Friday, January 15, 2010

Seek and You Shall Find

My treasure trove hungers after
Worldly accomplishments.
Appeasement is a far trek.
Progression, regression arise by what I seek.
Wonder if what I sought fetched me this!

Mind is on continuous wander,
Every soul is looking for something.
Some worldly, some spiritual,
Some get, some don’t
Its presence is happiness to one,
For another its absence is.
The duality confuses me to no end!

Makes me think, do I really need what I seek??

Discontent accompanied attainment,
Forecast of happiness mocked my judgment,
Lingered in me a thought,
What I require is the wisdom to seek right!

Prayers turned to solicitation
Hopes of materialization of materials rose.
With an inventory of never ending wants,
I slip into a slumber...
Only to awaken to a Higher calling!

The voice said “count your blessings”
And I comprehend how void my prayers were..
Begins my prayers of gratitude,
For I had much more than I sought.
The power to make it happen!

I set on to acquire what I want.
But on an uphill climb, I question my power
The voice in turn answered,
“Are you questioning MY power?”

Elated I looked up to the voice and said
“I realize I am a mere instrument to execute your will”
The voice said “Path trails what you seek”
And I whispered to myself “know what I seek, cause’ I shall find”

Next moment, the world was at my feet.
Materials ceased to be significant.
The created guided me no more,
I embark on a quest for the creator in me..

The voice said “if the pursuit is strong and the intent right,
Seek and you shall find...”

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Fly Happily With Time...

As this year comes to an end, once again I exclaim that the year passed by so soon. Each year seems to pass faster than the previous one. Thanks to our life’s pace and the world becoming a global village.

There is good and not so good feeling to it. Good because we need not endure bad times for long. Not so good because we don’t have time to enjoy the good times for long. Lol, I want my cake and eat it too.

However when I think deeper I realize that when time flies, there is an overall kindness associated with it. How often have we felt the endurance of bitter phase lasting an eternity? Fortunately today’s world does not offer us a choice. It pushes us fast enough to move on and quickly learn our lessons whether we want it or not. Thus helping us save the time and energy that we fritter away in brooding over the sour experiences. Makes me believe that time indeed heals everything.. Well, almost  :) 

The same cannot be said about good times. Does time fly faster during happier chapters than it does over bad ones? Seems so, it is natural for us to seek happiness always. But how long is long enough? How much time do we need to relish good things? Though it’s very relative, I think it broadly boils down to the three beings in us for making us experience happiness for a short while:
  • The futuristic being
  • The result oriented being
  • The insatiable being
Futuristic being in each one of us is potent enough to let us not live in the present. That way we let the good times slip away, by worrying about it coming to an end or about the threats to our good times. We are constantly on the run and don't even allow the happiness to sink in. If only we learn to live in the Now, we will welcome and experience so much more happiness.

Result oriented being in us does not let us enjoy the process that culminates in good moments. Thus, process becomes a routine and we wait to enjoy life until the result shows. Perhaps we should start enjoying the process too for a long lasting happiness and satisfaction. That way we don’t treat happiness as one time event but a way of living.

For the insatiable being in us, anything good is never too much. It just ain’t enough. This one I’m going to attribute to the animal kingdom’s instinct to which we belong. I’m reminded of Mahatma Gandhi’s quote: Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not every man's greed

Let’s grasp that nature does give us enough time to enjoy. At the same time it does not let us get intoxicated with the happy and successful moments for long because another bunch of happier moments await us. We need to get up and work towards it. Thankfully it’s the right push that nature bestows on us for our own good.

Else, if the hangover of success or happiness prolong, it impedes our progress and then the days of boredom and dissatisfaction is not far off. Even the arms length happiness would appear distant. Perhaps that is why so many amongst us never repeat another glory as we continue to linger in our past glory while the time waits for none.

Hence, it becomes imperative for us to set off on a process to find the next level of joy and triumph before  the spirit and enthusiasm fade off. Let’s get the equation right, enjoy our lives and at the same time be conscious of the time when we need to take the next step. More importantly let’s begin everything on a happy note and start realizing the beauty that the present offers. That's when our happiness will continue to persist. Enjoy the whole process including the hardships and learning that may confront us and soon we will have the next level of elation embracing us. That way when time flies, we will fly happily with it..

2010 is knocking our doors with a promise of greater happiness and good times. Time again to welcome it and experience it happily…

Happy and Prosperous New Year J

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Animal Harmony

My friend recently told me that we all are spiritual beings going through human experiences. Instantly I ponder why the world compares everything to animal experiences then?

People say that it’s a dog-eat-dog world and it’s a tough rat race. People think they do the donkey work irrespective of whether the market is bullish or bearish, they are busy as bees, eat rabbit meal, make a bee line every where and take cat naps.

At work people are strong as horse, sharp as hawk, graceful as swan, fast as cheetah, have a memory like elephants, work like ants and want to be the cash cows.

At the same time one can also find people cunning as fox, thick skinned as buffalo, blind as bat, prickly as porcupine and making a complete ass of themselves. People conveniently shed crocodile tears, don’t hesitate to bull s***, make others scapegoats or even monkey, ape each other, drink like fish, eat like pig, get swine flu.. Lol..

Ever wondered what animals would be talking about human beings? Do herbivorous animals talk about fake vegetarianism like humans? Do pigs talk about man-flu? Do monkeys talk about Man-iacs? Does Fox talk about Man-ipulation? Do crocodiles talk about whiners? Do Dogs talks about disloyalty of humans? Do chameleons feel inferior over man’s multiple standards? Do ants talk about lazy humans? Do donkeys talk about stress and anti-depressant pills? Do reptiles think they are less cold blooded compared to the destruction that humans cause?

On a positive note will animals wonder at man’s intelligence? Did we hurt Cheetah’s ego by inventing machines that can move faster than it? Do birds feel intimidated that human can travel continents faster than them? Do animals feel we can cure all their ailments with our inventions? Do animals feel jealous of our family structure? Do animals feel we humans are blessed for our ability to talk and express?

Holy Cow!!! I ain’t game for this!!! Are we giving animals their worth or are we doing a reality check with animals… Perfect, as long as we strike a harmony with them...  Fascinatingly, it takes one to be human to experience and appreciate the divinity and the beauty of this world.

Being an animal lover myself and having become a vegetarian, I can’t help but wonder at the ability of the 5 sensed creatures. Not only do I find animals being full of life, but I find them very inspiring too.

As  my teacher points out, a cattle works in the field all day and feeds a family; A bull pulls a heavy cart to feed a family; a monkey by jumping and dancing as per the instructions of its master, helps a man earn his income; for that matter, we have so often seen the so called astrologers, whose earning is dependent on a parrot. Strange is the fact that  man – the most supreme of all creatures, still depends on animals for his livelihood. And these examples date back to the beginning of mankind, where animals practically assisted man in every aspect of life.. travel, cargo, security, wars, food etc etc.

But today, because Man being the supreme of all the other animals, managed to replace animals with machines. But then  does not mean  we have acquired the right to ill treat animals and encroach into their territories?? We use them for our consumption, medicines and cosmetics get tested on them, their body parts become fashion accessories’ and there is no end to the cruelty that we bestow on them. All this because, we are on top of the food chain!! When did we assume that animals don’t have as much right to this planet as we humans do. Humane? Are we really?

Oh well, am I expecting too much… we define cruelty against fellow humans as animalistic… In all probabilities that takes a priority.. Cruelty to animals will fall way below the agenda.. All for of their inability to cry, talk their pain , express what they feel??

Perhaps, we aren’t supreme at all!! Perhaps it is our inability to understand the unspoken!!

And I see my puppy next to me waiting patiently for my attention.. Guess it understands that I am  not to be disturbed…

Friday, December 18, 2009

Fall of Fame

Yes! The Tiger’s saga is making me think about it and now write about it.

Tiger woods’ life had all of us believe that he had a perfect life - a great golfing career, brand ambassador for top brands, a picture perfect family, fortune in billions, scandal and controversy free life. Contrary to that, Tiger’s life proves to be anything but perfect. Tiger did succeed in hiding his dirty linen at least till he became the first billionaire sports person.

Not that Tiger woods has done something that most of us didn’t. Almost every one who is screaming foul on top of their voice has done it. I feel world need not entrust different moral standards on celebrities. If anything, people are just comforting themselves that they are not alone, they have someone as good and powerful as Tiger Woods do a similar act.

By all standards what Tiger Woods did to his wife and children, is wrong. I think he should be given his space for regret or remorse if any and to get his life back in order. It’s none of my business to reprimand Tiger Woods for whom he sleeps with or how many times he has cheated his wife and children (though I feel sorry for them). If I have to assess him just for what he does i.e. play golf, then I think it is sensible for us to judge only his sport and not his off-the-field sports. If he is adjudged as “The Athlete of the Decade”, then he deserves it for taking golf to a different level (money & popularity).

But if he makes millions by endorsing products to billions of people on the planet, then for sure his life does come under public scanner.  I understand and fully endorse the fact that celebrities are entitled for their share of privacy cos’ they are humans after all. But they need to realize that if they have the power to influence people’s choices with their endorsements, then it is not just due to career merit but also because of the image they have projected of themselves. And if that goes wrong, obviously people do have the right to disassociate themselves. Who would want to buy products endorsed by sportspersons who have bad off-field record?

If Tiger woods golfing merits and squeaky clean image fetched him billions, he is probably going to lose as much for his tainted image and indefinite golfing break due to his transgressions. Makes me feel that consequences are relative to our lifestyle and status.  Probably his celebrity status is making him go through the trauma many times more than an ordinary person would go through for the same mis-actions.

To add to Tiger’s woes, the count of the women goes on and on. I wonder if he himself remembers them all. What’s with these women? All of sudden they all want their 60 seconds of fame and $$$ for interviews to trash magazines??

Will celebrities learn anything out if it?? Tiger woods should have been a bit more careful. He had Becker, Beckham and many more with similar fate to give him a prelude into the consequences. But the difference is that they had ‘playboy’ image for themselves and world continued to love them for who they are. Illogical beings that we are, we don’t mind the bad ones continuing to be bad. The problem arises when the good becomes ugly. “You are exactly that Mr. Woods, unfortunately”.

Just one moment of madness is enough for a person to make an exit from the hall of fame. One moment of madness is enough to tarnish years of hard work and laurels. One moment of madness is enough to make people change the way they look at you forever.

How hefty a price this is, depends on your emotional quotient.... 

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Mumbai, One Year Later…

The whole nation remembered and marked the first anniversary of 26/11 Mumbai carnage last week. 26/11 to India became equivalent to USA’s 9/11 (except for the dd/mm format). News channels across the country flashed “Lest we forget”. For once I felt if public memory is really short? Do we as a nation fail to remember these events and have given media the responsibility to remind us?

Time again since India’s struggle for independence we saw new heroes emerge with every crisis that our country is pushed into. And we have seen so many crises that for us the latest attack on our cities becomes the one which we recall. All other previous attacks quietly find a place in the history books. So are the martyrs…

Before 26/11, it was our very own Mumbai’s 7/11 (this time mm/dd format – perhaps media looks at its convenience or want 11 to be constant) that shocked the nation. It was 7/11 that was equated with the 9/11 of USA… But for most of us 7/11 is almost out of our memory and I will not be surprised if another attack (God forbid) will soon push away 26/11 to similar status as happened with number of other cities that became victims of terror in between.

Mumbai, than any other Indian cities has been a chronic victim of terrorism dating back to March 93. With every terror attack we end up taking pride at the ‘Mumbai Spirit’ for the way the city resumes its normalcy.

To me ‘Mumbai Spirit’ is clichéd. Agreed, the vibrancy and energy of Mumbai is one of its kind, but does the city have another option. It has to move on. Do people have a choice? They have to move on. Somewhere overtime, for us these attacks have become a part of our lives to the extent that another such attack does not really shock us anymore. We expected it. And this is what is concerning.

For once let’s take pride in prevention instead of recuperation (which happens anyway).

After 9/11, USA has not witnessed a single attack of terrorism. India on the other hand has been extremely vulnerable. Bangalore, Delhi, Jaipur, Ahmadabad and more new cities gets added to the list along with Mumbai.  This is where I think we need to look up to USA’s 9/11. Like USA we need to stop another 9/11 instead of equating every next terror attack to 9/11.

9/11 should not be synonymous for the worst attack; it has to be synonymous with the last victory of the terrorism and a new beginning to an enhanced security and peace of the nation and its people.

We as a nation should not be proud for creating new martyrs; we need to ensure that the sacrifice of the existing martyrs does not go in vain. Else, with every attack we will only be adding names to the list of martyrs, only to be forgotten soon. 

This has to stop before we take martyrdom for granted, before the children of our soil think twice to serve our country, before our calendars end up showing only the horrific past of our nation.

How you and I can make a difference? We can play our part by being responsible citizens and co-operate with the security systems of our country. In addition to being more tolerant with people irrespective of religion, nationality and creed, it would be right for us to stay united internally instead of dwelling or clashing over regional differences. United we need to stand to fight terror. In short, treat the nation as you would treat your home.

I strongly sense a need to think progressive, instead of looking at the past to celebrate martyrdom and display our hypocrisy. If anything we can do to make our martyrs and their families proud, we need to stop another attack. Give ourselves a secure and peaceful nation that we so deserve…

Friday, November 27, 2009

All in the Game

Sachin Tendulkar completes 20 years of international career and is still going strong..  Very rarely that one comes across a sportsman proving himself the best time and again… It’s so easy for critics to write him off if he underperforms even in a single match, but true to Sachin’s style it’s his bat that does the talking… Awesome records, controversy free career and 20 years of brilliance is no mean feat… 

Not long before Sachin’s accomplishment of 20 years in international cricket, one former tennis sensation and legend Opens up. Andre Agassi’s or Drugassi’s (courtesy: Amul’s hoarding taking a dig on current affairs) crystal clear career slam gets tainted with a crystal meth drug... Was it really the drug that did the trick for him of winning all four coveted Grand Slams?? Could it be that Agassi is giving credit to the drug more than its worth...

What made Agassi confess?? If the drugs gave only physical strength, then we all know the amount of mental strength needed to win matches that eventually went down into the history?? Its not that the matches he won were against some ‘never heard’, ‘never seen’, ‘never played’ players. He won against his equals. And when equals clash, it’s not the physical stamina alone that does the match winner… And if pills really help mental stamina, then why could not Agassi take one now to shut up?? 

Not sure if this goes on to show his integrity or goes on to prove that a true sportsperson can never run away from integrity. I admire you Agassi for coming clean, but I’m still not sure about the motive behind coming clean.  

If your confession is a way to make money, then I doubt if you could stoop so low to resort to such practices. I hope you don’t do this even if you were bankrupt.  I hope not.

If this is a way of riddance of a guilty heart and an effort to come clean to the world that gave you so much, then I think you are on the right track.  It takes a person of your stature to be really really strong to confess, knowing the consequences your confessions could invite.. But yea, there is nothing like a guilt and regret free life… Whatever you lose post your confession will only be far less than a guilt ridden conscience that you had to live for long..  I respect you and I still think you deserved those wins (at least the Majors, as you didn’t win any of those during 1997 when you tested positive for drugs).

But I wonder how this is going to affect the whole game of Tennis.  This coming from the only career Golden slam player that the sport has ever seen is agonizing. Why couldn’t you be a sport? you are a human too??  Yea, Right!!! You never claimed you are perfect. It is we audience who perceived you to be. You are not compelled to live up to others’ perceptions, are you?? Agassi or Drugassi, forming perceptions and accepting reality is at the audience’s disposal…

What next for Agassi?? Like Marat Safin says “give back his titles, his money and his Grand Slam titles”.  Would Agassi do that? Is he ready to trade off his titles for a guilt free soul? As far as giving back the money goes, who knows his book might just ‘Open’ up the gates to greater fortune… win-win either way?? Agassi knows best. Looks like some are born winners no matter what…

Not long after Drugassi episode, comes another ‘hand of God’ goal. This time from France’s Thierry Henry.. 

I know its not fair for Ireland.. Not at all fair... What you did is wrong Mr. Henry. And I still wonder how it can be ‘instinctive reaction’ that made you do the handball.. You are not playing soccer for the first time, are you?? Aren’t these rules ingrained in your sub-conscious mind considering the number of years you have been playing at an international level?? So don’t blame it on instinct Mr. Henry. It appears to be a very conscious decision and intentional…  Why did you do? Did you already embrace defeat in your mind?

And as a consequence if you are getting one year ban which may also prohibit you from playing in world cup, then I guess it serves you right. I apologize for being harsh on you (as if you care.. lol), but wait. Did Ireland get its due?

Some of the Ireland’s players probably have been deprived of their last or only chance of playing in the FIFA World Cup. One such atrocious ‘Hand of God’ goal is the culprit. Don’t we all agree that the pain of being denied is much higher than the pain of losing? One man’s ban is no healer for one whole nation’s deprived joy of watching its team play… 

What purpose will your ban serve, Thierry Henry? What have you lost except one year of non-playing and giving a miss to the World Cup in Cape Town. Your country and your team still go on to play the World Cup at Cape Town. Isn’t it fair to ban your entire team? If one man’s goal can send a team to world cup, then the same one man’s no goal should bring out the team from the world cup. Isn’t that fair?  If only players like you knew that such erroneous ‘instinctive reactions’ could attract such severe consequence, this would not have taken place.

Thierry Henry, I only hope this is the last time ever that a team gets advantage of such rubbish ‘hand of God’ goals or for that matter anything that is against true sportsmanship.. It’s a disgrace to the most popular sport of the world.. 

Also, I’m glad Mr. Henry, in-spite of your ‘instinctive reaction’, you were not ‘instinctive’ in denying the mistake.. 

Life is serious and that is why we love sports.. But if sports get dirty, where is the fun? Isn’t integrity the mark of a true sportsman?

Monday, November 23, 2009

Celestial Dance

Celestial Dance

Sounds divine! Reminds of the magnificent and mysterious Lord Shiva's dance... But what has it got to do with my blogging…

Alright here it goes...

I ain’t a great dancer. I just dance.. Recently through some divine intervention I was introduced to a type of exercise – dance as if you are dancing for the Gods in gratitude, dance away to glory as if you own the world, dance as if nobody is watching you, a moment to be just yourself… May be when you are dancing and a high energy engulfs you, you become oblivious of the world around you and derive a happiness that you longed for.. The happiness of being yourself - The Very You…

I often hear most of us giving a thought to whether we are our true self or we are acting in our everyday life… "Am I truly what I am? Or am I someone that ‘fine tunes’ myself to the changing people, situations, seasons and an endless list of entities that has hidden the true me from myself…"

Do I have this urge to be what I truly am? Do we fear to be ourselves? Are we confident of presenting ‘The Real Me’ to the world instead of ‘The Acting Me’ that the world loves to see… Blame it on the clichéd yet the most defensive statement called “man is a social animal”..

Agreed. But that doesn’t mean we reduce ourselves to Social Slaves.. Why do we have to take pride in being puppets that dances to the tunes of other entities (whoever or whatever).

Alrighty, now that we are talking about puppets, lets continue with the puppet analogy… Puppet dance, if you have seen one, gives you a clear picture that the strings are pulled by someone else, making the puppet look rigid as if it is being asked to dance at the gunpoint... Isn’t our situation similar? Haven’t we also become rigid to the extent that we feel odd to be ourselves..  However, we do have a choice to be ourselves. If only we dare to cut off the threads of inhibitions tied to us and stop ourselves from dancing to the so called ‘right norms’ created by the entities around us…

Now that very definition of "what is Right?" is debatable. One man's food is another man's poison, they say. But then give me a break! Let's define "Right Conduct" in simple terms - That what you wish others dont do to you, you dont do to others as well. Does that help??

So from now on we are talking of people who agree to this definition of "Right Conduct"... Others, you may choose to read, you can choose not to subscribe to my views, or simply leave...

Time now to continue... So does that help??? If yes, the next retort is "it isn't possible all the time.. There are so many factors that act as a constraint"...  Really? Fair to blame those ‘other entities'?? Shouldn't I be blaming myself for your inability to be true to myself.. I again hear someone telling me that life is a Zero Sum Game. For every winner, there has to be a loser... Even if that statement were to be true, shouldn’t we be proud to make ourselves the winner.. But No, our conditioning wouldn’t allow us.. Probably we have stooped to a ridiculous extent where in we take pride at the victory of ‘other entities’ that prevents us from being our true self... This could arguably be our worst defeat, yet we happily accept … At the same time we crib over all other trivial defeats that come as a package in our pretentious lives..

Have you ever given a thought on when was the last time you did something from your heart that made you happy.. Again, I would like to point out "we are strictly talking about people who agree to the definition of 'Right' as defined earlier". But again, if you are so much in to the system of suckers that you don’t even know the difference between the wants of your head and heart, then probably we are altogether tackling a different problem… Or probably you are the best example for this write up...

Why do we take pride in pushing our own happiness far below others’ happiness.. If we are a social animal, yes there are some so called norms we need to adhere to... keep the surroundings clean, dont covet others' property, family life will involve compromises... yes, for sure!! These are needed to keep the world grounded and for mutual harmony... But we aren't talking about the obvious... we are talking about being the very me.. very you...

Why are we succumbing to wrong standards.. Who on earth says, you are selfish if you think about your happiness..  Must have been a person who was uncomfortable in his own skin, must be a big time loser himself who has succeeded in making many more losers… And for years we have silently epitomized these norms...

It’s amazing how much we don’t mind our transition from ‘social animals’ to ‘social slaves’? It’s a regular thing to see a person’s happiness compartmentalized. Ex: A successful world class nuclear scientist with unhappy family; happily married person with unhappy social life or career;  a happily married person, with great career but a life of regret... Is it a difficult task to strike a balance and still be happy across all aspects/roles  we essay in life??

Of course it is!! Perhaps that is why we find very few who are happy and content. Still I guess its worth the try!! If we dare to put our priorities and principles ahead of others to make our own life perfect first, instead of living a life to please others…

We are social animals.. SO WHAT?? We can still strike a win-win deal!!

Ok, lets face the facts.. We all know what our problems are.. If we use our intelligence wisely, we will discover the cause for our problems and also figure the solutions … Every thing is right in front of us.. But if we choose to be blind, then God bless us (I admit, I am also one of the many that God needs to bless)

Why not for a change let the rational being in us take dominance?? We all have enough intelligence to figure out what is right and what is not right for each one of us... Why not we just dare to stand up and draw a line between the right and the wrong and not succumb to unwanted pressures from the peers, relatives, society, colleagues and all other entities of life.. If we want we can truly stand up to our principles by being amidst all the ‘other entities’ and yet stay unruffled. We can strike a balance between our principles and the world’s principles if we really want to. If only we believe in the strength of ‘me’ more than the strength of ‘others’.

Easier said than done?? Bingo!! But nothing is impossible.. Why give up before even begin...??

I want to break freeeee… Do I dare to??

Eeeks.. My first blog wasn’t meant to be sooooooo serious and soooooo long…
All I say is hope my blogging is a way to break freee (isn’t that the very purpose of a blog – as if it needed my testimony.. haha) .. I am hoping this celestial dance of mine gives me the same joy that I get, when I dance as if I don’t care who owns the world …..