Answers – Part 2 : Of Places and Wishes

This follows from part 1 and I’m clubbing two questions as my answers to these are similar.

Given the option to move to anywhere, would you? Why would or wouldn’t you?

What is the one thing you want at this moment?

How you feel emotionally is a place, a state of being is a place. Owing to some recent lessons, I feel that even though the world has much to offer, our internal world is just as magnificent a universe to explore.

The abandoned ruins of childhood memories, the fresh fields of momentary happiness and the wilderness of difficult emotions are all places to spend time in.

The way you discover different sides to you when you physically travel, these journeys into yourself could be just as rewarding, if not more, with the right mindset.

While I certainly do love to travel, at this point I realize all the more the need to attain the state of mind that allows me to stay calm and composed no matter what the situation externally. As I start to discover treasured moments in my own home that I know like the back of my hand, I see why clear perception is essential.

And perception cannot be clear unless the mind allows itself to drink of the present, which it rarely does as it’s either too consumed by the past, or too obsessed about the future.

I wouldn’t necessarily say I ‘want’ that, because I know that I and every other being on this planet is evolving slowly towards that state of mental clarity.

Consciousness evolves too, not just the physical forms.

But it’s the closest thing to ‘want’ that I can think of now.

I remember how – on my most surreal trip until now to the mountains, I enjoyed every bit of the journey. Climbing the first few hills, going deeper into the forest. Camping at a clearing where we still had a signal on our phones. Going higher still the next day – walking through wild country, listening to the streams, stopping for a breath as I basked in the sun, encountering a whole community of sheep. The cup of tea at the thatched tea shop, and the first sight of the snowy mountain. Standing under a night sky as I sent a thought of love to my family whom I couldn’t call as I had no signal on my phone, and seeing a shooting star then.

None of these moments are better than the other. They all have the same precious spot in my heart, and they always will. As I knew then that I will reach my destination, I know now too, for the only qualification to be on this journey is the willingness to learn.

And so for now, I savor the journey.

Why we shouldn’t let our ancestors dictate what we should believe

“The older generations believed that shouldn’t be done. They say it’s not appropriate.”

No matter where you come from, you must have heard these words – often from well meaning elders or even your more conservative friends.

I heard that recently from one of the most open- minded, forward-thinking people in my life.

We were talking about how the wooden prayer cabinet in our home that housed our sculptures, texts and other prayer articles, was often referred to by my friends as a temple inside my home. He must have heard someone in the older generation say it shouldn’t have been so, and he shared that with me.

Read more

Beholding infinity

When I rediscovered my love for photography recently (on phone camera, please don’t judge) I found that just like before, I was fascinated by the silent demonstrations of life. The leaves of a plant with her proud face to the sky. The shadows falling on the wall as the sun set.

These quiet depictions of beauty, usually taken for granted, started to really grow on me. One of my favorite hobbies these days is to go out to my front yard and just stand there, my neck craned up, eyes taking in the beauty of the sky.

Cloudy days, sunsets, sunrises, even moon glow – how different were the personalities it exhibited.

Yesterday evening, I was sky watching as usual – the sky was an ocean of clouds. I could imagine why most religions in the world had a God who sat up in the clouds on his golden throne in paradise.

Every part of nature is magical and beautiful, but when we look up at the sky what exactly is it that we’re looking at – or more precisely – what are we seeking?

When we look up at the sky hoping for faith, for guidance, for light and rain, are we really looking up at a God-figure that we painted in our heads?

Or are we reaching out to the whole of life and humanity – who see the sky all the same – but in different forms in different parts of the world, quite similar to our spiritual quests. Seeing the same thing really, just in different ways.

Perhaps, somewhere deep within us is buried knowledge. Of remembrance and connection. That we are not one but all, and all in one.

A Culture of Gratitude

ब्रह्मार्पणं ब्रह्म हविः ब्रह्माग्नौ ब्रह्मणा हुतम् ।
ब्रह्मैव तेन गन्तव्यं ब्रह्मकर्मसमाधिना ॥

Brahmarpanam brahma havir
Brahmagnau brahmana hutam
Brahmaiva tena gantavyam
Brahma-karma-samadhina

Many a time during my school days, this mantra (chant) used to sound in the background as we prepared to have lunch. It seemed especially long on the days when I knew my mother had packed something special – for there was not just the joy of having it, but also of sharing it with my friends. The true meaning of the chant – though it was duly provided in our school diary – was lost on me.

Read more

Communication

We are a species that’s so obsessed with giving the right terms and classifications to everything and everyone. And yet, as nature so often does, exceptions abound.

Carl Jung, the famed psychoanalyst who is credited for sowing the seeds to the most commonly used personality type indicators, once said this of his typology:

“Every individual is an exception to the rule”

We let ourselves be socially programmed to believe we can only build genuine relationships with other human beings, and that there needs to be certain criteria to be fulfilled if it is to even be considered one.

Read more

Truly Divine [ Three Day Lyrical Challenge – Day 1 ]

Many thanks to Gina at Singledust for nominating me – I do love a challenge, especially one that involves something as divine as music.

The Rules

1. Thank the person who nominated you. Thank you once again, Gina.
2.  Share one of your favorite song/lyrics one at a time for three days.
3.  Nominate three other bloggers each day. (Or one, one is probably enough)

Nomination

I nominate watchyourlifeinpictures. You already have a superb taste in songs and often post of them, but well, challenges are fun.

The Song

There is something about certain songs that stick to you for so long, it becomes part of your routine, sometimes even your personality. This particular song from the movie Bajirao Mastani is a soulful rendition of love, separation and the joy of union.

To me personally, it is a reminder of a beautiful companionship, an important lesson and the lyrical representation of the relationship that our wandering souls have with divinity.

Read more

Nailing Mindfulness – 5 Easy Ways to Make it a Habit

Much has been spoken of the importance of mindfulness, and it consistently proves its worth by making its practitioners healthier, happier human beings. There are many ways to achieve this tranquil state of mind, but in our world that’s heavy with distractions of every sort, it’s hard to cultivate as a habit.

Here are five easy ways to get started with this beautiful process.

Read more

# 10. What You Seek Is Seeking You

This post is in response to the Incredible Blogger Marathon Challenge hosted by Its PH, a challenge that I believe all you bloggers out there must try your hand at. Give it a go, guys!

This is the final challenge.

At this point, I would also like to thank the host for such a wonderful, thought-provoking challenge. It has been a journey in its own right, and I’m wiser for it. 

Happiness is a conscious decision.

Whatever an external being or thing can provide you is temporary, because once that vanishes, your happiness does too.

Happiness is finding the slightest joy in the darkest night.

Happiness is finding hope where there is only desperation.

Happiness is believing in a better future and striving to make that happen, for the sake of others if not for ourselves.

Read more

# 8. Rhyming Away

This post is in response to the Incredible Blogger Marathon Challenge hosted by Its PH, a challenge that I believe all you bloggers out there must try your hand at. Give it a go, guys!

This is the eighth of ten challenges. We are to give a new interpretation to a nursery rhyme. I chose the ‘Wheels of the bus’. This also happens to be my first poem, and I did enjoy putting my words to verses. All and any suggestions are welcome! 

The wheels of the world go round and round,
Anywhere else but homeward bound.
The wheels of the world go round and round,
All the way round.

The wipers of lies go swish, swish, swish,
But truthful mud stays despite their wish.
The wipers of lies go swish, swish, swish,
As they wish.

The horns of warnings go beep, beep, beep
All but the bravehearts weep.
The horns of warnings go beep, beep, beep
The horns by themselves weep.

The doors on the magic go open and shut,
Like the door of a windswept hut.
The doors on the magic go open and shut,
But never do they open for a ‘but’.

Break the wheel and fly out free
For the magic rides on wings.
Let your wings go flap, flap, flap,
All the way to Mother’s lap.

Sins and Ladders

Life is a climb, but the view is great. 

I took those words to heart the first time I heard them.

Every step in that incredible journey gives you something to savor, something to store in your memory as a mark of that step.

Like a river flowing into the ocean, you take with you everything you find on the way, tweaking some things to suit your purpose, but always remembering.

When I was little (all of us really) , I often had my elders advising me to stay away from certain things.

Bottle up your anger.

Rein in your pride.

Don’t ever be lazy.

Read more