Archive for June, 2010

Rapport and Control … how to establish …

Posted on June 28, 2010. Filed under: Personal Magnetism |

Here are the ways most people establish rapport and follow it  by ‘control’ over persons they desire to influence.

The easiest and most common way of doing it is by showing Interest, Sympathy and Kindness in persons they want to contol.

This is also done by being Polite and Generous.

A wee harder is the route of Sensitiveness and Sentiment.

Easy for some but hard for the average is the route of Humour. Humour should be spontaneous and should  never be forced. Humour is essentially the ability to see the ludicrous in the serious. One should never descend to telling jokes. 

More accomplished and dangerous persons resort to Accusations, Challenges and even to Threats to gain control of persons.

Finally, the most common and most dangerous routes are both the Sexual  as well as the Selfish Stimulus or Bait.

Once you know these modes, you can guard against these being used against you and in turn use them yourself over others.

Good Luck.

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Ben Franklin’s Thirteen Virtues …

Posted on June 24, 2010. Filed under: American Thinkers, Books, Guide Posts, Personalities |

Benjamin Franklin sought to cultivate his character by a plan of thirteen virtues. He began at age 20 and  practiced their cultivation all his life. He didn’t try to work on them all at once. but would work on one and only one each week “leaving all others to their ordinary chance”.

While Franklin didn’t live completely by his virtues and by his own admission he fell short of them many times, he yet believed the attempt made him a better man and contributing greatly to his success and happiness. His thirteen virtues –

1. “TEMPERANCE. Eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation.”

2.  “MODERATION. Forbear resenting injuries so much as you think they deserve. Avoid extremes.”

3. “FRUGALITY. Make no expense but to do good to others or yourself. Waste nothing.”

4.  “CHASTITY. Rarely use venery but for health or offspring, never to dullness, weakness, or the injury of your own or another’s peace or reputation.”

5.  “ORDER. Let all your things have their places. Let each part of your business have its time.”

6.  “CLEANLINESS. Tolerate no uncleanliness in body, clothes or habitation.”

7. “SILENCE. Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself. Avoid trifling conversation.”

8.  “TRANQUILLITY . Be not disturbed at trifles or at accidents common or unavoidable.”

9.  “HUMILITY. Imitate Jesus and Socrates.”

—-

10.  “SINCERITY. Use no hurtful deceit. Think innocently and justly and if you speak, speak accordingly.”

11.  “RESOLUTION. Resolve to perform what you ought. Perform without fail what you resolve.

12.  “INDUSTRY. Lose no time. Be always employ’d in something useful. Cut off all unnecessary actions.”

13.  “JUSTICE. Wrong none by doing injuries, or omitting the benefits that are your duty.”

In his autobiography, Ben Franklin devoted more pages to this plan than to any other single point. He wrote, “I hope, therefore, that some of my descendants may follow the example and reap the benefit.”

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Ben Franklin – true Polymath …

Posted on June 18, 2010. Filed under: American Thinkers, Guide Posts, Personalities |

Benjamin Franklin was a true polymath – author, printer, satirist, political theorist, politician, scientist, inventor, civic activist, statesman and diplomat.

As  scientist, he was a major figure in physics for his discoveries and theories re electricity. He invented the lightning rod, bifocals, the Franklin stove, a carriage odometer, and the glass ‘harmonica’. He formed the first public lending library and the  first fire department in Pennsylvania.

He was a proponent of colonial unity and as a political writer and activist he, more than anyone, invented the idea of an American nation. As diplomat, he secured French aid for the Revolution. Here are some gems from his thought —

Observe all men, thyself most. …. He that composes himself is wiser than he that composes a book. ….. It is a grand mistake to think of being great without goodness.

By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail. ….. Whatever is begun in anger ends in shame. …….. Distrust and caution are the parents of security. 

Write injuries in dust, benefits in marble …. There are three things extremely hard – steel, a diamond, and to know one’s self.

Take  time for all things – great haste makes great waste. Never confuse motion with action. …. He that can have patience can have what he wills.

Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.

Each year one vicious habit discarded, in time might make the worst of us good.

An investment in knowledge pays the best interest. …. Books constitute capital.Remember not only to say the right thing in the right place, but far more difficult still, to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment.

Beauty and folly are old companions. …. Many a man in love with a ‘dimple’ makes the mistake of marrying the whole woman. …. Admiration is the daughter of ignorance.

Keep your eyes wide open before marriage but half shut afterwards. Marriage is the most natural state of man, and the state in which you will find solid happiness.

Never take a wife till thou hast a house. A house is not a home unless it contains food and fire — for the mind as well as the body. Guests and fish begin to stink after three days. Beware the hobby that eats.

In general, mankind, since the improvement of cookery, eats twice as much as nature requires. Know thoat Hunger is the best pickle. I saw few die of hunger; of over eating, a hundred thousand.

I guess I don’t so much mind being old, as I mind being fat and old.

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A Greater than Napoleon – Scipio Africanus …

Posted on June 9, 2010. Filed under: Guide Posts, Personalities, Roman Thought |

Scipio Africanus was,. among other things, a Roman intellectual who wrote his memoirs in Greek.

As a soldier he defeated Hannibal at Zama, the final battle of the Second Punic War – having replaced Fabius’ tactic of not giving battle for safety sake. Recognized as one of the finest commanders in military history, he was Rome’s greatest general who never lost a battle.

Livy, the Roman historian, narrates that when Scipio and Hannibal met afterwards, Hannibal took the high road and said that the greatest generals were Alexander, Pyrrhus and himself. When Scipio asked what would have been the order had Hannibal defeated Scipio, the reply was that then Hannibal would have been the greatest.

Here are Scipio’s few known sayings. which indeed, mirror the man.

I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it.

I’m never less at leisure than when at leisure. Or less alone than when alone.

It is the part of a fool to say that which I shouldnot have even thought.

Just prior to Zama, Livy writes that Scipio’s men captured a couple of Hannibals spies. Scipio ordered that they be fed and feted and shown around the entire camp before being escorted back midway to Hannibals camp.

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Inder Gill, Zorru Bakshi on the ’70s armored Doctrine …

Posted on June 9, 2010. Filed under: From a Services Career, Personalities |

First Zorru Bakshi.

He earned his first gallantry award as a brigade major to then Brig Bikram Singh, who had First Madras, First Sikh and Third Garhwalis in his brigade in the 1048/49 Indo Pak War. The latter two units won the highest number of gallantry awards won by any unit in any War.

Zorru as a brigade commander in ’65 made the then Major Ranjit Dayal capture the prized Hajipir Pass which got them both prized gallantry awards. 

Zorru, a thorough bred regimental type, is a Fifth Gurkha officer, who to his consternation also became Military Secretary. He remains one of the most highly decorated and respected generals of the Indian Army.

This post is of the time when he took over the 2 Corps in the mid 70s and was shown the armored division going through its paces for the encounter crossing of a lightly held water obstacle.

To show Zorru the offensive power of India’s elite Armoured Division, a ‘Demonstration’ was laid on to show how an unheld or lightly held water obstacle would be crossed, once this monster formation was unleashed.

The spectators took their seats with the water obstacle in front and an armourd squadron came roaring from behind. It stopped a kilometer and more short of the obstacle and fanned out. Then came the infantry. They got out of their armoured carriers which in those days were the Czech Topas.

Having spread out in assault formation, the infantry moved towards the obstacle through the minefield and took position on the near side of the canal to show ‘it had secured the home bank’.

The engineers then came and cleared a lane thru the enemy minefield. Then came the bridging equipment to make the bridge. Once that was done, the squadron crossed in file  and charged onward,pennants fluttering.

We awaited the new Corps Commander to say Shabash and ‘What a nice job done’ and commend one and all before we went home.

A short, snappy, alert, active figure with a chest full of gallantry medals (MahaVir and Vir Chakra), moved forward briskly and took the mike. His first, “Gentlemen”, showed a typical Dograi accent, unashamedly un english but which drew attention because of the voice behind it but which evidently left him unfazed. In the same accent, he continued –

Gentlemen, When i came here on my arrival, I first heard about this concept. Then I read it. And now I have seen it. And I am convinced in my mind that it is a tamasha and it will not work in war’.

‘You say that this model  is for an unheld or lightly held water obstacle. I ask you that if that is so, why go through this drama? Why not just bump it and move on? I ask – why has the armor stopped a km or two short of danger? Is it to save tanks from being hit’?

‘Gentlemen, I have seen a bit of war and I do not think it right for any sane commander to ask infantry to go through a minefield and then lay down in the open for what you call, securing the home bank. What, in heavens name, are they doing there lying in the open when both own and enemy artillery as well as enemy machine gun fire from pill boxes and bunkers within fifty yards, is being poured on them?  This infantry is being butchered and I call it down right murder’.

”Gentlemen, do you know how it feels to assault thru a minefild? I think not! And then what in Gods name are they doing there lying down in the open when the enemy opposite them is in pill boxes and safe from anything that can come down on them’?

‘You call it securing the home bank. What utter rubbish! Can anyone imagine what is going on over there at that moment other than mass murder. Even the trench warfare of the First World War would be a picnic compared to this’!

‘I tell you what you have shown me is pure drama and a ‘tamasha’ which will not work in war. If the obstacle is un held or lightly held, just bump it; accept some tank casualties, maintain  the shock effect by keeping on moving without losing momentum’.

‘So for Heavens’s sake, please rethink your doctrines and drills. Thank you”.

This summation was the death knell of what we in the elite Armored Division had been practicing. It  had started under its showman commander General Butch, a bigger fraud than whom it is hard to imagine.

Indeed it was this man who as Brigadier had pulled the rug from under the feet of his own Divisional Commander, Gen RK Ranjit Singh, the Armd Div Comdr in the late 60’s, had maintained that one night was insufficient for a set piece armor offensive across a bund type strongly held obstacle, which included contacting the obstacle, bridging and establishment of the bridge head, induction and break out.

This had been mooted and desired  by no less a person than General Prem Bhagat and Butch won his favor by agreeing that it could probably be done with time to spare. Well, of course on paper and in demonstrations!

Now Inder Gill.

Inder took over as Zorru Bakshi’s boss – the Western Army Commander. This short statured, blonde haired, ‘Gora white’  para trooper had been a sapper in the British Army and his exploits as a Capt find mention in Wikipedia. This man will forever remain as one of the Indian Army’s All Time Greats.

Here follow the views of Inder Gill, who made similar points on the set piece armored offensive across a ditch cum bund, DCB obstacle.

These are his views on the first night of the set piece offensive by the armored division across  a prepared and held obstacle. These are his written words in Demi Official Letters to his Corps Commanders.

“We should always keep an ‘open mind’ – specially with regard to the offensive task.

‘At present we seemed to have closed our minds to any other option and all we seem to be obsessed with is a one night affair.

‘For God’s sake think of other options – two nights, a week, a month or something totally different. Learn from history – they win who do what was never thought of.

‘Doing everything n one night restricts and limits time for all the various needed activities. The result is very tight timings for all needed tasks like securing home bank, breeching minefields, establishing bridge head, bridging, induction and breakout.

Should any one thing go awry, the whole operation will unhinge, fall in pieces and the result will be disaster. It will take a long while to pick up the pieces.

Having tight timings with no alternate plans is dangerous. Should any timing go awry then the whole thing is jeopardized and no one can afford such a scenerio.

Tight timings make the risk of failure very high. We should  always keep our minds open and consider all alternatives. We should never ever close our minds. No fixations ever.

The earthy practical sense of Inder Gill was displayed when I heard him take to task a top level highly rated professional. It was during the ’76 Corps Exercise when Brig Amarjit of JAK LI, the  highly rated officer whose brigade was occupying a defended sector in the Exercise. Read on.

Gen Inder Gill accompanied by Zorru Bakshi flew down to hear the brigadiers briefing. For 45 mins the brigadier held everyone in thrall with a flawless briefing.

Once it was over, I doubted if there could be any questions but Gen Inder asked, “Zorru, do you have any questions?” When Zorru answered No Sir, Inder went on, “Well, I have a few. Amarjit do you have any water points?”

It was the one thing that had not been mentioned and the Brigadier apologized and asked his Q staff officer to show them but Inder went on, “I am not trying to catch you. What I am saying is that you have at least four water points and also a number of reserved demolitions and all these are bing manned by engineer personnel.

So, there are very few engineers left to prepare the engineer company localities – the main, alternate and temporary – so prominently marked on yur map. So these positions can not in reality be prepared in the given time frame.

“What I am saying is that one must be practical. Similarly, all those antitank arcs of fire displayed render your position unpenetrable. But this is not the case because on the ground the whole thing is entirely different. So,  look into the practical side because that is what matters in war. Thank you”.

Thank God that Inder was DGMO in charge of operations during the Bangladesh war, as much of the credit for  its success belongs to this practical, wholly regimental and earthy officer with loads of good sense and character, matched only by Sam Manekshaw!.

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Jesus’ – Sermon on the Mount …

Posted on June 3, 2010. Filed under: Eloquence, The Good Book |

First. Jesus the Speaker  from TR Glover’s, ‘The Conflict of Religions in the Early Roman Empire’.

“What stamps the language of Jesus is its delicate ease, implying a sensibility to every real aspect of the matter in hand – a sense of mastery and peace’.

“Men marvelled at the charm of his words. The homely parable may in other hands be coarse enough, but the parables of Jesus have a quality about them after all these years that leaves one certain that he smiled as he spoke them’.

At the cost of a little study of human character and close reading of the synoptists and some careful imagination, it is possible to see him as he spoke – the flash of the eye, the smile on the lip, the gesture of the hand, all the natural expression of himself and his thought that a man unconsciously gives in speaking, when he has forgotten himself in his matter and his hearer – his physiognamy, in fact’.

“We realize very soon his complete mastery of various aspects of what he says. That he realizes every implication of his words is less likely, for there is a spontaneity about them – they are out of the abundance of his heart; the form is not studied; they are for the man and the moment. But they imply the speaker and his whole relationship to God and man – they cannot help implying this, and that is their charm. Living words, flashed out on the spur of the moment from the depths of him, they are the man’.

“It was not idly that the early Church used to say, ‘Remember the words of the Lord Jesus’. On any showing it is of importance to learn the mind of one whose speech is so full of life, and it is happily possible to do this from even the small collection we possess of his recorded sayings”.

Randomly selected quotes from Jesus’,  ‘Sermon on the Mount’.

“Blessed are the meek in spirit, for they shall inherit the earth. Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.

He maketh his Sun to shine on the evil and on the good and sendeth rain on the just and the unjust.

Behold the fowls of the air; they do not sow, and neither do they reap, nor gather into barns, yet your Heavenly Father feedeth them.

Our Father! Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our debts; lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.

It was said by them of old times, “Thou shall not commit adultery”; but I say unto you, “Whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her, hath committed adultery with her already in his heart”.

Take heed that you do not your alms hefore men. When thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth, that thy alms may be in secret. And thy Heavenly Father shall reward thee openly.

Enter ye in the strait gate, for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leadeth unto destruction, Strait is the gate and narrow is the way that leads unto life”.

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Moses and the Ten Commandments …

Posted on June 3, 2010. Filed under: Great Writing, Guide Posts, Personalities |

Moses, the Great Law Giver, probably lived in the 13th Century BC. As per the Bible the Lord God gave the Jews the Ten Commandments through his mouth.  

The first couple Commandments direct the Israelites not to have any other Gods and not to make graven images of the Lord or worship anything else/other. And they were not to take the name of the Lord in vain.

They were to keep the Sabbath Day for rest after six days of labour. And they were to, “Honor thy father and honor thy mother”.

They were commanded not to kill. Likewise they were directed not to commit adultery, nor to steal.

They were told that they could not bear false witness against their neighbour. Neither could they desire their neighbours wife or covet his house, servant or his ox or ass or anything that was their neighbours.

Then in Twenty One Chapters of the Bible, Moses set forth their Law.

 

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