16 Nov

Yesterday I drew something that came right from the heart. I can’t remember when I felt this satisfied with a creative end-product and, if I say so myself, the painting looks damn good! This is where I want to take myself creatively- I want to express the truest parts of me through the three mediums I use- the written word, drawings and photography. I want them to be true, I want them to be good, and I want them to be filled with light.

I’ve been thinking recently about what it means to ‘speak your truth’. I thought I knew what that meant and I was sure I was doing it. Turns out, I was only partially right. There’s more for me to figure out about my truth, andt I don’t always realise that I’m not speaking it.

And this has all got something to do with the throat chakra, which I’m figuring out.

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To be writing again

11 Sep

It’s been a while, and perhaps it would be good to write a little post in here. I’ve been estranged from my words recently, not just in here but also in my journal. I’m doing that millennial thing of drowning in the internet, consuming shtuff. Most of what I consume is immemorable, although I have to say The Office was not. The Office, the US version, was surprisingly heartwarming, funny and wholesome. I might be in love with Dwight Schrute 😀

While most modern TV is designed to induce binge watching, The Office seemed to be an exception. Most episodes stood on their own and didn’t leave you frantically wanting to know what happened next. The Pam and Jim romance was not milked for the usual kind of drama (I’m looking at you, Grey’s Anatomy!), there was a stability to even that story line! I guess this shows there are ethical ways to keep a show popular and one doesn’t have to programme in a binge watching element to narratives! Which is not to say that I DIDN’T binge watch, hehe. It is just that when I needed to, I was able to limit myself to one episode per day.

What have I been up to? Well, I spent two months in Delhi as my father underwent the surgery we were waiting for since December. The whole thing ended up being more complicated and serious than hoped for, though we were warned by the surgeon of all possible outcomes. Through it all, before, during and after, we felt the unmistakable hand of God and Guru carrying us physically and emotionally. We were calm, we felt prepared, and the post-surgery finding feels manageable. There is a road ahead of us to be journeyed, and we will embark on it with prayerful gratitude in our hearts.

I felt zero inclination to even try and work on the PhD whilst there. I wanted to make my full self available to my father and family. To an extent, I met the goal of setting myself aside and diving into small acts of care. But I won’t kid myself that outwardly it translated into a whole lot. In my ideal world, good caregiving translates into keeping the home in order, making warm and nourishing meals, and cultivating an environment of peace and joy that infuses positivity and joy into hearts. And alongside that, most importantly, regular sessions of pranic healing. I found that all my energy went into ensuring semi-regular pranic healing sessions. Order in the home, meals etc all fell on my mother as I quickly became overwhelmed by it all. All I did was that semi-regular pranic healing. One blessing from this season was that I lost my fear of healing. I received good advice, and now I feel more able to perform the healing as worship and prayer, which suits my temperament more than performing it as a ‘healer’, one who can do damage if the channel through which God’s healing comes isn’t pure and holy.

I’m back in Calcutta now, and have just applied for an extension on my PhD registration. This has sort of become the norm now, everyone seems to be doing it. Next week I head to Bangalore for a workshop. And then, I need to find a way back to my writing, a way past-or through?- the many worries and anxieties about my future and my decisions that are becoming my steady companions.

As always, there is but one way ahead- regular meditation. It has been nearly a month since I meditated. The time and situation are right to begin again.

 

In which I bitch about the improper drinking of tea

5 Apr

For a person who doesn’t have a daily tea (or coffee) habit, I sure do have strong feelings on the subject!

I just read a beautifully designed blog post on the tradition of drinking tea, illustrated with famous pieces of art depicting tea or tea drinking. There was also a section on the hour long formal tea ceremonies of China. This led me to think the author was a tea connoisseur. The post, however, ends with her talking about her favourite cup of tea. This involves.

A teabag.

A heaping spoonful of sugar.

And milk.

It’s the quantity of sugar that upsets me the most. Anybody who puts a heaping spoonful of sugar in a cup of tea isn’t drinking tea, they are drinking sharbat, and should say so.

 

 

Batti Jal Gayi moment

28 Mar

TIL that Jimmy Kimmel and Jimmy Fallon are different people. I had registered the ‘Jimmy’ and ‘talk show host’ bits and wondered why Jimmy looked so different sometimes.

This is in stark contrast to the time in senior school when I knew one of my batchmates (in a different section, not mine) played competitive football but wondered why his friends sometimes called him A and sometimes H. A year later I realised they were two different people. In my defense- they were identical twins.

How to not evaluate your life through the sole lens of your PhD attempt

12 Mar

Or, How to Not Miss the Forest for the Trees.

One of the biggest temptations during a long, full-time PhD where your only commitment is to the PhD (and not, say, also simultaneously providing economically and emotionally for dependents) is to answer yae or nay to the question ‘Am I making progress?’ based on your progress with the PhD. Or maybe on whatever else you are prioritising with the PhD, which in my case is my spiritual practice. This might not be a very good way to do things because hey, those are just parts of your life, not the sum total of.

So, fellow yumans, take note of all the the little wins that will come in handy in doing life. You can’t put ’em on a CV, but you can put ’em on social media with saccharine filtered photos and flowery new-age prose-poetry.

To my list I’ll add: earning mum’s approval for single-handed maintenance of domestic premises, including the newly gained ability to jhadoo-pochha whenever needed.

 

26 Feb

It is 2 AM, and I am reading through a World Bank report on urbanisation while drinking lightly brewed (in deference to the hour) Earl Grey tea from my favourite mug.

I am on a deadline to submit whatever is ready of a rough draft of my first chapter, and it has been a while since I’ve done the night owl thing for work.

Feels good.

The night is the best time for work, and everything else \m/.  Too bad I’ll go back to attempting healthy normal hours from tomorrow :-/

Some gratuitous Park Street Photos

21 Feb

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Street Art acknowledging Arathoon Stephen: rich Armenian dude and builder of things. And flute man.

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Park Mansions: Home of Alliance Francaise, Goethe Bhavan, miscellaneous offices and 36 residential units

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Also, the doors and windows are painted red, yellow, blue, violet