Respect For Individual..

21 06 2008

This time I started with the title first, and as soon as I keyed it in, it sounded darn preachy! Especially when I have the Accenture core values pamphlet in front of me that has features the title as one of the core values. 🙂 Yet, it has been a lingering thought since sometime, and I have some interesting anecdotes to share.

Now that I mentioned Accenture, let me start with my induction programme that happened some months back. We were allotted some 2 hours session for discussion around this particular core value. Incidentally, this was I think the last session of the day and all of the participants were tired. The faculty walks in. The first question he posed to the listless audience was: “how much time do you all give to me?”. Someone answered 30 minutes. He quietly agrees and announces that this is ‘respect for individual’. I couldn’t help but burst clapping in appreciation. Yes. Indeed, he closed the session within agreed time and I did carry the message home. 🙂

One of my favorite anecdotes in office humor has been about ‘biscuit’. Though we often kid about the incident in lighter note, it did generate a serious thought too. It all happened in one of those office treks, where we are buying food stuff for snacking en route. One of the teammates wanted to pick some biscuits for it and he was made fun by some folks of being kiddish for his food choice. It is very easy to get carried away in light hearted banter. Most often, humor generated is at the expense of someone, especially in groups. Finally, that poor chap didn’t pick his biscuits and that did leave that feeling of denial with us.

Yet, that incident did trigger a new dictum in the gang, which we call by name biscuit. A rule to abide by the respective individual choices instead of succumbing to group think. And it did offer me some interesting experiences too. Respecting somebody’s interest in Art and Theatre did take me to ‘Water Lilies’, ‘Natyalakshana’ or ‘Don Muttuswami’, some of which I throughly enjoyed. “What’s your biscuit?”, this question that often happens among us, whilst we are thinking about weekend plans, often sounds like music. The idea of group coming to individual and celebrating independent thoughts, instead of individual interests being drowned in group is charming. And Yes. No one is denied of biscuit these days. 🙂





Some Story Telling Session…

25 03 2008

This moment is filled with sheer nostalgia. A chip off the memories at the IMDR personality development classes.. I do wonder at times about the things that haven’t changed, looking back at those days when we did that four princes story telling session and impersonated one of the prince’s exile story with utter glee. What I loved was the beginning of the story, the entire group gathering and the joy of offering the non-material gifts.

That was some day when that sane wise man started his session like this: “Once upon a time, long long ago, just about yesterday, far far away from here, just around the corner was a kingdom a kingdom not too large, not too small and like all kingdoms its boundaries extended to East, West, North and South to the extent of the known world…” And then we went through a racy ride over a kingdom blessed with four princes, each with his own unique skills and two unique gifts from his fairy grand mother, all set to reign the world.

The two gifts for each prince were intriguing too. While one gift fetched success in public, the other gift acted as a mirror in the closed quarters. First Prince got the Book of Knowledge and an Ever Smiling Doll, the Second Prince was gifted the Magic Sword and the Roaring Mouse, while the third prince is left with the Magic Box of Potions and the tear bag and the Fourth Prince had the Magic Cap and the Magic Wand. Faced with a challenge to live a two year exile period out of the comfort zone of his kingdom, each prince marches in the designated direction at a certain age to make his life. There the story was left open and the participants made their own journey impersonating the prince of their choice.

Little did I know at that time that my instinctive choices haven’t changed even after three long years. I am still that rolling stone, the prince of laughter, gifted with magic cap and magic wand.. What felt like fun sounded frivolous at times, yet I guess the beauty of that experience lies in its inherent contradictions. It engaged our creativity while making us introspect and reflect on our choices. It held our interest and spread a lot of cheer while making us ponder over the deeper implications. We all need mirrors at times, to see how we have evolved and how we have changed over the sands of time.





Jadoo Ki Jhappy..

12 12 2007

Dunno why my heart longs for this from the loved ones today. A real chilled morning and I can feel the cold seeping into my soul somehow.

I dream of being perfect in everything I do, trying to put a piece of my soul in every activity. Sometimes, it feels so close, that can I become that little Ms. Perfect. Yet, if I have to be totally realistic, I would like to be really good in everything I ever did or do. And for what sake? To be loved a little more.. Is it what am looking for?

Sometimes, guess this choice always hangs around. Having the courage to quit and bear the tag of loser for being true to oneself or sticking around betraying oneself for the sake of society. These are choices we all have to make at some point in our life. Hoping that I have enough spine to stand up for myself in things that I truly care. In those rare low events, let me pray for some jadoo and some jhappy to last for the life.. 🙂

A little greed doesn’t hurt anyone, does it?





Some Thought..

6 12 2007

“Whatever we never seem to learn is that the world runs on a few dozen cliche’s. We spend our lives repeating ourselves..”

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Thats the SMS that I received over my mobile from a Pal who loves to capture the beauty of expression from the books he engages with. What struck me is the potency of the thought in that simple statement. How true!

Many a times we are challenged by the circumstances to be true to ourselves.. Though the lessons and knowledge are universal, and we are equipped to deal with the world with enough cliches since childhood, the choices that we make in those moments of life are intensely personal. Choosing right over convenience, love over hatred, sharing over selfishness and honesty over deceit.. These are the choices that make our journey of life intensely personal.. These are the moments that ascertain our purpose of life and define its direction. We indeed spend reaffirming ourselves though the choices we make..

Indeed, life rolls in patterns!





Two Choices..

25 09 2007

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What would you do? You make the choice! Don’t look for a punch line; There isn’t one! Read it anyway. My question to you is: Would you have made the same choice?

At a fund raising dinner for a school that serves learning disabled children,the father of one of the students delivered a speech that would never be forgotten by all who attended. After extolling the school and its dedicated staff, he offered a question:

“When not interfered with by outside influences, everything nature does is done with perfection. Yet my son, Shay, cannot learn things as other children do. He cannot understand things as other children do. Where is the natural order of things in my son?”

The audience was stilled by the query.

The father continued. “I believe,that when a child like Shay, physically and mentally handicapped comes into the world, an opportunity to realize true human nature presents itself, and it comes, in the way other people treat that child.”Then he told the following story:

Shay and his father had walked past a park where some boys Shay knew were playing baseball. Shay asked,”Do you think they’ll let me play?” Shay’s father knew that most of the boys would not want someone like Shay on their team, but the father also understood that if his son were allowed to play, it would give him a much-needed sense of belonging and some confidence to be accepted by others in spite of his handicaps.

Shay’s father approached one of the boys on the field and asked if Shay could play, not expecting much. The boy looked around for guidance and said, “We’re losing by six runs and the game is in the eighth inning. I guess he can be on our team and we’ll try to put him in to bat in the ninth inning.”

Shay struggled over to the team’s bench put on a team shirt with a broad smile and his Father had a small tear in his eye and warmth in his heart. The boys saw the father’s joy at his son being accepted. In the bottom of the eighth inning, Shay’s team scored a few runs but was still behind by three. In the top of the ninth inning, Shay put on a glove and played in the right field. Even though no hits came his way, he was obviously ecstatic just to be in the game and on the field, grinning from ear to ear as his father waved to him from the stands. In the bottom of the ninth inning, Shay’s team scored agai n. Now, with two outs and the bases loaded, the potential winning run was on base and Shay was scheduled to be next at bat.

At this juncture, do they let Shay bat and give away their chance to win the game? Surprisingly, Shay was given the bat. Everyone knew that a hit was all but impossible ’cause Shay didn’t even know how to hold the bat properly, much less connect with the ball.

However, as Shay stepped up to the plate, the pitcher, recognizing the other team putting winning aside for this moment in Shay’s life, moved in a few steps to lob the ball in softly so Shay could at least be able to make contact. The first pitch came and Shay swung clumsily and missed. The pitcher again took a few steps forward to toss the ball softly towards Shay. As the pitch came in, Shay swung at the ball and hit a slow ground ball right back to the pitcher.

The game would now be over, but the pitcher picked up the soft grounder and could have easily thrown the ball to the first baseman. Shay would have been out and that would have been the end of the game.

Instead, the pitcher threw the ball right over the head of the first baseman, out of reach of all team mates. Everyone from the stands and both teams started yelling, “Shay, run to first! Run to first!” Never in his life had Shay ever ran that far but made it to first base. He scampered down the baseline, wide-eyed and startled.

Everyone yelled, “Run to second, run to second!”
Catching his breath, Shay awkwardly ran towards second, gleaming and struggling to make it to second base. By the time Shay rounded towards second base, the right fielder had the ball, the smallest guy on their team, who had a chance to be the hero for his team for the first time. He could have thrown the ball to the second-baseman for the tag, but he understood the pitcher’s intentions and he too intentionally threw the ball high and far over the third-base man’s head. Shay ran toward third base deliriously as the runners ahead of him circled the bases toward home.

All were screaming, “Shay, Shay, Shay, all the Way Shay”

Shay reached third base, the opposing shortstop ran to help him and turned him in the direction of third base, and shouted, “Run to third! Shay, run to third” As Shay rounded third, the boys from both teams and those watching were on their feet were screaming, “Shay, run home! Shay ran to home, stepped on the plate, and was cheered as the hero who hit the “grand slam” and won the game for his team.

That day, said the father softly with tears now rolling down his face, the boys from both teams helped bring a piece of true love and humanity into this world.

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Am quite touched by this story.





Life Rolls in Patterns..

18 06 2007

Sometimes it just feels so right to listen to heart. Sometimes you indulge so much in the beauty of the moment only to realize that its sanctity can be destroyed by simple interpretations. Sometimes you stifle the voices of conventional wisdom and get carried away only to realize that age old sayings have come true..

Advice is the easiest thing to dispense, I wonder how many are takers though. Yet, you rushed ahead based on your instinct only to hit the dead end.. You have so many people to flaunt that lyrical ‘I told you So’ with an ironically compassionate whisper which may do little to assuage that nagging pain in heart. You may want to create something beautiful and alas you ended up with the old frame thats etched in your memory.. Memories never die, they just repaint themselves in new colors to flaunt and haunt again.

Sometimes it so happens that you make certain choices which prove bitter and then when you walk along the path of life, you have this dejavu kind of scenario where everything is back to square one and you may have to choose again. Have you ever wondered that you have done that one that you have always dreaded to do? Sometimes priorities and choices weigh more than feelings and when you respect the stand you take, there is little chance that you get space to sit and brood over spilled milk.

Nothing remains pristine over the passage of time.. You get tough and when you wake up to a new sunrise, your area of focus changes. One can’t really change their basic nature, can they? Guess one can find patterns whereever they look.. Life is what we make out of it.. Let it roll in patterns or take the wildest route possible.. I can still have a choice in deciding what glasses to wear.. I am content as long as I have my voice and attitude alive and kicking..





Educational System out here…..

23 11 2004

There is nothing to be taught but there are values that can be extracted. The basic thing is that here the education system has been a sort of assembly line, and hence the thought process has been in a manner that everything is to be done in a step-by-step method. But the real education comes when something is experienced. We need not do the real important things in life. I think that all the important things happen on their own. In many ways I have been driven. Not because there is an inner calling but there is a driving force that pushes me in a slot. The major thing has been the career choice. This was one in which I was thrown into.

Then the question arises that do we make the decisions or the system makes it? The first thing that arises is, what is a system or society? System is what we want to see it. It is a set of assumptions. System is a context. It is a sight that is determined by us. No two people see the same thing in the same way. They always see it differently because their context is different. Here people make their career choices based on their parents’ expectations.. Now they actually don’t own their aspirations and hence thus start living for others which actually kills their real self.

We create a context; hence, we can change it. But this is to be done in the light of awareness. For taking a decision there should be an evaluation of choices. There is nothing wrong in following a choice. But the truth is that we have been so protected that we do not know that we are exercising a choice.