The Starry Sky

Looking at the starry sky through my window;
I thought it was so beautiful.
Until the day, when I saw the entire night sky;
Without my limiting window frame.

I felt foolish to have restricted my sky;
To the size of my window frame.
I felt cheated to have felt happy;
About the limited vision that I had.

But then I thought about what actually mattered;
Is it the momentary truth or the absolute truth!
In that case, what is absolute truth;
Is the night sky actually as it appears to me!

I sought out to find an answer;
Asked many people to describe the sky above.
Each one had a different version to talk about;
None of them matched with what I had in my mind.

Is there no absolute truth then;
If it is all so person specific and time bound.
What are we actually seeking for;
Who will show us the real picture?

As I close my eyes and think about it,
I see the same starry sky within me.
Is it a reflection of the space above;
Or is it the other way round?

The dilemma continues,
So do the questions.
My mind learns to settle down,
And continues to look within.

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An Inward Journey: Relocation

We don’t have to wait for a physical relocation to start afresh. A lot can happen within.

An Inward Journey: Journal Series- Introduction.

An Inward Journey: Journal Series- HE is Everywhere!

An Inward Journey: Letting Go.

An Inward Journey: Thank You.

The day had finally arrived. She had to check a couple of more items in her list and then leave. The preparations had started long back. Three years to be exact. She first visited that place with a guide and thoroughly enjoyed her stay there. It seemed like the perfect location for her to spend the rest of her life. 

Even though the decision was taken, implementation was not as easy as she thought it would be. She knew she had to empty her old place. When she started pulling out things, she was taken aback by the sheer volume of things she had accumulated over the years. She decided to throw all of them away. Memories and attachment are not easy to let go. She had to literally pull some them away from her own hands and throw it.

It did hurt. She even decided to give up the plan. She came under the influence of the “known devil syndrome” . Dreams of her new life started getting replaced with nightmares of not being able to fit in. The new terrains and surroundings which seemed so welcoming earlier slowly wore the face of unknown lonely places.

She shook all of that away as mere anxiety and went ahead with her plans. She kept herself busy by reading more about the place and getting as familiar to it as she could.

The last item to be ticked in the list was to lock all the windows and doors of the old place and throw away the key.

The old place that she lived in was filled with anxiety, worry, fear, envy,  greed, guilt, frustration, hate, anger etc. The walls seemed unbreakable and the gloomy environment made her unhappy. The bouts of happiness that material luxury brought was unfulfilling. She knew she had to move out.

She held on to all these emotions while she lived there. She wanted to lock it and relocate into a space that had love, empathy and hope at its core.

Her quest started when she met a guide along her path. He showed her this new place. This place had a sweet aroma. The air and water tasted sweet. Her body shook with excitement during her visit there. It had a lot of intersecting roads. All roads led to a single point which was an extremely beautiful horizon. The guide showed her around and asked her to choose the path she wanted to take. She decided to take the path where she could freely move around without fear or restrictions.

Her first visit did not last long. She had to get back soon. But then she knew that meeting the guide and visiting that beautiful place was not an accident. She knew she belonged there. And so she waited for three long years to wrap up everything and relocate.

As she locked all the doors and tossed the key in the air, she looked as radiant and vibrant as the horizon where all those roads submerged.

We don’t have to wait for a physical relocation to start afresh. A lot can happen within!

 

 

An Inward Journey: Thank You.

I recently asked my seven (well, almost eight) year old,” So, tell me what is the first word that comes to your mind when you are actually living your dream? ”

He has always and always wanted to join a particular sport coaching. And I recently enrolled him for one.  On the second day of that sport coaching, I asked him this question.

His reply was quick ” Thank You God!”

Today, I had a similar experience. I was in the middle of my work and when I paused for a while, I suddenly realised in that moment that I was actually living my dream too. And with that realisation, I felt so overwhelmed with emotion that I felt as if I was just dissolving into everything around me. I am not sure if words can actually describe that feeling. But, I just ceased to exist as a separate entity and the only word that came out of me was “Thank You God!”.

I don’t know if that’s what my little boy experienced , but those were the exact words that came out of him too. “Thank You God! ”

No wonder every civilization ( structured and unstructured) has given a lot of importance to the concept of “gratitude”. Means to show gratitude varies from region to region. Gratitude has and always will be the easiest form of divine connect.

I have always loved to go through the Acknowledgement page of the book that I am reading. There, the author’s language and expression has a different texture. No matter what the story of the books is, the acknowledgement has a very humble and positive energy to it.

Similarly with the person who proposes the vote of thanks at a function. It is usually not the most aggressive talker but someone who can say ‘Thank You’ in plain simple words and actually mean it.

“Thank You” is a magical word indeed and no matter whom you say that to, mean it when you say it. When said to the divine, it fills us with a positive energy and when said to another fellow being, it brushes aside all differences and creates a wonderful connect between the two people.

May all of us be able to experience the divine connection and bliss through gratitude.

THANK YOU.

 

The Best Me.

I don’t know how long I lay inside the earth;
Waiting for a chance to see some light.
Then one day that miracle happened ;
A bright ray touched me and held me tight.

I knew it was time for me to come out;
To breath some air and feel refreshed.
The first sight of the blue sky filled my heart;
With a desire to soar up high.

I was well aware of the changes happening within;
The small shoots and the strong roots all growing fine.
I could feel this all the while;
But my eyes wouldn’t move from the sky

I knew I had to reach there;
That is where I thought I belonged.
The blue sky, the white clouds;
They were all waiting for my advent.

As time passed , I noticed the difference;
Everything that flew had wings ;
I looked down and saw my firm roots;
I started to wonder if I could ever reach there.

I still told myself that’s where I belonged;
Amidst the heights that my eyes could behold.
I grew and I flourished with fruits and flowers;
I was frequented by animals and birds alike.

Then one day a miracle happened again;
I felt the coolness and the softness rubbing on me.
I  saw the white fluffy clouds;
It was actually passing right through me.

I had roots and so couldn’t fly;
But I never stopped looking up.
I grew to the best of what I could;
I could almost touch the sky.

 

PC: My daughter.

Leave That Wood Alone!

If we understood the power of our thoughts, we would guard them more closely. If we understood the awesome power of our words, we would prefer silence to almost anything negative. In our thoughts and words, we create our own weaknesses and our own strengths. Our limitations and joys begin in our hearts. We can always replace negative with positive.” -Betty Eadie

I have been reading a lot about the power of words. The words we use are actually a reflection of how we feel from within. There are programs that use the power of language to combat stress, anger and depression.

With all these thoughts fresh in my mind space, I attended a get together of some good old friends. There, I noticed something very strange. Each sentence ended with a particular phrase. I became aware of it first when I myself used it and then, that phrase is all I could hear.

“I am loving my job. Touch wood. ”

“I am feeling really fit and am aiming a half marathon by next year. Touch wood.”

“My daughter is really good in academics. Touch Wood.”

“I still love my husband. Touch Wood.”

“You are looking fab in the little black dress. Touch Wood.”

“Your son is a very good mannered boy. Touch wood.”

The phrase was used generously not only when we spoke about ourselves, but when we spoke about others too. ( Others in the room only!)

According to Aunt Google, the phrase derives from the pagan belief that malevolent spirits inhabited the wood, and if you expressed a hope for the future you should touch, or knock on, wood to prevent the spirits from hearing and presumably preventing your hopes from coming true.

When I got back from the party, I tried to analyze it a little further. If our words symbolize a certain belief, what could that be?

Possibility No.1:
We still believe there are evil spirits living in those trees far away that are eves dropping on our conversation and trying to prevent our good fortune from coming true.

Possibility No. 2 :
We think those spirits have shifted base from the trees into the wooden furniture around.

Possibility No. 3:
We see those evil spirits in the people seated around us.

I ruled out possibility No.1 because in some cases the trees are so far away that even if the spirits had excellent hearing aids, they would not be able to hear the conversation. Possibility No.2 also seemed like a remote chance because the carpenters would have knocked the wood so many times to make it into a piece of furniture that the spirits would have been driven away. I was only left with possibility No.3 and I could not find reasons to negate it. I was very uncomfortable accepting it though.

I went back to the good old childhood days with similar gang of girls. Our conversations usually were:

“You are looking so smart in that dress. Wow! I want a similar one. ”

“I am gonna become an astronaut when I grow bigger. What about you?”

“I have fallen in love. It is a wonderful feeling. I wish you find someone soon.”

“How can you write so well! I envy your writing skills.”

The obvious difference in the conversations then and now, being the way our feelings were expressed.  If I liked your dress, I would say I want one like it. If I wanted to write like you, I would say that I am envious of your writing skills. When I felt really good about something, I would wish you the same.

The touch/knock woods have made every other emotion is my statement secondary. The obvious, loud and clear emotion/feeling present being fear and vulnerability.

I came across another interesting article about the origin of “touch/knock wood”. It said : The other origin they suggest is that some of these tree worshippers laid their hands on a tree when asking for favor from the spirits/gods that lived inside it, or did it after a run of good luck as a show of gratitude to the supernatural powers.

My conclusion from this entire experience is to use the phrase ( If I do ) as an expression of gratitude and not because I think the other person (or that bad spirit that has shifted base into him/her) can prevent me from some good luck that in store for me.

That Someone.

Even when you are in a crowd, it is only that “someone” who can cheer you up.

Whenever I thought I was alone,
Someone caught up.
Holding hands, Patting shoulder;
Listening to me and chatting with me.

Whenever I thought I was lost,
Someone showed up.
With the indicator, leading the way;
Guiding me and lighting up the place.

Whenever I thought I was in pain,
Someone came to me.
Wiping my tears, asking me to smile;
Reminding me of good times and cheering me up.

That “someone” has come and gone so many times,
It all happens before I can gather myself up ;
To ask his name or where he lived
Because that “someone” left as soon as I was fine.

I have often looked around,
To catch a glimpse of that “someone”.
I never found anyone near or far.
Until one day when I saw my own reflection.

I have often run around the place,
Screaming out loud for that “someone”.
Hoping my voice reached those ears,
Until one day when I heard my own echo.

My reflection looked like that person,
Who had lent me a shoulder and held my hands.
My echo sounded like that voice,
Which had talked to me and comforted me.

It was my inner strength which always consoled me.
It was my inner light that always showed me the way.
It was my inner voice that always transformed me.
It was me myself who always showed up for me.

You Deserve Someone Better

Story about two people who thought the other person deserved someone better.

The Split.

Whom do you blame when both of them have taken up the complete responsibility of a failed relationship? They wrote a parting note to the each other and it read more or less the same (except the usage of words). It read as follows:

Dear………,

I know I completely messed it up. I did not keep my promises. I was never there when you wanted me the most. I thought I would mend things the next day, and that next day never came. I am sorry, I am late. You deserve someone much better.

Love Always,
——————

How could the notes be so similar?

Both of them were very passionate about their work and they knew that their work made a difference to the world. He, as a doctor traveling to different parts of the world curing and giving hope to those affected by animosity and anger among the people they were surrounded with. And she, as an artist bringing people closer to each other through dance, music and drama.

They were so similar in their thought process and the role they thought they had to play in making this world a better place to live in. They were so similar to each other when they had to choose between work and family. They always chose the former. They were so similar in knowing that it was time to part ways so that the other could move on with his/her life.

It was hard to even think that they spent a decade together. Their friends had predicted a couple of years of marriage for the “too independent to be together” couple. So when they heard about the split, they were shocked because they actually spent a decade together.

So, then, why now? That was a question they did not have a proper answer for. It was just that each of them felt that the other person deserved to be with a better partner. So there were no arguments or fights before they parted ways. They mutually agreed to call it quits and they did it in their own unique way.

Time Together.

They were both passionate travelers. They had shortlisted a list of places and they went to those places whenever they could. Sometimes solo and sometimes with each other.

Traveling together was something they had really enjoyed.  Whenever they stayed in any place for more than a week, he organized medical camps for the locals. She made sure she learnt about a new dance form or recorded some local artists to be later included in her stage shows. She played the attendant in his camps and he played the cameraman/spot boy for her recordings. And they did their job well.

They could never disconnect the people in a place from the nature around. They always connected with both the entities equally.

She had a knack to discover raw talent from the rarest of rare places. She always said that the same knack helped her spot him in a flight. He was helping a fellow passenger who had a particular medical condition when she first saw him. She made sure she got his details from that passenger and later approached him on the pretext of being that passenger’s relative wanting to discuss about his health. She could come up with stories in a jiffy and get away in any situation. He was amused at her lively nature and had his jaws drop when she later told him that she was not related to that co-passenger at all. They were soon seeing each other which ended in a wedlock.

Away, But Connected.

They kept traveling even after they parted. Work, travel , more work and more travel. So now, when they travelled solo, they missed getting involved in each other’s activities. Some such things just become a part of you and and even in the absence of the person who introduced you to it, you just want to do it. She volunteered at local medical camps whenever she could. And he loved spending time dancing and eating with the locals whenever he could. They felt each other’s presence in these activities. But admitting the fact that he/she missed the other and reaching out to each other was not something they could bring themselves to do. They weren’t sure about each other’s relationship status after they parted.

They filled the vacuum created by the other person’s absence with a lot of good work. Each one went out of their way to reach out to people who needed help. The list only grew longer with each passing year.

But the irony here was that each one never hoped to find a better partner for themselves because they knew it was not possible. What do you call such people?

A Different Space.

Another decade passed in a wink. They were in their 50’s now. They were not as active in their respective fields as they were earlier. They had done their part for the society and now, it was more of reflective time. They travelled lesser and read and wrote more. Both of them had spoken to each other about this phase of their life long ago. They had wished to retire into a small suburban home with some pets. They had a list of places that they would travel during the retirement period. Places where they could spend a longer period of time and help themselves in their inward journey. They wanted to study more about spirituality and embark the journey of self discovery.

In one such place ( a place on the map and a place that they had reached in their inward journey ), on the banks of a river, she spotted him. He was trying to learn to play an instrument from a local boy. She sat there for a long time not wanting to interrupt the class. When he stood up and noticed her, the first thing he did was to look around. His heart was beating fast and his fingers were crossed. She smiled and ran to hug him and said “ I am all alone. Looks like there is a dearth of talent.” He said “ I almost found someone but thought she was too much like you “ .

They spent the next couple of days catching up about what was happening in each other’s lives. They got their stay in that place extended and moved in together.

The Last Leg.

How they got back together was just like how they parted ways. Absolutely no big deal. They knew that this time it would last way more than a decade, probably till the end.

How do you define such love stories? Some rivers split into two before getting together again and then they enter the sea together. Such rivers form a beautiful sight from above. The land mass in between remains beautiful and flourish well. The two of them had devoted all their time to work into helping people during the time that they were away from each other. The people who were benefited from their selfless work formed that beautiful land mass in between. Now, they were ready to flow together into their life together.

The End.