Archive for January 12th, 2020

The Engine Driver and His Muse

January 12, 2020

Creative “Engine” – The Muse – A Story By Vikram Karve 

They say that fiction is a dramatised version of the truth. 

They also say that most fiction is autobiographical. 

If you want to write – first – you must observe – and – you must “feel”

And then – you metamorphose your feelings into stories – of course – with due literary licence.  

In most cases – your creative writing – your stories – they are based on something you observed – something that happened to you – something that emotionally affected you. 

That is why they say that most fiction is autobiographical. 

Well – this story certainly is…

CREATIVE “ENGINE” – THE MUSE 

Fiction Short Story By Vikram Karve 

From my Creative Writing Archives:

Here is a story I wrote around 14 years ago – in the year 2006.

Are you are a creative writer…?

If so:

Do you remember the moment when you saw your first creative effort published…?

Do you recall the moment when you saw your very own words in print – for the world to read…?

I do.

It was the happiest moment of my life when I saw my first fiction short story published in the Sunday literary supplement of a newspaper long long back (around 33 years ago).

(Well – Literary Supplements have disappeared long back from Newspapers – and today – we have Page 3 Gossip – and Entertainment News – in their place).

Tell me – Dear Reader – what inspires you to write…?

Do you have a “Creative Engine” – a creative engine which acts as a Muse to inspire you – a “Creative Engine” which helps you unleash your creative talents…?

Most Creative Persons are inspired by a Muse.

Here is a simple Story of a Poet and his Muse – a Railway Engine Driver and his “Creative Engine”…

If you are a creative person – a writer, a painter, a blogger, anyone who is creative – I am sure you will like the story…

CREATIVE “ENGINE” – THE MUSE – STORY BY VIKRAM KARVE  

Chotte Lal is in seventh heaven.

He is on cloud nine.

Call it what you like.

But one thing is sure.

This is the happiest moment of his life.

Chotte Lal experiences a delightfully beautiful emotion as he looks lovingly at his own words printed on the top left hand corner of the last page of the newspaper.

Chotte Lal experiences an ecstatic feeling of pride, joy, thrill…

I really have no words to describe this unique emotion – but if you are a writer – just recall the moment when you saw your first creative effort in print – and you will understand what I mean.

Chotte Lal reads his poem to himself, slowly, deliberately, tenderly, drinking in each word – he drowns his self in his creation – in a state of blissful timelessness – till the bookstall owner roughly shakes him out of his idyllic reverie by loudly asking for money for the newspaper.

Chotte Lal pays him – and then – continuing to read his own poetry – he walks with a spring in his step towards the “running staff” room – to share his happiness with his colleagues.

And – as Chotte Lal strides down the long platform towards his destination – let me tell you a bit about Chotte Lal – the hero of our story – an Engine Driver in the Railways.

(Nowadays – I think – in the Railways – “Engine Drivers” are called “Loco Pilots”…)

Chotte Lal’s father was a humble Gangman whose life’s ambition was to make his motherless son an Engine Driver.

Every day – Chotte Lal’s father looked up from his lowly place beside the railway tracks – fascinated by the sight of the haughty Engine Drivers speeding by – who roughly snatched the tokens which he held up for them.

And then – the Engine Drivers would rudely throw their tokens – kept in small leather pouches – mounted on large cane rings.

They would throw the tokens at a distance – for him to fetch – and hand over to the signalman.

As he underwent this routine time and again – his resolve became stronger and stronger – and Chotte Lal’s father dreamed of the moment – when his son – sitting in the Engine Driver’s seat – would pick up the token from him.

The day his dutiful obedient son Chotte Lal was selected as an Engine Driver – his father was so overjoyed – that he celebrated by drinking all night – he indulged himself so much – that he died of liver failure in the morning.

Now – Dear Reader – after this small digression – let’s get back to our story – and see what our hero “Chotte Lal” is up to.

Chotte Lal walks into the driver running room.

No one notices.

His fellow drivers are busy playing cards.

“See. See. My poem has been published…” Chotte Lal says excitedly – holding out the newspaper.

A fellow Engine Driver takes the newspaper from his hands and says:

“Hey, look – there is going to be a pay hike…”

The driver begins reading the headlines from the front page of Chotte Lal’s newspaper – as the others listen.

“No. No. Not there. My poem is on the back page…” Chotte Lal says.

“Where…?”

Chotte Lal turns the paper and shows him.

“Good…” the driver says – even without reading the poem.

Then the driver turns back to the first page – and he begins reading aloud details of the pay hike.

“Illiterate Greedy Dopes. Bloody Riff Raff…!!! You buggers are only interested in money…!!!” Chotte Lal shouts in anger at the Engine Drivers – and he snatches the paper.

“Oh yes – we are illiterates worried about money – we are not philosophers like you wasting your time writing poetry…” someone says to Chotte Lal.

“Why don’t you become a Professor instead of wasting your time here driving trains…?” another taunts.

“Or – you go and join the film industry and write poems for songs – or do “sher-shairy”…” they all jeer at Chotte Lal.

Chotte Lal walks out in a huff.

But let me tell you – Dear Reader – that the railway engine drivers are right.

Chotte Lal certainly does not belong here – amongst this hard-drinking, rough and tough, earthy fraternity.

Chotte Lal lives on a “higher plane”

While his compatriots drink and gamble to pass time in their leisure and during their changeover breaks – Chotte Lal reads – and now – he writes.

Had Chotte Lal got the proper opportunity – he would have been a man of erudition – but as I have already told you – circumstances willed otherwise – and poor Chotte Lal had no choice.

Chotte Lal is a good Engine Driver.

He is happy in his job – and he is content with life.

He never gets bored with the long waits – for he always carries with him a good book to read.

And now – Chotte Lal has started writing too – yes – creative writing – poetry.

Chotte Lal always wanted to write – but he did not know how to do it – till one evening – he got the inspiration to write.

While waiting for a signal – the glorious spectacle of the setting sun – the picturesque countryside – the villagers hurrying home – the birds chirping returning to their nests – the endless tracks disappearing into the horizon in front of him – the whole scene in its entirety – this inspired him so much – that the spark of creativity was ignited within him.

And – for the first time – he poured out his inner feelings on paper.

And thereby – was born – his first creative effort – a poem – to which Chotte Lal gave the title – “Waiting for the Signal” 

Chotte Lal lives in a typical railway town – a relic of the Raj – with its spacious well laid out railway colony with huge bungalows and neat cottages – amidst plenty of greenery and expanse.

This quaint mofussil town boasts of a newspaper – a four page tabloid really.

The back page of this local rag features crosswords – cartoon strips – tit-bits – and creative contributions from readers – which Chotte Lal always reads with avid interest.

It was always his dream to see his own creative writing printed right there on that page one day.

So – Chotte Lal neatly wrote down his first creative composition – “Waiting for the Signal” – on a foolscap sheet of paper torn from his daughter’s notebook – and he personally submitted his contribution to the editor – who gave him an amused look.

The editor read Chotte Lal’s poem while Chotte Lal looked on anxiously.

Then – the editor said to Chotte Lal:

“We’ll see…!!!”

Chotte Lal waited – and waited – he almost lost hope – and now – at long last – his poem “Waiting for the Signal” had been published on the back page of the tabloid newspaper.

Chotte Lal walks conspicuously towards the exit of the Railway Station – deliberately stopping by at the Station Master’s Office – the ASM’s Office – the Train Clerk’s Room – the TTE’s counter – yearning for appreciation.

He is hoping that someone would have read his poem – he is eagerly waiting for someone to say something in appreciation.

But – all he gets is smiles of forced geniality.

“Useless fellows…!!!” Chotte Lal says to himself – and then – he begins walking fast towards his house – eager to show his poem to his wife and children.

Seeing Chotte Lal walk past his Dhaba – the street-food joint – without even a glance in that direction.

The Dhaba owner –Ram Bharose – he senses something is terribly wrong – because – every time Chotte Lal returns from duty – he always stops by at Ram Bharose’s Dhabha for a cup of tea – and to pick up a parcel of Anda-Bun (Boiled Egg in a Bun) for “Engine” – his pet dog.

(Yes – the name of Chotte Lal’s pet dog is “Engine”…)

As always – his pet dog “Engine” is the first to welcome him at the compound gate of his home – and the dog gives Chotte Lal the customary enthusiastic reception – playful, vigorously wagging his tail – barking, jumping, running – waiting for his Master – to give him his treat of Anda-Bun.

But today – Chotte Lal’s response is different – he just walks by – no hugging – no fondling – no baby-talk – and most importantly – no Anda-Bun treat.

Engine is confused at his Master’s odd behaviour – but – the dog follows Chotte Lal loyally towards the door of the cottage.

Chotte Lal rings the bell.

His wife opens the door.

She gives him a preoccupied look – and she begins walking towards the kitchen.

“See – See – See…” Chotte Lal says with childlike enthusiasm to his wife, “See here – my poem had been published in the newspaper…”

“Poem…? What Poem…?” his wife asks.

Chotte Lal hands over the tabloid to his wife – and he shows her the poem –Waiting for the Signal”

His wife gives the poem a cursory glance – and she asks him:

“How much did they pay you for your poem…?”

“Pay me…? What are you talking…?” Chotte Lal asks puzzled.

“Yes. How much money did the newspaper pay you for this poem…? Don’t tell me you are doing this for charity. Or maybe – your poem is so “third rate” – that they think that your poem isn’t worth even one paisa…” his wife says scornfully.

“Please…!!!” Chotte Lal raises his voice getting angry, “This beautiful poem is the fruit of my creative effort – it is not some item for sale. Where is the question of money…? You will never understand the value of the reward of creative satisfaction…!!!”

“Reward of Creative Satisfaction – My Foot…!!! This good-for-nothing local rag prints a poem of yours – and you are boasting as if you have won the Nobel Prize in Literature…!!!” his wife mocks Chotte Lal.

Then – Chotte Lal’s wife says:

“Why don’t you stop wasting your time doing all this nonsense and join my brother’s transport business – he wants to make you the Regional Manager…”

“I don’t want to go to the city…” Chotte Lal says.

“Do you want to rot in this Godforsaken place – driving Railway Engines all your life…?”

“I like my job. I like this place. I like to read and write…”

“Oh yes – now all you will be doing is wasting your time and your effort writing all this nonsense for free – when you could be earning a good amount of money – if you put in the same efforts elsewhere…!!!” Chotte Lal’s wife says.

“I am happy where I am – and I am content with what I have…” Chotte Lal says.

“Oh, sure. You are happy to live in a gutter and watch other men climb mountains…!!!” his wife retorts.

“Papa – Mama is right…” his daughter interjects – appearing suddenly.

“What do you mean…?” Chotte Lal asks his daughter.

“Why don’t you retire and take your pension…?  You should take up the job Uncle is offering you as Regional Manager in his Transport Business. We can all move to the city…” his daughter says to Chotte Lal.

“Here – here – look at this…” Chotte Lal says excitedly – giving the newspaper to his daughter, “My poem is published today. Read it and tell me how you like it…!!!”

“You can read it later. Have your breakfast first…” her mother says sternly, “You are getting late for college…”

“Take the newspaper with you. Show my poem to your friends – show it to your teacher…” Chotte Lal says to his daughter.

A horn honks.

The girl puts the newspaper in her bag and she rushes out.

Chotte Lal excitedly runs behind his daughter towards the gate – and Chotte Lal shouts to his daughter:

“My poem is on the back page – the name of the poem is on the top – it is called Waiting for the Signal”…”

A boy is waiting for his daughter.

The boy is sitting on a motorcycle.

Maybe – the boy is her college classmate – her boyfriend – maybe…

Chotte Lal realises how little he knows about his children.

His son – he has already gone to the city to work in his uncle’s company.

His son is obsessed with earning money – and he has no time for the finer things of life.

Like Mother – Like Son.

Chotte Lal feels sad.

It’s a pity – a real pity.

There is nothing worse for a man – than to realise – that his wife and his children are ashamed of him.

Maybe his daughter will appreciate his poem, his talent, his creative genius, his worth – after all – she is a student of arts.

Chotte Lal looks at his daughter.

Chotte Lal’s daughter is talking to the boy.

She is pointing to the rear seat of the motorcycle and telling him it is dirty.

Then – Chotte Lal’s daughter takes out the precious newspaper which Chotte Lal has given her.

Chotte Lal looks on in anticipation.

Maybe his daughter is going to show the poem to the boy.

Yes – Chotte Lal’s daughter does take out the newspaper from her bag.

But – she does not even open the newspaper.

Chotte Lal’s daughter does not show her father’s poem to her boyfriend.

Chotte Lal’s daughter just crumples the newspaper – and she wipes the motorcycle seat with it.

Then – and Chotte Lal’s daughter throws the newspaper to the ground.

Yes – Chotte Lal’s daughter consigns Chotte Lal’s poem to the dust – without even reading the poem.

Then – she sits on the motorcycle seat behind the boy – and they drive off on the motorcycle.

Chotte Lal experiences an inner pain much worse – than if a knife had pierced through his heart.

His pet dog Engine rushes out – he picks up the newspaper in his mouth – and the dog brings the newspaper to Chotte Lal.

Engine drops the newspaper at Chotte Lal’s feet – and then – the dog begs for his treat.

Suddenly – Chotte Lal realizes he has forgotten to get Engine’s customary treat – the Anda-Bun (a boiled egg in a bun).

“Come…” Chotte Lal says to Engine, his dog.

He picks up the newspaper – and they both – Master Chotte Lal and Pet Dog Engine – they both walk towards Ram Bharose’s Dhaba (Roadside Eatery).

Chotte Lal looks at his pet dog Engine – as he happily cavorts and gambols in spontaneous delight at this unexpected outing.

Chotte Lal remembers the day he had got Engine home.

“And now – you have got a Pie Dog – an ugly Mongrel…” his wife was furious when he had rescued and adopted the tiny abandoned puppy whose mother had been run over by a train.

At first – Chotte Lal used to take the baby puppy along with him in his Railway Engine – and his assistant driver named the puppy “Engine”.

But soon – the word spread that Chotte Lal was taking his pet dog for rides in his railway engine – and he got a memo with a warning to stop this practice.

Since then “Engine” remained home.

So – whenever Chotte Lal was away on duty – poor “Engine” was dependent on the reluctant love of Chotte Lal’s wife – who Chotte Lal suspected actually liked the cheerful dog though she did not outwardly show it.

Now – Chotte Lal walks along with his dog “Engine” towards Ram Bharose’s Dhaba.

A few minutes later – after a leisurely walk – Chotte Lal and his pet dog “Engine” – both of them – they reach Ram Bharose’s Dhaba.

“What happened – Driver Sahib…? You didn’t take your usual Anda-Bun parcel…?” Ram Bharose says Chotte Lal.

“I forgot…” Chotte Lal says, “Give me one Anda-Bun now – and also give me a cup of tea.”

Chotte Lal thinks of showing the poem to Ram Bharose – but he hesitates.

Ram Bharose may barely be literate.

And – if educated people like his colleagues – even his wife – and his highly educated daughter – if could not appreciate his poem – yes – if no one could appreciate his creative composition – how can he expect this country bumpkin Ram Bharoseto do so.

So Chotte Lal sits down – and – he decides to read his own poem to himself.

He decides to celebrate his own personal victory – and not be dependent on others for his happiness.

He gives the Anda-Bun to his delighted pet dog “Engine” – who sits at Chotte Lal’s feet.

“Engine” starts eating the boiled egg and bun hungrily.

Then Chotte Lal sips the piping hot rejuvenating tea – and he starts reading the poem to himself.

Suddenly – he feels a nudge on his feet.

It is his pet dog Engine – prodding with his paw – looking up expectantly at his Master Chotte Lal.

Engine’s eyes are dazzling – and the dog is making a sound – talking – trying to say something.

“Do you want to hear my poem…?” Chotte Lal lovingly asks his pet dog Engine, affectionately caressing the dog’s ears.

Chotte Lal’s pet dog “Engine” gets up – he nods his head – and the dog places his head on Chotte Lal’s knee adoringly – and wags his tail with love.

As Chotte Lal reads his poem “Waiting for the Signal” – his devoted dog “Engine” listens to ‘His Master’s Voice’ with rapt attention.

The Dog’s eyes are glued on Chotte Lal’s face– and his tail wagging in appreciation.

After he finishes reading the poem– Chotte Lal looks lovingly at “Engine”.

“Engine” looks back at Chotte Lal with frank admiration.

Then – the Dog wags his tail – and proffers his paw as a “shake hand” gesture.

Chotte Lal is overwhelmed with emotion.

He orders one more Anda-Bun for his pet dog “Engine”.

Delighted at his Master’s sudden spurt of generosity– “Engine” gratefully devours the delicious Anda-Bun 

And then – the Dog “Engine” looks pleadingly at Chotte Lal – as if saying: “Encore…”

“Do you want to hear my poem once again…?” Chotte Lal asks his dog “Engine”.

“Engine” again keeps his head tenderly on Chotte Lal’s knee.

Engine looks up lovingly at his Master – continuously wagging his tail – listening with rapt attention to his Master’s voice – waiting for him to finish reading his poem – in eager anticipation for his reward of an Anda-Bun.

There are many such recitations – and many Anda-Buns later – Dog and Master – “Engine” and Chotte Lal – they both walk back home.

Chotte Lal looks admiringly at “Engine” – his sincere patron – a true connoisseur who understands poetry – and who appreciates the poem that Chotte Lal has written.

Suddenly – Chotte Lal gets the inner urge to write – to express – to say something.

His pet dog “Engine” has ignited the spark of creativity within him.

Moments later – the flood of creativity within him unleashed – Chotte Lal sits at his desk and his latent emotions come to life – and he pours out his inner feelings on paper – writing poem after poem – while his darling pet dog “Engine” – his stimulus – his inspiration – his Muse – his motivating “Engine” – sits loyally by his side – looking lovingly at his Master with undisguised affection.

And so – the Railway Engine Driver Chotte Lal creates poetry – and his pet dog “Engine” – his “Creative Engine” – inspires and appreciates…

And – they both sit together in sublime unison – the Poet and his Muse – in perfect creative harmony.

EPILOGUE

Dear Reader – do you remember – that right at the beginning of this post – I said that all creative writing is autobiographical.

And – I also said that – this story is certainly autobiographical.

I was always interested in literature – since my school days – I loved to read – and later – I developed a keen interest in creative writing – and – I started writing fiction stories.

Sadly – no one in my family is interested in literature – and they have no appreciation whatsoever of my creative writing.

You may be surprised – but – no one in my family reads my Blogs.

Yes – believe it or not – no one reads my writings – my “Better Half” – my Children – my Mother/Mother-in-Law – my close relatives – no one is interested in reading my creative writing.

In fact – I am sometimes taunted about my creative writing and blogging – by derisive comments.

They say that – instead of doing something useful – I waste my time sitting “idle” whole day in front of my laptop “doing nothing”.

It is sad – but – it is true – that – no one in my immediate circle of family/relatives appreciates my creative writing and blogging – and – forget about appreciation – they don’t even read my stories which I post on my blog.

However – there was one exception.

Yes – there was just one member of my family who always inspired me to write and blog – my pet dog Sherry.

Sherry was my Muse – my source of inspiration – who motivated me to write.

(You can see Sherry’s picture with me at the top left hand side of this blog)

Whenever I sat down to write – Sherry would sit near me – inspiring me to write.

And – whenever I read out my stories to her – Sherry would listen intently in appreciation.

Yes – Sherry was my Muse – my “Creative Engine”.

It was on my long walks with Sherry that I got the best ideas for my stories.

It was Sherry who inspired some of my best creative writing.

Sadly – Sherry left for her heavenly abode in December 2014 – but whenever I sit down to write – I can still visualize her sitting near me and inspiring me to write.

Sherry was – and will continue to be – my Muse – my “Creative Engine”.

So – whether anyone else appreciates my writing or not – I will “Bash on Regardless” with my creative writing and blogging – knowing that my muse Sherry is looking down at me from heaven – appreciating my creative writing – and inspiring me to write even better.

VIKRAM KARVE

Copyright © Vikram Karve
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Disclaimer:

This story is a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the story are a figment of my imagination. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

Copyright Notice:

No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.

Copyright © Vikram Karve (All Rights Reserved) 

Link to my original post in my Blog Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve: http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2017/06/creative-engine-story.html

© vikram karve., all rights reserved.  

This Story was written by me Vikram Karve around 13 years ago in the year 2006 and earlier posted by me online in my creative writing blogs in the year 2007 and a number of times later at urls: http://creative.sulekha.com/engine_68620_blog and http://creative.sulekha.com/the-poet-and-his-muse_71919_blog and http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2011/05/creative-engine.htmland http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2012/03/poet-and-his-muse.html  and http://creative.sulekha.com/the-railway-engine-driver-and-his-engine_79206_blog  and  http://creative.sulekha.com/engine_68620_blog  and  http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2015/03/a-poet-and-his-muse-creative-engine.html  and  http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2012/09/chotte-lal-and-his-creative-engine.html and http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2014/07/the-creative-engine.html  andhttp://karvediat.blogspot.in/2016/07/do-you-have-creative-engine.html  andhttp://karvediat.blogspot.in/2016/07/do-you-have-creative-engine.html and http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2016/10/the-creative-writer-and-his-engine.html and https://karve.wordpress.com/2018/02/11/creative-engine-the-muse/ etc

Inspirational Wisdom from Swami Vivekananda

January 12, 2020

INSPIRATIONAL WISDOM FROM SWAMI VIVEKANANDA
By
VIKRAM KARVE

Today, January 12, is the birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda (12 January 1863 – 4 July 1902).

I first learnt about Swami Vivekananda, sometime in the 1960’s, when I was a small boy, and my father had taken us to visit Belur Math near Kolkata.

At Belur Math I acquired a tiny pocket book called “Thus Spake Vivekananda”.

Whenever the chips were down, or I felt dejected, I referred to the inspiring gems of wisdom, distilled from the complete works of Swami Vivekananda, for instant motivation and strength.

On the occasion of his death anniversary, let me tell you about my favourite saying of Swami Vivekananda which inspired me and I try to implement in my day to day living.

AN INSPIRATIONAL GEM OF WISDOM FROM SWAMI VIVEKANANDA

Here is an inspirational gem of wisdom, a phrase from the sayings of Swami Vivekananda:

“Anything that makes you weak physically, intellectually, and spiritually, reject as poison”

I feel that the word “weak” is all encompassing.

The term “weak” embraces anything that creates in you a stressful situation.

Thus “weakness” includes all negative emotions and feelings like anger, irritation, fury, worry, anxiety, frustration, despondency, depression, demoralization etc, which, in a nutshell, cause unhappiness.

These negative emotions disturb your inner tranquility and equanimity, drain you emotionally and intellectually, and make you feel “weak” just like physical weakness.

UNHAPPINESS IS WEAKNESS

Unhappiness is a negative emotion which drains you.

Hence:

Unhappiness is Weakness.

Unhappiness is Poison for the soul.

Conversely:

Happiness is Strength.

Happiness is Tonic for the soul.

Now, how do you “reject as poison” the “weakness” of unhappiness?

The first step is to identify your “Unhappiness Creators”.

IDENTIFY YOUR UNHAPPINESS CREATORS

Now sit down in a quiet tranquil place, close your eyes, introspect, and try to think of all the things that make you feel negative.

Reflect and introspect on all your unhappiness-creators and unhappy situations.

Now sit down in a quiet tranquil place, close your eyes, introspect, and try to think of all the things that make you feel negative,

Reflect and introspect on all your unhappiness-creators and unhappy situations.

These unhappiness creators can be anything – tangible and intangible – things, activities, persons etc.

Unhappiness Creators include:

  1. Toxic individuals and incompatible persons, who irritate, annoy and hassle you.
  2. Foods and Beverages which do not suit you and are physically detrimental to your health and well-being.
  3. Activities, social and personal, which may appear pleasurable, but which actually drain you out.
  4. Technology and Gadgets, like your cell-phone, which disturb your peace of mind.
  5. Strained Relationships, which are a source of unhappiness and cause stress in you.
  6. Any activity or thing that causes a guilty conscience within you.
  7. Disagreeable persons and unpleasant activities which are a stimulus for negative emotions like anger, worry, fear, etc and create negative vibes within you.

Close your eyes, introspect and think about all aspects of your life – your work life, your home life, your social life.

Think about all the persons, activities and things that generate negative vibes, create stress and unhappiness in you, things that make you feel “weak”.

Then, follow Swami Vivekananda’s advice:

Anything that makes you weak physically, intellectually, and spiritually, reject as poison

Yes, you can do it in actual life.

Just “reject” all these “poisonous” things and people by avoiding them as far as possible.

Make an exhaustive list of all your “unhappiness creators” – all the things and people that make you “weak” – and try to reject them as “poison”.

At first you may be a bit skeptical about this approach.

But when you start implementing, you will be surprised how much of it is in your own control to prevent unhappiness.

SAY NO TO UNHAPPINESS CREATORS and WELCOME HAPPINESS CREATORS

While, on the one hand:

You reject the things that make you “weak”and unhappy

simultaneously, on the other hand:

You must reinforce the things that make you feel “strong”and happy

Say NO to unhappiness creators

Say YES to happiness creators

Yes:

if unhappiness is “weakness”

then:

happiness is “strength”.

So simultaneously, reflect and contemplate.

Make a list of things and persons that give you strength and joy and make you happy and productive.

Include all the things and people that create positive feelings in you.

Then try to devote as much time and energy to doing these positive things and interacting with these morale boosting people that give you strength and make you feel good and happy.

MANTRA FOR HAPPINESS (and UNHAPPINESS) – IN A NUTSHELL

To put it in a nutshell, if you want to be happy:

  1. Try your best to generate happiness vibes by doing things which make you “strong” and happy.
  2. Try to reduce or even eliminate negative unhappiness vibes by “rejecting” things which make you “weak” and unhappy.

(And if you want to be unhappy, just do the opposite – keep wallowing in negative vibes by encouraging your unhappiness creators and avoiding your happiness creators)

HOW TO CREATE HAPPINESS and HOW TO CREATE UNHAPPINESS

Whenever I feel unhappy, I realize that it is because I have allowed myself to be overwhelmed by my unhappiness creators.

And the moment I envelop myself with my happiness creators, I start feeling happy.

Remember this saying of Swami Vivekananda:

Anything that makes you “weak” physically, intellectually, and spiritually, reject as poison.

Conversely, I say:

Anything that makes you feel “strong”, imbibe as nectar.

Implementing this inspiring gem of wisdom from Swami Vivekananda is breathtaking in its simplicity.

Try it – experiment.

Discover your happiness creators and unhappiness creators.

Start making your two lists and then you know what to do.

This works for me and I am sure it will work for you.

I do feel stressed out and unhappy at times – but I know why – and I know what to do – so I try my best to make my unhappiness creators disappear and overwhelm myself with happiness creators.

Wish you a stress-free life filled with happiness.

VIKRAM KARVE

Copyright © Vikram Karve
1. If you share this post, please give due credit to the author Vikram Karve
2. Please DO NOT PLAGIARIZE. Please DO NOT Cut/Copy/Paste this post
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

Disclaimer:

All stories in this blog are a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the stories are a figment of my imagination. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

Copyright Notice:

No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.

Copyright © Vikram Karve (All Rights Reserved)

Link to my original post in my Blog Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve: http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2017/01/inspirational-teachings-of-swami.html

© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

Updated, Abridged and Revised version of my article written more than 25 years ago and Posted by me Vikram Karve at 9/26/2009 03:50:00 PM in this blog at url:http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2009/09/stress-management-made-simple.htmland http://creative.sulekha.com/wisdom-from-swami-vivekananda_561671_blog and http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2014/01/inspirational-wisdom-from-swami.html and http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2016/01/inspirational-tonic-from-swami.html etc

Happily Single

January 12, 2020

Last evening I met a girl.

I had met her last around 10 years ago when she was studying for her Master’s Degree (M.Sc.).

I was happy to learn that she was doing so well in life – she had gone abroad for her Ph.D. – and she was now working as a Research Scientist in a prestigious institution in that country – where she intended living permanently.

She had come to India on her Christmas Vacations to visit her parents and was going back soon.

The girl is around 30 years old – and her mother is worried that her daughter is still unmarried and refuses to “see” boys for marriage.

The mother said that even if her daughter wanted to marry a colleague at work – a “foreigner” – it was okay with them – but she must get married as she was already 30.

The girl said that she was perfectly happy being single – she wanted to focus on her career – and she had no intention of getting married.

There seem to be an increasing number of youngsters who want to remain single by choice.

This reminds me of a story I wrote a few years ago…

MY HAPPILY SINGLE GIRLFRIEND

Short Fiction Story – A Romance By Vikram Karve

Part 1

DINNER DATE (with my “Girlfriend” at a Pub near CBD Auckland)

“Why can’t people understand that I don’t want to get married…” my “girlfriend” said.

“What happened…?” I asked her.

“It’s my mother again. Now – she has found a “Boy” for me over here…”

“Here…? In New Zealand…?”

“Yes – last year – when I was on vacation in India – I escaped seeing “Boys” saying that I had decided to settle down permanently in New Zealand – and – I was unwilling to relocate from Auckland – so now – they have found a “Boy” for me out here…”

“Oh…”

“I just don’t understand why my parents are so desperate to get me married…”

“You are 30 now – you are already past what is considered “marriageable age” in India…”

“But – I don’t want to get married – so – how does my age matter…? What difference does it make whether I am past “marriageable age” or not – when I want to remain “single” all my life…?”

“Well – in India – parents feel it is their duty to get their daughters married…”

“That was okay in the past – when girls were not financially independent – but today – things are different – in fact – I am sure I earn much more than most “Boys” of my age…”

“I don’t think your parents feel that way. Maybe your parents feel that now that you are 30 years old – it is high time that you should “settle down” in life…”

“But – I have already settled down in life – haven’t I…? I have a good job with excellent career prospects – I have my own house in the best inner city suburb of Auckland – I have my own car – I have everything I need…”

“That may be so – but – probably – your parents feel that you need a husband – and – getting married will complete your life…”

“Well – I feel “complete” already – so – there is no place for anyone else in my life – I don’t need anyone – I have got everything…”

“Everything…? Are you sure…? What about…”

She interrupts me – and she says to me:

“Please – let’s not discuss that – but – let me tell you that I can easily get enough of sex – to satisfy my needs – whenever I want…”

“I meant “companionship”…”

“I get plenty of “companionship” at work – in fact – a bit too much – you know the job I do – I have to spend the whole day interacting by people – colleagues, customers, clients – I get so fed up that I just want to be alone at home to enjoy my “self-time”…”

“I meant “friendship” – friends…”

“Friends…? You are there – aren’t you…? You are my “BFF” – aren’t you…? Whenever I want to relax over a drink – or – if I feel like going on a drive – or – if I want to get something off my chest – I call you – and you come to me immediately – like you have come now…”

“Yes – I am always there for you – but – don’t you want to have more friends…?”

“Actually – out here in Auckland – one doesn’t need many friends – I like the social culture out here in New Zealand – where they respect your privacy…”

“You never had any friends out here…? Even when you were studying at the University…?”

“Of course I did. But – those days were different. Now – I like my solitude…”

“Yes – I have seen that. Nowadays – you like to be alone in your spare time…”

“In fact – now – you are my only friend. I like you because you are the only one who doesn’t indulge in “matchmaking” and try to get me married off. Sadly – most Indian “Expats” out here are doing “matchmaking” all the time – they keep hounding me to get married – they keep searching for suitable “matches” – finding all sorts of “Boys” for me…”

“Well – you can’t blame them – can you…? They may have travelled a long distance from India – migrated – and settled down over here in New Zealand – but – their mindset hasn’t changed. They may be physically here – in a modern country – but culturally – in their minds – they still carry old-fashioned Indian values. That’s why they feel – that it is unusual – for a girl to remain unmarried – once she crosses 30 years of age…”

“Well – I am “happy and single” – I am living my life to the fullest – I live on my own terms – and I don’t want anyone worrying about my marriage – not even my parents – and certainly not these Indian “expats” out here…”

“Don’t pay too much attention to them – but – remember – that – like your parents – their intentions are good…”

“Well – I don’t care about their intentions – but – they hassle me with all their “matrimonial talk” and comments about my living a single life – that’s why I have dumped everyone – except you – because you are the only one who accepts me as I am. Yes – you are the only one that I consider as my true friend – because you don’t have any “good intentions” to end my “spinstership” and get me married off…”

“Hey – your glass is empty – should I get you some more beer…?” I ask her.

“No – I’ll go home now…” she says.

“Why so early…? It’s Friday night – and it’s only 7 o’clock…”

“I have to go home. But – you wait here…”

“Me…? Wait here…? Why should I wait here all alone…?”

“Because I want you to speak to the “Boy” – and – you will tell him that I don’t want to get married…”

“What…? You want me to speak to the “Boy”…?”

“Don’t you remember what I told you…? My parents have found a “Boy” for me over here…”

“Oh yes – you told me – but – I almost forgot. So – your parents have found a “Boy” for you over here in New Zealand. Who is the “Boy”…?”

“You will see the “Boy” in a few minutes…”

“What…? Is he coming here to meet you…?”

“Yes – I have called him here in this pub at 8 o’clock – for dinner. But now – he can have the “dinner date” with you – instead of me…”

“Who is the guy…? Does he live here in Auckland…? Maybe I know him…”

“No. You don’t know him. He was working in Christchurch. He took up a job in Auckland only last week. I don’t know what my parents told his parents – and what high hopes they raised in him – because – from the way he talked to me on phone – it seems that he is taking things for granted. I only hope he hasn’t relocated to Auckland in anticipation of getting married to me – because – if he has fancy ideas about getting married to me – he is going to get the shock of his life – when you tell him – that I am not interested in marriage…”

“Oh – so that is why you called me here – to do your dirty work. You want me to meet the “Boy” and tell him the bad news that you are not interested in marriage…”

“Yes. That’s what good friends are for – aren’t they…?” she said.

“But – I don’t even know him…” I said.

“Here – I am sending you his picture and name on your mobile phone…” she said.

The moment I received the picture of the “Boy” on my mobile phone – I looked at it – and I saw that he was quite a smart guy.

Suddenly – my “girlfriend” said to me:

“Okay – I’ll go now – you enjoy your “dinner-date” with the “Boy” – and – you please call me up in the morning and tell me what happened…”

“Okay. Bye. Take Care…” I said to her.

“Bye…” she said to me.

Then – my “girlfriend” kissed me on the cheek – and – she walked towards door of the pub.

Part 2

NEXT DAY – MORNING (at my Home in Auckland)

Next morning – I called my “girlfriend” – and – I told her that the “mission” had been accomplished.

“What happened…?” my “girlfriend” asked me.

“I told the “Boy” that you were not interested in marriage – I told him that you wanted to remain “single” all your life…” I said to her.

“So…? What was his reaction…?”

“He looked crestfallen…”

“Really…?”

“And – do you know what he asked me…?”

“What…?”

“He asked me whether you were a “Lesbian”…”

“Oh My God…!!! So – what did you say…?”

“I kept quiet. I let him draw his own conclusions. Maybe – it will be a “consolation” to him – if he feels that the reason why you “rejected” him is because you are a “lesbian”…”

“You are a terribly wicked fellow…” my “girlfriend” said to me, naughtily.

“You owe me a treat…” I said to her.

“Of course I’ll give you a treat – wherever you want. You call me in the evening – and you tell me the place and time – and – I’ll be there. Okay – Bye – Take Care…” my “girlfriend” said to me – and she disconnected.

I sat quietly – deep in thought.

After some time – I called up my mother in India – and – I said to my mother:

“Mother – you can start looking for a suitable bride for me…”

“Bride…? You want me to search for a bride for you…? What happened to that “girl” over there in Auckland…? The girl you are dating – your “girlfriend” – you said that you wanted to marry her. Weren’t you supposed to meet her last evening…?” my mother said.

“Yes. I met her last evening…”

“What happened…? Did you talk about marriage…? Did you propose to her…?”

“We talked about marriage – but – I didn’t propose to her…”

“Why…? What happened…? Did you have a fight…? Is there some problem with her…? Did you break up with her…?”

“No – No – Mother – nothing like that at all – we are still good friends – but – she doesn’t want to get married – that’s all…”

“She doesn’t want to get married to you…? Why…? Why doesn’t she want to get married to you…?”

“It’s not me. She doesn’t want to get married to anyone – she prefers to remain “single” – that’s all…”

“She wants to remain unmarried…? She wants to remain “single” all her life…? Strange girl…!!!”

“Mother – you forget about her. I am coming to India for a month during my Christmas Vacations. Please have some good “girls” lined up for me to “see”. I want to get married to some nice “back home type” girl…” I said to my mother.

“Don’t worry – you will get the best of girls to select from. You are a “prime catch” in the “marriage market” – you are a “most eligible bachelor”. And that too – you are so smart and handsome. And – you are so well settled in New Zealand – excellent job, your own house, plenty of money – there will be so many good girls dying for the opportunity to go to Auckland and settle down in that lovely place…” my mother said to me.

Part 3

AFTERWORD

Well – my “girlfriend” – who wanted to remain “happily single” – maybe she had “Gamophobia” (Fear of Marriage).

She was “single” – but – she was not “sorry”.

Yes – “Single But Not Sorry.

But – as far as I was concerned – I surely had “Anuptaphobia” (Fear of Staying Single).

Yes – I certainly did not want to remain a “chronic bachelor” for my entire life.

EPILOGUE

GAMOPHOBIA versus ANUPTAPHOBIA

Some persons are afraid of getting married.

They have Gamophobia – fear of marriage – the fear of getting married.

So – they avoid getting married on some pretext or the other.

On the other hand – some persons are apprehensive that they will never get married.

They have Anuptaphobia – fear of staying single – the fear of remaining unmarried for their entire lives.

So – they are desperate to get married.

Gamophobic persons may remain “happily unmarried” for their entire lives.

On the other hand – in their frantic desperation to get married – anuptaphobic persons may land up getting married to the wrong person – since – in their desperate hurry to get married – they may choose partners on a whim – and quickly marry in haste – without considering the consequences.

Well – I have seen both types of persons – some having gamophobia – and a few having anuptaphobia – and – if you look around – you will see both types too.

Hey – Dear Reader – what about you…?

VIKRAM KARVE

Copyright © Vikram Karve
1. If you share this post, please give due credit to the author Vikram Karve
2. Please DO NOT PLAGIARIZE. Please DO NOT Cut/Copy/Paste this post
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

Disclaimer:

  1. This blog post is a fictional spoof, satire, pure fiction, just for fun and humor, no offence is meant to anyone, so take it with a pinch of salt and have a laugh.
  2. All Stories in this Blog are a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the stories are a figment of my imagination. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

Copyright Notice:

No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.

Copyright © Vikram Karve (all rights reserved)

Link to my source blog post in my Blog Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve: http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2017/02/dinner-date-in-auckland.html

This is an updated and abridged repost of my story GAMOPHOBIA written by me Vikram Karve around 3 years ago in December 2016 andposted by me online in my Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve Blog on Friday, December 2, 2016 and revised/reposted on February 3, 2017 and later in my other blogs too at urls:

https://karve.wordpress.com/2017/07/09/dinner-date-with-my-girlfriend-at-a-pub-in-auckland/

https://karve.wordpress.com/2017/02/03/immigration-dating-romance-marriage/

http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2016/12/gamophobia-fear-of-marriage.html

http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2017/02/dinner-date-in-auckland.html

https://karve.wordpress.com/2017/10/05/gamophobia-versus-anuptaphobia/

https://karve.wordpress.com/2018/02/14/single-but-not-sorry/

https://karve.wordpress.com/2018/07/09/are-you-afraid-of-marriage/

https://karve.wordpress.com/2019/04/26/my-happily-single-girlfriend/

and

https://karve.wordpress.com/2019/07/02/my-happily-single-girlfriend-2/

etc etc etc

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