The Butterfly Effect

This is not a one-off event, but often times I have observed Butterfly Effect shaping up my life in unforeseen ways. Obviously taking a cue from Jobs, “looking back all the dots make sense”. But this time it was so closely knit together that I wish to share…

The first flutter of the wings took place in the year 2006. It was December, and I picked up a book from the Tech Market on campus at Kgp. I had a new-found insurmountable hunger for reading books, to amass knowledge of any and all kind. So, what did I do – I pick up one of the most recondite sounding book on Open Society by a man named Karl Popper. Little knowledge did I have of the man, or his work, and absolutely zero knowledge to understand what he had written to say the least. At that point, I thought either the man is a genius, and lost to the world (because for my little head, I had not heard of him so far) and how pitiable is the situation that they remain in the books only; or these days anybody can get a book published with their weird ideas that no one can understand, and what a pity that finding quality material is these days!!!

Then, the second event happened in the May of 2009. While I would walk down from my lab at Berkeley towards I-House, I would encounter a big ground/stadium to my left. “Funded by George Soros” or so was inscribed in a big gold plated plaque outside it. I thought who could fund such huge stadiums for the alma mater. Then I looked up for Mr. Soros and found that he was a billionaire and keeps donating multi million dollars to his alma maters. But I was really impressed by the guy, and kept in touch about him since.

The third event was my choice of CEU for exchange. This was January of 2014, i.e this year. Hungary, Budapest, Eastern Europe… all sounded so far and distant. Areas I had very little knowledge of (apart from the fact that lady dracula was from hungary and count dracula from neighboring transylvania). My wanderlust and desire to explore led me to chose CEU, not to mention the great international community as well.

After landing here, I soon found out that CEU in large part was funded by Soros. He himself comes from Budapest, and has played a key role in economic upliftment of the region through his Open Society initiatives. I even visited the Headquarters just behind CEU main building to see what wonderful works the organization is carrying out.

Today, while I was reading a guide book on the history of Budapest and the walks around, I read “CEU, in large funded by George Soros, who studied at London School of Economics and was a protege of Karl Popper….”

Wait…wait.. wait… KARL What??? My mind went into a tizzy. And I started searching about the man again frantically. The co-incidences have been far apart. And does not matter much in a sense. But the three incidences cover most of my educational training at quite diverse backgrounds.

It just reminded me how the Butterfly effect plays in our lives. If we are observant enough.

In sanskrit they say, every atom in the universe interacts with every other in an unforeseen yet impactful manner. Isn’t it incredible to think that I destined myself to write this post from here, Budapest, the moment I picked Karl Popper’s book in a remote book shop of Kharagpur?


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