13 September 2014
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"I’ve been overweight all my life. But I broke up with my boyfriend last year, and things weren’t going well, so it got worse and worse. I’d try to diet, but I’d eat something that I wasn’t supposed to. I’d try to go to the gym, but I’d leave early. I was trying to lose weight because I felt like I needed to be a different person. But time has passed now, and I think I’m approaching weight loss with a much more positive attitude. I know that I can be happy without losing weight. Sure, I wish I could wear prettier clothes. I wish I could take a photograph without my face looking like a football. But I know that I’m not my weight. And it’s hard to come to that conclusion. You really have to battle to separate your self-image from your weight. Because weight is always the first thing that somebody sees. Somebody will see you after a few years, and their first comment is about the weight you’ve put on. Maybe I’ve become a better person these last few years. Maybe I’ve been a great friend to someone. Maybe I’ve read a lot of books and become smarter. Maybe the reason I’ve put on weight is that I’ve got a great job that can be stressful and doesn’t leave me time to go to the gym."

(New Delhi, India)

12 September 2014
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"I’ve got to stop being so emotional. If someone is sad, I normally start crying before they do."

(Amritsar, India)

12 September 2014
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"If you could give one piece of advice to a large group of people, what would it be?"
"If you feed your children with food earned from corruption, they will be corrupt. If you feed your children with food earned from honesty, they will be honest."

(Dharamsala, India)

12 September 2014
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"He’s very naughty. He won’t play with his toys. He only plays with his kitchen utensils."

(Amritsar, India)

12 September 2014
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Thanks to all of you who came to the meet-up in Delhi. It went about as well as a spontaneous meet-up could possibly go. Amazingly, we were able to have a pretty organized, calm speech. Until the very end, of course, when we ran from the police. Coolest part for me was when the police were looking for someone to blame for the crowd, and asked: “Who is he with?” And everyone screamed in unison:
"All of us!"

11 September 2014
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Today in microfashion…

(Jammu, India)

11 September 2014
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"Some people still prefer the arranged marriage, especially in the countryside where tradition is still strong. The thought is that your parents know you very well, and will make the decision based on experience and not emotion. The divorce rate with arranged marriages is lower, because both families are heavily involved and there are many people committed to making the match work. But the tradition is on the way out. It used to be that you didn’t even see your wife until your wedding day, and you fell in love after your wedding, as you learned to support and care for each other. But today there’s Whatsapp and Facebook, so keeping two people apart is almost impossible. ‘Love marriages’ are becoming much more popular than arranged marriages, and even arranged marriages involve much more interaction than they used to. Many families still choose to uphold the appearance of an arrangement. Their children will come to them and say: ‘I fell in love.’ And they’ll say: ‘OK, let us arrange it.’"

(Jammu, India)

11 September 2014
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At an Indian wedding, the bride has a tough act to follow…

(Jammu, India)

11 September 2014
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Today in microfashion…

(Jammu, India)

11 September 2014
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"Let me tell you about my son. When Aditya was born, there was a very popular television show on the air, and the main character was named Lord Rama. Lord Rama was known as a revealer of truth. So I joked with my best friend that my son was going to be just like Lord Rama, and he was going to bring a great truth into the world. Sixteen years later, that very same friend called me while I was out of town on vacation. 
'Uptal!' he screamed. 'Uptal! Turn on the TV! Your son is on the TV! He's just like Lord Rama!'
'What channel?' I asked.
'Any channel!' he screamed. So I turned on the television. And there he was. I hadn't known it, but while I was gone, he had started a petition on the internet. He was only sixteen years old at the time, and he had started an online petition calling for the government to reopen an old rape case. The case was nearly ten years old, and it involved the son of a very powerful government official. The son had raped and murdered a girl, and even though the evidence was overwhelming, he was only given three years in prison because of his family's connections. So Aditya started this petition to reopen the case. And soon it had millions of signatures! A sixteen year old boy! I couldn't believe it! I called his mother, and she was very scared. The men he was challenging were very powerful, and had many powerful friends. 
Soon Aditya was on the cover of every newspaper: ‘Young Boy Challenges Mafia,” the newspapers said. TV cameras were lining up in front of our house. His mother and I were very scared for him, and wanted him to lay low, but he insisted on doing every interview. He went on all the TV shows. Soon he started a protest right here at India Gate. He announced: ‘I am going to sit here until the case is reopened.’ Thousands of people joined him. All the famous musicians and Bollywood stars came to join him. The largest magazine in India called him ‘the country’s youngest icon.’ Soon after the protest began, the chief judge of the Supreme Court announced he was reopening the case. When the new trial was finished, the man had been given a life sentence!”

(New Delhi, India)

11 September 2014
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"What’s your biggest dream for your child?"
"We’ll let him dream for himself."

(New Delhi, India)

10 September 2014
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"The second date is going much better than the first one."

(New Delhi, India)

10 September 2014
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He told me that he could look at anyone’s face, and tell them exactly what they need in life. I asked him to give me a try. He studied my face, looked up at the sky for a few seconds, then said: “You don’t need anything.”

(Jammu, India)

10 September 2014
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"We’re praying for the souls of our ancestors."

(Jammu, India)

10 September 2014
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"In Ukraine, they say that every man must do three things to fulfill his duty: plant a tree, have a child, and build a house. I planted a tree in grade school, I had a daughter fourteen years ago, but with how the economy has been, I’m starting to fear that I’ll never have the money to build a house."
"What was the happiest moment you ever spent with your daughter?"
"I taught her to walk on a small playground near our house. I’d hold onto her hands and walk her around slowly. She was laughing so hard, and she was making noises the entire time, I could sense she was trying to tell me something."
"What do you think she was trying to tell you?"
"Just how happy she was to be there with me."

(Kyiv, Ukraine)

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