Archive for December, 2011

2011 has come to an end, and it brings along a zillion memories of the days of the year that have rushed past : The cold winter mornings and chilling evenings of January and February-mid; the warm, smiling sun, come march; the scorching sun in April, the sweltering heat in May, the beginning of showers in june; the raucous rains of July-August-September; the October heat and then aah! the pleasant, sweet beginning of the romantic winter, come December.

There might be many days you want to remember forever, some that you might want to change or conveniently forget, some days that are etched in your mind for no reason whatsoever, and others that are well, very forgettable and might have already escaped from your memory.

The end of the year also brings along plans of the much awaited new year gatherings and parties and the reunions with friends on whom you always had to hang up for some reason or the other all year. You plan to spend your new year’s eve with someone special, your family, friends and planning for the occasion makes your heart swell with joy and your ¬†phones ring with chatter!

And yes, the aspect of the new year that is most laughed at: New Year resolutions! ūüėÄ

They are made to break! I’ve never heard of anyone following their new year resolutions to the tee! New year resolutions usually comprise of stuff you conveniently missed last year, out of lethargy, boredom or because your heart didn’t take to it. I, myself don’t remember when was the last time i kept one! But yes, i always end up making a solemn promise to myself on new year’s eve, “I promise to follow my new year resolution as it will do me good…”, with my¬†subconscious mind yelling, “You are not going to keep it!”. Out of sheer optimism, I prefer to ignore this snide remark and step onto the rough, tricky path of following the resolution, which has millions of enticing diversions and tempting treats pulling you away from the tough journey’s onset.¬†¬†Well, this year I’ve devised a simple plan to help me follow it. You might want to read it if you are among those who wish to follow theirs:

1. Make sure you want to achieve it badly! and make sure it’s YOUR goal, not one that is adopted from someone else’s!

2. Visualize the results of your successful attempt at achieving your goal. If they are pleasurable enough, then the drive will be strong enough to keep you going at it.

3. Give yourself a treat every time you are successful at achieving a small step in the bigger picture. The treats might help you in sticking to the plan.

4. In case you think you could use some help, ask for it! Announce your resolution to those who understand you and are always there for you. They can help you when you are think you are flailing about and not heading anywhere.

5. Don’t drag along new resolutions along the way. Don’t get diverted from the goal you are set to achieve. Don’t change your goal, only because some other goal seems easier to achieve. The level of accomplishment you are bound to feel after getting to it won’t be the same as that of the easier one!

You are now geared with the essential equipment for your tough and appealing journey! Get on with it! Good luck!

So, what’s your resolution for the new year? Care to share?

The Silence Within

I have often pondered over how one can listen to the inner voice, or even get close to making an effort to do so in the chaotic world that we live in.  We can barely hear our neighbour, forget about listening to the inner voice! I thought this to be an insoluble question,  but have only recently found the solution, and that in the forests of Gir.

I recently visited the Gir Sanctuary, located in Sasan Gir, Gujarat. Among other enjoyable and unforgettable experiences there, one was the solution to the question that i thought was until recently lacking an answer.

Well, the solution dawned on me soon after the jungle safari was over. After I contemplated on the events of the day, i realized that the journey through the jungle had erased whatever chaos often rung in my mind. I had become silent from within and could now invite the sound of my inner voice to play. What i mean by this is that, we can listen to our inner voice only after we clear the clutter within, and clearing the clutter is surely a difficult task, often made easy by experiences like my safari through the jungle. Well, the realization was at an unexpected place and at an unexpected time, but a welcome change, sure enough. Among the scores of things one can do, and the thousands of different paths available, one must choose the one that is most endearing. The most endearing path may not be smooth or a cakewalk, but is sure to lead you to or atleast make you realize what was it that you really wanted.

Well, this may sound too profound a piece of thought, coming from a callow youngster like me, but I am sure this is what I have thoroughly thought upon and am sure to use.

The silence within is what we seek. ūüôā

I recently read Chetan Bhagat’s latest- Revolution 2020. It wasn’t just another roll out of The Chetan Bhagat factory, it was a thought-provoking one.

There are two categories of people in India:

The first, the indolent lot who don’t care about the bigger cause of the nation, and are lost in pursuit of MONEY, NAME and FAME, unconcerned about how they get it!

The second,  the righteous lot, for whom the path followed to achieve the goal is extremely important; that is those who still own a conscience(that is,honestly, an unorganized minority).

The story is based in the beautiful, small city of Varanasi(also called Kashi or Benares). There are three central characters in this story: Gopal, Raghav and Aarti.

Gopal, is the kind of guy who “Wants to be a big man one day”, but doesn’t really look like a bright guy with sparky ambitions. In short, he doesn’t really have the spunk to get ahead in life, following the right path. He belongs to a poor family and lacks the guts to take on the world.

Raghav, on the other hand, is the quintessential hero. He is intelligent, ambitious and wants to change the ways of the world. He wants to kill the bug of corruption and wants to bring in a revolution, to transform the world into one based on honesty, righteousness and fair means.

Aarti is the filling in the sandwich(The two bread slices being Gopal and Raghav.).She is a beautiful girl, daughter of the DM, who aspires to become an air hostess, and ends up as a hospitality manager in a 5-star hotel, as her parents cut her wings(her dreams of flying).

Gopal, Raghav and Aarti are good friends since school. Aarti and Gopal are best friends, who share everything with each other, while Raghav is initially, just a friend’s friend for Aarti. Later on, as the engineering entrance exam results are declared, Raghav bags a good JEE as well as an AIEEE rank, while Gopal, remains the loser, and doesn’t make it to any of the lists. He joins a coaching institute, CareerPath in Kota and repeats JEE on his father’s insistence and his savings. While Gopal is away from Varanasi, Raghav joins IT-BHU, using his JEE rank and Aarti and Raghav fall in love with each other. Gopal sniffs the affair and confronts Aarti a number of times, and fails in his attempt to get his girl back, while struggling to study hard for the JEE. He returns after the re-attempt, back to Varanasi, and a lot of changes(read: results of JEE, leading to his father’s death; his¬†acquaintance with Shukla-ji(the corrupt politician), his consequent post of directorship to a new engineering college, supported by pillars of corruption and wrongdoing, and his consequent surge of confidence) occur and he is transformed into a rich guy, who is close to getting the girl and close to losing his conscience. He gets Aarti to his side(she falls for Gopal and his hollow fame) and is ready to dump Raghav, who has taken up the cause of changing the world through the written word(journalism) and has been fired from his job as reporter in a good newspaper group, The Dainik, because of his naive ways and his insistence on “delivering the truth to the people, however dirty it may be”. This is harmful for Shukla-ji’s political career and he gets Raghav on the road. Raghav starts his own venture ‘Revolution 2020’, filled with righteous vigor and strength of a pure conscience. He continues to move on, notwithstanding the peril to his life. And he wins! Both, satisfaction of a pure conscience and the girl, Aarti. However, Raghav wins the girl all thanks to Gopal. Gopal¬†gives her away, because of the dawn of the realization on him that Raghav is the better person, and that Aarti deserves the best, not him. Gopal, in the end, becomes “a good person”.

Chetan Bhagat’s line of thought is for the youth of today. Through this tale of the two guys and the girl, he says, you choose what you want :The cacophony of a successful career, rooted in corruption; or the sweet melody born out of the union of a pure conscience and honest effort. What’s your pick?¬† ¬† ¬†