Saturday, September 19, 2015

Growing old

My niece was complaining the other day about going to school and all the home-works and projects and the tests she needs to prepare for. It is a usual thing for today's kids.They are overwhelmed with studies and after study classes. On a usual day, I would just smile and move on. But this day, I sat with her and was explaining how, in every phase of life, you keep feeling that the next phase is good and going to be better.The myth is broken as one grows older.
We face reality when we are in late thirties or mid forties, then you know this is it. You have reached the best portion of life and you either decide to enjoy  it or keep living it in the hope of future.
Growing old is not a great feeling especially when you have crossed fifties. It is said that when you are fifty , when you wake up if you don't feel pain somewhere in the body , you are dead !!!
Growing old teaches you to let go. Letting go of some dreams to make some dreams a reality, Letting go of some of your loved ones for some of your other loved ones , Letting go of some opportunities to enjoy something else, letting go of your loved ones from your this  life. 
In an interview with a lady who was 80 years old, when she was asked why nobody looks forward to growing old, she told how growing old is about letting go and letting things go gracefully, how it is about being frail and being dependant.For somebody who lived life with all independence, being dependant is not very nice.
Its also one of the most important reason in Asian cultures for families. Asian cultures, still continue to support the elderly within the family. Marriage , kids are still looked upon as insurance for old age.This is changing gradually with lesser people staying with parents.With more globalization, people are growing more consumerist and that calls for more money, this is causing Asian cultures also to look at providing comfortable living for elderly outside the family in old age homes, retirement homes. The visible example is how ads for "Nana Nani" (Granpa Grandma - maternal side) has increased in the recent years. It irritates me , how they chose the name to suggest that the girl's daughter has nowhere to stay, especially if they migrate.Paternal grandparents are called - Dada Daadi.With a lot of folks migrating to American and European countries, these homes have become new avenues for business.

But nevertheless, as man grows old, s/he gets more opportunity to share, to retrospect his life, to share his learnings. I look forward to growing old, seeing my nephew and niece make their life, spending time with my cousins, parents, sister and her family. Its a journey and if we do not enjoy the scenery outside the journey is not worth it!!!!

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Pale Blue dot

If you do not know what this is, this is what Carl Sagan called the Mother Earth on a historical photograph captured from pioneer space ship.
Here is a link to You tube video which explains it here.
It is very philosophical while being a pure astro-physical concept. While we run through our daily lives, it is introspective to know our place in universe and how teeny-tiny our existence is and yet how important and how lucky.
All that happened so far, the men who lived, the wars fought, the triumphs obtained, the history made, the discoveries made, the religions followed and the religions extinct are all part of the space and time Mother Earth provided us.
We should be happy when we realize this.
We need more people like Carl Sagan who can bring in so much passion to masses in science.

Thursday, July 30, 2015


When I was very young, we used to have lessons in school about Vivekananda, Ramakrishna Paramahansa, Gandhi ji, Chacha Nehru, Sardar Vallabhabhai and others.
Over a period of time, we look up to these gigantic figures who changed the course for humanity and retold the history.
We always have good things to learn from these personalities , from how they started humble and identified their paths and reached the destination that nobody else could have told them.
But as we grow up, for a majority of us, the dream of doing something ground changing seems too far. For various reasons - the eternal struggle between balancing responsibilities, career aspirations , family and so on.
Somewhere we start to not recognize and appreciate the simplicity of living. For a lot of us, until we are quite old enough we do not recognize our parents achievements. When I look back, i started appreciating them and their journey only when i was in early thirties. May be I am slow. May be we are so close to them that we do not take time to bring in the perspective to look at their journey.
Once I met a person , who told me that he had to do all his college studies in correspondence over mail because his family was not in a good situation in their business. So he had to take break from his studies to give time to business and then come back and pursue the studies. I contrasted this with my own situation, where my parents used to treat me like a queen when I was studying - ensuring  I got all I asked for - not just basic needs but the other things which I could have managed without as well. It was only then that I was thankful to my dad, who provided for all of us and ensured we had the security and safety with which we could think of other things.
Then I looked at the journey my own parents took in perspective, I am actually proud of what they have achieved so far. The humble beginnings with which they started and the independence with which they are leading their life. While we appreciate the great personalities , we should also appreciate the common man around us. This I think is purely self learnt in the Indian system and some will never get it .... ever....

Wednesday, July 29, 2015


People keep telling all the time that they do multi-tasking. I have always found it very difficult. There could be two ways of multitasking - one is time sharing  - for example  do task 1 for 5 mins then do task 2 for 5 mins and switch as required. Second is doing two things at exactly at same time- same second actually. For example reading a book, while you are listening to music.

It is the second one which i find totally not doable. Everytime i try this, one of the task is not done properly. For example, i would end up reading same page multiple times when i multitask it with music. If i am writing an email and then listening to music i get distracted.

So in my opinion, multi-tasking is not easy. A lot of people just refer to the first approach as multi-tasking. A person who understands how brain operates, may be able to explain.