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Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Thoughtful stories to ponder

An Art Of Subtraction
- ponder and attempt
I have watched my parents very successfully practice the art of subtraction. It really works. I had Money, Property, Family and so forth. It was a mirage I was living in. 

Now I have very little, but I am better off. I thought it would be difficult to 'Let Go'. Nature did it for me. I am grateful for that. People Buy large Cars, Homes and amass wealth. I have come down to a Scooter from a Car, a 1 BHK from a much larger apartment. From a large city to a lesser one and now moving to an even smaller place in the wilderness.

Each time I SUBTRACT I feel better. The Mantra I have learnt is :
 "If you wish to be happy, you have to learn to subtract'

The Art Of Subtraction

The tendency of our lives, businesses, art, is to keep adding: more furniture, clothes, gadgets, tasks, appointments, features to websites and apps, words to our writing.

Continual addition is not sustainable or desirable :-

Too many things to do means we’re always busy, with no time for rest, stillness, contemplation, creativity, time with loved ones.

Overwhelming customers with choices means they’re less likely to make an actual choice. They’d prefer that we curate the best.

Too many possessions is clutter, visual stress, cleaning, maintenance, debt, less happiness.

Too many tasks makes it harder to focus on any one thing or get anything done.

Too many things we want to learn means, we never learn anything well.

Subtraction is beautiful: it creates space, time, clarity.

Subtraction is necessary: otherwise we are overburdened.

Subtraction can be painful: it means letting go of a child.

Subtraction is an art that improves with practice.
 Subtraction can be practiced on your schedule, task list, commitments list, possessions, reading list, writing, product line, distractions.

What can you subtract right now?
 1) Do not count what u have lost.
Just see what u have now,
Because past never comes back,
But sometimes future can give u back your lost things.
2) Always be the reason of someones happiness,
Never be just a part of it.
Be a part of someones sadness,
But never be the reason for it!
3) "Life is like a FLUTE...
It may have several holes and emptiness,
But if we work on it,

The same holes and emptiness produce Magical Melodies."
.Once upon a time, there was a king. He once declared in his region that any person from his territory who would be able to feed his goat till full satisfaction in a day would be given share in his kingdom.
After hearing about this declaration, a lot of people came to accept the challenging offer. They took the goat one by one and used to feed it throughout the day with green fresh leaves and brought it back to the king at the end of the day. The king used to test whether his goat was satisfied or not by a method. He used to put again green leaves in front of the goat. If the goat would have been satisfied throughout the day, it would not turn towards green leaves put by the king in the evening.
But it was seen that every  time the leaves were put in front of goat in the evening, it again leapt towards the leaves to again feed on them. The episode continued for several months but every time the goat was found not satisfied.
After a long time, one day a wise shepherd came to the king and claimed that he would be able to satisfy his goat. The king gave the goat to him for a day. The shepherd adopted a different method with the goat. He put some green fresh leaves in front of the goat and put a tough stick in his hand. Now every time the goat tried to feed on the leaves, he beat the goat severely with the stick. He continued this process throughout the day and did not let the goat to feed on a single leaf for the whole day. In the evening, he brought back the goat to the king and told the king that his goat was fully satisfied. The king checked by again putting green leaves in front of the goat. Till now the goat had understood that it would be again beaten badly by the stick if it would try to feed on the leaves. So it just did not even look at the leaves and turned its face away from the leaves. The king was very happy to see this scene and declared the shepherd the winner in this challenge and gave his share in the kingdom.
Moral message :- the king represents "the supreme god". The wise shepherd represents "the human intellect" and the goat represents "the human senses". The lesson is that the human mind also keeps running after the illusionary energy of god called "maya" and never gets satisfied with it. But a person who is able to control the wandering mind and engages it in the service of the lord, then he can attain his original position back in the kingdom of god.
_______________________________________________________________________________________________A story with the good Moral

Many years ago a circus was broadcast live on television in front of a large audience, and one of the acts featured a lion tamer and a cage full of Bengal tigers.
The trainer entered the cage and locked the door behind him. The spotlight lighted the cage and as the television cameras moved in closer, the audience watched in suspense. The trainer put the fierce cats through their paces, but in the middle of the performance, the unexpected happened: the power failed and the lights went out!

For twenty or thirty long seconds, the trainer was stranded, locked in with the tigers, knowing they could see him perfectly, but he could not see them at all. His whip and a small stool were all that stood between him and certain death.

But he survived, and when the lights came back on, he finished his performance to a standing ovation. 
Later, in an interview, the trainer was asked how he felt knowing the tigers could see him but he was completely in the dark. He admitted that fear had sent a chill down his spine, but then he realized that the tigers didn't know he couldn't see them. "I just kept cracking my whip," he said, "and I kept talking to them until the lights came back on. And they never knew I couldn't see them."

The parallel to what occasionally happens in our own life is unmistakable.
 At some point, we are all fighting tigers in the dark, terrors we cannot see. But if we trust to what we know, just keep cracking our whip, and wait for the Light, all will be well.
...The Power of Good Words

A group of frogs were traveling through the woods, and two of them fell into a deep pit.

All the other frogs gathered around the pit. When they saw how deep the pit was, they told the unfortunate frogs they would never get out. The two frogs ignored the comments and tried to jump up out of the pit.

The other frogs kept telling them to stop, that they were as good as dead. Finally, one of the frogs took heed to what the other frogs were saying and simply gave up. He fell down and died.

The other frog continued to jump as hard as he could. Once again, the crowd of frogs yelled at him to stop the pain and suffering and just die. He jumped even harder and finally made it out. When he got out, the other frogs asked him, "Why did you continue jumping. Didn't you hear us?"

The frog explained to them that he was deaf. He thought they were encouraging him the entire time.

This story holds two lessons:

1. There is power of life and death in the tongue. An encouraging word to someone who is down can lift them up and help them make it through the day.

2. A destructive word to someone who is down can be what it takes to kill them. Be careful of what you say. Speak life to those who cross your path.

The power of words… it is sometimes hard to understand that an encouraging word can go such a long way. Anyone can speak words that tend to rob another of the spirit to continue in difficult times.
I sat with my friend in a well-known coffee shop in a neighboring town of Venice (Italy), the city of lights and water. As we enjoyed our coffee, a man entered and sat at an empty table beside us. He called the waiter and placed his order saying, ‘Two cups of coffee, one of them there on the wall.’
We heard this order with rather interest and observed that he was served with one cup of coffee but he paid for two.
As soon as he left, the waiter pasted a piece of paper on the wall saying ‘A Cup of Coffee’.
While we were still there, two other men entered and ordered three cups of coffee, two on the table and one on the wall. They had the two cups of coffee but paid for three and left. This time also, the waiter did the same; he pasted a piece of paper on the wall saying, ‘A Cup of Coffee’.
It was something unique and perplexing for us. We finished our coffee, paid the bill and left.
After a few days, we had a chance to go to this coffee shop again. While we were enjoying our coffee, a man poorly dressed entered. As he seated himself, he looked at the wall and said, 'One cup of coffee from the wall'.
The waiter served coffee to this man with the customary respect and dignity. The man had his coffee and left without paying.

We were amazed to watch all this, as the waiter took off a piece of paper from the wall and threw it in the dust bin. Now it was no surprise for us – the matter was very clear. The great respect for the needy shown by the inhabitants of this town made our eyes well up in tears.
Ponder upon the need of what this man wanted... He enters the coffee shop without having to lower his self-esteem… he has no need to ask for a free cup of coffee… without asking or knowing about the one who is giving this cup of coffee to him. He only looked at the wall, placed an order for himself, enjoyed his coffee and left.
... probably the most beautiful wall   you may ever see anywhere....!!!
I was jogging one day and I noticed a person In front of me, about 1/4 of mile. I could tell he was running a little slower than me and I thought, good, I shall try to catch him. I had about a mile to go my path before I needed to turn off. So I started running faster and faster. Every block, I was gaining on him just a little bit. After just a few minutes I was only about 100 yards behind him, so I really picked up the pace and push myself. You would have thought I was running In the last leg of London Olympic competition. I was determined to catch him. Finally, I did It! I caught and passed him by. On the Inside I felt so good.
"I beat him" of course, he didn't even know we were racing.
After I passed him, I realized I had been so focused on competing against him that I had missed my turn. I had gone nearly six blocks past It.
I had to turn around and go all back. 
Isn't that what happens In life when we focus on competing with co-workers, neighbours, friends, family, trying to outdo them or trying to prove that we are more successful or more Important?
We spend our time and energy running after them and we miss out on our own paths to our God given destinies. The problem with unhealthy competition Is that It's a never ending cycle.
There will always be somebody ahead of you, someone with better job, nicer car, more money In the bank, more education, a prettier wife, a more handsome husband, better behaved children, etc. But realize that "You can be the best that you can be, you are not competing  with no one.

The Moral ;

T ak e what God has given you, the height, weight & personality. Dress well & wear It proudly! You 'll be blessed by It. Stay focused and live a healthy life.
There's no competition In DESTINY, run your own RACE.
 The world is full of daily,happy surprises, if we just have eyes to see. 
Have you been surprised lately?
A woman called her pastor. "We just won $10 million in the lottery!" she exclaimed. "But I'm afraid to tell my husband. He has a weak heart and I'm afraid he may have a heart attack. Pastor, would you be able to tell him for me?"
The clergyman thought that perhaps he could, so he came right over and sat down with the man. "What would you do," he began, "if you were to win $500,000 in the lottery?"
"I suppose my wife could quit her job and I could work less and relax more," the man reflected.
"What would you do if you were to win a million dollars?" the pastor continued.
"If I were to win that much we could both retire," the man said. "Life would be easy."
The clergyman forged on. "Well, what would you do if you were to win five million dollars?"
"We could do anything we wanted," he mused. "We could travel, live anywhere in the world and enjoy a life we never dreamed was possible."
Finally he got to it. "Now tell me...what would you do if you won ten million dollars in the lottery?"
"Ten million dollars? Why, if I ever won that much, Pastor, I know one thing for sure. I'd give half of it to you and the church."
You guessed it. The pastor had a heart attack.
I don't know if a gift of massive wealth will turn out as wonderful as one might think, but it's probably a good thing that most surprises don't come in such huge helpings. I think I prefer my surprises to come in smaller, bite-sized portions. Even the good ones. And I'm discovering that the world is full of daily, happy surprises, if I just have eyes to see.
Have you noticed that we will tend to see what we look for and miss most of the rest? I once observed a class instructor hold up a large sheet of white paper. It seemed to be clean except for a black dot in the center made by a heavy marker. He asked us to tell him what we saw. Everyone who raised their hand predictably pointed out the black mark, each describing it differently. Then the teacher asked, “Why didn't anyone say they saw a sheet of white paper?”
Was that answer too obvious? Maybe so, but I often miss the obvious because I'm busy looking for something else. I might be surprised at what I can see if I were to actually look for it.
If I search for mistakes in myself or others, I will find enough to keep me critical for a week. Likewise, if I look every day for what is admirable in others, what is pure in myself and what is lovely in the world, all of these things suddenly become obvious. But the large sheet of white paper is easy to miss when I am searching for black smudges.
Confucius taught, “Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it.” And baseball great Yogi Berra added, “You can observe a lot by watching.” It's about what I'm going to look for, and that's enough of a surprise for me.

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