You are Infinite

You are Infnite

You are Infinite they say

You are Infinite, our Great Rishis have said. But what do they mean?

Men are mortal, they are finite in size and a resident of a finite earth which is bound by finite laws of Physics. Yet our Ancient Seers insist, You are That (Infinite) [tat tvam asi]. Something else must be going on.

Its been more than 6 months now that I have quit corporate life and started my own venture. Nothing fancy or splashy – just a simple Management Consulting practice. I have earlier talked about why I quit corporate life and what all I learnt. And this entire journey has been one of self-discovery.

We all want Freedom

I was always a spiritual sort of chap, but unfocused, confused and aimless. Materially I was quite prosperous with a good enviable job and all, but spiritually I felt something was missing. I was feeling incomplete. And then suddenly I had an intensely private spiritual transformation, and things just sort of clicked into their place. The Upanishads suddenly started making sense, and I realized all at once what the Ancient Greats were trying to say.

But I have to admit – it didn’t happen just like that. I had been doing some intense meditation practices prior to that  for some time and in some of those sessions I would suddenly go to higher states where there was no “body-experience” and then all of sudden I would come crashing down. But still that calmness remained. And perhaps all this ground work helped crystallize my thoughts.

I want to be Free. Freedom was what I craved and freedom is what our Ancient texts talk about. This was not about going to a jungle or mountain top and becoming a sanyasi or sadhu. This was the freedom to be your own Master, to lead your life on your own terms.

Many people quit their jobs after feeling dissatisfied with their work-life scenario. But the problem is that, intellectual and mental preparation alone is not enough – one must be spiritually prepared as well, to face the inevitable post-job issues, the frustrations, the ups and downs and so on. And this is where a spiritual grounding is essential.

Once you realize that the potential of the Infinite is within you, no adverse outcome will faze you. Once you realize that you only have a right to action and not its outcome, you will remain calm in the fiercest of internal battles. All of us are Infinite. You are Infinite, so am I. The problem is that we have forgotten our Infinite Self.

And that is what we must discover within us to become Free.

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Step out of your comfort zone

Step Out of Your Comfort Zone

The Comfort Zone

In a regular job, as the monthly paychecks keep on coming in with relentless regularity, we enter what is known as the “comfort zone” – a state of monotonous mediocrity, mundane mind-numbingness, and mental melt-down.

Comfort Zone not only conceals our true potential, but also of makes us lazy and less than human.

In fact, the lust for money makes people destroy their relationships, destroy each other, destroy societies and destroy Mother Nature.

What comfort zone does to us

Comfort Zone Web of Maya

Image Source  © Copyright sylvia duckworth and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

In Indian tradition, this notion of comfort zone is known as Maya – a web of apparent pleasantry and evils, which makes us forget our true unlimited potential and compels us to run after the insignificant and meaningful pursuits.

But don’t we all work for money?

Not really, I would say. Saying that we work for money is wrong at so many levels.

  • Money is and always has been a means towards an end, not an end in itself. We work for an end whatever that may be, and money is just the medium.
  • A capitalist makes money work for her – she doesn’t work for money.
  • We work for wealth, not money. Wealth manifests itself in different forms – physical wealth (health and prosperity), mental wealth (knowledge) and spiritual wealth (freedom including physical, spiritual and financial freedom).

Step out of your comfort zone

As we board the money train, and chug our way to the banality of daily job/ house/ car/ foreign vacations/ family commitments, we slowly distance ourselves from our True Self and its infinite potential.

Comfort Zone Train

Having said that, it is never too late to take a break, look inwards and reacquaint ourselves without true Nature and its immense potential. The freedom of choice always lies within us.

We can choose who we want to be.

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Thank you for reading Step out of your comfort zone. I hope you enjoyed it. Please leave your comments in the comment box below and do share with your friends and family.

Take up One Idea and Make that One Idea Your Life

So much to do and so little time.

Yet we are wasting our time. We have the potential for greatness. But not the zeal. We are like dead batteries.

We need a massive jolt of charge to bring us back to life. We need an electric shock to push us out of our comfort zone.

And that charge is an Idea. A massive idea. An epic idea.

As Swami Vivekananda says, you need to Take up one idea and Make that one idea your life. And then we become live batteries. We become useful.

I’ll launch my own spaceship

 

Elon Musk Colonizing Mars

One can get extraordinary results by doing things differently.

Take a look at Elon Musk, the world’s Raddest Man.

He has a dream of saving humanity by colonizing Mars. That is his One Idea.

To achieve that he has done what no one man has ever done before.

He has changed rocket science completely by making revolutionary new rocket designs. He is the guy who challenged NASA’s dominance.

And he has launched his own spaceship.

Elon Musk is an extraordinary person. But his extreme obsession with his Idea is the reason he has achieved such staggering results.

We can all be that.

In true Vivekananda style, Elon Musk has taken up one idea, made that one idea his life by thinking of it, dreaming of it and living on that idea.

As long as you have the spirit and grit and persevere and dare to think the impossible, you can make spectacular achievements.

You can launch your own spaceship.

Who is Kanak Das? And why we should be like him

But then you don’t have to be an Elon Musk to achieve extraordinary results.

Look at Kanak Das. Have you heard of him? No I guess not. Our media talks about celebrities only.

Kanak Das from Morigaon Assam lost his father when he was young. His family had no money to send him to school. Sometimes he did not even have food to eat for days together.

Yet he defied all odds. He overcame all obstacles. He grew up to be a serial innovator and inventor.

His One idea in life has been how to make everyday life better for the common man, using his available resources which are his pluck, his courage to think differently and his delight in doing something meaningful.

Kanak Das inventor bicycle which runs faster on a bumpy roadHis most amazing invention is the E-Bike, a bicycle which runs faster on a bumpy road.

The E-bike uses the jerk produced by bad roads to charge his cycle battery.

Innovation at its very best.

Kanak Das may never have read Swami Vivekananda’s work, but he had somehow internalized Vivekananda’s teaching. His brain, muscles, nerves, every part of his body, is full of that idea of doing good for the common man.

 

Be obsessed. Be Driven.

Like Musk, you can launch spaceships to save humanity. Like Kanak, you can use can  convert your enemies (bumpy roads) into allies (battery charger).

There are countless people like them who have each taken an idea.

They are tirelessly working on such ideas.

They are motivated people, always positive and ever resourceful.

They are trying to make our world a better place to live.

Let us therefore take a pledge

  • to take up one idea
  • make that one idea our life
  • think of that idea only
  • dream of that idea only
  • live for that idea only

We can all achieve mind-boggling results.

Original Quote of Swami Vivekananda

“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.”

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Reference:
  • Read more about inventor Kanak Das here.
  • More about Kanak in “India Land of a Billion Entrepreneurs” by Upendra Kachru (P. 44).
  • Elon Musk Image taken from here.

Arise awake and stop not till the goal is reached!

 

You think you are awake? Think twice.

You think you are doing fine? You could do much better.

You think you have achieved all your goals? You have not even reached the shore of the ocean you want to cross.

Are you ready to arise, awake and stop not till the goal is reached?

Are you really awake?

Everyone wants an easy life. I want an easy life. You want an easy life.

Perhaps you want foreign vacations every year? Or maybe, you want a promotion and an apartment in the best gated-community in the most elite locality?

We all want such things. We all want jobs, cars, large houses in posh neighborhoods; we want to eat out in the most expensive restaurant, rub shoulders with celebrities and go for long overseas vacations.

You spend your present thinking about the future and regretting the past.

In this process you feel frustrated. So do I. So do most ordinary men.

Everyone, except of course Great Men like the Buddha or Swami Vivekananda. They saw what Life really is.

Remember Rip Van Winkle? You are him. Except you have been sleeping forever.

Rip Van Winkle sleeps for 20 years and wakes up one day to discover that the world he had left behind is nothing similar to the world he is now seeing.Arise-Awake-and-Stop-Not-2

We are all like Rip Van Winkle, a permanent one. We think we are awake, but we are actually asleep.

We live like robots doing things we don’t enjoy and doing work we do not like.

For what?

To make shitloads of money? To enjoy life to the hilt?

By the time you make money, you are too old to enjoy. You cannot take your money to Heaven.

Pinching yourself will not help you awaken

Do you sometimes feel some unexplained emotion within you? Something unfulfilled? Some strange sensation as if something is gnawing inside you?

Something much deeper than money, fame and good life?

You do? We all do.

And that something is your infinite inner self.

Listen to that voice, say the Wise Men

The more you listen, the more you hear. You discover the vast unexplored world within you.

A world where anything is possible. A world of infinite possibilities. A world where there is peace and harmony.

That is what Buddha meant by looking for answers within ourselves.

True happiness does not come with money. It sounds clichéd. But it is the truth.

Nobody denies the importance of money. But we tend to forget that money is a means to something, not an end in itself.

True happiness is the goal.

Money, fame, fast cars, designer clothes and yachts will not give you true happiness.

Figuring out who you really are will give you true happiness.

That is what Swami Vivekananda says. That is what the Buddha says.

So let us take a pledge to arise awake and stop not

  • we will arise
  • we will awaken
  • we will not stop till we reach our goals

Let us try to discover who we really are.

PS: Do share your comments and let me know how you have progressed. Thanks in advance for your comments and likes.

References:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rip_Van_Winkle

Vivekananda Image: http://www.rkmpune.org/downloads/rkmp_wallpapers.html

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Duties versus Rights

Do your duty and a little more and the future will take care of itself. Andrew Carnegie

Duties are those which must be done given one’s place or phase in life. A student must study, parents must look after their children, doctors should save patients.Rights are those which one is entitled to given one’s position or stage in life. A student is entitled to free primary education, elderly people have a right to social security and patients have a right to sue doctors for medical negligence.Duties have to be done unconditionally and choicelessly with attention and effort in the right spirit. This will produce contentment. When all do their duties correctly, everyone’s rights are met automatically.

Illustration

1. When students study properly and leaders build a good education system, the students’ right to good education is met as well as the ministers right to an educated electorate is met.
2. When employees work hard and increase company’s profitability, and management rewards employees by giving them a part of the profit, both employer and employees would have done their duties and received their entitlements (productive workforce and better pay respectively).

Duties and rights are joined at the hip. By doing are duties we are automatically ensuring our rights.

We must remember the words of John. F. Kennedy (35th President of USA), “Ask no what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.
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How can children learn so fast?

How can children learn so fast?

Learning is a life-long process.

But the rate at which we learn decreases as we grow older.

Children are fast learners. Under normal circumstances, a child can learn 4-5 languages from a very early childhood without getting confused.

I used to be an average Indian kid – but by the time I was 5, I could converse in 3 languages – English, Hindi (the defacto lingua franca of most Indians) and Bengali (my mother tongue).

I know an Andhra (or maybe Telangana) guy who was born in Kerala and who later moved to Chennai during his childhood and he knows 4 languages (English, Telugu, Malayalam and Tamil). But despite staying in Mumbai for many years during his career as a financial analyst, he was not able to pick up more than a smattering of Hindi.

No doubt, dying cells (as we age) don’t help with the learning process. But is there something else to this?

There is. And that is Fear.

Children are born fearless.

They have no inhibitions.

They are eager to learn and experience new things.

They are eager to experiment.

They are always on the lookout for new hacks.

And boy, do they learn.

They pick up myriad information from different sources, analyze them with an open mind that is free of pre-conceived notions and sythesize them to come up with some brand new conclusion never imagined before.

A normal child keeps on asking “Why?” to every question and is not afraid to dig deeper. It is we, the parents and elders who instil fear and caution in them by telling them about ghosts and gods and demons. We project our deficiences and bad habits onto them and stunt their relentless pursuit of truth.

It is we, the parents and society at large, who make our children fearful. 

And that is when they stop learning in the true sense. They stop asking “Why”, they feel afraid to synthesize, they start experiencing the dread of ridicule and embarassment. Their core of infinite potential, boundless beauty and innocence, starts getting covered by a thick veil of counter-productive emotions.

If we, as a race are to truly become extra-ordinary we must lose all our inhibitions and think like children when we tackle unsolvable problems. And that can only happen when we are absolutely fearless.

Image: https://pixabay.com/p-391610/

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