Monday, January 31, 2011


Calvin & Hobbes by Bill Watterson (C). Source:

I have picked up three important articles that struck a chord in the last three weeks. It has absolutely nothing to do with the C&H strip above...except perhaps that Calvin is also convinced that he has what it takes (albeit the wrong skills) to do what he wants.

1. Change yourself. Find your own mistakes first. Become more patient, accommodating, forgiving, understanding and what not. The easiest thing to change is yourself, not others. Never ever give up. It's ok to pursue efficiency, knowledge, excellence and the rest but that's your personal choice and chase, not others' pursuit.

2. Do not "take" whatever comes to you. Learn to send back the things that don't belong to you, things that you don't deserve. Free yourself of other people's baggage and burden. You do not have to defend yourself every day of your life.

3. Unconditional love exists but only within yourself. Learn to like (and forgive, as appropriate) yourself rather than expecting other people to know you and your 'wonderful' qualities. Focus on your talents and allowing them to bloom rather than wasting time in expecting others to give you room.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

What's More Dangerous?

Cruelty by itself is not permanent; It can be removed. What makes it dangerous is it is because of or combined with insanity and/or stupidity.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Conscience is the Customer

Writing a poem after a long time...!

A severe and unexpected blow on the head 
Can either leave one forever dead
Or give one new wisdom to deal with what's ahead

When another person's greed 
Comes at the cost of one's own need 
One can retaliate and scream in haste 
Or perhaps change one's own taste (uncompromising and yet clever)

When problems pile up together
One can complain about rough weather
Or smile & just brush them off with a light feather

It's ok to be human, take the shock and pause for a while
But life is eventually about covering the next mile
The map is drawn with values as the path(s)
It's up to one to determine which to take without any wrath

The most important thing is the conversation with one's conscience   
In order to discover one's own happiness in the long distance  
(Because) That's the only thing that may finally make sense

Friday, January 14, 2011

Know Thyself

Just been reading this fascinating research paper (thanks to Zephy for the pointer). 

Know Thyself and Become What You Are: A Eudaimonic Approach to Psychological Well-Being by Carol D. Ryff and Burton H. Singer.

The paper isn't really as intimidating and esoteric as you might imagine it to be at first (based on the Title). Once I started reading it, I was excited and wanted to read on till the end.   

The paper explores and studies various thought-leaders' writings on the highest human good which, according to the authors, Aristotle equated to happiness (activity of the soul in accordance with virtue). The authors go on to say virtue may be different for different people but Aristotle thought it was be the ability to be intermediate (moderated behaviour). Virtue, he stated, "is the state of character concerned with choice in which deliberate actions are taken to avoid excess or deficiency". (Nice....reminds me of Buddhist principles)


"The excellence of the human being is thus going to be associated with growth towards some final realization of his or her true and best nature"

"For (Bertrand) Russell, happiness depended most importantly on 'zest', by which he meant having active interest and engagement in life, and by 'affection', by which he meant having meaningful bonds of love with significant others."

"Eudaimonic well-being is linked with better neuroendocrine regulation, better immune function, lower cardiovascular risk, better sleep and more adaptive neural circuitry" 

The authors find that the three key things in life that helps people be genuinely happy are Personal Growth, Purpose in life and Positive relations with significant others. The interesting thing is that women rate positive relations higher on the happiness scale while men replace that with autonomy. Two other contributors to the happiness recipe are, understandably, self-acceptance and environmental mastery.

Lots of food for thought in the paper!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Vivekananda Jayathi

“Take up one idea. Make that one idea your life - think of it, dream of it, live on that idea. Let the brain, muscles, nerves, every part of your body, be full of that idea, and just leave every other idea alone. This is the way to success, that is way great spiritual giants are produced.” - Swami Vivekananda

Not only spiritual giants, I might add! 

"We want that education, by which character is formed, strength of mind is increased, the intellect is expanded and by which one can stand on one's own feet" - Swami Vivekananda 

Happy National Youth Day! Swami Vivekananda (12 Jan 1863 - 4 July 1902)