Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Understanding Life: Curse or a Boon?

Another dose of random thought...

Random Thought 61:


The more you understand life, the more precisely you know *what* you want from life, the messier it looks. And more painful it becomes to live.

These are the words (not verbatim) that Pal shared in an exchange of a few soulful words we had the other day. I could have never put the essence of one of the many important lessons of life in such a concise form. The words have, ever since, stuck in my head and just refuse to go away. And so thought of wedging them into yours too.


Sometimes I really ponder hard on the benefits of living the 'ignorance-is-bliss' kind of lifestyle. Occasionally I get torn between the benefits-n-bliss of ignorance vs the fear of stepping into a mess because of ignorance. So far, to my knowledge, knowing more has only exacerbated the pain. Yet something in me refuses to adopt the way of ignorance ~~~sigh~~~

Probably, as with everything else in life (and computer science!), best of the solutions are the ones which are hybrid of many. I guess, therein, somewhere lies the answer to my vexing question.

7 comments:

preetsy said...

That thought is very well put indeed. Kudos to Pal. My husband the other day urged me to "think" less, and as he put it - people who "think too much" are never happy. One would have to agree, this does appear true on the surface. My only question is what if you realize *what* you want at a later stage in life? Possibly too late to even give it a shot.

Lucky is the man who died ignorant.

The Shaolin said...

@Preeti...
> My husband the other day urged me to "think" less, and as he put it - people who "think too much" are never happy.
True. But I would not so far in claiming that they are 'never happy'. I would rather say that they are never 'satisfied'. They are constantly restless. I keep saying the same thing to 'think less' to my Mom all the time, but I have realized it is not all that easy, I myself am a step ahead of her on that!

> One would have to agree, this does appear true on the surface.
> My only question is what if you realize *what* you want at a later stage in life?
> Possibly too late to even give it a shot.
That is one of the reasons that makes me reconsider being ignorant.
But then, I constantly ask myself, which pain is greater: the pain of loss of ability to do that *what* because I realized it too late, -or- the pain of knowing-it-all. And every single time I get a different answer from within :-(

>Lucky is the man who died ignorant.
I second that!

Nakul Aggarwal said...

*bullshit* is all I can say. :) Usually, I tend not to comment on these analysis, as these are totally personal but such ruthless handling of life I just cannot see from a friend like you.

And seriously, I don't know what you have gone through and anyone else. So, dont take anything personally. I would just say, you need to watch some movies and then analyze life again. Start with "Life is beautiful".

I agree "Ignorance is bliss", so don't think at all. But, statistical analysis definitely makes life much much more beautiful rather messy. But, not everything in life can be statistically analyzed too. ;-)

Joe Ambrosino said...

I slept and dreamed that life was joy
I awoke and found that life was service
I acted, and behold, service was joy.

Tagore

aani (not my name but I like that name) said...

Hi there,

I stumbled upon your blog(s) yesterday through the blog of a mutual friend. I had started by reading a 101 things (actually 99) about yourself - quite enjoyed it. Though I found many-a-number to be interesting, I will just comment on #24 and #36.

I too don't like to celebrate my birthdays. Heck, I prefer that folks don't wish me. And I too am afraid of celebrations. I suppose I don't mind attending other people's celebrations as long as I get an opportunity to assist in organizing or setting-up.

I love the fragrance of Jasmine (mograa being the favorite amongst various species of Jasmine). I have to go out in a few minutes, but I think a flower shop will be on the way. I'm not sure I recall the fragrance of Lavender, but I'll go refresh my memory.

Start numbering from 0, that's so interesting, and quite cute! (Add #0 to the original list)

Appreciated the non-technical category of your library. Provided an inspiration to make time for recreational reading.

Lastly, there is an interest to browse through your blogspot; will be doing so, time-permitting, in the coming days. Hope it's alright with you.

This for now. Have a blessed Sunday.

p.s. The atult.net did not allow for anonymous posting, so had to comment on an entry that I did not even properly read (have to run out in a few minutes). As this is not at all related to the attached post, perhaps you may not want to have the comment published. This is for your reference only anyway. I don't know. :)

The Shaolin said...

@Joe Ambrosino: Thanks for sharing the beautiful lines!

@Aani the Anonymous:
Thanks for reading my blog and reading the never-ending blabbering on my atult.net
Birthday Celebration: To add more, I see nothing to celebrate in it.
Lavender: Do did you finally get to smell that lovely fragrance?

Library: You can find reviews of some of the tech/non-tech books in my blog's Books Review section here.
Do share your feedback as and when you read them.

> Lastly, there is an interest to browse through your blogspot; will
> be doing so, time-permitting, in the coming days. Hope it's alright with you.

Why wouldn't I be fine with it!!! :)

> did not allow for anonymous posting, so had to comment on an entry...
The infrastructure for atult.net is a tad old, haven't gotten around upgrading it yet.
Feel free to shoot email on address listed here.

Thanks for your wishes and you too have a great time!

-at

The Shaolin said...

@Nakul:
First off, I'm fine and nothing I said here has any bearing with current good/bad events. This has been my view all years along!
For BS: well it is not your fault, we as engineers are trained to believe MORE of anything is always GOOD: Knowledge (and almost everything else).

I'm not that big a philosopher to convince you why knowing more is not always good, but
Barry Schwartz in his amazing book "The Paradox Of Choice: Why More Is Less"
does an excellent job of it. Though he talks about material things, his logic is unassailable to me as a general rule.

Or, you can watch his video on TED that summarizes the whole book in a short 15min talk.