Cupcakes and Tea: Gandhi’s Striving

1. Travel, Writing and Silence

I blame my frugality on wrists pains (tendonitis) though on some level the distance away from technology has encouraged more healthy pursuits. Sometimes my entries emerge from needless chattering, sometimes a desire to form art out of words, tell stories, self-reflect. Then at times, silence is always better. They say the American teaches how to express, and the Japanese teaches how to listen, keep silent. Students of life traverse in between, in search for understanding and self-expression.

We have travelled the mountains on backpacks hearing in the fore of the silence, the haunting songs of the native guide sing. Our footsteps are heavy as our heart is light. We strive to ascend the more remote, but know that the sooner ascent arrives, the sooner we begin our descend. We absorb the sunshine we once despised, and let the cold melt at the tip of our noses. These Poets of the antiquity sung lyrical the cloud formations in pink and blue skies, the golden glory of the sunset and in their bewilderment of nature, words have sparked the imaginations of those, like myself, who are far less travelled. We appreciate the silence as an absence of something – absence of chatter, of gossip, of over-thinking, of analysis-paralysis. So we disappear into monasteries and mountains, and seek the guidance of monks and peaceful monotony.

But silence is more than just a pause of thought. It is a clearance of one’s space. It is not the absence of thought, but a presence of space. I once loved a man whose words and thoughts emerged from and sat eloquently on silence. I am not creating poetry, there is no other manner I can find in explaining this odd physical phenomena.

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3. Akhila Kolsetty is a young writer, blogger who uses her intelligence and perspective-shifting to advocate for justice. She has just returned from a volunteer experience from Kabul. Every Friday she features the work of an organization or person. I thoroughly enjoy this element of her website because she brings to the readers to work of countless individuals whose work has not been thoroughly marketed to the rest of the world. I see Akhila as a young activist who is always looking inward whilst looking outward and admire her consistency in updating us with crucial perspectives that go beyond the standard litany of contemporary news. Here is a post on changing the world, she wrote for another site.

4. Take your Daily Cup of Tao here, Zen in Modern Life.

I can’t fight against war – as then I’m at war.

I can’t make rules for politicians – as then I’m being political.

For peace the only action I may make is to be peaceful.

Note that these rules are for conceptual people as the true I is not split so in no position to act at all.


6 thoughts on “Cupcakes and Tea: Gandhi’s Striving

  1. What a lovely post. I, too, have been discovering the value of silence and the stories it tells recently. I really enjoyed reading all the embedded links as well. I love Akhila’s blog and writing and was so happy to see that you included her here.

  2. Your writing and way with words never ceases to amaze me :) “It is not the absence of thought, but a presence of space” – I love this phrase. It’s very true. Interestingly, I always thought of true silence and meditation as an absence of thought, but this provides a refreshing perspective to look at silence.

    In this world of constant news and social media, silence is a precious and rare commodity. The challenge is to find this ‘space’ not just in the mountains but in everyday life, as we live it.

    Also thank you so much for mentioning me. I am honored :)

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