“Devendra, we are collecting money for liquor party. 1000 rupees each.” One of my senior soldiers, roaming along four others, including my Section In-charge, called out.

“Ok sir”, rolling out from beneath the ‘Zil’ missile-loading vehicle, while doing 1st line servicing. I wiped-up my greased hands with rugs and took out my wallet from kangaroo-pocket of my overall.

“But sir, I don’t drink.” Handing over two 500 rupee-notes, with gentle smile.

They all burst out with laugh. Though he accepted the cash and ticked my name on the slip pad.

“Ok, we will arrange ‘soft drinks’ for you.” The other voiced his humor out.

“I don’t even take soft drinks”. I crooned, softly.

Again, a laughter.

“Sir, I have never seen him taking tea either.” My colleague intervened, trying to sort out.

“Then what are you doing in Military!”. Continuing the mockery, the main collecting guy tweaked. I was used-to with this phrase, though.

“Do one thing.” My 57-year-old supervisor, maybe due to his irritation at my non-inclusion in the liquor party, intervened. “Return his bucks. Let him not enjoy.” Sharing cigarette puff to other, blew away the remaining smoke from his lungs, in his style.

His anger was visible in his voice. Anyhow, with laughter and sense of deprecation, the elite group left on their way; leaving me astonished at ‘Let him not enjoy’.

***

Those days such things would pinch me. ‘Let him not enjoy…!!’ I used to be like ‘these drunkard chaps will decide how one should enjoy’. Do you agree, such occurrences we all face, when we are 180-degree to the situation or the people around!

I had one more problem (in their view); I don’t take tea. Ha-ha. You guessed it. Though I don’t take tea right since my kidhood, but it grew problem-way parallel to my age. When I grew to the level of socialization, it would turn out to be a bundle of different reactions. All that astonishing stuff- ‘What! You really don’t! or some intimidating way- bring him a glass of milk, he is yet to grow! and lot many.

So, you know, it was struggling to manage my path of being ‘Satvik’ in the mostly-‘Tamasik’ surroundings.

But one thing for sure I had learnt out of this ‘Let him not enjoy’; this enjoy thing is the bottom-line of the entire life. Whatever be the deed, the ultimate outcome, we wish to seek, is ‘pleasure’; ways and means may be different. Be it of any level, temporary or permanent, but pleasure is the supreme objective of each one of us.

Temporary or permanent, is all our choice. Temporary pleasures will lead us to a ‘Bhogi’ (consumerist) life; and other one to being ‘Yogi’, the Divine-Path. As living-beings, we all are blessed with the state of ‘awareness’ and we all have senses to analyze optimally. Why not to choose wisely! (Isn’t it sounding like a lecture..! 😊)

When we disentangle ourselves from the temporary pleasures and tread upon the path of the permanent pleasure or the blissful state, then will open, the next chapter, of our life.

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Devendra

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