Monday, April 27, 2009

Yellow Wood

When my father made a stubborn decision that I should go to a different school for my 11th and 12th grade classes, I still think, that the only thing in his mind was that I should get a better score to be able to enter a top rated college for my "Engineering" (That was my decision versus his "Medicine") . It turned out to be a good decision, not because I got a good score but because, the new environment made me a better individual fit enough to compete in the struggle for existence. Being amongst the new crowd, re-engineered almost everything about myself. If I removed those two years from my life, I might not have walked out of college with a job in hand.

When I look back, that's the last time I remember him supporting the bicycle from behind. probably he knew that it was time for me to ride it by myself and may be fall a few times if that is what it takes to learn bicycling. Of course he has been there to guide on few occassions, but he let me make all the decisions in personal life or career thereafter.

It hasnt been easy taking decisions. Especially, with what they call "the quarter-life" crisis. It isn't just two roads that diverge in the yellow wood. Every road taken diverges, triverges and more often multi-verges. It may have been possible for Robert Frost to always take the one less trodden by. But I have very rarely taken the one less trodden. Sooner or later, I have always taken the path that many took. At the best, I try to wear a different shoe....and has that made any difference? You know, I know, 'No' :)

Decision making is a subject that I keep thinking about often. Obviously, I have written about it before, in the pre-blog days. I decided to write again now.

Scientifically, it is greatly amusing that nerves across the body use chemical and electrical synapses to communicate and thereby simulate a certain action by the body. Not all reactions happen on the fly! Some actions are based on past experiences. So, the nerves have to first identify peas in the plate, then search the folder "past signal repository" on "eating peas" and send back signal to my hand, eyes, tongue, nose and mouth - "Don't eat. Roger", then the hand has to send "Copy that. Roger". Sometimes it has to apply over-rides and say "peas prepared by friend with love. Applying override. Breach recommendation. Roger".

Now think of this - the signals about aversion towards peas is supposedly on the left side of the brain and the emotional operations of the brain are on the right side. So, everytime my eyes sense peas, the left brain has to generate orders which then are reviewed by the right brain to see if any over-rides need to be applied. What complex machine am I? Well...those of you who just thought about "God", had one pulse sent down from right brain. And those of us who just thought about "corpus callosum" had one pulse sent down from left brain....and then those of you who thought both - dont worry, you can survive on this most trodden road and do not have to take "left" or "right" in the next road and I am not going to influence you take "left" :)

Suresh, my close buddy, once said - "This is happening to me because I made a decision a while ago, but I dont know which one". I have often thought, how deep that statement is. Every decision made is interleaved with another, causing all the happiness and disappointments in life. Every decision small/big has butterfly effects that are small/big. The decisions could be good or bad. What is good for one could be bad for another. What is good for one could be bad if taken two days later. What is good for one in US could be bad for the same one if he/she were in India.
But, it is decisions that run this world. One cannot run away from decisions.

So, what is it that one should consider while making decisions? Thoughts???? If anyone wants to write on this elaborately, let me know, I will be very happy to send you an invite to be an author in my blog.

I dont know the answer to this question, but I have decided to try to come up with something within the next 8 weeks.


If this post was written by someone else, and that person were to end it right here, I would feel like kicking him/her. I am ready for the kicks - keep them coming....!

(Part II - http://alpha-beta-blogma.blogspot.com/2009/06/yellow-wood-ii.html)

5 comments:

Seshadri T A said...

Good one HM! Crossing a road to typing this comment... one cannot be poor in making decisions all the time :-)

Well... about opportunity losses, I am conceiving a blog. I don't know the delivery date, but sure I will. :-)

I shall move it up the priority list as this has come up now.

Bee'morgan said...

Good one na.. :)
ஆனா, இவ்ளோ தத்துவமா.. கொஞ்சம் மூச்சு முட்டுது.. ஒரு சி்ன்ன suggestion.. கொஞ்சம் லைட்டா எதாவது எழுதலாமே.

ஆனந்தம் said...

Hmm I have been thinking exactly the things mentioned in this blog. "The quarter life crisis", "decision making"...

The second thing in particular. A single phone call, a single accepatance letter to a company. Oh man oh man... I may not be writing this comment here... But it's all inter twined isn't it...

Nice philosophical post once again... :)

Geetha said...

hmmm...interesting..lets wait n see what u come up with.

சேரல் said...

Good one bhupi :) made me think for a while. But decided not to think about decision making again :)

Expecting more like this from you....

-Priyamudan
sEral