Mar 21, 2016

The "instant" life

We wake up, we would rather grab a cup of instant coffee than take a few more minutes to prepare the traditional, filter coffee.
We fall sick, we would rather pop some antibiotics immediately than let the body's immune system to fight it out.
We feel pain, we would rather pop a pain-killer and get instant relief than try to understand why the pain has occurred in the first place.
We feel hungry, we would rather grab a pack of ready-to-eat food and stuff our mouths than prepare healthy snacks and stock up at home/office.
We want to cook, we would rather buy a pack of cut vegetables or sprouts and whip up something quick rather than cut the vegetables by ourselves.
We want to make dosa, we would rather buy the readymade batter pack than prepare the batter using a electric mixer/grinder at home.(Dear grandma, you really used that huge traditional Indian stone grinder? unbelievable!)
We don't get sleep, we would rather pop a sleep inducing tablet than try to calm our minds by doing pranayama/yoga nidhra.
We visit our extended family and we would rather buy a pack of chocolates/biscuits as a treat for the kids than spend some time preparing a healthy treat at home by ourselves.
We are over-weight/obese and we would rather buy shape-fit clothes than take up exercise everyday.

Numerous such examples of how we run towards "instant" shortcuts than seeking the "right" solutions. I can't help but yet again reflect back on my favorite line from Harry Potter when Dumbledore says "we have a choice between what's easy and what's right".

In Tamil, there is a very interesting word - "menakkedal" (மெனக்கெடல்). For some reason, I have fallen in love with this word. In English, it would roughly translate to "deliberate effort".

Our grandparents made the time for deliberate effort on activities that's important for their health as well as their family. Neither our parents nor we are ready to make this time.
Is it the easy availability of such "instant" shortcuts?
Is it the excessive, loud marketing that makes us believe that these shortcuts are indeed the solutions?
Is it that we are so time-starved?
Is it that we think these efforts are not worthy of our time?
Is it that our priorities are so different?
Is it that we are so addicted to technology and devices that a few minutes away from them makes us feel insecure?

Since I was born in early 80s, I have seen the lifestyle of then and now. I feel strongly that the present lifestyle is not sustainable - neither for us, our health, our relationships nor for the environment.

Let's embrace "deliberate effort" on the priorities that are important for the long term. Let's make time for them - our health, our relationships, our peace.

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