I Am Blessed.


For sometime now, I had been searching book shops in India and online sellers, for a book “The Path of Purification: Visuddhimagga”. I had not succeeded as it has been out of print for near 12 years.

I even found an online pdf version which was duly downloaded by a friend who got it printed, spiral bound and delivered to me. I was happy till I discovered that it was too unwieldy for me to hold and read, and in a moment of inspiration, I approached my friend and Vipassana teacher HG if he could help me get a copy. Like the very resourceful man that he is, he promptly sought help from a friend of his in Sri Lanka and was able to get me a copy which was sent by post from Sri Lanka and which reached me today.

This post is not about finally getting the book that I had been wanting to study for so long but, to express my gratitude to two remarkable people.

The fist is of course HG who had earlier featured in my post on Tragic Optimism and the other, that wonderful Buddhist in Sri Lanka, IDS, who took great pains to procure the book, pack it for overseas despatch and sent to me. And most important, practicing a Buddhist tenet of Dana, gifted it to me, a total stranger.

I am indeed blessed to have such people in my life.

Degrowth.


I draw my readers’ attention to the comments by Nick and Mike in my post “Do You Believe In The Great Reset?”

These two comments reminded me of a very significant book Degrowth by Giorgos Kallis which I read before Covid hit us early this year. Covid has brought in focus many worries that had occupied thinking minds about our world and the book sounds in retrospect almost prophetic.

I was reminded of the book by another reminder in the form of an interview that Georgos Kallis gave to our Economic times three days ago.

Some of my other recent posts have been trying to convey to my readers that living a simple life with few wants can be very satisfactory and more important, possible.

I urge my readers to read the book.

Do You Believe In The Great Reset?

Definition of reset
transitive verb

1: to set again or anew
reset type
reset a diamond
reset a circuit breaker
2: to change the reading of often to zero
reset an odometer.

Do I believe in the Great Reset?  I do not know about the “great” in that question but, I do believe in RESET.

When I look back at my life, I see that I have been resetting my life every so often that I never even noticed that I was resetting my life.  Relocations, new schools, new friends, new relationships, new jobs, promotions, again relocations, marriage, parenthood, illnesses and recovery, death and coming to grips with separations, and so on and so forth.

Then came retirement and its own resets.  I had just got used to that and settled down to a sedate and contented lifestyle when Covid hit the world and while everyone had to adjust, the only difference that it made to me was to curtail my regular meetings with my friends once a month and a reunion twice a year.  I could not go to my barber and pedicurist and had to make do with long hair and toe nails till the latter got trimmed by my very considerate son.   For a while my daily quota of newspapers stopped and I was lost but made do with books and online news.

All those have now been pushed back and life is more or less back to normal except that I still hesitate to go out as I am vulnerable due to my preexisting conditions.

When and if life returns to the pre Covid ways, I will have to do very little to reset.

“Sleep is our recharge function and our reset button…and we all need a reset button sometimes.”
― Sam Owen.

I sleep soundly twice every 24 hours and that natural reset keeps me going.

This is my contribution to this week’s Friday 8 On 1 blog post topic. The other seven bloggers who write on the same topic every Friday are Maria. Sanjana, PadmumRaju, Shackman , Srinivas and Conrad.  This week’s topic was suggested by Maria. Please do go over to their respective blogs to see what they have to say on the topic. Thank you.

Winter.

Pune where I live is experiencing cold wave conditions and my home being on the ground level and surrounded by trees hardly gets any sunlight. As a result it can be 2 to 4 degrees colder than outside.

As it happens so often in my life, synchronicity struck and I came across this image in WhatsApp sent by a friend who knows how much I love to read.

My daughter in love could not resist the temptation to take this photograph while I was deeply into a a very interesting book.

Information Overload.


I recently saw a short clip of a speech by a well known medical practitioner about his experiences with patients with Covid.  Mind you, this was at a gathering of a club whose members encourage humour and all speeches are in that genre.

The doctor, a second generation medical practitioner,  was light-heartedly  suggesting that if he prescribed some simple medicine and treatment to a patient, the patient was dissatisfied and reeled off  a list of names of high power antibiotics that should be prescribed.

Though this was said in humour, the message could not be more descriptive of today’s internet addicted humans who consult the internet before going to a doctor.  Since the advent of Covid, the number of messages that I get about it on social media is simply mind boggling.  Although I simply delete them or skip them, the sheer number takes up time.

Similarly, I get messages about temples, religion, self improvement, politics, crime and so many other topics that if I were to read them all carefully I am sure that my brain will explode as its memory capacity will reach its limit all too soon.

Here is the latest one that two different friends have sent to me.   Please click on the image for a larger resolution.

Of what interest could this information be to me?  Or for that matter, the friends who sent them to me?  Am I or they, ever likely to walk this road, even partly?

A very dear friend of around my age, has solved this intrusion by junking his smart phone and switching to a primitive one that can be used only to make and receive phone calls; and send / receive SMS messages. He has been urging me to follow suit. I am seriously tempted to.

Should I?

Breaktime – how do you relax when you get a moment?

I have been on permanent break for so long that I have even forgotten when I started.  I have no earthshaking meetings to attend, appointments to keep, or targets to meet and I simply have to live one day at a time and spend my time as entertainingly as possible.

So has my friend Shackman who too retired from active business life many years ago.  That is why it intrigues me that he has come up with this topic for this week’s Friday blog post.

With modern online shopping available to add to my library, life has been made easier further. I don’t have to step out of my home for anything at all.

My life revolves around my set routine about which I have written here. Since I am not involved with any activities that need me to get suited and booted, I spend all my time dressed very comfortably in our native dress and am totally relaxed. I get plenty of excitement from my social media activities, reading and crossword puzzles besides many phone calls. More than enough for me to lead a contented and peaceful life.

My daughter in love and son look after all domestic matters and that too is something that I do not have to concern myself with and worry about. All my comforts are provided for and even the odd shopping that I may want is done by one of them.

All in all, a comfortable and peaceful retired life which I think I have earned after a lot of stress filled times till eight years ago.  I am extremely grateful for my present lifestyle.

Lastly, I am not dressed like that bloke in the image on top.  This is my normal every day look.  Very comfortable and functional for my current lifestyle.

This is my contribution to this week’s Friday 8 On 1 blog post topic. The other seven bloggers who write on the same topic every Friday are Maria. Sanjana, PadmumRaju, Shackman , Srinivas and Conrad.  This week’s topic was suggested by Shackman. Please do go over to their respective blogs to see what they have to say on the topic. Thank you.