Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Paradox

Once a very wise teacher, had to choose a successor. He decided to do that on the basis of an examination. He called all his pupils and said, “I will ask all of you a question. One who can answer that will be my successor.” Teacher being the wisest, it was clear that question would be very challenging and the chosen one will be truly great.
“What is Life, in just one word?”
“It is ambition, without that life will just be ordinary. Aimless. Nothing will move. We will not build civilizations, we will not strive to become great.”  Said one student. Teacher smiled and looked at someone else for an answer.
“It is nothing but Love. I don’t need to explain that” Said someone with full confidence. Teacher thought for a moment and said “Very good. Love is essence of life, but it is not life. There are other emotions as well and Love alone cannot describe what life is. “
Pain, Dance, Music, Knowledge, Gift were some of the answers given by pupils. Wise teacher was still not happy.
A shy, petite kid standing at corner raised his hand hesitantly. Wise teacher asked him to speak.
“Paradox”
That moment teacher knew that this kid will be his successor.
“Explain”
“Every moment in our lives, from the moment we are born, life enters us through every breath yet our journey towards death continues. Every instance we have this urge to stop and reflect and think of every possible consequence of our tiniest action yet at the same moment we have to act. We have to build civilizations, win wars, climb mountains yet we want to stop and reflect. This duality is paradox. Small moment in itself contains eternity.”
We want to love our family, pets, country, and fellow beings. We want to give all we have. Everything. Yet we know we have to hold back something. Something that is ‘You’. Scriptures teach us concept of Non-Duality (Adwaita). Yet we know instinctively that we are different from others. This is duality. A Paradox.”
We want to achieve a lot. Yet we know that our lives will not be sufficient if we decide to enjoy what we already have. We have ambition, yet we know that it does not matter. We want to stop and reflect and do nothing but we have to go ahead and move mountains. This is duality. A Paradox.
Men fall in love every time they see a beautiful woman. Yet they know reality and remember their wives. They want to make love to those women yet want to be known as cultured. Same is true with women. This is duality. A Paradox.”
We want security. We want to keep things as they are for eternity yet we want to improve them. We want to go to heaven yet we don’t want to die. We want to be ecstatic about everything yet there is this deep sadness that shackles us. We know that this sadness is real and something is terribly wrong about life yet we also know that life has be celebrated and we are lucky one to be born as humans. This is duality. A Paradox.”
Most of us are not even aware of this paradox. Few of us are aware of it but clueless about how to deal with it, or rather how to deal with life. Very few of us, the truly wise ones are not only aware that life is a paradox but also know how to deal with it.”

Friday, October 18, 2013

poem

This one is for Hindi poem lovers
गति प्रबल पैरों में भरी

फिर क्यों रहूँ दर दर खड़ा
जब आज मेरे सामने
है रास्ता इतना पड़ा
जब तक न मंज़िल पा सकूँ,
तब तक मुझे न विराम है, चलना हमारा काम है।


कुछ कह लिया, कुछ सुन लिया
कुछ बोझ अपना बँट गया
अच्छा हुआ, तुम मिल गईं
कुछ रास्ता ही कट गया
क्या राह में परिचय कहूँ, राही हमारा नाम है,
चलना हमारा काम है।


जीवन अपूर्ण लिए हुए
पाता कभी खोता कभी
आशा निराशा से घिरा,
हँसता कभी रोता कभी
गति-मति न हो अवरुद्ध, इसका ध्यान आठो याम है,
चलना हमारा काम है।


इस विशद विश्व-प्रहार में
किसको नहीं बहना पड़ा
सुख-दुख हमारी ही तरह,
किसको नहीं सहना पड़ा
फिर व्यर्थ क्यों कहता फिरूँ, मुझ पर विधाता वाम है,
चलना हमारा काम है।


मैं पूर्णता की खोज में
दर-दर भटकता ही रहा
प्रत्येक पग पर कुछ न कुछ
रोड़ा अटकता ही रहा
निराशा क्यों मुझे? जीवन इसी का नाम है,
चलना हमारा काम है।


साथ में चलते रहे
कुछ बीच ही से फिर गए
गति न जीवन की रुकी
जो गिर गए सो गिर गए
रहे हर दम, उसीकी सफलता अभिराम है,
चलना हमारा काम है।


फकत यह जानता
जो मिट गया वह जी गया
मूँदकर पलकें सहज
दो घूँट हँसकर पी गया
सुधा-मिश्रित गरल, वह साकिया का जाम है,
चलना हमारा काम है।

-शिवमंगल सिंह 'सुमन'

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Saturday, October 15, 2011

ALEPH

Read it on someone's blog...
‘My assets are the occasions I made others smile and the situations I experienced inner joy and peace in these years. My liabilities are nothing but the opportunities I lost for excellence to become a world class citizen’.‘Hell is when we look back during that fraction of a second and know that we wasted an opportunity to dignify the miracle of life. Paradise is being able to say at that moment: ‘I made some mistakes, but I wasn’t a coward. I lived my life and did what I had to do.’

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Few Things I Learned...

There are two ways in which we can learn, during a small projects which we call internship. One is a very particular technical knowledge ,which can be knowledge about a particular organization or a particular type of problem and the solution of the problem which organization is currently facing. The other is a very general knowledge ,which can be mainly the insight you get just by working with people, processes, problems. The main differentiation between these two types is while first is very particular in nature and is NOT applicable to other situation while the second is very generic and is applicable to other situations also which helps you develop insight. This essay is about second type of generic learning.

The first and very important thing which I learned during this project is that organizations can be more disorganized than you might feel. I think the main reasons for this situation is departmentalization. Due to this departmentalization free flow of information is blocked which leads to problems. The more I read about this, the more I feel this system based on ' silos ' should be abandoned. I feel automation in any form will not solve the problem, even though it reduces it to a great extent making information available. Ultimately it is the management will, of creating a system of sharing information, which will change the scenario.

The second thing I learnt is that not all people in an organization know that they have problems. Even if they are aware they might not know the extent to which the problem is deep or complicated. It might seem very simple to say that more co-ordination between departments is required but the actual implementation of a system to make so can very complicated.

Third point which I would like to mention over here is the availability of employee's time to give you right information. Since I have taken up this assignment as a consultant, information is very essential in solving a problem but people are not available to provide you right information. Thus it seems consultant should only take up an assignment if management is committed. Management should make sure that the information required by consultant is available.

More often it might also happen that problems and solutions are both known but people are not ready to change. In this kind of a scenario a consultant can suggest solution once again but it is the management which has to force/sell the solution to employees. A consultant will sell solution to management and management has to sell it to employees, it's not a job of a consultant to sell the solution to each and every employee in an organization.

Again emphasizing the same point once again that it is the management which has to committed to bring about change in an organization and without it's will power problems will stay regardless of how many consultants are appointed or which Enterprise Solution is implemented.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

I-Card

I was traveling to office today by office bus. Got a window sit so morning sunlight and air were pleasing me. I decided to listen to some songs and so was listening to few songs which are there in my cell phone. I was looking out of window and started thinking about the book I am currently reading, Zen and art of motorcycle maintenance. I was thinking about Kant, Hume, Inductive and Deductive logic, religion and what not. Soon I realized that I had reached office and had to wear an I-Card.

I felt as if this I-Card is telling me that I can not think of Philosophy and Religion and Kant and Hume now. I must better start concentrating on how I can reduce the cost of logistics. Strange as it may sound, had this I-card been a human being I would have asked him who are you to tell me what to think and what not to think, but then I immediately felt how naïve this feeling was. Company is paying me for my brain. How can I ask such a question to I-Card. I have worked for 16 months before this assignment but never felt like this before. I don't know why?

Is it because my loyalty is different towards 2 companies. Earlier I worked as a full time employee here I am working as a consultant. This is not true because I loved or hated to work equally in both the places.

Or it is because that now I am certainly feeling that I-card is no longer a symbol of belongingness or pride but a modern form of mental slavery.

May be I am being too harsh on I-card. It may be only because of mental fatigue, a result of week long (Non) working.

Now I understand it's because I don't see any meaning in the job I am doing it's not worth 2 months of my life. It can be finished in 10-12 days. It's because I am forced to spend my time doing nothing. This is what I hate, most wasting my time. Not that I am not learning new, I understand if I don't learn new every day it's my problem not theirs. The frustration is catching on and I-card is not to be blamed.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Zen and art of motorcycle maintainance


This is an excerpt from the book I am currently reading.Zen and art of motorcycle maintainance. This excerpt is pasted here for myself so that I remember these words for a long long time.Hope you like it.

I should talk now about Phædrus’ knife. It’ll help understand some of the things we talked about.
The application of this knife, the division of the world into parts and the building of this structure, is something everybody does. All the time we are aware of millions of things around us...these changing shapes, these burning hills, the sound of the engine, the feel of the throttle, each rock and weed and fence post and piece of debris beside the road...aware of these things but not really conscious of them unless there is something unusual or unless they reflect something we are predisposed to see. We could not possibly be conscious of these things and remember all of them because our mind would be so full of useless details we would be unable to think. From all this awareness we must select, and what we select and call consciousness is never the same as the awareness because the process of selection mutates it. We take a handful of sand from the endless landscape of awareness around us and call that handful of sand the world.
Once we have the handful of sand, the world of which we are conscious, a process of discrimination goes to work on it. This is the knife. We divide the sand into parts. This and that. Here and there. Black and white. Now and then. The discrimination is the division of the conscious universe into parts.
The handful of sand looks uniform at first, but the longer we look at it the more diverse we find it to be. Each grain of sand is different. No two are alike. Some are similar in one way, some are similar in another way, and we can form the sand into separate piles on the basis of this similarity and dissimilarity. Shades of color in different piles...sizes in different piles...grain shapes in different piles...subtypes of grain shapes in different piles...grades of opacity in different piles...and so on, and on, and on. You’d think the process of subdivision and classification would come to an end somewhere, but it doesn’t. It just goes on and on.
Classical understanding is concerned with the piles and the basis for sorting and interrelating them. Romantic understanding is directed toward the handful of sand before the sorting begins. Both are valid ways of looking at the world although irreconcilable with each other.
What has become an urgent necessity is a way of looking at the world that does violence to neither of these two kinds of understanding and unites them into one. Such an understanding will not reject sand-sorting or contemplation of unsorted sand for its own sake. Such an understanding will instead seek to direct attention to the endless landscape from which the sand is taken. That is what Phædrus, the poor surgeon, was trying to do.
To understand what he was trying to do it’s necessary to see that part of the landscape, inseparable from it, which must be understood, is a figure in the middle of it, sorting sand into piles. To see the landscape without seeing this figure is not to see the landscape at all. To reject that part of the Buddha that attends to the analysis of motorcycles is to miss the Buddha entirely.
There is a perennial classical question that asks which part of the motorcycle, which grain of sand in which pile, is the Buddha. Obviously to ask that question is to look in the wrong direction, for the Buddha is everywhere. But just as obviously to ask that question is to look in the right direction, for the Buddha is everywhere. About the Buddha that exists independently of any analytic thought much has been said...some would say too much, and would question any attempt to add to it. But about the Buddha that exists within analytic thought, and gives that analytic thought its direction, virtually nothing has been said, and there are historic reasons for this. But history keeps happening, and it seems no harm and maybe some positive good to add to our historical heritage with some talk in this area of discourse.
When analytic thought, the knife, is applied to experience, something is always killed in the process. That is fairly well understood, at least in the arts. Mark Twain’s experience comes to mind, in which, after he had mastered the analytic knowledge needed to pilot the
Mississippi River, he discovered the river had lost its beauty. Something is always killed. But what is less noticed in the arts...something is always created too. And instead of just dwelling on what is killed it’s important also to see what’s created and to see the process as a kind of death-birth continuity that is neither good nor bad, but just is.