Jun 3, 2018

Think, wait and fast

[Img Src: Wikipedia]

"I can think, I can wait, and I can fast," claims Siddhartha in Herman Hesse's eponymous book when asked what he could do. With my enthusiasm for Kaizen and all things self-improvement, I wondered how I stack up against Siddhartha's advice. After all, he says one can make magic if one had the ability to think, wait and fast.

I can think, I am sure of that. I have always been a thinker; To be honest, I have had to watch for vanity seeping in on occasion about my ability to reflect on a topic. I could potentially be accused of over-thinking sometimes. So that is the easy one on the list. I just need to perfect my pose à la Rodin's Thinker. Let me hasten to clarify, I only meant the chin resting on the hand. Rodin's sculpture has abs and biceps and is muscular. He looks like he is about to sprint or lift weights or box after his bout of thinking. I am overweight and if pushed I might type up a blog.

Can I wait? That is a bit tricky. Time is the most precious commodity for me that I am quite choosy about how I spend it.  On top of that, I am so used to multi-tasking and stealing cycles from every task that I think the true meaning of the word 'wait' is perhaps lost on me. Easy for you to say, Siddhartha, you didn't have a mobile phone reminding you of the chores you can and have to do while waiting. Does it even mean 'waiting' really when you are simply busy while anticipating an event? If yes, then that kind of waiting I can comfortably do. Depending on the magnitude of what I am waiting for, and how fair and transparent the process is, I can be quite patient, not anxious, and not nag. I can save up for stuff, I can wait for my turn. If it is a test of patience then I score reasonably well. If it is also a test of detached acceptance of unfairness or lack of control, I could use some work. If it means close your eyes and meditate - well then I need a lot more work. Oh well, why don't we just chalk it up to 'reasonably good with waiting.'

The third one in Siddhartha's list is firmly in the 'not-going-to happen' territory for me. Masala peanuts and nutty chocolates [need those proteins] are my vices. Um... French fries too. And cashew Pakodas [again proteins]. Appalams. Mixture.  You get the picture. I can polish tubs of them in a matter of minutes. I do realize one can binge eat and also fast - at different times.  That one is not me.  My friends tell me their concentration is sharper, they feel good and that fasting is great for one's health. My concentration is fine as it is, and I feel better eating chocolates. Besides, like the diva in the Snickers ad I can be a total pain when hungry. Ramadan or Ekadashi or my friends bragging about their latest fasting success makes me wonder if I should try fasting. Then after a minute, I am back to eating my mangoes. My few and far between experiments with fasting have usually ended in about hour 5 with me irrationally yelling at my mom or SR. So there I am.

Full marks on 1, very good on 2, and a fail on 3. Not bad at all. It's time for dinner.

June 03, 2018