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Chapter 4            A New Form of Life  4.1 Cambridge looked graceful in the late afternoon as sunlight streaked across the snow, creating bands of light and dark. Swathed in parkas, pedestrians on Massachusetts Avenue walked warily to avoid puddles. It wasn’t windy, but it was cold, a...

Today if you tell me some things are fated I would be inclined to believe you. The last three posts just sort of happened – there was no grand design involved, just the order in which we happened to chance upon things. There was a BBC...

Our two posts on fundamentalism (1, 2) have only scratched the surface of this phenomenon and revealed many more interesting questions to explore.  A useful place to pick up the exploration is a recent article by Mark Lilla, a professor of the humanities at Columbia University,...

It should be obvious by now that one of our objectives at The South Asian Idea is to encourage engagement with ideas. If we do not learn to look at different sides of an issue and debate the merits of alternative positions we would be...

The following story reported by the BBC is an intriguing one and we wonder what readers will make of it.   Islam and Hinduism's blurred lines By Jyotsna Singh, BBC News, Ajmer, Rajasthan Story from BBC NEWS, Published: 2008/07/11 16:20:24 GMT http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/south_asia/7473019.stm Forty-two-year-old Sohan Singh is delighted to call himself...

In our last post (On Fundamentalism), a point of view had been advanced that there could be no religious fundamentalism without the existence of a scared text. It was the sacred text, the word of God, which provided the reference for the movement of going...

The only F-word to have retained its unambiguous meaning is the original F-word. Two others, Feudalism and Fascism, seem to have lost all meaning. They serve no purpose except to characterize any development the user is negative about. Thus anyone you don’t like can be...

There was a music program in Washington, DC recently in which the three performers on stage were of South Asian origin – the vocalist from Bangladesh, the tabla player from Pakistan and the harmonium player from India. All three were young and together they created...

Chapter 2       An Interlocked World 2.1 Chaturvedi sipped his early morning tea. Bombay’s summer had begun early and he felt hot and sticky. His wife, sitting beside him, slapped him on the wrist for swallowing so loudly. A ceiling fan rotated its three blades...