Saturday, September 10, 2016

Academics and I

Academics and I go a long way back. We began like 2 strangers stuck together on a long journey. Slowly we got to know each other and by the end of a 18 year journey we were back, full circle complete, still as strangers. One thing we both saw was that both of us had the capacity to become better. But we could not do it without each other. After years of debate and argument we changed seats, moved away from each other just before we got off. In a huff, both of us got down at the same stop, went pretty much in the same direction till we ended up on one helluva long road with each other for company and no one else to help except her mother - Education.

It then dawned on me that I was thinking about academics and her betterment this whole time. After school and college, I went to work with the tourism sector. Here I was, showing people birds and animals and getting them to learn the environment around us. Soon, I saw myself moving into research, environment education till one day I moved into a lovely school. Here I met my old friend academics again. The only thing that struck me was that she was looking very old. I could not comprehend the fact, for a moment, that we were on an 18 year and more journey together. I knew I had grown up and had changed in many ways, but when I did meet her, she seemed so much older, so much like a great- grandmother who refused to reach Pearly Gates due to her strong will to live on!
We sat down and spoke for a long time. This is when I got to know that there was a young academic in there somewhere wanting to get out of the old body I was talking to. A young academic who wonders why people are not letting her move on and become better. She had apparently spoken to many other people like me and asked for their support to become better, to grow so that she in turn could help others around her. But she never got all the support she needed. Some people wanted to help but hesitated by thinking "what can I alone do?", while others helped her for a very short time. In this time, she could not change into the young and dynamic personality she really is. With this little to no help situation, she began to look older and older. 

This reminded me of a caterpillar getting into the cocoon stage. The caterpillar wants to come out as a beautiful butterfly, but people are not wanting the caterpillar evolve into a butterfly because it looks cute and chubby. Academics too is at this stage in her life.  Before leaving for the day her mother - Education came up to me and said " What does not evolve, change and remains stagnant is as good as dead. My girl is dying because people have kept her stagnant. If she does not evolve soon, she might just die. If she dies, I will be the next to go. Then what will happen to all of you?" 

This question struck me as if I had put my fingers into the electric socket. What will happen to us if there is no education, if academics is not allowed to evolve? I guess we will ourselves stagnate, degrade and die out eventually. Is it really worth it- That is the Question?

I, along with few others like me, am out to help academics and her mother Education to evolve and change for the better. Would you like to join in and help bring about this change? Its worth it I'd say!! 

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Butterfly emerging

Found this butterfly, a Common Mormon (Papilio polytes romulus - Cramer, 1775) emerging from its chrysalis stage one morning on a lemon plant (my terrace garden). These are fairly common butterflies in and around Bangalore city. The caterpillars are generally found on plants of the rutaceae family like citrus spps.  More information on this butterfly can be found here.