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Showing posts from September, 2016

THE 'BREAKING NEWS' ONLY BREAKS

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What is happening in Kashmir concerns me… The menace of terrorism concerns me… The attack on our soldiers in Uri and the consequent surgical strike by the Indian Army on terror camps across the Line of Control really concerns me…
But, then, how much can I do about these events?
Well, as an Indian, I can’t be indifferent and insensitive to matters concerning my county… I must read and listen to the news… I must wonder… feel anxious… fear and worry when times are bad… feel elated and jubilant when times are good…
But, then, if I keep focusing on this area – which Stephen Covey famously called our ‘Circle of Concern’ - the Circle which is not within our immediate and direct control - Yes, what happens if we focus too much on such events and calamities (negative energy) is: we become more and more reactive people… and our Circle of Concern expands, while tour ‘Circle of our Influence’ – which contains those events and activities within our immediate and direct control – shrinks.
Yes, it does…

HAPPY B'DAY DEAR... LOADS OF LOVE AND WISHES

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You and I cannot remember birthdays of everyone around us. We remember our own and of some significant people in our lives. For me, it is my immediate family – my wife, son, parents, brothers some of their family members and some close friends.  I am not talking about birthdays of Jesus or Mary, Shiva or Krishna, Gandhi, Nehru or Dr. Radhakrishnan… I am certainly not talking about remembering birthdays of Amitabh Bachchan, Sachin Tendulkar or Lata Mangeshkar…
I am talking about remembering people around me… those I see, meet, talk, work with almost every day… even my neighbors and students… I am talking about them… Yes, I am saying that I am unable to remember all b’days… And, mercifully, I am not expected to!
Right?
Right.
Thanks to this Facebook, every morning, I am reminded to wish at least half a dozen of my FB friends… These days, FB reminds me of the upcoming birthdays, too… so that when the birthdays actually arrive, I will not forget to wish… and, the nice thing is: even if I fo…

WHEN YOU HAVE TO THINK HARD, DEEP AND FAR

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“The real man smiles in trouble, gathers strength from distress, and grows brave by reflection.”
- Thomas Paine
There is a fierce debate going on – and, it doesn’t seem to end – on the manner we have responded to terrorism in Kashmir, particularly, on the manner our government has responded to the latest Uri killings.
Those who are extremely loyal to P.M. Narendra Modi are busy defending him… why the measured response is the most sensible thing, and not the outright retaliation. On the other hand, those who are not so loyal to him - especially the Modi-baiters – remind us of how aggressively he had blasted in Aap Ki Adalat (Rajat Sharma’s show) mocking at the knee-jerk response of the PM of the time, Mr. Manmohan Singh. Modi had roared on that show like an angry lion… So, his detractors, now, point to us about the very same knee-jerk response he is now showing, when he is in PM’s hot seat…
I like both my Prime Ministers – Narendra Modi and Manmohan Singh. I do not wish to say that their r…

WHEN YOU TO THINK HARD, DEEP AND FAR

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“The real man smiles in trouble, gathers strength from distress, and grows brave by reflection.”
- Thomas Paine
There is a fierce debate going on – and, it doesn’t seem to end – on the manner we have responded to terrorism in Kashmir, particularly, on the manner our government has responded to the latest Uri killings.
Those who are extremely loyal to P.M. Narendra Modi are busy defending him… why the measured response is the most sensible thing, and not the outright retaliation. On the other hand, those who are not so loyal to him - especially the Modi-baiters – remind us of how aggressively he had blasted in Aap Ki Adalat (Rajat Sharma’s show) mocking at the knee-jerk response of the PM of the time, Mr. Manmohan Singh. Modi had roared on that show like an angry lion… So, his detractors, now, point to us about the very same knee-jerk response he is now showing, when he is in PM’s hot seat…
I like both my Prime Ministers – Narendra Modi and Manmohan Singh. I do not wish to say that their r…

THE KARATE KIDS AND THE BLACK-BELT PARENTS

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“My idea of superwoman is someone who scrubs her own floors.”
— Bette Midler
Let me not confuse you: This post is not about a ‘superwoman’, or, for that matter, not even about a ‘woman’… It is just about learning to do some of our own daily chores, early in life, and feel ‘strong’, ‘confident’, ‘independent’ and yes, ‘good’… about ourselves.
Some days ago, I was a witness to an interesting discussion. A man was proudly telling us about the series of belts his teenager had achieved through rigorously attending Karate classes. The teenager was about the age 15. The father said, “Every kid, boy or a girl, must compulsorily learn some form of Martial Arts for self-defence and self-dependence.”
“Who washes your 15-year-old Karate-kid’s undies?” the gentleman next to the father (obviously his good pal, who knew the household better than I did!) quipped…
The mother did!
As I told you, this Post is not about women, men, boys, girls, grandmas and grandpas, uncles and aunts… It is about, learning to …

FEARLESS: DISCIPLINE

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Invariably, all of us – if not ‘all’, most of us – have disciple in those areas of life, which, we have made as our priority areas. We have a strong value attached to those areas and hence, we give a lot of attention and focus to these areas…
Yes, most of us are disciplined in that sense…
For example, when it comes to my work – getting up, starting my first batch, being punctual and regular… writing a bog almost every day… keeping my promise and commitments… thanking, appreciating, keeping good communication etc... yes, when it comes to these, I am very disciplined. Working hard, yes… I am extremely disciplined… Keeping good relationship, yes, I am extremely disciplined… Forgiving and letting go… yes, I score excellently there, too…
And, yet, there are many arrears in my life, I lack discipline. On top of this list comes my health care!
Health is wealth… Don’t I know this?
The problem doesn’t lie in ‘knowledge’… Problem lies in ‘implementation’ of that knowledge! Some of my young studen…

JUST FOR AN HOUR...

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For most of us, one of the hardest things to do is to accept the idea that we are dispensable...
That, without us, the world can function perfectly well…  Life can go on perfectly well, as well.
On this July 24, my wife and I decided to quietly celebrate my 58th birthday in Pune, with Kenrick, our only son and Dr. Deepak, our close friend. What surprised me, that day, was a very simple fact I had not noted all these years, but Dr. Deepak pointed out. He said, “You are born on ‘twenty four/seven’!”
“Gosh! I did not know that!” I exclaimed…
“It’s okay,” Dr. Deepak calmed me down in his inimitable way, “You know it now.”

When do we use the phrase – ‘Twenty four/seven’?
A lot of truth is packed in it…
The mind is so addicted to thoughts and habits… that to live without those thoughts and habits seems impossible. The thoughts, mostly of negative nature … worry and anxiety, fear and clinging… fear of losing… insecurity, doubt, jealousy and anger… guilt and regress, shame, hopelessness. These th…

"HAPPILY EVER AFTER IS NOT A FAIRY-TALE... IT IS A CHOICE"

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“Love doesn’t just sit there, like a stone… It has to be made, like bread; remade all the time, made new.”
– Ursula K. Le Guin, The Lathe of Heaven

Twelve years ago, when Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie got married, the world began to hail the couple as ‘Brangelina’. It became a fashion for couples around us to call themselves so… Norbert and Teresa renamed them as ‘Noresa’…  Amol and Vishaka baptized their relationship as ‘Amoshka’… and, Salman and Nargis became ‘Salgis’!
I and my wife, too, got tempted to re-christian our matrimonial relationship as ‘Germa’... That is, Gerald and Anima, to be precise!
Before I proceed any further, let me make it very clear, here… that, I have no business to judge on the break-up of Brad Pitt and Angelina’ Jolie’s marriage. I have no inclination to go into why, how, what when etc behind it…
The couple ‘chose’ to split. And, it’s their choice… Only they know how good or bad… how joyful or painful that decision is for them…  I do not wish to gossip about it, …

THE URBAN DICTIONARY

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I, consciously, made a decision to improve my English when I was in twelfth standard, Fr.Lawrence was our English professor and he was teaching us Shakespeare’s plays such as King Lear, Julius Caesar and Merchant of Venice. He was the first teacher, who, made me conscious of my English problem. Later, in my F.Y. B.Com, when Prof. B.S. Raman came to teach us Accountancy and Commercial Geography, I had decided to what to do in life: like him, a fine teacher. So, by now, I knew, what I had to do to achieve that goal… I was determined to do something about my English…
There is this famous saying: “When you decide what you want in life, the whole Universe conspires to support you.”
In my case, the Universe did not do any partiality…  My dad’s sister (Sr. Leo) was a nun and lived in a convent, hundreds of miles away from my home. One day, a sister by the name Sr. Lawrence, who was a very dear friend of my aunt, travelled all the way from their convent just to gift me a very fat – and exhausti…
THE WILD, WAYSIDE FLOWERS
There is, always, something extra-ordinary in the wild, wayside flowers...