Darziod’s Stone : Richard Smith – My Review

Published: August 16, 2016

Purchased: Received free from the author in exchange for an honest review

I give it ☆☆☆☆/5 stars.

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Review:

It was a fascinating read!

The story starts with creating and hiding of a special stone, in a cove in Cornwall, that becomes the most wanted stone and leads to war between two groups. Of course, one set being good, that wishes to protect the stone and the other, the bad guys group that wants it for their own selfish purposes. Now, come to the present and we find 5 kids, who go for a holiday at the controversial spot and lo! their holiday turns into a treasure hunt. But the bad guys get into action, the good guys try to shield the kids and kids find themselves trapped in a battle of good and bad, all the while fighting for the treasure, as well as their sweet lives. Who wins? That’s for the readers to find out in this very captivating crime, mystery, sci-fi, action mix work of fiction.

I must say, it was a fun read. I liked all the characters, save Ryan. Well. Though the plot was a bit stretched at times, it was never boring and there were twists and turns upon turning almost every page. The author’s writing is very engaging and I am sure, readers from almost every generation will enjoy this book.

100% recommended to the young readers and to those who love a nice, cozy mystery. 🙂

Thank you to Booktasters on Twitter (@BookTasters) for providing me the introduction to this book. Thank you to author for providing me with a review copy!

Feminism – Are women abusing this word?

The words feminism and feminist are the some of the most used words all over the world today. In accurate words, feminism is the advocacy of women’s rights on the ground of the equality of the gender. India is a democratic country and as far as our constitution says, every citizen of India has equal rights. Of course women who are born in India are entitled to the same. They have all the freedom to do as they please. And as we can see today, they are reaching sky heights in whatever field they chose to work at. There are women who work really hard to achieve their dreams and make the impossible seem possible with their efforts, knowledge and skills. But there are some, who are not so, as they say.

Now,’some women’ seriously must be unlucky for not getting what they wish for, but what about the rest? I ask, when women have been given the rights, why are they not using those very rights and instead are indulging themselves in this circus of feminism. Somehow I am not able to agree with the phrase ‘Women are weak’. This is just an excuse. I believe women can always achieve what they aim for, be it now or later. In fact, these days, they are given so much liberty to take their own decisions as well. I don’t understand the reason behind all the hue and cry that takes place when things are related to women or women’s rights. Women are given the same brains as given to men. While men use the rights in the best possible way(over the head in fact), women simply decide to sit back and chose to be a victim, which is simply not justified. Instead of hating men, how about try loving oneself more?

A popular motto – God helps those who helps themselves, is one of the ways to describe this whole scenario. If women can’t help themselves, how can they expect anyone else to be there for them always. In all the daily soaps and saas bahu serials, its almost always shown that women are their own enemy, which is very much true in the real life as well. Women shout out for equality, but when opportunities come, how many of them actually grab those? Hiding behind household responsibilities, all the while blaming their upbringing, families and partners for taking them for granted and not showing the due respect, is that how women expect to earn equality?

We are the curators of our own life, and we chose our path. Its important that women chose what is best for them, that they must believe in their path instead of blaming the whole world for their bad luck. Women have the power that needs to be tapped in the right way. Once they realize this, I hope then we would have better words to harp on.

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This post was featured in Spicy Saturday Picks on BlogAdda, on December 3, 2016.

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The Comfort of Strangers

The coffee cools, the cigarettes end, the music stops and life simply gets back to the old track. It moves on.

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What I want to say here is : You can go from being strangers. To being friends. To being more than friends.. And then being practically strangers again. #LifeToday

You know what I feel? We should let people remain strangers, for they are better that way. People remain with each other for a lifetime only when they allow themselves to be away for a while. We don’t just inhale, inhale and inhale. We need to exhale too, in order to breathe properly. Isn’t it? Likewise,  strangeness is important between two people, no matter how long they are together. I don’t think its possible to be a good friend without being a bit of stranger.

We all start as strangers to each other but end up being something else. That something else may be any relation. And the moment we give a name to that relation..the voltage starts fluctuating. The moment you start opening up to them, start thinking of letting them enter your life and start expecting the same from them, it no longer remains what it should be. You try to remain as close to them as you can.. and want. You try to hold on to them. They try to hold on to you. You feel happy to have them in your life and they feel the same. You now know them fully. They know you fully. No wonder you believe that you are perfect together. But are you really? Expectations and judgments introduce themselves, one by one. N Whoa.. you gradually open your eyes and realize for the first time that roses don’t come without thorns. Life becomes monotonous, you sulk but accept and let it go on, when in reality it becomes stagnant. But you don’t want to leave them. Even when you become so used to them that you stop needing them. The coffee cools, the cigarettes end, the music stops and life simply gets back to the old track. It moves on. You go back to being strangers again.

And that is when you think of meeting new people. Or as they are called..Strangers. You need someone again. The cycle repeats. Now, where does that leaves you?

I ask, what is the need to know every person that you meet? In spite of having so many friends, relatives and a lover(possibly), why does the need to make new friends arise? Why are we in such a hurry? Because to relate is insecure, and relationship is a security. Relationship has a certainty; relating is just a meeting of two strangers, maybe just an overnight stay and in the morning we say goodbye. Who knows what is going to happen tomorrow? And we are so afraid that we want to make it certain, we want to make it predictable. We would like tomorrow to be according to our ideas; we don’t allow it freedom to have its own say. So we immediately reduce every verb to a noun.

Getting comfortable with people whom you know well, is definitely satisfying. But not in the long run. It turns you greedy. It makes you complain, it forces you to depend. It makes you lose your interest in yourself. When you don’t know people, you treat them better and vice versa. Strangers make better friends if we let them remain like that, but when friends turn into strangers, its worse. People just don’t understand this. I am not saying that one should not make friends, but you can be a stranger to people and at the same time also being a friend to them.. you know? being detached while being attached. Some strangers you have known for a few years, some for a few months, some a few days, some you have just come to know, but you are strangers. Even your husband/wife/parents/other people with whom you have lived for years are strangers. Two strangers living together by and by become familiar, that’s all.

So. Learn to wait. Learn to be free. Never be afraid of strangers. Remember, however long you have lived with a person, you still will remain strangers. Being with a stranger has freshness. Don’t try to make it stale. Never hold people. And don’t allow them to hold you.

Let yourself be a mystery. All you need is strangers, for good company and good memories.

Tc! 🙂

MINDSCAPES

You don’t get anywhere if you don’t depend on people around you. – Paulo Coelho

Very true. But don’t you breathe with your own nose, eat with your own hands and mouth and remain alive with your own heart beating inside your own body?

When you have people in your life, with whom you interact and live, its hard to remain aloof for long. No matter how much you want to be with your own self for a while, they wont leave you alone. I really don’t know if this is good or bad. I think its good to have people in your life who care for you so much, but then it’s actually a little frustrating when you don’t get any time for yourself, just because the people who care about you so much wont leave you alone or may be you don’t want to make them sad or leave them wondering that why would you not respond them or be with them in the way it has always been, in the way that usually suits them, makes them happy and satisfied.

Why are people always averse to being alone? Why do they feel that if a person is alone, he is undergoing some sort of depression or that if he lives alone, he is a questionable character? Why don’t they understand that alone does not mean lonely? If a person wants to speak less or remain alone for sometime, then he must not be disturbed. People must understand that being alone is not fearful or disheartening or unhappy. Being alone means sans the notional crutches in our mind which we get so accustomed to and dependent upon. These can take the form of one’s kith and kin, near and dear ones. Some are part and parcel of life, others are self cultivated. Their existence and presence in our life breeds mutual expectations. Man is a social animal does not mean that man cannot be alone. It is not always important to adhere to the so called rules that one has to be with the community in order to survive. That if you are alone, you are being selfish. A person connects with people because he likes companionship, but it is not true that companionship only makes a person complete. If you cant connect to your self being, you cannot connect to others. And in order to remain connected to the world, its imperative that you remain connected to yourself, your inner being. And just that is why being alone, spending some time in solitude, without interacting to anyone, is essential.

The problem is people don’t understand this simple concept. “Man is a social animal”, this phrase is inked in their small minds and it acts as oxygen for another term, known as Society.What people need to understand is that sometimes solitude is like a short break from day-to-day life to re-energize , rejuvenate and re-focus your mental faculties. They need to work upon the phrase of “He is a free bird”, from time to time. They need to let the person breathe through his own nose and think through his own mind.

As Parker Palmer has explained this in his book  A Hidden Wholeness : Solitude does not necessarily mean living apart from others; rather it means never living apart from one’s self. It is not about absence of other people — it’s about being fully present to ourselves, whether or not we are with others.

You must enter in
To the small silences between the leaves,
You must take your time
And touch the very peace
They issue from.

Tc people. Have a nice weekend!

 

The Coffee and The Rain -1


Tap tap tap tap tap tap…the rain falls on the roof tops and the water slides down the window glass. Dark grey skies just want to empty themselves, as if in a hurry. Its 1.00 in the afternoon, perfect time to gather myself along with a cup of hot coffee and sit near a window. Windows are the best place to be at when it rains. Coffee completes the set. Watching the rain. It falls. I take the first sip of my coffee. As the warmth sets in, I cup my hands around the mug. Its raining, heavily. I look around. Small rivulets have formed, making their way from somewhere to nowhere. The surroundings look green. The fragrance of wet earth takes over. A cow and a dog are standing under the shade of a tree, protecting themselves, sharing the space.  Two children from neighborhood are making paper boats and feeling happy. The rain falls harder. Their mom shouts at them and forcefully takes them in the house. Winds have become harsh. Everything is hazy now. All I can see is the dim forms out on street. It feels like the rain has created a transparent wall between me and the outside world. But the mind’s eye can never be obstructed. Its always open and is looking for the right opportunity to poke the mind. And lo! the memories come out fresh and clear. All the way from my childhood. Some, that just made me happy all over again, and some, that were supposed to be dissolved in the muddy waters long back. But as they say, one can never trust them memories. Shedding them away, I look at my coffee. The soft brown color blends perfectly with the weather and my mood. I smile and take another sip.

Such moments are much awaited, when I have all the time in this world to myself. I sit back. Peace sets upon. The coffee is finished. But I am still tingling all over. Coffee and rains on a quiet Sunday afternoon does that to you..

My Blogging Journey!

Your blog is your unedited version of yourself. – lorelle

The other day I was thinking about my journey of blogging. I remember that I had initially started with a blog on Blogger in October 2010, when I was highly frustrated with my life. Back then I dint know much about blogging. I saw and read so many blogs and was surprised that the world of words was really large and was inviting too. And I was already full to the brim with feelings and had to vent them somewhere.  Also, I had stopped maintaining my diary. So I thought that blog would be a good medium to vent out my woes. Least did I know that this very platform would become an integral part of my life. Initially I was very active on it and posted some really sad poems and verses.I decorated it beautifully, changing its look every few days like it was a doll that I played with. But I soon lost interest in it, as it turned out to be making me more depressed than ever. Whenever I took a look at it, my heart would fill with such sorrow that made me think “Is my life so miserable?”. It was increasing negativity in me and as a result I stopped posting anything on it. After a few months..I deleted the blog.

But wait, I had already tasted the blood. The blood of writing. Discovering  Wordpress at that moment was like food to my thoughts. I explored WordPress and it did not disappoint me. So as soon as I deleted blogger, I created a new blog on WordPress. I decided that this would be a new beginning and that I wont post crap on it. So I started with small things in life and short poems. I used them to portray what I could not speak or whatever went in my mind. AND, I actually felt GOOD!! I dont know if it was the change of blogging service or something else, but now when I looked at my blog, I felt happy.I felt positive. This inspired me to a large extent, inspired me to write about various things that were happening or non happening in my life, in a creative way. Or may be just plain simple write up. Its not exactly a long way but still I have achieved a lot, not in materialistic terms but in other more meaningful ways.

Blogging for me has acted as a –

Liberating process : I wasn’t sure what I would be doing blogging. Gradually, I started pouring out my thoughts into the blog on a continuous basis.  I wrote whatever came in my mind, I wrote whenever I found time. Gradually I realized that blogging was not just blogging for me anymore. It was much more than that. Penning down the thoughts was so very liberating. I realized that it made me free from within. I felt a sense of achievement after I wrote something, be it a poem, an article or something random. In the past, this creative process took place offline, sometimes alone, sometimes with like-minded people. In a sense, blogging allows people choose, on what art form they want to skill, the fact that everyone is an artist.

Blogging Books : Those who are continuous readers of my blog, are fully aware how much I love books. Initially I posted what I felt. That included my personal views on a topic in the form of an article or poem or humor. But as I was getting engrossed in the world of words, luckily I was getting to read some awesome-est books at the same time. Book blogging has encouraged me to read more and more widely. I have learned a lot as well through writing reviews and reading and knowing what I like and what I dont. I like it when I see more people reading books that spending time elsewhere. I like it when I am able to provide them reviews of really good books. I feel good when I get to write about something that I love the most i.e Books.  That is a satisfaction in itself. I have posted quite a few reviews, one of them being an invitation by Blogadda. Boy, did I feel happy? Answer – Superhappy!

Testing Ideas : Blogging is a good and safe way of testing ones ideas – sharing the stuff that you would like to write upon with others and getting their feedbacks.The learning that I’m doing here is keeping my mind active and stimulating me to ever more creative thought. I usually try to blog about something that goes on in my mind for long. In the beginning I wasn’t sure if I should write about those particular topics but as I experimented with the topics and actually got response, a mixture of calm and excitement was felt within. Blogging has by all odds, been a better medium to pouring out the deepest thoughts that otherwise clog one’s mind and are a cause of unrest.

Connecting With People : I read so much interesting stuff daily and meet so many interesting people on WordPress! There are so many great blogs to follow–I could sit in front of the computer reading all day. But that just doesn’t seem to be possible cz of me doing job. Blogging makes me feel that every other work is co-curricular activity 😛 But even co-curriculars need to be done sometimes!

I think blogging has a lot to offer to both new and experienced writers. Also I tend to analyze things quite a bit so its nice to write something down online and to look back at when I started, and how my posts have amended over time. I try to make my posts useful to readers. I find that I am more thoughtful, more aware of what goes on day to day than I was before. And I have to say I like it, I like it, I really really like it! I feel that blogging is its own education. Too bad you can’t get college credit for it! The journey that I started an year back has led me through beautiful pathways that I guess forms a non-separable part of me.

Here I end my post as to what blogging has done to me over time. I am sure everyone who blogs must be having something to answer about the following questions:What have you learned from pouring your thoughts out there for the whole world to read? Where has your blogging journey led you to?

Tc people! have a nice day ahead.

PS: This post can be considered as a birthday present to my blog which is on 21st of May. Still 5 days to go but could not wait till then. This blog would be completing its 1 year on 21st!! Yayyy! *claps happily* 😀