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When was the last time you put away your digital device and said to yourself, “The world can wait,” as you plopped yourself next to your mate in order to cherish the flash of camaraderie that has been stripped from many of us largely due to the frenzied lives we live, due to the craving to be connected all the time. I reckon many would not be able to respond in the affirmative here because they have become quite the victims of the popular indulgences of time.

I often take a sabbatical from the din of connectivity, and in so doing, I feel thoroughly rejuvenated. It is here that I wish I could make people understand that to be disconnected too is being connected to something far deeper than what they can imagine, for life is not what binds you to its pattern, but pampers you in its modest pleasures, pleasures that can be felt and experienced and not really described in words. So after a break of three weeks, I logged in to my social media and the first thing my eyes fell upon on Instagram was this image from my brother Imran Abbas (Immu) with his friend Feroze Khan. The text that accompanied the image said –

“The moment when two friend’s try every possible means to get a perfect click…and, yes, one of us is wearing a borrowed shirt from the other one, and that’s me…”

The simplicity of emotions transported me back to the times when we actually did things like that, shared clothes with our friends, spent time with them in innocent abandon, without having to worry about the million things we unnecessarily worry ourselves with these days. What mattered to us then was the moment, and whom we were with, as opposed to what people value today – calculating nearly everything in a measured scale of pre-conceived agendas.

Every relationship has its specific place in our lives; yet, friendship is rather the lifeline of it. It is irreplaceable. The time you spend with your friend, sharing actual happiness, is incomparable to anything else. I wonder when people will appreciate the fact that life is to be found in the unpretentious and not in the extravagant. I wonder when people will grasp that ego and celebrity are momentary. That we shall perish one-day…blend with the earth, and at that time our cars, our clothes, and our belongings would mean nothing. It is the love we give those who matter to us that will remain in the hearts and minds of those who matter to us, and that is the vivid veracity of existence that Immu’s picture reminded me. It made me see the truth that fate simply loves to invent forms and designs, that her difficulty lies in such complexity. But life, well, life itself is difficult, because of its simplicity, and yet, it is this mixture of difficulty and simplicity that lends it it's distinct flavour. It reminded me that I wanted nothing else but to live a meaningful life, a life full of love, a life where I had the time and the ease to be with those who meant the world to me – the sun never asks anything in return when it warms our bones with its warmth, now does it? It is in these simple acts of love I gathered, my brother Immu does what he does best: he gives his love to everyone around him, so passionately, so sincerely, that I cannot think of him as anything else but like the rays of sun that warm the person they descend upon to health.

I think it is time to tell yourself, and today, that life’s simplest pleasures aren’t to be found in grandeur but in the little things that make us truly happy, and so you will do all that the world asks of you, BUT you will also learn to make time for yourself, and those who matter to you, so that, god forbid, if anything were to happen to you suddenly, then the world would remember your warmth so long as the memory in the one’s you have touched with your love remains. I think it is time to tell yourself too that you must be kind to people, and to love them with everything that you have, because as Rilke said, our heart learns to survive between hammers, just as the tongue between teeth is still able to praise.

Immu and I cannot offer you any more advice but this: to go into yourself and explore the depths where your life wells forth, for to explore self-transformation throughout is where the essence of the heart of life quite literally sits.