Sunday, June 23, 2013

Certainties in this uncertain world

Certainties in this uncertain world

The only thing certain about life is : it is uncertain.

We plan for the posterity and not a moment we are sure about.

Most of the uncertain things are beautiful and the certain dreadful. Life offers all the charm, romance, joy with its know-not-what's-going-to-be- next.

World sustains only on uncertainties-hopes, dreams, imagination.

I heard : 'Retirement from work is as certain as death'. I was shocked and found the comparison unkind. Meek, whisper like murmur submitted : 'It is more sad that retirement preceds death'. It left me aghast. I had never thought of retirement along those lines. With grey hair asserting and weight loss not much obliging and motivation levels lying low with little outcome, I was not really prepared for the hurt when queried: 'must be two three years left ? ' Took me a second to gulp down the quizzing as I found it very insulting like directly asking the age from a woman.

All working people, I feel, think a lot, plan so much for the life after retirement. Mostly it is in terms of financial investments, pension and medical plans, insurance policies, calculation of PF and PPF and pension plans. Do we really prepare ourselves for the real, heavy, mind boggling emotioanl upheavel which is immanent fall out of retirement ? I don't think so.

Hard to believe but it has been thirty one years that I have been working. Cannot imagine what my life could have been without my work. I have loved my work whether it was teaching or as a civil servant. It is a passion with me, mo gain saying the fact. On it hinges my life's meaning, significance and purpose. Literally with blood, sweat and tears I have worked, put my heart and soul into it. Such huge investment!! Naturally, once deprived of it, it is going to be catastrophe !

But o k a y, its fine... Life is more important than work, isn't it? Do we give life as much importance ? To healthy, happy, comforting, meaningful, joyous life? Life full of music and charm, grace and grandeur, substance and meaningfulness and not just full of 'looking before and after' and pining for 'what is not'. Honestly, there has never been much of time to give serious thought to it. And then it may be too late to 'think', they say.

Work is life force and I think, we are afraid of whole lot of time at our disposal and not having to go to place of work. Besides, its ageing, too that we are afraid of. As long as we are able to deliver, keep moving on, it is respectable and basis of our self esteem. But then handing over the whole of credit for our own esteem to the work that we do, perform is being unkind to ourselves. We, for sure, are important and must matter as such.

There is basic tendncy to do something worthwhile and remain busy like an ant so shall be even when the 'Governor is pleased to retire...'

Why should one wait for what is certain? It will come when it will. True, I am yet to visualise the place where life after retirement will be spent till His pleasure and what the living would be like. In course of time, this aspect, too would get addressed once the dye has been cast. Right now it feels good to live one day at a time and when each day passes joyously, contentedly and peacefully, its silent thankfulness to Him at the end of the day. Amidst horrifying revelations of what rough weather can do to multitude of humanity, this moment we breathe is the only certainty. Rest is only history in the making, isnt it?

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Pain, pain go away....

Pain has all the components that beauty and joy and love imbibe: intensity, ability to affect not just mind, heart and body, but, soul, too. It has the ability to touch, sweep anything that comes in its ambit. Adroit Pain loves to penetrate, permeate and pervade.

Pain loves privacy, safety of a cocoon, withdrawal unto oneself, isolation and self-indulgence, luxury of brooding.

Its childlike nature shirks to meet the love-ful eyes that have the capacity to bare it, melt it, wash it and shoo it away. Naturally, it fears annihilation.

Weathers of any and every kind possess ability to sprout Pain and make it grow, enhance, bloom.

Pain seizes like scorpion’s tentacles and one gives up, letting the hold tighten further. It wrings all energy. Life sustaining hope is its first casualty. It halts time, brings life to a standstill, freezes time and the most natural thing as breathing requires an effort when Pain reins. Regular and repeated attacks of authoritarian Pain limp, close, shut and still.

Sometimes it is accompanied by a reason-a loss, an end but sometimes it comes from the backdoors of mind, hits on the back and causes a hard fall. Its complex behavior chagrins, annoys, maddens, agonizes, hurts but it doesn't stop. It can stoop to levels to cause a heart ache human mind fails to fathom at times the justification for.

Sometimes like an unplanned conception, the seeds of pain grow in the deepest recesses of heart and when it grows, it’s difficult to abort it. The process as such causes huge sense of irrevocable loss. Also, something dies within.

Nature has umpteen examples by which it glorifies pain by enabling sweet melodies blossom from thorn-birds and their likes amongst humans. Nevertheless, the charm, beauty and music emanated from Pain is accompanied by loneliness and isolation in love. On the contrary, Joy too renders music, beauty and depth to its creation and this paradox is the hardest to understand. It has baffled mankind since times immemorial.

It is not matter of choice but perforce that one awaits Joy, shuns Pain but like a reckless being, it cares the less and asserts its being where it finds the weak spot, the vulnerable hole to pierce through, shred, tear apart. And who bothers how long it takes to seal the wounds, patch things, co-join, make it workable.

At the fag end of my life I want to learn to 'say NO' to Pain in all its hues, varieties, colours, textures, forms and shapes. Have lived with it, loved it, nourished and nurtured it, seen it flourish and drown me in its unstoppable deluge.
No more. Now,no more.

With passage of time, I have seen its modes, moods, elements and components. Now I can see it coming from the distance afar. I feel Pain has realized that it is unwelcome; therefore, it hesitatingly approaches me, stalks me at times but cannot attack me from behind now. It has to come to the front, face me, challenge me, give me fair opportunity to counter it, prove my mettle and only when I give up after the fight; it takes over me-not before that.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Thanks Is Such A Small Word

'Full many a gem of the purest ray serene
The dark unfathomed caves of ocean bear;
Full many a flower are born to blush unseen
And waste their sweetness on the desert air'.
(Thomas Gray)

In this our dear world where inconsistency and its-undergoing - continuous-changes are the hall marks, some things, nay, some people stand apart. Involuntarily and unknowingly they enrich it, add meaning to the lives of a few by just being there.

I feel so fortunate and blessed to have such people who have stood by me in thick and thin, absolutely selflessly giving and caring and showering affection unconditionally and thereby have made my life's journey smooth, convenient, comfortable. I am feeling acutely conscious how callous I have been to hardly ever acknowledge their contribution in making me feel special, valued, loved and above all so much respected.

Over two and half decades they have been there almost noiselessly with their inconspicuous presence made conspicuous only on my birthday or with congratulatory compliments on my having got some recognition-social or official. Most noteworthy has been their presence when the going was tough, traumatic, tiresome and when darkness loomed large with all its frightening apprehensions, they were there like the unseen strength, holes of light and by being there in the thick, they handed me hope and courage to go on unfailingly.

Uncountable are the gestures that they asserted their being with me especially in my hours of need and deprivation and hopelessness. At the same time numerous are the instances when an unexpected call or a visit with a bouquet or a gift would bring cheer. Honestly, I cannot even recall how often I have turned to them for a small errand or a big job without deliberating much nor expecting either but they have n e v e r let me down. I know they must have gone out of the way often only to facilitate the fulfilment of my that particular hour's wish and requirement howsoever mundane and routine or impending, urgent.

I confess I myself have so often forgotten their birthdays but they would gently remind me-sometimes the next day without a complaint and I used to feel guilty as to how on earth I could forget it!!

In their own hour of personal injury or trouble I have hardly ever been of any help and more often than not I would come to know of it only when the unkind tide had passed.

I would like to tell them that they have made me feel very rich and at times complacent, too, for I had them to count for sure as friend, mentor. It feels good that undefinable relationships nurtured over years become assets one can only feel proud of and grateful to God for.

Thinking reveredly of two persons -both of them may be too shy to be named herein. To one of them I am wishing happy birthday and to another a belated happy birthday after ten days.

Thank you-both of you-for being there. Bless you. Pray for your well being, health and happiness.