Posted in For Readers

India – A Nation of the offended.

India is a country of a billion lives, a billion perceptions, and a billion thought processes. But what unites us all, apart from “Integrity”, is the art of getting offended. We are, by far, the most easily offended breed amongst all breeds in this world. We have made the stereotypical angry Red American look like a puny god in front of us. We have made Mohammad Ali Jinnah look meager to our offense taking abilities. The situation seems so bad that an argument on social media has to be ended with a tag of no offense, or my dear you might just reprimand for speaking your heart out.

Snapchat, Snapdeal and Sonu Nigam and Sonu Sood are the latest victims of a long list of offenders to the largest democracy of the world. Among these four, two were caught for their bold statements out of which only one has credibility while the other could just be another stone in the river. Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel was claimed to have branded India as “too poor” to expand his business operations. An Indian employee at snapchat claims to have heard Evan Spiegel make this statement, while Sonu Nigam today felt disgruntled on the fact that he was woken up earlier on a Monday morning. I don’t know about Evan, but I can totally sympathize with Sonu Nigam. Jokes aside, below was his original tweet, after which he went on a rant as to how the loudspeakers everywhere need to stop prophesizing religion as if we didn’t have enough.

Sonu Nigam

In support of Sonu Nigam came The frustrated Indian with the most logical statement –

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While this was happening, snapdeal’s ratings were plummeting. But it was snapchat’s CEO, right? Well, my fellow Indians, we f****d this up big time. We confused snapchat with snapdeal and while snapchat’s rating had already plummeted to 1 star with some really interesting reviews on the play store, some of us took out the brunt on snapdeal’s ratings and reviews.

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Now, the question arises, with this story now being 2 days old, Was it logical for us to get offended at that? Was the brutal lash out on the apps of Snapchat and Snapdeal justified? I would love to disagree. With 95% of the Indian population not even qualified to pay taxes, we are poor. With more than 13% of the India’s population Below poverty line, India is poor. With world’s largest slum in Mumbai, India is poor. But the worst part is, while we may not be poor at heart, we have lost our senses. The news of the statement broke the whole mass, and it had no proof, no backing by Snapchat or the CEO that the statement was in fact made by him. And if this was not enough, people went ahead and abused, attacked and reprimanded Miranda Kerr, Evan’s fiancé, for no fault of her own. We were so easily offended that all it took was for somebody to call us poor and we were floored.

In the case of Sonu Nigam, however, religion played a major part, and in a country like India, with such a sensitive topic, he was bound to be slammed by the social media. But was it fair? No. Everybody has a right to speak towards or against something that either pleases them or displeases them. It’s a basic right, and it’s very ironical as to how in the largest democracy in the world, we have forgotten that it is. He was just angry about being awoken earlier on a Monday morning. Can’t you understand this simple fact? Loudspeakers can’t speak to god, or the poor outside the temples/mosques/churches wouldn’t die of hunger.

India, once upon a time, brimmed with patience. We acknowledged each other, we listened to each other, we epitomized patience and understanding. If not for that, The Mughals or the English wouldn’t have looted us of our own possessions. But I guess, when you look at it, it’s the anger from the past that is ruling our present. The anger that we let anybody run over us, anybody to oppress us, anybody to call us “poor” or “land of the snake charmers”. But, as they say, one should never let the past rule your present, it hurts your future. Let’s get past this pain, and come back to our senses. Let’s be architects of a better world again, not pessimists and especially let’s not allow the world to run over us again.

Posted in For Readers, Life insights

Psychology – A life coach’s guide to globalisation.

Psychology, the art of understanding minds and behaviour, is slowly becoming an integral part of a global village. As we move towards a unified world, which I am positive we are, irrespective of walls and terrorism, we have an ever growing need of understanding each others’ psyche. Psychology has become more popular in this world post the initiation of businesses run through user inputs. Previously, with fewer customers, smaller customer base and a much smaller reach we were confined to knowing people like us, people who were interested in collecting the same products as we were in creating them. But now, we create products not out of our own understanding of a need, but the understanding of what this world needs, the people need, and not just in our community, but across the globe.

While yes, the world runs on business, profits and loss and every new research are somehow affecting your stocks, I will be talking about psychology here on a more personal level, a level which will be required to touch your bottom and lift you into this magnanimous world of mindfulness. The human psyche is interesting to the limits that we haven’t even reached yet. They say, and I agree, that we don’t even use 100% of our brain. How outrageous is that? Yet I sit here helping you understand other humans better because, my dear readers, I also believe that the rest of your unused brain will only develop through understanding others. What if this world we live in is a huge maze, and the secret in unlocking the maze was through mutual understanding and helping each other out? Sounds interesting? Read through.

Psychology is mindfulness of yours towards the mind of others. It’s a connection which helps you to sympathise, or which harms you to outrage for or against anybody. It helps you understand why others think or feel what they think or feel. While I may be a life coach, I am no psych major or humanities expert, but I have met a lot of humans and there’s no better way to understand humans but a practical approach. I am intrinsically News-leadership-psychology-702x395an introvert, but I love socialising, experimenting with socialising. And I will request you to carry out the same. Don’t have a single set of people to hang out with. Don’t be too comfortable at your workplace. Don’t be too adept to a city. Go. Explore. Experiment. Psychology is best understood with people of varied regions, varied backgrounds and varied understandings.

When I practice life coaching when people come to me with issues in their relationships, it’s actually very easy to find out the problem. The flaw is always that impending fear. The fear which has not let you explore other people who might be more suitable for you, friends, lovers, co-workers, anybody and everybody in this world. All a life coach does is show that person a bigger picture, and voila! You have an understanding of this world and of people you have not had all this time. But understand, the bigger picture is always different for everybody. So understanding the psyche is also a different ball game with every different human and that’s what makes it fun.

Psychology today has gained control of its own reigns and is a lot freer than it used to be. It is being used by anybody and everybody in ways they don’t even realise. And the healthiest outcome? We understand our fellow beings better, making this a truly global village. An Indian understanding the lifestyle of a Portuguese, and not trying to mould him into an Indian is what we are aiming towards. Respect comes through understanding. Let’s understand better.

Posted in Fiction, For Readers

Letter to my childhood self

Dear Teshu (my childhood name),

It’s been long since I have talked to you, in fact, it’s been long that I have acknowledged your presence at all. You have been alive all this time, feeding off my happiness of the present, for you were always sick then, and food was a luxury. I hear you all the time, asking, why I have forgotten you and your ways, your attitude, your lessons. You try and remind me the way my problems were momentary, away from my cartoons, my video games and my books. You have, for the countless number of times, helped me get back to my moments in which I needn’t be an adult, in which my life was just me going out to play a game of football or Cricket, as per the mood of the gang. You made me realise that even though no one let you play with them coz you didn’t know any swear words, didn’t affect the fact that you were always doing well in your studies, was great at co-curricular and had nothing to complain. You remember how everything was immaterial compared to your cartoons. But apart from these, there are memories that haunt me today, of ignorance, of negligence, of being the odd one. Those days when you didn’t have any friend, or when you couldn’t stay fit enough to even lift your head up. When you were always shunned away by people you needed, and accepted by those who needed you for the wrong reasons. I have memories of the wrong people teaching the right lessons, and of right people not teaching me anything at all. You are a mix bag of complications that are not worth investing time in to simplify. I don’t have problems anymore, no and no responsibilities either. Yes, people still leave me, or I leave them, but now I know, people were never important, cartoons were, and most importantly, so were you. Thank you for all the memories, thank for being my conscience, thank you for being my pathbreaker and my pacifier. Thank you Teshu.

Love,
Ritwiik (your 15 yr older self)

Posted in For Readers, Poetry

The Bigger Picture.

Hit hard. Down. fell. broke.
Lost, senses withheld, rugged,
Bleeding with no clogs in sight,
It was finally the end.

For a few moments, it had been so
sans, the light, sans thirst.
Those moments were blinding,
even plunged into nothingness.
The will had risen though,
Risen to the occassion, a call.
And so it had thrown away
The darkness into the light
the light without a cover of width
focusing on the bigger picture.
And was the view overwhelming? Yes.
This was exciting, but uncertain.
This was huge, and me so small,
And the comfort was so amiable,
but courage was not at a loss
and loss wasnt your gameplan.
You had lost the darkness to those
who had never been in the light
and you had finally viewed it
with the respect the Bigger Picture deserved.

Posted in For Readers

Aesthetics of Honesty

 

I see this world and my life as a revolving door, opening to multiple possibilities. There’s possibility to be of the people, for the people and by the people, there’s possibility of accepting your leadership for the people, and then there’s the possibility of accepting your ingenuity for your selfish contentment. I am a selfish prick, so I’ll aspire for the unique ingenuity only to satisfy my anxiety to exercise my intelligence to pursue the mysteries of this universe. It could be contradicting with your conscience, asking you to reject this possibility. How can someone be this selfish? Isn’t it a sin to be selfish and not think of your people, your brethren? You might question the existence of this philosophy by being outright, that if we weren’t meant to live together, why were we created in co-existence? But then aren’t those two completely different statements?

Honesty is what you are experiencing in your deepest corners; a concept which has been buried under the thought of the day –“Honesty is the Best policy”. A concept who’s beauty is fathomless, yet it transcends into nothingness upon its ignorance. Honesty is today mistaken for being mean, anti-social, self-damaging, harmful to the society, and is understood to be being non-corrupt. But, in the words of a simplistic, Honesty is truth. Honesty is not about being able to reject a party invitation, but about your own emotions, your needs, your aspirations, your silver lining, your definitions, your understanding, your creativity and what not. Honesty could be devastating to your social life, your love life, your family life and even to yourself, but if you have heard about the legend of the phoenix, you’ll slowly really, if you persist long enough in the path, that you will, like the phoenix rise from the ashes of your burnt relationships and bonds.

Remember when you actually detested the idea of meeting someone you never wanted to? Remember when you felt dejected but made up a reason to stick by even when the situation never improved? Remember when you believed that nobody could help you but yourself? We all have been through all the aforementioned situations, clichéd situations. And while it’s very easy to say enduring through them makes you stronger, I say standing up and saying no to such situations make you soulful. Honesty. To yourself, to that person, to that group, to that job, to that desire, to that taste, to that sport, to that piece of furniture. Explore yourself in a way that only truth comes out of your mouth, what you think, you speak. It takes more courage to reject that company which made you feel less intelligent coz you didn’t study in a big school, to believe in your intelligence when you face nothing but rejection from all around you, to put your foot down on your ideals and stay firm with an undying attitude. We know it in our bones, everything, but we need a bucket to go down that well and take the water out to be used to clench our skins of fake possibilities. There’s only one possibility in this world, and while one could fool himself or herself, that people define them, it’s their truth that defines them; the truth that is not spoken to others but which comes up when one is silent, in a grave discomfort, while making a life-changinAyn-Rand-2g decision.

And when you are honest, the truth will hit hard, it may burn and the phoenix that will rise again will be fresh, new and you will realise as if a layer of fake aggressiveness towards this world and “my” people has lifted, a burden to be proven has been lifted. People will leave, you will leave people. You will abandon paths with little notes left for those who might trod the same, but most importantly, you will rise and fly away to a path of your own unique existence.

That’s when you’ll realise that no genius in this world ever worked to create good for this world, but to satisfy his need to serve his intelligence. People say Nikola Tesla tore down his royalty contract to serve the people, to not be selfish. But I say, he was the most selfish of them all. He was selfish in a way that those who have been genius can realise. He needed to know that what he could do, he would keep on doing, without interference. He never cared about the people, he cared about how much justice he did to his creations, to his intelligence, to his ability to transform nothing into something. He worked alone.

You may know steve jobs as one who made apple what it is. But I know him as a selfish, self-centered artist of the modern silicon world. He created to satisfy his own innate desire to turn nothing into something. You may know Ramanujam as someone who gave Maths infinity, but he just exercised the control that he had over numbers to belch out the information stored in him.

I believe human was created to work his magic individually, not by assistance, not by brainstorming, not by taking an average. Human was created to exist longer than this universe, not by feeding on each other, but oneself. It could be very paradoxical, given the fact that people believe in working in teams, that the best can come out of 3 brains rather than one. But whenever I have worked in a team, I have felt more let down than when I worked alone. Not because my team members were incompetent, but because I felt I wasn’t exercising my entire potential. If you have felt so too, then you know what I am talking about. No team has existed without disagreements, no team has come out with an individual creation. It’s always an average. Its always a derivative of the combined intelligentsia of the en mass and I feel today with the population explosion, this plague is hitting every venture.

Given the fact that we have now worked for centuries in teams, may be, it is time that we explored the other side of the road, where while we will walk on the road together, we won’t think for the collective conscience, but for the individual contentment.

Ayn Rand 3

Posted in For Readers

Transcendence of a New Beginning.

Do you want to Create your own God?
Isnt it what man has been trying to all along?

Hasn’t there been a common, worldwide out cry for safety, better resources and all in all a better life? But what is a better life? A good home? A good car? Or a good girlfriend? Hasn’t there been a generic notion of achieving everything “satisfactory” in this world through materialistic possession? Deluded, hopeless yet sympathetic of our own selves, we are moving towards an era when humans won’t believe in themselves, but will still believe in machines, putting a foot down on the afore mentioned obsession with materialistic possession. However, whose foot it would be, is a question that has to be answered right now. God, a general answer to everything, is losing his focus these days. Like the fallen angel of Constantine, he’s no more a spirit of good, but rather a spirit of vengeance; that is, if there’s a god. While atheism, rising more profoundly through the seeds of terrorism feeding on religion, it’s a race now as to who will win. The race is between two forces- one which doesn’t believe in god, but in a lifestyle which is governed by no one but themselves or the conscious beings” and the others who are hanging in the limbo between religion and God faced with the only choice of forcing the will of vengeance of god upon us through the self-made laws of religion or the “enlightened beings”.

Love, pulse, physical ability, emotions, life, existence and at the very end- Conscience. A topic of discussion since years, centuries probably as to “Are we self-aware and can we prove it?” While the answer to the first question is a definite Yes, how do we prove it? Our senses? Or like Christopher Nolan so effortlessly proclaimed the power of love as a physical dimension? Or is it the sense which is used to love? Where are we moving? Towards happiness, peace? Paris, Beirut, Syria and hundreds of other cities and their countries have made it their point time and again that world needs a balance, of everything; of happiness against sadness, of peace against war, of stability vs instability, yet we in our hyper stage are far away from achieving the balance between breaking and fixing things. The emotional bonds and the engineered machines- while one is breaking, the other is fixing itself. While we are trying to achieve happiness, there’s so much depression that the very path that exercises itself towards happiness is dwindling and causing depression on its way, blurring the face of what once was effortless peace (happiness being just a pre-requisite).

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Then what’s the cure? What’s the lead to move towards a better future? Of transcending into an era of balance? There isn’t one. There was a time when happiness was a way of life and not a hard fought emotion. There was a time when people took effort to understand others- humans, nature alike. There was a time when terrorism was there, but so was peace.

Written above somewhere in a short sentence is- who’s foot it would be? Let there be no foot. And I answer it now. Release creativity, humanity, belief, and freedom. Stop trying to understand the conscience while living out of it and dig deep within for the answers. The ways of nature which have been incomprehensible even after recreating the “God Particle”, cannot be comprehended upon by reconciling machines with more machines rather, yourself with this very existence. Materials can get you so far as to making you immortal, but would that life be worth living if there was no fear of its end; thus the balance? Think of life as an acorn- there are layers within before you actually realize peace is at the seed while happiness was just the layer you have to peel off before you release the seed and plant it again for a newer day.