Tuesday, December 25, 2007

A star filled sky in my courtyard!

Few days back I was asked to judge a fancy dress competition for differently-abled people (earlier called disabled) as there were lots of things happening for the disability day in rehabilitation centre, NIMHANS. These participants were having lot of life challenges from mental illnesses to neurological ones and also challenge in the intellectual realm.
I found judging really difficult because there were so many good participants. Still we managed:)
Seeing their performance, I wanted to attend the final celebration when there will be cultural programs by the participants. Along with few colleagues I had planned for just few of the programs but we ended up watching all, since we loved it all.
There were classical dances to break dance..... and a fashion show where a wheel chair bound person's performance showed the entire hall that the life breaks through all such boundaries.
We came out of the halls inspired and awed by the joy of this group of individuals who deserved so much of admiration, and the people who were working with them.

Yesterday I was reminded again of it all, while watching a lovely movie about a child with Dyslexia ('Tare Zamen Per'). Very sensitively made movie and the director had done the homework properly regarding the multi-modal multi-sensory training for such difficulties and also the psychological-social and legal viewpoints about it. Unlike the movie 'Black' where right issues were raised and had great visuals....but unfortunately the audience leaving the hall didn't carry back much about such children in every day life and what to do about it .....

Movie 'Tare Zameen Per' reminded me of a much celebrated book on 'Play-therapy', which has become a classic in itself 'Dibs in Search of Self'. Dibs was a brilliant, lonely child (mistaken as a profoundly retarded child) trapped in a prison of fear and rage, a prison from which only he could release himself. And through psychotherapy and love he did- A true story of a child's search of self and meaning and finding that the security of his world was not wholistically outside himself but that the stabilizing centre he searched for with such intensity was deep down inside that self.

Here I just can't hold myself back in selecting three lovely paragraphs from the book, one at the start, one about play room and one in the end....for more get a copy of this book and read for yourself:)

"...Night...The darkened sky gives growing room for softened judgements, for suspended indictments, for emotional hospitality. What IS seen in such light seems to have so many possibilities...Here the benefit of a doubt can flourish and survive long enough to force considerations of the scope and limitations of human evaluation. For when horizons grow or diminish within a person the distances are not measurable by other people. ....Even though we do not have the wisdom to enumerate the reasons for the behavior of another person we can grant that every individual does have his private world of meaning, conceived out of the integrity and dignity of his personality.....I thought of many children i had known - children who were unhappy, each frustrated in the attempt to achieve a selfhood he could claim with dignity - children not understood, but striving again and again to become persons in their right...."

(About play room) "... There was nothing about the room or the materials in it that would tend to restrain the activities of a child. Nothing seemed to be either too fragile or too good to touch or knock about. The room provided space and some materials that might lend themselves to the emergence of the personalities of the children who might spend some time there. The ingredients of experience would make the room uniquely different for each child. Here a child might search the silence for old sounds, shout out his discoveries of a self momentarily captured, and so escape from the prison of his uncertainties, anxieties and fears. He brings into this room the impact of all the shapes and sounds and colors and movements and rebuilds his world reduced to a size he can handle."

"Dibs had had his dark moments and had lived for a while in the shadows of life. But he had had the opportunity to move out of those dark moments and discover for himself that he could cope with the shadows and sunshine in his life. ....Perhaps there is more understanding and beauty in life when the glaring sunlight is softened by the patterns of shadows. Perhaps there is more depth in a relationship that has weathered some storms. Experience that never disappoints or saddens or stirs up feeling is a bland experience with little challenge or variation in color. Perhaps when we experience confidence and faith and hope that we see materialise before our eyes, this builds up within us a feeling of inner strength, courage and security......We are all personalities that grow and develop as a result of all our experiences, relationships, thoughts and emotions. We are the sum total of all the parts that go into the making of life."

Thursday, December 20, 2007

A Mystic Story

When [the Russian mystic] Gurdjieff’s father was dying he called his boy. He was just nine, and Gurdjieff remembered the incident all his life. The father called him. He was the youngest child and the father said, ‘I am so poor, I cannot give you anything, my boy. But one thing which my father gave to me I can give you. You may not even be able to understand what it means now, because I myself was not able to understand what it meant when my father gave it to me. But it proved the most precious thing in my life, so I am just giving it to you. Preserve it! Sometime you may begin to understand it.’
So Gurdjieff just listened. The father said, ‘Whenever you feel angry, never reply before twenty-four hours. Reply, but let there be a gap of twenty-four hours.’
Gurdjieff followed his dying father’s advice. It became deeply impressed in his mind the very day his father died, and Gurdjieff said, 'I have practised many, many, many spiritual exercises, but that was the best. I never could be angry in my life, and that changed the whole flow, the whole current, because I had to stick to the promise.'
‘Whenever someone would insult me, I would create something, some situation. I would just tell him that I would come back after twenty-four hours to reply, and I have never replied because it proved such nonsense to reply.’ Only a gap was needed.
And the whole life of George Gurdjieff became something different.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

I Have a Dream!!

Since yesterday I'm reading a nice book 'Emotional Intelligence in couples Therapy' (Brent Atkinson). A really good book. Author and his wife are both couples and family therapist.

The author has explained very well, taking from the recent researches in affective neuroscience how our emotional life ans its difficulties are controlled by our brain circuits. The way Amygdala (part of brain which is involved in emotional processing and is common to all animals) works and how it high jacks the thinking part of the brain when under emotional stress or trauma, or just a perception (or misperception) of it.

It further gives step by step process how to help people, using the latest researches in brain behavior researches. That gives a lot of hope!!

They have also given 5 prerequisites for relationship success and ten habits that enable partners to meet them.
FOR MANAGING CONFLICT INEVITABLE IN ANY RELATIONSHIP
Have a soft start-up and don't talk down your partners by----
Habit 1: avoiding a judgemental attitude
Habit 2: Standing up for yourself without putting your partner down
Accept other's influence (There is evidence that although wives tend to begin complaints more harshly than husbands, husbands are generally less willing than wives to accept influence. Research further shows that the willingness of husbands to accept influence alone predicted marital success 80% of the time (Gottman 1999, 2002).
Habit 3: finding the understandable part
Habit 4: Giving equal regard
Effective repair...by
Habit 5: offering assurances
Respecting your partner's dreams; holding on to your own... thru
Habit 6: Understanding and Explaining what is at stake

CONNECTING DURING NON-CONFLICT TIMES
Five positive for every negative
Habit 7: Curiosity about your partner's world
Habit 8: Keeping sight of the positive
Habit 9: Pursuing shared meaning
Habit 10: Making and responding to bids for connection.

That seems to be easy at first thought but doesn't work when we are upset, angry, hurt or fearful about losing the person or her/his love.....and here comes the therapeutic work which is working with that part of the brain which is in between the emotional and thinking parts so as to make a better connection easier by changing our emotional response patterns.

Well, coming back to my dream.
I want to work with people as a therapist as a coach as a trainer in their individual and relational lives and bring healthy changes as far as possible in as many lives as possible. I especially wanna target the growing up children, especially adolescent boys (supposedly the most difficult group) to help them grow as sensitive and just individuals.
Seeing so many people around and so much of emotional, sexual, physical violence and abuse it seems to be one of the most compelling work needed. Whatever is possible and where ever possible, especially i wish to do so in the Hindi belt where i have seen children growing up into a feudal culture and no matter how intellectual they are, falling back into same patterns of feudal mentality when in a conflict.
I am aware of the difficulties in the way, but i am aware there is a meaning in such work... I wish it will happen one day.
I dream of a changed inner world of people, more harmonious and beautiful!!
Amen!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Weird World!

" Those for whom
touching the lips of ocean
is enough,
tuck their clothes,
leave their slippers,
take a careful dip."
(a piece from a poetry book by an author, I don't know)

Long back i had read something which meant something like....."Some people hate.... as if they are going to love some day, while some people love with caution...as if they are going to hate someday." So many people really love with caution and calculation. (only rare are those who hate, as if they are going to love someday). They will look at the balance sheets of give and take, will want to have profit forever and would like to avoid taking any risk. They may believe the are open to experiences, but the moment they feel threatened they turn around and walk to the safety of the river bank.
Recently we found in some research that this kind of personality trait of those who want to avoid any kind of harm to themselves, are those with less amount of happiness. May be it is due to the reason that such people worry a lot about their safety or any harm which might befall them. The fear of failure of more persistent than an expectation for success. And so they may not be giving their 100% in any thing, any goal including relationships.

Those in their lives often might feel like telling them....
"Your friendship makes my heart ache,
Be my enemy for friendship's sake. "

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Life of Pi

Recently I read a nice book 'Life of Pi'. It won Man Bookers Award few years back and since then I wanted to read it full after reading the reviews, as they say its a book about faith. And also because it starts from the place I love, Pondicherry. The writing style is called magical realism.
As per Wikipedia, in literature, Magic Realism often combines the external factors of human existence with the internal ones: it is a fusion between scientific physical reality and psychological human reality; it incorporates aspects of human existence such as thoughts, emotions, dreams, cultural mythologies and imagination. Thus it can be more exact in depicting human reality. Nonetheless, a certain person's or group's perception of reality may differ from another's: to the insider, a given magical-realist text can be a relatively accurate depiction of his reality; the same text, however, may appear rather unreal to the outsider, whose perception of reality may differ greatly from the insider's. Despite this, the reader (often the outsider) can bridge the gap by momentarily suppressing his perception of reality and adopting the reality presented in the text. This, in turn, equips the reader with the necessary tools required to decode the text. This can be described as the 'evolved duties' of the reader.
In the twentieth century, the ideal of homogenisation caused societal dissonances within the world's communities and social groups and between them and led to the blood-stained history of the twentieth century. In the aftermath of conflict, some have tried to assimilate history in order to aid the healing process of a particular community or social group and to re-define their identity. In literature, this manifested itself as Magic Realism, a dissident and dialectical discourse strategy which can provide a more accurate representation of human reality as a whole. Indeed, Magic Realism can also be seen as the story of the 'other'.
I did like the book especially its humour and the way it has different layers. It is a story of a guy who is left with a tiger after a shipwreck, which kills his entire family. One of my favourite take on it was where the author talks of his love for both, people who believe in religion vs. those who instead believe in science. For, both kind go as far as their respective fields of knowledge take, AND THEN 'BOTH MAKE A LEAP OF FAITH'. He has uncomfortable feeling regarding agnostic, for you can't live your entire life with doubts. Wow! it makes a lot of sense.

Today, I got a different perspective on this book. Some one used the book as a metaphor about living in an abusive relationship. About what all humans sometimes do to avoid being lonely.... like living with someone dangerous, violent, a tiger! and being attached to him.
Hey that makes sense too!!

Thanks to my Girl-Friends!

They talk of women's sacred rituals...
holding hands and sustaining and nurturing each other is also one of those it seems. I wanted to thanks all my girl friends who called back, came to visit me, listened to me, prayed for me and gave a hug ...in times of need.
I'm posting a fwd messages here for my girl friends.....and all women out there. (btw, there is something smilar from Archies... a large poster.. but i didn't find it great enough:)

1)

FAMOUS POET MAYA ANGELOU'S ODE TO WOMEN

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE ...
enough money within her control to move out
and rent a place of her own,
even if she never wants to or needs to...
A! WOMAN SHOULD HAVE ...
something perfect to wear if the employer,
or date of her dreams wants to see her in an hour...
A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE ..
a youth she's content to leave behind....
A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE ...
a past juicy enough that she's looking forward to
retelling it in her old age....
A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE .....
a set of screwdrivers, a cordless drill, and a black lace bra...
A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE ....
one friend who always makes her laugh...
and one who lets;
her cry...
A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE ....
a good piece of furniture not previously owned by anyone else
in her family...
A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE ...
eight matching plates, wine glasses with stems,
and a recipe for a meal,
that will make her guests feel honored...
A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE ...
a feeling of control over her destiny...
EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
how to fall in love without losing herself..
EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
how to quit a job,
break up with a lover,
and confront a friend without;
ruining the friendship...
EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
when to try harder...
and WHEN TO WALK AWAY...
EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
that she can't change the length of her calves,
the width of her hips, or the nature of her parents..
EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
that her childhood may not have been perfect....but its over...
EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
what she would and wouldn't do for love or more...
EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
how to live alone...
even if she doesn't like it...
EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW..
whom she can trust, whom she can't,
and why she shouldn't take it personally...
EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
where to go...
be it to her best friend's kitchen table...
or a charming inn in the woods...
when her soul needs soothing...
EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
what she can and can't accomplish in a day...
a month...and a year.
.
.
2) To My Dear Girl friends , Bringing you a mother's important piece of advice..

A young wife sat on a sofa on a hot humid day, drinking iced tea and visiting her Mother. As they talked about life, about marriage, about the responsibilities of life and the obligations of adulthood, the mother clinked the ice cubes in her glass thoughtfully and turned a clear, sober glance upon her daughter.
Don't forget your girlfriends," she advised, swirling the tea leaves to the bottom of her glass. "They'll be more important as you get older. No matter how much you love your husband, no matter how much you love the children you'll have, you are still going to need girlfriends. Remember to go places with them now and then; do things with them. And remember that "girlfriends" are not only your friends, but your sisters, your daughters, and other relatives too. You'll need other women. Women always do.
What a funny piece of advice,' the young woman thought. 'Haven't I just gotten married? Haven't I just joined the couple-world? I'm now a married woman, for goodness sake, a grownup, not a young girl who needs girlfriends! Surely my husband and the family we'll start will be all I need to make my life worthwhile!'
But she listened to her Mother; she kept contact with her girlfriends and made more each year. As the years tumbled by, one after another, she gradually came to understand that her Mom really knew what she was talking about. As time and nature work their changes and their mysteries upon a woman, girlfriends are the mainstays of her life. After 50 years of living in this world, here is what I know about girlfriends:

Girlfriends bring you chicken curry when you need help.
Girlfriends keep your children and keep your secrets.
Girlfriends give advice when you ask for it.
Sometimes you take it, sometimes you don't.
Girlfriends don't always tell you that you're right, but they're usually honest.
Girlfriends still love you, even when they don't agree with your choices.
Girlfriends laugh with you, and you don't need canned jokes to start the laughter. Girlfriends pull you out of jams.
Girlfriends help you get out of bad relationships.
Girlfriends help you look for a new apartment, help you pack, and help you move. Girlfriends will give a party for your son or daughter when they get married or have a baby, in whichever order that comes!
Girlfriends are there for you, in an instant and when the hard times come. Girlfriends listen when you lose a job or a friend.
Girlfriends listen when your children break your heart.
Girlfriends listen when your parents' minds and bodies fail.
Girlfriends support you when the men in your life let you down.
Girlfriends help you pick up the pieces when men pack up and go.
Girlfriends rejoice at what makes you happy, and are ready to go out and kill what makes you unhappy.
Times passes.
Life happens.
Distance separates.
Children grow up.
Love waxes and wanes.
Hearts break.
Careers end.
Jobs come and go.
Parents die.
Colleagues forget favours.
Men don't call when they say they will.
BUT girlfriends are there, no matter how much time and how many miles are between you.
A girlfriend is never farther away than needing her can reach.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

my movie watching days!

For a change let's talk about movies...
This time during my vacations at home I watched a number of movies. Not that I wanted to, but because my father is a movie buff and has got some collection of old Hindi movies and is still in process. He wanted me to see all of them, but most were already seen by me and I'm not so keen on watching movies second time until and unless it is really good or engaging...or if it is a difficult topic handled well.
I ended up watching lot of V. Shantaram and Sandhya's movies and one of them "navrang" about a poet and his imagination stood out little more, because of an old association. The entire movie was full of song and dance, at the drop of a hat. This movie was again reminded to me, while watching a new movie 'Saawanriya'. The director of this much hyped movie tried to make a poetry out of a story "White Nights" by Fyodor Dostoevsky (original i still want to read) but something went amiss.
My speculation is, while the poetry dances in a dreamy location, story stands on the window-sill, ready to jump out! ;)

Other than this I watched two movies which i really wanted to see. 'Yatra' a difficult movie, worth watching again to understand better. And 'Hazaron Khwahishein aisi' ...ah! here comes a brilliantly made movie...it is one of those which makes you think weeks later .... and sometimes brings a change of life decisions!
I have started missing north India more and I wonder about an alternative course my life would have taken -had I taken the road to JNU instead of Tata Motors after my PG!
Seems like Vidhi ka Vidhan!!!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Search for a home!

A longing for a home..a deep yearning to return back and be welcomed... and an acceptance for all the lonely journeys we have taken in our assertion of independence..
need for a stable part in life, to make it a centre a base, from where we can go on adventures, explorations and to where we can return back for healings!
One of my first poems, reflected this ...
(Can this need ever be really fulfilled..or is it an ever changing dynamic process?? )

प्रिय/घर
क्या तुम
उन वृक्षों से हो सकते हो
जो पंक्षी की
खुले असमान मे
निर्द्वन्द उड़ानों के बाद
शाम को
बाहें फैलाये
उसका इंतज़ार करता हो
उसको स्वीकार करता हो।

Friday, November 30, 2007

Revisting Lessons of Relationships

This post has been shifted to my blog
http://modernmysticmusings.blogspot.com/

Sunday, October 14, 2007

From the other side of the table

Writing about psychotherapy is indeed a difficult task, especially when one is engaged in it and is still learning about it, from multiple perspectives and also having different experiences about the same phenomena. But, one thing is consistently present, it is one of the most intimate relations, where one (obviously the client) is oneself and is allowed and even expected to talk about self in the most open and transparent ways.
Therapists themselves are expected to undergo therapy as per many schools of thoughts. I too believe, it is important for a therapist to be aware of one's own subjective inner world. Recently I have started it and found my therapist a wonderful person (? transference), an opinion shared by my friends and his other clients or colleagues too.
Talking about long sidelined issues was like I am connecting to another soul after a long long time. It felt home! Especially, when i felt understood and so very validated about my being, my beliefs and strongly held convictions that i could see some tears on both side.
Sometimes, I too have held back my tears, about the life stories my own clients have brought to the therapy room.

And then the intellectual academic part of me was wondering, how often different schools of thoughts co-exist and carry on with in the same therapy. The presence of two people with their complete commitment in the therapy room, is in itself so very existential. No matter if it is an existential therapy or not. The change always happens in here and now, the 'Kairos' moment comes in the 'now'. But also thoughts and influences from other therapy schools can also be picked up from the same therapy.....like looking for dynamics of childhood experiences, disrupted attachment patterns, corrective emotional experience etc. It seems therefore researchers haven't found much difference in the effectiveness of different kinds of therapy and much of the therapy gains are clubbed in the account of Unspecified therapy factors.

I am reminded of a quote which seems to sum up the process and final moments in therapy or its goals...
"God grant me serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can and wisdom to know the difference"
Its all about acceptance and change...and that wisdom gained in the process of therapy!

My last session ended with lot of laughter and a whole lot of optimism. One comment of my therapist continued back with me - " I have been to most parts of the world, but I have never seen a perfect weather".
God! did I ask for wisdom???

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Introspection about Relationships

I usually believed what few researches too have shown, women many times face additional stress, when in relationships. I would often meet women friends who are having difficult or unfulfiling relationships.
But recently I happened to meet many men too, who are unhappy or feel their relationships are unfulfiling for them. Many of then unknowingly or knowingly are in search of THAT perfect relationship.

It almost seems like every one is in a masked dance party. When the music stops, every one hold the hand of the person nearest....... and when the lights are full and the mask is off, they realise this person is not 'that perfect one' for whom they came to the celebration. Again the lights dim and the music starts, with masks on, and the story is repeated....

All this makes me gradually convinced that relationships are about learning. And As Eckhart Tolle says, they are not here to make us happy they are here to raise our consciousness. So search for that 'perfect/dream' relationship is a futile effort. every relationship brings us face to face with our own self, our own weaknesses like a mirror.

a very apt mail on this matter was send to me by a wise and much loved senior and friend...

The 6 phases of a relationship.....
" phase one is of building up the illusion...

Phase two is that one takes each other for granted. Life is still good, not as exciting, but alright.

In phase three reality dawns: one realises that the other is as narrow-minded and egoistic as everybody else in this world. If one is wise, then that's all and love or at least comradeship remains, but if not phase four starts.

In phase four one begins, whether openly or only inwardly in oneself, to make demands of which one knows that the other cannot fulfill them as they are simply not in the other's character. In the beginning hope & good will still prevail, and such setbacks are taken in one's stride, but slowly resentment builds up. Again if one is wise one laughs at one's own folly, resigns oneself to fate, and the show can go on, but if not...

In phase five resentment becomes too strong to remain hidden, and one or both parties begin, again openly or indirectly, to do things that are not really loving any more. If at least one of the two is wise, all is well, if not ...

..phase six starts: Hurt and resentment now build up further and further, and then one bad day one of the two does something to the other that really hurts, not in his or her own eyes of course, but in the eyes of the recipient enough to reciprocate. The basic faith is shaken. For a while habit still lingers, but there is no real basis anymore to stay together....If at least one is wise...., but if not ....

All through there remains the dream of someone, somewhere who is, as a prospective friend once said of herself, "high value, low maintenance": always happy, inspired, loving, never demanding you to be different than you are, accepting your foibles with good humour, highly appreciative of whatever little good you have or do, present when needed, never intrusive or possessive when not, desirable, good-looking, sporty, intelligent, and so on and on.

Why such a god or goddess would ever love someone like you ... the story doesn't tell, but then ... if your partner had been only a little more like this dream, would you not easily have become more perfect in due time?

Life is terribly straight forward I think. As long as we are not perfect, we don't deserve company that is perfect: semi-precious stones are polished by putting them together in one big bag with streaming water so that they rub each other again and again till all imperfections are worn off. Then and then only they shine....

....and so the story goes on... "

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

A warning to visitors!

I have been adding lot many things on my blog recently. May be it shows what i am having in my mind, it may seem to be lot of interesting or even inspiring things or it can look like clutter. I just wanted to warn visitors to enter at u r own risk and if u feel u are not comfortable u are free to leave.
For I understand, it is difficult to be a host and it is also difficult to be a guest....

Monday, October 1, 2007

There are some interesting web sites with some interesting stories and poems..may be when one is free and lots of time in hand one can go thru them.
http://www.storybin.com/lists.html
http://www.ntu.edu.sg/home/hblim/tmind.html

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Bird Verse

After a difficult patch in life, a wish to stand alone!!


I want to break free,
Cut all my strings,
Strings of past, of future,
Of morality, of dignity,
of pain and pleasure.
Of culture, of civilisation,
Of religion, of rituals.
Break free from collective collected unconsciousness
Of whole of evolutionary history.
I want to break free,
And live elements in raw.
Be one with the snow,
The radiant or the rocky mountain,
Or the wild brook.
I want to break free,
And open myself to spread of nature.
When wind hisses past by,
My stretched arms, my ears,
My body
And spreads my tiniest particles
Possibly defined,
In that murderer air,
In the embrace of dust,
I wish to be rooted.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Memories

Some things in life bring trails of memories...almost like a smell, notes of a favourite song...it almost seems like the in-between years never existed or in fact fade into the background. It reminds me of two of my favourite quotations picked up from some shelf reading here and there and even the exact form of these saying is not recollected and not found ...
it was something about... some memories are so vivid they are like a ...giant painting... hanging in the living room of one's psyche, looming large and permanent!
and the other goes something like....very often we are able to handle the times of crisis and keep the strong front but then one day suddenly a bud in bloom, an old letter slipping out of a drawer and then every thing falls!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Siddhartha

This post has been shifted to my blog
http://modernmysticmusings.blogspot.com/

Monday, August 27, 2007

About the story...

I invite all of you to contribute towards the story, its chapters, its end ...

Still, I believe a story always continues. There is never a final ending in creation.
Every thing goes on...may be moves a bit linear ...a bit circular..a bit spiral....May be towards final perfection.

Hope one day we will have courage to introspect and point in what parts and in what ways we all carry the bird and the hawk and the snake and that hand with a cage.......
and may be we will have strength to do something about it.

And I further hope that it will help the bird to survive and live a whole life....

love to all!

A story continues...

I forgot completely about that singing bird from the neighbouring tree...and the hand that captured her.
That hand was related to a pair of eyes and ears. They loved the colours of the bird and the sound of the chirping. They wanted it to be with them, when they go back to their own jungle of concrete,........ after a short time in the woods.

They captured the bird, took her home, got a cage made , kept the bird there, gave all the food and water ...believed they have loved the bird and it will heal the bird and forget about the jungle and the sky and all the hawks and snakes lying there to attack and live and sing to them.

The bird stopped singing first ..

then one day............................

A story continues...

How about snake?
He was lying low. Generally sleeping after having a heavy meal...
which was not every day!

He had a shining skin and he would often change it.
He liked the celebration around and loved the place and the greenery and the tree and even the birds on them. Every thing seemed good and right.
After all if these birds and other small creatures are not around how will he survive? God has made them for his food- was his firm belief!
He also would talk about 'he' being the favourite of so many Gods!

Once in a while he would think (he too had his idisyncratic beliefs ...his being a 'thinker' was the foremost) that oh..the birds too have a right to live.
May be live as long as he is not feeling hungry.

He would like to hear them sing, and flutter around. Some days he would hear them chatter and would enjoy those stories of far off places where he could never possibly go.

But one day.........

A story continues...

..lets talk about the hawk!
He was one of the birds.....and wanted to believe he is just like that little bird! Infact he believed, there is no difference and no cause for the little bird to fear him.
Sometimes he would be angry on all the bird-mothers of the world for instilling such fears in their little birds.
He just wanted to be with them, fly with them and play with them.

Well, some times... he will kill one of them, when he doesn't have anything better to do, or if he had a bad day!
but it happened only once in a few months or may be in an year.

Birds are supposed to have a short life and shorter memory. Often he would himself forget when he did what, and would wonder how those little birds remember and carry on the stories of horror about his grandfather and his father and him...

One day...

A story...

there was a little bird, like any other bird,...too delicate!
You might feel like, just reaching out and wishing, she would hop on your hands...
She was just learning to fly... There was a courage that would forever make her eyes look at the sky with dreams of unlimited possibilities...Sky meant a gift of life.. not a dark place full of dangers, of all the crows and hawks flying.
Mother told her about the hawks!

Mother also told about snakes lying low and waiting for a moment of dreamy sleep, to slither up on the branches and reach their nest. Mother would often shiver with fear thinking about her small little bird ...child!
But our bird...sitting on the branch, she would look down with curiosity in her eyes, admiring every thing down there, the grasses, the leaves, the dancing grasshopper and waiting to see that dark snake! Thinking where he would be at this moment!

Mother somedays told her about another bird on another tree, who had a beautiful singing voice, ...captured by a hand of those who walk erect and lived in cities.
Nobody heard the singing voice ever again!

But for the child...our little bird every thing was new, she was just learning every thing and was eager to learn every thing on her own!
She had a heart like any other bird. Simple!
There never was a need in their world, to be anything else.

But one day................

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Meaning in life

This post has been shifted to my blog
http://modernmysticmusings.blogspot.com/

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

celebration of women friends

When I am with some of my good friends who happen to be men, I don’t feel any thing missing or different. But when I am with close women friends, I feel something extra…a different bond.
Yesterday I spent time with two of my women friends with similar language and wavelength. Hours slipped by without us noticing, while we were busy talking of caring for pets, houses and spouses, friends and acquaintances, work and society…these are the ones with whom I jointly find meaning in my individual life. These women deeply care about the world and everything which is happening around…aware and awake…those who seem to know the power within themselves to make changes. Not in the media savvy ways, but quietly in personal and professional lives…wherever their touch can make the worlds a better place to live, and when they go, leave it much better than what they had found …
It also feels great to see how they stand up and have courage to stand up alone…it gives so much of courage to each other too. It is about a joy to be alone, turning it into solitude and space to grow rather than a loneliness to mourn…
And the strength it gave to my convictions helped me to finally take important pending decisions......celebrate my personal space and leave confusing state of bondage called by other names….
Its immediate effect was seen in my exchange of smiles with colleagues on my way to work…

Monday, June 25, 2007

stocktaking of life...

In last 1 month two of my teachers passed away....the gap in our ages mere 16-18 yrs. I have to take stock of my life too! What i look for in my life, have i got it, have it lived it as i wanted...? For next few years will be dedicated to my childhood dream of PhD, which no longer seems to be a far fetched dream, but ya a costly one:) in terms of precious time...if i look at the hourglass and slipping sand....
i don't regret the life i have lived,............ took lots of chances ...more than i was taught to take, and was enriched experientially due to them. No would not want to change them.
The work? ya i love the possibilities in it, even if it hasn't yet fulfilled all the promises. I haven't yet given up!! I know it will be there for me in my journey...enriching my life. what about other aspects-lifestyle?....of my choice with in my limits! Fulfilling relationships?.....more than enough! lucky to have few very deep relationships in my journey....
then..? ?
but there seems to be something still pending....still i am waiting...

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Alchemy

Alchemy as i understand is a knowledge field about transformation...in material aspect - of iron into gold and in spiritual aspect - of that reflective process which makes a person wiser......
There is a symbol of it, a snake with its tail in its mouth. It is symbolic of devouring itself and changing....by self. But does it always happen?
I do wonder, ....often self proclaimed, self loving poets/writers (i think of some friends:) have this idea about their process of creativity. They wait for the stimulation, generally the negative, and devour themselves....finally turning it into poetry.....
but then do they short circuit the process of transformation of self? I often wonder.

They will often defend their actions by saying that poets (and other artists) do have character flaws, and that is a part of their creativity.
Any way...this existential choice of either defending ones own flaws and make it permanent fixture or make it a passing phase absolutely depend upon the individuals. Those who have courage to face it and strength to overcome it move further on their journeys of self actualisation and realisation.

some days

Some days the moon seems so silent ...not talking to me as usual... the rustling leaves seems to ignore me while on their way to a destination unknown...can i ask why? A frightened child, is not angry or manipulative child, it is just a child who is en-wrapped in fear. It will need a lot more of comforting words, not anger to bring the child in the open to play...
But the moon, the leaves ...are angry!

Sunday, June 3, 2007

Caste Politics and Intimate Relationships

The caste wars are infesting the country and in few states it is more prevalent than others. It seems interesting to observe how it effects the socio-psychological spaces between people, even in between intimate relationships. How it is further effected by changing political scenarios in the state or country.
I have recently seen this question cropping up amidst two individuals of different castes, who were supposed be a couple till some time back. One of them nurses political ambitions in his heart. (It is in the backdrop of sudden rise of Brahmins as a political force in UP politics thanks due to Mayawati).
In any case I have not yet seen even one Brahmin in my friend circle to rise up to such an occasion. May be its a chance may be it signifies something deeper.
I remember Kabir again: "जात ना पूछो साधू की ...

Letting Go!

Talking about TOI, just now a close friend told me over phone today's quote in the context of some discussions about life in general. It goes something like...sometimes u need to let go to understand if there was something worth holding in the first place.
I was wondering how true it is,...especially in terms of relationships, some times we just keep clinging and then suddenly we find there was really not worth holding on to it. Or even in terms of major life decisions, so many times the original reason has gone, and what makes people to cling to those decisions are the reasons they have later created to hold on to that decision...its like telling lies to oneself, with out being aware of it.

Inspirational read

Reading Narayan Murthy's lecture to students at New York University was inspiring. Hope many more people will get so.
http://www.rediff.com/money/2007/may/28bspec.htm

A Quote

Recently there was a quote in Times of India (TOI), which went something like this (I'm sorry, i forgot the author) ....
The difference between Indian and US democracy is, in US you can kiss in public but not pee, in India you can pee in public but not kiss.
It seemed an interesting contrast, to be given a thought!

It also brought me to two other topics, one about this pee business in India, which leads to men as a community, getting a lot of disgust from women inspite of some being innocent, I suppose. And it makes mental health professionals' work more difficult in diagnosing who is suffering from one kind of paraphilia - of 'exposure'.

The other point this quote brings me to, is how TOI have been a way of bonding with others, the way Indian movies have been. When cousins will meet in summers or talk over phone, they will ask which new movie u watched or liked, it was a good way of finding who thinks alike and who is as sensitive to same story or visuals as I am. TOI too had served similar purpose for me with few close friends, one of whom was posted on borders being in armed forces and would get the newspaper little late. We often will talk of the quotes, the cartoons along with the Times middle, the sacred space and speaking tree !
Alas ....neither those friendships remain same, nor the newspaper, both underwent drastic change in the quality!
Am I already old enough to be nostalgic for such things?? may be...

Personal Transformations

This post has been shifted to my blog
http://modernmysticmusings.blogspot.com/

Random Musings

Some people do every thing as if in a hurry, as if there is little time to savor, to live the moment and slow the pace, look out of the window and see the sunlight falling on the greenery of whatever trees or plants exists around...Some people are like that even in relationships..
aggressive, dominating, in a hurry to have it all, at the same moment.........
But gradually things do change.
Seeing change in a person is as lovely as witnessing change of seasons. It is more than watching the greying of hair or wrinkle on skin, it is about watching the smoothness of spirit which comes as the sharp edges of one's personality becomes more blunt and non-threatening. As many more things gives that golden glow which comes with nostalgia....And when it happens during the moments meeting old friends it becomes heart warming...

Empty Days

The room is silent
My mind too.
Your laughter
your bitterness
not present
to spice up
my days.
Now this day,
like every other
restart
seems empty
seems my own
unshared
alone.

Loneliness

Loneliness
the beautiful companion
who allows me
the entire play room
just for me
looks at me
and smiles
without that tormenting
sarcasm
spit out
of your mouth
which lingers in my
memories.

Saturday, June 2, 2007

Mindspace & Mindscape

This blog is all about the spaces inside
and
the forms & frames there,
which keeps shifting ...