My Power Quote !

A good book on a rainy day is happiness for me - Ruskin Bond

Sunday, July 19, 2015


Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.  

- Benjamin Franklin

If you ask me what's my first piece of writing, I would say without hesitation that it is on 'Swami Vivekananda' way back in 1989 when I was studying second year B.Com in a sleepy town called Machilipatnam, Andhra Pradesh, India.

Vivekananda's fiery words  put me on my path.  That way my writer's journey started.   I used to read a lot since then and I find writing as an 'outlet' to express my creative energies.  The problem with my friend circle on those days is that they did not show any interest in my cravings  due to which I could not share my ideas with them.

In spite of so many ups and downs in my life, reading remained my all time passion.   I have books more as friends than humans. The idea to have less friends is to work more on harnessing my own potential.  Since, I learnt the stenography which involves hard labour, I find no load on my mind to spend extra hours for educating myself.

I started my personal library way back in 1990 with a handful of books of Vivekananda's literature published by Ramakrishna Mission.   A cardboard box was cut into book shelf  and books were kept in orderly fashion.

I was groomed in a serene atmosphere where I was gifted with a plenty of solitude to digest that timeless wisdom.  I generally don't mingle much with friends and spend more time in public libraries and that habit still continued till today.

The habit of jotting down the date of purchase of a book/writing an article/ notes came from my father whose book Bhagavad Gita purchased in 1960s was in my possession now.  In fact that book was my first training ground to improve my vocabulary.   Some times, I read loud the stanzas to feel as if I am a news reader.  That way, I somewhat improved my pronunciation.

Now when I look back all those books,  fond-memories of those times with vivid details bath my soul.  When I see that old dusty file where I punched 'The Hindu's ( English Newspaper in India) prominent weekly column 'Know Your English' clippings,  I could remember those hard days when I sit hours together to improve my vocabulary, craft etc.   All this reiterate the fact that I am obsessive about writing much before it was resurfaced in 2011 and till now it is an effortless saga  with  more than 350 articles  in all my three blogs.

Whenever, I am in low steam,  Divine Providence  helps me to  come across a fiery book which kindles my imagination  for some weeks if not  for months  and put my writer's journey vigorous.  The last book that served me so well on this count is : Benjamin Franklin's 'Autobiography' (1706-90).  It is truly a remarkable book.   Benjamin  is known as 'The First American and is  one of the Founding Father's of United States.

I was terribly inspired by his multi-facet personality.  Though he had little by way of formal education, he shined well in his life .  He was an author, printer, scientist, civic activist and diplomat. The methods he adopted to ensure his  personal discipline with 13 Principles is truly mind blowing.  

I used to complain earlier that my father did not send me for higher studies i.e. ICWA at Chennai due to financial crunch. But I must thank him for getting my graduation completed which include teaching of  shorthand  to gain employment  in 1992. 

There seems to be great similarities between some life circumstances of Benjamin and me.  As mentioned in his biography,  Benjamin never knew either his father or mother to have any sickness( till they died at 89 and at 85 years).  My case is similar with very good genes I inherited  from my parents who are still healthy and gale even in their ripe age(father 70+ and mother 65 years). 

When, it comes to games in my childhood, I could say that I played less.   Like Benjamin, reading is my only amusement.  After coming to government service, though I have lot of resources, time, energies and opportunities, I have not pursued any higher education beyond my bachelor of commerce which I did in 1990.  I never believe that you need testimonials to validate your knowledge.  For earning those needy bucks,  I followed society's rules and now survival is comfortably taken care of,  and now I am very much on 'Knowledge Path'.

My philosophy is, have a childlike curiosity to widen my knowledge-base.  There should not be compartmentalization in pursuing your interests.  The humanities and sciences must be devoured in a healthy dose according to your appetite.  I read commerce in my graduation, but science is my charm.  My personal library is dominated by books on neuroscience/psychology, philosophy/ self-help etc.

I have not borrowed somebody's interests. When I raised my personal library, it is my private collection of immortal books  of giant personalities who with their humble backgrounds climbed to the ladder of fame and success. I continue to draw my inspiration by  reading and re-reading their literature and try to digest their wisdom, and pass on to  my posterity for their benefit !

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