Conversing practical wisdom!

The bright sunshine, the first of 2013, after several days of fog, clouds and chilly winds has an elevating effect. Sitting in bright sun shine, turns every person to recluse. The body, after battering with cold for several days wants to relax and heal itself. Strangers sitting in lawn, hardly make any attempt to converse amongst each other. Each immersed in his own universe of thoughts, as if talking within. Many of them have seen more of the winters than others.
This reminds me of last weekend. An old friend and admittedly, more experienced, was narrating me several of his life experiences. Not that I wanted it, but talking made it possible for him to ignore his internal turmoil, the disappointments, the hurt and above all the loneliness. Delirious effect of drinks helped his cause further. To sum up he dropped these Chanakya like, pearls of wisdom:
“1. Be good from the out-side, if not from inside and keep the reality in mind;
2. Do not forget but know how to forgive;
3. Let there be enmity with someone but do not let him know;
4. Do justice or not, but make sure that it should appear that you are just.”

As is apparent, the old man had tried the above principles, all his life. It made him accumulate some wealth but it earned no solace or peace. Why? Because looking closely at each principle of the above Charter of Manipulation is sheer clever wording to be dishonest, brutal and cunning without any feeling of guilt. It is a blueprint for deception. After a life time of acting this deception, it becomes a reality. Mask becomes face. Several masks make one wonder about the real face. This oscillation, when causes depression take us to church, temple or some Guru to tell us that this world is an illusion and so are our problems. When it makes us elated, we go to pub and brag how wonderfully, we conquered, the world ruthlessly. Battering with these two ends, the mind becomes shallow and devolved.
Surprising fact is that every person knows the above principles and is following this Charter, believing that it is a secret knowledge, personal only to that person.
I wanted to convey this, but it was useless. Talking is rarely conversing. We only talk. We don’t listen. Even when we do pretend to listen, a little google inside our minds, merely scans the words and make us speak with a few words in response, without understanding the context; mental or environmental.
Most of the time, communication remains illusive and at best, just one-sided.

© Sandeep Bhalla

Teachings for teacher

A friend has sent me the following text, which is the part of a letter written by Abraham Lincoln to the headmaster of the school where Lincoln’s son was studying. (In this letter Abraham Lincoln is requesting / guiding the headmaster what to teach to his son in the school.) The friend has asked for my comments.

The letter of Abraham Lincoln

“HE WILL HAVE TO LEARN, I know that all men are not just, all men are not true. But teach him also that for every scoundrel there is a hero; that for every selfish politician, there is a dedicated leader…….Teach him that for every enemy there is a friend. It will take time, I know; but teach him, if you can that a dollar earned is of far more value than five found…teach him to learn to lose…and also to enjoy winning. Steer him away from envy, if you can, teach him the secret of quite laughter. Let him learn early that the bullies are the earliest to lick……Teach him, if you can, the wonder of books…but also give him quite some time to ponder the external mystery of birds in the sky, bees in the sun and flowers on the green hillside. Continue reading