Productivity Days During ˜lock Down With Sue and Resultant Two Books Published
I remember when I used to attend the Ashram of Swami Shraddhanand at Vasai Road close to Bombay, the Swami preached to us to make the best use of whatever time one has. He was also clear, one should not blame anybody for anything and try to do the best in whatever situation you are in. This is a very simple axiom but we all know that it is very difficult to follow.
I have been deeply influenced by Swami Shraddhanand and it will surprise readers by a Muslim Pir, who used to have his abode at Mohammed Ali Road. His name was Pir Nasiruddin Badshamiya Qadri Nakshabandi. It is a lengthy name but he always had rare words of wisdom and best of all he had developed the power of clairvoyance and ESP. I can say the same for Swami Shraddhanand who could read your mind and tell you what you are thinking.
The influence of these two men both from diverse religions has given me a lot of fortitude and strength. This came in handy during the recent lockdown enforced by the Singapore government during the China virus crisis. It was a 30-day curfew and I wondered how I would pass these 30 days.
Another factor weighing on my mind was the direction by the board of directors of the company to lay off almost 50% of the workforce and send them on unpaid leave. I had also to give the pink slip to my Secretary Sue, a vibrant young Chinese American.
I didn't like the pink slip business but I knew if I didn't enforce it, I would be given a pink slip. Giving Sue the pink slip was a tough proposition as she was staying alone. Readers will recollect that in my previous article I had mentioned that I had offered Sue to come and stay with me and she came for the simple reason she knew me well and worked with me.
She came when the lockdown was just commencing and she couldn't go back to get her suitcase so she was stuck with me with just one set of clothes. But it was not something insurmountable as she could wear my shorts and T-shirts though they were a little big for her. But then when you are staying at home and not going out, say "locked-in" it doesn't matter.
In hindsight, I can see that those 30 days which we spent together have turned out to be absolutely unforgettable. Apart from doing our official work, my creativity was at its best and I was able to compile one book on military warfare and one on fiction.
Dieter Fredrich Uchtdorf a German aviator has stated," the desire to create is one of the deepest yearnings of the human soul." I also recollect that Swami Shraddhanand had said that, "this yearning to create has to be ignited from the inner soul and a woman most necessarily may be a part of it"
Many will take umbrage at this statement of the Swami. Fair enough and we should respect the opinion of such persons, after all a dice has six sides and everyone is entitled to have a say. For me, Sue was a tremendous source of inspiration and creativity especially after she showed a flair of becoming a girl who could give a lot of guidance and support in the world of creation.
We spent a lot of time together, with me dictating my stories and articles on the word processor. We had two computers running and whatever I dictated she would immediately go through it on her computer and correct anything which the processor had not understood. She had become close to me and perhaps could divine what I was thinking when writing and carry out the amendments.
Another catalyst was the single malt whiskey. The idea was never to get drunk but to drink in a way where the imagination fertilized. I dare say that Sue had a tendency to drink a little more especially as it was a rare whiskey and then plump on the bed. That's part of the game.
Confined to my three-bedroom flat in this city, with no permission to go out we spent time cooking, working, and writing. I have been able to complete two books and the third one is about 20% ready. The books will take a few weeks to come out in the market and will be listed globally at Amazon and other sites.
I can see now that in case Sue had not been there, I don't think these books would have come out. Anyone who has ever read the great poet and Sufi mystic Rumi, has felt an immediate connection with the intense longing and burning desire of love and passion. Many philosophers have opined that the seat of creativity has been inspired by a woman companion.
It has inspired some of the most famous and inspiring pieces in the world. Thus the architectural splendour of Emperor Shahjahan's Taj Mahal to the passionate sculptural embrace of Canova," Psyche, revived by Cupid's Kiss," are all part of the same scenario.
Can one have a platonic relationship and still be creative. Maybe yes, if you are far away from each other but in case someone is close to you I don't think it is possible. After 30 days of the lockdown, I had a feeling that the lockdown should continue for another 30 days. However, the first step which I took was to remove the pink slip from the record of Sue. She is the only employee reinstated and I can't say for the others.
We must remember that creativity is not the gift of a few lucky ones. We all possess this gift, some of us have it buried deeper within, that's all. Swami Shraddhanand said it has to be ignited and it could depend from person to person how it will happen.
I have no pretense of being a great writer but yes I have a sense of satisfaction of having created 5 novels and books. The genie is out and I plan to get another two or three books ready by the end of the year. For these two books, Sue has been a big factor. I think all this was ordained by the Almighty and he will show the way forward.