I Am With You!

Freedom

On the wings of freedom
Soaring higher than the clouds
If you could divest those earthly shrouds
To embrace this evanescent experience
I am with you.

Together we quit the foolish faction
That takes pleasure in strife and command
In search of our own lustrous land
Far from those who create craters
Trust is our anchor.

You may call it escapism
But we fly for love, for peace
Away from this chaotic crease
Carrying the silent message of breeze
Embracing echoes within.

The symphony of surroundings
The harmony of sounds merge our identities
All shadows of fear dissolve themselves
Positive vibes illuminate our domain
A new dawn beckons.
© Balroop Singh

Thanks to Sue Vincent for the inspiration and Wings #writephoto.

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

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When I Met Death…

Death quote

It was not a perceptual experience or a hallucination nor any feeling of detachment from the body; it was the sensation of being aware that ‘this is the end’…‘its all over.’

There were no questions, no anxiety, no eagerness to save myself; only a strange numbness and acceptance and a refrain ‘its all over.’

Another thought – Oh! My new car…probably this thought hit me before the numbness; not sure.

This was not what researchers call ‘Near-death experience’, according to which there is an awareness of being dead, peace and painlessness surrounded by positive emotions.

Let me reconstruct that moment for you. Intoxicated by the exuberance of youth and the arrogance of driving a new car, one morning when I was going to work, the speed of my car was nearly 80 (I was living in Delhi at that point of time) and it happened to touch the central curb…I don’t know how, probably the demon of driving turned the wheel. He had whispered into my ear a number of times to drive within a safe driving speed but who takes the advice of demons or even well wishers?

Obviously my car flew away and landed after three somersaults. I went completely numb, with only one thought in my mind: Oh… it’s all over!

It was early morning and the traffic was very light at the freeway.

I was amazed at the impact! How could I escape unhurt, just with a few bruises and blood at my face? How could I request the onlookers who offered to take me to hospital to drop me near my home? How could I walk home myself with a bleeding lip and hand? That was the day I started believing in miracles.

All fears evaporated as I had met the ultimate fear. The desires of acquiring material possessions waned considerably. All arrogance melted when I saw my new car in shambles and people refused to believe it had absorbed all the impact. My husband refused to believe that it had somersaulted three times! My mom told me it was the iron used in the car, which could be lucky for me!

This miraculous escape taught me:

  • Life doesn’t happen as we plan, it is more like a bubble. It can burst any time, live it with abandon.
  • Take out your favorite crystal glasses and use them everyday for whatever drinks you enjoy.
  • Plan that dream vacation right now as, tomorrow may never come.
  • Communicate what lies in your heart; unexpressed emotions may go with you into your grave any day.
  • Face your fears. The power of all fears recede when we learn to encounter them.
  • Learn to forgive. The moment we forgive, we feel confident and powerful. It develops and validates our goodness and compassion.
  • This fiercely competitive, engulfing world may be waiting to devour us but we have to approach it with calmness.
  • Success does not just mean a lot of money and power or the house of your dreams. It is living a meaningful life.
  • Savor little moments of joy everyday.
  • Feel the gratitude for this blessing called life, which can be snatched any moment.
  • Laugh out louder and learn to love people around you.

I was humbled by this experience, I changed, I came back happier, with deeper love for my family and friends. I have lived the bonus years granted to me, with profound gratitude“For life and death are one, even as the river and the sea are one.” – Khalil Gibran.

send me flowers while I am alive

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

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Balroop Singh.

What If Some Experiences Are Not Positive?

Positive thoughts

Is life so simple? Can we control our experiences?

I stumbled upon the above quote and got a lot of positive energy from it but a thought immediately crossed my mind…what if some experiences are not positive? What if positive feelings are not reciprocated?

All people are not alike. There may be such persons in your life who are always trying to find some reason to irritate you and spread unpleasantness.

Some of them are around us all the time, in the form of our family members or colleagues.

Have you ever given a thought that negative experiences leave a deep impact on us? It is very difficult to forget them whereas positive people just pass by and are easily overlooked or taken for granted.

Life does not remain positive at all times. It is at such a challenging and grim time that positive thoughts lose their track.

This mind is so strange. It also gets distracted from its positive path.

What drives negativity? Why is it so easy to jump into this messy pool?

People! Some people are selfish. They have their own designs; their ulterior motives can never be understood. Some are arrogant, they disseminate negative vibes; they always try to put you down. Some have narcissistic traits; their presence in your life can be quite detrimental. Some are manipulative; they try to exploit your goodness.

I know many such people.

People are like an ocean! Understanding them is like diving into an ocean.

Some deep, some so shallow!

Some never come to the shore some never leave it.

If you are fortunate, you might find a pearl!

Human behavior is quite intriguing, oscillating between darkness and light.

The values, emotions and the virtues are ingrained in human soul but at the same time the vices that ensnare us can easily sway our integrity. Hurts can lead us astray.

Lack of guidance, injustice and disappointments bring out the worst behavior.

Teasing, bullying, violence, intolerance, wreaking vengeance and driving others to take the extreme step of committing suicide in modern societies seems to be an addition to human behavior.

A new negativity? However, it is possible that it lurked there in some other unfamiliar form.

Human behavior has chiefly been influenced by society, culture, region and religion, which has strengthened with time. There have hardly been any significant changes in the core values and ethics that have guided it.

Fear and insecurity may bring some changes in human behavior but only for a short period of time.

Despair and disillusionments follow us everywhere. They also change our behavior. How do we react?

Hope

Disappointments often intimidate us but if we keep talking to the hopeful aspect of our mind, if we refuse to let our mind be clogged with the fear of failures, if we embrace the tenacity of our positive spirit, we can strengthen this sentiment and pass it on to our children who exemplify true hope.

Have you ever felt the power of positive spirit?

If disenchantments follow you, learn to cultivate hope, which is an inborn virtue. It lies dormant if it is not nurtured.

Observe a child carefully and you will see an amazing amount of resilience and hope for achieving even the unattainable. A child may fall or fail but the efforts to learn new things never wane. It is the inherent quality of hope and happiness, which keeps children going robustly towards their goal.

As their little feet start growing, hope grows within them. Each step they take, each game they play, this hope becomes sounder.

No child ever thinks of losing. Cynicism is unknown to them. Little failures may dishearten them for a while but they start again with renewed efforts. It is the hope that carries them forward to catch happiness.

Hope fills enthusiasm in their efforts. They look forward to their parents for encouragement and reassurance to accomplish their little goals. When they see happiness on their faces, their spirit soars further. Hence a positive approach and support nurtures hope and happiness.

Hope and happiness are so interconnected!

It is the hope of being successful which leads us to it and happiness follows effortlessly. While conscious efforts are required for all that we hope to accomplish, happiness just meets us on the way to success.

I have had many such experiences, which have shaken my positive spirit but I have always bounced back by convincing myself that this is just a passing phase, by reminding myself that all people are not positive.

What are your reflections about meeting positive people? What impact have they made on you?

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

Balroop Singh.

Are Memories Timeless Treasures Or Learning Experiences?

Memories

Memories are those endless treasures, which we can keep exploring till eternity and bask in their glory like a slow swinging hammock!

Like Ellen Hopkins, let me ‘open that bottle of memories they’re pouring out like wine, crimson and bittersweet.’

We can completely get immersed the moment they start pouring out!

Heartwarming memories, some sweet, some bitter and vivid, long-lasting and precious…unforgettable fond memories, haunt us if we happen to be sensitive as they have a profound connection with our emotions.

Some memories stand before us with extended arms, ready to embrace us lovingly…the first crush, those hands ensconced into each other’s, those amorous glances…that walk in the rain, huddling together…the touch of your new born child, the most precious possession…myriad such moments are stored effortlessly in the mind’s eye.

Happy memories yearn for those times to return, resist and resent change.

Unhappy memories are tenacious, they get entrenched in our minds retaining their ghost like exterior… they can tear us apart with their piercing, menacing eyes.

Repressed memories get embedded in the subconscious mind despite our best efforts to shove them out.

Sometimes I have to close that inward eye to stop the reel of memories so that they bounce back into the subconscious mind.

Sometimes I hear those loud voices…let go…forget the past…detach, I dump all those memories and choose only joyous ones yet they keep returning whenever the connection emerges.

One of my colleagues had a magical eraser, which didn’t leave any mark on the sheet. Sometimes I wish such an eraser could be invented to expunge unwanted memories from our memory bank!

Have you ever thought why certain memories keep coming back?

Have you ever wondered why certain facts, songs, statements or situations can be recalled without any effort whereas important information or textual details have to be read again and again to recollect them?

Psychologists have called the former as implicit memory and the latter as explicit memory

It is this memory, which is called implicit that holds our moments…moments of delight, of exhilaration, of accomplishment, of pride and countless such emotional instants.

We hold them in high esteem, clutch them as if they were the only possessions worthmemories keeping and derive pleasure out of them during our hours of solitude. We keep interacting with them till we realize their material nature.

They come with a large baggage, which we refuse to give up!

“Forgetting isn’t enough. You can paddle away from the memories and think they are gone. But they will keep floating back, again and again and again. They circle you, like sharks.” – Sara Zarr

They also come with some profound lessons if we are ready to discern and digest:

  • Childhood memories are the strongest reminders of love and affection. Handle children with care.
  • Don’t invest all your emotions in one person. Memories of such a person can drain you.
  • Attachments are aching reminders of fond memories.
  • Dwelling in the past is futile as it retrieves painful memories.
  • All people we meet leave an impact on our life. Avoid negative people as much as you can.
  • Memorable people affect us deeply with their qualities. They give us good memories.
  • Earliest happy memories convey life-lessons of happiness and relaxation, which are picked up from parents and siblings.

Memories are like roses of various hues in their raw form, thorns are the natural attachments unless we scratch them away. I have embraced all the shades and tones and learnt from each one of them. I had no choice.

During the prime of our life we keep gathering them, unaware of the thistles, which start piercing us as we mature.

I have a very vivid childhood memory of a thorn, which pricked me, broke and got embedded in my finger. I came running to my mom, crying and wondering whether she could lessen my pain. She pulled the thorn out mercilessly, without caring to be soft.

I wish this memory too could have been pulled out as harmlessly as that thorn!

But memories are etched permanently on the canvas of our mind.

Do you have such memories? Have they been your learning experiences? I would love to hear your views.

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

Balroop Singh.