The favorite underwear
We all have our favorite underwear—the one that fits and feels so comfortable that it’s good enough to sleep in!
The same thing can be said of our mind-sets. We all have our own, based on how we lived and how we experienced what we experienced. Changing or discarding favorite underwear can be difficult in the beginning—its comfortable and fits well, but after a point, it gets worn out and demands that it be retired for something new. The same can be said of the thoughts that created a mind-set. In the beginning, they make sense and fit the experience perfectly, however, as the breath of our experience grows and our thoughts evolve, the mind-set of old finds it difficult to adjust and cope—it begins to wear out.
It is at this point that a person is faced with a difficult, but necessary choice—whether to discard or whether to deny. If we chose to discard what doesn’t fit, we go off to the metaphorical “market” and get a new pair of underwear—one that fits better. If we chose to deny, we keep washing and wearing the same underwear till, one day, it rips open at an inopportune moment and everything we were stuffing in it becomes difficult to contain.
Change is inevitable.
Our experiences are only a perception of our inner workings at the time.Whether we choose to be self-aware and accept change willingly and gracefully or whether we choose be stuck to the old un-examined ways and have things randomly dangling depends on how supple we make our minds and ourselves.
Some have argued the fact that we are, in essence, are a nervous system experiencing an individualized form of the physical environment—our body, for better or worse, is akin to a fleshy bubble created for our brain and spinal column as a vehicle—because, quite frankly, a world full or brains and spinal columns wriggling around would be absurd and also, a little creepy.
But random 1980’s horror movie plots aside, both these thought lines do have one thing in common—that the world we experience is geared towards individual human experience and that no two experiences can ever be identical because the daily life we experience is mostly based on how we are feeling and what we are thinking. Positive thoughts bring joy and negative thoughts bring about melancholy—in identical external environments! In a nutshell, my favorite underwear can never be the same as your favorite underwear because, even if the fabric and make is identical because how I perceive it is different from how you perceive it.
Change is also individual. It is based on individual perception and experience.
What I perceive to be positive change, another can perceive as negative, or nothing at all.
Therefore, if I don’t judge you for your favorite underwear…don’t judge me for my mine!
Success and melancholy
Have you ever noticed that success can carries with it a level of melancholy? If you haven’t, keep an eye out for it the next time you achieve something that you worked towards. In “simplespeak”, we call it the “highs and lows of life”. Chemically, it can be attributed to the drop in the endorphins we have experienced after our most recent success has worn off.
However, what if failure and success are both treated as “the imposters that they are”—as Kipling put it—and are given an equal amount of un-importance. Would success and failure cease to exist? Would these very important aspects of human adult life lose meaning? And, are we ready to have these two lose meaning?
Success is the flavor of existence to most of us. It is fed to us through mass media. We are tuned in to the lives of the rich, famous and glamorous all the time. This is an extremely unforgiving way to live life since anything that falls short of extreme success is considered useless at worst or semi-useful at best. How can a human life be distilled into such an arbitrary measure of nothingness? Success is an illusion, as is failure. Neither last forever. In this world of illusion, I believe we have begun to breach the farthest reaches of time-waste by measuring the worth of human lives in terms of success and failure—especially materialistically!
So why is there the melancholy at the end of success? Simple. It is there because the success we seek is a form of distraction from our pre-existing condition of being alive. I am not blind to the fact that being alive is difficult—especially as one grows up in this harsh, unforgiving world and the bliss of ignorance gives way to the bitter truths of exposure. However, this unpleasant fact need not be taken as unchangeable.
Success, lasting success, cannot be measured in achievements. It can only be measured in evolution and awareness. And as we tread down this path, the very concepts of success and failure begin to dissolve. What is presented, in their stead is experience—experience of living, experience of thoughts and experience of feelings. This experience is all that matters, in the end. It is all we gain. The ability to experience purely through observation and detachment is the next logical step in human evolution. The knowledge of pure experience—unadulterated by expectation is, in this writers mind, the one true experience of success.
Success, when defined in this form, is absolute. It can bring only joy, because at the heart of it, the human experience is tailor-made towards experiencing joy.
Success and happiness
Success is inter-laced into life since birth— a successful birth is the first step into existence, as we know it. However, does a successful birth really exist? As beings of pure consciousness, we choose to manifest ourselves in certain forms at times to experience evolution and a deeper understanding of our connectedness with the divine creator.
In this context, would we experience success as we experience evolution towards an understanding of our own deeper, truer-selves? And would this experience of success translate into happiness?
All actions lead us to a deeper level of meaningfulness and self-understanding—our most coveted purpose, if we allow ourselves introspection. Conscious evolution—the supreme human trait, has its roots in our ability to look within, quietly and detachedly, observing without evaluating what is being experienced.
A key takeaway from the movie -The Matrix was the evolution of Neo’s character. He is shown living a regular life, trying hard to ignore the feeling—“something is wrong here”. Eventually, he “wakes-up” and realizes all that he thought he knew was limited to his ability to expand his sphere of experience. As he begins to expand his experiential existence, he realizes that the world is not final, but a fluid-interconnected sphere of experience which can expand and contract in connection with his own ability to do the same.
I understand “the founder” to have a similar disposition. And, as “the founder” begins to expand their experiential sphere, usually instinctively, they begin to understand that things are programmed to expand and move, fluidly and intrinsically through their ability to further their own sphere of experience. This, I believe is the first true experience of success.
The awareness that their choice can have perceptible impact is the birthplace of a true founder! I do not believe one can choose to take on the role of “the founder” without first experiencing this fundamental truth. The awareness of this truth has the ability to produce positive energy at astounding levels, transforming the founder into a conduit of positivity and happiness!
Monetary success, while valid on a base level, is not the end-goal of any idea-new or old. The measure of success is subtler and infinitely more satisfactory when observed impartially, through the lens of impact. However, to arrive at a correct narrative of true impact, the following steps are essential:
Purpose Patience ===> Interaction ===> Impact
The purpose behind any endeavor is the guiding force of the endeavor itself. A deep clear purpose (not limited to monetary gain for self) is the spiritual anchor of any start-up. This does not mean that the start-up must be limited to a purely altruistic nature, commerce, too is part of the greater universe—energy transactions are a reality! And like all transactions, clear purpose allows for clear results. Ambiguity really does not exist—in time, all things are revealed. Start clear and simple. Don’t waste time “discovering” your purpose. It either exists, or, you’re simply not there yet—wait, be observant—it will come!
A cornerstone of all endeavors. While purpose is the first step, patience is where and how you take that step. It is extremely tempting, especially for younger founders, to rush into the idea and develop it as quickly a possible. “Grow fast and break things” has been fed to the start-up generation and many wear this attitude like a badge—this is why so many start-ups fail! Be patient, be steady and you will see tremendous growth—in a correct amount of time.
Extremely important and utterly misunderstood. Interaction is primarily about introspection. As humans living in this world, all we do is interact—with the environment, with things and with each other. Interaction is inevitable, how we interact—that is the key! The first person anyone interacts with is themselves. How you treat yourself and how well you observe this interaction determines how you respond to external stimuli. A team is built on interaction—this we know. That this interaction is based on individual introspection, with the founder as the lead—this we must observe and accept. As the founder, the role of setting up positive, introspective team interaction, through example is of utmost importance.
This is where success comes in! Beginning with the founder, the impact of just “being” must be thoroughly understood. This understanding expands outwards towards every facet of the business—from the team, to the product, to the people of the world! Eventually, it is through the correct assessment of impact that the founder and their team can make correct decisions—which are good for all, leading to an honest amalgam of success and happiness.
Disposable nappies: The scourge of the Earth
Interesting things come your way when you look away from your focus for a while. While we went about our daily business-creating gorgeous dresses, being creative with left over materials and generally having a good time doing our share in helping save the world, something astonishing came our way, in the form of baby diapers, or more precisely, the volume of their daily usage, per cute baby!
All told, ever since their invention in the late 1950’s, disposable baby diapers have added millions of tonnes of non-biodegradable waste to landfills, the oceans, our drinking water and food… who would’ve thought your own crap (your parents tossed a lot of it away, by the way, as did mine) would come back to haunt you, huh?
So, when we added a baby to our team (to clarify, someone on our team had a baby) we saw, first hand, not only the amount of work it is for new parents (wow!) but the number of diapers one baby needs-DAILY! In case you don’t have the experience yet, here is a number for you on a usual 8 hour working day-5! That’s 1.6 diapers per hour mom and dad put into a working day. That translates to 64 diapers a week, 256 diapers a month…not including diapers for the remaining 16 hours of the day. The math is simple, the number of diapers each baby has thrown away per year, globally, is…well…its exhausting!
Why not switch to organic diapers, bamboo diapers (cloth nappy’s are impossible to manage for any working parent) or any other efficient, eco-friendly “poop-maintenance” apparatus is a natural question, I would ask. The answer, believe me, is undeniably profound-FAMILY BUDGETING!!!! Budgeting takes on a whole new meaning once a baby is in the equation and this is where we found a huge disconnect between the desire to do right by the planet and having enough money to sustain the family.
Basic disposable name brand nappies cost as much as 75% less than organic, eco-friendly ones, especially since all the baby websites are jumping to provide you with massive discounts for bulk buy’s. And believe me, its really not practical to pay through the nose per poop. It becomes difficult for an average working parent to afford the eco-friendly diapers in the long run, and the system is geared to make it as hard as possible and why not, disposable diapers are a $65 billion a year industry!
So here we are, faced with another version of fast fashion vs slow fashion. Who knew, they would throw poop at us!
DECEMBER 11, 2018
How Dhirta’s Label LOVE CHANGE is Styling a Healthier Future for Fashion
With her line of sustainable clothing called LOVE CHANGE, Dhirta Rikhye is out to spark a wave of slow fashion among Indian millennials. read more
Sustainability is at the core of evolution, evolution being the slow march towards progress and efficiency. As a species, we have evolved from individual hunters to tribes of hunter-gatherers to villages of agriculturists and beyond. This evolution occurred hand in hand with a conscious realization our species had over time that to survive, we must create systems that work—long term. The invention of agriculture, a sustainable system of producing food, freed up humanity to focus on things other than basic survival. As a naturally curious species, the freedom we won from the daily grind of “hunt-kill-survive” allowed us to focus on our intellect. Philosophies and languages were created to express ideas and thoughts. A universally understandable system of symbols was invented which has evolved over centuries to provide a platform on which our scientific theories can be expressed, challenged and improved upon—essentially, a system that can evolve sustainably in tandem with our ever increasing understanding of the planet and the universe.
One of the reasons why we are at the top of the food chain is our instinct of curiosity. Given enough time, we are instinctively (and curiously) able to create robust, efficient and sustainable solutions to everyday problems. Ironically, however, each time we achieve a level of progress, we invariably wind up ignoring this instinct. A basic study of history shows that previous attempts at “civilization” have followed the same steps—a “civilization” rises out of chaos, creates various systems that allow it to thrive and then, eventually, begins to neglect these systems, which leads to an eventual decline. The decline too, follows a pattern of overpopulation, denial and an indiscriminate use of resources. The people who created the systems that fuelled the initial rise to power usually become either over dependent on the systems to produce results or too comfortable with the gratification that the systems bring. What swiftly follows is a near dogmatic adherence to previously held beliefs with no room for discussion and evolution. Demands and desires begin to out-weigh intelligence and sensitivity and the systems, once built to sustain progress, become its undoing.
The current phase of human planetary civilization is probably the largest and most sustained progressive step we have taken in recorded history— predominantly because we have used science and invented technology. We have systematically industrialized as many aspects of our lives as we can in order to free up our time, by reducing the need for manual labour and maximizing output. This mechanization and industrialization has had far reaching effects, but the sheer size of the planet ensured that the ever-expanding human empire did not feel the catastrophic results of indiscriminate expansion directly for a long time. While we are all sensitized to the horrors of wars and epidemics, never in history have we realized the scale of environmental havoc that has been wreaked in the name of progress.
It is widely accepted (and literally perceived) that the weather is changing—rapidly and mostly adversely. While many opponents of the global warming phenomenon would like to live in denial, the intensity of the weather has seen a rapid change over the last few decades. Air pollution is out of control in the “production friendly” parts of the world—mainly India, China and Bangladesh where air and water pollution levels are alarming. The entire eco-system has begun to change in these countries—rivers have changed colour, children are being advised to stop playing outdoors, the elderly are being over medicated and the working class is being kept busy with their ever-mounting debts—thanks, most of all to the unsustainable consumerist lifestyle being propagated through every media channel possible. Our lifestyles have become un-sustainable to the point where we are in a collective “Stockholhm syndrome”—harbouring a love for the very things that not only cause us harm, but also keep us enslaved.
Being enslaved to unnecessary comfort and apathy, however, is a choice. As a revolutionary thinker once pointed out, we can choose to emancipate ourselves from mental slavery and free our minds. The tyranny imposed by desensitization can be overcome with curiosity. Curiosity is the catalyst that has propelled the human race from the beginning. And it is curiosity that can be our guide, if we just pay attention to that—our most basic instinct.
We must learn—learn to teach ourselves where our “things” come from. We must assess the “real” cost of the physical adornments we choose through understanding the environmental impact that our clothes and accessories have. This is no small task and like any knowledge that is worth gaining, it requires patience and a realization—a realization that compels every sensitive human to question the status quo.
So choose awareness, not dogma. Choose research, not hearsay. Choose love, not apathy. Embrace positive change and watch in wonder as positive change embraces you!
The visual we experience when the word “Holi” is uttered.
Holi, while a playful and fun festival, is deeper than just smearing colours on each other. The spirit behind the festival is one of spiritual enlightenment—the realization and belief that underneath it all, every individual life form is a small, yet integral part of a larger system.
The Holi colours, created by artful and precise manipulations of a variety of natural herbs, spices and flowers are symbolic of the living world we perceive. The invisible hand that has crafted the world has created fantastic possibilities of life through a careful and deliberate mixing of cosmic and spiritual energies.
The festival of Holi is one of gay abandon—where people from all over are welcome to laugh, play and share in the festivities. The free and deliberate intermixing of energy through the free and deliberate intermixing of life is the essence of Holi.
Holi marks the onset of that joyous time of year where life is liberated from the cold, oppressive cover of winter—a time of joy, love and emancipation.
Nature expresses the onset of each spring with a vast outpouring of vitality and it is the vitality of life’s eternal and unending, although forever evolving source that directs each life form in tandem with the change in season. And, just as spring symbolizes a discarding of the old and worn out, LOVE CHANGE™ hope to symbolizes a discarding of the wasteful, archaic and selfish practices propagated by the fashion industry.
We, the team of LOVE CHANGE™ hope that this Holi symbolizes the ushering in of an era of responsible fashion and responsible consumption so that all life on earth can bask in a cheery and positive new season full of joy, positive change and most of all—LOVE!
The purpose of change
The average life form lives through systems. Animals migrate, hibernate and procreate based on natural “laws” which are followed through instinct. Therefore, it is safe to imply that it is instinctive for humans, too, to follow set patterns in life. To follow the rules without question or reason is how the world survives and, arguably, thrives. The planet rotates and revolves, day after day. We KNOW, that the sun will rise, the moon will shine and the clouds will rain. This is all we know and this is all we wish to know. That is the natural order of everything. What we don’t see, or wish to acknowledge, is that this dynamic system is independent of the life forms that have come to treat it as the gospel of truth. It is a dynamic system that operates intrinsically for and of itself, alone, and has the ability to change when it sees fit, without consultation or regard for the creatures living and thriving on it.
The “survival of the fittest” theory defines the “fittest” as the most “adaptable”. Nature insists we constantly adapt to it and in our attempt to understand and assimilate this fact, we have tried and quite ingeniously managed to create static rules for a dynamic system. The concept itself is a bit of an oxymoron, but we believe it works because we have harnessed the power of “predictability” and it is predictability, therefore, that is most valued in all the major governing systems we see around us. Being unpredictable, while exciting and intriguing, is not a favored quality in any system—human or mechanical. The essential unpredictable nature of change, therefore, makes it an uncomfortable concept.
Change, therefore, is not always good—not immediately, anyway.
Change, when un-tempered with purpose, can be devastating. This is another truth we are all instinctively aware of—through history—personal and acquired. This is one of the primary reasons why, instinctively, most people are averse to change—not because we lack purpose, but because us ordinary folk have been convinced that purpose is an esoteric concept and is hard to articulate—to both others and ourselves. At best, we can describe our aim and hope our described “aim” is in the same zone as the purpose we feel.
It is because of this that we find comfort in order. An orderly life, lived within the external framework of job, payday and consumption allows us to gain the various advantages our civilization has to offer us. However, this routine is empty. Life demands more.
As conscious beings, our daily routine needs to follow conscious thoughts and actions and it is because of this consciousness that any change we wish to make is inherently based out of purpose—a purpose to adapt and perhaps, to improve.
This, too, is the purpose of LOVE CHANGE™.
Our name signifies our inherent desire to improve not only our daily experience but ourselves as well. As a company based out of a developing nation, we have had the painful opportunity to witness, first hand, the utter devastation unbridled and un-tempered change can impose to our surroundings and our environment. Our country has witnessed a “consumerism explosion” over the past two decades. To top this sad fact and to feed our growing economy and acquired consumerist behavior, we have begun to compete with our neighbors and are trying to become a production hub for the world. All this has come at a grave cost to our environment. Our cities are polluted beyond measure, our rivers, once the lifelines of our great and rich culture, have been reduced to drains. Our forests are being leveled to meet our land requirements for the non-stop cultivation of cash crops that are spun faster and faster into industrial fabrics which are then dyed using poisonous chemicals which are harmful to the wearer and continue to cause pollution throughout their life-time, which, due to fast fashion, is extremely short lived in a wardrobe. This situation is an undeniable example of change lacking conscious purpose. Change for the purpose of change is an expression of discontentment with what you have or perhaps just of boredom. To love change for the sake of change alone is incomplete. Change, in itself, cannot have value—neither personal nor cultural.
Change gains value when it is the result of the pursuit of a purpose and the pursuit driving the purpose of LOVE CHANGE™ is creating timeless and enduring designs for the conscious wearer. Each design is intended to become an heirloom—to be preserved with care and love. Our fabrics are robust and low maintenance. They are built to last and are designed so that the wearer can maintain them with ease. Our purpose is to remind the world that great looking clothes are great not only because of the way they look and feel, but also because of their inherent longevity. For full disclosure, we must admit, each garment you purchase will last a you a very long time, so be patient with it—or not. Either way, our clothes are here to stay in your wardrobe and your memory as a reminder that great things do come at a cost, but that cost does not need to be detrimental to the environment.