Addiction…

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There is no freedom at the bottom of the bottle… Any form of addiction, even in its mildest dose, brings only more shackles…more chains…more bonds…

There is no freedom anywhere unless you understand the impermanence and uncertainty permeating every sphere of your life – people, situations, emotions, everything!
You were born strong… So, why give up now? Why make it your crutch? Just persist for a little while more and you will have reached the core of strength inside you. Touch it, draw from it… Free yourself…
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An Elegant System…

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As you sow, so shall you reap…. What an elegant system!

Who needs the fear of hell or the lure of heaven at the end of life to improve oneself, to perform good deeds, to be kind and generous and helpful to family, friends, foes, strangers, all… Heaven and hell are in your own mind…

It’s simple…

As you sow, so shall you reap…

Take control of your own life, your own actions… No deity can help you if you refuse to help yourself…

In the Face of Adversity…

Courtesy begets courtesy. Isn’t that what we are taught in schools when we are young? What happens when we grow up? Why do we forget the lessons? Or do we forget them or adapt them as per our grown-up perspective of the situation and people involved? Obviously, it is effective being courteous to people who can understand and reciprocate in a similar vein. But what if courtesy just slips off the skin of the person who is in front of you or who takes undue/unfair advantage of your courteous behaviour? What’s the use of being repeatedly courteous to a bully or a slob who cannot or doesn’t want to change herself at all?

In social situations, you do extend common courtesy to the ones around you. But what if you have a long term acquaintance with someone and you know that despite of your courteous behaviour, the behaviour of the concerned person will not change ever and that you will have to take or handle the fall out from her actions? What do you do then? What do you do when you are stuck between a rock and a hard place? There’s no easy answer. Each handles such situations in their own unique ways. Some lose their temper, some laugh it off, some end up abusing that person – all end up unhappy! None particularly effective as none solve the primary problem.

We come to: Courtesy begins at home. Each is responsible for her own behaviour. An adult can’t be taught corrective behaviour at such a late juncture. One can advise but one can’t enforce. An adult chooses the way she wants to behave. So, if you feel so bad about someone being discourteous to you, then take a step back and think. Think if it is the fault of that person’s nature or a reflection on your own. One can only try to change one’s own habits and nature and that’s easier said than done. So, how can you expect someone else to change their behaviour overnight? Having said that, in a social scenario, one has to be alert that one’s behaviour or habit does not create nuisance for other people. One has to be socially aware and socially accountable for one’s behaviour. But, sadly, we don’t see that happening. We are so busy in our lives that we are just focused on our own tasks and responsibilities. We don’t care if we make life tough for other people. We are narrow-minded. We refuse to see the broader picture. We are willfully blind. At least, that’s what I think – when someone clearly elucidates the rules of engagement between two people, two departments, two companies or even two nations, then how can you expect amicability to exist between the said parties if one party does not follow the rules and just flouts them? Amicability can never exist between two parties who can never exist in the face of willful misbehaviour. Courtesy is shot to hell.

But then, if you cannot maintain courteous behaviour in times of adversity, then you are not a true gentleman or a lady. Courtesy is not only for times of peace. Only because one party is acting like a neanderthal, one may not descend to their level and behave in a similar fashion.

Never lose focus that human life is about self advancement, self-improvement and self-actualization. Rest all is secondary, tertiary or unimportant.

Keep trying… Keep walking…

A Few Harsh Truths….

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I learnt a few things today:

  1. Truth is difficult – Very much so. People might believe in the vague idea of truth being good always and might even think that they are truthful to others and themselves but  when the push becomes a shove hardly anyone stands by it. It’s easier to keep on believing in things one always did than accept that one might actually be wrong. I don’t know the need for such self-deception except that it is effortless, doesn’t require intense analysis and efforts to improve oneself, to grow, develop and evolve into a better version. The unknown is vast, uncharted, immeasurable and infinitely scary. Leaving behind the known realms of self on a journey to an unknown plane takes immense inner strength, determination and the purest form of passion. It takes a pure, powerful mind free from any preconceived notions, ideas or bondage of all kinds to not only perceive truly the strange vistas one comes across on this journey as they are in their form, structure and matter but also to encompass the strange visions with wisdom, to understand and assimilate them without breaking down. Such is the quest for truth. The path is arduous with will-o-wisps leading down to bogs. One has to be very alert and attentive to their surroundings lest they be caught in a quagmire. Only the brave of heart and strong of determination can walk this path. Truth is difficult.
  2. Self-improvement is just a concept – It is like a shiny ornament. Bright and beautiful to look at and show off to others. No one is really interested in it. It is like the latest fashion trends but with a longer shelf life. People love talking about it but that’s just empty noise with no substance to it. They don’t want to improve in any way. They love existing the way they have done since the beginning. The familiar is good, is comfortable. To accept the need for self-improvement is to accept that something is wrong with the current self and that is in direct contradiction to the precept – I am perfect! Ah inertia! We human beings are the perfect example of it. We continue to be in the state that we are unless and until something happens in the external world that makes us to stop, stand, look around and take a stock of our current situation. If the occurrence is stronger than our inertia then we make changes in ourselves or our situations. If it is not, then nothing happens. We continue as we were. The problem is that in most cases, the momentum required to create the change is very huge and not everyone can have occurrences of deep impacts in their lives. We have to sensitize ourselves to even the smallest opportunities that may arise for self-improvement. Sadly, we live in a world where the senses are overwhelmed by the constant bombardment of materialistic things. So, we just build elaborate lies around us and end up believing them. We don’t look inside our minds for answers. Self improvement is just a concept.

Why???

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We become so used to a fixed behavioral pattern that it becomes our standard goto response for anything that happens with us. The known provides comfort despite the wrongness of it. Why are we so unwilling to inspect our own selves and make changes as  required? Why is truth so unbearable, so unmanageable, so unpalatable that we prefer our cocoon of lies and deceit to the simple beauty of truth? Is it because it’s cold, harsh and not many have an iron clad digestive system? Why are we so apprehensive about our self image that we lie and cheat to maintain a rosy picture of ourselves instead of removing the thick blinkers of self deception and take a good, hard look at what we truly are?

Why do we revel in blindness? As human beings, we are on the topmost level of evolution. We have brains which can think, analyze, reason and conquer over the animal instincts we were born with instead of just blindly following them. So, why don’t we? Why this mass delusion? The society would be a better place if we actually used our brains and be truthful. Then why don’t we? Is it because of the life long mental conditioning that we receive from our parents, teachers and the society in general since the moment we are born? Is that conditioning too strong for most to just break free of it? Or does the mind need to be trained right from the beginning to think out of the box, not just believe blindly in whatever it is taught?

The mind is a high strung and equally highly trainable animal. It can be taught anything. Then why don’t we train it to do that which is its primary function? To ask questions, to doubt where there is a reasonable doubt, to be unbiased, to think, analyze, reason and then arrive at the correct conclusions? Why don’t we do that? Why do we persist in delusions?  Is it because of the conditioning or the cocoon we have wrapped around us? A goto behavior, a standard response is all that we can manage. We believe in conformity instead of standing out in the crowd. If others live a miserable life then we too are okay with our own miserable one. No standing out ever! Not even for happiness. Why?

A Guide to Harrowing Emotions: Part – II

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1. One is one’s own strength… That’s what this life is all about – finding one’s strength within oneself…
And when one finds it, it is one’s responsibility to nurture it and care for it the way one’s does for one’s own baby…until one day it grows so strong and mature that it is capable of making it’s own decisions, overcoming any tragedy, any mishap, any hurdle and ultimately, help in realizing the future one dreamt of…

2. In every struggle between the brain and the heart, let the brain win every time and you won’t have to regret any decision ever.