Shesha [what remains over a bowl of finger chips]

Observations in your life influence your character. However sundry or routine they may be they bear a constant change in you. With this in mind, I look for incidents that invoke my philosophical Self. This is one such experience of 10 mins.

Ganesh restaurant is a nice busy place. Right in a corner of the big and famous Vivekananda hospital campus, it’s a place for tea / coffee to most and lunch for a few. On a meeting I was there for lunch with a colleague sitting in a table for 4. Probably a brief emptiness between us made me look around, when four people came in and occupied a table on the side. A middle-age man, quite vocal, led them to the free table. Looking for the waiter, there they were -a very young charming girl, another middle-age man with handful of documents with a plain look in his eyes and a person eldest of all with such an evident power that whenever he talked everyone listened and what he said was not being argued.

“What these people say is -given the availability of facilities and your condition, there will not be any problem” opined the leader. As he finished, a young man prescribing someone over his mobile entered and was seeking a place between these. The girl immediately slid to a seat on my table asking him to take her seat. As a bowl of finger chips was served, eagerness showed but none started towards it.

“Please have it! I know these are her favorite dishes” said the eldest. Every one laughed. “Is this the last test or some more need be done? Haa. The prices are terrible aren’t they?” paused the eldest person. “Yes this is the test. Further we may need some minor ones. But we are very sure Baba, you should go for it!” jumped in the girl turning to the young man for his say. “Yes! I’ll have the reports by night and I can arrange for anything you need” said the person. It now appeared that the young couple to be doctors at the Vivekananda. The doctor looked up to ‘Baba’ for a positive reply.

“I know both of you since long. You really have been wonderful and now hardworking too. This girl always pulls me through something like this” smiled Baba. She replied to his compliment ”Baba, you really have enjoyed always missing us.” “Yes dear, I’ve traveled, seen places, met people and made friends. People remember me for what I’ve been to them and fun is what I shared. Why now”. He was cut by the middle-age leader- “It usually guarantees an extra 3 years.” “Am I Sachin Tendulkar?” retorted Baba. While half of this world actually likes to get related with Sachin, whats wrong with Baba? Or Sachin? “Expectations“ continued Baba “you expect Sachin to perform each time he has to bat. So he has to pad up, be fit and win. What I should expect now or in those 3 years?”

“Purpose stands up to dictate life. It finds place/form in goals, performances and in practices, principles that get attached to you. Know or not you live on a purpose but the purpose should not change the person in you.” Baba delivered what perhaps the hall was just waiting for. A perfect four. He continued, “Who’s dictating here? Your knowledge through your words should dictate. Thus I’ve been what I’m.” Everyone realized in his words, certainly ‘To live’ will not fit as a purpose. The respect, love he governs today easily conveyed his knowledge and the level of comforts he would have been after.

“Sir, there may not be problems any soon but its not intelligent to carry risk to future, isn’t it?” asked the plain speaking person. “Fear of the present makes you think for the future and you act now for it. Again fear emanates from failure of purpose. Once I had a purpose in life. To make as many good friends. Then I knew many, so several people knew me too. I was not sure I succeeded, cause I was not sure all of them were good and friendly. I had to change my purpose as to accept each one to be good and the best (qualities) in each to be my friend”. The intellect was sharp and clearly dividing. All the persons were completely engaged in him. My curiosity in him found no bounds.

“Baba, why don’t you just accept our request? We won’t let you go just like this,” pleaded the girl.

“Nothing ever ends. What always exists is only seen through our consciousness a bit sooner or later. And what’s making you say like this is a kind heart in you. The extra years you give me or an extra full life really cannot change me. For once what remains to be attained for me is really a changeless entity. Pure bliss, within and without.”

Here it was as if divinity followed this person. He made the Absolute become clear to the mature minds present there.

“I too am having the same, kind, elastic heart now. Please don’t ask me to change to a plastic one.” Baba completed. Everybody went into a laugh including me. As they stood up to vacate, Baba pointed to the last chip remaining in the bowl. ”Oh! don’t leave this haa”. When each one hesitated to have, Baba picked it up to swallow in one go. They all simply erupted!

By Ravikiran. Joshi.


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