Encompassed

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The heat is bogging everyone down and the view outside my window is a land filled with buildings and alleyways, bordered by huge hills that hide the horizon. These hills are magical. You may believe this or you may not.

Some mornings when the sun’s still in bed and the clouds have taken over – it would seem as though this town never had giant hills holding it in their arms. You’d look afar from the highest terrace and still not find a trace of those hills that I speak of. And then, when they decide to make a special appearance amidst the pink-evening sky, you’ll see them stand tall, gaily inviting your eyes to their presence.

I’ve not had the opportunity to enjoy these hills too much in the past three-something years but whatever little I have got to see has been nothing less than enchanting. I still remember the first time I went up there with a few good friends. It was a clear-night sky and the town was a silent lake lit with lamps that forgot how to float. From highway lamps to the glittering dots that were houses – they resembled a thousand lamps sitting atop an endless pool of water. And it was silent – except when the breeze made the trees sway. We were standing atop a boulder as huge as a truck.

I looked up and there, in the lap of Unknown consciousness, I found my bliss – a starry night unlike any other I’d witnessed before. Prettier than the ones NASA uploaded, more vibrant than the painting of its namesake. I still remember the feeling I had : to dust the sky because there were just too many of them to focus on any. It resembled a dusty table that needed cleaning. That night, I felt I had seen true beauty that was far from pretentious, bigger than us all and humbly looking down upon us from light years away. 

Whenever I see stars and feel their light upon me, I remember, that this light that now touched my eyes comes from ages ago – when what emitted this glow co-existed with a different age.

The memories and times that I look at the stars with, will be silently passed onto someone else, ages later. Unknowingly or not, these stars tell stories from afar. And we can only hope to understand their silence. How beautiful the mystery of the unknown is that it makes you look deeper into oneself and derive an honesty that is special – one of a kind.

Then there is the other night when I encountered these stars again – on a different hill – famous for spotting peacocks and cheetahs. We stopped the car in a secluded spot and turned off the ignition. While the crickets and breeze took over, I slid my neck out of the window and turned to face the sky squarely. The night-sky loomed over me – bearing itself upon me – filling my eyes with its darkness. I had to focus hard to find the celestial lamps tonight. I despise romanticizing my experiences but mere stars do not make up for what  they make us feel like. There is a feeling of freedom you get when you realize how inconsequential you are when you stand among the cosmos.

Yes, we play a part. Its all a circle. I agree.

But sometimes we take life too seriously. We start behaving as thought the entirety of our being depends upon the project due the next weekend or that the one day our partner couldn’t give us time will determine our entire future. Our ego belittles everything and makes us give way too much importance to us and our circumstances than we deserve. That is what stress is – and that is why we stop breathing.

But when you leave all that behind, roll down your window and gaze up above- look at how humble those bigger buddies up there are, your eyes are filled with tears – not because you feel small- but because the Universe is the reflection of what you hold inside you. Infinite possibility. Then why don’t we allow nature to enter us and teach us? Why are we so away from what is really our maker?

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Time to reconsider spending more time – tasting raindrops, climbing hills and gazing up the stars. If that’s too dreamy for you, why don’t you just pause beneath that tree you walk by everyday? Just stay, look up at its canopy shading you from the relentless sun and pass on your gratitude to it? We tell these things to our kids. Why don’t we follow suit?

If Tumkur has taught me anything then his will be it. Peace lies closer to nature. To ourselves. 

 

 

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I’ve let good things (and people) go and good things have left me. Perhaps, that’s life’s way of preparing us for the better things that are yet to come.

For Bigger Things – Women’s Day

There are people who lose and then there are sour losers. I am not proud of the fact that I belonged to the second category. Always running into new opportunities, making mistakes and moping about it, etcetera. Sometimes I would win and celebrate like there was no tomorrow and if I ever happened to lose I would be a pile of misery sobbing in a corner. Such was the hyperactivity my Mother had to tolerate.

She would always sit next to me, look at my tear-stained face and say, ‘Don’t worry about this one. You’re made for better things,’ and smile.

I never understood what she meant then. I’d always think she was too optimistic for reality. But as life moved on and I actually landed up in good places I realized that if I hadn’t lost that day I’d never tried for the position I succeeded in. Sometimes things just happen (or don’t happen) for a reason. Life is always throwing options at y. Always trust that what you choose is the best. And if you falter remember that you’re probably made for better things and search for enough courage to stand up and walk towards a better horizon. Do not mistake this as escapism because whole-hearted effort has been put in the fruition of a task.

On this woman’s day I’d like to congratulate the spirit of the woman – the woman who creates; who’s asked to adjust because “the world is like this only”; who’s feminism is laughed upon or misunderstood; who’s sensuality is looked down upon as cheap; who’s behavior is judged subjectively; who’s biology is help up against her existence; who’s security depends upon the other gender; who’s freedom is localized; who’s love is taken for granted and who can rule the world if she sets her mind on it.

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Feminism is not a placard you hold in a rally against the people. Its a message- a way of life that needs to be adopted to bridge the gaps (that we all know, exist) be it financially or otherwise; to get out of stereotypical treatment; to face perverts/abusers with the confidence that they should fear their prey; to be able to express without worrying about hurting the male ego; fighting against the chains women have gotten themselves bound into and alas, its not a race. Its not a plea. Its a mindful decision that a person takes towards equality in a broad and holistic sense.

Happy Women’s Day because somebody feels its important to make us feel loved and remind us of our importance when actually it should be a living-breathing-everyday-realization in every home, workplace, public area, road, street and room.

And you cannot expect everyone to change overnight- you need to live by this principle yourself. Stop expecting people to assist you when you can do it yourself. Listen to yourself, use your discretion, analyse what you do. RESPECT YOURSELF AND THE PEOPLE AROUND YOU sans judgement. Give it your best – work with passion. And if you’re unhappy wherever you are- believe that there is a way out and there is a better place.

Dear woman, girl and human reading this: Opportunities come and go but one must give it a try (fairly) and the objective is to have tried and worked for your dream – if it works out, splendid and if it doesn’t, always remember you’re made for better things in life.

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An Other.

So often our troubles seem insurmountable and there is no solution in sight. There is fear, apprehension, hurt, anger and regret all mixed in shades of themselves.
To overcome that is natural instinct. That’s how life progresses.

But when another’s trouble makes you tear up inside and take away your night’s sleep…and when all you really wish is to make it alright for someone else despite knowing how to, is when you have evolved as a person. And the other who you want to help; share burdens with; console and take care of- is important to you.

I had read a post about karmic cycles and soul-circles. If any of that is actually true then you both are probably of the same circle trying to rescue each other and attain the next level of progression together.

That’s the beauty of being alive – wanting to intentionally help another, support another, nurture their dreams and make sure they sleep alright.

Parents do it to us when we’re young. And it’s a blessing when we find partners and friends who you can do the same for and they reciprocate unconditionally.
I think we grow everyday.

And today is that one extra day that I was given to realise this. To realise that I have the capacity to feel for another and share their worries- unconditionally. And I’m glad I could.

Who.

This is the part of my life where I start understanding who I am. Who I want to become .But there is no saying who I’ll become.

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Its not easy to figure it out in a day, months or now that I come to think of it, years, maybe. Every week I discover something new about myself; the people around me, the potential I have and how it affects the others. Every action reverberates. It brings something new to our life. Like, just last week – though short – I’ve lived through a journey on a brook (were I a little paper boat this sentence would have made much more sense than it does, right now). If you know me then you’d probably have heard the word Thesis at least ten times a day on an average basis. The poor parents, close friends, roommate and partner go through much worse. All they hear about is : Thesis. So much so that my Dad doesn’t discuss anything else, he is attuned to my nature- keeping track of my progress and encouraging me in whatever way he can including the occasional hearing to remind me a theater play or a movie should not be my focus and that I should start focusing on also getting an internship. Parents are farsighted. That’s probably why I’m in a college and getting to write this post, right now. The point being – when you start becoming more vulnerable (and this is purely by choice – a shade of mindfulness, maybe?) to the things happening around you and there is no saying whether its good or bad – you realize how real things can actually get. Your interaction with people is not based on the that moment or even the moment before. Our entire life affects every action we take. Over the years the way you think, react to things, accept criticism or pain, respond to threat, appreciate another or learn something – have all evolved. You’re not the same person you were two years ago (in my case, a month ago). When you look back at the things you said last weekend after the jury went bad and you were all red-faced and puffy-eyed – would make you laugh at our childishness (nudge, nudge, that’s me).

So give it time. Let things sink in, be processed until you’re sure about how you feel before expressing it outside. You’ll be surprised how a little thinking before speaking can help in the long run. After my rather unexpectedly weird jury I took a time off the maddening heat of the thesis. I spent time with friends, read good things and waited for the answers to come to me. And come they did : in a newspaper article, that too, believe it or not and by next week it may actually turn into something life-changing. Open to these new experiences. Anyway, lots of following up to do and a test tomorrow. I’m going to try writing more here so that I can get to a clearer thought-process.

Also I’d like to thank you all for the support : all your comments and remarks mean a lot. Keep them coming. Which blogger doesn’t love comments? So just feel free to share things with me- always receptive. Hope you had a great weekend. Waiting to actually hear from you and learn something so yes, write to me.

Arrividerci.

Journey

You stumble and fall.

You get lost.

You join nomads.

You abandon travel-mates.

But you’re still walking.

Sometimes running – out of breath.

You never stop.

Life doesn’t let you – that’s its cruel sweetness.

The unseen beauty of how things work – the process in continuum.

You choose some of the paths you take.

And the others choose you.

You find companions on the way.

Some stay while the other have a way of withering away.

Some demand your time. Some are free.

You’re either a nurturer or a wanderer.

You choose companions – for life or for the moment.

That’s the law- break it- and you feel lost within your Universe.

You’re always thinking- too less, too much, deep or shallow.

Reminisce – nostalgia -memories give light.

Fears. Challenges. Betrayals – bring dusk upon you.

You breathe. You sleep. You cry and then look up at the constant sun.

This journey that our lives have begun – ends only at the beginning of another.

Nobody’s Left Out.

Sometimes, I feel like shutting the entire system down and hiding inside the blanket. Scrolling down the Facebook Homepage where feeds from all over the world await to amaze you. People announcing promotions and new jobs (some finally achieving dreams you once had); getting married to college (and in some cases school-sweethearts) while you cluck at their haste thinking, ‘Hey! How can you decide on life partners without seeing the world?,’. Unfortunately, we are judging them, unknowingly. What do we know about them? Maybe they’ve seen more of the world than we can imagine? And what’s wrong if they believe in their bond? Sometimes we make our worldly mind get the better of us.

Back to Feeds, the most interesting of them all are the Holidaying-Partying-Chilling pictures in exotic destinations. While some have sweet (and wealthy) parents; benefactors and some, have earned it. Its really nice (yeah, yeah )seeing the world from their perspective until you reach a concentrated-syrup point where you can’t take anymore and despair at your not having the time/resources and company to visit those places. Fret no, your time shall come. Or at least that’s what I say to myself to hold onto the one half of my sanity I’ve kept loose. One half is padlocked in a safety cell, away from human contact. Because sometimes this world is too much for me and I can’t lose it all at one go, now, can I? I know I’m on the path to a more peaceful life but it takes time and I’d like to be a little careful.

Then comes the New Ventures. Do you remember the scene in Interstellar where the Grandpa and Coop are sitting the night before he leaves for the Cosmos? Grandpa says that when he was young, something was invented or discovered everyday and all the 6 billion people wanted it. And kaboom. Live within your means is a phrase limited only to BPL families? Can’t we follow suit? Sustainability is not : using earthenware and recycling paper (once in a blue moon).

ANYWAY, point being : everyone is starting something of their own regardless of whether they can sustain that venture or not. I know I’m being pessimistic BUT it’s that little creature in me that’s watching movies instead of learning how to use Photoshop that feeds such thoughts in my head.

We humans, we know it all. What makes us, what breaks us. And yet, we falter and blame it on our nature. Being jealous (I’m stating it plainly) is okay. But are we doing something to reach there? Not everyone has people who can give them a lift every now and then. But we can reach there ON OUR OWN. It just takes effort, repeated effort and determination to get there. Ans we can do it. I see all these people clearing CAT and entering dream B-Schools/ clearing IAS entrances and be who they want to be.

BUT WHAT IF YOU’RE STILL CONFUSED AND DON’T WANT TO ENTER THE WRONG FIELD AND REGRET AFTER A DECADE?

There goes the alarm. I don’t mind giving it my best shot as long as I know that’s what I want. But what if I’m unsure? Some people just KNOW what they want from life. They work and achieve it. What about the people who are still figuring it out? The dreamers who still are glued to The Science of Sleep and Amelie. Who rant on social media (like this) but spend the rest of the day playing SIMS? You’ll call it lazy. And I accept it. But you know what it really  is?

FEAR. Fear of choosing the wrong path again. You’ve made that mistake before and you’re living by it. And you want no more of it. So you’re just waiting for that right hour (which may or may not come) or inspiration (which is always on its way). But you’re certain that when that moment arrives, you’ll be ready to do whatever it takes to realise your dreams. You have an abstract idea but its not enough to fuel your engines. So you’re soul searching. Sometimes inside, sometimes out. Through smoke, through spirit , through travel, through words and voids.

And one day you’ll arrive at it. And you’ll know happiness.

Realists find all this delusional. But ask yourself. Are you getting everything you want from life? 

No aptitude session/ counselling can get you the answer. Even if there is something you love. The society (we just love this blame-game) will have a hundred opinions about it. The Auntys, the elder cousins and even, the kids. And its easy to say that you don’t care. But the people you care for, care about them. And you can’t help it. Life is not about severing ties, now? And I know ignoring is the option but its not easy if you’re trying to be humble as well.

Bills and expectations make us force us to do whatever we can to satiate them. But that does not mean we forget the fire. Light it. Keep it going even when you’re stumbling into the wrong path. It will show you your way out of the maze when time comes. Wait for it. And know that you can do it. Just stay strong. I’m trying my best here. As a dreamer, while I can.

Share your views. Help one another. 

So while the others be awesome and share it with you. Just try to be as happy and accepting as you can. Your time will come 🙂

Love Always,

S

Where is That Soulmate?

We’re all seeking that special person who is right for us. But if you’ve been through enough relationships, you begin to suspect there’s no right person, just different flavors of wrong. Why is this? Because you yourself are wrong in some way, and you seek out partners who are wrong in some complementary way. But it takes a lot of living to grow fully into your own wrongness. And it isn’t until you finally run up against your deepest demons, your unsolvable problems—the ones that make you truly who you are—that we’re ready to find a lifelong mate. Only then do you finally know what you’re looking for. You’re looking for the wrong person. But not just any wrong person: it’s got to be the right wrong person—someone you lovingly gaze upon and think, “This is the problem I want to have.”
I will find that special person who is wrong for me in just the right way.
―Andrew Boyd

Books and books. Movies and more movies.

Articles and magazines. And nowadays, more popularly, Thought Catalog ; LifeHack, BuzzFeed and Cosmopolitan … those are the places we try to find true love in.

10 Ways To Know He/She’s the One

20 Things To Decide Whom To Marry

What bullshit. Are you kidding me? Are you really buying all that? Its good to read them and fill our delusion-jar sometimes but using it as a crutch to judge those whom we may consider as potential candidates (now, that’s what its all become). That’s why this post stood out of the spectrum of love-related garbage.

Why do we have to literally put ourselves on the street searching for love? Isn’t there plenty around us, in other different forms, anyway? No, I’m not the self-righteous, conservative kind. Actually, I don’t want to believe in tags. I’m not saying I’m completely off that grid, either. We are all on the way to Change. So stop EXPECTING things.

Just live your life, let things happen to you. This is not an insurance plan for you to summarize it date by date or log it in a diary. You just need to breathe and clean your window. And see how things can go. Don’t lose your originality and spirit in life. Do what you like. Be who you are. Aim high and get those dreams. Don’t side-track the essential things waiting for  the right one. Mr. Darcy is sadly (I know) not going to show up in the next dinner party you are invited to. Nor is the perfect girl (I really don’t know who men idealize as life partners) gonna magically appear in the seat next to you at the movies. So stop looking, start living. And most importantly… don’t let people, stereotypes, societies, castes and religions (in our country, at least) inhibit you from anything, ever. They exist to divide. And we are all One, above everything else. Breathe.

Love,

S

Immerse.

If I could immerse myself in something right now…in these times when you are tired but you have pushed yourself so hard to do something that you cannot sleep. But your mind isn’t settling into the task that you set out to do, either.

These are moments I had words that could take me somewhere. On a trip. Escapism at its best. The future can wait while I dream with my eyes open.

I really don’t see what a few guilt-free trips of escapism can do to harm anyone. Sometimes it just rejuvenates. It reminds us that we are still in control. Warms our hearts, ignites our bones.

If you’re feeling out of place or sometimes, misplaced … lose yourself into something you can claim control of anytime… but it kindles the fire of hope in you. We have to face it, good or bad. Might as well do it with renewed energy. Hope is life. If words can turn the pages in your life, allow them to. Immerse yourself. Embrace the story. The nature of its occurrence hardly matters.

For me, its books. It words and conversations with people who make me think, smile and listen. Its moments sitting under the shade of a tree watching kids play. Talking to my parents and letting the steam off…bite bits of their wisdom (whether or not I can digest it, later) or crack family jokes with my sister. Sounds very gharelu. It’s called Homesickness.

For you it could be re-visiting your childhood with old photographs, swimming in the pond behind your house (if you’re one of those lucky few), meeting people who buzz you, long walks away from any immediate concern, a cup of tea under the streetlights at midnight, a long drive with strangers to Nandi Hills (I’ve covered that base, I ca say proudly. Though now we are friends) etc.

Just jump out that window. Don’t hold back. Rejuvenate before you wilt away.

Love always.

S

Utility of Non Existence

By Tao-Te-Ching

Though thirty spokes may form a wheel,
It is the hole within the hub,
Which gives the wheel utility.

It is not the clay the potter throws,
Which gives the pot its usefulness,
But the space within the shape,
From which the pot is made.

Without a door, the room cannot be entered,
Without the window it is dark.

Such is the utility of nonexistence.

Arrividerci