I love selfies. It is my chance to focus on myself for a moment and take a picture.
But “selfie” is also a hallmark of the culture we are seeing increasingly – people excessively focusing only on their selves. When we start putting ourselves before others all the time, it impairs our ability to serve others which is so vital in the collaborative and networked world we now live in.
I am reminded of a wonderful quote in Huffington Post article titled “Selfie World” by Michael Rosenblum quite aptly sums up what we really need to focus on:
As the sage Maimonides wrote, “If I am not for me, who will be?” But he also followed with “If I am only for me, what am I?”
We sure have the first part down.
Maybe it’s time to focus on the second?
What do you think?
Nicolae Tanase is the Excellence Reporter who asks thought leaders from different walks of life a single question: “What is the meaning of life?”
This is one question that I secretly hoped no one ever asked me. I have been thinking all the time about business related topics and any question that did not have defined boundaries was difficult for me to respond to.
And it happened. Nicolae asked me this question and threw me into a whirlwind of thoughts. What emerged as a response was as follows:
Life is so profound, enormous and ever-expanding that it has no meaning.
When I photograph birds, I learn something about life. A bird, enlivened by the same life energy as us, never goes around trying to find the meaning of life. It just follows its own nature — to fly, to sing and to simply be what it really is. They are peaceful with their self not lamenting about what happened to them in the past or what will happen to them in the very next moment. They live in here and now; in perfect harmony with their inner nature.
I see the same life energy manifesting itself when I see my three years old son jumping on the bed merrily singing rhymes. Joyful for being alive, he is the most complete expression of life, just like birds and other elements of nature are.
The quest for meaning of life is the quest to connect with our inner self and let that shine bright. Nothing outside of us can help in finding the meaning of our own life. We can see the abundance in the world only when we connect with the abundance of life that is within us. Only then can we see the possibilities that life brings to us. Only then can we truly express our real selves through our endeavors. Only then can we expand our consciousness about life. Only then can we move beyond mere survival and truly live our potential.
Connecting with our true inner nature is almost like diving into a deep ocean to find a precious pearl. It may not always be attainable but it is this pursuit that makes life worthwhile and beautiful.
~Tanmay Vora, Excellence Evangelist, lifelong learner, blogger, author and IT business leader who writes at QAspire.com
This response originally appeared here.
In the analog world where I grew up, I had formed a habit of maintaining an analog journal. A joint effort between me and my father, the journal was enriched with wise words, poems, quotes, thought snippets and articles from great thinkers – all hand written! Occasionally, my father would also ruminate on life using this small journal as a tool. Everything that inspired or enabled us to make sense of the crazy world around secured the space in that journal. It is a shared stream of wise thoughts on living a simple, meaningful life.
And then we were invaded by demands of life and career. By technology. We saw ourselves writing and reading digitally more often without even realizing when the trusty pen silently gave way to the keyboard.
Analog journal gave way to business blog that I started in 2006. The goal here was to get wise in business and record my lessons on leadership and learning. The blog evolved to gather recognition across the globe. This journey of learning and expressing extended to Twitter and resulted in my first book in 2009. The mere act of thinking and putting my points of view out there made me a better professional and a better learner.
And then, on a rainy Tuesday morning, the memories of maintaining a personal log of thoughts, ideas and inspiration came back to the fore. There was a strong urge to travel back in time and continue with the process of exploring the random dots of life, connecting them in some way of the other, sharing inspiration and being inspired in the process. The real reward in the journey of life is the journey itself. As we move along this journey, we notice things, things notice us, we evolve and we weave a life together.
And therefore, a digital version of “The Wise Journal” is born. I aim to share wisdom as I encounter it. I hope to delve deeper into higher dimensions of life beyond the trials of mere survival. I hope that this journey will take us some place worthwhile, enabling us to connect the seemingly random dots that make up a wise, meaningful life.
So, join in this exploration. I look forward to our conversations here and elsewhere.