The Three Ships…

There were three ships which were nearby when the Titanic sunk.
One of them was known as the Sampson. It was 7 miles away from the Titanic and they saw the white flares signaling danger, but because the crew had been hunting seals illegally and didn’t want to be caught, they turned and went the opposite direction away from the Titanic. This ship represents us and people like us if we are so busy looking inward at our own sin and lives that we can’t recognize when someone else… is in need.
The next ship was the Californian. This ship was only 14 miles away from the Titanic, but they were surrounded by ice fields and the captain looked out and saw the white flares, but because the conditions weren’t favorable and it was dark, he decided to go back to bed and wait until morning. The crew tried to convince themselves that nothing was happening. This ship represents those of us who say I can’t do anything now. The conditions aren’t right for it and so we wait until conditions are perfect before going out.
The last ship was the Carpathia. This ship was actually headed in a southern direction 58 miles away from the Titanic when they heard the distress cries over the radio. The captain of this ship knelt down, prayed to God for direction and then turned the ship around and went full steam ahead through the ice fields. This was the ship that saved the 705 survivors of the Titanic.
When the captain looked back at the ice fields they had come through, he said Someone else hands must have been at the helm of this ship! This ship represents those who would pray to God for direction and then go without hesitation.
Life whispers in your soul and speaks to your heart. We need to take time to listen and to these whispers and take heed.

Can you hear a pin drop?

What is the meaning of pin drop silence?
Following are some instances when silence could speak louder than voice.

Take 1:

Field Marshal Sam Bahadur Maneckshaw once started addressing a public meeting at Ahmedabad in English. The crowd started chanting, “Speak in Gujarati. We will hear you only if you speak in Gujarati.” Field Marshal Sam Bahadur Maneckshaw stopped. Swept the audience with a hard stare and replied, “Friends, I have fought many a battle in my long career. I have learned Punjabi from men of the Sikh Regiment; Marathi from the Maratha Regiment; Tamil from the men of the Madras Sappers; Bengali from the men of the Bengal Sappers, Hindi from the Bihar Regiment; and even Nepali from the Gurkha Regiment. Unfortunately there was no soldier from Gujarat from whom I could have learned Gujarati.”………….

You could have heard a pin drop

Take 2:

JFK’S Secretary of State, Dean Rusk, was in France in the early 60’s when Charles DeGaule, the French President, decided to pull out of NATO.

DeGaule said he wanted all US military out of France as soon as possible.

Rusk responded, “does that include the 180,000 who are buried here ?”

DeGaule could not respond.

You could have heard a pin drop

Take 3:

Robert Whiting, an elderly US gentleman of 83, arrived in Paris by plane.

At French Customs, he took a few minutes to locate his passport in his carry on.

“You have been to France before, Monsieur ?” , the Customs officer asked sarcastically.

Mr. Whiting admitted that he had been to France previously.

“Then you should know enough to have your passport ready.”

The American said, “The last time I was here, I didn’t have to show it.”

“Impossible. Americans always have to show their passports on arrival in France !” , the Customs officer sneered.

The American senior gave the Frenchman a long, hard look.

Then he quietly explained …

“Well, when I came ashore at Omaha Beach, at 4:40am, on D-Day in 1944, to help liberate your country, I couldn’t find a single Frenchman to show a passport to…. ”


You could have heard a pin drop

Take 4:

Soon after getting freedom from British rule in 1947, the de-facto prime minister of India, Jawahar Lal Nehru called a meeting of senior Army Officers to select the first General of the Indian army.

Nehru proposed, “I think we should appoint a British officer as a General of The Indian Army, as we don’t have enough experience to lead the same.”
Having learned under the British, only to serve and rarely to lead, all the civilians and men in uniform present nodded their heads in agreement.

However one senior officer, Nathu Singh Rathore, asked for permission to speak. Nehru was a bit taken aback by the independent streak of the officer, though, he asked him to speak freely.
Rathore said, “You see, sir, we don’t have enough experience to lead a nation too, so shouldn’t we appoint a British person as the first Prime Minister of India?”

You could hear a pin drop.

After a pregnant pause, Nehru asked Rathore, “Are you ready to be the first General of The Indian Army?”…….. Rathore declined the offer saying “Sir, we have a very talented army officer, my senior, Lt. Gen. Cariappa, who is the most deserving among us.”

This is how the brilliant Gen. Cariappa became the first General and Rathore the first ever Lt. General of the Indian Army.

Courtesy: Lt. Gen Niranjan Malik PVSM (Retd), Indian Army

The Ram who came to the rescue of Muslims

Tilak Ram’s humble place in Hashimpura sheltered over 12 Muslims, including many who had no idea what was happening in the by-lanes.


It was May 22, 1987. The Provincial Armed Constabulary (PAC) along with the Army had surrounded Hashimpura, a settlement in Meerut. The five lanes where Muslims lived had no rear exit, so there was no escape route.

The Army was searching every house. Muslim men, old, young and children were coming on to the road with their hands raised.

Women were on the rooftops, crying, begging the PAC to let go of their men.

Amid all this horror there was one house where Muslims were safe. Tilak Ram’s humble place sheltered over 12 Muslims, including many who had no idea what was happening in the by-lanes.

When some of their fellow community members were herded into a yellow PAC truck, only to be murdered in cold blood in the next few hours, about 12 people managed to save their lives.

“Thankfully, the Army didn’t search our house. There were about 12 people who stayed with us on that terrible day, May 22,” says Ram, in his late sixties now.

The twelve people left Ram’s house only after the curfew was relaxed. Nayeemuddin, one of them, is all praise for Ram.

“He not only saved people’s lives but became a symbol of Hindu-Muslim amity,” he says.

A Delhi court on March 21, 2015 acquitted all 16 accused in the 28-year-old case. All the acquitted are former personnel of the PAC.

Massacre shattered syncretic culture, says neighbour

Ram’s house, which provided sanctuary to 12 Muslims during the PAC-Army search at Hashimpura in 1987, was not a pucca one then but just brick walls covered by an asbestos sheet. It is located right at the front portion of Hashimpura and welcomes anybody visiting what has become now largely a Muslim ghetto. But that was not the situation before May 1987. Many more Hindus used to stay in Hashimpura.

The riots and communal tension due to the Ramjanmabhoomi-Babri Masjid row, and the massacre changed the demography of Hashimpura, says Sher Ali, a tailor master whose shop ‘Gulmarg tailors’, is next to Ram’s house.

Sitting next to his neighbour on a flat wooden charpoy, Ali, with a big picture of goddess Kaali in the background, talks about the history of Hashimpura.

“What used to be a live example of ganga-jamuni tehzeeb, syncretic Indian culture, gradually turned into a ghetto which came to stand for victimhood of the minority community and its constant search for justice for the massacre of 42 innocent people,” says Ali, while remembering the “good old days” when people didn’t use to be Hindu or Muslim but “friends” whose “houses and hearts” were always open for each other.

Ram, who sacrificed a goat for his favourite goddess Kali on Ramnavami on Saturday became nostalgic. “It was fun to live in those times. Ali and me belong to those times and feel a bit suffocated now,” he gestures towards Ali. Together they looked like a rare specimen from the past. “There was no question of any conflict. Muslims and Hindus used to be religious but not intolerant.”

Satasi ke kaand ne sab kucch badal diya, ham sabke liye. (The massacre of 1987 changed our lives, lives of both Muslims and Hindus,” he says.)

“There used to be religious clashes and communal riots but then things used to calm down. But the massacre of 1987 shook Muslims from inside and even the slightest of tension used to scare us,” says Ali, a man in his early sixties.

When this correspondent begins to take leave, Ram says, “My father Jas Ram was born here and died here. I was born here and I will die here only, as a resident of Hashimpura.”

Ram has a visitor: Sanjay also a resident of Hashimpura, in one of its inner by-lanes. He was just four when the massacre happened. He is happy that his father chose not to leave the area unlike his fellow community members after 1987. He says the situation is not as bad as people think. His best friend is Babu Khan.

“Hatred is in people’s minds and not in their hearts,” he remarks, indicating that all is not lost in Hashimpura.


Down Syndrome Affected Girl Madison Tevlin – What an inspiring story!

Well my blog is equi-religious(if there exists a word like that 😉 ) . However , I’d like to share a verse from the Bible which to me… is a really really wise answer to a very very puzzling question…

And His disciples asked Him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he would be born blind?” Jesus answered, “It was neither that this man sinned, nor his parents; but it was so that the works of God might be displayed in him.”

Surely Dear Madison Tevlin… You are displaying the works of God through your singing and we all do respect you and will vow to work hard in life as you have!