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Two Classes that Made Me Think About the World Differently

By Pavan Katepalli
Rutgers

Image taken from http://en.wikipedia.org

There were two classes that I took in college that forever changed the way I thought about everything.

Buddhism

I took Buddhism in college thinking it would be more of a history class.

I couldn't of been more wrong.

It's a mix of philosophy, science, sociology, religion and history all put together.

Buddhism forever changed the way I thought about the world, myself, the way I think and react to things.

I learned that ignorance is the cause of all suffering on Earth and internally within yourself.

That very basic piece of wisdom has changed everything for me, because I became aware of my ignorance. Whenever, I catch myself being ignorant, I find myself realizing it and I correct it by opening my mind.

I also learned about attachment and permanence. Nothing we know of in this Universe is permanent.

Nothing.

Yet, everyone is attached to things as if they are permanent. By just understanding, and constantly being aware that things we are attached to are impermanent, we can effectively reduce our suffering.

For example, I know that one day my pets won't be with me. I love them a lot and by understanding that they will be gone one day, I cherish every moment with them more. I make sure to have no regrets. It's like carpe diem, but Buddhism's way makes a lot more sense and is easier to adopt.

Acting

I took Basic Acting in college thinking it would be an easy way to fulfill a graduation requirement.

However due to me missing 2 classes and a strict attendance policy, I was on the verge of failing.

I talked to the Teacher, and he said that he might pass me, but for my Final Performance, I'd have to dig deep and be incredible.

So, I worked really hard and tried to take in what it meant to be a really good actor.

Much to my surprise, I learned that good acting is the opposite of faking emotions and reactions. Good acting is being able to react and elicit emotions truthfully, and one can do that by doing lots of analysis.

It was the most jaw dropping thing I learned in college, because I never thought of acting in that way before.

I was completely wrong in the way I thought about acting. It made me wonder what other things I was misinterpreting.

This has been a great help with getting my start up 10k+ users. I never assumed I knew the answers. I always verified things and made sure I backed up my decisions with data that showed a story.

My entire major was dedicated to being good at analysis, so I knew I had a shot of being good at acting.

For the Final Performance, I not only memorized my lines, but I made sure that I wrote reasons for every one of my lines and my partner's lines.

I made sure to write thorough intricate background stories for my character. I explained why he was saying what he was saying and why his partner was saying the things she was saying to him.

By the end of this process, I had around 5 pages of background written, even though the play was just 2 pages long.

When it came time for my Final Performance, I was able to read my lines as if the conversation was actually happening and react so honestly to what my partner was saying that I was the only one to get a standing round of applause.

The Teacher passed me, and told everyone in the class that what I did, was exactly what he wanted everyone to do.

If you get a chance, watch a documentary on buddhism philosophy and read a book acting truthfully.

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  • Hey Sayanaël I’m glad the post helped you out! I switched from windows to mac and then mac to ubuntu, so I forget how to refresh wamp. Do you pull up the wamp menu and click on refresh?

    Pavan in Cake PHP 2.2.1 Installation Errors
  • Thanks for this solution ! After hours browsing internet, your solution work just fine ! P.S: You don’t have to restart wamp, just refresh it.

    Sayanaël in Cake PHP 2.2.1 Installation Errors
  • Great article Pavan! Hopefully I can use a lot of these tips to further my own coding experience.

    Joe in How I Learned to Code For My Start Up

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