Evening at Zambezi River, Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe, May 2015
and so does everything around... the situation, the people, the perspective, the needs.... and we too change.... the wise and courageous seek change.. because only change is constant!

Saturday, May 30, 2009

40. Living Leaving

It is second week of May. It is very early in the morning. The sky is pleasantly anticipating arrival of golden Sunrays. The breeze is cool. My lungs are full of sea-smell. Coconut trees are whistling and mildly dancing. They are engrossed in hushed conversations. I close my eyes for a moment. Life is such a pleasure.

I am surrounded by 30 youngsters. They are bubbling with energy and are excited with the just completed ‘Maitree’ (Friendship) camp. The train is waiting on the platform like a long sleeping snake. We occupy the bogie, arrange luggage. The train slowly leaves the station… I silently go to the door of the compartment. When the train takes the curve, you can have a glance of the beautiful station. But I cannot see anything … my eyes are full of tears, my heart is almost broken. Because, I am leaving Kanyakumari forever

The incidence happened only once … long back… to be exact, 19 years ago. But even today, on so many early mornings I wake up with the same dream… the young me standing in the train compartment door with so much of pain and sorrow, shattered by emotions and rationality, caught between living and leaving. It is appallingly ‘real’ every time…

Like the Dark Wizard Voldemort (if you have read Harry Potter …) I have divided my soul into so many parts and kept it at many places (I wont call it Horcrux though) … Leaving Kanyakumari was the beginning of that ‘soul departure’ kind of living.

But why speak only of pain? There is happiness associated with every pain… one just needs to have paradigm shift.

Because of my ‘sense of responsibility’ I had informed (about leaving) to the concerned colleagues six months in advance. Everybody argued with me, tried to convince me, promised me certain changes, challenged me… I was too young (and too attached) to resist all that and agreed to stay for one more year. Everybody was relieved … a year is a good time to make people forget their plans. Everyone was assured that they have me continuing to live with them.

At that time we had a set of yearly activities. A youth camp in this month, a women’s training in that month, a meeting at Kanyakumari in August, Vivekananda jayanti (birthday) celebration in January … and so on.

Because of my decision to leave after a year, I started enjoying every activity very intensely. Every moment became a unique moment… I was sure that it will never come again, and so I lived it fully, without any distraction. Even a simple walk in Shivaji Park, running to catch a train at crowded Dombivali station, the books in the library, the phone calls, the visits to various homes, the yoga class, the coffee at someone’s home, travel to Kanyakumari, walking in Kanyakumari campus at 3.00 in the morning, writing cash books, conducting EC (Executive Committee) meetings, writing an article for publication, arranging visit of boys and girls from Arunachal, eating at ‘Aswad’, playing carom with friends, the cool breeze in Dadar station, patting a cow at the garbage dump, talking to a shopkeeper, … I lived every moment as if it would never come back. And certainly it never came back…

That was the best period of my life. I was not fragmented but whole. I was not anxious but was eager. I had lost the outward battle, but I had won it within. 'Leaving' taught me the 'art of living'. Living fully, completely, intensely, happily, objectively, and so much more.

Life is funny. Many times things you love most are bound to destroy you. You need to leave people, places, and ideas to save yourself from that possible destruction. You have to carry it all alone, with a smile....because others never understand. They can question, they can sympathize, they can support… but they cannot live it for you.

Because of that ‘leaving’ experience I never faced the dilemma of leaving afterwards. For me, living and leaving are the two sides of the same coin. Apparently you can have only one of those, but in reality you have both. When one door shuts, another opens …with many more probabilities. One should not be scared of leaving. The scar remains but the pain disappears… because learning to deal with pain is an aspect of inner growth.

Why not leave to live?

Saturday, May 23, 2009

39. Rediscovering Marx…

We all are Marksist in our student days … I mean we all run after ‘Marks’ in the examination… and some unfortunate people run after such things all over their life.

In my childhood ‘marks’ was the only instrument I had; to blow the barriers around. That was the only way I had for crossing the limiting life chances. Once I earned freedom; I put ‘Marksism’ (and everything associated with it) in the coffin.

When I came to Pune for graduation, attending Marxist Study Circles was the fashion of the day. It was a kind of symbol of intelligence … I mean at the age of 15 if you talk about ideology and social transformation etc. you really are ‘out of the world’. I do not know why but I was attracted to Marx… Getting attracted towards unknown worlds without understanding them properly is still my way of life.

I went to the Study Circle meeting once, twice, thrice … and then I dropped out. I was not able to grasp the discussions there. I had hard time spelling words like bourgeois (even today I am not sure about the right spelling) and proletariat. Alienation was completely Chinese to me… and I could not understand forces of production, mode of production, historical materialism, superstructure, false consciousness and dialectic…leave understanding those words; I was even not able to pronounce those properly. Nobody in the circle had time and patience to make the learning process easier for me. If I asked any question, most of them laughed because they were too simple. Hmm... Gone are the days. Today I am surrounded by people who get irritated and feel uncomfortable because I ask too many simple questions….

Even after trying if I am unable to do something, I smile and say ‘Ok, this one I will keep for the next life’… not that I believe in rebirth, but that has always been a good strategy to cope up with failures and hurdles and non-cooperative teams.

Recently I read Marx again… (Let us differentiate between Marx, Marxists, Communists and all such categories) and without any external help, I could understand what he was saying… I could understand his dream of an egalitarian society… I could appreciate his elaboration on false consciousnesses and after reading so much of philosophy his historical materialism was like a fresh air….The glass ceiling between me and Marx completely disappeared … …Funnily it disappeared without shattering. Must be some magic!

What has happened? I suppose I have lived enough of life, I have gone through many experiences because of which my understanding about different situations has expanded. When Marx says alienation, I understand it because I have experienced it. When Marx says human interaction with nature creates history, I can appreciate it because I have been part of the process of history making… by either active or passive participation. When Marx talks about superstructure, I am aware how my economic struggle has shaped my ideas about life. When he describes capitalist controlling ‘forces of production’, I understand because I am forced to work just for livelihood and I cannot afford to have any ideology.

I was just wondering why they teach such things to young ones. Such ideological aspects only should be taught after people are bit mature… (No, I am not saying maturity comes only through age….) so that it becomes not a tool to gain success but a real tool to transform oneself and society at large.

For me, rediscovering Marx means a great thing at the moment. It is an energizer I was desperately searching for. Re-discovering Marx was an inherent part of soul searching exercise, through Marx I am re-discovering myself. And I like what I have discovered… that is the best part of life.

End of false consciousness? Realization?
Ah! That would be too big a claim to make…

Monday, May 11, 2009


Sorry, no post so far this week.
Actually I was trying to insert one minute video, but could not do it due to technical problems. Will post it sometime later.
For next 10 days I won't be posting anything ....
A break for you and me .... we all deserve it.

I have decided to dedicate next 10 days to study of Sociology... Need full time for that.

Will share with you what I find interesting.

Will post around 24th of May. Till then have a nice cool time.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Mode of Transport

The March-April poll question was:
 What is your mode of daily transport to workplace (or work)?

27 visitors answered the question.

3 (11%) either walk or cycle …Seem to be the luckiest of all .. their residence is near to workplace… or may be they really eco-conscious

12 (44% ) use Two wheeler… not bad taking into consideration traffic situation and public transport

Only 3 (11%) use Public Transport … highlights the problems with Public Transport

9 (11%) use Private cars….oh! I did not know that so many readers of this blog are rich!

Friday, May 1, 2009

38. Any1 @ HelpDesk?

Fot th last couple fo weeks a uniqoe thisng is happeing with me. It is litlte strsnge.
Can u read it peroperly? I guest you ight not. I dma nto sure whjy it is hapenign and when it stated

(For the last couple of weeks a unique thing is happening with me. It is little strange. Can you read it properly? I guess you might not. I am not sure whey (why) it is happening and when it started. )

Somehow, when I type my fingers seems to be running lot faster than my mind …. Earlier it was the oher (other) way round.

Well, it is almost a decade now that I am using computer for at least 200+ days a year and 8 hours per day. I mostly use MS Word (70% of my work), MS PPT (20% of my work) and then rest is MS Excel. So it is not that I am not used to working in Word. Actually when I started working with computers, I downloaded Typing Tutorial, practiced it religiously. Now I can type with a speed of around 50 words per minute with just 10% of error. Well, that was the case before this stated (started( ) happening!

Typing tutorial helped me a lot. Earlier I had to look at the key board while typing and that created barrier in the thought processes. Now I can just look at the screen and keep on thinking and my fingers type. I have been able to separate the two actions ‘thiniking’ (thinking) and typing – maintaining minimum required connection. If some spelling mistake is there, MS Office is there to take care of. So, I could always finish my work faster, I could take ‘online’ notes of any meeting with ‘secretarial’ proficiency.

But somehow nowadays the bridge seems to be disappearing. Now you read the first two sentences in this post and you will understand how much corrections I have to make any document I type. Clearly, I am facing a problem.

I do not know whether I need to slow down my mind or I need to teach my fingers typing fast, or vice versa, tech (teach) the fingers to slow down and increase the speed of mind. I think the speed is not the problem. Recognizing the words with their intended meaning and typing it correctly are the two actions – which my mind is failing (here I typed ‘feeling’) to do simultaneously. And sometimes the MS office does not show the mistakes – I mean instead of ‘started’ if I type ‘stated’ or instead of ‘guess’ if I type ‘guest’ – nothing wrong according to MS Office. But that means I have to read the whole document word by word again! My efficiency has decreased becaous (because) of this.

I have a feeling that the fingers are trying to read the mind, decode the words (which is not their job) and hence the mistakes. Ashenden, Somerset Maugham’s ‘author-cum-spy’ character elaborates at one place: when he had to decode the message, he went on decoding each and every letter and never tried to read the message in between. Because, most of the time the mind jumps to conclusions, which are not meant to be there, and the mind tries to interpret things in that light (I was typig – typing -lift)…

Here instead of my mind, the fingers are jumping in between, decoding, and interpreting, taking lot of freedom. I am not sure whether body parts can think….but I have such a feeling

I need to learn from Maugham. And may (I typed ‘many’ here) be I really need to slow down… May be I need to stop using machine for a few days …. May be I am just exhausted and my fingers are giving me indication….May be, I should re-practice Typing turorial (I mean tutorial) again…. May be I should just laugh at it

Wht wuld you adicve me? (What would you advice me?)

Any1 @ HelpDeak? (HelpDesk?)