Come pause a minute,

Sit with me awhile,

and share your thoughts...

25 May 2016

Something to learn...

and pursue diligently...




I do believe this is the only way, not only to grow as a person, but also to not let anything ruffle my mind, or spoil its peace.

It is necessary at times to make a break with someone or some situation you have been in which you realize now has swamped who you really are...How can you be true to yourself if you are turning yourself inside out and upside down trying to be true to everyone and every situation just because you do not want to upset the boat, or be hurtful...What happens to your feelings/what you really want to do and be/your happiness/your peace?

It is better to, in your own way, separate yourself from anything or anyone who drags you down, or you find yourself in a position that is painful to you...that you know you do not enjoy....Momentarily, it may cause pain to do this, but in the long run it will be good for you....and, for all you know, it will end up being good for the other person too, and improve the situation you walked away from....

You have only you, so start looking after you....and remember we can be what we want to be. Quoting George Eliot: “It is never too late to be who you might have been.”

23 May 2016

President Obama said...

a very important thing, among many others, in the Commencement speech he gave at Rutgers.

He said, "In politics and in life, ignorance is not a virtue."

Somehow this statement struck deep. And, how true it is.

How often I find myself saying I don't know this or that, and leaving it there, instead of taking the trouble to find out about what it is that I don't know. Yet, I know that when something or someone has caught my interest and I feel I want to know more about it or him/her, I take a lot of time and trouble going through the Internet, searching and searching till I feel satisfied with what I have learnt.

I now believe that this is something I need to do about everything that I do not know about.

Thanks to the Internet a huge, huge amount of knowledge is available. Some of the information on a subject you are studying may be erroneous, but there are very many more sites that offer correct, accurate and extensive knowledge on the subject. One just has to search. Of course it is going to require time and effort, but then that is what learning is all about, isn't it? And think of how much more you will know...! I have started doing this and little by little am extending the boundaries of my knowledge. What I am finding fascinating is that besides learning more, my head does not feel cluttered, as it does when it is going round and round in circles about something that all I needed to do was to find out more about...And, the time factor loses its hold over me. Knowing more is a liberating feeling, believe me. Another wonderful thing is that one thing leads to another and you end up knowing more about a lot of other things - associated or far removed, even - from the topic of your search. The desire to know and learn also helps in analytical skills and decision making. Decision making and analyzing is important in the tiniest things that affect our lives - these are not words that are only for the 'important', 'big', and 'serious' issues of life. Knowing about things - big, small, serious, foolish, good, bad, silly, inconsequential, necessary - expands our knowledge base and knowing more always comes in handy....in every area of life...every single area of life and living...

No matter how often we turn our heads away from political matters out of disinterest or ununderstanding, politics is important. It IS important to know what is happening in our city, our state, our country and in the world at large. It IS important to know what national and world leaders are thinking. It IS important to be able to grasp the workings of our country and the world. Why do we need to do this? It is only when we force ourselves to take an interest in the politics of our country and other countries that we can form informed opinions about our country and the world, and the people who shape our country and the other countries of the world. Why? Among a lot of advantages, let us just say that the very exercise of finding out and understanding will benefit us...

If we take the trouble - and it's really not all that much trouble -  to find out even about things that don't really interest us, or are not our cup of tea, or are not going to affect us, or we feel don't have a place in our lives, just the taking of that trouble will expand our minds. Going in the same mental route will eventually make our minds very small, as will having the attitude of 'what I know is enough'. This in turn will most definitely have a bearing on the quality of our lives. As people there is every chance that we will find ourselves becoming smaller and narrower in our outlook on life. In fact, slowly but surely we will shut ourselves off from the beauty and grandeur of Life.

The whole quality of our lives is bound to change for the better if we decide that we need to know....know more about the things that directly affect us....know more about the world we live in....get to know the issues that face our country.....just know for the sake and pleasure of knowing...

Ending with a quote from my favorite author, Maya Angelou.

"My mother said I must always be intolerant of ignorance......"

20 May 2016

Think on this...

If one has no time, one has also lost oneself.


So why don't we have time? Are we
  • so caught up with the daily routine and round of duties...
  • in a hurry to get things out of the way, one after another, so that we can move on to something that again needs to be done to get it out of the way...
  • caught up in the belief that unless we are constantly doing something we are wasting time, our talents, money - somebody's or our own...
  • under the impression that our self-image depends on what all we do, and how much we can accomplish in a day...
  • holding on to this: we have to account for every moment of every day by actually showing something for all the efforts we have put in every second of the day...
  • by some parameter, that we have arrived upon, deciding what is important and not important, or who is important or not important so that we can apportion our time to tasks and people accordingly...
  • in the middle of all this, also passing judgements on ourselves? our looks, our talents, our capabilities....

....all the usual arguments


In all this physical rushing around and mental acrobatics, are we
  • aware of ourselves? the way our heart ticks? the things our body needs? our actual strengths?
  • aware of the children/people around us who need us - just now - for something?
  • conscious of the fact that we are a part of the Universe and somewhere, someone needs our energies and thoughts and prayers?

....what is left of us?

We have lost touch with ourselves.
We have lost the contact with our inner core.
We are no longer at home in the only home we actually have which is our own self.
And gradually we see that we really are not giving of our best to any one thing or person because we are rushing around so, from task to task and person to person. We are the most available people to everyone and for everything...but of no use to our own self, for, when we suddenly find ourselves in the stillness of the night face to face with our own self..our reality...what do we find?


We have to
  • be grateful for our life, our individual gifts, talents...
  • accept that we are who we are for a very specific, customized purpose...
  • protect our time...
  • spend time nourishing our soul...our inner life...
  • learn to be ourself and love being ourself...
  • remember that there is no need to copy anyone. We are, each one, a separate, distinct individual...We can change ourself, but not to become anyone else, but better copies of our own self...
  • work regular hours. If something is left over, leave it for the next round of fixed working hours; if it gets bad - well, it wasnt' meant to be and if it stays, then it was meant to get attended to...
  • read books, watch movies, walk in the rain...
  • pray...
  • switch off all devices at certain times of the day and reconnect to our core...
  • wear purple...Do whatever we want to...would love to do...pine to do...

Two centuries ago, Danish philosopher Kierkegaard lamented our greatest source of unhappiness — “Of all ridiculous things,” he wrote, “the most ridiculous seems to me, to be busy.”

18 May 2016

Profound words...

that popped up during my meditation reading: "Human trafficking is what happened to you. It's not who you are."

Substitute 'human trafficking' for anything - any action or words, too - that may have happened to make you feel insecure, scared, unsure, weighed down, deeply sad, anxious....something so unfair that happened to you to make you feel like this was the end of your road, that there is nothing more in life, that your life has been and is, in your eyes, futile, and that you don't see any change happening to make your life easier or more peaceful, or dare we say, happier...

Repeat - This is something that is happening TO me. It's not who I am. It's not who I believe I am, and it's not who I know myself to be. Then, force your mind back to one happy memory (or more) - stick to it and with it. You'll see that slowly, maybe, but surely, you will get back your centre of gravity and your focus...

Caution: the first set of feelings will not get displaced easily. In fact, they will keep trying to seep into your consciousness and into your heart. So, keep repeating the other set of words and they will finally totally displace what is hurtful and ruinous.

The good thing is that you feel strong....and get stronger...

16 May 2016

Some thoughts...

on Freedom.

Why Freedom? Because the answers to our inner quests, a feeling of relief from inner pain, and the desire to be just who we are, unapologetically (not crudely) lie in this one thing....freedom.

My search led me to what James Baldwin writes:

Freedom is not something that anybody can be given; freedom is something people take and people are as free as they want to be. One hasn’t got to have an enormous military machine in order to be un-free when it’s simpler to be asleep, when it’s simpler to be apathetic, when it’s simpler, in fact, not to want to be free, to think that something else is more important.

See, freedom has to be deeply and single-mindedly desired.....and then it has to be fiercely and diligently worked towards....

Not easy.

Easier to just blame fate.... Drift along with whatever tide one finds oneself in..... Think we are not important, and our lives are not worth a damn anyway..... Let others take all the decisions, make all the plans take all the initiatives....It's easier....

Why express our inner feelings which may lead to uncomfortable moments? Why come out of anaesthetized moments?

Because even one moment of real personal freedom would be worth it all.....

Baldwin says, 'One is only as free as one wants to be.' Though difficult to come by, and one has to work very hard - no, desperately hard - for every moment of freedom, I think....I believe it will be worth the effort....

And if you ask why freedom is so important, the answer ---- when you are hurting inside of yourself, when you feel dissatisfied with the way your life is going, when you feel trapped emotionally and psychologically ------ that is your soul wanting to be free.

13 May 2016

Continuing with the topic of aging...

Got some deadly advice from my DD yesterday. At 65, she said I should be caring a rat's ass about a lot of hitherto considered 'serious' issues and concentrating on being a total badass....

The rider is that I must first clean out the clutter in my head. Thich Nhat Hanh says: People have a hard time letting go of their suffering. Out of a fear of the unknown, they prefer suffering that is familiar. True. Debris from past hurts, words that put me down and raise the ugly head of insecurity, unanswered questions, doubts that have built up into fears, unsureness, due to my age, leading to regressive thoughts, thoughts that break me down, and modes of thinking that don't let me go on ahead or hold me back from trying to fight my fears and insecurities, conflicting, suffering-producing thoughts that end up pulling me down......all these have to go...have to be cleaned out.

Fantastically releasing..........and I intend to start cleaning up right now.....

(Secret: Not sure how it works, but I am definitely determined to learn. Starting with the delicious dream of becoming a total badass, I resolve to work towards making the dream a reality!!!!!! Now there's something to look forward to, right?!)

So, cheers to badasses and those on the way to becoming badasses!

11 May 2016

Reconciling...

with our aging bodies with grace is hard enough and needs a lot of will power, practice, positive thinking and Zen, but, what is definitely harder to do is to harmonize the external and the internal. You feel young on the inside - You hear music that makes your fingers snap to the beat and your feet itch to move - the whole of you wants to blend with the music and dance..but...... You see an outfit that looks and feels definitely you, and then it gradually dawns on you that you are the wrong size and the dress is clearly the wrong style for you..and so..... There's that yum mud pie just calling out to you..but..... and so it goes. You are absolutely young on the inside, but the outside doesn't match up.... This is the greatest conundrum for those of us who find ourselves on the wrong side of 50...60...70... And, this is where gentleness comes in. The reconciling has to be done not only with grace, but with gentleness...