Archive for March, 2011

I have always questioned between religion and rituals…a number of religions impose a number of restrictions on “How to pray?, When to pray, when not to pray?” how to practice religion?, etc, etc. I would say that the priests have made religion so ritualistic that we have lost the essence of it…Largely speaking i have read the Bhagvad Gita, The Ramayan, The Mahabharata, The Kuran, The Granth Sahib and The Bible.

All the religions preach a few things in common…like doing good, speaking the truth, donating a part of your income, etc etc…but the rituals have taken precedence over the religious teachings and have been invented largely by the priests for their benefits…No where in the scriptures it is mentioned that eating non-veg is bad…if you read the Mahabharata extensively you find that they used to hunt and eat…Arjun, Bhima, Yudhistra belonged to the warrior clan. They stayed in Banwas (exile) and survived on those means. If you read the Ramayana, there was war, killing, bringing justice to the race and so on…Similarly, when you read the Bible, we see that Jesus mentions, You drink my blood and eat my flesh…(though metaphorically). Religion never despised food in any form…so why do we humans deem vegetarian and non vegetarian as good or bad…Religion preaches good things not a list of “touch me not”

A few other rituals are mentioned below:

Fasting…do we gain anything by fasting, yes you improve your digestive system…that is the scientific benefit…apart from that what other benefit do you obtain…My question is “will god be happy if you remain hungry?”. if his child is craving with hunger…i guess not…hence fasting was brought into the forefront cause it improved your digestive system…So do you fast for a good digestive system or do you fast for a ritual…I fast on Mondays cause we eat a lot of crap over the weekend…….it helps me set my stomach right..btw i even skip fasting during the week as i forget at times…:P

Now moving onto a few other rituals, don’t cross a road if a black cat crosses your path…come off it a black cat has crossed a zillion times and she/he has turned damn lucky for me….(though i personally don’t like cats, rather dogs are adorable)

Have a bath before praying…who said so…just keep yourself clean…cause that makes you avoid germs and illnesses…so another scientific reason…to the kitty.

Who said one can’t pray during menstruation..hell with you…who says you are impure…if the same egg had fertilised into a foetus then would that be impure too….i guess not…this ritual was invented during the old days when the household chores were done by the lady of the house…a 5 day break provided her rest from the mundane work. This has been made into a big issue these days. So lets see anyway i have never followed it.

As far as religion is concerned i practice every religion…i visit the temple, gurudwara, church, etc…I believe, God is omni present and rituals should not bind us in anyway…and btw i love the prasad its very very tasty…

Just folding your hands in front of him/her and being humble, a good human being and doing good works wonders…


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Looking at my family tree, i always wondered where my origins lie. On a bit of prodding, my father revealed that we were direct descendants of the third Guru – Guru Amar Das (from among the 10 Guru’s). I was “huh nonsense” to this my dad took us to the ancestral village temple (Gurudwara) in Punjab. This is situated approx. 30kms away from Amritsar and is called Baoli sahab. This had been originally built by our original Guru (Guru Amardas ji).

When we reached there i asked my dad “yes we are here and so” then he took me down the 84 steps and showed me his name inscripted on the steps…his fathers and his great grandfathers and so on…to this i was suprised and joyful like a small child…he he…we actually descended from the Guru’s clan. But i still wonder what did i do to be born here?? am still discovering various aspects of my lineage….a few discovered and a few yet to be discovered….

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Note: This response might seem incredible, but many ideas seem incredible or possible before reality happens and proves to the contrary.

Although this is not a statistically significant data set, I spoke to a few friends and was surprised to find that although some of them are non-religious and non-superstitious, it caused them to give a bit more credibility to the ubiquitous 2012 end of the world disaster rumor.

With global warming and climate changes approaching new levels, it’s very possible that natural disasters will become a more often, if not frequent occurence. This would increase the credibility given to the 2012 rumor.

We all know how powerful rumors are in bringing down banks. Warren Buffet had first hand experience with this and we’ve all lived through it. My hypothesis is that this earthquake and tsunami creates more credibility in the 2012 myth.

If people think the world is going to end for sure, then the present value of future cash flows of all equities, debt and any other financing instrument including (supposedly) zero risk securities would lose much of their value as people sell them and hold cash. Businesses would stop functioning in anticipation of zero demand, and production of products and services would come to a halt. People would scramble to buy (and steal) the remaining goods in anticipation of hard times and there will be massive inflation. Money may actually become completely worthless as financial (and all) markets are destroyed.

From this point of view, we’d multiply the new probability of 2012 disaster by the difference in economic welfare of the world between having and not having this disaster, and that would be this events effect on the market. However there will are many different forces on the market, so unless there are many more catastrophes like this one as 2012 approaches, it’s unlikely we’ll see a dramatic effect caused by 2012 mania.

However, as value investors, we stick by the rule of be fearful when others are greedy and be greedy when others are fearful. If 2012 rumors actually does take hold of the general public (low probability event, yes), I believe it would be wise to invest(if possible) in agriculture, mining and textile companies. Agriculture because people will need food, and it’s the first industry since the dawn of man. Mining because we need flint, tools and weapons. Textile because people need clothing to stay warm.

If people think the world is coming to an end, and it doesn’t, whoever owns these industries and can instill assuredness in his people to work for and with him, will be making a deeply valuable investment.


Michael Jiang – Campaign Manager at Marchex

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