Substance Writing ‘by Menonim Menonimus, Published by www.menonimus.org
All Rights Reserved
D.T.P. by A. Shahriar
Whose pious simplicity is worth praising
— Menonim Menonimus
(Tips for Writing Substance)
‘Substance’ (Summary) refers to the statements covering the main points (essence) of a literary piece. At the time of writing a summary of any literary piece, we should be mindful of the following points:
1. At first, read the given text as you read a newspaper. Do not be bothered with searching for meaning word by word.
2. After your first reading, take to read the passage a second time. This time, be careful to understand what the passage is about and try to make out the central idea of the text. Underline the important points, parts or sentences.
3. Make a mind map of the main message of the text.
4. Begin to write the summary. And while writing, leave out the examples and explanations. If the examples represent some ideas, then just take the ideas.
5. Exclude figurative and explanatory sentences.
6. Avoid direct speeches and if needed turn them into indirect speeches.
7. Be consistent and maintain a logical unity of ideas.
8. There is no hard and first rule regarding the length of the summary of a text. But the length should not be more than one-third of the original passage.
9. As far as possible, the summary should be written in the writer’s own words.
Note: The terms ‘Summary’ and ‘Substance’ are synonymous.
The progress of a nation depends on the honesty, labour and achievements of its people. Social evils and vices are the results of human weakness. They gradually destroy the wealth of a nation. These cannot be removed by laws. To attain national prosperity, individual morality is more important than man-made laws and instructions. In a nation, there may have a large number of educated people as well as sages and philosopher, but if its citizens are dishonest, idle and negligent of their respective duties then all are vain. The nation will be proved the poorest of all, however rich in resources.
Substance: The progress and honour of a nation depend upon its honest and duty-conscious people. The social vices and evils can never be swept away by laws but by its honest, active and dutiful people.
There are books which are really no books at all, and to read which is a mere waste of time; while there are others so bad that we cannot read them without great harm. It is no doubt good to be warned against temptations and dangers of life, but anything that familiarises us with evil is in itself an evil. So also there are others which one can read without being the better of them. By useful literature, we do not mean only what will help a man in his business or profession. That is useful no doubt but by no means the highest use of books. The best books raise us into a region of selfless thought where the troubles and anxieties of the world are almost forgotten.
Substance: There are two kinds of books: bad books and good books. Bad books are temptations to evil thoughts which do great harm. On the other hand, good books raise the readers into a region of selfless thought and make them forget the troubles and anxieties of the world. 0 0 0
It is very difficult to get rid of bad habits. So, one should be very careful that one does not form bad habits during the early years of life. Idleness is one such bad habit. Every boy and girl should be diligent. They should avoid idleness like poison. Some of them love to remain in bed long after daybreak and get out of bed most unwillingly. Even after that they waste time over trifles and spend as little time as they can in reading. As a result, they cannot learn much as they should. What is worse, they become so accustomed to such a bad habit that they cannot shake it off – even with their greatest efforts. These bad habits then hold them hard in their coils like a large snake.
Substance: Once a bad habit is formed it becomes very difficult to get rid of it. Bad habit includes getting up late at daybreak, spend time in trifles, neglect one’s duty etc. To make our life a happy, secure and prosperous one we must form good habits from our early life. 0 0 0
It is easy to acquire bad habits, such as eating too much food or eating too many sweets or drinking too much fluid of any kind of smoking. The more we do a thing, the more we tend to like doing it and if we do not continue to do it, we feel unhappy. This is called the force of habit and the force of habit should be fought against. Things that may be very good when only done from time to time tend to become very harmful when done too often and too much. This applies even to such good things as work or rest. Some people form a habit of working too much and others of idling too much. The wise man always remembers that this is the truth about himself and checks any bad habit. He says to himself, “I am now becoming idle” or “I smoke too much” and then adds, “I will get myself out of this bad habit at once.”
Substance: Habit is second nature. If we do a thing too often or so much then it become a habit. A habit is such a thing, if it is not continued then it makes us feel unhappy. Wise people always avoid forming any bad habit. If somehow they become addicted to any bad habit they can get out of it at once. We should form good habits in our childhood. 0 0 0
Of all the amusement which can possibly be imagined for a hard-working man after his daily labour, there is nothing like reading an entertaining book. It calls for no bodily exertion, of which he had enough. It relieves his home of its dullness. It transports him to a livelier and more interesting scene. While he enjoys there, he may forget the evils of the present moment. Nay, it accompanies him to his next day’s work and if the book is an interesting one, it gives him something to think of besides the drudgery of his everyday occupation. If I were to pray for a taste it would be a taste for reading. Give a man this taste and the means of gratifying it, you will find a happy man. You place him in contact with the best writers of every age recorded in history and then you will find him like a citizen of all nations and a contemporary of all ages.
Substance: Book reading is the best entertainment after hard work. It calls for no bodily exertion. It relieves us of daily dullness. Book reading gives us something to think of besides the drudgery of our everyday occupations. Book reading turns us into a citizen of all nations and a contemporary of all ages.
The work that Gandhi had taken up was not only the achievement of political freedom but also the establishment of a social order based on truth and non-violence, unity and peace, equality and universal brotherhood and maximum freedom for all. The unfinished part of his experiment was perhaps more difficult to achieve than the achievement of political freedom. In the political struggle against a foreign power, all one could do was either join it or wish it a success and give it their moral support. In establishing a social order of this pattern, there was a likely possibility of a conflict arising between groups and classes of our own people. Experience shows that man values his possessions even more than his life because in the former he sees the means for continuity and survival of his descendants even after his body is reduced to ashes. A new order cannot be established without changing the mind, for at some stage or the other the rich have to yield place to the poor to achieve a kind of egalitarian society.
Substance: Gandhi worked not only for political freedom but also for the establishment of a social order based on non-violence, unity, peace, equality and universal brotherhood. But later on, it was realised that this goal could not be achieved because a man gives more value to his possessions than to his life. So to bring about a change in society we should try to change the mentality of its people. 0 0 0
People travelling long distances frequently have to decide whether they would prefer to go by land, sea or air. Hardly anyone can positively enjoy sitting on a train for more than a few hours. Train compartments soon get cramped and stuffy. It is almost impossible to take your mind off the journey. Reading is only a partial solution, for the monotonous rhythm of the wheels clicking on the rails soon lulls you to sleep. During the day sleep comes in snatches. At night, when you really wish to go to sleep, you rarely manage to do so. If you are lucky enough to get a couchette, you spend half the night staring at the small blue light in the ceiling for fumbling to find your passport when you cross a frontier. Inevitably you arrive at your destination almost exhausted.
Long car journey is even less pleasant, for it is quite impossible even to read. On motorways, you can at least travel fairly safely at high speeds, but more often than not, the greater part of the journey is spent on narrow, bumpy roads which are crowded with traffic. By comparison, trips by the sea offer a great variety of civilized comforts. You can stretch your legs on the spacious decks, play games, swim, meet interesting people and enjoy good food always assuming, of course, that the sea is calm. If it is not, and you are lucky to get sea-sick, no form of transport could be worse, Even if you travel in ideal weather, sea journeys take a long time. Relatively few peoples are prepared to sacrifice up to a third of their holidays for the pleasure of travelling on a ship.
Aeroplanes have a reputation of being dangerous and even hardened travellers are intimidated by them. They also have the disadvantage of being the most expensive form of transport. But nothing can match them for speed and comfort. Travelling at a height of 30,000 feet, far above the clouds, and at over 500 miles an hour is an exhilarating experience. You do not have to devise ways of taking your mind off the journey, for an aeroplane gets you to your destination rapidly. For a few hours, you settle in a deep armchair to enjoy the flight. The real escapist can watch a free film show and sip a hot or cold drink on some services. But even when such refreshments are not available, there is plenty to keep you occupied. An aeroplane offers you an unusual breathtaking view of the world. You soar effortlessly over high mountains and deep valleys. You really see the shape of the land. If the landscape is hidden from view, you can enjoy the extraordinary sight of unbroken clouds, plains that stretch out for miles before, while the sun shines brilliantly in a clear sky. The journey is so much smooth that there is nothing to prevent you from reading or sleeping. However you decide to spend your time, one thing is certain: you will arrive at your destination fresh and uncrumpled. You will not have to spend the next few days recovering from a long and arduous journey.
Substance: There are various means of travelling as: by train, car, sea and air. Travel by train is inconvenient and exhausting. Travel by car is time-consuming and boring. But travelling by car is a little better than travelling by train. Travel by sea is interesting but it turns one sea-sick. On the other hand travel by air is most comfortable and speedy. But it is also the most dangerous form of travelling.
1. How does television affect our lives? It can be very helpful to people who carefully choose the shows that they watch. Television can increase our knowledge of the outside world, there are high-quality programmes that help us understand many fields of study such as science, medicine, the arts and so on. Moreover, television benefits very old people who cannot often leave the house as well as parents in hospitals. It also offers non-native speakers the advantage of daily informal language practice. They can increase our vocabulary.
2. On the other hand, there are several serious disadvantages of television. Of course, it provides us with a pleasant way to relax and spend our free time, but in some countries, people watch the “bob-tube” for an average of six hours or more a day. Many children stare at a television screen for more hours each than they do anything else, including studying and sleeping. It’s clear that the tube has a powerful influence on their lives and that its influence is often negative.
3. Recent studies show that after only thirty seconds of television watching, a person’s brain ‘relaxes’ the same way that it does just before the person falls asleep. Another effect of television on the human brain is that it seems to cause poor concentration. Children who view a lot of television can concentrate on a subject for only 15 to 20 minutes.
4. Another disadvantage is that television often causes people to become dissatisfied with their own lives. Real-life does not seem as exciting to these people as the lives of actors on the screen. To many people, television becomes more real than reality and their own lives seem boring. Also, many people get upset or depressed when they cannot solve problems in real life as quickly as television actors seem to.
5. Before a child is 14 years old, he or she views eleven thousand murders on the tube. He or she begins to believe that there is nothing strange about fights, killings and other kinds of violence. Many studies show that people become more violent after certain programmes. They may even do things that they have seen in a violent show.
6. The most negative effect of the ‘boob tube’ might be people’s addiction to it. People often feel a strange and powerful need to watch television even when they do not enjoy it. Addiction to the television screen is similar to drug or alcohol addiction. People almost never believe they are addicted.
Substance: Television affects our lives in many ways. It increases our knowledge; it helps us to understand science, medicine, arts etc. It helps old people and patients in hospitals to forget the pain. It provides language practice to the non-natives. There are also some bad effects of Television. Watching TV is time-consuming, children lose their concentration in studies, and people become dissatisfied with their own lives. It increases violence and people easily get addicted to it. 0 0 0
There are two problems that cause great worry to our educationists — the problem of religious and moral education in the land of many faiths and the problems arising out of the large variety of language.
Taking up the education of the children we see that they should be trained to live with one another, to be kind and helpful to all, to be tender to the lower animals and to observe and think right, The task of teaching them how to read and write and to count and to calculate is important but it should not make us lose sight of the primary aim of moulding personality in the right way.
For this, it is necessary to call into aid culture, tradition and religion, But in our country we have, in the same school, to look after boys and girls born in different faiths and belonging to families that live diverse ways of life, easy path of evading the difficulty by attending solely to physical culture and intellectual education. We have to evolve a suitable technique and method for serving the spiritual needs of school children professing different faiths. We should thereby promote an atmosphere of mutual respect, a fuller understanding and helpful co-operation among the different communities in our society. Again we must remain one people and we have, therefore, to give basic training to our schools to speak and understand more languages than one and to appreciate and respect the different religions prevailing in India.
Any attempt to do away with a stream of roll the differences through governmental coercion and indirect pressure would be as futile as it would be unwise. Any imposition of a single way of life and form of a workshop on all children or neglect of a section of the pupils in this respect, or barren secularization will lead to conflict between school and home life which is harmful. On the other hand, if we give due recognition to the different prevailing faiths in the educational institutions by organizing suitable facilities for religious teaching for boys and girls of all communities our problem will be solved to a larger extent. This may itself serve as a broadening influence of great national value.
Substance: School children in general face two problems as problems of religious faith and the problem of language since there are many religious faiths and languages prevailing in our country. The teachers should be involved in moulding right personality. They should be taught to be tender to the lower animals. The techniques by which this can be achieved are respecting, understanding and cooperating with different communities.
Man is the maker of his fortune. We cannot prosper in life if we are afraid of labour. People generally think that success in life depends on luck. This is not true. Men of science have toiled day and night to invent the radio, the television, and the telephone which have added to the joy of our life. Life is not a bed of roses. Life will be miserable if we shrink from labour and fail to earn money enough to meet our daily expenses. Industry is the secret of success not only for an individual but also for a nation. China and America are the most powerful nations in the world today. They have attained such power and position by virtue of the earnest labour of their people. We, Indians too, must work hard if we want to raise the prestige of our country in the eyes of the world.
Substance: Lard labour, not luck, is the key to success. People who are afraid of labour cannot prosper in life. Life is miserable if we avoid labour. The prosperity and prestige of a nation depend on its industrious citizens. 0 0 0
Books of Composition by M. Menonimus:
- Advertisement Writing
- Amplification Writing
- Note Making
- Paragraph Writing
- Notice Writing
- Passage Comprehension
- The Art of Poster Writing
- The Art of Letter Writing
- Report Writing
- Story Writing
- Substance Writing
- School Essays Part-I
- School Essays Part-II
- School English Grammar Part-I
- School English Grammar Part-II.
- Exam-Labs Microsoft DP-200