A New Beginning

A young girl, haunted by the shadows of her life and struggle, encounters a man who compels her to step out of her boat and explore the vast sea ahead.

It had barely been a week since my arrival in the neighborhood and, to my amazement, I never could adapt to this environment. The snarls of people, their worries and dissents topped with hypocrites all over the place, had instilled a raging monster inside me that neither wanted to be depressed nor happy. The abysmal reality of the city disappointed me in many ways. It seemed as if the people in this part of the world consumed cakes of hatred and idleness, frosted with a bitter layer of envy.

I know my soul was tired to the last muscle (if it had any) and had become a mere existence and would continue to be this way until my heart gave up. Desperate for a break from this monotonous yet dangerous life, one night, I found refuge in the City Park.

It was no unusual night and was burdened with discontent, making it a restless one. I craved a long walk in the Park. I wanted to speak to the monster inside me in peace, make it see where it was leading me to.

Donning a cap on my bobbed hair, I got up, shut the two-room I called a house and set off. With a dull thud at every step, my feet sensed the excitement, and it was with difficulty that I prevented myself from rolling down to the landing when my right foot slipped on the stairs.

 I gained the advantage of being on foot by treating my nostrils with sweet-scented air and feasting my eyes on the star-spangled sky, the leaf-strewn ground, the night-time pursuits of bats, the dewdrops on the grass and all the things that seemed other-worldly. It was not until I spotted a thin-framed man that I came out of my wistful fantasy. He walked with stiffness, hitching his shoulders every now and then and a lurid tartan scarf prevented any revelation of the little neck he had got.     

“What’s he doing here when the entire world is snoozing in their beds!?” I thought to myself, clearly oblivious to the fact that he may be thinking the same about me. I heaved a sigh of relief when the two of us walked past.  

 The sight of the well-pruned hedges and shrubs of the park drove the man out of my mind for at least three hours.  Sitting on a cold, hard bench, my body had been reunited with my brain. They somehow get separated when I am trapped in my strenuous life and overloaded with extreme emotions.

Listening to the song of the trees and seeing the flowers jig to its rhythm, compelled the philosopher inside me to awaken, sending off my monster into hibernation. I had never thought deeply about life but now that I had a few moments devoid of honking cars and shouting people, I resolutely pledged to be mindful and happy in every moment possible. “Fat chance with the next-door witch of a woman though.”  I was being judgmental yet again.   *sighs*

I automatically stood up and started moving towards my house after what seemed like ages. My body still striving to balance my mind on top of it, I was desperate to not let the Philosopher inside me sleep this time.

I felt wise. A rare string of thread was weaving an incredible cage around me, trapping me in the shell of my own emotions.

At first, I thought that my mind was holding a battle against my body because I could hear a lot of noise. On straining my ears, firstly I realized that men were shouting. The second realization I had on coming out of reverie was that I had already reached the street that led to my home, except that much of it was hidden behind grotesque doll-like figures who seemed to be very busy indeed.

As my eyes raked the sky, to my horror, I saw smoke billowing out of a building which was placed exactly at the position where my house was. When the reality finally dawned, I ran towards my house, caring the least about whether my mind had already fallen off or not.  Brimming with ambivalence, I saw one of my neighbors (The Witch).

Gauging my harassed face, she gave one of her sympathetic looks and told me that the firefighters presumed that I had probably left the gas-stove burning for hours due to which the entire block caught fire when someone lit a cigarette.

“Blow that Someone!” I bitterly thought and twisted my lips into an uncharacteristically ugly face, and said out loud, “Anyway, thank you for all your trouble in calling the firefighters.”

“I never called anyone Miss. I know I should have but…” her voice trailed away in what I thought was an apology.

 “Then who did?” I murmured to myself.

Showing human nature, I silently mourned for the destruction of a house that had never been my real home. Turning my face away from her, I glanced at the building and on the steps saw a familiar tartan scarf. My mind fell off and rolled down the street and as I scanned its progress, it went to a man standing at the other end. As if on cue, I grabbed the scarf and ran to him. And as I ran, shouting in glee, the cage that had trapped me was breaking, the monster inside me was purring. They knew, and I did too, that that night I would be leaving my past behind.  I knew that I would be ready for a new beginning when morning dawned.

The Story of A Soul

Innocent and carefree, I entered this world with much hope and curiosity. When God blew breath in my newborn soul, it felt as if I was just one of the nondescript ornaments that adorned the planet.

When I approached the vestibule of infancy, I was not mindful of the mountains of misery I had yet to traverse. Being like a bird that was kept in captivity for long, finally getting refuge in a body was like taking my first flight.

Alas, little did I know that a bird isn’t just supposed to fly in the eternal sky….it is supposed to keep flying inspite of falling down.

The first time I clapped my eyes on the human race, which is often termed as the most beautiful creation of God, the sky where I was longing to be, started to seem quite daunting.

Years snailed by peacefully, with me either laughing giddily or crying exuberantly as an infant.

As I racked my brain, trying to settle in and trying to understand the conception of life, a decade had already passed since the D-day.

Although not a complete novice, I was still a kid, still a simpleton. But I wouldn’t remain so in the impending phases of my life because by then, my pure heart will have been encrusted with the grime of jealousy and ill-will.

But you see, there are a few pros of being a kid. One of them being that one can do as they wish, without attracting many chidings. I wonder why do humans overlook children’s follies sometimes. After all, doesn’t a plant which lacked proper support in its tender age, end up being a crooked tree as well?

Anyway, I clung on the elders like a parasite, ever so curious about seemingly ordinary things. There were many things I didn’t know about the world.
Heck, I didn’t even know how many things were unknown to me!!

Thus, all I could do was patiently wait for The Universe to give me signals and make me see the right way forward.

Somewhere within my mind, I was content after having gauged humans with my child brain as it was like finally understanding the epistemology of life- something I had just heard about from God back there.

As I ‘grew up’, my brain acted like the pedal of my cycle and I assiduously fought a long-lost battle against myself, in trying to have a control of the temper that always seemed to be at the threshold in those days.

And that was when I fell headlong into the next phase of my life-teenage.

My brain teemed with varied emotions- rage, hatred, jealousy, camaraderie, benevolence, joy and sorrow, all at the same time. But I, the soul, remained as untouched as ever. I marvelled at the seemingly endless capacity a human brain had, and had a firm conviction that it would surely blast someday trying to get a grip on all those contrasting feelings. It was as if emotions were oblivious to my presence and wanted to affect the only part that could think for itself-my brain.

Whatever the theory was, I realised that it would need a greater magnitude of strength and vigour to intrude on my purity. Clearly, I was wrong.

As I was to realise later, my brain was nothing but a mere reflection of me. Or maybe I was a reflection of it.

But as Aristotle said, we must no more ask whether the soul and the body are one than ask whether the wax and the figure impressed on the candle are one.

Gradually, as I got to know more about this interesting species, I found myself struggling to keep record of all the on-goings.
Being aloof from the reality as a child and having lived as befitted royalty in those days, I later learnt about the odious struggle humans had to make to make two ends meet. And as I had myself become one now, (at least I thought I had) it was high time I got geared up to face all those challenges.

 With my transition into a young adult, I later stumbled ,rather in an unprepared state, into adulthood and it was then that I joined the ‘rat race’ like others to feed my stomach. But here, it wasn’t the Pied Piper of Hamelin that lead us, but it was the lust for power and money that was doing so. And just like the rats in the fable, we too blindly ran behind it, terribly demented with the mania of owning things.

Days involved tears, days involved pain, days involved remorse but they also involved joy somewhere in between. My paradoxical mind, unfortunately, was not quick to notice the small stones of hope embedded in between the mountains of despair, as much as it was quick to notice my tears.

And that is why it is rightly said that the soul knows how to heal itself, the challenge is to quell the mind.

Humans often think that the spiritual knowledge comes only to some who are worthy, but in reality spirituality is nothing but the soul speaking to the mind. The less fortunate people who are blinded by the greed for power, fail to listen to the very audible voice of their soul and thus, fail to see the true meaning in their life.

Years rolled on further, with me starting to act as The Alchemist in search of inner wisdom and peace. And that was when I got swallowed by old age.
I knew that with every passing second, I was nearing my conjuction with God.

My brain finally started listening to me. With huge magnitude, it resolutely stiffled strong temptations to rejoin the rat race, because, as I realised later, I had started having it’s control.
And just as an ox is taken away to the slaughterhouse one by one, I too became one of the dying humans.

Death came as a blessing from this painful world and I longed to see Him and see my future being carved through his hands yet another time.
 
Having had a taste of what life is like, I now narrate this Story of A Soul to every soul that repairs to me.

For some, the desire to know their soul has ended all desires, but the remaining are still striving to listen to their soul, they are still striving to make themselves whole.

A living soul, once conscious of it’s power, cannot be quelled.

“Come here”, said Grandma

It was the 18th of December.

An unusually peaceful day in 2019.

The clock had just struck 5 pm and by the sound of it, no one in No. 175 was stirring at all barring a few muffled sobs from the elders. My grandma had just passed away after months of silent struggle against a chronic disease.

It is said that a dying person already knows when God has invited him back from where he came, and so did my grandma. Seconds before the last breath abandoned her gnarled body, she spoke for the first time in months, and whispered to me with whatever strength remained in her otherwise well-built frame,
“Come here, my child.”

As she caressed my face and ruffled my hair, her lips parted into a watery smile and her heart ceased to pump after toiling for 8 decades in the same body.


With that little pronouncement she left us for ever, for good.

The bathroom tap that otherwise dripped incessantly, stopped doing so at that precise moment. And that was when tears rolled down my father’s cheek in rivulets, as if they had been waiting for the tap to cease.

I am often told that I am a slash-and-burn person who spares no room for affection or sympathy. That day too I simply closed my eyes, which were leaden with pain, not bearing to look at her disappearing smile or her falling hand. Quite unlike everybody else present at that moment ,including some close relatives, my eyes didn’t even glisten with tears.

The wind stopped blowing, the seconds hand came to a halt and it seemed as if I was drifting in eternity beside the pure soul, pleading for it to return to the body where it had taken refuge for decades.

But it didn’t want to come back. It flew like the crow flies, silhouetted against the mauve universe, and finally diminished into a mere speckle, fulfilling the age-old-adage that he who is born cannot prevent death by any means.

Finally, I got up, touched her hand for the last time and went to my bedroom to have a moment of reflecting what had actually transpired.

It seemed so surreal that I had a firm conviction that my grandma WILL call me back to her no matter what the others said. When she didn’t, I realised with a spasm of plaintiveness that one of the frumpy leaves of our family tree, had succumbed to the impending autumn and had drifted away into nothingness.

And thereafter things began to get real blurry and chaotic. People thronged our house and the hall resembled the vestibule of a temple, teeming with prayers for The Gone.

After controlling it’s velocity for that day alone, time speeded into days and as the reality began to sink in sluggishly, piercing it’s claws in my brain, two years had already passed since that incredible day.

Although her torso parted from us, the deep and long lasting impacts that her soul had imprinted in our memories never faded away. I still gaze at the ghostly celestial bodies in the night sky, hoping to find my grandma twinkling at me from the glows of one of the stars.

I still remember when many an evening she used to play Carrom with us which always used to culminate with her being the champion. I still never have understood or grasped the techniques with which she played the board game but I can still hear her cries of joy and surprise as the game moved on.

She used to reminisce and narrate the never ending stories of our ancestors- their farms and fields, their simplicity, their honesty, their jokes and most importantly their rudimentary lifestyles. Since my grandpa died right after I was born, leaving no scope for him to tell tales to me, it was my grandma who became the family’s storyteller. Every night after dinner when the dogs would retreat to their spaces after plenty of barking, she used to sit on the old rockchair in the dim-lit hall, ready to entertain us till the sun peeked in the mullioned window. Me and my twin used to fight not very non-violently for sleeping with grandma because being in her bed was synonymous to being in the past world….in her world which didn’t like to get modernised.

Ghosts were a favourite subject of her especially during the dark because she was mindful of our fears as a child and left no opportunity to scare the HELL out of us!! Once, I laughed quite heartily after having listened patiently to her encounter with a ghost, but after that she refused to speak to me for days. Fortunately, her temper didn’t last long and from that day I knew better than to laugh at her stories, no matter how far-fetched they might seem.

Speaking of her temper, she wasn’t at all a mushy and emotional person and always taught us kids to be tough-hearted. One day while I was helping her water the garden, I slipped from the stairs, for they were really wet, and fell headlong on the road hence breaking one of my front teeth. Instead of rushing towards me in a jiffy and pampering me, she simply shook her head in dissaproval and asked me to get up and not make a nuisance of myself. Under her able guidance, I learnt to be strong because she taught me to embrace all- the good, the bad, the ugly.

Athough many of those indelible memories have begun to fade away, the tears of joy she shed for me, the sweat on her forehead as she stood before the stove cooking delicacies for me, the pats that she gave my back indicating her approval, were a few moments that will never languish.

As I sit cosily in the house that earlier echoed with her commands and laughter, the words “Come here, my child” still ring in my ears. They make me want to nurture our family tree more and more because even if her leaf fell down, the remaining leaves are still grateful for all the chlorophyll her leaf bore.
Although her time-tested tales seem anachronistic in modern times, they are putting efforts in making our family ever stronger…..ever happier….and all because of Grandma, the storyteller.

~ The Amateur Pen

Hunar Haat~ Exploring India

Being cooped up in my house for long, I decided it was high time I got my travelling hat in use. Those of you who have read my ‘About’ will have possibly gauged my love for travelling but you see, the upside is that I am a student. So I simply don’t have the fortune to go off for days on long journeys across continents as my other blogger friends may do.

Long story short, I decided to bank on the Hunar Haat which is currently running as a trade fair in Sector 17 of the Union Territory of Chandigarh. For my international friends, Hunar Haat is simply a trade fair where merchandise(that includes food as well!!)  from all over India is put up on stalls and tourists can have a peek into our country’s diverse and rich heritage all at one place. But mind, it is no mean feat to explore the entire fair all in a go. Impossible, if that’s what I should say because there are goods from ALL the freaking 28 states and 8 Union Territories and if you are a person like me, that likes to stop at every stall, then you’d better reconsider your choices.

So, back to square one. We (my mom too) left for the carnival early afternoon and immediately regretted our decision. What with the scorching sun and no sign of breeze, I began doubting if I should give a thumbs up and progress my journey.
 I braved it anyhow. Partly because I wanted to write a post on it and partly because I thought there surely must be an ice-cream stall amongst the many tents.

The very first stall we saw gave us a glimpse of what Uttar Pradeshi craft work is like. Ranging from Varanasi silk to exquisite cotton types (Hell, I don’t even remember all of them), everything tempted people’ eyes, especially women’s.
After being patient and waiting for 10 minutes each on the initial 3 to 4 stalls, I left my mother alone to enjoy the huge fabrics collection and wandered off to the stalls where you could buy regional craft from various parts of the country.

Stalls from the states of Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan dominated the entirety maybe because those two have the most diverse and prominent population of the country. Can you believe when I say that out of Uttar Pradesh’s population, two Russia’s can be formed? And we all know that Russia is no miniscule island. It’s an entire continent. phew!

When I approached the toys’ stall, I was really impressed at the omnibus of wooden pieces. Blue, red, yellow, green, black – you name it. Wondering why in the world do Indians buy Chinese toys when we have a treasure of them on our own, I asked the salesman how the response from customers had been. He told me that everybody just glanced at those toys, marvelled at their beauty, clicked some photos of them for their youtube vlogs, but never bought them keeping in mind their high prices . I agreed that they were really expensive ones but we should really encourage our artisans instead of just sympathising with them, shouldn’t we?

Anyway,  I wanted to get back home before dinner time, so I quickened my pace and stopped only when I DID want to buy something. Just after a few steps, I came to a stall which sold bamboo craft from North-East and I just couldn’t tear my eyes off the beautifully done baskets and bottles. I could hear people haggling with the saleswoman to give them a discount of Rs. 500, but the woman flatly refused.
“And why shouldn’t she?” I thought to myself. After all, it might have taken days to finish a single basket as it was all done by hands.

Cane and Bamboo furnishings, Barapet, Assam

As it was the slack time of day, the place was thronging with a myriad of people, buzzing here and there like angry bees.
People careered around at top speed, wanting to buy everything and I myself couldn’t decide what to buy and what to leave. Everything enthused my to the maximum limit possible and the money clamoured in my pockets to be spent. After a venture seemingly as long as the Nile, I zeroed in on a lovely wooden keychain and show-piece.
After paying the required amount and having a quick glance at the salesman’s ecstatic face, I set off to find my mother who was by then completely enjoying herself in a stall of handprinted sarees.

Scornfully looking at the swanky apparels, I prised a saree from her hands and took her to the food stalls. It wasn’t that I disliked her choices, but at that point, I had had enough of suits and sarees.

Having filled our tummies with exotic summer drinks (From MP) and a spicy cuisine from Rajasthan, we felt the rare satisfaction that one gets after reading a well-written book.

We continued shouldering our way through the masses of the people and after many hurried apologies to senior citizens for bruising them while moving, I later ensured to walk as assiduously as possible because on top of it, I had also accidently knocked over a wooden statue !!

Wait…..accidently or on purpose??!

Brass ware, Rampur, Uttar Pradesh

In the evening, when 3 hours had already snailed by, my phone decided to switch off precisely when the colorful lights came up in the dark. I was so irked by it and so desperately wanted to capture those lamps speckling the sky with their mystifying glows. You know the feeling when you drink water after hours, realising in hindsight how thirsty you had actually been?
Well we felt the same way. Tired to the last muscle after a long walk, we decided to call it a day.

In those few hours, I became a convert to India’s rich culture and heritage as I realised how behind our local craft is in terms of marketing.  Those intricate paintings done with dexterous fingers of gifted artists, shouldn’t lie unwanted. Instead, they should be loved and admired like never before because they reflect our country’s personality. Those show-pieces and wooden furniture illustrate a story inscribed in timber…..the story of how our country was colonised but how it’s resilient people sprung back.
But today, production is whole-hearted and consumption light-hearted.

That is why artisans in our country either compete or are left to perish.

For bringing these artisans on stage, I would like to thank hon’ble PM Narendra Modi for giving our country’s people this opportunity to travel across states and present their Hunar or Talent to commoners.
As we celebrate the 75th year of our Independence, I would only wish that the phrase ‘Vocal for Local’ gets a fillip in it’s true sense. Moreover, I was glad to see the increment in the number of saleswomen this year and it clearly indicated a growth towards women empowerment.

And that is what India is all about.
Unity in Diversity.

While I explored those stalls, I may not have satisfied the ostentatious psyche inside me, but I did travel through the lanes of our history. The curated pieces of art and craft rekindled the patriot inside me and I dived deep into our country’s past, entering the vast vestibule of wisdom that our country’s elders have always contained within them.

While contemporary times may have changed and talking of revolutions may seem to be anachronistic, our hearts have not changed at all. We are still the same old fellows, our spirits brimming with benevolence and camarederie. Our hands and legs still contain within them the desire to work hard for our nation because the rivers that flow on our motherland, are the fruits of sweat through relentless toil.

With this short visit to the trade fair, I bid March farewell and welcomed April with an optimistic attitude. Even though the month wasn’t really hectic, March the 31st taught me the true meaning of fun and frolic. Although we didn’t have a real rainbow donning the sky, rainbows adorned our hearts as we connected with each other’s craft, cuisine and culture without giving second thought to religion. In the faces of the sellers, I saw true happiness. In the moving bodies of children who shouted in glee that day, I saw the silhouettes of a bright future.  And finally in my mom’s ever-smiling face, I had a look at a powerful symbol of friendship and respect for all.

Standstill in Solitude

I sat there alone on the dewy bench in the moonlit park beside my sweet house. An unusual echo of the wind chime tinkled somewhere in the distance and the strangeness of the calm wind that ruffled my hair as it gently slapped my face, set my imagination going.

In the moon, which was emitting light in swathes and cones, I saw an eerie mirror (possibly The Mirror of Erised!?) , which reflected back a myriad of thoughts from the inhabitants of another world….. the world behind the white glow in the dark, dull sky.

The whiteness was of a grotesque figure, running feebly in the wan moonlight. It was a rabbit, The Moon Rabbit. I had heard about it many an evening from my grandma. She used to tell me that there lived a rabbit in the vastness of the moon and that is what gave it it’s color and it was the one responsible for the huge craters on the moon’s otherwise undulating surface.

The sand where the rabbit carried out it’s pursuits, took me to a honey colored desert, where Fennec foxes tussled amiably in the scanty thickets. Sandunes streched for miles like rubber and right on the zenith of the biggest ‘Barchan’, was perched a pink flamingo, contrasting the the light browns. I could see the flamingo energetically waving at me while flashing a toothless grin with his beak, which went all the way up to his beady little eyes.

The scene dissolved into the greens of a forest which was saturated with the bracing air of the sea. Snakes were positioned in a sinew on the tree trunks, which were now growing old and beared the scars of the talons of many an animal that climbed on them either for food, shelter or safety.

Nearby, a river was flowing with so fast a speed that I surmised it would destroy the rocks that came in its way, into smithereens.

With a jangling squirm, the water finally managed to smash all the rocks, but wait!! All the rocks managed to reassemble into a high hill, over which now fell a beautiful waterfall.

The nondescript beads of water churned and wriggled and finally rushed headlong in rivulets, hinting the appearance of a fountain of white gleaming pearls.

These pearls fell back into their origin- the vast emerald sea. In the middle of the sea, stood a tall tower on whose window lege, I sat and gazed dreamily at the turtles and starfish, who milled around, playing the game of ‘Catch me if you can’.

Suddenly, the starfish transformed into a toucan and it flew over the sea, took my arm and as I clasped my hands around its colourful beak, it went straight down the line to the sea.

The toucan got sucked in by the water surface as soon as its plumage touched the water, and we both stumbled roughly into God’s abode, wherein I clapped my eyes on heaven, drifting slowly in the colorless air.

Fireflies swam about in huge numbers and shone with a dull golden glow, lending a mystical appearance to the star-spangled surroundings.

As my eyeballs oscillated back and forth to absorb in all the marvel that lay in front of me, I did a doubletake and again saw that great pink flamingo, it’s coat not so violent a pink as it was earlier.

Gradually, the coat removed its many shades of pink and what was left was a pale rosewood color.

The fireflies were vanishing as minutes snailed by and so was the toucan.

I realised what was wrong- the wind chime had ceased to sound.
It was unwonted.
Everything dissolved into nothingness.

With a spasm of remorse, I thudded back on the stony cold bench, with the moon still peeking at my surprised face.

Amongst the many craters of the moon, I saw the silhouettes of the flamingo and the rabbit, one tall and lean and the other daft and plump.

I stood to my feet, brushed my clothes with my hands and with a last glance at the moon, turned away from the utopian world and ambled towards my house.

My mind light as a feather, I smiled to myself for in my heart, there slept The Content that an artist gets when contemplating her masterpiece.

To see a World in a Grain of Sand And Heaven in a Wild Flower, Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand, And Eternity in an hour.

~William Blake

The Arrow of Grief

Yesterday, to relax my mind after all that mental gymnastics with maths, I took my phone and started whiling away time by checking people’s Whatsapp Bio’s.
Every bio carried either an impressive quote or their status of activity (like sleeping, in a meeting etc.)
But one of them read ‘Miss you Papa….’ along a sad face and a man’s photo on the DP.
When the reality finally sinked in, I realised with a spasm of remorse that every mortal in this world has to first face the deaths of their kinsmen and later, their own deaths.

That sad incident reminded me of a famous sermon preached by Lord Buddha, regarding a woman named Kisa Gotami .
In the grief the death of her only son, she carried the boy to all her neighbours, asking them for medicine, and the people reverted indifferently “She has lost her senses. The boy is dead.”
At length, Kisa met a man who benignly replied to her request “I cannot give thee medicine for thy child, but I know a physician who can.”
And the girl said, “Pray tell me, sir; who is it?” And the man replied, “Go to Sakyamuni, the Buddha.”
Kisa Gotami repaired to the Buddha and cried, “Lord and Master, give me the medicine that will cure my boy.”
The Buddha answered, “I want a handful of mustard- seed.” And when the girl in her joy promised to procure it, the Buddha added, “The mustard-seed must be taken from a house where no one has lost a child, husband,
parent or friend.”
Poor Kisa Gotami now went from house to house, and the people pitied her and said, “Here is mustard-seed; take it!” But when she asked, “Did a son or daughter, a father or mother, die in your family?” they answered her, “Alas! the living are few, but the dead are
many. Do not remind us of our deepest grief.” And there was no house but some beloved one had died in it.
Kisa Gotami became weary and hopeless, and sat down at the wayside watching the lights of the city, as they flickered up and were extinguished again. At last
the darkness of the night reigned everywhere. And she considered the fate of men, that their lives flicker up and are extinguished again. And she thought to herself, “How selfish am I in my grief! Death is common to all; yet in this valley of desolation there is a path that leads
him to immortality who has surrendered all selfishness.”
The Buddha said, ‘‘The life of mortals in this world is troubled and brief and combined with pain. For there is not any means by which those that have been born can avoid dying; after reaching old age there is death; of
such a nature are living beings. As ripe fruits are early in danger of falling, so mortals when born are always in danger of death. As all earthen vessels made by the potter end in being broken, so is the life of mortals. Both
young and adult, both those who are fools and those who are wise, all fall into the power of death; all are subject to death.
“Of those who, overcome by death, depart from life, a father cannot save his son, nor kinsmen their relations.
Mark! while relatives are looking on and lamenting deeply, one by one mortals are carried off, like an ox that is led to the slaughter. So the world is afflicted with
death and decay, therefore the wise do not grieve, knowing the terms of the world.
“Not from weeping nor from grieving will anyone obtain peace of mind; on the contrary, his pain will be the greater and his body will suffer. He will make himself sick and pale, yet the dead are not saved by his lamentation. He who seeks peace should draw out the
arrow of lamentation, and complaint, and grief. He who has drawn out the arrow and has become will obtain all peace of mind; he who has overcome all sorrow will become free and blessed.”

Rabindranath Tagore, the great Indian poet, also pondered upon this inscrutable kind of suffering.

Say not in grief that she is no more but say in thankfulness that she was.A death is not the extinguishing of light,But the putting out of the lamp because the dawn has come. ~Rabindranath Tagore

Live every moment with your friends and family as if you were to die the next day. Live your life to the fullest because when that day of parting comes, you will depart with tokens of love, content somewhere deep within that mind that you were loved.
Because as Professor Dumbledore said “To the well-organised mind, death is but the next great adventure. “