To be or not to be- Shakespeare!
To blog or not to blog- Pramod.
Doubts creep in the minds of everybody including Shakespeare!
We have a WhatsApp group of friends who passed out from COEP in 1971. After a lot of efforts, fights and bickering we concluded what should be shared on the group. There are around 140 of us. The main rule is that there should be no forwards. Friends are encouraged to write, paint, take photographs, sing and share this on the group. Suddenly one of our friends had doubts about my sharing the link for blogs written by me, with the group. He felt that I was breaking the rules and that I was “marketing” my blogs — all the friends who responded explained to him that there was some confusion in our friend’s mind.
But as usual my mind started thinking, why am I writing the blogs? What do I gain by writing the blogs? What are the benefits of writing blogs? Following are some of the reasons.
- Because I love to write
- Organise my thoughts and learn new things
- Get in touch with new people
- To tell stories has now become my passion
- To become a better person
Are these reasons good enough? Yes, I think so. If you love to do something, then you must try to do it. My writing does not affect any person, nor does it disturb anyone. I do not indulge in controversial subjects. I generally don’t delve in politics as people have different and passionate views about politics.
Blog writing is both impulsive and compulsive. When my writing is spontaneous, my thoughts flow out, and within no time my blog is ready. But most of my blogs are compulsive. While writing these blogs, I have basic ideas in my mind, but my thoughts are not organised. In such cases, I need to think, and I must hold my thoughts; I need to research too. I must learn and understand the subject. For example, some of the blogs are based on Hindi poems by Gyanpeeth award winner Kedarnath Singhji. Since my Hindi is not strong enough, I need to understand the meaning of the chosen words he has used. Google baba ki Jay ho!
Blogging culture is slowly spreading in India too, and I have people who follow my blogs. Occasionally, they send their comments or suggestions. Sometimes they ask questions. I follow some of these people on their blogspot, and we become blogging friends! Most people who read blogs do not respond formally. But when they like a specific topic, they communicate and sometimes become nostalgic. They share their experiences. Such experience is fascinating.
I am a people’s man and love to chat with people. For a long time, I have found that I have many stories locked up in the brain. At the appropriate moment, these are automatically accessed. The storyteller in me wakes up, and with blogging, I get an outlet for storytelling regularly, and it’s fun.
Blog writing has made me a better person. Previously I tended to push my agenda, but with regular feedbacks, interactions, exchange of views has changed my attitude towards conversations. I have started understanding other people’s point of view though I may not accept them. Now I know that there are always two sides to everything except the birth and death events. With my conversing with many people regularly, I have learnt to introspect periodically. The love shared by people has a humbling effect on me.
There is another reason I want to share why I would like to keep on writing. My only thought and hope are that even if one person takes a different look at things, after reading my blog, it is worth it. I have recently written a blog about Umrani family’s endeavour to run a school for deaf and dumb children.
After reading my blog, one of my friends from WA group got in touch with Umrani sir and donated some funds to the school. Another friend has also confirmed that he would also do the same shortly. What more do I want? Umrani sir called me yesterday to share this information and was very happy. I have suggested to him that he can put a link for the blog on their website. He liked the idea!
We are lucky to be in today’s technological world. We are also fortunate that longevity is helping experienced people (I am using a fancy word for oldies like me) to be around for more time on the terra firma. On top of that, we oldies have in hand all the time in this world. Those inclined to write as I do, share their experiences. Some take beautiful pictures and share them. Two people can click a photograph of the same place, but these can look different. Quality is based on the composition, angle of lighting and steady hands. My friends Abhay and Vijay make our life rich with lovely photos! Sudhakar enthrals us with beautiful paintings which are appropriate to current events, along with the right comments that he writes. Pravin has rekindled our memories from youth with beautiful songs by his troupe Swarnad! Collin is on the verge of publishing his first novel! Another friend Vasant has been fully involved in social work and enjoying it; he shares what he does when we meet. What more do you want from life?
I asked the same question to me again, why do I write the blogs? Now I know the answer. The reasons are the same as taking pictures and doing paintings and singing songs. All these events give us joy! By joy, I don’t mean the enjoyment but contentment. It provides us with a feeling that everything is right in this world!
After reading my blogs, people have sent different reactions. In one of the blogs, I had said, “If you go to your native place, over a period you lose the charm, and you cannot relate to anything.” A friend called me and said, “I become nostalgic and go to my native place every alternate year but as years pass it becomes more and more irrelevant.” My native place is Pune where I live. So I do not have this difficulty. But has Pune changed? The friend asked me, “How could you judge something from my mind?” I told him, “My thinking is that when we leave our native place for greener pastures, there is an old film that remains etched in our mind, and we go by that reference. Don’t forget that things change. Raj Kapoor has died, so has Shammi. Sunil Gavaskar is our age. But then we still see these people through etched films”. Don’t forget the even Sachin Tendulkar retired six years back! Feeling irrelevant is a natural thing to happen.
I am satisfied with what I write and looks like I will continue to do so. Shortly, I plan to go one step ahead and publish a book of selected blogs in about six months. It will keep me involved as well as grounded in what I do. Thanks, friend for raising a question on the group; the question activated my brain to think! Yes, thinking is what I like to do these days! I will enjoy doing it!
Now, I have no doubts in mind!