Saturday, August 25, 2012

Life is like standing on an existential anxiety plank

I think I have spent the last two years spending a lot of time reading and seeing many 'spiritual' lectures which has produced a series of thought processes, that now I am beginning to wonder I might be a victim of existential anxiety! Existential anxiety is dreading and worrying about life questions, such as "What is the meaning of my life?", "Who am I?", "Do I have a soul?", etc. It has been a year since I came to the United States in search of fulfillment of my spiritual goals - peace of mind away from dysfunction, making a difference in this world, mindful awareness and non-attachment to certain worldly emotions.

Adi Shankaracharya said, "The jiva continues in Samsara (cycle of birth and death) only as long as it retains attachment due to ignorance or Maya". Now talk about the other meaning of samsara (family/marital life) -  Lately, I have started realizing that spiritual goals take a backseat when you get bound into a family. Transcending jealousy, possessiveness, fear of losing the one you love, all seem like a far-off dream...You are actually more likely to hold on to youth and the thoughts of "I wish I look pretty for my husband even when I am 50". The need for approval and fulfilment of emotional cravings shoot up! 

Maybe, the feelings of having a purposeful, meaningful life is all an illusion filled deep-seeded thought process. Maybe, there is nothing deeper to life. Or maybe, descending into the Himalayas is the only way out! 

Sometimes I wonder, whether wanting to attain spiritual goals is a selfish act in itself. At the end of the day, arent we hoping to find the enlightenment that Buddha got or a shift in consciousness in order to lead a happier life? So doesnt that actually make us get attached to a goal and thereby collapse the arguement of leading a non-attached life?

A question that is haunting me from a few days as I embark on a new phase of my life soon - Is it really possible to find a balance between relationships and current and former spiritual goals? I use the word 'former' here, because I have already forsaken a lot of my previous objectives with the hope that someday I will revive them. 

Being an impermanent human, is it wrong to hold on to relationships knowing that inherently it is so unpredictable and transitory? Is it wrong to live in fear that love in a marriage might one day disappear or hope that my husband wont change? Is it wrong to expect your children to stay cute and loving forever? Is it wrong to want your mother to live forever?

Most importantly, is non-attachment even real? How do I not slip into existential anxiety and miss out on the happiness that marriage will bring in?

Friday, November 4, 2011

When your ‘purpose’ starts taking a form

Funny, how small things can bring a life time worth of happiness. I’m in one of those days, where some instances feel like they were written for me.

I feel a resonating harmony inside myself; as if an aura of peace has encircled me. At this point, I want to quote Wayne Dyer’s quote – “You are doomed to make choices. This is life's greatest paradox.” Well Mr.Dyer, I agree with your paradoxical statement but I don’t want to believe in the ‘disaster’ synonym of ‘doom’. But come to think of it, these stepping stones that I am building for myself might one day attempt a cartwheel to ultimately fall into a deep pit. It can definitely go on and prove to be a doom, in the future. I, after all, a mortal human cannot foresee the future. But the fact that I truly enjoyed putting every piece together to form a stone, will give me the utmost satisfaction.

My Professor called me into her office today and gave me Indian food and the related ingredients, right at the time when we were running out of things at home. How did this happen? I don’t know how things just happen to happen for the good. I silently retreated to a spot where no one could see me, and cried for a really long time. Why did I cry? I have no idea! I was way too overwhelmed to think of a reason why I was shedding tears.

The other day, I am sitting in a restaurant and wishing that I hear an instrumental version, of my most favourite song (I can’t stop thanking Mallika for introducing me to ‘the’ song), and voila! The instrumental version appears right before we leave. My heart started racing and I couldn’t stop shoving myself at the counter to beg for the hotel manager to give me the song. (I did eventually get the song from him – the laptop and pen drive happened to be there at the right time!) Why did my heart start racing? Again, I have no idea. I was too dazed to even think how the song I connect so deeply for no reason, could overpower me with emotions. It goes on to show, how music has a profound effect on all of us.

I attended a meditation workshop today, and when I was working on this abstract concept of ‘connecting with my inner advisors’ as directed by the counselor, I saw that my inner advisors were creatures that were totally unexpected. There was my dog; a beautiful shining sun with clear cut features, and this entirely outer space being that seemed extremely cute and reciprocated the best among the three. Where did we meet you ask? Oh! It was a beautiful place. I don’t know if it was the effect of the counselor’s way of making us connect with our inner self, but it was a surreal experience how I could switch into a fine-looking personal space which, felt like that was already built and was just waiting for me to step in; and the fact that suddenly the above three ‘beings’ appear; and finally how I drifted into the flow of the counselor’s power of speech. Meditation has always had good effects on me. I just made a mental note to practice it more often.

Situations like my Program Director emailing me amidst her busy schedule to ask when my Sitar performance is, makes me want to celebrate!

These instances that I am writing down here, feel very simple but it did touch me deeper. In some unfathomable abode...which I can only feel, but cannot reach via my own conscious level.

Maybe I am too grateful about my life. Or maybe, there are so many things worth extending gratitude for. I was talking to a senior person today about gratitude and its implications on life and he mentions me that it has proven to be the ‘master’ strength. But there have been instances when this strength has turned into a weakness for me. A trivia to share – I maintain a gratitude journal.

I can clearly see my purpose taking a shape. It is very far away, but I can see it clearly. I want to go as close as possible, as soon as possible, to fill in the finishing touches. The fact that I found it after years of searching is unnerving and comforting on the same.

 One question is lingering in my mind - is the HIDDEN dream going to unveil itself? I want to be the person, who says one day, that she is “living the dream”.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Self Esteem and its Tag Along

I believe we are our biggest betrayers. We let our minds do the bashing all the time. One little misstep, and the mind makes us brood and replay it over and over. Diffidence, Low Self Esteem and Self Doubt were my constant companions, who became closer over the past couple of years especially. Thank you, because if you three hadn’t masked my inner self, I wouldn’t have been able to experience these ‘new’ unveiled feelings.

I must admit, I love it. I love that ‘I’ can bash my mind now. I want to knock it down completely one day.

So, how did this unveiling happen? Off late, I have become obsessed with growth. But, what after all is the ultimatum of evolvement? I am still vague about that answer. Isn’t it ironic that people, who are not even a little close to you, contribute to your growth, whereas the ones that ought to do come of no help at all! Or is it that growth is entirely up to us, our perseverance and perception?

Now that I am experiencing those never-before-had feelings (at least I hadn’t experienced them in the recent past), the manifestations have turned out to be entirely different. I find myself expressing differently.

Assertiveness is the main plug-in that wants to fasten itself to the prototype that is slowly getting ready.

There have been so many people who have made a difference to my life. Some of them don’t even know that they are in the list too! Yes, I do have one long list. How opportune it is! Who can get so many Wild Cards in life?

This Wild Card takes up any colour it wants, and that is the one tagging along with my self esteem. It takes up different roles, and plays them beautifully.

Hello there!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Purpose, The Disconnection and The Bask

There have been a million times, that I've questioned myself, on my existence in Planet Earth. The number has increased in the past 2 months (Courtesy - The two special people who are threading my life onto spirituality. I will address them as T and C). They say and believe that Everybody is Born here for a Particular Purpose. I have started believing in it too.

The main reason I took a break, and went ahead as a single traveler to Kolkata, was to get some answers. I did get some answers, but the Solution to my Purpose Question is still fuzzy. There are so many new things I want to do now, something I hadn't realised in the past year exactly at this time. I was all confused, influenced and mainly disoriented from my goal. I never took the initiative to take any decisions, but ironically the decision to NOT take any decision has paved a new path for me now. This new path is green, fresh and rosy. Yes, it has the thorn-filled stone obstacles that I have to pass on first.
Kolkata trip gave me a disconnection, and allowed me to ponder over things that I dont normally get to do here. I enjoyed every moment of those 7 days. The trip was something very personal, so I dont want to get into details on this public forum.

So, when does one's life get a meaning? I always thought a successful marriage with a very compatible partner would make a living worthwhile; but I cant believe myself as to how my views have flipped in just a couple of months. I was taught about Karma Yoga by C and T, and I was amazed how it never occurred to me all these years, even when I would go WoW over people who love and enjoy their work. I want to engage myself that will make a difference to MY life. For instance, teaching a math problem to a kid will make my day, but it might not seem that special to another person. This is a very crude and a small example, I want something big. Then again, 'big' in my perspective.

I am very glad I am enjoying the job I have right now. I am getting to re-live my college days, flexible timings are allowing me to explore my other side - Learning the Sitar, something I never did all these days. But, I am looking for something more. Something that can give a meaning to my life, to my existence. Something that will convey, ''Yes, this is what I was born to do". I want to attain Karma Yoga atleast to a little extent. Current status is probably 0.5%. A 50% would satisfy me for sure.

One more important thing I have realised is that, you need a guide i
n every step of your life. Especially when you are hellbent on determining the significance of your birth. It can be anybody, right now I feel I have the best guides in the world - T and C. Feels like it was destined to have met them. I have been given a wild card, an option that I never felt I had it in me.

If everything goes just the way I have planned now, I will need 2 years to get past the obstacle path, get a view of my Purpose clearly. Reaching the Purpose and staying in it, will take my entire life.

I will be 23 in exactly 5 days. I want to create a New Me, from Age 23. So many things that seemed important all these years, seem frivolous, for no reason whatsoever!

I want to Bask in the Glory of the Lucid Beautiful Life.

Bask in the Glory

No more walking on the deserted path,
No more the lost loner
I want to Bask in the Glory,
That is awaiting for me.

Adept at being the Creator,
Endow me the Grant,
That I know is hankering in me,
I want to Bask in the Glory.

I cease to disappear the illusion,
And hold on to the bona fide,

Carefully pacing a slow crusade,

Knowing, it is awaiting for me.

I have the bearing of a comer,

By no means, diminished or weary,
I so want to Bask in the Glory,

That is awaiting for me.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Do you doodle?

If there is something I do all the time while studying, listening to a lecture, or sitting idle, its doodle-ing. Its like scribbling something gives a break to my all-the-time-preoccupied mind. My mind is always working, making plans most of the time. I am sure there is nobody in this world who has made as many plans as me.

My favourite doodle has to be Hiranya Kashipu (my creation). It was in 9th std that I created him.

He incidentally has most of my dream boy's features.
Good looking eyes, Hairy, always a wide smile; but he looks more like a creature than a man. And the roots of his name go way back to my childhood, when I would listen to mythological stories from my maternal aunt. I always felt Hiranya Kashipu would be more suitable to a good soft-natured man, unlike the demoniac character in the Narasimha story.
There, thats him in the picture.

According to Reader's Digest, people who doodle on the left side of a page think more about their past, and people who doodle on the right think more about their future. People who doodle geometric shapes are mostly thinkers, and those of the flower-leaf types are found to be creative.

But me,

I doodle on the left,
I doodle on the right,
I doodle in the center,
I doodle everywhere.

Any white space on a paper, that will be my doodle space.

And I draw most of the things, stars, triangles, flowers, leaf patterns, faces... When I am happy, most of my doodles are smiling faces, when I am sad its the stars, when I am bored its the flowers, when I have nothing to do its the snow man and funny looking men. And then there is the letter 'S'. I reckon this is the most common doodle - the starting letter of the name, or a signature. And the most common areas would be the last pages of a notebook.

You wont see me study without doodles. Doodling soothes my mind. Be it on benches or books or my foot ( yes, I am weird enough to draw on my feet). Every studying session is doodle time for me. But doodling is also accompanied with a great deal of remorse sometimes, that I am wasting so much of paper on meaningless scribbles. But I feel guilty for all sorts of things. For instance, I feel my blog's background has to be Black, since a Black web page consumes less power than a white one. Being guilty for not being green. Nevertheless, I can never stop doodling.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

A Remembrance : My Childhood

I always feel my childhood could have been better for reasons known only to me. But on the day of my Optical Fiber Exam I was remembering my childhood memories more than ever! I jotted down some incidents on the question paper, at 4.30 pm. I had finished writing the exam soon, thanks to the difficult questions.

I remember I had got a zero in my first ever test in 1st standard. Yes it was a big ZERO! Our class teacher was absent on that day and a PE teacher had come to give us the test. Ranga Sir was his name. Funny how I felt that since its a PE teacher I shouldn't write my test, and I gave back the test book with nothing written in it. Needless to say I got a Zero. My mother freaked out and complained my teachers. I was taught that whoever is the invigilator, I have to write down the test. I still laugh seeing my report card.

There, that was my 1st std report card, oh, it says 2nd test.And ironically it was in english!

I wonder why it looks like a minus zero.

Also, in the same year, I had eaten a guy's lunch who used to sit beside me, thinking it was my new lunch basket and new lunch box. How could I just assume that! I reckon that guy's name was Naveed. And because I stole his lunch (well mistakenly, of course) he started crying and his mother came and gave me a nice scolding the next day.

Moving on to 3rd standard, I was one big ardent fan of Cartoon Network. Scooby Doo, Popeye, Swat Cats, Powerpuff Girls, u name it, I would have seen it. Bugs Bunny was my most favourite in those days. And I, didn't have a bugs-bunny-type teeth (fortunately). And only to look like bugs bunny, I had made hard efforts to get its teeth. I would always keep my front jaw on my upper mouth, so that miraculously some day, I thought, it would start protruding like bugs bunny! I am so thankful that, that miracle did not happen.

I guess in 5th standard, it so happened that I was given the role of a princess to enact in front of the class. It was a lesson from our English textbook apparently, and my classmate Rajath was the prince, and another classmate Kavya was given some role if I remember properly. I couldn't express how happy I was! I was always considered as an ugly duckling among my family and friends, this small incident brought a big smile :)

I was an avid reader from my childhood. Reading is something I can never give up in my entire life. And so we friends thought of a small library among ourselves. We would exchange books and comics and return it the next week. The library was formed in the 'katte' that joins the road from my school to cftri office. This road is certainly memorable for we used to play almost all the games there. Be it tree-to-tree, juutaata, I spies, sharap-current (Correct me if the name is wrong).

Oh, and how can I forget my gooseberry fascination! I used to steal gooseberries from a house near my school with a friend named Parvathi. I had even got caught by our teacher Saraswathi Aunty (CFTRI school is known for making their students address the teachers as aunty and not as miss or ma'am). Saraswathi aunty known for her wickedness, glared at me and I'd frozen on the spot, when she had seen us stealing. I still remember her glare in those watery red eyes. Brrrr.

Come 7th standard, I got a computer at my place. Pentium 1 processor, 20gb hard disk and 16mb RAM with VSNL internet connection. Connecting to the server was one helluva job. I remember clearly that trrrrr-ti-ti sound when I would start connecting. I don't remember what bandwidth it had but it was painfully slow. I never had any idea technology would improve this much in the coming years. Having this technology made me like some proud owner of a big company! My friends would ask me to explain about my computer and they would wait for a chance to come home and play Prince of Persia. 7th standard after middle term, we got computer classes in our school and I was relieved of all the pestering :)

GOOD OLD DAYS :) But don't ask me why all these memories came rushing in the exam hall. I don't know the reason too.

In the end, I would like to thank my beloved CFTRI school for having given me such good memories, and a big thank you to all the teachers who guided me in one of the most crucial phases of my life.

Monday, June 15, 2009

My Happy Apple Theory

Before I start, I have to say this post has been inspired by good old Mallika (a.k.a Godo) :)

You know there is an old saying that one rotten apple can spoil a dozen good apples. I contradict it. My Apple theory is different. I believe, no matter how many rotten apples you have around you, you never become rotten if unless you are rotten by default! I don't know if default rotten apples exist in the first place. But I know some terrible default ones. Trust Sindhu on meeting rotten apples in her life..Nobody can beat her in rotten apple count, you bet..

Well, if not by default, how does a person actually become a rotten apple? When you are doing a potentially big mistake the heart always stops you, its just that we go against it. And that's when you start to rot. But you can always bounce back just the way i did. Even though there were tons of rotten apples around me, I never let them take over me. I was always on the ground. But yes I did get influenced and i ignored all the warnings that my heart was giving me, but mark my words, I have slipped many a times, but haven't fallen. I am still standing high and tall.

In the end all that matters is You, Your willpower, Your principles and Your decisions. I had read somewhere, that we grow up when we alone are responsible for our decisions. So no excuses, even if rotten apples come towards you, don't blame them for your decisions, just kick them away, clean up the mess and start including only happy apples in your life. If you feel "What was i thinking!" or "What the hell am i doing" or "This is not me", that's indicating you are beginning to rot and you need to rinse out all the toxins from your mind.

And the main part is, when you start getting negative vibes from somebody, hands down, that's a rotten apple! U need to be real wary about that person. I ignored all the vibes and now I have an endless list of betrayers and back stabbers. I followed my happy apple theory, and I must say I have only happy apples in my life :)

All you rotten apples before its too late refine yourselves, If not go to hell. All you Happy apples welcome to my life..

P.S : Happy Posts coming up..Adieu to goLu posts..

I am flying high,
Over the sky,
Cos my heart can never lie,
Good time has come by :)

Learnt a lot and few,
Left all those who were a grey hue,
My heart always stopped me,
But I went against and never did see :(

But now, I am devoid of the guilt,
Changing myself to the hilt,
Cos my heart can never lie,
Good time has come by :)