Wednesday, November 9, 2011

GNH and Neo-liberalism

(This was submitted as an assignment during my PGDPA at RIM)
Until the turn of the 19th century, Bhutan was seen as a lost land. The people were seen as a sort of curious mountain tribe, “with a deep running devil-worship tradition” (Baillie, 2005), and with little personal hygiene to speak of. Of course, it all changed. Thanks largely to a succession of great hereditary monarchs since 1907.
The same Imperial forces that had once forgone the chance to take over this hidden and impoverished land, like they did so many kingdoms of its kind in the Himalayas, are now suddenly looking up to it to provide the glimmer of hope that they so desperately need. Their long standing belief in the forces of market is crumbling before their eyes.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Vanity Exercise

“Beauties in vain, their pretty eyes may roll; Charms strike the sight, but merit wins the soul”-Alexander Pope
I haven’t been doing my regular exercises, which invariably included a heavy regime of weight training and stretches. Nor have I been on my regular diet consisting of a healthy mix of the three principal components of nutrition. This is bad.
However, what is worst is the alternative. Working out in Thimphu’s gyms with their varying levels of professionalism is more than just a matter of keeping good health. From wanting to build unworldly biceps to shedding the last remnants of fat, from pounding on the mega mass supplements to cutting down on all nutriments, and from the disorienting narcissisms to the gym blues, these clubs and their members are all on what one could call vanity exercise.