Let's talk it out
He asked “friends?”. She thought “F.R.I.E.N.D.S?”. She replied “Anytime”. He extended his hand. She responded with an “oh!”.
There are lots of hue and cry about what to read and from where when it comes to Ethics, GS4, preparation. Here is simple and concrete guideline:
With above preparation anyone can go to ethics paper and write good answers(Try this in some mocks). You need to use as much as possible ‘keywords’ and Articles of Constitution from above mentioned sources.
For Quality improvement:
For Ethics, more than knowledge, you should depend on application of knowledge which you, and we all, already have acquired from Polity, Newspapers, Essay, and Society part, even from history.
All the best.
There are many guides and suggestions available online and offline on this topic. So I am going to be short, very short.
There are only two things required to clear UPSC.
Time Management: Again on this topic there are huge amount of literatures available. So again I am going to be short here again. To effectively manage time, just be aware of time all the time. Get a watch preferably one which make some sound every hour. Be aware of time left for exam, time you have spend preparing for UPSC, time wasted in a day, time you really spent studying. Be aware and keep telling yourself what your real goal is.
Relevant Materials: Again huge literature and guides available on this topic too. Very hard to confine oneself to just relevant materials. Its very easy to get swayed away to other areas. Try to read one book many times rather reading many books on same topic. In coming days I may publish what relevant materials are, which are just right.
Till then all the best. Keep your focus on Time and Materials. They matter the most.
Colourful Holi is coming yet again. Fifth for me in Delhi. It has been memorable journey so far. Filled with struggle and excitement. But as this Holi approaches, it reminds me of an incident which happened during my first Holi in Delhi.
It was 2013. I had just shifted from Bengaluru to Delhi to get started with UPSC preparation . I was staying in a hostel near Nirankari colony in North Delhi. Much like every evening I took a walk from my hostel to the colony for evening snacks. I was alone and immersed in my own thought. It was all going good. But then something surprising happened.
A balloon hit me. It was not filled with colour but just plain water. I was taken aback. Both the sudden event and cold water startled me. I looked in the direction of the balloon. First reaction was bit of disappointment which suddenly turned into a broad smile. There was a cute-little girl with one more balloon ready in her hand. She didn’t hide after throwing the first balloon but waited for my reaction. When I looked towards her. She said “Happy Holi”. And then when she saw me smiling she threw the other balloon in her hand and kept smiling. That made my Holi ‘happy’ for sure.
That was beginning of Holi for me in Delhi. Most probably this will be ending of Holi for me in Delhi. I have shifted to ORN(Old Rejendra Nagar) now. So far many balloons have passed by me leaving me untouched. But main difference here is: its hard to find throwers.
Let me start by saying that I am totally against the idea of Nationalism which is exclusive in nature. Instead I support the idea of Patriotism which is inclusive in nature. Here I am going to paint two scenarios and I would like know who are more patriotic?
There is a girl named Geeta. She said something which lets say some people, who called themselves Desh-bhakts, find anti-national. So they tried to beat her up. If they could not. They tried to threaten her with gang-rape and started bringing her old videos or posts on social media to mock her and ridicule her.
However when Geeta, was threaten she went to institutions which make India for her protection. She complained with police and other agencies about this hate and threat which she received.
Now, here is one to decide who is more patriotic. The desh-bhakts or the girl, Geeta. When something which desh-bhakts didn’t like they think its their duty to make it right or teach her a lesson. They did not believe in the institutions of India. They could have approached to Police and filed a complaint about any anti-national things. But they took law in their hands. This makes India look a ‘weak-state’. But Geeta believed in idea of India and in its institutions. She made India look ‘strong-state’. Now you decide who did more disservice to idea of India and Indian-state? Who is more patriotic?
Recently I watched a TED talk “A Scientific approach to Paranormal“. It reminded me of one incident which is associated with me.
I was in studying in 8th standard. I started getting headaches. It was very painful and unbearable headache. Even medicines for headache work sometime but next time they are found ineffective. After trying lots of doctors, mostly in and around of my village and block . My parents decided to explore the idea of going to Temples and even Mosques.
I was taken to Panditji and to Maulaviji. Bu they were ineffective. Eventually my parents found me one Sadhuji. He did something and I felt lighter and my headache went away. Since then whenever i used to feel headache I used to call my parents or elder brother who then used to go to Sadhuji and my headache used to go away. I don’t know whether it was really a case or not. Whether there is any connection or not.
But then i got an opportunity to meet this Sadhuji. I asked him, “Why I only have this headache in my family?”. He said everyone is not same and there are some weakness in my planets. Somehow I got convinced. Days passed, weeks passed, years passed, and eventually I landed up in Delhi to prepare for UPSC.
Only fear when I came to prepare for UPSC was, what will I do when I get headache in or during the exam. Or even during preparation if I get regular headache how will I crack such a touch exam. But luckily something happened. My paranormal meets science.
My roommate in Delhi, who was also aspirant, had this same issues of headache. He belonged to family doctors. Once I was going home from Delhi, I was having very bad headache. I told him about it. He gave me one tablet of pain killer. I took that tablet and boarded the train. I felt relaxed and my headache went away.
I came back from home and asked him what tablet he gave me. He told that it was “Diclowin Plus” and anti-inflmatory pain killer. I thought the medicine which can be cured my twelve or thirteen years of issues of headache must be costly. But it was very cheap. Cheaper than even a glass of fruit juice. Then I told him about my issues and he told me that it could be due to Sinus issues. He also had this issue. Since then whenever I feel discomfort I take half-tablet of this tablet.
Now, I am not required to call at home whenever I get a headache. What I realised is: diagnosis is very important of any disease. After realising that I have issue of Sinus, now I don’t think about weaker or stronger planets anymore. Somewhere, now, I even think that my dad also have this same issue. Even if its true my grandmother and paternal aunt, both are no more, also had this same issue. But they all were diagnosed wrong. May be one day I can make things right.
[PS: Do not take any medicines before consulting a doctor]
Many UPSC aspirants have asked me that how to start preparing for UPSC and what it takes to clear this, one of the toughest exams in the world.
I am simply going to state here about how to get going. In later blogs I will discuss in details what specifically needs to be done to clear this exam.
So, to get started with the UPSC preparation, irrespective of where you are and what are you doing, you need to start giving attention to news from all over the India and the world. Next step will be to start reading editorials in newspapers, preferably from TheHindu and IndianExpess. Keep doing these two things as much as possible and till you get selected. But to get selected there will be other things which are required to be done.
Further, it would be most logical step to read and know about the UPSC syllabus. Why? Because, when you will be reading news then if you remember Syllabus then your attention for that particular topic will increase drastically.
Now, to understand news in totality one need to understand the Polity. So next most logical step will be reading Laxmikant for Indian Polity. And read this book along with reading news.
If you can follow these things religiously for months. Then you are ready to plunge into the nitty-grity of the UPSC preparation. In next blog on this topic I will cover the book list which one needs to follow for Preliminary examination.
I am staying in a 2BHK flat in Baljeet Nagar, Shadipur with my flatmate. I shifted to this place just before the CSE-2016 preliminary examination. I could have shifted anywhere. But i shifted to this very place because there were three of my friends staying here. And I joined them as fourth member.
It was very pleasant and happy environment till the CSM-2016. But after this exam got over. We had fun for few days. But eventually fun time got over. And two of my flatmates left the flat. One went to Bengaluru and other to Bihar(his native). So eventually we two were left at the flat.
However, out of two of us, it was only me who was left to spend time in the flat. My flatmate was busy working in some coaching from 10am to 8pm and if he feels he goes to either to his sister or some friends place. So i was left alone for whole night after spending alone whole day. Its not i did not like solitude. After after sometime one needs someone to talk to.
So, I started going for evening walks with my friends. I went to nearby Rock Garden for walks. Not that, I even went till Karol Bagh for have a chat with friends and spend some time with them. Till now only companion had been my maid. But she also generally appears only when my roommate appears. She doesn’t like cooking for single person.
Eventually, I decided to move out of the place and shift to Karol Bagh. Place where i had many friends and at least I won’t be waiting for anyone to come home every night who eventually doesn’t come. Also Karol Bagh has very good environment for UPSC aspirants. So I took this risk even if at the higher cost of living. My Personal economy is hurting me. But I had to take some decision to make things happen.
Now, i will be shifting to Karol Bagh or Rajendra Place to be precise. Here I am hoping to have good company and better study environment. Lets hope for the best. Lets see, if I am here till June or October. I am hoping for the best but training my mind to be ready for the worst.
Today, I was saved by following simple instructions which I learned from my PET (Physical Education Training) teacher in school and Warning boards put all across the stairways in INTEL.
While in school, my teacher will advice us to keep our both hand free. Hands are best friends of a man. They are first and best defence against any unseen and sudden objects. So if they are free they can protect us from falling badly, they can protect us from flies and insects or even balls.
However, Warnings on Intel’s stairways read number of accident and death due to not following the staircase etiquette. So what is that etiquette? Always, I repeat, always put your one hand on handrail. It will save you from any staircase mishap.
Now, coming to my incident. I am staying in a flat in Shadipur. There is very narrow stairway and there is always dark there. So, while using staircase one has to use mobile’s light to see clearly. So I was holding my mobile in one hand with its light on and I was holding handrail with my left hand. Suddenly, I slipped. I literally made a 360 round around that corner of staircase. Given I was holding mobile in right hand, only help came from my left hand which was holding handrail tightly.
I wonder, if I would have not holding that handrail, I might have been in some hospital now. Given the narrowness and darkness in the staircase, I might have had some serious injuries. But I was saved by simple rule of holding on to the handrail. So hold that handrail.