Devil and the deep sea

March 8, 2007

It is now 13 years since I started working. Suffice to say that I am looking forward to retiring and escaping from this tyranny. Unfortunately, my present financial position does not permit me to do this, or so my peer group keeps telling me. I have no reasonable option other than carrying on with this charade. Which brings me to ask myself – Did I enter the job market far too soon?

My early life, including my education confirm to the typical Indian middle class stereotype. Right from the beginning, it was made amply clear to me that the only honorable way to lead a fulfilling life was to acquire a “professional” degree and secure a respectable job. There was also a lurking fear that the puritanical attitude of the family will come in the way of paying capitation fees. Consequently, I made a brave foray into the commerce stream and despite myself ended up as a Chartered Accountant. If I am giving the impression that all this was happenstance it is intentional because that was and remains the whole and the complete truth.

So, here I was all set to contribute to the then recently opened up Indian economy and that’s how serendipitously my working life kicked off. It would also not be out of place to mention here that the rigors of getting through the chartered accountancy course in India do not leave you with further enthusiasm for academic pursuits.

Little did I know that notwithstanding the pleasures of a new found monetary independence, the romance of a job evaporates faster than one can possibly imagine. But the rat race had begun in right earnest and the treadmill just refuses to stop. It has been said in the past that if work were to be so rewarding, the rich would have monopolized it by now. I fully subscribe to this point of view. And we keep chasing the mirage of “rewarding work”.

After a few years of soul searching, all I can do now is castigate myself for having been lured into the false security of a job, the farcical camaraderie of the work place, and the sanctimonious attitude of the bosses. In a scenario like this, for the multitudes like me who are not born into wealth, the only viable option left is to submerge ourselves into academia. The fond hope being that let us, if not anything else postpone the inevitable.


5 Responses to “Devil and the deep sea”

  1. Kamakhya Says:

    How true! Life rarely gives us a chance to find our true mettle – or rather we move along with the tide just because we dont let ourselves think beyond the mundane requirements demanded of us – parents, family, society etc. But I feel the greatest blame should fall on ourselves for not even thinking beyond the well-trodden path. People who have found their heart’s desire in the career path that they have chosen would have been in the same situation as you or me – what is the differentiator? Probably it is still not too late now to think of the right balance of financial security and truly rewarding work. All the best!!

  2. Kiat Says:

    Hi Ganesh,

    You are just having a moment of introspection. I call it a pause, a moment in life that you think things over.

    Well, that moment or pause is past! You had crossed it.

    By now, you would have thought things over and realised the education you had is good knowledge, your career is fine and you have the toss of luck with you, you have a lovely family and their support.

    You and Beni are realising your dream in your activity in Goa. It’s like what I like about Raksha’ Active Canvas, making dreams come through!

    Isn’t that wonderful – when you wish upon a Star …….. and it makes your dreams come through.

    You also choose happiness and take the risk towards that conscious choice of being happy.

    From a view over here in Singapore, you and your family are one of the happy ones. It does not mean that you won’t be tired or frightened or afraid in the course of life, but your choice of the positive have always got the majority vote. That’s the best that one can do – just do your best!

    You can see here that I said you are one of the happy ones, not one of the FEW happy ones. There are many happy ones you know, and be it rich or poor. Happiness or realising your dream or staying healthy or active participation in your family life does not have an economic divide.

    I had a great weekend at your home last week. Oooh, I think I could be invited to your home again.


  3. Srinivas Rao Mahankali Says:


    Interesting and profound .. though I have a slightly contrarian view – if you enjoy what you are doing, then work can be pleasurable .. not sure if academia will be as pleasurable as you may think it is, all the challenges ( sucking up etc) are there as well

  4. Sanjeev Says:

    I agree with the absurdity of life…..The key question is…Given the absurdity, how do you want to live life? You can be happy, sad, profound, thoughtful, revengeful…..or anything else…All of us have been born with that choice and will exercise choice till we kick our bucket.

  5. Frankly too much of pondering over things can become more of Intellectual ma…n
    “Life is all about living and loving
    When we try to look back at things its like looking at bucket with water (weather it’s Half empty or Half full depends)

    We can always ponder over path taken (Road Not Taken), missed opportunities ,what about all that we got ?
    Life is a journey not a destination, there is always a second chance


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