Posted in Family and Society, Personal Musings, poetry

Mayhem, but Precious

“Children are not things to be molded, but are people to be unfolded.” Jess Lair

With holidays full on, travel not an option on the cards and work aplenty on the farm; little hands and feet join in. Watching them scatter the hay and the corn, uprooting the weeds, pulling the wheelbarrow along and to see the eager smiles and chatter, are all little things to treasure away in the memory bank.

True that there may be endless questions, incomplete tasks or not done the right way, but does that kind of perfection really matter. The latter thing, i.e. perfection matters at times, while on many other cases it doesn’t. Knowing which is which is an art by itself. Funny thing is that life will make sure we learn that either now or later, in hindsight.

Amidst all this, there are days when we wish for a little peace and quiet and we rush to our “quiet time”. But even so, it’s the pitter-patter, yelling, crying, chuckles and laughter that bring a life to the house. We need a little of that and this. When we chase behind either, things then get out of synchrony. Is it worth it ? After all no matter how lopsided or soggy the cake is, it the taste of love that fills our hearts, mind and soul.

“When I approach a child, he inspires in me two sentiments — tenderness for what he is and respect for what he may become.” Louis Pasteur

On Children

Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
Which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them,
But seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children
As living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
And He bends you with His might
That His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
So He loves also the bow that is stable.

Kahlil Gibran

Posted in Family and Society, Musique, Personal Musings, Reflections

As the Music Goes

Sitting cross legged and rummaging through the stack of boxes wasn’t an ideal way to spend the one hour break from “the work from home routine”, but it was a necessity, for the demand had risen up quite a few decibels. Oh yes, the search is for those Christmas CDs, not that the music player list is not saved on the desktop, but here’s something rustic and nostalgic in winding down with some good old carols and Christmas music, for both the young and the old. While many of the CDs by themselves carry a lot of memories, there’s a special feel to listening to the lyrics and preparing for the Christmas time.

“Here’s the gift of Christmas, the world at it’s best
We mustn’t forget why the gift of Christmas
Can help remind us remember the rest….”
(Lyrics from Dannii Minogue – The Gift Of Christmas )

Talking about the feel, the essence of Christmas lies in the selflessness of love and kindness. This is one season wherein the spirit of giving comes alive. Regrettable though is the reality that the “giving” doesn’t go beyond the last month of the present year, over to the next year. For some it may, but then it gets tempered down with time. Seeing the holiday season come to full effect, reminds one to go beyond the commercialization and celebrations and carry over the Christmas spirit within oneself. It may start with one small act, words or thoughts; but as the chain effect goes on, the ripples created will last through the ever-changing winds.

To be kind to the self and to those around us. For that is one of the best gifts to receive and pass on, the spirit of happiness to last through all the seasons of time. As the music and lyrics go, let these last couple of days of the year bring forth and keep alive the thoughts of humaneness and kindness all year round.

Posted in Christian, Daily, Family and Society, Personal Musings, poetry

“A”-Way we Go

With the sudden chill in the air, announcing the arrival of early winter showers; the sodden steps of the porch bore the evidence of the persistent rain overnight. Surprisingly the small backyard kitchen area wasn’t covered by wet pools; more likely that the winds of rain didn’t go that way. While wiping out the excess water from the porch steps; it brought to mind the directions that we go in our lives.

“It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.” E.E. Cummings

Different people, different lives and situations and of course, winds that blow in varying directions and at odd times. Comparing life to a ship a sea is a familiar analogy that even non-avid readers (or as mildly known as keen newspaper readers) are familiar with. As always the analogy states, it’s about the outcome of how we get to the other side or the destination. It is the captain who mans the ship and sets the sails or the motor in motion, steering it, to reach the shore safe.

Switching the focus into each of our ships that we are a part of, the facts lie in not just how we steers but also in who guides us and gives us the inner courage and the will to forge ahead. In other words, who gives us the peace and calmness to the mind, heart and soul within each of us. That is the answer that one always seeks for. While a part of it lies in His abundant Grace and His Love, another part of the answers is what makes us whole. A part of it is the emotion of love, humaneness and kindness that binds together as a family, a unit, as friends or neighbours or makes the network or own social circle a welcome place to be in. Into the last month of the year, finding the will to steer and prepare ourselves to write or start off another segments in the life that we live.

The Set of the Sails
by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

One ship drives east, and another west
With the self-same winds that blow;
‘Tis the set of the sails
And not the gales
That decides the way to go.

Like the winds of the sea are the ways of fate,
As they voyage along through life;
‘Tis the will of the soul
That decides its goal,
And not the calm or the strife.

Posted in Family and Society, Personal Musings, poetry

A Fine Regard

It was one of those evenings, wherein the dusk settles and the household has the chance to hear the proverbial pin drop. This happens not because all are busy on their media devices and accounts, neither the young nor the old; for each device has their own “fashionable noise”. This was one of those evenings, as all were gathered in the den, from a busy crochet pattern to reading the daily grind with the young ones engrossed in their creativity (surprisingly noiseless for a change). Evenings like these bring to mind, the days of my own childhood; devoid of all the “social fanfare, entertainment and modern knowledge of today”; though surprisingly rich in it’s own share of happy moments.

“We sit silently and watch the world around us. This has taken a lifetime to learn. It seems only the old are able to sit next to one another and not say anything and still feel content. The young, brash and impatient, must always break the silence. It is a waste, for silence is pure. Silence is holy. It draws people together because only those who are comfortable with each other can sit without speaking. This is the great paradox.” Nicholas Sparks ( from The Notebook)

Many a time, the quietness around us is what gives the balm to the restless soul or aching heart. The sooner we learn to stop and live in the moment; taking comfort in just being there and around, the more we get to add to the treasure trove of “good moments”.

Life is not always about being on the move or turning all the pages of the book at once. The gifts or even opportunities lie, in learning to savour the moments and just stop for a couple of seconds. As always known emptiness makes a lot of noise. Instead enrich it with the quiet moments scattered throughout the day. or scenes like “these quiet evenings” is what makes the soul through the passage of time.

Keeping Quiet
Pablo Neruda

Now we will count to twelve
and we will all keep still
for once on the face of the earth,
let’s not speak in any language;
let’s stop for a second,
and not move our arms so much.

It would be an exotic moment
without rush, without engines;
we would all be together
in a sudden strangeness.

Fishermen in the cold sea
would not harm whales
and the man gathering salt
would not look at his hurt hands.

Those who prepare green wars,
wars with gas, wars with fire,
victories with no survivors,
would put on clean clothes
and walk about with their brothers
in the shade, doing nothing.

What I want should not be confused
with total inactivity.

Life is what it is about;

I want no truck with death.
If we were not so single-minded
about keeping our lives moving,
and for once could do nothing,
perhaps a huge silence
might interrupt this sadness
of never understanding ourselves
and of threatening ourselves with death.
Perhaps the earth can teach us
as when everything seems dead
and later proves to be alive.

Now I’ll count up to twelve
and you keep quiet and I will go.

Posted in Personal Musings, Photography Art, Reflections, Stories Around the World

Seasons, Phases and Shades

“I don’t know what lies around the bend, but I’m going to believe that the best does.” Anne of Green Gables

While attending the biennial workshop held as a part of the company policy on updating their employees, many of us signed up mainly for the chance to visit another interesting place. In fact the venue itself was one of the appealing factors of this time’s workshop. Based on the recommendations of the previous city visitors (though it was three years old) we had decided to visit the local famous haunts. To our surprise, while most tourist places had stayed on(or even updated), some of the local popular places like the delis, square gardens as well as city walks had changed quite significantly.

While the entire week went in a whirlwind of various sessions, trips to the local areas, experimenting with new dishes; our experiences were a little different from the previous accounts we were told. Though our experiences were different, it was a lovely stay for the season we were in.

“Even seasonal situations can bring with them lessons that last a lifetime. If the love doesn’t last, it prepares you for the one that will.” Mandy Hale

Each of our days brings in a lot of scenes, flavours and experiences. Our own experiences may be seen in a different light by others. While one may have a good memory, the others may share a not so good or sad memory. To pass judgement too quickly based on a single happening would be to deprive oneself of the whole picture.

Each event or person has their own phases. While one phase mayn’t turn out to be well, it doesn’t mean that it is a lost cause. Instead give it some time, for then one would discover that things weren’t so bad but an interesting experience  seen so in the due course of time.

The Seasons of Life 
There was a man who had four sons. He wanted his sons to learn to not judge things too quickly. So he sent them each on a quest, in turn, to go and look at a pear tree that was a great distance away. The first son went in the winter, the second in the spring, the third in summer, and the youngest son in the fall. When they had all gone and come back, he called them together to describe what they had seen.

The first son said that the tree was ugly, bent, and twisted.
The second son said no – it was covered with green buds and full of promise.
The third son disagreed, he said it was laden with blossoms that smelled so sweet and looked so beautiful, it was the most graceful thing he had ever seen.
The last son disagreed with all of them; he said it was ripe and drooping with fruit, full of life and fulfilment.

The man then explained to his sons that they were all right, because they had each seen but one season in the tree’s life. He told them that you cannot judge a tree, or a person, by only one season, and that the essence of who they are – and the pleasure, joy, and love that come from that life – can only be measured at the end, when all the seasons are up. If you give up when it’s winter, you will miss the promise of your spring, the beauty of your summer, fulfillment of your fall. Don’t judge a life by one difficult season. Don’t let the pain of one season destroy the joy of all the rest.

Posted in Daily, Personal Musings, Quotes, Random Thoughts

Beyond the Wish

“It doesn’t matter who you are, where you come from. The ability to triumph begins with you. Always.” Oprah Winfrey

When an invitation for an evening performance of classical music and dance had landed in the mail, it perked my interest. One reason being that in the digital age, almost everything is through email or phone messaging applications. The second reason was that why the mail to the residential address. On reading the entire programme detials, the name of one the dancers being familiar lead to the call home. The confirmation of the details came as a shocker. Yes, my fifty plus year old cousin who runs a boutique, children at university has decided to fulfill her childhood dream of performing a classical dance. The entire preparation was kept as a surprise.

“When you’re not sure if you’re following the right path, when you’ve been knocked down a few too many times, it’s completely fine to get discouraged, hell even defeated. What’s not okay is to stop.” Gary John Bishop

Age never as a limit on our dreams, neither has time. During childhood, all of us may have wanted to do that one art or hobby; but were constrained by limitations of time, academics, co-curricular or other priorities. Yet as the age matures and responsibilities change, it is up to one self to make he cherished dreams or desires happen, if feasible. It takes courage to do something new, especially when the world around as well as society put plenty of tags and labels. The truth is it all lies in oneself. If had wanted to do something with great desire from within, follow up on that dream and make it happen. For one can never be too late to fulfill own dreams, no matter how much the time or the age flies.

“For what it’s worth: it’s never too late or, in my case, too early to be whoever you want to be. There’s no time limit, stop whenever you want. You can change or stay the same, there are no rules to this thing. We can make the best or the worst of it. I hope you make the best of it. And I hope you see things that startle you. I hope you feel things you never felt before. I hope you meet people with a different point of view. I hope you live a life you’re proud of. If you find that you’re not, I hope you have the courage to start all over again.” Francis Scott Fitzgerald

Posted in Daily, Reflections, Stories Around the World, Work

Merge the Angles

“An ant can’t define shape of an elephant solely from its’ point of view. They have to unify all views. It’s a way for ant to understand elephant. In order to understand true realities, men need to do mental blending.” Toba Beta

Prior to starting off another major project, there was the brain-storming session in the office. As the ideas got exchanged, details considered and outcomes were contemplated; there were open disagreements on whether the said plan would work out. Although the fist fight had never happened, the flurried exchange of words was close to a verbal war. Eventually the project details were finalized and set in motion, though the entire discourse reminded one of the importance of bringing the different viewpoints together to bring a consensus to the decision.

“The most fatal illusion is the settled point of view. Since life is growth and motion, a fixed point of view kills anybody who has one.” Brooks Atkinson

Starting from elementary school, there would have been many similar scenarios wherein a squabble breaks out on who is right. The hard part is when both arguing parties are right but not in entirety. That is when reaching the middle ground is important. Finding a consensus and appreciating the other viewpoint teaches one that each person has their different set of experiences. These differences tracks help to bring out the common goal when different views are contemplated and merged together with the understanding that each perspective is important in its own right. As the different notes get harmonized, only then the play can be set to music. Life is never made of a single angle or plane, but an amalgam of varied panorama, angles and slants. Unless viewed as a whole, each of us may miss out on the compete picture.

“We don’t get harmony when everybody sings the same note. Only notes that are different can harmonize. The same is true with people.” Steve Goodier

When I was in elementary school, I got into a major argument with a boy in my class. I have forgotten what the argument was about, but I have never forgotten the lesson I learned that day. I was convinced that “I” was right and “he” was wrong – and he was just as convinced that “I” was wrong and “he” was right. The teacher decided to teach us a very important lesson.
She brought us up to the front of the class and placed him on one side of her desk and me on the other. In the middle of her desk was a large, round object. I could clearly see that it was black. She asked the boy what color the object was. “White,” he answered. I couldn’t believe he said the object was white, when it was obviously black! Another argument started between my classmate and me, this time about the color of the object. The teacher told me to go stand where the boy was standing and told him to come stand where I had been. We changed places, and now she asked me what the color of the object was. I had to answer, “White.”
It was an object with two differently colored sides, and from his viewpoint it was white. Only from my side it was black.
Sometimes we need to look at the problem from the other person’s view in order to truly understand his/her perspective.
Author Unknown
(Source:vk.com)