Courage is contagious. When a brave man takes a stand, the spines of others are often stiffened. – Billy Graham

As we grow older into our years.. there are lots of events that we as humans tend to go through.  Every event does a take away or adds a little to make you into a better you or a worse you.

My objective has been always to live with intention and not out of habit and everytime, I come across events in my life… the first thought before any action I undertake is consciously examine the intention…

So cancer has been kind of a common friend the past few years where I have lost may souls and sometimes, I just shunned the whole process of pain which my friends went through it. Even when they discussed with me, the focus for me was to ease them out of their state and have them focus on something light other than the whole process…

As my roommate went from one step to the next, my heart would beat faster and faster till I wanted to shut down the whole thing and I knew she was slipping away and yet… I held on …. for some fragments of the gross body I knew of her… till I lost her completely…. it was exhausting, went on a fine guilt trip after that… for not being more kinder… or more understanding… .sigh…

And slowly the counts of cancer increased in the space of friends and relatives I knew… and I intended that I will have to be just there…. for the ones that wanted me… it was a learning phase… some lived, some passed on.. I desperately held on to compassion through joy and tears…

And just when I thought I was getting there… I had another close friend go through a very advanced stage and this time the lesson was staring me at my face…  everything that I was telling myself.. went for a toss.. and I started the whole process of anger… ( knowing that there was no reason and yet… ) Denial… being fatalistic… and even rebellion… life not just being fair and all that … feeling of helplessness, a strange chaos growing inside me… and I can only express in copious tears… which just does not end… how long.. and what is the intention I need to keep to face this again… coz compassion was not helping me… this time…

But I must tell you, my courageous and very strong friend taught me new lessons of resilience, strength, and quiet courage… and how we can flow continuously despite the obstacles… and I took courage from her… everytime now I think of anything… impossible,  this soul lights the way.. in her own way…

Sometimes, one thinks one has cracked it and when we feel comfortable.. BANG comes something to test all that we think that we have learnt and “know”

Wanted to put this down as a reminder… to myself that courage enhances wisdom.

From standing far, I stand with bowed head, admiring the courage of the souls who are going through similar process of living and coming out a winner… and raring to live joyfully despite all… and I pray that I have that courage to continue… to live…

When my will fades, its from these souls, I take the strength to move on and go forth…

Again, putting this down as part of my thoughts…my steps to live.. the days when there are no steps…

And my friend continues to fight… bravely…. and is recovering so fast and so well that I can only dance with thanks and joy for this blessing… prayers for the continuance of strength, courage, life and joy…

And as I hear of another friend just in the beginning of the battle… I stand still and imbibe a lot of courage from inside thanks to that beautiful soul… who taught me to swim through the tough waters through her own experience…. I just send her warmth and loads of love and prayers… that yes it will be alright… it will be alright….  Hold on.. and keep walking…

My thoughts are with you both and with all the souls who are going through similar experience…

Am always inspired by Rupi Kaur.
Many of her thoughts strike a chord… even if its with a different context
 
The fact of me being comfortable with myself…
From being the single girl child where the father would prefer a boy child… from being shunned to do many things at crucial times, because I was a girl… till I proved that I would do it despite all the rules… 🙂
 
From having to prove myself and my own existence of being a hybrid ( a byproduct of two different ethnicity). Being the only one of that kind in my father’s family, the rejection and ridicule overwhelmed the precious joy of being just myself… till one day… like Rupi says, I opened all windows and decided to live the way I wanted to live…
 
And after a long while…. after searching for questions… who I was… and where did I belong…. I did get some beautiful answers…… and yes, I also talked to the 5 year old me and the teenage me where the confusion and the bitterness was at its peak… ( as if the drama of hormones were not enough)…. that my body was my actual home…
 
And all my little selves who had been rejected by the so called validators of breed… were welcome… and we were safe in this body… in this shell that I have chosen this lifetime…
 
The last few lines again are amazing… about what is home… home is where I am, where I am at peace… where I live in joy despite gender bias, despite mis-expectations, despite everything that tries to stop the growth and cohesion of my identity which I am quite happy about…. Took me a while… but yeah…. roots redefined, roots revisited with a different perspective and it all makes so much sense… and its so natural….

So when you pray for something real bad, you get it.. I always tell myself to be careful what I pray for… many a times, I just did not know that things turn around so quick…

Two years back, every second, I would pray for sometime for myself to figure out my next steps in my life.. I did not want to do a job just for the sake of doing a job and earning money and continue with all the riff raff of fighting for a place in the pyramid. It was exhausting. Even when my concerned colleagues who would have definitely thought, I have gone down the bend :), asked me, I was like, I will have to figure out.. I mean who does that… ? Was I crazy…  But it was like that time.. when I needed to take stock of what to do with the remaining years of my life… and I needed to do something which was meaningful to me.

It started with the withdrawal symptoms of a workaholic… was going insane without the work routine… But I am glad I went through it all… found things to do I have had long time on my bucket list about me…

Spending time with self (loved that part – I was losing myself) , knowing what to do besides the usual and expected, drawing, designing to my hearts content, learning shlokas, getting acquainted with Sanskrit, getting initiated into the next step of spiritual practice which was a long time coming… and then Yoga.

Prayers and mediation and requesting for guidance from the Divine Mother… on

what to do… what to do… what to do…

This reminds me of the song

We’re goin’ on a bear hunt
(We’re goin’ on a bear hunt)
We’re going to catch a big one,
(We’re going to catch a big one,)I’m not scared
(I’m not scared)
What a beautiful day!
(What a beautiful day!)

Uh-uh!
Grass!
Long wavy grass.
We can’t go over it.
We can’t go under it.
Oh no!
We’ve got to go through it!
Swishy swashy! Swishy swashy! Swishy swashy!

Chorus: We’re going on a bear hunt…

……..

It took 8 months to be peaceful and after that, and just like that, the calling came…  but once my cup was empty, the new thoughts slowly started trickling.. so many new possibilities…

All I knew was that I wanted to do something which had purpose, meaning and made my life worth living, which included all the squishy squashy parts…   I prayed for the opportunity to do something with a brand I believed in, a brand that valued people, a brand that gave back to people and not just excelled in making slaves out of them, a brand that brought in positivity in people’s lives daily.. and well, the calling came…

Taking the certification was not easy.. but it gave me purpose and I discovered so much about myself. Doing Yoga at the studios and learning and living Yoga everyday of the moment with a group of like minded people with a similar mindset…

Being certified to teach Yoga and actually teaching Yoga is like the icing on the cake. I like to think I am still a student and will be studying every day… and what better way to close the circle to share what I learn to the community around me… and make it a job out of it… what more could I ask for but to keep learning… as I grow…

So yes… thank you dear Divine Mother for answering my prayers…

Cannot forget the friends and my family who have supported me so much..

It is a mountain I have to climb… but then I am from the mountains… guess I am in my element…. rain or shine..

Today I sit and write this so that when I am down or out, I can read this and remind myself about this lesson I am learning… the memory gets tricky…

maya-angelou-819x1024

Everyday life…

Its what we try and live every moment, sometimes in a routine, sometimes with awareness, sometimes with rebellion, sometimes with courage and sometimes with a desperate wish to do more and more… to live more and more the only way one knows how… right or wrong… it does not matter how…

Having reached a considerable age in human years and hopefully in soul years, I have not been untouched by death, the most impactful was that of my mother’s and I am still getting over it… there is no saying how long that “time” takes to heal.. one never does in a way…

Living and losing is a part of life’s game and yet… it makes for so much pain. I guess I would not be human if I would not feel it again and again. The pain is in a way reminding me that I am still human…

Among the multitudes of souls that pass by some souls just touch you deep in your subconsciousness, just by being themselves this was one such person.

Rituraj Choudhury or Raj as he was called… came into my life as this crazy friend a year after mom died. It was the 31st of Dec and I pushed myself to get back to normal life for the first time, going to a friend’s house. It was his birthday and well I was born on a 31st too…(what a coincidence, I thought.. tough numbers, tough destiny..)

We talked cars, we danced to the night, we celebrated his birthday cooking and drinking generally doing things what people do… It was my first step towards getting back to normal life..

And somehow he became a very dear friend. Describing him would be very difficult as he had all the great things that made him a wonderful soul and all the not so great things which made him so human… I think I am the only person who knew him for such a short time. All the rest seem to have known him forever… And yet, it seemed like a long time. He had loads of friends from all walks of life. And he was generous with everyone to a fault. Everyone.

Then he became severely ill which he just refused to admit to himself until it was too late,  and took us through the agonising moments of his death. The many procedures his body had to go through, the clutching at straws knowing this is a point of no return and just rueing the fact that it is such a waste… but then maybe he did what he had to do… with his life..made his choices …. so there…

It has been 3 days and I am still trying to control the flow of tears out of nowhere as I sit and do my work.

I know it is life. I know the soul lives on forever, and I will meet him again and again… if its so willed..

I know that we don’t die… only change our bodies… and roles…

And yet, this role of mine which knew him as a friend in this lifetime is so pained at the loss…. cannot comprehend why… I am just trying to get through… maybe because its so sudden, maybe because it was such a close encounter…  I dont know… So here I write… I get through better when I write… And I affirm the following…

wake-of-loss-affirmation

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I would like to thank him for so many things..  Little things which we take for granted… in the wake of racing with the world..

1378709_10151618127742890_823384916_nI would like to thank you for all the fun dances…. we had as friends…

For all the times, when we were stuck, you offered your car or bike or whatever…

For having my red tea once with a grimace even though you preferred your poison..

For being so positive and “so what” even in the face of “what will I do ?”

For those warm hugs…

For giving us the space to be… joyful and enjoying the moments..

For rushing to be with us when Dad had his surgery… even though it was too much for you to get up early and make the long journey… I will never forget that…

For the lovely music..  You have a collection I love.

For swinging to Rabindra Sangeeth…. even though you said you never understood it… I will never forget that night with You and Jaya… as we both got caught by cops that night and also let go…. what a memory… I am still chuckling… as I write this… you were a badass rock star … far away from Bangla songs… hahaha 🙂

For the plants you forcefully bought for me… while walking with me to the horticulture garden.. no reason… you had to give them to me..

For the many evenings and afternoons, you spent with us, making us laugh…even getting angry… (I keep expecting you to ride by with your yellow glasses and hailing us and stopping to chat…)

For sharing your Five Star Chicken and Coke… I will always remember you when I have that now.. ( so many silly memories)

For the photos you clicked… I remember you crawling on the floor to get one good shot… and you were drunk… sigh…

For caring for so many people… wanted to please many…

12049653_10152995233897890_3339534337722018632_n (1)For spending time with my Dad…  You guys had a gala time when I was not there.. and you made sure I knew that… good for you…

For the silly gifts which only a friend can give… I will treasure them all… the silliness of it all makes it all the more special..

For those comments on FB… I will treasure those caustic notes.. ( I am not much for social media but it is so nice to go through your thoughts now)

For the deep talks and even the sharing your tears and fears with us.. I hope you know now that we all have similar fears and live through it every day..its not easy to share tears for a guy… I was humbled by that..

For the future you saw and wanting all of us to be there…

For just being you… incorrigible, reckless, rambunctious, naughty, freaky friend on one hand and the same time, a generous, kind, sensitive, emotional, loveable friend…. for not hiding the ugly and the beautiful… thus making it easier to accept you more easily..

For showing me that extremes can exist in one person… its just the choices that one makes that paves the path…

You did what you could… you lived as you wanted to… and its ok…  Now Remain in Peace and Light , till we all gather together and reminisce this lifetime we had and prepare for the next….

 

 

Meanwhile, I remain here with the rest… just another tiny soul… waiting to cross when its time… and wishing, wishing… wishing and swimming between What Ifs… 

Today was reading this post

http://www.marcandangel.com/2014/03/26/3-questions-that-will-free-your-mind/ and it tempted me to write a post about the same.

There are many times, when self enquiry has enabled me to achieve clarity in my mind and my instincts have become sharper and sharper..

Even when faced with abject contrasts, it is this beautiful thought process which always enables me to take a very clear decision

The most important question I ask myself is

How would you like to have it done yourself ?   ( the typical Alexander Porus story )

I developed this quite consciously in fact from something I read somewhere… where according to Buddism, if you have to gift something to someone, choose something that you would like the best and your gifts will always be appreciated. Once I chose this path of thought, I saw that the gift that I bought for people always made them delighted because it was what I would have selected for myself… and it worked all the time.

I was so amazed at this simple thing that I started applying this wherever I could. With my interactions, in making some crucial decisions… like selling something… how much would I have bought at ?? And Eureka !! thats the price it always went at…

Even when I am interacting with a difficult person, at first it would be the spontaneous reaction of whatever but then I reflect inside and think, how would I like to be treated and start interacting with people like this in the same manner and slowly but surely, there is a change…

do unto others as you would do unto you… is just about right…. you can never go wrong.. your insides will always take you away from situations which does not need you… 🙂

Choose your battles…What is it that matters the most ?? 

As we grow older, we are faced with different choices and priorities… and many other multitudes of the worldly drama, it is important to ask yourself what is it that matters and what is it that is bothering me the most ??

I first ask, what is bothering me the most ? Most often pat comes the answer “your EGO” 🙂 🙂  I work at it and ask myself why is my ego bothering me ? Is it because I am not getting “attention” Or is it because I think I am not worth it ??  and so on…  And finally I ask… what matters to me ? And once I filter out the ego part, I go to what actually I want.. what is important to me and the Choice, Chance and Change steps are very easy to follow…

Sometimes, overthinking about things, expecting a negative outcome and getting too attached to the outcome bungles things..

Just let it be…. like someone I really love says… Everything just is…. Everything just is…. there is no positive or negatives…

Choose what matters to YOU and proceed accordingly.. you will get to your destination…  it is your unique path

Well there are many more thought rockets.,.. but will pause here.. as this prompted me to put down a few words… for my sake… 🙂 if not anything else…