Sultan & Mermaid Queen: Surprising Asian People, Places and Things that go Bump in the Night
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The Sultan and the Mermaid Queen is a collection of essays and articles which describe rarely written-about Asian people, places and events.
community management one way to stop destruction PRAYER FLAGS OVER RIO Should we trust the eco-bureaucrats or the farmer in Bhutan for eco-solutions? ENVIRONMENTAL SERVICES IN TINKERBELLS’S SACRED FOREST Dragonflies point the way to eco-cultural conservation WE BETTER COLLECT THE BIRDS’ NESTS BEFORE THE OUTSIDERS GET HERE In isolated eastern Indonesia, the big question is who owns the resources DIVERS IN INDONESIA DO IT DEEPER, THEN DIE Chinese middle-men put huge pressure on nature and
and wear attractive clothes and speak several languages and we don’t want to know anything about what our rural forefathers were doing just a few generations ago.” So I set out to seek tiger magicians, just as I’ve set out to seek men in west Java who can turn themselves into thieving pigs, and a tribe of giant white cannibals in Halmahera. Each time I get to the provincial capital and people will roughly point in the direction of the mountains. I’ll get to the mountains, where the villages
support what is real and true, avoid what is bad!” Chapter 2 SPIRITUAL LEADERS HELP TO RE-GREEN KRISHNA’S BIRTHPLACE Sadhus combine religion and pragmatism VRINDAVAN, India When I visited Vrindavan in north India, birthplace of Lord Krishna and site of a city-wide re-greening effort, I was asked if I wanted to plant a tree. I arrived at the designated site and found that the hole had already been dug. For me, digging my own hole and getting dirty is part of the ritual, a point I
active. The world obviously needs food, and lots of it. Several years ago IRRI introduced a “super rice” that was predicted to increase rice yields by 25–50 percent. A new variety called IR72 is engineered with a gene called XA21 to resist the common rice disease bacterial blight (Xanthomonas oryzae). Other breeders have genetically-engineered rice that produces beta-carotone, the precursor of vitamin A. It is hoped that this variety, dubbed ‘golden rice’ because of its yellow colour, will
passage is the only mention of the spirit world in The Malay Archipelago. Odd, because Wallace was traveling in a land inhabited by people who acknowledged that they co-habited with spirits, and enhanced by the fact that Wallace himself was intrigued by psychic phenomena. Wallace learned mesmerism (hypnotism) in 1844, ten years before leaving for Asia, and defensively said of his controversial talent: My first great lesson in the inquiry into these obscure fields of knowledge, [was] never to