Sunday, February 25, 2007

India's Knowledge Commission

This is an email from one of the members of SAJA(South Asian Journalists Association), Ram Narayanan who is with the US-India Friendship group. Good read for those who want to do something for India, in any of the following ways.

"Dear Friends:
The National Knowledge Commission is a high-level advisory body to the Prime Minister of India, set up with the objective of transforming India into a knowledge society. It covers sectors ranging from education to e-governance in the five principal focus areas of the knowledge paradigm, viz.:
1. Access - Easy Access to Knowledge: Literacy, Language, Translation, Libraries, Networks, Portals
2. Concepts - All Levels and Forms of Education:
School, Vocational, Higher, Medical, Legal, Management, Engineering, Open and Distance Education.
3. Creation - Effective Creation of Knowledge:
Science and Technology, Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs), Innovation, Entrepreneurship
4. Applications - of Knowledge Systems:
Traditional Knowledge, Agriculture
5. Services - like

The Commission has set up nine working groups on:
Libraries, Language, Health Information Network, Undergraduate Education, Medical Education, Legal Education, Management Education, Traditional Knowledge, Open and Distance Education
It has organized a number of workshops and surveys on these and related subjects.
The website of the National Knowledge Commission can be seen at
The Commission’s Report to the Nation 2006 can be read at
There are many pieces of information on the website worth reading including:
Report of the Working Group on libraries, as submitted to the National Knowledge Commission...
Expert Report on Knowledge Network prepared by Dr.D P S Seth...
Report of the Working Group on language, as submitted to the National Knowledge Commission....
More working group reports will be out in due course.
The Commission’s website also has a "Discussion Board" to post comments, although I didn’t see any comments at this time.
All in all, the Commision’s website is worth careful study. For those living here in the US or in India or elsewhere, who possess specialized knowledge and/or have the ability and passion for doing something in and for India, here is an opportunity to start thinking.
To me it appears for successful implementation of the Knowledge Commission’s present and future recommendations, the involvement of government bureaucracy, especially at middle and lower levels, should be minimized (except for funding) and a major share of responsibility fixed on the private sector, including credible, competent and passionate NGOs. Do you agree?

Do you think it would be a good idea to set up a "Fraternal Help Team" (can we coin a better term?) for each of the 21 Focus Areas to offer ideas to the Working Groups and to help implement their recommendations when they come out.
Would you like to be part of one or more "Fraternal Help Team(s)" devoted to each of the following 21 Focus Areas?:

Literacy, Language, Translation, Libraries, Networks, Portals, School Education, Vocational Education, Higher Education, Medical Education, Legal Education, Management Education, Engineering Education, Open and Distance Education, Science and Technology, Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs), Innovation, Entrepreneurship, Traditional Knowledge, Agriculture, e-Governance
If you have specialized knowledge in any of the above specific areas, your contribution may be crucial to help India get successfully established on the road to becoming a knowledge superpower.
Do let me have your thoughts on what you CAN AND ARE WILLING TO DO?
Ram Narayanan
US-India Friendship

Thursday, February 22, 2007


A presentation of Accessible Horizon Films
Just a montage of specially painted artwork. Crazy designs made by applying paint on paper and folding paper into two. An expression 'sans' meaning or concept...just plain, simple and crazy!

Principle or Person

Is a human important for another human being or the principles formed by a human being? This is a question that has been articulating in my mind for a long time.

Many people say that Hitler killed hundreds or thousands of people and was responsible for the attempt of Genocide. It is impossible for any single human being to accomplish such a mass killing. It is the principle advocated by him and the people who blindly followed him were responsible for such an act.

Any leadership involves principles and it has to help the humanity to be in harmony. But in many cases a wrong leadership or wrong principles are propagated and it causes an imbalance among the people.

There were many messengers of gods who came on to this earth and preached valuable principles to help the humanity in peace. But now common people are more bothered about the persons who preached rather than the principles they preached. If everyone started thinking and analyzing the principles rather than the person, this world would have been a better place.

If i say i follow Christianity or Islam or Hinduism, i mean to say i am following only one person and his or her principles. If i say i follow humanity it means that i follow the valuable principles what all these religions or their messengers preached.

We are more concerned about "who is the person saying?" rather than "what the person is saying?" Is there any way to see a change in this approach? Yes there is, when every human is open to his/her thinking mind.

Let us be open for the good principles to help all living beings in co-existence and peace.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007


Here's a list of really funny types of kissers from TwistedDNA. Some of them are crazy and outright hilarious. What type are you? (can you think of others?)
The Vacuum Cleaner: Believes kiss is the vacuum seal of love. As soon as an air-tight lip-lock is achieved, he sucks hard enough to collapse her lungs.

The Archeologist: Within a few nano seconds of initial contact, he digs the tongue deep enough to cause a gag reflex.

The Hairdresser: She habitually passes her hand through the guy’s hair messing up his expensive hair-do. Messing the hair is OK for guys, but not for just a kiss.

The Epicurean: Proceeds to the abomination of a kiss with remnants of her lunch firmly implanted between her teeth.

The Unsure: Typically a guy at the end of a date. Not willing to kiss on the cheek and not quite gathering the nerve to kiss on the lips, lands the kiss in the no man’s land between the cheek and the edge of the lips.

The Announcer: Announces the actions before doing them. “I am going to gently nibble on your lips now.” It might be exciting at the beginning but pretty soon it will feel like a scripted TV show and you would want to change the channel.

The Venus De Milo: Just like her phone calls, she likes to take her kisses handsfree. She lets her hands hang by her sides like wet towels. The guy would typically have to pin her to the wall to stop her from falling over.

The Drifters: Where lips keep sliding out of position and the couple having to realign themselves repeatedly. It may also be an indication that one of them is about to die of suffocation.

The Dental Dueler: With his firm conviction that harder you press better the kiss, he applies enough pressure for the lips to give way and teeth to clatter.

The Decibelle: As soon as, or even before, the lips met, the woman begins moaning heavily, making the guy wonder if he is standing on her foot. In such cases if the guy is hoping to score that night, he better find a place in the middle of nowhere.


Ask questions about Social Issues here!

Whatever we tread nowadays in the world of the internet, leads us to more and more information and knowledge and it is up to us to utilize this to help make this world a better place.

I recently came across this website which discusses important questions that address the pressing social issues in our present day world.

Dropping Knowledge is a unique campaign working for social change through the internet. The non-profit initiative encourages open dialogue on the pressing social questions of our time, promoting the worldwide exchange of views, ideas and sustainable solutions.”

You can plunge into any social issue and gain some insight into it and if you want to pose a question, you can!

This led me into knowing about a Human Rights Activist, Founder of the Oakland Institute, Anuradha Mittal. She was responsible for founding THE OAKLAND INSTITIUTE whose mission is to increase public participation and promote fair debate on critical social, economic and environmental issues in both national and international forums.

Under which I found this article she wrote on The True cause of World hunger.

And check this article too, if you are interested...

Here we have post on other pressing issues which we dealt with in the past few months like Air Pollution , CO2 Emission, Nuclear Weapons, and Global Warming

What a Century!

Ok ok, thank you, thank you!
This is our 100th POST. We owe it to the fast growing Technology, and we have tried to reach out to the whole world, but at our own pace.
We have shared and received knowledge and we look forward to doing a lot more in the coming years. Starting on August 23rd, 2006, we've had a wide range of articles and posts which we shared with the world around us. Though we have dealt with a lot of issues like Global Warming, Air Pollution, Nuclear weapons, Social Issues, Peace, Nature, Music, Kids, Current Events, Photography, etc. We still feel that there is a lot more in this world that needs to be explored.
There is a saying in Tamil, “ Katrathu Kaialavu, Kallaathathu Ulagalavu”
It means whatever knowledge gained is just size of the hand and whatever has to be learned is as big as this world!
So, there is a long way to go. And we hope that more people will join us in this journey of unraveling knowledge from this vast universe. Folks, as the world is getting smaller and smaller through technology, make use of this by sharing whatever you feel, know and think. Opinions, thoughts, questions, answers, whatever!
Three cheers to Blogging and the Internet(the one we've taken for granted)!

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Freedom Writers: Remove Racism through Education

Last night we were watching this 'film for change' - Freedom Writers, which is based on a true story. This is a movie that was not only well-made but also has been timed so right, because of the current situation the world is in right now.
Essentially, it's about a committed teacher with a noble cause who eliminates the visible and invisible racial borders between the students of her class, by educating them and liberating them from their prejudices. There's another kind of liberation at work here, liberation of the creative unconscious, that is, she makes the students write out their stories, their own true stories onto a diary which serves as the way to freedom, the way out of racism, the way out of the inexplicable hatred that they find themselves in. She finds innovative ways to teach the students about the irrelevance of hatred by enlightening them about the Holocaust and does all this at the cost of her own personal loss.
Primarily, a must-see movie for everyone, but otherwise, a excellent study tool for children especially teenagers all around the world. Although overt racism is now supposedly 'outdated', that is, we have legal regulations and the like, it is still very prevalent in more subtler overtones but nevertheless, filled with the bitterness that every form of discrimination engenders. Sometimes, we feel it in the air like a slow poison entering every cell of our body. I can't even begin to get into the heart of the topic, but the point here is, as we are maturing philosophically, we need to try and take that extra step towards eliminating racism. If we don't know how, education through this movie would be a step in the right direction.
For more information about the real-life teacher on whom the movie was made, check out Erin Gruwell at

Monday, February 19, 2007

Total Nuclear Disarmament: Wishful thinking Vs Realizable Goal

Achieving a world devoid of nuclear weapons is simple.
We just need to track the same steps that we followed. Let’s go back to the first creation of the N-bomb in 1945, the Trinity, developed by the US.
It is a classic case of the US leading by example. Once the US showed the world what it was capable of, the production of Trinity (and the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki), it didn’t take too long for every other capable country to produce their own. The then USSR, UK, France and a list of states followed suit.
Simple. You have it, why can’t I? And deterrence has been an important rhetoric ever since and their reason for Nuclear arms.
The world’s countries are now racing towards more and more weapons, advancement in their missile technology and trying to outdo each other in the deadly arms race.
If the world (especially the US) is so particular about Iran and North Korea not getting their hands on the weapons, then they have to practice what they preach. Yes, obvious. But the fact that it is obvious does not mean it needs no reiteration.
Lots of arms regulations and Disarmament agreements – Non-proliferation treaty (NPT), Nuclear Weapons Free Zones (NWFZ), Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), Partial Test Ban Treaty etc - have been created to one end. Phase out nuclear weapons from the world.
Why is it so hard to understand?
Let’s come to the solution at hand. All we need to do is start with the US. Let the US once again ‘lead by example’. Let the world follow the ‘leader’ but this time instead of creating the N-bombs, let them start disarming, not just dismantling, but complete disarmament.
That means reduction of Active Warheads from their respective nuclear stockpiles. The US and Russia each have more than 5000 active warheads and the UK, France, China, India and Pakistan together boast hundreds of active warheads. It is so ironic because these are the very same countries that talk about spreading peace and prosperity in the world.
Isn’t that the world (civil society, not Governments) wants and needs?
When the US does this, it will no doubt be a Confidence Building Measure (CBM) for every other nation that is a nuclear state or those aspiring to be one. That is why, the first biggest step should be the US’s.
It might seem outrageous to governments, defense analysts and the ‘decision-makers’ of foreign policy to even think of this possibility. But what is actually outrageous is that they don’t get that it’s what the people of the world want. The collective majority.
Now after the Iraq war, the American public image has been so tarnished that it can only be regained by gaining the world’s confidence. The ‘super-power’ image is not something one should strive for, because there is a negative egotistical stigma attached to the word ‘power’ when it applies to countries. And when we want to create a nuclear weapons free world, we can forgo this very word, idea, and concept of who is the biggest power because that in itself can be a major factor in one’s perception of themselves and others.
If the US wants to be loved and embraced by the world, it has to shed its current unilateral stance and be open to truly multilateral endeavors. If it wants to fight terrorism around the world, it should spend more on humanitarian needs and collaborations than (hundreds of billions) on futile wars. It has to understand that terrorism is a concept not a physical entity that can be crushed by brute force.
By complete disarmament, the US can truly gain the world’s trust. These Confidence-Building Measures are the greatest change that can psychologically make other nuclear states like India and Pakistan disarm completely and even stop nuclear aspiring states like North Korea or Iran.
If the US decides to ‘lead by example’ in this case, it can create waves of positive change and can thereby change the course of the arms imbroglio in the long-term.
Though the first logical steps would be to become signatories of the NPT (188 sovereign states), the CTBT (176 states), the possible Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty (FMCT) and many more it would make more sense to also implement a No-Use Treaty. A Treaty of this sort may seem unachievable and infeasible but this should be in the big picture because we have to see ourselves as a world going towards complete nuclear disarmament and peace. This has to come from within, as the world has to realize the impact of long-term security that can arise. Of course, other aspects to be focused on are the conversion of High Enriched Uranium (HEU) to Low Enriched Uranium (LEU), halting the production of plutonium and other fissile material as would be included in the FMCT.

A HUGE Peace Campaign!

How does a Peace Campaign sound to you all? What if all the Peace lovers of the world came together under one single cause? With the help of the Good Intentions, Internet, websites, blogs and all others with the similar thought process we can try and do a campaign for PEACE. What say? Mentors could be the initiators and the children could be responsible for spreading the word in and around their families and neighborhood.
Recently I came across this website and felt so strong that it is time we started our campaign for the REAL CAMPAIGN??
There were some good concepts in this site which I came across. The horrors of war had been mentioned and at the end a question was posed to the readers as to
"What could have been done to avoid the loss of so many lives ??"

You all remember the ONE VOICE MOVEMENT which was posted in this blog earlier?

That seems to be the answer!!

But I ask, We better ask ourselves one question and that would be enough.
"What are we willing to do to bring PEACE in this world??"

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Library Creation

Recently we were discussing about creating a book through Accessible Horizon Films, sort of a learning tool for the kids at Siragu Montessori School. In fact, we were even thinking of building a library source for them. Although this is in the very basic stages of development, we need ideas on what topics to cover. We suggested comic books like Amar Chitra Katha, Tinkle, Archies, etc which are an effective way towards cognitive development in English, the language and its grammar. There is no specific genre of books or topics you can suggest, just that we have to be creative to pick topics/books that can help in overall development of children aged 3-10. So if anyone has any ideas, please feel free to share them with us.
The goal: Create a library of books, resources for Siragu School, so by the end of a year, they will have something to go to, for creative/knowledge acquisition.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Phases of Nature!

As unique as Perceptions...are these phases of Nature!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Funny Math

Reiki - An Alternate Healing Practice


You have heard this word a lot recently. But what is this about?

This is what a Reiki practicing friend shared with us.You probably learned that everything is basically made of energy. When you look at any atom under a powerful enough microscope, all you see are electrons and protons, other energy particles, and empty space. We are all made of energy, and we all have electro-magnetic fields. That's why MRIs work. Our electro-magnetic fields are similar to a battery's electro-magnetic field. We even have a north and a south pole.
When anything negative happens to you, it interferes with the flow of your energy. If you are frightened or angry or sad, or if you are injured physically in any way, your energy becomes blocked or stagnant in the areas that are affected. Reiki unblocks the energy similarly to how a charged battery can share energy with a dead battery. If your iPod takes two batteries and you only have one dead one and one charged one, you can still run the iPod because the charged battery will share its energy. Receiving Reiki is kind of like sharing the energy of a balanced person only better. The person who has Reiki isn't depleted by sharing Reiki energy. It flows freely and balances the other person's energy. As Reiki removes the energy blockages, the person feels better emotionally and their body is able to heal.

I feel Reiki works on good intentions alone. As long as you intend for peace, love and light, the world around you will get just that. So, even if you learn to do reiki in the right way or not, your good intentions will always go a long way!! Keep them high!!


For more on Reiki...keep the web flow...:)

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Significance of September 21

Did you guys know the significance of September 21. Its the "International Day of Peace". United Nation has declared this as a Peace day. Are we maintaining peace every year on this day? This does not mean we should maintain peace only on the Sep 21. This means we have a target date to work on and we will try to bring peace in the this world before that. And from then everyday will be a Peace Day.

300,000 people participated in the International Day of Peace Vigil in Sri Lanka in 2004.

But out of around 6.1Billion people in this world, don't you think this is quite less. Lets try and make it significantly large this coming year. Sep 21 2007.
Here is a story for the kids and elders.
With Love, Peace and Hope let us work towards a better world.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Did you know? - about Flo-Flo Ship

Lift-on/lift-off or "lo/lo" operations use cranes, roll-on/roll-off or "ro/ro" operations use ramps and float-on/float-off or "flo/flo" operations are the trademark of unique submersible hull ships that transport yachts. Specialized Heavy Lift Ships, also known as Float-on/Float-off (FLO/FLO) or semisubmersible ships, provide the capability to load, transport and offload outsized military cargo independent of port equipment traditionally used for handling large or extremely heavy cargo, such as tug boats, barges, landing craft, floating cranes, and single anchor leg mooring systems. Lifts range from approximately 50 to as much as 45,000 tons.

These ships are designed to take on ballast water in floodable tanks that partially submerges the vessel. Cargo is then floated over the submerged portion of the vessel which then deballasts and surfaces under the cargo. After the vessel is full afloat, the cargo is secured for transport.

There ships are normally used in oil-refineries to carry the huge objects to the sea. They are also used as war ships to carry and as you see here these are the ships which can carry other ships.

To know more about flo/flo, please continue your web flow to Flo-Flo Ships
and in wikipedia flo/flo

Friday, February 09, 2007

The 'Colorist'

While we were in the research phases of our Documentary film, "Men of Burden - Pedaling Towards a Horizon", I came across some wonderful pictures of cycle rickshaws/hand-pulled rickshaws in India. To my surprise, one of the photographs had a Pondicherry rickshaw as the main subject. So, I immediately sent out an email to the man behind the work.
Claude Renault. He prefers to be called a 'colorist'...not a photographer. He gave us permission to use his work for our film for no fee. We couldn't thank him enough, that's why apart from giving him credit I wanted to share his work with everyone. An excellent eye for detail, an emotional connection with the subjects and a colorful rendition of life...these are some key features of his work.
Check them out:

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

In search of Oneness!!

I recently ran a search by just typing "CHILDREN OF THE WORLD, UNITE!!" and found so many sites and blogs which convey the same message. Isn't it wonderful that many souls in this world think alike and are actually doing something about bringing the children together?
Well, check this site and let me know what you think!!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

World Wide Post Card Painting Workshop!!!

We conducted a workshop wherein we asked around 150 kids between the ages 4-11, to paint whatever they liked, for children in other parts of the World. Similarly, we intend to conduct other workshops in other parts of the world where children from different countries and cultures would express their thoughts through art.

The postcards would then be posted on the Internet for world wide access so that messages are exchanged and shared. The idea behind that was to get them to make friends with kids across the globe, thereby promoting global peace and understanding in the long run. So from the comfort of their homes or classrooms, children can now exchange their cultures and thoughts towards creating a truly universal philosophy.

We hope that this workshop would be a great step ahead for the children of tomorrow’s world. We are positive that with like-minded people, we can transform the world through children and bring about a more peaceful co-existence.

If any of you is interested in doing one in your school or neighborhood with any number of children, please contact us either through this blog comments or mail us at

Peace Tree in Siragu!!!

Mitra (my filmmaker friend) had asked me if the kids at Siragu would build a Peace Tree if she gave them all the necessary materials and details. I replied to her that the kids at Siragu would love to do anything new and innovative and they are ever ready to take up creative workshops like these, especially where Peace is the issue!
I spoke to Muthuram on Jan 31st 2007 about the kids implementing a Peace Tree at Siragu Montessori School. He welcomed the idea and so I sent him all the materials that Mitra had sent to me.
On the 1st of February 2007, just one day after I had sent them the details, the Siragu kids had implemented the Peace Tree much to our surprise!
This itself is proof that the kids are so enthusiastic about connecting with the kids across the world in a Peaceful manner.We really miss the kids so much and wish that we were there with them when they are doing wonderful things like this!
If this continues, the kids will make friends with others around the world and also influence the adults into Peace activities!The day is not far!
Let us join together with the kids and spread the Peace in our Planet!!!

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Significance of 2012!!

A major paradigm shift is also talked about...are we talking about it without even knowing anything about it?
Or is it just that gut feeling each of us is having about something impending?
We could trust our instincts as far as this is concerned...
and do something about it or just wait for that major event to happen! it is always our choice...but then, what is that purpose of our very existence??
I found the below article during the search...

" For those of you who are not familiar with the significance of 2012, here’s a short explanation:
The basis of this event lies in the Mayan calendar, in which time, as we understand it, comes to an end. And a major shift occurs in human consciousness. Will this be the end of the world? Or, is it the beginning of a new world? Some believe that the shift will reveal the 4th dimension (time) or maybe the 5th dimension (unity with the unseen Spirit World/Heaven). My spirit guide, Dew, has told of a time, near the end of time, when inanimate objects will come to life, including stones, and that our animals will speak to us, to prove God’s dominion on earth. And yes, 2012 is his date for all this to occur.

It is our intended goal to help everyone prepare for what could possibly be the greatest event modern man has ever experienced. It’s not intended to make an apocalyptic prediction (we don’t need more of those). It’s just something that has gotten our attention that has potentially significant meaning for all of humanity.


First, we recognize that, to anyone seeing this information for the first time, it probably comes off as being a little like the Y2k scare in 2000 or the Hale Bopp fears in 1996-97. And to be completely honest, no one “knows” anything. All we are looking at are signs. The first sign is that the amazingly accurate Mayan calendar comes to an end on December 21, 2012 (Gregorian calendar). Calendars aren’t supposed to do that. Second, we absolutely know, based on scientific knowledge, that there will be major astrological conjunctions occurring at once on that date. And third, that the sun is going to once again shift its magnetic poles and hammer the earth with massive amounts of energy.

Most of what we’re basing our theories on is spiritual intuition, though, and not ours alone, but those of many associates and prominent “seers” who all believe that we were put here to witness something poignant and transformational. But, we don’t intend to turn you into believers. Do some research yourself. We’ve added links that go into great detail about this subject, including the mechanics of the Mayan calendar. So educate yourself and make up your own mind. To get started, here’s a brief summary of what we have learned so far:

We are in the final “room” of the last “house” of the Mayan calendar. Several predicted events have already occurred that are leading up to some main event. Several independent sources have reported what could be devastating possibilities for the Earth and for us, her inhabitants. (For example, while Diane and I were at Crater National Park a few years ago, the guide told us that his son, who works for the NSA, told him that NASA is tracking an asteroid, scheduled to make close contact with earth in--2012.)

Recent reports of the sun changing its magnetic poles and huge bursts of energy hitting the Earth are to be repeated in--2012. Plus there are the ongoing measurements of Earth’s magnetic fields, which appear to be speeding up. In addition, this date also corresponds to the Hopi prophesy of their “5th World” coming. Tibetans are also pointing to 2012 as being a significant time. And recently we have come upon a Maori legend that speaks of two worlds coming together--in 2012. You’ll find the entire text in the right column.

Scientifically, astronomers have shown that our planet will be in perfect alignment with the center of the Milky Way in December of 2012. On the “Coast-To-Coast AM” radio program, the date comes up repeatedly during interviews mainly revolving around the subject of earth changes; such as increased melting of the poles, magnetic and equatorial shifts and the potential flooding of the coastal regions around the world.

So, 2012 keeps popping up in many ways. Pay attention and see for yourself. This is looking very BIG. (If you hear of anything new in the media about 2012, or if you come from a culture that has a legend regarding 2012, let me know and I will gladly add it to this section.) Let it be said here, that besides the possible devastating events predicted by some, there is also an equal chance that humanity will witness a remarkable event. But will we be prepared? It’s time for humanity to wake up and function from a point of love and hope instead of greed and fear. Because in the end, “the love you take is equal to the love you make”.

Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Here are some tips from the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) Climate change website on ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions/Global warming.

Making a few small changes in your home and yard can lead to big reductions of greenhouse gas emissions, increase the nation's energy independence and save money. Explore our list of nine simple steps you can take around the house and yard to reduce greenhouse gas emissions:
1. Change 5 lights
Change a light, and you help change the world. Replace the conventional bulbs in your 5 most frequently used light fixtures with bulbs that have the ENERGY STAR label and you will help the environment while saving money on energy bills. If every household in the U.S. took this one simple action we would prevent more than 1 trillion pounds of greenhouse gas emissions.
2. Look for ENERGY STAR labeled products
When buying new products, such as appliances for your home, get the features and performance you want AND help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution. Look for ENERGY STAR-qualified products in more than 40 product categories, including lighting, home electronics, heating and cooling equipment and appliances.
3. Heat and cool smartly
Simple steps like cleaning air filters regularly and having your heating and cooling equipment tuned annually by a licensed contractor can save energy and increase comfort at home, and at the same time reduce greenhouse gas emissions. When it's time to replace your old equipment, choose a high efficiency model, and make sure it is properly sized and installed.
4. Seal up your home with better insulation and duct-work
Close up any visible cracks and gaps in your house, install adequate insulation, check that ducts are sealed and choose ENERGY STAR qualified windows when replacing old windows. Not sure where the cracks and gaps are? A home energy auditor can also help to identify areas with poor insulation and evaluate the energy efficiency of your home. By taking these steps, you can eliminate drafts, keep your home more comfortable year round, save energy that would otherwise be wasted, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
5. Use green power
Green power is environmentally friendly electricity that is generated from renewable energy sources such as wind and the sun. There are two ways to use green power: you can buy green power or you can modify your house to generate your own green power. Buying green power is easy, it offers a number of environmental and economic benefits over conventional electricity, including lower greenhouse gas emissions, and it helps increase clean energy supply. If you are interested, there are a number of steps you can take to create a greener home Exit EPA Disclaimer, including installing solar panels and researching incentives for renewable energy in your state Exit EPA Disclaimer.
6. Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle
If there is a recycling program in your community, recycle your newspapers, beverage containers, paper and other goods. Use products in containers that can be recycled and items that can be repaired or reused. In addition, support recycling markets by buying products made from recycled materials. Reducing, reusing, and recycling in your home helps conserve energy and reduces pollution and greenhouse gases from resource extraction, manufacturing, and disposal.
7. Be green in your yard
Use a push mower, which, unlike a gas or electric mower, consumes no fossil fuels and emits no greenhouse gases. If you do use a power mower, make sure it is a mulching mower to reduce grass clippings (PDF, 8 pp., 1.59 MB, About PDF). Composting your food and yard waste reduces the amount of garbage that you send to landfills and reduces greenhouse gas emissions. See EPA’s GreenScapes program for tips on how to improve your lawn or garden while also benefiting the environment. Smart Landscaping can save energy, save you money and reduce your household’s greenhouse gas emissions.
8. Use water efficiently
Everyone can save water through simple actions. Municipal water systems require a lot of energy to purify and distribute water to households, and saving water, especially hot water, can lower greenhouse gas emissions. Do not let the water run while shaving or brushing teeth. Do not use your toilet as a waste basket for toiletry items - water is wasted with each flush. And did you know a leaky toilet can waste 200 gallons of water per day? Repair all toilet and faucet leaks right away. See EPA's WaterSense site for more water saving tips.
9. Spread the Word
Tell family and friends that energy efficiency is good for their homes and good for the environment because it lowers greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution. Tell 5 people and together we can help our homes help us all.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Wings Of Evolution - World Wide Postcard Sharing

This is a clip from our New Documentary film "Wings of Evolution" on a school for homeless children in India. This clip shows the Postcard painting workshop where children on one part of the globe draw/paint postcards for children in other parts of the globe, thereby promoting peace, diversity and understanding in the long term.

yanni link - About appreciating life!!

This will take you to a different world!!!
Thanks to Yanni and Youtube!!

Inner Universe

Looking at the eternal problems in this external world, I was under chaos and confusion and wanted a solution for it. There were a lot of solutions that led to other problems and did not give an end to it.
Thinking about the chaos and confusion that was going on in my mind, i was trying to elminate it in all possible ways and the inner universe is so troubled that it needed peace to think clearly what is happening exactly within and around. I realized that if i could not attend to myself, who else will. Even when there are loving people and caring people around me helping me to get rid of it, i could not. Then i tried to get to the self to know myself more clear what am i doing and where i am. It took me to another universe which i have formed. It was so messed up and i regretted being the creator of it. I was so engaged in cleansing
it and i had no time for this external world. There was no harmony in myself and how can i expect the same from the external world. Desire, expectations, possessions, wealth, ego all these things were so much accumulated that my SELF lost its identity or humanity what it is meant for. By even thinking about all these worldly things, i was again sucked into same mess by question myself, what am i going to do in the world without desire or possessions.

I found no language to communicate with my soul and it was difficult for me to attend it to it. At times i have heard from many people say that. It is my turn to realise that with this introspection. The more i got into it, it only added meaning for the word insanity, which we have coined for this external world. In this process, i lost myself being in this physical world and there was only silence and i was busy finding the language to communicate with the inner self that i did long back. In the process i forgot to live for which i am meant to be. If i could not exhibit my humanity with the people close to me, where else can i exhibit them.
It was time to turn my fingers to point towards me and clean up the mess. The first and foremost thing that anyone can bring a change is the " self" and not others or the external appearance or the world. Because those are in the endless process of change. I realised mind is only a tool to connect to the external world and most of the time it puts everyone in trouble with more analysis and assumptions. Whoever forgot to use it to connect it to the outer world were defined under the category of being "insane".

I has conquered the "self" and it needs to be attented and to restore what i am meant for and be a human to help the humanity. I am in the process hoping to succeed....!

Self-Discipline > Intelligence/Academic Brilliance

Here's an entry that I read in Desh's blog that indicates that Focus, Hard Work & Intelligence are the key for success (in that order), that Intelligence is only secondary to Focus/Self-discipline. True, but are we following it?

He talks about a journalist 'who found her librarian predict the kids getting the first class degrees with remarkable consistency and accuracy!'
Here's the article:
"A DECADE ago when I was an undergraduate psychologist, a departmental librarian called Anne was doing something any psychologist would say was impossible. Every year, with near-perfect accuracy, she would predict which third-year undergraduates would be awarded first-class degrees.
Anne didn't know how their essays were rated, what A-level grades they had under their belts, or how they scored on IQ tests. (All information many would say was essential to forecasting final results.)
All she knew was how often she had seen students in the department library: reading course notes, photocopying journals, borrowing books. And the handful of students who Anne saw a lot - conspicuously more often than the other students in the same year - were going to get a first.
Anne was working on the principle that in academic achievement it is self-discipline, not talent, that counts. Ten years on, a study published recently in Psychological Science has come to exactly the same conclusion.

Now a research study has found the same thing! After all it is the self-discipline that is a better predictor of better grades of students than raw talent!

Psychologists Angela Duckworth and Martin Seligman descended on the eighth grade of a large public school in the northeast of the US. As the autumn leaves fell, each of the 160-odd children took an IQ test, then they (and their parents and teachers) answered questionnaires that probed self-control. Are you good at resisting temptation, they were asked. Can you work effectively towards long-term goals? Or do pleasure and fun sometimes keep you from getting work done?
The children were also given a real-life test of their ability to delay gratification. Each was handed a dollar bill in an envelope. They could choose either to keep it or hand it back and get $2 a week later. Their decision was carefully recorded.
The researchers returned in spring. They took note of each child's grades and then looked back to see both how clever, and how self-controlled, that student had been in autumn. What, they wanted to know, was the most important factor in school grades?
The psychologists discovered it was self-control, by a long shot. A child's capacity for self-discipline was about twice as important as his or her IQ when it came to predicting academic success.
At first glance, research of this sort is a comfort to those of us not exploding with raw talent. The science seems to back up the writer Kingsley Amis's well-known advice that "the art of writing is the art of applying the seat of one's trousers to the seat of one's chair". Why, in that case anyone can write a book. Yet a small problem remains; namely, the problem of keeping the seat of one's trousers applied to the seat of one's chair.