Posted in anecdote, Life, Philosophy

Life…and tips

I have been living in Doha for a better part of a month now. One thing I noticed is, there are a lot of Indians here. Especially people from Kerala.

I have been staying in a hotel for  15 days (the bill was enormous, but there was no other way), when I noticed a few things.

First thing I noticed when i entered Doha, was the air was full of perfume smell. It was refreshing but weird. Like everyone wore the same perfume.

Second thing, That I look Egyptian. This was commented by a Taxi Driver and seconded, later , by a lot of other guys.

Thirdly, Whenever I mentioned that I was an Indian, the Indians and Nepalis treated me like a brother. I got an extra bottle, extra soap, extra coffee better service… overall very good service from most of the people.

All they wanted was someone to chat with from “Back home”. No matter if the Person is from a different district. It was India.

I say most, because the Taxi drivers, mostly Indians and Bangladeshis , tried to charge me more that the meter.

But I am used to it.

Moral of the story:

  1. People  tend to give you a better service when spoken to / treated like a human being.
  2. India may be a country which is divided by caste issues, regional conflicts and overall hatred between certain sects; but to se the unified nation, it is ironic,  that you need to leave the country to see it.
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Posted in Article, Life, Mensa, Philosophy

Depression

This is another article that I wrote for a Mensa meet. Apparently, I am depressed.


What is depression?

Excessive sadness, perhaps?

So let’s remove sadness from life. By-product : no happiness. As it happens, you can’t feel true happiness unless you know what the absence of happiness means and the absence of happiness is sadness. Like darkness is just an absence of light, or chaos is just an absence of order.

But, Just like, a small beam of light can cause a dark room to brighten, a small act of shouting and cutting queue (chaos) when filling up the graduation forms in college can cause a small and exciting riot, conclusion : a small shock of sadness can actually break the depression.

No this is not a typo. I agree, that small bout of joy can also help with depression, but that is just for a particular moment. For long-term effects, you need a small shock of sadness. This will look at life from a different perspective. It gives the feeling that God just gave a smack on your bum and asked you to “man up” to life. He says life isn’t cruel, just mischievously sadistic.

How do you spot a depressed person ?
He is definitely not the one shouting “I am so depressed, that I can no longer work.” This is simply a lazy guy who wants others to do his work for him.

He is definitely not the person sitting quietly in the corner… staring blankly at a wall. He might just be admiring the colour or texture of the wall. Or perhaps he might be absent minded. Or perhaps he might think himself to be John Forbes Nash and thinks staring at walls may just win him a Nobel prize and he might get a beautiful mind.

He is definitely not the one who refuses to take baths, has long and dirty fingernails. He might be a gardener or he might have just buried someone,preferably not alive.
( I should stop watching police procedural dramas )

No these are not the depressed beings.

Notice the guy who keeps smiling, no matter what the situation ? Yes, the guy who is laughing all the time, cheerful, pleasant, cool to hang out with. Look at him closely. There might just be a hint of sadness hiding in those eyes.
The eyes, always trying to find something. Something they don’t know how to explain, something that’s missing. A spark in their life, maybe… ? or a purpose to live , perhaps …?

Have you tried to talk to him ? He might just speak for hours and you might gain a lot of general knowledge and absolutely no personal insight into this person. He has shut himself off, emotionally. He might put on weight, or loose some within a short span. He might claim to get plenty of sleep, almost 12 hours, and claim he needs it.

These are just some symptoms of depression. There might be more.
So next time you spot such a person, try to look into him, rather than at him. You might just learn a lot about him

Posted in Life, Philosophy

When do we loose a friend ?

A schoolmate commented on an old photograph on my facebook page. The photo was of my school days, taken at the time we completed our high school. The entire batch along with the teachers, captured into an immortal moment.

Most of the faces were familiar, some familiar but difficult to recognise .

But some faces seem foreign.

This got me thinking. Why do I not remember them ? Have I lost these friends ?

When do we loose a friend ?


Is it when the friend dies ?

Nah. Can’t be. I lost my best friend when we were 15 years old adolescents. But I still consider him as a friend. Amongst us, we still discuss and cherish our memories involving him. Only the state of his existence has changed. So I can’t say that he is no longer a friend.


Do we loose a friend when you call him, but he disconnects the call, and sends a sms – ” I am busy, call me later” and  never calls back ?

In our day to day life, the lifestyle is getting more hectic. It is very probable for some one to forget a call back. So, this can’t be the answer.


Do we loose a friend when he gets married and can no longer “hang-out” at your usual spots ?

Definitely not. Everyone needs his own personal space, but most often, there is a change to make a new friend. But it does take time for the spouse to know you better to be considered as a friend.


Do we loose a friend when a familiar voice says “wrong number” ?

Hmm. Maybe .

Do we loose a friend when you look back at your life and can no longer find anyone to share a bench with ?

This, would be a difficult question to answer.

Posted in Philosophy, spirituality

Hindu Mythology

I watched movies like “The Mummy” over the weekend, and it got me thinking.

Why is Hindu mythology, not shared with anyone outside India ?

So this got me thinking, and I will be adding a new section in the blog.

Do check it out

Posted in Philosophy, Short Story

What does charity mean ?

The recent earthquakes in Nepal and the sudden rise in want-to-be philanthropists made me write a short story from the Hindu scripture ” Bhagvad Geeta.”

A little background on the characters and situation.

Karna : He was a loyal friend of the Kauravas. He was known as the most charitable person alive. Extremely honourable, but highly looked down upon because of his lineage.

Arjuna : One of the Pandavas. Highly skilled archer,

Krishna : King of Dwarka. Very intelligent, practical and diplomatic person. He is the one who rist recited the geeta to Arjuna.

Here is the story :

One day, Arjuna says to Krishna ” Oh great ,lord, why is it that Karna is deemed as The hero among donors ? Even I do a lot of charity work. Why is it, that I am not given the same honour ? ”

Krishna though on this and decided to give him a practice session.

He took Arjuna to a village, created a mountain of gold and asked him to distribute the mountain of gold among the villagers. Arjuna started calling all the villagers, asked them to form up a queue and started giving out potions of the wealth. Eventually, he got tired and frustrated, as the villagers kept asking for more.

Krishna saw the frustration on Arjun’s face and told to stop what ever he was doing.

Then he sent word to Karna and told him to do exactly the same thing.

Karna called the villagers to the mountain, asked them to take the gold and then without another word, went about his own business. He never even glanced at the pile, or how the villagers were using the gold.

Now Krishna says to Arjuna ; ” Did you understand your mistake now ? O brave archer ? You, in your pride, decided to hand out the gold on your own. You thought it was your prerogative how to distribute the wealth. Al this gesture did was  caress your ego. You also endeavoured to distribute the wealth equally.  But Karna has no such thoughts. He know he had to give away the wealth. He simply asked the villagers to take the gold. To achieve that objective, he knew there was no need for him to do anything more than simply ask the people to take the gold for themselves. He never thought that it was “He” who is giving away the wealth.”

———————————————-

Similarly, if you really want to help someone, you should not think that it is “you” who is helping him. A selfless help , a selfless act is richest forms of charity. There is no point in asking questions like :

  • Will this money reach the needy ?
  • How much should I give so that I can show it in my Tax returns ?
  • How much would be enough, to brag to my friends about ?

If you want to give away, have no regrets . Do it selflessly.