The song 'Vande Mataram' finds its place in Bankimchandra Chatterjee's novel Anand Math, published in 1882. Unfortunately, today with the brute majority, the scions of cultural nationalism, have the wherewithal to pronounce judgments on what is an 'insult', what is a 'protest' and what is 'nationalism'.
In Syria, they are chewing the hearts of cadavers; on Indian border they are beheading the soldiers and in the US they are exploding the cooker bombs. How could Africa lag behind when all the continents are on fire? So the richest and most advanced country of this continent after South Africa, namely Nigeria got it in the form of 'Boko Haram.'
If I were to say that the highest imaginable pleasure in life is to sacrifice oneself on behalf of others, it would be a joke in today's materialistic world. But for such thinkers as Jan Patocka, Emmanuel Levinas, Jacques Derrida and Jean-Luc Marion, the highest ethical gesture is a sacrificial self-offering which expects no benefit in return. The good is, as a paradigm, is a purified sacrifice, the purest sacrifice imaginable.
Noted Islamic scholar and social scientist Dr Asghar Ali Engineer, 73, passed away in Mumbai on the morning of May 14 at his home in Santa Cruz after a prolonged illness. He is survived by a son and a daughter. He was a leader of the progressive Dawoodi Bohra movement.