Posted in Daily, Family and Society, Personal Musings, Quotes, Stories Around the World

Cleaning the House

With the season of spring soon approaching, it would be time to give the house a thorough clean up from top to bottom sorting out the old and the new, the torn and the goo as well as removing the dirty and useless articles. The entire act of “spring cleaning” takes time to bring in the final finish of being fresh, new and neat.

“The face is the mirror of the mind, and eyes without speaking confess the secrets of the heart.” St. Jerome

While many of us may engage in “cleaning the house” , few of us actually invovlve ourselves in the spiritual, mental and emotional cleaning. While these latter aspects are difficult to do and hence avoided, doing them would give us a fresher outlook on life.

“We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves.” Buddha

It is in these moments that I recall to mind, a story forwarded in my social network pages. It has been translated, yet the essence is “cleaning should be the best where it is the least visible”.

I remember how quite as a child I had first washed the floor in my grandmother’s village house. I had tried very hard and washed out till the boards shone in the sun. After I had completed, I had called my grandmother. Grandma came, looked and then silently went to the bed, raised the bedspread, which almost hung to the floor, knelt down and quietly called me. I walked over, sank down beside her and wondering, peering under the bed. There, among the fluffy clumps of dust and dried blades of grass, from a newly dried clover, lay my sock lost a couple of days ago.
“If you clean, always clean so that where it was not visible cleaner than anything! Good?” she asked softly.
– OK, Grandma.
Many years have passed since then and today there is no grandmother next to me. The village house is abandoned. But still, remembering my grandmother’s words, I often think of the “dark corners” of our souls and the “brilliant surfaces” of our lives, exposed. In those moments a quiet, gentle and strict voice as an audible, unearthly echo comes like my grandmother’s voice, “Well?”

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Posted in Christian, Family and Society, Life, Quotes, Reflections

After We Go

“What remains after us when we are gone? Will it be of bills, cars, apartments, houses or debts, loans, mortgages as a part of the physical aspects.” 

“What will be left after you when you are gone? Will it be memories of shortcomings, the unsaid “love”, grudges,  resentment, bitterness and pride. What will remain? Our creativity, our poems, our songs or will it be our indifference, our arrogance, our licentiousness or rumors laced with good fame or a thin reputation?”

“You make your mark by being true to who you are and letting that be your staple.”  Kat Graham

This question has seared our hearts and minds knowingly or unknowingly. For leaving a legacy behind is no easy feat. Besides requiring purpose, direction and effort; it also requires us to develop a sense of humanness to touch hearts as we journey on in life.

“What will our children say about us and what will our grandchildren remember?” For to leave behind treasured memories of love, kindness, forgiveness, laughter, vitality, hope, acceptance, generosity, sacrifice, respect, wisdom, humility, patience, faith; every day you need to ask yourself the question: “What will be left after me when I will not be?”

“All good men and women must take responsibility to create legacies that will take the next generation to a level we could only imagine.” Jim Rohn

Building a legacy doesn’t mean it is confined to family alone, but also encompasses shared memories in the minds and hearts of society, colleagues and neighbours. After our time in this world, we may not be able to carry out anything but only leave behind. While ancient civilizations practiced burying the remains with materials for after life; in reality we haven’t been able to provide scientific evidence of after life. Yet what we have is the words, actions and memories of today and yesterday for the future to know, remember and share. Wouldn’t it be better to do something today that tomorrow would treasure ? Above all, leaving behind a legacy would make our time, be it short or long; more fruitful besides being mentally, spiritually and emotionally satisfying and being content, happy and peaceful within.

“Carve your name on hearts, not tombstones. A legacy is etched into the minds of others and the stories they share about you.” Shannon L. Alder

 

Posted in Family and Society, Life, Personal Musings, Quotes, Work

Hearts That Support

“In the sweetness of friendship let there be laughter, and sharing of pleasures. For in the dew of little things the heart finds its morning and is refreshed.” Khalil Gibran

We all have our own crosses as well as ups and downs in life to bear. Despite the dark moments, we still manage to revive a bit of ourselves and get our footing back on track. In the process of getting up, unknowingly or known to us, we rely on select few who give us their support, strength and the courage to start again.

“I love those who can smile in trouble, who can gather strength from distress, and grow brave by reflection. ‘Tis the business of little minds to shrink, but they whose heart is firm, and whose conscience approves their conduct, will pursue their principles unto death.” Leonardo da Vinci

They give excuses for us, when we don’t explain ourselves. They accept our shortcomings and acknowledge the apologies that we give or turn a blind eye when we neglect to ask for pardon. At our worst, they lift us up, even if that means putting our priorities first by setting theirs aside. They don’t try to flag down when they fall or ask for attention on our busy or light days. They accept us for who we are. Yet what we often fail to realize is that, these hearts are few in number and tend to fail when untended for long.

When we rise up to stand, it would do well to remember these noble hearts for they are helped us to regain ground. For in the due course of time, when these good hearts give up on us; our skies will fail to clear up and darkness will linger on. A heart doesn’t turn need much to stay warm, just a little bit of love and kindness once in a while.

“Life is made up, not of great sacrifices or duties, but of little things, in which smiles and kindness, and small obligations given habitually, are what preserve the heart and secure comfort.” Humphry Davy

Posted in Christian, Daily, Family and Society, Stories Around the World

The Omnipresence of God

Modernization, technology, education and learning have been evolving over the years to the extent that the shades of grey have been frequently increasing, marring the areas of black and white significantly. For the present generation of children, the distinction between right and wrong isn’t easy. Very often they fail to understand what truth, Faith and true values of humanity encompasses. The easiest way to ensure that a child walks on the right path is to make him aware of the ever-loving presence of His Faith and above all, to know that God will guide him to know the difference between the right and the wrong.

“Mom, how to live in order to constantly feel God’s omnipresence? ..” one boy asked his mother,”I did not quite understand this lesson.”

“I will explain it to you this way,” the mother replied, “as I heard myself as a child. Listen! Live, my child, always as if you always see God before you.
Do not do anything that you would not like to have a witness to the Lord.
Do not say anything that you would not say out loud to God.
Do not write anything that you would be ashamed to show God.
Never go wherever you hope to see the Lord.
Do not read such a book, about which you would not want the Lord to ask: “Show me her.”
Never spend your time so that you can be afraid of the question: “What are you doing?” – or the words: “Shame on you!”

( Source: From the book of Archpriest Arseny Tsarevsky “Lessons on the law of God”)

Posted in Daily, Family and Society, Quotes, Reflections

Over Time

With the advent of technology and innovations, the old adage that “old is gold” doesn’t hold true in every scenario. For instance, the Internet Era and the World Wide Web have brought a hoard of information and data to our fingertips with its’ own share of pros and cons. The “gadget era” has revolutionized the art of cooking, communication and even decor.

Yet as we grow older, we discover certain things are like wine and cheese, antiques and fine art. The longer we treasure, maintain and nurture them, the more priceless they become. Human behaviour as well as relationships often fall into this category.

“If we take care of the moments, the years will take care of themselves.” Maria Edgeworth

Over time as we grow older, we begin to better understand silence, read between the lines and peek into the souls of people. It comes with experience to those who are open to life and learn from the lessons as well as situations that we encounter. Slowly we learn to appreciate time, memories and moments. We begin to approach life cautiously, slowly and with respect learning to speak soft, touch gently and embrace warmer. We learn to thaw the frozen hearts person with the warmth of our experiences. We would have learnt from the bitterness of loss and the joy of gaining, thereby helping us to understand the inner silence of others has we encounter.

“The greatest gift you can give someone is your time because when you give your time, you are giving a portion of your life that you will never get back.” Anonymous

Over time we learn to treasure and respect relationships. Turning aside flamboyance, superficiality and grandiosity and instead focusing on nurturing the kindness, respect, love and sincerity which become the main measures by which we choose our close circle. Over time as we become wiser, we discover the beauty of life to make our own niche into the world we were born into.

 

Posted in Daily, Family and Society, Life, Personal Musings, Quotes, Work

Penning the Gratitude

“Develop an attitude of gratitude and give thanks for everything that happens to you, knowing that every step forward is a step toward achieving something bigger and better than your current situation.” -Brian Tracy

The other day when I had received a “thank you” note, numerous emotions and thoughts had surfaced in my mind. One of the lost arts of modern living is the art of saying “thank you”. To be very honest, the frequency of my gratitude for favours, gifts and time spent with dear ones has been slowly dwindling. To an extent, we are all caught by the crazy melee of the daily hustle that life throws us in. Yet when we scrutinize and retrospect, we realize that time can be actually made when we really want something to be done.

“Appreciation can make a day, even change a life. Your willingness to put it all into words is all that is necessary.” -Margaret Cousins

It doesn’t take much to frequently write, text or forward a few lines to dear people that you love them. When there is time, the power of spoken words can balm the soul when tired, weak, drained or listless. We are all masters of our own time. To refer to the fact that we do not have time shows the misplacement of our priorities. It doesn’t take much time, just a few seconds to pen down a few words to our loved ones. It takes few seconds to jot down a few words of gratitude and hope to those who have brightened our day. Take time and write. It will not only please us but also spread the warmth around us as well within us. In these busy times, there are few dear people in our life that we can comfortably lean on and they need to be cherished. Even though we may start off late, infrequently and small, a few worded thoughts of kindness, love and gratitude a day can do wonders to all and can soon turn into a pleasant habit.

“Make it a habit to tell people thank you. To express your appreciation, sincerely and without the expectation of anything in return. Truly appreciate those around you, and you’ll soon find many others around you. Truly appreciate life and you’ll find that you have more of it.” -Ralph Marston

Posted in Family and Society, Life, Personal Musings, poetry

Approach of Dawn

“We went down into the silent garden. Dawn is the time when nothing breathes, the hour of silence. Everything is transfixed, only the light moves.” Leonora Carrington

One of the perks of being a morning lark or a really late owl is that we can see the marvels of nature, the break of dawn thereby giving the spark to start the day. Dawn as always been one of the points of focus for many ranging from scientists to poets, naturalists, hikers, photographers, artists and even children. The ole adage of “sleeping on our problems over the night and let everything make sense by the light of the morning”, makes sense especially when the light of the dawn chases away the bleakness of the night.

“Through the blackest night, morning gently tiptoes, feeling its way to dawn.” Robert Breault

 

If one has witnessed the breaking of colours in the sky, it would be a treasured memory to keep in the dark times. Dawn and dusk has been always the times where we can view with wonder as well as contemplate on one’s personal quest in our pages in the journey through life and time. To quote Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Every sunset brings the promise of a new dawn”. Through the early days of spring to the fresh snow of winter, the break of dawn will always be a source to renew one’s purpose and strengthen the resolve to make our existence in this world quite meaningful.

“Have you ever seen the dawn? Not a dawn groggy with lack of sleep or hectic with mindless obligations and you about to rush off on an early adventure or business, but full of deep silence and absolute clarity of perception? A dawning which you truly observe, degree by degree. It is the most amazing moment of birth. And more than anything it can spur you to action. Have a burning day.” Vera Nazarian

“Dawn comes to those who have seen darkness
In all its murderous majesty …
Who cried from someone else’s indifference,
But was not indifferent to anyone!

Dawn comes to those who were on the road,
Not knowing neither fatigue nor laziness.
Who, exhausted, fell to his knees,
But he rose, continued to walk …

And, clamping his will into fists,
Suddenly he found a chamomile field,
And, choking from aching pain,
Hid his palms in his petals!

To those who, having buried their dreams,
And, having remembered them, rushed on.
Who could among the betrayal and falsehood,
Do not lose spiritual purity!

Accidentally in the blue of the sky,
Suddenly the sunny doors will open.
Dawn comes to those who believe in the light.
Absurd, to the last. But he believed!
– Rus Svytaya

“Let every dawn be to you as the beginning of life, and every setting sun be to you as its close.” John Ruskin