The Spirit of Dussehra

It’s becoming a month of revelations and learnings. Of eyes wide open , mouths sealed shut. A month of understanding and reconciling. Of accepting and cleansing. Letting go, and holding on. Just another month, one might think.

What makes it special is that many years in a row now, October has held that place in my annual rituals. It’s shaky to begin with, a bit stumbling in the middle, and then a new horizon awaits.

Lately I’ve started feeling that sense of “it’s never going to be like the old times ever again”. Like, life will never be as simple as it was a dozen or so Diwalis ago. In that state of overwhelm I start to look for ways to simplify my own life, for I cannot change the world around me. And I keep coming back to the question – how did I get here? And how much further do I need to go? It only goes downstream from where I am. It is only going to get more complex.

Going back to David Brook’s Second Mountain, where I stand today, is clearly my first peak. I can do two things – descend and find my next worthy ascent; or keep climbing from this peak to some next.

To keep climbing I need to change myself. Become who I have not been. I might not like who I become. I might not ever be able to simplify my life if I keep going.

But if I descend, it will come at a cost. I don’t know the price I will pay. I don’t know what that experience will make me. May be I won’t like that person either.

The fork in the road is clear. Choices not so much.

So, I have decided to start to walk, and go just far enough to know if I want this path for myself. I don’t have a more worthy ascent ahead of me. Those choices take time to create. They need preparations, that I have not made.

So I pick the route up, I pick my pace, and I pick my values. Some I won’t compromise and some that aren’t for the outside world. I can be authentic to myself, by being quiet to the outside world. That way I won’t be deceiving myself. I will be deceiving the world. That world which is not ready to accept me as I am. For my family and friends, I am me. For others, I am who they expect me to be where I stand today.

The diabolical and the divine thoughts play each other, in the corners of my mind, getting tangled in the cobwebs. They say, it’s the spirit of Dussehra!

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