Posted in "Theory of pursuit", Dilemma, Life, Moi, Personal, Thoughts, thoughts to think

Being Insecure.

I was intrigued by this dialogue in one of the movies that I was watching, “If you were to describe all men with one statement what would that be?” Asks a man. “They all are insecure” answers his wife. I don’t know if the ‘man’ in question was meant to mean people irrespective of gender, I don’t know if it is true with women too, however I think It is true, many men are insecure. I have been insecure most of my life.

Will my hair last till I am 25?

Will I look old in my own wedding?

Will I have enough money when I am about to retire so that I don’t have to depend on anyone?.

Will I have my job for as long as I want to work?.

Will my son grow up to be independent and self sufficient?.

Will I be healthy till I die?.

Will my house last my lifetime?.

Am I satisfying my wife?.

Does she really love me with all her heart?.

Will I be able to eat what I want for the rest of my life?.

Will I be able to afford my healthcare if and when I need it?.

Will my son take care of me?.

I just had to think for a minute, and I could list so many of my insecurities. For as long as I can remember, I have been insecure. 

Are we insecure because we are not confident?, I am not so sure. I have been very confident in many of these aspects, but still it does not drive the insecurity away.

How do we fight insecurity? 

Be more practical?  Be more ignorant?, 

Work harder? Take it light? 

Step back look at the big picture? Zoom in and take a closer look? 

Be philosophical? Be nonchalant? 

Listen to your heart? Listen to what the world has to say? 

We don’t see a definite plan of action, do we?

Men from different classes of life, different educational backgrounds, social backgrounds, religion, country and race seem to have one thing in common. 

Insecurities.

Posted in "Theory of pursuit", Dilemma, Kindred, Life, Moi, Personal, Thoughts, thoughts to think

The Descent

I had heard this in a lecture that two sanskrit words “deha” and “shareera” both used for the ‘body’ mean that in completely opposite ways. Deha means the one that grows, where as shareera means one that withers. I appreciated the beauty of the language, and now I have started appreciating the philosophy behind it.

At one point in our life our growing body transitions into a withering one, and more often than not without any knowledge of it.

Lately I have been of the opinion that this concept does not just apply to our bodies, it very much applies to our minds too.

When I look back at various events in my life, I remember how through most of them I had the feeling ‘this is just the beginning, a lot more good stuff are bound to come.’ Every vacation I enjoyed, I had the many more that are going to come at the back of my mind, every moment in life where I felt the love, deep down I believed there are numerous more on their way, every friendship I enjoyed I never worried about not having a possibility of not making new ones, every place I visited I knew that I had time to visit the same again or better it with an even better place.

I guess my mind has realised the descent. It does experience a sad meloncholy about what were and may never be. More disappointingly, has given in to the fact that the peak may have certainly been passed.

I am not liking this.

The descent

Posted in "Theory of pursuit", Kindred, Life, Moi, Personal, Questions N Answers, Randomness, Thoughts, thoughts to think

Experience

With every year passing by,

I can’t help but wonder,

Am I going closer to end?

Did I do justice to the year that went by?

What did I gain?

What do I lose?

Am I wiser?

Am I happier?

Parenthood, leadership, struggles and worries, what did they do?

Blogging, books, podcasts and life, What did they give?

What did I achieve?

Knowing life, it must be a short answer.

Posted in "Theory of pursuit", Life, Moi, Thoughts, thoughts to think

Quality Vs Quantity

When you talk about buying things what comes to your mind first? the cost or the quality?.

When it comes to buying things, many people probably start with a budget in mind, even when they do not specifically set a budget, there is a particular cost they are mentally willing to spend for the product, a lot of this is dictated by their affordability. There are a class of people for whom affordability is so high that the budget really does not matter. As I cannot understand their mindset, nor I have dealt in such a situation let us leave that class of people out of discussion for this post. Assuming that we have set an actual budget in numbers, or have a fair idea about what we are willing to spend, what usually proceeds is our look at the choices available.

We run various filters in our mind to narrow down our choices. some look at the appearance, some look at the brands, some look at cost. However one thing which everyone consciously or unconsciously is looking for is quality. There are many characteristics of the product which contributes to its quality. Durability, finishing, taste, richness in color, aroma, the look and feel, the texture, origin, handmade/machine made, the raw materials used, thread count, and so on. There are so many characteristics which are appreciated in products, and give a better experience of the product in question.

Many people have this notion, higher the cost better the quality. Few have the notion that, higher the cost higher the chances of us being duped in the name of quality. I for a big part of my life have been in the latter bracket. I have always eyed the products with suspicion when the same is available for a much lesser cost. In my case, I think most of it can be attributed to the fact, that for most part of my early adulthood I had a very low affordability. It could have been a case of fox and the sour grapes.

As my affordability improved, which coincided with my interaction with a set of people who grew in a different economic background, and valued quality a lot more. I slowly began to realize the significance of quality in the experience provided by a product. I began to see the perspective of people who were willing to pay for such enhanced experience. As I began to experience quality, I understood the idea of relishing it. What did not change though, is my willingness to spend for it.

Strangely when my affordablity grew, instead of seeking more of quality, I began to seek more of quantity. Instead of that fine cotton Park Avenue, I would end up buying three in house brands online, which I thought had better quality. I know the quality does not match the top brands, but I enjoyed having 3 numbers of quality I am used to. The satisfying experience of quality, was now felt via the happy feeling from abundance. I think again this has to do with the feeling of “not having enough” of many things growing up. A big drawback of minimalism not by choice, is a sort of unknown love towards maximalism. I am not a hoarder, but just the joy of buying in numbers more than what we actually need is satisfying. I would rather eat in inexpensive restaurants which I am used to, 5 times a month, than go to a high quality restaurant once that month. I know that restaurant uses best of the raw materials, the taste is exquisite, the ambiance is mind blowing, just the whole eating experience is much better than the joints I like to frequent. However I find it more satisfying to eat 5 times in a normal restaurant which I frequent. Your mind wants, what it wants right?.

I have moved from lack of respect for the quality, to a level where I understand its significance. I know what it feels like, but still quantity triumphs quality in my mind.

I guess few of our values never change, for good or for bad.

Posted in "Theory of pursuit", Kindred, Life, Moi, Personal, Randomness, Thoughts, thoughts to think

Conversations

It has been a long stay at home, I am not just speaking about 2020 with all its problems and challenges, my mind has been home for a lot while longer. I guess it is common to miss things when we are home. The last sentence sounds almost unbelievable isn’t it, we are known to miss home, what do we miss when are home?.

I feel home when I am with myself, I feel home when I am thinking, I feel home when I am cooking things I love to eat, I feel home when I am with my family, I feel home when I am solving complex problems at work, I feel home when I am watching my favorite comedy, I feel home when I am reading books I love, I feel home when I am home.

Having said all that, why do I miss things, and what do I miss.

Monologues are my thing, being a single child has spoiled me with an alpha ego, which is hard to suppress, I am used to getting my voice heard, I am used to getting things done my way, I am used to speaking.

This post feels incoherent so far, so is my mind these days.

I would be lying if I say, I am not anxious about the current situation around us. Who isn’t anxious.

Despite of all of these distractions, and routines. My mind is missing something deeply.

One can always arrange the right setup, perfect food, great lighting, favorite drinks, lovely snacks, but can they assure joy?

To all those of you who have crossed my path, and given me this gift in the past, the gift of what I have been missing these days, it is time, surprise me!

Posted in "Theory of pursuit", Children, Family, Kindred, Life, Moi, Parenthood, Personal, Thoughts, thoughts to think

Pop Culture.

Today is Father’s day.

I have not been big fan of celebrating things which have been alien to us, Father’s day, Mother’s day these seem made up to me, a means of certain corporations trying to sell things to people by playing on our emotions. That being said, i have to admit, they have been successful in doing so, and these so called “days” appeal to us in a way that they hoped it would.

Last few posts have coincidentally been about based on parenthood, I didnt plan it that way, but it ended up being so. I guess there are mainly two events in a man’s life which changes his perspective in life, one when he get’s married, and “he” officially becomes “we”, second when he becomes a father, and “we” officially becomes “us”. When we become parents, a very customary question which is often asked is “how is parenthood, has it changed you?”. This is one of those questions where a simple question has a profound answer, something which we will take years and years to find an answer to.

Fatherhood has definitely changed me, there is no doubt about it. I have had few people, who are not keen on having kids, ask me sarcastically what did I achieve by adding to the population of the world, even thought I respect their cause of not adding to the world population, I can only pity them for not having the pleasure of learning on their own, the satisfaction and contentment of living parenthood. I have carefully chosen word “living parenthood” because there are a few things in life where the experience in itself is achievement, and that no third person can make us realize that.

One thing I have realized in these years is that, the statement that children are needy, is a myth. I know they depend on us for certain things, they need us to take care of their social, cultural, educational, financial and all other needs, but they are not dependents, they are in need of “things” and not us. Parents are much more needy when it comes to children, then the other way round. They have material needs which end up being fulfilled by parents, it can be taken care by any else too, however parents are much more needy of their children, what we look for in children cannot be satisfied by any other person in this world. The amount of emotional attachment we develop over a period of them growing up is enormous, and they can only feel the same only when they become parents on their own.

I have been a child for my parents, I share a strong bond with my parents especially my father. However, becoming a father has made me realize the kind of needs I had as a child, is so much smaller and insignificant compared to the kind of need I now have as a father.

I have tried to distance myself from the “antu” [stickiness] to my relationships, specially to my son, who I can already see spreading his wings, developing his own mind, his own preferences, his own sense of right and wrong. I know the ball has already got rolling, the day he began his kindergarten, his world is expanding at a pace much faster than I am able to absorb, the kite has taken its flight, and I am just a person who “feels” is in control of the kite’s flight, it is going to be just few more years, before the gusts of life is going detach my wonderful creation into a wide open sky, and I am going to watch it with bitter sweet memories, at the same time as a father I will root for the kite to go beyond the seven skies.

Working from home due to this pandemic has given me a greatest gift for this year’s father’s day. The gift of spending quality time with my son, the gift of playing the role of a father the way I wanted to, holding his hand when I feel like it, hugging him when he wants it, feeding him things he loves, there is no better gift than the satisfaction parenthood brings.

Happy Father’s day!

Posted in "Body or Soul", "Theory of pursuit", Admiration, Dilemma, Kindred, Life, Moi, Personal, pure pursuit, Thoughts, thoughts to think

Lets get physical

After almost 10 years of married life, I have realized that apart from immense love and compatibility between couples, one of the mainstays of a happy married life is physical attraction between the couples. I am happy that I still am attracted to my wife physically, and this attraction adds joy to our married life.

Growing up, I have been used to associating guilt with physical attraction. I blame this one my conservative middle class mindset. There are many many ideologies which I am proud of, and I attribute them to conservative middle class upbringing, but I guess this is one of those few which are incorrect notions instilled in young adolescent minds, due to parents not being able to deal with their own attractions. I have always tried to highlight, my attractions to various things in the opposite sex, and none of them have been a lie, I have been attracted to strong oratory skills among women, I have been attracted to women who are bold and stand up to their arguments, I have been attracted to women with a good sense of humor. I have highlighted this in my conversations with my friends and family, I have spoken about these on my blogs. Even thought this is the truth, this is not the entire truth. I have always felt a sense of guilt, in feeling physically attracted to opposite sex, and admitting that. Apart from the feeling the guilt, I have looked down upon people who feel physically attracted or express the same, I have been made to believe this “looking down” is the acceptable norm, and we should morally stick to it. I have realized lately that this is an unhealthy mindset, and should be dealt appropriately from an young age. It is never late to correct one’s mindset, Isn’t it?

Now that I have openly admitted to feeling physical attraction, I want to debunk some of the myths on this subject.

Attraction is a trigger, and not an end. Physical attraction is associated with lust in many minds. Lust in itself is a huge topic, if it is a good or bad. However I don’t think physical attraction is to lust, whereas nonphysical attraction is to love, is a very incorrect association. When a bee gets attracted to a bright colored flower, isn’t that the most natural form of attraction?, so what if it is because of the color or smell of the flower?, is the bee wrong in getting attracted?. Does the bee lust the flower?.

Beauty in all forms, including physical is nature’s gift, and feeling attracted to whatever we fancy is not lust. It is an honest expression of a strong like to a certain subset of what our senses perceive.

Physical attraction does not always mean temptation. I am not sure why it is depicted in all media, especially films and newspaper that a physically attracted male is succumbing to the dark world of temptation. I have been attracted to many people physically after I have been married. To be honest, not even one of them turned out to be a temptation. It was a strong like to certain aspect, which happens to be physical in nature. To give you an example, I get easily impressed by dressing sense of people, especially choice of colors. I think pastel colors like peach, light yellow, pearl white, light rust etc are so pleasing to the eyes that women who wear such colors seem attractive to my eyes. I will always notice the color of people’s clothes and how they carry those colors. One might argue, dressing sense is not a physical attraction, I would argue why not?, should physical attraction be limited to shape of a human body? Or some parts of it?. I am not saying being attracted to that is temptation or bad, its just not a complete definition of physical attraction. If I ever was attraction to human body, which I have been, I feel it is completely natural and nothing wrong with it. I wouldn’t have admitted this a few years ago, I guess age has made me bolder, or may be more truthful.

When poets write at lengths about their admiration for loved ones, the society does not frown upon them, they are not termed indecent. When an young adult admires a classmate’s essay, it is not considered bad, however if he admires classmate’s eye, it is frowned upon. It is considered inappropriate for students. It is not just considered bad by teachers and parents, even the peers make fun of the young mind. What’s wrong in admiring something you get attracted to?. Isn’t that natural?. I am not saying all natural thoughts should be expressed in raw form without the norms of a society, but a sense of shame and guilt instilled for something as pure as physical attraction, is not a fair thing to do. The time I was that age, it was even worse for women. I don’t even know their take on this matter. It must be even more difficult for them to express their attractions. I have heard the times have changed, and young boys and girls growing up in India, these days are more liberal about these things. I would love to hear from someone that age, how today’s youth deals with such topic.

When we walk into a room full of people, what attracts you most physically to a people?. To me, it’s their choice of colors and dressing sense, secondly its their perfume. A whiff of a good perfume always makes my head turn. Sadly, the perfume is associated more and more with seduction. I believe that each of us have our own aroma, and only a few have the skill of enhancing it with just the right dash of perfumes, and at the right regions of their bodies. I have an acute sense of smell, and I get easily drawn to people with good choice of perfumes. Would I call it, I get seduced by them?. Definitely not. I don’t get seduced, I get attracted. Physical attraction is not means to seduce someone, or get seduced. It can be used as a bait, I agree, however not every worm is a bait, or not every fish falls for one.

Lastly when it comes to be crude bodily physical attraction, I have to admit I have been there, done that. But just the fact that I used the word “crude bodily physical attraction” shows how prejudiced this is. My heart says there is nothing wrong with it, it is natural and all of us go through it, there is nothing wrong in admiration of human body, getting attracted by it. My head says, this is just your way of justifying one’s weakness. When did physical attraction become weakness our head?

I would love to hear more from you guys, people growing up with different mindsets, different gender, different country, thoughts are welcome.

Posted in "Theory of pursuit", Admiration, Kindred, Life, Moi, Personal, Randomness, Realité, thème, Thoughts, thoughts to think

An enchanting window.

Whenever I stood next to it, I felt the power creep into me. Who does not enjoy being powerful?, I did enjoy it too. I love the fact that, standing right at my home, beside this powerful tool, the window, I can get see and observe lives of many people right at my doorstep.  I can actually hear some of them too. As my gaze goes far, I still get to observe people, even though I may not get to comprehend them well. Farther down, even though I can’t see or hear them, I get a whiff of their lives. I get to see both the good and the bad, I get to hear both music and noise as mere sounds. I get to experience the smells without having to look for the aroma. I like the power of an open window.

Our bodies and minds have this amazing capabilities of recognizing patterns, and mapping them. You automatically start brushing your teeth when you stand in front of your sink in the morning, or your nose starts sniffing for fresh coffee early in the morning as you walk past your kitchen. When I started living along, my mind developed this acute sense of feeling raw emotions when I stood at my window. For a person who is not so comfortable showing emotions, smiles and tears did not shy from showing up when I stood at my living room window. There was nothing magical about it, but still, enchanting it was. Complex emotions found their way into my expressions, without the fear, the guilt I usually associate with most of those emotions. I wondered if it showed, If I displayed?, If I presented. Oh wait!, I didn’t care anymore, I stood behind a window. Who cares what the outside people saw.

Have you ever lived in a room with thin walls, you can exactly hear whats going on with your neighbors, you just didn’t show it. You heard all their words, without listening. You learn to pretend without being pretentious. To be honest, the window ignited the naturist in me to be stark naked, without having to cover my insecurities, without having to care for the voyeurs lurking in the dark. I was not an exhibitionist, but a pure naturist. I enjoyed having the control of closing the drapes when I want, and living it open when I feel.

Near the window, I made up my own rules, whenever I felt like it, I broke them too, I didn’t have anyone to answer to, more importantly I didn’t have me to question. A long standing rule, was about me, not sitting near the windows. I always stood there. I like to have my eyesight level with the windows, I did not want to look upto it. It was my equal, it was my mate. I liked the sweet pain in my legs when I spent long hours with it, it was worth the pain. It deserved the respect of me standing up to it.

Dimensioning one’s gain is very difficult, especially when the gain is not materialistic. My window had both the lovely dimensions, space and time. I have observed the constant space over a varying time, I have seen the same front yard from my window for ages now. The color of seasons, have changed and repeated, people have often stood, gone and returned, the constant tree has withered and greened up. When I have moved places, I have seen the constant time with varying space, the windows have changed, I have observed how my new courtyard reacted to the same seasons, how new people have come reacted to exact same stimulus. How each one of them have left a mark in me with their reactions, even though they are not aware of me watching them acutely.

Its not like my window has always remained open, or I have always been besides it. However I have found great comfort in seeing life, and being seen. I have enjoyed being leered by perverts, and admired by prophets with equal nonchalance.

As I close the drapes on this post, I cant help but enjoy my ramblings at my window, albeit virtual.

Posted in "Theory of pursuit", Kindred, Life, Moi, Personal, Soul crap, Thoughts, thoughts to think

Looking forward.

I looked forward to every exam during my school and college days, it was in a way looking forward to their results. For a person who was from lower middle class, these results held the key to a good job, and a comfortable world, both of which I looked forward to. For 21 years of my life, largely my goals were very simple, study well get a good job was its motto. I really looked forward to end of this phase, where I thought I can spend my time on my other interests and goals.

I looked forward to visiting ‘America’ a dream country. I somehow never had it in me, to migrate there, enjoy their standard of life. This was long before I even developed enough maturity as to why I didn’t want to move there. When I started to work, and many of my friends chose America as a country to go and settle, I looked forward to visit the country. I looked forward to see what is it that, attracts so many people, I looked forward to experience the standard which everyone was so happy about.

With all the material things which I looked forward to, I never had enough thoughts on how much I was missing out on the human front, on the emotional front. I started looking forward to more meaningful friendships, a meaningful relationship, and whole lot of people in my life who will add new meaning to my life.

As I grew older. I looked forward to even more riches. I looked forward to a 4 figure monthly salary, I looked forward to buying properties, I looked forward to owning things which I missed out on growing up, I looked forward to eating out when I can.

There was a time, where I looked forward to the final series of tv show friends. I discovered books. I looked forward to reading authors whom I adored, reading about things and plots which were so vivid and varied then what I am accustomed to. I discovered writing and I looked forward to reaching out to people through my blog. meeting and knowing more people online.  I discovered travelling, and I looked forward to travelling to many places which I carefully picked out from the world. The idea of planning and picking places to go, places to eat at in itself was a big thing to look forward to, much before I ended up in those places.

I looked forward to parenthood. I knew I would love to pass on things to my child, I looked forward to many things he started learning.

Recently I was asked by an ‘app’ what is it that I was looking forward to.

Bam!.. I didn’t have anything which I was looking forward to. The discovery that I was not looking forward to anything made me really sad. Instantaneously I messaged a friend about this, if it is sad that I don’t look forward to anything now. I don’t think anyone can answer that to me, but still in a desperate attempt to get over this discovery I was making an attempt to get some comfort. There is nothing I could think of at that moment as to why  I do not have anything to look forward to,  and if it was ok to be that way.

A great feature to many of these online music website, is their playlists. There is playlist for everything, mood you are in, activity you are doing, the city you are at, the singers you love, the time period you are thinking. You name it, there is a playlist for that. I was listening to a random playlist that morning on my travel to a destination for my vacation. As I was travelling with someone, I did not have much control on the music they played, and I was struck with this random playlist which kept playing songs. As the time passed, I started to wait for the unknown lyrics and tunes, some which I ended up liking, some which I wanted to desperately end, some which were too average for me to develop an opinion on them, some familiar, some alien to me. I really looked forward to listening to the next song in the list. It was so in the moment that, the looking forward to lasted just a song, and there was no holding onto. Two days later as I was back from my vacation and on my way to work. I wanted to try this again, where I play a random playlist and relive that experience.

I realized I have begun to see my life as this playlist, with random sequence of familiar and unfamiliar things, with lovable and not so lovable events which I eagerly look forward to. Unlike long ago, where I had concrete things to look forward to, I have more blended canvas for a life, where I know there are going to be occasions where I look forward to things which are short lived, and then move on to other things. Some of the things life throws at us are highly challenging, some of these challenges last a long time, they test our patience, they test our skills, some let us win, and some defeat us, at the end if there is one, there is going to be another challenge. We get to meet many people, some stand by us, some move apart, some stick to us long enough, some are happy to hug and say goodbye. We buy new things, some we look forward to, some we save up for, some are impulsive buys.

 

I have no clue what is going to be tomorrow, I look forward to that unknown. Looking forward to what’s in store. Looking forward to life.