Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Omar Khayyam,Once Again!

Omar Khayyam's exquisite quatrains require no introduction and Edward Fitzgerald's translation does full justice to his verses.Please enjoy....

One Moment in Annihilation's Waste,

 One Moment, of the Well of Life to taste---

 The Stars are setting and the Caravan
Starts for the Dawn of Nothing---Oh, make haste!

'Tis all a Chequer-board of Nights and Days

 Where Destiny with Men for Pieces plays:

 Hither and thither moves, and mates, and slays,

 And one by one back in the Closet lays.

 The Ball no Question makes of Ayes and Noes,

 But Right or Left, as strikes the Player goes;

 And He that toss'd Thee down into the Field,

 *He* knows about it all---He knows---HE knows!

 The Moving Finger writes; and, having writ,

 Moves on: nor all thy Piety nor Wit

 Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,

 Nor all thy Tears wash out a Word of it.

 And that inverted Bowl we call The Sky,

 Whereunder crawling coop't we live and die,

 Lift not thy hands to *It* for help---for It

 Rolls impotently on as Thou or I.

If you liked these verses you may also appreciate the following posts.....


Sourced from google.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Raise Your Self Esteem--in eleven easy steps

I have come across many individuals who are qualified,competent,hardworking and honest but they have not been able to achieve much due to low self esteem.What's more,they know what drags them down but are unable to mend it.

Is it so difficult to raise your self esteem?I think it is easy;provided you recognize the need to do so, believe you will be able to do so and take the necessary steps towards that end.Let me confess at the outset that i too have suffered from this malaise and (as i think) put it behind me.Perhaps what worked for me will work for you too-so let me pontificate a little.

1) While preparing the groundwork for a higher self esteem,it is essential to first recognize that your present opinion of yourself is a fallacy(built up over the years by many stimuli), which is redundant and counter productive.

2) So you feel inadequate and are now ready for a makeover.In which sphere do you think you lack?Is it your personal relationships?Are you a pushover?Start by asserting yourself.Say what you feel,what you think is right.Most important of all-stand up for your rights.Nobody is going to give you them on a platter.Don't be scared of voicing your dissent if the occasion arises.Believe me,the very first time you voice your honest opinion you will start feeling capable and confident.The feeling of inferiority will subside considerably.

3) As you begin to say what you feel and not what others would like you to say, you will have to give up the habit of people pleasing,which,incidentally,is very detrimental to a healthy self image.

4) A feeling of inferiority often spawns self deprecation.If you want to augment your self esteem you will have to discard this habit of always belittling yourself.You are not the only one who has a flaw or a shortcoming.So quit saying-'I am no good at this','I am ugly','Nobody loves me' etc.

Most people would not even notice these things about you if you did not proclaim them from the roof tops.It is a person's temperament and behavior which attract others,not his/her physical characteristics.It is even possible that your perceived flaws are merely the result of an over-active,unrealistic self analysis.If you really think that your body structure or personality have a glaring fault then take some positive steps to correct that fault-merely lamenting about them will not accomplish anything.And just keep quiet about your weak points.

5) Peep into the secret chamber of your heart.Is there any somnolent desire lurking there?Any skill which you would love to master but dare not attempt because of a fear of failure ?I would suggest that you learn the ropes and then go for it.You are no less capable than anybody else and if you give it a try you are likely to be pleasantly surprised, as i was,when I first touched my pc at the age of 65 yrs.

6) Self deprecation can easily slip into self-bashing.Do not be too hard upon yourself if you fail-in fact be as kind to your own self as you would be to another person.

If it is a joint project or an official assignment which has gone wrong, you might be held responsible by others because there is no dearth of people who will pin the blame upon those who are not likely to rebut or retaliate.People can have exterior motives.Those who suffer from a meager self opinion lambaste themselves even if they are not at fault.

Even if you have failed or committed a blunder, you are not the only one to have done so.It is honest and upright to own up your mistakes but avoid capitulating to false accusations or flogging yourself.It is a review of the whole process which is called for and not guilt, because your method and intentions were the best according to your judgement at that point of time.There is always the next time.

7) Low self esteem comes up as a huge boulder when the time comes to take up an important assignment in hand or to take a personal decision which can have grave ramifications.As a result we often shelve taking a decision or ask for someone's advice or let a momentous opportunity go by.If you really want to strengthen your image it would be better if you consider all the pros and cons of the situation and then--if you are sure of what is good for you--just go for it independently.This will increase your confidence in your own abilities.

8) When you are unsure of what to do it is of course necessary to ask for expert advice and even help;if you do not have the requisite resources.But if this is not the case and you only want additional force behind you, then it is time to let go of those crutches.Take your decisions,use your resources and bask in the adulation and self-satisfaction which will follow.

9) We all want to be loved and for this very purpose we often put up with a lot of insensitivity or indifference from others.But if you want to assert yourself then begin by ignoring such individuals if they do not belong to your inner circle.Do not give them more than you receive.If you fear that they will be hurt by this change in your behavior then think--how long have they been hurting you.Your needs are no less important than others' needs.If you ignore your own happiness then who will care for it?

10) Self esteem cannot come out of a vacuum.If you want to value your own self then make yourself worthy of your respect--stick to your values and standards of behavior,pursue goals which are upright and noble according to your thinking,and don't be secretive about your achievements.

11) Look around you and consider the person you hold in high esteem.What is it that attracts you to him/her?Is it possible to inculcate that quality in yourself?If yes then there is no harm in trying,but it should not devolve into aping.This suggestion needs a caveat--very often it is not because we are inadequate that we feel insignificant;rather we have been made to believe thus by unthinking or uncaring others.Every person is unique and has special attributes.What you are and what you can do,no one else can.So believe in yourself and cherish yourself,all the while learning and evolving. 

In the end I would like to repeat George Elliot's words;
'It is never too late to be what you might have been'

The image is from google.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Learning A Lesson.......The Hard Way!

Last month I was rendered immobile for a week.You can well imagine what all this entails.Thank God I was on my feet again after one week but this one week taught me many lessons.

The day I first walked to the bathroom after this, I realized what a blessing it was to be able to do so.Before that I had never imagined that one day I would rate this simple act as a major component of my happiness or satisfaction with life.

And then there was the buoyant feeling of not having to depend upon anybody for the simplest of needs-like turning off the fan or picking up something to read.Because of my reluctance to bother my family time and again,I had been suppressing many such desires in the past week.

It was almost a thrill to be able to undertake any activity of my choice-even a simple act like sitting out in the garden or making my tea my own way.Lying supine on bed for one whole week had tested my tolerance to the maximum.

As I took over my normal routine I felt deeply indebted to all those who had chipped in to help me out in the week gone by. I could not but marvel at the many blessings, the good lord had bestowed upon me.Every small convenience now became a source of joy.I do not live in the lap of luxury but even small facilities like a comfortable bed with clean sheets,a nice clean bathroom and a convenient kitchen-- all these factors have made life easy and enjoyable.Not to talk of bigger boons like a healthy body and mind,a caring family,the home I own etc etc.

The list could go on and on,but I guess you get my point.There are so many comforts we enjoy and take for granted.Not until we are deprived of them do we realize how lucky we were.We sweat about small stuff ,not even considering the pleasures which fortune has bestowed upon us.We take for granted what we have and we also desire what others possess.Instead of gratitude we fill our hearts with envy and discontent.Perpetual hunger for more and more causes unrest and anxiety.While yearning for happiness-we in fact tarnish it.

Even as I write this I am aware that if I am healthy and happy today it is not always going to be like this.The whole life experience is like the wheel of a bike with different parts of it's circumference embossed with natural events which generate happiness,sorrow,disease,frustration,growth or stagnation,with the passage of time.We feel deeply the current joy or displeasure which is uppermost on this wheel, forgetting that this too will go down and other experiences will come up.

Even when face to face with a calamity,what succor do we have?We can only thank God that it is not worse than this, while coping with it to the best of our ability and telling ourselves that this too shall pass.I guess the answer lies in savoring mindfully and gratefully,what we have;appreciating more, and whining less.Talking of gratitude,this post has a lot to offer.It is worth a visit.

What is precious to me could differ from what you hold dear.It would be interesting to know what evokes feelings of gratitude in you.So come along,say your say !

Image courtesy google.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Defeating Difficult Times

Nobody can expect to go through life without facing any troubles or traumas.Beginning from disappointments,upsets,failures and going on to rejections,separations,loss,accidents,disability,disease and death;the dark shadow of sorrow spares no one;though it is true that some get more than their fair share of it.We try our best to avoid these vicissitudes but it is not possible to prevent all of them.The only option open to us is to learn healthy ways of coping with them and coming out unscathed.

When the situation is not too grim or life threatening, POSITIVE THINKING can work wonders.It enables us to find a ray of hope even when the clouds are dark and dreary.We set aside our doubts and find the courage to move on.Perhaps you broke off with your girl friend or failed to get a promotion,but if you think a better girl or job might come your way then your regret will subside considerably.An innate belief or hope that tomorrow will be better,you will make it better,or you can make it better makes it easy to live through challenging times.

But positive thinking does not help when a solid problem stares us in the face and demands a solution.At such moments only logic can help us out.A preponderance of emotions is likely to muddle our thinking  and obfuscate reality.Rational thinking saves the day,it points to the way out from a tricky imbroglio.

Some problems are heaven-sent,some created by others and some are self-inflicted.If only we pondered over our own role in a fiasco instead of lamenting about destiny or someone else's behavior we would be able to mend the damage sooner.When we blame someone else for our own blunders we lose the opportunity to correct our course and the problem stays put where it was.We compound our mistake by reading too much into a gesture,remark,or a development and mentally label a friend or an acquaintance as an enemy.This is not the way to emerge from tumultuous situations.

Personal problems generate a lot of heart-ache.So much so that they can blot out all sources of joy and satisfaction.Emotional matters involving close relationships evoke sad memories,disillusionment and sinking feelings about future.We are so overtaken by conflicting signals that it becomes difficult to choose the correct course of action.At such moments it helps to discuss the problem with a close friend or a relative  who is not involved because that person will have a clearer perception of reality.

But if we do not want to disclose our problems to any known person then professional help is the best choice because it is of paramount importance to vent our emotions and find a solution to our problems.When we express our innermost thoughts,worries, suspicions or guilt in front of someone who is not  judgemental we immediately feel lighter by virtue of  catharsis.A professional views the state of affairs from an unbiased stand and suggests a way out which is likely to satisfy all concerned;or which is the best possible solution at the given moment.

Positive thinking,logic and  even professional help are of little use when we find ourselves in the center of a  terrible tragedy like the loss of job,home,limb,or a loved one to death.Such shocks are the hardest to bear.It helps to take a break from the hurly burly of life,to cry,express our sorrow and grieve for our loss.Problems which require immediate attention can be entrusted to those who care for us.These are small measures but they give considerable relief.

However the grieving period must not extend beyond a reasonable limit or devolve into self pity.A lot remains even in the aftermath of a tragedy because only death annihilates fully.Therefore if we take stock of what all has not changed,count our blessings (yes some always remain),then we can pick up the threads of life and build a new life scape.In the ever changing kaleidoscope of life we are often required to reinvent ourselves and the outcome should not be viewed with skepticism because the future will pan out in sync with our own expectations and efforts.

Sometimes we are tempted to look up at the sky and ask 'why me?'.But why not?We did not ask this question when life was rosy.Maybe the sorrow has come to teach us a lesson,to help us evolve.Religion and spirituality can offer strong support in stressful times.They endow a broader vision so that we can look beyond our hassles.

It is very comforting to believe that there is a supreme power which will look after our welfare and ensure that justice is done to us.Above all,it is very soothing to think that if the cheerful times have receded,these irksome days too,will pass on and we shall find our happiness once again.This takes a heavy load off our shoulders so that we can take charge of our  lives once again.

Image courtesy google.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Passing Moments.....Lost Moments.

Every moment is slipping by,
Like carriages of a train whizzing by.
Loaded with stuff no one can see,
Desires worries and memories,
Hope anxiety and agony.

A lamp post on way shines some light,
And so, the carriage perks up bright.
Into the jungles, and then again,
Darkness black resumes it's reign.

A cool breeze sometimes brings reprieve,
Then turning to gusts,it sows unease.
Take care,the signs of a brewing storm,
Hold tight to all you cherish and own.

Thank God the storm has passed away
Not taken you too,along it's way.
But the journey still is far from done,
All kinds of weathers will test you on.

Many carriages have dropped by the way,
And new ones are added every day.
What was dear and intimate,
Is now swathed in distant haze.

Onward goes the march of time,
Who can ever lag behind?
My own destination I do not know,
 In my hands, to heal and grow.

Image courtesy google