Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Awkward Silence

I was thinking about the the number of times we get into an awkward silence while talking to people (read friends, family and acquaintances)......
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And that's one awkward silence you got into with me while reading this post !!:) Now you can stop smirking and think about the most awkward silence you encountered and share it if you please.

And guess what! I found an iPhone app called the 'Awkward Silence Breaker' which is absolutely hilarious! One can set a timer on awkward silence and depending on the 'time limit' and 'sensitivity' the app breaks the silence using sound or vibration. How innovative I must say! I guess we have given up on our communication skills already! 

Well if you don't like the above method of breaking an awkward silence you can try this one I found over the internet:

Cartoon about avoiding awkward silences











Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Carpe Diem


What are we waiting for?

Ever been in a state of limbo? Being haunted by those niggling questions like how things will turn out, what will happen, when will I know about it, isn't a nice feeling. I know because I am in one. Limbo. The state of mind when you are just hanging, in the middle of nowhere. Sometimes it leads to anxiety, sometimes pain and sometimes it just leads to indifference. Que sera sera (whatever will be, will be), at least that's how I have learnt to take things in life. 

The point to ponder here is when are we 'not' in a state of limbo? Aren't we always waiting for something to happen? The beauty of the human mind is that it can never be satiated. Almost always we want something very badly, so badly that we base our lives on it. We forget everything else in the mad chase for that one single desire we deem worthy of all the pains and turmoils. And when we get what we wanted, we move on. Instead of relishing our feat we find another 'desire' we reckon is so precious we could sacrifice every comfort in the world for it. 

A week back I was coming back from a friend's place in the night. I boarded the last bus available that night and realized I had forgotten my travel card. I took out a tenner and gave it to the bus driver to buy a ticket. The driver couldn't find enough change and so asked me to find a fiver at least. I looked skeptically at the 4 people sitting in the bus, when this old man started digging for change in his wallet. When he couldn't find enough for ten, he asked me how much I had and he'd give me the rest. I was short of a pound and he gave me one without a second thought. I said in a meek voice "Are you sure?" , he smiled and replied "Yes, please take it" and then turned to a young man sitting parallel to him and said "Life's too short." I was overwhelmed with gratitude for this old man but couldn't say anything. Walking back alone with that heavy laptop bag on my shoulder, in the dark of the night would have been a nightmare. It wasn't a 'life-changing' experience but it surely brought a smile on my face. 

But there was something in the old man's way of saying 'Life's too short" that got me thinking. A man, probably in his 80s, says life's too short. Will I be saying this when I grow old? Or will I say that I have lived a good life, enjoyed every moment of it. When was the last time I did something thinking life's too short?

We plan out our lives ahead and work towards our goals thinking we are going to live forever! And in this wild goose chase of attaining an almost never-ending list of desires we forget to do those little things that actually give us happiness. Helping someone or doing something for someone else seems like an ordeal. "What's in it for me?", we often ask. Criticism comes naturally to us but we struggle with words of appreciation and empathy. We admire the music playing in our earphones but don't care to lend an ear to  people when they talk. We pretend to care about the world by drowning ourselves in a newspaper on the bus but forget to offer our seat to an old lady standing next to us. 

I know that it's easier said than done. That it's not a fairy tale world and that life's much tougher than this stupid post on a blog makes it feel like. Well, of course it is. But I say what the hell !! Even if I gotta slog for my 'bigger' plan in life, 'living' a little never hurt anyone. One doesn't need to be a King to live life like one.

As Horace, the Roman poet puts it in “Carpe Diem”, or “pluck the day”:

"Ask not—we cannot know—what end the gods have set for you, for me; nor attempt the Babylonian reckonings LeuconoĆ«. How much better to endure whatever comes, whether Jupiter grants us additional winters or whether this is our last, which now wears out the Tuscan Sea upon the barrier of the cliffs! Be wise, strain the wine; and since life is brief, prune back far-reaching hopes! Even while we speak, envious time has passed: pluck the day, putting as little trust as possible in tomorrow!"






Friday, July 22, 2011

Lonely Wanderings

Kal shab mujhe beshakl ki awaaz ne chaunka diya,
Main ne kaha tu kaun hai, usne kaha aawaargi..

(Last night a strange face-less voice startled me,
I asked, who are you, it said- a lonely wandering)

Even though I created this blog long back, I never made any of my posts public. But these days my mind is plagued with thoughts and emotions. I was listening to this ghazal called 'Aawaargi' by Ghulam Ali yesterday and realized something. I realized how people change, how I have changed over the years. How I hated this ghazal till a few years back,when my dad played it over and over. Today it makes perfect sense to me. My heart is now aligned with my mind's lonely wanderings or 'Aawaargi'.

The mind is a mystic place, an infinite vault, that homes the plethora of our thoughts, feelings, images, memories, emotions, secrets and knowledge. The mind has no rules, no inhibitions, no boundaries. There is no morality, no judgement, no fear, no condemnation. It is only when we stir our thoughts, emotions and feelings with our knowledge of the outer world, that we develop morals, we judge everything and everyone around us, but most of all, ourselves, our actions, our deeds. We fear not others, but ourselves the most. For tomorrow, we have to justify the same thoughts in our minds again. The mind knows no stigma, it is Spotless.

It is amazing, how sometimes we try to find solace from the internal chaos of our minds in the outer world, and how sometimes we find peace within the mind itself, when we want to run away from the outer chaos. The punishment for committing the act of thinking is sometimes wandering and chaos and...... sometimes its peace.

Buried deep in my vault are thoughts I dare not let out, emotions I am unaware of , feelings that if converted into actions would only be disastrous. For years, we struggle with these, and yet, there comes a time, when they become mere strangers passing-by in the city of our mind. Some of them feel familiar, we look at them and smile. There are some that we had forgotten completely and they startle us with what they know about us. And then there are some, that we wish never became strangers, never faded into oblivion and stayed with us forever............... as memories.