A story of an Eastern European guy who worships a Hindu god

Photo by Artem Beliaikin on Unsplash

A sharp August sun makes my banging hangover after a farewell party even worse. I try to ignore it because this moment is very important. I don’t know it yet, but it will stay with me forever. A row of Indian men, women, and children stretches in front of me. The subject of their interest?

Me.

It is the end of the international folklore festival in my hometown and I am a guide of this group from Gujarat in India. During the past six days, we spent every waking hour together. …


A message to all American friends

Photo by Cameron Smith on Unsplash

“As long as people are people, democracy in the full sense of the word will always remain an ideal. One may approach democracy as one would a horizon, in ways that may be better or worse, but which can never fully be attained. In this sense you, too, are merely approaching democracy. You have thousands of problems of all kinds, as other countries do. But you have one great advantage: you have been approaching democracy for more than two hundred years, and your journey toward that horizon has never been disrupted by a totalitarian system.”

— Václav Havel, Speech to…


Yet, we are in the prime position for a better future

Photo by Rafael Arkenau on Unsplash

Humanity has never been dumber.

Yes, the technological advancement of the last decades is remarkable. We continue to produce and construct wonderful creations, as we always did. We have raised the quality of life to unprecedented levels and won many battles against our eternal adversaries — poverty and child mortality have dropped significantly.

But this war is neverending and right now we face many vital challenges, most of them of our own making. …


We should celebrate them as much as we can.

Running on trails… (Photo by Brian Erickson on Unsplash)

Running is a hip thing. Often it seems like all the cool cats run.

“You don’t run? That’s weird.”

You may be tired of a dozen friends telling you running is the activity we were born to do, convincing you it is essential to become a healthy individual.

But maybe you don’t like to run. Yeah, it can be as simple as that. It just bores you. That’s fine. You can still choose plenty of other activities, movement practices, and sports. What matters is to find the one we truly enjoy and then actually practice it for years and years.


And how to feel like it even if you’re not a performer

Photo by Yvette de Wit on Unsplash

The thrilling cocktail of tension and excitement makes my limbs tremble like an old tree in the wind.

I’m familiar with this feeling. Every performer knows it intimately. It’s an old friend who comes to visit before most of the live shows. No matter if we dance for a group of seniors to brighten up their day in the retirement home, or if we perform at a big concert; I am always nervous.

But today is different. You don’t dance for 5,000 people often. Maybe if they quietly watched the show, I would feel calmer.

But it’s a pandemonium out…


Stay patient, the next train will arrive soon

Photo by Karen Zhao on Unsplash

Some days feel like they’re written by mad screenwriters. They are interesting, yet not funny. These days will come. Luckily, they will also go away.

Days are like trains. The train rides through the country of your life, you often enjoy your seat and observe how the countryside behind the window just flies by.

However, if you are not mindful enough, you will catch yourself thinking, where are all those days passing? If you get too comfortable, you will wake up one day and realize half of your ride has already passed, and you just slept through it.

But sometimes…


Give it a try if your obligations allow you

Photo by Alexander Redl on Unsplash

There’s no bad time to run. As long as you take your regular dose, run whenever it suits you.

I run in the morning.

However, crawling from a bed to my running shoes can be a challenge. When I run early in the morning, I don’t feel energized and sometimes I struggle to maintain my pace. But the feeling of a brand new day is worth it!

The moisture evaporates from the ground and fills the air with freshness. As the sun rises, the city wakes up and the noisy opera of people and cars begins its first act.

Every…


A powerful lesson for generations to come

Photo by Insomnia Cured Here on Flickr (CC BY-SA).

“Greed has poisoned men’s souls, has barricaded the world with hate, has goose-stepped us into misery and bloodshed. We have developed speed, but we have shut ourselves in. Machinery that gives abundance has left us in want. Our knowledge has made us cynical. Our cleverness, hard and unkind. We think too much and feel too little. More than machinery we need humanity. More than cleverness we need kindness and gentleness. Without these qualities, life will be violent and all will be lost…”

… Said a nameless Jewish barber when he climbed on the stage to face the entire army of…


Be aware of people who fit the characteristics

Image by Olya Adamovich from Pixabay

There’s no middle ground.

You either recognize their deception, in which case you lose even the last bits of respect, or they trap you in their web of tricks and you fall for the cult of personality.

I’m talking about men and women who treat themselves as stars of our universe. Those who believe that everything and everybody should spin as they command.

They are the egomaniacs of this world.

According to the Cambridge English Dictionary, an “egomaniac is someone who considers themselves to be very important and able to do anything that they want.

If you have one as…


Because it’s an easy task

Photo by Ravin Rau on Unsplash

I am at fault.

Constantly analyzing my life, looking for improvements, and aiming to be the best version of myself. I want to reach for the stars and taste the greatness.

I’ve been flirting with the hustle culture, consuming the productivity porn.

I work on several projects with various partners (some of them nonprofit) and I often find it hard to switch off. Put away my laptop and enjoy the moment.

When I don’t work, I want to write. I want to write so damn much.

My friends even make fun of me. They tease me if I’ll be so…

Jan Vajda

Freelance writer, project manager in two NGOs active in culture. On Medium, I write about the body, mind, soul, and community. Contact: vajdajan9@gmail.com

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store