Posted in Daily, Family and Society, poetry, Reflections

From One Candle

“Those candle flames were like the lives of men. So fragile. So deadly. Left alone, they lit and warmed. Let run rampant, they would destroy the very things they were meant to illuminate. Embryonic bonfires, each bearing a seed of destruction so potent it could tumble cities and dash kings to their knees.” Brandon Sanderson

With constant power outages in the midst of the heavy rains (the latter being an affirmation of the monsoon season getting into it’s full swing); light and electricity, the essentials for daily living are often more “drained out” than available. Which is why, the alternative measures, ranging from generators to inverters, emergency lanterns and the like are made available to continue the daily life, uninterrupted, hassle free and comfortable, be it home, neighbourhood, office or an institute. Yet when the alternatives too run out after continuous long hours or even days of power outages, the two essentials to fall back on are the “sun-rays” and the “candle”. No matter how technologically advanced one becomes, at the end of the night, it’s the candle that throws some light; especially during power outages.

“Look at how a single candle can both defy and define the darkness.” Anne Frank

The fascination in watching the flames of the candle flicker never dies out with time. The light as well as the direction of the flame, the shadow and patterns it casts are few of the many reasons why candles are still around. Most is the warmth reflected by a candle. At times, candles remind one of people in general. The spread of warmth and sharing of light makes the most aloof person glow and lights up the inner happiness. At the same time, when misused, lit wrong or without proper safety measures and precautions, candles have the capacity to light ablaze destroying everything in the process. The potential and power of a candle, like people, can never be underestimated. The more one grows optimism and love within; the more light is shared and like candles; warmth, happiness and joy is spread about. Even if one candle is lit, it can make a big difference in the world around it.

“Each time a person passes by you and you say ‘hello’, imagine that person turning into a candle. The more positivity, love and light you reflect, the more light is mirrored your way. Sharing beautiful hellos is the quickest way to earn spiritual brownie points. You should start seeing hellos as small declarations of faith. Every time you say hello to a stranger, your heart acknowledges over and over again that we are all family.” Suzy Kassem

And People Went Out Like Candles

Sometimes, there is a longing in the evening,
But there is no soul near …
So people went out like candles …
They broke like pencils …

And they need just a little –
Support without prickly phrases,
Love is sensitive and trust in God …
And compassion for kind eyes …

Heartbreak was not noticed …
We are in a hurry about our business …
And people went out like candles …
They broke like pencils …

We do not need advice,
When longing is in the soul …
We need a drop of light in our heart,
When there is a hand in our hand …

A meeting with a loved one –
Saving the human soul …
People shone like candles …
They sharpened like pencils …

-Irina Samarin-Labyrinth
(Translated to English. Source: vk.com)

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Posted in Christian, Daily, Family and Society, Musique, Reflections, Uncategorized

Through Uncertain Times

“Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God.” Corrie Ten Boom

As I was stacking up the old newspapers for recycling; amidst them was last year’s calendar. With the accompanying monthly pictures being beautiful, I hadn’t discarded it but kept it aside to cut them out. With the pending task being accomplished, I leafed through the months and the tiny notes along the dates. “School reopening”, doctors’ appointment, “sports’ dates”, local functions aref ew of the many red or green inked circles that were scattered through the year.

“For who is God except the Lord? Who but our God is a solid rock? God is my strong fortress, and he makes my way perfect.” 2 Samuel 22:33

Looking back, I felt blessed by His Grace and the countless ways He had kept watch over us and the daily happenings. At times, the feeling of wonder strikes as one realizes long after the difficult situations were over, how God had stood over our lives, guiding us with His Hand and by His Word. The relocation to a new place of work, new school year, family weddings and many more; all the big events within the family were felt big and difficult in those days; but went smooth largely due to His Grace and Blessings.

“I have held many things in my hands, and I have lost them all; but whatever I have placed in God’s hands, that I still possess.” Martin Luther

Many a time, some of the changes in life may be forced. An unforeseen work related transfer, opportunity to pursue higher studies, ill health and the like. Though decisions are made, they mayn’t work out. Yet once we place it in His Hands and be prepared to do things as they come; then things start falling into place and happening at the right time. Eventually when the obstacle had been crossed, one realizes the true magnificence of His Grace, His Power and His Love. Man being man mayn’t foresee many things. How much more better it would be ], when we put everything in His Hands, put in our efforts and await His Will to show us the way.

“And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together.” Colossians 1:17

“….I am one of those who are determined to go to the end.
I will not slow down the pace, I will not look back, but I will praise Christ.
I will not give up, do not shut up,
Do not weaken and do not burn.
I will not finish praying, with Christ I stand.

I am one of those who firmly decided to go to the end.
I can not stop, do not buy, do not hold.
And when He comes to pick up his own, he will recognize me,
Because I am one of those who have come to the end.

And if the salt loses its power that will replace it?
And lit a candle, do not put it under a vessel.
Here I am before You, use me for Your glory
On earth, Jesus, let Thy will be done

Olga Yatsenko ( few lines of Poetry/lyrics of “Till the End”, translated to English)

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

The “Changed Faces”

If you were deceived by life,
Don’t feel dismal, don’t get mad!
Be at ease and don’t feel sad:
The days of joy will soon arrive!
The heart can’t wait for this to pass;
The present is depressing here:
All is fleeting rather fast;
That which passes will be dear.
-Alexander Pushkin (1825)

Change in life, happens like water; more so when people are involved. The continuous flow of water or the sudden gush with or without a block in the regular course; taking the shape of the vessel it belongs to and tasteless but blending its flavours from the source till the other end; the nature of people runs along similar lines. Especially the latter, which maybe as predictable as the flow and nature of water or even the wind.

“It happens to everyone as they grow up. You find out who you are and what you want, and then you realize that people you’ve known forever don’t see things the way you do. So you keep the wonderful memories, but find yourself moving on.” Nicholas Sparks

Reviewing across the various phases in life, many of us may have encountered at some point of time or other, people who were once close acquaintances become distant or avoidant; or the ones who were “less friendly” stepping in with a helping hand or forging new bonds in the later years. Such is the nature of man in general. People change, so do perspectives and perceptions. While for some the fault may be ours or on the other side; sometimes the distance may just happen. Bridging the gap maybe too late; at times a non achievable feat, no matter how much one may try.

“When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.” Victor Frankl

As the “faces” change, one of the hardest part is accepting the “blow”, while at the same time, trying one’s best to not bear deep seated grudges or hatred within. Being human, feeling hate, regret, disappointment among the many emotions is normal and natural. Yet staying in the same rut or frame of mind will prove detrimental in the short as well as the long run. People will change, each of us will be subject to change in our lives. Few times we may be at the receiving end of “changed faces”, while other times we may at the “giving” end. No matter how the “changing faces” maybe; moving on in the right manner is what matters the most. For life with her lessons, gives us memories and moments to cherish, learn from as well as mature for the better tomorrow.

“You collect people to take with you. Some people change, other people don’t… it’s wonderful because I’ve met some incredible friends.” Imogen Poots

Posted in Christian, Daily, Life, Personal Musings, poetry

Thy Will be Done

“Make me to know your ways, O Lord; teach me your paths. Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all the day long. He leads the humble in what is right, and teaches the humble his way.” (Psalm 25:4—5,9)

Following the principles of the Christian Faith, family prayer is an essential part of the daily life. On praying aloud with children in the family; for a toddler to understand elaborate words may be difficult. For the little ones, to comprehend the concept of Christ and His Sacrifice may be difficult, but they deeply feel the love of God and His Kindness. On reading passages from the Bible, they’re engaged in the story and the events that unfolded. Yet while praying together, keeping it short and simple is easy for them to learn and understand the essence of Christian Faith.

“Whoever gives thought to the word will discover good, and blessed is he who trusts in the LORD.” (Proverbs 16:20)

While teaching the little ones to pray before they sleep, the Love of Christ, God’s Grace as well as the protection of the Holy Spirit is said as a part of their prayers. however complete submission to God’s Will and His Role in the Christian need not be echoed by elaborate words but as simple words as , “Lord let it all be as by thy Will”. Prayer from the heart doesn’t demand nor does it ask for concessions. To pray from the heart with complete surrender putting their worries into His Hands, repenting for the wrongs, trusting His Will and His immense Grace to make things go as per His Plan, is not easy to practise; yet much is the power of true prayer.

“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”(1 Thessalonians 5:16–18)

God, Here Is Bill

Simple and poor
The old negro prayed to God.
Husky bass he firmer
Only three words. “God, here, Bill,”

Pastor John with him for a long time struggled
to pray he studied,
to a beautiful saying,
Not just:. “God, here Bill”

Negro hours on his knees
slalom Creator Thanksgiving
but prayer is offered
as succinctly: “God, here, Bill,”

His life has come to a close,
and in the hospital room
he for the poor hit.
Pastor John to it went.

But once it was clear
that the empty bunk Bill.
the pastor politely asked
patients: “And where is Bill?”

The whole hospital room,
Quietly embraced with joy,
Bloomed like a May garden.
And the patient said:

“Oh, Bill, our saint, believe me.
In the morning, before the death
of Tycho, the last effort
to pray,” God, here, Bill. “

The entire chamber followed by
illuminating the bright light
as if the angelic palace.
From the Sky, a voice: “Bill, God is here.”

The pastor fell to his knees,
To praise the Creator,
But he managed to say
only three words: “God, John is here.”
-Vladimir Artemyev

(Translated to English, Source:vk.com)

“…….. your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” (Matthew 6:10)

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

Amidst the “Dark Clouds”

“Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky.” Rabindranath Tagore

With summer skies slowly fading away to the rains, the time for quiet reflections indoors when “the pitter-patter” of rain starts outside. Add to it the melee of children and keeping them occupied indoors is no easy task. With the rains on full swing, the childhood memories of making paper boats, splashing into puddles, getting wet as well as schools getting cancelled due to the downpour were the routine that comes to mind.

“And when it rains on your parade, look up rather than down. Without the rain, there would be no rainbow.” Gilbert K. Chesterton

Fast forward to the present day, for the “adult” rains bring forth an inner dread. Although the smell of fresh earth haunts the adult mind and memories, it is buried under the hassles of getting to work on time, the commute and the traffic, the dirty marks on the kitchen floors, clothes perpetually wet and children mud stained; rains although are necessary for the fields and crops, the adult mind prays only for a healthy dose for a short time. What the “adult” fails to realise is that, perspectives do matter. Rains can be made a hassle or as fun depending on how one blends it into one’s framework of mind.

“Into each life some rain must fall.” Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

For happiness to be squelched, there are innumerable things. On the other hand, in the same scenario and same situation, change of one’s attitude, approach and perspective makes all the difference in finding happiness, losing the stress and being at peace. One needs a bit of everything in life to enjoy, a bit of rain and summer skies, a little of cold winds and snow as well as the essence of spring time air. Same is the case with joys, sorrows, happiness, failures and success. Staying on the same page, time frame or waves of success brings no challenge or sense of accomplishment and contentment in the day. To find the happiness; experiences of joys, fear, trouble, success, sorrows, kindness, love as well as failure help us appreciate the good and best things that life, time and memories wash up onto our shores.

“Life is full of beauty. Notice it. Notice the bumble bee, the small child, and the smiling faces. Smell the rain, and feel the wind. Live your life to the fullest potential, and fight for your dreams.” Ashley Smith

There is the silly elation,
The garden the windows look on!
Soundless sunset reflection
Swims in the pool, like a swan.

Greetings, golden serenity,
Shadows of trees, black as tar!
Crows on the roof, in sincerity,
Hold vespers in praise of the star.

Timidly over the garden
Where the guelder- rose springs,
A girl in a snow white garment
A beautiful melody sings.

Like a blue gown
Cold from the meadow sweeps …
Happiness, sweet silly feeling!
Virginal blush of the cheeks!

Sergey Yesenin (1918)

“Sometimes we should express our gratitude for the small and simple things like the scent of the rain, the taste of your favorite food, or the sound of a loved one’s voice.” Joseph B. Wirthlin

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

Power of the “Little Things”

“Success in life is founded upon attention to the small things rather than to the large things; to the every day things nearest to us rather than to the things that are remote and uncommon.” Booker T. Washington

Of the many attributes that binds man, family, friends, community and neighbourhood in general, is the art of paying attention. Simply put, the secret of happiness, love, respect and kindness have a common subset of “attention”.

“Give whatever you are doing and whoever you are with the gift of your attention.” Jim Rohn

Excellence at work or the chosen field, lies in the art of doing it well and as per the targets or goals set. All this would be void without due attention being paid to each and every aspect.

Time spent for family and children can be sought only when attention is paid to what may seem trifle things, but can make the daily grind seem lighter. For instance, putting the breakfast dishes in the sink, putting toys on the play corner only, soiled clothes in the cloth basket (not on the floor) may seem trivial, but when done properly echoes to the other person that one does care.

Patiently listening to a colleague’s woes. Forgotten calls replied when possible. Due help given whenever possible, especially when requested. Being around for hospital visits with parents, as they grow old. Though these may seem trivial at that moment; for the other person it means big.

“Attention is vitality. It connects you with others. It makes you eager. Stay eager.” Susan Sontag

As far as family, friends and loved ones go; actions do speak louder than words. The essence of love, respect and kindness isn’t reflected in the big things, but the small things of life, that really matter the most. To seek happiness of home, family, friends or community is in the individual minutes of small, quickly forgettable pleasures of a hugs, smiles, kind look, heartfelt compliment and countless small, but kind thoughts and sincere feelings, all arising when one pays due attention to those who around them. Love, kindness, joy and peace also need their daily bread.

“I love you” in the family vocabulary.
Sounds in other kind words:
“I will hang the linen myself on the balcony”,
“Let’s go on a holiday to the dacha to mother”.

“Cool, dress warmly”,
“Let the angels lead you everywhere”,
“Didn’t work out this time? Come on bolder!”,
“Get some sleep, I will wash the dishes in a flash”.

We sometimes do not notice much, The
most important thing is not grasping the essence,
With honeyed tea served in bed,
“I love” and the native people say.

Inna Kucherova (Translated to English)

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

Effect of a Smile

“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

After work , one longs to put their feet up, shift the day’s tune and just delve into a different frame of the mind. In a home with kids and family, doing so may be little difficult. Very often, when stepping into the house or picking up kids from their different activities, one longs for some quiet. Yet a child’s smile changes everything and puts the mood into a different beat and rhythm. On seeing the smile of a toddler, one is reminded of the little joys and happiness in life as well as how precious that little action is. A smile indeed can change the world.

“Nobody needs a smile so much as the one who has none to give. So get used to smiling heart-warming smiles, and you will spread sunshine in a sometimes dreary world.” Lawrence G. Lovasik

A difficult day. Smile and the mood shifts, solutions crop up and the stress fades.

When facing mental hurdles. Smile and hand over the stress into His Hands.

Plagued by worry, doubt, insecurities and impatience. Smile to let go and embrace the present, facing each day by the hour, minute and seconds as they come by. Smile, lift up the inner spirit, stay strong and strive.

“Children show me in their playful smiles the divine in everyone. This simple goodness shines straight from their hearts and only asks to be loved.” Michael Jackson

The only rule to follow when one smiles; is to smile from the heart, honest, sincere and warm. Smile with hidden intent, plastic kind or while harbouring ill, does more harm to the “doer” than the receiver. Smile like a child from within to stay happy, calm and at peace.

The Smile

There is a Smile of Love
And there is a Smile of Deceit
And there is a Smile of Smiles
In which these two Smiles meet

And there is a Frown of Hate
And there is a Frown of disdain
And there is a Frown of Frowns
Which you strive to forget in vain

For it sticks in the Hearts deep Core
And it sticks in the deep Back bone
And no Smile that ever was smild
But only one Smile alone

That betwixt the Cradle & Grave
It only once Smild can be
But when it once is Smild
Theres an end to all Misery

– William Blake

“I’m a firm believer in smiles. I used to believe that everything had to be a belly laugh. But I’ve come to realize that a real sincere smile is mighty powerful.” Roy Clark