Pulkit – The Philocalist
We spend our lives living experiences that shape us. These experiences do not come with age requirements, necessary experience or essential qualifications. We just get the hand that we are dealt and we have to learn how to transform our lives to react to every page we turn. This Week’s Sunday Story is that of the poetic writings of Pulkit and his “wise beyond his years” experiences that truly reflect his pure love for life even whilst in the mist of quicksand.
Every morning brings a new day to rise
Happy and wise consider it to be a surprise
It’s the start of a new day, get up from the bed, see that bright sun
Look out from the window, birds are having fun
And then I went for a morning walk
To do a bit of sweet air talk
And then there comes the milkman, always on time
Always greets me with an internal rhyme
On the way to the garden, I see a little girl with her father
That attachment and peacefulness get all the my joys.
And here is what I see, A group of old people having a chat with a cup of tea
I can see their long years of experience and happy-go-lucky attitude, from that facial beauty
Oh now, here arrives the gang of children, having no worries and tension
I miss those awesome days, when it was no fight for any perfection
Chattering monkeys, chirping birds, mooing cows and quacking ducks
So much to see, so much to learn, I can’t even get for a million bucks
The Gardener then welcomes me with a beautiful rose
Trust me people that’s the best feeling and I felt so composed
And then after that beautiful journey, I take a deep breath and stand there in the middle of the garden
That soothing breeze and catching up to that wooden redolence
What peace can be to enjoy with all the cheerful things around you
Live everyday like it’s your last, because there is so much to attend to
So just go on, and enjoy this peaceful morning
We never know what happens next, the next day it may be storming.
As I read his strings of words, I feel that I am talking to a worldly man who has experienced love and lost and all that is in-between. It takes experience to find the pleasure in every day life. To relish in the birds you hear, to delight in the interactions of others, to thrive on the prospects of what may lay ahead despite the possibility of rain and thunder. I ask Pulkit about inspiration for such beautiful words:
“I have a habit of finding positives out of everything. And that’s what the main theme for all of my blogs. So this poem is based on what to look for on a normal morning day, which is enough to put up a smile on our face.”
All I can think is how mindful he is of the world around him. Mindfulness is one of the most difficult skills you can learn – to focus solely on the present moment, bringing one’s attention to the internal and external experiences that are occurring simultaneously. Pulkit appears to do this effortlessly without any consideration of his past experiences or predictive theories of his future endeavours. He sits and takes the world in, acknowledges its beautiful existence on his well-being.
“From a piece of paper to a human being around me, I don’t know but everything made me smile and that’s when I started writing blogs. My main motive for the blogs is that I want to show people that you can find good in literally everything. From a train journey to a normal morning, it depends on our observation, each day is special. ”
His zest for life is unlike anything I have seen. He wants to show the world that life can be worth it, worth the dramas, the sadness, the stresses and the quicksand. Quicksand is defined as a loose wet sand that yields easily to pressure and sucks in anything resting on or falling into it. It is a bad or dangerous situation from which it is hard to escape which is undetectable to the eye but engulfing of all those who cross its path. At the mere age of 18, Pulkit appeared to have had found himself, on occasion, sinking quickly into the obis. His honesty about his former struggles is beautifully tragic and yet sounds nothing like the Pulkit I have come to form a bond with. It is laced with the knowledge that sadness, disappointment and anxiety are all homogenous emotions experienced regardless of circumstance.
“Sadness is a major part of life but yes facing it like a warrior is what I want to see each one of us doing. Secondly in this teenage life there are a lot of problems – relationship problems, peer pressure, studies and what not. We teenagers always have some thing or another going up in our mind. And sometimes, some people crumble in these situations and end up giving up. And yeah there was a time where I really was very negative by attitude. Not getting admission into a good school for engineering here in India put me under a lot of depression. And that’s when I decided to prepare for abroad studies and I started preparing for SAT, SAT 2, ACT and all. And that’s where I also joined some art of living classes. I left my city and went to a new place in full isolation away from home for my prep. ”
Despite his darkest hours, Pulkit resembles a phoenix. He rises from his own ashes only to take shape again. His refusal to drown within the restraints of this world is peculiar for a man of his age. I mean, he is 18. 18!?!! I was not that wise at 25 let alone 18. He sees the pitfalls of this world take others fall into and is able to see past the materialistic entities that captivate the majority of us. Instead he takes in the natural beauty that is so freely offered.
“And that’s when I got to know my real self. I started to see joy in everything. You know there is something inside each one of us. People just get too busy in this outer world that they don’t have time for themselves. You know each one of us is special. And observing the world from a different outlook since the last 1 year, I can say that there are a number of things that can cheer you up. And these moments are nothing special, it’s just our perspective how we see things. So yes each one of us is a born champion and we can do wonders in one or another field. Each one of us wants to travel and explore this beautiful world. It’s just about escaping out of this monotonous life, where you leave all things behind and clear your mind – I think that’s the real challenge. The people who get stuck in their work regret that at the end, when they get to know that there was so much to do, so much to see. After reading this, I hope many will take that step to get out of that zone, and embrace on a journey to the mother earth.”
He firmly views this world as an opportunity and his eyes are the cameras. He zooms in and refocuses his lenses on the finer details to ensure that he sees everything that is available – the things that you don’t see through the screen of a laptop, phone, and ipad. I see him sitting on his porch with a pen and paper writing this poem. I want to see life through his eyes. I want to hear his internal dialogue, walk with him and have him just talk at me. Like a game of “spot-the-difference.” What don’t I see on my walks with Rupert? What do I stroll past without a second thought that Pulkit would rejoice in? I have the sudden urge to go walking and probably take about five steps in an hour or walk into something because I am so busy taking life in. I question if I really see the world, all of it. I mean I know I see the beauty in sunrises, running water, wind in the trees and smelling coffee in the morning but do I see it all? Pulkit starting blogging to achieve this, to make other think more laterally about the world that surrounds them.
“I started blogging because I want to show the people the world with my eyes. I want them to look for positives even in the most stressful situations of life. So as a teenager, I want all of my fellow mates to rise with confidence. It’s about teaching the readers how to do well as well as how to search for our real self. And that’s what my ultimate goal is. There lies a vast eternal world inside us. All we need is to find it and polish that. ”
We continue to talk about life and how there is always a motivation to carry on. There is something to fight for. I am sure Pulkit would agree that in life, there are soirées and there is warfare. We dance, we laugh, and we smile through those shindigs. For those moments are the ones that we photograph, we write statuses about, we take pictures of and we reminisce over. However, it is within the arena of warfare, that we make our impressions, learn our strength, develop ourselves and chase victory. Having said that, during his combats, Pulkit has always looked for a sword rather than a saviour. His battles are his to be fought, his rollercoaster to be rode, and his demons to be faced. He believes as I do, that life is there to challenge us and he enjoys every one of his challenges. Sometimes when you are most full of anxiety that is when you are about to face a challenge to test you and sometimes you are so happy that you feel you are at the height of life. So like all other human being, its important to take the ups with the downs.
His message to the world revolves around the idea that your past should act as your springboard rather than your quicksand. Our history is a part of our makeup and this should guide us through our darkest nights; it should no interfere with our destiny.
“When talking about advice, I would say to anyone going through a bad phase, “We get only one life, we should make the most of it, rather than wasting our time being sad.” This nature is so great, and we can’t endeavour its whole beauty even if we devote our entire life to it. So I would suggest to anyone that you should just make the most of the small time that we are blessed with.”
I have no doubt that his future is bright due only to his hard work and swordsmanship. He has duelled with the demon and come out as a champion. He is worthy of the every success he has and is a poster boy for hard work and diligence. He is a man who exemplifies persevering and zealous traits.
“Bit by bit from the art of living classes, I gained confidence. Then I got a good score in SAT and then I got an offer from Purdue. That’s when I realized that good happens with the ones who think good thoughts. And only then did my life take a U turn. Now I will be coming to America for my undergrad studies.”
This man is going places. He has the determination and willpower to do it. As excited as he is about the States, he is as animated about his home and eager to share his culture with anyone that will listen. He holds his country in such high regards that it is impossible to not see his appreciation for its wonderment. If India was not already on my list, it was firmly planted there now.
“And yes I am from a town near New Delhi. I have been there for my whole life and yes India is awesome – 29 states with each state having different people, different languages and distinct culture. It’s a land of festivals. And Indian food is popular all over the world. There is so much to see in India, you must visit. We have a saying in Hindi (my native language) – Atithi Devo Bhava which means that guests are like god to us.”
At the trend appears to be continuing, Pulkit has taught me two things; (1) the best time to plant a tree was twenty years ago, the second best time is now and (2) there is an oasis in every desert. The way he write about tragedy (see post: wish he was there…) shows me that age is truly irrelevant. Pulkit is 18 years old and I am in awe of his emotional wisdom. I wish I knew what he did at that age but I am planting my tree now. He has taught me that we grow, thread new rings into our trucks and strengthen our roots everyday. Once we are firmly grounded and our roots are deep enough into ourselves, we then laugh through the storms. I came across a perfect quote by Ilan Sharmir – “And as trees, we need to stand tall and proud, go out on a limb, remember your roots, drink plenty of water, be content with your nature beauty, enjoy the view.” I swear this is something that Pulkit could of written as it is advice that he has indirectly given me through our conversations
The second lesson – there is an oasis in every desert – is something that resonated in him from the first email. His meliorism is unwavering yet endearing. Pulkit has taught me that there is always an oasis even in the largest of deserts. I don’t know about you, but something I feel like I am in the desert where delusions set in and mirages led to nothing but false hope. But Pulkit has led be to believe in an alternative. His story has shown that even through the savage of the sun, there is an oasis, a pleasant place in the midst of every difficult time. He has highlighted the importance of taking time out to appreciate that paradise is a feeling that you can experience just by refocusing your eyes. Its all already there, anything you will ever want to bring into your life, exists. You want peace then walk against the tree and listen to the psithurism. You want perspective then star glaze and realise how small you are laying there amongst millions and millions of stars.
In terms of his ikigai, I think Pulkit found his reason for being in his philocaly – his love for beauty. When he stopped and took a breath, he found that the world around him was enough to be grateful for every single breath he is able to take. Pulkit sees the splendour in everything that surrounds him inclusive of the people he meets, the different cultures around the world and the beliefs that he lives his life by. His reason for being is simply to enjoy the heavenliness in every picture his eyes take and his thrust to see beauty in other’s perception of ugliness. Pulkit is a true Philocalist – he cultivates, creates and appreciates beauty in all of its endless forms.
And…I’m done. So, a different take this time. I hope you have enjoying reading it as much as I have writing it. Pulkit, thank you for your poetic genius and your wisdom. I am truly in awe of your advisability and sagacity. Thank you for your story. His blog can be found here: Pulkit’s blog
Please, if you have any comments, questions and thoughts then leave then below. However, if you want to get in touch privately, my email is firstname.lastname@example.org. Likewise if you want to be a Sunday story, please write to me.
Until next Sunday,