Wednesday, July 8, 2015

That don’t impress me much!

Well, to begin with, I love Shania Twain! Not only because she’s a fabulous singer but also because of the lyrics of one of her songs which I absolutely adore and can so relate to. (Actually, the song title is the title of my post - as some of you might have noticed).

Recently, I heard the song again which triggered my thoughts for this post.  The lyrics of the song may’ve been written by someone else but since I don’t know that ‘someone,’ and also because she’s sung it so beautifully, the credit for the lyrics goes to Shania.

It’s one of my favourites from her collection. Just read these lines -

“So you got the brain but have you got the touch
don’t get me wrong, yeah I think you're alright…that don’t impress me much”

My sentiments exactly!

Although, she’s only addressing it to the men in the song. In my case, however, I silently voice it to all the attention seeking, self – absorbed, arrogant, egotistical, rude and insensitive people that I sometimes knowingly and at others unknowingly get to meet.

Now this post is not to hit - at those people that I’ve had the displeasure of meeting or knowing in my life’s journey so far. Not at all.  It’s actually something that I’ve been wondering about for a long time. Why do people behave so unlike themselves? What is it that prompt an increasing number of people these days to go against the basic traits of human nature: simplicity, humility and kindness? Is it because the world is becoming more and more superficial? Is it their own insecurity or bruised ego? Is it that they feel inadequate in some ways or is it because they never got the love and attention they deserved from their near and dear ones? I’m still trying to figure it out.

I’m a member of a lay Buddhist organisation called Sokka Gakai International (SGI) which upholds the values, thoughts, teachings and traditions of Shakyamuni Buddha. (The India chapter of the international organisation is called Bharat Sokka Gakai - BSG). Among the many simple yet impactful teachings discussed and shared in this beautiful practice, the one that I remind myself time and again, whenever I get swayed by such emotions or baser instincts– of course I get influenced too-- are the simple lines – “It is the heart that is important.”

Isn’t it a beautiful thought? And isn’t it true?

At times we forget that we’re all but mere mortals. It does not matter whether we are rich or poor, wise or a fool, beautiful or ugly; sooner or later death will claim us. We are not going to live forever. It is thus important that we lead meaningful, happy and fulfilling lives. However, selfishness, narcissism, arrogance and such negative qualities does not lead one towards happiness we all seek. On the other hand such qualities disconnect one from other fellow beings. It creates an environment of mistrust, insecurity, resentfulness and jealousy. Other people may be nice to such men and women out of fear or awe but they will never open their hearts or connect with them at a deeper level.  Of course, there’s nothing wrong in realizing one’s self worth and feeling proud about it. But it is equally important to be humble and respectful towards others. To appreciate others, be happy in their happiness, and genuinely reach out to them in their difficult times. It is also important to accept one’s own good fortune with grace and humility. While you ponder on my post let me roll out another line from the same song -

You think you're cool but have you got the touch/

Don't get me wrong, yeah I think you're alright… /

… but that don’t impress me much!


And just in case, here’s the Youtube link of the song -