“The impatient Indian”- 14 April 2019.

See the young minds in spinning dreams. ‘I want to become an IAS officer so that I can earn lots of money!’ ‘The best business is U-Tube and there is no need to study for high fancy degrees!’ ‘I want to do business and my parents don’t understand for they are into jobs and don’t understand- I will take loan and do it’. It is the quick and easy route that many are looking into- the mega bucks, the name, fame and success –but do they ever study the process underlying success is my concern. We believe that there are no short cuts in life- its hard work all the way up. Along with the ninety percent perspiration to remember what Einstein said, it is also the ethics, the virtues, the attitudes and the personality traits that are needed to back up the sweat. Where is the easy route except through compromises and crime to make it big?

So this dreaming suggests a state of mind that is hyper-stimulated and deficit in attention. Everything has to be quick and fast. Speed is not a bad thing –but it has to be in context of the situation. The ‘flying devils’ that zoom past you like flies and mosquitoes on the roads should test their skills on the racing tracks – they should compete with the best and show their worth and not harass common civilians on narrow streets.

The light at the traffic signal turned green and those behind me start honking immediately as if I am blind or I am sleeping! All I am doing is waiting for my turn to come. ‘Be patient. Wait for your turn. Don’t break the queue.’ That is what we were taught. ‘Rules are made for public good and so we must follow them’ said my Father- even at mid-night when traffic is thin’. Wonder how many parents must be teaching their kids such behaviour today? Only those parents who themselves are patient will teach their wards through their own display of behaviour. Otherwise they are sending wrong signals to the young lad who is seated next to him and watching very keenly.

I am waiting for the lift and as soon as it arrives, people who are waiting with me, start pushing to get into the lift, without letting people get out of it! Ridiculous! Hilarious! I am at a shop counter and someone comes from behind nudges me out and places his order. The sales guy is indifferent to the chaos for he does not set any system of first come first basis. It is a free for all and you could be waiting for your turn for all eternity and nobody cares.

These are regular scenes in Nagpur -India. And we do not care to put systems in place. But that’s not totally true too for I saw a change the other day in the General Post Office where they have started a computerised system of dispensing tokens and servicing clients at the various counters in a fair way. Earlier one had to push one’s way through the crowd and try your luck. Wonderful use of technology- for the public is forced to follow order and fairness. You cannot jump the line in any way there. But if Indians could they certainly would for Indians generally don’t care to respect rules, lines, queues, women, senior citizens, children, and other people. The GPO way is good- I was impressed! Some people are making efforts in the right direction for sure.

We are impatient in relationships too. A six year grand-child was trying to keep pace with his grand-father who was very fast for the kid. When he was asked to hurry up and walk fast, the little kid looked up at his tall grand-pop and asked ‘what is the hurry grand-pop?’ He was teaching an important lesson to the grown-up- the time spend together was more enjoyable and not the speed. Very often we are in a hurry to reach the destination and the goal but do not enjoy the journey. The path is full of obstacles and hurdles and we need to endure that too with patience.

Most life-style disorders such as hyper-tension, diabetes, symptoms of CVD, insomnia, aches and pains, obesity, stress, aggression, and anxiety which are on the rise exponentially are due to the lack of the virtue of patience and tolerance. We blame technology but we need to remember that we control technology and not vice versa. It is the human mind that is being hammered and neglected.

Patience is a virtue extolled by the wise for it is an imperative. Patience denotes control over your mind, control over your emotions and thoughts. It develops the ability to tolerate frustrations and disappointments and tide over them with equanimity. It guides you to proper thought and action. Perhaps people like me are losing patience with impatience! Ironically we need to be more patient with the impatient and wait for them to wake up and realise the damages it is doing to their lives.

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