Archive for the inspiration Category

Humor and Foolishness

Posted in inspiration with tags , , on October 12, 2011 by amotings

I dream of asking a room full of super-achievers, “Who here thinks they are foolish in what they do” ? All super achievers have to think high of themselves so they may not answer, and even if they do, it would still be in pretense.  I think we feel powerful about being smart and humble about being foolish. We often choose the former, because we are in an ego-centric world which laudes personal success.

It makes me smile to think of this  truth –  most of our lives (which is now mistaken as work-life for me), we spend trying to be our best and train and learn whatever there is.  So, we do everything to avoid being seen as stupid or foolish. And, we stop learning just for learning sake, but start acquiring knowledge to make us look smart. 

 Is my purpose behind acquiring knowledge to gain superiority ?

Imagine for a moment, if you could become free of this label of “staying foolish” also. Would you be more spontaneous in learning and be free ? Would that make you laugh and be happy ? Would you learn, finally ?

If we have to laugh and allow ourselves to be laughed at, won’t we achieve our true potential – maybe make it to the room of super-achievers and still raise our hands to the question of whether we were foolish. Freedom at last.

 Be the unassuming one, the nitwit, the simpleton, not judging but accepting.

Humour yourself, and raise your hand to learn something new because it connects with your purpose. Let us not do it because you are are avoiding looking foolish and therefore acquiring more knowledge.  The experience will make you more complete. The creative genius,  that is you, will finally reach your purpose.

Like the Bible says, “The meek shall inherit the earth”.

So, just “how” can we be patient and “why” should we be ?

Posted in Letters to my son with tags on October 4, 2011 by amotings

When should you be patient or show patience ? It  is when you want things happen your way because, at all other times you would call yourself as patient, wouldn’t you. I mean, at least you are not desperate for something to happen.

When you realize that you are getting impatient, “how” and “why” should you act,  patiently?

Let us first look at “why” patience is a virtue and is an advice with much gain.

Nature's patience shows her beauty

1. Anything done in an impulse does not come out right. Unless you are a truck with no feelings, you already would have got cues on this.
2. You act better with a calm and clear mind, rather than a restless or agitated mind.
3. Nature’s rhythm has to match with yours, and nature is pretty darn patient and seems to have time on her side.
4. When you let things happen with your “intent”, miracles happen.
5. You make an impression. Others will perceive and understand you better. Your character shines through even more – you will not know this, because if you do, it is not shining.
6. That, you did not send out negative energy when things do not happen your way and kept your chin up, makes the force in the universe sit up and notice. You created an imbance in the universe which she has to balance.
7. Infinite patience creates “immediate” opportunities. You will get what you really want and right for you when you least expect it.

Alright then, so you’d have to be nuts to throw away the gains you will receive because of patience. Now let us come to “how” do we show patience.

1. Breathe ! Yes, right now, just breathe in and if you feel like just breathe out( the latter was meant to make you smile as you read my post, during my bus journey to work). You need to shut up – and how else can you shut your mind, but by noticing the present.

2. Feel better ? When agitation comes, you switch on your deep breathing. You become more aware of your body, the moment which is NOW – and Lo! the mind numbs pretty quickly.

3. Say thanks! Be grateful. Shower thanks for all you have. They weren’t joking when they said, count you’d blessings.

4. Hope you haven’t  lost patience so far because I am still in my bus.

5. Be good. Do good to some stranger. Or a loved one or a colleague. You are too great a human being, so just be it now.

I think by now, you have just become and acted as a patient person. Just let things be.

Reached work.

That’s all folks! (All Disney cartoons end this way.)

Do not let one’s sadness impact loved ones.

Posted in Letters to my son on July 4, 2011 by amotings

While sadness does engulf us all, often it is something we can do nothing about. The best approach then is to let it pass. Even better is to talk it over with a friend and reduce the grief. Instead of struggling with it, I find it fine to be quiet with it. But, I cannot make myself happy with happy thoughts. I do find that I can get over it, by imaging a meaning and purpose and look at opportunity beyond it – a kind of quiet struggle and resolve to get over it.

But while I am at this process, what happens to our loved ones ? Doesn’t your family bear with your pain. Do they deserve it ? No.

Sometimes if my wife reasons with me of the futility of my mood, I get to realize the larger damage done. When you have your spouse and child looking up to you and waiting to be loved, it is unfair on them and quite selfish of ourself to engage in our own moods.

I have found, time and again, that while it is easy to bring your worries home or try and expect a change in some relationship, all the while it is impacted someone else.

Instead, how would it be, if we resolve and make sure that we do not impact anyone who comes in touch with us, with our sadness. How do we live like that ?

 By finding quiet meditation time regularly, and then being able to stay in touch with your innerself at all times. That way, even the sadness, does not percolate deep into you. You are conscious of your purpose at all times and in control of what you are projecting out. And your authentic self is seen – no one gets touched with your sadness because you are at peace. You are living a purpose at all times.

My son is in his best years of his life. An eight year old wants to play, laugh, experience and do things he has never done before. I do not want him to miss the joy by being a father who is more concerned about his worries. Meditation helps, silence helps, talking it over with one’s wife/spouse helps to get over the moods quickly. Let us not let the moments of life slip by us.

To my son – Going through the grind

Posted in Letters to my son with tags , , on February 5, 2011 by amotings

Dear Arvind

Today, I would like to talk to you about the inevitability of difficulties coming in your life and what in my view is the best attitude when faced with it.

Say, you are trying hard to get something(promotion, college admission, hike, money, girl’s love, respect, admiration or anything else that means a lot to you) and it does not seem to be coming to you. You might be feeling worse, that what you desire most seems to be coming to someone else. And you wonder if you are worth it or not.

Dear son – Firstly, I am sad to see any sadness come to your beautiful life. You are so blessed and perfect in who you are that, to me, none of what you get or do not get, makes any difference to me. I will still love you.  

Send love and blessings even to strangers

The grief of not getting something can consume you. You might feel like you are losing interest in everything. There will seem days that everything will seem hopeless. You will get angry at others, curse your life, us parents, and curse anyone who is innocent around you.

The negativity might seem to be theme of your life as nothing seem to be going alright to believe that there is something good around you too.

Arvind, here is where there are three stages to go through to turn around your life.

First stage: Relaxing your mind, your body. Medidate and watching your thoughts as an observer outside of you. Bringing silence and being comfortable in silence. Being in nature.

Second stage: Appreciating the smallest beauties in your life. Blessing every stranger or known person for nothing. Giving something to someone every day in silence anonymously.  Being in nature and observing the calmness in every blade of grass or life around you. Observe any negative thought or deed. This is where, being thankful and grateful replaces all negative thoughts with time.  

Third stage: Letting it go. Focus on the bits and pieces you have in front you. Pick them up and act on them with love. If there is any action that you feel good about, and it will not hurt others, then only do it. Or else, wait for a better moment to arrive. Shift your focus to something else. Look at the mirror and smile. Talk to a loved one or a friend, help him or show care for him or her. Help a stranger.

And when you are doing all three stages for a few weeks or months, that is when you will begin to observe goodness happening to you. Your desire, which you had let go, gets transformed to something even greater. Your perspective of what you did not get changes, as you will get something even more deserving.

Have the faith, that God has something great in store for you. You are entitled to greatness and goodness in your life. You are not ordinary. This is a blessed life and this difficult time is only to sharpen your soul. Come what hardship may come, but I am about to receive some greater fruits after this. Let it come and I will bear them. I can bear them, and the universe will owe me for what I beared. Even if the universe does not owe me, I will continue to be good. Any unhappiness, is my cleansing of my bad deeds. Good that I am going through them, let them come. I will not fight it, but surrender to God. Let me accept whatever he has to give me. My prayer and faith will not deter. This universe is mine and I belong to this universe. My heart has no ill-will.

And lo ! When you least expect it, you will suddenly see much happiness come to you and your desires coming true. It came because you had the faith, as Tagore said, “Faith is the song of the dawn bird, before the dawn”….(before the dawn). You need to have faith in goodness that will come to you and that you have God taking care of you, when you are the saddest and having a difficult time.

You “are” a beautiful person. You “are” a wonderful person. You “are” good as you are and need to change nothing in you.

Your loving father,

Appa

Photo courtesy: Meanest Indian

Giving your gift to the world

Posted in inspiration on January 16, 2011 by amotings

Each of us has in us, something to give. But here is the question. When you transact in your world, how many times did you think that you are giving a gift to someone ?

Kite-flying
Ready to fly

What is your gift to the world ? A gift is an act where you give out of love and respect to the other, without expecting anything in return. It can be a touch over the shoulder, letting a car pass by before you or thanking someone for their help. The best gift is an act which the other does not even realize has come as a gift from you. Be the silent mover and giver and stay away from the emotions in you. Just do and shut-up – never talk about it, even when your ego wants to write a memoir of your petty or selfless deed.

The only reason for unhappiness is when we start giving our own life too much importance. Instead look for something to give. Do not think of the act of giving, but just give. Watch your thoughts  – do they make you feel good, are you doing it out of a sense of superiority, or are you just blessing the other in the act of giving ?

Once we perceive what it is like to give unreciprocated, anonymous gifts to people whom we are in contact with, it will start bringing fulfillment is all areas of our life – work, home, relationships. The attitude which we carry will begin to change.

Seth Godin, in his amazing book Linchpin, talks about this idea of giving gifts but in a different context – how to be indispensable at work ? Seth considers indispensable people as artists at work – who do not look at every day as a job to be done for the money earned. Instead, he says, artists are those people at work who refuse to do lousy work and be a cog in the wheel. They will be in relentless in their pursuit till they give a gift. It has nothing to do with income or job security. Artists at work are trying a way to change you and they want to give that as a gift.

 Seth has taken the spiritual reasoning of a fulfilled life of giving yourself to others to a different level. He has made us connect our work with a purpose – giving a gift to someone, which changes the other for the better. True, it might make us indispensable, but that is not the intention of an artist. His intention is to help make the other better.  

So, today onwards, instead of mulling over career and  focus on improving oneself, let me identify ways in which my actions will lead to larger change amongst the people in my life. Already, I have set my goals which reflect the opportunities which inspires the people to opt for change and bring about a change in me. My every transaction with people is a reminder of my work in giving them a gift. Share what I know, inspire other to achieve more than they think they can. Be there for my loved ones, listen. Support the lost one or the scared one to break out of their shell. Let me give my time in this life as a “gift” to others.

Photo Courtesy: Meanest Indian

Passion – an act of violence ?

Posted in inspiration with tags on May 9, 2010 by amotings

The great painter Picasso was supposedly asked on his death-bed, what is the secret of his success. He is to have told, “to have passion with moderation”.

At work, I often observe and have seen myself judging other’s aggressive behavior towards achieving goals. I realize what our saints have often told us, judgement causes conflicts in our minds and actions. Judgement comes from words – which are the tools for thinking. And yes, conflicts does arise from words judging behaviors – eg. passion, aggression etc.

We can wrongly label an individual’s behavior – and that is an act of violence and injustice.

It is almost a necessity now to show passion at work – which is loving what you do and achieving things which bring great recognition and satisfaction.  

I wonder if showing passion can become an act of violence  ? Is it natural to be passionate ? If it not natural, aren’t you pushing nature to do something or achieve something – and hence becoming violent(eg. aggression). Why is it that no-one talks of peace and passion in the same breath ? 

Why do we need to moderate our passion. What does it mean ? Moderation, perhaps is nothing but, letting things “be”.  Moderation to our passion, then,  pulls back our ego. Why cant we always let things “be” and accept what is natural to our actions.

Would we still call that behavior, of letting things be, as “passion” ?

Goals in life

Posted in inspiration on May 3, 2010 by amotings

Why is it that only with a goal you can get oneself going ? I am amazed that every time I stop having a goal, I slip into boredom. Everytime there is lack of passion in anything we do, it is a sign that we are not aligned to a) a motivating purpose b) or, our natural self. It is possible to know what we are good at. By the time you spend couple of decades, you know what you like doing. The basic patterns of your personality are known. You like loud people, you dislike loud people, you like short and quick work, you like specialization, you like limelight, you like obscurity – each of these personality traits reinforce what we always tilt towards. It is also amazing that when you look back, the decisions taken in our life are also aligned with our personality. Or is it that our jobs define our personality. You take a sales job because you have to network with people or you take a mechanical, detail oriented desk -job because you love digging deep into things and understanding them things – not necessary selling them to people. So, now when I am here, wondering where and what I am upto, I suddenly realize that life has come out pretty well for me. I do not need to “rock the boat”. What do I want ? It is hard to answer. But it is human nature to always strive – to strive for more, to achieve more and get a sense of fulfillment. So, we take up our goals with a sense of getting fulfillment, a sense of importance and a sense of existence. That is our goal, in whatever we do. So, find out what gives us a sense of fulfillment. A legacy for your children, for your family, comfort and education for loved ones, experience a new barrier and overcoming that barrier – all these give a sense of fulfillment.

%d bloggers like this: