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Motivation of a different kind!

Discussion in 'Cheeniya's Senile Ramblings' started by Cheeniya, Mar 10, 2007.

  1. Cheeniya

    Cheeniya Super Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Motivation of a Different Kind

    The best part of my childhood was almost entirely spent in Triplicane ( in Chennai). I have been in various places during subsequent years ranging from unbelievably remote villages in the Himalayas to swank cities in India and abroad. I must tell you honestly that I have never seen a place more vibrant than Triplicane. The people living in Triplicane are as vibrant as the place itself. They have a lot more concern for what is happening in their neighbors’ houses than in their own. They know all your friends and relatives who visit you and your equation with every one of them that you yourself would not have cared to analyse. Every incident that touches your life touches theirs too.

    What I have come to discuss with you now is not about the extroverts of Triplicane but the fact that the locality has always produced the best brains in the country. As a matter of fact, most of my childhood friends are scattered all over the globe in exceedingly high positions and a couple of them keep looking at Sweden for a call for the next Nobel Prize. The most important aspect is that most of these chaps were considered in their boyhood as fit only to graze cattle by their respective fathers. These parents made no secret of their assessment of their wards and from time to time gave colourful expression to their thoughts. In fact, they would concede a few alternative positions, such as hair cutting and woodcutting besides grazing cattle, to their children depending upon how benevolent their moods were at the time of predicting their children’s future. I never could understand how anyone rated so low by none other than his own parent could ever make such dramatic progress in life.

    It was then I happened to see the short and amazing film ‘The Miracle Man’ on the real life of an aircrash victim for whom the medical fraternity could give no chance of a survival. Looking at this man lying totally crippled, every doctor in the field just pursed his lips and nodded his head sadly from left to right. It is the story of how that man bounces back to life proving wrong all these negative predictions about his chances of survival from everyone around him.

    Some people have it in them. Just tell them that they can never do a particular thing and you will see how well they do it. On a deeper analysis, I would even tend to think that flattery and incentives can hardly be as effective a motivating tool as negative sentiments and gibes. A highly provoked man can get far more motivated to prove his capabilities than a highly flattered, over-rated individual. The men of Triplicane who are scattered all over the globe as trendsetters are a standing testimony to this theory. Dont you think that for someone, who is tipped to become only a cattle grazer, to scale unbelievable heights in society is nothing short of a miracle? Miracle men are not those who perform miracles for others but for themselves!
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2021
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  2. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Sri,
    A very factual post, which has gone unnoticed, for the lack of a proper forum when you posted it, perhaps ! Anyway, I happened to read it; better late than never.
    Since we both are senior citizens, we can reminisce a lot about our "antha kalathile (nan collegile padikkumpothu etc!)".

    Yes, formerly parents used to scold their children with usages like "nee mudi vetta than layakku, nee madu meikka than layakku' ! Will any parent dare pass such a comment today to their wards? Hair Salons are so posh now and flourishing with money jingling in & Amul & Aavin are making waves in the economy !

    The part of Mylapore where we live almost borders on Thiruvallikeni. So I recollect the area which I have seen, when I came to Chennai as a newly married bride. There used to be narrow congested lanes where the middle class lived happily ! Those were the days when young men flaunted their bravados and coloured their dreams, where small victories were celebrated without reservations and where enemies were forgiven and friendships would last through the worst of times. TVs were non-existent & people used to gather in the "vasal thinnai" & review the day's proceedings in the entire neighbourhood !

    Recently I was passing through that area & saw how passionately cricket is still played there. The team is the sort which rolls up its sleeves, plants three stumps and heaves the bat against tennis balls, using every unorthodox style of playing that is yet to be documented !!

    Oh, the simple pleasures of yesteryears, when we did not have TV, mobile, computer etc ! I feel like bursting out "anda naalum vanthidatho" !

    You said it correct that if & when provoked, our inner dormant strength manifests much better & we rise to great heights in an effort to prove ourselves, very often to our own surprise as well !

    Love,
    Chithra.
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2007
    sindmani and Yumna like this.
  3. Lavanya

    Lavanya Bronze IL'ite

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    I beg to differ with both of you on certain accounts...
    1) Although chastising seems to make a better person than flattery, it depends on a great deal on the person in the receiving end. Being brought up in Madras I have seen what you are referring to, though I've been blessed with a family who never reprimanded so much that we had to repent our existence. They encouraged when we did the right thing and motivated us by being examples to great extent.
    2) Now that I'm in US I see kids who are used to flattery. My friend's 3 year old girl calls herself the little princess which her mom (Russian) disapproves of. Flattery is the extreme form of encouragement. So this doesn't work out too well in real life especially when we need to face rejections & losses.
    3) My take on this is that we have to definitely encourage kids & motivate them positively but then again parents should learn to stop before they overdo themselves & let the kid learn with the realms of reality. I consider encouragement to be as vital as the very breath of life while I still will remember that if you spare the rod you spoil the child. A healthy balance of both has made me who I am & I don't regret the person I have become.
    4) Finally, although I agree on not wasting too much time in front of tv, Mrs.C, if not for computers & internet I'd have never known IL or the many wonderful ILites including you from whom I learn something positive everyday.
    -L.
     
    2 people like this.
  4. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Lavanya,
    Don't you ever think that I underestimate the value of computers, internet etc. But for that facility, you & I would not be interacting so enjoyably with Cheeniya here !
    My only thinking is, there was much more human interaction before they arrived on the scene, which has decreased now. Children play less with neighbours, have less time for outdoor activities which makes me feel sad.
    When my children were young, we, as a family used to have dinner together. But, now, my grandchildren adjust their times with their favourite T V programmes, not wanting to miss out on it. The term Couch Potatoes which was not heard of previously, has come to stay now.
    My own family complains that I spend more time on the net than with them ! Our priorities shift without ourselves realising it !!
    I love to keep in tune with modern technology, but feel sad only on the above said points.
    Love,
    Chithra.
     
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  5. radhavenkatesh

    radhavenkatesh Silver IL'ite

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    Reading ur posts i honestly have to accept tht i find them v true and realistic ,
    memories race down whn we had so many friends freedom to go to our neighbour hood and peep into their kitchens and taste a little of wot was being cooked on their stoves calling side households atta and mama ,akka and anna do little jobs for them and get our drawings of science praticals with them many of school project works were not difficult bcz we had so many hands to help us with lot of affection.
    today whn we find ourselvesin better positions we dont find a helping hand even whn we shell down so much currency .
    my husband has no sisters we had a family rented in our house and my son use to call her atta means fathers sister years later whn her sons r settled in US and other places has grandchildren still visits my son stays with us for one or two days and we have happy time recollecting those golden days whn we had less entertainments and more communications.
    in this concrete jungle with so many attractions like virtual world around end of the day i many times feel lonely and lost inspite of having loving husband , caring mother in lw and a v gud son and bundles of work to do .
     
  6. Vidya24

    Vidya24 Gold IL'ite

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    Cheeniya,

    We are all in search and praise of what is lost, the more irerecoverably lost it is- the more we lament and yearn for it. There is something of the knights in all of us searching for the Holy Grail. You have sketched the long lost times and tempers of Triplicane so vividly. It almost beamed me there, though I have never had the bhagyam of visiting Triplicane or the Parthasarathy temple. Though am a big fan of Mansion Kavithaihal.

    Back to your wonderful piece, yes, Tiruvallikeni has produced some of the best minds and brains many of which we have drained/donated to the west. I know that they recahed such excellence not just battling grimy economic and habitual conditions, but also parental disdain and angst which was such an integral part of child rearing and discipline in those days.

    I also liked your punch line on miracle men creating miracles for themselves. Have you seen the movie Bruce Almighty? In that a rejuvenated Jim Cary after meeting with God,uses the by-line,'Be the miracle'. I quite made that the motto of my life.

    Very happy to read your work Cheeniya.

    Lavanya,

    Poaching on Cheeniya's thread again. I liked your bulleted replies. Yes, flattery can flatten out a mind just as criticism can.

    V24
     
  7. Cheeniya

    Cheeniya Super Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Chithra
    What I have written about here is what I had gone through in my childhood. Living in one of the ten houses in a colony sans electricity was an experience I so lovingly cherish in my mind. The people there had no resources to keep their young in good humour and yet there was always an undercurrent of warmth even when they caned us. We all grew up as they desired bringing credit to them.
    The present day children have greater ambience and more resourceful parents. Even though not a day passed without my dad taking me to task for something I have done or not done, I never allow the same thing to be done to my grand children!
    And so life goes on!
    Sri
     
  8. Cheeniya

    Cheeniya Super Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Lavanya
    Even the kings of yore sent their children during their early formative years to a Gurukulam to learn the rigours of life and to let them discipline themselves. They perhaps did not want their children to grow in the ambience of the palaces and be denied of the knowledge of how other less fortunate children grew. This experience stood them in great stead in later life. And at the Gurukulam, they toiled as hard as others.
    I am not for a moment suggesting that the motiation of the kind that exists among the lower middle class people as the best method! Far from it! I was just in a reminiscing mood! We all went through similar treatment and we too grew up into what our parents wanted us to be!
    Life in pockets of Triplicane which is infested with lower middle class families is still the same. I have seen parents coming home from a hard day's labour to their dingy little tenements getting irked by the indifferent children and giving vent to their feelings in unprintable terms. It is not that they want to be so but what else can be expected of a much harrassed parent? oh, I have gone through that life and we never felt any illwill towards our parents. Whenever they got a chance to be good to us, how joyful those brief moments used to be!
    Sri
     
  9. Cheeniya

    Cheeniya Super Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Radha
    How very true that life in modern times is hardly a patch on what it used to be!
    Relationships have become synthetic and smiles hardly reach the heart. More women are confined to old age homes for convenience, not of them but of us!
    We have an old age home here called Vishranthi which I visit often to share my time with less privileged persons and how happy they become to see someone from outside their world. They dont long for good food or modern gadgets but they intensely long for human company.
    In spite of the tough times that we faced in our early life, we had people around us and that made our lives so joyous!
    Sri
     
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  10. Cheeniya

    Cheeniya Super Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Vidya
    Be the miracle is my taraka mantra too!
    There is a sleeping giant in every one of us and manyatime he needs to be poked than pampered to awaken him. Like Kumba Karna!
    Having been a subject of the manner in which I was brought up as described in my thread, I now feel thankful to the methods my parents employed on me! My dad being severe on one side and my adorable mum on the other side softpedalling the encounters all the time making sure that we understood our dad's motives behind being harsh to us in proper perspective so that we did not develop any illwill towards him.
    sri
     

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