In 2015 Punya Publishing Released Tum Ho Advitiye , http://punyapublishing.com/you-are-unique-hindi, by Dr A P J Abdul Kalam on his first birthday after his passing away. We were sorry that we did not receive a call from him on that day as he had already bid farewell to this world.
Year after year we tried to release a book of Dr Kalam on his birthday. He always highly appreciated our efforts of most aesthetically and meaningfully presenting his ideas. We shared his dreams of inspiring people, specially youth.
When the first copy of The Luminous Sparks was presented to him by Swami Ranganathanandaji, he was very happy to see the production and called me as he returned to Rashtrapati Bhawan.
Similarly he appreciated the editing and presentation of You Are Unique. He always expressed to you that he could perceive the hard work put into the work and he sincerely appreciated it. Such love and encouragement is only possible by a great soul. There was so much to learn from each meeting we had with him.
One is born alone. In the dark cave of the womb starts the journey of being alone. One is alone as infant before its socialising starts. The smiles, crying, pranks they all become a medium to attract others. Listening, differentiating repeated sounds from a medley of sounds, making sounds, liking of sounds by others, forming relationships of sounds with objects and finally through, repetition, response and reward starts the learning of language. Language leads to verbal and written communication – an instrument of socialising.
Becoming social has its own rewards and punishment. You are not only to be social but you need to be accepted, recognised, LIKED ( People count and hanker for likes of Facebook and Twitter).
The struggle of recognition gradually tinkers on the innocence that came from the womb. The need of acceptance and recognition brings the feelings of insecurity. The perpetual want of position and recognition, changes the innocent baby to a human being who is diplomatic, jealous and capable of telling lies. Besides desire of being recognised, now there are so many more things on the mind – money, power, sensual cravings and social responsibilities. One forgets how to be alone. Even when one is alone, mind is harping on the thoughts of, praise and blame, merit and demerit generated out of the ego and the personal perception, coloured with ones social and circumstantial conditioning. In the every day humdrum, you are hurt, angered, dislike something, ambitions are thwarted, all these create a web of thoughts that entangle you day and night. Thus you are never alone.
And life goes on as the story of two birds on a tree, in Mundaka Upanishad,(third Mundaka,first section,)‘dvā suparṇā sayujā’ one bird jumps from branch to branch eating the bitter and sweet fruits but the other simply looks on without eating, sitting on the top branch. While eating bitter and sweet fruits, when the fruit is bitter, it looks up, at the other bird sitting calmly, and again goes back to flying from one branch to the other tasting bitter and sweet fruits. But then sometimes the fruit is too bitter, an irrevocable loss that drowns one in sorrow, then it looks up again at the calm, luminous, golden bird and slowly starts going up towards it. Both exist together as the reflection and the original and finally the first bird merges into the Luminous one and realises there is no second one it is one only, the self.
It is one only.
Proper knowledge is equal vision, or perception of the one Atman in all. It is a journey from alone back to the self alone, which exists in all.
There is so much that one remembers about 11th President of India Dr Kalam. An extra ordinary human being perhaps super human because he was a spirit that could so easily flow into fellow human beings, animals and even plants. If one had to see a living example of a spirit that was one with humanity, it was Dr Kalam. Simple and pure, from a distance of many miles, he could feel and empathise with you. Hard work was his Mantra and inspiring youth his mission. He had an infectious zeal for life.
We ended the You Are Unique his book with a question to Dr Kalam:
How will you like yourself to be remembered?
His answer was: ‘He brought smiles on Millions and Millions of faces. I will work for it.’
And he did work for it tirelessly through out his life till his last breath.
In a jungle, when we come across a woodpecker, it surprises us. Precariously perched on the edge of the bark of the tree, it pecks and pecks and goes on pecking maybe for days to make a safe hole.
What a symbol of persistence and following one’s goal. His goal is to make a safe abode in the tree and with a single-minded devotion it tirelessly goes on with its task. It is very interesting to watch it. Sometimes after hearing some sound it hides itself but again comes back to its job.
Taking a que from it If we all have a single-minded devotion of self-development according to our inclinations, the focus will wipe all negativity of being defeatist, corrupt and jealous. Follow the woodpecker.
2012 was thought to be an ominous year. It has been ominous in many ways for India. Not a day passes when we do not hear about a heart breaking scam. I will use the word heart breaking because human beings have a tendency to look for hooks to hang their emotions, faiths and weaknesses. These hooks come as teachers, religious gurus, mentors and political leaders. And we put all our faith on these hooks.
We Indians are specially born with an inherent tendency to bend to the feet of others. Socially we are conditioned to do that. Most of the times those feet turn out to be the feet of clay. It is rather unfortunate that we keep drifting from one pair of feet to the other of elders, politicians, religious and spiritual leaders. Acharaya Kriplani, after the resounding victory of opposition parties had said in his lecture at Ramlila ground, ‘Don’t touch their [leaders] feet.’ By touching their feet we suddenly put people on undeserving pedestals in our lives and lose the capacity of critical thinking and analysis. And one day feel scandalised, cheated and disillusioned when the feet turn out to be of clay or worst plastic.
What is the solution, do not lose your power to think. Let no one think for you. Once you learn to question those who take you for granted today, you will instill in them the need to be honest and transparent.
It is an inner revolution which will come only by strengthening our own moral fibre.
This strengthening is a clarion call for you. Let us not allow ourselves to be blown with storm of one party or the other. With our feet rooted on earth, with our power of analysis and scientific thinking in tact, with a balance of emotions and intellect let us analyse each situation, and make it clear to all those who are trying to exploit us with their rhetoric in one way or the other that we are not animals and it is not An Animal Farm borrowing from George Orwell.
The world today needs the thoughts that can enrich one’s personality.You Are Unique is a book that leads the path. Written by Dr A P J Abdul Kalam, the book with his biographical incidents inspires one to be sincere, honest, having indomitable courage, hard working and having goals for oneself and humanity.Some highly reflective poems are projected with excellent colourful paintings in the book along with great thoughts of Dr Kalam.It leads one to balance the head and heart.
A baby is born with no feelings of imperfection. He/she gives a smile to all who are showing love to it. It does not hate. It makes its choices, sticks to them. AND SLEEPS PEACEFULLY. He/She was sleeping like a baby we say. But slowly we lose the capacity of sleeping like a baby. Based on the messages we get, Accept and Give ourselves, we create beliefs and thoughts – thoughts about ourselves and others. Just as a cricket endlessly chatters in the absolute silence of a jungle, we create a noise in ourselves of likes, dislikes, insinuations, imperfections, jealousies, wants, fulfilled and unfulfilled desires. This noise is of our thoughts.
Thoughts that will create actions. Actions that will create reactions – desirable and undesirable. And that will become life, pleasant or unpleasant.
Two things are very clear. We must learn to give a pause between action and reaction. Secondly, before being critical about anyone ask ourselves, what is the reality, reality that I see and reality of the other person? Trust me if we will start seeing the reality of the other person we will be able to forgive others very easily. Did I say forgive? No, forgiving is also a form of ego. Who are we to forgive others?
We will be able to accept others whole heartedly, if we are able to perceive their reality.
Ask yourself am I finding the person or the situation wrong because of my own ego, or I have a genuine concern. Am I making a noise or whistle blowing out of hatred and jealousy? What is the percentage and proportion of the two elements? Tap the door of your mind, and ask are my thoughts and reactions born of ego and personal fanaticism. If so I need to look at them again and drop them. This will help to understand the situation. Live better, love yourself and love others.