Of anger

“He conquers the world, who patiently puts up with the abuse of his neighbours. He who controls his anger, as a horseman breaks an unruly horse, is indeed a charioteer and not he who merely holds the reins, but lets the horse go whither it would. He who sheds his anger just as a snake its slough, is a real hero. He who is not moved despite the greatest torments inflicted by others, will realize his aim. He who never gets angry is superior to the ritualist who faithfully performs for a hundred years the sacrifices ordained by scripture. Servants, friends, brothers, wife, children, virtue and truth abandon the man who gives way to anger. The wise will not take to heart the words of boys and girls.”

Sukracharya imparts wisdom to his daughter Devayani who is angry after being treated badly by her companion Sarmishta.

(Mahabharata by C. Rajagopalachari – p.34)

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Have you played the waiting game?

Waiting...Have you ever wondered what your WQ (Waiting-Quotient) is? How long can you wait before your brain starts scratching the inside of your skull, rendering you irritated and ready to take a bite at the next person who pulls on that last nerve?

Whether it is waiting for someone, or waiting in a queue, or waiting for your station to arrive when you travel – your patience-clock starts ticking! And when it reaches that WQ, it screams out an alarm, blaring from within and in no time your face looks like a bear who was disturbed from his hibernation in the middle of winter!

Based on WQ, there are broadly three kinds of people – The Patient, The Rogue, and The Crank.

The Patients are the people whose WQ is the highest. They are the ones who wait it out. They are usually ones who can detach their minds from the current situation and find something else to think about. Though their WQ is high, it is not infinite. When pushed far enough, they are known to turn into Rouges or Cranks.

The Rouges are people whose WQ is somewhere between that of the Patients’ and Cranks’. Once their WQ is reached, they are generally people who avoid the situation by hook or crook. (Here, I’m not considering the people who avoid waiting – like paying online without standing in the queue – instead, those who avoid waiting in the queue after they are in one) Usually, Rouges are people who ‘bend’ the rules. By hook, to avoid waiting in a long line to buy an economy ticket, they would spend more to buy a first class ticket if they had to wait lesser for the latter. By crook, they may bribe someone ahead in the queue to take their place.

The Cranks are people with a short fuse when it comes to WQ. Their tolerance level is the lowest and they are not as clever as Rouges to find a way out. Hence these people tend to fight it out – many a time disrupting the queue and the harmony for others.

The basic disadvantage of measuring up people using their WQ lies in the fundamental fact that WQ is in fact, a very volatile factor. Likewise, it has to be noted that the above classification is completely circumstantial and subjective. That is, a Patient in one situation can become a Crank in another. (WQ varies from person to person and situation to situation)

I am sure we have found ourselves to be all three at one point or the other. Coming to my inspiration of this post – I played the waiting game today and I was a Patient.

I was waiting at the mechanic for my motorbike to be fixed. I saw a kid enjoy a cake from a nearby bakery and throw an empty box in the middle of the road. That was when the game began. I started guessing who or which vehicle would be first to go over the box.

I ruled out two-wheelers thinking they would easily maneuver around it. The snazzy four-wheelers were also out because they avoid the box thinking it might be filled with nails and burst their tires. The three-wheelers (auto rickshaws) were more careful to avoid it. I said to myself – it had to be a truck where the driver would be least bothered and go over it without hesitating.

However, I was pleasantly surprised that I did not think of it before it actually happened. The box was run over first by a woman riding a two-wheeler! If I had forethought of it, it would have topped my list of possibilities.

I had a nice quiet laugh, and my patience-clock reset.

Have you played the waiting game today? What were you – Patient, Rouge or Crank?

I hold…

I hold the truth, ‘cause a heart must not be hurt,

I hold my weakness ‘cause my strength must not diminish,

I hold my rage, ‘cause anger has helped very few,

I hold my feelings, ‘cause love must not be forced,

I hold my pain, ‘cause it powers my will,

Life is all about endurance; Patience is the key…