Thursday, April 27, 2017

Beginner’s Mind







You have taught me the art of the beginner’s mind, taking small steps, internalizing the rules and learning day by day. Though this art of being completely aware in the present moment has brought in its turn, both happiness and sorrow.

This mind was often like a cup ready to be filled in, with nothing to boast of or previous knowledge to fall back upon. It often stood still in silence and dreamt of a peaceful future with its soul mate and at times set on its own charting out territories to explore.

Yet it knows how to balance its trust in the infinite gifts of Providence yet to keep its eyes open for the wonderful gifts that each brand new day brings.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Mana ke hum yaar nahin...

video
 
There are songs that keep playing in the head, the ones that you call earworms, which have no cure except that you need to find a new song to hum. One tends to  listen to these countless number of times without any rhyme or reason or because of the magic in the voice of the singer.  One  current favourite is Parineeti Chopra's Mana Ke Hum Yaar Nahin, which speaks of a love that is not what you normally call love  yet close enough to have a code of rules to abide by. 

The edited transcript goes like this:

I admit that we are not lovers
What we have is not love either 
But don't look into my eyes
For this heart can't be trusted.  

If you ever meet me on the way
Stop to hold hands with me. 
If there is someone with you
Just flash a smile from faraway. 

But the smile should be such
That there is no confession in it...(ikraar is a strong word)

Don't confess it through your eyes
for this heart can't be trusted. 

I admit we aren't lovers.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Leaves in his hair

Monday, April 24, 2017

17000

The sweet face looked sour, pained by the sheer irony of life,
Of having to face the small steps that led to a huge success.
Like a wounded lion, your face crinkled with wordless agony
As the large crowd howled and roared with huge expectations.

Clouds of expectations that could lead or crumble the spirit,
Hovered over the sad face, struggling amidst the tension.
The early disappointments at dot balls silenced the crowd,
Who could not see their little master beaten in any game.

Still life came in quiet strokes that swept across the field,
Gracefully as ever; the characteristic of an unbeaten master,
Who has strove hard to ahead by thousands and thousands,
While the stars and the sands watched in amazement.

Finally, you have given an answer to the doubting crowds,
A page in history that records the strife of a winner.


Saturday, April 22, 2017

Capsula Mundi


















When I breathe my last, cry no tears for me
Cremate me and scatter me in River Green;
Save me from those crowded churchyards
Where you can hardly stand and pray for me.

If by that time, there are burial pods here,
I’d love to come back as a white magnolia
Like the one near the verdant campus gate,
Whose flowers we picked and smelt daily.

Give away my stacks of favourite books,
The majority of unread ones, if any good,
Discard all my unfinished writing attempts
You can read no sense when hardly I can.

When your time comes join me as a favourite,
To leave a green forest tribe named after us. 

World Earth Day 2017



World Earth Day is celebrated on 22nd April every year since 1970 in order to increase the awareness among people about the environment safety as well as to demonstrate the environmental protection measures. There are many ways to celebrate the earth day:

1.New trees plantation at required places.
2. Do some outdoor activities with your family such as making the home for a bird on the tree and discuss their role in the ecosystem.
3. Motivate people to reduce the use of plastic bags to avoid the soil and water pollution.
4. Teach your children about the recycling and reuse of the old materials.
5. Take part in picking up the wastes from streets, parks and other places.
6. Take part in the amusement activities like singing a song related to the Earth safety to attract more people to the event celebration.
7. Take part in the educational sessions like seminars, discussions and other competitive activities related to the safety of natural resources of the earth.
8 Motivate people by wearing green, brown or blue clothes for displaying the environmental colors.
9. Promote people for energy conservation by various practical means.
10. Teach people that every day of their life is earth day, so they should take care of the earth on daily basis.

World Earth Day Themes
The theme of World Earth Day 2017 is “Environmental and Climate Literacy”.
The theme of World Earth Day 2016 was “Trees for the Earth!”.
The theme of World Earth Day 2015 was “Water Wonderful World” and “Clean Earth – Green Earth”.
The theme of World Earth Day 2014 was “Green Cities”.
The theme of World Earth Day 2013 was “The Face of Climate Change”.
The theme of World Earth Day 2012 was “Mobilize the Earth”.
The theme of World Earth Day 2011 was “Clear the Air”.
The theme of World Earth Day 2010 was “Reduce”.
The theme of World Earth Day 2009 was “How Do You Get Around”.
The theme of World Earth Day 2008 was “Trees Please”.
The theme of World Earth Day 2007 was “Be kind to the earth – starting from saving resources”.


In celebration of the movement, IBTimes Singapore has compiled a list of top 10 quotes on our home planet.
1. "Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's needs, but not every man's greed." - Mahatma Gandhi
2. "Find your place on the planet. Dig in, and take responsibility from there." - Gary Snyder
3."The world is not given by his fathers, but borrowed from his children." - Wendell Berry
4."The laws of nature tell us there's a finite amount of any substance on the face of the earth, and at some point, that's going to run out. And if we're smart and we have some grace and we have some willingness about our destiny, then we will take ourselves into the renewable world." - Mark Ruffalo
5. "We only get one planet. Humankind must become accountable on a massive scale for the wanton destruction of our collective home. Protecting our future on this planet depends on the conscious evolution of our species." - Leonardo Dicaprio
6. "We are in danger of destroying ourselves by our greed and stupidity. We cannot remain looking inwards at ourselves on a small and increasingly polluted and overcrowded planet." - Stephen Hawking
7. "Once you've been in space, you appreciate how small and fragile the Earth is." - Valentina Tereshkova
8. "There have only been about a half dozen genuinely important events in the four-billion-year saga of life on Earth: single-celled life, multi-celled life, differentiation into plants and animals, movement of animals from water to land, and the advent of mammals and consciousness." - Elon Musk
9. "Personally, I do not know whether humankind is alone in this vast universe. But I do know that we should cherish our existence on this precious speck of matter... the greatest gift that could be bestowed upon us. For all practical purposes, there is only one planet Earth." - Ban Ki-moon
10. "What is the use of a house if you haven't got a tolerable planet to put it on?" - Henry David Thoreau

Images and info courtesy from the web

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Yom HaShoah



Yom HaShoah or the national Holocaust Remembrance Day in Israel is celebrated as a commemoration of the six million Jews and others who perished during the Holocaust.This year it will falls on Sunday, 23rd April.

The word ‘Holocaust’ originally meant the animal sacrifice offered to the Gods in burnt form but during the 1950s, it acquired a very specialised meaning of the genocide of the Jews under the Nazi rule. This mass extinction of Jews was initiated by Hitler’s belief in the superiority of the Aryan races. The Nazis were of the belief that their race, the Aryan race was superior and that all the other races had to be exterminated using different methods.


The Holocaust began in 1933 when Hitler came to power and ended only in 1945 with the defeat of Germany by the allied forces in the Second World War. Though the extermination of the Jews was happening at a huge scale, the other countries of the world did not come to know about the concentration camps until it was too late.


The Nazis wanted to keep the fate of the Jews a secret and they destroyed all evidence pertaining to the mass killings such as the crematoria, gas chambers and people. But the truth is that the existence of concentration camps to annihilate the Jews was something hard for the allied powers to believe in.


When survivors who escaped described the Holocaust based on their experiences, most of listeners were full of disbelief at the cruelty of the Nazi soldiers. Many survivors went through this experience and were crestfallen when nobody wanted to believe them.


The Jews were subjected to unnameable acts of torture and many of the survivors are of the opinion that this enormity of their trauma made their memories and testimonies incoherent and unbelievable. Even sharing of these testimonials was a difficult act for many of the survivors.


The horrors of this historical event have been portrayed in historical documents, survivor testimonies and memoirs. But the Holocaust was a not single event but an annihilation process that had many locations across Europe and millions of victims who were tortured and killed.


One common thread that runs through survivor testimonies and memoirs of the Holocaust is the hunger that the Jews suffered in the ghettoes and in the concentration camps. They were given soups that were more like vegetables in hot water. The physically weak, the old and children were immediately sent to the gas chambers.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Auschwitz

The world stood still for a few days, it was as if there were no one around. Their tired eyes sought God and lamented about divine justice.

For they were innocents who wore their hearts on their sleeves, the ones who had not learnt how to deceive with a serpent's tongue or act like a dove.

They bore their yokes without even a murmur and none ever saw them cry. Not that their shoulders crumbled with the weight but only became stronger.

Now, they look like zombies lost in a mad world of dictators and strange chatter.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Barsaat


Rain has been a very interesting theme in literature and multimedia. There have been plenty of love-songs with rain in the background and the heroines in the focus or with the lyrics that deal with an emotional downpour. In Half Girlfriend, one of the recently released films, there is a song Baarish in which the heroine steps out spontaneously into the rain. May be because of the summer heat,  I find myself humming a few of my favourite rain songs:
  1. Mausam : This song  by Mehnaz has been a favourite back from the Channel V and MTV watching days, when the first thing on the mind after coming back from college was to listen to the latest songs. This song is about a girl who is on a  train journey  to her hometown  and the memories she has about her lover. 
  2. Barsaat: This slow number by Adnan Sami tells what it wants to tell the beloved. The longing to have someone you love next you when it rains, is beautifully expressed in this song taken from the album Kabhi to Nazar Milao (which from the trivia encylopedia starred a Mrs. India).
  3. Aaoge Jab Tum: This song from Jab We Met does not have rain in the backdrop  but deals with unrequited love and the longing for the loved one to return.
  4.  Bhoondon se baaatein: This song from Thakshak has the beautiful Tabu dancing in the rain. The lyrics explain what the rain is and how she wants to talk to the raindrops. 
  5. Sawan Barse: This song from Dahek has Sonali Bendre and Akshay who are getting ready to meet each other and the rain comes as an obstacle in a busy Mumbai. 
  6.  Barso Re:  This song from Guru was a surprise with a svelte Aiswarya dancing like a peacock with the rains. 
  7. Ab Ke Sawan: Set in the background of a Bengali community, this song by Shubha Mudgal celebrates love and longing across the different age groups. 
  8. Hum Tum:  This song is one that brings in a feeling of nostalgia with the various fantasies that plays in the mind of the heroine. 
  9. Tip Tip Barsa pani: I think the right name for a hot song was a sizzler  in the 90s and it does not surprise the viewer in the least. However, a recent version by Neha Kakkar is a beautiful rendition.
  10.  Sawan Aaya Hai: This song from a completely ridiculous film Creature is about the season of monsoon. Mohabbat barsa dena tu, sawan aaya hai!





Sunday, April 02, 2017

Dedication

I love you! 



These are the words that might start a relationship; a turning point from where there is no return. At the same time, many dread these three little words as it might be the beginning of a commitment and the end of freedom. But I guess there are bonds that need no words, loyalty that transcends time and true love that goes beyond death. 

For me, I thought that such things were things of the past yet when I caught affected with a happiness virus from you, what I realized is that it is a time-sent present for all grief. Just like a bout of chicken pox later in life can be very severe, your virus has not been very benign as could be seen from the fact that I am not cured yet. 

Yet in an intensely private world, my sore unfulfilled desire might be a restoration of the status quo, of just being the air around you and nothing else! 

Saturday, April 01, 2017

From Your Valentine

The rose is red, the violet's blue,
The honey's sweet, and so are you.
Thou art my love and I am thine;
I drew thee to my Valentine:
The lot was cast and then I drew,
And Fortune said it shou'd be you.