How Paramacharya is inspiring me - Part 1

or how I am moving to a vedic lifestyle

The story starts around the year 1999.

I was working in Sun Microsystems
(now Oracle) in Silicon Valley, USA.

It was a job I had aspired for, since
seven years. Nice pay.
Nice place. Salubrious climate -
not too hot, not too cold.

But ...

I did not like the job.
I told myself, "Hariram, give
yourself sometime. It is a
new job. New place.
Takes sometime to get used to."

So, I gave it a few more months.
In the meanwhile, I went to a career

In the very first meeting, the counsellor asks,
"What would be your career choice ?".
I say spontaneously,
"Priest. Philosopher. Teacher".
I was surprised by my own answer.

The counsellor, over the next few weeks
asks me to take a few tests. One of the
tests was Myers-Briggs Type Indicator,
where I tested as INFP, a personality
type not suited for the job I had (and aspired for)
and very much suited for the careers
that I blurted out spontaneously.

I don't know if you have gone through this.
You have worked a few years to reach a
goal. Now that you have attained it, you
feel this is not what you want.

So, here I am aspiring and working for seven
years towards what I want to do
every day. Then one day it hits you that
not only does the job not suit your personality
type, but also you inner voice is shouting
that this is not what I want.

It was intensely disturbing.
I started to doubt my ability to
self-evaluate. Is the results from
the career counselling a true
reflection of myself ?
Or is it the seven-year-aspiring-guy
the real me.

At that point, I had two choices.
One. Grind it out at the current profession.
Two. What two ? I was not even
thinking of an alternative !

At those times, I have asked
myself - "Do you aspire for
Scot McNealy's job ? Do you
aspire for Bill Joy's job ?" [+]
Do you want to start your company ?
Answer to all of them was always - "No".
Yet, I was not ready to opt out.

Looking back to that point (which was
12 years back), it is funny in hindsight,
that I was not even considering a
career change. It took me another
seven years to completely opt out
of Information Technology as a career.

I suppose, these things have a
momentum of their own.
If you spend seven years aspiring
for something, you need to spend
seven years de-aspiring before
you can be free from it !

Around that time,
I came across these pages:

These were an English translation of
parts of Paramacharya's "Deivattin Kural".

I read them over a period of few months.
In hindsight, it has turned out that I have
internalised many parts of it.
But those days, it felt as
just another interesting read.

Over the years, I have asked myself what was
in it that is driving me. It cannot be the
words. Because it was a translation that I first read.
It cannot be the uniqueness of the ideas.
Because, I have heard those ideas before
and not been significantly affected by it.

It has got to be Tapas.

I feel it is Paramacharya's Tapas that
is driving me towards a Vedic lifestyle.

(... to be continued)

[+] Scot McNealy, the CEO & Bill Joy, the Chief Scientist
      were also the co-founders.
      They then represented the top jobs
      in the business and technical side of Sun.

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