Category Archives: A thought…

First day of class and you are late


When you are late, the metro is also late.

The queues will crawl and the rickshaw-wallah will brawl.

These are facts, tested and tried.

The daily ordeal is quite simple and it has to do with only three things- over-crowded metro, technical-failures and late-comings.

It is already a bad day if you get up with the dismaying realization that you should have been up ten minutes before.  You rush to get ready and with much difficulties and obstacles you somehow manage to cover five of the ten minutes of delay.

After that, you thank the heavens and then DMRC for the unique invention that the Delhi Metro is. The thanks giving is something of this kind-

Lord, and the Mr. Shreedharan and all his co-fellows. I thank you for the highly effecient metro running across the city. May all those who twitch their nose and raise their brows on the little technical failures here and there enjoy a better and hassle-free ride next time. Amen.

The prayer, as you see, is short and joint. The reason being the paucity of time.

You punch your smart card after getting yourself thoroughly mapped during the security checking. The security checking is a very good practice no matter how much people feel uncomfortable about it. You take the accelerator/elevator or stairs depending on nothing but your whims and reach the platform silently smiling at yourself that the metro will take exactly forty five minutes to transport you to your destination. This is the best thing about metro, you don’t have to worry about being stranded in heavy traffic jams.

You reach the platform and the heart sinks to see that the next metro is due in not two minutes but five minutes.

When your are late, remember, every second counts!

Every passing minute brings a multitude of people to the platform. They are mainly office-goers or the victims of morning lectures like me.  You see the clock ticking while you make strategies to find a place to atleast stand comfortably in the train. No, getting a seat is a distant possibility, so forget about it. So, the expectations are low.

The way to happy life is to keep your expectations low and the way to happy journey in Delhi Metro is not to keep any expectations whatsoever. Therefore, the joy knows no bound when you get a place in one corner of the train without being jostled by the crowd.

After a lot of struggle, you are pushed inside the compartment, shoved and kicked by numerous hands and handbags. The inside smells of x number of perfumes and deodorants mixed with the smell of body wash and shampoos which may sound pleasant but is highly claustrophobic .

With every dramatic halt between the two stations, a throng of people lean backward and forward kicking more people and sometimes, falling on them. Some say sorry, others give away a guilty smile and yes, there is a species who does not bother to acknowledge trampling on human foot. If not pedicured but yet human feet they are, equally lively to the sensation of pain and suffering!

The  tale of this highly unpleasant beginning repeats itself through the middle and culminates in its stylistic manner at the end.  When your destination station is announced you are hit by contradictory emotions- happy because this is the end of the harrowing journey and sad because…

Pleading to be excused and thus trying to make your way out through your co-passengers and finally managing to be the last one to alight.

However, you are thankful that you atleast managed to de-board. The queue at the university station is ostensibly long and has no mercy on people like you who are getting late for the lectures despite being able to manage to cover that five out of ten minutes delay.

But, you should not blame their insensitivity because most of those in that line belong to the same category as yours. Like you they are also delayed by technical failures and over-crowded metros and their jammed doors.

You ask the rickshaw-wallah to ferry you to the college and he asks you an immodestly high fare for that ride. You frown but since you are already running out of time, you finally succumb to suffer the exploitation.

You trip and fall on the stairs to your lecture-room and sigh in relief when you find that though you are almost fifteen minutes late, the lecturer hasn’t arrived yet.

You find the familiar faces and try to relax among them after the morning ordeal and try to regain your already spent up energy to sit through the class.

After five minutes, an office staff enters the room and informs that the lecturer is absent without prior notice.

So, what next?

May you have a more hassle free ride next time.

Amen.

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A Himalayan Memory


Unfinished Creations proudly welcomes its first ever guest blogger Om Swami.

Om Swami is a mystic who lives in the Himalayan foothills. An advanced yogin, he frequently writes on his blog- omswami.com.

He shares with us his experience- A Himalayan Memory

The stillness in doe’s compassionate eyes easily surpassed any yogin’s perfected gaze

It was sometime in April last year, perhaps beginning of April. Surrounding peaks were snow laden still. Temperature was mostly sub-zero, where I was, for most part of the day, but snow had melted away except in the shady areas where it had hardened and felt neither snow nor ice, somewhere in between. Most wild animals descend to non-snowy areas during the winter. At this time of the year, mine was the highest snow-free point. As a result, the number of wild animals, especially bears, boars, deer and baboons had gone up significantly.

Occasionally, when I stepped out in the afternoon, it was not uncommon to see deer and stags playing at a distance. They would disappear galloping at the slightest human sighting; just goes to show how much they dread, hopefully not loathe, our race. My hut was next to a large plain surface, almost like a nine-hole golf course, dotted by tall trees and surrounded by dense forest. Beginning April, you could see hundreds of baboons busy plucking newly bloomed flowers that lay low on the ground and eating them in swift movements. Such tiny flowers were of red, blue, pink and yellow colors. Baboons, however, seemed to have a particular preference for the yellow ones.

If I waved at them, even from a distance of three hundred meters, they would frantically fling to the nearby trees. If you went any further, they, the flawless acrobats, would start moving to the deeper forests. They seemed to have no regard for other creatures though. No nests were to be found anywhere because the baboons would notoriously annihilate them. They were always so restless, like the conditioned mind hopping from one thought to another without ever falling or failing.

One day, I walked to another area of the woods. A couple of hundred meters away from my hut was another deserted hut. Tall wild grass had grown all around it. Its broken and ragged thatched roof was resting at a sixty degree angle. Over the years, the villagers had stripped its door and other wooden artifacts, leaving only the unusable stuff behind. During the snowy days, bear tracks were a common scene around that hut as were marks of hooves. The boars would stick their horn in the snow and move at rapid pace drawing lines all over the ground.  The deer seemed to trot around all night in a zigzag fashion. As I approached the hut, I was looking down while walking and murmuring a vedic chant in the bhava of my deity.

As soon as I raised my eyes, standing in front of me, at a distance of less than five meters, was a beautiful doe. While growing up, I had seen deer in zoos but seeing one in the wild, out open, so close, had something divine about it. My lips slightly parted in awe and my voice halted as I froze in the tracks. I was the one in intense meditation but here I stood spell bound in front of a beautiful, innocent hind, as if she easily proved her superior yogic prowess with her stillness and purity. Eyes never lie. She was gazing at me out of her huge, soft and compassionate eyes. None of us moved. I stood there appreciating her. She looked visibly pregnant. I was expecting her to disappear into the woods in a jiffy, but she stood there unblinking. Her short white tail beautifully arched and erect, alert ears, her long face marked with the beautiful nose and those amazing eyes, made it look like some heavenly creature.

A good few seconds passed, I don’t know how many, and she turned her face a little more inward, towards her belly. She was now looking at her stomach as well as the hut, but all along she did not take her eyes off me. She stayed in that posture for a little longer. I felt as if she was talking to me, conveying a message with her gaze. She was saying, “With such great effort I had identified this place to deliver the baby fawn. They are not safe in the woods. The baboons, bears and boars are a danger to the baby deer. But, you have come here as well. Tell me, where am I supposed to go now? What am I supposed to do?”

I felt sad for her and felt bad that I raided her space. In my mind, I told her that I would not come to this place again and that she was safe. But, I don’t know if she heard or understood my thoughts or intentions. I never went there again to check. This tryst must have gone on for a few minutes, and ultimately, she quietly went into the woods, in slow, steady and graceful movements. Her slender legs, moving in perfect synchronization, made her gait breathtaking.

I came back to my hut and I thought truly what have we done to our planet! If we pay attention, over the past ten thousand years or more, we have left no stone unturned to challenge, change and destroy this planet. If man could match nature’s scale, earth would be long gone. And if Mother Nature were to be as intolerant as humans, our race would be long extinct.

If you are careful in what you take from nature, taking only what and how much is needed, you will always be provided for. However, given the present rate and pace of destruction, can we reasonably hope to have an eternally sustainable planet?

One world is enough for all of us, as they say. A pure inner world will result in a better outer world. Compassion inside translates to harmony outside, tolerance within transforms into peace without, purity at heart creates serenity at sight. Humans are not worthy enough to inherit anything from nature, we merely borrow from it.

I just wanted to share my experience with you. You derive your own message from this.

Peace.
Swami


The real drama


I spent my three hours

watching the silver screen

I spent those three hours

living my life, like a dream.

 

A version of reality

or say a slice of it.

A figment of my imagination

woven on that seventy mm; duly knit.

 

A life projected before me

played by someone other than me

and yet, the obvious sense of duality

is nicely hidden beneath the facade of similarity.

 

It’s less realistic sometime

you’ll say it’s romantic all the time

but facts aren’t worth a dime

if its fiction that sets forth my heart’s chime.

 

You accuse it of being a reflection

for being a diversion, distortion and deflection

but it’s a world of my creation in play

that’s the only world, reality can’t lead astray.

 

If world’s a stage and I, a player

why do we look for a soothsayer?

Isn’t it better to confront one’s life in a theater

where I know the whereabouts of its creator?