The Dilemma of eternity – Do we matter?

We are but a speck in eternity. Before us were our parents, grandparents, ancestors, dinosaurs, some micro-organism & the big bang. Ahead of us are our children, their children, alien invasion & apocalypse. Life existed before us & will go on after us. We are but a speck in eternity. Does anything we do even matter?

Everything before us did their bit to make us possible – our parents, grandparents, ancestors, dinosaurs, some micro-organism & the big bang. Our life in fact started with each of them and extends back to the big bang. Each of our actions now also determine how the timeline ahead of us shapes itself. Therefore, our life also extends forward to the end of time.  Our life is actually the entire timeline – it is eternity. Every action we take today will have repercussions on that entire timeline of life. We are eternity. Everything we do matters.

Thank you Shishir

Preventing micro management 

Easiest way I think is to just so much to do that micro management is impossible.

If you are the micro manager- give yourself more work when you find yourself intruding too much. Or go to the gym!

If you are the managed- ask your questions or point out other things that you were not able to do 🙂

Open Minded & Assertive at the same time

Struggling with the concept of disagreement. In certain cases – i disagree but I don’t get the final say. Such cases bring in the art of influence, but for now – this excerpt gives a

Great excerpt from Learn or Die (from Ray Dalio).

I began seeking out the smartest people I could find who disagreed with me so that I could understand their reasoning. Only after I fully grasped their points of view could I decide to reject or accept them. By doing this again and again over the years, not only have I increased my chances of being right, but I have also learned a huge amount.

There’s an art to this process of seeking out thoughtful disagreement. People who are successful at it realize that there is always some probability they might be wrong and that it’s worth the effort to consider what others are saying — not simply the others’ conclusions, but the reasoning behind them — to be assured that they aren’t making a mistake themselves. They approach disagreement with curiosity, not antagonism, and are what I call “open-minded and assertive at the same time.” This means that they possess the ability to calmly take in what other people are thinking rather than block it out, and to clearly lay out the reasons why they haven’t reached the same conclusion. They are able to listen carefully and objectively to the reasoning behind differing opinions.

When most people hear me describe this approach, they typically say, “No problem, I’m open-minded!” But what they really mean is that they’re open to being wrong. True open-mindedness is an entirely different mind-set. It is a process of being intensely worried about being wrong and asking questions instead of defending a position. It demands that you get over your ego-driven desire to have whatever answer you happen to have in your head be right. Instead, you need to actively question all of your opinions and seek out the reasoning behind alternative points of view.

Living Alone – What a change!

Its been an interesting journey – for 17 years I lived with parents. There were frequent announcements (parents screaming at me) , magical self cleaning rooms & a supply of food. For the next 5 years or so I lived in my own room. The room was about two lunges wide & there were corners for clothes, books and other stuff! Toilets still had self cleaning & food was available quite easily. For the next 4 years I lived with other people – complaining often about their habits and also complaining about their complaints about my habits.

At each phase I had human interaction , but suddenly I live alone now. A huge place – all to myself. I’ve built in the auto cleaning with the “maid module”. Food gets served thanks to a hobby. But the solitude is new.

At first a challenge, but now I am starting to enjoy it. Reading, relaxing and treating it as thinking space!

Look up at the tower, and keep going towards it 

Yesterday I went for a trek to Sinhgad – a fort that was a strategic possession because of its location between other important strongholds.  It was considered one of the hardest forts to capture and witnessed great wars (including people scaling the fort walls using monitor lizards).

Today though, it is the trek up to the fort that appears to pull crowds. Loads of people scaled up the fort and the trek takes 45mins to 60 mins up to about 4000 ft elevation. There were perhaps two highlights to the trek. The first was a gentleman named Ghokale who appeared pretty old and many people knew him. He was quite the character – not afraid of sharing his views with people who looked at him strangely. Once he got to the peak he then started singing loudly – very soothing when mixed with the strong winds at the height of the peak. The highlight though was a his wisdom to the tired trekkers perhaps quarter his age – “Don’t sit down, keep going”.

The other highlight happened on our return journey. We were scared to come down the slope, so we took the easy road that is used by vehicles. Unfortunately, as we discovered a few minutes (40-50 mins) later, this was a supremely long way down. So we asked a shop keeper for the shorter way down (We had just passed up the shortest – which was the same path we used to go up).  She told us to walk through the forest . Given there aren’t too many signboards in a forest – we asked how we would find our direction. She asked us to look up to the telephone tower and keep walking towards to it.

The combination of Ghokale & the shop keepers words  were pretty deep… or perhaps those are just my tired legs speaking!

View from the top – across the Western Ghats & Khadakwasala lake

The trekking paths – rocky, muddy & crowded

The way back down – look at the tower and keep walking.