Saturday, February 19, 2011

The World sans Hues



Attachments resulting in detachment, what an irony!

 
On the crowded station in Ahmedabad, the old man looked completely detached from the surroundings. I wonder if he is really at peace with himself or trying hard to camouflage the whirlwind inside.

With all the captivating colors surrounding him, he seems to be failing at capturing their real essence. The reason? Go figure.



Thursday, February 3, 2011

The New Age Passionistas


The other day, I was aimlessly surfing through the television with nothing constructive at hand and paused at  "Do what you love, love what you do-Blackberry" and it suddenly dawned upon me how this tagline reflects the new age mantra of the present day youth. Earlier, the mere mentioning of pursuing their passion as their profession was supposed to be a Herculean task. Two reactions were sure to follow. First, the cold look and the expression of indifference reflecting the shut-your-mouth-and-do-as-you-are-told-to attitude, or you find yourself out of the invariably-mother-pampered lifestyle. But today, the youth is comfortable with the idea of moving out of their comfort zones and the 'safe' jobs. The hard-knocks in the process turn them way more resolute than when they started the journey in search of their dreams, with the roaring fire inside, to turn them into reality.

What followed was the living proof to what had just crossed my mind,a song from the movie Rockford. The man who directed the film (Nagesh Kukunoor) and the music director (Shankar Mahadevan) have lived their lives on the same principle. They abandoned their well established careers and chose a path they thought they were meant to. 

Nagesh Kukunoor pursued his masters degree in chemical engineering from United States and invested all the money he made from his engineering career in producing Hyderabad Blues. I am sure he might have suffered all the criticism back home (The western world not quite aware of all the circus back here), people questioning his intentions and ambitions in life, but he followed his calling. Some of his movies might have been successful some not, but what matters to him is the amount of satisfaction he gets out of his work and that is what according to me is success in a true sense.

Another remarkable exemplar is the renowned singer Shankar Mahadevan. He did his bachelors in computer engineering from Mumbai and worked as a software engineer. After working for some time he made a decision to venture into the field of music and we all know how big he has made in the Indian music industry. I wonder where this conviction stems from.

My brain seasoned by all these years (engineering years to be precise) of questioning jumped to whys and hows of the situation. The major problem in Indian households (especially the middle class)is, the children are fundamentally trained to think rational when it comes to choosing a career path and the parents aren’t really to be blamed owing to all the insecurities to keep up with this competitive world and rising inflations. They don’t want their children to suffer through the tough times.

But we can’t deny the fact that when we are passionate about our work we enjoy doing it, leading to a better performance and eventually the success is taken care of. On the other hand, if we hate what we do, or unwillingly connect to the assigned tasks, we are less likely to reach the deserved success. That is because we don’t fit into it which will result in a slight or no growth.

But, the scenario is different today- the shrunken world, the rising opportunities in a variety of fields, the low interest loans which can be repaid at ease over a period of time- All of these factors stand in aid of those who, with their utter verve want to reach out to the world and prove the sheer brilliance they are stuffed with, in their respective fields.

I was transported back to my then aimless surfing of channels to now socially conscious state by another fine example bringing me close to the conclusion that these are some signs holding some relevance to me and leading to a life altering moment. The latest life insurance advertisement is aired on the television with a father-child conversation; child trying to justify her chosen career and father’s argument over having invested a mammoth over all the experimentations. The conversation ends with the father happily making peace with the child’s failed attempts and the success achieved thereafter (and saved the money on dum biryani, pretty lame, but that’s not the point here). The advertisement aims to urge the parents to recognize the plethora of career options beyond the conventional jobs (doctors, engineers, teachers, lawyers) and the means to let them explore their true drive.

With the series of offerings from the tagline to the movie, and finally, the advertisement in the perfect sequence, I recollected the quote by Paulo Coelho, 'When you want somethng,the entire universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.' So this was it, THE PLAN.

I decided to give it a thought, and explore the opportunities where I'd not have to persistently try to fit in,which I had been trying to,since last six years; well that is a different story for some other time.

Those who have not been lucky enough have a to-do list which they think they will get down to realizing, someday, but that never happens. They are always absorbed in daily errands and fail to realize that with every passing second, time is slipping out of their hands. They should pause for a second, introspect and rekindle the lost romance in their lives following the adage, "If you can’t find something to live for, you best find something to die for."