Spider web

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Spider web is dusted,

I am not you,

I can’t take the feeling,

What are you,

So big yet so small,

Mouses run in fear,

I discourse,

What the spider says,

Are you afraid of me or not,

Inside I feel hot,

So I say why not,

The spider laughs and says,

You better run if you know you’re best,

I giggle and reply,

Do you want too know why,

Why what are you saying,

I am smiling and laughing,

Then I said,

We had a conversation,

Isn’t that amazing,

Why don’t we meet again,

Soon we can be friends,

The spider was afraid,

He looked at the damage,

that was already made,

How can I repay you for this insight of yours,

I said just be brave and discourse,

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Ayub’s Recipe (A Very Short Story)

It’s bound to be utterly delicious “, he said, “cooks are from Qatar, no joke.”

I was waiting for my turn sitting in a corner with my head buried in the newspaper when this remark made me look up; he was cutting hairs of an elderly half-bald man while talking to another old guy sitting at the other end of the pew, almost on the edge, with his head tilted to the left like he was really enjoying either the talk or the wait, not that he had that much time on his plate at this age but he wouldn’t have any choice, I thought.

Ayub is talkative and it works out well for his profession as a barber. You could spend hours listening to his narratives and not get bored.

“Only thing is, that I am not invited”, he continues, “and he is”, he adds further pointing to the soda stall next to his shop.
“This is funny because I was the one who introduced them, and now they seem to be going at it without me”, he said with a scoff followed by a grin, and then a self-assuring smile which remained plastered to his face for few more minutes until he started to speak again, “Have you ever had such a relishing dish?”, asked he to the other old man sitting at the corner of the bench.

Man shook his head.

At this point Ayub picks up a different pair of scissors and steps out for a few seconds, looks here and there on the road and then stares at the hardware store across the road from his shop.

They are going too”, he said as he started trimming moustaches of the man in the chair, “You should know the recipe is pretty special and intriguing, let me tell you.”

He goes on without waiting for any response, “First chicken will be washed in detergent powder for an hour..”, I tilted my head, “..then it will be dried out and immersed in boiling kerosene.”

I was trying to find any hint of jest on his face but it looked sincere as he continued telling about the recipe.
“Once fried in kerosene, four bags of chewing-tobacco will be poured into it and then it will be mixed and mashed into keema.”
And he remarked, “Who would not want to be invited to a party where one will be served with such delicious chicken-keema!”

I continued staring at his face in awe and amusement. If he was laughing in the inside, he certainly was doing a great job hiding the expressions from showing up on his face and in his sad but twinkling eyes.

“That is what takes him through the day.. he keeps amusing himself and everyone around him”, I thought to myself.

I was interrupted by a nonchalant voice, “You’re next! Please come”, it was Ayub, smiling at me as I rose and went to sit in the chair.

Words can change our present reality

Dear friends,

How are you all doing?  I am sure you are reading and learning something new every day.

Recently, I was reading the “Rich Dad’s Guide to Investing” by Robert T. Kiyosaki.  I had been meaning to read the “Rich Dad Poor Dad” for a very long time but finally got around to reading this book of his. Just few pages into the book and I read something that I felt was relevant for me.

One of the lines that caught my attention was “If you want to see a person’s past, present and future, just listen to his or her words.”

This line is not to judge anybody. If we apply this to our life, we definitely see a connection  between our choice of words and who we have become.  This also means that if we don’t like who we have become, it can be changed by changing our choice of words.

In my case, I used to be a very negative person.  If anything happened in my life, good or bad, my first thought would always be negative. Now, how was that possible? For example, if something bad happened then it was easy to be negative but if something good happened (suppose I scored very good marks) then I would be scared that it would go away (what if next time I did not do well?).

I still do have a little bit of negativity in me but there has been a considerable improvement in how I see myself now.  There are days when I feel low and I use demotivating words, but now I am conscious about them and try to come out of them as soon as possible.

Another powerful line from the book:

“Words form thoughts, thoughts form realities and realities become life. The primary difference between a rich person and a poor person is the words he or she uses.  If you want to change a person’s external reality, you need to first change that person’s internal reality.  That is done through changing, improving or updating the words he or she uses.”   

So to be a happy person, I need to use happy and positive words which will raise my vibrations  and take me into a positive zone.  That is why gratitude is considered to be the first step in becoming a positive person.  It helps us see our blessings, whatever maybe our situation, and this in turn sets momentum for more blessings to come into our lives.

To bring about a change in our present reality, we have to change ourselves internally and first thing that can be done is use of positive or constructive words.  These words will start giving shape to our thoughts and before we know we will start seeing the positive changes in our lives.

It is very important for us to have more positive words in our vocabulary.  Just think whether you speak more positive words or negative words.  We are so used to talking about the problems happening around us, that at times we have long conversations just discussing problems – our life, the society, the nation, the world at large. Increasing the vocabulary of positive words will keep us in a positive frame of mind eventually making us  happy persons.

I had read a similar thing in “The Power of Positive Thinking” by Norman Vincent Peale where he gave a method to come out of a negative state of mind.  He said  to become positive , one exercise to do was to make a list of all positive words that we could think off till we became positive.  So once when I was not in a good mood, I started typing all the positive words that I knew and by the time I wrote some fifteen words, my mood had changed. Now I know more positive words than I have ever known.

Positive affirmations  are another powerful tool to stay positive and believe that things are working out in the best possible manner for us. Affirmations are positive words put together but they become powerful when we believe in them and then let go.

So what can you do about it?  How can you change your use of negative words into positive? Here are few things that you can do.

  1. When you feel negative, first accept it and don’t fight it. The more you fight it, the more intense it becomes. Take slow steps to convert it.
  2. Think about a positive word, look at its meaning and then use it in a sentence. By the time you do the same exercise for 2-3 words, your mood will begin to change; or just like me start making a list of all the positive words you know, you can even google and find new words.
  3. Then, start writing gratitude for at-least 5 things that you remember at that moment. This will make you feel good about what you currently have.
  4. Then dance, hear music, go for a walk, meet friends etc.  Do whatever you feel like doing.  (I used to crochet because it used to divert my mind from negative thoughts into positive and happy thoughts.  I now hear songs that motivate me and uplift me.)
  5. By this time you will be in a very happy state and to further enhance it start saying some powerful affirmations for health, career, relationships etc. Repeat them again and again till they feel real to you and then let go.

All these steps together won’t take a lot of time and before you know you will be in a positive mind frame.

Gradually, you will start noticing a shift in your overall thought process as well.  The negative thoughts will be replaced by more positive ones.  If anything bad happens, you will be calm and you will try to look for something good in it.  Also, if  you do get negative thoughts, you will immediately realize it and automatically take steps to change your thoughts instead of worrying about them.

Words have great power.  So let us use them carefully and positively for our own good and for the world at large.  Let us pray for peace and harmony rather than discussing wars.

Love,

Rashmi

Finding True Beauty in the 21st Century [Video]

Beauty is more than skin deep

Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name; worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness. [Psalm 29:2 KJV]

 The first of a new continuing Sunday series about Godly virtues

What do you believe is beautiful? Is beauty a judgment of the eye from one person to another? Is the beauty of a piece of music only realized by what is heard?

Beauty is often thought of as a matter of personal taste and opinion about someone or something which is seen or heard. Yet especially in the 21st Century, beauty appears to reflect popularity rather than individual tastes.

This idea of beauty is not exclusive to today. But at this time in history, beauty and popularity are linked in the cultural psyche like never before.

That notion of beauty is both false in its premise and shortsighted in its viewpoint. Beauty does not rest on any human opinion and goes far beyond human senses.

That factor has been tossed aside over the past fifty years or so, and true beauty is losing true meaning today.

Beauty Goes Beyond the Senses

MosesA line from the classic movie “The Ten Commandments,” has Charleton Heston as Moses speaking to the Egyptian queen Nefretiri. She is trying to seduce him away from his faith in God with her physical enchantments.

Upon hearing that Moses also “is bound to a shepherd girl,” the queen compares her sensual attributes to those of that shepherd girl:

Are her lips dry and cracked from the sun? Or are they red and moist like a pomegranate? Is it the scent of myrrh in her hair? Or is it the odor of sheep!

In response to her flirtations, Moses replies,

There is a beauty beyond the senses Nefretiri. A beauty like the quiet of green valleys and still waters. A beauty of the spirit you cannot understand.

Society used to hold the view of Moses about beauty. Today, society holds the view of Nefretiri.

The beauty of sensuality which is truly only “skin deep.” True beauty is beyond the senses reaching the depth of the spirit within.

To recover such beauty, we must reach for the beauty of the spirit. The beauty we cannot understand in our natural being.

Why Beauty Is Not Understood

Spiritual beautyBeauty is not understood in our natural selves. At least, not in what science understands as natural. That is because beauty exists as a concept or an idea.

It is an invisible entity. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary online defines beauty as:

1: the quality or aggregate of qualities in a person or thing that gives pleasure to the senses or pleasurably exalts the mind or spirit

Beauty exists without being matter or energy. It cannot be measured as if it were a geometric form or a linear distance.

Therefore, beauty cannot be understood materially. It must be understood spiritually.

This doesn’t mean beauty cannot be appreciated naturally. Humans can and do learn to view and judge art and literature as ‘beautiful’ in a subjective sense.

The same is true about how we look at the “beauty” of an animal and yes, of another human being. It is interesting to note that only humans even realize such a thing as beauty exists.

Animals, even the most intelligent of animals, know nothing of beauty. But as culture and tastes change, so does the human judgment of what is beautiful.

A subjective, ever-changing concept of beauty will never recover true beauty because it cannot understand beauty spiritually.

Understanding Beauty Spiritually

AngelsOne cannot recover something that someone else lost without understanding something about the object. If my friend loses his cell phone, I could not recover it for him unless I knew some specific details about it.

I need all of those details to be sure I recovered the phone that belonged to him. Without them, I may find a phone, but it won’t be the phone he lost.

The same thing is true on a much larger scale when it comes to beauty. The scale is larger because we cannot sense beauty, and everyone acknowledges that beauty exists.

Beauty in its truest form cannot be described in the same way a lost cell phone could. It also cannot be owned by a human like a cell phone.

Yet, I would submit that beauty does indeed have an owner. Beauty is ‘owned’ by the One who created beauty in the first place, the LORD God.

Society lost beauty because of losing contact with the owner. And, like everything that ends up lost, one must be in contact with the owner in order to recover it.

The Road to Recovering Beauty

The road to recovering beauty involves a transfer of faith from ourselves to the LORD. That is, we must lose faith in our own judgment of beauty and gain faith in the Divine beauty.

This is a simple proposition, however, it is far from an easy one. This is not easy because we are so influenced and bombarded with popular ideas of what and who is ‘beautiful.’

These depictions must be transcended to see that the first principle of recovering authentic beauty is to look toward the holiness of God.

The word translated “holiness” in Psalm 29:2 is Hebrew for “a sacred place or thing.”
It is anything which is specially set aside to be used for the purposes of God.

This is the key to both defining and recovering beauty. The beauty of holiness is the beauty of the purpose of God.

Recovering beauty for our lives in the 21st century means finding the presence and purpose of God in our lives. It means diving into the Divine wisdom of His Word and absorbing the meaning of beauty from the sacred pages.

It means finding the beauty of a sacred place in your life and mine where we call out to God and can know His grace and love. And it means embracing the sacred path of God’s purpose for each of us to know the beauty of such a life.

May the LORD grant us the wisdom and desire to recover beauty in the 21st century, and may the beauty of holiness become real in our hearts.

D.T. Osborn

Sources: The Holy Bible, King James Version
Brown, Driver, Briggs Hebrew Dictionary, 1906, Public Domain

Featured and top image courtesy of Rick’s Flickr page – Creative Commons License
Inset image 1 courtesy of Prayitno/Thank you for’s Flickr page – Creative Commons License
Inset image 2 courtesy of Alice Popkorn’s Flickr page – Creative Commons License
Inset image 3 courtesy of Alice Popkorn’s Flickr page – Creative Commons License

All other sources linked or cited in the text

Originally published at TILJournal

COMMON ≠ NATURAL


It has been three long months at a B-School while I am still trying to adjust to its hectic ways and demands. Joining a curriculum straight after a weak graduation does not seem to be a wise move but I am glad like few others I have been able to make it and I am breathing fine. While I still panic at times to decipher the meanings of the occurrences around me, I make several observations, few of which need to be learned and many to be discarded as irrelevant happenings. Being one of the youngest people at my college, what I really feel blessed about is when many people confide in me. However some confessions really strike hard leaving me in wonder.
Are we supposed to be going by the worldly ways that are common and seemingly right or abide by our morals that rarely make our conscience speak urging us to take the path that might not be clichéd?
Anyway my purpose is not to question morals regarding what is right or wrong for I feel it is all a personal choice and a matter of the upbringing but yes I wish to assert that what is common is not what is natural!
Being a part of one of the coolest gang in my college, many a times I am offered drinks and cigarettes, however since I am adamant on not trying these, I am more and often forced to go for it in the lieu of missing out something really great and worth trying! What has been strange was when two of the members of the same group approached me personally, individually regarding the issues they had been facing in regard to the addictions. I was really shocked by the fact that those were the same people regretting who were forcing me the most in the group to drink and smoke. Well, I didn’t know how to react while they confessed their regret for they were elder to me. But it was really despicable to know that they were indulging in something that they actually didn’t enjoy. Of course I could easily sense from their conversations that it was a way out to escape from the daily tensions but cannot there be another way to evade the stress levels?
Well, I had no advice for them because I actually didn’t know what would work but all I could explain to them was relatively in terms of how they were getting trapped and succumbing themselves to the slavery of these addictions. Hearing their individual rants, one thing became very clear that all of it starts with peer pressure and the worst part is that despite knowing the harmful impacts, they are unable to quit it.
Another trait of human being that comes forward is that the one who is trapped in this vicious cycle of vices, feels pleasure and relief to have others on the same way as well. Making the incorrect correct has become very common nowadays and so it is really a tough call for people with a gullible mind to follow their intuition. Maybe that is the reason of our dying conscience as the world is so fond of making common vices seem like a natural process and ironically it happens to an extent that the line between the right and the wrong vanishes slowly.
‘Doing what one believes in’ is still not a banal quote to say for most of us still act out of pressure which can be family, peer and societal that succumbs our mind and weakens our heart. Undoubtedly it depletes our aura and breaks our determination for we end up committing regretting actions which we later try to justify by falsely convincing ourselves ‘ it is okay , it happens! ’
Before this article turns out to be a boring moral lesson , I got to write this simple reminder that let us not be a victim of the unconscious moves but rather be thoughtful of the consequences before we again end up doing just another common thing!

My First Blog Post – Hi World!

Remembering Day 1, (May.19.2017) – iSharvi 

This is a story of a girl…” is perhaps a very common and popular beginning of most stories we heard from our parents in childhood. “There was a girl and a boy …to… and all is well that ends well” which is the familiar, popular ending too. As a child, the tragedies of our world do not seem to have any effect on our innocent minds with the exception of extreme cases where we are as well affected. We laughed wholeheartedly. Sometimes, the silence of tragedy would tickle us to giggle despite being conditioned to see tragedy to be of a certain seriousness by society. We fall and we cry, and then the next moment, we are in our own world, in our own plays, being the captains of the ships we sail in the streams and oceans of our dreams. Who we are and who do we become? It is not about making any points and neither decode life as it evolves. This blog is simply the sharing of my journey and insights about life as I feel, understand and live it; learn and know from it. This is the story of a girl. Indeed! The difference being, not that of a fictional character, but one who is breathing her truth. 

🙂

Work, work, work

Sorry I missed yesterday. I did not do a recreational walk. But there is good reason.

I now work at a Hotel as Housekeeper. I have to be there at 8 am. With Autumn and Winter coming on sunrise isn’t until 6:30ish. While I get home between 2 pm and 5 pm I am A) Sore and tired B) Have other things to do and C) Soon sunset will be too early to walk after work.

This does not mean I am giving up my daily walks. I will still walk on my days off and on the treadmill. Though pictures of my time/distance will not be as interesting.

Right now though is still a physical adjustment to the work. I ran my walking app only during my shift yesterday, it registered almost 6 miles of walking. My hours yesterday were 8 am to 2:30 pm. The app does not measure all the bending, lifting, stretching and other physcial movement I do.

I have done Housekeeping before. I have been a server. When I worked food service at Target I not only walked but lifted frozen boxes of breadsticks among other things.

I have worked office jobs as well. What I have learned is I need to work the physically demanding jobs. I feel better overall when I do.

Got off subject a bit there. Point of this rambling is I will try and post pictures of daily walks as often as possible…they may be futher apart or not as interesting.

Walking Music

Not sure if I am headed outside to walk today. Might be a treadmill day.

Either way I wanted to share what is on my walking play list.

“Electric Daisy” Lindsey Stirling

“Elements” Lindsey Stirling

“Shadows” Lindsey Stirling

“Shatter Me” Lindsey Stirling

Yes, I like Lindsey Stirling.

“Rx” Theory of A Deadman This would be one of my ironic choices.

“Closing Time” Semisonic This would be the other.

“Believer” Imagine Dragons

“Rise” Katy Perry

“My Favorite Game” Cardigans

“Start A War” Klergy

“Leader of Men” Nickleback

There you have it. If you thing this list is a bit eclectic you should know I have one big YouTube play list with over 300 songs on it. I have other list which include but are not limited to: 30’s Swing/Big Band, K-Pop, Techno and Classical.

My favorite artists include: Nirvana, Frank Sinatra, Queen, Johnny Cash, Patsy Cline, Garth Brookes, Lindsey Stirling, Katy Perry. Big Bang (who I saw in concert), Guns N’ Roses, Baby Metal (who I also saw in concert), Ozzy Osbourne (my first concert-OzFest) and Mozart, Vivaldi and Gershwin.

Some of my favorite songs include, New York, New York, Come As You Are, Gimme Chocolate, No More Tears, Low Places, Rhapsody in Blue, Fat Bottomed Girls and Bicycle Race, and Four Seasons.

Even if I don’t post pictures today I hope I inspire some of you to expand your musical comfort zone.

Rain Rain Go Away

Good news my voice is back. Bad news. More rain. Which is good for farmers…sorta…a bit late though.

However! I started a job as Housekeeper at Holiday Inn Express today. Talk about miles walked!

Hoping the rain up so I can get some fresh air walking time in (and pictures) tomorrow.

Rainy Days & Runaway Cows

So I posted on my blog, acliddle.blog, yesterday that was unable to walk due to rain and the migraine that came with it.

Today it is still raining and while I do not feel sick, I have lost my voice, and I am fatigued.

Rather than another missed post I thought I would tell a couple of stories about loose cows.

I am not sure how they got out but in both cases their escapes were precipitated by…well precipitation..rain, and storms. I am not sure if the cows became restless or what but there it is.

The first story: I was driving home from work, on the backroads through the country. Ahead of me I saw three cars in the on coming lane with their flashers on. Then I saw in my lane, heading towards me a what looked to be pregnant cow. I was able to get around her, for she was not to be detoured from her path. Further down the road I saw the possible pasture she had escaped from. Then I noticed in the ditch another cow who had decided to take a walk. This cow did not look pregnant.

The second story: Today I was riding with a friend; we were going into town for errands. We came around a curve, right before a small bridge and there meandering around, were six cows on the side of road. Not sure what pasture they came from. They were gone by the time we were headed back.

Ah Life in the Country.