The comic strip ‘Peanuts’ has been a favourite of mine for decades. I can’t remember even one which I did not enjoy reading and savouring.
The latest to come way is a link to a blog on the philosophy of the late Charles Schultz, the creator of Peanuts, this blog post which I am sharing with my readers with the hope that they will enjoy it as much as I did.
This is a story that I came across which resonates with me and I want to share it with my readers.
“In December 1937, a match between Chelsea and Charlton foot ball clubs at the Stamford Bridge stadium London was stopped in the 60th minute due to heavy fog.
Charlton’s legendary goal keeper Sam Bartram remained unaware and kept on guarding the goal 15 minutes after the game had stopped, as he did not hear the referee’s whistle because of the crowd behind his goal post.
He stood there with his arms out stretched and completely focused, looking forward so as not to be surprised by the opponent’s shots.
Fifteen minutes later, when the stadium police approached him and informed him that the match had been abandoned, Sam Bartram said these famous words with great sorrow,
*”How sad that my friends forgot me when I was guarding their goal post.”*
Bartram thought his team was attacking and not allowing the opposing team to get close to the goal post.
*There are so many players in the field of life whose goal post one defends with enthusiasm and support, but when the situation becomes like a wave of fog, they are promptly forgotten..let us be more considerate.
Courtesy Ratnadeep Saksena”
I thank Neeraj K. Yajnik who shared this story in Facebook.
2021 is here with us and what better can lead us into it than the inimitable Lucy?
I do not have a Lucy in my life but, my daughter in love more than makes up for that lack. She bullied me into getting dressed “properly” and took me out to lunch at our local club earlier today. I had gone for a drive only once before during this lockdown and this was my second outing after March 5, 2020. I thoroughly enjoyed it though, wearing the mask was quite a nuisance.
The outing has given me the confidence to make other forays and I intend doing that to catch up with some socialising and shopping soon.
I take this opportunity to wish my readers a very happy and certainly a much better 2021. I hope as I am sure they do too that the Covid problem will leave us soon and that we can get back to some semblance of normalcy soon.
This story has its beginning a few weeks ago. I had asked my cousin who now lives in Tamil Nadu, the length of a South Indian dhoti to compare it with what we get here in Maharashtra where I live.
Instead of answering, he simply ordered me to accept two dhoties as gifts from him and that he will arrange to procure them and send to me. Naturally, I was delighted and gratefully accepted his gift which duly arrived.
During the same conversation, he asked me if I had an image of our Kuladeivam (family deity) in my puja alcove. I responded with a no. He did not mention anything further but, I felt that now being the head of my rather dispersed family, I should have the same in my puja alcove and found a studio in Tamil Nadu who was capable of making one to my liking.
I ordered four of them to be sent to me, another cousin now resident of Maharashtra, my sister in Bengaluru and for the cousin who had asked me the question which led me to this activity. On being advised about this, the last on the list regretted that he would not be able to accept the gift as he already had one and had limited space in his retirement home. I therefore got left with one extra to my need.
Yesterday, I was in one of my periodic streamlining exercises and decided to part with a rare PDF spiral bound printed version of a very popular prayer. I offered it to a Vedanta classmate of mine who can read Tamil and she promptly accepted it. While I was getting it ready it occurred to me to ask her if she would like the spare deity too and she was overwhelmed. It turned out that we shared the same family deity and she too did not have the image in her puja alcove.
I sent both the PDF and the image to her earlier this morning and she is simply ecstatic.
I have been left wondering about the sequence of events that led to this development and can only come back to my favourite explanation “synchronicity”.
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.
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.