Happier Poetry Series: The Trees

Poem No.2 for my daily gratitude ritual on Happier! https://www.happier.com/

Give some water, earth and light to a tiny seed

then behold a wonder that results from this deed

the seed erupts, crawls up to the sky with skinny shoots

and sinks deep into the soil with tiny roots

father time nurtures the seed and its tiny extensions

and it grows and grows without any pretensions

the first leaf is a sign of coming green

and a flag marking victory of forces unseen

branch to branch with leaves asunder

hold your breath for the next wonder

the seed becomes a tree when a branch bears the first fruit

and slowly but surely every other follows suit

the canopy expands, the fruits multiply

small creatures begin to arrive from the sky

some arrive from beneath in search of a home

they build their nests and they build their domes

the tree bears all, benevolent and great

every creature now bound to its fate

it gives shelter to the wet and shade to hot

such grandeur came from a tiny seed, forget that not!

Book Review: The Lord of the Rings

I use Grammarly’s grammar checker online because parallelism is not just about parallel lines, but words and sentences too. Oops! I just made an error here … a parallelism error, caught by Grammarly! Did you see it too?

Well, this post is not really about grammar, it’s about a great book I read known as “The Lord of the Rings“. Before I delve into a critical account, I would just let my inner child say … “this was the most fantastically fantasical super awesome oh god in hell superb Aragorn! Gandalf! Go to hell Sauron! I loved it!!”

Whuff! Now that its out, I can be more sober. ;)

Image

This work was written a long time ago and one can argue that the World Wars in Tolkien’s may have influenced his work, but I do not believe so as The Lord of the Rings is only an account of a brief period of the Third Age. Tolkien, a linguist by profession, created his own world, complete with detailed history, geography, mythology, sociology and everything else. A parallel universe as wondrous as the real, if not more. Personally I would liked to have been born in his universe rather than my present one, but you know the saying, “the grass looks greener on the other side”.

The Lord of the Rings consists of three books:

  1. The Fellowship of the Ring
  2. The Two Towers
  3. The Return of the King

After reading this large volume, I can now say something about Tolkien’s style of writing. He paid great attention to detail. The geography of every land encountered by Frodo or Gandalf‘s company was described beautifully, and in words only known to an expert in this field. It might be too much for a reader to grasp initially but if you just try to guess the meanings and go along, you eventually reach a stage when the scenery just starts to display right in front of your eyes. It is the most amazing geographical detail style I have ever read in any book. Similarly, every character was described in detail, from his/her appearance to personality. And everything had a history associated with it, whether land or human, a clear reference only possible by reading his complete works, but wondrous nonetheless.

For me, this book (and the movies) are very close to what I seek in knowledge. There are so many life lessons I took away from it, such as, the importance of simple things, the growing, dying and passing away of man, lands and everything, the concept of time, which played a major role here. And the tales of heroism, of war, of the plots of evil, and the persistence of a man’s heart, had so much to teach me.

I would recommend any serious reader to relish this beautiful stream of words and bask in the glory of its suchness. I will read it again and again for I am sure I will find something new every time.

Happier Poetry Series: The Sun

In my pursuit towards happiness and attaining a generally better sense of self-esteem, I have now embarked upon a wonderful journey with some wonderful people on Happier. This week I am executing my gratitude ritual by writing a short poem everyday on the things that make me happy. I start with the Sun.

 

The eternal fire ever burning brighter

illuminates dark space with floating matter

heat and light it churns out like a mill

I wonder at the persistence of its will

 

it has burned for an age, yet seems to rise

everyday a new light, every morning a surprise

without it, we cannot live yet too much we cannot have

burn me you will, if I but dare to grab

at the magnanimity of your core

and at your benevolence of giving more and more

 

O star of stars, our only star

stay there always in your place afar

come not closer or move away further

even an inch hither or thither

I like you up there and your daily sleep

a bit of darkness everyday is also of need

 

eternal fire, you give me power

when I dare to look upon you at noon

in your rays of pure light I daily shower

and get ready, it will be morning soon

Need – Desire – Obsession – Destruction

As humans, our defining characteristic has been our inherent property of having more needs than we can sustain. But over time, we seem to have evolved to sustain this property by moving on to the pursuit of the next need after enjoying the previous one, and thus to lead a life with multifarious experiences emanating from the enjoyment or suffering due to those needs. The simple path to a happy life. Simple.

This is the start of the next paragraph. It must be obvious that I will provide a contrast here. And so I do. It is not so simple as it seems. You see, needs get converted into desires when there is a positive reward at the end of the pursuit. Desires are self-motivators, i.e., they make us go the ‘extra mile’ to achieve that reward. To an extent, desires are good. They’re great in fact. Unless we truly desire something, we won’t work hard to get it and it usually things don’t come easy to most people.

As long as you get what you want in a certain ‘acceptable’ amount of time, you’ll be happy and your desire will be fulfilled. This time period is mostly influenced by peer pressure and other external pressures and an internal expectation of performing at a certain level. But sometimes, people desire things that are beyond their capabilities.

Why would people do that?

Well, one can be a good judge of his/her abilities but one can never truly comprehend the role of uncertainty or randomness, which is as you know, the law of nature. And we often forget that everything we do is partly controlled by nature/luck/the cosmos or whatever you choose to call it. There is a 50-50 chance of things going the right way or the wrong way. If it’s the former, then happiness ensues, but if it is the latter then the equation changes.

The equation now is influenced by years and years of evolution that has led man to become what he is today. The power to persist when the desire turns into obsession. Now again, you are more a slave to luck than a master of your own faculties. You cannot go away from what you want to achieve until you have achieved it. You just try so hard keeping only the end result in mind. So hard that you just make a mess of everything. Too much of anything is bad but even a little bit of obsession is destructive. Undoubtedly it makes a man go beyond his limitations sometimes but most men or women break down before it.

Never forget what you are because the world will not

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9nyV0dUPfeQ

My friend suggested me to watch this video yesterday night, when I was getting angry and frustrated about a task in our personal project we had to do this weekend. He basically wanted to say that I am a “Load-u” because I take too much “load” on my brain.

After watching the idiotic video created by the Gen-Y Indian college youth, I felt that maybe I do really “overthink” situations and inflict a state of dilemma upon myself again and again. I felt I had been doing this all my life and that had been the “reason”, as per my friend, “that I was never happy”. This is what he thinks and I guess he’s right.

Well, being born an introvert, a highly sensitive human, I have always taken too much “load” on my brain, overthinking and rethinking things until I am completely clear about them. This post is proof of that. He gave me a video to cool me down, I write a blog post about it.

After thinking a lot about this, and thinking is something I am good at, I have come to a conclusion that this is something I can never change about me. This is not be viewed as a problem. It can’t be a problem if it’s my nature to be sensitive. It’s not normal, but it’s not a problem.

Such uncommon personality traits are present in many other people as well who frequently feel “out of place” or “outcast-ed” or just “can’t belong” to the group of “normal people”. These traits are not a problem.

The only problem is that people feel ashamed of it when the world sticks it in your face that “you got a problem”. Believe me. Being yourself is not a problem. Accepting that being yourself is a problem when somebody else says so is the biggest folly and sin you can commit. Nobody was created equal and everyone has a place in the large scheme of things, which remains unbalanced if you lose your self-respect. Now I’ll tell you the solution to all this. How to sustain your nature and make it your own. Just read this quote below from the “Game of Thrones”.

“Let me give you some advice, bastard: Never forget what you are. The rest of the world will not. Wear it like armor, and it can never be used to hurt you.”

This was said by a dwarf – Tyrion Lanister to a bastard – Jon Snow, who blamed himself for being one and was repeatedly insulted by people for being a bastard. As the story progressed, he learnt this, and whenever anybody tried to insult him again, he stuck it in their face – “I know who I am, you worry about yourself.”

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