Sanspirit

Musings of my mind in the realm of creative writing, philosophy, music, sport, personal experiences and alike. etc.

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    • ‘The Woman’ Humor
      The stuff below is my copyright J… The Squint Eye A couple and their son were having a conversation about marriage. The son said, “Dad, Mom has a squint eye. You still struggle sometimes to figure out where she’s looking. Didn’t you notice that when you both met during your Vadhu-Vara Pariksha (Bride -Bride Groom Face-off […]
    • Mother, Motherland and New Land!
      The idea of writing this post struck me when me and my friend, Mahantesh were having a conversation after long 6 months, while he’s in India for few weeks. Before I talk about what actually triggered the idea, let me tell you something new! I quit Ness after a long 5 years and 4 months […]
    • Agility
      I moved cubicles in office. I moved into a new team. I moved into a new house in a new location, Bangalore. I’m spending like 3.5 hours on commute to work(don’t imagine it!). 2012 has been a heck of a year (we’ll talk about that in next post). Additionally, we use AGILE software development methodology […]
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‘The Woman’ Humor

Posted by sanstechbytes on December 15, 2013

The stuff below is my copyright J

The Squint Eye

A couple and their son were having a conversation about marriage. The son said, “Dad, Mom has a squint eye. You still struggle sometimes to figure out where she’s looking. Didn’t you notice that when you both met during your Vadhu-Vara Pariksha (Bride -Bride Groom Face-off Meeting in presence of elderly; typically, Family members) event? Didn’t grand mother, atti (father’s sister) notice that at least?…“. The father replied, “Son, I was reading the newspaper and I saw her only one eye. I could see only the normal eye. I should have seen both the eyes. Those days, people didn’t really bother so much about all such things. Your grandma and atti never mentioned this (not sure if they noticed that, too). Even if they did, they thought, maybe, the Squinty would bring in lot of good luck (it’s a belief in Hindu Societal Practices)!… Your mother came from a very well-cultured and respected family. Moreover, I was very ideological in my youth. I had seen and had read about the issues the woman had to go through during my ‘generation’ period; I had made up my mind that I would marry anyone that I would see first.” All three burst into laughter….        

 Two-Ticket Thought:

A young woman boarded a local bus. Two gentlemen (one nearly old man and a young man) vacated their seats to allow that woman to be seated! They had realized that she would easily occupy more than 1.5 seats. The conductor asked her, “Tickets?”. As she handed over fare for 1 Seat, the conductor disgustingly questioned, “You’re occupying two seats. This bus is crowded. Give me fare for two seats.” Everyone in the vicinity burst into laughter. While the woman looked puzzled, the conductor continued his talk, “Seats are made for ‘normal’ people.…..”.  Ashamed of herself, the woman got down the bus in the next stop, not because she couldn’t afford the Two Ticket Fare, but she caught herself in a very awkward situation.

Posted in Humor, Random | Leave a Comment »

Mother, Motherland and New Land!

Posted by sanstechbytes on June 19, 2013

The idea of writing this post struck me when me and my friend, Mahantesh were having a conversation after long 6 months, while he’s in India for few weeks.

Before I talk about what actually triggered the idea, let me tell you something new! I quit Ness after a long 5 years and 4 months of stay, in Feb. I joined FICO (formerly, Fair Isaac; it’s a new land!) last Feb.  While I get an opportunity to work with many varied stakeholders like Scientists, Architect, Product Management, Peer Developers, PMO, Technical Publications and also get to work on a product that does comprehensive mining of insurance *historical* claims data, I can’t forget the  experience at Ness that played an important part in getting me there. At Ness, I was lucky to be able to switch to teams where I could be offered a good work-life balance in the sense that I could pursue my Masters in Software Systems(MS) from BITS, Pilani during 2008 and 2010, at least for a couple of years compromising too little on opportunities for vertical and horizontal growth. MS was a very good learning experience for me and perhaps, the knowledge gained and the skills acquired helped me make it through good no of interview rounds with the best of the companies like Google, Amazon, Yahoo etc. I’ve made good friends with few people at Ness that I would like to keep in touch with, for lifetime!  There’re highs and lows in that journey during which I was supervised by 3 different managers for 3 different products in CRM, Life Sciences and Digital Media Supply Chain Management domains.

Back to the talk. As Mahantesh and I continued our conversation, he said, “You had rejected 3 offers. Then, you got an offer from HCL for a Lead Role to work on UID project. You also mentioned that HCL would give an opportunity to lead a team of engineers that develop software potentially used by 1 billion customers, something consumed by the common man in India (ideally!). This is Desha Seve (serving the nation, in English). Why did you reject it…?.”

I replied, “(in Kannada) Modalu Matru Seve, Aamele Matru Bhoomi Seve, meaning First serve your Mother and then serve your Mother Land. Ideally, I wouldn’t compromise on either; I would not uphold one against the other, because both are superior to heaven (A Sanskrit shloka – “Janani Janma Bhoomischa Swargadapi Gariyasi…” uttered by Lord Rama in Ramayana, a Hindu Epic, means that).  Unfortunately, I was not finding opportunity to serve both mother and motherland at the same time with a very high degree of satisfaction and sense of pride and achievement each day, every day. I don’t claim I’ve found that now. It’s too good to be true anywhere. Ultimately, it’s a balanced deal that matters. After a reasonably long passive job search, I settled for a job that currently offers acceptable levels of sense of pride and satisfaction. Additionally, to provide a very decent standard of living to my parents in the costliest Indian city, I need decent amount of money; Money can buy me a decent amount time for myself and family; I need decent comfort standards for living. Perhaps, this ‘decent’ can be subjective. What’s ‘decent’ to me, may be ‘indecent’ to someone else or maybe, ‘most decent’ to some other person. With due respect to HCL, for its contribution towards generation of jobs and Indian Economy, I rejected HCL Offer, too. What inspired me to reject the offer was based on the fact that I don’t exist without my mother. She exists and hence, I do. If she didn’t, I wouldn’t. This ‘I’ would not be the same ‘I’, if I were born to someone else, too. You can never repay a mother’s debt. He nodded in agreement.  We both knew such is the plight of most young Indian professionals. You can never write an algorithm to justify this. There’re infinite conditions and infinite ways in which the logic is executed, to prove this.

Then, we got into little bit of Mythological references and spiritual aspects related to these discussions. I said, “In order to practise true Dharma, even if I lie and kill people, I’m not a liar and am not a criminal. If one practises true Dharma, it leads him/her to state of Self-Realization, the ultimate state of being, at some point in time in his life time. The definition of true Dharma is too hard to grasp by the common man. It literally is so complicated to comprehend when we’re in dilemma or when we need to take a decision under really intricate and complex situations. That’s why we’ve gurus, swamijis, Popes, Seers, Pontiffs, and Mullahs to propagate the knowledge and educate common men, the practice of true Dharma. I’m not an authority on the subject…”  But, see Legend below for my attempt to interpret closer meaning of true Dharma.

He wanted us to dwell more on this with mythological references, related to another dilemma that many job seekers face in the recent times. He knew the rationale behind it, as everyone does. He asked, “Why you broke promise to HR or Recruiters in the first company that you had accepted offer from, and that you had told them you would definitely join them after 3 months?”

I replied, “Otherwise they wouldn’t offer me, in the first place. We tell recruiters or the HR that we’ll definitely join your organization after we’ve accepted their offer, to avoid all the unpleasant talk back and forth during notice period. They indulge in this kind of impractical talk, rather than just releasing the offer letter, which stands void, if candidate doesn’t join them. This is so true when the notice period is like 3 months or so.  Very few employers would accept the candidate joining them after 3 months from the day the offer was made. The dynamic nature of the industry, the volatile nature of assignments in most private companies, the democratic nature of applying for a job (this is needed!),   IT companies, in particular have attributed to such shift in mindset amongst job seekers and employers.  As I retrieved the related info from ‘mythology’ part of my brain, it reminded me of a story in Mahabharata, a Hindu epic, where Lord Krishna would have promised that he would not lift any weapon during the famous Kurukshetra War between Kouravas and Pandavas. Actually, during the war, when Arjuna, the only capable Pandava, to compete and defeat Bheeshma and make enough wounds on his body with his arrows that the latter would not be able to lift weapons anymore (Bheeshma couldn’t be killed by anyone because he had the boon of “icchamarani“, someone who dies on his own accord – whenever he wants; none could kill him), becomes weak enough to not do so, Krishna breaks his promise, and readies himself to kill Bheeshma with his Sudarshana Chakra (exercises Veto power; Lord Krishna, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu is the supreme Lord. He’s bigger than the biggest and smaller than the smallest). At this point in time, Arjuna realizes his true Dharma as a Kshatriya; realizes that Bheeshma is on the wrong side of true Dharma. He interrupts the Lord and pledges before Him that he’ll lift his weapons to fight against Bheeshma and that he would not become too weak to not perform his true Dharma ever again. “

I said, “With due respect to the Companies that follow true Dharma (invest in development of their human resource, follow professional standards in their Employment Practices etc), let me generalize this. Companies are like Bheeshma; I’m not trying to actually compare both of them. Many parallels can, however, be drawn. It’s an attempt to do so. Bheeshma knew that he was on the wrong side. He thought that because he’d got his bread from Kouravas, his only Dharma was to protect Kouravas. Bheeshma was only concerned with the protection of Kouravas, just because they give him his bread. Bheeshma forgot that if following true Dharma calls for being disloyal to someone, it’s fair enough to be disloyal. More often, Companies know that they’re not following professional standards, they’re not actually investing in development of their people; most of the times, they’re dancing to the tunes of investors, different stakeholders within their workforce. They can revoke offers made as per their whims and fancies, and they can fire employees whenever they wish citing reasons like restructuring or reorg even when they’re not doing badly. That’s nature of the job market. Sometimes, it’s genuine; some other times, it’s not. Company can exist as long it wishes to; even it can exist until it’s deregistered.  Company dies only whenever they (shareholders) want. Why cry and stop applying for other company jobs? If I’m applying to another job, after I’ve accepted an offer from one company, then I’m basically seeking a better path of true Dharma; seeking a path that leads me to Self-Realization, my ultimate pursuit in life. If I don’t get a better offer, it means that somehow, I’m not yet qualified enough to take that route to Self-Realization. Or, I’m not lucky enough to get that offer. When you’re following true Dharma, you mayn’t be successful at each intermediate stage; you may undergo lot of hardships. In the end, you’ll emerge as the winner. In my case, I was strongly convinced about my true Dharma, before I broke my promise to the first offer I got. I’ve no regrets about the decision I had made then. “

To be continued….

LEGEND:

True DharmaEveryone is born with a certain nature. The individual’s personality is shaped by many external factors, apart from the value system that he inculcates and the traits he inherits from his family. Education, peer influences, social setup, environment have their own influences on his thinking and his actions. He can choose the path in life by virtue of his physical and mental attributes. This path can take many deviations in one’s journey as the individual’s goals, aspirations, motivations evolve over a period of time. True Dharma is taking deviations but being strongly convinced about those deviations, for the good of the things. The principles of Practice of True Dharma should override everything, every other principle on this earth. Being Loyal is acceptable, but not at the cost of true Dharma.

Iccha Marani:  Iccha – Want, Marana – death; Marani – The one that dies

Posted in Personal | Leave a Comment »

Agility

Posted by sanstechbytes on December 1, 2012

I moved cubicles in office. I moved into a new team. I moved into a new house in a new location, Bangalore. I’m spending like 3.5 hours on commute to work(don’t imagine it!). 2012 has been a heck of a year (we’ll talk about that in next post). Additionally, we use AGILE software development methodology in our team at work. Daily stand-up meetings, milestones, 2-week sprint etc. So, agility is in, pretty much at work. There’s hardly any time for my blog posts that can be close to my previous best!

Heal yourself with some classical fusion now. Until next time. :-)

Posted in Music, Personal, Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

Classical Fusion and Shankar Tucker

Posted by sanstechbytes on August 1, 2012

I’ve been enjoying listening to Shankar Tucker compositions over the last few months. Shankar Tucker  is a young American musician(he got his first name changed to Shankar, to identify that fusion?!) and brings a modern and yet a very refreshing perspective on classical fusion, yielding a rich and soulful experience to music lovers with his composition.  This was one of my drafts in my blog kitchen sync, since long! :-). Check out one of his, below:

Posted in Music | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Yoga

Posted by sanstechbytes on May 1, 2012

Who hasn’t heard of Yoga? It’s a globally ‘realized’ means to improve health and attain ‘moksha’ (liberation from the cycle of birth and death; enlightenment is a stage before this).  Dhyana(Meditation) and Pranayam(breath control) are just the two “post-classical era” principles of Yoga; the others being, Asanas (proper excercise as stated in Yoga Sutras of Patanjali), The Proper Diet(the right food), Shavasana (proper Relaxation).  The goals of Yogic practice are varied for different people; The essence of Yoga really lies in attainment of ‘moksha’.

In Hindu epics, like Yoga Sutras of Patanjali and Upanishads, there’s a treatise on Yoga. In Chapter 6 of The Bhagavad Gita,  Lord Krishna talks entirely about the practice of Yoga, as to how it is to be performed. The Lord says that he had taught it first to Surya Deva (Sun God) and then over a period of time, the wealth of Yogic knowledge had been lost and that he’s preaching that to Prince Arjuna.  The word ‘Yoga’ has been used by Lord Krishna to attribute it to union of Bhakti, Jnana and Karma in the Gita. There’s a reference of different forms of Yoga: Karma Yoga (The practice of doing the ‘right’ thing, your Karma; sometimes, lying may be the right thing to do; you can attach things like selfless action here), Bhakti Yoga (The practice of devotion to God), Jnana Yoga (‘Jnana’ means knowledge; Knowledge about the Self, about your very being; ‘Jnana’ doesn’t mean storing lot of info about a subject like Math, Art, or Politics or GK in your brain or being a topper or possessing a high IQ. All those could be means to attain the ‘Jnana’ which is the knowing of  Kshetra(the field) plus the continuously evolving characteristics exhibited by you affecting the body and the Kshetragna (The owner of the field – The Lord present in you, the purce consciousness) in a very abstract sense – Ref: Chapter 13 of The Bhagavad Gita).

(Courtesy: Chapter 13, Bhagavad Gita)  What is ‘true’ Knowledge (Jnana)? Translated version below:

“The Mahabhutas (the five great elements – earth, water, fire, air and aakash(ether)), the ego, the discriminating intelligence, the invisible (self), the ten senses (ears, skin, tongue, nose, hands, feet, mouth, anus, and the sexual organs) and the five objects of the senses (sound, taste, touch, smell and the forms). Desire, repulsion, happiness, sorrow, the aggregate, dynamic awareness, decisiveness, all these are briefly the various aspects of the kshetra (body).  Without pride, without pomposity, absence of cruelty, tolerance, straight forwardness, service to Acharya (the spiritual master), cleanliness, stability (of the mind), self-control. Vairagya (absence of any feeling) towards the objects of the senses, absence of egoism, constant reflection of the pain and drawbacks inherent in the birth, death, old age and disease. Disinterested, detached from the son, wife, home and the like, always even minded in both desirable and undesirable conditions. Devoted to Me only without engaging in other yogas (activities) and evil pursuits, living in solitary places, disinterested in seeking the company of people. Always absorbed in self knowledge, engaged in the study of philosophy and spirituality ; all this is declared as ‘true’ Knowledge and the rest is ignorance.”

Back to Yoga experience. Not long ago, I met  Bhanu Prakash, a Yoga Champion (see his advanced yoga postures here) at a party hosted by Mahantesh, a mutual friend of ours. When I saw him, the glow and the tranquility on his face was so evident;  As I engaged in a conversation with him, I could see an extra-ordinary level of synergy between his mind and body(actions, I mean) reflect in his speech. Trust me, he’s been practising Yoga for the past 20 years and he’s in his early thirties. A bliss, indeed!!!

Personally, as a part of my Sandhya Vandana activity during my school and college days, when I used to be disciplined about it, I used to perform Pranayama and Dhynana (meditation). If it doesn’t sound like any self-boasting, let me tell you an incident that happened in school. A Yoga Teacher in school once asked all students to close their eyes and meditate. So did all. After we all opened our eyes, he pointed at me and announced that he could differentiate me and one more guy from a crowd of 500 students (not that I had ‘mudras’ on my face and I was the only one who had actually closed his eyes and had meditated ;-)), about 100 meters from the podium where he stood inside the auditorium. Such was the glow and tranquility on my face. I can definitely see the changes now when I can’t be so disciplined about such a Yogic Practice and there are other factors as well. However, realizing the need of Yogic practice for my lifestyle, of late, I’ve been regular doing some asanas and pranayama.

After I perform Surya Namaskar (which I’ve been regularly doing of late :)), I can feel how revitalized I’ll be. I can feel that in my mind and body. This is a good article on benefits of Surya Namaskar.

Bhanu Prakash Yoga Practice:

Yogathan Surya namaskar Video for Beginners:

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Chanakya Neeti

Posted by sanstechbytes on January 26, 2012

A couple of days ago, my mother and I were having a conversation on words of wisdom from the ancient Indian authors. Actually, she was reading a book on Chanakya Neeti Sutra(Chanakya’s Aphorisms) with Kannada translation. As we talked, she started quoting a few from a book on Chanakya Neeti.  Ohh!!! Memory Lanes!!!! …. It soon reminded me of Sunday 9 AM TV  Serial on Chanakya being telecast on DD 1 (India’s National Channel), when I was a kid. Back then, I could barely understand anything and now, I can totally grasp and understand the essence of these words of wisdom about life and apply it to life.

My manager at work had earlier been talking about as well. All this only made me really further explore Chanakya’s Neeti Sutras  and I ended up downloading Chanakya Neeti (translated to English).  These words of wisdom date back to 300 BCE or something (about 23oo years ago; Chanakya lived during 370 – 283 BCE). Phew! The scope of piracy is out of context for these words of wisdom on leading life. You can download complete Chanakya Neeti Sutra (translated to English) here (link ahead) - sri chanakya niti-sastra (1)

This celebrated work of Chanakya is  a concise statement revealing the truths about life and application of principles of living. Chanakya also authored Arthashastra (Economics) known as Kautilya’s Artha Shastra.

In the meantime, I just wanted to share some of these Neeti Sutras that I  read…

1. One should save his money against hard times, save his wife at the sacrifice of his riches, but invariably one should save his soul even at the sacrifice of his wife and riches.

2. (My manager was quoting this some time!) Do not reveal what you have thought upon doing, but by wise council keep it secret being determined to carry it into execution.

3. Friendship between equals flourishes, service under a king is respectable, it is good to be business-minded in public dealings, and a handsome lady is safe in her own home.

4. Consider again and again the following: the right time, the right friends, the right place, the right means of income, the right ways of spending, and from whom you derive your power.

5. As gold is tested in four ways by rubbing, cutting, heating and beating — so a man should be tested by these four things: his renunciation, his conduct, his qualities and his actions.

6. The man who is praised by others as great is regarded as worthy though he may be really void of all merit. But the man who sings his own praises lowers himself in the estimation of others though he should be Indra (the possessor of all excellences).

7.  A wise man should not divulge the formula of a medicine which he has well prepared; an act of charity which he has performed; domestic conflicts; private affairs with his wife; poorly prepared food he may have been offered; or slang he may have heard.

8.  The cuckoos remain silent for a long time (for several seasons) until they are able to sing sweetly (in the Spring ) so as to give joy to all.

9. We should always deal cautiously with fire, water, women, foolish people, serpents, and members of a royal family; for they may, when the occasion presents itself, at once bring about our death.

10.  He whose actions are disorganised has no happiness either in the midst of men or in a jungle — in the midst of men his heart burns by social contacts, and his helplessness burns him in the forest.

11. He who is not shy in the acquisition of wealth, grain and knowledge, and in taking his meals, will be happy.

12.  The student (brahmacari) should completely renounce the following eight things — his lust, anger, greed, desire for sweets, sense of decorating the body, excessive curiosity, excessive sleep, and excessive endeavour for bodily maintenance.

13. It is ruinous to be familiar with the king, fire, the religious preceptor, and a woman. To be altogether indifferent of them is to be deprived of the opportunity to benefit ourselves, hence our association with them must be from a safe distance.

Posted in Literature | Leave a Comment »

My Humor Stories Part 1

Posted by sanstechbytes on December 8, 2011

CAUTION: Some content in the stories is totally cooked up. Also, see Legend below for the acronyms  used.

1. The VOLVO Gender Bias:
Sanjeev wanted to get into Volvo bus that was about to depart from Marathalli bridge Bus Stop(in Bangalore), at  the so called “Man Side” of the Volvo (A/C bus). For the uninitiated, although there’s no gender or age based reservation in Volvos, for “smooth” operations, usually women tend to occupy space/seats close to the driver’s seat and the  men, the ever-shrinking leftover space called the “Man Side”. The Conductor asked Sanjeev to board from “Woman Side” of the bus. Sanjeev did so.

AG: “Aur Ek Ladka aa gaya (One more boy entered)! (there were a couple of boys standing beside her already).
Sanjeev: “For one thing, I’ve a huge crush on you and for another, conductor telepathically communicated with me and asked me to be as much close to my crush as possible. So, here I am.”
AG: [Taken by a surprise] “Hmmm! Grinn…”
Sanjeev: [Before women in the vicinity attempted to give me a confused or rather fiery look] “I’m kidding…”.
AG:  “Hmmm!!!….LOL…
OAG: “Hmmm!…LOL…
All the people in the vicinity, including Yours Truly, burst into laughter.

2. The Woman Behind:
Sanjeev gets a very high value award for his performance at work in his organization. Few of his colleagues are curious about the woman behind his success.

Colleague 1: Who is the woman behind your success?
Sanjeev: I’ve always recognised “Excellence” as female. Since I’m unmarried,  and she is behind my success!
Colleague 2: Come on, Sanjeev, we want you to mention real woman / women.
Sanjeev: Come on Dude, it’s my mother, that goes without saying. Apart from her, considering my  identity, other women are:  my current imaginary girlfriend whose personality can be represented by:  P.E.= L + iC,  and my ex-imaginary  girlfriend whose P.E. turned out to be: L – iC.

3. The Senior Citizen:
Sanjeev is sitting on a seat reserved for Senior Citizen in the just-full (not crowded) bus. An old man with half-bald head with white hair, boards the bus like, a young man would. He’s fresh and active(Call him the young old man). The conductor jumped in and asked Sanjeev to leave the seat to the old man.

Sanjeev: “I’m much senior to him.”
The Conductor: [Caught in a fiery look] Hmmm…!!!!
Sanjeev: [Before Conductor started talking] “First of all, look at my hair. I didn’t inherit these many white hair from my grandmother(mother’s mother is usually acknowledged to have transferred her hair gene). I’ve stopped applying hair dye. Whatever very little black hair that’s present, is all the remnant of my previously applied die. My hair had completely turned white. You know how I got ‘em. The fluctuating economic conditions, the parasites at work, the uncertainity in continuation of the nature of job that I loved, the people cribbing about system without trying to do their bit in reforming it, the people that show off their vanity at the cost of humanity, caused so much of pain and made me get stressed up so much that, to keep the integrity of my principles and my character intact, I had to think a lot and a lot about coming up with new ways to handle, fight or tackle such situations or progress towards my goals.  I did that by assimilating the knowledge and applying the wisdom gained through sub-conscious experience obtained through reading lot of inspirational books related to philosophy, the biographies, autobiographies, the Samsara. To get rid of my own vulnerabilities, I underwent the transformation by experiencing things that tempted me, in order not to be impacted by such temptations in future. I sought wise counsel from my mentors, from the successful people that have retained high level of integrity. The generation-gap induced, not only across age-groups but also across communities, by the unprecedented socio-economic changes owing to technological innovations and ever changing landscape for emerging business opportunities, with the system and the people representatives not trying at all to bridge the gap by educating masses about values of humanity, cultural integrity and communal harmony, forced me to grow up faster, to exercise wisdom in all my actions, to prove a lot of things, to convince, to guide and influence people, to address issues related to “generation syndromes”.  In the process, my muscle strength has been reduced, the pain in my arms, doesn’t show any signs of being reduced; I feel tired too soon. The failures and disappointments have necessitated my acquiring the true knowledge (Ref: Chapter 13, Bhagavad Gita: The knowledge of self and God) the knowledge needed to efficiently face the atrocities and nuances in life and ease myself towards eternal peace, which the most of the so called Senior Citizens acquire such knowledge when they near death. I coach the so called old people on facing the course of life, on facing societal trouble. I coach kids, younger people, middle-aged. I’ve developed lot of spiritual outlook towards life. Look at him[The young old man], he’s so young and active; Look at me, I look so old and tired. I’m much older than him.”
The Conductor: [Confused, glanced at both the old young man[Sanjeev] and young old man] with a confused look. “Haan!!!!!!”
The Young Old Man: [Having listened to the conversation between The Conductor and Sanjeev] “Conductor, he’s senior to me!”.
The Conductor: [To Sanjeev] Take care, man!

LEGEND:
AG = Anonymous Girl
OAG = Other Anonymous Girls
P.E. = Personality Equation
L = Awesome Looks, they call it beauty
C = The Sum total of acceptable compatibility levels measured against (not in any particular order) your Personality Type, your Family Compatibility, and your Intellectual compatibility.

Posted in Humor | 4 Comments »

Don’t be So Shy

Posted by sanstechbytes on August 3, 2011

Someone inspired me to write this below poem!

 

When you are so shy,

When you don’t raise your head up high,

How will someone greet you?

When they pass by you,

How will someone bid you bye-bye?

 

And I want to ask you, “Why?”

Do you think, in a sigh,

Into your life, someone will pry?

Or someone’s comment will be wry? 

And I’m concerned, you know why? 

 

Because you’re such a cutie pie,

But, away from your feelings, as you fly,

Your mind may go emotionally dry,

Don’t be so shy in your own quiet way,

From shyness, you shy away!

Posted in Poetry, Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

Wedding Poetry

Posted by sanstechbytes on July 25, 2011

My cubie and friend Tejas asked me for a quote on his Wedding Card (Love Marriage). Below is the poem I wrote, for him. Well, he ended up inserting couple of lines from this, in his card, although he said, “I totally liked this!”

“United as we stand in love, we’ll be
United for ever, through thick and thin, with family,
Amongst people, as we envision to become good couple,
Good parents, good citizens and good ancestor pair
And so we pledge, to stand together,
Spreading love and joy along the way,
When my best friend ____ and I tie the knot on the ___ Day
Of ____ in the Year of 20 __”

Cheers!
Sanjeev

Posted in Poetry | Leave a Comment »

Creativity: The Flow and Psychology of Discovery and Invention

Posted by sanstechbytes on April 17, 2011

I recently finished reading the book by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi titled as read blog post title. I happened to buy this book at a Book Exhibition held in our park campus. I wish I had read Flow, Mihaly’s most famous work, first!

Mihaly uses his famous Flow theory as he attempts to explain Creativity as a process and how it can enrich our lives, by drawing on interviews with nearly one hundred interviews with creative people in every field and his research in similar fields for over thirty years. From the perspective of History, Indian texts such as Ashtavakra Gita and Bhagavad Gita(read: Yoga of Knowledge) refer to this similar state(Flow is “action of inaction” or “doing without doing”). He tries to achieve his objective in three parts viz., The Creative Process, The Lives(interviews with Creative People) and Domains of Creativity.

In part I, Mihaly defines Creativity using Systems model, talks about traits exhibited by the Creative Personality, the Flow of Creativity, the Work of Creativity and Creative Surroundings.

To Mihaly, what makes most sense is that creative process can be observed only in the interrelations of a system made up of three main parts viz., Domain, Field and Person. Domain is the set of symbolic rules and procedures; Mathematics, Music etc are domains. Domains are in turn nested. Field is all the individuals who act as gatekeepers to the domain. Person is the individual. He explains that Creativity occurs when a person using the symbols  of a domain such as engineering, music, business, or mathematics has a new idea or a new pattern, and when that novelty is selected by the appropriate field for inclusion into the relevant domain. Occasionally, creativity involves the establishment of a new domain.

The Creative personality tends to exhibit primarily these ten traits:

1. Have a great deal of physical energy, but they are also often quiet and at rest.

2. Tend to be smart and also naive at the same time.

3. Exhibit trait of detached attachment and being both responsible and irresponsible at the same time.

4. Alternate between imagination and fantasy at one end, and rooted sense of reality at the other.

5. Seem to harbor opposite tendencies on the same continuum between extroversion and introversion.

6. Are remarkably humble and proud at the same time.

7. Creative and talented girls are more dominant and tough than other girls, while creative boys are more sensitive and less aggressive than their male peers.

8. Are generally thought to be rebellious and independent.

9. Passionate about their work and can be extremely objective about it as well.

10. Are exposed to suffering and pain yet also a great deal of enjoyment because of their openness and sensitivity.

In Part II, Mihaly presents compilation of experiences (in the very words of the creative people themselves) of some of the creative people including Pt. Ravi Shankar, Einstein, Heinz Leibnitz at various stages in their lives. To highlight the importance of being in the right place at the right time, he presents an example of Sir C V Raman‘s nephew Subrahmanyan Chandrasekar, an astrophysicist and a Nobel laureate, who took boat from India to study physics at Cambridge. This part is really interesting especially if one wants to draw insights from the different phases in lives of some of the creative people in different domains, and how they overcame or used those situations to their advantage. The manner in which Mihaly explains as to how the factors like parental influence, curiosity arisen out of their being prodigious, youth and childhood, role of education, supportive partners, the question of succession, the impact on the physical and cognitive abilities with aging, relationship with field/domain, in the lives of creative individuals, shaped their lives (perhaps with the words of creative people being introduced between the text) is truly inspirational. Reflecting on the lives of those creative persons, per se, highlights a set of different possibilities.

In the last part, Mihaly applies the theory and concepts presented in Part I and Part II to categorize the domains into: domain of the word, of the life, of the future, and of making of the culture. Fragile thoughts and feelings are transformed by words into concrete thoughts and emotions. Words are powerful because they enrich life by expanding the range of individual experience. The domain of the word is a joyful responsibility on the shoulders of writers/poets whose writing is needed to ensure survival of the human spirit; whose writing is needed for the conversion of the negative into the positive; whose writing is needed to experience something beyond knowledge acquired by meeting people and by what has happened to us.   Creativity can be used to making of the culture. Creative individuals can step in to take on global responsibility and also impact the cultural evolution.

I really liked reading the chapter on Enhancing Personal Creativity. How can one cultivate flow in everyday life? Before that, Mihaly states that the reason for missing link in flow is that when we get into a situation when there’s nothing specific to do, our thoughts soon return to the most predictable state which is randomness or confusion(remember Second Law of Thermodynamics? ;-)). When there is no external force demanding that we concentrate, the mind begins to lose focus. It falls to the lowest energetic state, where the least amount of work is required. When this happens a sort of mental chaos takes over. Unpleasant thoughts flash into awareness, forgotten regrets resurface, and we become depressed. Then we turn on the TV set, read listlessly the ad supplement of the newspaper, have pointless conversations to avoid becoming frightened by what is happening in the mind. Taking refuge in passive entertainment keeps chaos temporarily at bay, but the attention it absorbs gets wasted. On the other hand, we can learn to enjoy using our latent creative energy so that it generates its own internal force to keep concentration focused, we not only avoid depression but also increase the complexity of our capacities to relate to the world.

How can we do this?  Mihaly’s prescription derived from the objective description in Parts I & II:

-Waking up in the morning with a specific goal to look forward to

-If you do anything well, it becomes enjoyable

-To keep enjoying something, you need to increase its complexity (Example from IT: All these guys, Google, Yahoo, IBM, Oracle etc introduce complexity in the world of technology to bring in new business opportunities and customers, but they reduce algorithmic complexity in their code to solve the problems of complexity ;-)…

-Take Charge of your schedule

-Make time for reflections and relaxation

-Shape your space

-Find out what you like and what you hate about life

-Start doing more of what you love, less of what you hate

-Develop what you lack

-Shift often from openness to closure

-Aim for Complexity

-Find a way to express what moves you

-Look at problems from as many viewpoints as possible

-Figure out the implications of the problem

-Implement the solution

-Produce as many ideas as possible;Have as many ideas as possible;Try to produce unlikely ideas

I hope that my fragile thoughts and feelings expressed above will be turned into concrete ones (read: Edit).

Edit: I’m not sure how much of it has been assimilated inside, but I really enjoyed reading this book. I hope that I start internalizing the prescription much more than I used to.

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