Every day is Haloween..


“Every day is Halloween. Putting on our masks is a regular part of our morning ritual, just like brushing our teeth and eating breakfast. The masquerade, however, is anything but festive.  Underneath the masks are people who are terrified that there will be an unveiling.” Dr. Edward Welch, When People Are Big and God Is Small

The real Halloween was just last week. Whether it’s a masquerading at a costume party or just spoofing the neighbor’s kids or if you want to get kinky once in a while, there is something strangely compelling about being in costume. Halloween is just one of those times, it doesn’t matter what you are a witches, a vampires, a zombies, a clowns, a serial killers, or even a serial killer clowns.

Being behind a mask seems to be as old as humanity itself – the masquerade balls of the 15th century Europe, rituals of the ancient African and the Intuits. Shakespeare was preoccupied with the idea that people are not always what they seem and often have contradictory impulses. Some of his greatest plays had characters who often used disguise to enact themes of human deception and ambivalence. Taming of the Shrew, The Merchant of Venice, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream are just some to name.

Shakespeare anticipated some of what Sigmund Freud would fully develop centuries later. We humans are funny beings. Always divided, contradictory creatures with an uncanny capacity, not only to disguise ourselves from other people, but to masquerade our own wishes and desires from ourselves. Our defenses are methods of disguise–ways of transforming what we find unbearable or transgressed into pro-social and meaningful ambition and fulfillment. This masquerading of desire ensures that there is always the potential of another version of ourselves. We hide behind things that are acceptable to the social norms, which, again keep changing decades after decades.

Besides the ever so obvious pleasures associated with Halloween, our donning of disguises may be a way of enjoying the possibility of being someone who we didn’t know we were or we could ever be.

Donald Winnicott would probably say that wearing costumes is a transitional phenomenon. It all explains why the eager-to-be-helpful gentleman at the hardware store gets to experiment with being a soul-stealing, Dark Prince of Pain. Or, we have the corporate CPA by day; blood-sucking, gothic vampire by night. Halloween is just a day where we can wear our most tabooed defensive façade out in the open and not to be judged by it. Disguises help us wonder about what it would be like to be more humorous, less empathetic, more surprising, or simply more interesting than we normally feel we are.

 Hope you all had great Halloween.



Freedom in free India.

Every year right around aug 15 and Jan 26 we become highly patriotic.. Debating about the meaning of independence.. Arguing if we were really independent.. About the society we live in.. The questions often become monotonous and cynical.. Yet as we celebrate each independence day the questions become more and more relevant.. The question is as simple as why celebrate Aug 15 if we are not really free.. These questions are relevant because they talk about peoples expectation from the concept of freedom.. We are made to believe that 66 yrs ago a nation was born.. Constitution says that all of us are created equal.. Certainly, we can think of many instances in which we have been treated unfairly, or treated someone else unfairly. Corny as it may sound, it is within each of us who are fortunate enough to be living in this country to take steps to ensure that we do our very best to combat discrimination in every form, from race, religious, sex and age discrimination to discrimination against those with mental or physical challenges. 
I often wonder if we have taken the concept of independence for granted. The sole mean of being free means that I can kill or loot anyone I want.. Use another being as I may will.. Because I am free to! Its the concept of absolute freedom isn’t it?? To have no consequences for our action. Which we often see in our nation.. In the street next to our.. A place where a 6 year old is being used as a object of sexual gratification by a school teacher in her own school.. Why?? Because we live in a free society.. !! I would say perverted even.. People bother more about iphones and iPads in day to day life.. Patriotism and social awekaning last only a day or two and we go back to the mundane tasks.. Till there is one more incident that questions the very nature of humanity in the society.. I wonder how many such incidents are to happen for us to open our eyes.. ! I remember M.K Gandhi once saying “Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes” but how many mistakes?? Shouldn’t there be a guideline.. Here i remeber another quote from Nigerian writer Femi Osofisan “Freedom without responsibility is a loaded gun in the hand of a maniac”.. There is no concept of absolute freedom.. it is imperative for every society to delineate boundaries.. And we have live examples every where.. Extremities – countries like north Korea on one hand to Unites states of america on the other.. From isreal to denmark ( According to the world happiness report “Denmark is crowned as the happiest country in the world”. Thus, it can be regarded as the best country to live in the world in the current date).. And some where in between lies our nation.. For better or for worse.. Till our society finds the real balance between the right amount of right.. And the wrong amount of wrong.. Let’s get through one more day of independence hoping that by the next one atleast we live in a slightly Imperative society that understands the meaning of controlled freedom better..
Jai hind..

Never believe everything you think

youre-better“We can’t hate ourselves into a version of ourselves we can love.” ~Lori Deschene

Sometimes I am really terrible to myself and relentlessly compare myself to other people, no matter how many times I read or hear about how good enough talented or lovable I am. On an almost daily basis, I meticulously look for evidence that I am a nobody, that I don’t deserve to be loved, that I am not good enough, or that I’m not living up to my full potential.

There is generally a lot of pressure to “stack up” around us. We feel as if there is something wrong with us if, for example, we’re still single by a certain age, the people in our lives are not ready to commit,we don’t have a job or make a certain amount of income, we don’t have a large social circle or crazy fun party loving friends, or don’t look pretty and perfect and act a certain way in the presence of others. The list could truly go on forever, and the worst one is we are not being nice or kind “enough”.

Sometimes in the midst of all the pressure, we (read I) seem to totally forget all the wonderful, unique things about myself.

I get stuck in my head and allow my inner critic to completely tear apart my self-esteem until I hate myself too much to do anything except eat ice cream (get fat ), watch daytime television, and sleep (may be whine a little about the same s**t too).

The other day, I activated my blog after a long long time. I was going through past articles and couldn’t help but wonder what was wrong with me. Most of my articles in the past year or so were about sadness and grief. So much of negativity floating all around.. i diagnosed myself to be an emotional masochist ( which i regret right now and is totally not true!!) and i almost gave up on compassion and kindness. I re read most of my articles , and the comments left by readers and ended up moving almost 58 articles to trash . Anyways, while I was beating myself up over something I can’t even recall at the moment, I read a comment from one of my blog readers telling me that one of my posts literally got them through the night. Literally. And if that one simple word was used in the intended context, this person was basically telling me that one of my posts saved their life.

I used to get comments like these on a pretty regular basis, and they always open my eyes to just how much I might matter, regardless of my inner critic’s vehement objections.

Such comments also open my eyes to all the things we beat ourselves up over that don’t matter—like whether or not we look like a Victoria’s Secret model in our bathing suit, or whether or not we should stop smiling if we’re not whitening our teeth, or whether or not the hole in our lucky shirt is worth bursting into tears over. It also makes me realize that I cannot control how others behave, I cannot ask them to change their ways for me. It’s not fair to them or anyone involved. The only thing I can do is decide how I would feel about things and respond to them. If i cannot handle the way i felt about them, the only thing I can do is avoid being in such vulnerable places. After all prevention is always better than cure and the things that you do not know cannot hurt you.

Lately I’ve been trying harder to catch myself when I feel a non-serving, self-depreciating thought coming on. And I may let these thoughts slip at times, but that’s okay because I’m only human. While my self-love journey is ongoing, here are a few things I try to remember when I’m tempted to be mean to myself:

1. The people I compare myself to compare themselves to other people too.

We all compare ourselves to other people, and I can assure you that the people who seem to have it all do not.

When you look at other people through a lens of compassion and understanding rather than judgment and jealousy, you are better able to see them for what they are—human beings. They are beautifully imperfect human beings going through the same universal challenges that we all go through.

2. My mind can be a very convincing liar. 

I saw a quote once that said, “Don’t believe everything you think.” That quote completely altered the way I react when a cruel or discouraging thought goes through my mind. Thoughts are just thoughts, and it’s unhealthy and exhausting to give so much power to the negative ones.     

3. There is more right with me than wrong with me.

This powerful reminder is inspired by one of my favorite quotes from Jon Kabat-Zinn: “Until you stop breathing, there’s more right with you than wrong with you.”

As someone who sometimes tends to zoom in on all my perceived flaws, it helps to remember that there are lots of things I like about myself too—like the fact that I’m alive and breathing and able to pave new paths whenever I choose. I like to believe that I am trust worthy, forgiving, and understanding. When I am at my lowest I TRY and remind myself that I can put myself in other Peoples shoes every far more than then could ever be in mine.

4. I need love the most when I feel I deserve it the least. 

This was a recent epiphany of mine, although I’m sure it’s been said many times before.

I find that it is most difficult to accept love and understanding from others when I’m in a state of anger, shame, anxiety, or depression. But adopting the above truth really shifted my perspective and made me realize that love is actually the greatest gift I can receive during such times.  Love is the Only thing I need at that time.

5. I have to fully accept and make peace with the “now” before I can reach and feel satisfied with the “later.” 

One thing I’ve learned about making changes and reaching for the next rung on the ladder is that I cannot fully feel satisfied with where I’m going until I can accept, acknowledge, appreciate and forgive for where I am now.

I have realized that by Embracing and making peace with where I am now, and my journey toward something new will feel much more peaceful, rewarding, and satisfying.

6. Focus on progress rather than perfection and on how far I have come rather than on how far I have left to go.

One of the biggest causes of self-loathing is the hell-bent need to “get it right.” We strive for perfection and success, and when we fall short, we feel less than and worthless. What we don’t seem to realize is that striving for success and being willing to put ourselves out there is an accomplishment within itself, regardless of how many times we fail.

Instead of berating myself for messing up and stumbling backward, I have realized  that #I should be able to give myself a pat on the back for trying, making progress, and coming as far as I have.     

7. I can’t hate My way into loving Myself.

Telling myself what a failure I am won’t make me any more successful. Telling myself I’m not living up to your full potential won’t help me reach a higher potential. Telling myself I’m worthless and un-lovable won’t make me feel any more worthy or lovable but rather push me into a deeper pit of despair and agony.

I know it sounds almost annoyingly simple, but the only way to achieve self-love is to love yourself—regardless of who you are, what you have done and where you stand and even if you know you want to change.

Biggest revelation I have had in a long long time is that I am enough just as I am. And for every one out there, i would just like to say that self-love will be a little bit easier every time you remind yourself of that.


Expectations Resentments and other things


I am not sure how many people read the stuff I write or how many like them or can connect to them. but from the few feed backs I have received I have seen that people see me as a highly negative, pessimistic person. May be I am, may be I am not. I would love to believe that I am not rather than I am..

This blog is my bucket of ice cream. A place where I run back and crawl into and pretend to disappear when the big dark world outside has hurt me some how. But as I was looking back at the last few years of my life, and going into that mode where I become my own worst critic, I somehow feel that this bog – this “cushion” is making me believe that its oki for me to get “hurt” from time to time as I will always have “here” to come back to and feel good about myself.

I also realize that the I might have filled this whole place up with so much of negativity that its high time I get out of here. So this Hopefully is my last blog entry for a long time to come and as I am leaving, I am compelled to write just one last time about resentments.

Last night was one of those nights for me.. I wouldn’t be lying if I tell you that spend the whole of it looking back at myself. The good times the bad ones. Mostly the times when I felt wronged. At first I could only think of one or two.. but later there came many more. What was interesting that I lost count on how many times have I disappointed myself because I’ve expected a close friend, a relative, a neighbor , or even a stranger to do something…..and they don’t, won’t, or can’t.

I hinge a lot of my happiness on other people. Sometimes, I expect them to treat me like I would treat them. It doesn’t always work that way. Time is the most important thing I can give any one. I think it’s a sign of respect and care that I show when I give them some of my time.. For, you can get everything back other than lost time. But when other people start taking this devotion and loyalty of mine for granted, I start to feel hurt, then irritated, then angry (I for a fact believe that I stand correct from my point of view). In fact, as the “time” goes by, the worse it gets, and the angrier I be.

I remember a tiny instance narrated by “Lori Deschene” of the tinyBuddha.com in this regard. This is what she wrote:
“Before I left for my two-week holiday family visit, I asked my boyfriend to wash our sheets before I returned. I hoped to come home to a clean, organized apartment, with everything as I left it. That is not, however, how things panned out. Instead, I came home to a somewhat disorganized space and a pile of dirty towels—along with an empty refrigerator.

My boyfriend told me he’d been busy, and he didn’t have time to do all the laundry or go food shopping. I translated “I didn’t have time” to mean “I assumed you’d do it when you got back.”
At first, I felt annoyed. I thought, “I wouldn’t leave laundry for you,” “I would have bought at least some staples in case you were hungry,” and a few other righteous gripes about his domestic shortcomings.

I was going to let him know it’s not okay to take me for granted, but then I realized something: I was assuming his actions meant that, when they may, in fact, have only meant exactly what he said—that he got backed up and didn’t have time.

So instead of expressing my dissatisfaction with the expectations he didn’t meet, I expressed exactly what I felt: “When you say you don’t have time to do things around the house, I sometimes assume you expect that I will do them.”

He responded, “I don’t expect that at all. I expected I would do them later tonight. I know you’re busy too.”

This right here, I suspect, is the cause of most conflict in relationships: one person does something or doesn’t do something, and the other makes assumptions about what it means.

I have done it many times before—assumed the worst in someone I love because they didn’t do what I would do. But this rationale fails to consider that other people have different ways of doing things, and they have no idea what meanings we’ll assign when they choose to do things their way.
They also can’t know precisely what we expect unless we express it. I asked my boyfriend to wash the sheets, and he did. But more importantly, he’s a thoughtful, considerate person on the whole, and this one incident was not a big deal in the grand scheme of things.

We have a right to communicate when we feel hurt or offended, but maybe love is learning to be hurt and offended less often. The people we care about are generally doing their best—love is recognizing that instead of assuming the worst.”

Her narration that “assuming the worst” may be the root of all evil may be true in many instances But my experiences have taught me the hard way that Anger always comes from frustrated expectations!!


I have realized that when you discover that you’ve been hit in the fact with a thwarted expectation, the best thing to do is to take a breath. Instead of cursing, believing that I’ve been foiled yet again, I can ask myself the one or all of following questions:

Was my expectation realistic?
Just because I would do or say something in a specific situation does that mean that everyone has to act in the same way?
Do I even have all the facts right?
Am I making up any of the details of the circumstance?
Am I making assumptions about the other person’s motivations and agenda, thoughts or beliefs?
How do I EVEN know what I assume to be true is actually true?
Is there any other way the situation could be perceived?

And FINALLY, Even if this other person disrespected or devalued ME in some way, was it what I always expected them to do? If so, then it is high time I reveal and realize where I disrespect or devalue myself through my thoughts and beliefs about me..!! I cannot get that which I do not already have. If I want to be valued, respected, or loved I have to respect, value and love yourself first.

This thought process has helped me a lot to let go of the feelings of resentments that I had associated with some instances from my past. I feel much lighter now. I believe that the same will work for anyone who is still with me on this post. Once you’ve examined your expectations, change your thoughts, and decide upon the best course of action.

If someone has maligned you in some way, it is not within your control to alter another person’s behavior. The only thing you really can change is your inner image of that person in such a way that you are feeling less disappointed or hurt or bitter or cheated, or wronged by them. It is working for me and will definitely work for you as well.. trust me on This..

The Truth is, everyone is doing the best they can with the light they have to see. Some people are missing a few batteries in their flashlight. Others have no idea how to turn on a flashlight. They are in the dark, unconscious to, their own unrealistic expectations and misguided thoughts that their actions are based upon. You can choose to dim your light to match their or shine your light to brighten their way.

I have realized that as you begin to appreciate others in spite of their faults, you begin to appreciate yourself in spite of your own faults. Carrie Fisher had once quoted “Resentment is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die.” Imagine going to wedding and some one comments that you looks 20 pounds lighter, and you feel happy because you did not go there fishing for the comment. It was unexpected and hence really nice 🙂

As I am writing this article I catch my self having frown lines on my and small pout and alternatively a small smile creeps up my face. I think I am enjoying doing this. May be its time I stop writing.

As I am bidding a goodbye to this virtual wormhole for a while I would just like to say once again that it’s always easier to preach than to practice. Having no expectations from the ones we love is merely impossible but when you find your self deeply stranded in the state of despair due to unmet expectations keep saying this to your selves “Great Expectations are premeditated resentments”- it helps.!!

Adios.. 🙂

When actions speak louder than words..!!


I read this somewhere quite recently.. a pair of words brought together, beautifully by Mark Twain ~ “ Actions speak louder than words, but not nearly as often.” It did not seem much important to me that day, but as I was riding a bus on my way back home, I just couldn’t stop thinking about it.

I tend to over think sometimes and imagine the worst of any situation.. but by the end of the day, I always believe in giving people the benefit the doubt, and suggested, as I often do, people rarely intend to be hurtful.

Sometimes when I travel on city buses alone, I try chatting up with co passengers and sometimes these conversations take on to the next level, very deep and perpetual. Once in a while you realize that all these total strangers on the bus, are just a different version of us. In one of such conversations a nice lady in her 40s commented that I’ve obviously never encountered a sociopath.

This got me thinking about the many times I’ve heard my girl friends refer to guys they’ve been with as sociopaths and narcissists. Most of these guys are likely to have treated them horribly, but this does not mean that they have had mental disorders of any kind.!!

There are sociopaths out there, I agree.. but more often than not when people hurt us, it’s not because of psychiatric diagnoses. May be it’s because they’re hauling around pain from their pasts and crashing it into everyone they meet. When someone knowingly manipulates or uses others, or deliberately tries to control or intimidate them and they aren’t mentally ill, it’s rarely a happy, well-adjusted person who simply decided to be heartless and cruel.

Sometimes mistakes happen ! People you love and care about do shitty stuff and you end up hurt ! it’s sometimes no ones fault.. and sometimes its every ones!

In understanding this, we can be compassionate—but that doesn’t mean we need to willingly accept mistreatment. Then question then becomes: how do we know when to give someone the benefit of the doubt, and when to withhold it?

One of my favorite Oprah quote is, “When people show you who they are, believe them.” While I don’t believe any “one” action defines who someone is, I think there’s something to this. Actions speak louder than words. And repeated actions are what shape our character and reputation.

If someone says they want to spend time together but repeatedly fails to show up, they are communicating that they aren’t willing to follow through on their promises. If someone says they’re trustworthy but repeatedly lies, they are communicating that their word can’t be trusted. If someone says they want to change but repeatedly fails to make an effort, they are communicating that aren’t willing to do things differently.

I would say that Acknowledging this isn’t forming judgments. It’s recognizing the facts so that we can make a wise choice based on how things are—not how we want them to be. We may recognize we’re being mistreated and choose to set and enforce a boundary. But We all deserve second chances, and sometimes a third or fourth.

But there are other times we need to open our eyes so that we know when enough is enough. It’s never our fault when someone else hurts us, but it’s within our power to stop allowing it.