All posts by jcisnowjs

Blogger, Freelancer, Manager, Software Engineer, Beginner in Crocheting, Struggling Cook, Photography addict, Passionate for long drives n soulful music, Movie buff, Interested in politics, a loving wife and a Mom of three, but still a girl from heart :-)

Women’s Day and We Women

First of all, Happy Women’s Day.

I was in college when I first heard about a day to celebrate Women. I never knew what to do and how to celebrate that day. Still, not exactly sure of how I should be celebrating it; so, I thought of writing How Men should treat their Woman How a woman should treat other women and herself?

Why I do not want to focus on Men here is because all the strong women that I have seen and admired in my life, they have soared high in their lives did so by fighting against patriarchy system. They are not successful because of a man who is in/out of their life. They are successful because they are strong and confident women who chose to live life on their own terms. Point being the support of a male figure in your life is meaningless if you are not capable enough to stand on your feet.

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So, putting Men aside, I want to celebrate women by talking about women and how can We be the ones to inspire other women. 

The most important thing that every girl/woman should understand is that if there is anything that will be her ‘Jeevan-Saathi’ (Life Partner/Supporter) for all her life; it is going to be her Education and her Skills. Mentioning skills here because I belong to a country where education to girls is considered a privilege, and not everyone is born privileged. 

Point to Note – Never ever, I repeat, Never Ever in your life compromise on your education. The whole world may go against you but there is no noble fight than to fight for the right of your education. I was (still am) termed the most difficult child of my family because I went on hunger strikes many times to complete my post-graduation and I am hella proud of it. 

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Other than Education, the next big thing is – your Career. I have nothing against homemakers and women who worked but left their job to take care of their kids. I did that too, for 5 years, I quit my work and raised my 3 kids. I was happy with my decision but with time I realized how people’s perception will change once you are no longer working (earning money). This is the hardest decision a working woman must make. No one else can raise your kids the way you can, and if you try to manage both kids and your career then your parenting skills will be judged every time you will leave for office. Hell, even your working skills will be questioned every time you leave your office for home. 

Point being – No matter what you do, you will be judged, so ignore the world and just focus on what is best for you. Always keep yourself and your kids on priority. First You. 

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Being a homemaker is harder, as generally, I have seen that nobody takes you seriously. Most of the people think of you as an illiterate girl. As if you know nothing about what is happening around in this world; as if you don’t have any opinion; and, as if your life revolves around kitchen and kids. That’s it. Nothing wrong, even if this is your whole life. What more fulfilling than this?

Point to note here – Invest in some hobby. Have something creative to do in your life. You would definitely need a ‘Me Time‘ in your daily routine. Never compromise on that. If you value yourself and invest in yourself; only then people around you will value you. 

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The Next Big thing is choosing your life partner (Husband this time). No matter if you are going for an arranged marriage or love marriage; do make a point to know the person before you tie the knot. Talk to him, meet him, spend time with him, discuss everything you think is important to know; discuss your values and discuss your future dreams and aspirations. It is rather hard in case of arranged marriages where girls do not get much time and also have to maintain an image of shy Indian bride and thus do not discuss much with their future life partner, but a little shyness today may cost you a lifetime compromise. Another thing that we are told since childhood is that parents know what is best for you. But, do they know the complete you? My parents always thought of me as the quiet and lonely in her world kind of girl; while my friends knew me as the most talkative, outspoken one; my teachers thought of me as a studious and no-nonsense girl; while my colleagues think of me as a prankster. Contrary to everyone else, my husband still thinks of me as ‘kitni seedhi hai’ 😛 

Point to note: Only you know yourself better. You know what qualities your ideal partner should have. Parents, relatives, or friends can help you with your decision, but it should be Your Decision. 

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There will be many such important decisions that you have to make in your life, like when to have kids, how many kids, how to raise them, where to live, what to cook for dinner, etc… make sure that your voice is heard and respected in all these decisions. Whatever impacts you, must have your say in it.

Few more random points: 

  • Do not blame your parents, or your siblings, friends, relatives for your life’s decisions. If you chose a subject in class because your parents asked you to and now you are regretting it; it is your fault that you didn’t have the courage and conviction to fight for what you actually wanted. 

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  • If a woman is in an abusive relationship, never ever judge the actions of that woman. Abuse is abuse. It does not matter what she did to deserve that abuse. Nothing justifies abuse of any kind.
  • On the same note – if a woman is going through a divorce, or fighting a cheating husband; NO, it was not her fault that her husband cheated on her. Also, no it’s not her karma. It was an abusive, cheating man who has to be blamed for this and that’s it. 

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  • Be confident in your own body. You are fat, slim, ugly, pretty, fashionable, or whatever the hell you have labeled yourself – once you are confident about your own body and how you look; these words and labels won’t matter. Most of the time, we are the ones who label ourselves in our mind and then we start looking for reasons to verify these labels whenever we talk to someone. 

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  • If someone insults you, about your looks, clothes or anything; be upfront and talk to them. Most of the time, I have found that another person was either jealous or I just misunderstood them. You should feel prouder of yourself if the reason is their jealousy.
  • Not everyone is out there to get you. If you will ask for help, you will get help. Talk to other women around you. You won’t believe but most of us face the same kind of problems and know how to help another lady. 

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  • Do not stop learning. Do not stop growing. Use every opportunity to become a better version. Do not waste this life just being what you were yesterday. 
  • Be confident. Be Positive. Be Calm and be Strong.
  • Hydrate.
  • Moisturize.
  • Step out and don’t forget to apply sunscreen. 

Shine My Girl!!

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If You Feel Offended

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Photo by freestocks.org on Pexels.com

There was a general prayer that I used to do since I started praying and that was “whatever is good, let me do only that; and whatever I do, let it be only good“.

Now, however, I have understood one thing that no matter what you are doing, it will impact the lives of some in a good way and others in a bad way. You could go ahead and develop a cure for cancer, or eradicate poverty from this world and still, you will be offending someone by these actions.

I do not want to imply that if this is the case, we should not try to be good or do good; instead, be good, be more good than you ever can be and not worry about what people are saying. “Kuch to log kahenge…”

I have observed over the past years that all of us are getting more sensitive. As far as I am concerned, I think this is a beautiful thing. We should be sensitive, kind and compassionate. But, the downside to this is that most of us get easily offended. Small-small things are making the people to react in outrageous ways, especially on social media.

Social Media – a medium where we can be social and civil. Medium to share our thoughts, some part of our lives, our happiness, our sorrows, our achievements. Who could have thought, this medium of sharing will be the biggest cause of people getting offended?

There are some simple rules which I follow and sometimes (forcefully) ask my husband to follow too –

  • If you can’t say anything good, it’s better to say nothing at all. That includes commenting on someone’s post.
  • Never comment on physical appearance if you are going to be a jerk about it.
  • If you can’t think of anything good to write, just write nice or beautiful; that is more than enough.
  • Someone’s Religious thoughts contradict yours. Ask yourself below questions-
      • What are you trying to achieve by commenting on it? If it is anything else other than satisfying your pride/ego then go ahead and comment.
      • Is it a specific attack on your way of religious thinking? Is this person going to understand your views and put them in the right perspective? Are both of you capable to have a civil conversation? If you have said ‘Yes’ to these questions, please go ahead and comment.
  • Commenting on Political Posts – a big NO, if you are going to write against the proposed views. Still, if you can’t help yourself and want to write, ask yourself –
      • Would you be able to say the same things on that person’s face?
      • Why is it necessary to make the other person agree with your views? Why can’t that person have his/her own political views?
      • Can it be said to them in a private message, rather than replying to a public post?
      • Is this person going to understand your views and put them in the right perspective? Are both of you capable to have a civil conversation?
  • What if someone shares nasty comments on your post? In this case, it becomes important to reply but often times I have felt that the other person is going through a tough phase and it is their frustration with their own life and circumstances that come out through their bad writing. Sometimes, it is best to ignore with a thank you and smile. But if you can’t understand the reason behind their behavior it would be appropriate to reply to them. Things to take care of though –
      • Not be harsh in sharing what you think is right.
      • Consider their viewpoint and then share yours.
      • Everyone has their own thinking and you cannot change it in a day, so give them time to understand and be patient.
      • If you can, it is best to talk to them in person or call them, instead of commenting publicly.
  • Name Calling – this is the ugly stuff, and I have seen so many so-called intellectuals mudding their social media by name-calling each other. Strangely, I do not have any suggestions or advice on that issue. I think there is no saving a Titanic here. Oddly enough these kinds of creatures just keep the entertainment going and nothing else.

I do try to follow my own rules but still, if I have offended anyone of you through my actions, I would like to apologize. I am growing continuously and will learn more lessons, but I cannot guarantee that my actions will not offend you in the future. Still, I would request you, to be considerate and talk to me, so that I can improve.

No Offending Stuff 😀

 

Broken Thoughts…

Is it easy to live life easily?

What we all crave for from inside is a simpler and meaningful life but our every desire every action is to grab more than we need. In such a process instead of having a simpler life, we create labyrinth around ourselves, and more we try to move away from the deeper in its web we get lost. 

How hard can it be to take life and all that comes with it, easily?

Why is it so hard, to do easy?

The first brick of this labyrinth’s foundation is laid the moment we are born and given a sense of identity. We start moving to try to grasp each corner, trying to figure out everyone and everything in our life. There are no walls yet, just foundations of these walls. I can still see you; you can still talk to real me. We play, we dance, we fight, we cry, we laugh, we have no walls between us. This was easy. It didn’t look easy then, but now it looked like simpler times. Oh, our gone childhood.

With each step further, we put more and more layers of identity on ourselves. First, it was just my name which you asked, and we became best friends. Then………….

Today, I was cleaning my laptop. Removing unnecessary files and deleting all superfluous selfies of mine, to make some space for, quite possibly, some new selfies; when I discovered this. I am not writing much nowadays, but when I was, I used to write about anything and just anything that would come to my mind and store it in a temporary document until I get the time to finish it and publish it. This above piece, ‘Is it easy to live life easily? ‘of a somewhat probable future article that I wrote a year back, was lying hidden in plain sight on my laptop and today I visited it while accidentally trying to delete it.

It’s not a big deal. We all do such things when we write something down and forget about it later until we see it again. But, the big deal for me was, that even after reading it and re-reading it, I couldn’t recollect that why and when I wrote it. So, there you see, it is just sitting here in front of my eyes as some unfinished story which I forgot how I wanted to complete it. I have no recollection of how I wanted to end it, or what was the idea behind this piece. I had to read it twice just to make sure that these are my own words… memory is a funny thing, indeed.

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Photo by Startup Stock Photos on Pexels.com

I am still perplexed at this thought about living an easy life. Maybe in a day or so, I will be able to remember and get this answer, or maybe its time to find some new answers. Right now, my mind is like too many tabs of a browser opened at the same time. Multitasking and multidirectional. Too chaotic. Too much to process. Too much to complete. So, on second thought, I may let this one slide. Time to close one tab.

True Essence of Yoga

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Yoga

The literal meaning of this word is – Union.

The marketed meaning of this word has become – Breathing and Stretching Exercises.

We celebrated International Yoga Day Yesterday on 21st June 2019. Something which originated in India centuries ago has now widespread on an International level. Its popularity has gained a stronghold, especially in western countries. By declaring 21st June as International Yoga Day, we are now celebrating this rich heritage of India worldwide. The most profound thing here is that Yoga is accepted everywhere by all age groups and ethnicities. Despite the fact that some people confuse it with Hindu Religion and try to deter non-Hindus in accepting this healthy way of living; its positive life-altering experiences has credited in its success and popularity among masses.

But, my question over here is -The Yoga that we are celebrating and promoting, is this the true Yoga in its complete form?

If you google yoga types, you will find Hot Yoga, Yin Yoga, Hybrid Yoga, Power Yoga, etc… I couldn’t comprehend how did we reach here from a simple word which meant – Union.

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Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

Yoga is as simple as the word Union, its literal meaning. 

It is a union of you with your higher self. You may call it God, Universe, Existence, Non -Existence, Nothingness, Everlastingness, or just a union with your true self. Once you will understand the Union aspect of it, then you will also realize that you are never apart. So, why the Union? How can we unite with something from which we were never apart? This union is not physical. This is spiritual and psychological. This is more like a realization through self-discovery.

What we see today everywhere is more of Aasans and Pranaayam; which on a broad level can be categorized as body exercises/postures and breathing techniques to attain a healthy physical body for a healthy mind and in turn, they help you in progressing towards spiritual union(the true Yoga). We certainly need to go step by step and thus this is the most important step to lay the foundation upon which you can climb higher in your spiritual growth. It is as important as a baby’s first step. But, we also need to keep that in mind that purpose of teaching a baby how to walk is not limited to him taking a walk but also teaching him a way of life where he knows what he should be walking towards to.

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There are various paths given to achieve this self-realization from Raaj Yoga to Karma Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, and Hath Yoga, etc. There are ‘Yama’ and ‘Niyams’ to be followed like Ahimsa, Asteya, Aparigraha, Santosha, etc. The intent is not to just clean your body of toxins but also your mind, your actions, and your thoughts. We need to integrate it into our behavior and our actions if we want to call it Yoga; otherwise what most of us are doing are just aasans and pranaayaam. This should be the role and responsibility of Yoga teachers who when opening up Yoga Studios and Yoga Workshop teach their disciple that Yoga is done by integrating a way of life where not only our physical body but we also take care of our psychological and Spiritual well being.

In Yoga, we talk about harmony. We talk about our connection with each other. We talk about how we are connected to nature. We talk about how we are one with everything around us. How we are one with The One. It is much much much larger than what we have shown to the world so far. I know with time, we will teach our young generation that how they can start with Aasans and Pranayams and progress through Meditation and a Yoga Path to reach to their full potential and live a life which is filled with joy and compassion.

Happy Yoga Day.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Does your food taste better than…?

Does your food taste better than…?

How Good are your cooking skills?

I am not that sort of person to ask such question, but just for my curiosity can you answer this question. When you are answering it, you must be going through all the compliments that you have received for your food so far. Compliments on how delicious that particular dish was, how mouth-watering your gravy was on that day, how yummy that cake looked which you made on your kid’s birthday…. Did any of compliments mentioned, how great you cook in comparison to a restaurant/hotel?

A guy in my office, who basically is of  European origin, asked me in a very serious tone, “Can I ask you a question about what an Indian guy said to me one time?

Me: yeah, sure.

We were at the lunch table, eating and talking about various cultures when suddenly he asked me this question. By the way, he is a great cook, at least that’s what he claims. I have yet to find proof of his claim.

He: Once I had an Indian friend over at my place for dinner, and about my food, he said to me, “It tastes just like restaurant food”.

He: why did he say such a thing? I just don’t understand, was he trying to insult my food?

That was the time I laugh so hard that I almost choked on my food. All of us present on the table were laughing, except my European friend.

He: and, while he was insulting my food, he was smiling and nodding his head, like it was an acceptable thing to say.

Me: (still laughing) don’t worry, treat it as the highest compliment for your food. He was complimenting your food, not insulting it.

He: but, who compares home-cooked meal to a hotel food. Home cooked is special. I put so much effort into it. It was not at all comparable with a hotel food.

Before our laugh riot could go further, I felt the need to explain.

We(Indians) usually eat homemade food, daily. Occasionally we go to restaurants and order something special. Unlike, most of the people here, who eat outside food daily, and cook at home seldom.

For you, cooking at home is special, as you do it rarely, with family. When you are cooking, your whole family is cooking with you in the kitchen. It is a family celebration. It is special. For us, when we cook, we (woman) cook alone in our kitchen; and most of the time, it is a mundane daily activity for us. But, when we go outside to eat; our whole family goes together to eat and enjoy. That is special for us.

Does your food taste better than…?

When you are doing something daily, even when it is an important work; with time it loses its importance. We take the breath every second of our life, but we value it when we have to struggle to take it. Food that we are cooking and eating daily loses its charm after a while, but we realize love and effort put into it, once we don’t have that luxury of eating a home-cooked meal. We appreciate only those things which are hard to get.

After talking to him, I realized how important that food is which I am making with my own hands. It has care and love in it. It is special. It can never be like a hotel food.

Now, my husband needs to find a better compliment than saying, “oh, this tastes so good, just like a restaurant.”