MOTHER’S WORDS ON A TEACHERS’ DAY

Reproducing an article written in 2014..

Mother Teresa – August 26, 1910 – September 5, 1997

“I never forget an opportunity I had in visiting a home where they had all these old parents of sons and daughters who had just put them in an institution and forgotten maybe. And I went there, and I saw in that home they had everything, beautiful things, but everybody was looking towards the door. And I did not see a single one with their smile on their face. And I turned to the Sister and I asked: How is that? How is it that the people they have everything here, why are they all looking towards the door, why are they not smiling? I am so used to see the smile on our people, even the dying one smile, and she said: This is nearly every day, they are expecting, they are hoping that a son or daughter will come to visit them. They are hurt because they are forgotten, and see – this is where love comes. That poverty comes right there in our own home, even neglect to love.”

From the Mother’s Nobel Lecture – December 11, 1979

There is this place that I visit regularly and the Mother’s these words echo on what I feel there during each of my trip.

This one is a paid home for the senior citizens, the old-age people who are forced to live there (and in every such home, paid or charitable).

Yes I can use the word ‘forced’ because no one wants to live away from his or her family when he or she needs it the most, in old-age, when they become dependent on others, financially, medically and emotionally and this dependence increases as the age advances.

Here in this particular old-age home, financial constraint is not an issue except one or two members because most are well-to-do traders or pensioners with good financial background, but overall, each of them are poor emotionally, as the Mother’s words say, as the practical needs of an old-age demand, the emotional attachment and attentions, they need people to spend time with them, to listen to them, to care for them, and that is universally true, at least in the context of the Indian tradition where the whole family still grows together, where the parents forget their own comforts, comfortably and happily, to give a comfortable life to their children.

And such old-age homes reiterate the concerns on the value-erosion that is breaking people away from the joint-family tradition where even fathers and mothers become unwanted entities.

Here in this old-age home, even if the situation is like other worldly when we compare it with similar government run institutions or many charitable ones, this poverty transcends. It begins with the families. The poverty there pushes them to throw their elderly parents away to such institutions, the eternally emotionally poor places.

And it can be read on their faces.
Yes, the grandpas and grandmas here are fully aware of their situation and the lifelong learning and bad experiences from their own children make them tolerant enough to pass the days in their solitude.

Still, they expect. Still, they pray for their sons and daughters. Still, their financial planning of whatever they have revolves around their sons who don’t even call them or the daughters who don’t even visit them even if they stay in the same city.

It is always an unacceptable point that a son (daughters are not privileged to take such decisions in Indian societies) cannot accommodate his parents or his father or his mother in ‘his family life’.

Peace always evades them and their sons and daughters live in a world of fallacy, of a caricaturized peace, earned on the sobs and tears of their parents.

Some of them had come here together. They saw here one departing. And they are now alone. Relatives including the immediate family members, including the sons and the daughters (if some of them turn up) come for the last rites and then it is even more solitary and haunting a life where the only person with whom he or she could share the emotional needs, is no more.

And the institution here, the old-age home, with good infrastructure and material facilities, is no help either. There is no emotional connect. The basic requirement of such an institution, catering to the emotional needs of the humiliated hearts, is totally absent. The staff there treats them as paid inhabitants who don’t give tips.

Most of the charitable institutions (and yes, this old-age home is one from the lot) don’t even know what charity should be, where should it begin and that there is no end to it, as the Mother’s life and words teach us to follow.

The value-erosion is deepening as evident by such institutions proliferating across the country. And there is no defined solution to address it.

The major reason behind such ‘extremely nuclear’ families is an increasingly selfish and self-centered work culture shaped by an education system that forces students to become too individualistic in competing and succeeding.

The value-based education system has been replaced by a system that focuses only on examinations. It tells students to compete and succeed at all costs. It tells them there is no life beyond it if they fail. The students are bullied by life and by the society.

They live under consistent pressure and after a point of time, they start treating genuine concerns and advices of their parents as bullying and selfish acts. They stop seeing the fine print of their parents’ intentions. They justify the family assistance as their right, something that their parents enjoyed as well when they were youngsters.

Not all sons and daughters become like that. But the increasing number of old-age homes tells us the problem is widening and the society needs to address it.

A logical way to address it is introducing value based content focusing on parents and caring for them in the teaching curriculum right from the elementary level and continue the flow year after year till the undergraduate level. It is not a wild thought to opinionate that a separate course should be developed on family values in Indian societies. If there is a need of value-indoctrination in the Indian tradition, it is here, on this and similar issues.

Due to certain reasons, my visits to this old-age homes has become more frequent these days and thoughts on these lines naturally came to me today, after watching prime minister Nadrendra Modi’s address and interaction with the students from across the country emphasizing on the ‘value of values’ on the Teachers’ Day, a day to observe the birth anniversary of the greatest academician India has ever had, Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, the former President of the nation and a former vice-chancellor of my alma mater, Banaras Hindu University.

‘Who we are is not decided by our lineage’ but by our deeds and when we fail to perform on our primary responsibilities, that is to our parents, to care for them, to be with them on their every call, we fail in life, even if we amass great material wealth.

Dr. Radhakrishnan had said: “We are Braahmin not on account of birth or the performance of rites, not by study or family, but on account of our behavior”.

Growing up is basically about the values that we imbibe and how the values reflect in our acts. The sons and daughters who don’t learn to appreciate and imbibe the values that make the connect with their parents a natural bond remain poor throughout their lives – as the Mother’s words say, as the life says, as echoed in Dr. Radhakrishnan’s words – “Their joy is in the fulfilment of family obligations of marriage and parenthood, and other personal relationships.”

Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan – September 5, 1888 – April 17, 1975

Mother Teresa - Dr. Radhakrishnan

Mother Teresa – Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan
(Images sourced from the Internet)

©SantoshChaubey

LET’S GO BEYOND THAT CLICHÉ

Let’s begin on something
With newness in the air
Let’s go beyond mere saying
That every day is a new day
Yes, it’s a new you every day
But aren’t you trapped
In a living that makes it
Nothing but a cliché
When was the last time?
When you had run wild,
Without calculations
The feeling so thrilled
As if it was the first blood
For you on the highway
With many first tastes
As you cruised along
When was the last sunrise?
That romantically called you,
For the next sunset
With love in the air
Be it a blue moon sky
Or a blazing sun’s gun
Let’s begin on something
As pure as the first quest
With heat of first adventure
Let’s go beyond that cliché
To reinvent you
To find ‘you’ you thought of
When platonic was the air
And sky was the flair
Listen to that call to go wild
It’s always there
Just look at it, anew
Put aside life’s ifs and buts
And follow your instinct
To make it your day
Beyond this borrowed life
Of words and beyond
For a new you
Who was always with you,
It’s just that,
You miscalculated him out..

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

#HOLI IT :)

Colours – to bathe you 🙂
Colours – to lift you 🙂
Colours – to tell your tales 🙂
Colours – to go places 🙂
Colours – to make you friends 🙂

Colours – to read you red 🙂
Colours – to colour your blue 🙂
Colours – to paint you aura indigo 🙂
Colours – to purple your violet 🙂
Colours – to culture your yellow 🙂
Colours – to shine your orange 🙂
Colours – to jazz you green 🙂

Holi It-1

Colours – to rain your rainbow 🙂
Colours – to kaleidoscope your life 🙂

Holi It-2

Splash the day – soak it in colours – #Holi it 🙂

#HOLI IT 🙂

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

EITHER YOU TAKE ‘SIDE’ OR YOU TAKE ‘SIDES’!

REFLECTIONS

“Either you take ‘side’ – or – you take ‘sides’.”

 

Taking Sides

EITHER YOU TAKE ‘SIDE’ OR YOU TAKE ‘SIDES’!

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

WHEN YOU FEEL LETDOWN..

COLORES INFINITUM

Developments making you feel low are part of your existence. They invariably come to you – and sometimes come to haunt you.

Try hard but you are bound to feel so – its frequency depends on how you tackle it – and the first step (or the first offensive) that you need to take on this path – is – don’t let the development make you feel that it is some type of curse. Doing so is half the battle won.

You feel letdown by various reasons. But the share that causes maximum mental unease and stress is external – driven by and given by others – and you need to keep yourself away from the crowd in such circumstances.

One needs to learn and nurture the practice of winning over the tide – gradually and effectively.

You must keep in mind that you should not totally disregard something or some development that drags you down sending your soul in a nowhere zone because it has important elements to learn from.

You miss an important opportunity to learn life defining lessons when you dismiss any negative development in your life without giving it some time to ponder over.

You did no wrong or you were caught on the wrong side should only prevail after you have given the development enough time. After thinking it over, you may come to the conclusion that you did no wrong and there is nothing to feel gloomy about.

Alternatively, especially when the development involves a social setup with multiple people in fray, you may still feel low in spite of the fact that you came to find that you were not wrong. It happens because you start thinking about what ‘more others’ would think.

Try not to think that – or try to overcome that – for – if you were not wrong for what you had been targeted – your mental composure, if sustained, will make you the winner in the long run.

When you assess and come to the act of brashly disregarding the negative happening even if you know you were wrong, you move one step ahead in the quagmire that may derail your life one day. You have to very careful about that precipitation.

Any negative development in your life should have this sole purpose – that what you could learn from it – that how it can better your thoughts. Yes, it’s painful. Yes, preaching is always easy. But friends, your experiences also tell so.

Think it like this – and it will further help – that one has no option in life but to fight back – that no one helps beyond few words of sympathy – that beyond a point, your sad state of mind is seen as your weakness and people start keeping their distances.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

2016..A YEAR COMES..

COLORES INFINITUM

Why do we celebrate events like a ‘new year day’ – in every calendar – when it doesn’t bring any qualitative change in life in practical terms? After all, if we don’t count exceptions, nothing much changes on a ‘tomorrow’ than what it is on a ‘today’.

Well, it’s symbolic and therefore is important.

It is always between ‘what is going to change from one calendar day to the next’ and ‘every day is a new day, a reservoir of hopes, a new opportunity to do, undo or redo things’.

And it is always better to go with the later one – every day is a new day and every day is a new ‘you’.

Welcome 2016. Adieu 2015.

Reflect on. Retrospect. Introspect. And look ahead.

To reflect on the days ahead. To recharge yourself. With this symbolic milestone.

A symbolic milestone that comes every year.

It is for you to look at it – so why won’t we do it in a positive, uplifting mode?

Yes, life is very unpredictable – and so are its difficulties – with moments that let you down – with letdowns that lock you in an inertia.

But pragmatism tells to always look ahead – at the point beyond that letdown. It is only you who can break the run of inertia in your life – it is only you who can win over the psychological entrapments that you have built around yourself.

Life’s experiences should tell us that there is no substitute, no alternative, but to fight back – when life is dragging you down. Kill those jinxes that work to darken your path.

After all, apart from your family, who else stands with you emotionally? Everyone else either has a fleeting attention to the problems you are facing or a ‘knack’ to exploit you more in your hours of crisis.

The sum total is – there is no one else but you who’ll stand for you – and there is no one else but your family that will stand for you.

So, rules of the games point in just one direction – stay along and against the odds you face while trying to live life the way you seek.

Days like January 1 or December 31, now a universal phenomenon, are important milestones to take stock of how the time has gone by so far – and how you need to look ahead – to measure your life so far – with an element of periodicity.

And a touch of celebration is always welcome in this exercise.

Adieu 2015. Welcome 2016.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

2015 GOES BY..REFLECTING ON..

It is always between ‘what changes from one calendar day to the next’ and ‘every day is a new day, a reservoir of hopes, a new opportunity to do, undo or redo things’.

And it is always better to go with the later one – every day is a new day and every day is a new ‘you’.

Welcome 2016. Adieu 2015.

Reflect on. Retrospect. Introspect.

To reflect on the days ahead. To recharge yourself. With this symbolic milestone.

A symbolic milestone that comes every year.

It is for you to look at it – so why won’t we do it in a positive, uplifting mode?

Yes, life is very unpredictable – and so are its difficulties – with moments that let you down – with letdowns that lock you in an inertia.

But pragmatism tells to always look ahead – at the point beyond that letdown. It is only you who can break the run of inertia in your life – it is only you who can win over the psychological entrapments that you have built around yourself.

Life’s experiences should tell us that there is no substitute, no alternative, but to fight back – when life is dragging you down. Kill those jinxes that work to darken your path.

After all, apart from your family, who else stands with you emotionally? Everyone else either has a fleeting attention to the problems your are facing or a ‘knack’ to exploit you more in your hours of crisis.

Anyway, that was about migrating from one year to the next – here in this case, from December 31, 2015 to January 1, 2016.

So..what has been my account of the year?

Diversified. Challenging. With my share of highs and lows. With my problems and with my triumphs. Like it happens in every life.

The many things that I had thought to do this year – some of them I could do – some of them are works in progress – and some of them are in advanced stages of ideation – and some of them are in still pipeline – something that always happens – in every life – and I have learnt to enjoy it this way.

I successfully developed my personal website this year – which I treat as my web journal – and so far, I have been engaged with it looks and progress. I had taken the domain name last year but the development with a professional touch came this year – and it was in sync with what I had thought when I was beginning 2015.

While reflecting back on 2014 on December 31 last year, I had decided that I would devote more time to my books and would limit my online publishing activity to once a day. Now, when I am reflecting back on 2015, on a December 31 exactly one year later, I am already more than a post a day – so far 431 posts this year in 364 days with this December 31 yet to go.

2015 was the fourth consecutive year on my writing and publishing pledge when I could maintain the discipline of writing or creating something daily – something that I had begun on October 15, 2011 – though with a random thought – with no long terms goals – but with ‘every day’ convictions.

I still have no goals. My driver is the sense of satisfaction that I draw after creating something from discipline of doing it daily.

Yes, I regret that I could not work that much on my books as I had thought, but what is relieving is that I know that why I could not do so and that I would do something concrete with them in the days to come.

Like I have been doing with my writing and with my creativity, I could do all that I needed to – with diversity as the leitmotif – in articles, in essays, in poetry, in images, in quotes, in fiction.

All that I have been through in 2015 I cannot write here and I should not write here, but while moving to the next year with the symbolic importance of January 1 – of ‘newness and hope’ – I have no bad feeling about how 2015 passed – but good reasons to look ahead and positive energy to work further.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

LIFE AND DEATH: INEVITABILITIES, SO THINK OF EVERYTHING BUT THEM :)

Thought to share a brief but themed conversation I had with a friend the other day. Whenever we speak, life is the central theme we mostly talk about and we end up coming out to a point where we see some point. 🙂 

Me: Life and death are inevitabilities so think of everything but them while you live.

My friend: Some die in installments too.

Me: That happens in every life – at times – and that is again inevitability – bound to happen when you stop living.

My friend: Haha, no one can win from you… Life and death specialist…

Me: Experiential existentialist…:)

My friend: How are you existentialist… don’t tell me…that’s relative…bored of listening that from…xyz…types…

Me: Existentialism literally means you carve out a way for yourself based on your thought process. The society at large has to be a reflection of you which may or may not gel with you but you go well with that – living (and not complaining).

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

JUNE 21: INTERNATIONAL YOGA DAY AND EXISTENTIALISM

International Yoga Day is on June 21, the day when Jean-Paul Sartre was born in Paris.

It may be a coincident but a day to celebrate the ancient Indian tradition that has become a global ‘good health element’ with time, is also a day when the world remembers the most influential mind behind ‘Existentialism’.

Yoga in India goes beyond its ‘routine physical exercise’ nature – the practice that took it to the western countries, starting with Swami Vivekananda in 1890s.

Yoga in India, and in some countries where beliefs born in India spread, especially Buddhism, is seen as complete discipline and is primarily associated with spirituality and meditation. It emphasizes on the holistic balance in every walk of life and is aimed at ensuring a sound mind in a healthy body.

Yoga is a discipline with a philosophy that builds individuals who are self-aware and at the same time are in harmony with their surroundings, maintaining spontaneously balanced relations with nature and living beings.

Existentialism, though with different definitions, concurs that man is free and ‘is responsible’ to determine what becomes of him – in the sense that he sees and interprets his life and events in his life – based on circumstances – for the quest to lead a life that is as per his ‘understanding’ – that corresponds to his definitions of morality and different circumstances of life – the definitions that are within the norms for a healthy mind and body – the definitions that take different hues with time.

Yoga can help an individual develop a healthy ‘existentialist’ perspective based on his ‘philosophy of necessity’. Yoga can help find that ‘missing element’ in every life.

And June 21 is around the corner.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

THE END’S RELEVANCE LIES IN ITS IRRELEVANCE

My reflections on life – in quotes

“The end is as near as the next breath.
Yet, its relevance lies in irrelevance of that ‘next’.
The end is always privy to its beginning.
Yet it doesn’t seek its ‘being’ in that ‘next’.
The end begins, some day, with that ‘next’ written.
Yet it finds its relevance rooted in ‘now’.”

THE END’S RELEVANCE LIES IN ITS IRRELEVANCE

THE END’S RELEVANCE LIES IN ITS IRRELEVANCE

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey–https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/