In two days, our younger child is turning four! And, we haven’t yet ordered a cake, but this is a story for later.

Deeya is excited. I am nervous. We want to make it a memorable experience for her. We want her childhood to be a gift that would make her joyful every time she would think of it. Yet, I want her days ahead to be so much happier than the previous ones.

Before I start running around to get everything in order — return gifts, decorations, the cake (which she is yet to decide between Elsa, princess, and unicorn) — I reflect on what a precious gift life is.

When our souls decided to come down to earth, I am certain we wanted to enjoy our time here. We wanted to revel in the bounties of nature. The purpose was to savour every moment. To gather experiences and to live it up.

However, once here, we learnt to get rattled by the tiniest of discomforts. We managed to find minor glitches and turn them into enormous sadness.

By corollary, we are capable of learning to look for tiny moments of happiness in the emotional soup and focus all our energy on it. Every time someone says something mean, every time life goes off track, immerse in the memory pool and pick a happy one. Live it mentally. Then go for a walk. Let the grandiose of the cosmos hit you hard. You’ll know you are but a speck, and the problem is way tinier. It will work (unless you are PMS-ing, then God be your saviour).

Speaking of birthdays and life’s gifts, do you remember Harshita Goyal, our brave member who was bed-ridden after an accident (jog your memory here)? I spoke to her cousin, and I am delighted to share Harshita is moving around with a walker. She is recovering well.

Now, here is our OSME weekly roundup of transformational stories and invaluable wisdom to help live it up to the gift called life.

Wisdom from Swamiji

The Chosen Path: How do we know what we want to do is our inner calling and not just a strong desire constantly talking in the head? Swamiji dispels the confusion in his inimitable style. Recognise your gift!

Living in Conflict: “When you are tired of fire-fighting, when life constantly keeps on knocking you down, when your path continues to get blocked, it often means it is a calling. A calling of change,” writes Swamiji. Read this to deal with the damage, hurt and the likes. 

How do we know what we want to do is our inner calling and not just a strong desire constantly talking in the head? Here's how tell a friend

Transformative Experiences

Everything is Not About You: Gratitude might not always come easy. So, here’s Manjit, whose exceptional cousin taught her to practise it, single-handedly. Yup. Try this trick if you feel stuck in your gratitude journal. Count your gifts.

The Parrot who Wanted Freedom: A parrot kept reciting Lord’s holy name in the hope of flying out of its cage. But how was that going to change anything? Just when it was about to give up hope, entered someone… Bharti Kaundal’s piece highlights the gift of a Guru in one’s pursuit of freedom. 

The Seed: Narender Kumar shares this beautiful poem, ‘The Seed’, that speaks of hope in the heart of the seemingly dead. “Life is unimaginably grand”.

A Story of Solitude: It’s a tragedy that people are not taught to live in their own company. More tragic for women who are told they always need to depend on someone to live in society. That’s why Puja’s piece is refreshing. On a whim, she went to Portugal all by herself and thoroughly enjoyed her 10-day trip, pandemic notwithstanding. Here’s what she learnt.  

A Heart-to-Heart Conversation With Your Spouse: Manas Misra’s blogs, laced with humour, have earned him many ardent readers. Including his wife. Here, he writes about a discussion around his past blogs with his wife, leading him towards a better back. You will laugh and smile and maybe also browse through his past blogs.  

Why We Suffer in Life: We suffer for the same reason that we experience happiness — it’s the natural course of life. Ashok Rai explains this beautifully using the analogy of a lotus.

Beyond Your Imagination: If you ever feel overwhelmed by your imaginary future problems or the present circumstances, come back and read this piece by Amogh Parasuram. It is all but a minute speck in the grandness of things. 

The Ultimate Realisation: 12 life lessons from a man who has seen 12,000 deaths. Pratikshya Biswal watched a YouTube video and came back to write this piece where she discusses the one most important lesson of those 12. Read it, you still have time.  

12 life lessons from a man who has seen 12,000 deaths. + other actual experiences tell a friend

Watch This Now!

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So those are some brilliant posts by OSME writers this week. Did you notice these writers are fairly new to our OS.ME community? Give them a shout-out and lots of love. As for me, I’d wait to hear some suggestions on how to enjoy the gift of this precious life. Do drop your suggestions in the comment.

Meanwhile, I hope you are writing your Unlikely Teacher posts, there is something terrific in store.

Now, would you excuse me, I need to rush for the birthday prep. Here’s a fun fact though: When I first had the great fortune of meeting Swamiji, I was carrying Deeya.

Until next…