Tuesday, June 28, 2005

The Alchemist

I have read "The Alchemist" twice and want to read it again. The Book is a must read and unfolds beautifully. The book is loaded with some of the great quotes.Some of them are below

The Alchemist
It's the possibility of having a dream come true that makes life interesting. (p11)

What's the world's greatest lie? It's this: that at a certain point in our lives, we lose control of what's happening to us, and our lives become controlled by fate. (p18)

The boy didn't know what a person's "destiny" was. It's what you have always wanted to accomplish. Everyone, when they are young, knows what their destiny is. At that point in their lives, everything is clear and everything is possible. They are not afraid to dream, and to yearn for everything they would like to see happen to them in their lives. But, as time passes, a mysterious force begins to convince them that it will be impossible for them to realize their destiny. (p22)

And, when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it. (p23)

People learn early in their lives what is their reason for being. (p25)

When someone makes a decision, he is really diving into a strong current that will carry him to places he had never dreamed of when he first made the decision. (p71)

Intuition is really a sudden immersion of the soul into the universal current of life. (p77)

When you want something with all your heart, that's when you are closest to the Soul of the World. It's always a positive force. (p82)

The alchemists spent years in their laboratories, observing the fire that purified the metals. They spent so much time close to the fire that gradually they gave up the vanities of the world. They discovered that the purification of the metals had led to a purification of themselves (p85)

"I learned that the world has a soul, and that whoever understands that soul can also understand the language of things. I learned that many alchemists realized their destinies, and wound up discovering the Soul of the World, the Philosopher's Stone, and the Elixir of Life. But above all, I learned that these things are all so simple they could be written on the surface of an emerald." (p87)

I don't live in either my past or my future. I'm interested only in the present. If you can concentrate always on the present, you'll be a happy man. Life will be a party for you, a grand festival, because life is the moment we're living now. (p88/89)

Because people become fascinated with pictures and words, and wind up forgetting the Language of the World. (p91)

In his pursuit of the dream, he was being constantly subjected to tests of his persistence and courage. So he could not be hasty, nor impatient. If he pushed forward impulsively, he would fail to see the signs and omens left by God along his path. (p93)

When you are in love, things make even more sense, he thought. (p105)

Courage is the quality most essential to understanding the Language of the World. (p117)

Remember that wherever your heart is, there you will find your treasure. You've got to find the treasure, so that everything you have learned along the way can make sense. (p122)

"There is only one way to learn," the alchemist answered. "It's through action. Everything you need to know you have learned through your journey. (p132)

The wise men understood that this natural world is only an image and a copy of paradise. The existence of this world is simply a guarantee that there exists a world that is perfect. God created the world so that, through its visible objects, men could understand his spiritual teachings and the marvels of this wisdom. That's what I mean by action." (p133)

All you have to do is contemplate a simple grain of sand, and you will see in it all the marvels of creation. Listen to your heart. It knows all things, because it came from the Soul of the World, and it will one day return there. (p134)

People are afraid to pursue their most important dreams, because they feel that they don't deserve them, or that they'll be unable to achieve them. (p136)

Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself. And that no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams, because every second of the search is a second's encounter with God and with eternity.

Everyone on earth has a treasure that awaits him. (p138)

Every search begins with beginners luck and ends with the victor's being severely tested. (p139)

The boy and his heart had become friends, and neither was capable now of betraying the other. (p141)

When you are loved, you can do anything in creation. When you are loved, there's no need at all to understand what's happening, because everything happens within you. (p155)

Sunday, June 26, 2005

The Rules for Being Human

This indeed is very True but the last rule is the most applicable


The Rules for Being Human

1. You will receive a body. You may like it or hate it, but it will be yours
for the entire period.

2. You will learn lessons. You are enrolled in an informal school called
Life. Each day in this
school, you will have the opportunity to learn lessons. You may like the
lessons or think them irrelevant and stupid.

3. There are no mistakes, only lessons. Growth is a process of trial and
error. Experimentation. The "failed" experiments are as much a part of the
process as the experiment that ultimately "works".

4. A lesson is repeated until learned. A lesson will be presented to you in
various forms until you have learned it. You can then go on to the next

5. Learning lessons does not end. There is no part of life that does not
contain its lessons. If you are alive, there are lessons to be learned.

6. "There" is no better than "here." When your "there" has become a "here,"
you will simply obtain another "there" that will again look better than

7. Others are merely mirrors of you. You cannot love or hate something about
another person unless it reflects something you either love or hate about

8. What you make of your life is up to you. You have all the tools and
resources you need. What you do with them is up to you. The choice is yours.

9. Your answers lie inside you. The answers to Life's questions lie inside
you. All you need to do is look, listen and trust.

10. You will forget all this.

Quarter-Life Crisis

A very interesting article which all of us can relate to.
Read on


Being Twenty-Something............

They call it the "Quarter-life Crisis." It is when you stop going along with the crowd and start realizing that there are many things about yourself that you didn't know and may not like.

You start feeling insecure and wonder where you will be in a year or two,but then get scared because you barely know where you are now. You start realizing that people are selfish and that, maybe, those friends that you thought you were so close to aren't exactly the greatest people you have ever met, and the people you have lost touch with are some of the most important ones.

What you don't recognize is that they are realizing that too, and aren't really cold, catty, mean or insincere but that they are as confused as you.

You look at your job... and it is not even close to what you thought you would be doing, or maybe you are looking for a job and realizing that you are going to have to start at the bottom and that scares you.

Your opinions have gotten stronger. You see what others are doing and find yourself judging more than usual because suddenly you realize that you have certain boundaries in your life and are constantly adding things to your list of what is acceptable and what isn't.

One minute, you are insecure and then the next, secure. You laugh and cry with the greatest force of your life.You feel alone and scared and confused. Suddenly, change is the enemy and you try to cling on to the past with dear life, but soon realize that the past is drifting further and further away, and there is nothing to do but
stay where you are or move forward.

You get your heart broken and wonder how someone you loved could do such damage to you. Or you lay in bed and wonder why you can't meet anyone decent enough that you want to get to know better.

Or maybe you love someone but love someone else too and cannot figure out why you are doing this because you know that you aren't a bad person.One-night-stands and random hook-ups start to look cheap. Getting wasted and acting like an idiot starts to look pathetic.

You go through the same emotions and questions over and over, and talk with your friends about the same topics because you cannot seem to make a decision.

You worry about loans, money, the future and making a life for yourself... and while winning the race would be great, right now you'd just like to be a contender! What you may not realize is that everyone reading this relates to it.

We are in our best of times and our worst of times, trying as hard as we can
to figure this whole thing out.

We are making a lot of mistakes, but helping one another learn from them & reaching out to others.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Five Point Some One

I have yet to figure out the best part of my job but commuting to my workplace is quite enriching. Though the trains are crowded to the last centimeter, I find a way to read a book. Recently I laid my hands on a novel titled “Five Point Someone” by Chetan Bhagat. He is an IIT, IIM alumnus. The story revolves around three friends and their life in an IIT hostel.

The style of writing is simple and very young full of common youth lingo. The book is not a great piece of literature but classics are not meant to be read, right. Three friends- Alok, Ryan and Hari are the central characters, and the whole story is narrated by Hari. I could identify with some part or other with each and every character but Hari is close to my heart.

There is not much to think about the story or any takeaways. But is that everyday kinda stuff which happens to normal guyz.

Help yourself to get a copy and read it

Friday, June 24, 2005

Memoirs of an MBA............

Memoirs of an MBA...
July 26
Dear Diary,

I can't hold myself down. My FIRST day on the job!! And I like it
already. "Assistant Junior Deputy to the Vice Chairman -
Manufacturing". My dad was thrilled when he heard my designation.
"What the f!@#!!!" was his exact words. Oh I love it when my parents
are happy...

Need to meet HR in half an hour. I cant wait to get my first Employee
ID Card and cubicle. I hope Parthasarathy Whatayblouse Crappers is the
beginning of great things.

P.S. I have brought my favorite textbooks back from the insti. OD, OM
and HR should help me grow rapidly in the organization. And I WILL
handle soft issues before facing hard issues here at PWC.

July 28th
Dear Diary,

Had a lot of fun with HR yesterday. The guy who had recruited me had
left a month ago. So they didnt know I was joining. We had a hearty
laugh over that one.

I'll get my cubicle in a few days time. For the time being I am
sharing a nice one with Claire. She's with Corporate Communication.
The phone doesnt work though...

August 2nd
Dear Diary,

Met my boss today. He spend a lot of time with my CV and then asked me
how I managed to get a job with them. (Even he knows how lucky they
are to get me..) He told me to review our material ordering system in
the err... umm... the... the "big yellow and blue noisy machine
section" of the plant.

Claire is working on an "Our Employees Love Us" campaign. The office
boy had just resigned. So she got me to pose with an apron and a tray
of cookies for a photo. They are going to call me Ramon and use it for
ads. I am going to be famous.

August 7th
Dear Diary,

My first breakthrough. I have decided to order nickel ball bearings
using the EQO.. QEO... whatever formula. It takes into account item
cost, holding cost and weight of ball bearing I think. The purchase
guy gave me a funny look when he saw my annual requisition contract
form. He is obviously not an MBA...

Claire resigned today. She told me carry on with the "Our Employees
Love Us" campaign.

P.S. Lesson for the week. You cannot order 0.7564 of a ball bearing.
It has to be in whole numbers.

August 11th
Dear Diary,

I just got a shipment of 4384 ball bearings. I checked up with
Engineering. They said that should be enough for around 14 years of
requirement. I gave them 3 and stashed away the rest in a cupboard in
my room. If prices of ball bearings go up, I see a lot of potential

I have decided to develop informal channels of communication. From
tomorrow I will spend a little time next to the coffee machine to
understand the unspoken messages within the underbelly of the firm.
(That OD book is good)

August 14th
Dear Diary,

I sent my first official letter today. It was to our Facilities
manager Merry Le Bian. She is a hottie. I told her that the Coffee
Machine takes too much time to reheat between refills. Wrote it in a
WAC format and all with a table of contents and everything. She is
sure going to impressed!! I spell checked it in MS word and emailed it
to her an hour ago. No reply yet.

They scrapped the "Our Employees Love Us" campaign. The photo shoot
was taking up too much time, and people were being forced to stay late
without extra pay. Someone finally went and vandalised the banner. It
now reads "Our Employers Shove Us". I offered to model for all the
snaps and videos. They called me a dickhead. I was delighted. Dickhead
is internal slang for "Big Stud". HR told me. Everyone calls me that...

P.S. One more shipment of ball bearings came. Again 4384. The contract
can't be changed now. I dont have too much space left in my cupboard.

August 25th
Dear Diary,

My letter came back. It had a pink post-it on it from Merry. "Please
proofread" it said. It was CC'd to my boss. How was I supposed to know
MS Word would spell check her name and change it to Merry
Lesbian????!!!! Where's natural justice?

Today five minutes before a meeting the cupboard door broke open. It
took me ten minutes to pick up all the ball bearings from the floor. I
had to run to the board room for the meeting and slipped on a bearing
which rolled under the door. I fell on the coffee machine and tipped
coffee powder into the polymer mixing maching tray. Noone saw anything.

P.S. Sorry for the long break. My computer crashed. There was a mail
from an old friend. She's now married into the Welchia family I think.
Crashed after that. Strange name that Welchia...

September 2nd
Dear Diary,

My boss told me I may not last the probation period. I was mighty
thrilled to hear that. Imagine!! Permanent in less than three months!!
That should be some sort of company record.

I made a presentation to all the staff yesterday. Some 300 people were
there. I think I sent good vibes. Everyone was smiling and nodding
their heads during the presentation. Someone later told me my fly was
open the whole time. But I don't think anyone noticed. The
presentation was on "An Open Culture: Let the feeling show!!"

p.s. 17156 ball bearings. I floated a scheme to give each employee a
ball bearing for every year of service. The HR manager immediately
convened a meeting with my boss. Every suggestion counts here at PWC.

September 4th
Dear Diary,

I have been transferred to the office in Sub-Saharan Africa. I will be
heading the Room Heater and Hot Water Geyser products division. They
have also told me to pay for all the ball bearings I bought. I think
it speaks much of the entrepreneurial spirit. I have been told to
leave immediately for Kujumbinana.

P.S. A foreign posting in under a year!!!

September 5th
Dear Diary,

I am in Kujumbinana. We don't have a branch here.......

Saturday, June 04, 2005

My First Three Days at the Corporate World!!!!!

1st June 2005

Its 3 o'clock in the night and I wake up sweating profusely. With eyes wide open I look at the clock trying to comprehend what the time is. A thought struck my mind and suddenly I realize that it is just an other nightmare. These kinds have become a regular in my life whenever there is an important impending event. Today is 1st June, the day when I will put forth a small step in the corporate (this word is magical) arena. And no prizes for guessing that the nightmare was about reaching late to the office on the first day and having a bad start.

I start off my day by catching the 8:14 train with the blessings of dad & mom. I land up at church gate completely drenched by the humid climate. I reach the office and wait for my colleague who also joins with me. Well as always there’s always some thing weird or amazing happening with me as I go on with my life. The colleague who has done his MBA from dalmiya is also named Viral!!!!!!!!! So the confusion starts from day one. We are taken to our seats and were given some mags and journals to go through. Times goes on and we are then ushered to the cabin of one of our heads. He talks to us very casually and asks us to join him for lunch in about half and hour. So now I am off to my first business lunch (if u may call it). The food is very “international” in flavour (no pun intended).

The lunch goes heavy on my stomach and so I have this lazy afternoon to fight with, as there is no work to be done. Just sit on a chair and read through papers and documents. After 5 pm I get impatient to leave, as I am bored to death.

5:15, 5:30, 5:45, 6:00, 6:15,6:20, 6:25, 6:26, 6:27…. It’s getting difficult to pass the time. At last one of our senior comes across and tells us that few days will be without work and you all can leave. To my much-awaited relief we left the office by 7.

Reached home by 8 and thus come to the end of my first office trip …..Or the start of a journey.

Patience is how u act while you are waiting……………………………

2nd June 2005

So I am back to the office to start the 2nd day of my pro life. The day is not started and I get the feel of “The Routine”. The feel is very discouraging but at the same time encouraging. Discouraging in the sense that it doesn’t motivate me to do the chore but at the same time motivates me to quit and start my own at a point in time.

Today is no different from day 1. We were briefed for about an hour or so and then were given some documents to read. Sitting on my chair I just think infact laugh on myself on having grandiose plans for my job. The job in which I will be launching brands right and left, doing heavy marketing and formulating strategies to checkmate the competition. But I don’t blame my self for the thought, as this is what comes across to any B school rookie.

Afternoon is what seems very difficult to pass. The fleeting mind disrespects the 4 walls of the office and wanders in the world full of imagination and dreams. And why not, we only dream when the reality is not better than the dreams. I get hold of my mind and put it back where it must be. Try to create work for myself but soon the eyes roll to the right bottom corner of my desktop to see the time and do it repeatedly. Doing it so often makes you think that the pc clock is not working and the being so dumb, I really checked it twice.

I have got a corporate (oh man I love this word so much) email id now and was trying to check the way it works and suddenly I get a mail. It’s by someone called chetan. He is resigning and hence wants to bid goodbye to all. In his mail he thanks a lot for understanding and supporting him. I feel good as for the first time I am being thanked for all this without even seeing/talking/meeting/knowing the guy. And I doubt how many from my team know him. So is the corporate (again...I simply love this) world, like a forest in which you can get lost and dead.

3rd June 2005

It’s again a lazy afternoon and I my mind goes on a philosophical drive. I was just wondering the kind of life I want. The kind of life, which will make me happy, or at least satisfy me. I dip in to my mind and the heart for an answer and as always I return empty handed. Just joining the organization, I was thinking if I had made a right decision. Just wondering what my career would be down 3/4/5 yrs.Infact to be honest I was actually worrying.

But then I have realized that what is that I need to worry about at this stage. I have not yet started my job and am actually thinking of switching it!!!!. Thinking about my next break infact the next BIG break. This is what happens to us when we live in the future and not in the present. And I think worrying is the function of how much you stay in your future. The more you stay the more you worry. As I move along this philosophical drive I tend to remember Saunak (mafat). He and I are different as poles but we do meet at ends. I think that we both have this very bad habit of cribbing (although I do it very subconsciously) . We always feel that the grass is greener on the other side and always wish to be “there” and in the process; crib for our present i.e. “here”. I need to get ‘there’. ‘THERE’ is an important place. There is there and here. But then there are so many instances when I have got to “there” just to realize that the “there“, which is my “here“ now, is not so worth it and I readily search for another “there”. The pursuit goes on and suddenly I realise that the voyage between “here” and “there” is nothing but a round circle and on completing the circle what I get in the end is a BIG DAMN ZERO. I have realized with failing over time and again that “There” is here. There is no ‘here and there’, there is only ‘here’. We should enjoy our “here” and the “there” will be automatically taken care off. And that is what I am going to do with my job, enjoy the “here”.

Time passes by and its time to go, with the news that tomorrow is an off being a Saturday. I catch a 8:55 train and with Gods grace I get a seat. I take out a book titled “Jonathan Livingston Seagull” by Richard Bach. Just as I begin reading it, a gentlemen well in his early sixties sitting besides me and asks me what I am reading. He asks me what is the book about and I tell me the same. It’s about overcoming your limitations and excelling in life. He seemed to be a wise fellow and picked up the discussion from the point. He went on talking explaining me the various kinds of limitations we have and the process of overcoming them. He talked non stop for 30 minutes. He explained me the power of being positive and not cynical in life. He goes on touching each and every topic of life in those insightful 30 minutes. He told me how to tackle pressures at your workplace and how to keep your professional life different from your personal life. It seemed to me that God had indeed sent him to have a chat with me and steer me the right direction. He got down at bandra and that was the end of our discussion but he sparked off a new thought in my mind

Never Give Up!!!!!!!!!

Posted By Neo