Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Original Identity vs Choice -- Cultural Terrorism

If you have been following news it would not be difficult for you to understand what I am going to talk about now. “Cultural terrorism ” or “Literature terrorism ” or what ever terms people are coming up with recently has shown us of our limited tolerance towards others. It could be anybody in question we can talk about something and that might get into something in-tolerable for someone. How do you and us should view this ??

Every time we talk about tolerating , we do not know what we are tolerating and to what extend ?? This gives rise to a feeling inside us of being a victim and of being suppressed. If someone speaks against my religion and I tolerate it gives me a feeling of being suppressed, I feel threatened and in secure which in turn lets to hurt of sentiments and revolt and agitations.

But why does it happen all the time ? and more importantly why so frequently these days ? It is a question we should ask ourselves. Why do we feel so threatened and in secure all the time. What mechanism happens inside us that prompts us to think that we would be lost if we stay suppressed. Who is this “WE” which com???

I agree to the fact that some people might say all of this is not sentimental hurt , a large part of this is politically motivated. Of course I do not disagree with this, but we have to also agree that these political aspirations fuel the sentiments of those who are politically naive. They are driven by this threatened feeling and therefore we must look into this matter in a very different view and not just a law and order issue. After  all law and order works only after an incident is reported but before the incident happens a million thing happens in the mind of those who feel victimized.

One of the few things which are a part of human requirement in our daily life is “respect” and that means that people must accept me and my way of looking or doing things. But our understanding of respect is extremely crude which is why everyday we do innumerable number of things to satiate people and be accepted.

To be  “respected” I have identified myself with a few things in life which I believe are good/best for me. This I recognise as my “SELF IDENTITY”. My identity of who I am comes from my religion, caste, gender, profession, family, country,history and so many more. Each time I identify myself with any of them I identify myself with a set of beliefs and with a group who protect those beliefs. And every time another set of beliefs comes to question my group I feel violated. Threatened and in secure that if I do not stand up for my beliefs eventually I will have no Identity at all which would mean no respect.

Be it Kamal hassan movie, Salman Rushdie book, SRK article, Facebook 2 girls arrest , Assem trivedi’s arrest , MF Hussain or Ashish Nandy opposition or many more. Instead of viewing them just as a set of opposite views and using the platform to profound and en-deepen our knowledge of our own com , we chose to oppose them and scare them away. Because we are scared of losing identity or of being "Lost identity".

Every division that we have amongst us was supposed to simplify and group like minded people. Which eventually has becomes to scare opposite minded people. Every religion , caste , creed, profession etc was created to serve humanity. But we have forgotten what is humanity. Why ? Because we have forgotten a simple definition of “I”.

Being on the views side we must understand this issue as a psychological one, of a deep attachment to a set identity that is now or need and absence of it threatens our very life. This means in coming times we will have to see more of it as all of us have deep attachment to our very own identities. Say a word opposite to my religion, country, gender etc I'll be hurt and would react in an extremely emotional way.

If I can create an identity that does not depend on different groups of people, I will not feel threatened or suppressed if there are people with opposite point of view. Rather I with fruitful debates, will strengthen my beliefs not weaken them. Spirituality might be an answer to this. Who am I? What is my “Original Identity” .

In the womb of a mother , a child has no identity. Honestly no group can separate the purity and peace the unborn owns. Our faith is that purity and peace. Our religion should be to serve humans and not books of beliefs. We can be born in a country, we can follow a religion, belong to a certain ideology or proffession but they are not “I”. These are my mere choices I have made in life or been made because of my karma. Or even if view you see scientifically then see yourself as lump of flesh, blood and bones which group does that now belong to? Still simpler visualize bunch of atoms.

I wonder if the saints who have been path showers of our religions or our ideologies would have also reacted the same way as we do today. Sit silent for a minute and wonder do we really need to protect the ideology of such great men/women or in some cases we even try to protect “God”. Can we?? Their ideologies are such strong and profound that they have survived centuries. I believe if they would have been alive they would have initiated debate and discussions over their own beliefs rather than driving everyone away. Such should be the Faith and Trust on own ideas.

Spirituality teaches us to accept even our opposition “love our enemies”. To accept that opposite is as normal as my acceptance. Two forces of nature will always exists, one complementary of another. If we could see how we can mutually benefit from opposition. We would know if what we believe is our “Original Identity “ or merely our choice for living.

 Adios :)

Monday, January 21, 2013

Art of managing negative emotions

Negative emotions by their name suggest that they negate something from our lives. Yes they negate our happiness and lightness. This means they disturb our natural being whose it was natural property to be happy and contented. Sometimes you are at the recieving end , sometimes at the creating side you do not understand what you are feeling or why you are feeling but you feel. A strong deep negative feeling engulfs your mind and within few second your peace of mind is shrouded with umpteen number of thoughts. After sometime when you decide to stop them you feel drained , exhausted and tired and to top it all you feel guilty of having them. You feel sinful of holding those ideas , cruel or brutual at times you do not understand why did i think of these things. This is probably the side effect of being good. Today i'll talk about this.

If this has happened with you then you'd easily identify. You feel the day is going good suddenly you see someone holding something you deeply desired for in the hands of a person who is perpetually the last person on earth to deserve what he has. It could be anything as simple as a cell phone , car , job etc or as complicated as love, family , kids etc. You suddenly feel cheated, cheated for all the goodness that you have and blind out within few seconds. To top it all everyone around seems to be very happy or cheering them or attending them, you seem to be asking yourself what is stopping me why am I not happy ? I am not in competition with him and I'll have something much better manyfolds better and yet you crave.

The craving pushes us further. You cannot lie to yourself and then series of thoughts overwhelm you with negative emotions. Not having what other has easily bring us to blame anyone or everyone who has been or has not been instrumental in me not having "it". A huge number of such emotions further makes it impossible for me to handle anything challenging that would come later during the day. The guilt of being jealous and sadness of not aquiring gets painful and heavy.

Negative emotions are extremely drainful no doubt. Sadness , hurt, jealousy, anger, greed, vengence,hatred, frustation etc. While irritation , frustation , sadness can be termed as less negative. Hatred , vengence , anger are higly negative. Jealousy and greed are fine and subtle they shift easily from appearing light initially and then towards graver negativism. But they can be efficiently be dealt with in case we pay a liitle attention to what goes on inside us than watching who does what outside.

I have for long experienced eactly these things and then tried to see what goes on and what comes to my mind. Not only did I create negative thoughts but also found myself feeling ashamed of holding such down thoughts. And then i realized such self criticism is only making things worse because it exhausted my will power to overcome the negative and pull out the positive. The extreme self expectation of being good teamed with criticism held me back in a loop. Till I decided enough is enough i need to see what's happening. From such situation i have developed some pointers in "Art of managing self negative emotions".

1. In my suggestion it is always good to take out a minute as soon as you feel something low. Do not shrug away ignore the feelings nor do you engage in feelings of self pity. Self pity is terrible worse than negative emotions because in case of negative emotions you still want to fight the unjust that has happened to you but when you self pity or agree it as "Kismat" you loose the last fort too.

2. Identify the feeling inside you , your exact need, the object or the attention , love and respect the other person gets and you do not. The object can serve as your need or actually no need too. For eg you can feel jealous for a high end cellphone it might not be a need but a greed. Jealousy and greed can easily turn themselves towards sadness or vengence depending on the character of the person holding it. Just learn to pin point your exact emotion.  Note it keep it at side for a second.

3. Repeat this statement "I make choices in my life I chose to be who I am today and I respect myself for this." This is essential to stop a blame game that runs faster than goose inside our heads. The whole life story pops up. This happed that is why that happened then next then next then list goes on and on till you have blamed every last person on earth for evrything in your life. Yes really that happens I have seen people blamed US President for their broken relationships people can really go that far. You don't know if someone on some corner of this earth might be actually blaming you for something you have never done. So blame never stops till you want to take responsibility of your life. So repeat the above line at least a few times to remember “ Every one makes choices and you chose something at some situation of yours because it was important to you.” This calms you and avoids you from emotinal drainage. (This is the main reason of internal distrust of many relations.)

4. Now that you have time, have identified your feeling and also not blaming anyone. The next step is to explain yourself that you are not guilty of holding a bad feeling.
Co-join your identified negative feeling with a positive one. For example someone does a tick tak around you and you feel irritation at its highest. Instead of saying “I hate this sound I hate this person he always irritates me” etc try to co-join “I love silence. Silence is easier to get when I am smiling. I am smiling because I am at peace.” Though it doesn’t sound meaningful initially but positive words if repeated a few times actually helps you connect to times when you created these feelings.
For example if you have ever seen a baby smiling and felt very happy just remember those tiny movements and that feeling , you created peace and love on seeing that baby. Now when you say this sentence the mind will automatically search for moments of “Smiling” “Silence” and “Peace” drives your mind to find those scenes and brings back those feelings exactly how you echoed. It helps you to see the picture more rationally than emotionally.
5. By this time your greed will be over and you would invariably be able to identify what you really need and can you given the fact that there are some compromises you would never want to make. Seeking an understanding that you are still feeling like smiling even without that object will remind you that the object/emotion is actually your greed not need.
Even if it really is your need then minus – the guilt you would have more sane mind to achieve it in due process rather than creating guilt or self pity.
Emotions cloud our mind and a single negative thought pulls us down and diminishes our ability to seek any requirement wether it is our need or not. Every feeling is actually a greater involvment of love. Love for others, love for objects or love for self we need to choose who and what is important to us. Once you learn managing your own negative feelings by bending them towards positive ones your winnability increases many folds.
I have experienced this several times and it is hard to do at first later comes very easily. You just learn to smile and walk away. On the path of being good it is easy to encounter things inside your own self which are not so good or rather grey but it is a process you learn to work on it if you are determined to be who you really are from within.
[I know i needed time but i had so many things on my mind to write. I couldn't stay away from sharing. Hoping to share more soon. My pain is better even if not gone yet feeling happy and light. :-) See you. ]

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Personal update 18 January 2013

I know many of you are out there waiting for my post and I am sorry for delaying my posts. I really have loads to write and share but having a bad neck pain rising slightly from brainn to down on my shoulders making my hands a bit stiff. Nothing in panic situation i know i have these symptoms for long now, sorta spondalysis in neck region and my job at computer makes it worse :) [working even in wee hours] to top it all painkillers is what doctors give and they treat the pain only temporarily then hunt me later.

Anyways i want to write a lot and wish to talk and discuss again and I will soon be back give me some time period of 10 days or so. My writings are so long i wish i could write them down in pen and paper and they'd make their way to my blog ;-) that's way easier for me. My hands are hurting while I am typing this so would wrap up now. Don't worry its nothing big keeps happening to me after some or other time span. :) I ain't worried either.

Miss u all :)
And Thank you for being so loving towards my blog.

love ya :)
God bless

My twitter handle - @soulfulShreya
Facebook - (Mail me before hand so that i can know you are my blog reader and can add you up. )

Friday, January 11, 2013

Swami Vivekananda and some resources

"We are responsible for what we are, and whatever we wish ourselves to be, we have the power to make ourselves. If what we are now has been the result of our own past actions, it certainly follows that whatever we wish to be in future can be produced by our present actions; so we have to know how to act"-- Swami Vivekananda.

Words fall short when you want to extol a man with Courage, Character yet Calmness and Peace. We all long to meet people who display faith and hope with actions. In todays world where everyone is talking about changing mindset I see why in 19th Century Vivekananda could vision what India's need would be. His writings are perfect source of inspiration to every man and woman today.

I have always found great respite and freedom whenever in trouble by reading his work just a line or two would remind you what you want to do. It is exactly like someone pushing you to get up and be who you truly are. His motivation was his never ending faith in God and Self. Even Mahatma Gandhi said everytime he read works of Vivekananda his heart was filled with love for India.

Today on his birthday 12 January i pay my deepest respect. I wish I can be even an iota of who he was .......Nay I am as he was (We are all same and equal). May he be born again and again and again.

Sharing some resources i read personally. (Doesn't matter what you know about him but matters what knowledge you can gain from him. Therefore i did not include his biography but added his work here. You read it it almost feels like he's sitting next to you.)

150 Quotes of Vivekananda

Speeches and Writings of Swami Vivekananda

Speech at World Parliament of Religion at Chicago

Janana Yoga

Raja Yoga

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Happy Birthday to ME :)

Birthday is everyday as long as you keep growing,
It is just another time to remember no more mourning,
A time span went by to check who not to be,
Then why let go of the moment of saying "Happy Birthday to Me".
Yay !! I love myself Muaah!! :)

2012 was definitely not a great year for me but I will not let go of my spirit to be happy from my list  . And I wil fight back though not with my fist. 

I want to be in the loop of happiness forever
Determined to be who I am in a more definitive state of mind growing and learning
Happy Birthday to Me :)

Thank you everyone family , friends , lovely readers for being by my side for all your wishes and blessings and Yes keep showering them on me I need each one of your good will , I am happy to be on the receiving side of love anytime.

Take care
Thank you all :)

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Past Present or Future Perfect vs Problem

Each one of us in our mundane everyday lives have sometime or the other faced problems that has disturbed our equilibrium for a very long time. Till the time we achieved our equilibrium we were faced ripples of problem exactly like a pebble in a pond, going back and forth.
 What is Problem? How do we identify what as problem?
Problem is like a question raised that needs a solution or a situation that has to be resolved to bring back and set equilibrium in place. This could be physical, emotional, material or non material in nature. But a state of peace and quietness in that region gets disturbed is definite for all of us.
 So as we face problem we should ideally be looking towards a solution or an answer. For this our mind races back to identify a similarity in the pattern of problems from past. As far as we go back into our past we'd all find impressions of innumerable things small big, valuable non valuable just many many things. These impressions are neither permanent nor temporary but are kept inside our mind by the value to etch to them. Per say for someone who is very emotional by nature would have impressions of feelings and emotions up in the queue as it has been most used and thought over by him/her where as for someone who is aggressive in nature will have impressions of self defense actions on top. Like a fish escapes a fisherman while a snake puts his hood up. Simple but equivalent ways of using impressions at times of distress. Basically all I am trying to put up is a sense of queue of memories we all line up every day from our past to solve our problems.
 Queue of impressions is not just filled with important past details or memories but also filled with scenes from future. Future Perfect as imagery of our future considering everything from present will stay in equilibrium till future scene is achieved. That which gets toughest challenge when faced problem.
 So everyone is using past experiences in present to keep future perfect.

However that is not the only thing that happens inside us. I wish it was that easy then machines would have definitely gone ahead of us.
 When faced with a problem it is mostly practical but most often we get clouded with either past experiences or shattering of future perfect scenes and lose the judgment for present. For example you lose something important related to work in the morning.
How a machine would have analyzed?
Problem - Find the lost object
Solution/Possible course of action - Figure out where last kept.
Most probable places where it can be found.
Take help from someone.
 This would have been perfect course of action except a human adds a specialty of his own to this. He uses his queue of impressions.
Past: He gets images from past what happened when a colleague of his lost a similar thing.
What would happen to him if he cannot find it out?
He might even create an image of what will happen to his job, to his family if the job gets lost.
It leads to creation of fear, anxiety, sadness which in turn increases/decreases vital signs of our body and diminishes our chances of finding out that object further. These are mutated feelings that reverberate for a long time. Even if after few seconds you do find the object the feelings and notions that you created in your mind during that duration are now stored to be repeated sooner or later in case of distress.

What we fail to understand is that "Queue of impressions" inside us are actually chosen and created by us every day. Slightly unaware slightly aware we indulge in an action we agree within is right. Let's say a child cheats one time and he justifies that internally for that moment pledging not to repeat that, the next time he gets an opportunity to repeat that he'd use that impression unknowingly and create a justification to break his promise. Over the time his justification grows stronger and his immunity towards his ethics grows weaker. Every time you see, feel, hear, touch and taste something it passes through this "Queue of impressions" to form an opinion in your mind. Considering its importance it lines up higher or lower in the Queue. These everyday choosing lands up where we stand when faced with problems. You cannot just wait for one day for a problem to come and choose your ideal way to face it. It happens every day and every second.
Psychologically speaking each of us is a kind of personality in itself and thus approach towards problem for each one of us is different. And different books and authors have already explained innumerous number of ways our difference which though I quiet agree but also disagree.
I disagree that each one us is using any different process inside for processing come from any background, any religion or any color. The notion that they think this way because their community, race or religion or whatever has anything to do with it is wrong.
I agree that each one is different because each one every individual chooses to use his machinery differently. Some use past failures as excuses to run away , some may use the same as stepping stone basically the choice is different. The intensity of choosing the right words and thoughts which flourish as ACTIONS is different.
Each individual is not a puzzle rather each puzzle is a piece in itself.
In terms of Individual who maintains a sane mind at times of troubles and eludes from images of Past present or Future Perfect easily treads away from problems. It is for that "The Bhagwat Gita" talks of detaching from Fruit of action, which did not just mean detaching in action from hands but detaching in means from thoughts. Detachment from fear and anxiety over past and future increases efficiency many folds, if not for always it must be practiced at times of trouble.
In terms of society where collective consciousness is very important it is essential to understand what Priority is for a Society. A society that wants to grow holistically has to work on all endeavors together. Compromising on any one will compromise on happiness of every other aspect. If you compromise on equality you cannot hold baton of security, if you compromise on truth you cannot pursue fraternity and so on.
None neither an individual nor a society can survive in absence of a stable mind that is free from clutches of past and future. Problems are and will come it is the continuous training process and work on the Queue that will turn them to either a Challenge to overcome Or Stress to be endured.

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