Searching for the chocolate sprinkles
A road exists because life does. The long road ahead seems blurred by an inauspicious smoke. It must be the smoke created by the fire on the last turn I took; the fire that shall burn down the vivid memories of my last journey. A journey that was full of innocent mistakes. A journey that was full of endearing moments. A journey defined by a path made of fearless pursuit of pleasure. Sometimes in life, you know that you are perhaps committing a mistake; a mistake that you will regret for the rest of your mundane existence. But you still decide to embark on that trip to melancholy. You do it not because you aren’t strong enough to let go of the imminent, transient joy and happiness that awaits you. You do it because you desperately believe that you are brave enough to tackle the misery that will follow. To some of us, happiness in life is like chocolate sprinkles on a dry doughy cake. You can eat all of them at once or you can distribute it over the entire time you are eating the cake. But make no mistake; they are the same chocolate sprinkles. You either eat them now or later. And like me if you are of the opinion that, “Life is full of misery, loneliness, and suffering – and it’s all over much too soon”, the decision becomes much easier. I decided to eat the chocolate sprinkles, much like the mistakes i made, knowing that it will leave me as a bottomless pit. So the challenge now is to enjoy the rest of the cake as it is. But there are hurdles …
We are blessed with family, friends, colleagues, culture, tradition and a society around us that handicap us with expectations. We handicap ourselves by allowing them to preside over our life. We are often incapable of pursuing our own whims and fancies giving in to societal demands. I have done this so many times in my life because it seemed fair. It always seems fair to make others’ happy. Doesn’t it? The menace of altruism is unparalleled in relation to self satisfaction. And I say it with no moral liability. The inherent definition of happiness for us comprises of social approval; and hence the paradox. What we perhaps need is a paradigm shift in our definition of happiness, a definition that decouples happiness from social approval. But then, shall we all live like the Tibetan monks? Perhaps not! To me, the emotional state of happiness arises out of comparison. Tibetan monks aren’t happy. They just exist in an emotional state devoid of happiness and sadness. We need to be sad to perceive the true feeling of bliss. In other words, we need the dry doughy cake to appreciate the chocolate sprinkles. So asceticism is never an option.
As I munch on my dry doughy cake, the road ahead seems tough! The absence of taste and flavor has been debilitating. But slowly, something amazing is happening. The cake is beginning to taste a little sweet. For all I know is that it shouldn’t. For all I know is that my wisdom is failing to account for this sudden mismatch of expectation and reality. Are there hidden chocolate sprinkles that we can only consume if we persevere eating the cake? Is the courage of moving-on the true mantra for bliss? Or is the road ahead just taking me back to where I started a few years ago? I guess only time will tell.