Friday, May 11, 2018
Thursday, September 07, 2017
A true friend.
Monday, August 28, 2017
These words came from the renowned German philosopher and economist, Karl Marx. According to Wikipedia, “Marx believed that religion had certain practical functions in society that were similar to the function of opium in a sick or injured person: it reduced people's immediate suffering and provided them with pleasant illusions, but it also reduced their energy and their willingness to confront the oppressive, heartless, and soulless reality that capitalism had forced them into.” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Opium_of_the_people)
Since time immemorial, human beings have felt this urge to worship. We have a long history of being devotees of nature, animals, idols, mythological characters, men and women who came out of scriptures that were written by men themselves, and random people claiming to be the prophets of God.
Why this urge to believe in a force greater than us, is still a mystery. Maybe as Marx opinioned, it just made people feel better. They had something hopeful and positive to cling to – to blank out the misery and dark reality of life and existence. Religion probably gave them strength to face fears and tough situations.
But since when did we sacrifice our brains at the altar of the gods? Was that the condition they put forward to become a devotee? Why have we become an army of robots – unquestioning, blind, illogical, unscientific and plain dumb? Does the degree of our dumbness define the depth of our faith? Yes, the word ‘faith’ means absolute surrender to what you believe in, but since religion is mostly ‘man-made’, can we trust it to be 100% infallible and devoid of faults?
Why are we so engrossed in fighting for our human representatives of God (godmen and women), that we forget the basic tenets of religion? Love one another. Be kind. Spread peace. Do not hurt another being with your actions or words. Do not use violence; a lot greater can be achieved through love. Aren’t these more important than the idiots who claim to do all this, but only in words?
Yes, the people need someone to turn to. But then, let them not switch off their brains and at least place their trust in the right persons. A blatant rapist and murderer hardly cuts a fine figure to worship and trust. It’s like being in a relationship with a toxic someone who constantly cheats behind your back, physically and sexually abuses you and claims your life to be his/her own – and you saying, “But I can’t leave him/her because I love him so and I know he/she loves me too.” That’s when you know that you’ve stopped THINKING.
You want to cling on to something? Cling on to love. To peace. To non-violence. To the ‘live and let live’ mantra. These are so much better than the rubbish these false godpeople feed us. No human being deserves to be put up on a pedestal that high, that they are above the law and no longer accountable for their actions.
Let us switch on our brains. Keep them where they should be. Polish them regularly through analysis, logical reasoning and questions. Keep them running. Let us never be complacent, naïve fools – ripe for being used by the Ram Rahims who emerge from hell.
Faith is one thing, being ridiculously dumb is another.
Saturday, August 19, 2017
Usually drowned out by the laughter on TV or the endless beeping of the smartphone.
Attention to something that was there all along.
You just forgot it was there.
I can hear the sweeper's broom outside. "Swish....swish....swish..."
No passing car to bully these sounds.
If a pin dropped, it would not escape my notice.
Perhaps this silence means something?
Probably giving way to elements of life we normally walk past without thinking.
The body is in silence. And still. Any movement takes a mammoth effort.
With a whirlwind within, that's all it can do to contain it.
Feelings, emotions, dreams, disappointments, memories - all on a rollercoaster ride.
All held together at the crux by something so powerful, it will take all my armed forces to de-throne it.
This is the silence before the storm.
The inactivity before exhaustive action.
The rest before war.
And as the soldiers cry out for battle and the arrow stands ready for release,
Listening to the ticking of the clock.
Monday, June 05, 2017
A lot of people live a pattern. They graduate, study some high tech fancy stuff at an overseas university and join the ranks of the ambitious, almost robotic army of workers, rushing to climb the ladder of success and be "settled" by 30. By the time their shiny car summits the ’30-year’ hilltop, the next haul from there is downhill. Suddenly, they begin to pause and slow down to contemplate. They may find an unspoken, unrealised discontent under all those fast-paced heart beats that the work targets and fat pay cheques brought on. The car begins to hesitate. And one day, the successful corporate slave gives up everything to go live on top of a desolate mountain. Or backpack across the country, absorbing new culture, music and well, life.
Saturday, March 11, 2017
See, there are ways of working around it. It's like family planning and making similar arrangements. She goes on to say, "As a young working couple, having kids is not in our present scheme of things. But having pets is like bringing up kids, it's just that they remain a child all their lives and their world begins and ends with their human parents."
When I get home in the evening, either from dance class or a late night out, whatever the time, Ollie waits for me at the door with his ball. First, he peeps from the window and watches me drive in, and then strategically runs away with my socks to get me to chase him. So no matter how tired or dressed up I am, I have to sprint with him to the terrace and play ball with him, romp and run a little, till the little master is satisfied and had his "play time." Even Benny watches out for me with expectant eyes, even though he can't run anymore. The outside gang gives me a grand welcome at the gate and demand a pet or scratch before I can enter the house. It feels warm and fuzzy inside that in addition to my parents, there is a whole 'wagging' party waiting for me.
I guess Ammu and her husband's lives are no different. "Our two babies, Sheroo and Boltoo, have a huge influence on our lives - we don't carry work home, we are now morning people, we take our health seriously because they need us to be fit and they are such stress busters! The best ever company on any given day. I strongly believe that we don't rescue them; they rescue us. Imagine coming back home to two jumpy kids who have been waiting for you, to give you a grand welcome, every single day? A dog is proof that God loves us. Period."
Who is a mother? What does it take to be a parent? I guess only we can define this. So for my caring friends and distant relatives who'd love me to have babies one day, I have news for you - I stepped into motherhood long ago. And my pack, is ever growing.
Monday, February 20, 2017
There’s something about the fragrance of crayons that sends you shooting back to your childhood. To those countless moments when you sat scribbling in your colouring book for hours, struggling to keep the colours within the outline or trying to be creative and experiment with some shading.
Crayons, you still smell delicious. I could eat you.
Friday, October 28, 2016
Every morning, I awaken and saunter into my garden. Winter makes sure I feel his presence, and my arms go around me in response. The Harsingar tree is my favourite. All day and all night, there's a perpetual whiff of its fragrant white and orange flowers, that drop silently from the branches like snowflakes from the sky.
The garden dances each day. Seedlings making their slow progress skywards, flowers showing off their best party frocks, and trees singing in the cool breeze. And when the sun falls, they all bask - lazy and golden.
I await to see my Nasturtiums and Pansies. Their seeds were planted two weeks ago. There's a 'natural' suspense to it. The tomatoes in the back garden seem to be doing fine, while the melons have simply sprouted from the seeds in our homemade manure. This isn't even their season, yet they want to survive and shine.
I sit and watch the gossiping Babblers, hunting for tasty snacks in the grass; the occasional Hoopoe or Red-vented Bulbul; the flippity Sunbirds. They love the garden, I think even more than I do. It is their home, their feeding ground, their social hangout. A sip of water here, a peck at a wriggling worm there, and they're happy.
I watch them for myself. Because what it produces inside me is almost meditative. What a start to a day.