Tuesday, March 8

The Most Punctual Man in India

Gandhi is an amazing man kids. As you grow up and learn more about him, you'll understand why he's so amazing. And frustrating as well. His achievements, his thoughts, his views all have frustrated me for so long. I'm slowly working my way through his collected works online. He was a prolific writer and speaker. His collected works span more than 100 volumes. Four times that of an encyclopaedia Brittanica. Voracious reader and an encyclical genius. 
But I digress. This is about time. Time is the biggest enemy of mine. And my biggest friend at the same time. In work, I pride myself on being able to fix business. Or deliver things. This depends upon three things. The amount of work to be done. The amount of resources (money, people, technology) and the amount of time that I have. The first two I can change but one thing which I cannot is time. I can never recover any time. That's why it's my biggest enemy. 
But it's my friend as well kids. One of the advantages of believing in the Hindu philosophy means that I'm not restricted by normal lifetimes but on multiple lifetimes. One benefit is that I don't fear death. 
But timekeeping is vital kids. We have to be on time. It's the greatest form of respect to others and to yourself. We have so much left to do that needlessly wasting time is bleah. Bear in mind that this isn't meaning that you have to be on the go all the time son. Sitting and reading a book. Observing a sunrise. Sitting and talking to a friend are all things you want to do. But not waste time. 
Think of your life as a suitcase. You have a choice of just throwing things into it. Or  being organised and managing to fit in the tiniest sock and tie into a nook and cranny. (Btw I'm useless at packing) but life is like that. You want a full suitcase when you check out? Or an empty one which is disorganised? 
Finally, if you ask me, baba how do I know if I'm wasting time? Think back on anything that you did that didn't excite you. Or raised a smile. Or made you happy. Anything of those times indicate that you wasted that time. One learns. 
But in the meantime, be punctual. Respect yourself and others to be on time. 
It's kannu's special day today. And I still remember the wonderful day when he was born and I held him in my arms. That tiny little child cradled in my arms. Blinking slowly up at me. And the most joyous time of my life began. Which doubled when Diya was born. Time well spent :)

The watch never left his side. It was the first thing Gandhi reached for when he rose each morning at 4 a.m., and the last thing he checked before going to bed, often past midnight. He consulted it frequently through the day so as never to be late for an appointment. And, at that final moment, when three bullets from an assassin’s Beretta knocked him over, his 78-year-old body slumped to the ground, and the watch also stopped.
Mahatma Gandhi’s Ingersoll pocket watch, costing just a dollar, was among the handful of material possessions he owned. Since he didn’t have a pocket to carry it in, he attached the watch to his dhoti with a safety pin and a loop of khadi string. The Ingersoll is displayed in a glass case at the National Gandhi Museum in New Delhi alongside his bloodstained dhoti and shawl. Together, the three items form a striking metaphor of Kala, the Hindu god of time who is also the god of death.
Gandhi’s legendary punctuality had a utilitarian imperative—without it he would never have been able to answer the sacks of letters and streams of visitors that demanded his attention each day. But, as with everything he valued, it had a moral imperative as well. Simply put, time was tied to his philosophy of trusteeship: the belief that just as we do not own our wealth but are trustees of it—and thus have to use it wisely—similarly, we are trustees of our time. “You may not waste a grain of rice or a scrap of paper, and similarly a minute of your time,” he wrote. “It is not ours. It belongs to the nation and we are trustees for the use of it.” Consequently, any abuse of time was unethical. “One who does less than he can is a thief,” he wrote to a friend. “If we keep a timetable we can save ourselves from the last-mentioned sin indulged in even unconsciously.” While this focus on punctuality may portray Gandhi as skittish and anxious, the opposite was true: a timetable allowed him to give the issue at hand his tranquil and undivided attention.

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