Category Archives: Sometimes I Wonder

Thoughts which pop on my mind and are worth sharing ;-)

5 Things to Do after you watch Airlift

The Movie

Airlift depicts biggest civil operation of evacuation of 1,70,000 Indians in Kuwait during the Iraq Kuwait war in 1990 by protagonist Ranjit Katyal (Akshay Kumar), a Kuwait-based businessman. It is a masterpiece – a must watch for every Indian. Arguably, it is Akshay Kumar’s best movie in his successful series on patriotism – be it Holiday, Gabbar, Baby, Special 26. Kudos to you Sir, for staying committed and making movies like these which inspire people and call them to action!

Airlift-Collection

Here’s a list of 5 things I’d urge you to do after watching Airlift

1. Enquire and feel proud about India and being an Indian

We end up viewing other countries as ideal and well-developed, often not giving India the deserved share of credit, thanks to the way media has created an India in front of us! Enquire deep down and check if you’ll be able to find a country as secular and as free as India. Once you realise it, value it and feel pride in being an Indian!

2. Observe the miniscule scale at which we operate in our life

Remember that uncle who keeps complaining about services and discipline in the camp in the movie – He is just concerned with himself – As easy as it is to ridicule him, don’t we all operate on that scale? I, me, myself – for some it might extend to family, but why not the society, city, state, country and the world?

3. Be willing to do something about it – Allow yourself to be a part of greater good

Choose India as your toil ground – create a drive to make it a better place – contribute to the society in any and every way possible – be empathic, help people in need, take interest in matters of the community and participate rather than just being cynical about it. You can plant trees and do your part for the climate like Deepa (read her story here) or you can work towards a mechanism to keep railway stations clean through beautification as done by Dharmesh Shah in Borivali and Khar Stations (pics below) or you can volunteer at various NGOs to teach kids, play with senior citizens or explain your maid how to plan finances, help her with getting a bank account opened through PMJDY scheme.

There are innumerable ways you can contribute – you just have to decide to do it! Get in touch with me if you are interested in promoting harmony – we are working on something.

4. Be unstoppable

Go beyond reasons, commit to the cause and get more people along to do it! Once Akshay Kumar shifted his thinking from his family to all Indians in the movie, he got things moving. He failed when the ship didnt turn up in Kuwait, but didnt stop there – he kept going. When you decide to be a part of greater good, you’ll have to figure out your own way to contribute – you’ll fall, but that’s necessary to learn and grow. Persist and it will happen.

5. Be an Indian worth fighting for!

A huge board in Jaipur cantonment reads – ‘Want to do something for a soldier, be an Indian who is worth fighting for!’ This is the least we can and should do for our country! Why does the same person who stays in such a civilised way abroad, behaves like a rebel here – he litters around, spits, breaks signals, indulges in corruption – that’s because he knows he can get away with it. We need to create a structure where this can be mitigated and strive to be an Indian worth fighting for!

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A Catalyst called Muse

What is a MUSE?

Conventional Definition


The common use of the word muse is for a beautiful lady being an inspiration to an artist. Picturise Katrina Kaif being an inspiration to Aditya Roy Kapoor in upcoming bollywood movie Fitoor.
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Expansion of the definition


I believe, muse can be anything which keeps the fire within you burning to keep going. It can be a person – love for someone – a destination – a dream – a material thing – a hobby – a belief in something – making money – causing an impact. You should have a fitoor (when something overwhelms your mind to the point of insanity) for your muse – to such an extend that it drives you and the world crazy and magic happens!

Why is a MUSE required?


Humans are not rational beings, they are normal – they are driven by emotions, meanings and stories along with logical thinking. (One of the reasons why we are having volatile stock market behaviour since last two weeks – panic followed by behavioural decisions :P).


We live in the future we create, not in the past. For example, consider you’re going on a picnic tomorrow. You’ll be so full of energy today, you’ll pack all your stuff, help your family members with routine chores, do your allotted work as quickly as possible, think about how you’ll spend your picnic day and get up the next day even before the alarm rings! Practically, you are already on a picnic right from the moment you decide to go on the picnic; the enthusiasm overtakes the day and it goes smoothly thinking about the upcoming picnic. At the same time, once you are in the picnic and it is about to end, you are filled with thoughts of pending work, getting back to normal life on the next day – the thought of getting up to work the next day doesn’t excite you much making you want to extend your picnic:P. Thus, you live in the future you create; if the future is meaningful and filled with things you want, it’ll drive you towards it with full speed! So all you’ve got to do is give your future a meaning you want.


Now, consider us millennials – we do things only if we find them adding meaning to us and the society – we question everything around us, for example – we don’t understand the point of working just to make money – our work should add value. We are very keen and in constant enquiry to find the meaning of our life! Once we find this meaning, we are set towards a journey of self transformation! A MUSE is your meaning/purpose for your life!! It is the future you created and are excited about!

 

If you only do what you can do, you’ll never be more than what you are!  – Kung Fu Panda 3

Muse empowers you beyond imagination; it connects you to your inner potential of unlimited possibilities. It pushes you to the extremes and you do things you outrightly thought as not possible! During this journey, you’ll transform yourself completely.

Lets take Baahubali – The Beginning movie as an example. Shiva, the son of Baahubali got raised in a small village on the banks of a huge waterfall and he always wondered what was up there. Shiva grew up to be a well-built young man aspiring to climb the mountain and made many unsuccessful attempts at it much against his mother’s wishes. One day he stumbled upon a mask of a girl which fell down from the mountain – that acted as a catalyst. Driven to find out the identity of the girl, he climbed the mountain again and succeeded this time. He faced the same hardships as before, but it was the thought of finding out about his muse which kept him going – he overcame all obstacles and made it to the top! The song Khoya Hai depicts this journey in an awe inspiring way. Have a look –

Now imagine if Shiva didn’t find the mask. He would have kept on making repeated attempts at climbing the mountain but never would have succeeded since there was nothing driving him towards it. And there wouldn’t have been a movie on Baahubali! 😛 Shiva was able to climb to the top because of his passion, love, commitment and dedication to the unknown girl behind the mask. It was his obsessive passion for the girl which made him climb the mountain – a feat never done before! The craziness of climbing a mountain was a cakewalk for him whereas the same thing would have been fatal for others. And after climbing the mountain he met with his destiny! (We’ll come to know about it in the movie Baahubali – The End)

Have a muse – it can be anything you are extremely passionate about and committed to. It might be poison to others, but should be honey to you. You’ll meet your destiny in the journey!

 


This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda

A Year without Sweets

I have a big sweet tooth! I’ve always believed in having kuch meetha any and every time possible – Sometimes, sweets form a part of my appetisers and main course too along with desserts. Belonging to India and staying in Mumbai has exposed me to various varieties of sweets over years and travelling got me present to many more – and I’ve adored them all! Be it gulab jamuns, gajar ka halwa, boondi ke laddu, biraj/savaiyaan, kheer, rossogullas, barfis, chamchams, mama cakes, rasmalai, malai pedhas, jalebi and rabdi, kulfi, kaju katlis, shrikhand, modaks, jelly, blueberry cheese cakes, caramel tarts, red velvet cup cakes, basically you get my point, right! 😉

As I grew up and joined the corporate world – I came across an awesome phenomena called group indulgence!!! We had a group kitty and would get cakes and sweets with namkeen on various occasions – be it birthdays, anniversaries, team milestones, festivals or Fridays. My huge team size and weekend cheer ensured we had some or the other occasion at least once a week to dig into refined sugar ordered from different corners of Mumbai having unique specialities!! Over two years, I can safely conclude I’ve tasted sweets from all notable places in Mumbai. After such awesome weekdays, came the weekends – when I went out for lunch or dinner with friends and family or caught up with friends over desserts! Then came the blogging events, a new entry in my yearbook – Close to 6 huge events, followed by post event plans and dine outs! Then came the weddings – 2015 has been the year of weddings – I’ve attended close to 16 big fat Indian weddings ( an average of two functions per wedding) where I lost control over the sweetness of the occasion and my appetite for sweetness! Competing with friends over who’ll gut down the maximum ice creams after having a full fledged meal was awesome fun! Then came the festivals – days spent with family and idling at home while binging on fried items and sweets again. (barring Navratri when I was able to burn all calories I binged on ;-))

Now, if I were to count the number of times I ended up eating out, it was close to 100 out of 365 days – about 200 times! Out of that, lets assume I had sweets or desserts for about 150 times! Now, taking this number into account, while ignoring home made sweets, ice cream movie marathons, chocolates eaten while travelling – it is way too huge to be sustainable!! And 2015 has been least of my worries – for I was active and did a lot of treks, dance practice, cycling which helped me kept a check on my weight. But was I fit? I realised this sugar sitting and fattening my skin has reduced my stamina and flexibility – so much so that I cannot even touch my toes when I bend down in the first go! It take some huge efforts and some cheating (bending knees a bit) to do the same :P. If I continue with this trend, the circumstances are going to be the same and I’ll always end up binging on – the team will keep growing at work, people will keep getting married, Indian festivals are going to be the same – maybe the ones I’m celebrating will increase as I make new friends. Now, consider the fact that with growing responsibilities, I won’t be trekking, cycling or working out that often. Then that’s going to be a steep slope for the wheel of my health to climb on!!

Also, sugar intake has some really bad effects on body other than being prone to diabetes and weight gain – it leads to cavities and gum diseases, causes a dopamine release in mind, leading to craving for sugar, makes your mind numb – you feel less active and more sleepy, raises cholesterol leading to heart diseases, leads to ageing of body, increases the stress in the body and takes the place of important nutrients

This morning I sat down and evaluated what I want the most in life – Its the ability to do whatever I choose to do at any age of my life! I don’t care about my weight, I need to be fit and have stamina to do head stands, to learn contemporary, to just go on a running spree when I feel like, to be able to climb mountains and enjoy the journey rather than be busy catching my breath! And for anything that we need in life, there is a payoff – I’ve decided to make 2016 a year without sweets!! Its a challenging experiment for a guy like me who always associates celebration to binge eating sweets; but I’m going to give it a shot and see what happens! This is me taking action and controlling what’s in my hand rather than hoping for world to change for better! I request all of you friends and family members to help me achieve this goal – keep me accountable and help me reach my goal – without your support its going to be difficult. I’ll keep you posted as the months pass by!!

Also, I urge you to take a moment and take up something for this year which you feel is an arduous task for you but if done, it will help you be better!! Happy 2016!! 🙂

Happy New Year

“I saw a Flickr of light from my window & everything is very dark around it, I felt as if I am seeing a star… but I really don’t know how it feels like to see a starry sky so I just lived in that moment. It was beautiful, I saw something that I can feel & understand…it was a quiet night & all that wonder is lost in blink of an eye Because I moved my head slightly to get a better view.

For a moment I am thankful, I can see light & the first thing I do every day morning is to see if I can see the sun light. Then I thank the universe. It is very frustrating just to see patch of light & not see much beyond it.

I don’t remember ever seeing a star….this will be one of those things I would like to experience if ever I can see again in life.”

This story is written by Raghava. He is losing his eyesight as years progress, presently he is able to see 5% and is grateful to God for the same. His vision impairment hasn’t stopped him from living a life he is proud of and cherishes. It has enhanced his ability to look at things from a different angle, and face challenges with much more zeal and zest! He blogs at raghava.in, has run 21 km marathon in Hyderabad with the support of co-runner and sound boxes. He loves to travel and meet new people and is extremely positive about life! He is busy ticking things off his 101 bucket list!!

One thing which inspired me the most when I met Raghava is his awareness of being ALIVE! He says, ‘The biggest thing happening in your life right now is being ALIVE! Nothing comes close to it!’

This Diwali, acknowledge being ALIVE and infinite possibilities which come into being with it!!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

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An Instant 2 Minute Poem – You!

This poem is written in response to the 81st IndiSpire prompt: Write a 2minute poem! Yeah Heard right! An INSTANT 2-minute poem,a simple,sweet,nicely rhyming poem,playing with words,not hard but easy,funny and cool,a relief to your mind,not to grind,but to find,a solace and some peace #My2MinutePoem

 

Here comes a poem which is a rap

Listening to it will make your legs tap

So lets hear it for your power within

And let this saga begin!

 

You are fire, you are the sun

Let all doubts within you burn!!

You are beautiful, you are sexy,

You are amazing, you are flexi!!

 

You are the cause, you are the result

You are the catalyst, go ahead and exult!

You are bigger than your circumstance

So stop thinking, go for it and advance!!

Fighting Myself

I’ve been acting my entire life

I no further know who I actually am

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I’ve masked myself for way too long

I no further remember how I really look

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My choices are flavoured

My likes are coloured

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I am this person on a high

Drugged by unnecessary things

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I try to hide, mix in the crowd

Pretending to be what I’m not

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I don’t know if I’ll be happier

By acknowledging who I am

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I’ve been acting my entire life

I don’t want to know who I actually am

Thinking Pencils

 

Ganesha wanted to start writing in his book new,

So he created pencils few.

Of different colours they were – but of same potential,

Happy with his creation, he went to nap, for resting was essential.

 

An impromptu conversation started among the pencils,

Discussing their dreams and required skills.

Known to all individually, yet unknown collectively,

They started judging and discounting each other’s aspirations…

 

“I want to write the first alphabet of a child”, said one.

Another said, “I want to sketch the world, that would be fun!”

“I want to write my own autobiography, like people have done”

“I want to write something historic, to be forgotten by none!…”

 

Each one had given meaning to their existence,

Unknown to destiny, they thought they’ll get what they want through persistence,

But life isn’t fair and can’t be missed,

Coz its beautiful and filled with bliss…

 

Ganesha awoke and chatter came to an end,

He had heard their conversations and decided it was time for rules to be bent,

He decided to reveal the purpose of their existence,

Smiling, he thought about the positive consequence…

 

“Your life will be miserable if you don’t get what you decided,

You’ll not enjoy what you’re doing, nor be at peace with what others are getting to do…

Jealousy will grip you as you grow shorter…

You’ll loose your sharpness out of fatigue and get hotter (temperament)”

 

“Realise you limit yourself when you decide what you want to do,

Leave that thought and you will create endless possibilities new.

Life then would be a choice of various opportunities…

Stay sharp and do your work with integrity…”

 

“For your life is what it has to be as per the bigger picture…”

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The Green Car

I ordered a car new,

Model was different, owned by few.

Its finish was bold,

Looking at it, you’ll get clean bowled!

 

Colour I chose was yellow,

Yellow is Coldplay, Yellow is Me!

Yellow is Sunshine, Yellow isn’t green…

I never chose Yellow because it was Yellow

 

Days went by as I imagined driving my pride,

To all friends I look good to, I thought of giving a ride.

Life was waiting, happiness was in future;

In its anticipation, present went by…

 

Finally the day came when I went to pick up the car,

It was in the showroom, tucked inside far

Covered in cloth, like a bad boy waiting to be unleashed.

Down came the ribbon and the cloth fell down with ease.

 

To my shock I stared and stared,

For the colour was green, not yellow

I didn’t order this, I said repeatedly in my mind

Empowered with thoughts, I went to argue with the vendor!

 

While I shouted and was furious; he maintained his calm,

I handed over the keys in my palm.

He had the audacity to say the model & colour was as per my specification,

Annoyed and hysterical, I checked my application.

 

‘It says yellow, see’ I shouted aloud checking the application,

He patiently took me to the car,

And asked a couple of salesmen to identify its colour

‘Yellow’ they said unanimously, without any quiver.

 

They all were trying to prove me wrong,

One thing I hated strong.

Beaten but not lost, I continued to argue,

For the payment was yet due

 

I checked again; the car was still green,

That put me in retrospection

I was still wearing those blue shades, I remembered

I removed them, and voila, the car was yellow!!! 🙂

 

The car represents people in our life

Green is how we see them

Yellow is how they actually are

So when are you dropping your glasses?

The Other Candy

Life is like a candy in hand,
You get to choose which one you want
Its hard to decide given the array of options
You look at your friends choosing their candies

You want to choose something unique
Definitely better than your friends
And go for the one that looks the most attractive
Though the reference of attractive comes from your past

This is the way it always happens
You choose from things you know you know or you know you don’t know
Ignoring candies you don’t know that you don’t know anything about
So not all candies stand an equal chance to be chosen

You choose one on what options match your reference of attractive
Hoping it will taste awesome
As you walk out of the shop, friends praise you for your choice
And you look around to see what they chose

Creating a problem where none actually exists
You’ve decided this candy might not be the one
Not all attractive things taste good, you say to yourself
Forgetting totally to actually taste the candy and verify it!!

Your friend comes out of the shop with the prettiest candy you’ve ever seen
You feel jealous and curse your luck for choosing your candy
And decide to henceforth select the candy your friend chose
Forgetting to enjoy the candy in your hand!!

As you finally open the wrapper to taste the candy,
Preconceived thoughts about its taste mess your mind
Now the actual taste doesn’t matter for you already have decided how bad it tastes
You end up blaming the candy for what its actually not!

Enter the irony of life – Your friend is sad as he feels your candy tastes better
But can’t say the same, the same way you won’t compliment him for his choice
Both suffer for wanting something not in their control
Completely forgetting they chose what they hold in hand!

Why do you do this you think to yourself
Doesn’t being miserable make you suffer?
But it has a payoff too, you justify – others empathise for you
But wont being happy give a better payoff?

Remember you chose the candy you are holding in hand
You chose it because you chose it, that’s it!
No other stories around it
Now, relish what you chose without any notions…

The Right vs The Easy

Have you come across a point

Where right and easy crossed roads

And you traded off the right for the easy

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As you look back in the past

You regret taking the path often trod

When you traded off the right for the easy

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You tried to let it go but couldn’t

And now you stand at cross roads again

Will you still trade off the right for the easy?

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Today’s the day to make the right choice

Take the path which is right

Don’t trade the right for the easy