Tag Archives: Paradox

Is God elsewhere or everywhere?

The energy everyone has!

Energy that everyone has!

Most believers believe God is there but elsewhere. They don’t know where exactly this “Elsewhere” is. They often tend to look or point at sky, which is supposedly be having the heavenly abode.

Notwithstanding the above, believers seek God at the chosen places of worship; they search him is statues, figures, photos and other objects or locations. Ironically, it is a social taboo to ask a very pertinent question – when power of God is all pervading, how come then it can get restricted to specific or selected places or objects?

Their belief goes even further. It believes concentration of God or his power at individual level; some go further to consider it for their community and most expand it to boundaries of their country or a group of countries as if the influence of God’s power can be restricted like circle/s of a cell phone service provider! This is in direct contradiction to their overall belief that God and his power cut across whole universe. It clearly points to God being treated by most as their personal concept, though hardly anyone would admit.

What does enlightened preachers and holy books say

God is not someone’s personal property; he belongs to all and is everywhere. However, they don’t seem to address above predicament or paradox.

What do esteemed leaders say

You have power to make any and everything possible. Sky is your limit. Your power is limited only by the limits you set for yourself.

What is the Truth

Every proof points out to one fact – you have power, potential or perimeters of which can never be estimated or explained by you. Feature of this power is when you are positive, it presents itself and magnifies. But, when you are negative, it penalizes and pushes you down. This is what God is also known for.

Truth equally for believers or nonbelievers is – whatever name you give, this power or God is everywhere, in everyone and therefore, also in you. If you fathom its colossal meaning, you would only love and respect self and others; but never think of hate, hurt, fanaticism, fights, spreading fear/terror or encroaching on others’ freedom!

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Most casual but serious mistake we commit – confusing Seriousness as Sincerity!

Reflection of sincerity! Source: http://www.flickr.com/

It is normally difficult to comprehend colossal difference it can make, when one is serious as opposed to being sincere, though dividing line between the two is very fine even by dictionary meaning!

I had a colleague in a German multinational company in which I had worked, who specialized in X-ray spectrometry. He was too passionate about his work. He showed highest degree of sensitiveness to customers. He would sit late in office and come early in the morning to make sure that he replied to each and every letter and enquiries from his regional sales office counterparts and customers. If anyone pointed out shortcoming in his replies or work, he would be hyperactive and take great deal of time to prove that he had not committed a flaw. He used to be right most of the times. During appraisals year after years, his boss used to give him always highest marks for his sincerity. One morning he reported sick and did not come for few weeks. He was diagnosed for having had high blood pressure, which he neglected for too long and that had affected his heart.

Few years down the line, I figured out real difference between seriousness and sincerity and I felt in retrospect that boss of my above colleague should have appraised him for being too serious, rather than being very sincere and issued him warning about long term impact on his health! Unfortunately like this boss, most of us in professional and personal lives hardly care to understand fine dividing lines, which eventually turn fatal or cause our failures!

I can now identify hundreds of employees in organizations I have served, who failed to grow commensurate with their efforts since their focus was on being serious and not sincere!

Drawing a distinction between Seriousness and Sincerity

Reflection of seriousness! Source: http://www.flickr.com/

Earnestness is the only attribute, which is common for seriousness and sincerity. Following would clarify how these 2 words make a world of difference:

  1. Seriousness makes you sensitive; whereas sincerity makes you savvy!
  2. Seriousness brings worries; on other hand, sincerity banks on wisdom!
  3. Former makes you prone to errors; but latter promotes accuracy.
  4. Former has shades of obsession; but latter swears by ownership.
  5. When you are serious, you tend to work to please others; whereas you work because it pleases you, if you are sincere!
    Therefore, serious people are serious to show off their work and talk a lot about it!!
  6. Seriousness elicits emotions; but sincerity evokes inspiration!
    It is for this reason that seriousness prompts people to make their fascination or frustration, pleasure or displeasure very explicit!!
  7. Seriousness makes you anxious; whereas sincerity makes you conscious or aware!
  8. Although serious people are intense in their work, it is sincerity that accentuates innovativeness!
  9. Seriousness makes you restless; sincerity, instead, molds you to be relaxed!

Above makes it amply clear that seriousness and sincerity are look-alike but their outlook is nearly opposite. Paradox is that both kinds of people, who are serious or sincere, appear to be fully evolved and engage in their work or duties. As a matter of fact, serious people are seen vociferously dedicated. Real challenge for serious people is that they believe they are doing it right and refuse to accept there is something missing in their approach. They keep wondering why they are less productive and often fail to get good results. On other hand, sincere people appear sober and always score high!

Sincerity signifies balanced state of mind!

There is very subtle difference in doing same thing in 2 or more alternative ways, which we term as fine dividing line. It this difference or dividing line, which separates winning and losing, blessing and bane, effective and defective!

Let us understand how such subtlety comes.

We start to do it right and we don’t notice or sometimes don’t even comprehend how wrong creeps in. To cite some examples:

  • You have a close relative ailing and it is right to attend to her/him. But, when you start taking care of the relative, ignoring your health and other duties, it starts hurting you.
  • Your loyalty to your employer and customers is strong to an extent that skews your work-life balance.
  • You are humble and hence, hesitate to tell your boss where it hurts you, even when you are ill-treated or ill-rewarded for your efforts!
  • You are eagerly waiting for your spouse to return home in evening, which is a good sign; but beyond a time you become anxious and even frustrated. When he finally arrives, you would not like to hear him why he got delayed but would like to be heard how you have been hassled!

It is also a fact that sincerity is a highly misunderstood quality, though it is one among the most significant ones! Sincerity symbolizes balanced state of your mind – neither right nor left; just the center. When you are sincere, you are genuine. You start to do things, because that is obvious, not an option. You don’t do it for anyone’s sake. You do not see any other alternative but to do it. You don’t get obsessed to single thing or thought but view all aspects with same genuine feeling. This is when your efforts fructify and you start to reap rewards.

So, it solidly pays to be sincere, but not being serious!

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Strange but true – good writing, speaking and execution skills seldom coexist!

Harmony is a must to evoke appeal! Source: http://www.flickr.com/

You need ideas to write, you need ideas to speak and you need those to execute; yet research and surveys show these 3 skills normally do not exist together!

Pick the names of great authors, barring few exceptions, by and large they were not great communicators. Take examples of effective corporate mentors, they make poor managers. Bosses, who speak very well, hate to put same in writing and instead chose to assign planning and execution of their ideas to their sub-ordinates. I have witnessed many of such bosses in their younger years. They were never good implementers.

USA has produced some of the finest orators. Among its Presidents, John F. Kennedy has been rated as no. 1 orator. Historically famous speeches that he gave were written by his advisor and primary speech writer Ted Sorensen. Barrack Obama, current President has been rated as 3rd best orator after Franklin Roosevelt. His famous speeches until March, 2013 were written by White House director of speech writing Jon Favreau. Point to note here is that Ted Sorensen and Jon Favreau are not know for great speaking skills and these Presidents were not the authors of what they spoke!

Take the case of Russian born Vladimir Nabokov, who is known as one the most ingenious authors of 20th century for his originality and highly accomplished writings. His speaking skills were not impressive.

In today’s highly competitive world, you need all 3 skills at good levels – writing, speaking and executing. It looks, as though, nature refuses to grant all 3 in 1 person. Some are blessed 2 out of 3; but being blessed with all 3 seems to be a rare feature!

Why is that?

Why 2 or more skills at great level is unique and rare!

It is like a good tennis player can’t be a good badminton player; it is nearly impossible that a decent soccer player can ever to be a deserving (American) football player! Here below is how it seems to work:

  1. When you become good at or have natural taste for a particular skill in professional or personal life, you are inclined to become better and eventually great!
  2. When you fight on more than one fronts, you run the risk of losing all. Knowing this well, you dissuade yourself to focus on more than one skills.
  3. When you become great in one skill, you stand out of the crowd and come in limelight! When you are acknowledged in what you do, you get addicted to it! This alienates you further from other skills or traits.
    Therefore, you would notice that geniuses are not great at people skills; conversely, those having people skills are seldom genius!
  4. Rule of nature seems to clearly suggest that being too good at one makes other ones grim for you. So, if you are dedicated in translating your ideas into words, you would neglect or hate to give voice to the same. That is how good writers would not become good speakers and vice versa. When you are too engaged in execution, you become least concerned with words or voice!
    It is for this reason that darling of public invariably fails to become darling in private (even for his/her most dear one)!!
    Hence, Excellence inherently invites adversity in one or another form.
  5. Now comes a major paradox – our polity and practices are such that during starting phase, we are encouraged to focus on one area or skill, which is very understandable. We would tend to become from good to great in that skill! In corporate life, if we become great in one skill, management would brand us as experts and that compliment becomes a curse in terms of climbing organizational ladder beyond a certain point.
    And, if we focus on “no one area”, we would be master of none and run risk of being branded mediocre!

So, life looks to be a constant struggle; continuously countering with contradictions or conflicts, meeting diametrically opposite demands, managing right and wrong, good and bad. As a matter of fact, our lives have actually evolved out of conflicts, if you closely observe.

Above also implies that initially you need to focus on one area; but deflect it to other allied ones at an appropriate stage or time. This is very critical. You should restrain yourselves to go too deep of any area, if you want to emerge as true leader.

There seems to be one way out of above jumble mumble or vagaries of your life. Bring harmony in your thoughts, traits and tastes! I am sure, you have come across someone, who does most of his/her things right. What that person actually does is to think, write, speak and do in full harmony. When there is harmony in approach, outcome for everything is at optimum level and hence very appealing. It does mean simple, straight, smart but well connected thinking and doing.

Finally, simple mantra to get it – harmony enters, when your inner conflicts exit!

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Let easy access to every information not impair, but improve your intellectual abilities!

Information deluge! Source: http://www.flickr.com/

Intellectual abilities far outweigh your technical competence, educational qualifications, experience or general knowledge/information. If someone stands out of the crowd, it ought to do something with his/her intellectual abilities. Ability to analyze, rationalize, empathize, reason-out, lead, innovate, create, anticipate and foresight comes from your intellect!

Intellectual abilities have more to do with your EQ (emotional quotient) as compared to IQ. Everyone has these abilities; but the degree varies. Those with higher degree of intellect are tremendously successful in their career and personal life, enjoy terrific happiness and sense of accomplishments!

Intellectual abilities can be defined as your abilities to comprehend, contemplate and conclude using your consciousness and wisdom! These are all about mind and its response to a given situation!! This sounds like a simple statement; but it plays the most significant part in making you!!!

Let us discuss what the biggest threat is that can impair these abilities and what opportunities are there to improve the same.

Risks that we run in current era!

This is an era of information explosion. Colossal amount of information is being captured, collated, classified and presented every second. To access this information, internet and smart phones, apart from TV, Tablets and PCs/Laptops, have become integral part of nearly everyone’s life.

Research results and surveys show staggering use of on-line media. As per GlobalWebIndex, people across the world now spend an average of 10.7 hrs. daily on all forms of media, out of which 5.6 hrs. are spent on digital media! Weighted world average, as per survey conducted in Jan. 2014, for daily time spent on social media alone is 2.0 hrs., with Argentinians spending highest time of 4.3 hrs. and least time being spent by Japanese at 0.8 hr. Average American spends 2.3 hrs. per day, whereas Indians spend 2.4 hrs. on social media. Most of such time spent is for non-work related information exchange.

If you are an active user of social media, you would only know how much time you are tempted to spend on clicking likes, conveying greetings for birthdays, festivals, job or profile changes of your friends or followers! Most of times, people do it under compulsion or casually; but seldom consciously or purposefully!

Where does this relentless search and storage of information (in physical or mental files) lead to?

  1. Majority of times, surfing and search for information by most is random and hence, its end use is also random.
  2. When you don’t have a purpose of an activity, you would not know or bother about prudential limits of the same. This is when, you would stray into what is not sober and tend to get hooked to inadvertent or indecent information.
  3. Without a clear purpose, you can never focus on quality and hence you fall prey to quantity!
    So, you would engage yourself reading and collecting lot of information. This can only clutter and confuse your mind and kill your focus! It would be interesting to know that more than 80% of information that you read from print or soft media is irrelevant to you. So, imagine the time you spend first to read and then to mull over or discuss such information!
    It is good to remember that “good has limits; but bad has none”. Immaterial information is actually an ill!
  4. Irrelevant information makes you inefficient and incoherent!
  5. If you believe that what you do for fun, leisure or entertainment, including reading or viewing information, does not impact your character or class, think over again!
    What you do for fun actually has firm impact on your persona. So, be frugal with information flow or exchange!!
  6. Loads of information would lower your drive, patience, peace of mind and sound sleep.
  7. If one or more clicks can get you every information, multiple answers to every question you have, that too duly analyzed, then what is left for your brain to work on? How would you strengthen your analytical and computing abilities?
    2 things are sure to happen – (a) what comes easily also goes away easily. So you would have problem to retain such information in your mind (b) for lack of exercise, your brain would lose its power, like your muscles do in absence of good use! 

From above, it is very clear that easy, enormous and erratic information can severely impair your intellectual abilities.

How to convert risks into rewards!
You are blessed with superbly advanced information technology; do everything possible that it does not become a bane for you. Here is what you can do:

  1. Lower your engagement for the information, which is not relevant to you or to which you are inert or you react. Put more emphasis of such information from various media that makes you alert and active.
  2. Most efficient use of information that you gather is to align it with your short and long term goals.
  3. Practice to evaluate or investigate the information you possess as to what are contradictions, lack of clarity, presence of paradoxes and gray or unexplored areas in the same.
    Result of such evaluation would be your real opportunities to work on!
  4. Decipher from the information you have, up to what level the work has already been done. Going beyond that level, work and innovate would bring you experience and excellence, you would ever treasure and endear!
  5. Neven keep information or knowledge you possess as dormant. Roll it in following cycle:
    Information –> Investigate –> Innovate/ new ideas –> Inspiration –> Increasing intellectual abilities/Implementation/Strengthening your beliefs

So, why not take full advantage of IT enabled age to become fully Intellectually enabled?

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Answer to often asked question – Why I am here?

Discovering "I"; Source: http://www.flickr.com/

This question does trouble minds of most people often, however, more painfully or prominently when they are either full of troubles or free from all troubles!

If you look at any faith or religion, you would find that there is direct or indirect mention of “why you are here and for what purpose”! However, my talks with several people, state in which our societies are and innumerable writings do not suggest that majority of people are satisfied with the answers given thus far for “Why I am here”.

So, let us try and find out the most logical answer to this significant question. A right answer can indeed revolutionize your life!

To start with, let us speak about unspoken reality worldwide. We have arbitrarily earmarked some areas and reserved same for God or God men. But no where you can ever find that such a reservation is done at the instance of God! Unwritten sermons are that these areas are prohibited for common public to even think about, leave alone a discussion. It is this reality that has given rise to false practices and perceptions about God. To get a right answer, we have no option but to peep into some part of these areas.

Next question then pops up – who decides that you should be here? There are only 4 possibilities:

  1. You are here by wish of God
    This is by far the most popular belief! In one of my previous articles “Two third cancer cases on a/c of luck..”, we have deliberated whether God is located somewhere in our universe in his heavenly abode or he is everywhere and hence resides in us also. Conclusion is clearly in favor of the latter i.e. God resides in us also.
    Now, it is very important to know that though God resides in trillions of trillions particles or living beings, he is one and only one. It is a different matter that mythology shows him in different images and forms. Why would God exercise his wishes on such a huge number of living beings?
    It also means that there is no space without God. So, to think that God would bring you “from somewhere to here” does not stand to any logic! 
  2. You are here due to nature’s cycle of birth and death
    This automatically implies that concept of rebirth or reincarnation is valid. Till date, it has remained only a conjecture, in absence of any scientific evidence.
  3. You are here by your choice
    All of us are familiar with biological process for conceiving a life prior to birth. Nothing like “I” or brain exists to make a choice. So, this option looks farfetched!
  4. You are here by chance
    Scientists in field of quantum mechanics, which is the basis of birth of all modern gadgets and artificial intelligence, would happily agree to this. There is randomness or uncertainty in saying that you are here by chance, which is what quantum theory advocates! But, there is no real scientific research conducted so far on what is life and hence it does not hold any water!!
    On other hand, spiritual leaders would be prompt to defer “chance” to heavenly hands, which is same as point 1 above!

You can see from above that all 4 possibilities fall flat on one count or another and leave you confused.

Demystifying and comprehending “I”

To understand “I” is most significant aspect of our life.

All of us know who we are and what we do. We recognize ourselves through our body and thoughts. Yet, we hardly know what exactly is “Self” or “I”!

Look at a child up to age of 4 years or so. She or he observes, recognizes and responds; but, does not know what I is! For her/him, “I” does not even exist, except for verbal use of this letter!! “I” takes birth in her/him, the day child learns to think or focus on her/his body.

It is absolutely important for us to know that it is journey from childhood to adulthood that we discover and then discuss “I” or “Self”! Before that “I” or question “Why I am here” is non-existent!! Once we start to recognize “I”, then we acquire analytical abilities. If we are too attached to “I”, it turns into ego and if we are just aware of “I”, it turns into esteem or pride!

More we are focused on external objects in terms of actions or thoughts for same, farther we go from “I” or self. We come closest to self, when we focus on our body or breath! But, it is a real paradox that you can never ever experience “I” by itself. “I” is essentially your consciousness, which you require to observe or experience anything! So, how can you experience the thing (i.e. I), which you need for that very experiencing?

To conclude, the question “Why I am here?” is totally irrelevant; ill conceived! If we are asking this question, it is only because we have not realized true meaning of “I”, which is now possible through this article.

“I” i.e. your consciousness is there (like you say God is there); but you can never say it is here!!

So, just be aware that (your)Self is there and see your world through this Self! Then your ego would wane automatically and your vision would widen dramatically!!

As regards “Purpose for which we are here”, please see 2.0 version of this title in the coming weeks.

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