Shah Rukh Khan @ Yale University as Chubb Fellow

10 Jul

Shah Rukh Khan is perhaps most famous Indian on this planet. He is the most popular global ambassador of Indian film Industry. In this talk at Yale as a Chubb fellow last year, Shah Rukh gives an insight to his life and work that has made him this huge phenomenon.

In this inspiring talk to students at Yale, Shahrukh says three things that mark his journey:

– Be a tight rope walker, he calls it Funambulist.
– Unconditional punching bag that parents are. Love them.
– Being terrified of failure is the path to success.

This is an important talk save some self deprecating cracks at humour. Shah Rukh has a fine mind and has something instructive to share to all of us, in my opinion he is the brightest bollywood star of all time.

Shah Rukh says about his journey “As for my destination, I don’t think I ever knew one. I walk, I run, in the direction of my dreams. Things change along the way, people change, I change, the world changes, even my dreams change. I don’t have a place to arrive, I just keep doing what I know how to do the best that I can do it. ”

He goes on to say”in its eventual analysis, my life has centred around my creativity. I have assimilated the world through creative expression and in return the world has experienced me. I have grown to understand that on one hand the world will always uphold creativity as the most honest feeling possible.On the other hand, the portents of fame (the glitz, the glamour, the wealth) that arise from this very recognition of creativity will always be questioned. Why do we do that? Because sometimes it allows us to feel better than the creator and sometimes, it fills a void within us that comes about by being in awe of his creation. Either way, it enables us to quantify his engagement with the world around him.”

Shah Rukh on creativity ” Creative expression comes from the deepest experience of the artist himself. A good artist cannot be separate from his creation. Good art is honest art. A man may be an artist, a writer, a sculptor, an actor or a totem pole carver. Whatever he is, if what he creates is true to himself, it becomes a vivid testimonial to human creativity. If it lacks honesty, its entire premise is a waste.”

He says “I momentarily lose my ability to give and close up. And here’s where the trick is – when you are in this place of despair, where the world is staring you down into yourself – there’s only one thing you can do to survive – hang on to who you are inside. The world will be unkind to you, it will not be able to see you. You must learn at such times, to be able to see yourself.” This my friends is the most important life skill.

He adds ” Never become cynical about yourself and your life. Becoming cynical about your life is the single most destructive thing you can do to it. ” Further “For you have to remember – creativity is your gift to the world. It was never meant to be barter for anything, not even appreciation.”

Shah Rukh’s call of action, “life as a creator will always be a tight rope. Do not try to feed your stomach with creativity,it is food for your soul,not your stomach. Do not be afraid to defy conventions.Do not be afraid to destroy systems that kill art and your souls. Do not be afraid to be hungry. Do not be afraid to walk alone if necessary.”

Finally Shahrukh’s take on his phenomenal success ” At an early age after my parents died, I equated poverty with failure. I just didn’t want to be poor. So when I got a chance to act in films it wasn’t out of any creative desire that I did so. It was purely out of the fear of failure and poverty. Most of the films I signed were discards of better known actors and the producers could not find anyone else to do them. I did them all to make sure that I was working to avoid unemployment. The timing or something was right, and that made them happen. I became a big star, which means sometimes our success is not the direct result of our actions. Success just happens. Really. It is accidental and we take credit for it, I know I have done this even out of embarrassment sometimes.”

He says ” So I believe the true path to success is through the fear of failure. If you aren’t scared enough of failing, you are unlikely to succeed. It’s not pleasant to fail, it’s tough. All of us experience it. You will too if you haven’t already. Use it to succeed.”

He ends up saying “Chuck Norris’ has trained his dog to pick up his own poop because Chuck Norris will not take shit from anyone” 🙂

Please do check for more :

I had earlier posted an interview of ShahRukh with Barkha, who are really similar in their devotion to work and are truer than true to their stated craft. I first saw Shah Rukh khan in a television serial, he had this unnerving intensity about him, call it passion or instinct, he just ended being a trailblazer. I liked his early films which captured his irreverence and intensity. To be honest do not watch Bollywood films now nor am a follower, but Shah Rukh Khan is one hell of a phenomenon. I think his courage, convictions and intelligence are exemplary. I think he is a very good role model, intelligent,educated,loving father and super successful Bollywood star. I always always like listening to him and reading about him.

I wanted to share this:) Hope this was of service. Thank you!


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