Freedom of ideas: Self or Society?


I went to a Tarot Card reader yesterday, just to curiously know what my life has to offer me with those pattern of chosen cards. The reader glanced me and told me “You have the freedom to grow and pursue your dreams, but you are holding back somewhere just because you are dual in your thoughts. If you focus on one thing important, you will grow as a person”. I realized, she was kind of right. It happens with all of us.

Somewhere, in our life’s turns and burns, we all get into a situation where duality creeps upon us. Not that we want it to happen, but forces and situations around make it happen. To know, what exactly we are capable of, we need to get ourselves from the dual nature of self and society. Today, people dream thinking more what is suitable for the society around us and not what we are actually passionate of. These dreams take a shape of an unborn child and the opportunity passes away. To get the right click in the right time, we need to be clear in our thoughts and pursue the least trodden path to achieve what we do in dreams, accurately.

Clarity holds a person and gives direction. I remember an old age adage “A stitch in time saves nine”, which holds true with the true sense of freedom. Freedom is not just pursuing your own life, but creating a balance with the self and the society around. We stop after achieving a certain level of clarity because we feel the society around see us with enough respect. And our dreams are eventually shrinks to what our society thinks it should be, and that is when dreams die and world-denting ideas perish. We need to struggle till the end of our dream, and that is our freedom.

In business/job/startup, we know our freedom is more or less based on our ideas. Some ideas suffocate to die inside us and other make a way to the world and change it, till we execute it. Why is then our ideas don’t initiate and the freedom is not free? Because, like the Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle, our ideas are uncertain with the linkage of our self and the bond with the society. We get momentum, we lose track of our idea’s position. We get position, we lose track of our freedom’s momentum.

So, taking back from what the Tarot card reader said, the dreams which are fulfilled are in true nature, the reflection of self to the society and they are to be pursued and to be struggled upon despite the limitations to our freedom, and tending to infinity boundaries to our ideas. 

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Luck favors the unintended


We know that our ‘role model’ predecessors whom we look to must have been the innate example of ‘Luck favors the brave’. We have often being advised by our peers, family, mentors etc that to achieve something you have to set your goals and try to achieve it by knowledge, hard-work and passion. Would this just be enough to achieve something we always wanted to but never identified it in the first place?

Yesterday, my father narrated me a story of his life, a story which changed his life forever. A story of fate and fortune. Coming from a middle class family, my father was 13 years old when he was sent to study at Birla Public School in Pilani, Rajasthan (one of the finest boarding schools in India) with a sole intention by my grandfather to make him an engineer from BITS, Pilani in the long run. My grandfather was turned to by his brother who was living in Pilani and he suggested him to send his son to the school with a pretext of making him a capable person. My father went to attend the school for Class 8th. Owing to his nature and his attachment for my grandmother, he started writing letters to my grandmother when he was in school tugging at his heartstrings. When my grandfather came to know this, he posted all these letters to my father’s uncle back there in Pilani. The uncle then fixed this situation by asking the school authorities to take a retest for my father for Class 9th. This meant that my father had to give the re-test, could not think of going back and was stuck at the school for one more year. Propelling his will to go back, my father left Pilani with his bag in the middle of ninth standard, boarded a bus from Pilani to Delhi and then a train from Delhi to Surat with just 20 rupees in his pockets.

He came back to his parents and then was admitted in a local school. He then pursued Bachelors in Chemistry in a local science college. After getting a bachelor’s degree, he started working under my grandfather who was working as a Manager in a textile firm owned by Birlas. After one year working under my grandfather, he set out to float his own textile business. Since then, there was no looking back for him and he build a successful business along with his two younger brothers. More than 20 years in the business, he has been resilient and consistent in the growing the business. His experiences taught him to take a leap to something unconventional and go on a path less intended. One thing he told me ‘If I would have stayed in Pilani, completed my high school there and pursued engineering, I would never have got into business (which he nor my grandfather thought in the first place) and so whatever happens, happens for a reason’. 

We, as a generation, often ponder over our goals in achieving something through those common attributes of planning and hard work which have been preached over since ages and fear to take unintended risks. If we achieve or we don’t, luck has not only supported the brave but also the unintended. So, its sometimes better to be unplanned, believe in yourself and start looking for the dots which will eventually connect when the right time comes. Clock is ticking and I am waiting to ring my bell.

The greater fool


“The greater fool is someone with the perfect blend of self delusion and ego to think that he can succeed where others have failed. This whole country was made by greater fools.” This is when Sloan Sabbath tells Will McAvoy in the recent popular series of ‘The Newsroom‘ created by Aaron Sorkin.

I am amazed by this dialogue in the sense how perceptions work in nations with same kind of investors all around. This is not applicable only to principles of stock investing but also to our daily life situations. We believe in few things, go against those beliefs and then justify why we did. If you are in a consultancy business or a stock broker or a palm reader or a lawyer, you know your previously held beliefs over fundamentals but just to keep up with the business you are in, you tend to make sell what is against your belief just in the hope that someone will buy it in the future. Thats when we learn how to play games. Not just this, there are people who are tend to modify their beliefs over time because that’s much more comfortable and easy to maintain. Who is the greater fool then? Do we realize how we become one in real life situations?

This greater fool theory relies on trends, opportunities and psychologies in surviving in life and in stock markets. Its one thing which is common in all the nations. All of us try to supersede our peers by becoming that greater fool and make beliefs over experiences which were sustainable and not out of the box. We tend to lose out on our passion in the process of becoming that common fool and run with the world around us. Anticipating a life which we wish to live, we think, talk and express other than what is right or wrong? We know there is someone in this world who might not be as capable as you so as to buy that plan. Be it the blame game or pushing sentiments over love, honesty and integrity. When will the world be a place where we get suggestions not based on hypocrisy, advises with no manipulations, words with no hidden interests and love with no condition? World will be a better place then. We must not share what don’t believe in. Its better to remain silent then to spread something which we can’t practice, social issues will then be resolved. Until then we are all greater fools, and some of us greatest.

Gun Control, Really!


Saddened by the news of death of children in the US, there is an instinct in me which can relate the unfortunate event of the west with the old issues in the east. The twitter is trending with Gun Control as a measure to control the misuse of arms by few socio-paths existing in the world. But, is this issue really an obstructive one? And how is it related to the east? Well, several nations need some effective regulations in Gun politics as the measure to eliminate this misuse. There are several mishappenings around the world over these issues and how terrorism is reaping the fruits. Human mind is that complex web that can work the worst things out in the best possible way. Will this destructive human mind ever be cured? I am sure there are issues that are known and by awareness can be cured.

While there are so called entrepreneurs who have businesses in selling and exchanging these weapons to private license holders, there are also numerous ways that these dealings take a different approach. One of that is the dealing of weapons under government scrutinizing body. Why can’t it be possible that these private license holders not just take a permit from the government but also from an investigative body that carries out the due diligence over these licensed permit gun holders and keep a track on them. Moreover, the influx of these weapons should be through a structured approach even if they imported from different countries. There must be certain rules and regulations passed to protect this. Many more parameters can be included in the approach and make it more effective over different Arms Act or policies brooding over it and not preventing it. A good government can always solve this problem of Gun Politics. And this should not do anything with the defense sector of the nation. That is a nation’s right over security and control. But, the small businesses over weapon trading and manufacturing should be solved with tight protection and should have a justifiable reason to carry it.

This is not just a problem of one nation but many. Simple governance methodologies can solve this problem and it won’t give space to one in becoming a weaponizing socio-path and break the law. The law can change it. Strict laws can control the network of terrorism which is a huge act and castigate them. Civilized can be controlled, freaks can be prevented in becoming mass murderers and a man can be saved in becoming someone treacherous over religion.

Check this link out to know more about Gun Control: http://www.justfacts.com/guncontrol.asp

 

Indianess and Game.


Game theory has always been a zero sum game which determined that the profit of one will always be on the expense of others, which introduced by John Van Nuemann and Oskar Morgenstern until John Nash discovered the Nash Equilibria for the non-zero win-win situations and won a Nobel after quite a psychological stint in his life in 1994.

India, a cultural heritage has always been stodgy for economists and philosophers and they their own perception towards the abstract spectrum from its happenings and times. Nothing can match the susceptibility of the nation’s randomness and sovereignty. Psychology of an Indian has always been an outlook of its own kind, not really the demographics of the nation affecting it. Indians are known for their unruly social behavior and their unintentional verve. When it comes to making choice, we can be selfish as well as collaborative at the same time. Read the theory of Prisoner’s dilemma. We say that population, illiteracy, poverty and corruption are the  issues defining why we Indians are the way we are. But actually, it’s not the demographics that matters in our behavior but a social upbringing does. There are people spitting on the roads, throwing junk, breaking the queue, giving a bribe (most of them taking it), breaking the signals, urinating on the road sides and what not. Who is to blame? The system or the self? Often, we come across real-life situations where we end up being privately smart and publicly dumb. We celebrate festivals of colors and crackers and leave the roads and grounds defiled from their plastic wastes and chemical colors. Indians and Indianess goes along together irrespective of the caste, creed or position. We all belong to the same field of paddy crops. Then, we blame the system and its governance for its behavior, being publicly dumb. Social behavior is not something we just show it on Facebook, but how we actually implement it in our day-to-day lives. This is where Indianess differs from the Global social behavior. And we talk about globalization. That makes us self-contradictory.

Rationalism is a child’s play and when Indianess paints the canvas, the theory of game comes to being. We, Indians being superficially rational, be it in professional lives or the way we think, which still makes us the third world country because of this mass behavior. Only, when we try to change, others will. It’s like a movement with no incentives and holistic growth, which will be marginal for the self. As we know, we are heedless without incentives. And we blame the government, which itself runs like a tip-toed bulls. We have to create our own incentives for the satisfaction and not for the temptation. And then the Nash equilibrium is favorable for non-cooperative and win-win situations in particular circumstances stating that one can benefit, making others benefit too. Then the Indianess will make its hay shine in the field.

Few examples of game theory are Chess, Stone-Paper-Scissors and the art of tit for tat.

Adopted from the book Games Indians Play by V. Raghunathan and inferred by me.

Let not the game decide us, but our own behavior. 

The Rat Race


Life as we know, is a race. A race to approach the repertoire of dreams, accentuate the anomaly, understanding the dynamics of the running world and surviving through the fattest of all psychologies and culture. But, most of us run behind the things which are immaterial to what we actually want. We see, interact, discern and conclude without an over-thought. Do all of us follow our passion, the thing which makes us smile and the zenith we want to scale? The answer is Almost No.

History has meant it and believed it that one should follow their heart, no matter what and there lies the true satisfaction. But, it’s just a one ear-to-another ear-to the world again phrase. We belong to the commons, and we will stay in the commons. Until and unless, we are not usually eccentric in our thoughts and work. We are the common rats, and we will run like one until we realize that Money Making is not an attribute of differentiation, but a trait. This is one confusion of the mass. Situations and consequences makes some un-follow their dream and go to the path of survival. But, just as we remember everyone is same but different.

Just when I was talking to a friend over a lazy afternoon book-reading session, he just as well remarked ” Even if we win a rat race, we will still remain the rats“. We laughed in unison.

I am no one to inspire. But, I can definitely point out and hold a voice. This might help. Self-discovery runs in silence than in words. Make your own examples and create an example, which might as well be in the Rat Race to self discovery. Be what you are. And do what you want to do.

 

A Piece of Paper


As the clock struck past thirty minutes to seven, I approached the tutor who just left the class with a spellbinding session on English Usage and Vocabulary. I introduced my blog to him, and asked him for a topic to crib upon. In a fitting second, he tore a piece of paper from a book and gave it to me. And this left me baffled for a moment with a subject I can creatively ponder upon.

A Piece of Paper 

What does a piece of paper mean to all of us? Metaphorical or hyperbolical?

For some its an unfulfilled dream. For some a leadership style. For some a factoid. But for many, it was living.

Piece of paper is a symbol of creating history. Today, the essence of paper is soft-pedaled due to the emerging work-flow on the internet and the discovery of manmade machines. All the ancient scriptures, manuscripts, inventions and stories are made on this finest invention of the Chinese. Without it, the world would not have been more compact. The world’s best poetries were written on that piece of paper in the woods, or in the dark. It has an impact which is far-lived and implausible. A best piece of paper is often a rare piece of art and thoughtfulness. It is a tool, not just for those creative heretics, but for the commons.

A dream is not broken, until it’s not lived. A piece of paper symbolizes dream which is not lived. I believe, until and unless we don’t put in enough efforts to live it, we are like that torn piece of paper. As we say nothing is rewritten, but pre-written. With that one piece, we can make destiny dance over dreams.

Leadership is a behavior which is observed and experienced by many. Be it small or big. A piece of paper is a piece, even if its big or small. Just like it, leadership is like that piece of paper. Some have more stories to the journey, and some just enough to inspire. Leadership is not just leading by choice, but by example. A piece of paper is a simple epigram to those journeys based on values and leadership without complexities.

A factoid is an information bowl shared and exchanged from nations to companies to individuals. It is an agreement, a bond, a policy, an article and a shredded trash. A piece of paper is thus a utility for the commons, and a more day-to-day necessity. Be it anything, anywhere.

When I talk about living, ask the ones who have lived their heart out on a novel, a book, a prose or a poetry which instigated revelations and revolutions. To those ancient messengers, an eighteenth century poet, a twentieth century architect or a nineteenth century infamous sci-fi novelist, they know how understatement a piece of paper is. That was a living worth the dime, and for the dime. It has created almost everything and anything we see around. And we know that life’s simple inventions has created the best discoveries. That is living, by that piece of paper, and for that piece of paper.

Just so that we don’t make a satire out of sarcasm, we can add meaning to it ourselves.

One important task to do : Take an A4 Size paper, and list down all the words which you want to live, or experienced before. And then encircle it if lived. And then see a story taking over. You never know, if history has it.

I have been doing it myself and I love it when I glance it each morning. The feeling makes me want to experience more and live more.