Wednesday, August 29, 2012





If you want to learn the Art of Living just observe the way animals live and react to situations.
For me, my pet Doberman girl Sherry is my best teacher on the Art of Living.
                                                  SHERRY KARVE

Sherry is Doberman X – the “X” factor (father) is probably a Caravan or Mudhol Hound as her mother is a pure Doberman.
Sherry behaves spontaneously, joyfully, based on her inner instinct.

She plays, she barks, she chases, she eats and she sleeps in accordance with her natural instinct.

Sherry does not need to go to a gym for physical fitness. 

Sherry does not need to see a therapist for mental fitness.

Sherry is not a Goal Oriented person.  

She is an Inner Resource Oriented person – in short, she is a Source Oriented person.

Conventional wisdom teaches us to become goal-oriented. 

From childhood there are goals set for us to achieve, and when we achieve one goal there is always another goal waiting for us – it is an endless pursuit, a chase which never culminates. 

We are taught that it a goal oriented person who always succeeds in life. 
But is there a final destination of success...? 
Do you ever reach your final goal...?

Goals are always outside you, goals are in the future, goals are far away from you.  

Your goals are not in your control. 
If you design your lifestyle in such a way that your happiness depends on things outside you, if your happiness depends on things in the future and things not in your control, then you may find happiness elusive and you may never be truly content and happy. 
If you are too result-oriented – you will always be chasing horizons.

if you run after something it runs away from you, 
and, conversely,
if you run away from something it runs after you 
so calm down
stop running
and live a more Source-Oriented Life.

Look inwards, discover and harness your inner resources, act instinctively and you will realize your full creative potential.

Like my pet dog Sherry, you will live spontaneously, unpredictably, act on the spur of the moment and experience the joy of the glorious uncertainties of life rather than get frustrated by them.

You will live a more stress free life too.

Have you seen wild animals suffering from stress...?

Maybe some domesticated pet animals are stressed-out because we humans put stress on them by imposing our “goals” and demands on the poor hapless pets...!

We have become so preoccupied with achieving success that our lives are always heading towards something in the future.  

In the process, we lose touch with the aliveness and delight of the present. 
Sherry does not worry about the future, about achieving future goals, but live in the present.

Sherry does not live in the past either.  

Sherry is very forgiving – even if I scold her, which I never need to do, she is back to her cheerful self in a jiffy and does not hold any grudges either.

Anger is a reality.  

It happens inside us and the main cause of anger is pent up stress.
Goal Oriented behaviour may result in us trying to suppress our anger which in turn may create stress within us. Yes, stress is created by suppressed unreleased pent up anger.

                                      Sherry - ALL EYES AND EARS


Here is a lesson I got one morning from Sherry in Anger Management by Source Oriented Living.
We lived in a spacious bungalow with a huge compound, located high up on a hill slope, with a beautiful panoramic view of the verdant wide green expanse of Girinagar all around right down to the placid blue waters of the Khadakvaska Lake. 

One morning while we strolled on our lawn sipping rejuvenating cups of piping hot amruttulya tea in the lovely mist and slight drizzle, I noticed Sherry standing alert at the bungalow gate looking intently, focussing on something outside, and gradually getting angry, as evident from her focussed eyes, slow growls, heightened breathing, stiff upright tail and vivid line of hair standing taut on the centre of her neck and back, hackles raised. 

I walked towards the gate and looked outside – the object of her attention was a huge white cat that was walking nonchalantly towards our bungalow gate, almost defiantly. 
The moment the cat came close, Sherry suddenly lost her temper, started barking, violently jumping, infuriated with anger, desperately pleading with me to open the gate. 
The cat stopped dead in her tracks and crouched, and I knew that if I let Sherry out, she would desperately, furiously and frenziedly chase the cat down the hill, and if she caught the cat, there would ensue a violent fight to the finish, and almost certainly it would be the cat who would be finished. Yes, Sherry would surely finish off the cat, as she had done earlier in the wild.

So I just walked away and Sherry realized that I wasn’t going to open the gate, and she went so wild with rage, that she ran amok, running wildly all round the spacious compound, taking high speed runs, jumping over hedges, barking, chasing, leaping at birds, running fast at top speed round and round the bungalow, till she was totally exhausted, after which she went to her water bowl, lapped up cold soothing water, and lay down on her rug in a cosy manner, calm, tranquil, totally relaxed, her anger totally spent, dissipated and dissolved into peaceful serenity. 

That’s what you must do when you are angry, isn’t it...? 
Let me tell you it works - the moment you sense anger rising within you, just start exercising, run, jog, take a brisk walk, dance, move your limbs, sway, do something.
Spontaneously do some physical activity till your anger is spent, and the rage built up inside you dissipates, exhausts and disolves itself into a state of calm. 

So, Dear Reader, the next time you start getting angry, do what Sherry does – just start running till your anger disappears and you collapse into a cosy state of peaceful calm and tranquility

And if you can't run, at least take a brisk walk or go for a swim or go to your gym and workout.

Just see for yourself how physical activity dissipates anger

Yes, let physical activity does help you dissipate your anger, or any negative emotion.
It is the same with stress

The moment you feel stress building up, take a brisk walk and see how physical activity dissipates and dissolves stress.

There is a lot to learn about the “Art of Living” from our animal friends, isn’t it...?

So just behave naturally, spontaneously, doing what your inner voice and instinct tells you, observe fauna and flora around you, and most importantly, get a pet dog  and make him or her your friend, philosopher and guide.

I’ll end with a quote on dogs from Sigmund Freud:

Dogs love their friends and bite their enemies, quite unlike people, who are incapable of pure love and always have to mix love and hate in their object-relations. 
                                            SHERRY with her DAD
So here is a Bow Wow to you from Sherry and she wishes that may you live a happy spontaneous stress-free dog-like source-oriented life...!  

Sherry looks forward to your comments and feedback.

Copyright © Vikram Karve 2012
Vikram Karve has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this work.
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

Did you like this story?
I am sure you will like the 27 fiction short stories from my recently published anthology of Short Fiction COCKTAIL 

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About Vikram Karve

A creative person with a zest for life, Vikram Karve is a retired Naval Officer turned full time writer. Educated at IIT Delhi, ITBHU Varanasi, The Lawrence School Lovedale and Bishops School Pune, Vikram has published two books: COCKTAIL a collection of fiction short stories about relationships (2011) and APPETITE FOR A STROLL a book of Foodie Adventures (2008) and is currently working on his novel and a book of vignettes and short fiction. An avid blogger, he has written a number of fiction short stories, creative non-fiction articles on a variety of topics including food, travel, philosophy, academics, technology, management, health, pet parenting, teaching stories and self help in magazines and published a large number of professional research papers in journals and edited in-house journals for many years, before the advent of blogging. Vikram has taught at a University as a Professor for 15 years and now teaches as a visiting faculty and devotes most of his time to creative writing. Vikram lives in Pune India with his family and muse - his pet dog Sherry with whom he takes long walks thinking creative thoughts.

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© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

1 comment:

Aabha Vatsa said...

You will encounter anger in life all the time... cos you can never control how others behave.... and if they r unfair it is bound to annoy you. But after the first flush, spend the anger away by a physical activity like you suggest , or giving it back to the unfair person or simply distracting yourself with some activity. Never allow anger to build a crescendo in your heart.... diffuse it, deal with it and move ahead.