Bye-bye Positive Thinking

It was a Sunday afternoon. I had my lunch and was watching television at my home. Suddenly, I heard someone ringing my door-bell. I opened the door.

A Youngman in early 30s, wearing full-sleeves, tie and other paraphernalia. “Good afternoon Sir, I am Mr.Pramod Jacob.” Full smile, beaming, keeping chest bit upward, steady and cleanly shaven -a typical marketing executive look.

“I am a distant relative of your neighbor. He told me that you would be here today, so I thought of dropping in…Would you mind?”

“No…Not at all…am I available to anybody whenever I am free. Do come in,” I said.

“Yeah, that’s a positive attitude…that’s what we need in today’s world…” he said.

“Really?” I asked him to sit.

“Yes- really….today, people are really down with problems…you know, positive thinking will take them to places that they don’t know…”

“Interesting…”I said.

“Yes – Sir…for instance, you are a journalist, right? You can make quite lot of money if you think positive. Given your profile, you could have been even a billionaire…only if you have positive thinking…”

“Mr.Promod, are you from XYZ company?” I asked. The name of the company that I mentioned was a multi-level-marketing industry leader during that period.

“Yes…yes,” his eyes popped out…”How did you know? Are you some kind of clairvoyant?”

“Oh, no…Simple…only three types of people talk about positive thinking… (1) MLM guys (2) those who are in the business of personality development…”

“And the third one?”

“Whoever wants to exploit others or wants favors from others…?”

“This is damn negative attitude. Sir…I pity you…” his face turned red.

I just smiled at him.

So he toned down: “You are very pessimistic, it seems… One has to be very optimistic’’

“Are you being one?”

“Yes. I am a positive thinker. I read a lot on the power of positive thinking. Every day morning and before going to bed I make auto-suggestions on positive attitude.”

“But there lies an inherent stream of negative thinking deep beneath the sheen of positive thinking. The mind picks it up to produce toxic a thought…Over doze of positive thinking is harmful.”

“What do you mean?”

“Whenever we use affirmations like “I can do it!” – “I”, the underlying self (ego) develops resistance. This resistance and negative thought is then pushed into the unconscious.”

“Really?” he asked mockingly.

“The problem is that the unconscious directs behavior and we are more unconscious than conscious.Positive thinking can create unrealistic expectations that lead to depression when one does not achieve them in the planned time period. You will be exhausted by the effort of trying to “think positive” always. You’ll be fed up with the hype surrounding “positive thinking”. Many people say that positive thinking is so superficial that it’s depressing…”

“You mean to say positive thinking won’t work…”

“For me, positive thinking = wishful thinking.”

“Positive thinking has miraculous powers…Positive thinkers are successful in life…It is a proven fact”

“All successful people are not positive thinkers. Some just became successful because they landed on the right idea at right time and it took off and made them money.”

“Hmmm. But they must have been positive thinkers…”

“How do you know? I know many, many people are struggling in debt – ordinary people. Will a positive frame of mind help them to overcome that? You think that you’re not going to get sick, your vehicle is not going to break down, and you’re not going to lose your job…”

“Lot of people have shared their experience of success in the stage during our programs sir”

“I have heard about such stage shows or dramas to attract public…I go by my experience only. I don’t want to think positive or negative…BTW, call me Uday, not Sir”

“You know, internationally countless authors, scholars, experts, and television personalities have advocated the benefits of positive thinking…They insist that everyone should remain optimistic and positive…”

“I understand. Positive thinking is almost uniquely an American phenomenon…It is still promoted as one of the keys to success and happiness, though it is proven otherwise…Positive thinking can disguise real mental health problems. For people with minor problems like low self esteem it could be helpful. But people who think they can use “positive thinking” to get out of depression or counter addiction are setting themselves up for failure…”

“That’s not right…Positive thinking will help everyone”

“Please tell me how positive thinking is going to help me?” I asked

“Uday, you can make lot of money…”

“Whatever I get from my profession is more than enough for me. I am contented with what I have…”

“This is the problem…you don’t want to grow…you don’t have a great goal…” he said.

“How does positive thinking help you to attain the goal?”

“Ah- yes…that’s my subject…” he beamed. He said affirmative suggestions would work miracles. He said all those things that personality development trainer would tell you. In short, he explained how to boost your ego and reach to a bubble stage.

I listened to him patiently. Then I said: “I will tell you a story…There was this lady who got attracted by an age-old belief that one can move a mountain elsewhere in Italy and take out the treasures buried underneath. One just needs to have absolute faith. She had strong belief and thought that she could do it. Praying earnestly, she went beside the mountain, stood there, closed her eyes and prayed for nearly two hours. Expecting miracles, she opens her eyes only to find mountain standing rock solid as it was. The lady made this comment: “I knew that idea was bull-shit, right from the beginning.”

He thought for a while. Then asked: “So you think negative thinking will work?”

“No…Positive attitude works sometimes. Though, not always – because positive thinking gives you less experience than thinking the other way. Negative thinking gives you more experience by accepting the fact that something happened was wrong and that it has to change for the better…”

“Uday, you are misguiding me…positive thinking has miraculous effect…and will take up you to your goal…”

“Ok, tell me about your job”

“I am an accountant. And doing part-time MLM job for extra money…”

“What’s your goal in life?”

“I want to buy a waterfront bungalow…And I am affirmative that I will do it, by 2016.”

“Ok. So you will be happy if you will get this bungalow in future, right?”

“Yes”

“You have positive affirmation that you will get it. You always tell yourself that’s your goal, and you should achieve it, right?”

“Yes”

“The more you are affirming that you would be happy when you get a Bungalow, an equal and opposite quantity of thoughts are being produced in your sub-conscious, saying that you are not happy now…”

“That’s true only- I am not happy now…”

“What’s your name again, I have memory issue…”

“I am Promod, Uday”

“So Mr.Promod is not happy right now, but he will be happy in the future, say in 2016 when he gets the waterfront bungalow”

“Yes”

“Now, the current Promod is not happy…”

“Why you are repeating Uday – I agree with you…”

“Yes – you are unhappy now. That means, in the current given situation you are unhappy…this tells your state of mind….if you are not happy now with what you have, you will never be happy….The unhappy Promod is moving forward, not a happy Promod. So, even if you reach the destination by 2016, only the unhappy Promod will be reaching the goal. And, you will still be unhappy….”

“I don’t understand it at all…that sounded like playing with words…please explain…”

“Most of our goals – I would say almost 99% – are our wants or desires. The goal is not the need, it is just a want. Most of our goals are not essential things in our life – that’s the first thing I have learned”

“I cannot agree with you…But even if it is a want, without a want and without a goal, what’s there in life?”

“You may set a goal. And you should definitely work towards it. But if you need full energy, you should be happy and contented right now. You have to work towards your goal with a happy mind, not with an unhappy mind. And definitely not with positive thoughts that produce only resistance”

“Come again?”

“See, happy mood produces happy hormones in the body. It’s a scientific fact. Positive thinking will indirectly create toxical thoughts which will be suppressed in the sub-conscious. Being happy is more important because it is your energy which has to match that of your source, your higher or greater self, the God-given flow of energy, or whatever you prefer to call it…”

“Hmm. I still don’t understand the difference between ‘want goal’ and ‘need goal’…”

I will tell you another story. Few years ago I had a secretary. She used to tell me: “I am crazy about that young man (whom I love). My sole aim in the life is to marry him. I would rather die, if I can’t. I will be the happiest women in the world if he is mine.” Lucky girl! She got married to him. After seven years of successful (?) marriage, we met in a function and the woman was telling me, “That SOB (son-of-a-bitch) is a real pain in the ass. He is filled with inferiority complex. I would be the happiest woman in the world the moment I get my divorce …”

“Hmmm”

“If you are currently happy, when you reach the goal, the happiness will increase. And in the unfortunate event of not reaching goal, (because you are already happy) you will not be depressed. You have done your level best, though you couldn’t achieve it – thus mind will find solace…”

“You mean to say we have to be contented and satisfied with what we have today and not work towards our goal and aim”

“I said there is nothing wrong in having aim or goal in life. You should definitely work towards your financial security. A goal is set NOT for absolute happiness. There is a strong difference between the real happiness and mind-coined happiness…”

“Mind-coined?”

“Yes – mind’s concept of happiness will always be a want. A want is not essential in life. Want is not a need in life. It is just a want. Your mind coins a want and you work towards it. When you reach the want, then again, the mind will coin another want…”

“Can you explain it…?”

“I will tell you an example. Mules are considered stubborn .So some enterprising farmer rigged up a stick with a carrot on a string that would dangle in front of the mule, a few inches from its nose. The mule could never get close enough to take a bite. But would keep running to try and “catch up” with the carrot. We are all well-educated, knowledgeable and informed donkeys moving ahead with the hope that one day – one fine day we can eat that sweet carrot-happiness – that dangles in front of us at a future time. Well, it will never happen. Happiness comes not from struggling to overcome our current state of being, but by accepting it as-is. See things as they are, not as you want them to be.”

“That’s a rubbish idea. How can you accept a bad situation in life? If you meet with an unfortunate accident or lose everything, how can you be happy and accept it?”

“Promod, I guess you have a concept of GOD”

“Yes, of course…I am a God-fearing person…I am a true Christian”

“Great. Do you think GOD has better wisdom than you?”

“What a rubbish and idiotic question?”

“I talk bit rubbish. But I don’t know if I am an idiot. Please answer me”

“Yes – of course. GOD has better wisdom.”

“According to your concept of GOD, even a tiny grass won’t move without God’s knowledge, right?”

“Yes”

“So any situation in life is provided with the knowledge of God. There should be a broader reason behind the situation which appears to you as bad. We don’t know. So worrying about any given situation is equivalent to insulting God’s wisdom, right?”

“I – I don’t know…”

“If you worry much and get immersed in the problem you will be miserable. And your mind would log-on to past miseries to make a mountain out of mole. It’s true that life always appear unfair. So in day-to-day life, all kind of problems are mandatory. But worrying is optional. If you are worrying about a situation (1) you are insulting God’s wisdom and (2) you are becoming part of the problem and not part of the solution…”

“It appears true, but difficult to digest…”

“Ok – What will happen if you incur a sudden financial loss or your spouse leaves you or somebody in your house passes away..”

“Yes- it creates lot of misery, worry and stress…”

“Right, we have to accept that sad fact. But worrying about it won’t solve the problem. But if you accept the situation as is without positive and negative thoughts, you will see a solution…When a room (mind) is filled with noises (thoughts – both positive and negative), you can’t hear the melodious music. …Hope you understand…”

“Yes Uday…So we shouldn’t be positive?”

“Promod, positive thinking can have devastating results for many people. For most people, these deliberate attempts to think positively often compromise their well-being in the future…”

“So you don’t believe in positive thinking at all?”

“As a student of mind, I feel positive thinking is a pseudoscientific con. In fact, I found that most of the “depressed” or pessimistic people have a more accurate view of themselves and their environment. Positivity is good for sales and con games, nothing more…”

“So you are a negative thinker?”

“No. Instead of optimism or pessimism, what about trying pragmatic realism? Or transcendental thinking? Or logical thinking?”

“So, you are not positive thinker, not a negative thinker…so what do you hope for?”

– “There is a proverb – hope for the best, prepare for the worst, and expect something in between! Nothing more.”

“Without positive or negative thinking, how are you managing daily life? You can’t walk the talk…”

“Really? I am in a traffic jam on my way to railway station. I may miss the train. Should I keep on saying positively: ‘Yes- I will get the train’? Would that help? Or on a negative note, should I worry about missing the train and feel miserable? No way. I would think logically – if I miss the train, what will I do? What’s the practical way out? What’s my plan B?”

“But I am still a positive thinker, Uday…” but he sounded bit feeble now.

“Close your eyes…” I said

He closed his eyes.

“For the next five minutes, don’t think about your mother-in-law”

“I know this exercise Uday…”he suddenly opened his eyes and continued:”I will keep thinking about her only…I may even see a monster” He laughed.

“So you know. Your mind won’t listen you. The same is true of negative thinking…”

“Ok. You seem to have some pointers here…Let’s come back to the goal. Shouldn’t we have a goal? Everybody tells me that I should need to have a goal in life and I should work towards it positively – with affirmation that I would reach the goal…”

“Promod, I already told you, you can have a goal, and you can work towards it. But not along with positive thinking. Just with a logical thinking. And with true happiness…”

“Uday, I don’t understand…can you be more specific? If we don’t narrow-down our focus to the goal, if we are not dedicated to the goal and if we don’t work hard towards it, how will we succeed? Tell me in a layman’s language…” he came to the edge of the chair.

“Promod….Here is an example – I love chilly hill stations. When I decide to go there, it becomes my destination- consider it as an equivalent to a goal, right? I enjoy driving in ghat area, the U-turns, zigzags – I derive pleasure from that driving. I have passion for driving. I enjoy every moment of it…But when I reach hill station, I would be cuddled up inside a hotel room or resort hut or cabin – that’s no difference from being inside my bed-room in my home. So the drive or travel towards the destination is much more pleasurable than the destination itself…”

“That means?”

“The goal may be a set target. But we should derive pleasure and happiness while working towards the goal. Our passion, dedication or determination should be focused on the work, not on the result. We should enjoy every moment of that work….That would make you extremely happy…”

“That’s a great idea…”

“It’s not my idea. That’s what my ancestors taught me…”

“Your ancestors?”

“I mean our ancestor. Krishna.”

“Who?”

“Sri Krishna…”I smiled at him: “he said, karma is important, not its result. And you should get happiness by doing your karma. Result is just a by-product of karma. So first, accept you as is. You are perfect with all your imperfections. You are happy with current situation. But you have a want – a better situation. And you realize that as a want. With that awareness, you will work towards it, with happiness…”

He didn’t reply. He was just looking at me as if he was digesting something. “Can you relate it with an example?”

“I shall give you my own example. I am a writer. I don’t know any other jobs. Writing in journalism provides me, my bread. That’s my karma. I am very happy to do it. The salary I get is an added attraction, but not a goal. At times, as my humble contribution to the society I write few articles or blogs – to try my level best to break the concepts and conditioning…I enjoy it – that again is my karma, writing. If the goal was to make money would I write a blog? I write because I enjoy it, I am passionate about it, because it is my karma. Whether somebody likes it or not is not my issue…So I am very happy with my karma and making a comfortable living. I don’t have any other goal to reach…In fact, I understood that my goal is my karma itself”

“Hmmm…”

“To lighten you up, I will tell you another example: In the high altitudes of the snowy Himalaya Mountains, there is an endangered species – Kasturi Mrig (Musk Deer). The male deer has a highly prized musk gland, the content of which are literally worth its weight in gold. Local people believe that the Kasturi Mrig always sniffs this scent and runs around chasing the smell without knowing that the origin is within itself.”

“So, you mean to say that I should be happy now, and work towards my goal without positive or negative thinking?”

“Yes – A happy Mr.Promod has set a goal -it may be a want, desire or need whatever. The struggle of working towards the goal should make Promod happier. Promod’s dedication and determination should be in doing the work or doing his karma, not in the result. So you always derive happiness in working towards the goal. Then if you reach the goal, you will feel really great, but not egotic. If you don’t reach the goal, ok, that’s sad indeed, but you won’t be heart-broken or depressed, because you are already happy and you have enjoyed every moment till then. So your calm and relaxed mind would think of another alternative or plan-B.”

He didn’t say anything.

“Promod, the magic tree of happiness is really deep within. Mind doesn’t recognize it. Mind creates an illusionary and temporary image. It tells you that this image would give you happiness. It prompts you to chase it and you waste your entire life chasing a pipe dream. Positive thinking is just another trick to invoke and exploit such set of mind. Never ever trust your mind…”

“How is it possible Uday…we follow our own mind only…”

“Your mind is predominantly inside your brain. And brain is just another organ like your hands or eyes…Why should you let your organ control you? Mind is a human creation. Creation of conditioning. So don’t trust your thoughts – they can be positive or negative. But don’t trust it…”

“Uday – these things cannot be applicable in daily life…philosophy is good to talk…” he said.

“I agree with you. But if you have a clear understanding about yourself, these philosophies can be killer apps…”

After a moment of thinking he asked: “But what about money, I need more money – whatever I get is not sufficient…”

“Promod, you are an accountant. That’s your karma. You can do more accounting jobs. You can easily do without exploiting the public by selling pipe dreams and making them think positive…”

“Uday, one more clarification- if the current situation of life is really bad, though it is given by God, we go off-balance, right? How can we happy with current situation then?”

“We are disturbed not by what happened to us, but by our thoughts about what happened. When a problem happens, we can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we have when it happened. When we argue with reality, we will always fail. So accepting the situation or problem as is the first step. If you accept a problem or situation as is you will definitely see an exit route too…”

“But if the problem is beyond our control. For instance, great miseries and misfortunes…”

“Maha Vishnu says: sukha is my prasad and dukha is my Mahaprasad. When something happens that gives you joy and happiness, accept it as divine’s Prasad. When you face miseries and misfortunes that is mahaprasad – bow your head and accept it…what else you will do, tell me?”

“Yes…what else we can do? Our choices are limited…”

“Not at all. We have always have choices. The divine always provide you with a greater bandwidth in life. We are not seeing it…I realized that the life is a combination of destiny and free will. For instance, if you are destined to have diabetics at the age of 40 – by few practices like yoga, exercise, diet etc, you can extend it up to the age of 60. But if you try hard by sedentary life style, you can enjoy your insulin intake at the age of 25 itself – isn’t it a bandwidth? Life is like a rubber-band. You can extend it to certain limit, and then it may break.”

“You mean to say that we can go against our destiny and god’s will?”

“I don’t know about god’s will. But destiny is related to your karma and other factors – most of the people consider it as previous birth karma. I don’t know about that too. But I have realized that destiny always give us choices.”

“What choice?”

“Water has three forms. Ice, Water and Vapor. When you are in mind-body level, it is like ice, very rigid. When you focus on mind and beyond, we become like water, which is flexible. And when you are in total awareness, you are like vapor. Free. Now imagine – your destiny is to get ten lashes of a whip. If you are in ice-state, you will be totally broken. It will be painful. If you are in water-state, there is will be splashing. And if you transcends to vapor-state, the whip will make just swishing sound. The lashes won’t have much effect on you. Isn’t this enough choice?”

“Yes – a choice within limits…”

“Yes – so if you live your life with awareness and not with positive or negative thoughts, you will clearly see the choices you have…”

“But how to develop the awareness?”

“Very simple. There is a real you. And there is a manifested you. The real you is cosmic creation. The manifested you is the creation of the conditioned-mind. And you are identified only with the manifested you. So, try to be centered in the real you and observe the doings of manifested you. Don’t resist any thoughts. Don’t ever classify thoughts into positive or negative. Slowly, but surely you will see the separation between the real you and manifested you. Then you will really begin enjoying the life. You will see that the entire life is a festival of joy…”

“That’s bit heavy on me. Can you tell me how to start? I am a beginner…”

“Promod, everybody has his own way – you don’t need my advice. Nobody can show you a path that suits you. You have to find it on your own…”

“How are you doing?”

“I started observing my thoughts – positive and negative. Then I stopped classifying it. I realized that those are just thoughts and not absolute truth. So I stopped chasing thoughts and stop identifying myself with thoughts. That’s all I am doing…it is a long process for me, sometimes I fall down. My experience can’t answer your quest – you may be able to get instant awareness. Who knows? So you have to find your answer. Nobody’s answer is your answer”

“Hmmm. I will do that. Definitely from tomorrow…”

“That again is positive thinking,” I smiled at him “Rather a wishful thinking. Tomorrow may never come. Begin observing your thoughts right NOW.” (For further reading on similar topic click here: Are You ENLIGHTENED?)

(End)

By
Udaylal Pai
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© Uday Lal Pai. Please contact the author for re-posting or publishing at uday@udaypai.in

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16 Responses

  1. Samyuktha KS says:

    Extraordinary article, Sir! The allegory of ice, water, vapor is simply mind blowing. I believe after reading your article, I am already in awareness and know to be happy in the moment. Million thanks to you Sir! ????

  2. Natalie says:

    I agree with this I can see where he’s coming from but we do need a healthy balanced mind to achieve anything in life and if you have been depressed by your upbringing or social surrounding renewing the mind with a better way of thinking will change everything but it will take time it will be like a purpose driven road trip that would hopefully eventually balance it’s self out. I do agree that positive thinking used by government ect is a blanket of deception to self but is probably self preserving in economic depression and so on 🙂 x

  3. Pannag Kamat says:

    Thanks for your great article. will help me a lot.

  4. Anu says:

    Dear Udayji

    Each and every blog post of yours has answered various questions constantly surrounding my thoughts.
    It is always a pleasure to read your insights.
    Since we were talking about Karma. I would like to know your thoughts on fields like astrology esp. Naadi Shastra.
    I happened to get a Naadi Reading done just out of curiosity but now I am more intrigued than amused. It got all facts about my life with utmost accuracy without me giving any kind of factual information.

    Since you are such a well-read man. I would love to hear from you on this topic

    Thanks & Regards,

    Anu

  5. hastimalbarola says:

    dear udai ji,

    thanks for such a nice article on positive thinking. I have read much on positive thinking but not so far such clear concept on thought process. can you please advice me some methods to overcome inferiority complex or some other articles to over come this complex.

    with regards

  6. Budhiswatya says:

    Dear Sir
    I agree that it is quiet a different perspective that you have put forward and appreciate the way you have enlightened us accompanied with various examples and truly logical thinking is what you have emphasised and how we should enjoy the journey of reaching towards our goal or wants but yet I personally still abide by positive thinking but the focus of logical thinking won’t get lost in the process.

  7. E. A. Mukunda Pai says:

    Nicely explained in practical and realistic way. Positive thinking with negative care”

  8. Sakthivel says:

    nice post sir, soothing for me .. feel relaxed

  9. Prashanth says:

    Good thoughts Bhavaji… I will try to come here more often…

  10. Mayank says:

    Great blog uday sir!I just loved the line
    We are all well-educated, knowledgeable and informed donkeys moving ahead with the hope that one day – one fine day we can eat that sweet carrot-happiness – that dangles in front of us at a future time.

  11. Dear Uday,
    These are simple facts of life and teachings of various Hindu literature.However the presentation is absolutely superb.

  12. TOP 25 COMMENTS FROM SPEAKING TREE

    Vishnu Prasad
    Aug 20, 2012 at 12:54 pm

    Uday Sir, Hats off! Though you said you are not spiritual, reading you is a real spiritual experience. Though you challenge the concept of gurus, you are an extra-ordinary teacher.
    I have read many spiritual gurus interpreted the Gita slok “Karmanye vadi Karaste maa faleshu kadachana”. I never expected that it can be so easily applicable to ordinary man in daily life. I considered it just as god’s words or great philosophy. It is so easy to use in the life.
    As the most of the seekers commented in all your other blogs, we don’t have to read any other tough sacred texts if we read your articles.
    May god bless you for continuing your karma for a long period to come….thank you so much.

    Sekhar Ray
    Aug 20, 2012 at 01:26 pm

    The blog is:
    1)A reminder of”Karmanye vadhikaraste ma phaleshu kadachna”
    2)An excellant allegory….ICE, WATER & VAPOUR
    3)Enjoy the journey towards goal.


    Anu Singh
    Aug 20, 2012 at 01:47 pm

    .gud blog dr. pai. duality of mind is always in play, only with self awareness one can become a witness, when the observed becomes the observer…thanks and regards

    Anil Kumar
    Aug 20, 2012 at 02:55 pm

    Wonderful post
    there is no positive thinking
    there is only negative thinking
    we should see our negativiyy
    bbut never try to be positive as it is also a negativity

    Tincy Mathew
    Aug 20, 2012 at 03:04 pm

    I love the way you present tough topics in life. All your blogs have long-time shelf value. I can read like a book. When I finished reading this lengthy blog, it made me feel so realistic. I had read the book “power of positive thinking”. Now I realise that the positive thinking is fake. I heard many people say “think positive” without a pinch of honesty in it. You are very honest in writing and thinking.
    Over-doze Hinduism? LoL However, I feel that all your blogs have a biased tendency towards Hinduism. Though you say that you are not conditioned with concepts, you give more weight-age to Hindu concepts. But that is no big deal given the benefits human beings get by reading your blogs.

    Lata Jagdeesh
    Aug 20, 2012 at 04:21 pm

    Such a brilliant, post exuding tremendous wisdom, Uday ji.There is so much one can learn from ur post and attempt to make our lives more meaningful. Some of the following sentences, from among many, are truly inspiring,-
    1)Being happy is more important because it is your energy which has to match that of your source, your higher or greater self, the God-given flow of energy, or whatever you prefer to call it…”
    2)When a room (mind) is filled with noises (thoughts – both positive and negative), you can’t hear the melodious music.
    3)”There is a proverb – hope for the best, prepare for the worst, and expect something in between! Nothing more.”
    4)”The goal may be a set target. But we should derive pleasure and happiness while working towards the goal. Our passion, dedication or determination should be focused on the work, not on the result. We should enjoy every moment of that work….That would make you extremely happy…”
    Thk for a beautiful post sharing wisdom!


    Swati Arora
    Aug 20, 2012 at 04:24 pm

    U r a very good writer I must say….the way you hold on your readers is …. “Amazing”.
    My take from this blog of urs is –
    1.”Just observe your thoughts and beware of them but do not classify them.”
    2.”Mann ki ho jaye to acha na ho toh aur bhi acha.”
    3.”Be happy in whatever situation you are.”


    Tony Joseph
    Aug 20, 2012 at 05:01 pm

    Thank you for very good article sir. You are an educator with divine grace. You see everything differently and share with readers like us. This availability is what I call divine.


    Anima Jain
    Aug 20, 2012 at 09:08 pm

    Intresting Conversation Udaylalji…There is no magic formula for being happy .. We just can’t take happiness by itself any more than we can take sadness. That’s why living is more important than happiness. I guess the best thing is to try & make the best of everything that life offers, even hardships. And as you say in a positive way…Begin observing your thoughts right NOW…..


    Dr Gurdev Singh
    Aug 20, 2012 at 09:38 pm

    Nice reflections. Positive Thinking, positive attitude, positivity in action and Euphoric state are different. Those can combine with realism and logicto different extent at different times and in different mind-states. Real test indeed lies in being honest, truthful to your own-self while being bold, courageous and goal-oriented even while being in touch with the ground realities.


    Rajeshwari Sopan
    Aug 20, 2012 at 10:24 pm

    Everyone have their share of sorrows ……Whatever the situation we are in, we should learn to accept it, …….I feel this is a positive nature…..thanx for the wonderful sharing……

    Mann Belani
    Aug 20, 2012 at 11:14 pm

    Happy mood produces happy hormones in the body. The more positive you are you generate a good vibration around. The happiness and positivity quotient of one determines his state of health.
    I dedicate a poem of mine to you.

    Sahana Madhyastha
    Aug 21, 2012 at 09:57 am

    I have also felt that positive thinking/ wishful thinking has only a transient effect on reducing psychological symptoms. Rather, it has more of a suppresive effect.
    Psychologists practice more of a rational or realistic appraisal of maladaptive thoughts in therapy. Most people benefit (to varying extent)from this in dealing with their symptoms.
    But of course if one’s destiny is to self-realise even tharka or rational thinking has to be discarded
    All things should be advised based on the receptive level of the reciever.
    Uday, with another 15 posts like this, you can come up with a book in various languages for the ones who are not computer savy.
    I am sure you would have been a great sage in one of your previous births.
    Please continue the good work.

    Sreeram Manoj Kumar
    Aug 21, 2012 at 10:17 am

    B E A U T Y —— E X C E L L E N T —— Uday sir thank you for sharing such knowledge 🙂

    Neeru Malhotra
    Aug 21, 2012 at 10:42 am

    Great indeed sir
    U r a wonderful writer…. though generally i get discouraged to read lengthy blogs… urs i read without a blink…. they are always written magnificently. What i believe is dreaming or positive thinking with passion and hard work brings result..
    Regards and a salute to u.


    Rameshwari Thakur
    Aug 21, 2012 at 11:19 am

    Wonderful blog, Uday. Great thoughts & with lots of sense.
    Thanks for sharing!!


    Tej Tiwary
    Aug 21, 2012 at 04:32 pm

    Another gem of the blogs, Uday Ji.


    Nagaraja Mandalgeri
    Aug 22, 2012 at 06:15 am

    There are many self styled ‘gurus’, for both good and bad things-there is a training centr for pick-the-pocket, terrorism, dacoity, robbing, theft etc They run parallel to camps of satsang, prayer, meditation, bhajans etc For the first group the rest are negative thinkers.


    Changeman Citizen Mitter Vedu
    Aug 22, 2012 at 12:00 pm

    Very illustrative!Bravo! Live fully in the present, love your Karma,and do your best,enjoy!

    Surinder Raina
    Aug 22, 2012 at 04:51 pm

    Once again an eye opener.
    Right feed in right direction.
    We need lot of such feed to counter several beliefs in our society.
    Only fortunate one’s can meet Godly people.
    I wish I meet you once physically for a small chat.


    Niti Lora
    Aug 22, 2012 at 05:55 pm

    ‘There is a real you. And there is a manifested you. The real you is cosmic creation. The manifested you is the creation of the conditioned-mind. And you are identified only with the manifested you. So, try to be centred in the real you and observe the doings of manifested you. Don’t resist any thoughts. Don’t ever classify thoughts into positive or negative.’ – Well, may be true. But feel that they are just high sounding words.
    I am not in favour of mass marketing of ‘positive thinking’ under different labels. It is manufactured and marketed in bulk from US more to suit network marketing. But having said that, I do consider that there are positive and negative thoughts and being ‘inert’ towards them without any classification is not a good idea either. Look at a stone in a slope. It is its natural tendency to drift and roll down. You don’t have to give any input or energy. But to keep it in position or to lift it upward, energy is needed. It is my experience that if done nothing positive, human nature is to drift down. So in witnessing the thoughts, in meditation, a deliberate gentle attempt is to be made to invite more of positive thought for one to rise for ordinary mortals. It is not wishful thinking but rather blissful thinking…….:-)

    Ramesh Shenoy
    Aug 23, 2012 at 09:24 am

    Sir – as usual – another superior blog!!! I cannot say which blog is your master piece. All blogs are excellent master crafted.
    I know one person. He regularly attended those personality boosting stage performance. he has invested in a MLM chain. The layer-1 few guys made lot of money and all the followers lost huge amount. The case is under investigation now by police dept.
    Positive Thinking push is a complete fraud. As you said it will boost one’s ego. And that man will walk and talk like a plastic robot. At the end, it will burst.
    Realistic thinking, handwork, dedication and surrendering to GOD – this is the only secret of success. Thank you so much for sharing sir.
    All your blogs are novel experience for a reader. It opens up new dimension. It shows new perspective.


    Sumita Kataria
    Aug 23, 2012 at 11:41 am

    Wonderful blog Sir
    thanks for sharing
    you live your life truly when you live it with total awareness and balanced attitude.
    Ishwar Hamesha Saath Hai


    Mahavir Nautiyal
    Aug 23, 2012 at 01:09 pm

    Dear Dr Udaylal ,
    I like the way you lucidly explain your point of view through dialectical method ( in the tradition of Socrates and Hegel, the German philosopher ) . Underlying your views is the timeless wisdom contained in the Gita ( “Arjuna , perform your duties established in yoga, renouncing attachment to the fruits of action, and remaining even tempered in success and failure; evenness of temper is called yoga-verse 2.48 ” ).
    Your emphasis is to remain in the present, size up the reality and work towards the set goal with a happy state of mind, without bothering too much about the result.. It sounds a good and pragmatic advice. There may, however, be certain situations where this approach may not work with certain people for some of the following reasons :
    1. You have presumed that one will have a happy state of mind to work on the set goal but you have pulled the carpet from under his feet by suggesting that positive thinking is bad. In my view, positive thinking is bad if it is put on, a mere camouflage while feeling utterly despondent within. Positive thinking should not become a mask but should become a positive intent, which gives some zest, some happiness in undertaking the work. One needs motivation some time to work for a goal; positive thinking gives this motivation.
    2. You seem to have over reacted to the concept of positive thinking. In a situation when I feel shattered at the way things have turned out for me, I may either go into depression by negative thinking or may still realize, through positive thinking, that all is not still lost and i can pull through hopefully. Positive thinking can be good if it leads to positive action through awareness of the ground reality. It is bad if it is merely a wishful thinking, a kind of day dreaming for happy times ahead, remaining oblivious of the ground reality.


    Navin Sindhwani
    Aug 23, 2012 at 02:05 pm

    A great blog Mr. Uday Pai…..you have mastered the art of writing.

    Abhijeet Mane
    Aug 24, 2012 at 03:37 pm

    Initially reading such a long blog was a tiring thought, but once i got into it was enlightening and infotainment. I enjoyed all your examples (It was like amir khan in 3 idiots- ‘demo dena padta hai…’). It is a practical dose to all pramods. The significance of karma, the journey towards a goal, a happy state of mind was good to read. I really wonder how people like you think and then gather the thoughts and arrange them in a sensible pattern (of-course that’s what an author’s karma is). THANKS for the post.

    Venkateshwar Pandey
    Aug 24, 2012 at 07:48 pm

    This is just wonderful.The life is full of ups and downs, joys and woes. One has to accept the situation as it comes. The Geeta says one has to develop Sakshi Bhaaw( Attitude of a neutral witness) to observe the different phases of life.There is really nothing to add or comment about this blog. This is complete in itself,Mr Pai is doing a great job.

    Gopinath Kaushik
    Aug 24, 2012 at 09:23 pm

    Dear sir,
    A wonderful collection of thoughts very beautifully spread about.A positive attitude in life is always sought after by every one and we try to imbibe this in our children.Though just a thought does not move mountains, just as a sleeping lion will not get its food,it is essential that we do our work without any thought for the fruits.As rightly said we should try to be aware of our sorroundings,aware of oureselves and also every thing which we should be aware of.
    Thank You Jai Sri Krishna.

    Courtesy: http://www.speakingtree.in/spiritual-blogs/seekers/self-improvement/byebye-positive-thinking

  13. Prasad Reddy says:

    Dear Uday

    Excellent point and lovely way of presenting.

    Like you said, there is too much of emphasis in “being positive” and at times, I see people getting lost with this thought of being positive and I am only understanding why it is so now.

  14. Vinay says:

    very good article Uday…very nice and logical thoughts…good way to start my day,,with logical or rational thinking..:)

  15. Gopal Shanbhag says:

    Respected Shri Uday,
    First of all I thank you for suggesting me to read an article written by and appearing in Speaking Tree.
    After finishing reading that I saw this blogsite. You seem to have tremendously learnt from experiences of life, carefully researched aspects of life and have been fairly successful at deciphering the Truth which is sought for by all the seekers.
    Most of us are bad learners. But the lessons of life repeat again and again till the time we learn from them.
    You are definitely a wealth of knowledge and there is a lot to be gained by all humanity. I wish all humanity the very best. Please continue your Karma!

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