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journeyman keep your rewards in your pocket

Don’t be in haste, don’t run too fast, for in running too fast, always looking at the destination ahead in future, you lose the real charm of your journey. You forget yourself and identify yourself with what you are not. You snap your ties with your real self, and with broken ties with your true self, you hardly stand a chance to grow firm roots in the personal and professional domain around you.

As a speedster you miss the real fruits that were placed solely for you along the path. You hardly realize the real profits and boons coming across your path. You miss your present, the real you who can exist in the present only, the rest is just a mere jumblement of ideas about incomprehensible future and regretful past. The unreal you has no tangible existence except as a bunch of insubstantial, phantom thoughts. Unfortunately this phantom idea takes precedence over the real you, deriving a chasm between what you think yourself to be and what you are in reality.

So under the fallacy of identification with the unreal, you forget yourself, you overlook the present impregnated with countless things around waiting to be defined just by your look, your insight, your observation. Every phenomenon is incomplete without you as an aware observer. So by forgetting yourself, you ignore your role in the process of creation.

Forgetting yourself, eyes peeping into the hazy distances, leaving all the multi-hues of things and phenomena waiting to be defined by your aware look, you stumble so many times. And the blame game starts. You target destiny, you point out unfair forces against you, you crib about injustices and system failures. All these are but the projections of your unreal self on external circumstances. The things outside are simply the screens where you play the disharmonic drama driven by the wrong protagonist impostoring as you.

So you run very hard with all your might, your eyes mechanically glued to the so called target. But is it, in any way, better than a blind run? And mind you, no destination is defined in isolation, just in itself, something lying at a distance in abstract. Every destination is the sum total of the experiences coming across the way. The so called ‘reach home’ is just one more milestone like any other along the way.

The runner is always more important than the act of running and the so called finish line. So cool down. Take a pause. And move restfully with equipoise and respectful awareness. The things that light up your awareness at each step are as important as the goal to which you are dying to reach. The ever-giving trees, singing birds, cotton soft clouds floating as spectators, gentle breeze applauding your march, motherly soothing sunshine, restful ponds, naughty rivers, gracious people, charming conversations, and what not. The list is endless. Not that there aren’t grey shades to the things around. There are, but they are mere appendages to the basketful of bounties. As they say, change your outlook and the world changes. Grey has just two factors of white and black. Multicolored possibility on the other hand has a big rainbow of possibilities. But it’s never complete without the participation of your prism, your heart.

The little wayside flowers have no meaning if you don’t pause to reciprocate their smile. An atom of reality has an observer and the observed. Nature has played its part; now play yours by being a keen onlooker. These small milestones coming with each watchful step have their rewards and satisfaction, provided you don’t belittle them as mere steps to the so called final trophy. Each step is a destination itself. I hardly see any final destination apart from dying without too many grudges from life. The rest are just mere steps following one another. To avoid the final judgmental hammer-strike at the fag end of the journey, it is simply required to be just a journeyman. The journey itself is a reward. It’s an end in itself. Pain arises when we take it as the means to something. There is just one journey, life. There is just one destination, a regretless ending of the show.

Your each step carries the prospects of the pearls of happiness provided you slow down your time. The time which is yours, defined by you, not by the clock’s clicking hands or other’s expectations and your imitation of the conventionally safe pursuits. The latter give you a fake sense of security but leave your soul thirsty, depriving it of the adventurous nectar that could have been sipped from the flowering of your own self by gracefully picking up the pollen lying for you.

There is no absolute time, just relative fixations of it to serve tiny human purposes. That doesn’t mean it should become the master of your destiny, casting you in its cement mold, making you a caricature of your true self. Your time ought to obey you, not the vice versa. You can slow it down with your increased awareness. Stretch each second on the enlightened curve of awareness. Time then serves you, giving you more in seconds than you ever observed and experienced in whole days.

Do you think a journey is accomplished by the running force you propel into? Think again if you say yes. It’s not possible to run forever. A run has to depend on rest and pause to sustain itself. Do you think the accelerator paddle in your car takes you to the destination? Not at all! It’s the brakes intervening to give restful pauses for safety to give meaning and control to your speed, to make it an organized run instead of a mad rush ever accelerating and crashing into some fatality.

The break, the pause, the rest, these are the basic ingredients to turn any random movement into a meaningful, assured, safe journey taking us to some point further in the journey. Miles and miles of mindless dash without breaking, restful pauses are meaningless crazy pursuits in a desert ending in painful mirages.

As you run without pause, rest and awareness, and with heedless hurry, you stress yourself out. This stress and tension kills the imagery. All tensed up and stressed, looking anxiously at the destination far-far away, you lose that dreamy imagery which makes each step a victory in itself. Do you think life is meaningful without restful reflections and creative imagination? It simply isn’t. If not now, you realize it later when unfortunately it is too late.

So guys watch your step. And look around you. Countless things and phenomena are waiting to enrich you. These are the things which make your journey fruitful and meaningful in the true sense. The destination stands defined only in terms of the process of journeying and the experiences gained alongside. And when you reach your destination as a victorious king, it’s only the experiences before the final goalpost which have turned the scale in your favor.

The nutshell is: Enjoy the journey fella! Don’t just close your eyes to the surroundings thinking about the destination where you assume to become happy some day in future. Forget it. No destination can give you happiness if you haven’t been happy while journeying.

Happy journey! Carry on! All the best!

The Inconsiderate Indian Elephant

It makes me terribly sad. We Indians basically behave like a group of tiny animals crammed in a little cage having lesser grains and more hungry mouths. It’s basically a fight, a noisy wrangle for mere existence, a squeaking pandemonium for survival. It makes us one of the most inconsiderate, immodest people on earth. On the other hand, we have the most ancient scriptures talking of love, care, share and brotherhood. Everything vanishes in practice though.

Why do you need medicines? Simply because there are diseases. Similarly, the endless holy talks of scriptures only prove a diseased society plagued with hate, selfishness, lies, conceit, crime and malice. In a healthy society you don’t need tomes of holy talk in religious books. No wonder, ours has been a terribly unkind, unhealthy society. Need a proof. You try to come in anyone’s way in any form at whatever level. You will get a slap, an abuse, a glare. There is more possibility of a fight than a smile all the time at all places. There is an air of antagonism. The probability of a mishap lurks at every nook corner. You have to be extremely cautious. God forbid, if you just, involuntarily, happen to raise anyone ire!

Forget about the rules of civility. There seems to be mass frustration. People have a frown on their faces as they stampede on the survival stage. You drop your guard and you will not get a chance to offer apologies. Justice will be dispensed on spot. It’s basically about one-upmanship. Courtesy is taken as the inevitable final resort of the coward. Civility and chick-heartedness are synonymous. So no wonder everyone is out there to prove his/her bravery. You have to hold your position, however ill-conceived is your idea of the fight.

Mass conscience seems to have been bruised too deeply. Try it any level, from beggars to billionaires, you will find courtesy, civility and consideration exist just in books. I was parking in front of a railway station. Now I am least prone to disturb anyone’s sovereignty. However, the congestion necessitated me honking twice to attract a man’s attention who was standing in the way. It resulted in the puny man to shout an abuse. It was bigger than his size, but luckily I was found not ready to take the abuse. I simply parked my car and approached him. Now, even with my modest stature, I looked over and above him in size. But then as an offended Indian he had to hold his guard. He mustered up his body language to show courage, expecting a fight. I approached him and with folded hands said, “Sorry O King of this land! O Angad ji, I ask forgiveness for making your foot budge from the ground!” There was no way except acknowledge my apology. With a sheepish grin, he said, “Koi baat nahi!” And there I came out absolved of my crime.  

As we stamp and stomp around, we simply grab the opportunity to spit anywhere, urinate everywhere, park our vehicles anywhere, flout every rule, shout louder and louder to have our say, molest anyone, take every shortcut to make our ends meet. Ofs, the list is endless!

The air is full of insecurity, suspicion, anxiety, jealousy, negative complexes: as many negative shades of human behavior as can be expected in a situation defined by decreasing morsels and increasing hungry souls. Thanks to the universal applicability of the concepts of marriage and siring a male heir for moksha, India is full: overpopulated to the extent that the core of individual philosophy is solely defined by the fight to survive. It’s always about ‘fight or flight syndrome’. The norms of jungle! It makes us self-seeking and beyond the consideration of anything above our own little self. Do we qualify above the so called animals in the jungle?

We cannot see beyond the basics of life. And with so many hands grabbing the same morsels in the same little plate what else one can expect? We just identify themselves with our lower selves, the ego, defined by fears, insecurities, complexes and jealousies. The stage is so small that one doesn’t possess the opportunity, or the will, and consequently the ability, to get connected to the higher self, the stage of consciousness about one’s role, responsibility and duties as a considerate, contributing entity of the collective environment. This attachment to the lower self makes us terribly self-centered.

There is mass apathy. As long as we get the survival crumbs to pamper our lower selves, we care a damn about anything else. Self-responsibility. The compound word doesn’t exist in our vocabulary. We allow ourselves and others to violate any socio-legal norm. It’s a mischievous hush-hush pandering of the collective evil. A simple give and take. I will take my ill-gotten liberty, you take yours. The offshoots of such behavior include spitting anywhere, defecating almost everywhere, flouting traffic rules, tendency to take short-cuts to reach our little journey to meet the same puny destinations, grease palms of government employees, take bribes whenever possible, etc., etc., and etc.

You name anything, and we Indians will not disappoint you in flouting the norms. All because we inherently and instinctively connect with the lower self. Out of all these huge mass of self-seekers, the most potent ones become the politicians. They are the best self-seekers who have hardly any restrictions, moral or legal, to stop them from meeting their desires and destinations. No surprise small self-seekers deserve only bigger self-seekers to lead them.

There is no need to comment about our politicians and their oft-used tools of dividing society on caste, communal, regional and class basis. Indian democracy functions on divisiveness. Individually we Indians are very low on self-esteem, creativity, guts, courage and enthusiasm, so we identify ourselves with collective identities in the form of caste, creed, religion and region. This tendency is smartly used by the traders of divisiveness, the politicians. And there moves the great juggernaut, the inconsiderate Indian elephant.

Vultureless Skies

Dead vultures and well-ground meat

There were times when we had vultures in north India. Beyond their metaphorical abusive usage in language, they flew very high. They roamed freely in the bluish depths of undisturbed skies. Floating, their wings sprawled out, in utter peace and calm. They were too far and safe. They were detached, but as an earthling, you cannot ignore earth however high you can fly. Away from man’s reach—save some incidences when they crashed into man-made metallic birds—they floated free and landed only when there was something lying on ground with no more life, no more play in the hustle and bustle of things; something beyond the survival matrix of sweat and blood; something totally passive to the mucous throngs of life. And they swooped down, the scavengers from the skies.

They descended matter-of-factly. Cutting air with their sun-parched wings, coming to the world of we humans, to play their part in the natural scheme of things allocated to them. Beyond the bloody, brutal and sordid pulls of their pointed, hooked bills into the dead innards, they appeared self-effacing, modest scavengers going on their duty to help clean up the system. Even saintly with their sad, drooping eyes! I remember a whole fat, lifeless cattle turn into a skeleton in some odd hours, leaving no scrape of flesh around any bone, and no foul, rottening odor later on. The dogs took onto the bones, lost in the mirage of pacifying hunger from the deepest depth of a well where there might not be any water.

Then Diclofenac, a cattle medicine, came. The more the vulture did their duty for the dead, the more death did its duty on them. The vultures lost their skies. They got sick and fell from the sovereignty of their skies. One more entry to the increasing list of extinct birds. A very casual occurrence. So the skies became clear. Only mankind’s steel birds have a right to fly that high. So we don’t have vultures now. Only airplanes can go so high. The ethereal blue is calm and steeped in history. Of course the dead cattle need to be disposed off. The farmers bury these in shallow sand-pits. The dogs pick up the trail, dig out and chew on the sandy rot. And a huge cumbersome cloud of foulest odor clumsily reaches human nostrils to remind them of the species which is extinct now. Not too many mind though.

The dogs now go to the metalled road to meet their famous death, the much anointed dialogue, kutte ki maut, which is rarely natural. Death and its agent need not push themselves to grab their share on the road. It’s National Highway 334 B running through the densest rural and town settlements across central Haryana, starting from Western Uttar Pradesh, crossing Yamuna and going across Haryana from east to west. Till a year back it was just a district road. But then they suddenly changed it into a national highway without adding to its dimensions. It’s just a two-laned road without any lane divider. Heaviest to the lightest vehicles ply bumper to bumper day in and day out. And accidents happen rampantly.

The truckers have grabbed its link to Rajasthan and southern Haryana, with even more greed than a hungry vulture of decades. There is no toll tax on this link. It saves them 1200 rupees. This much money matters. Even the time it saves also matters. So human safely is lost in the smoke exhaust. Overloaded trawlers ply gleefully. It’s a journey of overs: overload, overspeed and overgreed. Transport companies put up rewards for the fastest drivers. In the mad rush, rules, regulations, care and concern take a back seat. And people die in road accidents. Almost daily there is a fatality. In a neighboring village, two brothers, one 17 and the other 19, going to their fields to prepare for physical tests for army recruitment, were crushed to death early one morning. The tragedy isn’t the odd one out. There are many. But they get buried into the tar under speeding, burning wheels.

The dogs too, knowing that there are no vultures, come under the heavy wheels to get crushed to a pulpy, well-ground meat. Even bones get ground easily; the vehicles are so heavy after all. Years back, when there were vultures, a dog hit by a vehicle, would be at least dragged to the roadside trench. Vehicles were sparse, wheels were smaller, and people had time to respect even a dog’s dead body and threw it into the roadside pit. Then the vultures would take up, efficiently, smoothly, surgically. Now right after the first hit, you cannot tell whether it was a dog, a cat or swine. Wheels are endless. It gets crushed within minutes, first to a juicy broth, then to dry sponge, the blood absorbed by the burning tar under hot wheels. It’s dry before you realize. The eddies of smoky wind let loose by tyres then puff away the last grains. It’s quicker than even the biggest horde of vultures. No man, possibly there is no need of vultures now. Metaphorically though vultures exist, thriving in fact, as we add to the haramzaadgi in us.

The point where everything is synonymous with nothing

Universe: The one song

Look at your body and think, whether it exists in abstraction, in exclusive totality. It doesn’t. It simply cannot. It’s simply a few kilograms of matter clinging to consciousness, chetna. Just like electricity is the link between a computer’s hardware and software to make it an operating unit, similarly, prana energy is the link between the matter, body, and consciousness, the seat of your real being. You occupy the chair of your existence as a dynamic unit operating under the infallible laws of reciprocal transformations of energy. 

This ecosystem, which supports you and countless other beings, is your extended body. You are just a point of existence within this larger body. These trees over there are your bigger lungs. These streams of water are the larger replica of the water in your body. Calcium, phosphorus, zinc and other elements of your body are just the tiny replica of the vast mountains and plains containing mammoth amount of this matter. You retain your identity in this sea of ecosystem like a drop of water does in an ocean. It exists, simply because the larger entity exists to define its existence. 

Moving up the hierarchy, this ecosystem also has an extended body. It is mother earth itself. Earth with dense metal in its core, its gravity, its spin and revolution, sets up the stage for the ecosystem to exist.

Further, the solar system is earth’s extended body. Earth cannot exist in exclusion from the solar system. Without it, it will just vanish like a tiny speck of dust and scatter its energy to be taken up by concurrent phenomena, God knows in what incidental, interesting way.

The Milky Way is the solar system’s extended self. Solar system will collapse without the vast surrounding balancing forces of the Milky Way. It’s just a tiny phenomenon cocooned in the huge galactic forces of matter and energy transformations prevalent in the Milky Way.

Super-galaxy is Milky Way’s extended body, and so on so forth. Till you reach the roof of everything, till you reach the farthest expansion of the universe. Then it’s nothing. Simply because there the explosion is imploding, getting sucked into nothingness. To be blasted out again for another cycle. How is it possible with net zero energy? Visualize a pendulum. It swings left and right simply because of the energy transformations taking from kinetic energy to potential one and vice versa. When it’s moving up, its kinetic energy is turning to potential energy. When it’s going down its potential energy is turning to kinetic energy. Same is the case with this cosmic pendulum. At its two extremes it explodes and implodes, expands and gets sucked up, and on and on. Just a cosmic swing, moving on and on.   

Now, can you guess, what is the meaning of “universe”? It is “one song”. If you still didn’t get it, no need to waste time, carry on like before, but don’t forget to smile and have fun. This is just one harmonious, ever-evolving song to which you can definitely add your melody and composition by being in tune with the natural laws. There is no specific need to understand it. It can be very easily lived.  

Closely watch nature. You will see the miracles happening with such magical effortlessness that they appear more mundane than even the simple task of you lifting your hand. And one more thing, like you see around, it’s nothing but dynamic exchange and transformation of energy and matter. In any case, it’s basically energy, because matter is just the apparent state of energy at a particular frequency.

Your own purposes in life always fall short of the universal will unless you link them to the causes beyond your own self. So while you strive to be happy and successful, try to do it in a way that it gets in sweet concordance with the very same desires of not just human beings but whole of the ecosystem.

Even a genuine prayer for someone will do. Enlightenment doesn’t mean skies will shower flowers and earth will part and you will get a halo around your head. It happens when you become the commonest of the common and see you in the natural scheme around, as a part of the totality around. When you accept in all humility that there is hardly any individuality around! It’s all but a massive commonalty.

One seed contains the potential of a whole forest. The cosmic seed, the point, the Bindu of Hinduism, is just the point where explosion and implosion begin and end. At the highest hierarchy, this seed, this point, this vector of nothingness, contains limitless possibilities for the mutually interchanging interplays of energy. Look at the marvel of a tiny banyan seed. Look at the wonderful sprout of a huge tree with the lateral openings for birds, animals and humans. The cosmic seed, the point of nothingness, contains the seeds for everything. Quite stupendously, it’s nothing and everything at the same time.  

These little groups of words in this tiny sermon just try to take a picture of the infinite and its day-to-day reflection in our lives. It’s just a poor substitute for the ultimate reality. Just like a picture taken on your camera is a poor replacement for the lively panorama you wish to capture. With due regard to human limitations to express the infinite dimensions of reality, all our efforts through words, art and science are just indicative in nature. They just point to the largest reality far above the smaller planes of human-contrived smaller realities which make life easy and comfortable.

There is hardly any difference between ‘everything’ and ‘nothing’. This cosmic cycle, having a time-span of billions of years, is a blast from a point. The net energy is zero. You can have an endless interplay of energy, with nullifying factors at each step, like you go on adding and subtracting at all levels. Eternity then becomes possible. It’s possible to have ‘everything’ out of ‘nothing’. The so called Maya of Hinduism is nothing but the apparent reality, which involves the subject and the object. In quantum physics, they say that for the subatomic phenomena to exist, it’s necessary to have a perceiver.

Radiation is both wave and particle at the same time. How is it possible? Waves because it shows the properties of a wave like refraction. Particle because it can strike like a particle and get bounced off? Contradictions melt in probability. And that probability is never complete till you have the observer to define it. Electromagnetic radiation, the wave, has particles called photons. These photons have zero mass. Then how can these be particles? They are particles through the probability within a specified zone within the path where there is a possibility of their existence. They are a wave without an observer, and turn to particle status the moment the observer arrives on the scene to define a moment of existence at a particular point in the band of probability. Scriptures say that all this is an extension of your mind. The latest researches in quantum physics prove the same thing.   

Explore your own space within the infinitely dynamic exchange of energy in the singular stream of primordial energy shooting off in countless directions, carrying fixed laws and supported by infallible universal intelligence. And all this is defined by the last law of all the lesser laws, the ultimate law. Call it God, supreme intelligence or the ultimate being. All this but is the same thing.

The power of tiny step and soft breath

One more step, one more breath

All you need to avoid a fall is to take one more step, then another, and then another. You should be bothered about just one more step. Forget about miles and more miles. These are meaningless without the step just about to define your current journey, your present. Being in league with one more step makes you the real journeyman. It means you are right there, still moving, still fighting. The chance of victory is always alive as long as you are ready to take one more step. And the possibility of life is active only and only because of the upcoming breath.

So mind your step on a beautiful dawn. One more day, one more step and the fresh dose of the next breath. These are the basic building blocks of a well-meant life, a purposeful journey. You look too far into the hazy distances, and you lose yourself in the puzzlement that lies scattered around. You mind your next step, and you immediately find yourself. You mind your next breath and instantly you feel the enthusiastic pulse of life throbbing in your veins.

Just like life means one more breath, living means one more step. Life and living are just a beautiful symphony between the next step and the upcoming breath, laying the foundation for the next and then the next, and on and on. These set up the notes for the beautiful melody which life is.

Each meaningful, mindful step becomes the destination in itself. If you completely mind your step, you then need not look for destinations and their assortment of heartbreaks far away into the distances of time and geography. If you inhale and absorb completely the portion of life provided to you in one breath by the existential forces, you won’t feel the need to explore living in the far-fetched quarters of make-believe concepts erected in the hope of a happy, contented life. If you mind your breath, allowing it to give you the most it has to offer, you won’t be running into many decades of longevity to feel the elixir that living is. You get it, right here, in an instant. Life then turns into living and a reward in itself.

One more step and one more breath, taken under tender observation and careful awareness, are the building blocks of life and living. They are the fabrics of your being. Work on them and you get a wonderful fabric decorating your being.

Don’t fall, take at least one more step, then another, then another. Only this much! That’s all you have to do for life and living: one more breath, one more step. And your one more step becomes more significant than the endless miles and still more miles. Your step defines miles not vice versa. One more breath, one more step! Seeped in the awareness of this incredible duo, you will first surprise yourself in the effortless ease you have walked on the path of life and living. You create and retain countless chances to reach a point, where you astonish yourself the most in your achievement.

The darkness isn’t completely dark as long as the tiniest of a flicker burns steadily, unsteadily in any corner of the cosmos. It holds the chances of light, of a win, of a fight, sometime when the conditions are more suitable. Hold your light. Hold onto your chances of a full blaze. It can even be the littlest star reflected in your fatigued eyes from the farthest distances across stormy clouds.

Just look back, some small-time remark of appreciation, some grateful bow, some serious acknowledgment, some feeble smile, some tiny reward to the tune of INR 500, some words of praise. Hold them. Cherish them. Pick them up from the dusty corners of your room. They are the treasure. They are the light, they are the breath, they are one more step. One more step is as important as the complete journey. Or even bigger than that! A tiny flicker of light, lost in the darkish wombs of loss, is as big as the big-bang of primordial light and fire that created this universe.

Long before you conquer the world, learn to be happy with the tiny rewards that hold your dreams in piece, which sustain the life of your goals just like one more breath sustains your life. A tiny word of appreciation will one day turn into a massive trophy, a huge applause, with camera lights flashing around and thousands screaming fans. This little smile on your lips will turn into a broad grin of triumph.

Hold the littles in your life, acknowledge their role like one more step keeps the journey, and one more breath keeps life together.

The art of love and smiles

The Elixir of Life

A look of hate snatches and steals a part of life; a look of love adds something good to life. A hateful thought kills; an idea of love saves life. Hate is the evil collaborator of death; love is the bright-smiled custodian of life. Nurture the good and the best in you, it will in turn make you more loving, the latter qualifying you for the real ‘living’.

Like most of the things, it can be practiced and learnt. Practice smile. It’s a small pill of wellness. Learn to look at things with love. Start with your food, water, whatever you drink, or whatever you eat.

Before you eat or drink, take a minute’s pause and look at the thing. It’s the instrument of life, the soldier of your survivability, the keeper of your life, resting before you on the table. It’s there for you, to help you get strong and survive and live another day. At this moment there is no better friend to you in the universe. Accept its friendship and brotherliness. Embrace its camaraderie. And it will become a part of your system with far more nourishment than you can imagine.

As you chew, swallow and gulp it down, it will become a part of you. It’s something that will become you once you have it in your guts. The moments before being eaten, it becomes a sacred part of your extended self. Accept it. Look with love. Take it as a blessing from your guardian angel to help you beat the negative forces hankering for your demise. The food taken with such love and affection becomes the elixir of life.

Practice smiling. It will pave the way for you rolling with real laughter later on in the journey. The tiny, feeble lines drawn by a delicate smile will lay the foundation for miles and miles of undisturbed peace and harmony in your persona. No wonder, I have a little smile glued to my face while I type this. And a surge of contentment and happiness overtakes the hitherto untouched, unlit, gloomy parts of my being. I feel happy and once you get the feel of real happiness, you simply cannot help distributing it. You want each and everyone out there to be happy and smiling.

All the problems out there, born of differences and misunderstandings, are born not of hate but lack of love. Turn more loving, smile more. Hate is the darkness which just vanishes the moment you light the tiny lamp of love. It vanishes like darkness from a pitch dark room once you light a candle.

Hate is the phantom. The only reality is the lack of love and smiles. By taking to a smile, you symbolically blossom a flower for mother existence. And believe me, you yourself will be the direct gainer once you decide to turn into a flower. Guys, let loose your alchemy of smiles and love. Believe me, humanity will need more of smiles than mega-bombasting leaps of science in future.

I tried a small experiment of love and smiles on a plant. I had planted some marigold flowers in my little garden at the start of the winters. Yellow and orange marigolds sprinkled their unrestricted charms. All these turned out to be robust flowering plants except one. The poor plant appeared stunted, malnourished and didn’t grow. A few buds remained unopened and the odd one which tried to smile, just bore a famished one-quarter smile.

I tried the alchemy of love and smiles. I started to sit by this plant for a few minutes, giving it kind, sympathetic looks, caressed its leaves, sprinkled water droplets on it. I just tried my level best to turn as much loving to it as I would to a little child. And no miracle is beyond the reach of love and smiles. The buds which hadn’t opened for a couple of months burst forth with unrestrained hilarity. Right now it’s the best flowery plant in my garden. This is what love and smiles are capable of! So guys, go and capture your share of life’s real worth through the simple technique of love and smiles.

The cosmic mirage

Here is the end; here is the beginning

Mix the contradictions. Churn out a paste. Blend the duality. Grind it well. And you get nothing in the so called ‘everything’. Is there any hard and fast line between the so called two ends of our perception? Is ‘black’ only ‘black’? Is ‘white’ only ‘white’? No. They seep into each other and relatively define each other, apparently though not in reality.

Dark is not just ‘dark’. And light is not just ‘light’. Dark is only ‘less light’. And light is just ‘less dark’. Duality sustains on our sense of ‘ego’ driven by our perception hungry senses. It turns our consciousness into self-consciousness.

Is there any pure, unadulterated ‘pleasure’? No. Pleasure is a state of having lesser pain. Pleasure has a mild dose of pain in it. Always! Find out a person who has no trace of pain in him. Is there any condition of just having ‘pain’? No. Pain is just having lesser degree of ‘pleasure’. Pleasure carries pain in it, and pain carries pleasure in it.

Our ego, our sense of ‘I’, stretches the point of reality in two directions for suitable duality, of contradictions. Imagine the morning ‘twilight’ when the day’s rising light mixes with the night’s vanishing darkness. The balance! The melting of duality.

Is there any state of something being perfectly ‘cold’ or perfectly ‘hot’? No. Cold is just lesser hot. And hot is just lesser cold. The reality just gives the illusion of apparently getting stretched in opposite directions. It’s the see-saw battle. We look this way, then we turn to the other side. By subduing the element of ‘self’ from pure ‘consciousness’, one can get a balanced vision. Then the funny mirage of seeing two avatars of the same thing becomes invisible.

The two things are inseparable, and are just our conveniently defined two points on the plain of reality. Death is not just death in itself. It is the beginning of life, of birth. Birth is not just birth. It is the beginning of death.

Same is the case with the apparent duality of creation and destruction. They don’t exist separately. For an event and happening to occur, there has to be a balance between the two. Like human body survives on the principle of the balance between creation and destruction. New cells are continuously being created and old ones are dying. The circle. It holds the key to the mystery.

The reality has loops of the so called dualities going side by side, at all points, in all directions, and in all events. The counterweights. The balance. Going on and on in loops. The ever-expanding universe and the ever-dying universe. In loops. In circles. At countless points. Forever. Explosions and implosions. Blasts and suction. Circular loops. Creation and destruction. Creation and destruction. On and on. In circles. Expansion and suction. Going from nowhere to everywhere and from everywhere to nowhere. And passing through the point where you happen to read it presently.  Enjoy the moment. Enjoy the ride. It’s a whole thoroughfare out of nothing. From nothing to everything! No wonder, the net energy of the universe is zero. It’s a cosmic heartbeat, with the only difference on the so called time scale. Your heart beats once per second. The cosmic heart beats at the rate of billions of years. It expands, it implodes. Endlessly.

So don’t get doubts about the eternity. It’s possible. If a clock pendulum can maintain its swing, why cannot the cosmic cycle? When the pendulum is going to the right, it’s creating the potential to travel leftwards, and vice versa. When the universe is expanding, it’s creating the potential to implode. During implosion, it’s creating potential to explode. Simple see-sawing with net zero energy! Isn’t it the greatest trick by the existence?!

Let a smile kiss your lips

A smile is like the sun on a cold, frigid, gray day. Comforting. Warm. Healing. Soothing. It dispels the gloom. It absorbs the pain. Its nonjudgmental rays embrace you in your totality, the way you are. It touches you with sympathy. It becomes your lenient confidante.

You may not be enjoying a roller-coaster ride in life. There are pains and problems and of course you feel like crying. Of course you are not in a position to laugh. Well, if laughing seems too much, you can smile at least. Even a sad, resigned smile will do to begin with. Smile just to yourself. Without any reason. Or at least try. Even a fake, feeble smile will do. It reshapes the lines of your tensions, your worries. You will instantly feel its warmth, its light. It cannot be the other way. A maneuvered smile at least cannot give you more pain, cannot aggravate your messiness, however hard is the situation.

And then there is always something or someone around who can help you in building up a smile. There are more reasons to smile than cry. Just that we overlook them. So give yourself a reason to smile. It’s as simple as picking up one tiny one from the overloaded basket. So move away from the big garbage dump of worries and smile as you walk away.

Forget about the little world of your problems. This creation is not human centric, and within the human system the thoroughfare is not you-, me- or anyone-centric. In fact it’s not bothered about anyone or anything at all. So why should we?

The world around you is too big. And you are just a tiny part of its endless bounty. The things of beauty are as good for you as are for any other happy person around. Claim your share. Observe. Look around. Pick out from the unassuming treasures lying around in bits and pieces. A flower. A child’s pure smile. A bird chirping. A gust of breeze. Some green tree. A sparrow’s free dart in the sky, the sun, the stars, someone helping somebody, or anything for that matter, provided you have the loving eyes to see.

Everything is just drenched with beauty; it’s we who throw the jibes of ugliness born of our biases, greed, hate, jealousy and anger. Remove these blots from the screen and you clearly see the perfect beauty around. And once you see the beauty, love oozes out of your spirit in copious amounts.

There are infinite reasons to let a smile kiss your lips, to help you, to sympathize, to emphasize the cool hold of goodness inherently holding the system together. Just open up the door for a smile. It will open up a huge gate of comfort for the inner self. Light will enter the dungeon of real and imaginary problems. There is no logic for this. It just happens. Just like you feel the healing warmth of sunrays on a cold day! Try to smile without any reason. Immediately you will get a feeling of so many things to be smiled at, to be felt euphoric about, or even laugh about.

Do you know there is brain-brewed whiskey: Anandamide. It’s the chemical of happiness, ease, comfort and contentment produced in the brain. By learning to smile more often, you start the brain brewery in motion. It’s a simple practice, just like you get habituated to go for invigorating early-morning brisk walks.

The world is full of those who need narcotics, drugs and alcohol to enter a pleasant, forgetting, easy-going state. These definitely give you some temporary solace but come with huge physical and social side effects. Count upon your own self-made, brain-brewed chemical of bliss and happiness, Anandamide. It’s available free to all of us. Just that we need to look within for the joys that we seek outside! So seekers, happy days and nights! Brew your own Anandamide and stay blessed permanently. Happy spiritual boozing! Booze makers, beware! I have started to smile more and brew mine quite copiously…

Inhale Your Portion of Wellness

Inhale Your Portion of Wellness

It’s a lush green forest around you. Birds are chirping. It’s early morning and a cool breeze is blowing. Nearby, gurgling waters of a brook add music to the stillness around. You feel better. It feels good. The external orderliness, peace and calm raise the bar of your better feeling. With the same set of your own individual, internal, self-specific problems, worries and concerns, you feel better if the surrounds are better.

The desert sand is burning. It’s noon and forget about trees,you cannot see even a blade of grass for miles. You feel horrible. You feel bad. You find yourself worse than your self-specific set of worries make you feel normally. You feel bad if the surroundings are not convenient.

We cannot inhale in isolation. Or put more simply, we cannot exist in isolation in this universe. We are just put somewhere in the chain of interdependence. If there is misery in the air, it will enter your lungs. Use air-masks and air filters, do whatever. Life still will be stifling and genuine efforts just a struggle because we cannot help inhaling our share of the miseries prevailing around. The solution lies in cutting down on the pollutants.Not in wearing masks. When it comes to our struggle to increase our happiness,the efforts are almost as useless as wearing masks when the air is polluted. Fighting the consequences is never the durable solution, fighting the cause is.

Our own set of factors that make life either good or bad are not the sole deciding elements in making us happy or unhappy. If we are happy, then we are just sharing a fraction of the overall happiness surrounding us. Our lungs are safe just in proportion to the purity of the air around. If the quality of air is good, only then the individual battles like quitting smoking,eating healthy food and doing yoga to keep your lungs safe will be meaningful.

If we are unhappy, that also is a fraction of the overall misery spread around. Individual is just a constituent of the whole. Happiness is drawn from the overall pool. How long the frogs will sing songs of self-gratification in a vanishing muddy pond? Its waters vaporizing. Its shoreline decreasing. Stanching green mossy puddle. What can be drawn out of it? Only death and misery, not life and happiness.   

A talented software engineer, with his tools of prosperity and happiness, is of no use at a place like Somalia. There is no surrounding prosperity to help him nurture his talent. There is no supportive economy and companies to help him contribute to the overall wellness and get a fraction of the happiness in return. A software engineer prospers in America because using his skills he can contribute to and earn back a fraction of the happiness spread around.         

The surroundings set the stage for either make or break.

“Love thy neighbor!” By loving others you are loving yourself.By caring for others, you are caring for yourself. By contributing to others’ happiness,you are adding to your own happiness because your share of happiness and prosperity will be just a fraction of the overall happiness around. With your effort and skills, you draw a big portion if the social forest around you is healthy like the natural forest where each breath installs new vitality in you.

Long before you really start doing something to add to the overall wellness around you, start with a simple practice. You might be busy with scores of neck-breaking responsibilities, leaving you with very little time for real action on the goodness front. Start thinking good of others.Think good for your surroundings. Be happy over others’ victories. Smile over somebody’s stroke of luck. Feel bad for somebody’s loss. Say some sympathetic words as well. Over the years, the goodness in its womb will get healthy. It will deliver a healthy baby. And sooner or later, you will definitely ‘do’something to add to the overall goodness around you before you finish your journey. You will then have a larger share from the pool of wellness. When the sun will besetting and you preparing to enter the night for long deserved rest, you will walk into the forest with well-meaning steps. It will be a far happier retirement than it would have been otherwise.

A Well-cooked love recipe

“The trouble with falling in love is that, unlike death, love kills you every moment, robbing you, at first, of reason, and then, slowly, consuming you bit by bit until you lose the sense of time, of the true nature of things, and of all other precious relationships.”_Siddhartha Gigoo in Mehr: A love story.

No wonder they say one “falls” in love!

PS:..and no conjecture plz…about me ‘falling’…haa haa… My version of love is‘rising’. There is abundance of love around, of family, nature, birds, animals, flowers, clouds,honeybees, insects, beetles, crowded bazaars, isolated vales, springs, summers,winters, autumn, everything in fact. If you have the eyes for it, everything is saturated with love like luscious honey oozing from fat honeycombs hanging over wild rose thickets and the nectar dripping. And the honeybees tasting their own fruits as they buzz around collecting pollen from the flowers!  

When hate vanishes, love blooms and you ‘soar high’ with such love instead of ‘falling’. You love all, simply because you don’t hate anyone. You don’t have any enemies because you are friendly to all. If you have only love to offer, you just cannot have hate around you. The hate that we see in our lives is just the multiplication of the traces of the hatred inside us. Execute it inside you, and it gets killed from around you. You see light around, simply because there is no darkness inside anymore. You smile more for the world outside, simply because your spirit is abloom with myriad smiling flowers. And mind you, a smiling face always contributes to the efforts of even a stranger coming across the street.  

Love for a man or woman is the first step in the ladder. Fall in love with your man or woman, and go all the way in pursuit of your passionate craving. Melt in it like butter in the frying pan. Lose your identity, break the walls and surrender your self-driven cart to the free wheels of airy jaunts.This is the fire which melts the outermost stony ramparts that hinder you from the freest flight. No wonder, to rise you have to fall first. It’s a rebound. All natural laws say so. Your rebound and ‘rise’ is just in proportion to your ‘fall’for your man or woman.

Only after touching one summit, you feel like going for the other.So give all you can in your love for your man or woman. Touch your peak. There is no chance for half bakes. Cook it full. Boil it well. Lukewarm things keep you in a vague haze. Bake it full. Boil it completely. Vaporize your being with the heat of your passion. Then you feel like soaring high, instead of crawling in the cauldron.

But don’t just stop at this point. It’s just a beginning. It’s the path to a bigger destination. From particular to the universal. With your categorized love for your partner, you get a glimpse of the bigger possibilities. The limited love, the so called love for your partner, is simply a window to help you have a glimpse of the infinite potential of bliss, the universal love.

Do you know, why do you feel like ‘falling’ again and again? Simply because you don’t ‘fall’ completely. You go with insecurities and fear. You love your man and woman with lots of apprehensions, fears and insecurities. You are partially into it. No wonder, the delicacy of your affair is always under-cooked. And you always feel dissatisfied, craving for more and more. Then you proceed to cook another half-cooked affair. We rarely complete the recipe. It’s my promise, if you cook one relationship well, you will not be left with any appetite to run for more along the avenue.

So guys keep falling in love. But just falling forever doesn’t define you as a human being. Rising will. And rising occurs when you start loving all. When you use your full potential to love. And the path to hitting the full potential starts with your full love for your partner without any roadblocks of fear and apprehensions. The destination of love is to be all inclusive. Your love relationship with the man or woman in your life is simply an apprenticeship to help you become an all-loving person. So keep ‘falling’,but learn to ‘rise’ and love all.

As you enjoy the ecstatic grip of love chains of your partner,slowly learn to wipe away the names of the people you hate from your little black book. Take a sip of love from the petals of your partner and forget and forgive one name at a time. The honey of love should be sweet enough to make you forget all the bitter tastes driven in your memory at the mention of certain irritating names in your life. If your life’s bitterness isn’t swiped away by the sweet cherry of your love bites, then you have to objectively assess your level of dive in the love pool. If you are sufficiently deep in the pool of love for your man and woman,you won’t have any reason to be hateful of even the worst beings who have hurt you.

So here I rise high and see goodness in all the people in their unique ways. Love you all!