You Only Live Once

Friday, October 7, 2011

Like everyone else, I am also very sad at the untimely demise of Steve Jobs, the outstanding creative genius of our time. He was such a fine human being. I have watched the video of his inspiring commencement speech at Stanford University several times, and have been assiduously following all the stories that my friends have been linking. Quotes from the speech are still popping up on blogs and as status updates on Facebook.

His message, “You've got to find what you love,” has hit a chord with the young internet-savvy Indians.

Why do you think India doesn’t produce people like Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg, or Bill Gates? Is it because most Indians keep their children shackled both physically and mentally? Your parents expect you to follow the old worn-out rituals and traditions. Once you grow up, they make sure that you are well-shackled by someone else. Ultimately, when your spouse relents and grown-up kids stop feeling embarrassed at your choices, you do have an opportunity to break free. But at this phase in life, you have a new enemy, and that is your own body, which will stop taking orders from your mind.

Therefore I beseech you, be a rebel, go against the tide. “…have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.”

I found out early in my life what I loved doing, but never had the courage to follow my heart. This is the time to raise my flag too, now that Steve has showed us a way.

“Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose,” he had elaborated in his speech.

Now here is a wonderful song by Devang Patel, which I find equally inspiring as Steve Jobs’ message. It also lifts my spirit when I am gloomy. It goes, “Bhaiyya zindagi ye ek bar mili hai, bas tu bina soche khaa…(Dude, you only live once, so eat to your heart’s content....)”

What I love doing is eating and sleeping. No one is going to push start my stopped juggernaut. I am a rebel with a grouse. Suddenly I have realized that my time on this earth is limited. Therefore I will not waste it living someone else's life. (Continued => You Only Live Once: Part II)

Thank you Steve! You will remain an inspiration for many generations to come!

More on Steve Jobs:
The New York Times: Apple’s Visionary Redefined Digital Age
The New York Times: Steve Jobs’s Patents
Elephant Journal: Steve Jobs Sought Enlightenment in India After Dropping Out of College
First Post: Why Steve Jobs’ love affair with India ended very, very early
Forbes: The Top Ten Lessons Steve Jobs Taught Us
The Newyorker: Xerox PARC, Apple, and the truth about innovation by Malcolm Gladwell
CNN: The Spiritual side of Steve Jobs
The Economist: The Magician 
The Economist: A Genius Departs


  1. Steve's passing away may just be the tipping point for the long caged rebels in us. Towards our dreams, ho!
    A fine tribute to a legend of all times.

  2. He was a great innovator...and his life is all about highs and lows.A heartfelt tribute.

  3. very well written... seems You have perfected your understanding of Indian Psyche:)

  4. "Kha le re dosa idli" .. haha!

  5. Prepare to live ur life in ur way; only then u will end up taking the highway; or else u will end up struggling in the one way. Life can be compared to traffic rules....why not???
    Nicely woven words and cheers to u; cheers to ur writing style.

  6. @Umashankar: I see a lot of inspired folks like me. It may be the tipping point :-)

    @Alka: Thanks!!

    @Harsh: That's what I have been doing all my life...

    @Kartikay: :D

    @Sriramnivas: Thanks! That's a nice analogy :-)

  7. very well said, he learned and took everything to its highest level of perfection only because he loved what he was doing, was never forced to do, be it calligraphy , electronics , programming or his amazing sense towards user interface and user experience.children in India are only allowed to be what their parents wants and walk on safest path which guarantees fulfilling basic needs.

  8. Hahaha...I was waiting for the punch line and she didn't disappoint :)

  9. A nice sleeply way to tickle the the brain in slumber.

    A good post!

  10. Very inspiring and thoughts provoking post... thanks a lot for sharing...

  11. Steve was the poet of technology .. I liked the parallel thoughts brought in by adding the Patel scope ... cool !!

  12. Steve Job reminded us that we need to live and not exist. You rightly pointed out that "Our parents expect you to follow the old worn-out rituals and traditions" but that was past and with limited options in India and stiff competition it was the need. Now with world is so interconnected and so many options parents are more open to whatever their child wants to follow.

  13. Thanks Bhupender, Purba, Neeraj, Madhulika, Ashish, and bemoneyaware!!! Thank you all for reading :-)

  14. LOL that Patelscope video used to come on MTv years ago and I would watch bemused. And yes if your desire is to eat and sleep, then you should follow your heart and walk on that path. Steve would be proud of you. :P

  15. Wow that Patelscope video made me laugh so much, had forgotten it! The glorious 90s!!!
    Super funny, but then you know that about you anyway!!

  16. While people laugh at Patelscope, I see him as an inspiration. It's not absurd until you can feel its absurdity. :D

  17. Lovely....while you went with your dreams, I started nostalgic trips down my own memory lane by raking up my garage life

  18. Thanks Sammy, Deepa, Prateek, Rahul, and Saumya!!

    1. Nice ,enjoyed the reading, Giribalajee.


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    2. Thanks Suresh Kumar Ji!!!! Keep visiting !!


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