Wednesday, November 9, 2011


Remember when we buy that favorite dress we have been eyeing for weeks? Finally we go out and buy it. But the moment the payment is made, apprehension starts kicking in? Will everyone like it? What if they don’t appreciate it?

Hey it was my choice right from the beginning, then why do I have doubts about it?

Then there have been times when one of our pieces of cloth was met with cold response. Where is it now? Stowed somewhere at the back of the wardrobe…

I guess even this is not so bad if it remains to discarding a piece of cloth. The greater harm comes when we discard our dreams and goals because it does not meet the popular choice. So many dreams die in their womb because the few that you shared it with met it with an out-right rejection and ridicule or a simple yet sarcastic smile.

We all have dreams and we always wonder how some people are able to fulfill their dreams while we dumped them on our way? Then we find solace with words like- tough luck, faulty system, lack of support and so on. Think deep… What did you do when you felt thrilled to have a dream? How much effort was put into building a reality out of it? How many ‘real’ people did you consult? How many blueprints did you make? How many people did you fight to go past just to follow your dream? How many sleepless nights did your dream give you?...

Hardly any… I had a dream, I voiced to a few friends and family, they smiled and told me “don’t fly too high”… “stay on ground”… “Be practical”… “these things do not happen to us” and “do not build castles in the air”… and I believed them. Why? Because my people did not approve of it…

No.. you did not follow it up because it was easier that way… Following a dream causes much hardship and pain and at times isolation. So I make use of this “negative response” from “my people” and stay on the routine course.. doing what everyone does and in turn getting what everyone gets!!!

Then it was your choice right? So why are you not happy today? Why does it pinch you when someone else successfully reaches a goal? Why does it leave you uneasy..

I tell you why… because You loved your dream…Because you are unique and your dreams are unique… Your happiness comes from what you love and not what others approve of… May be your people care for you, but they are different, their likes are different, their experiences are different and their expectations from life are different. They are not you…

Next time you have a dream…no matter how wild, no matter how seemingly difficult and no matter at what stage of your life… first place your full faith in it. Next seek out people who have dared to follow their dreams and seek motivation from them… then go on looking for experts in related fields and consult them… do your home work… set on your path and then share it with the people around you… you know what? Now that you would have concrete plan and action and most importantly ‘determination’… they would appreciate you!!!

Go ahead… Dream… Build castles in the air… and then dare to build foundations under your castle…

Sunday, November 6, 2011

THE THREE MICE... (within)

Ever lived with just these two?? wow ask me. what a mess man!!!i am sure who ever invented this saying "Three is a crowd" , was where I was once. On a sabbatical!!!I was there, with myself. Well almost myself. If you think it is difficult to take a break from your social life or your family or that work that you think cannot survive without you, think twice...I tried. I once decided to take a sabbaticaland believe me it was not even half as messy as trying to leave these two characters behind. Try as i may, there was no way I could get rid of them. I

And there I was stuck with two mice. I didn’t quite realize what the proverb really meant--- "Quite as a MOUSE” and here I had two mice. I never realized how competitive they can be till I was a bit settled in. Then as it turns out, they both were seeking their own sabbatical too, albeit....they both claimed their clear space...and here I was seeking my own space... so this sabbatical turns out to be one big holiday with THREE MICE in a space for single…
pleaded, I hit the ceiling, I tried to sneak out...the more I tried to wriggle out the more I got tangled in this mess. Finally my better sense prevailed and I realized it was smart to just let them tag along. BUT...BUT...I put my condition. "I am doing this to bring some peace to myself so you two better be quite as a mouse".


Then I just decided not to blog for some time. In fact I had decided not to do anything that involves my other two companions. Because I discovered that whatever I took up, these two would start meddling with their advices, promptings, suggestions which would finally lead up to arguments, attention seeking antics and finally tantrums, thus making a mess taking me back to starting point.

My Heart and My Mind were all hell bent upon making a mess of everything. But how to keep them away? To keep these two out of anything thing meant not doing anything at all. Well… that’s exactly what I did. I stopped everything and just started to Be.

Ok..Ok…that’s taking too much of credit. Of course it was not possible to do it on my own. This “just be” and all that. I am a mere mortal you see.

So I tricked these two into a ten day VIPPASANA course.

For those who are new, Vippasana is a form of meditation based on the teachings of the Buddha and the ten day course starts with observing the tenet of absolute silence(verbal & non verbal).

The first day into silence in the middle of a forest shook the spirit out of all three of us. On the second day I heard them screaming “Please let us have some external sound, anything, WE CANNOT STAND OURSELVES”

Wow! What enlightenment!!

(It was an enlightenment even to understand what enlightenment means)

It felt like a breakthrough. WE had together taken a sabbatical to be away from “IT” all. We craved for peace and silence from this chaotic world. And here we were, all three of us shocked from this discovery, “We were the ones creating all the Noise, chaos, mess”. There is no IT, no THEY, no WORLD. It was the three of us together all the time. And we thought everyone else was responsible! WOW!!!

The rest of the days at the camp and on the Sabbatical were spent in stunned silence. All three of us found ourselves avoiding each other. I for once did not have anything to write or talk about.

And slowly all three of us settled in our own places and ironically

that is when I experienced for the first time,

The bliss of ONENESS, the bliss of JUST BEING.

Thursday, November 3, 2011


There are days when I feel like writing but do not know what to write. At such times I remember Haruki Murakami’s ‘What I talk about when I talk about Running’. He has been an inspiration for my writing, specially helping me during those famous “Writers’ blocks”.

Whenever I feel that may be I am not ‘gifted’, his voice fills me up, “the problem with talent is that in most cases the person involved cannot control its amount or quality. You might find that the amount isn’t enough and you want to increase it, or you might try to be frugal to make it last longer, but in neither case do things work out that easily. Talent has a mind of its own and wells up when it wants to, and once it dries up, that’s it”. Coming from a master, this is quite a solace! He quotes the great mystery writer Raymond Chandler who once confessed that “even if he did not write anything, he made sure he sat down at his desk every single day and concentrated… this is the way Chandler gave himself the physical stamina a professional writer needs, quietly strengthening his will power” . This always propels me to go ahead when I feel I can’t.

While considering his careers as a marathon runner and a novelist, he has given a very interesting and technical comparison, “For me, writing a novel is like climbing a steep mountain, struggling up the face of the cliff, reaching the summit after a long and arduous ordeal. You overcome your limitations, or you don’t, one or the other. I always keep that inner image with me as I write”. And further… “I shorten the amount of time I run, the point being to let the exhilaration I feel at the end of each run carry over to the next day…When writing, I stop every day right at the point where I feel I can write more. Do that and the next day’s work goes surprisingly smoothly”.

Addressing the monotony that sets in after writing a few pages, he has quoted Somerset Maugham, “In every shave lies a philosophy…No matter how mundane some actions might appear, keep at it long enough and it becomes contemplative, even meditative act”. And finally the words of encouragement, “there are people in the world (Only a handful, for sure) blessed with enormous talent that from beginning to end, doesn’t fade… But the giants are, in the end, giants-exceptional legendry figures. The remaining majority of writers, who cannot reach such heights, have to supplement what’s missing from their store of talent through whatever means they can-Focus and Endurance”…. Murakami puts himself in the second category!!

Cheer up friends, we have chances!!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Feel like sharing again

That’s been a really long time off blogging. As I got back, a lot of time was spent discovering the account details. And then I realized, a lot has changed between the two blogging periods… Then and Now.
To start with, yes, my account details changed because I could not remember my pass word. Now I will have to let that pass because that seems to be the most benign of all the changes.
The biggest?...well…I…er…I finally reached the cross over line. I finally crossed 40. WOW!!! Now how does that feel??? YOUNG YOUNG YOUNG!!! In fact I have never felt so young and alive before. Seriously. When I realized this fact, it got me thinking. I had been hearing so much about the dreaded 40. Being an ophthalmologist, I had encountered many a frowns at the prescription of presbyopic glasses at 40. I have known aunts who would not admit to have reached ‘the mean’. But I am feeling just great. In fact I am being told that I even look younger. How is that? So here is what I reached to:

  • By this time we are through even bothering for people and their expectations-> More in control
  • Life has a certain direction and we have clear aims to look forward to-> Enthusiasm
  • Either because of increasing weight or a doctor’s prescription, we have started taking those rejuvenating exercises-> Energy and vigor
  • We have finally learnt to say NO when we do not wish to say YES-> More time for our self

I am sure some of you might start arguing that this is not true for all. No need to argue. I agree. This is not true for all but this is certainly true for all those who have started looking and feeling younger at 40.
I feel like it’s a new chance to live. I feel like having been born again. Albeit, with a difference. When I was born for the first time my parents decided how I will behave, where I will study, even what I will study. The teachers decided how I will study and what I should be working hard on. Then my spouse and the new set of parents knew exactly what was best for me. If that was not enough, the children came over to decide what music I should listen to, what time I should be getting up, what food I should like and which movies I should like!!!
Not any more sire. This is what this second birth is all about. Here, I take charge from day one. And that is where all the energy comes from.
I am loving to be 40. I am loving to be Myself!!!