Posts Tagged collectibles

2 minute read : HOW to LIVE and DIE ….. Khushwant Singh

Sardar Khuswant Singh, Controversial, Maverick, Blunt whatever……. I first read him in his prose of ” The pORTRAIT OF A LADY”  & ” The Mark of Vishnu in class 7 or 8. Ever since ” The Grand old man of Indian writing, has at intermittent slots come around through his columns & books. Below is just a 2 minute read excerpted from an article I read today…Had a very pleasant feel coming from a DO or DIE 95-year-old. Pick some of your like….

“Baagh-e-bahisht se mujhe hukm-e-safar diya tha kyon?Kaar-e-Jahaan daraaz hai, ab mera intezaar kar                         (Why did you order me out of the garden of paradise? I have a lot left to do; now you wait for me).

I’ve lived a reasonably contented life. I’ve often thought about what it is that makes people happy—what one has to do in order to achieve happiness.

◆ First and foremost is good health. If you do not enjoy good health, you can never be happy. Any ailment, however trivial, will deduct something from your happiness.

◆ Second, a healthy bank balance. It need not run into crores, but it should be enough to provide for comforts, and there should be something to spare for recreation—eating out, going to the movies, travel and holidays in the hills or by the sea. Shortage of money can be demoralising. Living on credit or borrowing is demeaning and lowers one in one’s own eyes.

◆ Third, your own home. Rented places can never give you the comfort or security of a home that is yours for keeps. If it has garden space, all the better. Plant your own trees and flowers, see them grow and blossom, and cultivate a sense of kinship with them.

◆ Fourth, an understanding companion, be it your spouse or a friend. If you have too many misunderstandings, it robs you of your peace of mind. It is better to be divorced than to be quarrelling all the time.

◆ Fifth, stop envying those who have done better than you in life—risen higher, made more money, or earned more fame. Envy can be corroding; avoid comparing yourself with others.

◆Sixth, do not allow people to descend on you for gup-shup. By the time you get rid of them, you will feel exhausted and poisoned by their gossip-mongering.Since I have no faith in God, nor in the day of judgement, nor in reincarnation, I have to come to terms with the complete full stop.

◆ Seventh, cultivate a hobby or two that will fulfil you—gardening, reading, writing, painting, playing or listening to music. Going to clubs or parties to get free drinks, or to meet celebrities, is a criminal waste of time. It’s important to concentrate on something that keeps you occupied meaningfully. I have family members and friends who spend their entire day caring for stray dogs, giving them food and medicines. There are others who run mobile clinics, treating sick people and animals free of charge.

◆ Eighth, every morning and evening devote 15 minutes to introspection. In the mornings, 10 minutes should be spent in keeping the mind absolutely still, and five listing the things you have to do that day. In the evenings, five minutes should be set aside to keep the mind still and 10 to go over the tasks you had intended to do.

◆Ninth, don’t lose your temper. Try not to be short-tempered, or vengeful. Even when a friend has been rude, just move on.

◆ Above all, when the time comes to go, one should go like a man without any regret or grievance against anyone.

Iqbal said it beautifully in a couplet in Persian: “You ask me about the signs of a man of faith? When death comes to him, he has a smile on his lips.”

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A  note i came across on Facebook worth a re-blog. [ on mine of course.. got a good feel to that ]

Before I ever had my part-time relationship with this computer, all my writing was done in a spiral or leather-bound journal stuffed with supplements of receipts and bar napkins, post-it notes laden with good bad ideas and bad good ideas – real tangible scraps of thoughts that could be easily lost if the wind blew the wrong direction.

Since the integration of personal computing into my life, the chronology of journaling has somewhat lost its order. Were I to die and someone were to try and connect my literary dots, they would find themselves going back and forth between hard drives and the myriad oily books stuffed in boxes and those crammed into bookshelves that no longer have any more space for cramming. A few toys, tokens and awards from the random adventure adorn these shelves as well almost blocking the books in a way, serving as tiny security guards, protecting the notebooks from dust, cats, and curious fingers. While I would prefer to see the shelves more organized, it’s been the way it’s been for so long my mind reads the space as it would wallpaper – in 2 dimensions. Therefore it seldom occurs to me to reach out and move something. The clutter then becomes a comforter and I just carry on.

Recently, and partially due to the over-preparedness in forcing a new creative cycle, I have been traveling with both computer and sketchbook. Some places I’ve been haven’t offered a connectedness to the web or even electricity for that matter – such as a car or plane or Ghana for instance. Thus, wielding a pen has proven better for songwriting and listing the order of things, especially on-the-move, but it offers less space for blogging and/or speaking to the masses. Rarely have I transcribed something from a handwritten journal to the screen.

This is likely due to almost-fact that the patter I position on the computer is largely planted in a café, or at the breakfast table, or a hotel desktop – places that invite to me sit down and write, and/or places generally known for conversation. For some reason the intention of writing in the space for chatter creates something in and of itself that often becomes a public share in the form of a blog or on-stage anecdote; whereas the pen and paper and “on-the-go” writing style stems more from the soul; a real extension of the body – perhaps longing for a place to connect, someone to be with, a space to reflect – though within a book, works remains quiet until introduced to music. I resolve by being so grand as to say that using a pen is to truly write by the hand of God, the Universe, the all-knowing unknowable, etc.

Then again, I wrote this on the computer. So what do I really know?

This view is nothing more than a momentary result of sitting at the breakfast table with a laptop ready to spoon-feed the keys my daily dose of bullshit. I could have written about the butterflies that bounce in and out of the kitchen from the back garden – Or the cat dancing with them all, reaching out with flared claws in hopes of finding a partner. Perhaps on paper this is what would’ve happened – poetry and imagination over rhyme and reason. Yet, the true matter of either is that it’s just entertainment really. My thoughts, and certainly the way they are organized are first and foremost for my own pleasure. In writing I see my life birthing before my eyes in real time. Each letter unfolding one after another – 26 letters arranged in ways that seldom repeat themselves when expanded into words, sentences, paragraphs, pages, and themes. Like my favorite way to describe surfing, writing is a Great way to waste time.

Well, perhaps surfing is a greater waste of time. At least writing may align your thoughts and interests with another and help them to fill a hole in their soul. Surfing may align you with nature, but it’s otherwise solitary unless you’re into going tandem. In the water you can certainly fill your own void, and you can hope that someone else is watching you achieve something in your style, but odds are, the other surfers are focused on their next wave already. By writing, so long as that person speaks your language, you have a great opportunity to inspire emotion, transformation, education and possibly some kind of action. Other than that, all work truly deserves to be tossed in the recycle-bin as it was just the writer’s way of filling time at the breakfast table before heading into the studio. Had you seen him picking his nose while drinking an odd concoction of tea and instant coffee, I doubt you would’ve given him this much of your morning.

While this entire entry could’ve been posted in parenthesis, suggesting the non-action of its type being merely an aside to the author’s great life work; that which eats its own tail. I remember now that everything is valid and somehow we do serve a greater purpose. If anything, the dancing cat had his audience of one while I sorted this out. And you, well – you gave us the space to share it.

So the cat and I, and the butterflies and smaller insects that remain alive, we thank you.!/notes/jason-mraz/on-journaling/405064706052

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