Love: A Mirage

images
Love is but a mirage,
A lifetime you wait for it,
Still remains it,
A distant dream.

Shining like a beacon,
Luring you in,
Unwary the traveller,
Trapped within forever.

A cage it is,
Not so golden or silk,
Woven rather,
With fragile heartstrings.

You yearn a soliloquy,
It wants a symphony,
Pleasure or pain,
With it accompanies.

The cresendo amplifies,
The end’s in sight,
A burst of sunshine,
Or ashes left by.

Why sell yourself short?

images

Don’t sell yourself short. Never sell yourself short because if you don’t believe in “you”, if you don’t trust “yourself” then who else will. You are the best person to know yourself, to judge yourself! Then why sell yourself short? Why belittle yourself? Why put yourself down? There seems no reason, at least none logical ones! And yet I see people belittling themselves, never achieving their true potential. I even find myself doing so on occasions. And then I wonder why? Why would a mostly rational person like me do that? I asked myself and arrived at some simple yet stunning revelations.

The most prominent yet the most destructive of all is – the couch potato syndrome! Getting so used to your current situation that despite of being tired of it and knowing how harmful it is, you are so comfortable in it that you force yourself to make do with it. It maybe your job, your relationship – any facet of your life – whatever it is, you make your peace with it and call yourself grown-up, responsible, matured! They are just some more words to push down yourself, your self-confidence. The second is – giving up your dreams and making the best with the second or even the third-rate. Why? Maybe because following your dreams takes more time, more efforts, more patience than you have to give! Maybe because of the peer pressure, family pressure to grow up, be responsible and move on with  life! But mostly because we become more and more scared of living as we grow up, of standing alone, taking the challenge and following through our dreams.

What we forget is that while moving on with life is necessary, what we “often” leave behind are the best parts of our “selves” – the light, carefree nature, the ready smiles, the zest for adventure, the ease and comfort of letting go! So many things which defined us, delighted us, made us into better persons, helped us evolve – just vanish along the way. What remains behind is the tired husk of man bowed down by responsibilities, commitments – so many of them! In the eagerness to grow up, we give up the curiosity of childhood. In order to conform, we give up individuality. That we yearned for in our youth remains now just a silly, far-fetched dream. We lose ourselves, our belief in the inner self, the strength, the trust, the absolute confidence in our dreams – we put ourselves down, we make do! We live a half-life, an unfulfilled, unsatisfactory, miserable half-life!

Ask yourself why! Life’s only once – Live full!

images (7)

Why is being bad so easy?

download

Why is being bad so easy as compared to good? I often ponder upon it. Anger is easier than forgiving someone. Greed is easier than being satisfied with what one has. Anxiety is easier than just letting go. I think I might have found an answer. I will not get into defining good and bad here since that is not the objective here.

In my experiments with spirituality, in the search of one true peace, I have tried various meditation techniques. One of them dwells on observing the sensations that arise in the body. The technique is Vipassana – an age old meditation technique teaching the path of wisdom to those who seek it. Though I am just an initiate in this technique, what I learnt through it was quite enlightening – that each and every moment, a sensation or more arises in the body and pass away. These sensations can be categorized into two groups; gross and subtle sensations.

Now, the gross sensations are so strong and intense that it is very difficult to ignore them without reacting as is taught in the technique while the subtle sensations are so ephemeral that it takes a very concentrated mind to perceive and experience them, let alone ignore them. For example, it is easier to feel pain in your leg after sitting in one position for a long duration than to feel the play of a light breeze against your skin. The exercise is to develop a well-balanced mind that maintains its neutrality/balance in times of adversity and prosperity both. I will not expound more on the technique as I am just a layman yet.

So, where do these sensations come from? These are born of our thoughts and actions in every single moment of the day. Our daily activities and interactions with the environment around us create these non-ceasing sensations in our body. During the course of meditation, one is taught to concentrate one’s mind so that one can experience these sensations and understand their true nature. It takes years of practice to train the mind to keep it calm and focused. So what happens the untrained mind – as most of us have? The untrained mind is mostly tuned to feel the gross sensations as they are very intense and strong and then, just to react to them, to satisfy them instantly (self gratification at its fastest!). It cannot detect the subtle, ephemeral sensations as it takes a lot of efforts and these sensations get lost in the torrents of intense feelings.

The other thing that I learnt during my meditations was that most of the gross sensations are connected to negative feelings like anger, hatred, fear, anxiety, envy, etc whereas all the good things like love, peace, charity, goodwill, kindness, etc are linked with the subtle sensations. Therein, I believe lies the answer to the dilemma of why is bad so much easier than good. Remember, how strongly we react to all the wrongdoings done unto us whereas all the happy, warm memories flit away from our minds like butterflies. It is in our very nature to be easily led to vice than virtue. Our untrained minds perceive and react to the gross sensations very quickly and strongly as opposed to the subtle sensations. Thus, doing wrong again and again is easier than doing right. In other words, we can say we have a predilection towards bad things that hurt us and others. But, herein, also lies one other very significant fact – that we have highly trainable minds and we can train them to be good, happy and peaceful rather than angry, anxious and bitter. It is also in our nature to have free will, reason and the power to exert them. As with everything else in life, it is a choice. So, what will yours be?

images (2)

A Celebration of Life…

79784__lovely-forest_t

Walking in the shadows am I,
Looking for a place to stop by,
A place I would call my own,
Among lovely beeches and rowans.

Here I could hear
Merry songs of the brook,
Willy wildflowers dancing,
The cawing of the rook,
The chirping of birds,
The baaing of sheep,
Blending in harmony,
A symphony of peace.

Here would I stay,
‘Til the next journey beckons,
To unseen lands,
Through siren songs.
Here would I tarry,
A stolen moment so right,
From within and without
A celebration of life!

A Lonely Lost Girl…

lonely_girl_1

A silent step
An unheard sigh
A stifled smile
An unseeing eye
 
A voice unvoiced
A fire doused
A feather wing broken
A storm unroused
 
“The landscape’s dry and barren, I see
No breath of cool air, no relief
‘Tis night to night, my life exists
There’s no one left, nothing that lives
Here I remain, ever seen never heard
Like a blossom, only never to unfurl
Here I remain, forever forgotten
Forever frozen, a lonely lost girl.”

Self-Worth Vs. Social Worth

self esteem

I see many people in society who are conflicted by self. Every single person wants to identify herself with something – an idea, a notion, a group. No one wants to be alone. No one wants to be left out – each deriving their self-worth, their meaning for existence from an external locus. Are we a generation so scared of our own uniqueness, our individualism that we take comfort in groups, hide behind the collective mindset? Why are we so unsure of our own self-worth? Or does the problem lie in our perception of self-worth? If we consider it, self-worth is a qualitative term rather than a quantitative one. Then how come we feel bad when we think that we are falling short of some pre-decided measure of human behaviour or expectation? Is it because we compare our self-worth against the predefined “social worth” criteria of the existing society?

If we look at it very carefully, then we can see that the society, itself, is so dynamic that the definitions and boundaries, which make up social worth keep on mutating constantly. Definitely, there are certain parameters of social worth which change very slowly over decades and more while there are some which are quite flexible and susceptible to changes in the collective beliefs and principles of the society in a very short duration. Hence, social worth, in itself, is not a constant. In such a scenario, it becomes quite stupid to measure one’s self-worth against the yardstick of social worth.

It is undeniable that self-worth, in some part, is derived from social worth. But what I refuse to believe is for social worth to be the major composition of self-worth. If so, then what about the experiences one goes through in life? These experiences are mainly responsible for the evolution of an individual, for defining her nature, character, beliefs and principles. They shape up the individual into whatever sort of person she is today. So, it would seem logical for the self-worth to be derived from a person’s inner belief in herself and her power of comprehending and interpreting the experiences she has been through than anything else.

Yet, somehow, we – the people – end up defining our self-worth as a function of social worth instead of as an independent variable. Hadn’t humans evolved initially as small groups of slightly rational animals who then formed societies for survival. I wonder if that was when social worth & self-worth were evolved – so entangled that it has become difficult for us to separate the two even in our own consciousness. Or are the two such an intrinsic part of being human that one cannot exist without the other? Was there a conspiracy back in time by the powers-that-be to make the social worth as the true mirror and the self-worth a mere reflection of it? Maybe, then, it would have been easier in those time to label and castigate those people with highly individualistic tendencies as rebels and crush them out. Voilà! No opposition!

History stand testimony to several such leaders who led their people to victory. Many civilisations have risen and fallen due to a few key players. I wonder what would have happened if these people would have stuck to the existing social conventions and mutely followed the predominating rules without challenging them ever. One this is certain – history would have been very boring and monotonous! If these people would have given up on their own self-worth, then we would still be living under the oldest civilization till date. There would hardly have been any inventions, discoveries or any progress in the human evolution process as for all this what is required is a highly individualistic nature, the courage to challenge the preconceived ideas, the persistence to keep going in the face of failures and above all, an unshakeable believe in self.

Hence, self-worth is more than a function of social worth. It is an independent variable altogether. The sooner we understand this, the better it is – for the individual as well as the society as a whole because ultimately, the society benefits from these expressions of self-worth. But that will happen in the long run. In the short run, the one who benefits most is the individual! No more vacillating, no more doubts about the choices one makes, no more self-disgust and pity for the wrong ones. One would be free of it all – all the negative emotions which hold us back from being truly happy.

Remember, only can a free rational  mind truly experience the bliss that true self-worth brings. And only can a person truly worthy of oneself be free!

befree

About Rule Books, Null Hypothesis & Social Sense…

baaaaw_social_misfit_by_choopy_choo-d2y3c9f

Have you ever felt that the entire world around you has a rule book but you! I have been in such scenarios many times… And what I do next is even worse – make certain assumptions, presumptions and watch myself fall flat on my face! But then, how can one make any assumptions about something one cannot even comprehend? The best way would be by laying down a null hypothesis and then by following a logical procedure to prove it correct or false. All this is fine and good for a scientific experiment but what about a social one?

For the sake of argument, let’s say that it is possible to assume, presume, predefine, hypothesize and generally conduct a social experiment but what are the chances that you will succeed in your endeavour? In a scientific experiment, it is easier to make logical and knowledgeable assumptions but pretty difficult to do so in a social one if you do not have a well-developed social “sense” or in other words – the rule book! All human beings are involved in social experiments at every stage in their lives thus, resulting in their respective success or failure in the society. Let us see how the different economic classes deal it.

1. The Rich Class: There are a very few things that transcend this necessity for social “sense” like money, fame, power, etc. The rich class is just too rich or powerful to be bothered by social failures. Still, even the rich class is involved in the social experiments; just not as affected by them in case of failures.

2. The Poor Class: As with the poor class, it is too poor to be bothered with social “sense”, too engrossed in trying to make ends meet to worry about social experiments and yet, they do participate in this exercise up to a certain extent. It would be safe to assume that this need to identify, interact with and judge other human beings in hardwired in our psychology.

3. The Middle Class: The middle class, by far, is the largest percentage of human beings involved in the social experiments. Bogged down by thousands of morals and principles, they undertake the most interesting and richly diversified social experiments, thereby creating fascinating interaction patterns and behaviours. The best thing is that they have different rules of behaviour in almost similar circumstances which does account for a veritable smorgasbord of human behaviour. Thus, the middle class is the most concerned with social “sense” without which it believes the entire society would collapse or descend into anarchy. So, to prevent this, it keeps on conducting experiments based on its social “sense”, thereby, adding to it even in case of a failure.

So, what are the people like me who lack social “sense” but belong to the middle class supposed to do? These are the social misfits since they do not have the rule book that the majority are equipped with. They feel out-of-sync no matter how brilliant they maybe in the personal or professional lives. The smart thing to do would be to acquire a rule book for self – by befriending someone who has one and comprehends it clearly and then, taking lessons from them, conducting your own social experiments with a control group (maybe a group of friends) and a placebo group (maybe some strangers), comparing results and Eureka! You develop your own social “sense”! The society which was a mystery for so long is no more mysterious. You will be able to perceive it in all its glory (debatable?) and your experiments will be more successful than just plain duds! All this, of course, if you want to make an effort….