Close encounters of the chat kind!

Before I start talking of my long pending account of chat friends, I'd like to confess that I've a bad memory, more so when it comes to names. So I may end up missing out someone whom I have chatted with a lot and who'll come back and haunt my memories while driving or other lonely afternoons. In that case, I may kindly be excused by them.

One of the reasons that I decided to blog this in these days is because there's a good chance that I'll never get to meet these nice people again! On that sad note, I'll jot down these friends, in no particular order, as they occur to my mind... (unless otherwise mentioned, all are from the room #pune on talkcity)

Gaulee taai:
Her real name being Gauri and who would talk like a kid many a times, leaves me
no choice but to call her Gaulee. Whenever addressed by her second name Shringarpure, she would say: "purey" as in "atta purey". She's the sister I never had, who's settled in US with her hubby Pandu and a cute li'l son, Adit. I attended their marriage at Blore with Niks and we still await to see the photo of the four of us clicked together. Gau, any luck scanning yet? ;) I've had the best talk with her. Gau's the one who was always herself on chat and gave a realistic picture of life-after-chat and how things will never be the same as they seemed on chat! That although we all knew, some would've had a difficult time to digest post-chat days. I didn't have much luck to capture this camera-shy friend since she was always the one to hide behind someone else during clicks. She also holds a title I coined for her Max Muller followings, that she lived up to: German Queen :) I still can't believe that we talked so easily on chat, but couldn't exchange more than a hi when we actually met first at the Pune Mega Meet! Gau was able to guess my voice years later when I gave a surprise call to her during my UK visit. Hats off. There was an earlier time when G claimed credit for having guessed what book I sent her on receiving a parcel on her bday!

Mayur Pendse, "blee blee blee", is what I remember addressing him. He was one of the famous ones on #pune. Settled in US, married now and runs an insurance business, I guess.

Nikhlya, 1976 trademark, another of me in terms of laziness. Thanks to this common habit, we didn't meet more than a few times even while being in Blore. Most of these meets were courtesy Anjaan's company who sent him on trips to Blore. Sometimes I feel that this is the only reason that Anjaan was sent to Blore! A busybee with his network management coding, Niks has, since a couple of years, been able to find time for his stage acting. I've been fortunate enough to watch his two performances, but thats all the time we had then that day. Before marrying recently, Niks was at Blore and I believe he's still here.

I missed out nk, sorry, due to Niks name overlapping Nk's, both being Nikhil! Okay, nk's another cool chap of belonging to my thrice calling names on chat: nk nk nk. Later, I moved to calling him nkya after I habituated myself with the ya suffixing work. Another guitar player, or I recall he learnt with the chat folks, perhaps Srini. Nk's also been a badminton champ and a good piano player. I've a pic of him riding the bike that I clicked when I was pillion riding another bike, both in motion. This was during the mega meet. We hadn't been in touch for a quite long time till gmail made us exchanging emails again for a while! Nk sourced a gmail account from me; well, back then gmail was beta and I got lucky getting a few extras.

I guess this guy was studying in Singapore, when he made a trip to Pune for the mega meet.

I remember laraa, Laxmi, had two dogs and was quite a favorite on chat. I remember wishing her a few birthdays after the chat days.

Coded official tea-guy on #pune, perhaps by my sick jokes on "Ramu, chai la". I met him once during the meets.

Vivek Gupta, ajnabi, to whom a lot of people are thankful for founding #pune, including a few couples that were made online, was last known to be addicted to work at Veritas, Pune.

Damtya, Amit Dharwadkar, the biggest PJ master, not only in quality, but also in quantity. He has to his credit of being made it to the group's abuse phrase "haa damit hota" on someone's cracking a PJ. Sorry Damit, I hope you don't mind me saying this ;) Damtya has been a great contributor to all that was organised in the name of #pune from many a megameets to small Vaishali/Rupali hangouts. After many days of chatting, Damit and I found out that our dads knew each other from MGM hospital days. When we got this info, I was still at MGM then. Damtya spent some years at Bosch, Blore, when we met a few more times, before he moved back to Pune a few months back to work for Deutsch group.

Damit's cousin, French Vanilla, Amrit; my hand
still hurts when I think of his hi-fives that spread across more than my palm, or anyone else's for that matter. He always came up with some colorful UI on chat when he logged into the room. A Java freak at heart, its no wonder that FV made it to some game company in US.

Sharadya, anjaan dada, who's in Hyd with a company that unknowingly sponsored lot of his #pune meets not only in India, but in US too! .

Shona, at Blore, loved lollipops and actually asked for orange flavor on chat. I recall she was in architecture.

A tending-towards-US fella, who ended up coding at some high-profile defense projects in US, who once in a while throws a "namaskar saheb".

Lost him in US. We spoke a couple of times during his visits to India earlier.

Smd kaku:
Swati kaku, who moved from Canada to US some years back, claimed Canadian beer as the best. She was lively on chat and even when she made a trip to Mumbai. There, we landed at her place after some meets at some restaurant in Dadar West. Anjaan, as usual, made it too! That evening, Shardya and I planned to talk over drinks and Swati kaku joined us. We were worried that it was getting late, but smd seemed cool until we, mostly her since we escaped after dropping her home at almost midnight, got blasted from her dad.

A well-known guitar wizard, many people don't know that this guy and his guitar were actually siamese twins ;) We talked much over phone when he spent a few months in Bby. However, his routine needed him to practise playing even on phone. It was fun talking with him listening to his music, until one day he vanished and I ended up talking to his aunt, with whom Srini was staying. She told me that he'd moved back to Pune. Funnily enough, when I said, "Oh, I didn't know; he didn't call me or anything", she went "He hasn't even called me after going back to Pune". Well, that was our Srini.

A very good short-time friend. We met twice but we gelled so well that he shared his bad times with me. Unfortunately, I even stopped hearing news about him these days. Years back, Nilya ran a (hacked account) cybercafe and we all were, at some time or other, guilty of gatecrashing there to surf for free!

The #pune stud who makes bold comments always. Our first meeting at Dadar is still remembered by Damit and me at times. Ameya was seen with a paunch overlapping his gym-physique during his GRE days. Immediately past this, he spent a week to flatten it! Quitting CA after his MS, spent some time with a startup and now, Mountya is with Bloomsberg. I still remember feeding him with an answers to Bansri's game questions "Which animal do you like?" and "Why?" He bought them and said "Rabbits" and "Because the taste good!" That was some fun.. Bansri was wild at him! :)

Baaaaaaaansri, in a high-pitch, would this short kid yell while introducing herself. One of the rarest named girl ever, she used to attend many a meetings.
She would always say "Why do I need a nick? I've a good name". I remember travelling with her to Pune on the mega meet.

Posing him a "positive or negative?" question invariably has ion answer: "ion is always positive". We were mostly the first ones to arrive at meets. My memory refuses to recall his real name.

An NCST scholar, who spent most of his time being modest, has the experience of running a company, before venturing into deep waters of security, insurance and Saudi projects, all at once! Gotya and I've fought over AMIETE issues whenever we met and none of us changed our point of view, ever. He'll be furious to know that I quit AMIETE for good, for my reasons! Then again, I'll be quitting everything for my reasons! Anyways, after knowing his plans in Saudi, those insurance and security interests make much sense! :)

Smriti taai, who made it a point to send her graduation pics, follows my birthday by two days, but is much younger than me. Most of us have spent meeting many a hashpune folks at her house in Prabhadevi. She's settled in US now with her husband, a kid and her dietician role. I've had the pleasure of shocking Smriti taai on phone twice during my UK trips.

Mamta, always seen with Smriti is also in US with her hubby and kid.

Smita, called me guru and herself shishya due to my all time blabbering, perhaps. She's the audiologist who could be completing her PhD anytime now and is settled in US. We mostly spent chat time, humoring each other out.

Coolhary, Harshya are the names of this dude who's working in US now. I don't remember chatting with this fella, but we met a couple of times.

Amrut, a thums up, Linux and Hariharan fan. I always called him pUnekarU or something like that. He didn't want to go to US, but spent a year on an Indian job there. I've heard that he refused to take a mega-paying job by the US client, reasoning "I want to return to India". Hey Amrut, hats off to ya man. We need more people like ya. I didn't have a chance to meet him past our chat days, even when he tied himself to a Bangalore job a couple years back!

Angee, Cindii:
Always known together, thought of together, talked of together, sisters who've hosted many a get togethers at their beautiful flat at Dadar. Aarti, I guess continues their father's business while Angee is a a groundstaff with some international airlines.

Pixu. Major Pixar fan. Always colorful, always fun, great chap, always ditching meets, in short, always himself.

One who hated being called pishvi, was last known doing her MBA at Symbiosis, Pune.

Madhura Maideo, another sister online, whom I recently googled out and contacted. She told me that she married a couple of years back and is settled in US. Boy, she hated being called "dhaakti" and used to yell back "mothyaa" against my prefering "thorlyaa"

The sweetest kid I remember whom all loved online. This Chennaite now misses idli sambar in UK where she's giving finishing touches to her internship at HR dept in some co at London or maybe she has a job already.

I haven't chatted much with maddu, maddixit, Varsha, but have met her a few times and talked over phone. An MBA, who has tried out more than one field of work. I guess she used to work with her brother before she took up a job with Wipro (was it? Well, I could be wrong)

Zp, oft mistaken for zilla parishad, but actually zweet pea, who talks in shortforms such as VM, JB, JM, that I guess stand for Vande Mataram, something and Jai Maharashtra. For that something, my guess is as good as anyone else's (except zp's). As one may know by now, zp is in the habit of replacing all s occurences with z's, zooner or later.

If I remember her name correctly, I went to her house once for giving/collecting a book

I only remember her frequent :Ps

We didn't chat more that we spoke on phone. I don't recall his name right away, but he's known to be a guitar wizard. Last I heard that he too moved to the US.

I remember he was doing his MS and was also a favorite #puneite in US.

Another #pune frequenter who slowly reduced his frequency and one day vanished into US to resurface one fine day on the #pune list.

A paki girl:
One time chat with this paki girl helped me conclude that Pak has some great set of people who share very similar peaceful feelings as Indians.

One of my favorite americans, who has a family of seven. Her kids are just too cute, all of them. I lost touch with her since she vanished from her mail id. Ms.Willard's husband used to chat as TPM, the piano man. I hope her youngest kid Elizabeth is doing great. I still remember the day when I chatted with HB, while she was still at the hospital, after Liz underwent heart surgery as a kid of less than two yrs.

This one e-mailed me one day when she was admitted due to her handicap causing some trouble. She was bedridden for a few months and we exchanged emails in her broken English. Although, I didn't remember chatting with her at all, she clearly did. Most often she talked of social service. She too vanished one day without a trace. I hope she's doing well.

I don't remember her nick or name, so I'll just call her Gita, a befitting name for her. A dentist at Blore, who ran the (bhagvad)gita room.

#india friend, who hailed from Delhi. Totally lost this chap.

Other servers/rooms:
Something to do with spiritual readings, I used to hangout at this place that had one of the most lovely people I came across. How they helped each other out to wade through the death of near and dear ones was touching.

One more server, where I used to chat with a kid who was an Indian in LA, my memory failing me. But she was definitely a lifeguard at some children's swimming pool.

(I reckon another reason for blogging these could be that I've been looping through all ten seasons of F.R.I.E.N.D.S lately, a series that comes second only to M*A*S*H. The third fav is definitely Seinfeld. I know this has nothing to do with my chat friends, but I can't help listing MASH when I talk of favorite TV series anywhere :)

Th... th... th... Thats all folks!!!

More on time

Earlier, I expressed a little on how time is another illusion created by the mind. Here's more on it, where I'll try to say how I think a realized might feel about time.

All of us must've come across or atleast heard of crazy workaholics who can think of nothing when they're working. This is a good disease to have; its like meditation. All that meditation helps us achieve in its early stages is to focus on one thing. So working of this work-maniac can be seen as a karma yogi's way of meditating! It may not be difficult to assess now that this person, who knows nothing else around him while being under the burden of getting things done, would not know how time passes by him. So s/he is quite oft heard saying "Oh! I didn't realize it was midnight already!" or "I don't know how the day went so fast; I've so much to do still", etc. These statements occur to that person when someone or something interrupts this fellow's work. S/he may not remember what s/he ate over lunch too or even so, skipped lunch altogether. This is the most basic example that I came to when thinking of how a realized relates to time. Think of this, but a zillion-odd times more indifferent to things around!

So when a person is engrossed in the Self, realized, how can he know time? For him, the time doesn't exist, just like any other thing.

Time: another illusion

Today, I woke up with some thoughts about time, and slept thinking over it, missing alarms perhaps, till being woken up by a telephone call. I'll try to gather here what it was that made me conclude some more things on my conviction about time being an illusion (as much as space is!)

Well, think of a project schedule or students working on something. Everyone has a similar capacity to do stuff, so it should actually take the same amount of time if two people start working on the same thing. However, we've seen that that almost never happens. Its easily concluded that one guy is better off than the other in that particular task. My viewpoint is totally different here. Why couldn't it be that both may have actually taken the same "length of time quanta" but both have different resolutions of it? A scientific approach to justify this nonsensical statement I made is that when one travels away from earth, time slows down! Ah, that seemed perfectly acceptable, didn't it? Why, God knows! The reason is that the time's slowing down as the spacing increases from earth is because time and space both are illusive creations of the mind!

So what happened there when these two individuals worked on a 2 hour task, eg, is that both perceived those two hours differently. Their own interpretations of those two hours that came by their minds' resolutions of time were different. Mind creates an illusion of a time factor as a part of creation. Each one has a different *belief* of time. This is the reason that project schedules fall apart, students fail, individual achievements vary, major govt plans fail too, etc. Why else would everyone need a clock each, put in sync, if everyone's interpretation of time was *understood* by the mind, in sync?

There's one more example I've used in past that strikes my mind now. Suppose you're habituated with sleeping & wake-up timings of 2300hrs and 0600hrs, respectively. Say one Thursday, you slept at 2300hrs & woke up at 0600hrs, not on Friday, but on Saturday! (forget the pathology you have, hypothetically it happened). Will you ever know without others (humans or things) telling you that you lost the so-called 24 hrs of your life? Ever?


Wow, today's headlines of Saddam's trial brought back memories from my arbitration at an earlier job. Of course, it was nowhere closer to this one and it would be a gross mistake comparing myself with Saddam, but I'd rather say that I'd like to compare US to the arbitrator or other party in my arbitration. I'm refraining from mentioning the name of the company here since I've high regards for it, except for a bunch of fools who ran the division I was employed with.

It was a joke, biggest ever I've practically faced. Of course, I lost a lot of money since they'd a private PF and stuff, but then writing off the monies was better than standing those stupid people. I still remember the first arbitration (the arbitrator himself was the second party!!!!!; yeah, I didn't know much since I was kind of a kid back then) meeting where my lawyer put the arbitrator in his deserved position... well, I can't use bad words, but you get the hint, right? :)

Okay, these were the interesting moments:
Arbitrator: I'll assure you, Mr. Bhat (my lawyer too was a Bhat) that I'll take an unbiased, fair, decision.
Lawyer: I'm sure you would, but let me tell you this. The decision should not only be fair, but it must also appear to be fair.
Me: (thinking, hah, you're screwed, Mr. Arbitrator :)
Arbitrator: Aaa, Uuu.... huh!

The words in italics are precisely what today's headline story carried, about the human values associations' voicing about Saddam's trial! Kudos.

satyameva jayate

A different math

Raghav's quoting "1 -The only member in the Advaita’s number system" brought back many a memories from my satsanga earlier. I was prompted to think that this 1 as Rags calls it, actually means infinity in advaitic math, if I may call it so. Why it is so is that any number, any formula, be it addition, subtraction, multiplication, division or any complex equation, in advaita, the result equals one. The only way this can happen is if this One is complete. And so it is. Its pUrNamadaH. Its infinite. It includes everything that there is. Consider numbers 1 and 2. Between these two integer numbers, there's a whole lot of infinite decimals that can occur. Actually, these too are a part of the One in advaita since that one is infinite.

There's further shUnya look to this math as I recall from my satsanga. Ghabri-ji had a very interesting viewpoint: shUnya can't be described inasmuch as infinity can't be! Any increase or decrease of shUnya leads to a value thats non-shUnya. It tends to be 1 or -1 then. Lets analyze this: if one tries to assess and understand shUnya, it ceases to be shUnya. When mind starts off its rest, thats shUnya, it ceases to be the Self that it is. It slips from its infinite position that sees shUnya and then rolls off into tending to be 1 or -1 and then there's creation! Ah, the beauty of the complexity made simple.

I understand that shUnya actually could be infinity, except for missing an identity of purNa! I mean that shUnya is the viewpoint of infinity. What nirguNa brahmaN witnesses must be shUnya since there's nothing that there is apart from it, that which is infinite/ purNa!

Inferring consciousness

The other day, what occurred to me on consciousness is something that I'll *try* to express with a basic (read "stupid") example: Consider yourself in a pitch-dark, huge, empty room. You can't see a thing, feel a thing, etc. None of your senses tell you there's anything out there, except for empty space. Now, one has to conclude it to be a *void*.

When this void is experienced, similar to what may be experienced in many a spiritual path, one might err to conclude that its a big void. But if the focus is clear that one who's experiencing the empty room out there is the one and only *consciousness*, then its like inferring that, at this stage. One may call that by any other name, but in common parlance also when one says s/he is aware of things, eg, when coming out of fever, shock or coma, the inference is one's *consciousness*. All words have this basic limitation when it comes to expressing any experience. While many a thing are beyond even experience, how can words describe brahman or logic infer tat tvam asi?

I am...

Ramana Maharshi taught self-enquiry as a means to self-realization. One of the main methods he suggested is to enquire "Who am I?" and holding on to the I thought till the I dies off in the Heart and then abides as Self.

Of course, it sounds simple and had it not been for the monkey mind, it would have been so too! Well, the unfortunate part is that this is not the only problem that we all have with Ramana's direct path. Most of the people have understood it to be one or more of the following:
  • Ask "Who am I?" continuously.
  • Ask "Who am I?" and wait for an answer from within.
  • Keep on repeating "I am" mentally.
  • Focus on the "I am" and search for the I (or lead the I to find who the I is).
  • Be as you are, while focusing on the I/I am.
My understanding is that the last two may be closer to what Bhagavan's teaching is. The mind is a bunch of thoughts and to focus on the I thought is as difficult as any other path of jnaana. As Maharshi said walking the path of jnaana is like coaxing a bull with a blade of grass. That sounds about right, even in any beginner's understanding of trying self-enquiry, any which way!

Now what is it meant by focusing on the I thought, in each thought? Although Ramana's teachings came from his experience, he himself said that others found out the same to be inline with Shankara's teachings on advaita vedaanta. Yesterday, I was trying to analyze this particular aspect of self-enquiry with what little I know in the traditional advaita. Advaita tells us that the seer sees the object that is this universe, to start with, because the mind goes out and takes the form of any object that is perceived. Trying to draw parallels with what Maharshi says, when we think of any person/thing/whatever, the former being the subject and the latter the object, a thought goes out and takes the shape of that object and we wastingly live the moment so. Our focus is drawn to the object instead of the subject that is I. I'll try to express this in better detail, bringing in day-to-day examples:
  • I woke up: The inference here should be that "the I" woke up; woke up from sleep? So was the I sleeping? If I was sleeping then how can I say that I experienced a bad sleep or blissful sleep? So is it I who slept or the body that slept? It has to be the latter. Then who is this I? So this is the I-thought that I need to hold on to here.
  • I'm freshening up: The "I am" of "freshening up" can be held to and thought of as who is this I, but I deviate here to explain my advaitic understanding. The unstill part of the mind that assumes the shape of the objective "freshening up" takes the still part of the mind thats I (according to tripuraa rahasya). So when one makes the statement "I am freshening up", the "doing of the action" of "freshening up" is what is understood by us, generally. But if one rightly sees it as it to mean that I have *become* the act of freshening up, then the statement means something else, while still reading the same! Thats what happens. The mind takes the shape of the the objective and becomes it, while doing so dragging the I along with it!
  • I'm taking a bath: Similarly, *I* becomes the act of taking a bath and so "I am" equals "taking the bath". And so the others like:
  • I'm dressing
  • I'm eating
  • I've to go to work: I (am the one who has to) go to work. "I am", and so I, becomes the act of going to work.
  • I'm driving: as taking a bath.
  • I'm working: as above
  • I'm asking "how are you?": The mind goes out to become the speech, and the action of actually asking the question here.
  • I'm talking lots in the meeting: as above.
  • I'm thinking: A recursive activity here thats a big stumbling point in self-enquiry. I think that I'm thinking... and so on. This is mostly what happens when the mind fools us that its into self-enquiry while slipping us a thought that its thinking!
  • I'm sleeping: The most peaceful thought that can occur when one is in deep sleep. This is a contradictory one, in the sense that how can the mind and enquiry be active in sleep, but one of my most favourites. I always had a strong feeling that the deep sleep state is very similar to the realized state, except for ignorance. Gaudapaadaacharya has a similar explanation as per my understanding. If one can enquire in deep sleep, so to say, it could be quite fruitful.
In all of the above, subject can easily lose the focus and become the object. If the mind's dragging the I into name and form of the object is understood, it should be comparatively easy to negate that in theory and focus on the I-thought as the only one in practice!



avidyA has been thought of to be nescience that overlaps the real and creates an illusion of universe, ishvarA, etc. As per my understanding avidyA that is due to mAyA cannot be unreal, in the exact sense of the word. Since there is nothing other than brahman, its quite difficult to understand how mAyA can exist as a separate entity and overlap brahman for the creation to occur. Even so, if mAyA is not different from brahman, then it would cause other absurd conclusions.

Now, there are examples such as mAyA reflects brahman and that is what results in this creation. I've extended a similar example for understanding why brahman is not clearly understood in the veil of avidyA: a dark cloud covers the sun to such an extent as to make the sun disappear for some time; the cloud, during that time, is quite clearly visible. However, were it not for the sun, the dark cloud itself wouldn't have been visible! To summarize in a statement: the sun lights up the dark cloud for it to be visible and cause the sun to be veiled! This is precisely what mAyA does. mAyA cannot have a separate existence from brahman. But due to mAyic avidyA, one can't know brahman.

Another thing I notice in this example is that once the sun is seen and the light focussed upon, all that one can see is light; nothing else is visible. That is to understand that once brahman is realized, one can't see anything else without actually seeing brahman.

brahma sathya jagan mithyA jIvo brahmaiva nA parA


Earlier, I used to be unsure about what turIyAtIta meant, against turIya. When turIya itself is beyond the three states, it could be confusing to understand what can be termed beyond the fourth! Here, I'll try to express my understanding.

While the three states are:
  • waking, experienced by vishva, represented by a,
  • dreaming, experienced by taijasa, represented by u and,
  • sleeping, experienced by prajna, represented by m,
the turIya is, literally, "the fourth", thats represented by the ardha-mAtra. The fourth is actually to be used only in relation to these three states, else its meaningless. Thats the reason that this state has no name, per se, and is called the fourth. What turIya actually depicts is the natural state of existence in all the three states and hence is beyond the three states, while still including them!

When one looks at understanding turIya, it is still turIya. But once *in* turIya, none of the three states exist; in which case, usage of the term turIya is rendered meaningless. Then, all thats left is the state that was earlier termed as turIya; thats the state when no individuality of soul(s) remain(s) and there's only aikya... ekameva advitIya brahmaN..., considered beyond the fourth: turIyAtIta.


Silence and advaita

Even kids know what silence means at some level. When there's lot of noise around due to kids, parents and teachers tend to say "be quiet" or "silence, please". If you look at what this silence means, its quite clear that its the silence of words; as in not using any words. It doesn't take one to "do something" for being silent. If a person says "I'm silent", s/he's broken the silence; s/he's no longer silent. At later stages, silence means more than not talking.

If this simple lesson is compared with advaitic moksha, one wouldn't ask: what do I need to do to get moksha? There's nothing to *do* to get moksha, there's only a series of *undos*. Thats what is termed as neti-neti in advaita parlance. Strictly speaking, undoing something is also doing something in the same way as thinking "I'm silent" is not being truly silent.

So what is this undoing? Its undoing of bondage. Its undoing of false superimpositions. Its undoing of "I'm the body/mind/intellect" concept. Its undoing all the learnings that views brought us from childhood. Its undoing of "I'll believe only when I see" belief. Its undoing of the idea that there's something to do. Its undoing the difference in everything. Its undoing one's own ego. Its undoing of cycles of births and deaths.

ekameva advitIya brahman

Always in the wrong

All my life, I've been multitasking. While it has brought me happiness and whatever it is that I have today, its not what I aim for. Now its time to switch tracks and focus on one thing, not because I want to do different from what I did till today, but because I'm incapable of doing anything that I've been doing till now. Moreover, any activity of mine now takes amazing energy and focus to get done, or so I feel. If I focus all my energy on doing one thing, it'd rather not be what it was till now, since I know them to be meaningless.

So God, I ask for strength, courage for me, my family, relatives and friends... and while doing so, submit myself unto you; thou are the only light. With that, I know that no matter what I try to do, all that is going to happen is what you intend to happen unto me. Still I'll keep on trying to do what I think is right, and not trying to do what is not right. There's no point in asking for blessings since I know I have your blessings, like all do!

Part-time saadhus don't get enlightened.
--Dr. Poy

And here's my first step taken today to correct that: talking to my boss about quitting my job.

athaatho brahma jijnaasa