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A game called Life and A journey called – IIT!


I have always PLAYED Life like a GAME which has brought very varied, interesting and exciting experiences. The GAME has some predefined RULES which you cannot bend – although you always try your best, and then there are some rules that YOU define – mostly in your imagination and follow them in your life…this game of defining your rules and playing your game as per your rules – makes life very exciting! 

I have had an experience called IIT where I learnt the game of Playing life! It’s not bad to learn the art because once you imbibe this art you make your own Rules and play the game the way you want! 

I know above lines are heavy let me help you digest them!! 

So the story begins when I entered into Indian Institute of Technology, IIT Delhi. I was fresh and full of energy. I had never stayed in a hostel and had a very sheltered life all throughout. First few days were shocking – after I kept my luggage in my hostel room, there was a call on public announcement system for all fresher’s to come down. I sincerely went down and found a senior hostel mate standing with a grin on his face. I was asked to give my introduction in a set manner (which was not very humane) “Rule no. 1” in IIT. The first few days were grueling, we were asked to follow many Rules which were legacy of IIT and everyone had to learn them. Some who did not learn them were thrown out of system. The hectic schedule for first few weeks made everyone really scared. We used to pray for those days to end. Our prayers were heard of and greener times came to our lives very quickly. 

Within first few days we realized IIT was place where you will always find your “baap” (father) in every area which you consider yourself to be good! There were people who were geniuses in Math – International Math Olympiad rankers, Sports, Music and many others. But everyone could find their “baap” on the campus. As they say IIT is the biggest “leveler” in life. No matter how good you are in a particular thing – you will find better men than yourself on the campus. I still remember when we got corrected answer scripts of a math course exam in first semester tears came out of my eyes – 3 /30 was my score. I had never scored this bad ever in my life. It came as a shock to me. But soon I came to know that even the Olympiad ranker got 7/ 30. So what!!! ?? We learnt the “Theory of Relativity – in IIT” 

The Theory of Relativity - in IIT states that – it does not matter how well or how bad you perform in absolute terms, what matters is how the other guy performs! Strange – but that the truth. That’s the Rule in IIT. We learnt how brutal and how beautiful the competition could be. Many times if we missed the classes and teacher announced a quiz for next day, our friends never informed us about the quiz simply because they wanted to keep the overall average of the class low. Sometimes if we missed the class friends would even wake up for us whole night to teach us everything and even make us cheat in the exam so that we did well. Strange? But that’s the truth. 

The amount of exposure IIT gives is immense and that’s what it is valued for. You see people taking durgs everyday and you see people getting up at 5 am for prayers everyday. You see two friends at 5 am in the morning standing at basins and brushing their teeth – one before going to bed and other before going to start the day. You see some people studying crazily before exams and some watching movies crazily before exams. That’s the extreme you can find in IITians. This is crazy and it’s the most beautiful part of IIT. I describe IIT as a place where bunch of top brainers are left to discover and explore themselves and when they are out of IIT they are totally transformed. What transforms them is the environment around them and that mercerizes them for their entire life – permanent IITians are stuffed with the feeling – “You are the best”. Always believe there is only position in a competition – 1st. 

There are many Rules of life we learnt during our days at IIT. We did not like them but we had to learn them – because there was no other option. No matter how hard we tried to refute them – we could not. Now when we look back we can connect the dots. Had those rules not been there we could not have learnt the art of playing the game. Its important to learn the art first and then make your own rules. When people come out of college they are exposed to real world. There is lot they want to do and learn, but real world is different, you need to play intelligently and any people just fail to do that. Lot of people take up jobs and keep on working and cribbing endlessly for years. Lot of them never take out time of “understand their mind” – what they want out of life and why they want that? Until you do that you will never be happy – though you might be successful. It’s important to be happy than successful. What we learnt at IIT was superb in the sense that it gave us objective thinking of what we wanted out of life? We could decipher the omens and understand the signals of the journey. Many rules were laid and unlaid – but all in all IIT is a tremendous place and an experience worth going through once in life!! 

I can go on endlessly on this – but I guess let me keep you “guessing and waiting” for the next edition!!

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