Friday, December 6, 2013

How Can Love Complain !

( When enough is not enough )

Driving up and down the hills of Mussoorie on my scooter, just before my early retirement, I used to tell God "Wait till I have leisure like you and sit with you" !

And finally that day came. I always wanted to volunteer but never had enough time. The only way I could convince myself was by saying "Charity begins at home". Once I finished all the responsibilities, I started volunteering at Sunnyvale Shridih Sai Temple.

Every Thursday morning devotees used to sing Baba's bhajans. I used to hear enchanting stories of some devotees.Each one's life was so different from the other's.People after people poured in either to ask for favors or thank HIM for favors and blessings bestowed on them.

I thanked Baba everyday for letting me be with him. Most people wished for jobs, homes, children, money, health e.t.c. When people used to ask what was the favor Baba bestowed on me I used to say, "He helps me enjoy leisure". 

Despite having best jobs and living in the best part of the world, people had tons of complaints about their lives. When enough is not enough ! Most devotees returned or stopped coming but for one. Sunshine or rain, she never missed attending the noon aarti. Always smiling and cheerful, uncomplaining and thankful. I always wanted to speak to her but could never dare to interrupt her meditation in the Temple. She saw no one in the room, sang bhajans or meditated silently. Soaked in Baba's devotion she was a true devotee.

Finally one day, I stayed longer than her in the temple. When she was leaving, I approached her and asked her to share few moments with me.I told her how I admired her devotion and presence every Thursday and asked her to bless me and give me some message. 

And she did. Her message was "Never ever complain for anything in life".

She was in Love with God. She had no complaints in life. On the contrary she thanked God for sparing her from not seeing the dark side of life.

Her eye surgery had gone worse from bad. Instead of getting better sight, she had lost sight in both her eyes ! Yet she arrived and left the temple everyday with a smile. 

How can love ever complain !

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

When love got misfired !

I was 23 in my dream city Delhi. In Love with love and life !

They were the love of my life ! All of them. Were and still are !

The girls came in the staff room. They complained their money got stolen everyday. We kept an eye. Books got stolen, pens got stolen, our peace got stolen ! Clueless and lost, I wondered who was stealing things and why ?

I called in the monitor, an all rounder smart boy, to discuss. Asked him to have a 24/7 vigil around. Nothing worked ! Whatever could be sold was stolen everyday from the classroom.

Trying to solve the mystery in my head, failing everyday, I found my frustration rising its head loud and high.

A knock at the door busted that loud silence in my head. What the two boys told knocked my senses out ! To cut the story short, I was told that the monitor of the class stole things to buy drugs.


I refused to believe it. But trusted those boys. Called in the monitor to search for drugs in his pockets. Much against my wishes, made another boy search his pockets, socks,shoes. How happy
and relieved I was when I found nothing. Called in his best friend. Asked him why did he humiliate his friend like that.He burst into tears saying ' Ma'am save him, check him again, he has hid the drug in his folded sleeves'. Hell broke on me when I discovered a slim, long case from his folded sleeve.

There was no point in reporting the matter then and there to the Principal or other staff members as finals were within days.I wanted to save and not destroy the boy by issuing him a transfer certificate.
He was sent from a small city to Delhi for higher and better education.He lived with his sister's family, they used him for finishing daily chores and raising their twins.

I consulted a doctor, talked him out of drugs. There were no more thefts. Peace returned. But it was short lived.I was threatened in the corridor by an ex student for stopping the monitor from buying drugs.They had lost a member of their gang. When I questioned the ex student to talk to me like that in school premise he roared and left,saying ' I'll see you outside school'

When the last bell rang, my entire class was soaked in fear and I in courage. I started my scooter and made the monitor sit behind me to take him to my house for safety. No sooner I left the gate and hit the road I was surrounded by boys with hockey sticks and cycle chains. They demanded to release the boy. I refused and drove him to my house. My parents accepted him with open arms and hearts. He became a part of my family.

Peace returned as the ex student again met me in the corridor next day. But this time he did not threaten me but fell at my feet crying and saying ' Wish I had a teacher like you.Its my word that no one will ever touch him now ' My monitor became the star of the school. He got the best grades and was awarded the best student of the year. Needless to say for months I and my family spent huge amounts of time nurturing him.

But love got misfired !

His best friend knocked at the door and came in again. He said 'Ma'am please save HIM'
Who now ?

"The monitor. He is on drugs again".

When I called him to my room and asked him ' What happened, why did U start again '
He broke my heart in hundred pieces saying " Ma'am you loved me more when I was on drugs, now I wait for you to call and love me. See you finally did "

Love got misfired !

Friday, August 3, 2012


Life is all about good company.

Ever since she was born she was surrounded with company.Her baby sitter used to stroll her down in her stroller to the park amongst giggles and screams of joy. She was welcomed by her tiny tot friends. They played till their mothers pulled them away to go back home. She loved going to 'play school' and grew out of her Kindergarden stage within no time it seems. Getting ready and going to school was fun for her, not, coming back home. Because at home she felt alone and lonely. Her toys were lifeless. At best she enjoyed watching video's or listening to songs. Her biggest question everyday used to be '' With whom should I play ?''

As years rolled by she surrounded herself with friends. She is at her best when she is with friends. I would watch her from my balcony in Cupertino playing with kids from different cultures, background and ages. Children would walk in and walk out of the lawns on a Summer, Spring or Winter afternoon, but she would be the last one to drag her feet back home unwillingly. Age,size,gender,nothing mattered to her. I knew she was fond of friends. But there was something I didn't know.

Lisa asked me if she could baby sit her son, Mary asked me if she could teach her 5 yr old, Jyoti loved her playing with her daughter, Lucy wanted her to dog sit her dog. All of them had one thing to say ''she is so good with kids and pets.'' Well she wanted to do all these but as luck would have it, she got a chance to volunteer at a playground playing soccer with school kids. Every Sunday she used to be super excited about going there. I knew why!

One day out of curiosity I decided to go there to pick her up and see for myself. I saw a large field where people were divided in groups and playing. I sifted through the kids, looking for her. The place was full of cheers, yells, screams, applauds and noises.The greatest cheering came from far away. I was not sure whether I should go and check that or look for her around. The noises were so big that my steps automatically moved in that direction. I realized all the school kids were differently abled. Some were holding crutches, others were limping or they were having one or the other challenge. Now it became clear to me why parents were cheering up their kids so frantically with whom volunteers were playing soccer.

I heard a kid laughing out loud, real loud, and this laughter was followed by a louder laughter of the crowd assembled. I saw her standing at the other end,holding a soccer ball which looked funny, ready to strike, calling out ''Michel, are U ready''. And he yelled with all his power ''Yes I am''. Even before she kicked or threw the ball in his direction, the crowd started clapping and cheering Michel.Michel.Michel……..She rolled the ball in his direction, and yes he hit it back hard, real hard….and away rolled the ball.

Happy Tears were flowing down my eyes. My daughter was playing soccer with a funny ball which beeped. Michel was kicking the ball despite being blind from his birth!


Friday, July 27, 2012

Love me Back

Love me back

Loving heart knows nothing else but to love everybody unconditionally.

 Loving and being loved are two sides of love coin. Have we ever heard people say, 'Love me back.' Most of the times when people say, 'I LOVE YOU' they actually mean 'Love me back.' How strange but true! 'I love you' should actually mean, 'I love you unconditionally no matter what.' But when love is not returned, people become resentful and revengeful. They kill love in their hearts and become loveless. Love that they claim vanishes like thin air within minutes of non acceptance or rejection as they call it.

Either love is overrated or misunderstood or mismanaged by most. When 'I love  you' means 'Love me back', its not loving. Its demanding love. Love is inspired not demanded or begged. Love is not a currency to be exchanged, to be bought or sold. Love happens! It can't be forced on anyone. A heart which is unkind can never experience real love. A loving heart is a kind heart, a tender heart. What makes us miserable can't be love. If love is to conquer its not love. If one stoops to conquer, its not love. Love is not a bargain. If love turns in pain, misery, revenge, remorse, it is not love but possessiveness. Love is joy. Love is freedom. Love is bliss. Love is giving more than receiving.

Instead of pestering for love we need to become LOVE and loving for everyone around us. What goes around comes around. How can we UNLOVE someone we Love. Have we been lying to ourselves and others.How can love be conditional. We can accept someone's love but how can we demand anyone to love us back? True Love comes back full circle so if its for real, stay in love, stay loving no matter what. If we are happy when our love is happy and sad when our love is sad, we surely are in love. Love is loving and staying in love,its not asking someone to love us back.

If we Un love our love, we were never in love....if we wish unhappiness on our love, we were never in love, if we kill our love, we are not in love. Stay and keep loving, no matter what!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Storm of Love


                                         I could watch the main road from my pent house.I could see the school bus stop and watch the kids get down.I knew it took just a few minutes to reach home.I also knew what kept her away,busy and playful,happy and screaming with joy.I knew what she was doing while I awaited her arrival along with Flash and Vito at home.Both of them could hear the bus break along with me and couldn't wait like me for her to get back home.They all waited like us,all of them.Some of them hanging on the main gate,others greeting her on street,some following her.She had a kind word,a pat,a touch,a scream for each one of them whether they lived in homes or streets.She was like a storm of love for all of them exactly at the same time everyday.The language shared by them was alien to us but familiar to them.The whole neighborhood used to erupt like a storm,no one could ever stop.The roars of love multiplied with each step she took.She stormed fearlessly and lovingly amongst them while onlookers ignored or feared away.That was the happiest half an hour for her on her way back home.She knew their names if they had one ,if not she gave them one.She was like a Pied Piper for them.Everybody knew her as the girl who knew and loved them all.Yes as eight years old, she knew each and every dog which lived as a pet in every home or every street in our neighborhood.I watched a storm of love striking the street from my terrace every afternoon along with Flash and Veto our two pet dog's,waiting to be struck by it.Flash and Veto never stopped participating in the love chorus of their clan barking their hearts out till she hugged and played with them.She never stopped laughing,playing,jumping,cuddling,yelling out of joy till she climbed the steps back home returning their love calls.I am reminded of all this today after my daughter reacted negatively to my Face book status,'If we keep kicking every barking dog we can never reach our destination' apparently liked and commented by many.She didn't like it a bit and for sure.Her reaction which I should have known was '' Mom why kick them,why not pat and love them on your way. You surely will reach your destination no matter what,with lot of joy in your heart.Lesson learnt from my own creation of love.Barking dogs need more love,care and attention than anyone else,give them some too on your way.My heart stepped up from Love to Compassion.