Indian origin 96-year-old is world's oldest blogger

Butisingh's popular web blog was recently awarded the Greypow Award for best senior site by the website lifebeginsat80.com, which periodically lists the best senior sites on the web.

The website was launched in 1999 as an attempt to encourage the world's senior citizens to overcome their distrust of computers.

Butisingh, who was born in British Guyana (now Guyana) Dec 1, 1912, succeeded Maria Amelia Lopez Solino as the oldest blogger on the web after 97-year old Spanish great grandmother died in May 2009.

Maria Amelia had become an international celebrity after her blog registered more than 1.5 million hits. Her blogs were an eclectic mix of Spanish politics, international relations, and her memories of life over the decades. 

The oldest known bloggers were Ruth Hamilton and Olive Riley, who died in 2008 at the age of 109 and 108 years.

However, Butisingh has the distinction of being the only one among the senior bloggers to type and post his own blog. Maria Amelia dictated her blog to her grandson, while both Hamilton and Riley spoke to helpers who wrote up their blogs.  

Butisingh says: "I am in fairly good shape after surviving a serious illness. I can do most things for myself like showering, dressing, preparing my breakfast, etc. I can walk, unsupported by a stick. At present, the only pill I am taking is the aspirin (low strength) to help with my circulation. My blood pressure is stable -- 140 over 70."

He grew up in Buxton, East Coast Demerara, where he received his primary education. In 1927 he passed the school leaving examination and became a pupil teacher at the age of 15 to begin a 45-year career as a teacher. He retired in 1972.

He has seven children, 19 grandchildren and 18 great-grandchildren, who live in America except for one daughter and her son who live in Guyana. He has written three books of poems and was recognised as a Poet of Merit by the American Poetry Association.

His varied background is reflected in Butisingh's blog; he writes about life in Buxton, on philosophy, economics, politics, environment, poetry, history, psychology and religion.

He has a secular world view and wrote last year: "I was raised as a Christian from birth by Hindu parents and grew up in the Christian Church, in a village which was predominantly Afro-Guyanese. But eventually I separated from the church as I saw it as exclusive and divisive and I wanted to be involved in all mankind.... I am at present living in the home of my son-in-law and daughter, who are Muslims."

At the age of 80 he began learning Arabic so that he could read the Koran.

Butisingh has studied comparative religions and philosophies. He believes that "there is a fine thread of truth woven into the fabric of all of religions, but very few are able to find it. Those who find it, the mystics, although their source may be different, find themselves in the same brotherhood journeying to the same destination."

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