Monday, October 13, 2008

The Final Lecture

Alternative Video:
Achieving your childhood dreams

"If you lead your life the right way, the karma will take care of itself; the dreams will come to you. If you live properly, the dreams will come to you." ~ Randy Pausch

If this is not the epitome of inspiration, I do not know what is. Most lectures that I listen to always has an idea that resonates with me at a profound level. The quote that I opened with did just that. As soon as he said it, my mind delved into a moment of contemplation where that thought was the main focus.

I think life is not always as complicated as it seems and once you live a life of integrity, be truth and honest, kind and loving, then everything else will take care of itself. We have all spent long hours thinking about the meaning of our lives and why we are here. I had a discussion with a friend the other night about this and thought to myself "Does the why we are here really matter?". The fact of the matter is that we are here now, and we have a choice to exhibit a certain character or not. We have a choice to view the world or process situations a certain way. I had a thought that nothing caused us to be here, but we are merely a manifestation of Divinity in a physical realm and by virtue of our very nature, conscious beings, we aim to return to the very source we came from; we strive to realize our true Self.

Randy got me thinking of what my last lecture would be. I think it would be a reflection of all the valuable lessons I learned in life thus far. I do not know exactly how I would express those words, but I know that they will be an expression of love, peace, inner serenity, forgiveness, compassion and integrity. These are all virtues I believe are very important in living one's life that would lead to the ultimate realization of who we are. There is no separation between us all; we are all one with the Source of All. You may call that Source God, Allah, Buddha, The Divine, Krishna, The Great Spirit, Yahweh. It truly does not make a difference what the Source of creation is called. All that matters is a knowingness that we are all one with this spirit. Chief Detroit, a Native American, knew it at a very fundamental level when he would ask the deer for forgiveness before taking its life, knowing that it is giving up its own life to sustain him. He understood the oneness and connectedness of all things. This is truly an advanced state of consciousness. It would be a lesson I would love to leave on this Earth as well.

Based on where you are in your life currently, if faced with a similar situation, what do you think your last lecture would be about? I am truly interested to hear.

WHO IS HE? (courtesy: Wikipedia)
Randolph Frederick ("Randy") Pausch[2] (October 23, 1960 – July 25, 2008) was an American professor of computer science, human-computer interaction and design at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He was born in Baltimore, Maryland and grew up in Columbia, Maryland. Pausch received his bachelor's degree in computer science from Brown University in 1982 and his PhD in computer science from Carnegie Mellon University in August 1988. Pausch later became an associate professor at the University of Virginia, before working at Carnegie Mellon University as an associate professor.
He gave his "The Last Lecture" speech on September 18, 2007 at Carnegie Mellon. Pausch conceived the lecture after he learned that his previously known pancreatic cancer was terminal.[3] The talk was modeled after an ongoing series of lectures where top academics are asked to think deeply about what matters to them, and then give a hypothetical "final talk", with a topic such as "what wisdom would you try to impart to the world if you knew it was your last chance?" The talk was later released as a book called The Last Lecture, which became a New York Times best-seller.


Sunday, October 12, 2008

Steve Jobs Stanford Commencement Speech

Steve Jobs speaks to the Stanford graduates at Commencement ceremony in 2005. Steve Jobs is currently the Chief Executive Officer of Apple Inc. and founder of Pixar animation.

A feeling of amazement always comes over me whenever I hear of such success stories, and the accomplishments of Steve Jobs is truly that. It is a manifestation of courage, perseverance, strength and intelligence. He talks a lot about the challenges he went through in life, and how he overcame them. Most importantly, he understood that it is always difficult to "connect the dots" in the midst of the situation, but we have to trust that all will work out. This excerpt from his speech stuck out to me the most.

"You can't connect the dots looking forward, you can only connect the dots looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in the future. You have to trust in something; your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever, because believing that the dots will connect down the road will give you the confidence to follow your heart, even when it leads you off the well-worn path. And that will make all the difference."

This really emphasizes that we must trust that things will work out. It is always difficult to see the end result in the midst of the journey, but with each step we take we get closer to the ultimate goal. All that is necessary at times is to focus on each step, focus on the very moment and know that they will ultimately lead us to that place we desire in our hearts.

What part of the speech stood out greatly to you?