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Thursday, November 17, 2016

How Is Your Heart Doing? - by Omid Safi

In many Muslim cultures, when you want to ask them how they’re doing, you ask: in Arabic, Kayf haal-ik? or, in Persian, Haal-e shomaa chetoreh? How is yourhaal?

What is this haal that you inquire about? It is the transient state of one’s heart. In reality, we ask, “How is your heart doing at this very moment, at this breath?” When I ask, “How are you?” that is really what I want to know.

I am not asking how many items are on your to-do list, nor asking how many items are in your inbox. I want to know how your heart is doing, at this very moment. Tell me. Tell me your heart is joyous, tell me your heart is aching, tell me your heart is sad, tell me your heart craves a human touch. Examine your own heart, explore your soul, and then tell me something about your heart and your soul.

Tell me you remember you are still a human being, not just a human doing. Tell me you’re more than just a machine, checking off items from your to-do list. Have that conversation, that glance, that touch. Be a healing conversation, one filled with grace and presence.

Put your hand on my arm, look me in the eye, and connect with me for one second. Tell me something about your heart, and awaken my heart. Help me remember that I too am a full and complete human being, a human being who also craves a human touch. I teach at a university where many students pride themselves on the “study hard, party hard” lifestyle. This might be a reflection of many of our lifestyles and our busy-ness — that even our means of relaxation is itself a reflection of that same world of overstimulation. Our relaxation often takes the form of action-filled (yet mindless) films, or violent and fast-paced sports.

I don’t have any magical solutions. All I know is that we are losing the ability to live a truly human life.

We need a different relationship to work, to technology. We know what we want: a meaningful life, a sense of community, a balanced existence. It’s not just about “leaning in” or faster iPhones. We want to be truly human.

W. B. Yeats once wrote, "It takes more courage to examine the dark corners of your own soul than it does for a solider to fight on a battlefield. "How exactly are we supposed to examine the dark corners of our soul when we are so busy? How are we supposed to live the examined life?

I want us to have a kind of existence where we can pause, look each other in the eye and inquire together: Here is how my heart is doing...How is the state of your heart today?
Let us insist on a type of human-to-human connection where when one of us responds by saying, “I am just so busy,” we can follow up by saying, “I know, love. We all are. But I want to know how your heart is doing.”

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Back With a Bang - Certified Scrum Master




I have been in hibernation mode from last few months.Many of you may have thought I am busy and won't retrieve back to writing. But but but - I have a great news - I have been working hard and I am pleased to share with you all that I have passed my CSM - (Certified Scrum Master) certification from Scrum Alliance.

I am a Certified Scrum Master now. This was a professional goal which I set for my own self. In my upcoming posts I will be posting about details of Scrum and how to get certified. So stay tuned!!

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Conversation between him and her

 
 
They say what you can’t do in action and you seem to have no other way of expressing your ownself take to writing. From last 2 years - I had wished to be part of your celebrations but unfortunately, it never works. So I decided this time to fulfill my long cherished dream of conversing with you on your big day by writing a monologue. I might sound insane but I think there is no better way of getting my wish fulfilled. So here is a monologue, an imaginary conversation between you and me.
 
A conversation of a different realm. Between you and me - beyond time and space.
 
N: We met at a wrong time. This is what I keep telling myself anyway. May be one day years from now, we will meet in a coffee shop in a far away city somewhere and we could give it another shot. What do you say?
 
A : That sounds really funny because you and I were destined to meet and I am happy we met. I would want to meet you like I did years ago again and again.
 
N: Sigh! I seem to be deserted at times. The entire world seems to turn cold. I feel like thrusting myself into a void. I want to escape this wretchedness.
 
A: What wretchedness are you suffering, dear! Who has caused you pain?
 
N: I have no idea. I feel cheated and left alone. I feel there are only moments of fleeting happiness in life. Sometimes I feel life is utterly absurd and sometimes I feel I am truly blessed. I am in confusion. Do you feel the same ? Do you have a solution?
 
A: I wish I knew. But I know - these are the pangs of intellectual birth. Don’t you worry about all this – I am sure will soon be able to get the answers to all these questions and that time the divine nakedness of the moment will be in front of you. It would be highly liberating.
 
N: Divine nakedness of the moment - I will wait for that moment.
 
N: Why do you think its imperative to live with reverence?
 
A : I don't know what you mean? I don't think I can answer your question.
 
N: Is there any one who can answer my question?
 
A: Hmmmmm
 
(...to be continued)
 
PS : Wish you a very happy birthday A :-)

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Jottings

She has a strange dream in her eyes,
She has a strange feeling in her heart,
She has a strange wish to accomplish,
She has a strange courage to feel full,
 
I discovered very early, within you, the same wheel of restlessness which I had years back which I seem to have even now. There is this madness, vastness, serenity which I want to feel. There is this mystery which I try to solve whenever I look at your innocent face. Unfortunately, we are all wearing a mask - because of which the inner self remains untouchable till we end up in grave.
 
To all those who don't open up fast - life is sweet and short. Make it a celebration who knows what next day will cast.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Gautam Buddha - Short story

When I heard the story of Gautam Buddha, my question was always about his wife and son that he left behind.This write-up by Vikram Bhattacharya touches that part of the story.
 
He left her in the middle of the night, the night their son was born. When she heard the news she was devastated. Yet, she did not complain but her life lost all meaning. The only reason for her to live now was her son. She wanted him to grow up to be a man that the world would look up to.
 
Her friends and relatives came around and asked her to forget about the man who had left her and start life again. They asked her to marry again but she refused. She was young, beautiful and suitors queued up outside her door but she refused each one of them.
 
Then one fine day he came back !
 
He stood in front of her and she could hardly remember him as the man who had left her.
“They call you the Buddha now?” she asked him gently. “I hear they do,” he answered in a calm fashion. “What does it mean?” she further inquired. “I think it means the enlightened one, a knower,” he informed. She smiled and then a silence. “I suppose we have both learned something. Your lessons O Buddha, will make the world richer in spirit, but my lesson will unfortunately remain largely unknown.” she reflected deeply.“ And what lesson is that ? ” The Buddha probed.
 
Her eyes sparkled with unshed tears, “That a courageous woman does not need anyone to complete her.. SHE IS COMPLETE ON HER OWN ”

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

A year gone by

 
In the year gone by
have you let life bypass you
Have you let the joy of your being
find expression or have you
found reasons to excuse yourself
Have you let the love in your heart
warm this world or have you found
reasonable excuse to languish in frown
Did you find something wonderful
to say of all around you or have you
become the judgment day damnation
Have you loved, laughed and teared up
or have you remained untouched by life
Years shall go by.  ---Extract from Isha Blog