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Friday, 31 August 2012

Desired Things For Life


                                                                                                  
Almost five years ago when I was interning with a prestigious law firm at Churchgate, Mumbai, beside feeling the thrill of being on my own in a far off land I was also undergoing an inevitable disillusionment about my desire for leaving my hometown and settling down in Mumbai. I had led myself to believe that I was the proverbial 'small town' boy succumbing to the lure of etching a name for myself. But I eventually discovered that the engraving would be on a wall where so many names were already shining. And there was a mad race for owning up whatever space is left therein. I wasn't ready and probably amn't yet ready for that mad race. This wasn't what I exactly wanted when I'd said that I wanted to go out and do something on my own. Years and a few layers of maturity later, I would owe up the blame. It was my novice perception, my mistaking of a glorified arena for an utopia that had led to the heartbreak.

Strolling down the by lanes of the bustling city and meekly confronting the seasoned vendors and hawkers over the price of stuffs I wanted to buy, I stumbled upon a regularly styled piece of a wall hanging with absolutely extraordinary verses of inspirational ideas written on it. It was legendary. By the time I finished reading it, I had already begun experiencing arousal of a subsiding zeal, to go face the world despite being naive and ordinary, to stand in the arena despite being weak and inexperienced, to believe in myself despite a recurring realization that there is nothing special about me, to believe that I did not selflessly love for nothing and that there is hope for good despite palpable bad all around. It inspired faith. 

The author's name was missing. I purchased it without wasting a word over bargaining it's price. I had made up my mind that it was priceless. Five years have passed since. Not a day goes by when I don't thank the schemer of things, for having brought us two together. Not a single line of it has yet lost it's relevance. It never will. I feel like a fool for not having shared these lines through my blog. It's worth a hundred times over than anything else that I've shared. But that's not the only reason why I'm blogging about it today. The real reason why I'm blogging about it today is because today I have not only discovered it's author but I have also found out that the timeless piece has a name too. It's called Desiderata and it's written by an American author named Max Ehrmann. 

My heart felt thanks to Manreet Sodhi Someshwar (a name which saves me from the labour of rendering it an introduction or endorsement, especially when stalwarts like Khushwant Singh ji and Gulzaar Saab have already spoken greatly about her.) She blogs at The Long Walk Home
Had Manreet not blogged about Desiderata, I would have probably remained in dark about it's author. So Thank You Manreet for sharing your inspiring memories with Desiderata. Now the great thing is that even she has narrated life experiences which only echo what millions others must have felt by reading Desiderata. By the way Desiderata means "Desired Things" and it immortally reads as thus :-



Go placidly amidst the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. 

As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons. 

Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story. 

Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexatious to the spirit. 

If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself. 

Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time. 

Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals; and everywhere life is full of heroism. 

Be yourself. Especially, do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass. 

Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth. Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. 

Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. 

Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. 

And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should. 

Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labours and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul. 

With all its shams, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful.

Strive to be Happy.



My most favourite lines -

"Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth. Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune."

&

"With all its shams, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world"




 

46 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  2. Thank you Anupam for reading my blog and guiding me back to yours. It is indeed a fortunate coincidence that we have felt inspired by the gem of poem that is Desiderata - as I am sure, and you've written, are countless others.

    A poem like Desiderata illustrates the enduring pull of worthwhile art. RIP Max Ehrmann and may your work shine forth!

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    1. Thanks once again Manreet. Thanks for your kind wishes

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  3. What a powerful set of words. Powerful indeed.

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  4. Oh! It is creating a change in me! Excellent one! One of your best! I am sharing it on my FB wall Anupam! Really a powerful one :) Kudos!!!

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  5. "Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labours and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul. "

    Very-Very True Said shri Anupamji,

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  6. Replies
    1. I've only shared it Naddy. Thanks for reading brother.

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  7. My fav was 'You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here' Thats a feel-good statement...Thanks for the share Anupam!

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  8. As usual, I enjoyed reading your writing; it is different and makes me think. Your quest for an Utopian world and subsequent disillusionment led you to the wall-hanging 'Desiderata'. Of course the advice is very pragmatic and suited tto make a person better. But, on another plan I read two things in it:
    1. Just like your discovery of the wall-hanging, could it be that the answers to our questions about life are hanging somewhere as mirrors on wall or simply blowing in the wind and we have to open the eyes of our heart to 'see' them?
    2. For a person like me who has discovered many lessons of life, it fills me with great joy that a relatively much younger person is actually fascinated by such discoveries.
    Bravo, Anupam, everytime you have something for me and like the mcDonald ad 'I'm lovin' it'

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    1. I agree Sunbyanyname ji that sometimes we need to open the eyes of our hearts to see those answers. I'm delighted by your generous appreciation and support for my works.

      It works as splendid motivation.

      Thanks again

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  9. "Maatru Devo Bhava,Pitru Devo Bhava,Acharya Devo Bhava,Aththi Devos Bhava"

    Mother is God,Father is God,Guru is God,Guest is God)

    Sathyam Vadha,Dharmam Chara"

    ('Speak the Truth,Nurture Righteousness)

    Sathaynaanna Pramadhi Ddhavya,Dharmanna Pramadhi Dhavyam,Kuchallanna Pramadhidhavyam'

    Do not speak anything bit the Truth,Do nothing but that is Righteous,Do nothing that will affect the welfare of others)

    Satyam Bruyaath,Hitham Bruyaath"
    (Speak the Truth,Speak it in such away that it does not hurt any one)

    Thachcham yora vruneemahe,Gaathum Yagyaya,Gaathum Yagyapathayee, Daivee swasthirastunah,Swasthir manushebyaha,Oorthvam jigaathu beshajam,sanno asthu dwipadhe, sachthushpate,Om Shanthi,Om Shanthi,Om Shanthi

    ( May the Two legged animals be Happy,May the two legged (man) be Happy,Let there be rains)



    Siskhshavalli-Taitriya Upanishad)
    The above Prayer is ours, from The Vedas.
    It abounds in these .

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  10. Anupam, I am happy to read that again. I used to have it on my table for several years. My friend wanted it and I gladly given that sheet! The unique message inspires many!

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    1. Lovely to know that you have it too. Thanks for reading Sibi

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  11. Thank you Anupam for sharing such beautiful words. They are almost like a prayer in this mad world. I find solace in them as I splash looking for meaning...

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  12. I can relate to it, especially because now I have started reading again after so many years... :)

    Long time and good to be back here Anupam...hope you are doing well...

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    1. Yeah, long time Chintan. I'm glad that you related to "Desiderata".

      Welcome back

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  13. Great thoughts!
    will go through desiderata :)

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  14. Its awesome, Powerful and inspiring..Thanks for sharing Anupam..

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  15. Anupam
    This blog is an useful one and need to be read over and over again. However, i like aggressive persons. Most of them are clear in their heart, acquire knowledge and plan their work in a meticulous way. They are confident about their action and fearless. I learned a lot from such persons.
    I got the internet connection of VSNL after long debate with them.
    A very nice thought and useful direction for life.

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    1. Very true Mr. Biswas. Thanks for reading

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  16. Really Inspired!
    Can I repost this (crediting you ofcourse) on my site?

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    1. Sure Navin. Go Ahead. This stuff needs to be shared

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  17. Wow! very glad I got to read this- many things to really ponder over in your writing.

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  18. My first time here Anupam. Must say, a great guidance for life. Thanks a lot for sharing this. Now I want that wall hanging in my room, to see, read and engulf every single day. :)

    Its difficult to choose one, but my heart goes with this... "Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here."

    Cheers,
    Anand.

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    1. Yeah that's a motivating line. Thanks for visiting Anand.

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  20. its really worth reading,thanx for sharing.

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