We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves

~ Gautam Buddha

Monday, December 27, 2010

Bad fashion day.

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While watching a program 'Total Recall' on the telly, the evergreen love song Baharo Phool Barsao, by the legendary Md. Rafi, took me back to the bustling revelry of my wedding day.

The elaborate and exhausting rituals had already sapped the last ounces of energy out of me. I had previously spared no excuses in trying to convince my parents to postpone my marriage on the pretext of this and that. I was one unwilling bride, but soon I'd run out of ways to dupe my honest folks. As a result of my foolish strategies, I had to 'undertake' the ceremony a few months before my exams and I was left to pull my hair out in the horror of the upcoming exams.

Busy contemplating the would-be outcomes of exams just after the wedding and the proposed honeymoon, I was in a blank and shocked state of mind, on the D Day, merely watching my married sister and cousins work on their beauty and offering random tips. All of them were enthusiastically and happily working their way for the beauty pageant that evening. My sister, unlike me, hardly ever left an opportunity to dress up and try to look her best.
After every ritual, as I came into the room, she'd show me something new and ask for my suggestions which I'd duly offer. My exasperated brother-in-law failed miserably in his attempts to reason with her and make her understand the real importance of the day. I was too preoccupied with the various rituals to bother with looking beautiful, having anyway given up on the whole concept way back. But my sister wasn't in the mood to give up on me just yet.

Soon afterwards, the strains of Baharo Phool Barsao resonated through the air, acting as a signal that mysteriously put everyone, including my mother and sister, in an emergency mode. Both jumped onto their toes, very literally, throwing terrified glances in my direction. I returned them with placid, Buddha-like looks, from under the layers of turmeric paste and betel leaves. Suddenly, though, I was being subjected to action. I felt the pressure as someone tried to shove a bathing cap on my head, which was futile, owing to my knee-length tresses. Someone slid plastic gloves over my mehendi-stained hands as the shower came on, with numerous hands scrubbing me. God knows how many of them were with me, under that shower, drenching their finery.
Next, I was subjected to cosmetic weapons in the dressing room. After a few minutes and an uncountable number of hands later, I emerged, a few kilos heavier due to the make-up and in a heavy Jaipuri lehenga. I was then marched to the next scene of action, the stage, with an entire battalion of iconic beauties. At the stairs, however, I ran into Mr. Precise, my elder brother, who'd come forward to take stock of the situation. He suppressed a shriek after one look at me and did the only thing he could, at that point of time: put a rather heavy dupatta over my head.
I got onto the stage, supported by numerous hands, conscious of the loud revelry and the frenzied, palpating whoops.
"What a personality, what fair skin!"
My mind grasped the meaning of those words and figured I didn't fit into the description, at least not now. Frantic, but not yet losing my cool, I pulled my dupatta down and flung the garland around the neck of the tower in front of me who was trying desperately to steal a glance at me.

Now, with grown up children, I've still sworn off make-up and in my opinion, it best suits me.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

The best food

The peace and happiness are the ultimate aims of life. The Universe filled every heart with them still the created suffering rules the life. And like everything else the heaven too distributed it so unevenly in different lives. Therefore the vast magnitude sometimes becomes unbearable in someone life .
Even suffering around us too jolts and conscious fails to restore peace. Then to respite the self the words act as savior.

Often I wonder why does even the vast universe with its unlimited potential to support life fail to cease the grief? Why don’t we make a habit to create peace in ourselves and around us to make the world a little better?

After all in twenty four hours how much we eat, how many clothes we wear at a time- why then the meager needs of survival of individuals create misery and sufferings in the life of others.

Golu was lying on the ground beneath the huge Peepal tree. He was gazing the fluttering leaves up above in the air.

Through the foliages the streaks of sunrays were filtering brightly, to avoid them he slid his head to other side.

His heart was pulsating – the breath was flowing – the mind still conscious – it was thinking. He was thinking about the food- the best and the sumptuous one – the food cooked by the loving hands of granny- feeding the four year old Golu.

She would beckon Golu with food bowls in hand. While feeding him the adoring smile would play on her face. Her silver locks of soft wrinkled face were the tenderest feel of his heart.Sitting in the gentle aura of granny the morsel would taste best to him.

The meal time story used to go on- of king, queen and small princes-“ the princess, whom he will bring as his bride when he will grow up.”

Golu eyes would sparkle with flow of story, not for princes as his bride, but floating in the pleasure of granny’s smile. He would chuckle in his delight not for princes but for granny's presence.

Golu didn’t chortle at the arrival of king and queen chariot because they were full of riches. His eyes had never witnessed the support of grand rich father and mother as he was only accustomed of granny’s lap. Even in his dream he hadn’t seen any motherly and fatherly king and queen.

He had opened eyes in the loving presence of granny. Her touch, her feel and her nearness were his world. The vast world beyond her was unknown and harsh to him.

That day was the tenth day since he had not taken any food. Now the cramping in belly too had subsided or perhaps he was unable to feel it.

There was a giddiness in the head with feeble pain. Day before today he had entered in the park and safely chosen that isolated place at the far corner of uneven earth. The mother earth had given her the comforting lap.

He had never seen his mother and the father never bothered to look after him. Dumping him in frail old granny’s arm was his biggest relief.

Four years back he lost her too. Granny’s death gave him a new name - a burden- a good for nothing fellow -an empty stomach with unfailing hunger.

Subsequently the smirk became unavoidable addition of his food and grief inducing contempt a ritual affair of his meal time. He would get a lump in throat while swallowing the morsel.

His sliding rank in the studies tagged him - a useless fellow in all respect. At sixteen he was not earning. How he supposed to do so?,but he had been eating and was spending on school fee, clothes and food.

He started to detest the food as the contempt would haunt him perennially. He did not know how to deal with hunger? He could stay in old clothes, without school but how to stay without the food? He desperately wanted to expertise the way to beat the hunger.

The smirk on the face and haunting sharp tone during the meal time would numb his brain.

Like Buddha he too wanted to learn the way to mitigate the suffering - how to stay without food became his biggest concern.
Again and again the sneer on the face while receiving the meal had been turned unbearable to him.

Listening everything calmly that day he stared at her blankly . He had sat there quietly for long holding the plate. He was listening the growling around and after a point the added snarls were not making any difference to him.

As he was ready to start his journey he had made up his mind.

He put the plate down – cleaned the dishes, made the beds in different rooms and went to his own at last.

Next day he did all the chores without any food- the dizziness accompanied him at a time then next after that it followed him with intermittent frequencies--.

The howling around him rose the clanking of plates he heard near him several times. But he was peaceful he had now enlightened not to have it any more – the root cause of his misery.

Exhausted till then the eyes were unable to see with clarity but brain grasp the meaning. Now there was no place for him in the house. At last he felt the grip on his wrist someone pushed him outside the door.

To regain clarity of the signal standing at the door for the while he stopped to gasp.

It was fine to get the lap of mother earth under the sky as she never refused any one. Through the foliages in his dimming vision he glanced the soft crinkled face of granny .

His eyes embraced the gaze. She smiled again – behind her there was another face- the beautiful queen of the story. He had seen her in framed photograph at granny’s room-the beautiful mom.

Then she came forth and smiled on him. He was staring at her and after a while he was only staring everything else had stopped.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Saloni's story

To support the cause of Akshaya Patra- “No child in India shall be deprived of education because of hunger.”
The story of Saloni
The long hours on the study table besieged Shreya and her attention wavered around. She glanced outside the window and followed the streaks of winter rays passing through the foliages in the garden.

But the sight of incomplete topics forced her to come back to studies as it was eight of o’clock already and her friends could drop any time after ten for lawn picnic. Mamma would cook something sumptuous today, she thought retreating to her diagram.

A packet of pop corn she had bought yesterday was kept on the study table to cheer start. She sniffed the packet of popcorn and put it back looking for the work in hand to complete.

“O – Santy is she your daughter? Mamma asked to bai aunty. "What is your name?," “Saloni”,in chuckle a voice answered.

Soon after the noise of shuffling feet heard inside the room and presence of two curious eyes I felt on my back. Saloni who was about my age was standing in the room. I tried to concentrate on my studies but her curious staring had been disturbing me. “what?” I looked her questioningly. She smiled and kept looking at me. “ oh , why are you staring at me?” I asked irritated.

My question made her bolder; she came nearer with smile on her face and picked up my crayons without bothering to answer. “Are these yours? What are you sketching? She glanced at my biology diagram of human brain but turned her attention as she disliked the trouble of its comprehension.

“Why don’t you draw and color birds? You don’t like birds? I would draw one for you.” She stepped ahead boldly that irritated me further.

To put her away I answered, “I don’t like birds looking at my crayons and silently appealing her to place it back.

Her face fell a bit, but again she shot her next question , this time with mom, she had been entering in the room. “Really didi don’t like birds.” Mamma replied laughingly “at this time she can’t afford to like birds” reading my impatience to complete work in time.”

My exams were nearing so my burden of studies.Saloni was accompanying her mother those days regularly. Little did I had idea that the internship of her hard life had already been started.

In leisures she would hover most of the time around Mamma watching and talking with her. “Saloni, aren’t you missing school on regular basis? Will you make up after wards ? Mamma asked.

“Once Ma will regain her health I will join it again,” she replied, helping her in cooking. “Do you help your mother in cooking?”, Mamma asked. Flattered with loving gesture she answered – “aunty I cook alone at home when mother goes for work.”

Their loving conversation irritated me, Mamma had no time to caress me but enough to talk with her, who cares I took out my bycles to cycle outdoor.

After the school for my afternoon rest I decided to open the window to ease the setting mustiness. I found Saloni admiringly looking at my birthday frock left on the chair. A passionate longing had been playing on her dark complexioned face. When her eyes met mine she flung a question with shining eyes. “ Is this the same frock which you had worn on your birthday?”

Her intrusive inquisitiveness appeared friendly to me. I answered “did you like the frock; my grandfather is brought it for me.” “Are your grandfather a rich man?” she popped next question. “That I don’t know but he loves me too much.”

Unconsciously I too started liking her like mom. “When will you wear it next?” she asked. I answered playfully-“ I will gift you this one on your birthday.” Her face beamed with joy and contently she withdrew herself as if she was dreaming.

After few days my exams were over, then I remembered Saloni’s birthday but those days she as well as her mother was not coming at our place.

I put my crayons and frock in a packet to present Saloni as a surprise gift. I rode my bicycle towards her house. In front of asbestos roofed house a drunken man was sitting. Seeing a packet in my hand in inebriated condition he walked towards me. He informed me about the Saloni’s mother sudden demise last week due to pneumonia.

I asked about Saloni as I wanted to leave the stuff over there. I saw the skinny creature was moving out of the house. But that day she seemed someone else, a lifeless, solemnly Saloni with blank eyes. A tired and weak look was reigning on her face.

I took out the frock and crayons from the packet –hoping the same gleam on her face again but I heard an unfamiliar voice of Saloni. Didi will you lend me rupees twenty?, Chottu hadn’t eaten anything since morning. “Can I come at your place to work from tomorrow?

I put the things at the wooden charpoy, feeling so heavy.I was analyzing on the points of my essay on child labor which I had written in the recent exam. And now I was seeking ways to save a life and to stop child labor for a twelve year old with a small brother and ruthless drunken father.

My eyes met her, “no you won’t, I replied to shocked Saloni,BUT I WAS RESOLVED TO DO MY BIT TO SAVE SALONI THROUGH THE AKASYA PATRA.

I the protagonist of this story appeal all of you to make a difference in lives of several Salonies-there are many in India.
Donate to http/www.akshayapatra.org/online.donation

Monday, December 13, 2010

The indecisive ride

The heritage carriage moved whiffing the steam. The battling mind of Rhia had chosen immunity to abound splendor of nature as she had been wishing to set her trouble right.

With changing rhythm the whistling carriage had left the settlement far behind and now it was snaking through the foggy woods of pine and deodars. Tranquilized under the spell of verdant hill and misty chill everyone of the team was in meditative silence.

The twenty plus team for the research of temperate climate and vegetation was en route to Himachal. For many this excursion was serving the dual purpose -a research work of temperate zone and a pleasure trip.

Rhia glanced upon them, the guide and rest of the members after breakfast were either too engrossed in nature’s beauty or yielded to nip infused drowsiness.

She steered back her attention to the nature outside. Flanked by the hills on the both sides the train was puffing ahead in fog.

The indecisiveness had fogged her and created a stillness inside, she kept staring outside .The picturesque frame seemed to her like a dexterous work of an artist the details all alive- invigorating and breathing. She hoped her life like the oaks woods. Like their sturdy girth she too wanted to kiss the sky.

Trailing on the curvy track the head and tail of the snaking coaches were visible to her like the life. The visual retreat didn’t appeal her. “What will she choose and how?” she looked at her finger, and rotated the ring. It seemed heavy on her heart. She slided down the ring and clenched it into the palm. She did not want this. Certainly not at this juncture of her life. But she couldn't throw it either.

She remembered the sparkles on dad’s face that day, those were his proud moments. How contented dad was, even grey fringe of his face was complimenting the contentment of the job done well.

“How meticulously he does his work keeping details on everything? That vacation he had promised her a surprise gift. A meticulous search of his- keeping every like and dislike of hers in mind- a handsome profiled guy like her dad- with bright future ahead- he had chosen for her.

The decision seemed to her like the extreme of the coaches moving behind someone aimlessly. How she would drag herself in this kind of arrangement, a life without her choice, a decision complete strange to her.

A piercing chill of temperate climate shivered her as the carriage was now crossing the stone masonery arched bridge with deep ravine on one side. Next moment through the sweeping wind the carriage entered in tunnel setting everything in complete darkness. The parallel of her thoughts with engulfed darkness startled her and wild musing at the outcome perplexed her more. She pondered whether she is going to lose her identity in the darkness of life.

She hoped her life like the puffing locomotive ahead, with no one ahead,dictating terms on her- a life of her own choice where the breathe would be of her choice. She would be able to move ahead in the beautiful landscape of her life enjoying throughout.

At this juncture in both fields- study and art she was in complete harmony."How will she handle all these changes? And what is the need of all this? " The thought disturbed her more.

At that point matrimony was the remotest idea. She had kept her promise of higher studies to dad pursuing her breath of life- the art.

“No dad I won’t go ahead with this? Not now, let me live my own life?” She rehearsed the dialogue several times. Still indecisive and sure to falter in front of him, shaken she felt the mist of eyes were trickling down the cheek. To shelter them she took off her scarf liberating the curls. “O man I love you most but don’t impose---.” She again remembered dad’s face, “it is difficult to break his dream, but don’t crush mine”-she begged silently recalling dad.

“Let me walk in the open sky. Let me fly for few more hours. You are my world I will back to you. Let me live my own life.”

A sudden cheer and stir floated inside the coach as the teammates were out of their drowsy monotony and were discussing about the tea and snacks. The high nosed Asmit had been sharing the snack packet, uninterested Rhia passed it to next fellow.

At the platform the chilly gush quivered her, next she glanced upon smiling dad waiting for her. Attending a conference over there he had taken drive of three hours to see her there. Forgetting chaos of whirling mental debate she ran towards the magnetic warmth of dad. His rough hand supported her shoulder.

At the windy platform there was something more with dad- an air of strange feel. The presence of a captivating aura she sensed but she wanted to show her disapproval. She felt two intense longing eyes of long frame standing over there. She ignored them completely flashing the silence of “not interested” but I love my dad.

After two years-
She made the tea and put in front of empty recliner opposite of hers. Where is he? Waiting Rhia got impatient her eyes glued to the entrance. Ed made through the entrance smiling, “you know in next coupe two more honeymooners are there. One is from my institution I invited them over here,” he took the cup.”

Without adhering to his words Rhia mumbled-“you don’t go anywhere without telling me.” He took a sip smiling on her.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Out of mundane

Few icons stay in the memory due to their undeniable mark so even the mentioning of their names bring enthusiasm in the tone. Still there are some ordinary that knock the hankering consciousness when the slightest semblance floats in air, smell and sight.

The wet humid air is the trademark of our place, we the favorites of the rain god most of the months bask or rather bath in rain. Reasons are myriad left on reader discretion- when there is coastal storm in Bay of Bengal, or monsoon or just to be with us or surprise us , annoy us or amuse us whatever be the reason rain is here for longest.

Life is a window of experience, when we open it for some fresh air it amazes us with its ever changing frame of memories long happened, long buried. It refuses to go seeking its outlet like a wayward child always loves to have its own way that comes, knocks and gushes out unchecked. Last week the uncalled drizzling again opened the ---.

The day was usual sunny. In the second half the gale started its tantrums trumpeting its might with thunder and lightning and soon the scudding black clouds followed them.

In normal days as a young mother the dramatic exaggeration of weather would impress me with its artistic appeal .I would get instantly in love with everything- the black clouds,the peculiar intense light at the back drop giving impressive hues to vegetations. But that day the tempestuous air fanned my anxiety with a feverish child as her lips were turned pink and swollen due to fever. There was precautionary power cut in the colony and lone land line phone was dead.

A bit tired with long howler of tempestuous weather I had been anticipating a quick relief. Holding my little one to my heart the lashing and wiping of rain seemed hard to me. The surging fever was defying to yield even in that created nip of coastal depression. Her orange lips turned puffy and parched. She mumbled something in half slept state. Standing near the window with racking nerve I had been waiting for my husband's return seeking an instant remedy for the crisis.

A homeopath doctor,famed for the best cure of children at the place was available, we decided to visit him.

The long spells of coastal depression had bathed the plateau region and now in setting dusk the flora was donning the lustrous green hues. My racking nerve had been spent entire evening watching anxiously for some respite for my little one. Soon the hues outside got darkened that matched the gloominess of my inner self.

On that bathed outdoor the rolling wheels stopped infront of the thatched roof clinic. At that time the clinic appeared depressingly dull to my anxiety ridden mind.
In long waiting verandah many people were sitting on the benches kept over there and more were standing for their turns. Waiting for my turn with feverish child in my lap mentally I was discarding everything ordinary over there. A gloom casted out of my ego on the mediocrity of the place but the selfish human instinct forced me to appreciate the therapeutic benefit that was being offered there.

The musty evening was rather cold that day after the long spell of lashing rain. Waiting endlessly with a feverish child in the are made me impatient.I saw out of turn few people were entering the doctor's cabin pretending to check the list of waiting patients. In the queue in front of me an old lady had been waiting with her sick grand child.The boy was squirming in fever and was crying feebly. Her soiled disposition was narrating the worn out hardship of her life.

After viewing the disruption in queue and long wait tempted me I got up from my place with my uneased baby. I was aware it was the turn of that old lady’s grandson. But my motherly instinct went unruly, unable to bear child's suffering for long I decided to enter in the cabin overlooking the frail lady with her ailing grandchild.

Both of us were at the door step of the cabin the old lady and I with our purposes but a strange sight awaited me over there. The doctor in his early thirties was as simple as his clinic, he gestured to me politely but in authoritative tone to sit and wait for my turn. He ushered the old lady to bring the child for checkup.He checked the child earnestly and patiently listened the symptoms then he signaled me to avail my turn.

That day this encounter of me with humanely faces touched my heart. Suddenly the ordinary place seemed unique as a uniqueness of humility was flowing in the air. It was the place where dedication was working ignoring all the trivialities of the material world where most of the time money, status and disposition rule.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Raghu's reverie

When the train halted the windy chill of winter greeted Raghu at the exit. The loving smile of grand ma flashed in his mind and along with grand pa he alighted out of the train. The oblivion open platform with rustic masses and chorus of tea vendors all delighted him as after the exam he was there for winter vacation.
Waiting for bus alongside the dusty road he watched the sea of yellow mustard crop swaying in chilly wind. Wrapping the muffler around his neck Grand pa instructed Raghu to put on his cap and zip the jacket. After some wait a roaring of locomotive heard and a brightly painted bus stumbled down the bumpy path, the dust spraying wheels halted near them.
Loaded with passengers the snarling bus made its way to cascading path. On the narrow road the bus was passing through the pastoral frames of palm trees, grasslands and sea of green crops. After a short run the bus crossed the newly constructed bridge and took the way along the canal. The evening river breeze gushed in through the window and the smell of earthen air filled the nostril. The running bus had been spinning and dwarfing the trees and palms along the bank. The grey patches of grass and weeds along the canal bank seemed to him like hen with her chickens. He glanced at grand pa he had been leaning on the seat’s back with closed eyes.
Crossing the dusty road along the orchard he remembered the tangy taste of raw mango of summer. He silently recounted the smell and taste of tangy mangoes of orchard but now he had to be content with visual delight of green sea of crops.
In the fainting intensity of rays the logs and heaps of coals were burning in front of most of the hutments. Through the willowing smoke of burning coal he sighted the bamboo groves on opposite side of kaka’s house, a lean fellow of small stature kaka was an earnest helping hand of grand pa. Apart from managing the field duties he used to take care of live stocks at grand pa’s place.
The soft amiable attitude and the magic of his hilarious humor had created a special bond with many of the children of the house.
His reverie took him to the last summer’s bustling recreation of swings on the bamboo groove. The rioting chorus of the children of kaka's place had got its delighted surge when with his cousin Raghav,he had come over there. To give them a pleasant surprise the elated kaka had frantically tied a cot as swing on the enormously high branches of bamboo tree and the hulla balloo of enchantment with other children had been lasted till dusk.
He remembered his last winter stay at grand pa place. When in the evaporating foggy morning being under the quilt he had heard the annoyance of kaka outside. In the chilled early hours kaka had been complaining about his delayed breakfast. As the delayed breakfast would hamper numerous answerable chores of grand pa and he would have to listen the reprimand from him. Raghu was amazed how his otherwise quick tempered aunt peevishly endured all his grunts. However he was inquisitively amused after all in teeth cluttering chill of morning hours where kaka had to go with such urgency.
Unable to resist any more he had been out of the cozy charpoy and rubbing his eyes still under drowsiness he had somehow straightened himself in front annoyed disposition of kaka. But his sight instantly delighted him, “ oh child in such a cold weather why did you come out of the bed so early, he admonish him softly holding his palm to save the fast evaporating warmness and hid him fondly in his thick cotton chadder . “But where are you going so early in the morning, kaka”, he shot his curiosity. Forgetting all about his delay he started with puffed heart- “oh I too have to go office like your father, it is really urgent”. “What do you do over there kaka?” – It was the next inquisitiveness, without halting at his glitch, confidently he added, “oh lots of jobs have to complete me over there. I have to do likhai – padhai(read and write). I do sit on the table and write on the chair.” And the odd description of his weird yet interesting work place put the Raghu in hilarious laughter. While he had been pouring out myriad queries regarding all interesting and weird office of his; Raghu had been seriously contemplating a must have visit of so interesting yet uncanny place. He felt a magical appeal about the kaka’s office.
The running bus came to the screech; he viewed the hutments at far. The settling winter fogs were blurring the hutments behind. He remembered his excursion of bullock cart and the delight of few hours stay in the thatched house of the grandparent’s employees. And how accidently that day he had explored the mystic office of kaka - a brick kiln of grand pa but he would not disclose it to him. Perhaps kaka would not feel better or it would steal him a good hilarious story session of kaka.
He already grown an year older and besides achieving second rank in the class he got selected in the football team of his school. He had to share many things with granny and kaka and that time he would evade the visit of brick kiln site although he had enjoyed every moment of watching the methodical process of kiln casting for hours.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

My musing-how to cater the work power?

On the world map the powerful emerging leaders are China and India. The reason behind their rising strength is working man power.
In the billion populations of ours and in addition of the populous states like UP and Bihar which is known for its vast resources of labor forces and skilled workers are ready to work. For the job search the migration not only of workers but by educated masses are rampant and palpable all across the country and globally.
In addition to this in India there is numerous educated women force- ready to work on contractual basis and in flexi- time limit without disturbing and damaging the safe guard of family fabric. This educated group not only belongs to educated women but the skilled and knowledgeable vast group of post retirement people who are equipped with experience and ready to serve for at least five to ten years more. The nature of this work force is perennial.
It means the vibratory populous country of ours has vast resources of working power to cater and promote the different fields.
So isn’t it time to generate the innovative means to engage these people for growth and progress. How state wise and keeping in mind the geography of the place these powers can be utilized without forcing migration on them and breaking family set up?
Blog is an immediate forum and window to seek the response to any problem. I hope this query of mine would draw attention of many expert brains that can show platforms to engage and suggest way to this. Isn’t it sheer wastage of skill and work force left underutilized in any country? I know unemployment is a biggest problem globally. Still in the country like ours where best brains are ready to give attention on the unorganized sectors during their summer internship, this unorganized sector of work force with enough potentialities is also seeking remedy.
The IIM alumnus and other experts who are known for their innovative means and best brain to utilized resources in best possible way must give their attention to this unorganized and underutilized sector.
So they can also contribute to the country, society, family and most importantly to the happiness quotient of theirs lives.

Monday, November 22, 2010

The couple

It was the post festivity season of advanced autumn there fore there were slight travelers inside the compartment. The rattling of train increased as it crossed the iron bridge of Victorian era.The monotony of advanced journey wrapped me in melancholy. Feeling drowsy I closed the open book on my lap, and outstretched my legs to relax comfortably.
When the train started slithering, I craned my neck to peep outside, the piercing railway's announcement got sharpened and eventually it halted. At the well lit platform the usual urgency was pulsating with rushing people and lug gages against the back drop of food stalls of irctc with bottled water and fancy snacks.
The scuffs of feet and mumbling chit chat near me steered my attention back inside the compartment. A couple the occupants of the berth opposite of mine were standing by the berth. Confirming their berth number they slid down the luggage under the berth and occupied the place opposite of me.
Dragged in prevalent monotony I chose to have a nap. Suddenly through the half closed eyes I got the glimpse of a manicured hand putting a chic hand bag on small dining board near my head. The glow of a fleeting milky hand disrupted the dullness of my mind for the while.
Quite a tuned coordination was stirring at the opposite seat of mine. A melodious discomfiture of coughing wife got reciprocated by the hubby with the magical donation of shining bottled water. The sight of bottled water recalled my neglected need of throat and I started looking for my own. The coolness of chilled water felt good and out of concerned I passed the bottle to Ed who was sleeping on the upper berth.
Fatigued with day long occupation we were contemplating an early siesta and waiting for the meals to be served.
I passed the food tray to Ed as he was reluctant to come down, and started the meal on my berth. On the opposite berth the symphony of love was in the air. The hubby was frantically unpacking the food items on the tray kept on the food board and arranged the plate for the wife. “The love birds, how nature binds couples,” I thought.
The drop in temperature before the day break seemed a bit inconvenient, and after few toss and turn I decided to view the nature after the refreshed siesta. Before that I felt need to freshen up.
Being inside the wash area the incoherent noise of an arguing couple was audible outside. “Who started in early hours?” I got amazed. A feminine tone in sobs was panting her annoyance. To douse the incensed wheezing of the lady the mumbling cajoles of the guy seemed so genuine. My exit halted their panting and raving for the moment. While coming out, my glance fell on the gent’s back in the striped night suit, and black t- shirt of the girl.
I returned to my berth the lady was sleeping peacefully opposite of mine. The hues outside were changing continually with advancing moments of twilight. I decided to feel the magic and it seemed best to watch the nature outside with its ever changing frame.
The rendezvous of mine with crack of dawn acted as a catalyst to induce me in sleep with the ascending sun soon I dozed off.
I sharp voice pierced my snooze and the rattling of train reminded me of my where about. It was irctc staff with news paper and tea, and standing by the berth Ed was telling me to have the tea. After waking up I realized that I was having belated tea in the compartment.
On the opposite berth of mine the gents was engrossed in tea preparation sharing the sheet of his slept wife. After a while he softly shook the fragile loving thing to have her tea. And then as slow recap the scene unfolded according to my conceptualization.
In the morning sun the loving thing sat lazily, holding tea in her manicured hand, beside her henpecked hubby, “A lucky thing indeed”, I mused.
Feeling freshened up with beverage, I caught the attention of a jean clad – a girl-with long open hair who was passing through the boggy, in black t- shirt--? Asking for the charger point she stopped for the moment. The attention of the guy, opposite of mine too got hooked to her. A changed of expression seized his ease for the moment then he composed himself.
For the moment he hesitated then pulling out his legs out the sheet, with charming smile, he held the empty cup from his wife hands, put it beneath the berth and added I am coming, after washing my hands; he walked away in his striped night suit, behind the black t- shirt. My sight got freezed by the dubious affiliations of his.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

A casual musing

A fleeting muse passed through me while going through the Sunday's Supplement of TOI—about the best inspiring chat of celebrities….
Ritu Beri, the designer had mentioned about the enormous impact of the conversation of hers with legendary Danielle Steele. Ritu Beri with her one year old child mentioned to her about the turmoil of working woman’s motherhood. Danielle Steele answered her,”I have nine children. I wrote books in between feeds, changing diapers and before she knew she was expecting again.” The read not only act as an inspiration of invincible and unfailing level of energy of Danielle but raises a debate about the unfailing source of incessant energy of hers.
Another striking conversation was of Anupam Kher,the actor with a blind man during his low as a struggling actor. He was advised by the blind man to wear bright colors to cheer him up. Really that shows a good example of optimism of blind man talking about the power of colors.
Everyone holds some view of his/her own on the topic and I would like to share it here.When I remember my most memorable one with lasting effect it is happened during one of my meditative session. The talk of mine is happened when I was connecting to real self in my personal space (during meditation) during the moment of low. In the meditative stillness I was accessing or rather witnessing all those moment of low once again. Then like a suggestion it flashed through me. “Why don’t I work for best to correct it? What is resisting inside me to visualize best of it? However it takes a good effort to collect all branched off dissipating energy and channelize back in desired direction yet it is not impossible.
This talk of mine with myself till date I feel the most memorable one. What is your memorable talk?

Monday, November 15, 2010

The liaison

The New Year Eve approached with its familiar nip in the air. The hills of valley region were full of winter blossom. The manicured gardens and the dyke areas were wooing the merry makers in their best manicured looks. Every morning and at the dusk the rioting chorus of the zooming tourist’s buses and vehicles had been piercing the solitude of otherwise quiet remote colonies of ours.
Catering the influx of visitors and meeting deadlines the laziness crept in uninitiated and overwhelmed with it I decided to pull out of the New Year Eve’s party. But few out stationed friends were making to the occasion to renew the bond so all excuse appeared irrelevant.
Against the settled haze of December winter the gathering was pulsating in symphony. The steaming warmth of throbbing gathering was rising in the smoky chill of hilly terrain. The feminine throng was settled near the bon fire. I too got settled with my friends over there. In that exciting air some new faces were beaming over there. Opposite of mine in the fluttering orange vapor of fire I caught the glimpse of a sculpted ivory face. In the reflected carroty hue of flames her responding eyes would gleam exuding the exquisitely charm. Her high peaked nose would get shrunk in approval in response during the chat. Beauty always leaves its appeal, it sank inside me.
On being called upon by someone she elegantly stooped forth looking for her silhouettes and her silky locks bounced ahead delightfully. She elegantly stood up, the shawl shrug off her ivory shoulder to flatter her curvy contour; she gracefully ramped towards the reception area. In the open lawn of club the floating mist in the air was complimenting the chilly haziness.
To the parents’ relief near the volley ball court the children were bustling in the games manned by few sporty chaps.
The celebration evolved into dinner time at the past mid time. Now the dining and lounge areas were thronging with glasses and smokes. “How many new recruits are there at this time of season? Now your place does not seem so remote that counted only as an ideal succor for vacation and merry making, my friend commented. So many projects are beaming up here and with them –added facilities and expansions with every passing day.”
Now the crept mist was making the hall foggier and the wafting aroma of food and bustle of the area were surging. Few youngster lots with their glasses settled on the table in the next row. In that horde the expressive eyes with equally charming tiny tot took her place in the next row facing me. The gleaming expressions of her sharp features would get more prominent while she was instructing her little girl, “Whose wife is she?” I thought.
On next gathering the imposed familiarity of small place of ours rewarded me the blossomed smile of hers during the overture. The unrestricted allure of her charm was spreading faster in the air soon it got cleared. The mesmerizing freshness and charm would accompany her everywhere exuding its appeal. Then the hush of whisper of her straying liaison was floated in the air, first to be ignored then it came with daring audible limit.
“Who is that fellow after all? -The lean suave one with broody look.” The imagination refused to grasp –the wafting rumors-nothing new of small place. Better not to poke nose in other affairs—“after all who had seen and can discuss with such a conviction? A strong reason to ignore for many of us, ----but the stray thing happened one time, then next in public view, accelerating the wagging tongues every time.
“Is it normal? How can she go stray to such an extent? Why does she risk her blissful married life? Cannot she chalk out futility of such desperation?”
Amidst all those rumors and facts, he-the sufferer-her spouse- was walking side by side with him-as a civilized person does-with the center of his affliction—the trouble shooter- a pretended friend. “Probably he is not aware of the fact, a busy man indeed with long working hours”, it got mused by the people.”But his holistic demeanor startled everyone despite the increasing frequencies of intermittent desperation by both of them, now in open display.
“Isn’t it a curse to live such a hell without any fault of own? A fleeting muse crossed the mind after glancing on her husband –a decent one with best of career and repute. But his genius got cleared during the crisis. He was there with the crowning glory of his life with his daughter tending, laughing and playing.
“ Is a dignified person become helpless in such a situation?” As he too cannot stoop such a low in life “what can be the best remedy?” I failed to find out.
Surprising all of us the solution itself emerged out through the crisis.
“What were the responses of famous and most brainy? How did they cope with the infidelity of their spouses? How did they sail out of the crisis not losing faith in lives nor their ability to live with dignity? To save the family especially the lives of children they chose to reconcile with the life.
During the walk the shuffling of his feet caught my attention, in the scattered dimness of vapor lamp he was heading home, carrying the bag of essentialities after a long day work. He seems a resilient, unique tribe of own who not only rules the house hold but mind and soul too. A confident accomplisher and believer of power of love win the game by love not by desperation. Believing in love and having the perception of right and wrong he knows that the enticement does not last long. It is the love and sincerity of relationship that binds a couple, not the look and lustful inclination. The lecherous usually fails to see the product of secure loving home and conjugal bliss in the glow of married woman face. This universe runs a perfect accounting system where no investments go unpaid. A courageous and patient spirit always reaps the benefit of his love in compound interest and reverses the steering back to his life. Others get sunk in quick sand and any lustful affair steal their lives.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

The mail

"Where is she ? Why do I find her call always busy ?” Riya asked herself shaken – then there came a ring on her cell phone---- She got the call just afterwords, “what were you doing?” nothing your call had got disconnected that I was retrieving. Riya swallowed the lie with piercing silence. "What are you doing today?" “Nothing I have not thought about it.” She got the meaning, “I don’t want to let you know, it is none of your business.” She knew even the answers of her insistence.
When love dies the relationship wilts, she knows this. How long will she permit these things to happen in her life? The incessant lies she had been receiving since her marriage. After the separation the financial burden she was facing and now the girl is straying. Before completion of one chapter of lies how this next has started. Why is it happening to her? Feeling choked she contemplated.
Tired she sat on the desk to complete her half finished work. But before that she must mail the publisher and request him for fresh deadline. She glanced on the half finished sections of the book. She started with reeling conscious--
To: Revathy @-----
Subject:Your home coming
When you will return, I would cherish the moment. I would wait for that elusive moment when you would realize your folly. When the truth would sink inside you that you are chasing the boundary instead of map, when you will realize the difference between life and illusion. When you will discern what is meaning of fullness of relationship. It is easy to get enticed; it is equally easy to fool your own people. There is no strength in fooling those who love you. It is a weakness of lust that is giving you wrong reason to deceive and live life of a liar which you are living at present. Strength lies in admitting and creating awareness for right or wrong.
A day will come when you shall realize the futilities of all that useless pursuits of deceives. You will certainly realize the wastage of time and energy you had invested in proving and shielding your wrongs. Instead of that you could have chosen to create a strong self. Admitting and building the truth so your future would have built on strong unshakable foundation.
When one fools and deceives their own people to create a relationship, how can that relationship work or would not collapse suddenly which is build on the shaken foundation of lies.
Now as a parent I reason myself about the place where I must have gone wrong. And certainly those moments of my wrong created these painful sagas of wrongs in you. Now I sincerely wish to stop the vicious cycle of wrongs. It is too painful to live with these series of wrongs Often I would pray to god and ask him to tell me where I went wrong. I want to change and undo my leniency.
With blurred vision she clicked at the –send. Wiping the sopping cheek she read the texts again and again -----

Monday, November 8, 2010

The promising star

After the completion of the diagram on the black board, I waited for the collective attention of the students in the classroom. Till then only few had only copied it whereas rest of them were still juggling at their initial stages. Though it was a disciplined class room but their different IQ levels and pace of work would often irritate me. In the generalized system of education everyone was served same pace and opportunity. Standing beside the board I halted for the time being to start the topic.

During the explanation, browsing through the class my attention got caught by the two inquisitive eyes among those reluctant lots of back benchers. But whenever I tried to get hold on that, I found that they vanished somewhere in the group. With advancement of chapters I registered a regular presence of an absorbing and assimilating mind over there.

“Isn’t there a boy in the fifth Std, observant and inquisitive one though a bit hesitant?” In the staff room I enquired of the class teacher Maria when I came to know about her flourishing group of tuition students. "That is Ruknubar— he is being fondly called Ruku by us. Not a bright one he is really-but polite enough and obedient. In fact he is a slow learner –before the exams he proves a pain” stated Maria.
As the session rolled in I found a permanent vibrancy in that particular corner of the classroom. Two inquisitive eyes were following every instruction of mine, working and jotting it down promptly. In the morning on my desk I would find his science note book with all scribbled answers of last class. However during the correction session his corporal presence around me would always got pushed aside by some smart and intelligent lots. Shyness and low confidence were his characteristics till then it had become evident to me.

But certainly a bond of empathy of mine was established with that particular corner. Now I found a new keenness on my part to search my attention holder student a bit deeper. I felt an urge to pull out that hidden and shaken self out of the shadow of low self confidence. I felt a need of precision while handling my empathy bonded scholar, as a bit of extra boldness on my part could prove detrimental to push him back in his shadowed self.

therfore I decided to work on fine level to pullout him out of the shadow of his perennial hovering low confidence. To prompt him to accomplish any task I preferred to put fine hints first. He was abysmal poor at the up keep of his notebooks with scribbled handwriting all over the pages, with equally uncared persona. Then I decided to work on each of them one by one, but what should be taken first I thought.

In the unit test my little learner charmed me again with his magic. The scribbled handwriting was the top scorer of the class. His score strengthened by desire to work on his weakness. To build a self confident persona of his that was the right time to put all the cords at right place.
Next in the class I appreciated those who had given the appropriate diagrams at every possible answer in the test. When I asked about those who had complied ,a hand rose promptly hiding the glow of earned pride on his face. I asked him his name- “Ruku –bu-, he faltered for completion, an embarrassment flashed on his face.He tried hard halting at several place. The class monitor Snigdha bailed him out of his discomfort and spelled out Ma,m, Rukunbar.

With not so clean look and often with crumbled uniform he would appear in the class. A strict vigilance on my part could turn other way so I diverted the attention of the class on the texts.
Back in the staffroom to unfold the entirety of Ruku’ s story Maria proved an aid-“his father works on a petrol pump , that one on the corner of our school he is an old staff over there so he earns decently. Ruku is the eldest of his five children only one regular to school others are simply not interested.” When I revealed my ignorance about his stammering, Maria added, “Not only this he is epileptic too.” One day she mentioned casually that Ruku had been taking interest in studies.He was attending the classes regularly with all completed works.

Holding attention on my empathy bound learner I advanced the task by dividing the class in four groups. Naturally to fill the positions of group leader the highest scorer and highest promptness shown in all activities was chosen. Amidst the cheers a self hidden soul stood to grasp attention and admiration of the class. I noticed he accepted the position in certain dignified way; a confidence was palpable on his face with a resolve to follow and act on every rule abided by the position.

Then I decided to step further, and during the moral class I raised the debate on personal hygiene and on the measures of personality development.

After that I noticed a change in his demeanor but as usual I had been choosing to avoid any keenness on my part fearing his withdrawal. But I was testing the patience of eleven year old one. Who was meticulously working on my next passed instruction and now the child was impatiently longing for the rewards.

As the group leaders were instructed to bring copies in the morning he would come dutifully with the note book bundle wishing me good morning. He kept the stack in front of me. Then he opened the page of the note book on the desk, I silently nodded in gratification. He was still there, lovingly I rose my head “what?” He hesitated –“Mam my uniform isn’t clean and my nail? he asked innocently outstretching his fingers in front of me.

And then I noticed he was there combed hair and well uniformed. It took me for a while to imbibe his pristine innocence, in response I lovingly added-“yes, you are.” With overwhelming shyness he darted out drenched in pleasure of praise.

That year he scored highest almost in all subjects placing his position at the top. And then unconsciously I debated- “who is important in action oriented process of education, Arjun or Dronnacharya?” my answer tilted to Arjuna.

After my stint of three years over there, to advance my career I joined bigger establishment in the same city still I was in continuous touch with all my ex colleagues and friends.

After the holiday of few days when school reopened I found an envelope was waiting for me, on my desk. It was from my ex school mate, Maria “after wishing me she had mentioned the good news Mam, your promising star shined the sky as school topper in board and is ready to soar the sky” I simply visualized him in my closed eyes wishing all success and best of life.

Friday, October 29, 2010

My globe of books and words

Reading is my passion since my childhood. It is my way to learn and explore the world around me, and to respite my list of “whys?” Books have alwayy been my faithful companion and closest ally as my inquisitiveness gets satiated through the ideas of prudent brains belonged to kingdom of book. They are the  means to stretch my horizon of learning and give me  expeditions of different minds.

In shaping my childhood the persistent exposure of words played major role  as it  gave me the power of expression.

Supported by apt words, during my childhood ,i won  many of  arguments with siblings and friends.It  always gave me edge over many fights with them. Words  always supported me. During siblings tiffs,it was  my better presentation of words and convincing power which always tilted father' s support to me. Where as my loving and innocent brother would accept his defeat or would force to  comply with father commands," Don' t fight with your little sister, she is so cute." Chuckingly father instruct him.Whereas faltering for words my brighter brother would repeatedly fail to garner his support.

 Sometimed to add   his woes he would challenge me openly infront of father. “You come outside, and then I will show you.” To counter his open threat i used to take refuge in my tears. They would act as wonder and a loving hug to father would take care of rest. 

And one stern look on father's face would close the case permanently in my favor. “Who can dare to touch me after that?” In father' s strong presence i would gleefully walk around humming a tune.

In formative years I got hooked by fascinating events of nature.I had to know the apt reasons and answers about the mysterious happenings of the universe,like blue colors of sky, the cause of rainbow and many more. Naturally i got more inclined to  books. They  became my favorite refuge.

My adolescent years spent mostly quenching the logic and truth of the happenings around me  whenever my ignorance raised another “why?” Although with academics I had already stepped into the dazzling worlds of the colors and monochrome as a painter,still books were my constant companions.

However after a point I  allured more to silence than words. But still in the charmed silence of self ,the words had been  taking shape inside me. During my busiest moments i would obscurely scribble words  at the front of note books or on the last  pages or at any vacant space on books. 

During my leisure affrctionately i used to write and greet my friends with my words. My conveyed words to them always won applaud to me by them. The lingering affection and gleams on my teachers’ and friends’ face were most enduring moments for me which they would flash after receiving my hand written appreciation letters. They  acted as a catalyst to me to work on next stuff. The mystic world of  words shaped my attitude and personality.

Books and words were parallel to me like parents, family and home. The touch of books, the shuffling of pages always appeared gentle to me . Walking in the long corridors of premises with load of book seemed soothing to me as if i am walking with most dependable friend.

Even in  the turmoiled hours of before exams i got succor  in the crispy touch of books and their words. They were the savior  of my tumultuous moments.

During the grueling hours in the exam hall when the lustrous words would make their appearance on the answer sheets,through my annulled mind. I would get my lost breath and reason for the survival on the planet earth.

Even  the bleak moments of failed words never failed me. The close one always rewarded my tears with compound interest as it magically heaped more guilt on them. With others those moment of failed words and hurt equipped me with survival strategies and provided me new direction of life.

Then at a point faltering for words I felt a need to work upon them.As my story spinning self had been demanding  apt words to explain the charming  world around me. Till then i acquired status of motherhood. And now I had to find words and expression –for those tiny, pink palms who were throwing a soft throb on my face whenever I would come close to kiss the velvety tiny tot.

Now finding myself at little ease whenever I sit with my   lap top .I ask myself, “Are the hours of straining the cerebra worth spent?” But my  world is   ruled by heart .Thus  the emotional  quest pests me “what I am going to do with these stuffs? Are they worth leaving as legacy or memoirs?” I have  no plausible explanation.

But words are my succor- my passion – my companion. They pour out of me- through my expression , my stories.

Then my loving and  chirpy companion- my reflection of childhood ,my daughter now she acquainted with speedy gadgets and life. She—gifted me a window of expression, my blog. It is a world of intellectual, a limitless world of friends.

The vibrant platform and connectivity of blog  widened my world and reasons. Through my blog  I started a different era of life. I ,a person of logical and analytical background now i entered in exciting world of literature.

Being with my buddy, the words I penned different invocation of memories.

These days while explaining analysis and logic of science as a teacher I do find a fellow within me who has been fighting for better grip on words and expression. In those moments I recall stern looks of  my blue eyed Anglo- Indian teacher of elementary school on my slip- up of the adjective in place of adverb.

But on the whole in the company of my earnest friend,words life seems refurbishing—after all who won’t feel elated with a true supportive friend of all seasons, the words.

Sunday, October 24, 2010


That year Raghu had come to spend two full months at his grandparent place. As Ma had diagnosed with gall bladder problem at the same time his parents were shifting from Lucknow to Mumbai. At the station grand pa was standing with kaka because he had under taken the journey on his own.
Next day the hobbling of feet and hushed voice with giggles had broken his slumber during the morning hours. Previous evening when they were coming home they were interrupted and asked by many acquaintances of grand pa whom to receive he had come to the station. Therefore the news of his arrival had already broken in the sleepy village of Sambalpur and his friends were there to meet him. Granny came into the room and she ushered them to come inside.
Raghu was invited for hang out with his friends. He was curiously wanted to venture all his place of interests – the river bank, the temple beside the pond, fields and most interesting the orchard. In that dusty remote village the names were really few but for Raghu the bonding he would feel with everything over there was special.
In the morning hours of monsoon Raghu felt delighted when he had been called outdoor by his friends. The paddy saplings were being taken out from the field and they have to monitor the work.
Sowing of green grassy paddy were going on almost everywhere in the water logged field. It seemed enchanting to him to listen the rustic yet invigorating folk song in chorus by the bent ladies busy with chores of sowing. He was sitting on the huge stooped branch of banyan tree beside the field. The leisurely pace of village lives always seemed close to him.
Settled at granny’s places since a week the loads of homework to be done than started pestering him. As the sun was blazing in the rain washed sky he had been refrained by the granny not to venture out. Watching the puffy strewn clouds for a while through the window ultimately he decided to complete his home work. He was too engrossed in his maths that he didn’t notice the howling of strong wind outside, with dark sky.
Granny had been rushing to terrace to bring down the dried cloths lined over there, he accompanied her. In the cool breeze out of delight the village children were running in the dusty lanes in the hope of cool showers. Standing at the terrace Raghu had been amusedly watching the enjoyable chorus down there. The sudden start of storm had put the lives at the rush in the idle surrounding. Some folks were hurrying down the path with their cattle’s. The bleating horde of goats was scurrying to their places. With surging gale the lightning with thunder started flashing in the sky.
Then amid the animals and folks he noticed a stooped weird man with knotted muscles and a lump at the back he was hurrying past the children. Rejoicing few of them followed him but deprived of his attention they returned back to their own group. His legs were bent sideways in arch. With unkempt look and maze of dry hair the man was busy talking with himself frantically throwing wild gestures. All that seemed quite uncanny to Raghu.
While collecting the clothes granny caught the uneasiness on Raghu’s face. To pull off his attention from him, she casually added that he was Baiju. He had lost his wife few years back in the lighting while she had been sowing the paddy sapling in the field. Then onwards every monsoon the sight of storms and rain infuriates him to no extent.
Soon the wind storm got blended with the thick dusts of gravel paths and fields. In that Raghu was finding even difficulty to open his eyes. Clutching the stacked clothes they both hurried down stairs.
In after noon Ragav his cousin called him from the window, to accompany him to the orchard. As the gale had already started furiously and the strong spell could start at any moment. In the dusty wind others were also rushing towards the orchard. And in all that it was fair possibility to enjoy the taste of sour, tangy green mangoes. After collecting enough for themselves they decided to find a place to relish them. Beside the pond the temple was the exact place for them.
In the shade of temple Raghav opened the knot of the bundle. The monsoon rain was pattering everywhere. The ladies who were sowing the paddy sapling had already left for home leaving the work mid way as the dark clouds with its thickness had been creating complete effect of setting dusk. The water logged fields were further refurbishing in the pouring rains.
In the already flooded field some baskets of paddy sapling left unattended. Raghu pointed the basket to Raghav, “Raghav who left those saplings there?” He simply shrugged the query but Raghu had got stuck in between the taste of mango and the sight.In blurred setting with whipping rain he was feeling lost. Again his attention got stuck on the left basket of saplings. He saw a man with arched legs was entering the field, so at least some one came to claim it. In the lashing rain oblivious of surrounding he was entering the water logged field. Through the lashing downpour the piercing thunder and lightning were making them deaf. The setting tempest seemed frightening to children. And then from the other shades few hordes made a quick escape viewing the worsening squall. The arch legged one standing in the middle of the field was shouting something inaudible with raised hands amidst the lashing rain.
Raghu got awestruck by the arch legged Baiju, " why he is still standing in the field ? What if the lightning will strike him?"
Under the impact of dark monsoon clouds the day seemed yielded to darkness, they too winded up from there.
In the morning Raghu went along the granny to collect some flowers. While shaking the branches he saw grand pa walking along the path towards the pond. He intended to accompany him, in affirmation granny smiled silently. Cheerfully Raghu jumped down the branches and hopped the fence to reach him.
Collecting flowers granny glanced to them, holding the arm of grand pa Raghu was insisting to go with him. Soon reconciled they both walked away.
Grand pa was taking the longest route as he had numerous farm duties to talk with different folks. Along the canal they walked for the moment then he took the branched muddy path.That took them to clay hut settlement, there was a brook flowing in front of the them.A palm tree trunk was kept to cross the brook.Viewing his inconvenience grand pa chided him lightly for accompany him. Standing at another side of the brook grandpa called out loudly. A man with a bundle of straw came out behind the bamboo grove and wished to grand pa.
Raghu got enchanted with the groves of trees over there, emerald greenery of huge big trees. At the distant he caught the frail figure of Baiju, he was busy digging the earth with new samplings of mango , neem, tamarind and many others. So it was Baiju’s orchard, the biggest one in the village without any boundary as every open treeless space belonged to him..
During the lunch granny seemed delighted as if she had some plan.To find out he asked her whether she wanted flowers next morning.
As she would send him for frantic errands or sometime she would send some message to busy grand pa at the farm. Ignoring his queries granny asked him whether he would come along her to temple day after tomorrow. There would be a fair- a big gathering of neighboring villagers. She lifted the thali (plate) after wiping the earth and went to the kitchen.
With other ladies granny went inside the temple leaving Raghu and Raghav at the temple stairs. It was a high place to view the standing folks down there.In the open uneven land some folks were busy flying the kites. Raghav was fond of watching the flying kites soon he got gripped in vivid colored paper avians.
Few children were throwing stones on the tamarind trees beside the temple stairs. It seemed more amusing to Raghu as a frantic throwing of pebbles in the thick foliages would create a bustle over there and flock of birds would fly in flurry only to return after some times. And then the next bombing of pebbles in the foliages brought down on the earth a big green parrot bleeding profusely. The sight scared the children as they started getting reprimands from the elders standing over there. Scared they flew off the place leaving the bird on the ground.
Tears floated in the Raghu’s eyes instantaneously he started climbing down the stairs and made his way towards the wounded bird. From another corner too the arched feet with stooped shoulder joined the place. Baiju lifted the bleeding bird and Raghu frantically brought water in broken earthen piece lying near the pond.
Sitting in the shade of backyard he waited for Baiju to bring the green herbs for faster healing. Granny brought a bird cage to put the bird for the rest. He was feeling the warmth of rough Baiju’s hands when he was plastering paste on the bird’s wounds. His crinkled face with broken teeth seemed so near to him—today Raghu got two friends the parrot and Baiju. As Baiju had promised him that he would come daily to watch the healing of the birds and he would look forward to it.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

The antagonist ruler

The antagonism is here in the life, as the family members are not listening. The child is not complying. The neighbors and acquaintances are difficult people and weird in behaviors. Expectations are failing. On the whole the world and people seemed so odd to live and communicate.
And anger is cropping up in whatever we do, as it simply rules the day.
It happening with every one of us, on a small and big level, and now it becomes a reality of life.
What stage up this show of anger?
-Fatigue self.
-When any issue, circumstances disliked most by us.
-We lack the desired strength and vision to solve the situation calmly.
-Person is exhausting more energy on daily basis without any attention of working on the creation and sustenance of energy. The system needs a rejuvenation exercise to make up the lost energy (that should not be confused with exhausting further in the name of tagged way of merry making).
The key question of related to anger is whether it is a simple weakness or a disease.
Myth-most often anger is viewed as strength. It is actually an inability to find a calm solution of ongoing crisis.
-When a weak body or mental frames fail to act accordingly as a result it reacts in outburst, completely disrupting the wholeness of personality.
-Anger shows a shaken and frightened self.
- It is an indicator of weak physical and mental frame.
What does help?
Self help is the best help, to acknowledge the need to work on it is the first step.
-Acknowledge the need of some measures to help ourselves (meditation- during meditation working on the particular points or body organs where anger accumulates help).
- Every time get aware of the surge i.e. anger.
- Acknowledge that the poison is taking control of you (during anger certain fight and flight hormones are secreted that hamper the normal body functioning. Once secreted the hormones stays in blood stream for more than weeks thus hampering the normal body function on regular basis.).
-acknowledge the urgency to built up the lost energy (means are varied).learn not only way to create but sustain it positively.
- Self counseling does help, as calming anger is not about surrendering to situation. It is all about showing and acting on the disapproval to certain people, work and situation.
Here I would like to state one story taken out of Buddha life. When Buddha had been preaching about mind- management and virtues of simple living, there had a surge in his followers with every passing day. Some of the son’s of rich businessman had too joined him as his disciples and they started following the lives of simple means.
That angered the community of rich businessman and one of them came to him. He accused him of misleading the youths with non actions, like he had been leading his own life.
Buddha had listened all his accusation calmly and asked one question-“Parth suppose you had brought a gift for someone, but the person refused to receive the gift, so where the gift would stay now”.
The infuriated rich man replied –“ an inert mind like yours only couldn't comprehend the simple fact like this. When the person refused the gift then it would remain with the person who had brought it.”
Buddha replied the gift of anger you had brought for me but it had been refused by me. You came from such a far of place and tired yourself with that extent I was really sorry for that. The man became charmed with magical serenity of Buddha.
Buddha did not react. So he did not lose calmness. But he acted rightly.
He had the power to deny the gift. A power to chose, what was to be accepted or what was to be left untouched.
He had the power to create immunity to bad words (IMMUNITY TO BAD WORDS ONE OF THE BIGGEST STRENGTH OF THE SELF).
He did not chose to pick up the fallen arrows of bad words which were strewn all around him, and pricking himself to feel the pain, sustain it in memory for long and dwell in it on permanent basis. An exercise more often we chose to do.( WE DON'T ONLY REGISTER BAD MEMORIES ATTENTIVELY, BUT CHOSE TO DWELL IN IT ON PERMANENT BASIS).
Still acknowledging all these facts it is difficult to get rid of anger. It takes years of willingness, persistency and workout to acquire a wholesome personality.
Measures to control anger-
Meditation is a powerful means to calm the mind and refill the lost energy.
-Reiki too comes as powerful aid, as it is equip us with potent symbols which give beneficial results. Working on particular chakras which are related to emotional issues and different points of brains offers good result but persistency is required.
-According to Buddhist philosophy one has to incorporate calmness first in thought then only in action it will be reflected.
-Some japa of mantras also help.
Most importantly being a believer in wholeness of life, relationship and action works wonder. The bliss which comes out of wholeness of relationships, job done and life is unparalleled to anything else in this world. And we deserve the best, as we are ready to work for the best.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

My bequest of this Navaratri

The mellow sunshine , the hide and seek of pestering rain and the sudden pinch of chill in evening air , a collective combination of familiarities precedent with the arrival of autumn and puja fervor. Every thing is the long awaited delight –the most cherished familiarities-to our bodies and cells . Still something inside questions, “are that all about the puja fervor”?

This Navaratri let’s listen the voice of self and gift the ourselves something really precious and permanent which can stay with us through out the year. Build the inner strength as a souvenir of autumn annually as it gives strength to brave the life successfully.

The epitome of entire creation is Ma Durga as the name implies –the fort, the Durge-which one harnesses as the blessing of Goddess after appeasing her.The built up inner strength , acts as Durge –a fort to protect the adept during the hardship.

Every year through the smoky ambiance of haven ,throbbing crowd and pulsating vibes of dhakies we glance the divine -Ma Durga. Beside the idol of Ma Durga we find idols of Ma Saraswati, Lord Kartkey, Ma Lakshmi and Lord Ganpati. The idols of Ma Saraswati , Lord KartiKey (the lord of purity and justice) are placed at the left and Ma Lakshmi and Lord Ganpati at the right. What all these holy figurines symbolize and make the sight worth cherishing ?

The nine days of Navaratri is the time to build the inner strength and to come out victorious (strength ful) as mother divine- Ma Durga- after healing negative attributes of ours .

During the autumn the nature replenishes and discards all rotten and non functional. Relying on the insight of the best teacher- the nature we too prepare ourselves to rejuvenate by discarding all negative attributes that is restricting our strength and growth.

When we successfully discard the negativity. The next step is to create a shield of mental and spiritual strength in which sound health resides – an indispensable to fight the hardships of life.

The Mercurial God Ganpati represents our mental attitude as mind is the subject of change with ever changing thoughts and emotions like the planet mercury. When the mind is not in balance it brings indecisiveness and rigidity which act as hindrance to success, growth and prosperity.

Ma Laksmi is the epitome of fertility, prosperity and peace( the calm attitude of being). Ma Lakshmi is the consort of Lord Vishnu (the sustainer of life). She signifies that the power of creation( Lord Vishnu) stays with adept when peace(Ma Lakshmi) reigns in the life.

The prosperity comes with the power of creation as the peace gives awareness and clarity to thoughts. In awareness one gets clarity and then takes right decision. The right decision leads to prosperity. So the peace gives the power of creation- the ultimate tool of prosperity.So where is Ma Laksmi (the peace and good luck)- the Lord Vishnu (the sustainer) will stay.

The Ma Lakshmi is worshipped with Lord Ganesha in Durga Puja Festival. Lord Ganpati represents the mercurial brain. When Lord Ganesha- the mercurial or indecisive brain is healed(discarding negative thoughts like indecisiveness ,fear..) then Ma Laksmi -the peace comes in mind. In this way to worship of Lord Ganesha with Ma Laksmi make a sense. To make peace a reality a decisive brain is needed.

When these two aspects get healed– Ma Laksmi (the peace) and Lord Ganpati (right decision), the intellect blossoms- Ma Saraswati makes her way into the life of adept.

During the autumn the nature replenishes itself by decomposing the rigid and non conformals.
So it is perfect time to surrender ourselves in the deep ocean of self and getting ready to heal ourselves by discarding all negative attributes of ours- the inertia, pride, shame, craving and aversion.

Raising our inner strength and elevating the power of self from tamoguna (depression, fear, and emotional instability) –is like acquiring Ma Laksmi. So the first three days adept spends in the worship of Ma Laksmi.

The next three days are devoted to work on rajoguna (which engulfs us in anxiety, feverish possession and sensual gratification). Once the futility of hoarding is healed, the intellect blossoms. The intellect imparts us the perception of the right and wrong- thus the presence of Ma Saraswati manifests.

The last three days adepts devote to attain strength of Ma Durga (a fortress of strength) ,standing on the right ground of sattva (a place of peace and dynamism) after beating the inertia, craving and aversion (the tamoguna) and rajo guna ( the possessions and sensual gratification).

The path is long and arduous, better to take one step a day and start now, after all how many years we already missed only witnessing the outer melee of lights and decorations. This Navaratri let’s gift the self with inner strength.
Have the happiest gift of life and Happy Navaratri!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

The home coming of Ma

Every year the usual provoked signal of Ma leaving her heavenly abode comes to us so naturally.This year too I got the same during the familiar day break of the autumn. Though inside the closed compartment of train all the familiarity came suddenly alive in the consciousness, refreshing me head to toes. I sensed the nearing of Dussehra. I got the hunch of Ma homecoming.
The surging cool of morning hours was notorious to slide even the chronic insomniac to deep slumber. At the time when a soft coolness touched me, I took it as a time of day break. In still dark compartment I had been refreshingly awaken.Without apparent reason sleep vanished , I got the urge to find the time. Till then the dawn had not been completely settled so there was enough darkness inside the Bogey. Most of the travellers were in the deep morning slumber. With banished sleep I sat on the berth, pulling the curtain I peeped outside to chalk the time. Even the sight of the swaying of inanimate objects outside in the rattling vibration of train at the break of dawn had been giving the feel of gushing cool breeze.
By the time the train was also slowing down probably due to non clearance of signal. I sat cross legged on my berth to view outdoor through the window. The snailing waterlogged field along the track captured my imagination. Slowly the train came at complete halt along a water puddle track. Perpetual by nature the water logging had acquired the characteristic of a pool. The fully blossomed pink lotuses were affirming that claim.
Till then, though the dawn had been completely settled in yet there were enough crimson smeared in the horizon amidst the puffy strewn clouds. In between through the twilight I got flash of Ma in red bordered saree. The nostrils got the accustomed fragrance of burning dhup and dhuni from no where. The vibrations of the harmonious beat of dhakies, the soft fragrance and cracking crispness of new cloths all flashed through the consciousness in one go. A jingle of bliss surged through me, instantaneously the lips picked up vibrations of the Ma stuti.

Monday, October 4, 2010

A stroll on the river bank

The day was silently yielding to the darkness. The mustard hue of the moisten sand beneath the sole was taking the soiled disposition in setting dusk. It was time to retreat to the home and to bid adieu to raged sunset. It seemed to reacting at the fun filled twilight at the river bank.

Holding the palm of my little one in one hand and my slippers in another I got a tingling sensation at my sole, as if sand was fleeting beneath. Taken aback I moved my feet to find a steering mollusk in the soil. Feeling relieved of the exertion it moved to the sandy sore towards the river.

An evening stroll on the sandy bank always seemed a good preposition for a relaxed weekend. However unlike sea-beaches it missed the permanent stalls of souvenirs or tender coconut, still the vibrant crowds of people on stroll were enough to attract hawkers. And there too up above on the embankment few of them were cashing their business of puffed rice and roasted channa.

The darkness was wafting through the riverside and was engulfing the crimson aura of the sun. I looked for my little one who was playing nearby with group of her friends. I got up to pick her. Catching my glance, she requested to stay there a little further. And I relented to her request feeling the soothe of breezy dusk.

At a distance a crackle of laughter broke behind me. It was a mix of arguments and hidden jibes. The spill of laughter spread in the air once again which followed the open taunts and laud bursting of giggles.

Every time the carefree airing of views followed the laud burst of giggles over there. The youngsters were making their presence through open voice and concern. Their well toned voice and bubbling confidence were telling enough about them. The carefree attitude always symbolized the youth of our society. Ironically the time and commitment, consciously fed that carefree attitude subsequently most of them got transformed into a withdrawn, introvert self .

Now the darkness seemed to spread fastly, painting everything in darker hue. Holding my little ones palm I started ascending the stairs of the embankment to reach the parking area. Trotting reluctantly with me but still engrossed in play and playmates, she was busy waving her friends.

Take care honey, I cautiously held her in front of me that shifted her attention to me. With chuckle she innocently put her query with her own readymade answer- “next weak again we will come here mama- with papa, won’t we? I nodded in affirmation. The mentioning of papa had drawn her attention to another favorite of hers that was balloons- “mama balloon”-she pointed to a big one. The crimson hue of evening was gleaming on her face.

The darkness was setting fastly as the desertion of the place was visible with receding sounds of moving engines. Putting her in my arms I contemplated quick exit from there. “Mama I want that” –she pointed to next enticed thing which was there on gorgeous display. My concealed engrossment she read and then she answered herself-“my stomach will pain mama when I would have that” Her childish inquisitiveness simply wanted to break the monotony of setting silence of me.

I thought about the three stages of life childhood, youthfulness and family life; in those receding hues of sunset all three appeared to me in different shades.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Life as a full circle

Life is a full circle, whatever goes up is bound to bounce back. Traditionally, off springs are tagged as prosperity in life. But, when the prosperity falls in the lap unexpectedly, it bound to startled one.But clouded in mysticism of  newly honored status of motherhood  and charmed with innocent divinity, we tend to forget the world in the bliss.

Though walking the path of motherhood the acquired prosperity soon forces us to be the mean to run the daily business of life as the simple means sometimes prove maimed.

However sometimes i found myself, at the nervy edge even with so called enjoyment. When the child was small, the crabbiness was unavoidable.Tired to the center, coping with all that I would often hear comments from elderly side –“Your generation loses composure so easily, see I had four children but I would hardly lose my composure.”

Although the powerful claim of my mother met the dust in the next few days, when she had been left with little one.That to with the unfortunate task to feed her the breakfast in a chilly winter month. After my return I found my mother almost in tears, shaking in guilt with her food bowl. Like a child with accumulated guilt of non performance she admitted that feeding a child like her was the most difficult task on the earth. Till then chortling in joy the bundle of energy supported  mother's failure with grin.the Full of energy the  bundle of joy taken her benevolence on complete ride. In more than half an hour she did everything except allowing the food in her mouth, laughing to charm her, hurting her gum in the process and then demanding the proximity of lap, smearing the liquid food all over her face and on the woolens of each other.

Then in that, bleak moment of exertion which parenting entailed, I would console myself that in few years when they would grow up the work would be lesser automatically.

But when asked honestly- “Are the problems of lives meant to be solved.” No they are not, they would be never be, “one have to generate strength and tolerance levels.” A vital lesson which comes to us belated like hard earned wisdom of spirituality which makes the entry in life after most of the sufferings.

So in parenting, the job of managing and cooking of the food is ours but the tastes are theirs. They shall take their meal in time or not, headache is ours, but the moods they have.

It’s their right to access all the facilities of modern gadgets and privacy of being on their own, but all the risk involved in accessing the powerful threatening gadgets by them, is ours. It’s our pain to get acquaint our self with know how to solve all expected problems they can generate with the high speed gadget, which came much later in our life than theirs. Despite all these risks it is our responsibility to provide them with the indispensable immunity of ours that they are not being heard or their personal space is not trespassed.

Whenever all these happen once again I console myself, “Only change is permanent in the life. The life is full circle, so I decided to wait for my day to enjoy, when I would witness the repeat of wondrous prosperity in the life doer of today. And then silently watching them i will feel the bliss and will comment like an enlightened one – “Your generation loses cool very easily.”

Sunday, September 26, 2010

My canine ally

My first trysts with those wobbly legged creatures were rather apprehensive. I would reciprocate the friendly holler of canine with retreating self or by vanishing from the place. The city dwell upbringing of mine had nurtured an aloofness in me to natural world and that was enough to restrict my carefree mingling with man’s best friend.

I had just returned from my native place after a vacation and I was paying my news paper vendor at the exit then I first met them. Sniffing my presence outside at the dusk their mother mistakenly took it as a call for food disposable time. She hurried from backyard, and four wobbly legged tiny ones were following her. She stood beside me wagging her tail in friendly way as if she was trying to revive my promise of food which I had kept throughout her gestation period.

Halting the conversation mid way I stepped further to have a closer look to those white patched and ginger hued ones. They seemed a bundle of joy in their puffy body with soft fur. Perhaps the alien proximity of mine scared them to the core, fearing for their lives they ran hither and dither as if sighted a blood sucking vampire.

In following few days the pups were reasonably closer to my family members especially to my daughter, a great canine admirer and animal activist of her own sort. Till then I was the only object in their sphere of life to be frightened. My friendship with them got further hiccupped during morning hours when I would open the garage to take out my vehicle. Then there they filled with last night showered emotions of mine would start their reciprocation in front of the wheels. Risking the already shaken friendship of ours I would haul them in backyards.

In the evening at my return to show their displeasure and humiliation of morning hours' they would scurry to backyards with their backs on me.
That year the winter had been proving harsh to those furry bundles, then one night her mother and siblings had paid to their lives to a wild brawl among strays. The sudden departure of their siblings and the mishap involved in their sudden disappearance brought some obvious changes in the demeanor of lone survivor. Even the nearness of human and animals were enough to alert her and she would maintain a safe distance from them.

Her aloofness to human started costing her health as she was turning into ribbed cased cage with pickled sort of four reedy arms.

She was always a frightening self. She was only one in the herds of strays of our colony who would contently move behind after having a small portion of food. We never witnessed any doggy and witchy sort of things in her way.

With time she struck the right note with all of us and our nearness relaxed her further.Now she would reciprocate lovingly however she was still ribbed and leaned.There was an unusual compassion on her face. She had beautiful long eyes filled with serenity.

Next winter she gave birth to four puppies, and the sight was all soothing with her naughty ones sleepy over and tumbling down on sleepy mother. The softness and humbleness was innate to her, but the most startling sight of hers at our place became when an orphaned kitten joined her puppies’ clan to suckle her. And ungrudgingly against the nature she had been suckling her too along with her puppies.

Then nature stuck her again and like her troubled past she lost her pups one by one.
We were thinking how she would cope with her lose. But she was more enlightened on that aspect than us, as we human tend to stick to bad incidents. But she had the strength to change the way of life with her thin long bony frame. So what if it was against the nature’s way. Now the kitten all grown on her feed became permanent companion following her everywhere.

Till then, she became loving companions of ours; she was with us during our evening walks. With seasons she became accustomed to our respective vehicles at retreating hours. At the start of the engine she would run to us keeping her at safe distance greeting us. My daughter,s arrival from her hostel would seem to her perfect time to rejoice. She would show her happiness jumping around her and bellowing something undecipherable putting her forearms at her front. That open display of love would last for long and then contently she would retire to any space on the verandah.

After our return from our annual vacation that year we found that winter was unusually cold at our place. To our dismay the harshness of winter got visible to us in her slow and jerky limps during the walk.

After that most of the time we would find her lazing around on the grass bathing the sun rays. One day my husband remarked might be she wouldn’t survive the winter. I shrugged the unpleasantness- “no she is not feeling well, that is why, in few days when the chill will retreat she would regain her agility.” but I had also witnessed that her agility had been yielding to chronic lethargy.

Then that day when after the walk of ten minutes we didn’t sight her, I felt a creeping void; I looked around why she didn’t come. Although we were quiet but we had been feeling her vicinity. “You know she is somewhere in the vicinity, perhaps now she is unable to move.” my husband remarked.

And then we spotted her at the distance amidst the bushes at one corner of the grass. That evening in her ailment somehow she managed to stand at her place and wagged her tail. She flagged us –“I am here.” She stood there for sometime then she sat at the same place that was her last expression of love to us. Even during her last moments she chose a quiet distant place not to create any inconvenience to others.

The place still exists in our yard more importantly in our hearts as a mark of love. Like an angel of love a gingerly hued had created a place in the heart of withdrawn, apprehensive one - “telling me open up, love is limitless, a perennial flow, embrace it and flow with it. That is only the way to live truly.”