If we learnt to manage twelve minutes, then we can be safe from so many storms of life
Dr. Ashaq Hussain
Life is one word that comes with multiple meanings and experiences. Above all life is not just about existence but also about how an individual defines that existence. One important aspect of Life is that it keeps going forward. This means nothing is permanent. A happy occasion will come to pass, just like a sad one. Above all, one must be optimistic no matter how bad things get. This is because nothing will stay forever. Every situation, occasion, and event in life is linked with emotions. Emotion plays a major role in influencing our behaviour. Life would be dreary without feelings like joy and sorrow, excitement and disappointment, love and fear, hope and dismay. Emotion adds colour and spice to life. Emotions generally have both physiological and cognitive elements that influence the behaviour. Some of these changes can be observed as an overt behaviour easily. For example, the heart beating, reddened eyes, flushed cheeks, choke in the voice etc are emotion aroused stimulus. In addition to these easily observable changes, there are internal physiological changes, e.g. changes in the circulation of blood, impact on the digestive system and changes in the functioning of some glands like adrenal glands.
Anyone who understands the chemistry of emotions can easily control the emotions. Being a Chemistry Teacher, some time back I was asked by one of my students," Sir what is the chemistry behind anger. This question kept me thinking and haunting for a long until I came to know that, we have sixteen chemicals inside us which shape our emotions. Our emotions, determine our moods and these moods shape our personality. For example, anger is an emotion and is caused by a chemical reaction. If our body did not make insulin or it was less than necessary and we ate too much salt or if we didn't get enough sleep or if we came out of the house on an empty stomach, what will be the result? We will have a chemical reaction inside us. This reaction will raise our blood pressure and this blood pressure will create a feeling of anger inside us. We will erupt, but our eruption will only last for 12 minutes. After 12 minutes, our body will produce chemicals that quench anger and so we will be cool down in the next 12-15 minutes so if we learn to manage twelve minutes of anger then we will avoid the ravages of anger.
This version is not limited to anger only. We have eight basic emotions: anger, anticipation, joy, trust, fear, surprise, sadness and hatred. All these emotions last only for twelve minutes. We are scared for only 12 minutes, we laugh for only 12 minutes, we are sad for only 12 minutes, we hate for only 12 minutes, we are angry for 12 minutes and we are overwhelmed with surprise, joy or pleasure for only 12 minutes. Twelve minutes later, our bodies return to normal. But still to our wonder, if every emotion last only for 12 minutes then why we see people all day long in a world of anger, sadness, hatred and fear. To analyze this and in order to arrive at a specific conclusion, let us assume and compare these emotions with fire, there is a fire in front of you, if you keep pouring a little oil on this fire, or if you keep on putting dry wood on it, what will happen? This fire will spread and will continue to burn. In a similar way, most of us instead of trying to control emotions, start pouring oil and wood on them. So the emotion that was supposed to return to normal in 12 minutes spread to two to three days and if we don't recover in two or three days, that passion becomes our long mood and this mood becomes our personality. This is how people then start calling us Ghuseel Khan, Uddas Chand, Khofzadeh Malik, Nafrat Singh, Mian Hasmukh Sahib or Heearat Shah. Have you ever noticed that so many of us always have a look of surprise, laughter, hatred, fear, sadness or anger on our faces. This is obvious because emotions knocked on their face for twelve minutes but they did not let it go back and so that emotion be it surprise, laughter, hatred, fear, sadness or anger became their personality. It then gets engraved on their faces forever. If these people had managed for twelve minutes, they would have escaped the scourge for lifetime and would not have became the slaves to any others emotions or would have not been blackmailed.
Surprisingly, Love and sex are also emotions and actually are the parents of pleasure and passion that too lasts only for twelve minutes and if you do not put new wood in this furnace too, it will also finish in twelve minutes. But we humans tie these with a rope and hang them around our necks and most of the times become insane and humiliated of actions in their response. But if we manage to escape these twelve minutes of Love, sexual emotions/ lust, we will be saved from sin, guilt and humiliation. But often so many fail to do this and so are stoned, murdered, imprisoned and humiliated. Thus we are all prisoners of emotions for twelve minutes and if somehow we managed to get out of these twelve minutes, we will be able to escape from the long prison; otherwise these 12 minutes will not leave us of anywhere.
The big question to ponder here is, how one can manage these twelve minutes. The answer and actions to follow are so simple. Whenever you are overwhelmed by an emotion, just shut your mouth first and don't speak even a word and also don't laugh loudly, just smile a little bit and with a smiling face start doing another work. Try to go out for a walk at the time of fear, anger, sadness and pleasure while observing a fast of silence for 20 minutes. Another option to do is to call parents, nears or dears or start cleaning your room, belongings, open some magazine/ book/ newspaper or sit down, lie down with ears and eyes closed. In this way twelve minutes will pass and the storm is over and after this time the mind regains power and one is able to make back proper decisions. But, what if you don't have all these works/phone call to do, then remember the best antidote to pass these twelve minutes is only the silence. No worry, whether the sky falls or the earth explodes do not open your mouth, believe me, no matter how big the tsunami is, it can't stand the silence. Everyone can overcome all the storms of life by remaining silent.
Dr.Ashaq Hussain is Assistant Professor Chemistry (Selection Grade) at Govt. Degree College Chatroo Jammu and Kashmir and can be reached at [email protected]