Thursday, March 31, 2005

The Interview With God

Check out this site and view the presentation.

Mindblowing indeed!!

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Taj Mahal - Not made by Shahajahan!!! BBC

Came across this article, couldn't believe what was written, especially as a name like BBC is involved.

The article produced can be viewed at the following link -

The Taj Mahal,located near the Indian city of Agra, is one of the world's greatest architectural treasures. The almost supernatural beauty of the Taj Mahal and its grounds transcends culture and history, and speaks with a voice of its own to visitors from all over the world of feelings that are common to all humanity.

There are two stories of how the Taj came to be.

The Taj's Love Story

It has been called the most beautiful temple in the world, despite the fact that it was built at the cost of much human life. The Taj Mahal is a real monument of one man's love for a woman. The story is a sad one, told many times. But it never hurts to tell it again.

In 1631, when his wife died in childbirth, the emperor Shah Jahan brought to Agra the most skilled craftsmen from all Asia and even Europe, to build the white marble mausoleum that is the Taj Mahal. He intended to build a black marble mausoleum for himself, and the link between the two was to be a silver bridge. This fantastic plan suffered a dramatic and permanent setback when the Shah himself died.

Its stunning architectural beauty is beyond description, particularly at dawn and at sunset when it seems to glow in the light. On a foggy morning, it looks as though the Taj is suspended in mid-air when viewed from across the Jamuna river.

This is, of course, an illusion. The Taj stands on a raised square platform with its four corners truncated, forming an unequal octagon. The architectural design uses the interlocking arabesque concept, in which each element stands on its own and perfectly integrates with the main structure. It uses the principles of self-replicating geometry and a symmetry of architectural elements.

If you don't want the huge crowds to distract you from your view, try arriving just as it opens or is about to close. A few minutes alone in the perpetually echoing inner sanctum will reward you far more than several hours spent on a guided tour. Especially if your tour guide is Murbat Singh, who makes it his job to find a new comic slant on the Taj story every time he tells it.

To really do the Taj Mahal justice, you should plan to spend at least a full day in the grounds, to see this stunning piece of architecture at dawn, midday, and at dusk. The colours and atmosphere of the gardens and the Taj itself constantly change throughout the day. Under moonlight the marble glows.

The Taj's Other Story

If you have ever visited the Taj Mahal then your guide probably told you that it was designed by Ustad Isa of Iran, and built by the Moghul Emperor, Shah Jahan, in memory of his wife Mumtaz Mahal. Indian children are taught that it was built in 22 years (1631 to 1653) by 20,000 artisans brought to India from all over the world.

This story has been challenged by Professor P.N. Oak, author of Taj Mahal: The True Story, who believes that the whole world has been duped. He claims that the Taj Mahal is not Queen Mumtaz Mahal's tomb, but an ancient Hindu temple palace of Lord Shiva (then known as Tejo Mahalaya), worshipped by the Rajputs of Agra city.

In the course of his research, Oak discovered that the Shiva temple palace had been usurped by Shah Jahan from then Maharaja of Jaipur, Jai Singh. Shah Jahan then remodelled the palace into his wife's memorial. In his own court chronicle, Badshahnama, Shah Jahan admits that an exceptionally beautiful grand mansion in Agra was taken from Jai Singh for Mumtaz's burial. The ex-Maharaja of Jaipur is said to retain in his secret collection two orders from Shah Jahan for the surrender of the Taj building.

The use of captured temples and mansions as a burial place for dead courtiers and royalty was a common practice among Muslim rulers. For example, Hamayun, Akbar, Etmud-ud-Daula and Safdarjung are all buried in such mansions.

Oak's inquiries begin with the name Taj Mahal. He says this term does not occur in any Moghul court papers or chronicles, even after Shah Jahan's time. The term 'Mahal' has never been used for a building in any of the Muslim countries, from Afghanistan to Algeria.

'The usual explanation that the term Taj Mahal derives from Mumtaz Mahal is illogical in at least two respects. Firstly, her name was never Mumtaz Mahal but Mumtaz-ul-Zamani,' he writes. 'Secondly, one cannot omit the first three letters from a woman's name to derive the remainder as the name for the building.'

Taj Mahal is, he claims, a corrupt version of Tejo-mahalaya, or the Shiva's Palace. Oak also says that the love story of Mumtaz and Shah Jahan is a fairy tale created by court sycophants, blundering historians and sloppy archaeologists. Not a single royal chronicle of Shah Jahan's time corroborates the love story.

Furthermore, Oak cites several documents suggesting that the Taj Mahal predates Shah Jahan's era:

Professor Marvin Miller of New York took samples from the riverside doorway of the Taj. Carbon dating tests revealed that the door was 300 years older than Shah Jahan.

European traveller Johan Albert Mandelslo, who visited Agra in 1638 (only seven years after Mumtaz's death), describes the life of the city in his memoirs, but makes no reference to the Taj Mahal being built.

The writings of Peter Mundy, an English visitor to Agra within a year of Mumtaz's death, also suggest that the Taj was a noteworthy building long well before Shah Jahan's time.

Oak also points out a number of design and architectural inconsistencies that support the belief that the Taj Mahal is a typical Hindu temple rather than a mausoleum.

Many rooms in the Taj Mahal have remained sealed since Shah Jahan's time, and are still inaccessible to the public. Oak asserts they contain a headless statue of Shiva and other objects commonly used for worship rituals in Hindu temples.

Fearing political backlash, Indira Gandhi's government tried to have Oak's book withdrawn from the bookstores, and threatened the Indian publisher of the first edition with dire consequences.

The only way to really validate or discredit Oak's research is to open the sealed rooms of the Taj Mahal, and allow international experts to investigate.

Is Heaven In Yellow Pages?

Got this one by mail. Had to post it....Read ahead....

Mommy went to Heaven,
but I need her here today.
My tummy hurts and I fell down.
I need her right away.

Operator, can you tell me
How to find her in this book?
Is heaven in the yellow part?
I don't know where to look.

I think my daddy needs her, too;
At night I hear him cry.
I hear him call her name sometimes,
but I really don't know why.

Someone hit her car, he says.
It fell in the river and sunk.
Someone hit her car,
and daddy calls him a drunk.

Why, operator?
Why did he drink and drive?
If he had not done it,
My mama would be alive.

Maybe if I call her,
she will hurry home to me.
Is Heaven very far away?
Is it across the sea?

She's been gone a long, long time.
She needs to come home now!
I really need to reach her,
but I simply don't know how.

Help me find the number, please.
Is it listed under "Heaven?"
I can't read these big, big words.
I am only seven.

I'm sorry, operator,
I didn't mean to make you cry,
Is your tummy hurting, too?
Or is there something in your eye?

Maybe I should call my church,
Maybe they will know.
Mommy said when we need help
that's where we should go.

I found the number to my church
and tacked it on the wall.
Thank you, operator,
I'll give them a call.

Friday, March 18, 2005

Modi refused a Visa by US....

After granting visas to modi, US has revoked the visas citing a rule that states that the person concerned has "directly carried out, at any time, particularly severe violations of religions freedom" [TOI].

Wow, now thats interesting!!!The Indian Police should arrest Modi immediately, as the US through its intelligence network has found out the real villain of Godhra riots...

But who did grant tourism/business visa to modi in the first place, will that officer be sacked by US Dept of Immigration.

Relax, Modi Bashers, I am not Modi Fan but America has no moral standing to act righteous and teach us about Racial Discrimination, Racial Hatred etc.

For more info contact the Hispanic, Afro-Americans, Asian-Americans, Arab-Americans who were at the receiving end after 9/11.

Nobody is mightier than the Indian Public, even the the great Indira Gandhi was jolted by it...remember the emergency...

But I really love the functioning of the US Congress, just imagine if indians similarly could pass resolution to ban the entry of American Leaders, I am sure Bush, Powell, Rice and maybe an MJ too!! would be restricted from entering india too.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Wife of HIV+ Husband kills herself.

The Husband's Reaction?

"I think she was stupid to die like that. She thought I was going to die. I have had this disease for the past two years; nothing happens. I’m just a little tired, nothing else!”
[ *@#!--forget it, not worth commenting...]

The wife was not aware of his disease, she was told that he had contracted TB.

Read about the pathetic state of AIDS awareness and I feel human relations...

Monday, March 14, 2005

Cutting dead bodies for 15 years...

Recently this article appeared in Mid-day. Click on the link -

“The initial years of my profession made me a robot who went about cutting bodies without any emotion. With the passage of time, dead bodies of children and women killed in blasts and gunfire changed the robot in me to an emotionless statue"

Maqbool is Kashmir's only post-mortem specialist, he has been religiously performing this gory duty for last 15 years. How can it be that the government that spends crores on J&K could not find some more staff for performing autopsies.

He buys autopsy kits from his own pocket at times!!

“I have nightmares. Whenever I sleep, the faces of the dead keep on turning in my dreams.”

Isn't this duty too a violation of Human Rights??