I have been a bit unwell this whole week. Something in the air. And very busy with work. Yes, in the first week of the year.
So, I didn't even realise that it's Friday. It's blog time. Thanks to a noble soul (thanks Chay) who asked me for the blog at 10:45pm :).
So I have sat down to write and there's this book in front of me on the table by the famous thinker of our times. Jiddu Krishnamurti. So I'm going to tell you something he talks about, passionately.
The great teacher that Jiddu Krishnamurti is, tried (he doesn't try.. he just does, simply.) to answer fundamental questions that keep popping in our heads every now and then.
Who are we?
Why are we here?
How can we be happiest and to the fullest?
How did I get to this, you ask? Well, my vacation reads for the last 10 days of December included only readings of Jiddu.
Also, I was recently talking to this elderly gentleman who I have seen talking to everyone and anyone in the apartment and giving a broad smile to strangers. Playing with kids. Chatting with young people.
He gave me this one nice smile and said "Hello, son, what is your name?" We got talking.
He said he is 90. Wow! 90..
I asked him what he did. He told me that he was in the armed forces for many years. I asked him what was his biggest moment in life. He said, right now. This one. I'm alive. Talking to you. This one is the biggest moment.
I thought grandpa like me was a bit high on Jiddu so I prodded more. He looked at me with all seriousness and said being in the armed forces taught him many things but one thing he always carries with him is to ask "Where are you right now?". And by that he was not asking the physical location but mentally where are you?
Because out there on the borders with a gun in the hand, if you are not in the moment, you can be a sitting duck to a stranger bullet. You had to live and be conscious in the moment.
If you are alive, you can be happy! You have the opportunity to create the happiness you want. And when your life is on stake, you seldom make the mistake of living unhappy.
I was astonished at this simple answer.
And my overthinking mind felt guilty and ashamed. And here I kept thinking about - When will I become a CHRO? When will I retire? About the retirement plan? And what not?
But it was all about being in the 'Now'. Here's a man who has lived it and seen it all, may be! Imparting knowledge to strangers. With a smile.
And then I could connect it back to what Jiddu was trying to say! He's one of a kind.
Jiddu says that there isn’t a higher purpose or path guiding us, but rather what we do with our life is entirely our own responsibility.
Here's one thing that I picked from the many things I learnt, that I thought was so relevant in the times we are in.
Happiness is short-lived, so stop searching for it and just enjoy the happy moments.
Jiddu says that when we’re kids, happiness comes easily and in simple things. We don’t really even have to try, we just find it in the things we do. As we grow, we stop seeing these happy moments and rush to get it for a longer duration.
I have stopped believing in the pursuit of happiness.
Happiness can't be pursued. It has to be experienced.
There will be moments of happiness. And the more we try to cling to it, we develop a fear of losing it.
And that fear is not good as it brings moments of anxiety and sadness with it! Example: Wanting to fall in love and fear of losing it once you have it. Wanting to be rich and then fear of losing it all.
This is why as we get older, most people get sadder or experience less happiness. We are in a constant need of security and well-being. And we are always in pursuit of it.
And no one can guarantee us that security. Not even the people closest to us. Life is a single player game as Naval says.
Happiness is short-lived, but so is sadness. Only when we realize this, we can truly be happy in those moments. And value it as it should be.
I loved my conversation with the grandpa. I loved reading Jiddu.
2022 has been a great start! Thanks to the two elderly gentlemen full of wisdom.
Here's one of them for you. Jiddu!