Shadow – On The Prowl

 

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As far as my life is concerned I cannot be anyone’s shadow. I am always guided by an unseen spirit; whatever you can call God or a Higher Power or my forefathers. Many queries have to be  answered and there are many solutions. Who can guide whom?

Karma never leaves us. It offers accordingly good or bad; we have to savour the dishes. Adventure isn’t something you do. The adventure is your life itself. Recognize how sweet or bitter it is. Let those winds of change blow. We change, we evolve, we grow and we acknowledge our faults in the process and the shadow follows us.

I remember an incident that happened in my life. I normally visit sometimes isolated places to calm my soul and to write my random thoughts.  10 years back, I was sitting in silent corner of a railway station nearby my home. I wrote something there listening to the rumbling sound of the goods trains and passenger trains and local trains. I was actually unaware while crossing the track. I just felt something has hit my head and felt on the track like sastanga. After sometime I realised i was hit my goods train and i just had narrow escape from death. Who saved me then? Was it not the unseen force? Again I was assaulted by some hooligan lawyers because of my honesty. I got depressed. It was a massive depression for 10 long years. But i overcame that because of that unseen force. My karma is my karma. After a couple of years again they assaulted one my colleagues. He is a strong willed person. He retaliated hard. I strongly got convinced that a force is working. We are just miniscule.

I would like to share with you a quote by Osho that really spoke to my heart and inspired me: “Be grateful to everyone, because everybody is creating a space for you to be transformed – even those who think they are obstructing you, even those whom you think are enemies. Your friends, your enemies, good people and bad people, favourable circumstances, unfavourable circumstances – all together they are creating the context in which you can be transformed and become a Buddha. Be grateful to all. To those who have helped, to those who have hindered, to those who have been indifferent. Be grateful to all, because altogether they are creating the contexts in which Buddhas are born – in which you can become a Buddha.” We are all unique expressions of the Whole; essentially ONE soul.

And One more saying  of Swami satyananda which resonates with me , “Assaults , abuses , injustices, taunts , harassments , discomforts , etc . Have strengthen my personality. Let me – Adapt, Accept, Accommodate, . Bear Insult, Bear Injury; highest sadhana. “

I am always grateful to the unseen shadow – I don’t who are they – may be – Shiva Himself , Christ , Kali, Shirdi Sai Baba or Himself Swami Satyananda Saraswati. I bow before them.

 

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.’

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Happiness – A state of mind

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Happiness is always a state of mind. It has nothing to do with one’s possessions. I have seen persons having immense wealth are unhappy and person’s having nothing is unhappy. It has nothing to do with rich or poor. I have learnt it hard way.

Society always compels us to go after unrealistic dreams which are in practical not possible. Life threaten us in many ways. We always want a comfortable life. We don’t accept pain. That’s the point where are stuck. We suffer from infirmity of will. The point a person achieved one-pointedness in his life, he is a happy person. Pain and pleasure are one to him. Many of us have to manage the emotional part of ourselves to survive certain situations. We have to transcend the part of us that feels anger, sadness, fear, joy, and love.

If we acknowledge our faults and negativity without suppressing or rejecting it , we have the answer. Guilt or remorse has no role in spiritual progress. Total acceptance is the key to happiness. Buddha calls this mindfulness ‘being in the present moment totally’. Ashtavakra calls this Sakshi Bhav – ‘witnessing everything, dropping the doership’.Krishna calls this Sthitapragya – ‘established in 100% awareness’. Patanjali calls it Ekagrata – ‘one-pointedness’It is all one and the same.

According to Swami Satyananda , the founder of Bihar School of Yoga ,” Yoga is complete acceptance of anything in life, whether pain or pleasure, defeat or victory, disease or death. Yoga brings about a complete understanding of the whole process of creation.” One thing I learned if we try to remain happy for 12 hours of our day without complaining, we have reached our goal. We cannot be contended or I’m not saying to be complacent. A balanced approach is needed. Remembering This too shall pass is the hallmark. Nothing remains.

Let go , Let God is the key to my happiness.

 

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.’

Unsolicited Advice Works

Unsolicited advices of parents and elders are relevant today even. “Come home early, ““ avoid bad companies”, read regularly , there is no time – these are some advices. When i was in my adolescent, I never took it seriously I used to take it for granted and never paid heed to it and I must admit and accept while writing this blog. This is my confession.

There is nothing justified or unjustified, I didn’t just listen and I hit my rock bottom. I was into bad companies and did loafering. Time rolled on – I picked up bad addictive habits. And now during my recovery days when I introspect those values hit my subconscious.

Actually I am grateful for those pitfalls and incredible failures. Nothing is wrong. Those failures has evolved me and I am learning , unlearning and relearning things. I accept whatever comes my way. Some might say that it’s wrong to listen to those advices and It is right . I wish I would have listened to those valuable dictums , i could have reached a total different dimension of my life. I realised and I am on my way .Nothing is late and life is beautiful. One must avoid sick relationships. The compulsive addict must exercise the spiritual power of choice around life. To know myself is making my talk a visible reality. As my life moving on – I always keep aside a time for communion with The Higher self. Actually this communion defines my life and give it purpose.

I conclude with a Herman Hesse quote – “Wisdom cannot be imparted. Wisdom that a wise man attempts to impart always sounds like foolishness to someone else … Knowledge can be communicated, but not wisdom. One can find it, live it, do wonders through it, but one cannot communicate and teach it.” ― Hermann Hesse, Siddhartha

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.’

 

 

Some Might Say That It’s Wrong To…

AUTHOR’S INTERVIEW : FEATURING Late UMA SHANKAR PANDA 

AUTHOR’S INTERVIEW : FEATURING Late UMA SHANKAR PANDA

Interview with UMA SHANKAR PANDA

Literature adds to reality, it does not simply describe it. It enriches the necessary competencies that daily life requires and provides; and in this respect, it irrigates the deserts that our lives have already become.

The living Icon of literary Orissa is Mr Uma shankar Panda. Translation is an area in which much attention has been paid. Most of the books into Oriya are translated into Bengali novels and many others. Almost all the prize winning works are available in Oriya translation. In a very cordial interview , Mr. Panda talks about his life and works.

Works of the author :

Umashankar Panda has been familiarized many western authors to the oriya reader. A great contribution by him . A poet, short stories writer, radio and television script writer and an incredible translators of regional and foreign languages books/novels/fictions.

Author’s inspirations :

Serious writers don’t wait to be inspired. Serious writers roll up their sleeves and get down to the business of writing. According to him “Being inspired” smacks of amateurish, daydream passivity, the notion that some supernatural presence must appear before us before the words can flow. He draws inspirations basically from nature, human psychology , and the human behavior . To be inspired by people is to be continually rewarded with story ideas. People are walking, talking stories. Everyone we encounter has the potential for contributing to our understanding of human nature—if we allow ourselves to be inspired by human nature in all its diversity. Inspiration matters because it prods us to traverse the full spectrum of human experience. An important part of what it means to be a writer is to become so turned on to the business of being alive, to be so completely inspired by life, that you will harvest ideas for writing everywhere—from books, from people, from music and other art forms, from the natural world, and most of all from your own inner resources.  There are ripples created in the mind and heart which is expressed in the themes of poetries and other prose writings such as stories, novels and plays.

When asked about the spheres of life he has worked on , he replied ,

I have worked on emotions and imaginations. The life around us i.e. all living creatures , cycle of birth to death and all the nature.

I asked him , “ in which languages do you write ? “

Basically , I write in Odiya.

Out if curiosity , I asked him , “ Did you belong to any literary movements? If so, Please describe.

He was very frank about it and declared openly ,

“In the early phase of my life I was a Communist/leftist thinker and was writing poetry for the masses , laborers and downtrodden. But afterwards , I shifted my writings to portray the human emotions and aptitude of the common mass and its effect on the day to day life.

In the second phase, I indulge myself writing poetry and prose analyzing the psychological mindset of various classes of people( Men and women) and their social behavior in different spheres.

I was the Vice Chairman of Odisha Sahitya Academy too.”

AWARDS :-

  1. Odisha Sahitya Academy Award in poetry.
  2. Bisuvaya Award in Poetry.
  3. Jhankar Award in Poetry
  4. Dharitri Upayan in Poetry
  5. Fakir Mohan Galapa Saman from Utkal Sahitya Samaj
  6. Akil Mohan Bisesh Kabi Saman
  7. Akash Vani Annual Award, New Delhi
  8. Utkal Pustak Sansad
  9. Ati Bhali Jaggnath Dash Puraskar
  10. Gangadhar Sammruti Saman

11.Pustak Mela Saman / Book Fair Awards across the states.

and many to his credentials.

I was so engrossed with his works and life , that I could not help but asking  about his opinion regarding the young generation writers.

His tone seemed to be very optimistic. He replied , “ A progressive trend is flourishing. Mindset style of work is gradually changing with the influence of social, political and life style of the countrymen at present.

The Young talents are bright and conscious of their own position in the social frame. They are faithful and true to their emotions. They often compose their best and most lasting work when they are young. “There’s something very misleading about the literary culture that looks at writers in their 30s and calls them ‘budding’ or ‘promising,’ when in fact they are peaking.”

Lastly , I dedicate this question to our dear readers  . I asked this great personality to  leave a message for you all and here is it , from our very own Umashankar Panda :

“ The readers should have a wide mental set up and neutral in judgement while reading books. They should have their own impressions and freelancing aptitude while commenting on the latest work of literature.”

 Lastly , a treat to our readers : A Poem by Umashankar Panda 

‘The White Flowers ‘

In this bosom . . .
I must carry a basket
of flowers
for you
as the flower
is a kind of fire
that burns the unconcerned bee
and helpless butterflies.

Shameless
is the wicked wind
that makes you naked
any moment.

If I meet Grief
this time
I shall ask —
what is its intention
to come so suddenly
like the lonely girl
carrying white flowers in her hand
alone
as if a magic wand ?

( Interviewed by – Siddhartha Mishra )

Siddharta Misra is a lawyer and a freelancer

( Earlier The interview was published in Intellinotions )

 

Alarm – Awareness is the Key

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Alarm – Awareness is the Key

Yes, i do keep a alarm clock beside my bed as a conscience keeper. It makes me aware how life unfolds. We are evolving every second. are we aware of our breath ? No – Must be the answer.

I Wish An Alarm Would Ring Loud And Notify Me Whenever I doubt about my existence.‘  Once a friend told me, “yes you exist and your existence signifies that you are surviving the odds of life and you are able to face whatever cards life throws at you with acceptance. Earlier I was quite stubborn always competing with others to be no 1. But as the clock is striking ,I see the impossibility of no 1 dictum, and I smile at my dreams and flatted ego. Later on I find that real happiness is not to be found in just trying to be competing all time, for money, romance, or self-importance. I learned hard but well learned and i heeded to my sense of wisdom that I can be serene and satisfied    as long as I play well whatever cards life throws at me. I am still ambitious, progressive and determined, but not absurdly so, because he can now see and accept actual reality. He’s willing to stay right size and humbly accept whatever served to me .

 

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.’

 

 

I Wish An Alarm Would Ring Loud And Notify Me Whenever...

Is marriage an excuse for rape?

injured woman, leaning on wall

Rape is a topic that makes many people of all ages uncomfortable. Few people think of themselves as potential rape victims, and even fewer consider themselves capable of the rape of another. The natural reluctance to talk about the issue and the widespread existence of mistaken ideas about rape have resulted in a great deal of secrecy, silence, and shame surrounding the subject. Lack of understanding, awareness, and open communication about rape only adds to the suffering of victims.

Marital rape is illegal in 18 American states, 3 Australian states, New Zealand, Canada, Israel, France, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Soviet Union, Poland and Czechoslovakia. Rape in any form is an act of utter humiliation, degradation and violation rather than an old concept of penetration. The nation, pregnant with misconceptions of rape, deeply ingrained cultural and religious stereotypes, and changing social values, must quickly alter the letter of the law.

Awareness must be increased

Marriage does not thrive on sex and the fear of frivolous litigation should not stop protection from being offered to those caught in abusive traps, where they are reduced to the status of a chattel. Apart from judicial awakening, we primarily require generation of awareness. Men are the perpetrators of this crime. “Educating boys and men to view women as valuable partners in life, in the development of society and the attainment of peace are just as important as taking legal steps protect women’s human rights,” says the UN. Men have the social, economic, moral, political, religious and social responsibility to combat all forms of gender discrimination.

Organisations working for victims of sexual violence were quick to point out that the new law has serious omissions: Most prominently, it does not criminalise marital rape. A woman raped by her husband continues to have no recourse under Indian law. The UN Population Fund states that more than two thirds of married women in India, aged between 15 and 49, have been beaten, raped or forced to provide sex.

Archaic laws

Fifty-six per cent of Indian women believed occasional wife-beating to be justified. The marital rape exemption can be traced to statements by Sir Mathew Hale, Chief Justice in England, during the 1600s. He wrote, “The husband cannot be guilty of a rape committed by himself upon his lawful wife, for by their mutual matrimonial consent and contract, the wife hath given herself in kind unto the husband, whom she cannot retract.”

Section 375, the provision of rape in the Indian Penal Code (IPC), echoes very archaic sentiments, mentioned as its exception clause, “Sexual intercourse by a man with his own wife, the wife not being under 15 years of age, is not rape.” Is marital rape a myth? Can we come out of this misconception and confusion?

Marital rape is a form of sexual offence and a form of violence against women in any form. It constitutes a violation of women’s human rights such as the right to equal protection of the law, liberty and security of the person and freedom from discrimination. Sex becomes the weapon, the vehicle to accomplish the desired result, which is to overwhelm, overpower, embarrass, and humiliate another person.

Further, marriage doesn’t mean recovered permission to sexual advancements. Some wives withhold sex from their husbands and their sexual drive or libido is so low that they can seldom make love to their husbands. However, these reasons do not constitute a license for husbands to rape their wives. Men who rape wives generally have multiple sexual partners. When their wives say no, it hurts their ego and in order to show their authority and supremacy, they force their wives.

Let us not use the notions of privacy and sanctity of marriage to condone or ignore sexual violence. It is a deep topic and it needs debate.

It was first published on Bonobology.com.

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Forgiveness – The Only Way

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Forgiveness this very word is yet to be understood. How easy to say forgive but it took me a hell lot of struggle to decipher the exact meaning of the term. It was an exasperating task to me. I was attacked by gluttony, sloth, anger, resentment, self seeking and enviousness.

Thanks to the spiritual seed that was ingrained by my parents earlier in my childhood. But as I was growing up , during the initial day of my struggle in my career I was hooked on alcohol. That high gave me a sky to fly but took away my wings. Life is not a bed of roses. We all have our pains and agonies. Few years back I was assaulted by my own fraternity members ( Lawyers ) because of my honesty. I was felt with self pity and victim mentality. Life is a topsy-turvy.

I hit the rock bottom of my life and the rock was God. I came back to my folder. I started praying for those who have assaulted me. I asked in my prayers, “ God , please give them everything what you have given to me – Health, Prosperity and Happiness.” Because I wanted to to let go for myself. They change or don’t change is not my priority. My need is a peace of mind and that is all important.

I forgive them or anyone not because they/he/she deserve(s) forgiveness, but because I deserve peace. I am not forgiving for the good of the other person. I am forgiving for the good of myself so that I can be free & move on. If I am to heal fully, I will need to forgive fully.

Self-care is always selfish. A solitary brooding young man – poetic rumination !I have a right to self-define. I enjoy being me.There is no recipe, no formula, and no guidebook for self care. We each have a guide, and that guide is within us. We need to ask the question: What do I need to do to take loving, responsible care of myself? Then, we need to listen to the answer. Self-care is not that difficult. The most challenging part is trusting the answer, and having the courage to follow through once we hear it. Garal ke sumander mein bhi Ganga Jal niklega !

The endeavour, the venture, the quest before you is never greater than the power behind you.  You are only human and perfection doesn’t exist. Focus on your strengths I don’t precisely know what you need to do to take care of yourself.But I know you can figure it out. No matter what you do in life, what or who you are, the first thing you need to do is take care of yourself. Avoid people, places and things, where you get negative vibes. Earlier, I was feeling guilty whether by saying No the other person might feel bad. But now It has become a Habit, i mean in a positive manner. Start by making “no” the default.  By saying yes, you are saying no to one of your needs, wants, or goals. Self Improvement or self care is divine.

I m powerless , restore me to sanity , I surrender my life , my will to you , Thy Will , not mine , be done . Show me the way towards acceptance , tolerance , self restraint , patience , awareness , clarity of thought , vision , forgiveness . How do I best serve Thee? Thy Will !

WOW: How Can You Celebrate Forgiveness?

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.’