Sunday, January 29, 2017

Life Lessons :)


Life teaches something every other day. Learning never stops. Life is a school we never stop attending to. We fall and then we rise. We fall again and then we rise again. It goes on and on. It’s not like the regular school we attend in our childhood, where there is a set curriculum, a set list of lessons, and where we have the choice of leaving out a few lessons if they are too much for our understanding. The school of life comes with an element of surprise; we never know what is the next lesson we may have to learn. We never know what and how life will challenge us. We never have a clue what test we may have to appear in. We may have to go through the same test again and again, until we choose to learn finally.

There is so much that we learn every day, actively or passively. But if I have to share the greatest lesson of life that I have learnt so far goes something like below:

No matter what, don’t carry emotional baggage. Believe in forgiveness and move on. If we give a lot of importance to whatever wrongs were committed against us, we poison our ownselves. And we sure don’t want to do that. Life is too short to harbor bitterness and host long self pity parties. Sometimes, we do that in the name of ego/ self-respect, but while attempting to protect our self respect, we fail to cleanse our emotional system. When I talk about wrongs, I don’t essentially mean some major betrayals/ selfish deeds/ drastic harms which we had to go through; I also mean small and little everyday things, which get escalated in our tiny emotional system; including arguments, misunderstandings, heartbreaks, unattended needs; basically everything from tiniest emotion left unhealed to the biggest and most drastic life experiences.   

There is no use playing the blame game, pinpointing people, holding resentments, criticizing people, criticizing circumstances. The real freedom, the real liberation and the real bliss comes with forgiveness. Forgiveness for people and forgiveness for circumstances. No one does the kind of things they do knowing that they are doing wrong. They do the kind of things they do because they believe they are doing right. It’s difficult to understand but it kind of works this way mostly. Everyone is dealing with their own limitations, learning their own lessons, just like we are. We all seem to be so different yet our roots are same. We are all attending the same school of life, just that we are learning the personalized lessons designed exclusively for us, at our own pace, in our own ways. When we attend school, we are told by peers and parents to not judge weak students, help everyone and be good to everyone. Same holds true in the school of life as well. Why judge people? Why not just be good to everyone. May be they are yet to learn their lessons. Why not just keep your emotional system clean and pure by learning forgiveness. Rather than dealing with the emotional baggage, we can deal with better lessons of life. After all, life is short.

And this principle of forgiveness does not apply to other people only; it applies to self as well. Infact, it’s much more important when it comes to self. It’s only human to make mistakes and get messed up once in a while. It never helps to sit on our own mistakes and ridicule ourselves. Self-loathing is much more harmful than the emotional baggage. It’s perfectly alright if we make mistakes. We learn even from our mistakes. So we should forgive ourselves for all the meddling up we do and love ourselves all the same.

In the end nothing matters, only love does. Love is the true nature of all of us humans.

So, that’s the biggest lesson of life I have learnt till date. I have yet not perfected it and I am constantly trying. It may take a pretty long time still and that’s another reason it’s the biggest of all lessons for me.


This post is written for the INDISPIRE Edition154 What is the best lesson that life has taught you so far? #LessonOfLife

Friday, January 27, 2017

*Don't settle for fear*


Let fear never drive you. It happens many a times that we are so used to being afraid and our sub-conscious without letting our conscious mind know starts affecting our choices. Fear is the greatest enemy one can have. It makes us believe we are not enough; we do not deserve any better. It’s the root of all negativity in our minds, all the toxins in our psyche. When it starts overpowering you, you’ll feel like settling, settling for the lesser, settling for the fear of not being able to fit in if you don’t.

“All my friends are getting married. What if I don’t? What if my age passes and I am left all alone in this world?”

“Oh! But I love this guy! But is he treating you right? Chances are that he may not be. But what if I don’t find any better?”

There is an age when everybody around you is either getting married, getting engaged, going on a honeymoon, having a family and there are talks of marriage all around you. The panic streak in you gets propelled by an underlying fear at some or the other point of time; and then, this underlying fear will give you many expedient and practical terms to justify this deep seated unrecognized fear. You may call it adjustment, being practical, sometimes you may even term it as love. It would throw several logics in front of you-“But! You can’t get everything!”, “It’s about making the best out of what is available.” “Compromises are a must in life.” “So what if he has limitations? I love him.” “He is well settled, what if he lacks some basic sense.” “He is not doing it intentionally. He is just a little messed up.” “It will get better with time, I can make it work.” And there will be umpteen no. of reasons that your fear will give you to just settle.

Not that I say believe in some surreal, far-fetched fairy tale prince coming your way. But, you better know when you just start crossing that fine line of being propelled by your fears and fears alone. You’re throwing away your confidence, your self esteem, your individuality and most of all, your life, your very own life, and all that for some petty thing as settling.

Making yourself smaller to get that approval of “Happily Settled” and from whom? The society who least cares? To appear taller in front of the society, if you give up the height of your self esteem, you do nothing but betray yourself.

There is not more than a handful of people in our lives who really care with what we do with our lives. Rest all just need some masala gossip for sipping their evening masala tea. And the people who care will always stand by you in all phases of your life, no matter what. So care about the few who matter.

A little bit of adjustment will always be required and we do that with our families, with our friends almost all the time. But don’t let your fear make you adjust more than what is necessary. Don’t give in if you fear losing yourself. You are the most important being you have got. Don’t let the fear play you and take you away from your very ownself. Don’t let the fear be the driver. Don’t let it pull the reins for you.

As it is rightly said, “Fear is death, fear is sin, fear is hell, fear is unrighteousness, fear is wrong life. All the negative thoughts and ideas that are in this world have proceeded from this evil spirit of fear.” 

Sunday, November 20, 2016

An Introvert's Jug!

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Once upon a time, there was a little girl (let’s call her Sandra for this post) who was very shy and reserved. She was not very talkative, but she did not find anything wrong about keeping quiet. She would be immersed in the world of her own thoughts. She was not adept at cracking jokes or talking out loud. She was the silent type, nevertheless, comfortable with her silence. Though children are spared from the naming and shaming; once they start growing up, they have to bear the brunt of relentless attacks if they are unable to fit into the crowds. These attacks are not always explicit; sometimes they are very subtle, even invisible, but the victim knows when it has hit him/her.

So, as the little girl Sandra starting growing up, people started judging her. The introverts are often the most misunderstood people. They get many adjectives to their credit ranging from arrogant to boring to lame to haughty and some generous people even crown the introverts with the title of misanthropes. Sandra had a very limited circle. Though it wasn’t like she disliked people but she could not come up with enough topics to keep people interested in talking to her. So, people withdrew and kept a safe distance from her. Ney! Not that she was disliked by people but only that they did not really want to be around somebody so boring and unentertaining. That is how Sandra started becoming afraid of people. Infact, she started becoming scared of having to share space with somebody when there were just two of them. She started running away from such situations when she will be left alone in a room with nobody but just one person around. And that is how she started failing in connecting to people; the connection that true friends share with no fear of silence between them, no fear of being their true selves. She did have friends, she did hang out in groups, and she did manage to make bridges. But she believed these bridges to be the abandoned ones, the deserted ones. The real connection, the magic; it was missing. Sandra lacked a jug in her life; a jug to pour freely into, a jug to fill her emotions into, a jug to understand the words in her silence.

When it came to Sandra, people came in her life like milestones. Sandra passed through many. Though she loved all whom she came across in life, she stopped expecting from any. She lived, she loved and she kept moving. Some of them stayed as well, but Sandra did not let her heart be truly dependent on anyone, No one.

But Sandra did need a jug like everyone; a jug to keep herself strong, motivated and positive; to share her moments of joy and sorrow; to live her strengths and move past her weaknesses. And after half her life was over, Sandra discovered her jug. Words were her jug. Her world had always been surrounded with books. And her love of books soon turned into her love of words. The words which hung all around her and when she gave them expression she felt fulfilled, at peace. Her jug never lets her down. Her jug has immense capacity to absorb each of her emotion and her jug is full of immense light to keep her shining always and forever.

Sandra loves her jug all the more with each passing day. “Words- The Jug of an introvert.”

I am writing about Jug in my life for the #DearZindagi activity at BlogAdda

Monday, November 7, 2016

Thank You Dear Zindagi :)

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Dear Zindagi,

As I sit down and ponder, I wonder how you have been made up of infinite moments joined together; some sweet, some bitter; some blissful, some painful; some full of smiles, some full of tears; some dark, some full of light; some encouraging, some discouraging; some moments of happiness, some of sorrow; some moments of weaknesses, some of strength; some moments of despair, some of hope; some moments of faithlessness, some of unwavering faith. And juxtaposed together, these infinite moments have given shape to you – my beloved life.

I zoom in to those moments and realize how I have always taken all my blessings for granted. How I have let happiness quickly fade away in the face of slightest disappointments. How I have let myself wallow in misery rather than trying to count my blessings. How I have struggled with my own lesser self to keep my faith alive.

I zoom closer and I also see that there have been moments when I was blessed with lessons more precious than happiness; the lessons of growth, the lessons of wisdom and spirituality and when I look at those defining moments of my life, I can do nothing but thank you Dear Zindagi for every turn you have taken and for every experience you have chosen for me. I realize the reality in the saying of seers. “Everything happens for Good.” And indeed it does. Even in the worst and the darkest moments of our lives, in the most hideous realities, in the most tragic experiences, there are such lessons hidden which can never be learnt lest we go through such testing times in our lives. These are those lessons which are perhaps the most difficult but most enlightening too. The light that follows such darkness is bright and shining; and in that light we flourish to become better versions of ourselves and that is the reward life had chosen for us. And I thank you Dear Zindagi for every reward that you had chosen for me. Sometimes things seem clearer in hindsight, as now I can see clearly that I had been blessed despite all the moments of hardships and heartbreaks. And I thank you Dear Zindagi for all my blessings that I have so often not managed to count.     

Thank you Dear Zindagi for not letting me collapse under the weight of my own expectations. For teaching me that it’s sometimes important to let the relationships breathe rather than suffocating them by holding too close. It is important to love but not to possess. People will play their role in your life, some would stay and some would move away. Life is about constant motion, about constant change.

Thank you Dear Zindagi for teaching me to believe in the god’s will.  For teaching a very important lesson of faith which goes as under-
You may not be fulfilled the way you have been wanting, Yet you should not let your mind stagnate at one wish, one desire, one love. It’s alright because your life is more than one wish, one desire, one lesson, one love. It’s about letting go when you feel stuck in a state of impasse; it’s about learning the other lessons till that one lesson decides to reach you. It’s about learning to believe that your life has a purpose despite your unfulfillment.

Thank you Dear Zindagi for teaching me to be soft on myself and treat myself with kindness. For a very important lesson of protecting my self esteem that goes as under-
It’s not necessary to prove a point all the time, nor is it necessary to give in to the sea of opinions around you. Don’t push yourself into a confusion hovering between a defected see-saw of low self-esteem and control freak arrogance. It’s alright to be different; not all fingers can be same, yet it’s possible to co-exist. You are on your very own journey; Don’t explain everything, take it easy, don’t even try to understand everything, simply accept without resistance even when you don’t understand.

Thank you Dear Zindagi for giving me a chance to love. Thank you for not letting me become sore even after the heartbreaks and waiting. Thanks for teaching me to love despite odds, for showing me the way to the healing love of God.

Thank you Dear Zindagi for all the precious lessons you gave me and which I am still learning and will always keep striving to learn.

Thank you Dear Zindagi for everything and every moment of my life. 

“I am writing a letter to life for the #DearZindagi activity at BlogAdda

Sunday, September 4, 2016

The Mask

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One mask after another,
Man of today scares the mirror;
Confused emotions,
False identities,
Mala fide intentions;
A look in to your eyes and mine,
What are these capable of hiding?
A grotesque reality lying beneath,
The faces behind masks,
Chiding and deriding.

One mask after another,
Man of today scares the mirror;
Practiced expressions,
Fake concerns,
Convincing pretensions;
A look into your eyes and mine,
What are these capable of hiding?
The ill-will and nosy intentions underneath,
The slander, back-biting and fighting.

One mask after another,
Man of today scares the mirror;
Plastic smiles,
Sugar coated words,
Pernicious guile;
A look into your eyes and mine,
What are these capable of hiding?
The superficial emotions, the cursory relations,
The selfish streak, the hypocrisy circumscribing.

One mask after another,

Man of today scares the mirror.

Saturday, August 6, 2016

The Story of a Suicide- Book Review

When I learnt about this book titled 'The Story of a Suicide' , I immediately started reading this book. I have always wondered if there is no after-life, then could the morality or immorality associated with the suicide be classified in terms of black and white? Our scriptures say that this life is not the end because it’s just one of the many lifetimes we have been here. Recently, I read Dr. Brian Weiss’s and Dr. Michael Newton’s works and the picture of the afterlife that they have revealed in their books based on the case studies, is strikingly similar to that in our scriptures.

Our life is not as limited as we think it to be. We are all on our own journey, learning our own lessons at our own pace. No two fingers of our hand are alike. Similarly, no two humans can be alike. We all have our own set of strengths and weaknesses. But it does not mean one is lesser than the other. In the end we will all be the same. We are just at different points of the same journey. It is true that we all get deluded and start comparing ourselves with others. Sometimes in this process of judging, we lose our self-esteem while at the other times we as a part of the society as a whole become so consumed with a particular point of view/ way of life that any digressive point of views/ ways of life are ridiculed. The person who is different becomes a victim because the society collectively acts in a way to lower his self-esteem.

“The Story of a Suicide” by “Sriram Ayer” is a novel based on four main characters Sam, Charu, Hari and Mani. The story captures the complexity of circumstances of life which lead one of the characters to suicide.   Out of the four characters Sam was downright wicked. Charu was a mysterious character or rather it can be said that she had some kind of identity crisis. It was not very easy to understand her but there was one quality of hers that was appreciable, her strong headedness and her don’t care attitude towards the judgments passed on her. Hari was a timid and sweet natured guy.

The storyline is quite Ok. Although while reading, at certain points, the narration leaves you disappointed at the picture of these youngsters' lives which has been painted so grimly throughout. When I read the title, I had imagined it to be a story which would include problem as well as solution. But there are no words of hope written explicitly. The story is very dark and even the positive traits of characters are overshadowed with their negative impulses.

While Sam is a very good programmer, he is not very good in his interpersonal skills. He is not dignified enough to take rejections with a neutral mind. His revengefulness is what shapes the course of other lives in the story as well. Charu is strong but she is much prone to depression. In her definition of freedom, I find hints of overt use of sexuality as a means of escape. Hari is still suffering from the childhood trauma of being raped by his uncle. But his emotions seem all tangled with him turning gay after the childhood suffering. This turn seemed a little inconsistent as his experience with his uncle should rather have had scared him of men. Mani is a hard working student from low income family. His father had abandoned them and his mother was a labourer. He is dealing with his own problems like learning English. His involvement with Hari was an unexpected turn for me. 

All in all, I found the story to be a dark one. Although, there were many problems or rather mental barriers each character was dealing with, what I did not like about the characters was use of too much sexuality and mental violence in dealing with the problems.  I would have liked it better if there was focus on solutions rather than problems alone. 

On an ending note, life is precious and so are the ones gifted with it. Without sorrow, none would know the value of joy. It's true that sometimes life can be testing us in the ways which seem impossible to cope with. But at the end of tunnel, there is always light. The life may seem unfair sometimes, but life chooses us for a reason; because it knows we are larger than the problems it throws on to us, because we are capable to endure and win even beyond our own expectations. Because we are much more than what we think we are. Don't let your story end on a hopeless note. Be a fighter and remember that you would be pushed to light when darkness becomes too overwhelming for your soul.

For more answers about the book, read the story at