Long Drives – In the Hills and Snow

Last week, 2 of my friends and I planned a 3 days trip to Kasauli, Chail and Kufri. We started with Kasauli and then went to Kufri and then to Chail and then back to Chandigarh. I’m into traveling and I never get tired of it. I keep on traveling, it could be due to my work reasons or it could be my own planned trips. Here I’m sharing few glimpses with you all from my recent trip to the hills of Himachal.

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This place is called Kasauli, a small and beautiful hill station, around 60 Km from Chandigarh. We stayed there for a night before heading ahead. The view is clicked from the Hotel’s balcony where I stayed.

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From Kasauli, we headed to Kufri, there was snow all over the way, and it is always risky to drive under such circumstances. So I decided to park my car at a safe place, and then we all walked few Km up to Kufri to enjoy this scenic place and nature’s paradise.

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So after walking few KMs, we reached Kufri, and the view in Kufri was amazing with snow all over  the place. It had fresh snowfall just an hour back when we reached there.

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Here, it’s me with a friend 🙂

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Pine trees covered with fresh snowfall in Kufri.

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This is Chail, a peaceful, less explored and beautiful hill station, I loved this scenic view all over the way while I was driving there.

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We stayed in Chail for a night and then started driving back to Home in the morning. It is always good to spend some quality time in the serenity of nature.

Have a good day all ~ Vikas Sharma

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Random Thought

Being an integral part of society, one’s thought is responsible for the fortune and misfortune of society, as well. And that shows why one should be responsible to one’s thought.

Shadows on the Wall

​They judge me negatively,

because they do not understand me.

They judge me positively,

because they see a part of themselves within me.

They think they know me,

because they can observe me.

They think that they see me,

because they have eyes.

Yet all they see is shadows on the wall. 

And all they remember is an illusion of the past.

How they choose to judge me,

shows their own reflection.

For a light casts no shadow,

till an object reflects its own brilliance.

Individual is the key

There is no need of charismatic leaders, especially in the framework of democracy the success of which depends on how enlightened an individual and society as whole is, hence, individual is the key. The individual is the indivisible part of the society, and change in one will affect the whole society, it has to. Depending on charismatic leader, or waiting for the coming of a messiah or savior, will bound us to be ruled under an autocratic system disguised as a democracy.

Playing the Game of Life

Excerpt from Alan Watts’s speech:

We have an absolutely extraordinary attitude in our culture and in various other cultures, high civilizations, to the new member of human society. Instead of saying frankly to children: ‘How do you do? Welcome to the human race!’, we are playing a game and we are playing by the following rules. We want to tell you what the rules are so that you know your way around and when you’ve understood what rules we are playing by, when you get older, you may be able to invent better ones.

But instead of that, we still retain an attitude to the child that he is on probation, he is not really a human being, he is a candidate for humanity. And in just this way, we have a whole system of preparation of the child for life which always is preparation and never actually gets there. In other words, we have a system of schooling which starts with grades. And we are always preparing for something that’s going to happen.

So you go into nursery school as preparation for kindergarten. You are going to kindergarten as preparation for 1st grade and then you go up the grades till you get to high-school and then comes a time when maybe if we can get you fascinated enough with this system, you go to college. And then when you go to college, if you are smart, you get into graduate school and stay a perpetual student and go back to be a professor and just go round-and-round in the system.

But in the ordinary way, they do not encourage quite that, they want you [to go to] after-graduate school or after-graduation, commencement as it’s called, beginning to get out into the world with a capital W. And so you know, you’ve been trained for this and now you’ve arrived. But when you get out into the world, at your first sales meeting, they’ve got the same thing going again, because they want you to make that quota and if you do make it, they give a higher quota. And come along about 45 years of age, maybe you are a vice-president. And it suddenly dawns on you that you’ve arrived with a certain sense of having been cheated, because it is just the same, life feels the same as it always felt.

And you are conditioned to be in desperate need of a future. So the final goal that this culture prepares for us is called retirement – when you will be a senior citizen and you will have the wealth and the leisure to do what you always wanted but you will at the same time have impotence, rotten prostate and false teeth and no energy. So the whole thing from beginning to end is a hoax.

You are involved by-and-large in a very strange business system, which divides your day into work and play. Work is something that everybody does and you get paid to do it because nobody could care less about doing it. In other words, it is so abominable and boring that you can get paid for doing it. And the object of doing this is to make money. And the object of making money, is to go home and enjoy the money that you’ve made. When you got it, you see, ‘you can buy pleasure’.

And in myriads of ways, you see, you go home, you are with the wealthiest people in the world and you would think that having earned your money and at home, you will have an orgy and great banquet and so on, but nobody does. They eat TV dinner which is just a warmed over airline food and then they spend the evening looking at an electronic reproduction of life which is divided from you by a glass screen. You can’t touch it, you can’t smell it. And you look at this thing and you have a strange feeling, you see, that the whole procession of grades that was leading to something in the future, to that goody, that gorgeous, galumptious goody that was lying at the end of the line, it never quite turns up.

And this is because from the beginning, we condition our children to a defective sense of identity. We condition the child in a way that sets the child a life-problem which is insoluble. And therefore attended by constant frustration and as a result of this problem being insoluble, it is perpetually postponed to the future. So that one lives, one is educated to live in the future and one is not ever educated to live today.

Now I am not saying that, you know, the philosophy of carpe diem: ‘Let us drink today, for tomorrow we die’ and not make any plans. What I am saying is that making plans for the future is of use only to people who are capable of living completely in the present. ~ Alan Watts

Random Thought

​There is a freedom of speech crisis in the world. The abuse of the right to freedom of speech is beyond comprehension. It is not just about politicians but members of the public as well. I am convinced that this irresponsibility will bring down freedom of speech. Freedom of speech is not about saying whatever is in your mind, this is a terrible misunderstanding. Freedom of speech should be expressed with responsibility because it is a treasure.

Food For Thought #10

From silence, came thought,
from thought, came ego,
and from ego, came speech.
So if speech is effective,
how much more so must be its source?” – Ramana Maharshi

You know, in the case of most of us, the mind is noisy, everlastingly chattering to itself, soliloquizing or chattering about something or trying to talk to itself to convince itself of something; it is always moving, noisy. And from that noise, we act. Any action born of noise produces more noise, more confusion.

But if you have observed and learned what it means to communicate, the difficulty of communication, the non-verbalization of the mind — that is, that communicates and receives communication — then, as life is a movement, you will, in your action, move on naturally, freely, easily, without any effort, to that state of communion. And in that state of communion, if you inquire more deeply, you will find that you are not only in communion with nature, with the world, with everything about you, but also in communion with yourself. – Jiddu Krishnamurti