Sunday, 29 June 2008

The brain

I came across an interesting article in a newspaper.

An excerpt:
"People go through various hurtful experiences from other people such as insult, blame, violence as well as encounter certain tragic events in their lives. Such distress experiences often leave in them certain emotional scars such as anger resentment fear frustration revenge hopelessness powerlessness, etc. These negative emotions when rerun in a person’s mind many a time become more deep rooted, resulting in mental scars with debilitating influence on the person's thinking styles and emotional states. True nature is obscured or blocked. The erroneous and limiting beliefs as mentioned above coupled with emotional baggage obscures the true nature of human beings. As a result she/he becomes unable to use his thinking capabilities and other potentials to learn and develop herself/himself as well as to cope effectively with various situations in life. The individual becomes intellectually and emotionally constricted and gets stuck with certain types of negative selftalk and self defeating behaviours. They always live in the past unable to live in and enjoy the present. Psychologists say that the average person talks to him self or herself about 50000 times a day and about 80 per cent of the self talk is negative."

I do not know how true the figures mentioned above are, but some of the situations, emotions and logic mentioned are absolutely true. All of us with some sembalance of intellectual capability will have gone through such a situation (if not, lucky you!). Point is how best one can deal with such situations. Indeed the brain is a voracious instrument that nature has perfected, which allows us to do so much yet also has the capability of stopping us completely in our tracks.

Making a thought positive, ensuring it is nurtured and retained is a tough task especially when it is just so easy to become self-centred. This is food for thought, isn't it?

Cheers to life.

Saturday, 28 June 2008

Hell and Heaven!

Chennai, what a city! It's been almost four years since I started living in this place and gawd knows, there's enough to crib about, but also loads to praise. Coming to this place with very mixed feelings, it has actually become a place which I'm so comfortable with that it sort of scares me (if that's the term!). I guess, I do have a thing about comfort zones, but more on that later...


Chennai (that was/is Madras?) tends to grow on you in ways that seems profoundly simple and direct yet illogically ephemeral. As a city, I have witnessed it change its character quite a bit in the time I have spent here, yet there is much that still remains as it has been for over a century and more.

Friday night was an interesting experience to say the least. Sitting and talking with a friend and poof the electricity supply is gone. Now, it had been raining, so the normal conclusion is it will come back in a few minutes. Unfortunately not the case. Friend decides to leaves for his house, which is just a couple of blocks away. And as we come out of the building, realisation hits us that all around us, there are lights and air-conditioners being powered away to glory and only our building has been affected. Turns out an underground cable connecting the transformer to our building had short circuited (burnt in three places as it turns out later).

Herein starts the experience. With the power on, the city felt different in that one is living in a safe and secure environment with access to water, sanitation, third party support, etc. Off goes the power and one realises Chennai's nature in full fury. Out of the all encompassing darkness come the raiders who descend on the hapless soul with precision attacking every possible part. As one of the bloggers from Chennai (see link) has asked, how dare we hoard blood, for it is the right of every bloody mosquito in the world to feast on us. Of course, it's not just blood that you are losing. Pouring streams of a saline liquid popularly known as sweat but not so popular when it starts to build and descend from that exact spot on your skull, to gather strength near the brow and together create its own version of the niagra falls! And this is but the physical manifestations. What about the mental? No more connected to the net or tv, one frantically searches through a mental checklist on what to do - can't shut the brain off, won't shut off! Phew, what a night.

Rather bleary eyed, low on the sleep quotient, one wakes up to the soulful morning with a happy realisation - the raiders have gone away for now - Yeah!! Make the best of it. Run. Jump. Scream. In joy. (Funny isn't it, how little things can give so much joy in life?). And then reality sinks in. There still is no power. One of the building's association member actually has to spend a whole day camping at the TNEB Assistant Engineer's office to ensure that somebody is actually deputed to find the fault and sort it out. Finally two people land up and oh dear, the open dug outs reminds you that beneath the surface lies so much! Every time we get a phone connection, or water connection or tv connection or a connection of any sorts, there is digging that takes place. Dig hard enough and you are bound to hit one of the wires in the dirt. Who cares, if a whole building goes without power because the rain water entered into the electricity cable through a cut/multiple cuts left during another connection being setup. Anyways, toiling industrially these two men manually sort out the whole mess and power is restored and life is back to normal.

But the brain refuses to stop thinking. In our man made heaven or mess of a city, whatever you call it, as long as everything is going in the way that leaves you happy, then all is fine. A change in that situation and the realisation dawns that nature has a way of showing you who really is more powerful (more on that later; met an interesting conservationist yesterday, check out the link to his blog too).

Chennai has evolved from a small fishing village into a giant metropolis. Have people and the place always been in tandem - absolutely not. Has the planning of the city been in tandem with the present needs, let alone future needs? Not is the sad answer. But have the people lived in tandem with each other? Yes and that is what makes this such an interesting city to live in. It grows on sub-conscious self in ways that's akin to a creeper, eventually becoming a part of your consciousness, without one even realising that it happened. But of course, a change (albeit temporary) like a power shut down leads you to realise what all. Here's wishing the best to this old lady of a city and its denizens.

Tuesday, 24 June 2008

Human relations et. al.

This a response blog, because as I started writing a comment, I realised that it was just getting longer and longer, thought might as well make it a blog! I also would like to state outright that all of what I will write here on is debatable, so bring it on... the more the merrier ;)

Call it Hum Tum or the hot topic of relations that opposite or even same genders of the human species could have, especially of the 'love' variety.

There are a few points I would like to say here:

1. There are no absolutes in any relationship. To think so would be foolish.

2. Right or wrong, as said in Anila's blog (check the link) is from 'a' person's perspective. There is my truth. Your truth. And the truth... LOL

3. While I do not backtrack from what I'd written, I must admit that those were written during a state of emotional trauma (or shall we say, a steep learning curve...LOL), so are liable to be very subjective.

In one of the comments on Anila's blog, a friend asks why do guys flirt at all. Yet another says, a flirt is somebody who's not ready to be steady (excuse the pun). Some say that it is part of the male psyche...it is also hard wired into our genes. I feel, that all of us flirt - consciously or unconsciously. As someone had mentioned in one of the comments, both girls and guys do 'check' each other out. Sometimes, the chemistry/connect/vibes et. al. is so strong that the flirting can get deeper and move on to something much more like a relationship. But to me the basic point of flirting (no rose tinted glasses here) is to get to know a person that much more than what one would get to know otherwise.

Body language is as much part of flirting as are verbal expressions. Flirting can have various styles, standards and goals. And not all flirting is with the intent as deciphered by the receiver. Having said this my point on perceived truth versus the truth still remains.

Civilisation, education, societal evolution - these and many more factors have brought in various elements that 'condition' us to what is behaviourally acceptable or not. There are also certain deeper factors, which not all of us recognise all the time.

While I agree that trust is the basic principle of any relationship (especially between lovers - maybe because the link is based on purely voluntary reasons?), the moot point is what is the trust for? For example, would it be appropriate to say, "Because you are in a relationship with me, I trust you not to flirt with other men/women"? or would it be better to say, "I trust you to be open and honest with me on every count, including the flirting?" or would be better to say, "I trust you to be with only me, in this manner, and no one else?" or would it be best to say nothing at all?

One of the movies that I have recommended - What love is - a recent release is worth watching, as amongst themselves, it shows men talking about women and women talking about men and both have a lot to say on this whole flirting thing. Yet when they meet up, all those discussions taken on a completely different hue. Please do see it, if you can, and add a comment/response to this topic. I will be very happy to take up a discussion.

More on this tomorrow...

Saturday, 21 June 2008

It's the weekend!

Finally... the best part of the week's here and the question looms large, what are you going to do, to make the most of it? Good question, eh? LOL...

From a stage, where the weekend was dreaded for it meant even more time with nothing to occupy, it has been a full reversal, with not enough time to do/experience everything that one wants interspersed with the mundane chores of a single person household!

With an imagination fired up, high energy levels (thank you chocolates!) and the idea of being in servitude to Bacchus high on the agenda later in the day, there's quite a bit to accomplish before one gets to that point of time.

I had a thought though... it is indeed in amazement that I look at how time changes so many factors for us. For instance, having met a person almost a decade ago, it is only recently that I can say, we have gone to stage which could be described as close friendship (a much abused term, but what the heck). That it took almost a decade to reach this stage, even when we were part of similar circles just possibly gives a bit of credence to the saying that 'there is a right time for everything'. There is not too many other reasons, why it took so long to connect.

Which brings to me the question of what exactly do we qualify and quantify as a connect between two human beings? Is it that feeling of being comfortable with each other? Being comfortable with the pluses and minuses that we all invariably have? Being more trusted and therefore more open to communication? Why is it that at times when, people move in and out of our lives, either, we get closer or equally we go so far that it makes no sense at all? While the theory of relativity may hold good for many, I feel that beyond the regular factors which one can logically pinpoint, there are facets, attributes and influencers not necessarily logically explainable.

Funnily, it is like doing the never end 'why' question. For example...

Q: Why is India named so? A: It was linked to the Indus river.
Q: How did the Indus river get that name? A: Possibly, the migrating tribes around 4000 BC gave that name.
Q: Why were there migrating tribes? A: Because they were following the changing rivers.
Q: Why were the rivers changing? A: Because the earth is an evolving planet.
Q: Why is the earth an evolving planet? A: Because the universe and everything in it is constantly evolving.
Q: Why does the universe need to constantly evolve? A: aaaaargh!!!

...you see there is no limit to the 'why' question. So I guess it is, in the end, sometimes, just one of those things we have to positively accept rather than persistently but pointlessly question.

Time to get to those mundane chores ;) Ciao for now.

Back in action!

Hey... it is a new or shall we say, renewed me back on the blog and this time with the objective of actually chugging along if not running at full speed :) consistently.

I must admit here that an inspiration has been a person about whom I keep getting to know something different each time, we talk. And one of the recent revelations has been the whole blogging concept.

Some feel that blogging is nothing but a public diary. Is that so? I suppose it depends on how each individual would make use of a facility to put down their thoughts... whether it should be their innermost thoughts or just what they feel at this point of time. All said and done, it is up to that individual, isn't it?

Here's looking at a great re-start. More anon.

The Chances We Take. Or Not.

Book under review: Ahmed Faiyaz,  Another Chance Grey Oak Publishers, 2010 ISBN: 978-93-81626-02-3 Rs. 195 We all know...