Freedom ; my chicken soup for the soul

Years back, I sat in a stuffy and not so big room full of anxious people in one of the by lanes of Gandhinagar, near the old Central Jail of Bangalore. Oh! by the way, the Old Bangalore Central jail is now being converted to a Freedom Park. I am not sure if the inmates of the prison are being freed but nevertheless we mortals do have a natural tendency for creating memorabilia out of tombstones, monuments and memories. Freedom, I wonder what exactly are the parameters which define it. Just by bringing in a change of guard and local rule would it mean we have achieved freedom. I guess most of us would say being able to walk free in this land without question and fear irrespective of what your race or creed is, would amount to being free. True, it might speak of freedom to a large extent. But in my honest opinion, true freedom is when you hold an opinion, a dream, a vision, and have the unrestrained freedom to pursue them with courage and reach the avenue where you can realise that romantic ambition of a lifetime. You have a dream and I have mine too. Why not toil hard and work towards reaching that avenue where there is a great possibility of going miles in career of fame.

Coming back to that stuffy room full of anxious people. The people were of two kinds. One set was the CET rank holders waiting for their turn to get into a good E-school(never heard of B-schools then). The second set consisted of the parents of these anxious big kids. This stuffy room in question then housed the Karnataka CET counselling centre, a one stop place to get into the best under-graduate engineering and medical courses in the state (I thank god that I made it into RVCE from this place. I met some of the finest people of my time here and among them I am sure that I have made a bunch of lifelong friends. I really value the 4 years spent at my Alma mater). Every other chap seemed to be tense and busy with their prayers. I, as usual was looking here and there trying to ease the tension in my own ways by making efforts to spot a pretty face from the fairer sex. It was by chance that I looked back and spotted a black board on which was an inspirational poem written out. It was such an effective poem that I spent the next ten minutes copying it into a sheet of paper with a hope that someday i would need it.

Back here in 2006 I badly needed it. I frantically searched for that note all over the house but so far couldn’t find that piece of paper. Thankfully I had Google to search for me and fish it out from the Internet. This has now become a daily prayer for me as I’ve embarked on my journey to realise my dreams. And here below is that poem/song from a musical based on Don Quixote (originally written by Cervantes). Its called "Impossible dream". Read it because Its worth the time.

The Impossible Dream (from Don Quixote – Man of LaMancha, a musical)

To dream the impossible dream
To fight the unbeatable foe
To bear with unbearable sorrow
To run where the brave dare not go.

To right the unrightable wrong
To be better far than you are
To try when your arms are too weary
To reach the unreachable star

This is my quest, to follow that star,
No matter how hopeless, no matter how far
To be willing to give when there’s no more to give
To be willing to die so that honor and justice may live

And I know if I’ll only be true to this glorious quest
That my heart will lie peaceful and calm when I’m laid to my rest

And the world will be better for this
That one man scorned and covered with scars
Still strove with his last ounce of courage
To reach the unreachable star.

Nishant Ratnakar
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By Nishant Ratnakar

Nishant is a Bangalore, India based Wedding, Portrait & Editorial Photographer. He is available for assignments across India. He also conducts photography workshops and offers personal photography mentorship.

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14 years ago

beautiful song.

14 years ago

I can relate to most of it coz I was surely one among those tense souls in the CET cell [I wonder why they call it cell?]
And this poem is very inspiring.
I am taking it back from here. Forever. 🙂

14 years ago

beautiful song.

14 years ago

I can relate to most of it coz I was surely one among those tense souls in the CET cell [I wonder why they call it cell?]And this poem is very inspiring.I am taking it back from here. Forever. 🙂