Posted in Economic

The Immeasurable Knowledge & Acumen Loss In Covid Times…

As thousands of lives get lost in this horrifying second wave of Corona pandemic, it may probably sound improper if we mention loss of knowledge and knowhow accumulation herewith. .

I am thinking of the higher secondary school students who have never been in the Physics lab, Chemistry lab, Botany lab or Zoology lab. I am talking about Engineering students who have not touched a lathe/machinery or nut-bolt in the Mechanical lab, not held a test tube or conical flask in their hands in the Chemical lab, not been on industrial tours or construction sites, not bisected a frog or reptile. I am concerned of the medical/ dental/ veterinary students who may be missing their autonomy classes vital to mastering physiology, their OP ward hands-on experience that can hone their diagnosis skills, semester examinations and of course the crucial internships that may initiate them as serving physicians in their chosen medical profession… What a tremendous loss to humanity! Can we even quantify this knowledge and expertise loss across India! Very unlucky batches, those that are caught in-between.

Many wonder aloud about school kids studying at home. I have no problem with that as my son had homeschooled under me in Malaysia upto standard two. The only issue may be fitting into classrooms when it is time for the children to go back to schools. The younger ones can adapt very fast to changing scenarios unlike us adults. The one problem I do foresee is the toilet training. This requires disciplining from early years controlling bladder from kinder garten. A second one could be relating to the morning routines and time-keeping/punctuality apart from eating habits, keeping hygiene and grooming neat. But none of this is unmanageable.

There are mentions of severe neck pain and even rare cases of vertigo in young children and teenagers who are learning from home online without attending schools in last 1.5 years. These are the ones glued to their mobile phone and computers for hours with incorrect posture that can injure their spine. This is an area that we must focus on apart from the mental health of the children who are denied their outdoor playing time and extra-curricular activities that may require physical attendance. Vitamin D from direct sunlight which is essential for bone growth is denied to growing kids. Last but not the least is the human touch to holistic education which is absent with the teachers staying home and schools closed. Online classes may hardly replace the classroom teacher parked in front of the blackboard.

Vocational courses have born the brunt of the covid 19 lockdowns that shut practical classes to their students. These include semi-skilled professions like plumbing, electricals, electronics, carpentry, air conditioning etc.

Fortunate are the school and university students in commerce stream who are least affected by the covid 19 effect on their education.

The computer students seem to be faring okay given the conditions after the accounting ones and arts & literature graduates.

Campus interviews have not been happening, and if they do happen fail to materialize into concrete appointments for fresh graduates. Those who wish to pursue higher education are left in the quandary unable to decide as job prospects grow dim. Even if this can be a temporary phase in our lives, covid impact will stay with us for a long time to come.

Medical and engineering aspirants in present times can seriously contemplate taking a break after finishing school until situation gets normal in an year or two. In my personal opinion this will be a better and thoughtful choice over missing valuable classes.

How to make best of the circumstances is what the academic institutions must focus on. Will it be possible to open up science and tech labs to staggered batches of students.

The years 2020 and 2021 need to be written off from the Biodata and CV of all those pursuing higher secondary school education, undergrad and postgrad courses in universities. Employers need to relax their prerequisites such as job experience when it comes to recruitments.

The restless teenagers need to be handled with care. They are at the threshold of their adulthood and they must not be allowed to lose their hope. It is important to engage them fruitfully in alternate activities and keep up their spirits.

Let us cheer our younger generation and not allow them to wither before they bloom. Looking forward to a bright and cheeful future!

Posted in Food For Soul

Silver lining in the cloud…

தங்கத்தை புடம் போட்டால் தான் தங்கம்னு ஊர்ஜிதமாய் சொல்ல முடியும். புடத்தில் இடப்படாமலே நான் தங்கம் நான் தங்கம்னா எப்படி.

There is no way you can define happiness or positivity without seeing extreme tragedy or negativity in life. Anyone who may speak otherwise is like a character in the ‘blind men and the elephant’ story we all grew up listening to. One blind man feels the ear of the elephant and says its like a fan. The one who holds its trunk says its like a snake. The third who touches the elephant’s side says its like a wall. The next one who holds the tail says it is like a rope. The final one who moves his hand over the tusk says the elephant is like a spear. This encapsulates human tendency to measure anything and everything with our own yardstick. The elephant is nothing like the blind men perceive. Happiness and positivity to some are like the blind men’s perceptions.

Perceptions as we see differ from individual to individual. Happiness and Positivity are not subjective by nature. They are more objective in the sense, you can relate to them by context. Confining them to narrow dimensions is neither right nor fair. Like how the elephant is unlike the blind men’s perceptions, happiness and positivity cannot be confined to any individual’s definition.

How can you bring happiness to a kid orphaned in present covid circumstances for instance. You can only hope for him/her to find relative happiness in future. How can you talk positivity to this godforsaken child. He/she may grow up into cautiously optimistic individual at the best.

Negativity to me is lacking love and respect, denying someone their dignity, dashing hopes, being inhospitable, insensitive, lacking empathy and compassion.

I wouldn’t want to go into this subject again. I have done it once. Enabling link here:

Someone who has seen the darkness can appreciate the light at the end of the tunnel better. Unqualified happiness is like a mirage. Unreal and shallow without a depth. Blessed are those who have not been subject to the task of whisking happiness out of vacuum by destiny.

Life experiences may mold some of us into different individuals. There is happiness in doing things by ourselves. For ourselves. For others. There is this sense of gratification in taking home the first paycheck however small it could be if it is our own sweat and blood… This is the moment we reckon our self-worthiness… Someone wanting to share their life with us for what we are – as an atma, as an entity that’s the next peak we can scale. Basking in that special gift that life bestows is unlike any other euphoria we may experience other than mothering our child There is pride in doing things on our own not taking orders from anyone. There is happiness in picking our own groceries and provisions. Cooking our own food, dusting our house with our own hands, even rinsing and pressing clothes can be self-satisfying however menial the chores could be. We are doing something productive and that is by itself a positive feeling . There is this unbeatable sense of euphoria acknowledging that we are self-made. … There is happiness in making a meaningful life, building our beautiful blissful home when the very earth under our foot has been shifting, shaking and spinning. There is this unparalleled sense of gratitude realizing that we have made it in life proving our critics wrong. And then finally comes over this sense of peace like the jewel in the crown, when we don’t have the urge to prove anything to anyone any longer. That we are complete on our own. We don’t wait for anyone’s appraisal or approval. We can live without that applause. We do not want to have that last word in everything. We let others have their small successes…

Positivity is the sheer will to squeeze a lemonade when life hands us down lemons . That is how I arrived here. The easiest way out is to quit. Nobody handed down anything to some of us in silver platter. We have had to beg, borrow, scrounge and swallow self-respect on the way. At the end of the day if we refuse to vent our frustration on third parties and put up a big smile for everyone, then that is what qualifies for true happiness and positivity.

I am therefore I am. I cannot be a hundred percent happy and perfect individual always but I strive to be happy despite what life has done to me. Embers of painful memories remain in the backburner. Not knowing the moment when they will make it to the surface, those of us who have been at the lowest ebb of our lives can never think of happiness without recalling our sadness that seasoned us. We are hopefuls despite the odds.

That rare gift of empathy in some of us is from life experiences. To me this exceptional sense of perception is the one positivity that counts. Happiness is an attitude when we wear it with pride when the scars earned shine like the striped stars…