Of late, due to my failing eyesight, I decided to download audio books, and found the website of librivox.org which caters to this need.
At 82 I recall, the 'development' the world has seen over my lifetime. In the forties, life was simple in Mangalore, and we were not exposed in any way to the external influences. My area of interaction with others did not extend beyond 3 miles in radius, and was limited to the Church, School and our relatives. This left beautiful memories, and even if the life that was forced on us by circumstances had many things wanting, we never thought about the things we did not have, but what we had. I took interest in singing in the Church and School, and had my own natural instincts and a few well-wishers who shared their knowledge with me.
For some strange reason, I felt like joining the Seminary, but had to leave it because, I was inflicted with these strange eye problem called keratoconus. This was the place where my musical gifts grew and were watered. It was again a chance visit to an ophthalmologist in Bombay, I was directed to a contact lens specialist and a new life was opened.
My sojourn in the Arabian Gulf for 25 years was also because of the kindness of a friend and what events led me through these years is a mystery to me even now. Around 1985 I had to come back to India, and was married and had five children by that time, and due to my handicaps felt like serving my Church as my gratitude to God, and that led me back into music and composing and conducting a choir for 7 years which was terminated when I had a stroke, but even though I gave up all my extracurricular activities, I was led into the cyber space, and one thing led to another, and I began my website, which started as an experiment with Microsoft Access and creating a program to build a database of recipes. A friend of my daughter recommended her to gift me a website and that is how I came to this point in 2004. In 2005 I had to undergo a by-pass surgery, and was more rivetted to the home front, and it was then, when I was 70 it struck me, how over these years I have fallen unwittingly in the right spot every time, and have built up my knowledge, but it was not an accident. My faith in God told me that it was He who had not left my hand and was goading me to do things I never even dreamt.
Now with these audio books, it strikes me more as to how He has guided this world, in spite of all the ingratitude of people on earth. I finished Count of Monte Cristo, which reflects time times around 1814 and life in France. I was surprised that Dumas who wrote it was born in Haiti, of a French General and a mother of ancestors who were slaves. His second book Three Musketeers is of life in France around 1625 and now see where France has reached in 2017.
In 1875 the Jews decided to band themselves and founded Zionism, after having to bear the slights of their hosts in Europe for nearly 2000 years, and Theodore Hertzel may not have understood where it would take him, as in three years he was replaced by wealthy Jewish families like Rothschild, Vanderbilt, and others and they decided that the only way to redeem themselves was to go back to Palestine. In 1917 they negotiated with Balfour the PM of UK, and a deal was struck, and persists even to this day. The Arab residents of Palestine, had no clue of what was going on. The first world war had broken, and the Kaiser found that the German Jews had supported Balfour and he had to abdicate, and the victors imposed 'democracy' on the Germans, but unwittingly instigated their own women to demand voting rights and universal voting rights were granted but not to black people, who had to wait till the 1960s.
This decision led to the impoverishment of Germany and rise of Hitler, just as Arab despots who sprung up after the demise of the Ottoman Empire. What is happening today is all but the after effects of the actions taken in 1917.
Indians may pride they have their own brand of nationalism, but what goes behind the walls one has to discover during the life time of our grand children ! Those who keep their eyes open, and believe in God will survive even though they will not escape suffering, just as the Jews did not really benefit, after their return to Jerusalem after the Babylonian captivity, as soon they came under the Greeks and then the Romans, who ultimately expelled them from their homeland, and it was with the help of a later empire they got back, but that empire itself is on its death-bed. In the meantime, Soviet Union has died and no one can guess the destination of United States. Indians too should look over their shoulders, before rubbishing the achievements of the past, and glorifying in ephemeral gains and achievements which are visible only to those in power.