Thursday, June 30, 2016

Learn and unlearn

Life offers many teachings. We learn multiple good things while unlearning unwanted things. This process of learning/unlearning is lifelong process. As it happens quite often I am in mood of preaching. So here go some words from the preacher in me.

To begin with below things could be added to learn activity.

1: Empathy : One has to interact with large number of people in modern world. So one has to understand what others think and feel.This becomes prerequisite for understanding new problems , decision making , conflict resolution , successful negotiation . Consideration of empathy can induce long lasting peace, happiness, harmony, fraternity. In present times of conflicts , wars , intolerance empathy in way ahead.

2: Stand for others : We should stand for others rights , help them , empower them . This is required for larger good of the society and world. In era of interdependence it is critical to help others when they are stuck up. Helping others should be done in good faith e.g. without seeking any specific return for oneself. Civilization has progressed with collective effort . This is requirement in present era as well as we face new challenges and concerns.

3: Love and care : Spread love and care for people around you. This can be done by keeping all channels of communication open. Acknowledge dignity and existence of others. Power of little smile , act of love and care is immense which is underestimated. Excuse of fast paced life laced with stress takes us away from social life. Idea is to remain close with people around you while you walk your chosen path.

4: Hobbies : Everyone has own way of maximizing happiness . Having multiple hobbies is one way of doing this. Not doing anything is not an option , so choose what you love to do . Try multiple things till you find something according to your wish. As a motivating factor hobbies help in remaining healthy , increases creative potential , lets you make friends and provide wholesomeness to life. Go ahead with dance , music , painting , reading , exercise , games . Options are galore , find what you love. It's never too late.

Below things may be added to unlearn tasks.

1: Prejudices : This reflects in form of negative attitude towards people , places . Removing prejudices can be done by application of logic , reason ,seeking facts , rational scientific outlook . Constant vigil can minimize prejudices which we might have developed.

2: Stereotypes : Generally this goes with prejudices which we may have generated. This shows in way be eat , talk , walk , wear, think , believe , act. Stereotypes can limit our potential. Narrow outlook towards people around us and ourselves is harmful for progressive outlook towards life.

3: Ego : This is basis of negative personality and fuels other negative things e.g conflict , hatred , violence etc. Solution lies in being humble and have long term perspective rather than short term show of muscle and power. Ego can be easily controlled by having good sense of humor. 

4: Comfort zone : With mundane life activities a sense of inertia develops. This limits the possible progress . Change can be painful but nothing is as painful as being in situation/place you do not belong. Way forward in this case is to seek challenges, enhance capabilities, rest but not too long , choose freedom over comforting chains , broaden the outlook and expectation from life. Rise and shine,  which is not possible by remaining in comfort zone.

The list can certainly get longer for learn/unlearn. May be those can be added in later blog posts.

Goal of human life is to be good human being while maximizing happiness. Let good things get attached with you while leaving bad ones. Let the process begin and continue...

Monday, June 27, 2016

From the Cook in Me

My tryst with cooking has been fairly old affair. Starting with simple tea i did try new things and experimented with the ingredients and the process of cooking . I had fair count of finger cuts , burns , spilled milks etc to make the story full of exciting moments.

Cooking certainly tests multiple things as human being . To be one good cook one should carry fair amount of patience , ability to learn from mistakes , innovate , experiment , be careful , good observer , learn from others etc. Honest effort and love one adds shows in the end result. Cooking is one way to show how much you love yourself and people around you. Here goes some of the learnings from my cooking experience .

1: Time : As a cook one has to develop sense of timing for adding ingredients. Order of ingredients matter as well . End result can be drastically different based on the timing and order of adding ingredients. One example can be taken of oil. As general rule oil should be added to the frying pan when the pan is moderately hot. Further let oil get hot before adding other things e.g onion , spices etc.

2: Chemical reaction : Cooked food get flavor and color due to chemical reaction which take place. Ensure that you understand the ingredients and what you expect from resultant product. One example can be taken for smoke point of oil. All oils have smoking point above which smoke starts coming. At smoke point trans-fat is created. This should be avoided during cooking i.e. Cook at low flame or choose the oil as per cooking needs having smoking point in mind.

3: Salt : Cliché statement is applicable in case of salt e.g. add as per your taste. Oil helps salt in uniform spread e.g. inside of vegetables. So add salt after initial around one minutes of frying in oil when the vegetable starts turning reddish. Considering health needs less salt should be part of meals.

4: Onion : This is part of gravy base of innumerable vegetable dishes. Try onions chopped in different sizes to add variety to your preparation. Onions of small sizes added as whole can be good experimental proposition as well. Same can be said for using baby onions.

5: Khichdi : This has been one of my favorite dishes . Saviors for the times when you are too tired or too lazy to do much manual intensive tasks. Add rice , pulses , vegetables , spices and salts into pressure cooker and boil everything for 3-4 whistles . Give takda to the preparation using cumin seeds and oil. Certainly an activity of optimal returns for minimum effort.

6: Washing Utensils : You can not be good cook without good at taking up clean up act e.g washing utensils , cooking area etc. This is important for hygiene and aesthetics as well . How to proceed with washing utensils? I think act of patience comes into play here. Let your favorite song play in your mind and proceed with the task. Clean utensils present happy picture and is motivating factor to accomplish the task of cooking wonderful dishes. Use minimum utensils for cooking to avoid dealing with mountain of them for cleaning.

7: Buying vegetables : Always go for the fresh and seasonal vegetables . Out of season vegetables are excessively costly and lack taste and nutrition value as well. Here again choose the desi varieties which may not look great but they are far ahead in taste compared to the hybrid ones . e.g. desi tomatoes have more water content. One side comment can be made to carry your own bag while buying vegetables. One weird fashion has crept in recent times to use plastic bags . That is bad for environmental reasons. So discard plastic as far as possible.

Cooking and related activities can add good value to one's personality . Healthy mind lives in healthy body and being a good cook is a step in that direction . I have introduced myself into this world , i shall continue with the process and try to become better as time passes. Bye folks

p.s : In due course I shall share some of my recipes. 

Repository of smiles

Knew someone who is repository of smile ,
Chirpy while talking , always brimming with energy ,
Admired the words even when repeated ,
I learn , apply , improve and feel privileged to know one.

Sometimes I can speak non-stop without inhibition,
Some words which make some sense, others without much sense ,
Time played spoilsport as it moved fast,
Not before multiple precious moments got created.

As i reflect back , want to extend wishes ,
Wish for you all love and care ,
Reach new heights , explore new frontiers ,
Dream big , add colors to your dreams ,
To repeat , spread happiness as you always do.

Worries and concerns for you will continue ,
Don't skip meals , eat healthy and on time ,
Take care of health , be emotionally strong ,
Take work less seriously , add other attributes ,
Be regular with exercises and walks , pick books to be read .

Journey of life is full of happy surprises ,
Surprised that introvert in me can find special people as I walked ,
Some lines meet only to separate ,
In helplessness happiness could be found ,
Special bonds will get older and better with time ,
And I knew someone who is repository of smiles :-)

 p.s : I shall try to be regular with blog entries.