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Old Friday, July 08, 2011
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Default Written essays on various topics

Most of the history is guessing rest just prejudiced.

Outline:
· Scientific age’s dilemma
· The politics of anthropologists, sociologists and historians.
· Physical calibration doctrine
· Technological development used as a yard stick to establish supremacy.
· The criterion of being advanced and primitive
· The spread of civilization doctrine and the conquering empires.
· From Mesopotamia to the Great Britain; linear depiction of history.
· Corollary’s ideal that if it was white it must have been great
· Denial of American history.
· Language a tool in the hands of historians; stereotyping.
· Polarization
· Renaming; oppressor and t he oppressed.
· Degradation of meaning by the historians.
· Double-think strategy applied to history to achieve certain golas.
· Power of images
· Religion and the historians
· Concealed prejudice of the historians aimed at the public.
· Print and electronic media, entertainment cinemas, art catalyst of the subjectivity of the historians.
· A new multidisciplinary approach to history.

The present age is the child of empiricism. Based on the scientific method guessing and hypothesis is just the beginning, only after testing the proposition is either established as a proven fact or is discarded in the absence of any proof. Though intangibles become an exception in this regard yet an objective unbiased approach is adopted to determine them. However, what has been found is quite contrary, element of prejudice has always been found in the first step of formation of the hypothesis leading to myopic conclusions and findings. Because of such fault lines one has to rely on his or her senses, observations, findings and unverified knowledge of the matters to gain knowledge about historical facts and figures. Various doctrines, theories, recorded history alongwith double fold meanings behind language, images, renaming and distortion of meanings is quintessential to this dark side of past’s portrayal.

The victims of the twisted history face the biasness of the historians, anthropologists, sociologists mostly because of the colonial, expansionist attitudes towards certain parts of the world. Edward Said’s eloquent description of such attitudes in Orientalism has elucidated the politics of the oppressors, the facts how the colonized became ‘us’ and the colonized ‘them’ with the self proclaimed white man’s burden to mould the world by any means. Every aspect of history no matter how people have tried to report it has neglected the rights of the historic subjects by only showing one side of the story.

In physical calibration doctrine white anthropologists treat people as racial specimens, measuring "cephalic indices" and attempting to prove superiority of the "white" brain. Racist terminology: "prognathism," "platyrhiny," "steatopygous," "sub-Egyptian." Mug-shot lineups of "the Veddan female," "Arapaho male, "Negroid type," "Mongoloid specimen" characterize this approach. Out of favor in the mid-20th-century, it has enjoyed a revisionist comeback with sociobiology and works claiming racial differentials in intelligence, such as "The Bell Curve." Heart of darkness is the depiction of such biasness from the writers like Joseph Conrad.
Then there is technological calibration doctrine that Insists on forcing archaeological finds as well as living cultures into a grid of "development" based on whether tools, materials and techniques valued by "Western" scholars were in use. Example they use are like : "They were a stone age civilization who never discovered the wheel!". Hence to the white protagonist in Robinson Crusoe the knowledge of the technology gave him an edge over the Africans fighting with spears. This model forces cultures into a progressional paradigm: Old and New Stone Ages, Bronze Age, Iron Age, Industrial Revolution, Space Age. This classification ignores the complexity of culture, and the fact that metallurgic technology and military might are not the ultimate measure of advanced culture and therefore, cannot be the criterion for one’s supremacy over the other.
The assumption that "primitive" cultures represent lower "stages" in historical evolution, and have yet to attain advanced forms of culture is what is known as the stages of development doctrine. One English scholar referred to "the child-races of Africa" based on such standards. Usually, social hierarchy, militarization and industrialization are taken as prime measures of "advanced" civilization. In the 19th century, scholars openly used the terms "savage," "barbarian," "civilized." Though these offensive words have mostly been dropped, the underlying assumptions are still quite influential. That’s the reason writers like Chinua Achebe took the power of pen in their hand and demonstrated difference in culture does not mean one nation is primitive to the other. His Things fall Apart , addresses the issues by drawing a binary opposition between the ‘whites’ and the prejudiced depiction of the Africans in history
The spread of civilization doctrine is another effort to demoralize nations. It Credits all achievements to conquering empires, assuming their superiority in science, technology, and government. Adherents are usually incapable of perceiving advanced earth-friendly systems of land management, agronomy, medicine, collective social welfare networks, healing, astronomical knowledge, or profound philosophical traditions among peoples considered "primitive" by dominant "Western" standards. Iraq is a very recent example of such believes where America invaded to liberate them, though Iraq had been the centre of all the knowledge that later became the base of the modern sciences.
Passing of the torch doctrine claims a chain of cultural transmission from Mesopotamia and Egypt to Greece to Rome to western Europe to the USA, leaving vast gaps where the history of the rest of the world should be. And the discussion never returns to Egypt or Iraq to consider what happened there after the fall of their ancient empires. Most of the planet's cultures are discussed only in relation to the European conquest, if mentioned at all. As a result, few people have any idea of the history of Sumatra, Honduras, Niger, Ecuador, Mozambique, Ohio, Hokkaido, and Samoa.
If advanced science, art, or architecture is found in Africa or South America, then Phoenecians, Greeks, Celts, Vikings must be invoked to explain their presence. This bias gives rise to a pronounced tendency to date American or African cultures later than warranted, and as a result dating for these regions is constantly having to be revised further back into the past as evidence of greater antiquity piles up.
Corollary’s ideal that if it was white it must have been great is the reason that the conqueror Charlemagne was a great man, in spite of his genocidal campaign against the Saxons, but the Asian conquerors Attila the Hun and Genghis Khan were simply evil. Stereotypes of cannibals are always pictured as the Africans. However, no one mentions with that the recorded evidence of cannibalism in the West. After all the deliberate efforts to deny any goodness in the ‘others’ the approach the historians take is the one that if it was not white, and its greatness is undeniable, then it must be deprecated in some way. The Epic of Man, published in the '60s by Time/Life Books, says of the advanced civilization of ancient Pakistan: "It is known that a static and sterile quality pervaded Indus society." Likewise, It used to be the academic fashion to call ancient Egypt a "moribund" civilization which "stifled creativity." Similar writings dismissed the "Incas" (Quechua) as "totalitarian," or the Chinese as "isolated" and "resistant to change," though China is emerging as the next Super power.
The bering strait doctrine insists that all indigenous American peoples came across a land bridge between Siberia and Alaska, filtering down through Central America into South America. Problem: numerous archaeological sites in the Americas predate any possible Bering Strait migration by many thousands of years. Access from Alaska to the rest of North America was blocked for millennia by two great ice sheets that covered Canada. A narrow opening that might have allowed passage appeared much too late (about 13,500 years ago) to explain the growing evidence that people were living in both North and South America much earlier than these "first" migrations.By 1997-98, the tide of opinion began to turn: several scientific conclaves declared that a majority of attending scholars rejected the Bering Strait theory as a full explanation of how the Americas were peopled. The long-doctrinal hypothesis of Clovis hunters as the first immigrants is crumbling before the new dating, as hundreds of pre-Clovis sites pile up: Cactus Hill, Virginia (13,500 BP); Meadowcroft Rock Shelter in Pennsylvania (14,000 - 17,000 Before Present); Monte Verde (13,500 BP); Pedra-Furada, Brazil (15,000 BP, and possibly as old as 32,000 BP).
Bering Strait diehards discount the oral histories of indigenous Americans. In spite of the huge diversity among the American peoples and differences between most Americans and east Asians, all are declared to be of "Mongoloid racial origin." After the initial press stampede declaring "Kennewick Man" to be "white," study of the genetic evidence shows something entirely different. Instead, it appears that there have been several waves of migration: from central China, from the ancient Jomon culture of Japan, from south Asia or the Pacific islands. And "Luzia," an 11,500-year-old female skeleton in Brazil "appeared to be more Negroid in its cranial features than Mongoloid," in the stodgy anthropological terminology of the New York Times (Nov 9, 1999). (Actually she most closely resembles aboriginal Australians.) But there is also a uniquely North American X-haploid group of mitochondrial DNA, which has yet to be explained.
Language is a tool used by the historians to further deviate form the truthful depiction of history. Stereotyping entire people as mad, uncontrollable threats; "Wild Indians", "Yellow Hordes" or "the Yellow Peril." as inferior nonhumans: "primitives", "savages", "gooks", "niggers", terms used not only against African-Americans, but also by 18th-century English colonizers of Egypt and India. Even the word "natives," which originally meant simply the people born in a country and by extension the aboriginal inhabitants took on heavy racist coloration as an inferior ‘Other’.
"Scientific thought" vs. "primitive belief"; "undeveloped" vs "civilized"; or "the world's great religions" vs. "tribal superstitions," "cults," "idolatry" or "devil-worship” is how the world has been unjustly polarized. Depending on where it was created, a sculpture could either be described by the masters of prejudice as a "masterpiece of religious art" or an "idol," "inspirational," or "devil".

Renaming the oppressed to further demoralize them has always been the norm where historians aid the purpose of the oppressors. Dutch colonists called the Khoi-khoi people "Hottentots" (stutterers). Russians called the northwest Siberian Nentsy "Samoyed" (cannibals). These are blatant examples, but many nationalities are still called by unflattering names given by their enemies: "Sioux" (Lakota); "Miao" (Hmong); "Lapps" (Saami); "Basques" (Euskadi); "Eskimos" (Inuit). European names have replaced the originals in many places: Nigeria, Australia, New Caledonia, New Britain, etc. History mentions the name without mentioning why they were changed or the true reasons behind this act.

Degradation of meaning by the historical recordings further adds to their biasness. "Mumbo jumbo" has become a cliché signifying meaningless superstitions, but it comes from a Mandinke word -- mama dyambo . fanaticism had been associated with the negative connotations to suppress the muslims, when found that religion of muslims actually asks for that then new coinage was inculcated into the minds as terrorists and extremists. One mentions a terrorist and only the Muslims come to one’s mind though world daily caters with the terrorists of all casts and creeds. "Fetish" now connotes an obsessive sexual fixation, but originated as a Portuguese interpretation of sacred West African images as "sorcery" (feitição). The holy city of Islam is often used in phrases like "a Mecca for shoppers." To destroy the feeling of sanctity associated with that.
Conquest becomes "unification," "pacification", "opening up," “liberation” and conquered regions are dubbed "protectorates." The convention is to use Europe as the standard, writing texts from the viewpoint of the conquerors and colonizers. In Iraq all the local literature has been burnt, teachers kidnapped or killed. Newspapers printed with an agenda, radios broadcasting what the colonizers want the people to listen thus narrating event to lay down base for another era of prejudiced history. Likewise, a rebellion against English rule in the sub-continent was termed the "Indian Mutiny." A peculiarity of this thinking is the tendency to refer to times of bloody invasions and enslavement with respectful nostalgia, as in The Golden Age of Greece and The Glory That Was Rome, or How the West Was Won. British subjugation of southern Nigeria is recast as The Pacification of the Primitive Tribes of the Lower Niger. Following Machiavelli’s’ Prince has always been the driving force of the Western politics. So with the help of that Double-think West finds ways to recast genocide as regrettable but necessary, due to failings of the people being killed, who are somehow unable to "adapt." Distancing the agent is key here, obscuring the violence with the idea that some kind of natural process is at work is how the subjective history presents the horrors.
Religion couldn’t escape the discriminatory historians. Bible had deliberately been altered, some old pages have been found in the caves of Egypt that tell a whole new version of Christianity, books like Davinci Code are banned for the reason that no one should guess the foul play. Religions like Islam are associated with violence and bloodshed. Historic events like the reign of the Mughals are portrayed as the cruelest eras. Very few people describe the truth.
Power of images is another undeniable factor that explains the subjectivity of the ones that depict history and leave a mark on the lives of the people for decades. Hollywood tom-toms beat as fake Indians jump up and down, uttering brainless cries and grunts. There's the "squaw" complex in literature and cinema, the faithful Indian sidekick, and Robinson Crusoe's "Man Friday." John Wayne as the Western movie hero, saying: "There's humans and then there's Comanche”. The actor tried to justify the settler theft of Indian countries later as "There were great numbers of people who needed new land, and the Indians were selfishly trying to keep it for themselves."
Tarzan; a white man goes up against witch doctors and eye-rolling African chiefs. The Caribbean is shown as full of fearful, superstitious natives and zombies, Arabs who have nothing to do all day but loll around in harems, or cheat with the white hero. Seductive Suzie Wongs, thieving Mexicans, and shiftless and sexually insatiable African-Americans along with the Chinese as obsequious and deceitful, Arabs as treacherous, Africans as ignorant and barbaric, is all the history had been telling.
A reader who might react negatively to a blatant expression of racism often misses perceiving one cloaked in scholarly language. In assumptions, judgments and misinformation most people have not been educated to catch the deceitful lies. It does not occur to many people to question a pronounced overemphasis on Europe, the smallest continent. If a chapter or two on African and Asian history is inserted in a textbook, publishers go ahead and call it a world history. Typically, media depictions of history have not caught up with information now available in specialized academic sources, and continue to present the old stereotypes and distortions as fact. V.S.Naipaul’s Among the believer is a deliberate scholarly distortion of history in a fiction, to effect the ignorant minds of the readers.
In the early '90s a hue and cry was raised in the national media against "multiculturalism" giving rise to Xenophobia. It threatened the very foundations of Western Civilization, explained an outpouring of magazine articles and newspaper columns which shed much heat but little light. A Newsweek cover blared: "THOUGHT POLICE: There's a 'Politically Correct' Way to Talk About Race, Sex and Ideas. Is This the New Enlightenment -- Or the New McCarthyism?" As if this wasn't heavy-handed enough, it adds a warning, "Watch What You Say." Further elucidated by William A. Henry that, "In U.S. classrooms, battles are flaring over values that are almost a reverse image of the American mainstream. As a result, a new intolerance is on the rise." Something which is a clear evidence of what the prejudiced history is doing to the initiators of this genre. On the other hand anything that discusses Muslim ideology is labeled under the literature of hate. All the western media , the debates, the discussions, the documentaries promote only one thing; that is hate against the Muslims, so much so that the Israeli kids kissed the missiles fired that the Lebanese in the recent war killing innocent children, men women.
In the last half century, the boundaries of "acceptable" history have been expanded by a multidisciplinary approach, including sources previously dismissed, such as the orature (oral tradition), linguistics, anthropology, social history, art, music and other cultural sources. More recently, the social locations of historians have come under consideration as a factor shaping their perspectives, along with a sense that there is no absolutely "objective" view of history. Past claims of objectivity have biases clearly visible today, notably in siding with European settlers and slavers against non-Christian cultures, and the almost total eclipse of female acts and experience from historical accounts.
Comparative literature originated and gained momentum by the ones who not only guessed but with proofs came forward to actually fight this prejudiced aspect of history*.As the colonizers have succeeded to make English an international language, the writers write in the language of the colonizers to assert back. Yet the process is a slow one in the world where the societies are under a new attack attired with new names of democracy, tolerance and liberation in Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon, and Pakistan.
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Old Friday, July 08, 2011
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Default Age of isms

Age of isms




Since ancient age to modern time, art and literature have come across multiple styles and movements. Most of them were new creation or transformation of one or other styles. Efforts by individual, group or brotherhood and schools lined up multiple art style in art and literature. French revolution ignited the feelings of the suffering people to deviate from the set standards. People from all fields of life purged the departments from the clamps of the bourgeois grandeur and brought it to the realm of the popular culture. The revolt was described in the words ‘we don’t live in an age of clear images’ and hence, all sorts of experimentation was done to celebrate the freedom.

Renaissance was an art style which was born in 14th century and lived up to 17th century. An art movement which was later broken down in more than eight regional forms of development by historians the "rebirth" was characterized by a radical development in the arts, medicine, politics and sciences in Europe. That was time in which individual expression and worldly experience became two of the main themes. Renaissance is Italian origin and later it was known as one of the most known European Art Movements. By region, Renaissance was identified by own regional movement in Italy, England, German, Northern Europe, French, Netherlands, Poland and Spain. By period it is known as Early Renaissance, High Renaissance, Harlem Renaissance and Northern Renaissance. The word Renaissance is now often used to describe other historical and cultural moments (e.g. the Carolingian Renaissance, the Byzantine Renaissances).

Leonardo da Vinci was the model Renaissance man representing the humanistic values of the period in his art, science and writing. Michelangelo and Raphael were also vital figures in this movement, producing works regarded for centuries as embodying the classical notion of perfection. Renaissance architects included Alberti, Brunelleschi and Bramante.

Renaissance Classicism sowed two different movements— Mannerism and the Baroque. Mannerism was a reaction against the idealist perfection of Classicism. The appeal of Baroque style curved deliberately from the amusing and intellectual qualities of 16th century Mannerist art to an intuitive appeal aimed at the senses. Baroque employed an iconography that was direct, simple, obvious, and dramatic.

Baroque art drew on certain broad and heroic tendencies in Annibale Carracci and his circle, and found inspiration in other artists such as Correggio, Caravaggio, and Federico Barocci is nowadays often termed as 'proto-Baroque'. Although Baroque was antiquated in many centers by the Rococo style, beginning in France in the late 1720s, more than ever for interiors, paintings and the decorative arts, Baroque architecture remained a practical style until the arrival of ascetic Neoclassicism in the later 18th century. Ingres, Canova, and Jacques-Louis David are among the best-known neoclassicists.

Neoclassicism was nothing but a reaction against both the surviving Baroque and Rococo styles, and as a desire to return to the perceived "purity" of the arts of Rome & Ancient Greek. Neoclassicism was also solitary representation of the American Renaissance movement.

As Mannerism discarded Classicism, Romanticism too refused the ideas of the Enlightenment and the aesthetic of the Neoclassicists. Romanticism movement turned world’s attention toward landscape and nature as well as the human figure and the supremacy of natural order above mankind's will. Hudson River School was highly influenced by Romanticism.

Another sub branch Aestheticism rejected the cruelness of nature, its didactic purpose was swapped with the sensuous pleasures, Keat’s Gracian Urn, Ode to Noghtingale are some of the quintessential poems in this regard. Machine aesthetics rejected all Greek and middle age aesthetics with more emphasis on the affordable material, comfortable design , less ornamented and hence cheaper furniture, houses and the living standards.


In 19th Century, after impacts of industrialization - Poverty, squalor, and desperation were to be the fortune of the new working class. Where Romanticism was optimism towards mankind; situation put art looking towards reality giving chance to Realism. Social Realism, Magic Realism, Photo Realism and Contemporary Realism are newer forms of Realism. Related movements were the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood and Arts and Crafts Movement.

Neo-classical movement rejected the extreme romanticism of Dada ,that hunted the discovery of authentic reality through the abolition of traditional culture and aesthetic forms in favor of control, religion and a dyed-in-the-wool political programme. Dada ignored aesthetics. Dada became an influential movement in modern art. It also influenced Surrealism, Pop Art and Fluxus.

Surrealists amalgamated the irrational with the rational. The first surrealist work was Burton’s deviating from all the set norms and principles. He wrote about dreams in the time when Freud had coined his Oedipus and Electra complex, a new sense of morality had already been a topic of discussion.

Dreams their significance regarding conscious, unconscious, and sub conscious challenged the Elizbethan morality, holiness and the rationalistic approach towards life. It not only liberated imagination but gave a new bent to relationships. D.H .Lawrence Sons and Lovers portrayed the relation of a son with his mother in Freudian terms, though at that time even talking about that was a taboo.

The tendency of an artist to distort reality for emotional effect is called Expressionism. Though it was incorporated into the later literature, Miller’s Death of a Sales Man is the perfect example of incorporation of this technique. An Expressionist wishes, above all, to express himself, an Expressionist rejects immediate perception and builds on more complex psychic structures.

Realism’s concept of seeing world by human eye gave birth to Impressionism. Use of bright color improving more visibility (as opposed to Academic art) and strokes that were mixed in viewer's eyes were key features of impressionism. The Group of Seven was strongly influenced by European Impressionism of the late Nineteenth Century. Original response produced asymmetrically without any hindrance from the conscious mind was the essence of impressionism

Fauvism & Post-Impressionism followed Impressionism. Later Fauvism started shaping itself in multiple new forms including Cubism, Abstract Art, Dada, Abstract Expressionism , Futurism, Naïve art, Op Art, Surrealism, Minimalism, Pop Art and other forms.

Nietzsche’s Beyond good and evil and thus spoke Zarusthra questioned the deterministic ideas. The idea of Umbermench(superman) and denial of god with the assertion ‘man is condemned to be free’ became the beliefs of the Existentialists .Beckett’s Waiting for Godot or Albert Camus’ The Outsider delineated their pessimists approach towards life.

Bohemianism took its roots after the Great Depression, the new technological developments, industrialization with the pursuit of pleasure and enjoyment was an altogether opposite reaction after the economic crunch. The hippy culture became the sole purpose of life. Life was denied its domesticated moralistic boundaries

Mechanization Industrialization, cars, telephone became the needs and requirement, which reduced men to mere tools. The pathetic life style, people living in ‘holes’ became the future. Though this step was denounced by Ruskin and Hardy for reducing humans to mere ‘hands’, yet society did not listen the moralizers and followed what the industrialists had to offer.


In arts and literature some trends as simplification of diction, rise of cinema marked the new age. Realism of Richard Fielding seemed to have gone bankrupt when faced by the trench warfare and the machine age thus paving way for the social realism of Erich Remarque’s All Quiet on the Western front.’

Social Darwinism assumes that whatever happens, ought to have happened. Based on Darwin’s redical theories, it opposed government intervention in the "natural" processes of human evolution, " It lent scientific support to the industrialist's exploitation of the workers and their dubious business practices as "natural" and, therefore, "moral. The theory explicitly declared the rich and successful to be the "fittest" and hence the ones having the greatest right to "survive. America was at the time, a relatively young nation, and more receptive to quasi-religious and philosophical ideas. Social Darwinism also provided a justification for the more exploitative forms of capitalism in which workers were grossly underpaid and made to work in the most horrid conditions. The theory became particularly popular in the United States where it continues to influence the society and people's perception of social problems such as poverty and inequality. Such an aspect of Social Darwinism was encouraged by the American industrialist Andrew Carnegie

Western empiricism was built on the idea of a mechanistic universe; the universe both physically and socially was eventually conceived of as a vast machine whose principles of operation could be grasped by the human intellect without recourse to divine or superstitious explanations. Correspondingly, each aspect of the universe operated in a different manner: the machine of physical phenomena operated differently from the machine of social phenomena. Empirical science in the West, then, also involved the separation of bodies of knowledge one from the other. Physics could not explain politics, ethics could not explain chemistry, and so forth. This separation of areas of knowledge one from the other is perhaps the single most important aspect of Enlightenment empiricism for on one hand it allowed knowledge in each area to develop very rapidly and on the ohther, purged off the Western society from the boundage fo theological morals.

Structuralism a Modern movement spurred by Sassure .He focused not on the use of language (parole, or speech), but rather on the underlying system of language (langue) and called his theory semiology. However, the discovery of the underlying system had to be done via examination of the parole (speech). As such, Structural Linguistics are actually an early form of corpus linguistics (quantification). This approach focused on examining how the elements of language related to each other in the present, that is, 'synchronically' rather than 'diachronically'. Finally, he argued that linguistic signs were composed of two parts, a signifier (the sound pattern of a word, either in mental projection - as when we silently recite lines from a poem to ourselves - or in actual, physical realization as part of a speech act) and a signified (the concept or meaning of the word). This was quite different from previous approaches which focused on the relationship between words and things in the world that they designate. Structuralism rejected the concept of human freedom and choice and focused instead on the way that human behavior is determined by various structures.

Opposing structuralism were the proponents of post structuralists. Without a central fixation on the author, post-structuralists examine other sources for meaning (e.g., readers, cultural norms, other literature, etc.). A major theory associated with Structuralism was binary opposition. This theory proposed that there are certain theoretical and conceptual opposites, often arranged in a hierarchy, which human logic has given to text. Such binary pairs could include Enlightenment/Romantic, male/female, speech/writing, rational/emotional, signifier/signified, symbolic/imaginary.
Post-structuralism rejects the notion of the essential quality of the dominant relation in the hierarchy, choosing rather to expose these relations and the dependency of the dominant term on its apparently subservient counterpart. The only way to properly understand these meanings is to deconstruct the assumptions and knowledge systems which produce the illusion of singular meaning. This act of deconstruction illuminates how male can become female, how speech can become writing, and how rational can become emotional.

Individualism was another gift of the horrifying experiences of the wars. People alienated themselves isolation and loneliness, fall of family institutions, materialism took over society’s institutions. Family values, sanctity of marriage, respect for elders, love for neighbors was all given up in the aftermath of the Great Wars. The attitudes which underline most of the modern writings.

Though Einstein’s Relativism gave an end to absoluteness, opening up the biased minds to acceptance. For the first time negritism, racial equality movements, gay rights became issues to be discussed and pondered over. Unfortunately other rigid ideals like Muslim terrorism, extremism took over the minds of the people.

Karl Marx’s assessment that ‘Art is always and everywhere the secret confession, and at the same time the immortal movement of its time’ shows how art and literature has depicted the human progress. The ‘ism’ does not just record the episodes in art and literature but tell a whole history about the development and evolution of mankind.
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Old Friday, July 08, 2011
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Apparel oft proclaims the man

Outline;
· A man just like a book is judged by its cover by undermining what it carries in the inside.
· Polonius parting advice to his son.
· Philosophy’s dualistic bifurcation of the inner and the outer self.
· Shaw, Chaucer, and various fields of life exhibiting the particular attitude of humans.
· Anthropologist’s thesis why humans tend to judge other by their apparent exterior.
· Antiquity, obvious characteristics helped people to choose and recognize.
· Relation to survival and reproduction
· A good judgment can save lives yet first impression is not the last one.
· Pride and Prejudice Elizabeth and Darcy victims to such attitudes.
· Looks carry particular importance for an employer.
· Categorizing people according to the company they keep.
· Psychological impacts
· Cesare Lombroso’s research
· People assert themselves by a conscious effort towards their attire.
· Just by having a color, belonging to a country breeds racism and contempt.
· Stereotyping a common error
· An illusionary world vs the real world.
· Nietzsche’s, ‘There are no facts, only interpretations.’
· Linguistic minimalism a source of expressing the inner against the focus of the outer self.
· Helmuth Plessner classifies bodily expressions.
· Symbolic physical bodily movements and their impact on the perception.
· Physical stance are actually the significant social codes .
· Edward A. Denison’s article ‘Dress for Success’.
· Hitler's concept of a master race based on appearance
· ‘Society and Traditional Expectations’ cultural baggage makes one to adopt a certain attitude.
· Majority is judgmental
· Media triggers the physical appreciation causes huge damage
· Vicious cycle of pretentiousness can break with the will.


Image is important, it’s part of nonverbal communication, which some would argue is more powerful than verbal communication. As a book is judged by its cover like wise man is assed in every day life by the outward appearance. In both situations one is undermining the worth of the person or the book’s inside, in both is usually questioning the worth by judging it without actually knowing it. Socially in psychological terms it can be devastating. In certain scenarios where it is actually a basic tool as in jobs, marriage suitors, unknown place the instinct that judges the person from the outside often proves to be fruitful. It’s just another tool to segregate and discriminate. Or because appearance tells people about a person’s personality and interests, attitudes, and their own self-regard,*it’s just simple human nature to evaluate them based on how they look.

This is part of Polonius' parting advice to his son Laertes as he is leaving for France. In Act I, Scene 3, Polonius advises his son in Hamlet that, ‘Costly thy habit as thy purse can buy,/ But not expressed in fancy; rich, not gaudy;/For the apparel oft proclaims the man’. A wise advice which elucidates Shakespearean belief that pretensions and energy spent on maintaining fake images is a stigma, once a person establishes a false believe about self then that image follows him through out his life. So the significant advice the father could give to a son is depicted here that one should advertise only what one can afford to do all along his life on every occasion.

In the dualistic tradition of the modern Western philosophy the exterior is bifurcated from the inner, the self is divided into mind and body. This tendency is closely associated with metaphysical dualism, in which the existential world is divided into the spiritual and the physical world, the world that can be perceived against the one which is invisible. Metaphysical dualism divides human intellectual ability into reason and sense corresponding respectively to mind and body, and divides the self further into the self as a thinking being and the self as a material being. Under this dichotomy, the body is degraded to an object of a natural scientist's experiment and observation while the mind is fixated as the subject of psychological investigation. hence, the philosophers accept this division between the outer and the inner.

A rabbi, priest or a mullah is identified in an instant by the apparel. A person's reverence becomes evident the moment he lays eye on his religious representative. In The Canterbury tales the priestess is presented to be amoral because of her inappropriate outer appearance.Sympathy, pity or a censuring laugh at the disabled is another instance that no matter how genius the person is the external is what appeals to people because of which a highly intelligent disabled girl was denied admission in medical college in pakistan. Then why don’t people name their children Stalin, Gangez Khan or even Bush, for the simple reason of the negative connotations attached with them, only by hearing the names one establishes an image.Beards banned in PIA or hijab in France would not prevent terrorism but it’s the significance of this exterior aura that makes people and nations take strange steps. Shaw in Pygmalion uses Eliza’s transformation to mock this attitude of humans towards their fellow beings.

Anthropologists suggest that opinions based on looks alone have been present since ancient times. Much of this strategy is based on fear and the avoidance of that which may be dangerous. Looks are the first criteria one has to assess a person. In prehistoric survival situations, one had no time to stop and communicate with another person to decide if he was a threat or not. Decisions had to be made immediately. humans tend to respond better to people who look like them, and early humans who avoided something or someone that was unfamiliar also avoided injury or death in many instances. The clans and small groups automatically turned them against other groups and clans with different facial markings, tattoos, ornaments. The populations of early man likely had much less variation in appearance and behavior than the human cultures of today. Thus, differences were particularly salient. Those who looked unfamiliar and were thus possibly hostile members of other groups provoked a defensive response.

Most of what is considered attractive is directly related to physical attributes that indicate health. Facial symmetry indicates lack of disease and deformity. Clear skin, proportionate bodies, wide eyes, full lips and color in the cheeks are indicators that a woman is healthy, well-fed and able to deliver and raise many children. For men, well-defined muscles, strong features and a tall stature indicate that the man is able to protect his family and be successful in providing resources. The primary motivators in early man were survival and reproduction. Communication was limited, so there weren't other methods to judge a person's character or suitability for mating. Even today people rely on these outward appearances to make contacts.

Certainly, most human populations are now less concerned with survival and reproduction than they were in early human history. But the responses to others have been passed down through time. This transmission may be cultural or somewhat biological. In any case, modern justifications persist for ancient judgments. Someone who looks "creepy" may in fact be dangerous, and the avoidance of such a person may save a life. In this case, judging on physical appearances can be a positive. A person values youth and beauty, and often takes these attributes as indicators that a person is smart, capable, successful, honest and friendly. Obviously, this is not always the case. A potential employer may form an erroneous impression that a person who is older or overweight is lazy, slow and unable to handle to demands of the job. In fact, one such candidate may be the best person for the job. Luckily, unlike ancient humans, one can now say that these impressions are only the first impressions, not the only impressions. A person must be aware of human predisposition towards forming impressions based on looks and so he or she must fight with the inner self to judge people according to better criteria.

Pride and Prejudice first called as First Impressions, caters with the same issue how myopic eye can make mistake at judging a very fine human being. This instinct to assess others has survived evolution and one cannot see a person without forming some kind of opinion about them based on their appearance. One can tell what kind of mood the person is in, and can guess what type of lifestyle and interests the other person has. Responses, replies and reactions all change according to this outward appearance.

There is a tendency to assume that people in suits with neat hair are successful and in control. This is the type of appearance one would want to put across if the person was interviewing for a job for example. If a person turns up in ripped jeans or with bright green hair s/he probably wouldn't get the job. The employer would probably assume someone who looked like that was going to break the rules or cause trouble. Those times when it doesn't matter what people think of a person, such as when s/he is out shopping or on holiday, wearing what they like, It can be interesting to try out different "looks" and watch people's reaction. Instead of worrying what people think, they make it fun. People learn something about how people perceive him or her and how much importance appearances have.

Have you ever heard someone say that "you are known by the company you keep?" There is a lot of truth in this statement. Consider the person at school who runs with a certain crowd, so everyone assumes that he/she is into whatever that group is doing. If someone plays basketball, they assume s/he is athletic. Then everyone has a tendency to lump people into categories like "jocks," "Goths," "preps," "nerds." Or if an adult, maybe categories are "yuppies," "retirees," "homeless," "new money," "old money." Regardless of the label, one anticipates that the people grouped will behave in a certain way that relates to that label.

‘Negatively Judged By Your Appearance?’ discusses three recent studies looking at the effects that "appearance based" rejection sensitivity have on a persons overall mental and physical health.It was found that those who anticipate rejection because of their appearance, are more likely to: Negatively compare themselves to others, Feel bad about themselves, Exercise compulsively, Not eat when hungry, Engage in binging and purging. In addition, those with appearance-based rejection sensitivity were more likely to have: Insecure attachment styles, appearance based self-worth, view themselves as unattractive with low self-esteem.

The concerns about appearance are not limited to existing weight issues, other real or perceived issues related to appearance can also trigger for a persons' sensitivity to rejection. Even thinking about aspects not liked in oneself, can trigger someone to feel to lonely, isolated, unwanted, and rejected.

According to Italian surgical doctor, Cesare Lombroso’s research, we can know that criminals always have disgustful faces, though not. Cesare Lombroso spared no effort in analyzing what characteristics can be associated with criminals. After continually verified, he discovered that physical characteristics of human are related to their behaviors. Amazingly, he also observed that people who have disgustful faces will incline to commit crimes, and he insisted that criminals who have terrible appearances represent as human’s physical degenerations.
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The question one needs to ask himself is,” Do I love myself?" This means, do you like the way you dress? Do you like the way you speak? Do you like the way you present yourself? It is not loving yourself to the extreme of being egotistic. It's all about character. words become thoughts, thoughts become actions and actions become habits, habits ultimately become character. Starting with words, if one doesn’t want to be judged as ignorant or less sophisticated, he shouldn’t use poor grammar .By examining words of choice, in the end, they design who they are and how they present themselves. People who curse every other word obviously make a huge statement about who they are. At the same time, people who use large words in the wrong context also send a message like Eliot’s ‘Shakespearean rags’.

The importance of the outward actions can not be underestimated. From nail biting to smacking the chewing gum, cracking knuckles, they all matter. Body language and facial expressions fall into this category as well. Williem De kooning in an interview asserted. ‘It is only shallow people who do not judge by appearances. The mystery of the world is the visible, not the invisible’.

One of the deepest pre programmed glitches in the human being is its mistrust of other ethnic minorities. It's irrational that most Caucasians are intimidated by Afro Caribbean men but that's the way it seems to be. One would presume this goes back to slavery and the racial divide carved out between the slave traders of all colors. This is why some black guys tend to have chips on their shoulders. Unfortunately both sides reinforce and fore fill racial stereotypes because of this divide and suffer conflicts.

Amber Grosj puts it as ,‘Most of us aren't blind. Be it your physical built, the accessories you use, the clothes you wear, even your hair color and ethnicity, there's always something that can and will be interpreted based on how you look.’ There are a lot of stereotypes out there. There are some good stereotypes, but there are more bad ones. Here are just a few: Be obese and you're sadly thought of as a glutton with food as your only companion whereas in reality that be a genetic or hormones gone crazy. On the other hand being on the thin side, others might start to think you have an eating disorder. Wear glasses and you'll either be thought of as smart or quite the geek. But then again, it will also depend on how your glasses look. Wearing colored frames such as red, you could be perceived as fun-loving or bold. If your frame is of a neutral color, you could be thought of as a serious type of person. Wearing just a shirt and jeans, others may just think that your boring and have no fashion sense. Wearing too much makeup could lead others to think of you as cheap, while wearing none or too little, you could be thought of as conservative. Of the hair colors, there'd be most to say about having blond hair. You could be thought of as a fun, bubbly person, fashionable but then sadly, sometimes, with not much brains.

There is much to say about ethnicity. Having African ethnicity, you could be perceived as good in sports, or in singing. Having Asian or Middle Eastern ethnicity these days especially, most would perceive you as to having some terrorist connection. White American stereotypes would lead others to believe you as not too smart and ignorant to a point.

The world has painted an illusion of how the world should look. Magazines are filled with them. Movies are loaded down with them too. Even a doll like Barbie has influenced the way one thinks. People should be thin, have clear skin, silky hair, long neatly trimmed nails, and a perfect smile with pearly white teeth to top it off. The average person doesn't look like that. Yes, a lot of people are over weight. But these people have a beauty within themselves. So what if this beauty doesn't shine through on the outside. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Why don't the world live by that phrase? Because its easier to look at a pretty face and deal with the bad personality than it is to look at someone who is wonderful and doesn't have a clear complexion.

Nietzsche says, ‘There are no facts, only interpretations.’ So in every sphere of life, schools, colleges, home, work, people when fully develop internal virtue, it is naturally exposed externally through facial expressions. Also, people in subordinate positions should not feign flattering looks as when their inner state of mind is sincerely respectful, it is naturally reflected in their face

Linguistic minimalism is a prominent characteristic of the linguistics. As it is the case with all semiotic systems, language is used to tell lies as much as to communicate truth. Distrust of language leads people to adopt nonverbal semiotic systems, such as eye and facial expressions and body gestures, as alternative tools of communication. This is because body language is more truthful than spoken language. Communication through the body is conducted by nonverbal mediators such as the eyes, facial expressions, and body gestures in a face-to-face situation. Body language, which is possible only if the speaker and the listener exist in the same temporal and spatial boundary, is more effective for sharing representations of commonly held beliefs than for communicating information, in the creation of a stronger sense of cohesion in the community. In other words, body language is a more efficient instrument to confirm existing value and belief systems than to transmit new information.

Helmuth Plessner classifies bodily expressions into three groups: 1) physiological or psychosomatic response without involvement of consciousness (e.g., blushing, paleness, coughing, sneezing, sweat, and nausea); 2) facial expressions and bodily movements that involve consciousness and are controllable, like words and action and 3) facial expressions and bodily movements that involve consciousness and are not controllable, like laughing and crying. The bright eyes of a righteous person are a natural external revelation of one's inner feeling and will. The eye expression is neither an unintentional physiological symptom, nor an intended voluntary action. This results when one's emotion and will for goodness grows as fully as possible, breaks the shell encasing one's inner world and becomes exposed to the outside. Emotion and will, which remain simply as a process of intentional consciousness, are externalized or embodied through facial expression and bodily movement visible to others and thus perceivable by others. In this sense, the body is a field of expressiveness, and the eye a window to the soul.

As Hegstrom argues, body gestures expressed for the purpose of communication like yawning and arm stretching are symbolic movements exchangeable with words. Symbolic body gestures in everyday life are communicative tools and at the same time represent power relations of domination-subordination. Expressions in the eye, face, and body movements reveal deep hidden emotions on the one hand, and disclose "a microphysics of power" in political power relations on the other. Particularly, in power relations of domination and subordination, the subordinates express their submission by making macro-movements like bending or lowering the body. But more importantly, the inferior can also use micro-expressions like eye or facial expressions for the same purpose. The fact that Song Si-yeol, a renowned Confucian scholar of the Joseon dynasty, implored King Sukjong to allow him a chance to look up to him in his audience demonstrates succinctly the importance of micro-expressions like eye expression in power relations.

Facial expressions, bodily movements, and clothes are a system of social codes. Social codes are composed of various nonverbal codes, including body language. Nonverbal codes include signs ranging from markers revealing one's social standing, rank, or rules of human relations that determine how to interact with others (manners, behavior, and clothes suitable for class and status) to means of social communication that foster a sense of belonging and solidarity among community members, e.g., ceremonies and festivals.

Kim Zoller at Image Dynamics says 55% of a person's perception of is based on how the person presents himself. Edward A. Denison in his article "Dress for Success" states you should dress appropriately for your surroundings. "Your appearance must be consistent with your message”. That is, don't wear a suit and tie to visit your mechanic. To dress for a specific function, you need to look the part. His second rule is "Don't underestimate the power of first impression." Assumptions are often made based on your first appearance. When an army general or the head goes to war leading the army, he must wear a courageous look with firm determination. His command should be strict, his face solemn, and his eyes clear.

Every one have their stereotypical views. It has always been understood that good-looking people are more popular, more intelligent, with good looks propelling them through the door. Look at all the people who are in the limelight, TV anchors, business men, show hosts and hostesses, politicians and movie stars. They all are image makers.

Hitler's concept of a master race based on appearance and therefore intelligence was so out of line, he set out to massacre a whole race of people. ‘Have you ever imagined what it would be like to have a superior race of blond and blue-eyed people being led by a lesser man of stature, with black lacquered hair , sporting a quirky mustache?’ was a critique presented against outward physical appearance.

‘Society and Traditional Expectations’ of Giovanne Pierre talks about the initiation of this approach towards each other and discusses a cause which is a little more home-grown, where someone gets their judgments from family, school or work environment, etc. The people whom are the closest tell their expectations of what is the "right" way or the "wrong" way to look. Of course, one starts off young, and by the time they are old enough to go out into the world, they don't want to disappoint their "circle", so they carry the baggage. Some baggage is good for an overall structure such as bodily hygiene is definitely an expectation that one should keep, should they ever decide to toss any of their judgment "values" out. However, too much baggage just ends up being dead weight, and that weight is the one that makes the most discrimination and social segregation problems that the societies

Even though we all like to think of ourselves as not judgmental, and a lover of all people, let's get real. We all judge based on appearance. We rate probability of success, mental capacity, social status, moral character, and a whole other slew of categories based on physical appearance. There was a study done on the very subject of which people were more likely to get hired to a job, and those people were the more attractive than their counterparts. They based the decision on the fact that the person's appearance reflected the company's "appearance" if the person was to work for them, and they want customers to feel as comfortable as possible with the employee, thus ensuring good business.

There are other reasons why people judge, based on appearance could be that someone could have had a bad or good experience with a particular person, and remembered what the person grossly looked like, and associates the image with an expected result, should they meet. This happens all the time with relationships. A guy may be into brunettes more than blondes, because he had a good experience with someone that filled that description. Or, someone may break out in hives every time he sees a bulky- looking guy, because in high school, he always got stuffed into a locker by someone who fit the description.

Media has played a huge part in shaping the perception of how other people may act or think. Not every black person that lives in the ghetto is in a gang, not every Asian knows karate, and not every white person is a country fanatic, or a victim in some crime,but that is what sells in the media, and that is what everyone, at some point watches. This comes as a huge disadvantage, especially for someone who hasn't gotten the chance to experience someone from another race, country or religion. Because of the isolation, they only have the media feeding them this information, thus impairing them when they actually go out into a diverse environment with an "us vs. them" attitude, especially in this country, where diversity is practically a given expectation in much of the country. Gulliver’s Travels, the diminutive Gulliver’s observation of the woman’s mole make it clear that one who looks attractive and appealing form the outside might not be the same when observed closely so one should always leave room for exploration rather then forming images based on outer appearances.

Looks are important. A judge can't walk into a court room wearing casual clothes and a mechanic can't work on a car wearing suit. Yes, children should be clean when going to a store. Yes, when a person goes out, he should look the best he can. Sometimes it isn't easy but every one should look presentable to the best of their ability. Everyone's ability will be different which is what makes all different. Being different is something what one should strive for. And if all endeavor to look for the different things in other people, then humans can get out of this vicious cycle of pretentiousness that they have lived in for hundreds of years. The brave will succeed and stand out. Be brave. Be your own person and accept others for the same reason.

Suggestion; the essays revolves around the same topic as ‘A book is judged by its cover. Even ‘ first impressions’ or ‘All that glitters is not gold’ takes its major portion from this essay.
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Default Conscience is God's presence in man

Conscience is God's presence in man

Outline;
· The inner law works through the voice of conscience; The voice of God.
· Role of conscience.
· Written law and inner law both mandatory.
· Conscious compelling acts and Dostoyevsky’s protagonist.
· Spontaneity of Conscious.
· Pushkin;s depiction of the guilty conscious.
· Conscience playing its role since antiquity.
· Pagan’s judgments based on conscience
· Conscience a driving force behind human actions. Adam Eve, Cain and David’s examples.
· God’s check upon His creation.
· God’s whispers in the time of strong passion, fear and turmoil.
· Hardships, clear conscience and hope.
· ‘Shipwreck of his faith’ due to recurring sins.
· Materialism and naturalism’s inadequacy defining the exintence of God’s inspirations in the heart.
· Philosophy and eithic’s answers
· Conscience, God’s presence and psychological evidence.
· Relation of conscience to God in the words of In the words of St. Maximos the Confessor and St. John Chrysostom
· Shakesperean perspective in Richard III and Hamlet
· Conscience common to all if same conditions prevail;Harun Yahya
· Qur'an, in Surat ash-Shams a witness
· Conscience works on God’s commandments thus an integral part of religion.
· In eternal life people will confess that their Creator had been advising them but they did not listen.
· Just a way of God’s advising with no compulsion, conscience uncovers the awareness of free will and responsibility.
· conscience influences the reason.
· conscience is an independent and superior characteristic which directs man's reason, will and heart with divine Law.
· Indeed , ‘conscience is a sacred sanctuary where God alone may enter as judge’.






Holy scriptures, revealed books tell people what God wants from His beings. However, the revelations have come to end with the last prophet, so there has to be a way where God connects with His pupil so that they don’t go astray. Laws, morals, principles, holy words indeed guide mankind towards righteousness, yet they cannot pen down each and every single detail of what how and when one has to do. Here, the all time instructor plays the key role, the conscience of the man tells them things even if a person apparently denies them. Be it the decisions , actions of one’s free will compelled by reason, morals, customs or socio-religious laws, through the conscience, as through a clear crystal, God's light enters the soul and permeates its every corner. As long as this light remains in a human, it guides the thoughts, elevates feelings, strengthens the will, and helps in every good undertaking. Through this blessed illumination, people become instruments of God's providence. When this happens, a person not only enjoys spiritual blessings, but also gets pleasure form the contented soul, which otherwise would have punished the wrong doer on God’s behalf.

This inner voice is a universal phenomenon, which draws man toward everything that is morally good and averts him from everything that is morally evil. This inner law works through the voice of conscience, which justly is called the voice of God in man. Because it is an integral part of human nature, it is active in all people, regardless of their age, race, education, or brought up.
Every person is familiar with his inner voice which on occasion accuses and oppresses him, and on occasion brings him joy. This small subtle voice, an inborn feeling, is called conscience. Conscience by its nature is a spiritual instinct, which more clearly and quickly differentiates between good and evil than does the mind. He who listens to the voice of his conscience never regrets or gets ashamed of his behavior. The skeptics and non-believers refer to this inner voice as the ‘heart’.
In general, conscience is a very sensitive moral evaluator, especially in children and adolescents, who are still pure and innocent. If humans were not stained by sin, they would not have needed any external guidance, and conscience alone could precisely direct their behavior. The necessity for written law arose from original sin when man, dimmed by passion, failed to hear clearly the inner voice. In the present condition, both the written law and the inner natural law of conscience are needed; and they both speak of the same; justice, truth, respect and love of humanity.

Emanuel SwedenborgSwedish mystic & scientist discusses the occurrences that are very common, where an impoverished woman stole something in a store and carried it away. No one saw her. On her way home a disturbing feeling gnawed at her peace of mind. She had to return to the store and replace the stolen item, after which she returned home feeling relieved. There are countless similar examples of people being compelled to do not what they want but what is right. This invisible feeling telling and compelling a person is none other then the power of the Unseen, who dwells in every one’s souls. Because of which Dostoyevsky’s protagonist gets caught in Crime and Punishment.

Our personal experience convinces us that this inner voice, called conscience, is not under our control but expresses itself spontaneously in spite of our will. In addition, just as we cannot persuade ourselves that we are full when we are hungry or that we are rested when we are tired, similarly we cannot convince ourselves that our behavior is correct when our conscience tells us otherwise. ‘Conscience is a soft whispers of the God in man’ is a beautiful depiction of the inter relation of conscience and God by Edward Young.
All the revealed or the unrevealed religions tell their followers that the guilty conscience will be punished in the after life. The Russian poet A. S. Pushkin very vividly described these torments in his dramatic play "Miserly Knight:" "Conscience -/ A sharp clawed animal, which scrapes the heart;/ Conscience - an uninvited guest, annoying discourser,/A rude creditor; and a witch,/Which dims the moon and graves." For the same reason that the wrong doer’s conscience wont let them have peace in the eternal life. In a another drama, Boris Godunov, Pushkin again recreated the sufferings of a guilty conscience, placing in the mouth of the king Boris the following words, "...Yes, pitiful is the one in whom conscience is foul!"
Indeed, studying the culture and customs of past and present nations, one notes that all people, even the most primitive tribes, distinguish between what is good and what is bad, between good man and evil man, between virtue and vice. They all agreed on this: that the good is worth striving for, that evil be shunned, and that the one deserves praise, the other, blame. Though in individual cases they may not be one in denominating the same thing good or evil, they are nevertheless agreed as to the general principle that good is to be done and evil avoided. The occasional discrepancy in labeling some actions as good or evil seems to come from the particular circumstances in which a given nation develops. It is a universally recognized principle that one should not do to others what he would not wish them to do to him. Vice everywhere seeks to hide itself or at least to put on the mask of virtue because God does not allow the guilty conscious to establish himself contentedly when He knows his crime.
Likewise, the Apostle Paul in his epistle to the Romans explains in some detail how moral law of God works in man. The Apostle reproaches those who know the written Law of God but willfully violate it. He contrasts them with the pagans who "not having a written Law, naturally observe the prescriptions of the Law. By this they show that the process of the Law is written in their hearts which is witnessed by their conscience and thoughts, which either punish or justify one another"
In daily relationships, people subconsciously trust the conscience more than written laws and regulations. Indeed, it is impossible to have laws for every imaginable situation and to foresee how to preclude any attempts at breaking them. After all, shrewd people manage to twist and manipulate even the clearest of laws. So people hope that conscience, which works inside every person, will compel the person they are dealing with to do what is morally good and just.
One can see that unkind behavior evokes in man shame, fear, suffering, feelings of guilt and even acts of desperation, even when no one is there to judge or punish them. For example, Adam and Eve, having tasted the forbidden fruit, felt ashamed and attempted to hide from God. Cain, killing his younger brother Abel out of envy, subsequently began to fear for his own life, because his conscious told him he would be punished for the wong he did . King Saul, persecuting innocent David, later wept in shame when he found out that instead of retaliation for evil, David spared his life.
Sometimes the pangs of conscience become so intolerable that man prefers to end his own life. One can see the most vivid example of accusations of conscience in Judas Iscariot, the traitor, who hanged himself after betraying Christ to the high priests . In every day life one hears about an unjust vicious person who committed suicide because he could not bear the burden of his conscious. "Beowulf".shows that conscience is the only beacon of hope for man when surrounded by evil forces. In general, all sinners, believers as well as unbelievers, feel responsibility for their behavior which comes through God’s check upon the acts of His creation.
It happens sometimes that a man in turmoil, caught in the swirl of strong passion or overwhelmed by fear, appears not to hear the voice of his conscience. But later, he feels the pangs of conscience doubly strong. When the brothers of Joseph came upon trouble, they remembered their sin of selling their younger brother into slavery and understood that they were now justly punished for their cruelty.
On the other hand, when man is aware of his innocence, his clear conscience strengthens his hope in God. For example, the righteous prophets, companions of Prophet Muhammad PBUH, while suffering, knew that the reason for this was not because of any sins they had committed, but that it was in God's plan, and they hoped for God's mercy.
For a sinner, in the punishment, there is no greater relief and happiness than to receive forgiveness and peace of conscience. On the other hand, a disregard of conscience along with recurring sins, darkens the soul to such a degree that man can undergo, ‘shipwreck of his faith’ so that he can irrevocably sink into evil. That’s when looking at a wrong doer with no remorse what so ever one wonders , if his or her conscience lets them live in peace.
Neither naturalism nor materialism can give an adequate explanation of mental events like consciousness. Consequently, divine and supernatural explanations are needed to explain why people are conscious and how the brains work. Richard Swineburne is a well known apologist who gives argument, stating that it is impossible to reduce mental events or properties to physical events or properties and that any attempt to do so would face serious problems. His conclusion is that certain psychological and physical events correlate with each other simply because God chose for them to correlate — nothing more, nothing less.
Sense of moral awareness or of right and wrong, the concept has been variously explained by moralists and philosophers. In the history of ethics, the conscience has been looked upon as the will of a divine power expressing itself in man's judgments, an innate sense of right and wrong resulting from man's unity with the universe, an inherited intuitive sense evolved in the long history of the human race, and a set of values derived from the experience of the individual.
Psychologists also differ in their analyses of the nature of conscience. It is variously believed to be an expression of values differing from other expressions of value only in the subject matter involved, a feeling of guilt for known or unknown actions done or not done, the manifestation of a special set of values interjected from the example and instruction of parents and teachers, and the value structure that essentially defines the personality of the individual. As a practical matter, the consciences of different people within a society or from different societies may vary widely.
The study of the relationship of conscience to the spiritual attributes of man is the domain of psychology. Psychologists attempt to clarify issue, Is conscience an attribute of man with which he is born, or is it the result of learning and encountering life's experiences in the environment in which he develops? Closer examination of man's conscience convinces us that it is not the result of learned attitude or physical instinct in man, but has an unexplainable higher source. For example, children develop conscience before any adult teaching or modeling takes place. If physical instinct dictated to conscience, then it would induce man to behave in a profitable or pleasurable way. However, conscience often induces man to do that which is unprofitable or unpleasant. In spite of the appearance that evildoers enjoy the good life and virtuous people suffer, conscience tells them that a higher justice must exist. Eventually all have to receive their just reward. The universal presence of conscience for many people is the most convincing argument for God's existence and the immortality of the soul.
In the words of St. Maximos the Confessor;
Do not treat your conscience with contempt,
for it always advises you to do what is best. It
sets before you the will of God and the angels;
it frees you from the secret defilements of the
heart; and when you depart this life it grants
you the gift of intimacy with God.
And yet again eloquently portrayed by St. John Chrysostom as;
The conscience should not be evaded, since it
tells us inwardly how to live in conformity to
Gods will, and by severely censuring the soul
when the mind has been infected by sins, and
by admonishing the erring heart to repent, it
provides welcome counsel as to how our defective
state can be cured.
Shakespeare in Richard III creates five distinct ways of relating to this basic question of conscience in the presence of evil, his celebrated protagonist Hamlet echoes the conflict between the conscience and his acts which eventually cost him life of all his family and loved ones as Gladstone declares, The disease of an evil conscience is beyond the practice of all the physicians in the world’. Conscience is a spiritual quality bestowed upon man by God that bids man good attitude and thought, and helps him think straight and tell right from wrong.
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Harun Yahya puts it as,‘One of the important aspects of conscience is that it is common to all people. In other words, what feels right to the conscience of a man also feels right to the conscience of all others provided that the same conditions prevail. The conscience of one man never falls out with that of another. The reason lies in the source of conscience: it is the inspiration of God. Through the conscience, God lets us know the best and the most beautiful behaviour and manners which it will please Him for us to adopt.’

Conscience is an inspiration from God is mentioned in the Qur'an, in Surat ash-Shams, ‘And the self and what proportioned it and inspired it with depravity or taqwa, he who purifies it has succeeded, he who covers it up has failed’. (Surat ash-Shams: 7-10)
*In the verses, God declares that He has inspired mankind with this very conscience that makes man guard against evil deeds and finds the right way.
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One of the most important aspects of conscience is that it helps man to find what is right of his own accord. Conscience will surely show man what is right, even if nobody else will. So, what matters for man is to take recourse to his own conscience, listen to what it says, and act upon it. For this reason, one can say that conscience is the main component of religion. If someone does not follow his conscience or use it fully, when he meets the angels of death, he will be plunged into an agony of remorse and hopelessness, which he will suffer for eternity.
*
Whatever a person does, the conscience will not leave them until he dies. Conscience is a power that works totally out of the will. It is God's voice. The short story "The Tell Tale Heart" by Edgar Allan Poe focuses on the same theme. Every one will continue to hear this voice until they die, but those who do not follow this voice will taste the intense regret of it after they die. Accordingly, in the Qur'an, many examples are given from the conversations in the hereafter in which those in hell confess what they failed to do in life, though inwardly they knew what right was.Therefore, in truth, everyone knows what he must and must not do and evading the conscience does no good. Quran portrays it in these words;
*
'What caused you to enter into Hell Fire?'
They will say, 'We were not among those who prayed, and we did not feed the poor. We plunged with those who plunged, and denied the Day of Judgement, until the Certain came to us.'
The intercession of the interceders will not help them. What is the matter with them that they run from the Reminder like panicked donkeys fleeing from a lion?
In fact each one of them wants to be given an unfurled scroll.
No indeed! The truth is they do not fear the Hereafter.
No indeed! It is truly a reminder to which anyone who wills may pay heed. (Surat al-Muddaththir: 42-55)
*
Then is conscience a result of the way the mind, feelings, and will operate or is it an independent characteristic. Regarding the relationship of conscience to other spiritual attributes of man with his mind, feelings, and free will, one observe that conscience not only speaks of that which is theoretically good or evil, but it also obliges man to do good deeds and shun evil. Good deeds are followed by feelings of joy and satisfaction, whereas deeds of evil produce shame, fear, and spiritual unrest. In all of these manifestations, conscience uncovers the awareness of free will and responsibility.
Of course, reason alone cannot decide what is morally good or evil. It bases its judgment on the observation of something logical or illogical, wise or foolish, useful or useless. It is a property of reason to select useful opportunities over deeds of kindness. Nevertheless, something in man compels his reason to not only search for profit, as an abstract mathematical computation, but also to evaluate the moral value of his intentions. Doesn't it follow then that, if conscience influences the reason, then it is independent or even above it?
Considering how conscience works through free will, one observes that free will can desire anything, but this ability does not dictate to man what he must do. Human will, as every one knows it, often battles with demands of morality and attempts to free itself from its bondage. If conscience were a product of the free will, then no battle would take place, no conflict. But the voice of conscience attempts to guide man's decisions. He may not always fulfill its demands, being free to choose, but he cannot ignore its voice, and when he does that, he does not escape an inner punishment.
Finally, conscience cannot be viewed as the product of feelings in the human heart. The heart craves pleasant sensations and avoids the unpleasant. But the rejection of moral demands often brings with it a strong spiritual conflict, which tears the human heart apart. One cannot escape the outcome in spite of the desire and effort. Therefore, in spite of being enclosed and dwelling within man, shouldn't one concede that conscience is an independent and superior characteristic which directs man's reason, will and heart with divine Law?
Thus, a clear conscience is a well-spring of all Divine blessings. People with clean hearts enjoy inner peace; they are gentle and benevolent. It seems that already in this temporary life, filled with trials and turmoil, God gives them a foretaste of the Kingdom of Heaven. Felicite R. Lamennais believes, ‘conscience is a sacred sanctuary where God alone may enter as judge’.
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Old Friday, July 08, 2011
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Default Coward dies many times, a valiant but once

Coward dies many times, a valiant but once
Outline
· The pithy epigram encompassing various aspects of an individual as well as a society.
· Shakespearean symbolic depiction.
· Relative aspects of a coward and a valiant in the Utilitarian, Kantian, Aristotelian term.
· Pessimistic hopelessness of the unseen.
· Hamlet’s inaction and coward’s behaviour.
· French Revolution, 1947 Indo-Pak independence, brave gave their life .
· Regrets and guilt slow poison for the cowards and learning experience for the brave.
· self-destructive pseudo-toughness vs the true valour.
· Coward’s fear of death and economic loss compared to the perilous life of the gutsy.
· Political agendas achieved by the feeble hearted men inhabitants of the nation.
· A brave person’s symbolic death becomes fuel for the dying nation.
· Hemingway’s brave men accept and endure the tyranny of life.
· Superstitious mind a heaven for the parasites of anxiety and fear.
· Social repercussions of a coward.
· Impulsive coward kills the situation.
· Spiritual death
· The very foundation of a society depends on its people to be brave. Education and a good infrastructure can train and teach such significant aspect to the society.



The pithy epigram illuminates not just a psycho social aspect but also signifies other pivotal features of human behaviour. Hopelessness, looming on every nation’s fate, be it economical or religious, pre-emptive wars, suicide attacks, deteriorating human conditions, deaths, unjust suppression, sanctions, expectations all ad up to the countless deaths of the nations and their inhabitants every day. Yet among all this catastrophe there is one and few of his likes who always fight with the hurdles, the ones who dare to face and challenge, and together make a valiant nation.

The proverb has been traced back to Mortimeriados. Shakespeare used it in his tragedy Julius Caesar. The first part of the quotation, "Cowards die many times before their deaths," how someone can actually "die many times" before they actually die. The binary opposition between a symbolic death and a true one because a person can't physically die multiple times in a single lifetime refers to the symbolic death to convey how a person feels inside when he or she runs away from a challenge. That person "dies" a little inside each time he or she denies the reality, meaning that he or she loses a little strength of character each time he or she refuses to face a challenge of life. Shakespeare is drawing a comparison between someone who is a coward, that is, someone who is afraid to face the challenges of life, such as dealing with difficult situations, taking risks, and fighting for what he or she believe in and someone who is valiant; someone who is brave in facing the challenges of life, is never afraid to face difficult or risky situations, and will always fight for what he or she believes in

What can incite the hollowing emotions of death and despair compared to fulfilment and bravery are quite relative. A utilitarian would say that if being heroic would create the most aggregate happiness then being the hero would be the most moral choice. A Kantian would say that the moral thing to do would be to preserve and respect humanity, which would depend on the particular heroic situation. A virtue ethicist would say that "the good life," which is what Aristotle said we are striving for, would consist of certain virtues. If the medium of cowardice and rashness is bravery, then bravery is what should be striven for. Most persons can be influenced by a culture, the traditions the trends they live in that often defines what is to be shunned or what to be accepted. What is cowardly for one might be prudence for other. However, there are certain criterion that does draw a line between a one who is day by dying in his heart and the one who is becoming stronger day by day and would only let the natural death to take his life away.

The instinctive pessimism of humanity is shown in many careless phrases such as "It's too good to be true." The majority of men and women believe that hopes are illusory, but fears accurately foretell the coming event. Yet any sensible old man or old woman will tell that nearly all the fears and worries from which they themselves suffered almost daily during a long life really never materialised. They suffered for nothing. People learn little from their ex*perience, but go on their way filled with apprehen*sion and alarm, and hence daily die a bit in their hearts as it is good to ponder and yet over doing ruins. The Incomprehensible fears take away the ability to act.

In hamlet the protagonist dies a thousand times as he refuses to face the reality of his father’s murder. The melancholic antic disposition, ultimately causes him his life illuminating another kind of coward, someone whose delay to get justice is also equal to coward’s refraining from justice and truth. The category of such ultimatlely forms an unjust society where not just the justice dies daily but it kills the innocents as well

Submission without question and inquisition kills the ego of the nation and its people. The French Revo*lution is a quintessence of how people died for ages and then gave up the ghosts for ever. The world has never been quite the same since the year 1789. Before that date, people really believed that those who were born in noble and royal families were superior to the common herd; after that date the nobility still believed it, but the common people did not agree. They found they had been respecting that which they had been told to respect, rather than that which is respectable in itself. A Frenchman re*marked, "The great appear to us great because we are kneeling. let us rise." In 1789 every*body stood up. Likewise, the 1947 martyrs of Indo-Pakistan gave life but once and refused to die bit by bit at the hands of the colonialists.

Regrets and guilt are such a curse that every one will avoid that kind of living death. No one wants to live with regret or with the nagging sense that life is passing you by. Rather then learning lesson, majority if the people live lives under their burden. This is another trait of the coward, rather then facing the truth and accepting mistakes, the coward dwells in the realm of insecurities, hides and rejects life. A coward learns and grows with the experiences good or bad.

One can pointlessly face danger to prove to himself that he is tough, called as self-destructive pseudo-toughness. But that's not generally what a brave person is. Similarly, choosing not to face danger when facing the danger is more harmful is not what is meant by cowardice. Cowardice generally refers to people who make harmful decisions out of fear. Courageous are generally people like fire-fighters who overcome their natural fear of fire when they can see it is worth the risk. Of course, people are more prone to use the word bravery when they feel the brave decision is especially compassionate, more prone to use the word cowardice when the fearful decision is especially selfish.

A beautiful poem says it all;

A coward dies many times
Even before the death comes home
He dies at all possible times
Where he could have shown
His valor and his skill
His kindness or his love
Rather a coward chooses other paths
Those seem direct but crooked
Where upon ideas are wicked
To hurt, to blame, to shout
This is when the coward dies
Other times are many
More than one can think
All I can sum unto
Is whenever he shrinks
From what is right to what is wrong
What is difficult to what seems easy?
So how you decide to die
Once in life time or may be countless death
That’s a choice for you to make
Hope you choose a better way
And never die a coward’s death

The fear of death, combined with materialistic fear of economic loss has thrown mankind in a constant dread. Though, death stares old men in the face, and lurks behind the back of youth, yet when finally it comes it’s always a shock. The booming insurance companies, the future plans, the treachery involved in securing the future of the next generations is another dilemma of the weak ones. Weak spend all their lives in a constant threat while the brave lead a tranquil life. This person can hold their head up high and be proud that he or she faced that difficult situation or fought for what he or she believed in. So, when this brave and valiant person physically dies, this is the only time he or she will know death because he or she has never been afraid to face the challenges of life.

Politically such fear is incited to attain some agendas. Courageous person like Michael Moore’s Stupid White Men shows how America subjugates not just its own people to attain some hidden purposes but also leads the world as mere puppets in its hands by inculcating fears, deprivation, hopelessness, dependency; the traits common in a coward. Likewise, governments trigger and arrange situations that breed such fears in the hearts of the people that they offer unquestioned submission. People suffer, yet do not complain, bear and don’t protest which gives rise to socially politically dead society. Tyranny, despotism and dictatorship become the norm and like cowards no one questions it.

There is another side to a brave person. Practically speaking, people keep dying and rising in how they interact with others. They keep repenting and being forgiven. If and when they catch themselves getting snared by the world's way of defining success, they re-adjust their perspective. they die to society so they can rise to the kingdom. When they hurt someone, they don't merely shrug it off. They do the hard work of confessing and seek forgiveness. They die to all that so that they can be compassionate and gentle and kind and open toward all others. People need constantly to be beating back the clutching of ego, desire and pride for the desire for the limelight. Here the brave win by letting go those pretensions, where as, the weak ones relies on them to live an estranged life.

Hemingway's A Farewell to Arms, ‘...the brave dies perhaps two thousand deaths if he's intelligent. He simply doesn't mention them, he accepts the challenges, the fears', sheds light on the enduring nature of the one who accepts every thing life has to offer.

Superstition is enemy to sanity. Hundreds of strange notions re common equally among men and women. People opt against logic and empirical evidence and rely on the stories. A superstitious person is most of the times panicky, anxious, afraid, the illogical tales feeds upon the confidence and serenity of the person’s life and makes its living hell.

‘The brave man can decide/the coward remains silent’, refers to the quality of leadership. The social success falls in the lap of those who have what it takes to be brave. The cowards with their bickering, complaints, backbiting, and schemes only end up in destroying their inner.

‘A hero is no braver than an ordinary man, but he is braver five minutes longer’ is what Ralph Waldo Emerson thinks of the two. Because valiant endures, then with patience comes up to a conclusion and reacts. A coward is impulsive reacts instantly and then later regrets for ruining the situation. The difference becomes evident in the words of Thomas Paine, ‘The real man smiles in trouble, gathers strength from distress, and grows brave by reflection.’

If one looks at it from a spiritual perspective, a coward "dies" a spiritual death, each time he lacks the faith. One, who may be considered a coward, could be someone lacking in faith, or confidence. And simply just doesn't have the courage to try. They may actually experience a sort of spiritual death. So each time they choose to back down or choose not to pursue a braver course, they risk "death. " And a coward is often aware of their own cowardice and its consequence, ‘Spiritual death’. So a brave man will surely only experience death; the mortal one, just once "A coward dies a thousand deaths, a brave man, only once." they don’t seek truth or are following the wrong path.

A coward is afraid of all dangers, real or imaginary ones. Therefore, it is in his mind that he meets these many challenges and because of his fears, he dies a death with each one that he conjures up. Even though he flees from it, it feels like a real death, every time he stumbles into a problem. The brave man, on the other hand, knows the danger but goes into it with courage. Because the danger is real and out come can be fatal he dies but once. He appreciates the peril and that is what makes him a brave man because he attempts it despite the odds against him. The coward as expected turns and flees from danger, which saves him for the time being but deprives him of the life force bit by bit.

So every one would prefer to be brave than cowardly, a success rather than a failure, popular rather than unpopular, esteemed rather than despised. People would rather be noticed than overlooked, be envied than pitied, they prefer to be the object of admiration rather than the target of scorn. If a person wants to make the most out of life, society has plenty of advice. The attributes in their binary opposition, deprives one of the life force, on the hand the very opposite attributes build what a courageous person is all about. People can be taught and trained, with a better moral and just society, good education system pupil can be taught to be brave. That may or may not come from knowing how important life is. It may also come from facing whatever life has to offer, the good and the bad. The fact of the matter is that neither an individual nor a society can advance with its people passing lives as living dead.
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Default fate and determinism

Determinism
Outline;
Relation between fate and free will in the realm of different spheres of life.
Fatalism in Greek play Oedipus Rex.
Modern perspective blames surrounding, biological factors in contrast to free will of the Greeks.
Balance between determinism and free will.
Ethical determinism and the knowledge about the good.
Aristotle’s censure and Shakespeare’s revolutionary Macbeth.
Saul Smilansky’s view.
Kant’s rejection of blaming one’s actions upon environment and genetics.
Empirically its been proved that humans have free
There is reason and will behind every action which can be proven scientifically.
Historical determinism of Karl Marx
Psychology and depiction of human nature.
B.F.Skinner’s behavioral determinism.
The causal chain and the naturalistic determinism.
Sartre’s rejection of the introspective theories.
There must be an external cause for the action which cannot be any one but GOD.
Calvin and Augustine’s theistic determinism.
Heisenberg’s principle of uncertainty is often invoked by indeterminists.
Islam and the balance between free will and fate.
Denial of responsibility on the pretext of original sin by Adam and Eve.
Literature usually preaches man’s lack of will and freedom.
Absolute freedom or absolute fatalistic attitude can do no good. A moderate approach is the more acceptable one.

For thousands of years, this very question has intrigued and perplexed philosophers, scientists, and everyone who think deliberately about how they choose to live and act. The answer to this age-old riddle is universally relevant to every one’s life be it a layman or a sage. The implications of one’s view on it can affect everything from small choices they make every day to their perspective on issues like criminal justice, salvation, redemption. From the Stoics to Boethius, from Kant to Hume, and Sartre to contemporary philosophers, great minds have debated over this connection of fate in relation to free-will. Determinists propound that all human action are caused entirely by preceding events, and not by the exercise of the will. In philosophy, the theory is based on the metaphysical principle that an uncaused event is impossible with multi-pronged thesis and hypothesis. The belief that man's actions are the result of antecedent causes has been formulated naturalistically and theistically, historically, physically, psychologically as well as philosophically.

In fact, the Greek philosopher Leucippus made the earliest-known statement of the view of determinism, proclaiming, "Nothing happens at random, but everything for a reason and by necessity." For Greeks as in Sophocles' play Oedipus Rex, fate decrees that Oedipus is destined to kill his father and marry his mother. Although his parents leave him to die and Oedipus spends his life trying to escape his fate, in the end he does exactly as the Oracle predicted at his birth. The Greeks believed that, for the most important things in life, a particular fate awaits you.

It seems that the Greeks’ belief in the fate only goes so far. Certain aspects of their lives are fated from the moment of birth. But even with their belief in fate, the laws must be obliged and the transgressors punished. This contrasts with the Modern perspective of the Determinist suggests that everything that we do is only a result of our surroundings, the makeup of our genetics and it is, in a sense, fated. In contrast, the Greeks held individuals responsible for their deeds despite the motive. This can be seen when Oedipus’ accidentally murders his own father and is banished. Never once did Oedipus attempt to say that the death was not his fault.

Ethical determinism propound man’s actions are determined by an apparent good, such as one knows what good is and so they all do that .Socrates believed man would choose what ever would seem good to him or her. Plato was certain that a person who knows what good is cannot chose anything but that good. The possibility that one still chooses evil could be because he is ignorant and doesn’t know what good is.

Good virtue enhances the free will, out of freedom they are approaching determinism. According to Greeks by doing the bad a person is actually enslaving the free will. Descartes, ‘if you know what is good the person would follow that rather then doing the opposite’. They have attributed determinism with the knowledge of good. Aristotle censured Plato and Socrates that a person follows evil with his or her own will. Something that became debatable in the Elizabethan Era, society was highly suspicious of the power of supernatural forces and it was commonly accepted that one’s life was governed by fate and was predetermined. Shakespeare’s Macbeth challenges the Elizabethan ideology of fate by privileging that although Macbeth was a victim of his ‘vaulting ambition’ , he was ultimately responsible for his villainous actions. Shakespeare has foregounded certain events to privilege that a person has free will and a conscience and the consequences of going against one's conscience.

In the Contemporary philosophers people like Saul Smilansky, for example, believe that humans do not have free will but that one must keep it a secret from the masses. If all people knew their behavior was determined, they would stop behaving morally, the believe the question of free will has overwhelming implications for the sense of moral responsibility. If free will makes us accountable for our choices, does the opposite hold true, that determinism absolves us of responsibility?

German philosopher Immanuel Kant argued that the moral responsibility stems entirely from the ability to do the right thing, to do the moral duty. Kant's theory implies that if a person can make the choice to do the right thing, he must have free will. To him, ‘If we do not have free will, and our behavior is determined according to what came before; our environment, our genetics, our parents' behavior—what does that mean for our society's ideas of crime and punishment? Should we be held responsible for actions that were inevitable? How do we treat individuals who commit crimes if we believe their backgrounds led them to the crimes?’

The debate continues as we gain increasing access to scientific evidence of brain activity related to moral choices. Professor Nichols's discussion of the relationship between the actions and brain activity of criminals is particularly fascinating, which leads into the examination of whether certain types of criminals, such as psychopaths, are morally responsible for their actions. Empirically its been proved that humans have free will and deliberately or unconsciously they perform an action with their own will.

Deterministic philosophy can be categorized as; Physical determinism, which has its origin in the atomism of Democritus and Lucretius. The theory that human interaction can be reduced to relationships between biological, chemical, or physical entities: this formulation is fundamental to modern sociobiology and neuropsychology. Causal physical determisnim stipulates that there is a cause behind actions which a person doesnt know, but scientific explanations can explain them for sure.

The historical determinism of Karl Marx on the other hand, is transpersonal and primarily economic, in contrast to these two formulations. It suggests the course of history predominantly through economic factor.

Psychological determinism whose philosophical base is the theory that the purpose, needs and desires of individuals are central to an explanation of human behavior. So for every action, be it a practical one, a thought or a dream they try to find a reason or a cause behind them. To most of them humans are free to make choices and hence, responsible for their actions, though the schizophrenics and neurotics are not blamed for their actions.

The behavioral determinism of B.F Skinner is a modification of this view, in that Skinner reduces all internal psychological states to publicly observable behavior. His stimulus response account also uses modern statistical and probabilistic analyses of causation which is a contemporary example of naturalistic determinism. He believes that all human behavior is completely controlled by genetic and environmental factor. These factors do not rule out the fact that human beings make choices: however, they do rule out the possibility that human choices are free. For Skinner, all human choices are determined by cause of his behavior. He is like a knife in the hands of a butcher or a hammer in the grip of a carpenter: he does not originate action but is the instrument through which some other agent performs the action

The naturalistic view sees human being as part of the machinery of the universe. In such a world every event is caused by preceding events, which in turn were caused by still earlier events, ad infinitum. Since man is part of this causal chain, his actions are also determined by antecedent causes.

Logical determinism’s advocated their believes with the analogies that no one can escape the fate even if the person wants to. Diodonis, ‘if a person gets sick he’ll recover either he goes to a doctor or not , on the other hand if he has to perish then nothing can save him’.

Jean Paul Sartre and other contemporary philosopher have argued that determinism is controverted by introspection, which reveals actions to be the result of our own choices and not necessitated by previous events or external factors. Determinists respond that such experiences of freedom are illusions and that introspection is an unreliable and unscientific method for understanding human behavior.

Some of these causes are the environment and man's genetic make up. These are to happen in the absolute determined way of what man does that no one could rightly say that a given human action could have been performed otherwise than it in fact was performed. Thus, according to determinism simple actions like, Bob's sitting on the brown chair rather than the blue sofa is not a free choice but is fully determined by previous factors.

A philosophical argument often given for determinism can be stated as all human
behavior is either completely uncaused, self caused, or caused by something external.
Now human behavior cannot be uncaused, for nothing can happen without a cause, nothing cannot cause something. Human behavior cannot be self caused either, for each act would have to exist prior to itself to cause itself which is impossible. Thus, the only alternative is that all human behavior must be completely caused by something external. Naturalistic determinists maintain that such things as heredity and environment are the extemal causes, whereas, theistic determinists believe that God is the external cause of all human behavior.

Theistic determinism is the view that all events, including man's behavior, are caused (determined) by God. One of the more famous advocates of this view was the Puritan theologian Jonathan Edwards. He maintained that the concept of free will or self determinism contradicted the sovereignty of God. If God is truly in control of all things, then no one could act contrary to his will which is what self determinism must hold. Hence, for god to be sovereign he must cause every event, be it human or otherwise. Calvinist’s Calvin promoted the doctrine of predestination, which he defined as ‘the eternal decree of God, by which He determined with Himself whatever He wished to happen with regard to every man. All are not created on equal terms, but some are preordained to eternal life, others to eternal damnation.’ Medieval theologians like St. Augustine, one of Christianity's most important thinkers, upheld that God knows absolutely everything, including every action a person takes, every decision he or she makes. Nonetheless, Augustine maintained, the person’s choices are still free, God doesn't force a person into His decisions.

Indeterminism is another view which contends that human behavior is totally uncaused. There is no antecedent or simultaneous causes of man's actions. Some indeterminists extend their view beyond human affairs to the entire universe. In support of the indeterminacy of all events Heisenberg’s principle of uncertainty is often invoked. This principle states that it is impossible to predict where a subatomic particle is and how fast it is moving at any given moment. Thus, it is argued, since subatomic events are inherently unpredictable, how much more so are complex human acts. From this they conclude that human and non-human events are uncaused. Two noted exponents of indeterminism are William James and Charles Peirce.

Then there is self-determinism, according to this view a person's acts are caused by himself Self determinists accept the fact that such factors as heredity and environment often influence one's behavior. However they deny that such factors are the determining causes of one's behavior. Inanimate object do not change without an outside cause, but personal subjects are able to direct their own actions. Self determinists reject the notions that events are uncaused or that they cause themselves. Rather, they believe that human actions can be caused by human beings. Two prominent advocates of this view are Aquinas and C S Lewis.

Islam is a religion of moderation it avoids extremes and encourages the balance of synthesis without compromising its vital principles. Islam creates an equipoise, which is in the form of a vibrant equilibrium between man's tendency towards waywardness and his equally natural inclination to cramp and constrict his creative energies. Thus, Islam comes out with a viable coalescence of the extremist attitudes. There is a delicate distinction between the creation of an act and performance of an act, very significant and cannot be brushed aside as a phenomenon of peripheral significance. The balanced and popular view of Muslim jurists is that man is neither the creator of his deeds nor his actions are divinely predetermined.

There is a verse in which divine will is mentioned with reference to the existence of evil. People who fail to comprehend the essence of the verse presume a predestined element of criminality in human conduct in the verse : "And if Allah had willed' (i.e., if it had been God's plan) they would not have taken the false gods.” The verse, in fact, negates the philosophy of necessity and determinism as a national and logical manner the verse suggests that though Allah has the power to eliminate evil and ensure human immunity to it, He does not interfere with the wrong doer’s freedom of option for evil. This verse does not suggest that God assists the evil. The only thing expressed in it is that though Allah dislikes man's choice of evil, He does not impose His will on him to checkmate his choice. If Allah had imposed His will on human beings, no one would have opted for evil. But it is the divine decision to leave people to their own' choices, without clamping a pre-determined divine compulsion on the independent exercise of their free will. This is the only basis of man's moral and legal responsibility.

It is established beyond any iota of doubt that Islam does not recognize the concept of determined criminally, whether it is genetically acquired or psychologically induced.
The positivistic or biological theory, propounded by the Italian school of criminology, is equally untenable because Islam neither believes at the concept of atavistic reversion of human beings nor in inherited criminality.

The acceptance of original sin; Adam and Eve’s act of eating the forbidden fruit invalidates man's freedom of will and action. This concept also vitiates man's moral responsibility. If he is a born criminal, he is not culpable for his evil acts. He is, therefore, exempted from all accountability. This notion, in fact, makes a mockery of man's creation and stresses the futility of man's struggle for moral perfection. Therefore, any cause of criminality that reduces it to a predetermined state or activity, is alien to the teachings of Islam, On the other hand Islam strongly affirms that human conduct is not pre determined in any sense. Man has freedom of choice and he is morally responsible for his act of commission and omission. Morality and responsibility in fact, are skillfully juxtaposed in the Islamic system of rewards and punishments.

Many Greek legends and tales teach the futility of trying to outmaneuver an inexorable fate that has been correctly predicted. This form of irony is important in Greek tragedy, as it is in the Duque de Rivas' play that Verdi transformed into La Forza del Destino ("The Force of Destiny") or Thornton Wilder's The Bridge of San Luis Rey, or in Macbeth's uncannily-derived knowledge of his own destiny, which in spite of all his actions does not preclude a horrible fate.

Other notable examples include Thomas Hardy's Tess of the d'Urbervilles, in which Tess is destined to the miserable death that she is confronted with at the end of the novel. Destiny is a recurring theme in the literature of Hermann Hesse including Siddhartha and his magnum opus and The Glass Bead Game.The common theme of these works is a protagonist who cannot escape a destiny if their fate has been sealed, however hard they try.

Human freedom and human limitation are the perennial subjects of philosophical controversy. There are a number of renowned philosophers who believe in unqualified freedom, there are others who believe in unqualified restriction. The former turn freedom into license and absolute lack of discipline, the latter shrink restriction into an unredeemed determinism and a pressure-cooker attitude towards life. Both postures reflect a perverse state of mind and a hopeless miscalculation of the sources and springs of life and their lap-sidedness is quite obvious only the nature of their respective tilt varies. But the bend is there and transforms both the crests and troughs of their imaginative exercise into a humpy assessment of human acts by presenting a middle approach.
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Old Friday, July 08, 2011
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Default The better part of valor is discretion

The better part of valor is discretion
Outline;
Shakespeare’s voice behind Falstaff.
Hamlet in contrast to Falstaaf.
Roots of the proverb.
Importance of discretion In a battlefield.
In Homeric warfare discretion often appears to be the better part of valor.
Valour defined by false manliness.
Impacts of the mock manliness upon the young generations.
Child hood games initiate the wrong notions.
Courage discretion and valour.
Lying on the pretext that better part of valour is discretion
Nunez’s Discretion unveiling a grave issue as to when discretion is better then valour in every day life.
Treatment of women pivotal to the issue.
How an act thought often as a heroic can do a great damage to a cause.
Nature nurture debate and experimental evidence.
Hemingway’s character showing grace under pressure, yet defying the proposed thesis that discretion is the better part of valour.
All depends on the character formation by the family, the school, the monastery, the state, the press and the theatre.


As said by Falstaff in Henry IV Part One, on a battlefield in order to avoid any personal damage to his life. These days, the phrase means more generically that prudence is better than unwarranted bravery. Though, the negative connotations attached with foresightedness labels the person as a coward, yet mock-manliness can be devastating.

Though Shakespeare’s protagonist Hamlet follows same advice as that of his other character form Henry IV, yet the very opposite at the climax adds force to his advocacy. The time till Hamlet resists the commonly taught sense of chivalry, it keeps him and his family safe and the moment he falls for the customary show off of valour, it costs him not only his own life but also the life of almost every one of significance around him.

Discreation is the better part of valour is the proverb that has been traced back to Caxton's Jason (c.1477) and was popularized by Shakespeare in 'King Henry the Fourth, Part I ‘The better part of valour is discretion, in the which better part I have saved my life.’ and by Beaumont and Fletcher in A King and No King (1619). Advocating exercise caution, don't take an unnecessary risk which is a phenomenal advice, modern world in dire need to use it.

At a battle field, the ever changing scenario puts a lot of strain on the general’s in charge and the soldiers on field. Many a times it happened that the forces retreated or defied the orders , by showing a better judgment rather then mere gallantry. ‘They wrote in the old days that it is sweet and fitting to die for one’s country. But in a modern war there is nothing sweet nor fitting in your dying. You will die like a dog for no good reason. Not that one should not retaliate for the just cause, but that in modern times solving issues by force has become obsolete.’

In Homeric warfare discretion often appears to be the better part of valor. Homer does not criticize Achilles for sitting on the sidelines when Achilles believes that fighting soon will cause his own death. Odysseus threatens to whip those Achaeans who want to sail home, but nobody is court marshaled or outcast for trying to escape from deadly confrontation. Nobody*is branded as a malingerer. Even courageous Ajax falls back from combat when he sees that his efforts are futile because the gods are supporting the Trojans. Zeus, Athena or other gods explain men's fearful acts, just as they explain their courageous ones. Homer seems to observe the various fight-or-flight behaviors without pronouncing moral judgment. Social duty and civic loyalty become motivating forces in later ages, after Homer, when the good soldier is defined mainly in political terms; military champions in later history may mechanically respond without questioning whenever their country, church or other favorite institution calls them, no matter how dumb or destructive their orders. Homer's Hector is a model for this heroism, since he is shamed by what others might think of him, if he does not lead the battle charge. Generally in Homer, however, the interests of the state and its disciplined engine of war are not as important as self-preservation, protection of personal assets, and support of comrades. These are private, not public considerations. There's no nationalism or racism or religious bigotry here. Achaeans are not better than Trojans or vice versa.
As most good things have their counterfeits, unfortunately, there is false manliness which imitates the great qualities, though at heart it is without them. Instead of strength of will, it is only willful; in place of courage, it has audacity. True manliness does what it believes right; false manliness, does what it chooses to do. Freedom, to one, means following his own convictions of truth; to the other it means thinking as he pleases and doing as he likes. The one is reverent, the other rude; one is courteous, the other overbearing, one is brave the other foolhardy; one is modest, the other self-asserting. False manliness is cynical, contemptuous, and tyrannical to inferiors. The true man has respect for all men, is tender to the sufferer, is modest and kind. The good type uses its strength to maintain good customs, to improve the social condition, to defend order. The other imagines it to be manly to defy law, to be independent of the opinions of the wise, to sneer at moral obligation, to consider itself superior to the established principles of mankind.
A false notion of manliness leads the generations astray. All boys wish to be manly but they often try to become so by copying the vices of men rather than their virtues. They see men smoking, swearing so these poor little fellows unfortunately imitate such bad habits, thinking they are making themselves more like men. They mistake rudeness for strength, disrespect to parents for independence. They read wretched stories about boy brigands and boy detectives, and fancy themselves heroes when they break the laws and become troublesome and mischievous. Many a little boy who only wishes to be manly, becomes corrupted and debased by the bad examples around him and the bad literature which he reads. At that time there is hardly any one to set a good example by practically demonstrating when discretion becomes the necessity and valour just a conceited attitude.
All remember playing with friends during endless summer days when everything seemed exciting and one couldn’t wait to prove their great courage when confronted with the infamous dare games. No one wants to be forever labeled a ‘looser and so every one takes the risk and rise to the challenge. Thus, form as early age children learn standing up against often foolish odds and taking the proverbial plunge into the unknown to establish the intangible sense of valour and acceptance.
Courage is another element which needs to be used with the right spirit . It is more than readiness to encounter danger and death, for a person is not often called to meet such perils. It is every-day courage which is most needed, that which shrinks from no duty because it is difficult, which makes one ready to say what he believes, when his opinions are unpopular, which does not allow him to postpone a duty, but makes him ready to encounter it at once; a courage which is not afraid of ridicule when one believes himself right, which is not the slave of custom, the fool of fashion. Such courage as this, in man or woman or child, is the desirable quality often not given its due appreciation. It is infinitely present in everyone. It does not seek display, it is often the courage of silence no less than speech; it is modest courage, unpretending though resolute. It holds fast to its convictions and principles, whether men hear or whether they forbear. One the other hand just to give life in gangs, to become a tool in the hand of hate mongers and become suicide bombers is the most debased side of gallantry.
Lies usually come from cowardice, to hide truth just because men are afraid of standing by their flag, because they shrink from opposition, or because they are conscious of something wrong which they cannot defend, and so conceal, can not be accepted on the pretext that better part of valour is discretion . Secret faults, secret purposes, habits of conduct of which we are ashamed, leads to falsehood, and falsehood is cowardice in the true sense. And thus the sinner is almost necessarily a coward. He shrinks from the light, he hides himself in darkness. He who lives by firm principles of truth and right, who deceives no one, injures no one, who therefore has nothing to hide and yet is not show offer oh his goodness and keeps his acts a secret he alone is manly. The bad man may be audacious, but he has no true courage. His manliness is only a pretence, an empty shell, a bold demeanor, with no real firmness behind it no matter how much he tries to conceal that truth becomes evident.
Nunez’s Discretion struggles with this oft debated attitude of humans , her protagonist Oufoula is told, early on, "to be a successful diplomat you will have to learn how to lie." At the end, a broken Oufoula contemplates the lessons of his life by loosing his love and wonders what really constitutes the better part of valor, behaving discreetly or choosing the truth. Man who cannot deny his passion and tied between Christian monogamy vs. African polygamy paves way for a lot of social issues where people face same question. Issues as diverse as stigmata attached with HIV patients, supporter of Nazi Germany, atheists among theists bring them face to face with the dilemma to disclose their truth and face wrath of the society or conceal it as a better option.
Illustration of valour by suppressing women through physical strength is another attitude that has to be censured. Against this the one having subtler feelings makes him wish to defend her rights, to maintain her claims, to be her protector and advocate be it in the privacy of his home or in the crowd of thousands. False manliness with erroneous notion of strength wishes to show its superiority by treating women as inferiors. It flatters them, but it does not respect them. It fears their competition on equal levels, and wishes to keep them confined, not within walls, but behind the more subtle barriers of opinion, prejudice, and supposed feminine aptitudes. True manliness holds out the hand to woman, and says, ‘Do whatever you are able to do; whatever God meant you to do. Neither you nor I can tell what that is till all artificial barriers are removed, and you have full opportunity to try.’

If an act is performed that has no thought behind, it loses its value. In the words of orator and lawyer Robert Green Ingersoll, "Courage without conscience is a wild beast." One should give some thought to an action before acting upon it. Without thought, or "conscience", the action can be untimely and uncontrolled as would a "wild beast." In 1999, two young men went on a shooting rampage at Columbine High School. This rash action, lacking conscience or concept of right and wrong, did not exhibit courage. For the reason that rather then voicing concerns though a democratic and more viable and long lasting process, people opt for the mock chivalry and rather then aiding a cause bring grave damage to it.

Rather, good intentions and motivations should fuel courageous actions. As British author Samuel Johnson states, ‘Bravery has no place where it can avail nothing.’ In other words, courage or bravery is worthless and unnecessary if the final outcome cannot be beneficial.

Programs are designed which explore the nature/ nurture debate whether courage can be instilled through training; and whether some people are more naturally courageous than others. Extreme sports and extreme sports participants have been most commonly explored from a negative perspective, for example, the "need to take unnecessary risks." This study explored what can be learned from extreme sports about courage and humility—two positive psychology constructs. A phenomenological method was used via unstructured interviews with 15 extreme sports participants and other firsthand accounts. The extreme sports included BASE (building, antenna, span, earth) jumping, big wave surfing, extreme skiing, waterfall kayaking, extreme mountaineering, and solo rope-free climbing. Results indicate that humility and courage can be deliberately sought out by participating in activities that involve a real chance of death, fear, and the realization that nature in its extreme is far greater and more powerful than humanity.

Why is there all this violence going on? Sometimes one thinks that had the hero in the story For Whom The Bell Tolls not been so brazenly courageous, maybe the sadness and disgusting malice may not have occurred, for if a person doesn't start a fight he cannot be beaten up, and also, if one hides instead of shouting, he can usually get away. Regardless, Robert Jordan must do both of the following two acts in order to cope inside this story: build up his life to apex at one final showdown, and to trap himself in a never-ending tunnel of beatings and ultimately destruction. Robert Jordan must make a final stand in For Whom the Bell Tolls if for no other reason, to save his manhood. John Wain explains:"...To make a last stand-for if defeat is accepted in Hemingway's world, humiliation and rout are not. His fictions present moments of violence, crisis and death, yet these become occasions for a stubborn, quixotic resistance through which the human capacity for satisfying its self-defined obligations is both asserted and tested. "Grace under pressure": This becomes the ideal stance, the hoped- for moral style, of Hemingway's character."

This last stand is in no way rational, and in no way necessary in the normal person's mind. To Hemingway's heroes, though, this last stand is the only imaginable way one can leave this earth with a facet of dignity. It is the final penance, a last forgiveness of sins. "If I have the guts to do it, I'll be all right." kind of mentality. This last gung-ho attempt to show ones valiance is a gift in the minds of Hemingway's heroes. But the interesting thing is to ponder what would have happened to this person had they not "bravely" risked their life's and decided rather to find another way out of this situation, to lead a normal life instead. Would the character still come to an untimely death in a similar situation just further down the line? Or could he possibly turn the corner? W. M. Frohock believes that regardless of the situation, the character is forced to do this insane, courageous act, for he has no choice in the matter. "For Hemingway courage is a permanent element in a tragic formula: life is a trap in which a man is bound to be beaten and at last destroyed, but he emerges triumphant, in this full stature, if he manages to keep his chin up.

The family, the school, the monastery, the state, the press and theatre all has an equal share in molding the character of the individuals of the society. Character thus formed determines action. The better the units, the better will be the mass. “The better the people of this century,” as Viscount Samuel remarks “the finer will be the heritage of the next”. It is true that thoughts determine action. Actions by mere force of repetition grow into habits. If a man has acquired good habits he does good only, that too, subconsciously through a psychological mechanism without the aid of the conscious will. There is literal truth in the proverb that habit is second nature. William James who calls men “mere walking bundles of habits” also describes habit as “the enormous fly-wheel of society, its most precious conservative agent”. Thus the habits of the units of a society affect the standard and the creative energy of that society and ensure the smooth running of the machine – the society without any friction. So in such a society where the individuals in their very impressionable, plastic stage are taught to appreciate and stand for peace, non-violence and good-will, they will grow up to be great peace-lovers and peace-makers and will instinctively abhor anything that is of a brutal or savage nature.


caution is a smarter policy to adopt than hot-headedness
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Default Education makes people easy to lead difficult to drive

Education makes people easy to lead difficult to drive

Outline;
· Different genres of education, manipulated and misused.
· Civilized man against 'a dumb, driven cattle'.
· A really educated man is glad to follow but he would certainly resent being forced to follow.
· Education mandatory in every country yet, the goals differ.
· Fault lines; \ tells how to make a living but doesn't teach them how to make a life.
· Gulf between what is taught and what is professed.
· bookish knowledge from the practical life.
· Parents as teacher, impact of their negligence.
· Orators play upon the immature minds of such young people who lack analytical power.
· Educators disrespected by the students.
· Historic Muslim educational system in contrast to modern dogmatic mullahs.
· Molana Modoodi’s analysis of the eastern education system.
· Macaulay’s ‘Minutes on Indian education’ and the idea behind WOGs which still supervises the countries.
· Imperative to inculcate the virtues from the early childhood.
· Role of Prophets and messengers.
· a teacher as an architect of future generations.
· The stale syllabi and teaching methods.
· Aristotle and Plato’s endeavor.
· Ibne khaldun and Al- Ghazali
· The pseudo knowledge and its adverse impacts.
· Innumerable fruits of proper education.
· Parents should keep an eye on public education
· Some people view education just from the utilitarian eyes.
· Bertrand Russell and teaching of contempt.
· Why is it easy to govern really educated people.
· Teaching for democracy and contribution from students.
· Teaching a life long process




Be it the formal education or the informal one such as parent’s didactic role, the duty entrusted upon the pedagogues,, theological upbringing in shrines, monasteries, Christian schools or the madrass, education serves its purpose when it frees the mind form dogmatism, inculcates ability to observe, judge and then take a decision, opens the mind and breeds acceptance and tolerance. Though, education’s ulterior motif aims for the utopian society. Truth is, students that are the building blocks of a nation are played upon by external factors as political economical agendas, then there are religious pundits who take the reign of students in their hands and divert them for their own beliefs and purposes. Its significance in any developing or successful society is undeniable, as this is the foundation upon which a nation succeeds and democracy prevails.

Education helps people realize their responsibilities while they appreciate their rights. They become able to weigh their opinions before jumping into conclusions, enables them to know how to respect the opinion of others while they may stick to their own. They learn there is always another side to a question when they differ. They have a right to say 'I beg to differ'. That is a sign of a civilized man. At the same time he will never allow himself to be treated as 'a dumb, driven cattle'. He does not like being driven. In whatever station he finds himself, the educated man can easily fit in. Real sign of education is that when he reaches an exalted position in life he never loses his head, when he is in a humble position he never breaks his head either. Thus an educated man shows equanimity. He will sail in fair weather or foul.

An educated person would follow, without being driven. He knows his limits as well as that of others, so if he senses that he is being driven he revolts. No force of government or the shackles of law can break his back. Physically he may be paralyzed but his spirit would be strong. Since democracy is a government by consent, the people should be well educated so that leadership among them may become possible. A really educated man is glad to follow but he would certainly resent being forced to follow, One of the reason America lost war in Vietnam was because it lost it’s people’s back. Though Bush has waged war on Iraq by guile, yet as people are becoming aware of the injustice, people have made Obama to declare withdrawal of American troops by 2013.

In every enlightened modem government, emphasis is laid on the education of its citizens. Up to a certain age education is made compulsory so that boys and girls get the benefit of it. They get enlightened and they are willing to obey and, given the chance, are ready to rule. Since, almost every government in the world is governed by the representatives of the people, these representatives and the people who choose them must be educated enough to shoulder the responsibility that falls upon them. The contrast, evident in the democratic and the autocratic countries.

Fatal fault lines in an education system are not that difficult to detect. Though teaching methods in a school and the curricula are the ever changing things yet the standards it has to achieve remains more or less the same. ‘An educational system isn't worth a great deal if it teaches young people how to make a living but doesn't teach them how to make a life’. A good life, any society following any religion creed values or customs agrees should end up in elevating the of moral characters of its pupil devoid of deceit, criminal activities with a good understand of what rights and duties are, with realization of the intangible yet very significant ideas like truth, tolerance, acceptance, patience.

The huge gulf between what is taught to the young souls and what is professed in the practical life creates confused minds. Moiz Amjad in his essays, ‘Role Of A Teacher’ established a thesis that, ’Every society has an established set of virtues and vices and it takes conscious and unconscious measures at various levels to promote the virtues and eliminate the vices. Sometimes a society may face a crisis of values in which the values are at odds with one another or the values suffer from double standards.In Islamic societies, the crisis of Musharaferian democracy in Pakistan and kamal Ataturk’s liberation in Turkey inspired by western secularization is one such examples where taught and imposed values result in a disaster, the notion of four marriages or for that matter women taking divorce is taught to be part of muslim religious education and yet in practical life they are fought with zeal and zest. Result is that ‘the people reflect*contradictions in their actions and in the morality they profess’ This form of baffling education system that breeds unsure minds breeds followers, never leaders.

An atmosphere which bifurcates the bookish knowledge from the practical life is hazardous for the immature and sensitive young people. Result, people react and suffer from mental confusion and are led to believe that there are certain values to be paid lip service only, whereas the practical needs of life demand an altogether different set of values.*Aggression betrayal adjustment problems are some of the very common outcomes of such erroneous education system.

*In the past, parents and teachers used to make the best of their efforts to provide an atmosphere to their children congenial to the development of higher virtues and morals. But the gross social change over the last few decades, large scale urbanization, ruthless competition for financial gains, and heavy preoccupation in everyday* life deplete all time and energy from the parents, leaving behind little time or energy for their children. Whatever time they have at their disposal is consumed by newspapers, television and other recreations. As a result, the younger generation hardly gets any opportunity to share ideas with their elders or to enter into a meaningful discussion. Labeled as generation gap, youngsters formulate their own standard and morals according to their ease.

Parents busy and religions education either dissociated form the formal education, or played upon by the ecclesiasts, the socialists, the moralists, their antagonism, elucidates only one fact that countries are teaching to mentally enslave the students. With a few exceptions, education is chaining the people in dogmatism, absolutism tutoring them to become herds.

In such circumstances, it’s always easy to trap the young minds. The demagogues, tyrants enjoy acceptability because of the same reason that there is no one to challenge, people unable to evaluate and judge fall for the rhetoric of any good orator that can trap them into their web with a few twisted words.

On the other hand, this idea is gaining ground that education is not meant to build up better human beings, but only to get better jobs. Consequently, the students' minds are obsessed with better jobs and dreams for higher social status. Obviously, the moral and religious training of the child has gradually been ousted from the preview of education. Be it the obsessed western institutes or the eastern, student’s aim is to get job, in West when they get jobs after going through the compulsory education till high school and after getting the free education elsewhere they don’t bother for higher studies.

Now the students tend to consider their teacher as their servant, rather than their mentor or reformer. The net result of all this deterioration is that the value system has fallen into oblivion.* It is again a contribution of the modern age that character building has been totally dissociated from education. That is why the educational system is producing an educated but characterless generation.

In Muslim history, teachers have not only distinguished themselves by their profundity in knowledge and research, but also because of their character, piety and abstinence from immoral acts to the character, nobility and conformity of belief and action. Throughout their history, Muslims have refused to accept the authority of any debauch as a religious scholar and teacher but only the ones with the moral status. Something which has been degraded due to the madrassas in the hands of the dogmatic mullahs . In the Islamic view of education, instruction of every day studies cannot be divorced from moral and ethical training. Because of this kind of education, students are to be made fully aware of the temporal as well as celestial world, a knowledge without which it is not possible to be ‘Free’ in the true ense.
Keeping in mind the third world countries Maulana Maudoodi observed in* Ta`leemaat ‘Devoid of any divine element and Islamic morality, our education system even fails to inculcate those basic human morals in our students, without which a nation cannot hope for an honourable survival, what to speak of any possibility of its development. The generations being produced by it are unfortunately equipped with all the decadence of the West but do not have even an inkling of Western virtues. They are neither dutiful, hardworking and devoted, punctual, nor do they have any claim on perseverance, determination, discipline or self-control. They do not have any ideals beyond their self-interest. They are just like wild bushes, and do not demonstrate any national character’.

Once colonized and suppressed nations, suffer the most. Strategies like Macaulay’s ‘Minutes on Indian education’ to produce WOGs(western organized gentlemen); people in the skin of the natives yet followers and mental slaves of their colonizers, illuminate this major block of a society can be manipulated. Decades after decades from a handful of WOGs whole generations are produced by such educational system who spread like endemic and deliberately or unintentionally become part of a scheme. Cambodia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq are the quintessence of such strategies. First they destruct the established pedagogical system and then swap with the one carrying the concealed agendas of the oppressor.

It is imperative to cultivate human virtues in students from the primary level of their education and training. For instance the promotion of punctuality, truth, hard work, honesty, simplicity, hygiene, etiquette, patriotism, mutual love and sincerity, social and civic sense, obedience to law, tolerance and other desirable virtues should be the hall mark of an education system.*Once t hey sweep to the roots of human mind, then education serves its true purpose.

When children learn to make decisions and consider the consequences of their actions, they make better choices - choices with fewer negative results. Children who learn problem-solving strategies, negotiation skills, peaceful play, and cooperation are more likely to analyze and make choices that are good for themselves and others. When children pick up after themselves, take turns, work out problems, share, or help someone, they are showing responsibility and thus benefiting themselves and the whole community. When children pour their own juice, decide about what toy they want to use, what activity they want to do, what they want to wear, or what they want to eat, they are showing responsibility. In a cooperative-interaction setting the emphasis is on everyone taking responsibility for their part of working together, so the group can accomplish mutual goals for the common good

Teacher being the human architect can bring positive social change in localism, nationalism and globalism. The reason Prophets Messengers were sent was actually to educate the people and convince them to give up the immoral debased characteristics and to raise humanity to the status they deserved, rather then being mere puppets worshipping idols and following the pharaohs, clan leaders for generations after generation. The Holy Prophet (sws) proudly declared education to be a prominent part of his personality and prophethood.

No other personality can have an influence more profound than that of a teacher. Students are deeply affected by the teacher's love and affection, his character, his competence, and his moral commitment. A popular teacher becomes a model for his students. The students try to follow their teacher in his manners, costumes, etiquette, style of conversation and his get up. He is their ideal. He can lead them anywhere. During their early education, the students tend to determine their aims in life and their future plans, in consultation with their teachers. Therefore, a corrupt and decadent class of teachers can harm a nation much more seriously than a class of corrupt and perverted judiciary, army, police, bureaucracy, politicians or technocrats.

The importance of a teacher as an architect of future generations also demands that only the best and the most intelligent and competent members of intelligentsia be allowed to qualify for this profession. It is unfortunate to find that generally the worst and the most incapable people of the society find their way to this profession ‘Most teachers have not received any formal preparation at the undergraduate or graduate level for their role as character educators.’. Then Pedagogic process is also hindered by work load, fatigue, negligence, shortage of funds and resources.

At the government level especially in Pakistan, the syllabuses have been finalized and the chapter for revision closed, as if they are divine scriptures, leaving no room for any alteration or revision in the light of new discoveries, research and progress. No room for inquisition, research with students unable to challenge or question.

Aristotle’s remarks are imperative when he said, ‘All who have meditated on the art of governing mankind have been convinced that the fate of empires depends on the education of youth’. The two Greek sages Plato and Aristotle’s discourse and pondering over education illuminates how important this aspect has always been. The stages suggested by both no doubt were an effort by both of them to embark the best possible virtues into the building blocks of the nation.

In the same manner Ibne Khaldun presented his version of theological Scholl system for the East. According to Al-Ghazali, "knowledge exists potentially in the human soul like the seed in the soil; by learning the potential becomes actual." One of the elements Al-Ghazali insists upon is that a child should be taught the words of the Creed in his earliest days and be taught the meaning gradually as he grew older; corresponding to the three stages of memorising, understanding and conviction

The dilemma with the education of today is that a degree in hand does not guarantee the person to be the best at his morals or behaviour, the reason why J.B.Shaw was staunchly against formal education believing, ‘What we want is to see the child in pursuit of knowledge, and not knowledge in pursuit of the child’. The pseudo knowledge given to the masses rather then diverting them into constructive thinking beings turns them mentally dry pupil. Such low education does not cater for any reasonable job. Draw back of the modern education in agrarian societies, without any practical skills is not of much use. Likewise, Indonesian commune schools as ridiculed by V.S.Naipaul in Among The Believers are actually the necessity for the survival of Indonesians. Hence, just a degree or a western education as a set standard does not guarantee success.

The fruits of a real education comprises of the essential elements. Creating a safe environment helps children build trust and enables them to think and act independently. Knowing that they are loved and they belong, children can learn and try out the behaviors of their role models as well as experiment with other behaviors. Developing rules with their family, class, or other community group helps children develop trust. Assisting children to learn about and to understand their rights and the rights of others through turn taking, sharing and promoting empathy helps children learn to see other points of view. Responsibility is an empowering word. Taking responsibility empowers people to have a say in their own lives. Helping children recognize their capability to choose what they want to do fosters a sense of mastery and competence, which, in turn, makes them feel worthy of participating in community life.

Few people would argue with the importance of educating children. But they also need to ask for what purpose they are educating children, and towards what ends? What is the "public" in public education? Why should people and governments as a society invest in public education? And who should educate children; parents, government, business, faith-based institutions? Even if one agrees that education is a priority, it does not help them answer these questions. Education is, however, a means to the answers.

Viewing children and education from a utilitarian perspective is not new. As Daniels Alexander Hamilton wrote in 1791 of making young children "more early useful’. He believed Public schools have a larger purpose. Writing about the relationship between education and democracy nearly a century ago, John Dewey concluded that "It is, of course, arbitrary to separate industrial competency from capacity in good citizenship." For Dewey, in a democratic society education serves to provide individuals with economic competencies and the capacity to act as a citizen.

What a democratically liberal society must want for its people to learn throght education is;Liberty, which includes freedom, choice, access, autonomy, mobility, openness, transparency, individual rights, voluntary, opportunity, individuality, exemptions, privacy, due process, independence, personal responsibility, self-determination, and self-sufficiency.Prosperity, which includes economy, efficiency, growth, productivity, profit, cost reduction, development, incentives, competition, consolidation, centralization, privatization, standardization, specialization, performance measurement, benchmarking, return on investment, using market rules to make decisions, and quantity of life. Equality, which includes fairness, justice, tolerance, acceptance, diversity, equity, inclusion, representation, equal rights, equal opportunity, equal treatment, equal results, grandfathering, and a level playing field. Community, which includes safety, security, a sense of connection and belonging to the people and places where we live and work, a sense of place and identity, health, aesthetics, preservation, restoration, conservation, tradition, customs, the sacred, uniformity, social and moral order, and quality of life

Flourishing national development and a society truly prosperous with knowledge all begins from its teachers. While the role of knowledge and a skilled society with visions and aspirations in the success of a nation cannot be stressed enough, it should also be remembered that knowledge cannot be acquired if it is not sought and received through the help of the teacher. This is why everyone should put efforts into seeking as much knowledge as possible, and appreciate the teacher's importance in guiding us and the generations to come, to become knowledgeable and morally upright people.

The worst possible part an education system can play is the one denounced by Betrand Russel where formal education is used as a policy tool both to indoctrinate ethnocentricism and anti-group enmity and to wage a cold war called as ‘The teaching of contempt’. India Pakistan social studies books portraying same events with totally opposite results aims and purposes to gain favour of their public is an eloquent example of it.
It is easy to govern an educated group of people for they know the need for such governments for the smooth functioning of the society. They know the value of give and take. They know the value of the rule of the law. They know there must be somebody to govern, even though the authority comes from the people. They will never allow themselves to be enslaved. Their rights are sacrosanct and anybody encroaching it is not tolerated. Still there are some societies where in spite of education, they allow themselves to be enslaved.

To educate for democracy, to educate for citizenship in that democracy, to teach children problem solving, negotiation, critical thinking and sharing skills, is to promote human dignity. As Malcolm Forbes put it, "Education's purpose is to replace an empty mind with an open one." When teaching about human dignity in the form of rights and responsibilities, they are taking active steps against crime and violence. In a democratic society, each citizen is important for making decisions, for providing for the good of all, and for ensuring the rights we all enjoy. When one person is not contributing, not only are his or her ideas and insights lost, but he or she may experience a disenfranchisement that can seem to justify actions that hurt the whole.

Children are not born with the skills for active involvement in a democratic society. Teachers parents as adult citizens along with the help of the media, must carefully consider what they and others do to convey healthy values that support and preserve precious democratic values. : Educating for democracy is a lifelong process. At every developmental stage this type of education takes a different shape in order to fit the needs of the learner, and yet twisting it for some agenda or goal can be disastrous.
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Old Friday, July 08, 2011
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Default evolution creation and islam

Creation Evolution and Islam


Since antiquity mankind has been grappling with the concept of the creation of universe and its genesis. Quran showed them that the universe is not a purposeless, pointless,or random conglomeration of matter. on the contrary it asserted that universe was a carefully designed structure from top to bottom by a Superior Being.

***In 19th century Immanuel Kant and his followers believed in an infinite universe with no beginning or end and their predecessors Marxs and Engels carried the believes to the 20th century. However Einstein's theory of relativity and Hubble's observation of the* 'red shift' turned the set pattern of* believes topsy turvy. They showed that everything moves away from every thing and that the universe constantly 'expands' which was later defined in terms of Big Bang. This led the scientists to believe that going back in time everything would shrink and converge to a single point which was called as 'zero volume' parallel to 'nothing', signifying the fact that the universe had a beginning and was created from 'nothing'. Quran elucidates it in the words;' it is We(Allah) who have built the universe with our power and verily it is We who are steadily expanding it'.

* This led to another debate that who created this universe from nothing. Skeptics gave their theories, existentialists like Nietzsche completely denied that presence of a Superior Being and called it a blind chance, 'the oscillating universe model' on the other
hand explained the phenomenon of creation in mechanical terms, that the universe's present expansion would reverse some time and it would begin to contract, then it would expand and would repeat itself in cycles.

Others gave explanation through the 'cosmic egg' theory, that mater prior to the Big Bang were in the manner of an egg, it exploded violently paving way for the creation through the energies it unleashed. Quran explained it in the terms that 'He is the originator of the heaven and the earth', and declared Allah to be the only force behind all the creation of the universe and the life in it unlike other skeptics or the world religions who distract the human mind by declaring 'Who really knows what happened? Who can describe it? How were things produced? Where was creation born? When the universe was created, the one became many. Who knows how this occurred? Did creation happen at God's command, or did it happen without his command? He looks down upon creation from the highest heaven. Only he knows the answer –or perhaps he does not know'. ( hindu holy scriptures of Rig Veda 10:129.1-7)

Maurice in his book Quran Bible and Science established the fact that Christianity is on the gravest mistake when it establishes false facts* about creation, such as the declaration* that earth was illuminated by the light on the first day but their source ,stars, moon and sun* were created on the fourth day.However, Allah says,' Your lord is Allah, Who created the heavens and earth in six days andthen settled himself firmly on the throne. He covers the day with night ,each pursuing the other urgently ....Both creation and command are subservient to him'. and thence challenges the mankind to find a single fault in His creation as 'there are clear signs for the people of intellect'.

The origin of life as described by Darwin in The Origin Of Species as chance happening, natural selection* and the survival of the fittest from the simplest to the complex was authentically refuted by Shapiro who described that a single living cell, the building unit of life is so complex that the law of probability makes it clear that its component a
protein has 10raised to power 40,000 zeros(which hasno equivalent in the universe) probability to exist by chance. Allah asserts with the divine truth 'You will not find any flaw in the creation of the All-Merciful'.

To complement it ,Mendel's discovery of the laws of inheritance further refuted Darwin's claims asserting that the origin and the distribution of the immense amount of DNA could not be explained by coincidental happenings.

* Against Darwinism another theory presented by the scientists is known as 'Panspermia' is* in close collaboration with Islam, according to which life emerged on earth suddenly and in complex form, based on the oldest fossil found from the Cambrian period
showing complex creatures since the time they ever existed .Hence, the fossil record indicates that living things did not evolve from primitive to advanced forms, but instead emerged all of a sudden in perfect state with the creative authority of Allah and His command ,'Kun-fayakun' .As illuminated by Harun Yahya in The Creation of Universe not a single transitional form verifying the alleged evolutionary 'progression' of vertebrates from fish to amphibian, reptiles, birds and mammals has ever been found so it can easily be said that every living species appears instantaneously and in its current form,perfect and complete , In other words living beings did not come into existence through evolution, rather they were created and they were created through the medium of 'sticky clay', 'mud', 'dust', or as Allah says "We made from water every living thing'* in
'pairs'.


Tip; a topic based on Darwinism and Islam would focus on Darwin's theoris in comparison to Islamic concepts. Some of the points discussed here would become peripheral while the ones related to Darwin would be emphasized.
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Old Friday, July 08, 2011
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Default child miseducated is a child lost

child miseducated is a child lost.
John F. Kennedy

The teacher can be rightly called a nation builder. Teachers through their perseverance love and sacrifices have shown the right path through which great men have built the nation, have achieved unimaginable heights, have transformed human life and above all, have turned out to be good human beings. It is the dear teachers who mould the character, personality and show the right direction which leads to the final destination.

Flourishing national development and a society truly prosperous with knowledge all begins from its teachers. While the role of knowledge and a skilled society with visions and aspirations in the success of a nation cannot be stressed enough, it should also be remembered that knowledge cannot be acquired if it is not sought and received through the help of the teacher. This is why everyone should put efforts into seeking as much knowledge as possible, and appreciate the teacher's importance in guiding us and the generations to come, to become knowledgeable and morally upright people.

Knowledge received without a teacher's guidance can be compared to a blind man walking without his stick. Because of this, teachers need to have a high level of commitment towards their duties and responsibilities which have been entrusted to them. The teacher is a judge who gives marks and ratings. He differentiates children on the basis of their intellectual, and often social skills in preparation for the social and occupational roles which they eventually play. He does this by recommending promotions and demotions within the school, nominating children to take certain examinations and counseling children and their parents with regard to appropriate school courses, and employment possibilities.

The teacher is a representative of the society who inculcates moral precepts. In the development of a country, great attention has to be paid to education and learning, as well as good morals, and nobody is more suited to assist in this process than the humble teacher. Without teachers, both knowledge and morals would suffer.

The role of the teacher is a multi-faceted one comprising academic, pedagogical and social roles. Academic roles comprise teaching, counseling and supervisory roles while pedagogical roles include instructional, evaluation and facilitating roles. As a facilitator of learning, the teacher is involved in motivating pupils to learn, maintaining control in the classroom and the school in general, and creating a conducive environment for learning to take place. Social roles of the teacher includes among others socializing roles which is preparing pupils to participate in the way of life of the society; others include reference roles, detective roles, parent surrogate (or substitute parent), confidants and affectionate roles.

No other personality can have an influence more profound than that of a teacher. Students are deeply affected by the teacher's love and affection, his character, his competence, and his moral commitment. A popular teacher becomes a model for his students. The students try to follow their teacher in his manners, customs, etiquette, style of conversation and his get up. He is their ideal. He can lead them anywhere. During their early education, the students tend to determine their aims in life and their future plans, in consultation with their teachers. Therefore, a corrupt and decadent class of teachers can harm a nation more seriously than a class of corrupt and perverted judiciary, army, police, bureaucracy, politicians or technocrats. A corrupt and incompetent teacher is not only a bad individual, but also the harbinger of a corrupt and incompetent generation. A nation with corrupt teachers is a nation at risk; every coming day announces the advent of its approaching destruction.

Teachers therefore , have to play a cardinal role in the building up of the character of the next generation. It is a fact that a civilization cannot rise out of a skeleton of mere ideas and abstract concepts. Civilization finds a concrete shape in the practical behaviour of a nation, based on these principles and concepts. Once the practical aspect is gone, the civilization also disappears and can only be studied through its remnants preserved in museums and chronicles. This necessitates the provision of a learning atmosphere throbbing with life in our educational institutions through the presence of the teacher, with a view to infuse confidence in our students and to enable them to be proud of their culture, to respect their national character and national emblems, and to ornament themselves with societal conduct and morals. They should stand firm on the centuries old foundations of their cultural tradition and at the same time should establish standards of excellence in their academic performance.

The essence of the teacher as a nation builder cannot be over-emphasized. Good teachers need to be themselves constantly seeking knowledge, be of good character, have high motivation and be creative, innovative and effective in their teaching strategies. The good deeds of teachers are great; because of them, we will grow to become knowledgeable people who will be of use to society, religion and our nation and country.
According to Professor Sirajuddin Ahmad for promotion of learning, teachers have to display a sense of responsibility and must be in possession of qualities of leadership that are essential for motivation of students. It falls upon the teachers to create a friendly environment in the institution free of coercion. They must teach through cooperation, facilitation, love and caring attitude and not by exercising authority, domination and giving punishments. They must try to raise the self-esteem of students. Good teachers create trust, confidence, interest, enthusiasm and hope and not fear, frustration and disappointment. They be kind and forgiving instead of being revengeful.
******* Teachers must encourage and entertain questions as well as ask questions to stimulate minds and promote formal and informal* discussions for enhancing critical thinking and achievement of in-depth understanding. They need to frequently evaluate student’s performance both formally and informally and give them prompt feedback in the form of encouragement, praise, appreciation and reward for correct performance and guidance for rectifying mistakes both meant for improvement of their performance and creation of a desire for learning. They should teach by interaction with students rather than depending on lectures alone. In this process they should identify the variety of talents that different students may possess for different desirable functions and should give them support for whatever potential they have. They should reinforce creativity and originality in students. Teachers should encourage students to help, teach and test themselves and each other as well as the weaker and the junior students. They should organize group-learning projects, contests, competitions, debates, cultural activities, entertainment and field visits to create interest in learning.
***** Teachers must remain humble and ready to say “I don’t know” and be prepared to admit their mistakes and take a lesson from them and from the mistakes of others. They must not laugh, ridicule, humiliate, embarrass or insult any student over commission of mistakes. If promptly and politely corrected mistakes teach memorable lessons for better performance. Apart from accepting blame they should make a habit to say “we” and not “I”. They should be prepared to speak less and listen more.* They should be magnanimous enough to share their credit with others and accept alone the blame for failings of students. They must share with students before making all decisions that affect students and must make an effort to share their joys and sorrows. Equally teachers should share their interests with students that will promote friendship.
****** Teachers should have a sense of humor and be capable of creating humor. They should use different methods to break monotony and boredom i.e. by use of variety of learning resources and teaching methods, relevant jokes, quizzes, questioning and involving the inattentive, creating surprises, mysteries and suspense, referring to relevant events in day-to-day life etc. They should teach by example and act as role models instead of giving sermons. What they do has far greater power to teach than what they say. They must be able to do themselves what they expect from the students to do and be able not to do what they expect from students to abstain from. In fact teachers should put themselves in the shoes of students before asking them to do or not to do anything. They should be sensitive to the needs and feelings of students. They should speak the language of the students when needed and should relate to their level of mental and physical abilities.
******* According to William Glasser’s Choice Theory, teachers must promote the basic needs of students to convince them that they are the well wishers of students and in return students will listen to them. These basic needs are the requirements of survival, love and affection, freedom, leisure, entertainment and empowerment. This means that in addition to academic issues teachers must take keen interest and help students in their social and economic matters and participate in their extracurricular activities. Teachers should delegate more and more to students and refrain from doing every thing themselves. In this way, apart from empowering students, they also give them a chance to learn by doing. Instead of passing knowledge to students they should be made to create knowledge to give them a sense of ownership of what they learn.
******* Good teachers must resolve disputes through the policy of give and take and make all the effort to defuse tension and ensure cohesion and friendship among students. They should set a side time for listening to problems of students. They should honor their pledges, be consistent in their responses, dependable and reliable. They should be flexible and not rigid to meet the changing circumstances and diversity of situations. They should always be ready for the unexpected and must exercise utmost patience and tolerance in dealing with students. Great teachers never lose temper and refrain from acting when upset. In difficult situations they should happily get the input of colleagues, parents and all the well-wishers of students. Teachers must treat all students equal, serve them selflessly with devotion and expect no returns from students. Teachers are regarded as spiritual fathers and mothers to students who are expected to act as guides and mentors. They must show courtesy, love, compassion and respect to their students that is bound to generate a similar response.
****** Teachers must take part in continuing education to update their own knowledge, skills and attitudes, come prepared to classes and should strive to develop learning resources for students. Lastly they must ensure their integrity, punctuality and physical and mental cleanliness at all costs. Teachers possessing these qualities will be highly respected and loved by the students and will create an ideal environment for learning in educational institutions. The developing nations must be ready to pay any price for such teachers who will groom their children into knowledgeable, skillful, productive and enlightened personalities of character.*
*** Every society has an established set of virtues and vices and it takes conscious and unconscious measures at various levels to promote the virtues and eliminate the vices. Sometimes a society may face a crisis of values in which the values are at odds with one another or the values suffer from double standards. In that eventuality, the people reflect* contradictions in their actions and in the morality they profess. The people are seen violating the values they hold sacred in their sermons and lectures. Such an atmosphere is hazardous for the immature and sensitive young people who react and suffer from mental confusion and are led to believe that there are certain values to be paid lip service only, whereas the practical needs of life demand an altogether different set of values.*

*** In the past, parents and teachers used to make the best of their efforts to provide an atmosphere to their children which is congenial to the development of higher virtues and morals. But the gross social change over the last fifty years, large scale urbanization, ruthless competition for financial gains, and heavy preoccupation in everyday* life deplete all time and energy from the parents, leaving behind little time or energy for their children. Whatever time they have at their disposal is consumed by newspapers, television and other recreations. As a result, the younger generation hardly gets any opportunity to share ideas with their elders or to enter into a meaningful discussion. On the other hand, this idea is gaining ground among us that education is not meant to build up better human beings, but only to get better jobs.
Consequently, the students' minds are obsessed with better jobs and dreams for higher social status. Obviously, the moral and religious training of the child has gradually been ousted from the preview of education. The system of private tuition among the students and teachers is also endemic. Now the students tend to consider their teacher as their servant, rather than their mentor or reformer. The net result of all this deterioration is that the value system of our society has fallen into oblivion, which we had to transfer to the next generation for the preservation of our religious and national identity
In Muslim history, teachers have not only distinguished themselves by their profundity in knowledge and research, but also because of their character, piety and abstinence from immoral acts. Throughout their history, Muslims have refused to except the authority of any pervert or debauch as a religious scholar and teacher. We have always attached importance to the character, nobility and conformity of belief and action. In the Islamic view of education, instruction of sciences cannot be divorced from moral and ethical training. It is again a contribution of the modern age that character building has been totally dissociated from education. That is why our system is producing an educated but characterless generation. Maulana Maudoodi observed in Talemaat:* 'Devoid of any divine element and Islamic morality, our education system even fails to inculcate those basic human morals in our students, without which a nation cannot hope for an honourable survival, what to speak of any possibility of its development. The generations being produced by it are unfortunately equipped with all the decadence of the West but do not have even an inkling of Western virtues. They are neither dutiful, hardworking and devoted, punctual, nor do they have any claim on perseverance, determination, discipline or self-control. They do not have any ideals beyond their self-interest. They are just like wild bushes, and do not demonstrate any national character. They would not desist from indulging in the meanest dishonesty, even when they are placed at a very noble position in life. They comprise the worst and the meanest nepotists, smugglers, transgressors on others rights and unwilling workers. We can find thousands of people in our society who can stoop very low to receive bribes and illegal gratification, would go out exerting all kinds of immoral influences to get unwarranted favours, whose lawlessness has no bounds and who would overlook the larger good of the society and the nation for a paltry personal gain. The product of these schools took over the leadership and administration of the country after we won freedom from the colonial rule (WOGS, Macaulay minutes on Indian education), and since then, the way our country has been mishandled and routed, by these characterless managers, is indeed tragic. And if you want to assess the character of the generation which is presently at the mercy of these schools and colleges, you can do so by studying them in their institutions, hostels, recreation spots, on national days and on the streets.
*** It is a fact that a civilization cannot rise out of a skeleton of mere ideas and abstract concepts. Civilization finds a concrete shape in the practical behaviour of a nation, based on these principles and concepts. Once the practical aspect is gone, the civilization also disappears and can only be studied through its remnants preserved in museums and chronicles. This necessitates the providing of an Islamic atmosphere throbbing with life in our education institutions, with a view to infuse confidence in our students and to enable them to be proud of their culture, to respect their national character and national emblems, and to ornament themselves with Islamic conduct and morals. They should stand firm on the centuries old foundations of their cultural tradition and at the same time should establish standards of excellence in their academic performance.
*
**A nation should try to build up a strong character in students right from the beginning and they should learn to act in accordance with what they profess, to follow what they consider the appropriate path, to carry out their due role in the society, to adopt what they find good and to avoid what they think is morally wrong. It is imperative for us to cultivate human virtues in our students from the primary level of their education and training. For instance the promotion of punctuality, truth, hard work, honesty, simplicity, hygiene, etiquette, patriotism, mutual love and sincerity, social and civic sense, obedience to law, tolerance and other desirable virtues should be the hall mark of an Islamic education system.*

Parents and teachers have to play a cardinal role in the building up of the character of the next generation. The teacher's role is particularly important and has been compared with that of the prophets. Every prophet is essentially a teacher. On more than one occasion, Providence has changed the fate of nations through effective and well directed teaching. This profession is so important and so sacrosanct that the Holy Prophet (sws) proudly declared it to be a prominent part of his personality and prophethood. If a teacher realizes the significance of his job, the tremendous responsibility he is shouldering, the share he has in the future development of the nation, and consequently the accountability he will have to face in the Hereafter, he will at once shudder with the idea of facing the grave consequences of any dereliction on his part.*

*** No other personality can have an influence more profound than that of a teacher. Students are deeply affected by the teacher's love and affection, his character, his competence, and his moral commitment. A popular teacher becomes a model for his students. The students try to follow their teacher in his manners, costumes, etiquette, style of conversation and his get up. He is their ideal. He can lead them anywhere. During their early education, the students tend to determine their aims in life and their future plans, in consultation with their teachers. Therefore, a corrupt and decadent class of teachers can harm a nation much more seriously than a class of corrupt and perverted judiciary, army, police, bureaucracy, politicians or technocrats. A corrupt and incompetent teacher in not only a bad individual, but is also the harbinger of a corrupt and incompetent generation. A nation with corrupt teachers is a national risk; every coming day announces the advent of its approaching destruction.*

*** Therefore, while selecting teachers, it must be borne in mind that, in addition to their professional competence, they must bear a good moral character and must be observing Muslims. No Islamic education system worth the name can afford to have teachers who are neither good human beings nor good Muslims. The teachers must be models of faith and piety and should have a fairly good knowledge about Islam and their conduct should conform to their faith. A teacher should consider it his duty to educate and train his students and should feel responsible for it. He should feel that his students have been entrusted to him and he should avoid any breach of the trust the society has reposed in him. He should be a sociable person with his roots in the society. People should take him as their well-wisher and a sincere friend who cares for their children. He should actively participate in the social activities in a positive way. He should know the art of teaching with a deep insight into child psychology. He should always deal with the students in a just manner. He should not lose his self-control on mistakes his students may commit, and instead he should respect their feelings and ego, and should try to understand and resolve their difficulties with grace while keeping his cool. He should be able to smile in the face of bitter criticism on his opinions, and should not feel ashamed or humiliated to accept his mistakes wholeheartedly. He should be proud of his culture, his national dress and his national language and should respect the societal mores and detest the immoralities of his times. He should be a missionary, a mentor, a reformer and a guide besides being a tutor. In other words, he should be a perfect teacher and a perfect educationist.*

*** Indeed it is an ideal teacher at the climax of his performance that brings about a positive change in the overall behaviour of his students by leading them to a lofty character and to exemplary morals. While commenting on the role of the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) as a teacher, an orientalist, Robert L. Gulick, writes in Muhammad: The Educator,:* ‘Only the most provincial concept of education would gainsay the legitimacy of placing Mohammed among the great educators of all times for, from the pragmatic standpoint, he who elevates human behaviour is a prince among educators.
*** This importance of a teacher demands application of rigorous standards for his selection and a constant grooming after that. It is indispensable to accord equal or more weightage to the character and religious commitment of a teacher as compared to his professional competence. A teacher suffering from decadent beliefs and morals is not capable of imparting mental and moral training to students that can go well with an Islamic education system. After all, unlike other fields, if the education system falls into the hands of spoilt people, society is left with no prospects of improvement.
*
*** The importance of a teacher as an architect of future generations also demands that only the best and the most intelligent and competent members of our intelligentsia be allowed to qualify for this profession. It is unfortunate to find that generally the worst and the most incapable people of the society find their way to this profession. Anyone who fails to find an opening in any other walk of life gets into this profession and recklessly plays with the destiny of the nation. An important reason for this is understood to be the poor salaries of our primary and secondary teachers which are no better than that of clerks. A large number of our teachers are therefore frustrated and disinterested. They have to go for part-time jobs to meet their basic needs. The teachers in rural areas are forced to work in fields, to keep livestock, go for small business and perform services in a mosque or the like. The teachers in urban areas opt for student coaching or part-time clerical assignments. Secondly, the teaching profession also does not enjoy due respect in the society. The primary and secondary teachers are particularly at a disadvantage. Their status is lower than that of doctors, engineers, advocates, civil servants; even lower than that of semi literate and illiterate traders. It would therefore require great commitment for an intelligent individual, however fond of education and training he may be, to forsake the career of a doctor or engineer in favour of teaching. Thirdly, at the government level, the syllabuses have been finalized and the chapter for revision closed, as if they are divine scriptures. The Aristotles of our bureaucracy have left no room for any alteration or revision in the light of new discoveries, research and progress. Even the students striving for Bachelor and Masters degrees have a set of limited books prescribed by the authorities. The teachers only solve the difficulties and then transmit a rehash of these books to the students, enabling them to memorize and copy the notes in their examinations. It is quite beyond the sphere of the assigned responsibility of a teacher to critically analyze the text books.* Consequently, the scholars with the ability to critically evaluate and analyze the given material and to add something by incisive research, just do not think of joining the teaching profession.*

*** These are a few reasons that are effectively keeping our intelligentsia away from the field of education. Obviously, we cannot expect an educational arrangement to deliver the goods unless it has a cadre of competent teachers. We need to address these and other associated problems of teachers. The teachers should be entitled to better salaries and better facilities when compared with other professions. It should be ascertained at all cost that a candidate for this profession has a natural acumen and aptitude for teaching. Simultaneously, all efforts should be launched at the government level to restore the financial and social status of teachers. We do have a practice of awarding actors, artists, and players but the outstanding achievements of a good teacher go unnoticed and are not welcome. The notable achievements of teachers should also be appreciated at the state level and while evaluating them, their academic and research output should also be considered. This is an important issue demanding immediate and prioritized attention of the government on emergent basis. The electronic and print media can also play a very positive role in this regard. These measures can go a long way towards a better future of the country.
Instrumental value of education is recognized throughout the world. With the passage of time change is involving every sphere of life. The future peace, progress and prosperity can be ensured at local, national and global level through new education and information technology. The changed role of teacher is very crucial in the socio- psychological dimension of the society. Teacher being the human architect can bring positive social change in localism, nationalism and globalism. Instruction is an effective tool in the hands of a teacher. Children are very sensitive and receptive. If a teacher is knowledgeable competent and skilled in imparting instruction; he or she can change the social values and cultural fiber of the society.
A teacher affects eternity:
he can never tell where his influence stops.
Henry Adams

Teaching is not a lost art,
but the regard for it is a lost tradition.
Jacques Barzun
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