Category Archives: Women

An Indian ode: Dear Girl From Pakistan

An Indian ode: Dear Girl From Pakistan

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Dear Girl from Pakistan,
Look, I’m not here to start a fight.
I just wanted to say Hi!
I know it has taken me 69 long years but I hope it’s not too late for me to say,
Forget about what’s in the news
Tell me, how was your day?

Watch this ode by an Indian girl: ‘Dear girl from Pakistan, I hope it’s not too late to say this…’

Dehli Poetry Slam YouTube channel last month has released a heart-touching poem ‘Dear Girl from Pakistan!’ by Delhi-based softhearted poet Shivani Gupta.

Her motions and thought provoking monologue in the slam poem speaks to a Pakistani common girl, Shivani Gupta moves the hearts of every Pakistani and Indian soul by throwing light on the relationship between the two historic rivals of Asia. Her attempt to interact and communicate with a neighboring strange girl in Pakistan is very loud and very deep towards people of nations separated on the basis of Two-Nation Theory in 1947, but shares the similar social bond.

Who is Shivani Gupta?

A psychologist by profession, Gupta got inspired by slam poetry when she began watching videos of slam poetry performances on YouTube two years ago. But it was only until a year ago that she performed in public at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in August 2015 for very the first time. From thereon, the twenty-two year old psychologist initiated an open mic night in Chennai, India.

With a colorful background in psychology, research, dance, choreography and theater, Gupta states that she was inspired to pen her poem in Edinburgh when she was hanging out with new friends from different backgrounds and nationalities one evening after a spoken-word event.

An Indian ode: Dear Girl From Pakistan

"Dear Girl from Pakistan,
Namaste. Adab. Asamalequm.
Did I not say it right?
Look, I’m not here to start a fight.
I just wanted to say Hi!
How are you?
I know nothing about you
Except that all we’re separated by is a border not created by us
A bus goes from my country to yours
That’s how close we are
A bus goes from my country to yours
And that's how far
I’ve seen you through the words of Khaled Hosseni and Salman Rushdee
Are you anything like me?
Do you think we’re enemies?
Believe me when I tell you that word doesn’t exist in my dictionary
And if it did, it would have nothing to do with your country.
Do you listen to songs and wish that they were the sound track to your life too?
And your favorite movie be your story, I know I do!
You know my favorite film? The inspirational one about patriotism.
Do your eyes dream dreams as unfathomable as mine?
Do you ever think of what it would be like to cross over and come to my side?
I'm sorry
I am sorry that without so much as a second thought
I say the words your country and my side
And all that’s left that is ours is a common divide.
I am sorry that even my pronouns are possessive,
Obsessive with a need to demarcate our partition I have a confession.
I wish I knew you better
What’s does the world look like from your eyes?
Did you also play eye spy as a child?
What did you see?
Maybe you saw the reflection of a girl who was a lot like me.
I am sorry because all I have to give you is an apology.
Not even a real conversation.
Because until now I was so worried about our gap of communication.
Treating you, unlike the long lost cousin that you are
But as someone I wouldn’t want to know even from afar.
I am sorry
I didn't mean it
Dear girl from Pakistan!
I know it has taken me 69 long years but I hope it’s not too late for me to say
Forget about what’s in the news

Tell me, how was your day?"

− Shivani Gupta


Teenage and Adult brains in the Digital World

Teenage and Adult brains in the Digital World

By | Arts & Culture, Career, Digital Marketing, Education, Health & Fitness, How To, Learning, Lifestyle, Men, Science, Social Media, Technology, Trainings, Women | No Comments

Do teenage or adults have more efficient brains when it comes to technology?

When it comes to technology, adults won’t be able to keep up with their children. It took the radio 38 years to reach 50 million people, but it took 20 for the phone and 13 for the television. In contrast, it took Facebook 3.6 years and Twitter didn’t even need that much time — in fact, it took Google Plus 88 days.

Over the last 15 years, digital communication has ushered in more changes than the printing press did in 1570. And the standout early adopters in this world are teenagers, whose brains appear to have an extraordinary capacity to adapt to the world around them, according to Dr Jay Giedd, an adolescent brain expert.

We are now discovering that, as a species, our brains during the teenage years are still flexible and capable of adapting. Having a more flexible brain means that certain parts of it, such as impulse control and the ability to make long-term decisions haven’t developed yet — which may also explain why, unlike some of our ancestors, we spend an extended period living under the protection of our parents rather than leaving home at the age of 12 or 13. This also means that the adolescent brain can adapt to new technology, allowing teenagers to keep up with the accelerating pace of digital technology and giving them a multitasking advantage.

In the US, teenagers are spending 8.5 hours using computers, mobiles and other devices to learn, interact and play. This jumps to 11.5 if you take into account all of the multi-tasking that goes on, such as talking on the phone while you’re watching TV. Australian teenagers were found to be spending an average of 7 hours, 38 minutes using these devices in 2009.

As they stare at these screens, they’re taking in and sifting through an incredible amount of information; in the past, they would have been working out how to do math’s or thinking about English literature. “The skills that the brain needs to be good at are shifting,” says Geidd. “The skill has become how to deal with large amounts of information. More and more of our time are spent with 1s and 0s.”teenage-and-adult-brains-in-the-digital-world

Socializing in a digital world

There are concerns as to how social media is affecting the way in which the brain learns to socialize, as one of the most important skills that we learn as children is how to make friends and interact with people around you. Geidd says that from a biology standpoint, a lot of what goes on inside our brains is social. “A lot of the brain changes are sort of set up to develop these social skills.”

These interactions are now being changed by technology — you could have hundreds of friends, all of whom are real people that you interact with — and scientists aren’t sure whether we’ll be able to develop the same skills using Facebook.

Another concern comes from the online content that can be accessed, including violent video games, and how this will affect our responses to violence in real life. Surprisingly, Geid suggests that violence levels in the US are low at the moment, as are the rates of teenage pregnancy and sexual diseases — and this is not what the scientist were expecting. While he doesn’t condone the violent video games, Geid says they could be giving teenagers a safer way to work through the various hormonal impulses that they’re experiencing. It definitely needs more examination, anyway.

There is another possible advantage of the growing digital trend: YouTube indicates that teenagers all over the world are watching the same clips and laughing at the same jokes, indicating that they are more global minded than their predecessors. Sharing the same jokes could possibly go a long way to breaking down some of the prejudices out there.

“Almost everything that I read and hear about teens was mostly bad,” Geid says. “Even though there are some aspects of that, it’s mostly positive.”

They may be obsessed with texting their friends and posting updates on Facebook, but teenagers today are probably going to have access to technology and hence social and educational opportunities that anyone with a less flexible brain might have trouble imagining. However, there is a cut off and by the age of 30, our brains become more set in their ways, making it harder for us to adapt and cope with new technologies.

Do teenage or adults have more efficient brains when it comes to technology?

This post originally appeared in the September 13, 2012 edition of Science Illustrated.