TRUTHS ABOUT DECEPTION

Whenever I make any new friends especially female ones my Di (elder sister) asks a bulk of questions about them. Though it’s good for me,  I often get irritated about it. Once I said, ‘Don’t try to put your nose into my issues, mind your own business. And why should you know everything about my friends!’ I can never forget her lovely reply, ‘you’re too sensitive about relationship and in this particular matter you use your heart more than your brain’.

The word ‘Deception’ always reminds me of one the incidents of my life.

Then I was a university student, barely in my early 20s. Being an extrovert, I had lots of friends. Within a very short span, my friendship with one of my friends went little more intimate. We started sharing best of our times and lives and trusted one another. After a couple of years of our friendship, my friend’s behavior always hinted me negatively but every time I avoided it correcting myself: ‘doubt always kills friendship and I should not allow it in’. In between my dear friend took a new Videocon smart phone with voice modulation feature. After some days, when I saw my friend is avoiding my phone calls, I questioned – “hey, what happened why have you stopped responding to my phone calls and the reply I got was, ‘actually, my cousin sister is using my phone and is always busy talking to her fiancé’. Many times I had phone conversations with my friend’s cousin sister. Almost after 8 months and because of some unexpected personal issues we had to break our friendship. The next day I came to know from my friend’s parents that ‘there is no one as the cousin sister in the family!!’ It was my friend who took advantage of the voice modulation technology and was misleading me! All our friends felt very bad about it as we simply believed the lies and fabricated stories of our dear friend.

“DECEPTION” is ‘an instance of actions and/or schemes fabricated to mislead someone into believing a lie or inaccuracy’.

C. Ryle says, “What would you expect? Sin will not come to you, saying, “I am sin.” It would do little harm if it did. Sin always seems “good, and pleasant, and desirable,” at the time of commission.”

Yes that’s very true, that’s what deception is all about! Deception allures us presenting itself in its most attractive form with all kinds of fabricated stories and well organized schemes to believe a lie. Wise King Solomon says in the Bible, For the lips of the adulterous woman drip honey, and her speech is smoother than oil; but in the end she is bitter as gall, sharp as a double-edged sword.”

Pamela Christian says, “Unless we examine what we believe and why we believe it, we can easily be deceived and not know it.”

Deception needs introspection. God always prompts us in many ways when we are being deceived. He speaks to our conscience ‘something is going wrong’, so it’s better to pause and introspect the whole matter rather than being emotion-bounded.

“This life’s dim windows of the soul,
Distorts the heavens from pole to pole.
And goads you to believe a lie,
When you see with, and not through the eye.”

(William Blake)

We are meant to see through the eye, with the conscience, not devoid of conscience.

Couple months back, I and a few of my friends heard about the present condition of our same friend who once deceived us. Now we all feel sorry about our friend but each of us are helpless to help our friend. The hound of deception which our friend once embraced has deceived her back. Deception deceives back the same person who deceived once.

Deception always DECEIVES back!

HOW MANY FRIENDS DO YOU REALLY HAVE?

Did you hear about the man who had 500 friends on FB, and 200+ followers on twitter and LinkedIn and so on? But when he met with an accident and was admitted in ICU only his wife, kids and a close friend were actually waiting outside worrying about him.

This, of course, is a fictional story I read somewhere but it brings me to a very real question.

How many friends do we actually have?

Do a small exercise. Go to your social networking account and check out how many friends do you have in your friend list. 100? 200? 300? Or maybe more?

Now go through that list of friends and tick off the acquaintances, the relatives and family. You may now be left with work friends, old school / college classmates or your society neighbours or maybe your classmates in yoga class and so on.

How many of them are actually your friends? The ones with whom you would like to pick up the phone and chat, the ones you can open up to or share your thoughts with. I am sure this number is hardly handful.

The number of likes on our vacation pic makes us so happy or the number of loves on our little ones fancy dress pic makes us feel so proud.

But seriously how many of them were actually interested in our life and how many just clicked on the ‘like’ button out of habit. We will never know.

Not only in our virtual life even in our real life this happens. We go through the journey of life meeting many people and making a lot of relations along the way. Some of these friendships stick with us for a long way and some are lost along the path.

But don’t get deceived with the number of people around you. Some maybe friends and some maybe masquerading as friends. I am saying this as a personal experience. I am a very social person and get along with people easily. Sometimes I think I open up very soon with people and it backfires on me. There have been cases where the person has been very sweet and lovable to me but behind my back the very same person has been talking very bitterly about me. This experience used to make me question myself, ‘What wrong have I done to this person that he / she harbours so much hatred or bitterness for me’. I used to spend endless hours going through our interactions to understand what went wrong. Nothing really made sense.

But this experience has taught me a valuable lesson. Firstly, don’t try to please everyone around you. It is an impossible task. And secondly, don’t get deceived by appearances and sweet talk. Everyone who is being nice to you is really not a friend. Choose your friends with great care. Don’t go about sharing your problems with all.

Remember only a few in our list of friends are really interested in our problems. Others are hearing us out and are secretly glad we have these problems.

 

 

FOOLING OTHERS OR OURSELVES ???

None of us are beyond lying. I am not talking about deliberate lies but the petty lies we say like we hangout with friends and tell our parents that we are returning from college 🙂 These lies are not harmful I agree, but more often I am confronted with one truth, that we all lie to over selves, in one word self-deception. 

We fool ourselves into believing something that is false, and we refrain from accepting the truth. The fact is we lie to ourselves about very insignificant things to important life changing decisions we make.  

I want to quote an example here out of my experience which really has hurt me, made me wonder why people behave this way… 

My birthday is not known to many of my friends or colleagues, that’s because I maintain a very low profile. It does not appear on my social networking websites.

Last year one of my friend, who never knew when my birthday was, somehow found out that it’s my birthday and with a big exclamation said, ” Oh Dear, sooo sorryyyyyyyyyyyyyy, I don’t know how I forgot your birthday, here are the wishes ” and she spoke for a minute or two.   I wondered why she is behaving as if she has forgotten a very important person’s birthday ? we were never that close. I was irritated a bit, but I paid little attention at that time. 

This year same scene repeated, but this time she got to know from another friend that my birthday passed by months later, he he !! Same exclamation and expression., well this time on social networking site she announced that she forgot it…”For God’s sake can you stop acting” was my thought, but it is not good to say that on someone’s face, so I just thanked.  I would have preferred if she would have rang me up instead of posting publicly. I really don’t mind when people forget, it’s natural and I do too…

This incident made me feel very hurt, I like her and respect her, may be that’s why it was tough on me. Why do people show off ? What do we get by lying and fooling around someone. Intentional or unintentional ? the line between them is blurry.

We mislead ourselves all day long… We tell ourselves that we are smarter and good looking than others, we don’t have enough time to help a colleague, we are too busy to make a few phone calls or check on our friends. 

We lie about our age, who cares what our real age is ? Why do we have to lie about it ?

When we encounter a friend of ours at a grocery store, we say “Aww, you look so pretty!!! “. Wasn’t she good looking otherwise? This is a kind of flattery to be nice, consciously we are aware we are lying.

We lie about why we married whom we did,  about what career we chose. Some people boost to an extent that it can be easily made out as a lie. We married whom we wanted to marry, does that require a reason or justification ?

We are unable to accept that we are fooling ourselves by giving reasons to others, it is psychologically effecting us. We deceive ourselves because of fear and ego. Fear of being rejected or taken for a wrong understanding. Living in a fantasy lie, forgetting what the reality is can turn out to be a costly mistake, a mistake that may not have a chance to be corrected later. Friends, let’s be careful and keep a watch on ourselves …

TAKE OFF THOSE ROSE GLASSES….

*Fiction with truth touching our lives

Hello Everyone,

Before going into the story I want to mention two things that were repeatedly tossing up in my mind for past two days as I was preparing to write for this week:

  • An old song :Duniya mein kitna gum hain, mera gum kitna kam hai” which translates to ‘there is so much grief in the world mine is nothing compared to it.’
  • Take off those rose glasses when you see the world, stop using magnifying glasses when you look at your own life.

Now going into the story:

I was reading the newspaper and hurried through all the headlines so as to hand it over to my brother who stood there staring at me sipping his coffee as if saying, “delay it by one more minute and you will have it from me”.  I gave the paper to him but kept the entertainment supplement with me to read it at leisure.  After being done with the day I decided to let my hair down with my favourite read “Entertainment News”.   As I was turning the pages I found an advertisement featuring my favourite actress. Oh! I simply couldn’t take my eyes off her, she looked mesmerizing.  After a few seconds of trance I resumed reading, rather noticing the advertisement.  It read “Live My Life For Seven Days“.  It was a contest wherein the contestants are supposed to fill in a caption and send their entries. Among all the entries only the best three were to be selected and would be given a chance to meet the superstar.  And one among those three will get a chance to live the life of a superstar that too for one entire week. “What luck!” I thought to myself.  “Why can’t that luck be yours?” my heart questioned me and made me pick up a pen, put my brain to exercise and at last I scribbled a caption which was nothing but my feelings decorated with words. Then I slipped into deep slumber with head full of imagination and eyes crowded with dreams. I could see myself there surrounded with nothing but beauty and ecstasy. Big brands running after me, I was adorned with the most fashionable clothes that enhanced my beauty, I was the talk of the town – many adoring me, many more jealous of me,  but I was there to stay.  Oh what a dream it was! About a month of posting the caption I got the news that I was among the best three, in fact I was better than the best and I would get a chance to live my dream now. My excitement knew no bounds. What else I could ask God for?

Soon the D-day arrived and my journey to the La-La land begun. It seemed all glossy at first glance. But soon I discovered that only the surface is made to look beautiful but underneath it, it’s all hollow.  Soon I had lost my freedom – freedom to move about freely lest paparazzi would follow me; freedom to eat whatever I wanted to eat to heart’s content lest I will put on those extra pounds and won’t fit into my branded wear; freedom to talk freely lest I would be misinterpreted, misquoted and misrepresented for the TRP business.  There were tabs all around and on everything. And the worst thing was that I was reduced to a mere “product” that comes with a shelf life.  My brain, my heart, my emotions had no place and never mattered.  It was all about “Face” and “Show”.  ‘Is this the life of a superstar?’,  I questioned and felt cheated.

At the end of the seventh day when I shed those high-end fashionable wear and came back to my common “street” fashion I heaved a sigh of relief.  I had realized one thing perhaps the most important lesson of my life:

  • When we look at others’ lives we choose to see only the seemingly beautiful and better aspects. We don’t get into the skin of matters like their hardships and their efforts. We are only concerned about the sweet lies and beautiful images but the bitter truth always scares us away.
  • Not only do we constantly keep an eye on how’s life shaping up when it comes to others be it our neighbors, friends or relatives but also we end up giving a royal ignore to the good things we have been blessed with – A loving family, supporting friends, health, a comfortable shelter over head, freedom to do petty things that give happiness in true sense and literally many more things that are intangible.
  • If comparison has to be the essence of life then it must be drawn with less fortunate ones as it could prompt us to thank God before we curse it .
  • Happiness is not in a highly priced product but a valuable one.  For example, a dinner plate priced worth thousands might not give the same happiness as a loaf of bread when you are hungry.  Hope the difference is clear!

At the end of the story I would like to say one thing, as humans we have a tendency of living in deception that whatever others have must be better as compared to our possessions.  We don a constant pair of rose glasses through which we fail to see the blistering heat that is panning lives. Meanwhile we have this constant frown 😞 on our faces when it comes to analyse our lives.  Never happy because the happiness is too small compared to our problems which according to us are bigger  than what anyone else have and here to stay forever for we are the most unfortunate, isn’t it?

Think about it and if possible ‘Take Off Those Rose Glasses’.

 

A TRUTH ABOUT LIFE – UNSAID AND UNSPOKEN, BUT VISIBLE

As every other day, I was busy in working on my laptop. A hectic day or not so hectic day, I spend hours in front of it at times neglecting my own responsibilities. It just the thought of being working gives me the pleasure of independence. The joy of being a powerful woman in the society. But then suddenly I feel like my inner self-questioning me a lot.

  • Is the job a prime thing in my life?
  • Are my kids important to me?
  • Is family or my work on high priority?

I tend to neglect many tasks either procrastinating or completely underestimating their importance in my life.

As I was working, in my so-called busy schedule, getting interrupted was something I hated the most. I tend to work on my own time-space, and if ever I am not getting the space, then I get irritated for no reason. Most of the times I hated that nature of mine. I get irritated for no reason and shout on others. It was not doing good to me or others connected with me.

It was just my wrong perception that ‘Work’ is important than any relation. Work is needed to sustain life, not to take up life as a whole leaving no space for your family needs.

We all work harder deceiving our own mind convincing ourselves that we work harder to earn better for our family. How many of us can relate to the same scenario? We often misunderstand the basic needs of our comfort and others to bring in more wealth. We deceive ourselves trying to make believe that we are sacrificing for our beloveds’ comfort.

All along, as we keep moving ahead in our career we loose our precious time with our kids, our family who are also moving ahead in their age.We forget to prioritize the needs as a human. As a human all we need is love. Work is important, but when we work harder avoiding the needs of the family we just become the ATM for them, a money vending machine in their life. In bringing in all the world’s comfort to our loved ones, we lose the space in their life as it is filled with the fortune we bring in.

We are actually bringing up a society, who just value money more than relation. Our children just watch us working day and night earning a lot for them. We are betraying them and creating duplicate life as ours in them. The values of relations dwindle in the current society. We are more modernizing our thoughts throwing away the wonderful culture of togetherness of a family.

Happiness is not just providing all the comforts we earned to the family, but making them realize how important love, adjustments, care and other human emotions have in our life. Rather than being victimized by the bucks we earn by neglecting the family’s emotional needs, we need to prioritize our life based on the true needs.

In order to prioritize the needs, we need to understand the basic necessity for our happiness

  • Our happiness comes from our family.
  • Spending time with the family we earn the greatest wealth – Time.
  • Money is just temporary, but Family is forever.
  • Money cannot bring in love but only fake hearts closer.

Once every soul understands and relates to these facts, the world becomes less competitive. It is only the need to be powerful and stand high in the society that one is greedy about money.

In the end, you may not find the wealth beside you, but only the love you earned all the yesteryears.

LOVE PEOPLE, USE THINGS

A short story –

There was a happily married couple and on their 10th marriage anniversary the husband decided to gift a car to his wife. It was an expensive yellow colored Mini Cooper just like she had always dreamt of. He was excited to see her reaction on seeing the car.

Finally the day came – the day of their 10th marriage anniversary. And the husband proudly handed over the keys to the wife and she was just puzzled. She noticed the key ring and her hopes started to get high but she kept her calm till she actually saw her dream car right outside the gate. She screamed with joy, hugged and kissed her husband. Her happiness knew no bounds.

She started to use the car and one fine day while she was driving after a hectic day, she was struggling to keep her eyes open. She was so sleepy that she could hardly concentrate on the road. She stopped for a while and took a few sips of water. Just 4 kms away was her home, so she decided to continue driving and not stop for tea or something. But in no time she dozed off on the wheel and hit the car on the rear of a truck right in front of her.

She couldn’t stop weeping, people collected around the accident spot. Many people offered her help, asking her if she was ok. She did not reply to anybody. She wasn’t hurt physically but her heart broke to see the condition of her brand new Cooper. What would her husband say to this? The car wasn’t even a week old. After a few minutes, she gathered all her senses and she knew that she had to call the service center to take the car for repair. So she opened the dashboard and took out the papers – registrations papers, insurance papers and among all these she saw a red envelope.

“Dear Jane,

If you have opened this dashboard and you are looking for insurance papers or service center papers, I know that you are in trouble. I hope it is not an accident but if it is – then first of all please calm yourself down. Make sure that you are not hurt anywhere. Please ask for medical help if you need any. Also look around if anybody else is hurt apart from you.

And if the car is damaged – DO NOT WORRY about it. It is only a car which is meant to take you from one place to another safely. If the car is broken and you are safe that means the car did a good job in saving you. Do not think a bit about the expense of the car or expense of getting it repaired. Be thankful that you are safe and sound.

Now before you call up the service center or the insurance, I want you to go to the doctor. We will deal with the car damage later.

Your’s lovingly,

Dave”

Jane started to cry even more but inside her heart she knew that she felt extremely relieved. That tension of “How will Dave react?” had disappeared. She realized that he was right. She hadn’t notice that her right arm was bleeding and there was pain on right side of her head. She heeded to her husband’s advice and took a cab to the doctor.

And they lived happily ever after. One of the reasons for that is Dave’s attitude.

THE END

How many husbands today would have done what Dave did? How many of us are guilty of scolding and hitting children when they unintentionally broke our phones, TV or that expensive dinner set? How many of us are always comparing the prices of their own household items with that of their friends? How many of us are more concerned about that little scratch on our car than the person who is bleeding due to the accident?

It is important that we remember

“Objects /things are supposed to be used and people are supposed to be loved” – but very often the phrase is just the other way round – we are too busy using people and loving our things.

Let us try to set this right in our own small way.

 

THE TRANSIENCE OF EPHEMERAL GLORIES

Last week, the wooden doors of the wall-built cupboard in my rented apartment had to be torn apart as they were eaten up from the inside by a host of termites. The idea was to get a termite treatment done. But on examination, the pest control treatment team found out that the wood was badly damaged and should not be let to remain in place. As they were tearing apart the doors (the house being more than 25 years old), I was thinking about the forefathers of fathers of my landlord who would have got the house constructed with lofty dreams before them. What satisfaction would it have given them to see the house in its completed form, the happiness they would have had in proudly showing the house to relatives and friends, and the house-warming celebration they would have had! And yet, now a part of it had to be pulled apart! A thing that seemed to be an accomplishment of sorts a few decades back, was gradually losing the sheen.

This made me think about the various things in life that we consider to be vital, little realising that they are soon to pass away. Not to mean in the least that we need not dwell on the essentials of life – but to make ourselves think deeper rather than reveling in the seeming permanence of life itself.

Life

The fullness of life on earth itself is deceptive. Life on earth is, but, for a few years. Record holders of the present age have set the finishing line to the 100s – 143 years is the maximum that I have heard of. Be it for a century or half a century or even lesser, earthly life sure comes to an end. Yet, how often we dream and plan for our lives as if it is forever on this earth! Wouldn’t it be more purposeful to invest in the lives around us for the little joys of a day that they may experience? “Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.”

The assets, accolades and accomplishments of life don’t make life full. It is wise to accept that we are sojourners and pilgrims on this earth. It is worthwhile to build castles in the hearts of people rather than erect mansions or run the mad race for achievements for  the sake of self-glory. Live each day as if it is your last – goes the wise word. Not in the fear of tomorrow. Not with the mind of a pessimist who doesn’t want to see another day. Live each day to the fullest so that if you close your eyes tomorrow you will have nothing to lose, but much to gain in eternity.

The Bard of Aven with his wisdom writes thus, “All the world’s a stage and all the men and women merely players: they have their exits and their entrances.”

Wealth

In my Career Counselling sessions with adolescents, the one common desire that is expressed by them is, “I want to become rich.” Though I try to explain that amassing wealth is not the only hallmark of success, I believe that experience would help drive home the point better than a Counsellor. But why think of adolescents alone! Don’t adults cringe, crave and aspire for more wealth? How often we see and experience conflicts and killings over worldly assets – be it for property or money! The fight for rights destroys families and relationships and gives rise to endless lawsuits. Knowing the fleeting nature of life itself, wouldn’t it be more worthwhile to sacrifice our assets to maintain the sweetness of relationships, instead? A ravaging flood, the fury of a hurricane, a devastating earthquake, a raging fire – and the lofty mansions of today turn into the ruins of tomorrow!

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal.”

Before he died, Alexander the Great instructed his soldiers to make two holes in his coffin on either sides so that his hands would be exposed. In doing so, he wanted to show to the world that even the great conqueror left the world empty-handed.

Life, or rather the seeming permanence of life and wealth are two of the major deceptions that cause us to lose focus. It is not wrong to enjoy life, nor is it a sin to be wealthy. But, to live our lives as if life itself is all and to blindly aspire to be wealthy – are surely deceptions that we can be aware of.