Those Who influenced me – Part 2

Hi All,

I know, I would have written this post long back. But, time didn’t permitted me from last few weeks because of my work. This weekend I spent lot of time reading blogs and watching movies.

Here we go….. with the continuation of my previous post “Those who influenced me”.

Brad Pitt & Angelina Jolie:

I (may be every one) Know Angelina as a world’s sexiest celebrity. And Brad as her husband, the hero of some of the hit movies of Hollywood.  And this couple, I know them as  the hottest couple of Hollywood.  I never realized that there could be a such a good background for a this couple.

As a team, actors Brad Pitt, 44, and Angelina Jolie, 32, have served as our goodwill ambassadors worldwide. They brought help to Pakistan in 2005, after a catastrophic earthquake killed tens of thousands of people and left millions homeless. They have tended to the poor and sick in Africa. And they’ve raised global awareness—and contributed $1 million of their own money—for the victims of atrocities in Darfur. Brad co-founded Not on Our Watch, an organization set up to focus global attention on Darfur and other hot spots.

In the U.S., Brad and Angelina didn’t just talk about, or even just throw money at, the tragic fallout from Hurricane Katrina. They actually moved to New Orleans and have set about trying to make right what so many have made wrong. Brad established a project to finance and build 150 new homes in the Ninth Ward.

Angelina has worked tirelessly through the United Nations on behalf of refugees around the world, touring border camps in Africa, Asia and Latin America and lobbying on Capitol Hill. The couple cares for three adopted children, from Cambodia, Ethiopia and Vietnam, in addition to their biological daughter.

Oscar Pistorious:

Some time back, I got a forward email to my office id. That mail was very inspirational and I there was also a picture of a George W Bush jogging with a guy who has both of this legs disabled. Initially i thought that it is some kind of photoshop trick (which i always experiment on) and left it unread.

But, after reading about Oscar Pistorious, 21, I could recall the mail which I read long time back. I promise you…..He is not a normal guy. He has got lot of determination and confidence  about his decision and yes. He made a difference.

After reading the following two paragraphs you will say….

“Disability, is no more a barrier to achieve the heights of success in your life”.

When Oscar Pistorius’ lower legs were amputated at age 1, few would have banked on this South African challenging world-class sprinters. At 20, when he began to close in on an Olympic-qualifying time for the 400 m, experts posited that his times were so good, he must have been getting an un-fair advantage from his bladelike prosthetics. When he set his sights on the Olympic Games in Beijing, the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) ruled he couldn’t compete against able-bodied athletes. An IAAF-initiated study found that more energy is returned to Pistorius’ upper legs from his blades than from ankles and calf muscles and that he uses less oxygen.

Pistorius, 21, is appealing, on the basis of studies with differing results. It was only recently that living with prosthetic legs was seen as a huge impediment, but he has turned this perception upside down. He’s on the cusp of a paradigm shift in which disability becomes ability, disadvantage becomes advantage. Yet we mustn’t lose sight of what makes an athlete great. It’s too easy to credit Pistorius’ success to technology. Through birth or circumstance, some are given certain gifts, but it’s what one does with those gifts, the hours devoted to training, the desire to be the best, that is at the true heart of a champion.

Erik Weihenmayer:

Even though he is not one of “Time 100 2008”, I just couldn’t shut my mouth speakning about this guys I would like to change the phrase that I have mentioned in my previous post. Here it goes.

“Disability, is no more a barrier to reach the Pinnacle of success”.

And for Erik, that pinnacle is Mount Everest. Can you believe that a blind person was able to climb the world’s highest mountain?  Yeah…Eric did it.

Eric Weihenmayer, 33, is the first blind person to reach the summit of Mount Everest. He also completed the seven summits in september 2002. His complete story was covered in the Time Article titled Blind to Failure.

Eric Says …….

When I was learning how to climb mountains as a blind person, I had a lot of encouragement from experts. But after I summited Mount Everest, these people weren’t ready to accept what I had done at face value. Some said I must have cheated; one even claimed I had an unfair advantage: “I’d climb Mount Everest too if I couldn’t see how far I had to fall.”

Its time to go to sleep……Time is 2.18 AM (very late in the night).

I may have to realease Part 3 of this series..

Untill then,


Durga Prasad.


Those who influenced me – Part 1

Hello Guys,

As promised in my previous post, I am back with an interesting post. This post is about few personalities in this world that influenced millions of people like me. The source of this post will be TIME 100 Influential people of 2008. Reading the TIME Magazine has become by favorite part time of recent days and I am almost addicted to this magazine. For those who are already the frequent readers of TIME magazine, please treat this as my running notes for a session on TIME 100 of 2008.

When I just had a glance at the 100 people that are listed in this magazine, I realize that i knew very few of them. I really felt ashamed that I didn’t know much about these great people. I will talk about few people whose life and achievements are really awesome and impressed me a lot.

Dalai Lama:

Dalai Lama, 72 of tibet is known for this non-violent fight against china to free the TIBET from their hand. He is the one who is following the Gandhian path to get this done.

China’s rulers aren’t like the British masters of colonial India, and the Dalai Lama’s Gandhiesque nonviolent struggle won’t give them twinges of conscience, leading to Tibet’s freedom. If anything, Beijing has grown more ruthless in suppressing Tibetan aspirations, as we’ve seen this Olympic year. And yet he has found a way to think kindly of those who oppress his people and vilify his name. I found him unwilling to show any harshness.

He said , “I don’t dislike the Chinese, only their actions”.

This one sentence shows his kindness to this world and that has created in me a lot of respect towards him.

Barak Obama:

Heard a lot of this guy in the recent times as he was one of the persons, who was running as a Presidential candidate along with Hillay Clinton. Also as per The Nostradamus Code, this is guy is going to rule U.S.A and will also be a key for the initiation of World war III.

Barack, 46, has already changed American politics. We often hear about the size of the crowds he attracts, as a measure of the excitement about his candidacy. It’s the variety of the crowd that is the real phenomenon: little kids who sit on the floor in front of the podium, and the 101-year-old gentleman who stood up from his wheelchair in Iowa and said, “I’m with him too.” Farmers in overalls next to people in business suits. Every race, religion and creed. Every political party and no party at all.

You can feel their excitement about being in Barack’s presence—and about being in the presence of one another. They glimpse for a minute what it might be like to find common cause across differences. That’s how Barack has changed politics.

He also was the author of many best selling books of America. Check out this link for all of his books.

Hillary Clinton:

I know Hillary as just another Presidential candidate running in competition to Obama. Other than that I don’t know much about her except some news regarding U.S election which I rarely watch in the television. But there is alot to know about this Presidential lady.

She really has done a lot to the U.S’s children. Rob Reiner, a noted political activist, anchor, director and producer, says

There is no more courageous, passionate and committed fighter for our nation’s children.

Hillary, 60, has worked her whole life to improve the lives of America’s children. She knows that through quality health care and a strong education system America’s children will be prepared to succeed in tomorrow’s jobs.

Jacob Zuma:

Jacob Zuma, the president of African national congress, and Thabo Mbeki were once friends and allies, but they fell out around 2002, allegedly because Mbeki, South Africa’s inscrutable President, suspected that Zuma was plotting to replace him.

The power struggle that ensued was a peculiar affair, its very existence denied by the ruling African National Congress (ANC). When Zuma was dismissed from the deputy presidency and later charged with corruption and rape, his followers were convinced that their man was the victim of an Mbeki-inspired vendetta. (He was acquitted of the rape charges; the corruption charges are still being investigated.)

The controversies didn’t hurt Zuma, 66, an unabashed populist who revels in traditional African polygamy—he has several wives—and whose massive rallies feature the Zulu anthem Bring Me My Machine Gun. His pro-poor rhetoric resonates with many ordinary South Africans who have not benefited from Mbeki’s business-friendly policies. That explains how he easily trounced Mbeki in an internal vote last fall to become the ANC’s chairman, a victory that has put him on track to win South Africa’s presidency next year. Many party elders are horrified that such a man should step into shoes once occupied by Nelson Mandela, but they can’t deny that he has achieved an African rarity: the peaceful overthrow of a powerful incumbent.

Sonia Gandhi:

When I first had a look at the front page of TIME 100, I was very curious to search for an Indian (I am very patriotic by the way) in the list of 100. To my luck, I was able to find few in that list.

Sonia Gandhi, 61, President of Indian national congress is one of them. I never expected that an italian lady can take the Indian politics in to her hand and drive it to the heights of success.

Sonia Gandhi came to India with his husband Rajiv Gandhi (Late), dynamic and very successful Politician of India. The couple has enjoyed their years of bliss, until the prince is obliged, in painful circumstances, to take over the kingdom and discovers the harsh realities of ruling a turbulent realm, culminating in the unspeakable tragedy of his murder.The queen retreats into silence and mourning until the insistent supplications of her courtiers compel her to emerge and once again take the destiny of the kingdom into her hands.

For the queen, offered the crown on a brocade cushion, turns it down. She prefers to remain behind the throne, walking with the peasantry, rallying the people but leaving power in the hands of her gray-haired viziers. She was always behind the scenes acting as a president of Indian National Congress, and was taking part in making the crucial decisions about the country. The story of Sonia Gandhi, 61, is remarkable at every level, and the fairy-tale metaphor barely begins to scratch the surface of its extraordinariness.

To be continued… my Part 2,

Durga Prasad