Posts Tagged With: world

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Categories: mind, my, philosophy, suggestions | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

What is so wrong with “conveniences”?

I didn’t see a better example for something that was running in my mind for many months, what can be so wrong with a cuttable kitchen-ready coconut? 

cuttable kitchen-ready coconutNo, there is nothing wrong with the coconut or the business model that made it ready for the kitchen. You don’t have to worry about breaking it, no hassle with the safety of your fingers, right?

But the problem is its too much of a convenience.  At the cost of what? They cut the coconut in two halves and then drained the actual tasty water that was inside (probably there was another business around bottled coconut water).  Then they sealed the two halves with a hard ‘wax’ after filling the space with distilled water and some air. That water is labelled ‘undrinkable’ and you have to drain it after “cutting your coconut” into two nice pieces with a normal kitchen knife.

So far, so good. If you want a coconut along with its natural refreshing water, then buy a normal coconut and break it yourself.  Or if you want the convenience and pleasure of cutting it with a normal knife, then buy this.

I thought a ‘convenience’ is something that makes my life easy. The ‘cost’ I am paying in return, often goes into fine print and I was made to conveniently miss it.

There are tons of such conveniences in our every day life and we are silently paying a price. Our lives were just good without any of these conveniences but we chose them, we pay a price and we miss something in the process, something natural, something good.

Don’t jump into any conclusions yet, but lemme give you few more examples:

  1. We were walking, cycling or taking a public transport to go to a workplace or a museum etc, but now with the transport ‘conveniences’, we go there by a car. Lets not talk about congestion, pollution and global warming now, NOT YET.
  2. We were buying fresh vegetables, or grow them in backyard, or store them for a short period of time, but with all the storage ‘conveniences’, you hardly eat fresh vegetables but just keep them in refrigerator for a very long time, I have seen people frequently throwing away rotten veggies and spoiled meats, almost every week. Lets not talk about the cost of growing and the cumulative loss now, NOT YET.
  3. Many of the families have even given up cooking as a daily activity, with the advent of all cuisine ‘conveniences’, that they just eat out every day.. almost every day. I can’t even imagine myself in their shoes but lets not talk about MSDs, health hazards, carcinogenic preservatives used in restaurants and their lethal impact now, NOT YET.
  4. We were playing outdoor games on a daily basis or spending lot of time outdoors otherwise, but with all the living room ‘conveniences’, we are stuck to TV, I mean your every day entertainment whatever it is.  Tell me what is used more frequently? Your TV or your treadmill? Be frank.
  5. We used to remember by heart, at least 20 phone numbers, another 20 full postal addresses, at least 200 names of people in every day life, people at the vegetable market, grocery store, bus conductors, autowallahs and who not? And the thousands of interactions it triggered, hudreds of relationships and tens of friends. But with all the electronic ‘conveniences’, we hardly remember 2 phone numbers. We don’t go out for shopping groceries, clothes, books at all. The e-commerce is slowly taking it away and yes, there is a ‘one-click’ ordering convenience too. Lets not talk about how many businesses are shutting down in your local area now and the wonderful personal moments you missed just like that, NOT YET. 
  6. We used to go out with different kinds of people and when a true difference came up, we fought, we patched up and then we moved on. We lived a 100 years together in spite of all our differences. But with the advent of friendship ‘conveniences’, you go out with like-minded people. you cut down your risk of getting into a difference. Lets not talk about how you just screwed your mind into a comfy-zone and forever denied it an opportunity to evolve, and thereby run into relationship issues later, NOT YET.

In fact, this list is endless. I don’t want to sound ridiculous or unwelcoming of the modern day changes or the techy pleasantries we enjoy having accustomed to live with.

But I want you to consciously look out and understand the price you are paying for the convenience you are claiming. I am sure it will change your life and lifestyle. 

Thanks for reading.

B

Categories: analysis, entertainment, friends, fun, health, home, life, my, suggestions, urban, world | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Elephant and your friends

[transcript]

hello everyone.. i want to tell you all a small story.. I am sure you know this one but I am just making a funny tricky conclusion in the end that might help us all..
It goes like this: Once upon a time, there were 3 blind men who wanted to go check how an elephant looks like.. They took the permission of the mahout and went ahead to touch it..
The first man who was touching the trunk of the elephant said that the elephant looks like a fat rugged water pipe..
the second man was at the legs and he said the elephant looks like a big pillar with rough surface..
the third man was at the tail and he said the elephant looks like snake with a hairy head…
then they all went home happy and yelling at each other about their new victory of knowing what an elephant is..
So how this story relates to our day-to-day life is that we make all assumptions about the other people around us without fully understanding their complete personalities.. We don’t have time to go through our neighbor’s or a colleague’s entire life, his experiences, his burnouts, his failures, his skill set, and his positives, negatives etc.. we just make opinions and we live happily within our own shell.. On top of it all, we have people who help us make opinions about others.. I will talk about them separately..

In the end, I think this is all wrong.. we shouldn’t be doing it.. right? So, lets open our eyes to this beautiful world and stop being a blind man who defines the elephant with his hands..
I hope you liked the story and the message at the end.. Lemme know .. bye bye.

[/transcript]

thanks for listening.

/balu

Categories: experiments, friends, life, mind, my, philosophy, suggestions, world | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

reading habit :: how it influenced the wolves and swans inside me

shell ganesha

In this pic, some see God and some an animal shell but I see an Imagination, a power of thought that transformed a shell into God who then was placed on this pedestal and revered everyday

I was a bad guy many years back, unimaginably bad. I was lonely by force & then by will. I was rude whenever the world interacted with me. I reveled in barbarian hierarchies and activities. I believed bruteforce could be a sure-shot solution for anything and everything. I never had a formal guru in my life.  I thought all that was spoken to me was truth. At one point of time, no one was talking good stuff and everyone around me was a mere mortal and almost all my friends were pre-occupied with the very common chores of daily life.  Together we all believed in flesh & muscle. 

But prior to that, there was one good thing that already happened to me by Divine Providence. I was born into a family of teachers and all my elders, though normal, were knowledgeably elite and believed its the ‘reading habit’ that can evolve one’s soul.  Its now clear to me that they intentionally provided me with lots and lots of books. As a child I grew up devouring tens of books every month, first they were just baby stories, later mythological and slowly the wisdom books, philosophies, biographies, magazines, newspapers, mysteries, fiction then what not, as I grew. I was not leaving unread even a paper piece that flew to me in a public park. That habit immensely improved my capacity to imagine. I could just close my eyes and see a whole new world in front of me. My teenage dreams were more vivid and colorful every passing day and I used to have saints, kings, queens and brave soldiers frequenting my sleepy realms. Animals and birds were talking to me  and levitation was a common practice. I often had dreams which were sequential, that they end at one point this day and continue from the very point later the next week. Each dream was so involving, that I maintained a diary to write up my dreams as soon as I wake up. An intense desire to record all tiny details but the fear of losing them made me sometimes write blindly in the diary without even opening my eyes, without even waking up from my bed.

Later, as fate would have it, I lost my family and was drawn into a different world of wildly beasts. As fragile and vulnerable a mind in its late teens could be but with enormous imaginative skills and with a huge cerebral bed of vast bookish knowledge, I ventured into a contrasting world of pure muscle power… None of the books I read till that date were holding true.  Not a single verse I read till then was helping me confront the hard reality.  I was all alone fighting and I started failing to imagine something that is not hungry, not rude, not brutal.  But the reading part never subsided and I indulged in stuff that kept me going.. stories that talk of beastly achievements, the folklores of brunt killings.. the hard triumphing over the soft.. dragons and draculas, blood and gory tales.. oh! it is in this phase, that I later realized there are more narrations in this world to divert a mind completely to a wrong point than the right one. So, in this phase, like the stuff i was reading and was living, I also reached the nadir of my fall too as a person.

I then started realizing that my biggest problem was not anyone else but my own self. One divine day, when realization dawned on me, I abruptly left all the dungeons behind and decided to fly away to distant places where there is abundant light and where there is knowledge. I have flown so hard that I was out of breath but the dark seas below kept me going, I was out of energy but the silver shores kept me inspired,  I was out of money but the musty smell of books pushed me forward.  Yes, I stand where I am because I have decided to come back by ‘reading’.. I did my Post Graduation that gave me new opportunities, it may sound more academic, but behind the scenes, it was my habit that changed my life back to better shapes again.  And of course, the invaluable people who pour life into you and show you direction. 

Now, standing here, I believe in the power of mind than the muscle. I still have a few issues with myself even today.. but I started shedding all that is bad and I stand a much cleaner person now. I attribute all this to those wonderful books I read:

Some books, you have to read early in life..
Some others, you have to read again when you are old…
And some more, you have to read once every decade and see how different they are to read again..

But the morale of the story is that you have to be ‘reading’ all the time.. and constantly try to implement the good stuff you learnt, flounder in your efforts, make mistakes, become a fool, go back to your books, reread and try again.. all this in cycles all your life.. 🙂 

Nowadays there are many authors who spew venom in the form of refined words than writing something in a neutral way.. we should be choosy in what we read or at least be able to discern good from bad. But, falling back to the ancient wisdom is always safer.  ‘The Holy Gita’ is a management master piece, before the commercial TV channel publicized it. Every time I read a page from this spiritual epitome, I wonder how magnificent the verse and meaning are. I believe ‘The Holy Bible’ has an answer for everything. I keep reading excerpts from ‘The Holy Quran’ that describe the subtlest beautifies in living a fruitful life. And to the innumerable scripts out there, its only for the reader to pick them up and change his own life. We as a modern civilization is not giving due respect to the ancient wisdom and truly missing the essence that is already available condensed, there by continue to wait for answers when life makes it complex.  May be its time we encourage each other, every family member and all our friends to go back to this wonderful habit of ‘reading’… say one hour a day? Read whatever you want but remember ‘you are what you read‘ 🙂

I still have the wolves inside me run in Brownian motion.. and the swans graciously moving in peaceful waters on the other side.. But there is one thing in common to both of them… ‘reading’. And I picked up the ‘Autobiography of a Yogi’ for the third time and its a different book than what I read a decade ago. 

thanks for coming here and patiently reading it all,
/balu

Categories: analysis, life, me, mind, reading, suggestions, world | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

5 most important reasons for starting your own blog and start writing!

A 200-year old love letter that I once asked my friend-and-love-guru to proof read and to analyze the hand-writing.. Try reading his comments.

A 200-year old love letter that I once asked my friend-and-love-guru to proof read and to analyze the hand-writing.. Try reading his comments.

Writing is a cursed bliss, I say.

My writings are like my memories. To relive a memory, world has so many things to help you, like photos, videos, people, places etc.. But there is no such help for writing. You can’t remember a writing unless you write it.  To actually ‘write’ something, I have to do it immediately when I feel like writing it.. I can’t write the same piece in the same manner if I miss the moment. Its just like missing that key moment of taking a photo.  I don’t have anything to help me continue writing in the same nerve/vigor once i stop it.. That’s why I say its cursed, but yes its bliss… Try writing something and see it in a shape.. you will understand what I am saying.

But Ok! why should you write?

  1. For all the billions of people in this world, there are only few who can ‘write’, whatever crap they write, of course.  But everything written is important. No? Who knows?
  2. Just like your camera gives you pleasure taking the pictures you want, ‘writing’ too gives so much pleasure along with a sense of accomplishment, fulfillment and a possible word of appreciation and perhaps a rare pat-on-the-back… Just like that one pic out of the hundreds you took, which can never be replaced/compared with anything else in this world.
  3. If you look back at an old post, its as much pleasure like looking at an old picture, or may be more. Because there will be words that explain so many emotions you were going through, at that particular point of  time.
  4. It makes you predictable. Trust me, this world likes what is predictable.
  5. It tells the world who you are. It explains what you think of something or anything. It announces your likes, dislikes, passions, pains and what not. It makes you an open book for the world to come in and know you better.  Don’t expect the whole world to read your blog though, but the ‘few’ friends you make when they read it, they bond so tightly and are invaluable in your life.

That’s all the 5 most important reasons I believe should get you started with a blog today.

Don’t you agree with me?  Please feel free to let me know and the ‘comments’ section is all yours 🙂

Thanks for reading,

/balu

Categories: me, online-life, reading, writing | Tags: , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

haha! pity! pity! world!

Guard your mind

Guard your mind

 
I can only pity them..

who earn money that they don’t spend…
who spend time that they don’t earn..
who live life that they don’t value..
and who value things that they don’t live.. 

🙂

thanks for coming here, you pl do the same.
/balu

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Categories: life, me, mind, money, world | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Which is the best Charity Organization to donate my money?

you first start, boy!

you first start, boy!

I see many people asking this question when they want to start donating a small portion of their income. It also brings up so many other questions like:

  • Where is my money going?
  • Would I get the Financial Statements of the organization?
  • Details of money spent on the cause in terms of Actuals Vs Administration
  • Tax Benefits

.. and the list can literally grow very long.

There are of course, huge number of NGOs, Individuals and informal Groups that are engaged in the service of humanity, trying to address/resolve many generic/specific, regional/global issues. Its easy to get lost, trying to finalize one among them. Its common to get confused over their intentions, actual field performance, garnering/analyzing true impact etc.

But what frustrates me is this question becoming a deterrent to actually start contributing in the first place.  I am tired of people giving this as an excuse. It just sounds lame.  They are killing their own spirits. They are banishing their own love of humankind. So, which is the best Organization to donate your money?

The first one that comes to you convincing.. or the first one that you found good enough.. FIRST.. START… SMALL.

First get started. First start doing something small and then think of this question. Its OK if you get cheated a few times. Its fine if you find some miscommunication. Its completely alright if you find that organization not good ‘enough’ to continue your subscriptions.  What I am trying to impress on is the idea of starting first.  By giving a small portion of your hard-earned money to charities, you get back a sense of fulfillment which is worth 1000 times the actual contribution.  Once you start doing that, its obvious and automatic that you will find your way.

As I said, there are thousands of organizations/individuals around and you will eventually strike a chord with one/few of them.  There is no single, best organization.. its the truth.  We are all unique individuals and so will have our preferences in supporting a cause, right? But to really have a good start, you can look at these places:

Your home:

Yes, Its the first place. Start looking around and you will find your driver in damn need of some money for his child’s higher education. Your maid might be suffering a lot to pool up money for a medical treatment… The autowallah, community cleaner, grocery shop assistant.. Did you ever listen to them?

Your Office:

“Corporate Social Responsibility” might have been slowly becoming a fashion statement, but its still a good place to start with. Don’t get carried away by those people who just pose for pictures. If its an initiative by your own employer, then there is a good chance that you can play a deeper role therein. You will have a voice and an opportunity.

Your Friends:

Um, whats better than riding with your own friend to a hospital and handover the cheque for a poor child’s heart surgery? Not just movies, dates and fast food, your friends have a lot more to share once you start the topic.

So, now you know what to do? Stop worrying about the end result and start contributing first.  Then you will find your own ‘best’.

thanks for reading.

balu

Categories: philosophy, society, suggestions, world | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

complement by negation

welcome everything. You don't have a choice either ;)

welcome everything. You don't have a choice either 😉

Carefully observe the pic above.  Its greenery on one side and barren on the other. The silhouette is only darker against a bright sky. There are tall hills distantly with deep valleys just in between. It was a random shot from behind when i was unknowingly opening my arms wide to the cool Himalayan breeze. I was in a blissful state in the lap of mother nature.  Strangely, my mind just went numb with the beauty of the landscape to actually ‘think’ of anything but i somehow felt there were thousands of life’s moments gushing thru my mind of past, present and the future. It is only a picture, just another picture for all of you, but it is showing me the eternal meaning of life.  There is light & darkness all around us. There is happiness & pain. There is victory & defeat, love & hatred, memories & forgetfulness, good & bad… When i came back and was checking the pics, I found this picture talking to me directly, trying to teach a greater meaning to my otherwise naive psyche. It was telling me that the above pairs are wonderful only when they are blended with each other. Each element entwining with its negation to become a mere complement as a whole.

Don’t know why  a common man’s life is filled so much with philosophy? Or is it plain introspection? Or is it just another visceral contraption? Drop a comment if you have any idea 🙂

Categories: emotions, mind, philosophy, Uncategorized, world | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment

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