Waning patience…

Has patience become an uncommon virtue in the present generation? I look around and see impatient young men and women all around…

People driving do not have even a minute at the traffic lights. Pedestrians seem to value their time much more than even life that they do not wait even a minute at the crossing. It only takes a minute for people to be aggressive verbally or physically. I often feel very angry seeing these things around.

Isn’t patience waning not only on roads, but also in our homes? I agree there have been domestic problems all through the time, but has it not increased in the past decade or so?

Husband-wife compatibility seems to have hit a low point, divorce cases are on the rise, even young children have so much anger within…

I looked around but then looked within…Even I am less tolerant and very impatient these days. Not that I was a ‘patience personified’ earlier, but still…Now even small things get to me very easily…Why?

What is patience? I feel patience is acceptance of people around oneself, irrespective of their behaviour. It is being not affected by the incidents that appear to be against one’s own principles. It is better to be not affected by any behaviour which one cannot change. Patience is being able to ‘respond and not react’.

How can we practice? The wise have always advised counting till 100 before you react to any situation. The mind should be calm as the still water in a pond.

The Mother’s words, “..it is not good to be impatient and agitated- you must do everything peacefully and quietly without haste.” And She gives the way to develop patience as well. “If the mind remains quiet in all circumstances and happenings patience will be more increased.” (CWM 14, pg 177)

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                 Source: www.motherandsriaurobindo.org

         (Flower: Ageratum houstonianum, deep lavender

   Significance: Vital patience. Indispensable for all progress)

All circumstances are opportunities for progress. The most important thing is how we carry ourselves through them. At every moment, we have a choice – to break or to be strong.

Realization of the need of improvement may be the beginning of the journey, hence my journey begins…

True attitude towards work

I started working as soon as I finished my studies and continued till my elder daughter was born. When she was born I had to make a choice- continue on a career path and reach great heights or enjoy motherhood and bring her up being a hands-on-mother. I had several factors to consider, but finally I chose to be a hands-on-mother.

Now after 10 years and having another daughter, there are moments when I tend to question my decision.

Do I regret my decision to leave a promising career and stay home? NO.

Do I miss the hustle-bustle of the office and the interaction with colleagues? Yes.

Hence, when I got the opportunity to work in the playschool, I did not hesitate to take it. It is not a big career, neither big money, but it was a welcome change from sitting home doing nothing in the mornings while my kids are at school…

I draw comfort from the words of the Mother. “You must do the work as an offering to the Divine and take it as part of your sadhana. In that spirit, the nature of the work is of little importance and you can do any work without losing the contact with the inner presence.” (CWM 14, pg 319)

I try to remember this and not get dejected. The work I do is not something I would really have liked, but still it is some use of my abilities and my attitude is the only thing that matters. There is no career growth here, but I get to learn every day. I constantly meet people who look down on us, which hurt, and it takes great effort to ignore their negative attitude. The behaviour of certain co-workers is often repugnant, but I remind myself of the Mother’s advice to take it coolly and go on with the work quietly.

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                              Image courtesy : Google images

{Flower:Acacia Auriculiformis (common name – Wattle)

Spiritual significance given by the Mother – “Let us offer our work to the Divine, this is the sure way of progressing.”}

May be, the obstacle to overcome within myself is the ego and preference towards a particular type of work. Whenever it becomes difficult to keep calm, I remind myself that my work is my offering to the Divine, I only have to consecrate sincerely and She will take care. The journey continues with this faith..

More of Her words which bring strength. “Let us work as we pray, for indeed work is the body’s best prayer to the Divine.” (Ibid, pg 321)

      

Always in my heart…

‘Home is where the heart is’ says the wise…

So, it wouldn’t matter whether I am away from home for a year or ten years if my dear husband and kids are with me. And if due to some unexpected turn in life I have to live alone for a year, then modern technology will keep me in constant contact with my family…

But then I imagined myself completely alone, cut off from the world….May be, a trip to the Himalayas…And I got down to think what I would take on such a trip to remind myself of my family.

I thought about some of the gifts my dear has brought me over the years. I also thought of the creative gifts my kids have made me on several occasions like mother’s day or my birthday. I even considered taking a photograph. But eventually I realized that there would be nothing I need to carry along with the purpose of reminding myself of my family. Close my eyes and there they would be….

Physical objects are very good channels to facilitate recollections. Looking at a photograph taken on an exotic holiday immediately transports one to the place and the joy associated with the trip is relived. Holding a gift from a loved one brings back memories of the occasion on which the gift was given. The occasion is again played in front of the mind’s eyes.

But these memories are not limited to the objects only.

Wherever I am, wherever I will be, my family always stay with me, in my heart, my mind and my being…

 [This post is written as part of the Daily prompt – An ounce of home]

My day…

I usually write reflections on daily experiences in order to learn from them. But today’s attempt in response to the daily prompt ‘Rare medium‘ is something different as suggested in the prompt.

I get up earlier than my kids,

Some yoga to freshen my mind,

Before I get on with daily deeds,

And a to-do list with no end.

 

Cooking and cleaning are part of life,

Taking care of family gives me joy,

Just as reading and writing for myself,

Also running after kids foiling their ploy.

 

Swim, gym or walk around the block,

Dinner and some TV in order,

Time for kids to bed along with their flock,

Some contemplation before sleep later.

 

Days are short and nights even shorter,

Life passes with such speed,

Everyday an effort to make myself better,

Thankful for being given all I need.

 

Time to let go…

This blog might sound an extension of an already written experience but I wanted to put it down to reinforce the learning for myself.

The knife which we had been facing for quite some time hit us in full force yesterday, tearing us apart. A one-liner from the authority saying that the validity of our programs have expired…’The End’…It is true that we were given an inkling regarding this imminent blow some days back, but we were clinging on to the thin thread of hope, the thinnest of a thread which finally broke under pressure today. It is hard to accept that all the work we had put into it, the time spent on assignments, on research, money spent throughout the course, have been for nothing. My classmates are planning to pursue the matter even now. But I wonder whether it is time to let go…

‘There is a time for everything’ says the Bible. There is a time to eat, to love, to weep, to laugh, to tear apart and even to sew together. I wonder whether this is the time for me to let go…

Let go of the anger towards the authorities…Image

Let go of the pain of the cancellation of our plans…

Let go of the sadness of non-completion…

Let go of the attachment towards the degree I so wished to have…

Let go of the desire to achieve…

In short, let go of everything…

I find my strength and support in the words of the Mother “We should be very tranquil” (Agenda, vol 13, pg 377)

Difficult, but not impossible…!

Image courtesy: Google images

A boon in disguise

        One of the biggest mistakes I recently made was joining a small play school where I work even now. The grass was green when I was afar but it turned out to be yellow as I came on the ground!

        I had been associated with the school even before I decided to join it as a teacher as my child attends the school. But I had never imagined that it would be a difficult working environment. , I realized that I made a mistake within a month of joining. It is a place where the Principal is sovereign, the teachers’ opinions do not have any value, ideas are not acknowledged, blame games play and to top it all, the honorarium is just about nothing. There are moments when I wanted to give up…

         Difficult times still persist. But just as there is a silver lining to every cloud, my teaching life also has a silver lining. It would have been impossible to gain the experience of spending the time with children without being a teacher. The hours I spend with the kids fill my heart with joy. I watch them play, wander and through it all learn something new each day. Their innocence touches every chord of my heart. I have to admit that there are times when these kids make life hell for us, with their fighting, pestering and being just troublesome. But as these difficult times pass, their cheerful nature brings back delight.

         As days go by, I realize that every day I get to spend with the children is a learning experience. Their mischiefs and tantrums make me a better mother to my own children. Their simple joys make me realize the meaninglessness of all the unnecessary complications we create in our own lives. The formidable authority teaches me to face all the arduous conditions in life with calm. The lesson that only my attitude has to change for the experiences to change is being constantly reinforced.

       Truly, this mistake has turned to be a boon in disguise.

[This blog is written based on the daily prompt,Favorite mistake, on wordpress.com ]

A help always at hand…

We are faced with challenging situations every day. Some tasks are difficult, some words are harsh or even some attitudes are very negative. Sometimes, it is the behaviour of one’s supervisor or colleagues that hurt or at times it is some news that brings despondency to us.

How do we deal with these situations?

How should we ideally deal with such events?

We, some students, have been struggling with the administration of a university in the pursuance of our MPhil / PhD. After several long years, we thought we saw light at the end of the tunnel as we received exam notification and dates. Exams were / are scheduled to begin this coming week. Studies were going on in full earnest. I had cancelled our vacation plans at the cost of huge financial loss as well as disappointments on the children’s faces. But now it seems that the light we saw was only an artificial light and not the day light at the end of the tunnel. We just received news that still there are some problems and the decisions regarding exams are not yet final.

For some time after I read the mail, my mind was in turmoil. A mixture of emotions – anger, frustration, disappointment, sadness, etc…flooded in. I even called up my hubby dear to vent out my frustration (he was of no help though- only commented “What can I do about this?”)

As time passed, I recalled a passage which I had only today morning. It was from a letter of Sri Aurobindo regarding equality. “Equality means a quiet and unmoved mind and vital, it means not to be touched or disturbed by things that happen or things said or done to you, but to look at them with a straight look, free from distortions created by personal feeling, and to try to understand what is behind them, why they happen, what is to be learnt from them….” (Letters on Yoga, pg. 661)

As I read this passage again, I felt a calm and peace within. All the negative emotions within me were gone, as a cloud drifted away by wind…. Level headed, I started thinking of the ways to proceed rather than being bitter…

It is not to say that I have attained equality of vital or mind…This blog is only a humble note about how the masters’ words guide me on the path, however rough it might be…