The uncharted waters

Life is like a 10-speed bike. Most of us have gears we never use. – Charles Schulz, Cartoonist

Image Credits : http://vimeo.com/

Image Credits : http://vimeo.com/

Each one of us is a gigantic storehouse of flair and talent. We have that vast sea within us, a mammoth body of possibilities, which is waiting to be harnessed by our ignited minds. We have within us the power to do and get whatever we want.

But then, why is it that only a few amongst us manage to make it big? Why is it that the major chunk of the society mostly lingers in mediocrity and is afraid to face Change?

It is because, most of us are too scared to explore the uncharted waters of our own oceans of talent. We are so thoughtlessly immersed into the habit of following the herd, that we seldom realize we possess abilities we never knew; and that our bodily vehicles have gears we never used.

One of the biggest tragedies of life is to leave this world with our reservoir of talents left unknown and unused. Of course, what good it is to think of travelling places in the world outside when we haven’t travelled enough within?

Image Credits : http://weheartit.com/

Image Credits : http://weheartit.com/

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Adaptation

Adapt or perish, now as ever, is nature’s inexorable imperative. – H.G. Wells, Writer

 Adaptation is an incredible ability. For the strong, it is an option of sustainment; and for the weak, it is an option of survival. It is nothing but a choice the wise make to stand firm in the intense winds of change.

There are two kinds of things in life. Those over which we have complete control, and those over which we have none. There will be times in our lives when we will have to face the latter too in enormity. It is adaptation, and nothing else, which can strengthen our stand in such circumstances.

Change is inevitable. Whatever you do, or don’t do, change is going to happen. Whether we like it or not, things are going to change anyway.

Change is constant.

When things are within the grip of our hands, we step forward to action and become harbingers of change. But when things are not in our control, we adapt.

Adaptation is not the same as compromise.

Compromise happens not because of situations being out of our control, but because of our own laziness. We compromise when we are indolent to step into action; when we don’t dare enough to budge from our comfort zones; and when we choose to stay within our own limits.

But adaptation is different. It happens when you make a decision to adjust your faculties to emerge stronger in the changing conditions. Adaptation requires courage, and a will as hard as stone.

When you adapt, you change. And change is good.

Refraining from adapting is lethal. Though we might feel comfortable initially, as time passes, the repercussions will be debilitating.

If our ancestors had not chosen to adapt, we probably would still have been in the neandarthal era. Civilizations wouldn’t have been born, humans wouldn’t have evolved into more intelligent species, and yes, even you wouldn’t have been sitting in front of your computer (or smartphone) reading this!

A usual ride to IIT

‘Beep Beep’ –  The mobile alarm penetrated through the many layers of slumber in my ears, and I woke up with frustration; not because of the alarm, but because I had to wake up when the majority of the city was still asleep. With a multi-protrusion surface of hair and a shaky body, I made my way to the bathroom. A look into the mirror gave me a sense of happiness, because every morning, though my hair looked like a disturbed bed of weeds and my face still carried the lazy notes of musical hibernation, (I call it musical because songs of my relationship and detachment with my bed keep playing within my mind) I loved the way I looked. After having done with my bath which was a spine chilling and mind waking encounter with cold water,  and also other rituals, I was now standing in front of the mirror in my room. My hair was wet, and my face contained waves of freshness. After getting slipped into my usual casuals, I was off to my IIT classes. One good thing about IIT classes is that they don’t look at your dress, but at your performance; and I was pretty bad at the latter, but I really didn’t care. (I always used to give importance to the way I dressed)

I ordered a plate of pongal at the small hotel where I usually have my breakfast. Pongal came hot and delicious, and I began to dive into it with peace. Sambar and chutney gave me company. I paid the bill and left for the bus stop. One very good thing about Chennai is that you have a bus running and coming every half a kilometre and half a minute respectively. My bus arrived in less than ten minutes, and my mind was filled with bliss when an array of empty seats presented themselves before me. A cool morning plus a seated bus ride equals a day of energy and enthusiasm. And such a ride, I would say, would be one of the best in the world.

‘One, Ashok Nagar.’ I told the conductor. He plucked a ticket from the ticket pin and handed it over to me. ‘6 rupees’ He said. I pulled out a hundred rupee note from my wallet and was about to give it to him, when he looked at me as if I have done one of the most stupidest things in the world. ‘No change.’ He said with a scowl and left. I realized right then, that ‘Change’ is definitely a problem in our country. An elderly man beside was kind enough to exchange my hundred for ten tens. I bought the ticket and pushed it into my wallet. And then, my head turned to the outside, where I could see tea stalls and parotta shops, flower ladies and cobblers, washer-men and petty hotels opening for their daily businesses on the great Indian pavement.

I got down at the stop, and a ten minute walk to the coaching centre awaited me. The traffic had come out alive for the day, and as I walked, everything under the sky except IIT danced in my mind. I reached the coaching centre, unchappalled myself, went to the classroom and had myself seated at my traditional desk; the one that is located at the farthest point from our professor. Minutes began to melt, and soon the room was full. ‘Surprise Test,’ our professor said. I tasted shock for a second, but then had this beautiful realization that having a  test is the same as no test, as all the IIT stuff always flew over my head. I smiled within myself and looked at the vast multitude of nerds before me, who, as usual, were discussing either mathematics or physics or chemistry; it was all the same, no change. Never in my life have I heard someone talking about dreams and visions at a coaching centre. ‘Change’, is indeed a problem in our country, I thought.