Hava Nagila!

Everything does pass, and we can endure and we can survive!! – Rahul Dravid

One Cockroach And An Army Of Ants

A busy software professional, I dont have time for lesser mortals. I rarely bother to look at other living creatures because mostly I plug my earphones on and keep looking if my company bus is coming. Damn it, my earphones were not working today and the bus was late. I looked down at the platform I was standing on opposite to Jayanthi theatre. There was a dead cockroach and a couple of ants moving beside it.
 
They were circling the cockroach probably to make sure it was dead. After some time, there were more ants and then even more ants. They were moving around the cockroach in haphazard fashion. Suddenly, they all grouped up like an army troop and formed a circle around the cockroach. They swarmed in and started dragging the cockroach away. I was amazed. The two small ants had managed to gather a whole army out of nowhere. How they managed to convey the location of the dead cockroach, I dont know.
 
They turned the cockroach a whole 360 degrees to face their home and dragged the cockroach a certain distance with ease. And then the projection of the tiles was in such a way that the cockroach dipped. Undettered, the ants regrouped in a matter of 5 seconds. This time a majority of them came to the head of the cockroach and pulled with all their might. A few supported from behind. Successfully, they tipped the cockroach over the next tile and marched on regrouping as required.
 
There was a small pebble and a few other scarps of wood on the way. On seeing these, a few of the ants got together and started pulling these things out of the way of the marching army. And once the obstacles were out, those ants rejoined the main group. They took their prize towards their home and tipped it in.
 
I was very happy for them. I looked up. The road was clear. I saw a few of my colleagues standing nearby oblivious to the army and the struggles below. The bus arrived and as it moved, I was thinking about the ants. I couldnt take my mind away from the cockroach and the ant army. I marvelled at their managerial and coordination abilities. They had a vision – search for food, they set out to achieve it. Once the target was sighted, they communicated it to their group. The group had then rallied and formed a strategy and charted the course for taking the food home. There was oneness of purpose – technically we call this "Focus". Each one of the ants knew what they were doing. Some pushed and some pulled. Some had the sense to remove obstacles from their way. We call this "Differentiation". What is a little stone to us would have been a lofty hill to those tiny creatures. They had the will and determination to do what they set out to do. We call this "Resolve".
 
Some of the ants were stepped on by people and died during this venture. But it did not seem to matter. They seemed to realize that with great victory comes great sacrifice. Once they took their prize in, they all went too fast into their home. What they did inside, I do not know. But I’d liked to think that they probably held a condolence meeting for the sacrificed lives and then threw a party for the survivors of the adventure. A feast of cockroach meat, perhaps.
 
They did not have brains, yet they were simply superb. I kept thinking on what gave them this ability. It dawned upon me that they were driven not by any external force but by a very strong internal force. The force is called "Hunger". How powerful it was! What capacities it gave them! They seemed to accept their way of life. They did not crib about the change in environments or anything else. Nature had designed them that way. This, I believe, is the root cause to success.
 
Today, more than any other day, I realized that there is so much to learn in the oustide world if we just open our eyes and our minds. Katradhu ennikume kai alavu dhaan!!
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This entry was posted on September 6, 2007 by in Thoughts.

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