It’s all about money, honey! Or, is it?

Of course, Money is important.

That is how most perspectives that explore the importance of money in our personal and spiritual growth start off. The tone is apologetic, often a bit guilty. The writers seem to be battling an inner incongruence between their soul’s desire for growth and expression and the harsh reality of insurance premiums and EMIs. It is a painful recognition of the role money plays in our day to day existence versus the heart which knows it matters not at all.

The reality says “I am judged, assessed, measured, accepted, respected, often even loved on the basis of the amounts of money I have.” The heart says “Money doesn’t matter – it is the self that does. There are plenty of unhappy rich people around.”

It is important to explore the role money plays in our lives and make peace with it for once and for all. I hope this article will help you do that.

Of course, money is important.

It is very important to notice where, how and why money is important. I believe money is an enabler in the external world. The key word here is “enabler”. Money is an enabler. It enables us to do things we would otherwise not be able to do. Like “walking” for instance. Walking enables us to get from one place to another. Or “swimming”. Swimming enables us to stay afloat while in water. Money similarly enables us to do things we would not be able to do without it. It enables us to travel to meet our near and dear ones. It enables us to avail of medical facilities to cure our body when we are sick. It enables us to buy nutrition and education. It is a resource.

It is important to distinguish money as an external enabler. It allows us to do things in the external world. Our internal world is different. It is made up of our beliefs, values, attitudes, thoughts etc. Our internal world has absolutely nothing to do with money and this awareness is crucial. Our internal world is the essence of who we are. It is the ever changing, dynamic landscape of our “self” which is shifting, evolving and growing every moment of our lives.

It is when we mix up the role of money and start using it to cater to our internal world that it pollutes and corrupts us. It is when we try and substitute the amount of money we have for being generous or kind or courageous or loving or honest that we have literally “mixed up” priorities.

Self awareness, I-witnessing, Self observation, self discipline, self exploration are the currency of the internal world. Not money. You cannot buy these no matter how much money you have.

The role of ego is using this external enabler to fulfill our soul’s needs is undeniable. Ego – a healthy tool that facilitates the illusion of separation of “me” from everything else can prove to be the single biggest obstacle in our personal quest for growth. The ego, which sees money as an extension of itself – easily confuses money as a substitute for developing personal traits and qualities.

So, let us earn money, spend money, give away money, have fun with money. Let us celebrate money and be grateful for it. Just as we should hop and jump for the gift of walking and be grateful for it.

Let us be kind, generous, courageous, loving, grateful, good, soulful, happy inside – whether we have the kind of money we want or not.

What rules is not bits of paper with pictures of noble deceased on them.
What rules is how you choose to express yourself – everyday.

Am I being the best version of what I can be?
That, my friends – is the question!

I like money, but I would choose self-expression (or self manifestation) over money any day.

Like a film director said in an interview “I make money to make movies, I don’t make movies to make money”

That, I believe is self expression.

Back to the Blog

It’s been a while.
I am back.
It feels good.
A lot has happened.
But this blog is not about me. (ok, maybe a little)
It’s about learning, growth, change, freedom, adventure, fun.

I am back.
It feels good.

Organizations – Wonderland?

Something to think about…

Organizations are artificial structures which provide you a fantastic opportunity to associate with people you would never, ever associate with under normal situations. Organizations provide us with an unparalleled opportunity to grow, to become more, to express the best part of ourselves in a setting which claims to be about tasks, goals, targets, missions and all that… but is really about who you choose to be with respect to all of these and the people around you.

Probably if not for organizations, our experience would be severely limited in terms of the number and the kind of people we would associate ourselves with.

If you think about it, every single day – surrounded by a milieu of people whom you don’t know, probably are not like and probably do not like – it’s literally a rabbit hole down there waiting to be explored by you.

New Web Site Coming Up

A big overhaul of www.abhishekkumar.com – my web site is underway. Some very key elements to make the web site successful are yet to be figured out. I have been spending the past two days learning about Keywords, Meta Tags, and Frames etc. I went to college with computer science as a major, so I cannot claim complete ignorance of the technologies that work behind the scenes to make a web site come alive on our computer screens. I do believe, though, that the process of creating a search-engine friendly, well organized, logical web site can have a steep learning curve. Well, I am climbing.

I am also planning a series of articles on the most common personal development issues we face.

So, coming…
All this and more.
Stay tuned. (

Thank you Firaq Saab!

Almost ten years back, I read a verse by Firaq Gorakhpuri that touched me deeply –

Ae mere ahbab kya kare numayan kar gaye…
B.A kiya M.A kiya, naukar hue, pension mili aur mar gaye…

(Oh my friend, You have indeed achieved a remarkable feat…
You did your schooling, you went to College, you worked in a job, you got your pension and you died…)

The moment I read this verse (Called a ‘Sher’ in Urdu), something resonated deeply inside me. The fact that I remember the verse almost by letter ten years after I read it first holds testimony to that.

This verse was a moment of insight for me and the ‘wow, I get it’ feeling that I had changed my life for the better.

It taught me to look beyond the path that was laid out for me by my family and the society in which I was born.

It taught me – that life is about more than what seems to be the most obvious and the easiest path to follow.

It drove me to look deeper, inside myself for purpose and fulfillment.

Thank you, Firaq Gorakhpuri.

Time Management in the Moment

The field of time management has been explored like never before in the past 60 years.

We have graduated from talking about better planners and increased efficiency to living our purpose and being effective.

We have evolved from talking about doing a lot of things in a day to doing a few things that really matter in the day. (The urgent vs. important principle)

All of these ideas are important and deserve some serious thought.

However, one of the key observations anyone with a slightly evolved consciousness would make is

“Life is always lived in just one moment”

That single unit of time in which you read this article and slide into the next moment is where life is – that is the only place you will ever live.

Every single moment – literally zillions of possibilities exist in front of us. Every single moment we choose one of these possibilities and make up our life as we go along.

Right now, you could close this window and start working on a project that really matters to you but you have not had the courage to start, you could write a letter to your mother, you could browse irrelevant sites, you could get up and scream a profanity, you could quit your job, you could go for a run…. The possibilities are endless.

And the only thing that prevents them from coming true – is that you don’t choose them.
But right now, couldn’t you choose to express yourself in any which way you want?

How can we ever be bored or stuck or be in a ‘rut’ if this is true?

The answer to that is complicated, but based on two pillars.

  1. Conditioning
  2. Fear

1. We believe certain things about ourselves. Generalizations we assume to be true. And then we feel we have to live by those generalizations. We literally, belief by belief, thread by thread create a structure that imprisons us in it. We trap ourselves into a corner and create the illusion that we do not have choice.

Choice is the ultimate and the only weapon we have to create any reality we desire.

You can choose a different belief, a different action, a different thought, a different idea, a different word, a different emotion, a different system, a different way.

What happens sometimes is – we make a bad choice and then we suffer. But instead of choosing again and choosing differently, we believe that we are the choice we have made. We use the consequences of that choice to define ourselves and then use this self-definition to create a limited reality – with limited experience, limited joy, limited fulfillment, limited satisfaction, limited happiness.

Most of the times, we choose unconsciously – we repeat patterns of past choices (often bad choices) even though they have not served us in the past.

The first step then is to become conscious of what you are choosing. Awareness is the first step to change. An evolved consciousness is a result of accurate witnessing or observing.

If you do not like what you are creating in an area of you life – choose again, choose wisely, choose differently.

Let me repeat that.

If you do not like what you are creating in an area of your life – choose again, choose wisely, choose differently.

If you want to create a result in your life, your new choices must be aligned with it.

Choosing wisely, choosing differently, choosing again in the moment is what the urgent/important theory is all about.

2. I talked about Fear. The question you might be asking right now is “How do I choose wisely?” or “How do I know which is the right choice?”
A choice born out of Fear is the choice that will limit your experience. A choice born out of love is the higher choice. If we must err, let us err on the side of love.

An enhanced awareness will let you answer this question “In this moment, am I expressing myself through fear or through love?”

A choice born out of Love will always be the higher choice.

Time Management, from a spiritual perspective boils down to two To-Dos

  1. Don’t like what you are manifesting? Choose differently, choose wisely. Choose a different emotion, a different action, a different word, a different state of being, a different belief. It is impossible to live without choosing – just choose what serves your highest vision of yourself.
  2. How do we know we are making the higher choice? Choose Love over Fear.

Summary

  1. Choose consciously
  2. Choose Love

Role Playing

When I walk into a restaurant or a coffee-shop – I assume the role of a customer.
And the person serving me assumes the role of a waiter.

I play my role – some characterisics of which are to expect , demand some things, even if they mean inconveniencing the other human who plays the role of a waiter.

The waiter plays his role – some characteristics of which are to fulfill my desires, even if it means inconveniencing himself.

Busy playing our roles, both of us fail to notice the inherent humanity glowing within the other.

If I am a boss, and you are my subordinate. We are not two human beings sharing humanity.
If I am a father, and you are my child, here is the rulebook for that. Please fit in. We are not two human beings growing together.
If I am an expert, and you are not – I cannot say “I don’t know” because that is not acceptable to the game we are playing.

If we stop acting our roles out and start acting human, how will our experience change.

‘Topics’ under Blog

Posts are now sorted into topics.

Most of today was spent trying to learn how to sort the posts in this Blog topic wise, instead of by months – as is the default provided by Blogger.

After hours of browsing and learning and looking at scripts that seemed more hostile than Chinese…finally I got it working.

On you right, you would see the topics under which the posts are divided. When you click on a topic, the page re-loads and all the posts under that topic get displayed just below the heading “Topics”

Hope this makes accessing posts for you easier.

Conversations R Us!!

Conversations are reflections of who we are being in that moment.

Think about it, how does a deep, honest, intense, touching, passionate, incredible conversation leave you feeling – energized, recharged…. Your personal energy increased and the world a little bit brighter than it was earlier, isn’t it?

And how does a shallow, superficial, pretentious conversation leave you feeling… drained out, tired?

In a conversation when we express the deepest and the best parts of ourselves (invariably, the deepest part of us is usually the best part of us), we express or manifest our true selves.

In fact, life is expression, isn’t it?

In fact, we cannot not express.

Right now, as you read these words, infinite potentialities and possibilities exist within you. The very next moment, what you think, decide, do or say is an expression of one of these infinite potentialities.

When we express a potentiality or a possibility, we bring a latent or a hidden part of ourselves into existence. As we bring it into existence, we experience it and it becomes, our experience.

If we habitually express a part of ourselves again and again – it becomes a pattern of experience in our lives and we start ‘believing’ that we are ‘it’.

But, at that point – every other potentiality and possibility also exists – latent, hidden, unexpressed.

If you want to assess the quality of your experience and the quality of your life – take a closer look at the quality of your conversations.

Conversation is a tool we use everyday, regularly to express ourselves.

The quality of your conversations would probably reveal a great deal about what you are bringing forth from the world of infinite possible expressions called – you!!

To improve the quality of your experience, improve the quality of your conversations.

If your conversations are happy, intense, passionate, happy, contended, joyful, cheerful and ‘soul’ful… then so are you!

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