This post is written by a guest contributor, Amit Kumar.
“I personally find this blog article really motivating and inspiring..find out more and read his story below… ” – Lou Macabasco, Lifetofullest.com
We all were apprehensive about this trip. We had recently joined a global company and an adventure tour was part of our training. Some of us did not want to miss TV, some did not want to miss talking to their girlfriends or boyfriends (as network was not available at adv tour site), one of us did not want to miss FIFA World Cup. But we had to go, how can we say ‘no’?
We were in sleeper class of “Utkal” train and was travelling to “Haridwar”. One small kid in same bogey asked “what you all do?” “We are software engineers” replied one of my friends. “Where are you going?” the boy asked quickly. “To climb mountains” said another friend of mine. “But why does a software engineer require to climb mountains?” the boy questioned innocently. We smiled as even we were thinking the same.
The journey started…
I opened my eyes after the most deep sleep I ever had. It was 5 a.m, and this was the first time I woke up this early without any considerable effort. I came out of my tent and what I saw was something that I had seen in movies only, there were mountains on one side and a river on the other side, many birds singing their morning song and a cool breeze making me believe that I am alive. I really forget this in my 9 to 6 job and amongst many tensions. I was out on an adventure tour in uttarkashi and this was first morning of my 10-day long tour.
I take my glass and go out to take tea from kitchen. My guide informs me that in fifteen minutes, group will leave for exercise and yoga. We were divided in three groups and were made to do basic exercises, deep breathing and yoga at 6 am in the morning. We all knew that it was a good thing and gonna help us in coming days, but our lazy attitude always kept complaining in our mind. But I knew that it was a new starting, for the first time I was doing something that I wanted to do but was unable always.
Everything was moving so quickly that after an hour I find myself in front of a 100 ft mountain with a safety rope hanging and my teammates trying to reach on the top. My mind said “Boss, this is impossible, with this much weight, you won’t be able to do it”. But deep inside my heart said, “You are gonna do it. If anyone can do it, it’s you and only you. You are meant for conquering all challenges”. I started slowly, there was no place to keep your feet, almost impossible to climb, but like it is said that don’t think about challenges and tough situations, when time will come all resources will be with you to make you overcome all challenges, felt a different energy level, some strength came from nowhere and I was able to pull myself up. I was at the top and it made me smile that I overcame my fear.
First day passed so quickly and we were among the mountains to do another task. we had to climb to a 80 feet cliff and then come down with the help of ropes. We had to come down in two ways, first by sliding on a slanted rope and second by a vertical rope. I reached at the top and being a vertigo, strange things started happening, I was thirsty with no water around and my legs were shivering. I had no control over myself and I did know how I will be doing this task. My turn came and now I was at the edge of cliff, trying to hold my trainer out of fear, suddenly he asks me to start falling, there was a safety rope attached, but I was scared of that height, somehow tries to keep myself afloat in air ,and uncontrollably slides down to a lower level, my trainer yells and instructs me to be slow, but out of fear I almost have forgotten all his instructions, I somehow regain my composure and chants “gayatri mantra” and slowly starts again and to my surprise reaches down smoothly.
Days passed so quickly and tasks kept getting tougher, whether it was crossing the river with the help of a rope or surviving on all your own in a village among heavy rain. We were asked to reach a village at 5000 ft by walking through hilly areas and set up our camp, cook our food and survive all night without any help from trainers. As soon as we reached at the top, heavy rain came down and our tents were blown away by heavy rain and storm. We were shivering in cold and do not know how we gonna survive. We kept praying to God. Rain stopped after 3 hours and we were able to set up tents again. We set up fire with the help of some dry woods which we managed to save. 9 of us in our group divided all the work and started cooking “khichdi” and “chokha”. It was difficult to maintain a steady fire amongst heavy breeze , somehow we managed to cook our food. We ate like we were hungry from ages. Rain had stopped and we were sitting around bonfire. We kept humming songs till 3 am and that survival night became a night which we cannot forget ever.
Finally we were on our way to our main aim — to reach “surya” top (at 13,500 feet). We had to walk 3 days with 2 halts in between. First day, the path was good and we were able to walk fast, with some tough hilly areas in between. But walking 8 hours was not joke. We reached our first base camp after much hardship and took a temporary breath of relief. We relaxed that night and again started climbing next morning with all the “enthu” and “zeal”. The whole path was hilly and tough to climb, somehow we kept supporting each other and kept going, that was the strength of team , when one used to get tired, others kept motivating and vice versa. We reached our second base camp at afternoon and were too tired. Next morning, we were on our way to “surya” top, amongst beautiful meadows and amazing scenery. Everything we passed through in last 10 days was so fresh in our mind and was making us strong in their own way. We reached “surya” top at 10 a.m and It was the most beautifull site I have come across. Everything looked so simple from the top. But we all knew in our heart that the final outcome was just the reflection of small successes we had in all the moments.
I was again in the train and was on my way to home. My mind kept asking me what was that power that came from nowhere, helped you in going through this challenge. What was it that make people achieve impossible tasks when the strong will is there? Was it the chanting of “OM or Gayatri mantra”, was it the wonderful weather of “uttarkashi”, what was it that was nowhere but was everywhere, what was it that was too far but too near, what was it that was hard to understand and still simple to feel. I kept thinking about it and came to the conclusion that it was “THE POWER OF NOW”. Yes, it was the power of now that made me do everything.
All this while, amongst everything I have forgotten that “The now” was most important. I had become almost like a Robot, thinking I have been programmed to think about past and future. No moments passed without regretting the past and thinking about the imaginary beautiful future. I kept thinking “Why things went wrong” and ”used to imagine that if this happens I will be happy, If that happens I will be happy”. Life had become an infinite loop “if else” statements and there was no exit point. I had forgotten that all I had was “present moment ”, only this moment going into the past and only this moment was deciding my future. And I was ignoring this moment and all its fun. When I was hanging from that rope at 100 ft, I could not think about past or future, my whole concentration, my whole energy was at that moment and that made all the difference, and that was the point from which came that positive power to conquer, from having my whole and soul fixed at that particular moment. At that moment, I discovered that the “now” was the most beautiful and irrespective of what happened in past and what gonna happen in future. This moment is the most beautiful thing I had.
My mind went to that small boy and his question,”But why does a software engineer require to climb mountains?” and I answered in my heart “Yes, even software engineers need to climb mountains”.
The life was all about connecting those dots, I found one dot in the love of my parents, one dot in the guidance of my teachers, one dot in the affection of my friends, one dot in the eyes of that beautiful girl, one dot in the failures of my life and one at the top of 13,500 ft “Surya” top. The more I will explore, more dots I will get and clearer will be the picture of my life….
Amit is a software engineer by profession. He has a keen interest in motivational books, articles, blogs. He started writing blogs last year and was enjoying writing about his vivid experiences. He thinks life is a great teacher and it teaches and motivates him everyday. His blogs are a reflection of various thoughts he has accumulated in his mind while passing through life changing moments. If you would like to find out more about him and his writings, feel free to visit his website, click A Search for Motivation or copy paste this url: http://totalgadha.com/tgtown/amitkumar/2009/09/23/a-search-for-motivation/
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