Why is Reading so important?

When we can watch the movie, listen to the audiobook, or watch a YouTube video synopsis instead, it can be difficult to convince ourselves to read a 382-page book.

Am I correct?

You’re missing out if the majority of your daily reading consists of social media posts, text messages, and news headlines.So, what are some of the advantages of reading books?

Boosts your imagination and creativity.

Reading can help you extend your creative muscles if you’re ever stuck. Reading a book, particularly fiction, enhances your creativity. You become an active participant in the activity when your mind creates a picture of what you’re reading. At least one study backs up this claim. A questionnaire was given to 100 people after they read either a fictitious story or a nonfiction piece. The fiction readers’ responses were more imaginative than the essay readers’.

Enhances concentration

If you’re still not convinced or convinced that reading is necessary, or that it isn’t beneficial to you, it’s crucial to remember that reading actually improves focus. Reading may teach our minds to focus correctly, which is beneficial in practically everything we do on a daily basis from studying to working and maintaining personal relationships. We may all benefit from improving our ability to concentrate.

Reading helps us to break free from the constant state of ‘multitasking.’ It permits us to concentrate entirely on one task at a time and be fully present in it.

Improve vocabulary

Stanovich discovered that passionate readers have a 50 percent bigger vocabulary in the same studies. This is due to the fact that the more you read, the more unfamiliar words you encounter. You can learn the meanings through context or by looking them up, and your vocabulary will grow over time. Learning new phrases is beneficial to your mental health.

Increases your empathy

Empathy is the ability to comprehend and sympathize with others, even if we disagree with them on a particular issue. While some people are born with a lot of empathy, the majority of us could use a little more. Reading can be beneficial. Members of a group read a variety of genres in 2013, including literary fiction, popular fiction, and nonfiction. A control group did not get any information. Researchers discovered that participants who read literary fiction were better at recognizing facial expressions and estimating how the characters in their books would respond during the experiment. This is due to the fact that characters in literary literature are often multifaceted. Readers must be more attentive and empathic.

Create a Feeling of Belonging

A book might also be your best buddy if you are ever feeling lonely or lost. It may sound stupid, but it is absolutely true, and there is nothing to be ashamed about. We’ve all been there, and we could all use some comfort and a nice book.Reading can give us a sense of belonging, give us hope through difficult times, and remind us that we are not alone. Reading about people who have faced similar difficulties and overcame them may be a real source of motivation. If they can do it, you can do it, too! A good book can sometimes be just what we need to keep going.

Is a great Conversation starter

Reading is beneficial not only to the soul and mind, but it also serves as an excellent conversation starter. Reading exposes you to a wealth of new information and allows you to connect with people from all over the world.If two people have read the same book, it will always bring them together, regardless of where they are from. You never know when a book you’ve just finished will come in helpful in a conversation. Perhaps it will help you land the job in an interview, or perhaps it will help you get closer to a romantic partner you’ve been eyeing.

Enhances emotional well-being

Emotions abound in books. With each page turn, they will make you cry at times, and at other moments, they will make you smile. It can make you angry when the story’s opponent succeeds in his terrible scheme, but it can also make you happy when your hero accomplishes his aim. Books have the power to make us happy, sad, envious, loved, betrayed, and many other emotions! Books are thus a mash-up of various conflicting feelings that, in the end, help us grow emotionally!

Improves Communication Capabilities

A key life skill is the capacity to communicate effectively.According to one research, 69 percent of companies prefer to hire persons who have “soft” talents like excellent communication.What’s the good news? One of the most important advantages of reading is that it improves our communication skills.How? Reading every day can help us communicate better in a variety of ways. Reading, for example, can improve your writing skills and expand your vocabulary.

Assist You in De-Stressing

In our busy and chaotic lives, many of us have a lot of things that stress us out, and we’re often seeking for fresh, concrete ways to deal with these worries. Reading, believe it or not, can genuinely help you relax. It’s not always necessary to spend a lot of money on professionals and programs to create a sense of peace; sometimes a simple book can suffice. Reading is an excellent method to unwind and soothe those tense nerves that plague you at work.

In fact, a recent study indicated that just six minutes of reading was enough to reduce muscular tension and bring down readers’ heart rates.Overall, it resulted in a 68 percent reduction in stress levels.

Enhances your writing abilities

If you’re at all interested in the craft of writing, you’re aware that some of the best authors advise extensive reading. You grow more familiar with structure, character development, and literary styles as you read more. This is true for both fiction and nonfiction. Even if you don’t need to write much in your daily life, reading prepares you for any eventuality, whether it’s a Christmas card, an email, a personal blog, or a diary post.

Overall, reading every day increases your chances of retaining your mental faculties and living longer!

Unemployment

Unemployment, according to the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development), is persons above a specified age (usually 15)not being in paid employment or self-employment but currently available for work during the reference period.


Unemployment rate, 2017
Unemployment is measured by the unemployment rate, which is the number of people who are unemployed as a percentage of the labour force (the total number of people employed added to those unemployed).

Unemployment can have many sources, such as the following:

new technologies and inventions
the status of the economy, which can be influenced by a recession
competition caused by globalization and international trade
policies of the government
regulation and market
Unemployment and the status of the economy can be influenced by a country through, for example, fiscal policy. Furthermore, the monetary authority of a country, such as the central bank, can influence the availability and cost for money through its monetary policy.

In addition to theories of unemployment, a few categorisations of unemployment are used for more precisely modelling the effects of unemployment within the economic system. Some of the main types of unemployment include structural unemployment, frictional unemployment, cyclical unemployment, involuntary unemployment and classical unemployment. Structural unemployment focuses on foundational problems in the economy and inefficiencies inherent in labor markets, including a mismatch between the supply and demand of laborers with necessary skill sets. Structural arguments emphasize causes and solutions related to disruptive technologies and globalization. Discussions of frictional unemployment focus on voluntary decisions to work based on individuals’ valuation of their own work and how that compares to current wage rates added to the time and effort required to find a job. Causes and solutions for frictional unemployment often address job entry threshold and wage rates.

According to the UN’s International Labour Organization (ILO), there were 172 million people worldwide (or 5% of the reported global workforce) without work in 2018.

Because of the difficulty in measuring the unemployment rate by, for example, using surveys (as in the United States) or through registered unemployed citizens (as in some European countries), statistical figures such as the employment-to-population ratio might be more suitable for evaluating the status of the workforce and the economy if they were based on people who are registered, for example, as taxpayers.

RIGHT TO DIE

“There is a certain right by which we may deprive a man of life, but none by which we may
deprive him of death; that is mere cruelty” -Anonymous
Every person is entitled with the right to live with dignity. This is a fundamental right
embedded in our Constitution itself. Everyone wants to live as many years as they can and meet death at a ripe old age. But sometimes the pain and suffering of a person is so prolonged that death seem an easier option to the patient and to the observer as well. The person seems to be living a facade of life.

Here arises a new concept of right to die or passive EUTHANASIA. Under this the person is granted the right to die to end his/her plight. If a person has been in a vegetative state for 40-50 years, it seems better to end his/her pain and transverse the respective person to the afterlife.

The government has always been in denial of this right until last year. The Supreme Court granted this right in the “Aruna Shanbaug” case.
In 1973, while working as a junior nurse at a hospital in Mumbai, Aruna Shanbaug was sexually assaulted by a ward boy and remained in a vegetative state following the assault. On 24 January 2011, after she had been in this state for 37 years, the Supreme Court of India responded to the plea for euthanasia filed by journalist Pinki Virani. In its landmark judgement, The honourable SC allowed passive euthanasia in India. The judgement gave a robust interpretation of ‘Right to life’ including ‘Right to Die’ thereby bringing it within manifold of article 21 of constitution of India.

Under passive euthanasia or ‘mercy killing’ the life support system is withdrawn from the patient leading to peaceful death. It is carried out only after the consent of the patient or from the doctor/relatives if the former is not able to express his/her wishes. However, it should not be confused with murder as it is carried out only after the consent of the concerned authorities as well as after observing the plight of the patient.

In recent years ‘living will’ has emerged as a solution in cases when the authorities have been reluctant to grant this particular right. A living will is a written statement detailing a person’s desires in advance regarding future medical treatment in circumstances in which they are unable to give informed consent, especially an advanced directive. Unfortunately, only 27% of the population are aware of this and out of that surprisingly only 6% have a living will.

Euthanasia is a dilemma due to the presence of more than one course of conduct on various grounds. Some people describe it as cruel, irrational and harrowing for the person and the family. They say Euthanasia is not a valid treatment option but represents failure on the part of doctor involved in the person’s care. However, the other party says that right to life doesn’t simple exist as a right but also involves ‘right to live with dignity’.
If a person is not able to maintain the basic standards of dignity due to reason of prolonged illness/ vegetative condition, he/she should be put out of his/her misery.
In a nut shell it is still a subjective matter. Death is resented because it brings an end to the life of someone, we care about but what we must never forget that it also brings an end to the pain and suffering. As people have a right to life, they should also have the right to death.

Euthanasia is seen as a way to let people have a good death, at the time of their own choosing and will make them happier than the pain of their illness. But there is no way we can measure happiness objectively. The right to life gives a person the right not to be killed if they don’t want to be. Hence, I leave this as an open-ended piece and urge the readers to contemplate about what could be the right course of action.

How to gain more self knowledge

  1. Confrontation styles: We are having four kinds of styles when we confront others: passive, aggressive, passive-aggressive, or assertive. Our behavior depends on the situation we are in.

2. Criticism: We respond to criticism in a variety of ways, like denial, self-loathing, acceptance or positive transformation.

  • Vague Ambitions: We talk of helping others, or being creative, or changing the world. Admirable they may be, but the ambitions are vague because we don’t know ourselves.
  • Attitudes To Ambition: Most of us suffer from a problematic attitude towards success. Our thoughts move us towards inaction and doubt, leading to failure. Our attitude makes us apply conditions to our happiness(I will be happy when I have this), leading to misery.
More Self-Knowledge, Fewer Hacks: Why Time is Up for Time Management  Techniques | TechnologyAdvice

Self-knowledge makes us understand how we impact others, allowing us to adjust ourselves, being more interested in the other person rather than just ourselves.

Strangers are surprisingly good at guessing stuff about us, though we find it difficult to grasp. We don’t realize what information we give out to others, or how our behavior annoys them. They might find us hogging the limelight or only talking about our own struggles and experience, unable to be impressed by what others are doing.

  • How We Feel About Our Family: We all have complicated feelings towards our family members, and may have unconscious attitudes and biases that can play havoc. It can be guilt, envy or disloyalty.
  • Blame And Self-knowledge: We blame our parents for things that are clearly not their domain. They may not be perfect, but it doesn’t help to shift all responsibility to your guardians and be miserable or emotionally crippled your whole life.
  1. Self-knowledge can describe accurately how one is feeling, through introspection or self-inquiry.
  2. Knowing yourself also means being aware of your self-machinery, or how your mind operates and distorts the world around you.
  3. The primitive, part of our brain is interested in our survival and does not have the capacity for morality, empathy or being deeply insightful.
  4. The evolved, mature brain, the neocortex, which came much later, is sophisticated but is not as strong as the primitive brain.
  5. Our hopes, fears and desires belong to our reptilian minds and overpower us most of the time.

Developing a capacity to observe our basic instincts: The times when our minds are free from subjectivity, defensiveness and self-justification(like late at night when it is quiet), we get a glimpse of truth, a tiny moment of wisdom or insight about how we behave.

Developing a capacity to understand other people’s behavior: We normally react automatically, almost reflexively, to how others behave. Our natural reaction matches the primitive action we see in others. A better option is to understand the person’s primitive action as a sign of distress and hurt, rather than their being evil.

According to a Buddhist world-view, our anxieties and worries are not really important or purposeful but only seem so. Buddhist meditation wants our thoughts and anxieties to bother us less and tells us that these thoughts are nonsensical or meaningless.

Philosophical meditation does the same but does not tell us to empty our minds and discard the thoughts, as they are signals with complex clues that can help us develop ourselves.

  • Set aside 20 minutes on a daily basis and sit with a paper and pencil, asking yourself simple questions like: What am I regretful, anxious or excited about in the present moment?
  • Write down what comes to your mind immediately without censoring or thinking. Do it as unselfconsciously as you can.
  • As we practice this meditation, we help ourselves by understanding our internal conflicts, desires and problems, and find clear insights in the otherwise confusing set of chaos and floating thoughts. Problems don’t go away, but demystify themselves, becoming manageable.

We can get to know ourselves by conversing with others, but not how we think a conversation should be. The key to a great conversation is asking the right questions and then listening well.

Some examples: Think about what flaws of yours you want to be treated in a better way, or what compliments would you like to get; Ask about some incident they want to apologize for.

Be vulnerable, foolish and real. Talk your heart out!

Self analysis and Self knowledge

Self-knowledge is the ultimate knowledge, and to know yourself is to know the meaning of life. There are millions of things we could know about ourselves, ranging from anecdotal to emotional or psychological matters. There are certain key bits of self-knowledge that we think might benefit us, like our work talents, or a partner who would be compatible with us.

Self-knowledge provides us with a route to a happy and fulfilling life. A lack of self-knowledge makes our lives accidental.

  • LOVE

1. Choosing the right partner: We often look at a partner who is kind, attractive or fun to be with. We don’t consider our own neurotic, unbalanced or immature behavior, and how it would affect our partner.

2. Childhood patterns are repeated: Like the ‘bad boy’ syndrome, most of us repeat unhealthy patterns from our childhood unconsciously, going for people who will be miserable for us in ways that are familiar to us.

  • WORK

Without self-knowledge, we are vague about what we want to do with our lives. Money always tends to be an urgent need, and we rush towards jobs that lock us into cages for decades, and we start to believe we are good for nothing, or not cut out for bigger roles.

  • SPENDING MONEY UNWISELY

Without self-knowledge, we have hunches on what makes us happy: We wrongly calculate what our purchases, or impulse buys would make us feel. We travel to a certain place and feel disappointed. We buy the latest dress, hoping to look good, but are only surrendering to consumerism. Without knowing ourselves, we cannot spend money in a fulfilling way.

  1. The unconscious mind performs most of our tasks and even how we behave.
  2. Our mind is divided into three parts: the primitive the limbic(emotions and memories) and the neocortex (higher reasoning). We are mostly operating from the primitive or emotional parts of the brain, resulting in a lack of self-inquiry.
  3. There is a natural resistance to unravelling the unconscious into the conscious, as we do not tap into ourselves out of fear of knowing the truth.
  4. We are not given adequate feedback about our own identity by others, who dislike us or don’t want to hurt us. For example: Friends don’t want to sound impolite or upset us.
  5. We haven’t lived long enough to realize the importance of self-knowledge, and haven’t tried out stuff to know the difference through experience. Example: While choosing the right career, we are still in a trial-and-error mode, switching from one job to another.
  6. We are vague in our judgement, and are living life in binary mode, where things are either good or bad, black or white, sweet or sour.
  7. We aren’t introspecting enough, as we don’t know that we can self-analyse or opt for psychotherapy, unpackaging our thoughts.
  1. People with self-knowledge are less prone to blame their problem on others.
  2. They admit to the full extent of responsibility when things go wrong.
  3. They are less frustrated at work, even though they don’t have the perfect job.
  4. When problems arise, they don’t panic, as they are in control of the psychological fear, like humiliation, rejection or boredom.
  5. They are not envious, less stressful, and apologize as soon as a mistake is committed.
  6. They tend to be great conversationalists and they feel complete within themselves.

In the next article, we shall talk about how to gai more self knowledge!

Being Spiritual but not Religious (SBNR)

In India, millennials are ditching orthodox religions and embracing spirituality. There is a distinct movement towards spirituality, and it is led by the young crowd.

SBNRs don’t look at old books or doctrines for guidance, but look within themselves. They connect with their true self and find the answers inside.

Religious Authorities predictably denounce self-spirituality, and provide their reasons. They say this leads to narcissism, hedonism, or both, but in reality, they are terrified that people are allowed to choose not to follow any religion, and eventually will not participate in hating other religions as a side-effect.

The term spirituality has one of two connotations: One is a classic religious one; the other is inspired by New Age Culture. Both categories embody spirituality better than cold, hard reason.
In a broad sense, both categories seem to move away from a world of science and reason.

  • True spirituality is defined by the skepticism of both today’s religions and today’s science. Spirituality is individualistic, and the opposite of dogmatism.
  • True rationality is open-ended and skeptical about itself even if it does its best, understanding that it is not possible to know everything.

Self spirituality has its roots in the 1960s counterculture and the ‘Rights Revolution, and focuses on individual rights, where there is no one size fits all rules.

They feel complete within themselves and have no inclination towards joining any religious institution which has specific rules, as for them it is just another cult full of greed, corruption and fear-mongering.

Humanity is sacralized in Self-spirituality, which automatically makes it an obvious choice for the millennials and youngsters already fed up with how the world works.

This also makes them make sustainable choices like recycling and veganism. While the old-school conservatives label these human-centric feelings as lacklustre, many of the liberals celebrate the individual freedom it provides.

  1. People that believe there is more to the world than meets the eye, more than the mere material.
  2. People that attend to their inner life (their mental and emotional states) in the hopes of gaining self-knowledge.
  3. People that value the following virtues: being compassionate, empathetic and open-hearted.

Spirituality is a framework for understanding the world. It enables people to make sense of that which, for them, science and religion fail to address: religion because it’s outdated and out of touch with scientific progress, science because it’s incapable to answer some of life’s most crucial questions (of purpose, meaning and value).

The Dalai Lama once joked: “While the West was busy exploring outer space, the East was busy exploring inner space”.
Regardless of the veracity of this, it does seem that for contemporary western societies, silence and stillness are an exception, not the rule.

It means acting wisely in the world by first reaching a high level of self-knowledge.
This is acquired through meditation, self-reflection, and psychotherapy and leads one to become more sensitive to the emotions of others, and even to one’s surrounding environments.

Hashtags and Mobilization

Movements are part of changing society and changing holocaust. Social movements have a structure which makes them functional relative to their goals. Activism is action on behalf of a cause, action that goes beyond what is conventional or routine activity. The central theme is to resist authority. The kind of reformation that is taking place through movements is shaking the base root of patriarchy. The patriarchal belief system is constantly negotiating the need of revolution. The action might be door-to-door canvassing, alternative radio, public meetings, rallies, or fasting. The cause of the activism will vary according the type of protests. The cause might be women’s rights, gender equality, opposition to a factory, world peace and so forth. Activism has played a major role in ending slavery, challenging dictatorships, protecting workers from exploitation, protecting the environment, promoting equality for women, opposing racism, and many other important issues. Activism can also be used for aims such as attacking minorities or promoting war.The main purpose of movements is to raise a sought of awareness and to engage the people in deliberation. It makes the people politically aware of the situation and hitherto experiences. The perpetrators of activism are called
‘activists’.

A major protest that happened in India was the ‘Nirbhaya’ movement. In December 2012, New Delhi witnessed a horrific crime– a student was violently gang-raped on a moving bus and then dumped onto the highway, injured and unconscious. While she didn‟t survive the attack, Nirbhaya, as she was named by the media, sparked a revolution in India and its neighboring countries. Social movements always stand by the side of marginalized. The Naxalite movements in India exemplify this. The Naxalite movement helps the downtrodden indigenous people to acquire their needs. It is a small group devoted to the left liberal activism.

The Internet helps in coordinating and creating platforms of discussion inside movements. The internet has given rise to social media and the social media in turn gave rise to hashtags and mobilization is an essential part of the movement. Social mobilization is directed towards social change. The Kerala floods were not greatly acknowledged by the national media. But with the influence of Facebook and twitter it crossed the regional differences and help was provided by various people residing outside the state. It is the ordinary people who harnessed social media and their own resources to play a role in relief and rescue efforts. Hashtags such as #KeralaFloods #Verified became trending within hours and helped to grab the attention of the whole world.

Movements are context based and it is up to the people to decide whether it should sustain or not. In today’s world there are both online and offline movements and both of them have their own merits and demerits. A protest that begins in the internet transforms into an offline movement and vice versa.

The Untold Story of The Easter Island

The Easter Island lies in the Pacific Ocean and is around 4000 km away from the mainland. A Dutch explorer named Jacob Roggeveen rediscovered Easter Island in 1722 and it was nothing but a large wasteland.


The Island was destroyed and there was not much vegetation or other creatures present.
Research excavations found that Polynesian people were the first ones to arrive at Easter Island and start their settlement there. When these Polynesian people arrived at Easter Island the natural resources and food were abundant. With an abundance of food and natural resources, their population started increasing. Soon there was a time when the population outgrew the food and natural resources availability.


On the island, large statues of moais were also seen. They built a lot of structural figures of their ancestors. Which also caused overutilization of the existing natural resources. They cut down almost all the trees present on that island and disrupted the whole ecosystem.


They exploited the existing ecosystem to that level that there came a time that they do not have anything to eat and the food scarcity was at its peak. There was no vegetation, fishes, animals, insects or birds for them to eat because of the large-scale man-made destruction which took place.


With population rising high they had no choice but to adopt cannibalism and the excavations which took place there prove that when there was no natural resource available at the Eater Islands the Polynesians adopted the cannibalism lifestyle which is eating their own species because there was no choice.
In the end, the whole island was collapsed and when after so many years the Dutch explorers arrived, they found dead bodies and remains of human civilization.


Till today many theories have been stated about Easter Island but it is still a mystery what really happened at that place.
But the most famous one is the destruction theory according to which the way they destroyed the environment over the years was the cause of their degradation and dying at the end.


The theory also suggests how we humans are destructing the environment and this destruction may get backfired on us in the end.

TRAVAILS OF LOVE

To a significant extent, the difficulties of same-sex love have been a matter of discussion. The horrors perpetrated against these people are numerous and terrible, ranging from bullying to harassment. Promiscuity (indiscriminate sexual partner selection) has been a fundamentally ethical education in and of itself. In so-called “ethical education,” being who you have no place. Even if there are numerous unsolved concerns, the law is unconcerned about them. In the eyes of the law, people’s particular identities are irrelevant. In the case of homosexuals, one partner is nothing more than a friend of the other in the eyes of the law. Following a flurry of rages and discussions, the Indian Supreme Court approved same-sex marriage. It is the culmination of two decades of unrelenting battles. Thousands of people gather every year in February to celebrate LGBTQ pride by rallying on the streets and hope for society to accept them in every state of India. The LGBTQ community is plagued by a slew of issues. The primary issue is getting people outside the community to accept you.

Lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transgender individuals, queers, intersex, and asexuals are all part of the LGBTQIA community. A lesbian is a woman who is attracted to another woman; a gay is a man who is attracted to another man; a bisexual is a person who is attracted to more than one gender; a transgender is a person whose gender identity differs from the sexual identity assigned to them at birth; Queers are gender minorities who are not heterosexual or cisgender. Intersex refers to a group of circumstances in which a person is born with reproductive or sexual anatomy that does not appear to fit the traditional classifications of female and male. Asexual refers to a person who has no sexual desires or sensations. Because the word “queer” denotes “weird,” “odd,” or “funny,” it relates to the degrading of that particular community. It reflects society’s obnoxious and patriarchal attitude toward the LGBT community. The LGBTQ community has been constantly scrutinized by the outside world. We live in a world where LGBTQ persons are reluctant to tell their parents about their sexual orientation. Every year, a large number of LGBT persons confront significant challenges such as assault, unemployment, prejudice, poverty, and a lack of access to health care. This is due to the discriminatory behavior of society, which instills the people’s mentality. Many people still have no idea what LGBTQ is or what it stands for. Even if a large number of people are educated, others remain illiterates in this subject, despite their acceptance. ‘Gay abandon’ is a relatively common occurrence.

Homosexuality was once considered a felony in India, thanks to Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code. Section 377 refers to ‘unnatural offenses,’ and states that anybody who voluntarily engages in sexual intercourse against the order of nature with any man, woman, or animal shall be punished with life imprisonment or imprisonment of either sort for a term up to ten years, as well as a fine. This exemplifies the morality enshrined in India’s constitution.