Sunday, June 29, 2008

A Living God

Its 11:12 pm, we are sitting and watching TV, suddenly Mom stood up and says, “I am now going to sleep”.

She picks up the dirty plates and takes them to the sink. She brings Bournvita for us. She sits down to write a leave application for my sister. She clears the mess on the bed, arranges the bed-sheet and knots the mosquito net to its keys. She switches off the light of the drawing room and pulls the grills of the main door. She prepares for her lectures to be delivered in her college the next day and presses her salwar suit. She puts a water bottle and a tumbler near every bed and puts the mobile phones on charging. She greets us, "Good night", which we don‘t even reciprocate having been absorbed in an Arnold's action packed blockbuster. She sets the alarm to 5’o clock in the morning and sits for her night prayers. Finally, she puts on the anti-ageing cream and moisturizers on her face. With a sigh of relief, she goes to her room, turns off the light of the room and retires to bed.

Its 12:04 am, I, tired after finishing the movie, get up and announce loudly, “I am going to sleep, Good night” to which there is no response. I go to my room and blindly slide under my mosquito net and see that there is no pillow. I complain to myself, "Nobody is concerned for me, I hate this world.”

A Ten Years Gap

It was 1998. I was sitting in front of the TV and watching Dexter’s Lab. Suddenly the power was cut, I cursed the electricity board with great enthusiasm and lied down on the bed still in darkness. There was no one in the room. My newly bought radium watch showed me the time was 9:30 at night. The main door was closed and I could see a faint moonlight creeping through the crevices of the door. The light pulled me towards it, and within a moment, I slid towards its birthplace : The Moon.

“I saw myself hanging in between the earth and the moon, being closer to the moon. I found several dark craters and numerous volcanoes scattered on its bright surface. My imagination took me to its surface which was a conglomeration of everything I saw in the cartoons, discovery channel and of course my imagery. I, being still dressed in my favorite trousers, saw beneath my feet impenetrable depth of light, so radiant that it dazzled my eyes. I looked at the sky and found the most beautiful thing I had ever seen : I saw my earth, all of its continents in perfect balance and my motherland India looking as if it had been crafted deliberately yet most beautifully by the Master Craftsman.
"My imagination instantly moved me to a rocket(much like Dexter‘s) which was traveling at limitless speed. Vicariously, I toured the whole solar system. I could see the Jupiter and its four moons dancing around it in circular orbits and I saw Pluto, looking much as a purple colored ‘Cadbury Gems’. I could see myself amazed by the deep blue colour of the Neptune. Within a moment, my super fast thoughts arranged my exit from the solar system. My thoughts unknowingly drifted from the zigzag motion of the planets, crossed the milky way and steered towards the periphery of the universe. The end of the universe was much like the horizon on the sea, as it drifted farther the more I tried to reach it. My mind gave up but my imagination didn’t(it had no bounds), it kept moving away from the universe to finally find a vantage point. And to my utter amazement, from the vantage point I observed that the universe was contained in a small seed and millions of such seeds were contained in an urn in a familiar seed shop in a remote village in northern India...(a sudden ‘wow‘ feeling came at my imagination)"

Sudden bright lights from the bulbs dissolved the dim moonlight from the crevices. The ‘noise’ in the TV brought me back to the world and I was still in awe. After two minutes, I came back to my senses and found that Dexter’s Lab was over, but that time it didn’t hurt.

Ten years later(21st June, 2008), summer holidays on. I was watching TV and this time not a cartoon but a movie. Suddenly, grains struck the TV screen with great intensity and lights flickered, I realized that power got cut and the inverter had taken charge(times have changed, you know). My newly bought watch showed me the time : 12 o’ clock in the night(My matured mind grew up for the radium watch this time). Nature could not interfere my thoughts this time because the moonlight became much less bright for me to notice. I shut down the TV, lay down on the bed and switched off the lights. My thoughts started to wander(not wonder).

“I thought about my school, where the very first thing that struck my mind was how badly my chemistry teacher once ridiculed me in the class. I tried to move my thoughts to my college whose insurmountable academic pressure punched me hard. I consciously tried to think of my future but, to my shock, I could find numerous doubts and dilemmas. My self-belief started to tremble. I heard a wailing sound of a child from somewhere in the neighborhood and this carried me back to my childhood days - where dreams were always meant to come true, where the whole universe was in my fist and I could twist and turn it in my own wish, where I could drive rockets with saucers, where the word “limitation” was never in my dictionary, where every morning was brand new and filled with enormous energy, where I was like ‘wind’ with enough power to smash every obstacle that stood my way. My thoughts soon merged with my dreams and simultaneously my childhood merged with my present scenarios. The tough realities haunted me with their true face and I realized how time had changed. I had matured but somewhere on the way I lost that innocence and that freedom. I longed for the same blithe of my childhood.”

A sudden call early in the morning from my aunt woke me up the next day. She asked me to come and teach her 5th grade son some Mathematics when I wondered, “Is it he or me who needs to be taught?”

Saturday, June 21, 2008

The Three Mistakes of My Life

I got really excited when I saw Chetan Bhagat’s new book in Big Bazaar. The cost(Rs.95 only) too did not made my wallet frown. I bought that book within a blink(The first mistake of my life, I realized later).When I met my friends, I proudly asked them, “Dude, have you seen Chetan’s new book?” My friends negated to which I proudly replied, “I have got it buddy” and my shrewd smile increased its curvature to form a perfect semi-circle and made me more flamboyant. I loved winning over them in ‘atleast’ one thing for the time being.

My pomp trickled me down to a slippery path of exaggeration(Its so very slippery that it can cause a dumb person to become an RJ or a little talk with a girl to be called as a date, and still we all love doing that!). Having read just the prologue and the first two chapters of the book, I told them the book is stunning with great storyline and blah-blah(Yes, you got that right : The ‘second’ mistake). It is not surprising because Chetan’s writing style especially at the beginning of his writing always looks marvelous(C’mon, he isn’t that bad!). The next few days somehow things didn’t workout, I could not get enough time to complete that book(Got tired of orkutting the whole day!) but that couldn’t stop me from giving free publicity to the guy who thanked Bill Gates in his acknowledgements. I recommended this book to every teenager I came across. Chetan must be getting hiccups everytime I advertised his book. Why shouldn’t I publicize? Its my fundamental duty to give a guy moral support who sat through the same tortures in the same lecture theatres as I am doing presently.

God was ‘a bit’ kind on me. My mom gifted that book to somebody(poor he!) for which I had a nice fight at home because the book was incomplete and I thought I would read it someday. The main problem was that I couldn’t complain to any of my friends about the lost that book because they were knowing that I had finished the book(courtesy to my exaggerations). Fortunately, my resentment faded away soon with incoming 200 scraps and numerous ‘gtalk’ conversations. Internet is a panacea, it can cure all your ailments. Days went by as fast as guys score runs in IPL(sorry for that dumb simile, I couldn‘t find anything better conveying my feelings).

I had a trip to Shirdi in the second week of June. I had taken two books(Paulo Coelho‘s stuffs) for the journey to provide my mind some philosophical entertainment(sounds weird, eh?). But the non-stop chatter of a 7-year old overenthusiastickid” brought me down to read some fiction(How could he understand the value of concentration, until he would need to fry his bottom to prepare for the competitions!). So I considered it a right time for finishing off with the incomplete book. At Jabalpur station, I committed the third biggest mistake of my life and nobody stopped me, not even my intuition.

I got down the train and purchased that book once again, and to add icing on the cake the shopkeeper told me, “Saheb, ye book bahot bik rahi hai”. My ego knew no bounds and a sudden pride sprang up : The book that I had suggested to my friends is gonna be a best-seller, “I rock!”. I came back happily on my seat and ‘dated’ the book for the next five continuous hours(Fortunately or unfortunately, that kid got down at the next station). The book provided me more jerks than the train. It was the same : filmy, melodramatic, repetitive, monotonous and non-sensical, in short disgusting. I could dream of continuous jeers from my friends, about this book, targeted at me with great force after they read it. The scenes from the film “The Butterfly Effect” flashed my eyes where I could go to the past and craft my future according to my own wish. Only in dreams I could save myself from my friends, who would leave no stones unturned in pulling my leg. Perhaps that’s why I am tall.

Book Analysis :

In the cup life of a Gujarati businessman, Mr.Bhagat added the spice of cricket, calamities, financial bottlenecks, friendship, romance, eroticism, emotional dilemmas, religious fanaticism and also maths(not to forget Mr.Bhagat ought to be good at this stuff). In a way the recipe for the script of a typical Indian movie could be found in that 95 rupees book.

Mr.Bhagat has gone somewhere wrong, he started writing out of his passion and now I believe he has drifted towards enriching his bank accounts. His books, save the stunning 5.someone, were a complete shit. He tried to do every kind of experiment on those, he tried to send us a message through God or tried to bring out the extremism of the religious fronts, but amidst all this he has forgotten to take care of the readers. He has become highly repetitive as his writings are always revolving around 3 to four friends of which one is stud, one is dull and the third, the narrator, is a guy suffering from ‘superb’ inferiority complex. The repetitions in the storyline tickles my small intestine and makes me uncomfortable. His writings claim to be true, but it is hard to find it in this real world of ours, ‘which moves around the sun if he notices’, so many coincidences are ‘beep’ impossible. If what he has written is true, then I am desperately expecting Ali to come out of nowhere in our Cricket team and replace Sachin and oh my jesus, I haven’t heard of that guy called Fred of the Australian team to be counted among the ‘Legends’. Comparing him with the legends like Naipul, Rushdie is inappropriate because he is not yet versatile, he needs to grow.
This is purely critical analysis, my views put in words. Every sentence describes my feelings and if this hurts anybody then prove your point to me or go to hell. Being a fan is the easiest thing in the world, just follow the herds of people who blindly follow a person. But one should apply one’s mind before carrying on someone else’s beliefs. Chetan Bhagat is undoubtedly very successful and his writing style is cool, but this monotony pinches me hard(and also tickles me, if you remember) and makes me comment on it. I would love to have your views on this book and also on Mr.IITian-IIMian husband of Mrs.Bhagat.

Sometimes I am bad, and the problem is that ‘sometimes’ happens too often.

(Written on 12th June in Shirdi)

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Faith :

I think that I am losing something, thats a vital component of existence and thats faith. The moment I enter a temple or any religious place I begin to question my belief, I am not able to believe in an idol. I really want to, but just the flow of faith is interrupted. There is always a doubt accompanying me at these times.

On analyzing carefully, Faith in a supreme power is necessary as well as spiritually good because :

  • It shatters the ego a big deal.
  • It makes one grateful for everything one gets, whether good or bad.
  • It marks a beginning in the power of prayers in our life. Prayers can do miracles.

These three points are totally out of my experience with people who firmly believe in GOD. I am not an atheist, rather am an agnostic, a "mean" agnostic, who does not believe in anything without logic; but I am a peculiar kind of agnostic who wants to be a Theist but can't do it. I am helpless, Can anybody suggest me a method, a course : a crash course kind of thing in FAITH Development?? Help me..

(Firm believers of God are welcome to share their experiences, I would love to read them)

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Scattered Thoughts :

A strange feeling slid inside me when I peeped down the roof. It was just a four-storied building and this fear of losing myself caged me from within. Coming back to my senses, I wondered for a while, why I got that eerie feeling? The fear of falling down made me so scared that I suddenly realized my existence. For the last 18 years, I never cared for my existence, I took it for granted. The bizarre thought of death never ever struck my mind. How could I die? I am here to live, to achieve, to pursue my interests... was all that I could think of...But suddenly, something more powerful than my existence, which can shake the roots of my very existence became visible i.e. DEATH. I get an abnormal sensation when I think about it.

My point is why there is much fuss about it? Are we doing such great things that death will cause some loss to the world? Nothing is indispensable. Our very existence is mere an illusion, just as someone has dipped his finger in water and the moment he withdraws his finger the water fill that space instantaneously. We are special but impermanent mortal species. Death is bound to come, its waiting for the right time. Instead of running away from it, if we welcome it with openness our lives would be the most fulfilling : because we will die happily.