Shukran!

Taking a cue from a very dear friend who has this wonderful habit of saying shukran (Arabic word meaning thank you) every now and then,

And why not,

Especially in these precarious times,

Where one never knows how long one is going to live,

Not just because of Corona but the very manner in which our generation has been consuming pretty much everything on this planet,

Its never enough no matter how many times one says shukran to the people one comes across in one’s life time,

thank you

Be it the parents to start with, who brought us here, nurtured us to become who we are today,

Be it our spouses/siblings/cousins/friends who made this life worth living,

Be it the teachers who acted as friends, philosophers and guides in this journey of acquiring knowledge,

or

Be it the mentors and seniors who pretty much laid the path for us to grow professionally,

We often take it for granted what people have done for us,

We often are drawn into the illusion of having achieved everything unilaterally,

and

We often ignore all the contributions/sacrifices our near and dear ones make for us,

Just to see us happy achieving our dreams and fulfilling our aspirations,

Now,

With no more excuses of being busy or not having enough time,

Why not just say it loud,

Give some form and shape to the gratitude that we all feel,

And take that first step to bringing one’s near-dear ones even closer,

Up for it, are you?

SHUKRAN 🙂

Source for the Image: https://www.multibhashi.com/gratitude-meaning-in-tamil/

गाँधी और बंदर

बंदरों का हम सबकी ज़िन्दगी में बहुत अहम् रोल रहा है.

चाहे वो हमारा एवोल्यूशन ही क्यों ना हो

या फिर

बुराई को ना देखने का, ना सुनने का और ना बोलने की हिदायत ही क्यों ना हो.

कहते हैं अच्छी चीज़ों पे फोकस करो तो ज़िन्दगी हसीन लगने लगती है,

हर इंसान के अच्छे पहलू पे फोकस करने को डेल कार्नेगी भी लिख गए है.

पर जैसे ही इन किताबों का हैंगओवर पूरा होता है,

और

गांधीजी कहीं किसी कहानी में खो जाते हैं,

फिर वही हम और हमारी क्रिटिकल शक्की नजरिया,

ये ऐसा है,

ये वैसा है,

इसने मुझे ये कैसे कहा,

उसने मुझे ऐसा कह दिया,

मुझे इसने इज़्ज़त नहीं नवाज़ी,

उसने मुझे गरिया दिया,

शिकायती टट्टू बनने में हमें बिलकुल देर नहीं लगती,

आज सुबह जब मैं कैब में आ रहा था,

तब ट्रैफिक में चलते हुए लोगों की आपा धापी देख के मैं घबरा गया,

पहले गुस्सा आया दुनिया के इस रवैये पे,

फिर दूसरे पल मैंने एक चिंता का मखौटा पहन लिया,

चिंता के बाद कुछ ना कर पाने की हताशे में मैं डूबने ही वाला था,

तभी

गांधीजी के तीन बंदरों की छवि मेरे समक्ष आ गयी और मैं हस पड़ा,

pic

इससे मैं टेंशन मुक्त तो हो गया

पर

क्या यही एक रास्ता है इन सब से पीछा छुड़ाने का,

ये विचार करने लगा,

आपको क्या लगता है,

इस बदलते समय में जिस तरफ हमारा देश और दुनिया अग्रसर है,

चाहे वो हो रहे रेप या हत्याएं हो,

चाहे वो सड़क पे बढ़ता हुआ गुस्सा और अग्रेशन हो,

चाहे वो पैसे के पीछे भागने की होड़ हो,

चाहे वो वैल्यू सिस्टम का समाप्त होना हो,

चाहे वो माँ बाप की सेवा करने से हाथ धो लेना हो,

चाहे वो इस वातावरण को तहस नहस कर देने का हमारा व्यवहार हो,

या

चाहे सिर्फ अपने बारे में सोचने की आदत हो,

क्या सिर्फ अच्छे पहलू को देखना ही इसका एक मात्र उत्तर है,

और अगर नहीं,

तो क्या हम सबको अपने अपने लेवल पे एफर्ट करने की ज़रुरत नहीं है,

इस ज़िम्मेदारी को हम सबको समझने की बहुत ज़रुरत है,

जिससे एक अच्छे सोसाइटी का निर्माण किया जा सके,

इसके लिए हमें गांधीजी के उन तीन बंदरों को इगनोर करना ही क्यों ना पड़े,

सवाल बस इतना सा है दोस्तों,

क्या हम खुद से ऊपर उठ कर

इस दुनिया में जी रहे और लोगों जीव जंतुओं के बारे में सोच कर

एक सही सिस्टम के निर्माण का निर्णय लेने को तैयार है या नहीं?

Source for the Image: https://navbharattimes.indiatimes.com/other/sunday-nbt/future-stars/three-monkeys-of-gandhi/articleshow/29820353.cms

व्यवहार, ज़िन्दगी का आधार

It’s said:

No matter how big you grow into,

No matter how wise you consider yourself,

No matter, how careful you are with maintaining public perception,

No matter, how hard you work on your personality,

The way you interact and behave with different stakeholders in your life, determines the real character of the individual,

Be it your wife whom you get to say good morning to each day of your life,

Be it your parents or siblings whom you get to talk to once in a while in this modern world,

Be it the driver who drops you to your office on each working day,

Be it the security guard, who tends to secure your life more than anyone else,

Be it the house maid, who makes your house functional each day,

Be it the office boy, who makes your stint in office comfortable,

Be it the colleagues and boss who tend to make you feel important,

Be it the grocery guy who tend to bring to your doorsteps the fruits of hard work of the farmers in our country,

or

Be it any random guy that you come across in this beautiful journey of life,

download

At every point in your life, you get to interact with innumerable people,

on whom: you may or may not consider yourself dependent on;

What qualifies as maturity, is being able to make that all important interaction:

Respectable, 

Enjoyable, 

Valuable, 

and

Treating it as the very last interaction that you will ever get to do in your lifetime.

Not realizing that one day, it will all come to an end,

Be it your ego/persona, 

Be it the luxury cars that you get to sit in or drive,

Be it the assets that you own or aspire to own,

All will vanish in thin air or ether as they refer it to as in Vedic texts.

How soon you realize this and work on that all important interaction is your choice!

Source for the Image: https://newsatjama.jama.com/2014/06/13/cdc-report-highlights-risky-health-behaviors-in-high-school-students/

P2P Competition!

You know what, my son Siddharth is doing great in his coaching classes for IIT Jee. Today, his teacher was telling me that he would surely make it to top 100″, says a parent P1 to another parent P2, who is the father of Shreya, who’s Siddharth classmate.

Oh, is it! That’s wonderful. Shreya is somewhat lagging behind in Chemistry. I just hope she is able to catch up, am a little concerned whether she will be able to qualify the exam”, responds P2.

You know what, you should start sending Shreya to this wonderful coaching institute in our neighbourhood, if you really want her to succeed”, P1, being a proud parent that he is, is always on look-out to offer free advise to other parents living in the same community.

I guess, you are right! Let me enrol her in the same program as Siddharth”, conforms P2.

If you are wondering whether P1 and P2 might just be an exception to the rule when it comes to parents demonstrating concerns for their kids, think again, for that’s what you tend to see in majority of parents these days.

What most kids’ routine would look like in today’s competitive world:

5:00 am Good morning

6:00 am Tutor at home, who takes care of kid’s Science and Math lessons

7:30 am Kid goes to school in an air-conditioned bus of the respective school which has curtains, and kids seem to be cut off from the world outside, few among who, spent most of the time in the bus, browsing on the internet, or watching some random video or chit chatting on Whatsapp

3:30 pm School gets over, kid sits in the same bus, comes back home, around 4:30 if he/she is lucky enough and his/her house comes first in the list of the drop-offs

5:00 pm After a quick snack of sorts, kid has some extra-curricular lesson with a relevant tutor coming to the house, be it a piano session or a tabla session, for kids need to excel in not only their studies but also other things, which gives a parent an opportunity to showcase their kid as a trophy of sorts to the who’s who of their society 

6:30 pm Kid goes to a coaching institute, where he/she is supposed to prepare for a competitive exam

8:00 pm Kid comes back to the house, totally drained out, but wait a minute, he/she needs to complete a set of assignments given either by the morning tutor or the school

9:30 pm Kid gets a chance to have his/her dinner and by the time, he/she is able to finish the same, there is no energy left whatsoever to remain awake, yet he/she, courtesy the mobile phone, spends sometime on the same, before falling asleep

family-867

And this continues for the entire year, which goes against the very fundamentals of how a kid should spent his/her wonderful childhood years.

Courtesy the quality of teachers we have in the system, the school system kills the inherent curiosity of a kid, ensuring that he/she is thrown into the rat race from the very moment, he/she is able to perceive the world in a certain manner.

Courtesy the eagerness of the parents to see their kids not lagging behind, the kid suffers tremendous stress, few of them succumbing at times to the same, few who might be lucky enough to not meet the same fate as above, end up spending the wonderful years of their life in a tizzy.

Courtesy the immediate society who are thriving on the vary act of comparison, ensures that the kid, who is so called not able to make it big, ends up going through a mental and emotional trauma, which surely leads to having repercussion in the latter half of their life.

What a waste, I would say!

Just because competing with someone has become the very basis of life, parents have a tendency to put their kid through enormous amount of stress.

Just because a parent considers it as their right to get their expectations fulfilled by their kids, they forget that the very life they have brought into this world is meant to experience and explore, rather than just meeting those man-made targets.

It’s high time that we as a society and parents begin to realise, that what we define as success, is it really the case?

And if not, then why the hell we are bent upon putting our kids through such torture.

My advice:

Calm down parents, be sensible, for this competition among yourselves would end up in being a disaster for not only your kid, but also for the society as a whole.

Source for the Image: http://www.altonschools.org/index.cfm?page=1045

Deciding to Obey!

Since childhood,

Be it our parents or teachers,

Be it the moral science books,

Be it any other elder in the neighbourhood,

We have been told to obey, for the sheer reason being that all the stakeholders mentioned above have experienced life much more, in terms of no. of years, than what we might have.

Fair enough, some would say!

But few might ask, is this the only and probably the right way to approach any or every aspect of life?

Well, may be and may be not!

obedience-2_opt

May be, because of the communication relationship and the trust that you might have been able to build with the person over a period of time.

May be not, because, unless and until you have experienced it yourself, you might have a tendency to stop being curious and accept it at a surface level.

So, it comes down to whether the acceptance is because of the very concept of obedience or because you decide, having experienced the same, to give your consent to obey.

Considering the kind of argument one gives behind obeying, in a way, influences the way your thought process shapes up.

From a teacher or a mentor point of view, it is extremely important that obedience is a consequence of the decision a kid chooses to take, after having had a complete understanding of the relevant aspect of life.

For, all the kids out there, there is a strong need to delve deeper into what’s being said and ask as many questions as you can, before you decide to accept,

and

For all teachers and parents, the imperative is to encourage kids to be curious and let them explore before expecting them to obey.

Source for the Image: http://dawnhydebooks.com/montessori-how-obedience-and-will-power-develop-in-young-children/

See_the_ME!

A philosopher once said, “If you really wanna know how a person is, you need to dive deep into the ocean of her eyes, for eyes tell nothing but the truth, if you perceive it well, that is!

A beautiful thought indeed, though what’s needed is to become a keen and focused observer to understand the very fundamentals of all emotions, be it love or hate and the very existence in itself.

What we refer to as the connect is very much a part of our realisation that each and every matter in this universe is nothing but a derivative of the same cells or particles.

Only if we were to remove the conditioned garb, which we tend to adorn with great pride each day of our lives, would things be perceived more than what it seems to be right now.

pexels-photo-531321

Which leads to a zeal to explore and in turn a possibility of a discovery beyond imagination,

Be it that one moment you would die to spend with the special one of your life,

Be it the cause that you would want to dedicate yourself throughout your life,

Be it spending quality time with your ageing parents,

or

Be it lying in the garden and looking at the beautiful starts.

For thou shall perceive, what you ought to, and what’s about to happen will reveal what it was all about in times to come!

Source for the Image: https://www.pexels.com/search/dawn/

Million Dollar Job!

Let me start by what it is not:

An Investment banker who makes every second of his day count into making loads of money;

A startup tycoon, who has tread the hard steps to become what he/she is today;

An IAS officer who, among all the competition has managed to secure for himself the most coveted of posts;

A Scientist or a researcher, who has to his/her credit numerous published papers and books and might be the most wanted expert in his field;

Wondering, what it could be?

One that most of us have come across possibly each day of our lives for the past whatever years, we have been in existence;

One which most of us take for granted;

One which is nothing but a natural consequence of being here;

One on which we can depend on without the give and take norms of the society;

One which, few amongst us, might have already had the fortune of attaining that status;

Being a PARENT. 

j6djclarllpqdtwx7s

Comes with lot of pleasure and an ability of being able to act the very agent of the source of creation;

Though, the role, if not performed well, has drastic consequences for not only the life whom we have brought into this world, but also for the society and in turn the ecosystem at large.

What follows just after the birth is a roller coaster where you go through the ups and downs;

Yet, one thing that cannot be taken from one as a parent is the possibility of directing the life into becoming a sensible being;

Which requires a dedicated commitment from the parents for a minimum of 18-20 years, where one tries to make sure that the individual evolves into a sensible being;

Capable of looking beyond what’s obvious and being able to make conscious decisions, which leads the world into a sustainable place to live in;

For few, the very process of parenting results in stress and discomfort; one needs to deliberate the very nature of the same;

What’s needed for a parent is to become sensible himself/herself before one treads the path;

So, just before deciding whether we want to become a parent or not;

Don’t you think, it’s sensible enough to ponder over the very sensibility of the act and the process!

“I Listen”!

In a colloquial conversation, in a public gathering, a teacher was once asked, “what do you do for a living?” 

He answered, “I listen!

Funny to the core as it might sound, it had a very deep trans formative meaning to the same.

Most of the teachers by any set of imagination, would go on talking on how well they teach, how well they are able to bring out the curiosity in the kid, how well they are able to communicate their learning, and so on.

But here, this gentleman was standing amidst the who’s who of education sector, answering the very fundamental of what you need to do in order to make sure that every kid on this planet gets an opportunity to learn, as per his/her needs, convenience and adaptability.

For if one doesn’t listen to what the kid has to say, how would one know, what he/she wants, what are the kind of challenges the kid might be going through in his/her life be it getting bullied by a set of rogues or failing to understand that one concept in science on which he was made to believe that his entire future would depend on.

This fantastic habit, which we all refer to as listening, goes well beyond what I have spoken above and is a mool mantra of sorts when it comes to our day-to-day life.

Be it professional, or personal, though everything is personal (another thought for another time ;)), yet for clarity and for discussion purposes, lets keep it separate.

Professionally, an organization is one big family, where in the father/mother or the so called CEO tries to make sure that each kid performs to the best of his/her ability, reaping proportionate awards for the same, at the same time, making this family a prosperous unit.

kids-listening-clipart-listen02

Personally, father and mother, try to do everything possible for their kids, trying to make sure that every need is met with a suitable material/emotional support for the child to grow and become a productive and healthy individual.

But if the above forget to listen to what their kid has to offer in terms of advice, in terms of feedback, in terms of sharing his/her concern, in terms of discussing his/her problems, then no matter how good the HR policy is

or

The home conduct rules and values are, the kid will end up suffering, because of the chaotic environment around him/her which doesn’t seem to offer that much needed ear, leading to multitude of problems, both physical and psychological, that our society needs to be caught in big time, at this very moment in our lives.

So, if you want to become a good father, a good mother, a good CEO, a good leader or whatever category of good, you need to imbibe this art of listening.

I wonder, how many are indeed listening ;)!

Source for the Image: http://www.clipartpanda.com/categories/free-clip-art-children-listening

Taken for a Ride?

The moment we all hear the phrase, “taken for a ride”, a negative image of some incident, more often than not, comes to our mind, where we find ourselves living the same and developing negative emotions because of who so ever or what so ever caused us to be taken for a ride.

We tend to think, how stupid in time we were, how bad the world was, or for that matter, how could one not see something coming, trying to calm ourselves at the same time, that is was an anomaly in the entire scheme of things that we happen to go through each day of our lives and that we are too intellectual to have been taken for a ride.

We go on to convince ourselves of the goodness in ourselves, which enabled us to bring out qualities like trust, faith etc etc and which made us believe what was on offer. Having said the above, taken for a ride, doesn’t necessarily mean bad things.

images

After all, when we were kids, our parents also took us for a ride ;), by making us eat all the nutritious food that we were supposed to consume at that point of time in our lives.

Our teachers, by hook or crook, made us learn the valuable lessons, which made us a better individual (supposedly ;)).

Our siblings, who taught us the very essence of togetherness and love, our friends who made us understand, what the dynamics of a society was.

As we grow old, we somehow tend to start having interpretations and perceptions which tend to swing towards the negative side of things.

We forget that our mind, which was supposed to see the positive side, has got conditioned into a dreaded monster of sorts, where we have developed a tendency to burn ourselves in the wrath of our perceptions and negative emotions and thoughts evolving out of the same.

What’s needed is for you to revisit your your younger self, and start enjoying the very nature that taken for a ride was supposed to bring to you.

The only thing you need to convince yourself, per say, is that after all taken for a ride was how it was supposed to be, if it were not so, you would not be, who you are meant to be :).

Source for the Image: https://www.youtube.com/user/RIDEChannel

The D in our Lives!

Without getting into taking names, because it seems to be the most irrelevant of things, even the master himself said, what’s in a name!, allow me the luxury to share with you one of the most common conversations that we have with ourselves on a daily basis.

Where D represents the Devil inside all of Us

Us—-“Don’t dare to come out, else will not be good!”

D—“Why not? I am meant to be taken out and not kept inside. Go out there and live life to the fullest”.

Us—-“Do you even realize the consequences, if I unleash you in full?”

D—-“But wasn’t I meant to do what I am supposed to do and not really sit within your subconscious?”

download.png

Us—-“There is nothing you can find as a support for your supposed to do things.”

D—-“What if I start playing within you. Do you realize what it will lead to?”

Us—“Probably yes, but you are hidden, at least not visible to the world.”

D—-“What world are you referring to, is it your parents, who will leave you one day to re-unite with their eventuality, or the insignificant others, are you kidding me?”

Us—“Well, it’s not that simple. They will have their opinions and point of views, which they will try to impose on you.”

D—-“Do you really care or more than that, should you really care?”

Us—-“Of course, I gotta live with them, they are the ones who care for me the most.”

D—-“Don’t you think that care is leading you to the end of a cliff, where there won’t be any other option but to either take the leap or jump for good? In any case, whether you like it or not, you will have to let go at some point or I will make you let go.”

Us—“Yes, but I don’t have the courage to do so.”

D—“Is it because you have lost your self-confidence or is it because you are scared, or may be too fed-up of the kind of ideas and notions that this world keeps bombarding you with and keep reinforcing you with?”

Us—-“Possibly yes, and I don’t think I have enough strength left in me to stand up to the same.”

D—-“What if, you give it a shot! Those who do, do succeed, those who don’t live their entire lives repenting and thinking of what if?”

Us—“Hmm! Do you think it is the right thing to do?”

D—“Who cares whether it’s right or wrong? Or is there something like right or wrong? What matters for you is to figure out what’s best for you!”

And because, we end up getting convinced by what the D in our lives tells us, we begin ignoring or shutting the D in some way or the other, to start with, following it with thinking about what D had told us and eventually end up doing what the D had warned us about.

But by that time, often for most of us, it’s too late. All our youth is gone and what we are left with is an opportunity to repent about what if we had taken the advice that D gave us, at a time which we considered as right.

After all, the only question that you need to answer is what the master posed to us long back, “To Be or Not to Be!”. 

Source for the Image: http://www.firstcovers.com/user/412095/to+be+or+not+to+be.html