Thursday, January 18, 2018

Can you? Will you?

“People don’t like love, they like that flittery flirty feeling. They don’t love love - love is sacrificial, love is ferocious, it’s not emotive. Our culture doesn’t love love, it loves the idea of love. It wants the emotion without paying anything for it." ― Matt Chandler
Probably this is true and I actually believe in it very strongly.
It's not love what people look out for - its jus that infatuation, those butterflies in the stomach, that excitement, that thrill, that desperation, that anticipation. Actually more than half of the love stories meet an unpleasant and terrible end, the moment all this enthusiasm and drama is gone from a relationship. Sad! but true. We no more (not generalizing), have those 'forever' happy afters. We no more have those relationships with the promise of being together for 7 births. 

We don't even understand this word we use so frequently, called ‘Love’... its just not an emotion, its just not a feeling. It's beyond that. I believe its the strongest emotion of all, stronger than hate and jealousy as well. All the other emotions make a person go through just one kind of feeling. When you hate a person, you just abhor them - negative feeling. It can never be positive. Same is with anger, sadness, and all the other emotions.

But love - One emotion that carries the burden of both the sides. That will give you happiness and will fill your life with sorrows. Its something that can be your biggest strength, but will fail you miserably by being your the biggest weakness too! It will prove to be the biggest blessing for you but will also come as the biggest curse in your life... It will be the biggest truth and yet the biggest lie. Love is the biggest myth and yet, the biggest reality...

It will take you to the peaks of ecstasy and will also throw u in the dungeons of sorrow and pain, it will make you, create you, mould you, yet it has the capacity to damage u forever, that too damage you in a way which would be irreparable...
It might help u in stitching back all ur broken pieces yet it might unsew every inch of your soul and leave ur wounds open and unsewable!
Love is an experience of both the sides... Half of the people just run away the moment good side is over... but real love, it begins after that... after all that excitement... After all that happiness. And that's the challenge- to stay there - loyal even after all that is gone... Can you? Will you?

Monday, January 15, 2018

Padmavati, oops Padmavat Row

I just happened to stroll by my blog today after an year and guess what, I got so many surprises. Few of them are listed below:

1. The number of views has increased by leaps and bounds
2. Getting more comments on my posts like never before
3. I am still getting good average views per day, despite the fact that I have not written from last one year.

But... but the biggest surprise was - I wrote about Padmavati row just one year before, on 28th Jan' 17... and here I am, on this blog (accidentally) exactly after one year, and the topic remains the same - Padmavati.

I mean, seriously for us a movie is a such a huge issue that we stretched it for one year? ONE FULL YEAR... I mean, even Nirbhaya (i believe the worst thing that happened to our nation in recent times), was also forgotten in about 3-4 months. People stopped protesting and went back to their regular lives in just a few days and here we are, shamelessly dragging an irrelevant issue for over a year now.

Today I read that  "Kshatriya Women Threatening a 'Jauhar' If 'Padmaavat' Release Not Stopped". Where were these women when girls are being rapped in our country? Why don't they come forward and threaten a Jauhar or a protest and demand a reasonable punishment for the culprits?

I am not denying, absolutely not denying the cause or sentiments or feelings behind the Padmavati protests. But all I fail to understand is why don't we show the same sincerity, the same zeal for other important issues? Why? We are fighting tooth and nail for a woman who is gone centuries before, why and why can't we fight for the women who are still alive, who are raped and left to suffer. Why don't we fight for the laws to be made more strict and harsher for the rapists? Why?

I wish we had shown the same honesty in dealing and fighting for issues that are far more grave, far more threatening than fighting for saving a part of our history. If that had been the case, we would have become a better society long back.

You know why we are where we are? Because we still live in the past and just do not want to look at our future. Because we are ready to die for people who are gone long back, but ignore who still breathe. Because we care for those who are irrelevant now and do not care about the ones who matter. Because... we are hypocrites. Yes, we are!

Saturday, January 28, 2017

The unforgivable act of violence!

Humanity has touched another low with the incident that happened in Jaipur, where Sanjay Leela Bhansali was assaulted while shooting for Padmavati. This horrifying incident did not just left everybody shocked, but also devastated, because it is a proof that things are going to get worse in our country. The day this incident happened will go down as a sad day in the history of India, when such illiterate goons with no inkling of facts or history attack anything that doesn't agree to their beliefs or doesn't go parallel to what they think is right.

The incident forced us to think if we really are living in a democratic sovereign country. Well, atleast that was the last thing we heard of...

Animals do that!! Attacking, killing. We are humans, why are we forgetting this day by day. Guess, its time to remove the tag of 'civilised' from our species.

And to everybody's dismay, such incidents are on a rise now. No amount of differences in opinion justifies this horrible violent act. If you have disagreements, there are other means to sort out the issues, go to court, speak up (there are so many platforms available these days) or protest, but violence? No, its not justified. Its cowardliness, its shameful, its disgusting!

This is definitely not what our forefathers, our ancestors taught. And what are we giving to the next generation? Hatred...

What are we turning into? An intolerant society whose levels have gone down to the extent of becoming over obsessed with certain ideologies, and bringing anyone down who have different views other than those! Its dangerous. If this continues, and at this pace, we will soon become like one of those countries in Middle east, who just do not bear anything against their ideologies. Do we really want to become one? No! A big no!

With time, we thought all the barriers, including caste and religion will eventually weaken. But unfortunately, they seem to have started becoming darker and deeper. 

Its scary! Such levels of intolerance are just petrifying. Anybody, anyone these days have the audacity to beat anybody up, on the name of patriotism, religion, values, honour and now, the newly added category to the list - History!

We, citizens of the greatest democracy in the world, should not let this happen. There has to be some way to stop these hooligans, justice has to prevail somehow. Until and unless that happens, these incidents will rise. 

I read about such horrifying incidents in books describing Germany under Hitler (Fall of giants - Ken Follett) or in books about Middle east and whenever I read such books, I thank God for not making me go through any such appalling and frightful times. But guess, we are on the verge of witnessing such times!

And BTW, if you have so many issues with distortion of facts, first go and change our textbooks, which are filled with so many contorted and misleading facts. Show your audacity there, not on helpless people

But now its time, we: all of us: have to stand and fight against these jokers and hooligans, and refrain them from making a mockery of our democracy. Lets not commit a mistake of staying silent and bearing all this crap and let these rowdies write our future, let them drive us as a society. Today its them, tomorrow it will be us. But the attacks will continue...

We have to stand against this terrorism now: for us, for our country, for our land, for democracy, for the next generations to come in. We cannot give them this: an obsessed society filled with hooligans and miscreants. 

- A Proud Indian and A Very Proud Hindu

P.S Hinduism is a religion that teaches us peace, tolerance and respect! Lets not forget that. We need to stop these idiots from making a mockery of our religion.

P.P.S  Some historians say that Queen Padmavati was only a mythical character imagined by the Sufi poet Malik Muhammad Jayasi in his allegorical poem written in Awadhi, in 1540 AD. He wrote it around two centuries after Alauddin Khilji conquered a kingdom called Chittoor, in 1308 AD. Apart from this poem, there is zero evidence of Rani Padmavati. 

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Playing with the fire...

Hey Shivi, What are you doing?
Playing with fire..

Yes, fire! Burning my hands, and feet and heart and soul...

And why are you doing that?
'coz its the fire of love... It hurts, but it makes you fly... It pains, but then, the sufferings are worth it!

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Swimming in the stars

Hey Shiv
<No reply>
What are you doing?
Swimming? But I don't see that? Where are you swimming Shiv?
In the stars...
I told you, you are mad!
I told you, I know...

Monday, October 3, 2016

A small chat with myself...

What's up Shiv,
<No answer>
What are you doing Shiv?
Building castles...
Where? I can't see any...
In the air
You are insane
Finally, you know!!!

The war of languages

So, after almost a year I am back to writing… Why... the real reason even I don’t know. But yes, there is one that has certainly played a role in it and that is my last month’s backpack trip to US. I mean I have so much stuff, so many experiences, so many things to share that I need someone and something where I can just pour it all.

I can’t do that with people, guess it can be torturous and I do not believe in torturing souls…<at all>

Anyways, so the first thing that I chose to write about from my bucket full of experiences is about the language. Yes, the language: different kind of languages that different kind of people use in different kind of regions.

While travelling from one state to the other, I just couldn’t resist myself from observing the languages that people from various parts of the world speak (and write, off course).

I was in a plane, which was still to take off. The passenger next to me was a Japanese and he was continuously on his phone. I happened and managed to sneak a bit in his phone (yeah, I know that’s bad habit!) and I saw that his complete phone, I mean all the features were in Japanese, and obviously his whole chat was also in the same language… I couldn't understand anything and that is why I carry  absolutely no guilt of that peekaboo :)

And this is where my obsession about observing languages started.

While I was in Grand Canyon (let me mention it here its one of the most beautiful places I have seen!!), where people from all over the world flock by, I met quite a few belonging to different backgrounds, different countries etc

One of such rendezvous of mine was with 2 girls, from Bulgaria. I spoke to them for a long time. Well, the communication started when poor girls were struggling to take a selfie with the gorgeous Grand Canyon. And I offered to click a picture of them and with that, our chemistry clicked! Pictures and girls, girls and pictures, needless to mention, they have some sort of connection since ages. Anyways, I ended up clicking some 10-12 pictures and they ended up with 20 pictures of mine… Equilibrium I call it!

Anyways, so talking about my obsession, I noticed them speaking in some other language, so I asked them what language were they using, to which they replied Bulgarian…

And then I had this Arabic couple sitting next to me observing and absorbing the beauty of Canyon, and they, guess what were talking in Arabic. <The guess was pretty simple though>

To cut it short, I met or saw or just observed many people and the languages they use, in my whole trip. For instance, Chinese and needless to say they were talking in their native language. There were Latin’s, talking in Spanish…. There were French people and the language… Japanese and their language… amongst few

Then on the way back I met another person from Germany and I just discussed the language thing with him. He told me that in Germany, it is almost impossible to survive without knowing German. Infact, if you get employed there without knowing the language (chances of which are very minimal), you are being given a crash course by the company…

Ditto is with other countries like France, Russia, and Spain etc

Did you notice I did not tell you about Indians. Off course, I cannot be the only Indian roaming around in US! Not for any other reason, but as they say save the best for the end.  And that's what the intention was. 

I saw/ met many Indians…And observed that more than 80% of them were talking or trying to talk in English, without even caring if they are able to speak the proper language or not. As if it’s a rule to talk in English ‘coz you are in ‘Amreeka’…!!! I noticed so many people just struggling with the language! Even Uncles and aunties… You could see that they are using the language forcefully and unwillingly. Especially aunties, who were rebuking their grand-children and guiding their husbands in the canyon in English, rather broken but English with an accent…

BTW, I am not generalizing it at all... I met many genuine Indians as well, who have such brilliant command on the language they were speaking, that it can just leave you mesmerized...

The ones with the fake accent are the ones that annoys people around… but then, deep down when you try to think about this behaviour and phenomenon, you will realize, it's not them who are at fault. It's all of us: Indians, it's our society largely.

Let's be honest here guys, we do judge the brilliance and intelligence of our fellow Indians on the basis of their fluency of English language. If we see anybody talking in a local language, we call them names like ‘Ganwaar’

But why don’t we do that with foreigners, who do not talk in English, who rather talk in their own native language?

And I am bound to ask my fav question, where are we heading to? We are on the verge of becoming a confused society, who is trying to copy west without putting in our brains… Let's face it…

I remember a friend telling me to stop reading and wasting my time on Hindi novels. Instead, I could use that time in reading English ones, as it will also help me build my English Vocabulary…

I know mothers declaring it with so much pride that their children get full marks in every subject, sans Hindi… They don’t know Hindi, they say! Is it something to be proud of?

We remember everything and are also corrected from time to time, about English grammar… Do we remember anything about Hindi Grammar, which is just so vast and logical?

In the seminars and conferences in India, you are bound to deliver the lectures or talks in English language, why shouldn’t you have this option of speaking in the language you are comfortable with.  Imagine, the talent, ideas that will be produced then. Half of the people just do not communicate their ideas because they are not fluent with English language, which is a second and a foreign language for us.

Why are we turning into such a hypercritic society?

I am not saying stop talking in English. All I am saying is let's not demean our own language, which is just so beautiful. Let's respect it. Let's not judge each other on the basis of a foreign language! Let's not alone learn from the west, let's also take and imbibe good things from other countries…  See the way they love their culture, their language, and their things. Observe the way they cherish them and keep them so safe. We should also do that…

They give a damn about the second language. They never care about the accent or about the grammar, for them, it is a second language. They speak in their own accent, own way… They leave it on others to understand… When we don’t judge them, why do we judge our people who talk in Hindi? Is Hindi or any other Indian language so bad?

Out of connotation, let me mention it here about some of the most beautiful words you have in Hindi and Urdu. They sound so poetic that you can't help, but fall in love with them like Jazba, Prerna, Adbhut, Avkash, Chaaon, Rimjhim, Jhilmil, Silsila, Jijivisha amongst million others

I am not demeaning the English language BTW, in any which way. Just that let's not demean ours, just to add a bit of ‘cool’ factor to our personality. Just to make an impression on some hypocrites.

Let's love our native language equally and let’s respect it the way other people from different parts of the world does.

P.S. Just observed, selfie word still shows spelling error! Still not added in the dictionary… How???? And why????

P.P.S. I always thought I would never visit ‘Amreeka’… I thought I would never like it (probably because I am not a great fan of concrete jungles) but this trip proved me wrong! I loved every bit of this visit. The place is much more than concrete jungles. Ok… that’s for the next post J

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

The tough decisions: You or them...

We, humans are so weirdly wired. No?

We love to be free. Yes, we do and every single person does! Come on, don't you? Everybody does. We all feel like just being by ourselves, doing what we love and what we actually want to do... Right? But then still we are so desperate to bind ourselves in relations, which to a certain extent takes away that freedom. 

We bind ourselves by creating so many expectations from our loved ones and in return, working hard to fulfil theirs. And in all this, we simply forget ourselves. We forget our individuality. We become so busy giving love to others that we simply forget to love ourselves. We become so busy fulfilling other's expectations that we just start taking 'us' for granted. Is that right? We don't even care if we are happy or not.

And the worst part is, till the day you think about others and make your life and decisions revolve around the people you love, they will be happy. They will be with you, they will adore you but the moment you try to take that away, the moment you try to add 'You' in your life, you will mess it up all. The same people who use to love you will start criticizing you. Trust me! Actually, they will start finding faults in everything you do then, even with the things that you used to do before, things that used to make them happy! 

You will be left alone, thinking and pondering what wrong did I do? Thinking if this life is actually yours? Thinking which way to go? Yours or theirs? To make yourself happy or them? Tough decisions!

And be ready to be labelled with different adjectives: Selfish, egocentric, Self-centered etc.

They will kill you every single day with these harsh words... Be ready to get tortured. 

It's not easy to love yourself in this cruel world, 'coz the price you for that is loneliness.

P.S. Sometimes I feel 'selfish' people are the happiest people on this planet 'coz they give a damn to what others think about them.

P.P.S. Have you heard about unconditional love? Well, there is no such love... Till the time you fulfil the conditions, everything will be heaven and you won't even come to know that you had been fulfilling them. The day you stop entertaining those conditions or pay any heed to them, you would understand that there is no existence of such words as 'unconditional' when it comes to giving adjectives to Love!

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

The Century Trilogy: Ken Follett (Book Review)

“This is amazing,” Volodya said. “He’s the President, yet he has to make excuses all the time for what he does!”
“Something like that,” Woody said. “We call it democracy.” 
― Ken Follett, Winter of the World

Once in a while a book comes along that grips you entirely, making it impossible to concentrate on other mundane things. After long this book has done exactly that. Absolutely unputdownable!

The characters are so well etched, their stories intermingling to perfection. Follett gives such a brilliant insight into the psyche of so many people in different geographies of the world and at different levels. Indeed, a wonderful read this trilogy by Follett had been.

This series deals with the economic, political and social incidents that marked the last century. The wars, the cold wars, the conflict between communism and democracy, fights for the civil rights, Revolutions in different parts of the world etc.

Follett tells you the complete history with such an ease, without making it boring, via knitting the characters so beautifully and perfectly. The series shows how enormous and wide-ranging were the effects of the incidents that took place in the last century.

The historical background is brilliantly researched. The details and the language will mesmerize you completely! With this series, he brings a world to us, that we always thought we knew but then, it will never be the same again.

As usual I wouldn't get into the details too much and make it boring. Will just try to pen down the gist

The 3 books, as I mentioned above are:

1. Fall of the Giants: The first book in the trilogy! I must say, it laid the base so brilliantly and made me hooked not just to it but also to it's successors. This book is an epic of love, hatred, war and revolution. The novel follows five families (with interlinked characters) through the world-shaking incidents of the First World War and the Russian Revolution in vast. The novel leaves you with nothing less than imagining the whole drama and leaving you with a momentous effect!

2. Winter of the worlds: This one begins exactly where the first book ends, with the same five interrelated families which are American, German, Russian and English. It deals with enormous social, political, and economic turmoil. All this begins with the rise of the Third Reich, via the Spanish Civil War. This book completely deals with the incidents of second world war. It tells about the struggles of the people in those times and also, the unfolding of the incidents at a higher levels.

It covers the catastrophe and cataclysms that marked the mid of the century.

3. Edge of Eternity: The third book in the trilogy... And I must say it is such an extensive and passionate closure to The Century Trilogy.

Throughout the series, Follett has tried to display the life of its characters and has followed the destiny of the five families. This book is about the enormous social, political, and economic turmoil in the later decades of the century, which covered civil rights moments, mass political movements, cold war between US and Russia, a war over the small countries, a war between communism and democracy. The book also gives a sweeping description about the Vietnam war, the Berlin Wall, the turmoil in countries like Hungary and Czech and the Cuban Missile Crisis

The best part what I liked about the book is the way Follett has described the fall of the berlin wall! He kind of forces a surge of emotions to erupt within the readers. For me, these emotions erupted in the form of tears. And I also like the way, Follett started the book with the Civil Right fights for blacks in US and he so beautifully ends it at Obama becoming the president of the state. It's a turbulent rollercoaster yet a beautiful journey that Follett takes you through this book. And he ends with such an amazing words by Shakespeare:

Time's glory is to calm contending kings,
To unmask falsehood and bring truth to light,
To stamp the seal of time in aged things,
To wake the morn of sentinel the night,
To wrong the wronger till he render right,
To ruinate proud buildings with thy hour
And smear with dust their glittering golden towers.
-William Shakespeare, The Rape of Lucrece

Go ahead, read it, You definitely will not be disappointed.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Ajaya and Rise of Kali: Anand Neelakantan (Book Review)

No self-respecting God would allow a good man to be happy for long. God has relevance only in the unhappiness of good people.
― Anand Neelakantan, Ajaya : Epic of the Kaurava Clan

These 2 books: Roll of the Dice and Rise of Kali: Strong enough to alter and shake all my prejudices and beliefs completely. The beliefs that were instilled and imbibed in me, deep and profoundly, since childhood!

Initially, I thought to write about them separately because both the books are so vast and they carry huge amount of information, emotions, story, drama and all. But then the problem is one book is incomplete without another, the second one is a continuation of the first, so thought to write about them as ‘one story’

There is nothing new in the story or the incidents, Its Mahabharata, which we have grown up reading and watching again and again… The same story, same incidents, same characters, same drama, same plot, same conspiracies, same events, there is nothing different, absolutely nothing, apart from one thing, and this one thing has the capability to change your perspective about the ‘same’ old story and ‘same’ monotonous incidents entirely! And the thing I am talking about is that this Mahabharata is written from DSuryodhana’s point of views, the view of the fallen, the view of the defeated. This book, somehow makes you believe in a very old saying, “The history is written by the people who are left and not by who are right”

Here in this book, the same old incidents (exactly how it happened in ‘our’ Mahabharata) has been depicted from the most evil man’s point of view and believe me, it will force you to questions all the things that you were made to believe via this great epic.

And BTW, if you are a fan or lover or believer or follower of Lord Krishna, do not even think of reading this book, because it's going to rip your beliefs apart brutally, it will tear your trust and love for him mercilessly and will force you to question the Lord and his ways.

The book is beautifully written, with so much detailed and extensive research, so much to the extent that not much of the events have been twisted or molded or added, by the author to prove his points right. Infact, the author manages to convenience the reader about the course of events from the other side (the evil side) and also manages, to make a space for DSuryodhana in the reader’s heart.

Go ahead, if you are a lover of unconventional writings if you are a believer in looking at both the sides of a story, if you are audacious enough to read and believe that God can also make mistakes, go ahead and grab this one.

And trust me, this book will leave you with several questions about everyone!

I cannot find enough words to write about Anand’s fabulous way of writing. I had been a fan of his Asuara and these 2 books had just been an addition to that list. And these 2 books have completely lived upto the expectations, even after an amazingly depicted and written Asura

Beware: For the first time, you will shed tears and you will feel an excruciating pain for all the evil men in Mahabharata, especially Karna and DSuryodhana. They will make you cry!

Go ahead and read  them..

How naive you still are, Arjuna my friend,” Krishna said with a smile. “Once you win, everything will be considered fair.”

― Anand Neelakantan, Ajaya - Rise of Kali

Sunday, January 17, 2016

The game of Equality...

Yesterday I was having a discussion with one of my friends on a very common topic which is in fashion these days and which has also kind of become an obsession for everyone these days. Rather I should say I don't know why but everyone seems to be going gaga over it, whether they understand it or not (Really!!!). Anyways, the topic was 'equality' discrepancies between males and females in our society.

Now during the discussion, my friend asked me with full emotions in her voice that why are we not treated equal to men, even when we can do all the tasks equally good. Now, I have absolutely no problem with fighting for gender equality, we should and we need to...  but I have serious issues with the weird and absurd reasons that we give to prove ourselves right, like "we (women) can do all the things that men can do", "we are equally good to men in every task" and all that

No doubt, we are...

But then let's think about all the hows and whats and buts and ifs and most importantly, why's. I mean Why, we women are so desperate to be called and declared equal to the other sex? What's the need? Why do we have to scream and shout and tell everyone that we are 'equally' good as men in doing every task that they do? Why?

I, somehow believe that we are much better than them in many other tasks, that they can't even think of doing. Why are we running behind proving ourselves equal to men in other stuff and works, leaving the amazing plethora of tasks that we are experts in, and men can't even come close to us in performing those!

And moreover, we are built differently by Nature itself. Aren't we? Both physically and mentally! Women weren't created to do everything that men can do. They were, in fact created to do everything a man can't do.

We both have our own set of strengths and weaknesses, and why the hell then, we are so much desperate to be equal to them?

And BTW, if research is to be believed then, there are some notable differences between the way our brains works as well, like:

The brain areas that control aggression and anger are larger in women than in men, which may account for some degree in larger male rates of violence.
Women handle stress better than men.
When it comes to intelligence, there are more male than female outliers. Girls, don't boil your blood. It just means that Male IQ has greater variance than female IQ; in other words, while females cluster toward the middle, more males occupy the extreme high and low ends on the intelligence scale.
Women are more likely to suffer from mood disorders.
Women feel more pain, but we all knew that already, too.
The female brain is geared slightly more toward language.
The male brain is geared slightly more toward math.
Women are purported to have better communication skills and emotional intelligence than men. Women tend to be group-oriented, and apt to seek solutions by talking through issues.
Women are more emotional, but we all knew that already.

These are just very few examples from a large list of differences that both sexes have. And these differences show very clearly that we, both the sexes work according to our brains. Women are good in certain things and men are good in other departments. Big deal! We score high at some places and they score in other places. Win-Win situation. Why do we have to hijack their list and prove a pro in that as well? Why? And you know something, we are losing our individuality, our uniqueness in this thrust.

Not just mentally, even physically, we women are so different. Its us, on whom lays the responsibility of giving birth to the new lives. Which means somewhere physically, our bodies are more endurable, much more stronger. Isn't that so incredible and beautiful? Isn't that something so special. And instead of being proud of that, we waste our time and energies in pondering about why and how and what needs to be done to prove ourselves equal to men. Again, why?

When nature itself has given us so many special characteristics and qualities to cherish for, then why are we so eager to bring ourselves down? Why don't we take pleasure in those and admire them and feel proud and happy about us: The Women.

Guess, we need to start celebrating Feminism, which is much deeper and meaningful than these mere petty things. Its beautiful, Its amazing. Enjoy it rather than ignoring it for other useless things. Let's love ourselves. Let's be proud of ourselves. Lets celebrate us...

PS. Trust me. Its great to be a Woman. And feel proud about it...
PPS. I read something beautiful, somewhere on FB:
Our generation is becoming so busy trying to prove that women can do what men can do that women are losing their uniqueness...
Isn't that so true?

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Jealousy: A Hungry Emotion or a Signpost?

“Welcome to the wonderful world of jealousy, he thought. For the price of admission, you get a splitting headache, a nearly irresistible urge to commit murder, and an inferiority complex. Yippee.”
― J.R. Ward, Dark Lover

Jealousy, an emotion that has troubled innumerable brains, broke countless hearts and caused unrest to numerous souls, in various ways.

Let me go back to my childhood and narrate a small incident which will make it easy for me to explain the whole thing further. 

Ok, so I have this cousin of mine with whom I am very close, very close since the days I remember. I am certainly not here to tell the happy and glorious cousin tales, but then to narrate a weird obnoxious thing behind those happy moments. 

You know she used to live in a metro city and I belonged to a small town. And so, there were differences between us, quite a few notable ones. She used to wear beautiful dresses, had such beautiful wavy shiny hair, she had many barbies, trust me many! And on top of that, she had different dresses and accessories as well, for them. And to my dismay, she scored higher than me even in studies. So, in gist, I used to feel terrible and horrible and inferior and whatever negative adjectives you can think about, can be made to fit in this puzzle. But I would like to mention here that despite whatever, I never stopped loving her. Then, now and will always do!

Anyways yeah, so there was this one emotion, that used to erupt frequently, whenever I used to see her dresses, her barbies, her hair, her stuff, her amazing books and off course, the way my parents and other relatives used to treat her. But Barbies was one thing I tell you, I used to feel extremely jealous about. May be because of my age... 

But you know when did this thing crossed the limit? Well, a day which was gloomy and depressing for me. I was in pain because of all this, so much so that it made me hatch a plan - a devious one. I was up a little late in the night and waited for everyone else to sleep. And once sure of that, I just went off to my cousin's bag, picked up her fav barbie (and off course, the most beautiful one) and broke it into parts and threw it off at the back of our house (with all her accessories) which was nothing but a field of wild plants. And trust me, I felt so contented at that time and regret it today! 

I don't understand that particular emotion, that thing, that strong thing that made a little girl do such a heinous thing? Jealousy! And this is one emotion I was and is so much scared of. Jealousy can make you do things that you cannot even think about doing normally. 

It takes you into some other zone, where you are not yourself, you are just unable to think, as if somebody has switched off the button of your sanity. 

That's what jealousy does to you, it gives you pain and you pay the price of your sanity for it... And why do we do that? Because we become helpless. It just happens without you knowing or even realizing.

In fact I very strongly believe that when you are jealous, you make up stories, all kind of unreal stories in your mind and torture yourself. You strive and crave to know more about that person, about that thing that you feel jealous about. You start craving for the content. I don't know why? It hurts you, it gives you pain, but you like a fool still go back and search for more such stuff. You are just unable to leave it and live in peace!!! Isn't it? You know why?  Because jealousy is a hungry emotion. An emotion that needs to be fed, fed with imaginative and unreal stories, if there are no real ones. 

Take example of social networks, whenever your friends put up check-ins in some exotic places, you almost stop breathing, that surge of pain is much more than anything. And don't lie girls, whenever you see those pictures of other girls with flawless skin, beautiful hair and eyes, on insta, you start pondering about why you dont have it all. A small tip here: invest in some expensive makeup kit and you will have it. Anyways, yes so guess that's the reason why social networks are so successful (of course, apart from other amazing reasons). They feed people with content! And we like fools, go back and feed on the same content and go through the torture! 

Why don't we just stop feeding this monster? And if we do so, it will eventually die and you will never have to pay the price of your sanity for it after that. And trust me, you will live happily!

Or think it from the other angle, I sometimes even believe that you generally feel jealous of stuff that you think you can achieve or get, but do not have. We tend to envy things that are actually within our grasp like in above eg a barbie doll or good marks or that attention of my parents or relatives.

Now let's give this poor emotion a bit of positivity. Jealousy could be a signal for anybody to put in more effort into things that you envy about others: like a relationship, or appearance, or  a job or whatever. 

Jealousy is a signpost. Period! 

We are jealous of attributes that are attainable to us. So, next time you feel jealous, stop feeding the emotion and start working on the things that makes you feel jealous because trust me, they are the ones that are obtainable and that's why they bother you. 

PS. Have you ever felt jealous of somebody for being an astronaut? or for being something that you know you can't? No, right. Even if yes, then it is for a small duration

PPS. Yep! I never had the audacity to ask my dad for a barbie.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Crows and a mere word associated with them!

"All humans are hypocrites the biggest hypocrite of all is the one who claims to detest hypocrisy." - Peter Wastholm

I recently got to know what a group of crows is called. I know it might be considered as a lack of knowledge and can be quite embarrassing, because this all, we are already done with studying in the initial years of our education! But then you learn new things every day, few of them are absurd, few of them makes you feel such an idiot and few of them can actually make you raise questions on your complete education! Phewww…

Anyways, so let's get back to ‘the group of crows’. People who already know the answer: You can skip the complete drama that I am going to create in this paragraph and save yourselves by jumping to the next one. People who don’t know: Guess. Guess what it might be called? Group of crows… Nahhhh…. Crowd… Nahhh…. Flock… Nahhh…Gathering, cluster, bunch… No, No, No! Ok, enough of drama. So, it is called ‘Murder of crows’ Surprised? Yes, it is! And guess who associated the poor creatures with this word. This, obviously even animals can guess! We, the humans, who think too great of themselves…

Now, why have we, the great-est species amongst all the species that ever existed on the face of this planet chose this name for a mere bird. There are several different explanations for the origin of this term, mostly based on old folk tales and superstitions. But first, let's look at the literal meaning of the word, Murder, which is killing, homicide, assassination, liquidation, extermination, execution, slaughter, butchery, massacre. Have you ever seen a crow doing anything that even comes closer to any of the words mentioned above? I read somewhere that this term has been given to the 'crow' for its traditional association with violence, death, or to its harsh and raucous cry. Really? As if, we humans never cry or howl or scream or wail! 

Another reason: There is another theory that suggests that this is based on the (fallacious) folk tale that crows form tribunals to judge and punish the bad behavior of a member of the flock. If the verdict goes against the defendant, that bird is killed (murdered) by the flock. Yeah, and we have never ever done that! Go to any village of UP, Bihar and Haryana, you will witness the brutality which will reveal that we are worst than any animal on earth! And still, the word murder shouldn’t be associated with us. We do not even spare our own children on the name of honor for God sake! I am sure crows would at least not do that! But still they are ‘murder of crows’

Wait, there are more reasons and theories for this word 'murder' being given to a bunch of crows.

Somewhere I remember reading that it is also because crows scavenge on human remains, atleast they feed on the remains of dead bodies. We, humans kill the animals and then, feed on them. Who deserves to get associated with this label of 'Murder'

The most absurd reason that I found is that many people fear them simply because of their black feathers, which associate them with death (and what about our black souls and hearts?)

Now, I am not here to defend crows. Not at all… But then, I am so much amazed at our hypocrisy. We, humans who are murderers: the brutal ones, we who kill and wage wars on other countries, just for our own selfish motives, dare to name other animals with such horrible terms.

See what is happening in the world now? People are killing each other, just because they want their belief to win. But we shouldn’t be called Murderers! No, we shouldn't, though ‘Murder of Humans’ suits us the most, I guess. Ahhh, but then that will probably reveal our reality, the horrifying face of us...

Tell me one animal, which is as brutal as humans. Animals usually kill to feed themselves and their family. And the list of our reasons for killing others is endless, guess the feeding (because of  choice and not compulsion) being the last.

We even hunt and kill animals for pleasure, but we shouldn’t be associated with the word ‘murder’. 

Why are we, such hypocrites! 

I wonder what word crows would be using for “a group of humans”!

I wish someday these animals learn to speak and write. That day will be the last day of us, glorifying ourselves and vilifying other animals!

P.S I wish I was a warg* at times. So, that I could enter in other animals’ mind and see what they think of us. I know it would be dirty, actually worst than that. 
*In Game of thrones, Wargs are people with the ability to enter the minds of animals and perceive the world through their senses and even control their actions. The act of doing this is called "warging".

P.P.S You haven’t seen GOT? Seriously! Go and watch it… Its one of the best series I have ever seen and BTW, crows play quite an important role in this series! They are portrayed in a very nice image! And handsome too (Jon snow!). You would be drooling on this crow!!! Download now and watch! 

Friday, September 25, 2015

Having Kids: Why or Why not....

And... today  I would be writing something really controversial, something that might give constipation to many, something after which I might be thought to be crazy!

Anyways, I write what I feel...

Being married has many advantages, and the amazing and beautiful ones (uncountable, I tell you!), but one thing that I detest about this institution would be I guess that just after a year or so, everybody around you start asking about your plans for kids, and this lot include your friends as well. After a while, you start feeling as if you were married just for having kids!

And this curious question becomes more annoying when it gets transformed to "Do you have any health issues which is preventing you from having a baby?" 

And this is something not just me, but many of my friends are also going through. And now, out of compulsion I have started playing with these people who ask me this question by throwing another question at them, why... why 'should' I have kids?

And trust me the answers will amaze you like hell!

The worst or the most creative, the epic and the most different answer that I ever got to hear is: To give a reason to your husband to come back home! If there is a kid at home, he will have to come back home. He can't go anywhere. 

And trust me, when I heard this one, I don't know exactly what I wanted to do at that time: kill myself, kill the person who told me this, kill both of us or just run away far from these idiots! I mean, sorry I would never want to have a kid for  this reason! And yes, thank God for not giving me this excuse to have kids!

Another answer: To take care of you when you are old! Oh really, do you think people after some 30-40 years will even have the courtesy to look back at their parents, leave taking care of them alone. If you take an example of this generation, most of them I see, leave the house after 12th and they never look back! At least they are nice enough to visit their parents once or twice a year, call them once or twice a week, send them gifts once or twice occasionally, but then is it enough to be called as 'taking care of your parents'? No... And moreover, its hard for the parents to leave everything and settle somewhere else with their children, at that age! And the next generation will obviously be some steps ahead of us. Then, how and why should I expect, that my kid who would belong to that generation, will take care of me and my husband.

Another Answer: To have a successor, to take our family name forward. Oh yes, we are from the families of Akbar's and Einsteins that the world would lose something big and remarkable if we do not have successors!

And moreover, one has no idea how the world will be, like after few decades. It might get better because of technological advancements. But then, it will have its own bunch of larger issues to worry about as well. If you compare today with say 50 years back, there are already so many distressing changes like diseases (rather variety of diseases) are more common, Non-renewable sources are already on the verge of extinction, Natural calamities have increased by folds in just last few decades, Global warming is on a rise, most of the countries are either under war or going through cold war! I am definitely not being pessimistic or something, but then that's the truth we all have to face. The kind of damage we humans have caused to our planet in just last few decades, is beyond repair. In fact there is a theory which says that it is bound to happen, even if humans doesn't do any harm or damage because that's how it works, one species rule, gets extinct and then comes another one... 

You would be thinking what's the correlation between having a kid and the world's increasing issues. There is a bit of connotation, though. I usually jog my brain on why would I want to bring my child in a world, about which I know all this. Why should I? Will it be a better place for my kid to survive? Why would I want to bring a kid when I know s/he might have to struggle throughout, may be even for basic necessities like water? 

On the other hand, there are millions of orphans out there, who have already taken birth and so, they will have to go through all this anyways, why can't  and shouldn't I just adopt one and make this journey of him/her a little better, a little bearable? In fact just think if every couple, rather than having their own babies and contributing to the increasing population, just adopt a child, how much better the place this earth would become? I know now, its weird, wild, abnormal, insane, horrifying and synonyms of all these adjectives. But then, think rationally, I am sure, it will help us in everything. They say that the increasing population is the biggest culprit of all the nature related problems. And we would be getting rid of that culprit!

I read somewhere, how our planet would be in next 50 years and few of the pointers were:

1. The world population will be over 9 billion. Disease will be more common, as everybody will be physically closer to everyone else, and chronic food shortages may be the norm. (So, why shouldn't we at least try to control the population???)

2.We'll also have to start cutting down on our energy consumption: If humankind continues to use energy at the rate it does now, and population growth follows expected trends, we will need the equivalent of three earths to support ourselves by 2050. Which is, obviously, impossible!!!! Now, would you want your baby to go through all that crunches, all that pain? 

3. They say, as far as global warming  is concerned, the Dead Sea will be almost completely dried up, nearly half of the Amazon rainforest will have been deforested, wildfires will spread like anything and the polar ice caps will be only 60 percent the size they are now. 

4. Superhurricanes will become a regular occurrence (Last nail in the coffin!)

Imagine if we, humans are able to control the population, half of these issues will be gone! And maybe we will gain some more millenniums to live, live in a much better place, in a much better way

Its not easy to explain this to people, its not easy to tell people not to have their own children. Actually they might take it as an offense, their ego might get hurt. But if we all know, we will have to perish one day then why this arrogance, why this ego? Why burden earth with more and more people! Why killing it further...

If children is what we need, then let's adopt! We will be making someone's life and we will also be helping our planet with not over-burdening it.

P.S. The most monotonous answer to my question "Why to have kids" had been "That's how it works! That's what you are supposed to do!!! I mean, hello! Excuse me! Just because I am a woman and God has given me this power doesn't mean I am just suppose to do THIS!

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Krishna-The God who lived as Man: Bhawana Somaaya, Kaajal Oza-Vaidya (Book Review)

I never post book reviews on this page of mine. But then, recently I read an extraordinary book, the review of which I am compelled to write at whatever places i can, its that beautiful and gripping!

It would actually be an arduous task for me to hunt for words that could describe my feelings for this book! That could elaborate on how I felt after reading it... It's going to be a taxing exercise!

I generally take my own sweet time to finish books, but this one! I tell you I finished in 2 days! 

This book is, I guess the best portrayal of Krishna's life till date. It deals with his relationships with the four women whom he loved, loved intensely: Radha, Draupadi, Satyabhama, Rukmini. Unlike other epics where all his roles are confined in relation with Gokul, Kans, Kurukshetra, Gita, Arjuna etc...

In fact, the beginning of the book itself is totally different. It starts with Krishna, being on his death bed, ready to be relieved from this world, remembering all his past experiences, all the time he spent with the four women. 

The beauty of the book is the way Krishna convinces all these women, who sulk, cry and crib because of different reasons. One for his time, and the other one for not getting enough attention, one for leaving her behind and other for making her go through so many hardships and for not understanding her love for him. The way he consoles all of them and win the arguments in any case, is something to be admired and learnt! What a charmer he was...

The conversations in this book between Krishna and the four ladies is incredible! It's breathtaking! Something beyond comprehension, I guess... Beautiful would be a word too small for describing those conversations. I read them again and again and while reading I shed tears again and again! If you are an emotional person, it will make you cry! You actually wait for the dialogues to come... You feel like skipping all the explanation and directly get on to the conversations... That's powerful they are... 

The plight of Krishna, and the pain he is going through on his deathbed, ready to be relieved, but unable to, will make your heart sulk. Time and time, he is thinking of his bonds that are still there, the questions that still someone is seeking the answers to, the relationship that couldn't find closures. All these things that are not letting him embark on his final journey, that are stopping his soul to abandon his body.

He tries to call in for all the people that he was extremely close with, to clear all their doubts, if any and to make him free of all the attachments, so that his soul can leave this world 

He calls in for Draupadi, who was his friend, with whom he shared a very special relationship that was beyond everybody's understanding. The way author has described Draupadi's anxiousness, after learning that something ominous is going to happen to his friend is remarkable. I have not read something so beautiful, so real... And their last conversation is just something to be read again and again because the meaning of it is deep enough, to be not able to be understood in one go... The way Krishna describes their relationship, their love, their bond! 

Then, his last conversation with Rukmini, who always cribbed on not getting enough time from her lord! The way Krishna explains her about his love, about his passion and about her place in his life will take your breath away, it will make you fall in for this God, who lived like a man!

I would quote one thing from Krishna's explanation to Rukmini on asking about her place in his life:
"Beloved you know you are not ordinary and can never be! How can Krishna's better half be ordinary? When I narrated in Gita to Parth and said, 'Among all the elephants, I am Airavat, among trees, I am peepal, among the cows, I am Kamdhenu, among the rivers, I am Ganga and among the women, I am Rukmini' I meant it. My beloved, you are supreme!"

What a player of words, what an amazing orator! 

Last but not the least, his telepathic conversation with Radha, was enough to bring out all the emotions in a reader! It's indescribable. It's beautiful. One actually needs to read it, to understand what I mean...

There is obviously a mention of other things from Krishna's life as well, from Gokul, to Mathura, to Kurukshetra, to Pandava, to Kauravas, to Yadav's, to Balram, to Yashoda Maa, to all the incidents and people who defined Krishna's life, perfectly knitted in his stories with the four women. The former not at all dominating the later. 

And the best message of the book: Even God couldn't save himself from falling in for the human attachments. Even God is facing trouble to get rid of those. That powerful human attachments are!

And the love that Krishna describes, is beyond our capacity to decipher, is much beyond us: the mortals to comprehend!

Go ahead, read it! It's much more than amazing...