“Come! let us have lunch together”. “I know you must be having some vested interests, that is why you are asking me for lunch”, comes the answer. “OK! Let’s make a new beginning”. “Every time you make a fresh beginning and make excuses”, again comes a typical reply from him”. “I really believe in retaining my relationships”. “As if, I believe in breaking them”, was the annoying answer I got.
This is a typical series of talks; we face in our day to day life. Believe me every sentence can be negatively answered. If I say “I love you”, the negative minded answer could be, “Say it clearly, what do you want from me, nobody loves without any expectations”.
One day I decided to practice negativity for whole day. It was little difficult to frame replies in the first hour of the morning but within an hour of talking, I became fluent in answering everything in a negative way. After few hours of talking negative, I realized that many sentences that I framed consciously that day were actually used by me while responding in real life interactions earlier. This negative talk game was an eye opener for me. I was ashamed of me that while I preach positivity and try to depict myself as a positive person on every forum, had such a negative person wrapped as a part of my habit.
I can’t say that I will change in a day, but I do feel an element of realization inside me. So friends! Try to play this negative talk game for few hours with a trusted and understanding partner and you can also jump into the fathoms of your own personality.
“Azino-sibne-meta-nido-zoic”. My science teacher came to the class and wrote down this word on the black board. He also wrote an unknown script below this word and then he turned towards us for its explanation. By this time our curiosity level was really quite high. He smiled and began his explanation. Children! This is a word from a tribal language from an eastern island near SriLanka. This language is called “Ottarwaka” and today there are only five people left, who know this language. The word I wrote here means a feast that is given at the time of their marriages.
We were just wondering, how come our science teacher became a geography teacher and what connection his narration has with our syllabus. The story he was telling was definitely wonderful. He started asking us, if anyone can suggest methods to save such dying languages. We were so involved in the story that we started giving some silly ideas that we thought were really innovative from our point of view.
Then the teacher went out of the class and we all started making noise as usual. He came back again and asked all of us a very pointed question, “How many of you believe that this story is true?” Most of us raised our hands. The boy who did not raise his hand said, “Sir this story is true, but the number of people who know this language currently is probably even lower”. Another boy said, “Sir, in my view, there are many languages in India also, that are dying and are known to less than ten people”.
Teacher asked from those two students, if they can give any reference regarding the comments they made. They said, “Sir! We have read it somewhere”. Teacher asked all of us, why they believe that whatever facts he narrated about the language are true. None of us could give a genuine answer.
Then the teacher clearly told us that whatever story he told us is was fully a cooked-up one. He told us that our brain has a feature of believing things that are told in certain objective styles. He said, “Children! This is what science tries to find a solution about.”
Our minds are trained to believe things that are told with certain Data parameters. The Data parameters given to us in this story were the location, name of the language, number of people and the meaning of the word. Science helps us to begin with disbelief and then verify the parameters with some proven techniques. The system of beginning with disbelief lead us to experiments and ultimately we start trusting things we are able to verify.
I can now say it with full conviction, that this was one of the best science classes I ever attended. The meaning of Science I learned that day, I can never forget. My teacher proved his point well to all of us. I hope the people who tell us lot of stories in the name of religion are also listening.
Mian Tansen, the musical maestro and one of the Navaratna’s of Great Mogul King Akbar, once sang the raga “Deepak”. With his exceptional singing talent he could light all the lamps around, but it also had a negative effect on his own body. He started feeling a burning sensation himself and became unwell. Due to his physical condition, he could not sing the remedial raga “Malhar”, which had the power to reduce his suffering. Some other singer of a similar stature was required to sing raga “Malhar” to cure him.
In search of such a singer, Tansen reached a place called “Vadnagar” in Gujarat. Here he saw two girls filling their pitchers with only so much water such that the pitchers could perfectly produce the notes of raga “Malhar”. He requested the girls to sing the same raga for him. These girls were Tana and Riri. While the girls sang the raga “Malhar”, heavy rains occurred and after bathing in them, Mian Tansen was fully cured. He returned to Delhi and tried to keep this story a secret. But he could not keep it a secret for long and was ultimately forced by King Akbar to tell the truth. This story was overheard by two princes in the Akbar’s family, who reached Vadnagar in the hope of marrying these girls. These princes were killed by Vadnagar people due to their bad behaviour. Then in a sad turn of events, Akbar’s army attacked Vadnagar and tried to bring the girls to Delhi. The girls committed suicide by consuming the diamonds out of their rings. The monuments in memory of these two amazing girls can still be seen in Vadnagar.
Indian history is full of people who never bowed in front of rulers who tried to get things done by force. The formation of a lawful society does require sacrifices of several brave and committed people.
Today when I am quoting this story to you, Shri Narendra Modi, the son of the soil of same Vadnagar has become the Prime Minister of India. Let us join hands with him to build a better and corruption free society by getting inspiration from stories of sacrifice of people of our own land.
It was quite late in the night. Such late nights can technically be called mornings. As usual, my wife was already in her beautiful dreams. Due to cold weather, I had decided to work in my bed itself. The room was extremely cozy and silent. While using my laptop, I felt that I could hear a few mild whispers. I felt as if the sound was coming from my laptop itself. I checked the volume of my laptop. It was an absolute zero. Oh No! Was it possible? Anything in this wonderful world of technology is possible. It was my keyboard and mouse talking to each other. I do use a wireless mouse along with my laptop.
Mouse: “Hi Kaybee! Are you listening? Good morning! Are you Okay? I hear a lot of punches and pushes sound coming from your side every day. I am a little worried for how long will you tolerate the beatings of your master?” Keyboard: – “Hey Mousee! Good Morning! Actually it is the other way round. I am always worried whenever you are rigorously moved round and round in a random direction and your scroll wheel is turned at a fast pace.” Mouse: “Naa! I am okay with my master. After all, he uses me to increase his speed to locate a place. I feel that without me, this computing world will remain a dumb and slow world of seventies.” Keyboard:”Yaa! But I am also used to increase speed. Even today, there is nothing which can allow faster creation of information as compared to punching my keys one after another.”
Before I could hear any further, my mind became philosophical. I felt if the same kind of positivity can be maintained while the members of a team talk to each other than that team will truly be the most effective team. Each member will have a role to play. Each member will know his/her importance. A member will not be complaining about his leader, even in the times of pressure. A member will have an empathy with his other co-members. A member will have an ownership role towards the team.
You may now read the keyboard-mouse talks again in this light and understand these simple team working principles.
“The Merchant of Death is Dead”, was the headline in the morning newspaper which he read about himself. He was well in his senses, but his face became pale white. He thought: “Is this the way people will remember me after my death?” Actually it was the news regarding the death of his brother. The reporter did not examine the facts correctly and wrote this news about him.
The error committed by the reporter became one of the top ‘blessing-in-disguise’ situations in history. The person for whom this news was published was none other than the great Swedish Inventor and Philanthropist Alfred Nobel, the inventor of dynamite. This news article forced him to think differently. He thought that the world will remember him mainly for his invention of dynamite, which became a symbol of destruction. He decided to do something to change this perception. It was this “perception change effort” that made him dedicate his earnings to establish the most coveted prize on this globe, the Nobel Prize.
Think! Are we doing anything in our day to day life to die positive? Here I cite the title of a famous book by a well known author Robin Sharma, “Who will Cry, When You Die”. You may also read this book to get this message with more anecdotes.
I know an old man who is very creative, and unlike other creative people he always likes to share the techniques and tools of his creation with other people around him. With his experience of teaching, he has created innovative techniques to teach Hindi to beginners. The methods he has devised are more useful for adults, who already know spoken Hindi, but cannot read or write. He decided to test his techniques by teaching the rickshaw-pullers in the area. He went to the roadside and asked them to join his class. In first go, all of them refused or gave some excuse. Now, he started camping on the roadside itself to show his teaching models to people who stayed on the roadside. With his consistent efforts, some people joined his roadside class and agreed to come every day for learning. His small class began. Magic started happening. Within a span of fifteen days his pupils gained knowledge of Hindi alphabets. After about a month, a rickshaw puller came to him and said, “I have come to know, why people were often making fun of me”. He further said, “I can now read the name written as a tattoo on my hand. It has been written as Rum Singh and not Ram Singh”. (Readers are requested to imagine how Ram Singh will read like Rum Singh if an ‘aa’ sounding maatra is removed from the alphabet ‘ra’ in hindi).
This episode inspired many other local rickshaw pullers to join the Hindi class. That is the magic of literacy. Literacy missions in India need people like me and you to join them and take a vow to teach at least one person every year.