It was an evening that was an eye opener of sorts.. A few conversations that helped me introspect.. What an insightful evening this was!!

Interesting though that each one of these insights were thru different mediums..

It all first started over a cup of tea with a friend of mine who said, “It is good to have an ego. That is when you will learn to respect yourself, when you will say that it is fine not to talk to someone who does not respect you for who you are, it is ok to say thank you when someone says that you have done a great job.”

“There is nothing wrong then in having an ego is it?”, was a question that I asked myself (you see I have this habit of talking to myself many times. Oh wait, did I hear you call me something? :-)). Ego by any other name is still ego isn’t it? Or is it ok to to say that “There is nothing wrong then in having a healthy ego'”. Well, the ‘adjectivised’ ego certainly sounds healthy enough!!

This conversation with my friend and then with myself certainly made me feel good to think that it is great to respect yourself as much as you respect others.. It felt harmonious to feel that it is fine not to talk to someone who does not respect you for who you are.. it gives a feeling of gratefulness when you say ‘thank you’ when you are appreciated.

The next conversation happened over a phone call with a 12 year old who said, “You know what aunty, many of my friends think I have an attitude but I actually don’t. I am kind and nice and loving. I can tell you many more of the nice qualities that I have.” 🙂

As the conversation proceeded, it turned out to be an intellectual one too. We discussed on how it is ok to have an attitude, I mean a ‘healthy attitude’:-). On how sometimes we use this attitude to protect ourselves from getting hurt. On how many of us project an ‘I don’t care’ attitude but inside we care a lot about what others think of us and what they think also has the power to let us hurt ourselves. The attitude that we wear is actually a mask, one that we think is an insulator, while it actually is not. The mask is for the others but not for ourselves. No one can be a more reflecting mirror to us, than we ourselves.

This made me reflect on myself and what I am projecting to myself and others too. It made me think that as much as I can call myself as my worst critic, I can also call myself as my best friend; that while it may seem protective and insulating to wear a mask for others, for my own inner growth it is good to wear NO masks when I see myself.

The third and final conversation happened over a whats app group chat. We were discussing on the usage of a word, in an article that was posted. A 4 letter swear word, if one may call the word so, (Oops, did you think what you thought it was? Oh No!! That wasn’t the word :-)) and one that is used fairly extensively by many. When I said that I refrain from using this word in general, I was told, “You are a saint”. It was very strange that my response to this statement, “I am no saint. I have my own failings”, opened many a shackle within myself.  It was as though I had just let go of what I was holding on to fiercely. I discovered that it is acceptable to have failings and equally acceptable to accept that you have failings too 🙂

“I am certainly no saint and while I think it is a blessing to be one, I am not ready yet”, I thought to myself. I have a jealous bone or two in my body. I am intolerant, insensitive, impatient at times and I do express these failings, oh sorry, these feelings at times.

It is fine to have all these feelings as being a human. It is but natural to have. But then if I know that I have these feelings and I don’t deny them; and as pUjya swAmiji Dayananda Saraswati says, “Welcome every emotion that you feel. Don’t resist them, as the more you resist them, the longer they will stay”, it may just help perhaps. I try to remember and tell this statement to myself every time I try to resist an emotion. And what I thought to myself after the conversation reinforced this statement.

All these three conversations happened back to back and within a span of 3 hours; and while each one of them opened up a lot of thoughts within me, each one of them equally had the power to make me feel lighter. As I come to the end of this blog, the one thought that is left in me is – When you accept yourself for the person you are, the road ahead seems winding and long; but invitingly marked with clarity, both of the road and of the scenic beauty around.