Outside and Inside #writephoto

#writephoto poetry

The wondrous window…
Her world, her only real realm
That connected her with clouds
Outside and inside.

The edges of the windowsill
Smoother than paths she trod
Reassured her that she was safe
In the arms of her benefactor

All fears receded within her
She licked her wounds and soothed herself
As she looked out…calmness prevailed
Outside and inside.

Starry nights churned the storm
Shook her out of her slumber
Wobbling towards the window
She looked out at the streaks of light

Which shrieked…‘coward!
How could you concede defeat?
How could you enter your own grave?
Cringe inside and outside’

The glow of each dawn descends
Deeper into her deliberations
She looks outside
To confine conflagration inside.
© Balroop Singh
All rights reserved.

Thanks to Sue Vincent for the inspiration.

You can click on Sublime Shadows of Life by Balroop Singh to read more poems.

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Thank you for your support. Please add your valuable reflections, they are much appreciated.

4 Invaluable Gifts That A Mother Can Give

Happy Mother's Day

Mother – the first caretaker, the first emotional anchor, the first teacher and the only real Angel in the life of a child. She has to live up to all these expectations.

As a baby opens his eyes, it is the mother’s face that fascinates him, it is the mother’s heartbeat he can hear, it is the mother’s tender touch that she can recognize, the same touch that gives a feeling of security, a unique bonding that is created in the womb and always remains special.

With her unconditional love, intuitive understanding and selfless sacrifices, she makes an indelible impression on the minds of her children. She is the sustaining force of a home and fills it with color and candor.

Guided by God Himself, she possesses divine instincts and therefore a mother’s influence is eternal and infinite…more effective than that of a father.

“It is mother’s influence during the crucial formative years that forms a child’s basic character. Home is the place where a child learns faith, feels love, and thereby learns from mother’s loving example to choose righteousness. How vital are mother’s influence and teaching in the home—and how apparent when neglected!”― Ezra Taft Benson

Besides love and understanding, a mother can give some priceless gifts:Motherhood quote

Quality time: Can there be a better gift than spending time with our children? Time is the most significant factor and it fleets faster than our wishes. Mothers who spend quality time with their toddlers by giving them undivided attention could make a lasting impression on their minds. Reading books, painting, flying paper planes, floating paper boats and playing imaginative games with the kids makes everlasting memories.

As they grow older and their interests’ change, you have to adapt according to their choices but remember to do things together, whether it is cooking, baking or folding laundry or learning to play guitar, children love to get involved in all activities.

Positivity: A positive attitude is reflected in our behavior and way of living. When a mother knows how to be positive, she passes on that approach to her children effortlessly. Even little hurts of friends who don’t care can be interpreted in a positive manner by telling the kids that it is okay to forget, that the hurt was unintentional.

Respect: When children grow up with respect around them, they learn this value quite early. Observation is the most effective teacher and children learn from what they see. Make sure that you respect the desires and demands of your children. Empty promises or manipulations convey a wrong message. A mother who respects the father of her children and talks about his positive qualities even if he is not around, inculcates that respect lies at the basis of all relationships.

Independence: As mothers, the best gift which you can give to your children is to let them think freely and take their own decisions after they cross the most impressionable age. Mothers who tie their adult sons and daughters to the strings of their apron often create unnecessary problems for them. If you let them fly freely, they soar higher than your expectations.

No mother wants to be remembered as a bad mother. Human imperfections keep raising their ugly head to give a bad name to the unconditional love, which all mothers have in their heart.

What kind of a mother are you? Do you agree that a mother’s role is more crucial in raising a responsible individual? Please share your reflections.
Thank you for reading this. Please add your valuable reflections, they are much appreciated.
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Balroop Singh.

How Reading Affects Our Personal Development #WorldBookDay

World Book Day - love for reading

World Book Day – a day that celebrates reading, a day that always inspires me to renew my love for books and share it, a day that reminds me how meaningless life would be without books!

Reading has not only given me pleasure, added brilliance to my gloomy hours but has also enriched my life in various ways.

It has made me wiser, healthier, resilient and emotionally balanced. It helps me converse with the greatest thinkers and dreamers.

“The reading of all good books is like conversation with the finest men of past centuries.” – Rene Descartes

Reading inspiring stories reassures me that inspiration could be found anywhere, even in the tears of detachment. Fictional characters too have the potential to enthuse new energy into us.

Redefines anguish:

Reading gives us the capacity to understand, to absorb and to figure out that anguish, loss, grief is a universal phenomenon. Getting stuck in our suffering can block our own growth.

When you equate your painful experiences with others, they seem trivial and you learn to deal with them. The connection becomes the healing factor.

Gives a fresh perspective:

Reading drags you out of your cocoon to watch the world with a fresh perspective, which develops when you are exposed to various views.

Pain, misfortune and emotional hurts are inevitable. It is futile to immerse ourselves in the setbacks of life because sooner or later we have to abandon this baggage to move ahead.

Takes us places:

Reading helps us escape the mundane events of life, it takes us to places, which we could have never visited; it defines our purpose of living; absorb the ideas that appeal to us and then analyze them.

The best moments of our life are created by reading; the best flights of imagination are crafted by the words of a writer who can create a scenario, which transports us into the realms of our choice and stay there frozen in time.

Realities of life come alive:

Stories of guilt, horror and forgiveness acquaint us with those realities of life, which could remain hidden from us. The atrocities of the past, the oppression and discrimination recorded in the annals of history unfold before us when we read.

Even those who choose light, romantic stories get a whiff of the truths of love and life and learn that freedom to live our life the way we want to, was not always possible and is still a far cry for many.Reading quote

Connections and social relationships get better:

The magical power of friendship and reverence, social interaction and kindness is revealed through reading fiction. We can learn some profound lessons of life from fictional characters.

Reading enhances our emotional quotient, our capability of understanding people, complex human behavior and their frailties. I didn’t know how forgiveness could free us from self-imprisonment till I read about it.

Virtues of life can be felt:

Have you noticed how a virtuous character leaves a lasting impression on your mind? Nobody likes a villain who is always conniving to make life difficult but we learn to distinguish between the good and the bad from his devious ways.

“Reading is a basic tool in the living of a good life.” – Joseph Addison

Develops analytical skills:

Reading poetry honed my aesthetic and analytical skills and has made me more sensitive towards the beauties around me. It also introduced me to the finer emotions of humanity.

Has reading affected your personality? I would love to hear your perspective.

Thank you for reading this. Please add your valuable reflections, they are much appreciated.

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Balroop Singh.

 

 

Why don’t I set a target?

books

I know you are surprised and curious! I know you are thinking that targets or goals form an imperative part of our lives and without them we may seem like a rudderless boat, which would never reach anywhere.

There are some targets, which seem inevitable, which are like milestones and refuse to move till we accept them as realities. I know! I too had to honor them but I would call them compulsive cahoots, gnawing at our minds everyday, challenging our abilities and pushing us closer to the curve of compliance.

Setting goals for reading? Really?

What confounds me is setting targets for joy, happiness, travel, leisure and above all reading! I have heard many times…‘this year I am going to focus on happiness’…as if our focus on this fleeting emotion ever wavers!

Setting targets for pleasure trivializes the term ‘goal,’ which inspires vision and success in the chosen field. Unconditional commitments do make us determined but isn’t it better to reserve them for more important achievements?

I have always encouraged my students to set academic goals to reach the pinnacle of glorious pedestal they would like to perch on and many of them have accomplished them.

I have never set a target of reading books, as I believe we read for pleasure, not for meeting goals and invite unnecessary stress. There are many other triggers around us to cause stress.

I have never kept a count of books I have read for all these years. Completing a book and starting another one is as normal for me as changing an outfit.

While Goodreads keeps nudging me to set a target, I remind myself …’If you take a book like a medicine, it loses its charm.’ I had learnt this lesson long ago when I could not read the specified number of books for my Literature discussions! The more I tried to keep up the pace; my concentration grew less and less.

Pledging to read a book within a specified time is like a noose hanging before me, depriving me of all the joy connected with the style of the author and language of a book.

Is it all about numbers?

Reading is not just about numbers and being able to say… ‘I have read 25 books this year.’ It is more about absorbing the thoughts, savoring the words, imagining and connecting with the places. It is a breezy journey to enjoy, not a whirlwind to escape! Quality of reading enriches our experiences, not the quantity.

“In the case of good books, the point is not to see how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you.” – Mortimer J. Adlerreading-quote

It is more rewarding to read a book slowly so that we can absorb the virtuousness of our favorite character…to drench in the feelings of people around us…so that we can become a part of their world.

Is it about emotions?

Some people don’t get emotionally engaged in a book, they read it very fast, without actually stepping into the realm of fantasy, without identifying with the characters and their thoughts.

One of my friends had this habit of reading the books very fast. Whenever we would mention a book or share it, she would come out with this reply… ‘Oh! I have read that!’ At that juncture of life, as a young and immature reader, I would envy her speed. I even tried to read in her manner but honestly speaking, I could hardly enjoy the book and felt guilty too.

Shallow reading seems to be the norm of the day just to complete the resolution of reading a specified number of pages during the day. If the book is a cheap romance or a thrilling mystery, delving deep into it may be inconceivable but we get out of such books quite early in life.

Reading without any distractions around us – another challenge of modern times!

The other day I happened to be at a hospital, waiting for a procedure of a dear one to be over and to keep my thoughts positive, I had taken my kindle along with me.

I tried very hard to concentrate with chit chat going all around, two ladies talking continuously, exchanging their views on every possible topic from hair styling to cooking!

I had read 20% of the book but I want to start it again for the pure pleasure of soaking in the beautiful words, which got lost in the crescendo around me.

“If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all.” – Oscar Wilde

Do you set targets for reading? Do you read faster to reach those targets? I am waiting eagerly for your perspective on commercialization of reading for pleasure.

Thank you for reading this. Please add your valuable reflections, they are much appreciated.

If you have liked this article, please share it at your favorite social networks.

Balroop Singh.