Tag Archives: Path

The Fall

A few days ago, I had gone out for a vacation, that’s why there was no post for a couple of days. But this short vacation that I went on, was quite inspirational and insightful.

The place that I visited in my vacation was a hill station in Gujarat, India. It is about 1000 meters from the sea level. Like any other hill station, it has lush greenery and a mountainous landscape. There were many tourist points, and the one that instigated me to think, was the Table land. It is plateau on top of hill, where you can do a number of things- that are quite missing in an urban life, like riding a horse, etc. This plateau is surrounded by declines and ascends of land, which appear like folds on a crumpled bed sheet. The day I visited this amazing landscape, I was quite ebullient and excited. With that rabid enthusiasm running through my veils, I tried to climb a dangerous high point on this ironically flat land. My mom and dad watched me from a distance; they were keenly observing me with a particular shrewdness a parent watches. And at that point, I SLIPPED; luckily I was able to hold on to the safety railings. By seeing me almost fall down from a steep point, my parents were furious, but there is where the insightful moment lies.

saputara Chaitanya's photos 174Zenith Point on the table land

As I tightly held onto the guard rails, almost coming too close dangerous to the point that I almost went tumbling down from the zenith point, my dad looked at me, and gave me an uneasy smile, and he said,” A man in his life has to answer 2 principal questions- one is what is his role in this world? And what is his fate rather he should have the ability to recognize and acknowledge his fate. And you young man, are not properly answering these 2 questions and delving into completely unknown territories!” Well my dad was quite implicit in what he said, his underlining message was quite clear- Be careful, but he unknowingly triggered in my mind a series of thoughts about this mysterious concept- fate and its recognition in your life. These 2 questions are the main basis on which the heavy metal legends Iron Maiden compose their melodies rather a more appropriate word would be anthems. These songs are enigmatic, and get me thinking each time I listen to them. Similarly, what my dad said was a general truth. These 2 questions have to be answered by each and every person born on this planet. But the thing that really got me thinking was predetermination of fate and rigidity of the future. The general truths posit that fate and future is rigid, stubborn, and unchangeable. These 2 things cannot be altered or changed.

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A memorable quote from Terminator 2

At this point, I beg to differ. I don’t think this is the case after all. Our actions have consequences, and as we progress in this ’brave new world’, our choices determine the path of our fate. This reminds me of my personal favorite and world-renowned Sci-Fi movie series- Terminator. The theme of this series deals with the inevitability of the future, and how the characters- Sarah Connor, John Connor, Terminator try to alter this inevitability. It also deals with the dilemma one faces when one has to take responsibility of his/her fate. In this world, we too go about in a similar way, we struggle with fate, with our future not consciously but our choices underline this aspect. This reminds me of another saying-

“What goes around, comes around”

This truth is also based on the fact that the future and our fate are changeable, and that our actions we take in this world are consequential.

I guess in our life, we struggle with these 2 choices- one is where we have to accept what fate has to offer to us, and the other is where we have to make our own fate.

I was surprised that this unfortunate fall would turn out to be so philosophical and insightful.

Path and Wisdom

Cycling is one of my many hobbies, which I pursue passionately. In a week, my cycling workout is around 70 kilometers. It has being 5 years since I took cycling as a serious activity than just a means of exercise. At home, I have several that complete my workout, while back at my university, I have another set of routes, which satisfies my hunger for a ride. One thing that I admit in all this is that it is quite a repetitive activity, and it can bore you, but there is another aspect to it.

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This is my current ride- R Bike from Schnell! 🙂

15 days ago, I was home. Back home, I used to complete my cycling workout in morning when the traffic is low and roads are empty. I had completed 3/4th of the path, and 1/4th remained. As you might have heard, cycling is an activity best carried out in a group. But even if you’re in a group you are by and large alone. It is an individual activity regardless of the fact you do it alone or in a group. That morning as I waited for the traffic light to turn green, I suddenly realized how alone I was, even though vehicles and bikes surrounded me. I was my own responsibility on the road, nobody was instructing me, following me. A chill ran down my spine, and I took more time to complete the remaining 1/4th path than I did to complete the 3/4th path. As I was down to only 2 kilometers from my home, my conscience suddenly made me realize that you can’t be too careful, you HAVE to be strong and you NEED TO concentrate on the road than on your mind. Reaching home, I had this moment of epiphany, that persistence and perseverance are 2 important aspects of cycling. You can’t get lost in your thoughts, and you can’t get discouraged by the miles you have to cover to reach your destination.Screenshot_20160228-154141-2

Cycling taught me persistence and perseverance

Another morning as I was cycling on a different route, I see other cyclists going from the opposite side of the road, some acknowledge me as a fellow cyclist, others are lost in their mind, OR ARE THEY? Are they lost in their world or are they like me too busy on the path? I suddenly realize cycling is not just pedaling up and down, but rather it is more enigmatic than that. It is about staying put on the path, you have chosen and completing it with determination and focus. Once you start doubting your path, the path will slow you down, it will make you less adventurous and more cautious, it will affect you on a psychological level. You will start considering the path a burden and become less curious and interested.

Back in the university, when I went on a short cycling trip with a group essentially I was all alone. Every guy of the group was alone, but on the path, we were all together. The path meant different things for us, but we were unified on the idea of conquering the path. The destination didn’t mean much, but the journey taught me many things.