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Book Review: On Philosophising, Philosophers, Philosophy and New Vistas in Applied Philosophy, by Dr. Sharmila Jayant Virkar

A little bit of context before you begin reading this book review. I have recently enrolled for an MA in Philosophy at the University of Mumbai. Philosophy is something I have been getting interested in, over the past few years, as those of you who have been reading my blogs and Instagram posts would know. During the pandemic, I thought long and hard about what I wanted to do next, and this is what I eventually came up with. It has been a challenge, getting back into academics as a student at this age, especially in a subject I have no academic background in. However, it has also been very exciting, especially thanks to my wonderful classmates (who, surprisingly, are of all age-groups, including some quite near my own) and my teachers, who have been very supportive and understanding. How well I will do is something that remains to be seen, but so far, I am enjoying this new journey and look forward to where it leads. Now that you know the background , you probably get an idea of how

Random Thoughts from school


School is a place where kids go to learn. School is also a place where parents get together and discuss the latest happenings. I am rarely part of such discussions, since I can’t talk on anything related to clothes, jewelry, cooking or even the difficulty of finding full time housemaids! However, on my latest visit to the school, I found myself at the centre of a group of women, all talking earnestly about the ‘topic of the season’ – vacations! Almost every family had been out somewhere or the other – while some had simply been visiting their parents and grandparents, there were those like us who had roamed over India, and then there were those who had been to Europe or China. This was probably the only topic which could induce me to listen, and some of these women knew that I wrote a travel blog, so they headed over to share their travel experiences with me.


Much as I enjoy listening to travel stories, there is just so much I can stomach about the difficulty of finding good food (read ‘food tasting like that made at home’) in China, and I was fast losing my patience, and itching to get away. And then one of the women told us how they had lost their travellers cheques and another pitched in with a story of how someone had lost all their money while travelling. Soon, the discussion turned gory and it was amazing to hear how many of these women had relatives or friends who had undergone some terrible experiences due to ill health or theft while abroad! Soon, they seemed to run out of stories, but come to a consensus that those who were carrying travel insurance were the lucky ones. Thankfully, the teacher interrupted us at this point and I didn’t have to hear anything more. However, the talk did make me think about how people going abroad were advised to carry travel insurance. But how many of us would even consider travel insurance while travelling in India. I certainly hadn’t thought about it earlier. Have you?? Have there been any circumstances under which you would have wished you had insured yourself while travelling in India? I haven’t so far, but I would love to hear your thoughts.


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