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What Is Your Story?

Do you remember stories heard from your Grandma, in your childhood? Have you ever surprised where it comes from? Let me tell you, every story has a story. Let us discuss how?

During a course in Film Direction at Film and Television Institute of India, Pune, I taught by my faculty about the various levels of a story. The lesson was “How we choose stories to make films?”.

Obviously, there is a huge difference between real life and reel life.  There should always some criteria, else everyone could make one film at least for himself or herself. He taught, a story is judged by below four levels :

  1. Plot Level
  2. Psychological Level
  3. Political Level
  4. Mythological Level

Every Friday, we get information that multiple new films are screening this weekend. Now OTT platform is also established, for example, Netflix, Jio Studio, Amazon Prime, etc. These all are approx 250 in total numbers. Hundreds of newspapers are publishing daily. Thousands of books are publishing every year.

I started thinking, from where these people get stories on a regular basis. “Is there, any treasurer of stories somewhere exists?” “How can it being produced?”

My mind blinks, “The formation generates in our MINDs”. But the question is, if everyone can produce a story, so all are story makers and storyteller.

Is this possible? Well, I think I am on the right path.  Yes, we all are producing stories every day. Not every day, every hour, every minute, every second. We all are actually story writers. That is a different story that actually we don’t know that we are doing because it is not deliberately, it happens automatically.

When we are in conversation with anyone, something is cooking in our brain very fast, maybe it is as fast as, sometimes our mind could not able to read it compare to the speed it is generating. At the same speed, sometimes we forget a lot of things. Isn’t it?

Once I asked my mentor Professor Joginder Singh Puri (US), “GOD has given us a beautiful mind for learning, judging, and invention, but don’t know why GOD has given us the habit to forget”. He smiled as usual and told me “Actually we are lucky that we can forget a lot of things, think about the situation, where you remember all the things, can you easily forget your insult done by your very close friend. I bet you can not, so, in that situation, you should be thankful to GOD to give you the gift of forgetting things”. I got the point, he made me unanswered. If you haven’t read so far, I will suggest reading my blog No-where is Now-here”

Our mind is so hardworking, that even it works while we are asleep. It takes care of our dreams.

Expert says that we want to do a lot of work in one life, but everything is not possible, so our subconscious mind produced stories every night. A lot of stories.

It is rare we remember all the dreams, but if it is, just allows me to say, you will laugh a lot at yourself.

Our brain cooked a lot of unusual stories. Have you heard the word “Day-dreaming”, yes, you are thinking right, we can cook up stories any time, even in days also?

The question is why we cook stories?

The answer is very simple, we cook stories for our existence. Maybe you don’t believe it, but this is a real truth that we live because our stories want us to live.

I have heard a lot of stories from my Grandma. And all are live visible before my eyes to date and they will end with the end of my life.

Well, the fact is she never told me the stories of fairy tales, instead it was real stories from our history. You know, I realized it the first time that history is also a story only when I heard a lot of stories about warriors, sacrifices, bravery, slavery, Independence, etc.

I still remember my childhood days, when I insist on my father to buy a horse for me. He laughed and assured me that it would be available on my coming birthday as a gift. It never happened. It was a joke for him, but it was a reality for me. I was living in on those stories somewhere in my mind. I remember I felt very bad on that day when my father missed the promise. This is the impact of stories, we love to live it.

If you recollect the childhood of all famous people in this world, you will find one thing in common in their life and that is they heard a lot of stories in their childhood.

Bhagat Singh becomes martyr because he heard stories of slavery, torture by English people upon Indian civilians, he heard stories of brave soldiers, he understood the difference between slavery and independence.

The great Alexander wanted to conquer the whole world because his mother always told stories to do so. She told him that you are born only to win.

Stories make us alive, else we are a dead person.

The story could be heard by you in your past or you are playing any role in any story at present or you have weaved a story for the future in your mind. But that is for sure, you are a part of a story.

Everyone exists because there is a story behind it.

Scientists make a story and start pursuing it, sometimes it reaches its end, or sometimes his end himself ends his story. But that is for sure that every innovation in this world has a story behind it. Only then this proverb can be correct “Necessity is the mother of invention”. Necessity brings a story and then invention starts.

Issac Newton reached its gravitational theory because there was a story of fallen apple behind it.

Why we create stories?

We create a story to prove our existence. And because we exist, so again we create stories.

Believe me, if we will not create stories we will die, we will feel helpless to do anything, our brain will die, and sooner we will no more. And if we would be there, we will become mad.

We exist because the story exists and the story exists because we exist.

One of my friends and a beloved personality Mr. Dilvar Singh Chugh was the owner of the GRAND HOTEL, at Grant Road, in Mumbai, India. Once I visited his hotel to have a cup of tea. Then the very first time I came to know that he is a great poet, lyricist, and writer.

On those days, I wrote my first poem in the English language, I thought this is the right time to have a discussion on that. I recited my poem, but he cut me short and started asking why I used the word “Harmony” here. He was a professor of the English language and conduct classes in his spare time at weekends.

The discussion started between us about the correct use of the word ‘harmony’. He was trying to convince me that harmony is like all strings come to one place and producing a piece of music. The combination of simultaneously sounded musical notes to produce a pleasing effect.

By his version harmony is to bring different colors together and to prepare a piece of art. As another example: his logic was about the garden full of flowers, where are different colors of flowers exist, and produces harmony.

I was not ready to buy his logic, for me, he was telling the meaning from the dictionary, but the dictionary can not understand emotions. 

My definition of harmony was completely different from his version. In my version, I want to go into the depth of the heart and want to bring out the real meaning. 

For me, the only artist can understand the meaning of perfection.  A musician, or an actor, or any artist can not work properly if we will not make him free from all boundaries. Well, boundaries could be anything like, our thoughts, our budgets, our limitations of instruments, etc.  Let them free and allow them to fly, let them get drench in their art, definitely, they will come up with their best, else it would be compromised.

Now for a second, assume the condition of an artist, who is trying to prepare a piece of his art, with his full skill. You know, multiple times he gets into a situation in which inconsistent elements are present. He knows very well, there is a contradiction of statements, a contradiction of ideas or features, they are opposing each other.

He knows everything but actually he is enjoying the contradiction and this is his real art. He does not want to get rid of them, he wants to enjoy with them. They are not obstacles for them, they are supporting them. Because contradiction suggests harmony.

Look at an example of our home, there are multiple members staying with us having different ideas, if this becomes obstacles for us then it will become chaos, it will mess up everything, but the intelligent senior person in the home will find harmony in these contradictions. Only he knows how to handle this situation, how it turns adversity into an opportunity.

Harmony is not a disciplined or professional note, explained in the textbook, it is not given to us by a teacher and we need to follow it as it is suggested. the whole idea behind it is to accept the contradiction and enjoy it.  

We are looking for harmony in men and women, we try to find harmony in day and night, but actually harmony exists in the poet’s minds with confliction of words in his poem, it exists in a musician melody, it exists in a storyteller’s plot.

The whole idea of contradiction or acceptance of contradiction is telling a story, but this is not a resolution.

Now look at, all the discussed ideas earlier, in a new way:

Day and night meet at horizon, this is not a harmony, this is a contradiction and we need to accept it to generate harmony.

A story is a contradiction, the universe is a contradiction. Everything is a contradiction. If you accept it then it becomes harmony.

So these are not producing harmony, instead, you are producing harmony by accepting the contradiction. And we should not confuse harmony with a resolution. It is absolutely not.

You can only understand the contradiction, accept it, and enjoy within a single piece of a song, within a piece of the story, within a piece of any skillful art. And this is actually harmony. Resolution is finite and harmony is infinite.

I will suggest more reading my previous blogs:

Is Negative Positivity worst?

If you have any question, please click here and Ask Anything

Thanks for reading, send your reviews, as usual, I will send you my replies as soon as possible.

Take care, Bye Bye

Regards,

Neeraj Bhatia

Direct email: neeraj.bhatia@aaradhyagroups.com

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If you can’t measure it, it doesn’t exist

Universe

Professor Joan Freeman, Ph.D., Middlesex University, UK is a distinguished British psychologist working for the development of human abilities to their highest levels. When I was looking for an article published on 30th Jul 2007 I came across a quote written by her “If you can’t measure it, it does not exist”.

I found this quote resemblance with the quote given by business management expert  Peter Drucker -“If you can’t measure ityou can’t improve it.” Both quotes have the one-line in common “If can’t measure it“.

It was a really interesting thought to pave my way to explore further. I remember the habit of intellectuals, I heard a story in my childhood, the story of King Akbar and his courteous Birbal, when Akbar wants to find the most intelligent person in his kingdom, King Akbar ordered one pot of milk to be poured into a pond by every person for all of his courteous at one night. And all the intellectuals thought in the same way that everybody will pour pot full of milk, what if I will pour water. It will mix in hundreds of poured milk and nobody can recognize his identity.

The next morning King Akbar found that the pond was full of water, even not a single person poured milk in it. What is the takeaway from it? Everybody who thinks he is intellectual thinks, in the same way, irrespective of others. Their parameter of measurement is the same. Let us take an example of a corporate word. If you tell something very specific to a member of your team and make him responsible to communicate the same to other members, you may have an experience that purpose and meaning of message loss in between communication because everyone tries to add his/her own words in the same message. Here again, the parameter of measurement is again the same, all are over smart thinking I can communicate in a better way. We got the same teachings in our classroom from our teachers in academics, but remember the takeaway is always different. I took something and my classmates took something else. When you analyze the reason, you will get that

              “The knowledge weighs upon the wisdom, the simple words lost in the quicksand of experience.”

I have posted the same quote “If it can’t measure it, it doesn’t exist” to my Facebook post. I got a number of phone calls, and everyone was asking for clarification. “What does this statement mean”? I simply asked “Tell me what do you understand”? My purpose was to reach their takeaway context. I was not surprised to get that, everyone was thinking differently.

Let us take one common question, the maximum people want to clarify is “GOD can not be measured, but it exists“, how will you justify this?

Well, to my experience, people always play with the existence of GOD, this is a favorite topic in the whole world.

Let us assume, ask a simple question in public “How big the GOD is?”. I bet you will get different answers. For some people it is 6ft, for some, it is 60ft, 600ft, and go on. Why they are giving answers like this? Because this is the image they are carrying with them. It could be a statue they are recalling from any nearest temple where are visits daily. It could be any other big statue generally they used to see from their daily office route from the office bus from the flyover. It could be their assumptions. But that is for sure, everyone is carrying one measurement.

Their mind fed up about GOD’s identification in their memories since childhood through Calendar pictures, framed pictures, clay statues, etc. Religion wise their statues of their GODs are different, but they have some measurement in their mind for sure. In some specific religion GOD could be on the seventh sky and for some people it could be only limits up to their religious book. Measurement could be different, but their faith is intact. Come what may you should not play with their faith. Because faith does not have any religion, but every religious person has faith.

I remember one incident, one day I was sitting in a large playground, many groups were playing different games. Then suddenly one group came and started flying kite. Soon after some minutes we can see a number of kites are flying in the sky and everyone was looking at their own kite only. They want to take care of their own kite only.

A small question came into my mind and I went to that group introduced myself and ask the question “How big the sky is? In a sudden spike, unknowingly there were a number of fingers pointing towards their kites. I got my answer. People say there is one sky in the universe, but a fraction of seconds before, I have seen hundreds of skies through children’s fingers. Every child had one sky. Their sky had their limitations it is not limitless. The limits of their skies were up to the maximum height of their kites. I understood every child had a measurement of the sky. A Million dollar question? Who is giving instructions to give these types of answers? Obviously our mind. So what if I want to get rid of my mind. How could it be possible?

Once I heard somewhere film director Shekhar Kapoor said    

                           “Panic is the great access to creativity, this is the only way to get rid of your mind”

Initially, I could not understand, why he quoted like this, but soon I realized he is right. Everything evolves and revolves around the mind. Our limits start from the mind and extents up within the mind.  Who makes the decision within you? You, yourself, or someone else? Well, everyone says “MIND”. We use our minds to make decisions, in maximum situations. And what about your heart? Sometimes people want to make decisions from their hearts, but it is always overlapped by the mind. Isn’t it?

Sometimes you really want to get rid of your mind. Because the mind has the knowledge, a library of information so it weighs upon wisdom. It means it will not allow you to take a fair decision, then what we need to do?

I will repeat the same activity “Get rid of your mind“, and to do this “Push yourself in a panic situation“. It is not a joke, it happens regularly with us, but we don’t realize.

Analyze a situation:

When you have not done anything wrong and everyone tries to blame you for any specific decision. You are crying internally, but unable to cry in public, you are in a situation where you need to maintain decorum. you are trying to convince everybody one by one, but nobody ready to be convinced. At this time you are in a panic situation. You want at least support of one person, who can stand up for you, by you. You do not want to take a decision from the mind, you want to deal with it with your heart. you want to talk heart to heart. But when you find yourself failing in all situations, then only you start thinking about GOD. you want to pray. You want to access of universe, you want to send your feeling to them through the universe. You want to tell them you are honest, you are pure. you do not have malafide intentions.

             “When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.”  – Paulo Coelho

You heard the above-mentioned statement earlier. But this time you do not want to read this statement, you do not want to be heard this statement again, now, you only want to feel it. Let the universe give you access and help you.

Here is the only solution for you. You should not hold yourself, you are already in a panic situation, let chaos come and go, that moment would be the honest and pure moment of your life. If you try to hold again, it means you are using your mind, you are obstructing the universe to helping you. Let all of them free, the truth will come out organically. Let’s wait and enjoy the moment.

When everything is done and somebody is asking you what happened to you. You don’t have an answer, you could not be able to answer, because you do not remember anything, something happened automatically. you could not understand what happened, but it happened.

The situation could be in a cricket match; six-run hits on the last ball by a cricketer. It could happen with a football player, a goal that happened in the last 20 seconds. It could be you are saving somebody from an accident just nick of time. It could be your destination arrival one second before the door closes. It could be cracking the interview with the last question, win the quiz without knowing the answer, just by choosing an option from given options. it could be anything, which you think beyond your limits.

Let us take another example:

Suppose you are a musician ( I am taking an example of a professional, where one is an expert in his profession). You are ready for a big concert. All the preparations are done. Till yesterday night you were full of confidence. Today morning you are feeling something is missing, but you have not lost your confidence. The entire team is your responsibility. You are giving instructions and everything is running smoothly. The concert timing is from 8 O’clock in the evening.

Since evening you started feeling panic. You are a confident person, you have so many successful concerts stories with you, but now you are feeling panic. And in this panic situation, you start praying to the universe, “Give me Courage”. “You have chosen me to complete this task, but I do not know how it will complete, help me to complete this task”. Now you bring yourself in a panic situation. Now you are expecting something to happen and you will be through.

Someone can say, you surrendered yourself in front of the universe. I am not using the word “Surrender” here, because when you know that you have the ability to do something and you believe that you are a chosen one, you are not in a surrender position. The reason is simple because you remember that you are the presenter of this concert. To surrender yourself you have to forget completely, who you are, you should become slave, you should become a puppet. You will obey an order without raising any question. The concert could be successful, or it could be hit by the worst situation, you should accept it. Only then you could be eligible to surrender. So here if you know that you are doing the task and you are chosen, it means at this point you are in a panic situation and you are accessing the universe to ask help. It is your trust which makes you successful.

I do not want to use word faith here, because faith is always unconditional, but trust is conditional. Here you are asking help from the universe because you trust your instincts and you want to make it successful so the whole universe will help you to succeed. Most probably at any age of yours, you have asked a question from yourself. How far this universe go? The answer you found was very simple “Forever”. And then you started finding the meaning of the word “FOREVER”, and I believe the journey of your search is still going on till date. Isn’t it?

Can’t you think here, who has created the Universe? If the universe is so powerful and it can answer our prayers then how powerful the source would be, who is giving source to the entire Universe. Suppose a woodcutter is going to cut a tree with his own capacity. He is full of confidence. He is using his full energy in every shot, but after some time, he feels low. He thinks to cut this tree alone is not possible, he should bring manpower. Before leaving he wants to take last chance. He prays to the universe and asking for help. Suddenly in the next shot, the tree dashed to the ground. Has he got some extra power from anywhere?

Do you think a woodcutter alone can cut a tree with his own axe without any help from the universe? No, absolutely not. But which type of help the universe provides? From where this extra poser comes? When all the sources of the universe and the master source, who is giving source to all sources of the universe allow only then the whole universe becomes the atom of the axe for that moment when the final cut happened.

We always wait for that “Moment“, because only that moment is the most powerful moment in the whole universe. At that moment the whole universe stands still for a moment and all forces in this universe started helping you only and only for your task.

Master source always helps you, it is the same source who made the universe, and when you connect with the source, you are eligible to get that moment from the universe. And this moment is the measurement of his existence. It is within yourself, people try to find him outside themselves, it is within the universe, but people try to find him outside the universe, it is alone and it is all in one. It is endless, it is infinite.

If you have any question, please click here and Ask Anything

Thanks for reading, send your reviews, as usual, I will send you my replies as soon as possible.

Take care, Bye Bye

Regards,

Neeraj Bhatia

Direct email: neeraj.bhatia@aaradhyagroups.com

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Reel Life v.s. Real Life

Ashok Mehra, a well-known film artist, producer, film director, met me last winter season in 2018, in Delhi. I spend approximately one month with him, but then I didn’t know anything about him, before Mr. Chaman, one of my Video Editor friend introduced me officially that what is his profession.

We met, we spend a good time along with each other, we took so many times lunch and dinner together. We share jokes, incidents, our viewpoints on any particular topic. I was busy in studio work, but whenever he visited the studio, the atmosphere of the studio changed every time like an entertainment mood. He came close to the heart with everyone because he was living his real life. When I came to know about his profession then only I realize how can an actor be.

I realized if a person has really a reality in his behavior in day to day life or you can say real in nature, nothing unnatural, nothing fake in behavior, then it is very easy to live a reel life with real-life amicably without any difficulty. He carks jokes with any dialogues, which relates to his any of the movie or play, we felt that it was never to show-off, it was real, direct come out from heart, not from the mind.

One of my blogs, I referenced you about Mr. Joginder Singh Puri, a great Professor from the USA and one of my mentors, once told me that whenever you get an opportunity to meet any person, meet like this is the very first time you are meeting with him. And when you leave the same person, leave him like, this is your last visit and you will never meet with him at least in this life. This is a philosophy of life. We do not have command on our birth as well as our death.

Once I got a clipping of a lecture delivered by Mr. Ratan Tata, and his one statement from his speech was very practical and very touchy. He stated,” You have seen ECG machines near hospital beds. When it is showing curved lines, up and down, it means life is still alive, but when it is showing a straight line, it means life is no more”. Life has similar ups and downs for each person. A person stands up, fell down, again stands up, again fell down. it means life is still there, his will power is forcing the person to stand up and fight with all ills. But when the person quits, the lifeline becomes straight. No ups and downs, no life anymore.

The philosophy to live a life is,

Live your real life like an actor is acting in reel life, and acting in reel life like living a real-life”.

Sometimes it seems, how fake is this definition, but if you go in-depth, you will feel this is the only definition that is near a fact nowadays. If you try to find nearby, you will surprise to realize that you are surrounded by fake relationships and fake relations. It is very rare you can find true love near you. You will surprise to see that in adverse situations, your true relations are among the very first person to left you alone.

Once I attended funeral proceedings, there was a custom to speak some words for the decease. Everybody was using selected great words for him. I was thinking that if he is very good in nature, very polite, very helpful and energetic in his behavior, then why he was living in such a miserable condition. Why he died because of short of medicines. People of this world have two faces. Or you can say there are multiple faces behind one mask.

Once I was reading the book written on Swami Vivekanand. He stated somewhere, “if your life is cool, it means you are on the wrong path”. This does not mean that we do not need a cool life. He wanted to indicate, if everyone is praising you, there could be two reasons behind it. First one, you are really a very good person and the second is that you never come out from your comfort zone. you never took the risk in your life to do something challenging. And then only you will live a cool life. The struggle is a part of our life, do not avoid it, instead of enjoying it.

In short, if I bring out me from myself, then masks will be removed forever automatically. Confused?

Take one live example from day-to-day life. If my manager is asking a report from me immediately, and I am asking for two days to prepare it, what does it means? There are two possibilities, either I am not working preparing a report on a day to day basis, so I want more time to prepare it, it is called laziness. But if I want to play with the numbers and aksing two more days to prepare the strategy, how to crooked the report, how to manipulate it before presenting it before my manager.

In the above situation, either I need to accept I am a lazy person or maybe I am busy with other engagements, so the report is not prepared so far. Or in another situation, I used to wear a mask on my face and tell my manager that the report is ready, but this is not in a presentable mode, so It will take time to prepare it. Or maybe I can crook some more ideas to make him fool. But actually I am making myself a fool, and this is a hidden truth lies between the lines.

In the reel life, the viewer, hero, heroine, characters and even the villain are well defined, hence, it is very simple to understand and in some movies, if the artist is doing similar roles when they already did in any previous films then, it becomes simple to recognize in advance. But in real life, it is like a suspense movie, where hero and villain are unknown but there is no viewer. I may mistake the hero for a villain or villain for a hero etc.. In the real-life, we require more understanding than usual to understand what is good and what is bad, then who is good and who is bad, in which circumstance he/she is good and in which circumstances he/she is bad.

Sometimes, it is seen that young minds are often carried away by what they see in the movies, without judging, what is true and untrue. In the movies, often obsession is justified in the name of love, violence in the name of revenge against injustice. And a fresh mind or young mind taking it as real. Do you know why it happened? Because the actor who is living his role in that movie is so honest with the character, that he/she mistook as real. But this real-life acting actually becomes successful in his/her reel life.

The clown lives a public life as real as he can but just think for a while, doesn’t he has issues any issue in his life. He does, but his real acting makes us feeling like hat we laugh a lot and actually forget our personal issues for a while. This happens only because he justifies his character honestly, he understands his responsibility.

Once a person asked me a beautiful question. Tell me, “Who is a more genuine person? A film Actor or a Cricketer.” The question was very practical. I could not give the correct answer on that day, because I could not give the right logic behind it. But today I can. Even today I can compare a Clown also with a Cricketer. Now you may have a question, if a Clown and a Cricketer both are the same, then why there is a lot of difference between their monetary conditions. I can not compare both in moneywise, but yes, both are playing real characters. A Cricketer plays a natural game and a Clown plays an honest character. And both have one special common feature while playing their roles in their characters. And that is. They don’t get a second chance or they don’t get the option of RETAKE. But when we are thinking of film actors, they can go for ‘n’ numbers of retakes. A Film actor can be different in nature in real life and reel life. Only that film actor can be famous who has no difference between both the lives.

A fake person doesn’t have a long life. Either in his life or afterlife.

In summary, we can say that “Luxuries and lies have huge maintenance costs, but truth and simplicity are self-maintained without any cost”. So better not to work with mix emotions. Emotions should be pure to attract another emotion.

It is possible that working for success will make you a Master for your skills, but working for satisfaction will make you a legend.

Thanks for reading, send your reviews, as usual, I will send you my replies as soon as possible.

Take care, Bye Bye

Regards,

Neeraj Bhatia

Direct email: neeraj.bhatia@aaradhyagroups.com