Passage 1

Happiness

Happiness is like the sun; it is often hidden by the clouds of thoughts, worries and desires. We have to scatter and dissolve them to experience happiness. You don’t have to create happiness. All you have to is calm your mind, because when there is a quiet mind and inner peace, there is happiness. Happiness is not something far away and unattainable. Happiness does not depend on circumstances, objects or events. It is an inseparable part of our consciousness, of our essence, but hidden and covered from sight by out thoughts, desires and worries. The mind is always in a constant race from one thought to another, from one worry to another. It constantly moves from one object or task to another, never standing still. This restlessness hides the happiness that is within you. It is like a choppy sea that hides the bottom. When the sea gets calm, you can see the bottom. In the same way, when the mind gets quiet, you sense the happiness that is within you.

You cannot see a treasure at the bottom of a stormy and muddy lake although it is there. However, when the wind stops, the water becomes still and mud sinks, you can see the treasure. The treasure is there, whether you see it or not. So is happiness. It is always here, only hidden by thoughts, desires and worries.

You can experience more and more happiness in your life. Only your thoughts stand in your way of experiencing it. Next time you feel happy, stop for a moment and watch the state of your mind. You will be surprised to discover that it is calm, and there are almost no thoughts in your mind. Since the mind is not accustomed to stay in this peaceful state for long, it soon becomes active again, and the sense of happiness disappears.

Questions

1. What is common between happiness and the sun?

2. How can we enjoy moments of happiness in our life?

3. How does the restlessness of our mind come in the way of our happiness?

4. How can we detect the treasure at the bottom of a stormy and muddy lake?

5. The word………. in para 1 is the synonym of ‘disperse’.

6. The word ……… in para 1 means the same as ‘one and the same’.

7. The word ‘hidden’ in para 2 is an antonym of ……………
a) transparent
b) evident
c) obvious
d) visible

8. Which of the following words in para 3 is a synonym of ‘habituated’?
a) surprised
b) adapted
c) accustomed
d) peaceful

Answers

1. Happiness is like the sun; it is often hidden by the clouds of thoughts, worries and desires. We have to scatter and dissolve them to experience happiness.

2. Restlessness of our mind comes in the way of our happiness by making the mind disturbed, whereas happiness requires a clam mind and inner peace.

3. The mind is always in a constant race from one thought to another, from one worry to another, never standing still. This restlessness hides the happiness that is within us.

4. One cannot see the treasure at the bottom of a stormy and muddy lake although it is there. However, when the wind stops, the water becomes still and the mud sinks, one can see the treasure.

5. scatter

6. inspearable

7. d) visible

8. c) accustomed

Passage 2

1. One would imagine that at the very sight of the panther, deer, antelopes and its other preys would just run for their lives. Nothing of the sort. They all stand their ground and make such a loud noise that the panther is left with no other choice except to leave quietly. I have seen a tinny chital baby standing in the middle of an opening in the forest, stamping its feet on the ground and shooting away a tiger. With the white of its erect tail showing, it kept up its shrill call until the tiger made itself scarce. No tiger in its senses would attempt to catch such an impertinent brat, just as you would not dram of catching an offending crow cawing away in your verandah.

2. While the panther sticks to cover and hugs the edge of the forest, the game animals, on the other hand, like to assemble right out in open vast grazing grounds. Open spaces, which the panther carefully avoids, are what the game animals deliberately seek.

3. It is difficult to describe the pandemonium kicked up by various animals when they spot or suspect a panther around. The chital strikes a shrill note, the kakar emits a deafening bark and the sambar rings a bell. The peacock on its perch, the jungle fowl on the ground, and the monkey treetops, all join in the chorus of condemnation of the panther. They curse the panther in their own inimitable language. The resulting confusion of sounds is so irritating to the sharp ears of the panther that it is left with no other option except to go away.

4. The panther has thus to deal with its ever alert and watchful associates who show no mercy and expect none. It is a fight between finesse and flight, between clever and skillful defence.

5. Contrary to the common belief, the panther never springs upon its prey. It stalks as close to its victim as it can manage, and then makes the final dash by rushing at it at lightning speed.

Questions

1. What strategy do animals like deer, antelopes etc adopt to drive away the panther?

2. How do the panther and the game animals (deer, antelopes, etc) react to open spaces?

3. What effect does the loud noise made by birds and animals have on the panther?

4. How does the panther kill its prey?

5. The word…….. in para 1 means the same as “high-pitched and piercing”.

6. The word………….. in para 2 is the synonym of ‘intentionally’.

7. Which word in para 3 is an antonym of ‘praise’?
a) pandemonium
b) confusion
c) condemnation
d) irritating

8. Which of the following words is a synonym of ‘springs’ in para 5?
a) flies
b) leaps
c) originates
d) evolves

Answers

1. The animals like deer, antelope etc. stand their ground and make such a loud noise that the panther is left with no other choice except to leave quietly.

2. The panther carefully avoids open spaces by sticking to cover at the edge of the forest, whereas the game animals deliberately seek such spaces. They like to assemble in vast open grazing grounds.

3. The loud noise made by the birds and animals when they suspect that a panther is around is so irritating to the sharp ears of the panther that it has no option except to go away.

4. The panther kills its prey by first stalking as close as possible to its victim and then makes the final dash by running at it at lightning speed.

5. shrill

6. deliberately

7. c) condemnation

8. b) leaps