On the wooden deck of Tel Aviv’s revamped seafront, Bayit Banamal, the good times roll. Too much faith has taken too much toll. So Israelis play up their swank, secular side. Beaches are bustling and restaurants never empty. There’s nothing Israelis love doing more than spending long hours in cafés, as if a national pastime; making love, chatting up, having fun, and even working from chairs laid outdoors of lovely, petite eateries. Read more

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One would have expected journalist Hasan Suroor to de jure write a book on the UK’s largely immigrant Muslim population. The Hindu’s former London correspondent would have had rich pickings to offer readers on the more febrile issues surrounding a vigorous community of which he was a part for “well over a decade”. Read more

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What price freedom?
What does it take,
to be free?
What is white,
without black.
Day without night? Read more

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“I stared as one – and then the other – of the twin towers of New York’s World Trade Center collapsed. And then I smiled. Yes, despicable as it may sound, my initial reaction was to be remarkably pleased.” Read more

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At an important speech last Thursday since winning a second term, Obama ran into a heckler. Yet again. Read more

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Obama, as is often said, will always be more popular than his policies. It is impossible not to pay attention to what he says; he’s still viewed as the well-meaning guy who broke some real barriers to get where he did. Read more

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No part of Gandhi’s life has escaped scholarly attention in a corpus of a little over a century. Literature on him is abundant. Read more

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An aspect of Israel that goes largely unnoticed is that the fiercest critics of its policies are Israelis themselves. Alice Miller is one such Israeli. Read more

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A piece of cloud, distant and fleeting,
The clouded fate of longings,
Of people in floating weightlessness. Read more

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Then stretch our bones in a still gloomy valley;
Nothing’s so dainty sweet as lovely melancholy.

– John Fletcher (1579-1625)

Malala in Pashtun means melancholy, a word that lies on the border of poetry and philosophy, and means more than just grief. Read more

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