Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Talk to Loneliness

The only way to handle loneliness is to talk to it, face-face...

"Ah, loneliness, welcome! How are you, my crafty little friend? Now that you have found me again, we will squander a few minutes together. Not that you leave me a choice, otherwise. Much has transpired since you left me recently. I’ve been keeping a tab on you, just as you always keep an eye on me.

"Was on a business trip to Bangalore, just the other day. You were not to be seen, then. Perhaps you were hanging out with S. I believe you followed him all the way to Mangalore Club, but it seems that you had to hold back your attack owing to his sociable father. However, you did assault him again through Christmas, didn’t you! You are so sneaky.

"K is annoyed at me. Yes, you know her. Just like everyone else, she is also one of your victims. And you had pushed her to the edge. I was just trying to help her get over you. I suggested that she should try to do it without those anti-depressants. She must have thought that I’m unreasonably poking my big nose into her business; naturally enough, she’s annoyed at me. You do strange things to people. But I don’t like you making drug addicts out of my friends. They suffer, don’t you see? You must apologize to her.

"P was here. He was inquiring about you. It seems that you’ve not found time to meet him recently. But of course, you’ve been busy. He looked happy, having found himself a girlfriend. But that shouldn’t worry you; it’s not something that you cannot fix, is it? The greatest of men have fallen prey to you. P is just a spoilt little brat. He’ll get over it.

"It looks like V and T have come completely out of your grasp. They don’t even seem to believe that you exist. Oh, you should see them babbling nonstop, oblivious of everyone else in the world. I suggest you don’t attack them; it’s in your favor that they are always together. All the people around them are constantly seen praying, nay, begging for you. Where else can you find several voluntary victims in one place? Come to think of it, I propose that you may want to stay a mile away from V and T. Get any closer, and even you may start believing that you don’t exist!

"And A...? She got married, and you did not attend the wedding! But you are not shy, are you? One at a time, did you say? Oh, but that’s not true! I’ve seen you attack people even when they are in a crowd, you liar. Why, I’ve even experienced it personally several times. That’s okay; I’ll live.

"What, are you leaving, already? Oh well, fine then. Until next time, take care."

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Shades of Ridicule

Someone had recently asked me, “You want to change the world?” I shall answer that question in a short while.

I have been forced to admit that there is much more to colors than what appears to the human eye. Most colors in the visible spectrum, it is taught, represent human sentiments. I shall recount but a few associations among the ones that I have successfully memorized:

  • White stands for such qualities as purity, serenity, harmony or surrender; that was relatively easy to understand.

  • Red is indicative of danger, brutality or love; it is quite confusing, the way one color represents opposing sentiments, but I have memorized it nevertheless.
    Blue could mean cool, but it could also signify depression or melancholy. Is it really so cool to be a pessimist?

  • Saffron. If I even as much as comment on this color, ostensible activists of my very own beloved country (please don’t ask me who they are; if you are one of them, please note that I have not stained your insignia) will beat me black and blue. So I shall desist.

  • Yellow, is said to signify friendship; no one ever told me why, but if it is accepted to be so world over, then who am I to question? But it always tickles me when the children gleefully rhyme, “Yellow, yellow; dirty fellow!” Why not officially declare that to be the rhyme of friendly communion?

  • On the one hand, green stands for prosperity. On the other hand, when one prospers, someone else becomes green with envy. Which means, everyone in this world will ultimately turn green, one way or the other.

The list could go on, but I believe that the above examples are enough to understand the point I am trying to make. One of nature’s most beautiful paintings, the rainbow, comprises of only seven colors. Combinations of only three of these seven colors can be used, by varying their hue and saturation, to concoct several thousands of shades. Thousands of these shades have been baptized. It would really be very difficult to memorize the list if someone were to associate each of those shades with some sentiment.

The above list concerns but a trivial concept – colors. I have been forced to study several other such ridiculous lists covering just about anything in the world. The topmost among these, in my opinion, are the lists of pathetic dogmas and doctrines, formulated by the so-called Gurus and Pundits, though what entitles them to judge or to dictate terms to the masses remains my never-to-be-answered question.

The pundits who propagate such farcical associations, canons and creeds have been allowed to grow very strong over the years. They have been offered a prominent pedestal. They have become the shepherds who guide the submissive multitude – a sheep that has long lost its flavor for real grass – a people that has long lost all self-esteem.

I have invested several valuable years learning the colors and lists of this world. During this period, I have had to study and commit to memory several, very complex instructions - shades of morality, lists of ethics, codes of conduct, meaningless rules, merciless regulations, blind faith, inhumane religion, fanatic sermons, ridiculous associations concocted by twisted minds - to name only a few. Unlearning them and re-schooling my mind has not been very easy.

Do I think that I can change all that? Most certainly not! What a hilarious deliberation. How can I change any of that? How can I simply ask someone to forget those absurd associations? How can I expect them not to judge the colors? How can I bring them together to enjoy the natural beauty of the rainbow or, for that matter, of anything else in life? I know that I cannot. One needs to do it for oneself.

Do I want to change the world? No, my dear, I rest my case.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Fighting Failure

Let us try to understand this clearly, shall we?

Let us observe two cases:

1... I want something; I try to get it; I fail; so I am disappointed.

2... Some things, I can never get/change; so I am disappointed.

What is the difference between the two cases?

In the first case, there is still a chance. Yes, failure has disappointed me, but it has not killed me. I could whine and cuss, blaming myself and others all my life, but I know better than that. Have I taken the time to ask "WHY" I failed? Now it boils down to how I handle failure.

Failure teaches very valuable lessons. The question is not whether one is willing to learn from failure or not. The question is whether one is afraid of failure or not. Fear is an ultimate driving force. For some of us, fear of failure is a great motivator. One who is afraid of failure will take all possible measures to avoid it. Ones knowledge dictates what the measures are. What if one fails even after doing practically everything in ones powers not to? Then, one automatically learns the new reason that made the failure possible. And if one is afraid of failure, one will consider this newfound knowledge while planning the next attempt. Knowing that, I would be good to myself. I would not put myself in a coffin and nail it shut.

In the second case, there is simply no chance. I should accept it. For instance, I cannot become younger by 10 years again.

It is good that I cannot, because time has given me experience and maturity, which I am not willing to relinquish. I have just one simple prayer for such conditions - "God give me strength to endure that which I cannot change."

Fighting Boredom

If you are really willing to think about it, boredom is not about having nothing to do. Boredom is about not having anything "challenging" or "interesting" to do. One may have something to do, and yet feel bored, because that "something" is mundane or simply normal. Normal is, apparently, boring.

Moreover, there is never a time when one does absolutely nothing. Even though we may not be physically active, our mind is alive and kicking at all times. Yes, day-dreaming, scheming, imagination running wild etc., are the result of the so called state of "boredom". Bacause the mind is a massive processor, which cannot stay idle. Give it something challenging to chew on, and it will be happy. Give it something interesting to ponder about, and it will be pleased. When we don't challenge it, it becomes self-employed. It flows, naturally.

This flow has great potential. Sometimes the so called "day-dreams" offer sub-conscious solutions to problems. They can be used productively. It all depends on ones perception. I dont want to get too scientific or too philosophical about it in this blog. But I would seriously suggest that when you are bored, follow your mind. Watch it carefully. Observe the patterns, the schemes, the fragments of imagination that make up your train of thoughts. You might just discover somethihg astounding.