Hey there! If you stopped to read this, wow, you're awesome! And since you're that awesome, maybe you'd be willing to check out this super sweet, not-so-top-secret campaign to take Films For Action to the next level of awesome in our quest to change the world. All the details here. Cheers!
Life's Pursuit: Endlessly Seeking External Rewards is Self-Defeating
By Gavin Aung Than / zenpencils.com
Aug 18, 2015

Throughout his career as a scientist, one of Kalam’s goals was to inspire and motivate the youth of India to get excited about science and knowledge. For instance, after his position as chief scientific advisor ended in 1999, Kalam announced he would personally meet at least 100,000 students in a two year period to help spread the word of science. Kalam’s fame grew even more during this time, as his first autobiography Wings of Fire was released (the quote used in the comic is taken from the book). In it, Kalam recounted how a poor country boy from the small town of Rameswaram went on to study physics, work his way through the ranks of the Defence Research and Development Organisation and then the Indian Space Research Organisation, visit NASA and the Goddard Space Flight Centre in the United States during the height of the space race, play a large part in India’s technological advancement and become India’s most-famous scientist. All of this BEFORE Kalam became the President of India in 2002, in which he gained another nickname, the “people’s president” for continuing to connect with the youth of India and allowing the public to visit the presidential palace in New Delhi.

It’s crazy to think that Kalam didn’t even want to be a scientist, he just wanted to fly. Dreaming of becoming a pilot, Kalam studied aeronautical engineering at the Madras Institute of Technology: “What fascinated me the most at MIT was the sight of two decommissioned aircraft displayed there. I felt a strange attraction towards them, and would sit near them long after other students had gone back to the hostel, admiring man’s will to fly free in the sky, like a bird. … The goal was very clear in my mind, I was going to fly aircraft. I was convinced of this.” After graduating, Kalam landed two job interviews. One was for his dream gig of joining the Air Force, the other a technical role at the Ministry of Defence. At the selection board, only the best eight candidates out of 25 would be selected to join the Air Force. Kalam finished 9th. He was devastated, but picked himself up and accepted the new path of his life and went to work for the Ministry of Defence. Turned out to be a pretty good Plan B.

Kalam was a deeply spiritual man and practised what he preached, shunning material possessions and rewards. The only material goods Kalam coveted were books, owning over 2500 of them. His only other possessions were a watch, six shirts, four pants, three suits and a pair of shoes. He did not own any property, a fridge, TV, car or air conditioner. From Kalam’s former media advisor, “He would never accept a gift, save a book, and whenever somebody brought him a packed gift and tried to pass it off as a book, he insisted on examining what was inside. Anything other than the book was politely returned.”

Kalam died last in uly 2015 after suffering a heart attack while giving a speech titled “Creating a liveable planet Earth”. Over 350,000 people attended his funeral in his home town of Rameswaram.

4.6 ·
7
Featured Films
Plutocracy: Political Repression In The U.S.A. (2018)
440 min Plutocracy is the first documentary to comprehensively examine early American history through the lens of class. A multi-part series by filmmaker Scott Noble, Part I focuses on the the ways in which the American people have historically been divided on the basis of race...
Fall and Winter (2013)
102 min This stunning film takes you on a hypnotic journey, reaching to the past to understand the origins of the catastrophic environmental transitions we now face. Over two years, director Matt Anderson traveled 16,000 miles to document firsthand our modern industrial world and the...
War Made Easy (2007)
70 min War Made Easy reaches into the Orwellian memory hole to expose a 50-year pattern of government deception and media spin that has dragged the United States into one war after another from Vietnam to Iraq. Narrated by actor and activist Sean Penn, the film exhumes remarkable...
Trending Today


Love Films For Action? Become a Patron.

The goal is to go 100% ad-free by next year and become 100% member supported. Would you be willing to make a monthly pledge? A few dollars per month times the power of a few thousand awesome people will get us to where we need to be. Click here to join.

If you'd prefer to make a one-time donation, you can do that here. Many thanks!

Join us on Facebook
Life's Pursuit: Endlessly Seeking External Rewards is Self-Defeating