A very inspiring piece of information which was shared by one of the senior citizens in our condominium!
An anthropologist proposed a game to children of an African tribe.
The game goes like this - He puts a basket of apple near a tree and told the children that who ever reaches the finish line first in the running race will get the entire basket of apples. When he told them to start running, they all took each others hands and ran together and then sat enjoying the apples together.
Obviously, the curious anthropologist asked “why did you do this? if one of you had ran first, that person could have enjoyed all the apples by himself”. The children answered as a matter of fact ” Ubuntu, How can one of us be happy when all the others are sad?”.
Ubuntu - is the philosophy of African tribes which can be summed up as I AM BECAUSE WE ARE!!
A very awe inspiring simple philosophy - triggers a very interesting debate about BEING HAPPY Vs BEING COMPETITIVE!!!
It always intrigues me to know that how philosophical the African tribes are and how great their sentiments are!
When you are parenting a teenager and also when you are handling a critical team at work with senior people and also when you are handling your aged parents and also when you are running your household..……………you know you are old… …..hey, wait!!! I am beyond establishing that I am growing old…..I am trying to establish that we also pass through many experiences in life over these growing years!!!
Every day, when I go through the daily chores at work and at home – I learn …..And it struck me that it may be a good idea to consolidate and put them together. While it will help to save my grey cells (when you get old, your grey cells lose capacity?), I also felt it may be a good thing to share with others so that they can pick one or two which suits them.
Motivated by the lack of simple and easy to follow guidelines, I am creating this series for all those who are starting to look for some simple directions in life. I will share information about my experience. We all know that life has its complexities and this is my bit to make it easy……….
It all started since last two years (probably coincides with my blogging effort?!!) – I introspect a lot ….
The first simple question is - WHAT DO I WANT IN LIFE?
While the question is too simple, take few minutes and think and write down the answer…..it may even seem simple initially to answer this question (unless you are like me, who gets different answers with each new day!) …… slowly, check if
HOW MUCH OF MY DAILY TIME GOES IN THE EFFORT TO GET WHAT I WANT IN LIFE
This will make us go back to the first question again and you may feel tempted to change the answer to the first question (see, I have reasons on why I change my answer to question #1).
It is actually good to go through multiple iterations of this, as long as the multiple iterations take you much closer to the real answer to the question of WHAT DO I WANT IN LIFE.
I feel I have done multiple iterations and I feel I have figured out something on the answer to WHAT DO I WANT IN LIFE. At a gross level, I find my life completely revolves around 5 key factors
- SELF - Focus on my self - inclusive of my physical, mental and spiritual well being
- FAMILY, Friends and Life - A lot of my life goes around family and friends and that becomes the second key factor in my life
- CAREER - Yes, there had been a time where I only thought of career…I even used career as an escape to face real life - and now, life has taught me the criticality of balancing the critical factors in life - I still view career as a critical part of my life
- PERSONAL INTERESTS - May sound out of sync - you may wonder on how personal interests (read it as leisure activities, hobbies) become key factor of life…crazy!!! I strongly believe that the time I spent on my personal interests makes me complete - It was a refreshing surprise to me on how much a trek or a music class or blogging helps me ……and indeed, it is a critical factor
- SOCIETY@LARGE - these have been more of thoughts and less of action, but I know for sure this is a critical factor in my life - I am slowly starting on few contributions in this space and I will make it.
When I looked at all my FABULOUS FIVE factors of my life, I knew that there is something more which needs to be put in to take care of the fabulous five and that ofcourse is the FINANCIAL WALL - the wall around the five key factors will help me keep my five critical factors intact.
Given that I am more of a visual person, here is my life model
Please note that this is a current version and there are very high possibilities that this may go through iterations in the coming days.
Going forward, I will share my life’s learning against each of these five critical factors and link it back here….Happy reading and learning!
Category - Romantic drama ; Rating – 4.5 ; Comment - Excellent Script!
It was a week day and the heaviest day at work….Thursday evenings are packed with weekly calls! Normally the calls start at 3 pm and then go on till 9.30 pm with few breaks in-between! And the breaks are filled in with last minute discussions before a call or analyzing the inputs which came on the call. Family understands that I am indeed occupied on Thursday evenings! By and large, they have their own activities on Thursday evenings!
But this week, thought it is a working day in India, it is almost shutdown in USA! Suddenly I saw my calendar was empty - all calls were cancelled due to Thanksgiving holiday! After 6 pm, i really did not have much to close and by 7 pm, I did not know what to do!! Very strange feeling - while there were lot of things to handle at personal front, for whatever reason, I only felt that I did not have much to do - I hardly handle any personal stuff during weekdays and store them for weekends and probably that is why!……
So, there I was… back at home, in the living room and it is only 7 pm – family is not going to be in for dinner till 9 pm (that is our regular Thursday schedule). so, default, i start surfing the TV channels - up once, down once……..nothing seem to be interesting and then i suddenly see this scene - a man and a woman walking through a cemetery – something made me stop and watch it …probably the girls face (devoid of any heavy makeup) or the casual air around the guy - i still do not know why i stopped there and started watching -
The first piece of dialogue i heard was “ I always liked the idea of all those unknown people lost in the world. When I was a little girl, I thought that if none of your family or friends knew you were dead, then it‘s like not really being dead. People can invent the best and the worst for you” The way it was rendered…the perspective it threw about being dead – something different.
I got interested and I find it is a movie called “Before Sunrise” - I continued to watch and was completely engrossed till the end!. Yes, ofcourse! it is a romantic movie at the outset (no, no, i never planned to watch it……though i like romantic comedies a lot, i did not know this one will turn up to be a romantic movie) - You can classify it as romantic drama, but the script and some quotes were unbelievably refreshing – especially the discussion about men and women…the thought that feminism was invented by men to have more fun!! haha!!!!…………99 men & 1 woman Vs 1 man & 99 women…intelligent sparks of wisdom!……….
I am so impressed with the entire script and may end up writing the whole script in this post………..but then, allow me to quote the following – which is so nicely put! …………
“You know, I believe if there’s any kind of God, it wouldn’t be in any of us. Not you, or me…but just this little space in between. If there’s any kind of magic in this world, it must be in the attempt of understanding someone, sharing something. (Sigh.) I know, it‘s almost impossible to succeed, but…who cares, really? The answer must be in the attempt”
Ideally, i recommend watching the movie and also the reading the entire script - it is available here…………
And later, i found this movie is rated as one of the best movies in many reviews!! Worth it!!
The other day I came across this short Sanskrit verse
Achaaryaath paadam aadatthe
Paadam sishya swamedhayaa
Paadam sa brahmacharibhya
Sesham kaala kramena cha
It means a person can get only one quarter of knowledge from Achaarya - the teacher, another quarter by analyzing self, one quarter by discussing with others and the last quarter during the process of living by method addition, deletion, correction, and modification of already known aachaaraas.
How true it is…Knowledge is always only one fourth of learning….but looking internal, discussing with similar minded persons and practicing makes the learning complete.
Reiterates that Hinduism is not a religion but a way of life!!