Gang of 6...

This blog belongs to 6 ex COE students of NSIT... Though, now, we are all in separate places, studying or working, we hope to remain in touch with each other lest we forget the great time we had back in college. This blog is an attempt to achieve the same. Here's to us...!

Sunday, October 01, 2006

what's the point?

Ummm. This is something personal - a bit 'too' personal for some people? I knew Raj Kiran, the AIIMS student who died yesterday due to complications from Dengue fever.

I had known him for around 2 years; first met him at Kamet. Kinda like a friend one might have had at VMC or Fiitjee - not particularly close, but I ran into him quite a few times. Have played badminton with him sometimes, have been to his hostel room, have talked about stuff in general on the bus... It is not clear what I feel worse about - that I will never see or hear from him again, or that I don't feel enough.

It never really hits you, the inherent unfairness of life, unless things like this happen to someone you know. And I can't help thinking about it - how his parents and close friends must feel, all his potential and dreams gone up in smoke. The really tough part is knowing that I'll live after he's gone, that I would go on to have a job, kids, whatever, and he'll not - it will be lucky if I even remember him, what he looks like. That is, of course, if a car doesn't slam into me at an intersection one these days...the first thing I thought when I heard he's in a coma is 'It's not about me.' I interpret that now as meaning it could happen to anyone, including me. The world doesn't revolve around me, life would go on as before for most people around me. I could cease to be and I would cease to matter.

I mean, it never really occurs to me generally, that there can be life-changing(life-ending?) events waiting for me just around the corner, things that I would never have planned for. I might plan to apply for an MS, join a CS program at USC, then work in some Silicon Valley startup, and so on...and then something like this could happen to me. You could go out with barely a whimper, and there'd be little memory of you in 2-3 years. Or there might be, for entirely other reasons - like in the case of Raj, who died the ironical death of a doctor falling to a treatable disease, discovered too late. What about Raj the sportsman(he was on the AIIMS volleyball and football team), Raj the musician(he played the guitar and piano quite well) and Raj the student leader(He was elected general secretary of the AIIMS student body, and was busy helping organize the AIIMS fest PULSE a few days back)? I am happy I have those memories of him as well.

I think that young as we are, we simply don't think about this aspect of life - that it has to end sometime, and that that can happen at any time. And I think one needs to be prepared for this possibility - though how one does that is beyond me. Knowing that one can not be absolutely sure of living beyond the current moment of time is important. It helps shape your attitude towards life, towards others. The following are some really relevant lessons, at least for me:
I should stop putting off things for later; once I complete my exams; for after my BE; once I am 25; once I make enough to retire rich.
It's not about me - it doesn't matter in what I do, as long as I do it only for myself, it simply is of no consequence in the long run. What can I do for others? How can others benefit from what I have/can do? I don't mean philanthropy, setting up trusts etc - do I help at least my friends with what little I can offer? Can I help my parents out sometimes without complaining? Can I stop complaining about stuff, about people, when I know I am not helping?

I don't mean to lecture, I just think it might be a useful way of looking at things. Someone I know, from my generation has died. Should not that affect me?
Among more positive things I have thought of - I am beginning to think I might learn to understand things I thought weird earlier. I can begin to relate to things like "It's better to have loved and lost, than not loved at all" I can kind of understand why introspection is important, not just to clarify one's thoughts on something, but also to know oneself better.

I don't know what you guys think of all this. Like I said, may be it's something I should really keep to myself. I just think it's useful to think of deeper things sometimes. You can brush it all off as sentimental sermonizing. (I think you guys expect that from Johnny:) Or you could think about it and write in what you think about it.

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