Wenn mancher Mann wuesste,

was mancher Mann waer,

gaeb mancher Mann manchem Mann

manchmal mehr Ehr!!


Translated from German, the above toungue-twister reads


“If the arrogant and daft Man only knew,

That his Fellow-man would conquer all he saw,

He would sometimes consider counting him in the few,

He held in respect and downright awe!”


I do not profess to have translated this sentence word to word, but I have surely tried to put across the meaning. I came across this tongue-twister few days back, was taken up by it, not only because of the fantastic play on the letter “M”, but also the depth of meaning it contained. It started a chain of thoughts in my mind.

Many a times, we come across people, some you take to immediately, others rub your ego the wrong way and even the sight of the person is irritating to you (without any reason, you just do not like the body language). Must depend on the way we are raised or more significantly how we have trained our minds to think, analyze, empathize – in short our reaction to people. In most of our intuitions about people, we may be right to some extent. There are some exceptions though, your perceptions about some people could be way off the mark. What do you do, how do you read people?



It was Saturday, and Geeta looked forward to taking her son Yug to his new once-a-month singing workshop. It would be nice to catch up with Sunaina’s father. The man was so down-to-earth and such a great family man. She did not always have this opinion of him. On first sight, he appeared to be a person, who bragged about his daughter – a genius in her own right, dressed without a care for the impression he created, seemed to know everything under the sun. However, as the monthly workshops progressed, his views about life in general left Geeta pleasantly surprised. A highly qualified IT professional, at a to-die-for post in a reputed company, he was very intelligent, extremely helpful, a fantastic mentor (no wonder Sunaina was such a confident girl and did everything so well), all this was vouched for by colleagues working with him. He still had camaraderie with his ex-subordinates and ex-colleagues, they could approach him for advice and help whenever needed. All this profusely commended and confirmed on professional networking sites!! He was not rich, only because he earned mega-bucks, but more so because he had earned mega-respect as a professional and as a friend, mentor, father and a fine human being.

Geeta’s mobile rang, she picked it up. It was her boss Pramodini, calling to tell her she had mailed her “Abraham Lincoln’s Letter to His Son’s Teacher”. Once again, she basked in the sunshine of the aura of people, who were not merely great due to their education, qualifications, profession or the success they had achieved, but who still held on to their roots, giving them new strength of modern knowledge, uprooting the weeds of useless ways of life, retaining the higher elevation of their intrinsic culture and religious values, their aura brightened by simple living and high thinking!! How many bosses had the time to notice, that their team member was depressed, how many of them could make out she had not slept for nights together? How many sat down and suggested a solution? How many of them believed, that deadline of a week was enough to get the work done (albeit, not through late sitting) and converted it into confidence, which actually did get the work done? I am sure very few. Many of them would start with “Oh no, only seven days, let’s not do it!!” Geeta had come to believe in “Let’s do it, we will finish it. If not, we will learn!” The moment one definitely commits oneself, divine Providence moves too. A few days with such inwardly and worldly mobile company can make you so fulfilled and happy.

Flashback to the mere interactions with some high flown professionals, boasting, belittling, flush with their own importance, negating everything human relationship advocates, rich, but never rich enough, never taking the extra step to meet someone half-way. As a result, they were always dissatisfied with the success they achieved (they did not enjoy it), never enjoying the wealth of human gestures, nor experiencing the joy of helping others. Geeta, like Arjun was by Sri Krishna, was pulled back to the present, Yug’s surreal rendition of Raag Asavari falling on her ears, her prayers imploring God to impart good sense to her son!