An Armour with dents


“So as far as fairy tales go, there is always a damsel in distress. Sure does help if the damsel is the princess of the land. Lovely as heaven and delicate and fragile as our soaring egos 🙂

The tale remains incomplete without a charming prince. Charming in every way possible. This aint that kinda story. Well at least not entirely!

The land was happy. The king was fair and just. Two apples of his eyes, his queen and his perfect princess Ellena. For a while, their happiness knew no bounds. As far as fairy tales go, such happiness is never meant to last. And it didn’t either. No surprises there. You see, Ellena was cursed with a spell. The day she turned 18, she was to sleep a dead person’s sleep.

The jester thought it wasn’t a big deal. 18 was the legal age to hit the local tavern. An evening in the tavern usually resulted in a dead person’s sleep. Ale… The tavern sold the best ale in the kingdom.

Unfortunately, the joke was all a joke and it could not be anything beyond that. The princess hit 18, and that night when she slept, she wouldn’t wake up the day after. She wouldn’t wake the day that followed. The weeks and months that followed brought no new welcome change. This worried the king a lot. Word was sent to all the kingdoms around that the prince who could wake her up, would win her hand and could rule their land as well.

Princes gathered. Princes wondered. A smart prince had figured out a plan that could work. Blood of a slain dragon, its final breath of fire were what it would take for the princess to awaken from her slumber of slumbers. The prince called upon his bravest of knights. The task was handed and a quest had begun.

It took a while. It wouldn’t be much of quest if it could be accomplished that easy. The knight braved the elements, he braved his fears and finally braved the nasty dragon. Blood was shed, scars were newly made. End of the day, a dragon was slain, its blood in a jar and its breathe of fire was kept burning bright.

A gala celebration was in order. Ellena was finally up. The prince held her hand. He was her celebrated hero. The two kingdoms rejoiced. Lovely princess and a handsome prince. A pair tailored to perfection. A match made in heaven indeed. The frenzy could not be curtailed. The people were overjoyed. Ale flowed like a raging river and merry was made all the while.

Far away in a corner, a concerned young lad frowned. He was the knight’s young apprentice. New to the ways of the world. He thought courage and gallantry were the currencies used by knights to gather fame and admiration of the masses around. His inexperience showed. His eagerness was obvious. His disappointment could not be masked. But you did the dirty work, he protested. You slayed the dragon. You brought the princess back to her life. The world will never speak of you or your deeds of courage. The world will never hear your solemn promise to uphold the words of your oath. Its not fair, he worried.

The knight couldn’t help but smile. His young apprentice had a lot to learn. Swords and battle were a child’s play compared to the many lessons of life one picks. His young apprentice had a long way to go.

You see, the knight started. I’m a knight by choice. My courage is a making of my choice. I choose to throw my life to dangerous quests. I choose to risk getting killed for kicks and fun. I never wanted princesses yearning for my return. I am not what kings are made of. I don’t really aspire for riches untold. I love my life. I love the roads long. I love my steed , its loyal ways of life. I love to live by my blade. And better still, I am in immense love with this armour of mine, he said pointed to his bashed up beaten dented armour.

What? This armour? , the young apprentice remarked. He could not comprehend the mediocre ambitions of his teacher. The armour was an armour like any other. It was not special in any way possible. It was old, tarnished and the shine had long worn off. This made no sense to him. His teacher was now a disappointment too. He lacked ambition, he lacked fame. the worst, he lacked that desire to even dream of ambitions. The young apprentice felt that he had wasted his life following a wrong teacher.

This one? whats so special about this one?? It will barely survive another quest. You must be joking , said the young apprentice.

The knight smiled. This was my very first armour. It continues to be the only armour I’ve ever had. Do you know why?

The apprentice shook his head. He had no clue what so ever!!!

You see little lad, the blacksmith. A wonderful daughter he has. She’s my biggest fan. Better than bards, she knows my tales. More than my life, she owns my heart. There is a lot of love and care that goes when she mends my armour. She restores it. She keeps me alive and she keeps our love alive. The secret to life is, my little apprentice, not all fairy tales are of princesses and princes …. there is a lot to a tale beyond the walls of a castle.

The young apprentice understood it all now. A knight in pursuit of treasure is always a restless one. Reckless ambition that usually invites reckless death. His teacher was not that kind. He had found his dearest and most precious treasure. That changed everything. Not mediocre, not lacking ambition. Just the smile of a satisfied content man.



The reincarnated

The long aged question over the case of reincarnation and rebirths has always been confined to the realms beyond the one that really matters. Are we not all creatures either trapped or pushing through in the land of the living. And yet our fascination lies beyond.

A very small gesture made me wonder about the chilling pragmatism behind the thought of reincarnation.

To understand the nature of reincarnation, one should first start by understanding the nature of both life and it’s grand conclusion, the big D. We choose to believe that we are born once and die just once in a given lifetime. That’s a fair understanding. The span is measured by the years clocked. A passage of time reveals the quality of the time well spent.

Here is the premise to a thought. Life or death as we know it, just happens to be a continuous process rather than discrete one off events marked by two distinct calendar dates. How can one even dare calling these events as a continuous process rather than the one off that these really are? By looking closely at the definitions of what each of the words mean, I think we can take a leap in a newer direction.

There are folks who are dead to me. I deny their existence. I do not acknowledge them. Such a cold indifference robs them of their existential identity. In short, even a living breathing bruising person is no more different than the other state. Haven’t we been in that spot. The years that we have clocked, we come across an ocean of people walking in and out of our lives. Some are cherished and kept alive through our memories. Some are buried dead to never surface in our thoughts. The deeper they stay buried, the lesser they resurface in our thoughts. The chosen few vanish even from our sub conscious trail.

The digital age is a wonderful proof of such a living. We add a lot, block a lot, ignore a lot. We learn to tolerate many folks and we learn to keep away from a healthy lot too. The digital age is one where there are births and deaths everyday. Memories are formed and memories get buried. It’s now a way of life.

Keeping this context, think about reincarnation. I’ve ‘Deleted’ more people than I can remember. I’ve added them again. The cycle of adding and deleting goes on. Is this any different from the certain said reincarnation? A return welcome, does it not start from scratch, the trail of the past catches up soon. There is a healing process and we also have the fair opportunity to not learn anything from the cycle of births.

This free will to learn or unlearn or continue in the path of an ignorant bliss is no different from the lessons of a soul theory. The theory of a soul is very much along the lines of what one’s soul would have to go through in order to complete itself. The digital age does that to us everyday. We are psychologically being groomed to handle gains and losses. We endure, we suffer, we celebrate.

Its funny how a flawed memory helps me see patterns that otherwise go unnoticed. I remember the moments, I remember the words, I remember the weather and the sights and sounds that surrounded me. I just don’t remember the 10 digits of our digital avatar that gives us an identity. Left unturned in a decrepit corner of bytes of available memory space of the phone that I call smart, rested the last remnant of a trail of words. I relived the moment. I gave the digits a name. I gave it an identity. I resurrected the dead. For a brief moment, I was Doctor Victor Frankenstein. I had given life to the inanimate. t’was alive a moment.

I smiled at my silliness and pondered over the frailty of a life, a digital life
. What I gave , I took it back in a jiffy. The dead stayed dead. Buried again. Mourning and staying forgotten were waiting to recur.

The thoughts made me wonder about the whole case of reincarnation. It happens everyday and yet we fixate on things that are beyond reason and deny the existence of a phenomenon that is as real as sun’s warmth. I smiled over the hypocrisy of our belief system.



Who let the cats out

“Reality when stated, ceases to be a reality any longer” – Katz

What a trippy statement to being a Friday huh!  I decided to crawl the alleys of wiki to understand about the feline which has caught a quite a few tongues in its lifetime.

Schrodinger’s cat is a thought experiment. It challenges the superposition of states. I think that translates to the fact that at any given point, there are multiple choices and options that are waiting to be made. The outcome of the event, of course depends on what is done.

The experiment deals with placing a cat in a rather hazardous environment and then sadistically and still cynically declaring that at any given moment, the cat is both alive and dead.

This is definitely my dumbed down interpretation of the thought experiment. Cophenhagen interpretation is deemed to be the closest one that catches the crux of the experiment. And it goes something like this . “A system stops being a superposition of states and becomes either one or the other when an observation takes place “. I pulled that one out from Wiki.

Whats really interesting about this? There is a certain Kat, who is writing about another cat. We are talking about a dead dude who coined the phrase, cat in the box. What is the big deal about it?

The interpretation caught my fancy. It simply articulates that when an observation takes place, the superposition of states (Superposition is the ability to exist as multiple states. I think its a seamless existence that transcends the boundaries and limitation of different states) goes for a toss!!!!!!!!

Historically, none of these would have made any sense to me. There is a change in the horizon and as I evolve, my understanding of things around me also does evolve.

Much of the motivational messages that we get, a whole lot of philosophies and spirituality theories often talk about committing to a moment. The present to be precise. They all talk about how we can make our tomorrow a better place. They all invest efforts into powerful words that give us a push to change our inertia. All that is fine. Here is where things start getting trippy.

Lets go back to the interpretation. It says that superposition ceases the moment an observer observes the event. Lets talk about reality. I did start this blog on a note about reality. What is reality after all? Many a times, our reality is a sum total observation of all the things that surround us and are happening around us. They can be good bunch of things. Happy thoughts and events. They can be sad and promote negative thoughts in our head. OR they can be totally lousy events which crush us.

Either way we see it , call it. The minute we add an adjective to it. The minute we define the parameters around an event. It becomes an observation. Its an observation based on our experiences, our interpretation which passes through our refined filters of bias. The minute there is an adjective to it, the event’s ability to exist as multiple states ceases.

How does this come into the picture? I had a very brief conversation with Anya last evening. We were talking about the nature of how reputation works. There are folks who like the way I work and totally endorse my approach towards problem solving. There are folks who hate the way I work. These folks do tend to disapprove my working style. Multiple states. What is real? What is me? Who am i really? Am I a good manager or Am I really the wrong guy in the right place and the role?

Once again, the magic of observation kicks in. I am what i am, as observed by people around me. Brilliant philosophy too. We are what we are. Then again, are we really what we claim because there is someone to validate it. Validation could either be approval or disapproval. Hence, the flawed definition of what it is to be us.

We are what we are, irrespective of how we see ourselves or how others view us. We make our choices. People and also ourselves, we witness how we choose and act. We get measured (fancy word for Judged) against this yard stick. Thats the way of the world.

Back to reality. As long as we dont poke around it, dont call it out, it is what it is. In terms of repercussions of that statement, I choose to think that whatever happens, happens. We either tend to make it better or make it worse because of how we choose to see it.

I started this morning on a note that I’m not worthy. I indulged in that thought for 15 minutes. I hit the gym. The sweat made me feel otherwise. I concluded that I am what i am and i’m a work in progress. Time would help me get better at being myself. And then the irony hit me. Both my trepidation and optimism, are they really real?

Imagine that. So much misery, so much pain, so many doubts… considering that they are all based on a momentary observation of an event unfolding itself. They are all real, because we make it real. they are all unreal, because they are.

What a cat day huh!!!!