with conventional weapons have been taking place, though not on a world-wide scale. The Vietnam War, limited wars in the Middle East and in other pacific regions and elsewhere are examples. We are lucky that the fire of these wars did not become a world conflagration.
The world must preserve peace or perish. Today humanity is on the crossroads. The choice is not between victory and defeat but between death and survival.
If governments and people all over the world become conscious of war danger it is likely that war mentality will give place to a peace mentality. A modern world war will solve no problem and will do nobody and gouman od. Science has created this dramatic situation which unique to history. It is not scientists that wage wars. The common people also do not wage wars. It is the rulers of countries that wage wars. It is up to them to maintain world peace. Science is knowledge. But the world can be saved not by knowledge only but by knowledge and wisdom together.
HOW TO SUCCEED IN LIFE
Success in life requires not only fine qualities but also suitable conditions. Every child should have sensible parents and a good home life. These will help a boy or a girl to grow in a healthy manner. Education and training are also necessary conditions for success in life. The social environment also plays an important part in the making of life. Home and society help everyone in making life successful. But this help should enable everyone to learn the secret and the art of self-help. Every man should make himself useful and serviceable to society in as many ways as possible. And every woman should to likewise.
Work is the secret of success and happiness. We are all storehouses of energy. Every man or every woman is a power house. When energy finds play in good work, joy and success come to life. Another quality for success in life is tact. Man is a social animal. We should learn to understand the character and temperament of those with whom we have dealings. Common sense is, alas, not so common as we fondly believe or desire it to be. But without common sense and tact life cannot be successful.
Life is not a bed of roses. Difficulties and disappointments are a common feature in the life of even the most successful people. We should have a sense of compromise. We should learn to bear sorrow and failure. We should not be panicky. One writer says that we should learn to suffer as fools. Toleration is also needed for success in life. Moderation, toleration, tack and liveliness contribute to success in life. We should also cultivate the art of cheerfulness. Sometimes it our duty to be cheerful even in depressing circumstances.
From the material point of view several things are considered important for success in life. But man shall not live by bread alone. Unless our emotions are enriched and our imagination finds full play, our life cannot be successful. Pursuit of one or more of the fine arts, literates, music, painting, etc. is also a necessary condition for attainment of successful life.
ESSAY WRITING-- a few short essays Reviewed by sambasivan srinivasan on 8:36:00 PM Rating: