Archive for June 2010
It is said that if one believed in life beyond death, one would live life differently, and better, even though there is no objective way of finding out. I agree, positive benefits would flow from a belief in permanence, if one thinks of it. As it is, our life span of 70 odd years is rather short, and even in those 70 years, death lurks as a possibility.
But death as a psychological concept, is not wholly undesirable. A normal person may find the thought of a final end unpleasant, but for a sufferer, death offers the ultimate escape. Think of someone suffering from chronic depression, or worse, from a severe mental ailment, a state of constant inner tumbling. The thought of being eternally trapped, having no escape from the torment of ones state would be horrendous. Not in this lifetime, or the next, but for ever. Imagine the victim of torture, and his desperate scream “does this agony know no end??”.
Heaven and Hell are undoubtedly states of mind, which are not even realized in every life, or as glimpses, but in some lives they are, and they always exist as possibilities. But death ensures no suffering is permanent, there’s a limit to every agony and torment. There can be no Sisyphus or Prometheus. Death is the ultimate relief, the ultimate catharsis. It is the psyche, the self’s final defense mechanism – to be obliterated into nothingness. It is maybe for this reason we even carry the idea of Death.
In the future, we may be happier when we have controlled death. But we would still like to have a “death switch”.
A poem written by my mother, which is one of the best poems on parting i have ever read. Couldn’t resist trying to do it into a song.
The cloud unfolded it’s golden wings
before the two of us
We both heard the mute song of parting
in the dying hours of the evening
– I, under the old cassia tree in the courtyard,
and you on the long road to freedom.
Alas! You could not hear the words it whispered to me.
And what it said to you was lost forever in the rising wind.
An add on song
Life has a sacred element. This sacredness is not derived from a divine entity in the sky, nor does it connote deferential or servile obeisance. The universe in all probability is ambivalent to human existence. We are in all likelihood nothing but a product of the blind forces of nature. A vehicle of its random laws. Motherhood probably an evolutionary tactic to ensure survival of the species. Love nothing more than a search for healthy mates. Altruism a complex form of give and take. Feelings only chemical churning in the brain. Further disaggregated, we are probably nothing more than clusters of subatomic particles floating around space in accordance with the rules of chaos. And transient, a blip compared to the vast time scales of the universe.
But we must never believe we are only that. We must believe that life has inherent value. That it has purpose. To find that purpose and live as if that purpose has a central place in the universe. To love from the depths of our life. To believe in truth, justice, compassion, fairness, reasonableness, tolerance. To shun violence. To ensure equality. To believe life is not futile in the face of imminent death. To try and not grow cynical or weary. To never lose faith in this sacredness. To treat every human as an end and not a means. And keep love at the center of all things.
This sacredness is derived from nothingness. But it is this sacredness that makes life worth living. The universe does not feel. But it has spurned conscious, feeling beings who are capable of pain. Beings well aware of the paradox of their very existence. Meaning has sprung from meaninglessness. Tragedy has been created. Is there a greater wonder? The meaning which is relevant to us is the only meaning that really matters. Otherwise what does it matter if rocks collide with each other? And explode? It certainly doesn’t matter to the rocks themselves. The meaning we create is the only meaning. Copernicus was wrong, we are the center of the universe. This is the conclusion of existentialism.
This sacredness must be nurtured. Reason may lead to the conclusion of meaninglessness. But this conclusion is not inherent in life. With every breath life asserts meaningfulness. When we love, we feel in communion with the divine. Our dreams, where we imagined the perfect reality, unfold right in front of us. We are in touch with eternity. We have found God finally. We may speculate about death, and shudder, but instinctively we do not know what it would be like to be extinguished. It is as if life believes it is permanent.
If for nothing else, this sense of meaning and purpose makes for a healthy and full life. If not, we would just meander and wither away.
Being handsome is all about having a handsome expression.
Life imitates Bollywood.
Punjab di kudi – speaks Punjabi with an English accent and English with a Punjabi accent
Long haired guys are never nice guys, since Jesus.
We are made for each other, me and the thought of you,
the last time i called you said “who??”
I used to admire Sajad Khan. Kasam se. I used to.
I admired him when he insight-fully revealed Bollywood movies in “Kehne mein kya harz hai” for the absurdities they were. When he informed us how Kramer vs Kramer was shamelessly copied from Akeyle Hum Akeyle Tum made 20 years later. When he educated us about the “hamming” talents of different Indian actors, the “koi chance nayi” Pran delightfully rattled off with head rocking from side to side in emphasis, the areal fight sequences between middle aged sanjeev kumar and manoj kumar in “Clerk”, and his personal favorite, the sub human Joginder who bhangraed his way to the bushes to take a dump . Or when he donned his rotating wig as Kishen Jhuthani and repeatedly implored “haina?, haina?, haina?“. (and as i found in someone else’s review – referred to jokes as chatokalas)
Frankly, i cannot help but chuckle even now when i see the videos.
I admired him in Ikke pe Ikka when he had his freewheeling absurdist exchanges with Suresh Menon and the original Dileep Kumar, who harbored two split personalities in him of an undignified old man and a foreigner with an americano dileep kumar accent “in ninety sixty seven during the Vietnam war“. When he conducted mock interviews as Vidhu Vinod Chopri “bollywood doezent desherve me” or Yash Chopra “itallisdependonthe jung generation“. Someone described it as “inspired absurdity” and i totally agreed. There is a thin line between inanity and absurdist humor, but he never crossed it, ever.
What has happened since since is inexplicable. Heyy Baby was already a meteoric fall, when the poo laden diaper flew through the air in slow motion and splattered on Fardeen Khan’s face. Housefull is even worse. The following scene sums it up:-