Friday, November 26, 2010

Dreams. Future; near and far

Since birth, I've always had some vision about my future; some desire, some expectation; some goal to work toward; something to achieve. Always, I thought that was the dream everyone talked about. The dreams that make you work harder, forgetting your sleep; dreams that make you forget all the comfort and work until you have all that you desire. But is that it? Is only that distant aspiration worthy of being called a dream? Or is it that all small desires should be worked upon with the same vigor?

Future, something I enter into every passing moment, yet something I can never know. It is the single most mysterious things; some think that is where the beauty of the universe lies. Or does it?

I've come to learn in the last month through a grave experience, that life is not a joke. It is not at all something that one should take lightly; value it at all times. I've come to realize that this life can play with you in unpredictable ways and there is no winner; at least no human. In such a setting, I'm forced to wonder, should I be spending time ,resources and energy thinking of the times ahead or should I make the most of now FOR now; not thinking how what I do at this moment will affect some part of the future I'm about to enter.

There are things I "plan" to do in the next few days, some in the next few months, years and decades. But is it sensible?

Just yesterday, a friend's blog (The Rationalist's Batcave ) brought back to me the plans that I had for future; made me decide to shed away the laziness and get to work once again. I had made up my mind to leave aside all short-term goals, temptations, desires and happiness and work for that one goal. I felt convinced that that was the thing I wanted to die working for and it was the thing once achieved, I'd die a satisfied person.

But yet, over the night, the sleeping mind wandered into the prohibited zones and re-opened the question, particularly highlighting "death" as a keyword. When I don't even know what will happen in then next few seconds; isn't it dumb to push myself into a life deprived of all pleasure in the quest for the ultimate goal, which in itself will take decades, if not more?

Here I try to cut short and pose the same question to all of you. What should be more important, the expectations of the present or of the future? Should one "sacrifice" his senseless desires for a stronger cause, which can take time, to say the least?


  1. Senseless desires?
    What you're asking is whether your present goals are more important the ones which you set for your life as whole right?
    Well, in that case, i would have to say that if the 'desires' that you presently have aren't going to help take you in the direction that you would prefer. Then why does the question even arise? At the end of the day, yes, you do have to look at the bigger picture, and decide what it is you want to do, or need to.

    But then again, its those short term desires that give us all that little bit of happiness that we all need and deserve. And in my opinion, that happiness is equally as important as that of your life's goal.

    chuck all of that,
    nice writing again, I don't know if it's just me, but I seriously do think that your writing has improved a lot over time. :)

  2. I agree. Your writing has come a long way for the better (unlike mine which has gone a long way down, right into hell).

    Now for the important question. This had been answered in a post. This post started out to be a comment on this post of yours. But I kept writing, and now it has become a full fledged post, so I put it up on my blog.

    we got played.

    I hope I have answered your question Rajat.

    P.S. Don't worry; there is nothing wrong with me.

  3. I think you partly answered your question yourself in the post. Or you were headed in that direction, in any case. Anyway, here's my two cents (although I have a feeling this is going to be a loooong comment):
    I think we need a balance. That's probably the solution to every dilemma in the history of the world, but it's true.
    It's SO important to stay in the moment. You can't just trudge through the next two years of your life, knowing that at the END of that, you MIGHT achieve your dream, whatever that is.
    You and I - like many other college students with middle-class parents and a decent brain - are very fortunate. We may not be superstars, but we do have pretty awesome lives. And how can we enjoy each and every bit of this awesomeness if we're constantly worrying about the future, working towards something we can't quite see on the horizons of our lives? Like you said yourself, you may freaking well die tomorrow. Carpe diem!
    That said, it's still important to know where you're going. Plans for the future are there, I believe, only for the sake of direction. For example, if I hadn't made plans about what I wanted to do after college, how would I have known what major to pick? So, yeah, planning is important, just so we can know what the next step is. Without planning, there would be no ambition or inspiration. We wouldn't be able to do anything great.
    So, yeah, recap ('cause I'm sure I stopped making sense a while ago) - it's important to live in the present, but also have a rough plan for the future. It's like a train. It'll keep chugging along merrily down the steel tracks, often headed the right way. But from time to time, the engineer has to control it's speed and direction, otherwise it may go off track and crash into the mountainside.
    Ha, I think that imagery was more confusing than helpful. Anyway, hope you get my gist. Sorry, it's so long. I've been mulling over it a bit.

  4. Yes iv commented already on your facebook post, but its only fair to do it on this awesome blog too!

    Wow:) this blogpost contains an idea, an issue that makes me ponder a lot too sometimes, but honestly not to an extent that would make me uncomfortable. Rajat, its completely fair on your part to think that way, because i feel that on one hand, IITs make you strive hard fr dat ultimate goal in life, but on the other hand, make you struggle for the tits and bits of the current study scenario(if u noe wt iam saying).....on one hand it makes us think," chalo koi baat nahi i got a C in AML110, so wt..i know im working fr da bigger goal!", and one the other hand it makes us so uncomfortable that all we think bout in da next few days is how to improve that F***in grade!!"..hehe....

    My personal opinion would be to strive for the bigger goal, because its only while striving fr that will you realise that ultimately the smaller goals that you make are only fr da bigger goal.
    A simple analogy that is a gr8 example in my life::: To be honest, i never was that mad about the elite IITs. when Vaibhav sir used to instill us with that confidence, it never really seeped into my veins, never made me growl with unending passion that Yes, ill do it. All along the path through JEE, the only thing that kept me going was that i had decided myself that IIT was just a stepping stone towards the bigger picture. Yes, the college itself was never an attraction to me coz f da brand, but because of the fact that in India, my dream of Higher studies and research can be fulfilled if i go to these elite institutes and extract the most out of the awesome opportunities given to me.I hope this makes my point clear bro. I dunt noe whether i will continue wid this perspective during my stay here, but its been this point of view that has enabled me to sit here in the best college of the country, IIT.

    A gr8 blog post i would say. Made me revise in my mind what my action plan fr the bigger dream was! Cheers:)

  5. This comes pretty late but I wanted to do justice to this and hence decided to post a comment only after a perusal. When something deserves to be categorized as a life ambition, its pursuit in itself, no matter how exasperating it may seem is essentially a process that you enjoy. People who have commented before me have made references to JEE and I must make one too. JEE was a goal, wasn't it? I have to say and I'm certain that you will say this too, that it was unequivocally a very enjoyable time. While you may never want to fritter, doing so in some little way or the other inevitable. All you have to do is know how to keep it under limits. Granted, you are intensely passionate about computers, about logic but that doesn't mean you shut yourself in a room, become a loner and spend days, hours and months in front of your PC to go further in your quest. I bet Bill Gates didn't mind grabbing himself a beer and chilling out with his buddies once in a while. Being scrupulous is one thing and being focussed another. Having pangs of guilt while you are making merry is normal. You should only give them importance if you know for yourself that you are not devoting as much time towards your aims as you should be. Having trivial, short lived wishes is only part of being a sane human being. Knowing not to blur the boundaries of work and play is perhaps one of the most trying things to do but then again only in doing so can one live a life without any regrets, a life that befits being referred to as a 'life well lived'.

  6. maybe all your smaller goals of everyday should relate to the bigger one, should contribute to it.. you can't be spending present on something and striving for something different in the some level things should connect and add up..and if some of those smaler goals seem selfish, still go ahead, as long as it doesn't harm anyone..