Here. An excerpt:
"COWEN:If I’m trying to model the Raj Chetty production function and I described it as such, it’s a multiplicative model, so there is getting the data, but that’s not the key point.
CHETTY: That’s not the key point.
COWEN: There’s then some conceptual advance that allows you to see the data can test something that other people hadn’t seen, and then there are numerous stages of execution, and then there’s also recruiting and managing the team. There’s a whole bunch of different steps, and you’re trying to do well at each of them and very few other people can do well at each and every one, and maybe that’s the way to think about your moat. Is that fair to say?
CHETTY: That is our strategy. I think the other thing that’s extremely important is, we spend a lot of time on trying to achieve clarity. There are ways to write papers in economics that are more accessible to the public and thereby have greater impact, and there are ways to write papers that are more technically oriented and narrow the set of readers."
P.S. I thought it was me who gave Raj his first computer. He seems to have forgotten. From an interview with his father, it was a Sinclair and he was three at that time.
The poem 'Chopping Onions' is making rounds and drawing praise from other relatively privileged and successful people. It is one of the poems here. Recitation around 21:00 Here, may give an idea of the groups interested in such things. The choice for the less privileged "Cut to the the 21st century. The latest census figures list only 32.8 per cent women formally as primary workers in the agricultural sector, in contrast to 81.1 per cent men. But the undeniable fact remains that India’s agricultural industry, which employs 80 to 100 million women, cannot survive without their labour. From preparing the land, selecting seeds, preparing and sowing to transplanting the seedlings, applying manure/fertilisers/pesticides and then harvesting, winnowing and threshing, women work harder and longer than male farmers.
Maintaining the ancillary branches in this sector, like animal husbandry, fisheries and vegetable cultivation, depends almost solely on women. So where are these women while the male farmers and their kakas furiously debate the future of farming, loans, subsidies and irrigation matters? Men get more than their share of visibility on TV, in governmental publicity material and within the banking sectors but millions of women farmers have no spokesperson from their ranks." from
“THE DEVELOPMENT EFFECTS OF THE EXTRACTIVE COLONIAL ECONOMY,” M. DELL & B. OLKEN: "Are you surprised by these results? They fascinate me, honestly. Think through the logic: forced labor (in the surrounding villages) and extractive capital (rail and factories built solely to export a crop in little use domestically) both have positive long-run local effects! They do so by affecting institutions – whether villages have the ability to produce public goods like education – and by affecting incentives – the production of capital used up- and downstream. One can easily imagine cases where forced labor and extractive capital have negative long-run effects, and we have great papers by Daron Acemoglu, Nathan Nunn, Sara Lowes and others on precisely this point. But it is also very easy for societies to get trapped in bad path dependent equilibria, for which outside intervention, even ethically shameful ones, can (perhaps inadvertently) cause useful shifts in incentives and institutions!" Another quote "But it is also very easy for societies to get trapped in bad path dependent equilibria, for which outside intervention, even ethically shameful ones, can (perhaps inadvertently) cause useful shifts in incentives and institutions! "
Abstract: This paper challenges conventional views of violent religious extremism,
particularly those that emphasize militant theology. We offer an alternative analysis that
helps explain the persistent demand for religion, the different types of religious that
naturally arise, and the special attributes of the “sectarian” type. Sects are adept at
producing club goods – both spiritual and material. Where governments and economies
function poorly, sects often become major suppliers of social services, political action,
and coercive force. Their success as providers is much more due to the advantages of
their organizational structure than it is to their theology. Religious militancy is most
effectively controlled through a combination of policies that raise the direct costs of
violence, foster religious competition, improve social services, and encourage private
A commenter says "Razib, I am pleased to see that you have kept your options open. You seem to change your options as soon as new evidence is placed before you. I have seen you flip flopping depending on the strength of the evidence, at that particular moment in time . This shows an agile and very less biased mind without some pre-determined notions ruling your judgement. " from Indian emetics, the never-ending argument: "Ultimately the final story will be more complex than we can imagine. R1a is too widespread to be explained by a simple Indo-Aryan migration in my opinion. But we can’t get to these genuine conundrums if we keep having to rebut ideologically motivated salvos."
Another Democracy leads to Islamism:
"Eric Kauffman argues in Shall the Religious Inherit the Earth? that modernization, economic development, and the expansion of political representation, integrates conservative rural populations and uplifts them all the while transforming the norms of urban areas.In other words, the rural bazar melds with the urban shopping mall, and both are changed. The 1979 revolution in Iran and its aftermath has been argued to be a victory of the bazar over the Western oriented gentry. In India the rise of Hindu nationalism is an assertion of the self-confidence of sub-elites from the “cow belt” who arose to challenge the Western oriented ruling class that had dominated since the early 20th century."
Society Is Too Complicated to Have a President, Complex Mathematics Suggest
"Most famously, the institute's director, Yaneer Bar-Yam, predicted the Arab Spring several weeks before it happened. He found that seemingly unrelated policy decisions—ethanol subsidies in the US and the deregulation of commodity markets worldwide—led to skyrocketing food prices in 2008 and 2011. It turns out that there is a very neat correlation between the United Nations food price index and unrest and rioting worldwide that no one but Bar-Yam had picked up...... "We were raised to believe that democracy, and even the democracy that we have, is a system that has somehow inherent good to it," he added. But it's not just democracy that fails. "Hierarchical organizations are failing in the response to decision-making challenges. And this is true whether we're talking about dictatorships, or communism that had very centralized control processes, and for representative democracies today. Representative democracies still focus power in one or few individuals. And that concentration of control and decision-making makes those systems ineffective." ... Bar-Yam proposes a more laterally-organized system of governance in which tons of small teams specialize in certain policies, and then those teams work together to ultimately make decisions." A more recent version here.
I smoked cannabis for an Year around 1970. But I did not like the after taste and stopped after an Year. May be I should start again. One effect that I remember well is that it slowed down time and listening to music was wonderful, one seemed to hear every note. Cannabis Reverses Aging Processes in the Brain
"Like any other organ, our brain ages. As a result, cognitive ability also decreases with increasing age. This can be noticed, for instance, in that it becomes more difficult to learn new things or devote attention to several things at the same time. This process is normal, but can also promote dementia. Researchers have long been looking for ways to slow down or even reverse this process.
Scientists at the University of Bonn and The Hebrew University of Jerusalem (Israel) have now achieved this in mice. These animals have a relatively short life expectancy in nature and display pronounced cognitive deficits even at twelve months of age. The researchers administered a small quantity of THC, the active ingredient in the hemp plant (cannabis), to mice aged two, twelve and 18 months over a period of four weeks."
The Telugu version was possibly the first film of Savitri's and the first line spoken by her seems to be "Nuvvu achu hero Nageswara Rao la vunnave" from Samsaram 1950 M.L. Narasimham.
Namit AroraAli, that's a good question. But even if this survey is correct, I’m not so sure that India is moving in the opposite direction. ;-) Civic sense was always terribly weak in India, given its strong historical investment in things like respect for authority, hierarchy, endogamy, nepotism, social conformity, religious taboos, family honor, etc. Add to this its very weak sense of the individual and his/her fundamental equal rights and dignity. In fact, the substrate is still quite feudal, esp. in the north. But having said that, I think it's likely that *on the whole*, Indians have more civic sense now than in the past, except it’s clearly far from enough for this day and age. They're simply coming from a much worse place, and most are still too ill-equipped to be good citizens able to do their part to make a decent modern society.
India’s huge diversity and syncretic culture were once natural bulwarks against fascism / majoritarianism but diversity and syncretism have eroded as new axes of identity mobilization have emerged (nation; a more aggressive Hinduism; etc.). Today’s mass communication, higher per capita incomes (freeing more people from basic struggles to focus on things larger than themselves), a truly shoddy school system severely lacking in critical thinking or civic education, unscrupulous demagogues, and the rise of unmet aspirations and competitive stresses of modern life have transformed Indian society (a million youth enter the job market every month; jobless growth is a big concern in India right now; many traditional sectors of industry have seen massive job losses)—and all this has made a large section of the youth more vulnerable to becoming part of various ‘banalities of evil’. It doesn't help that the country is now run by artful demagogues and unimaginative technocrats singularly ill-equipped to notice anything amiss.
To your comment right below, I think only a few key Indian leaders and a tiny percentage of citizens stood for a liberal, secular democratic ethos, at least in principle if not always in practice. The masses never had much affinity for a liberal, secular, democratic ethos—that’s very much a product of modernity, to which India is very much a latecomer (modernity is coming on its own slow and imperfect pathways, with all the attendant risks of derailment and massive pain en route; clearly, this is no time to be sanguine).
I visited Sandy ( our neighbour for twenty one years and now in a place for old people) today. She seems to have forgotten her age but knows that she is ninety plus. She remembers much older stuff well and regaled me with stories from the two world wars. The first was when her father went as a soldier to England during the First World War, went to a bank where he had connections and met her mother who was working in the bank. When they came back to Australia men and women were placed in different floors of the ship and could meet only on the deck. Apparently journeys were long and the ship owners did not want too many pregnant women on the ship.
And during the Second World War, her sister's boy friend was shipped off to Middle East. One of his friends offered to take her older sister to pictures. Those days, the tradition was the boy would buy chocolates which they would eat during intermission. Once, they did not come back by midnight, her mother was worried and they phoned the police. The policeman burst out laughing when he heard that a friend of the boy friend took her out and would not take the case seriously. First she thought they went out in his car and that is why the policeman expected them to come back late. But then, she said they came back in a taxi. I asked whether the car broke down and then she was not sure what happened.
And more stories of her cigar smoking and her mother asking not to tell about her smoking to her aunt when she visited England after the Second World War. But Sandy ended up sharing cigars with her uncle who was a representative for some tobacco firm in Holland. Except that Sandy did not really know how to smoke cigars, she only pretended to smoke and did not inhale.
"With corporate money banking heavily on cricket hyper-nationalism, the game is often reduced to war by other means. With cricket stars being elevated to the dubious status of warrior-gods, it’s important that this phenomenon is put in the context of greater society, beyond nationalism and pride. Few do this better than Mashrafe Mortaza, the philosopher-captain-hero of the Bangladesh team.
He says, “I am a cricketer but can I save a life? A doctor can. But no-one claps for the best doctor in the country. Create myths around them. They will save more lives. They are the stars. The labourers are the stars, they build the country. What have we built using cricket? Can we make even a brick using cricket? Does paddy grow on the cricket field? Those who make courtyards using bricks, make things at factories, grow crops in the fields – they are the stars.”" in
Ramarao reminds us some lines of poem of Sri Sri on Swinburne కవీ, నీ గళ గళ న్మంగళ కళా కాహళ హళా హళి లో కలిసిపోతిని; కరిగిపోతిని కానరాకే కదిలిపోతిని I have read very little literary stuff. This poem was not even in my syllabus. It was in my cousin's syllabus and was one of the poems he had to memorisze. But I still remember it అటజని కాంచె భూమిసురు డంబర చుంబి శిరస్సరజ్ఝరీ పటల ముహుర్ముహుర్ లుఠ దభంగ తరంగ మృదంగ నిస్వన స్ఫుట నటనానుకూల పరిఫుల్ల కలాప కలాపి జాలమున్ గటక చరత్కరేణు కర కంపిత సాలము శీతశైలమున్ But according to Nannechoda From The Arrow and the Poem by David Shulman: "An arrow shot by an archer or a poem made by a poet should cut through your heart, jolting the head. If it doesn't, it's no arrow, It's no poem."
"The thorniest, most fought-over question in Indian history is slowly but surely getting answered: did Indo-European language speakers, who called themselves Aryans, stream into India sometime around 2,000 BC – 1,500 BC when the Indus Valley civilisation came to an end, bringing with them Sanskrit and a distinctive set of cultural practices? Genetic research based on an avalanche of new DNA evidence is making scientists around the world converge on an unambiguous answer: yes, they did. ... So far, we have only looked at the migrations of Indo-European language speakers because that has been the most debated and argued about historical event. But one must not lose the bigger picture: R1a lineages form only about 17.5 % of Indian male lineage, and an even smaller percentage of the female lineage. The vast majority of Indians owe their ancestry mostly to people from other migrations, starting with the original Out of Africa migrations of around 55,000 to 65,000 years ago, or the farming-related migrations from West Asia that probably occurred in multiple waves after 10,000 B.C., or the migrations of Austro-Asiatic speakers such as the Munda from East Asia the dating of which is yet to determined, and the migrations of Tibeto-Burman speakers such as the Garo again from east Asia, the dating of which is also yet to be determined." From How genetics is settling the Aryan migration debate by Tony Joseph. P.S. I think that the origins of caste may also be clearer in a few years. Check the second paper (same as above) In this post by Razib Khan.
Why I distrust my comments on social and economic issues. I was in India during the emergency and did not really notice. I was in Delhi during 1984 and the events were just a blip. Too full of my own interests in mathematics and similar things. Now I try to think about other things. But...the only constant seems to be film songs.
"... in the rendition of the history of Indian mathematics, if there is such a thing, there is a bit of a TIFR-centric cosmology, and unless one lived in that multi-verse, they would not know anything about the greats. If others did not partake in that feast, it would only be natural that they cannot remember something that they never knew?" Comments Balasubramanian Ananthanarayanan on Rahul Siddhathan's wall. He is responding to Raghunathan's comment "He left India in 1965 to take up a professorship in Zurich, and, with that, he has been virtually forgotten in this country despite his immense contribution to the organisation and promotion of mathematics (and science) in India during his TIFR years." In Forgotten Genius. KC was an unusual case. He spent only about 15 years (1949-1965) in TIFR. During that time, under his stewardship, TIFR produced mathematicians like M.S.Narasimhan, C.S. Seshadri's, Raghavan Narasimhan, C.P. Ramanujam and others and some of their students like M.S.Raghunathan, S.Ramanan...KC also organised conferences on mathematical education and also hoped that mathematicians after some experience in TIFR would shift to universities. These were successful. The unusual aspects are his personality and achieving so much in such a short time and leaving the institute when it seemed to be a going concern. I had met him a few times in Zurich and had some long conversations with him but I was a beginning research student in 1964 and had only minimal interactions with him there. So most of what I write below is based on gossip amd what I remember of my conversations with him. Firstly he seemed both very attached to India ( he showed his Indian passport in 1975 with his place of birth Masulipatam) and at the same time kept many of the younger mathematician and colleagues at a distance though he seems to have inspired loyalty in many of them. He had taste and style of his own and found many of them uninteresting as persons. In a long conversation during 1975, he told me that mathematicians were like children. He rarely visited his kith and kin in Bapatla where his father worked as a headmaster and retired and where his uncles and nephews resided. As Raghunathan says, he had unusual operating skills and moved with ease and skill among some of the biggest mathematicians of the twentieth century. It seemed to me that his achievement in India is due to an unusual confluence of factors, funding from the government, autonomy, connections that he already made, desire to develop modern mathematics in India and not pushing his own research interests. He also had the luck of many brilliant youngsters channeled by Fr. C.Racine from Madras. By the time the School of Mathematics was going thing, his children were about to leave school I think and he left to take care of their education and family. After that he did not interfere in the schooll's affairs though indirectly he was in contact with some and friendly to those who met him. I vaguely remember him saying, but I am not sure, that there was nothing worse than interfering with what one has built after leaving it. He had a regular mathematical career later on but nothing as spectacular as he achieved during those 15 years in India. I am omitting his earlier influence in Madras and his helping Meenakshisundaram to Princeton and their work together. P.S. Related Parsing the Math in D.D. Kosambi the Polymath
Emmanuel Todd has written about the differences in terms family systems in 'The causes of progress' The theory is that because of the different family systems (asymmetrical and exogamous in the south and north), women have bigger say in the south and that is supposed to be one of the reasons why South is more progressive. There is also table on page 180 describing these briefly. Now some of the economic reasons below: The United States of South India The Protesting Tamil Farmer Pays For The UP Farmer’s Loan Waiver
Apart from this Hindutva seems stronger in the North and the desire to impose Hindi from time to time does not help. May be the division is not inevitable.
The theory is that, over 75 years ago, a reindeer infected with anthrax died and its frozen carcass became trapped under a layer of frozen soil, known as permafrost. There it stayed until a heatwave in the summer of 2016, when the permafrost thawed.
This exposed the reindeer corpse and released infectious anthrax into nearby water and soil, and then into the food supply. More than 2,000 reindeer grazing nearby became infected, which then led to the small number of human cases.
http://www.collectingbooksandmagazines.com/bony.html I generally read about any thing systematically but I think I read all these in the 1960, as well as many by Eric Ambler, Ngaio Marsh,..Though I do not remember much, I remember the descriptions of the outback compelling nc may revisit some of them again. More about Arthur Upfield.
"I would say look at the bills, see if there are errors, question things that don’t look right. One common thing is after surgery, when a nurse or someone comes in and says, “Do you want me to help you walk down the hall?” You say OK, and you see that come up on a bill as a $300 physical therapy charge. Say, “No, that wasn’t physical therapy. All I did was walk down the hall.”" from More Money, More Problems: How Profit Hijacked U.S. Health Care
Who is Emmanuel Todd? From The American Sociolgist: "In this special issue devoted to contemporary French sociology, political scientist Anne Verjus sheds light on the intense controversy that followed the publication of Emmanuel Todd’s Who is Charlie? in the aftermath of the Charlie Hebdo terrorist attacks in Paris (Verjus 2017; Verjus’ defense of Todd is only applicable to Who is Charlie? and should not be extended to his recent communications during the French presidential election). From his own words, Todd’s ambition was no less than to “[take] apart the infernal machinery that leads from a decaying or ‘zombie’ Catholicism to Islamophobia” (Todd 2015, Preface to the English Edition). But before answering the question Who is Charlie? maybe we should first ask, who is Emmanuel Todd?"
"Qanats: Originating in Armenia 2,500 years ago, Qanats have reemerged into the international spotlight as “rational irrigation systems,” says Dr. Ali A. Semsar Yazdi the Director of the newly formed International Centre on Qanat and Historic Hydraulic Structures (ICQHS) in Yazd, Iran. Today in Iran, more than 34,355 of the structures are still functioning. Sophisticated, self-regulating, and structurally sound, Qanat systems were an integral part of Iranian cotton production in the ninth and tenth centuries AD, and have since been found in 35 countries including China, India, Egypt, and even as far westward as Spain and Peru.
Surangams Similar to the technology of quanats is the surangam technology that was in vogue in Dakshin Kannada district of Karnataka and Kasaragod district of Kerala. A Surangam is basically a tunnel dug through a laterite hillock through which water seeps out and into the tunnel. Water is then collected at the end of the tunnel in a storage pit. A surangam is also known as thurangam, thorapu, mala in different parts of Kasaragod. The only cost of the a surangam is the initial cost of digging which was done by local workmen who were familiar with the geology, soil, slope etc. "
Afghanistan: Bullets and Burqas from Al Jazeera
"But in such a conservative country few would have expected that the most enthusiastic new recruits would be women.
Yet that is exactly what seems to be happening in Jowzjan Province, which sits on the border between Afghanistan and Turkmenistan, and is close to Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, where several hundred local women have decided to take up arms against the fighters."
How does executive visits to the White House affect firm prospects? :
"For the record, Donald Trump has already declared that he will not be making White House visitor log public!" Odebrecht inthe aaazon: Comparing responses to corruption in Latin America : "As this summary suggests, the Odebrecht scandal reveals not only the extent of corruption in public contracts and elections in Latin America, but also the widely varying capacity and inclination of different political systems to respond. Stepping back to consider another implication of these developments, we see that many of the funded projects are exactly those that have been the focus of civil society mobilisations in recent years because of their negative socio-environmental and human-rights impacts. The challenges civil society faced seem all the more daunting in light of revelations about the individual and partisan interests behind these projects. This only raises further doubt about what social benefits they actually achieved." "
Trump’s Ally: Saudi Arabia’s drive for Aristocratic Hegemony in the Middle East Juan Cole has the reputation of being an impartial and informed commenter onthe Middle East. This is not my impression. Statements such as "Riyadh feels that the Bush administration deprived them of an ally in the form of the Sunni Saddam Hussein, and replaced him with a pro-Iranian, Shiite dominated Iraq that they fear." seem doubtful to me. Overall, he seems better than many other writers on the topic. In my opinion both Trump and Saudi Arabia with their reckless policies will loose influence which is a good thing.
The article by Ajay Ashraf is here: https://scroll.in/article/838057/why-the-story-of-gandhis-nervous-breakdown-in-1918-and-goat-milk-is-relevant-for-todays-india
A response by Sooraparaju Radhakrishnamoorthy has appeared on Vadrevu Ch Veerabhadrusu's wall.
The response is in Telugu. My response to the comment:
"Anandaswarup GaddeHaving read the article now, I think that the final paragraph is brilliant. I do not know when Gandhi said that. He had the courage to change his opinions and so I am not sure whether it was his final opinion. But he was never able to convince Ambedkar, because Ambedkar felt that thinking with the heart lacked objectivity. But in the author's formulation of the final quote, I think that this problem is to some extent avoided by leaning towards self denial. And the test given is whether it is beneficial in a material sense to the person concerned. This is my reading of the author's take on a tricky problem. I may be wrong." The article in Telugu copied below:
Suraparaju Radhakrishnamoorthy రాసిన అద్భుతమైన వ్యాసం, ఆయన వాల్ మీంచి షేర్ చెయ్యడంలో ఇబ్బంది ఉన్నందువల్ల ఇట్లా కాపీ చేసి పేస్ట్ చేస్తున్నాను. రాధాకృష్ణమూర్తిగారూ, మన్నించగలరు. మిత్రులంతా చదవాలి కదా మరి! ________________________________ సత్యపరిశోధన సూరపరాజు రాధాకృష్ణమూర్తి ________________________________ (ఇది ఫేస్ బుక్ లోని ఒక పోస్టు ఆధారంగా రాసింది.ఆ పోస్టు , scroll.in నుండి ఒక వ్యాసం. ఆ వ్యాసానికి ఆధారం ఒక మనోవైజ్ఞానికవిశ్లేషకుడు, Frank Erickson, రాసిన ఒక పుస్తకం:Gandhi's Truth:the emergence of militant non-violence.ఆ పోస్టు పై నా ఆలోచన కొంత.)
గాంధీ స్వీయచరిత్ర ' నా సత్య పరిశోధనలు' (My Experiments with Truth') అని తెలిసిందే.ఆ పరిశోధనలు ఎటువంటివి? ఒక ఉదాహరణ.
1918 ఆగస్టు లో గాంధీ తీవ్రంగా అస్వస్థుడైనాడు, ఏ పనులూ చేసుకోలేనంతగా నీరసపడిపోయాడు. తనను చావు సమీపిస్తోంది అన్న భావనకూడా కలిగింది, అన్నాడు కూడా దగ్గరివారితో. ఒక డాక్టరు పరీక్షచేసి, 'జబ్బేమీలేదు,నరాలు బలహీనమైనాయి,(nervous breakdown)అంతే', అన్నాడు. ఈ నాటి వైద్యులైతే ఆ స్థితిని depression అనేవాళ్ళు.నిజానికి నరాలనీరసం (nervous breakdown) మానసికవ్యాధి కాదు. అది ఒక తీవ్రమైన అంతస్సంఘర్షణకారణంగా కలిగే ఒక విధమైన శారీరకమానసిక అశక్తత. ఏది చేయదగినదో నిర్ణయించుకోలేక,ఏమీ చేయని స్థితి.గాంధీకి ఈ స్థితి అయిదునెలలు అలాగే కొనసాగింది. ఆయన ఈ మనస్థితికి కారణమేమిటి? నిజంగానే ఆయనకు చావు అంత దగ్గరగా వచ్చిందా, లేక అది కేవలం ఆయన ఊహా? ఈ ప్రశ్నలు పక్కనపెట్టి, అసలు గాంధీకి ఈస్థితి కలగడానికి కారణమైన అంతస్సంఘర్షణ ఏమిటి, అన్నది అర్థం చేసుకోవడం అవసరం.
1917 లో చంపారన్ (బీహార్)లో గాంధీ జరిపిన మొదటి సత్యాగ్రహం ( అప్పటికి 'సత్యాగ్రహం' అన్న పదం వాడుకలోకి రాలేదు) విజయం సాధించింది.బ్రిటిష్ ప్రభుత్వబలం అండగా అక్కడి భూస్వాములు కౌలుదారులను అనేకవిధాలుగా పీడిస్తున్నపుడు, గాంధీ అక్కడి పేదప్రజలకు అండగా నిలబడి, వారిని సంఘటితం చేసి, భూస్వాముల అరాచకత్వాన్ని అరికట్ట గలిగాడు. అక్కడి ప్రజలకు 'బాపు' అయినాడు.'మహాత్ము' డైనాడు.ఈ విజయాన్ని సహించలేని బ్రిటిష్ ప్రభుత్వం గాంధీని అరెస్టు చేసింది. కాని ప్రజల ఆందోళనకారణంగా ఆయనను విడుదల చేయవలసి వచ్చింది. పేదవ్యవసాయదారుల కోరికలను అంగీకరించవలసి వచ్చింది. బ్రిటిష్ ప్రభుత్వం మొదటిసారి ఒక మెట్టు దిగిరావలసి వచ్చింది.
రెండవప్రయోగం,మార్చి 1918, గుజరాత్ లోని ఖైరాలో. ఆ ప్రాంతంలో ఘోరమైన కరువు ఏర్పడింది.
అక్కడి రైతులు గాంధీ నాయకత్వంలో ఒక తీర్మానం చేశారు. ప్రభుత్వానికి కట్టవలసిన పన్నులు ఒక్కపైసాకూడా కట్టము.ప్రభుత్వం ఏ చర్యలు తీసుకున్నా , చివరకు మా పొలాలు ,యితర ఆస్తులు స్వాధీనం చేసుకున్నా మేం ప్రతిఘటించం.' ఈ ప్రతిఘటన కూడా అనూహ్యంగా విజయవంతం అయింది.పన్నులు వసూలు చేయడం ఆపింది ప్రభుత్వం. సత్యాగ్రహం రాజకీయప్రయోజనాలు సాధించుకోడానికి ఒక ఆయుధంగా ఉపయోగించుకోవచ్చును అని జాతికి ప్రకటటించింది ఖైరా ఉద్యమం. కాని ఈ ఖైరాసత్యాగ్రహమే గాంధీకి ఒక అతితీవ్రమైన అంతస్సంఘర్షణకు కారణమైంది.
మొదటిప్రపంచయుద్ధం ముగింపుదశలో, బ్రిటిష్ ప్రభుత్వం భారతదేశంనుండిఅయిదులక్షలసైనికులనుసమీకరించవలెని నిశ్చయించుకుని, 1918 ఏప్రిల్ చివర, ఢిల్లీలో ఒక సమావేశం ఏర్పాటు చేసింది.అప్పటికి ఖైరాసత్యాగ్రహం ముగిసి నెల అయింది. గాంధీ ఆ సమావేశానికి హాజరుకావడమేకాక, అత్యాశ్చర్యకరమైన ఒక హామీ కూడా యిచ్చాడు బ్రిటిష్ ప్రభుత్వానికి.' నేను మీ సైనికసమీకరణాధికారిని అయివుంటే మీ పై మనుషులవర్షం కురిపించి ఉండేవాణ్ణి', అని. జర్మన్ రాక్షసబలానికి భారతీయులను బలి యివ్వడం ఏమి తెలివైననిర్ణయం, అని ప్రశ్నించారు చాలామంది. ఒక వైపు సత్యాగ్రహము, మరొక వైపు యుద్ధనినాదమా, అన్నారు కొందరు. అహింస పరమధర్మంగా నమ్మే గాంధీ తాను తీసుకున్న ఈ నిర్ణయానికి కారణాలు అనేకం చెప్పాడు. కొందరు సత్యాగ్రహాన్ని అసమర్థుల ఆయుధంగా అవహేళన చేస్తున్నారు. వారందరికీ సమాధానాలు చెప్పాడు గాంధీ. అహింస అంటే అవసరమైనచోట యుద్ధం చేయకూడదని కాదు. పైగా, హింస చేయలేనివాడు అహింసను పాటించలేడు. సత్యాగ్రహం దుర్బలుల ఆయుధం కాదు. అత్యంత బలంకలవారు మాత్రమే సత్యాగ్రహానికి సమర్థులు. యుద్ధంలో కంటే సత్యాగ్రహంలో ఎక్కువ ధైర్యం సాహసం అవసరం.ఇది ఆయన సమాధానంలో ఒక భాగం. మరొకటి. మన సైనికుల సహాయంతో బ్రిటన్ యుద్ధంలో విజయం పొందితే, అప్పుడు మన బలం బ్రిటన్ కు తెలుస్తుంది.దానితో స్వాతంత్ర్యపోరాటంలో మన మాటకు బలం పెరుగుతుంది.
కాని యిక్కడే గాంధీకి పెద్ద ఎదురుదెబ్బ తగిలింది.సైన్యంలో చేరండి అన్న పిలుపు వినగానే ఆయనను వినడానికి వచ్చిన వేలమంది,మెలిమెల్లిగా ఎక్కడివారక్కడ జారుకున్నారు. సైన్యంలో చేరడానికి లక్షలు కాదు వందమంది కూడా ముందుకు రాలేదు.నెల క్రితం తనమాటను మన్నించి , తమ ఇళ్ళూ వాకిళ్ళూ పొలాలు అన్ని విధాల ఆస్తులు గడ్డిపరకతో సమానంగా పరిత్యజించినవారు, ఈ నాడు యిలా తన మాటను పాటించకపోవడం ఎలా అర్థం చేసుకోవాలో ఆయనకు తెలియలేదు.జనం తన అహింసావాదాన్ని ఈ యుద్ధప్రతిపాదనతో సమన్వయం చేయలేకనా? కాని గాంధీకి అర్థమయింది.జనం విముఖతకు కారణం వారి అహింసాతత్వంకాదు. చంపడం యిష్టంలేకకాదు, చావడం యిష్టం లేక. సత్యాగ్రహం పిరికివారి మార్గం,బలహీనుల ఆయుధం అన్న విమర్శను యిన్నాళ్ళు తిప్పికొడుతూ వచ్చిన గాంధీ తన సత్యాగ్రహ నిజరూపం చూచి నిర్ఘాంతపోయాడు.ఈ పిరికిజనానికా నేను సత్యాగ్రహం చెబుతున్నాను, అనుకున్నాడు.
ఈ ప్రతిఘాతంనుండీ కోలుకోడానికి పూర్తి అయిదునెలలు పట్టింది.తన రాజకీయజీవితంలో అతి పెద్ద అయోమయస్థితిని, అతితీవ్రమానసికసంఘర్షణను గాంధీ ఎదుర్కొన్నాడు.
ఆ దెబ్బకు విరేచనాలంటుకున్నాయి.నిస్సత్తువ.నిశ్చేష్టత. కోలుకోడానికి పూర్తి అయిదునెలలు పట్టింది.కోలుకోగలనన్న ఆశకూడా వదిలేశాడు.పటేల్ ఒక డాక్టర్ ను తీసుకొచ్చాడు.
డాక్టరు పరీక్షించి, 'ఏ జబ్బూ లేదు.నీరసం.కోలుకోవాలి అంటే పాలు తీసుకోవాలి' అన్నాడు. 'పాలుతాగను. అది నా వ్రతం' అన్నాడు గాంధీ.అక్కడే ఉండిన కస్తూరి బా అన్నది,' ఆవుపాలుకదా తాగననుకున్నావు.మేకపాలు తాగొచ్చు కదా?' అన్నది.గాంధీ సరే అన్నాడు.
మేకపాలు కొద్దిగా ఒంటబట్టినతరువాత గాంధీకి గొప్ప జ్ఞానోదయం అయింది. సైన్యంలో చేరండి అన్న తన పిలుపును జనం ఎందుకు వినిపించుకోలేదో యిప్పుడు అర్థమయింది.తను మేకపాలు తీసుకోడానికి ఎందుకు ఒప్పుకున్నాడో, జనం యుద్ధం చేయడానికి అందుకే ఒప్పుకోలేదు. మృత్యుభయం. పాలు తీసుకోను అన్న తన వ్రతంలో, మేకపాలు లేదు. నిజమే. కాని, వ్రతపరమార్థమదేనా? ఈ సత్యం ఎప్పుడు తెలుస్తుంది? తనదాకా వచ్చినపుడు ఆచరణలో తెలుస్తుంది.సిద్ధాంతం చేసినపుడు కాదు.
అయితే యిపుడేం చేయాలి? చావంటే భయపడేవాడికి సత్యాగ్రహం బోధించలేవు.హింసచేయలేనివాడికి అహింస బోధించలేము అని అనుకున్నాడు.మూగవాడికి మౌనప్రాధాన్యం ఏం చెప్పగలవు? అంటే, అందరికీ తుపాకులిచ్చి, చంపడంలో శిక్షణ యివ్వాలా? అందరినీ శాండోలుగా తయారుచేయాలా? కాదు.హింసాప్రవృత్తిని అహింసామార్గంలో వినియోగించుకోవాలి. వీరందరినీ యుద్ధానికి సన్నద్ధులను చేయాలి.ఎలాంటి యుద్ధం? ఒక పక్షం ఆయుధాలతో యుద్ధం చేస్తుంది.రెండవ పక్షం ఆయుధాలు లేకుండా యుద్ధం చేస్తుంది. ఒక్క శ్రీకృష్ణుడు మాత్రమేకాదు, అర్జునుడుకూడా ఆయుధాలుపట్టకుండా యుద్ధం చేస్తాడు! చరిత్రలో కాదు, సృష్టిలో యింతవరకూ ఎవరూ కనీవినీ ఎరుగని యుద్ధం! ఆ యుద్ధానికే సన్నద్ధం చేశాడు జాతిని.రౌలత్ చట్టాన్నివ్యతిరేకిస్తూ నడిపిన ఉద్యమమే ఆ యుద్ధం. ఆ తరువాత చరిత్ర ఎలా నడిచిందో, గాంధీ ఎలా నడిపించాడో తెలిసిన విషయమే.
ఇక్కడ కొన్ని ప్రశ్నలు. గాంధీ మేకపాలు తీసుకోడానికి ఒప్పుకోడం ధర్మమా అధర్మమా? పదాన్ని గ్రహించి పరమార్థాన్ని వదిలేయడం కాదా? షేక్స్పియర్ నాటకంలో ఆంటోనియో ప్రాణాలు కాపాడడం కోసం పోర్ష్యా వాదం యిటువంటిదే అని మనకు తెలుసు. ' ఒప్పందంలో ఒక పౌండు మాంసమనే ఉంది, రక్తప్రసక్తి లేదు ', అని వాదించి కదా ఆమె షైలాక్ ను ఓడించింది? అది న్యాయమా?
హిరణ్యకశిపుడు వరమడగడంలో వదిలేసిన లా పాయింటు మీదనే కదా స్వామి అతన్ని చీల్చివేశాడు,పోర్ష్యా షైలాక్ వాదాన్ని చీల్చినట్టు? హిరణ్యకశిపుడు అంత సుదీర్ఘము తీవ్రము అయిన తపస్సు చేసి ఆ అలసటలో వరమడగడంలో తడబడ్డాడు,పాపం. అతడు కోరినది పరమాత్మనైన నాకు తెలుసుకదా, అనుకున్నాడా?ఆ లా పాయింటుమీదనే కదా చంపేశాడు ? ఏది న్యాయం ? ఏది అన్యాయం?
ధర్మం నిలపడం కొరకు ఏం చేసినా న్యాయమే, అని సమాధానం చెప్పుకోవచ్చు. కాని అన్ని ప్రశ్నలకు అతిస్పష్టమైన సమాధానాలుంటాయి అనుకోడం కూడా సరి అయిన సమాధానం కాదు.మనిషి బుద్ధికి అందనివి చాలా ఉన్నాయి అని తెలుసుకొని సమాధానపడడం అత్యుత్తమమైన ఎరుక.అయితే, ధర్మసందేహం కలిగినప్పుడు ఏమిటి ఆశ్రయం? బుద్ధి కాదు , హృదయమే ఆశ్రయం.
గాంధీ అదే అన్నాడు: 'ఇది ధర్మమా అధర్మమా అన్న సందేహం కలిగినపుడు, నీవు అడగవలసిన ప్రశ్న ఒకటే.ఈ పని వలన లాభం నాకా లోకానికా? స్వలాభం కొరకైతే అది నిస్సందేహంగా అధర్మమే.'