Somehow I’m wary of cocksure people. More so because I am a firm believer in the relativity of everything in this Universe. I don’t know many absolutes and I don’t mind that. I prefer it actually. If I have learnt anything in my life of 25 years it is this: everything changes. And if there is a truth in life it is that.
I think there is a lot to learn from one’s surroundings. If I were a believer in rebirth, I’d be the kind who was trying to attain Nirvana because of two things 1) I tend to look around and learn everything I can to be a better human being 2) I almost hate this world. I’m ‘this’ close to being a misanthrope. (Although, I’m not sure if that attitude would let me attain Nirvana.) A famous adage says one should learn from others’ mistakes. My mother is testimony to the fact that I can never get around to do that. I have to go and make a mistake myself to learn from it. However, some events have forced me to reconsider my habit. Change beckons.
I think being a spectator has many merits; you get to enjoy the show and the popcorn, and you get to learn while watching someone else do it. Even if it is rolling in the muck. Recently, I watched a series of events and I wondered why had it gotten so bad. I mean, how difficult could it be to make a plan and stick to it? Pretty difficult as it turns out. As is the case in all things gone wrong, one tends to sift through the past to find out what went wrong and where. As a spectator, I had much free time to do the sifting. So, I spent some of my ‘reflection’ sessions to wonder what had put the spanner in the works. Or rather, who had? And why? For many days, I didn’t come to any conclusion. I couldn’t see what I had to learn from the situation too. It seemed like a lost cause. Lost more so because everyone in the ‘play’ was so cocksure of themselves, it made me sick. I’m saying ‘seemed’ because everything is relative, remember? I tried to put the episode behind me, but it wouldn’t go. It was right there staring me in my face.
One day, on a fated bus ride, I continued my pondering and sifting. It came to me. In an epiphany, the ‘learning’ happened and I realised that although there wasn’t anything positive going on in there, there was something negative and I could learn from that. What I realised is this: It’s noble to learn what you should do, but it’s vital to know what you shouldn’t do. I think a bad example is better than a good one. A tad better. That’s why we have villains. So, we can see what we don’t want to be.
Many days after I had learnt my lesson and I was moving on with my life, I read this somewhere:
There is a saying in Sanskrit:
Durjanam Prathamam Vande Sajjanam Tadanantaram
First, worship the bad person, and then the good man. The bad man is falling and giving you an example, “don’t do what I did.”
Well, talk about reinforcements.
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