Faith and all the rest of it

Faith is a seed that needs conscious nurturing before it can blossom into a beautiful tree. It is easy to mistake faith to be a discrete event or decision that is an act of letting go in the hope of landing on the other side unhurt. Easy because we can point out one event or decision retrospectively and ascribe a certain credibility of faith to that event or decision. Human experience of decision making involves a more dynamic application of faith, and is rarely seen to be as easy as retrospective reflection. In the real world, faith is more a continuous process than a discrete event that requires diligent application of body, mind and soul. The application of a set of beliefs which cannot be proven as of date is but a mighty force that pushes people to achieve what they have never done in the past. This is particularly notable in the case of relationships between people. Certain relationships are built on trust  which are mutually built over time. But for an article of faith , trust cannot occur in the first place. A trust grows out of understanding the other person – much the same as acting from th memory of data points gathered from the other. Whereas faith is a clean slate. It takes enormous courage for faith to occur. When it does occur, it can inspire the other to trust this faith. For the trusting are a shade less natural than the faithful. It is the faithful that see possibilities and inspire change, the trusting merely follow suit. It is the faithful that plant the first seed. More often than not, they are conscious guardians going back to check if the seed is protected from that familiar enemy of loving optimism – Fear. Fear of past experiences and a fear motivated by survival. This is one of the most basic moving forces that has a tremendous capacity to inspire or to degenerate as the case maybe. Such is its intensity that trusting will fall flat like dies in a contraption at the mere sight of it. It takes a faithful to lead by example and hold hands of the trusting till the dawn of a new day. When this new dawn occurs, a tremendous possibility opens up. The possibility of the trusting to be more natural and move to the realm of the faithful. A position gained by continuous merit rather than a leap of faith. This merit is often tested by nature to push out the underserving back into the realm of the trusting. However, for those who manage to stay on, sacrifice past memories and courageously carry on – It is pure magic.

 The magic of life flowing in her full glory.

Fin.

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Light at the end of the Tunnel 

Light at the end of the tunnel.                     And a pot of gold at the end of rainbow. Surely overrated words and mere kernel. Thrown by life to continue the show

Till I met this beautiful existence.               She showed me how it’s done                   Trust for its sake will surely make sense The more the merrier, rather than all alone

A worn out reel tormented by unkind films Suddenly a new world with bright color She made me throw out my wicked whims This sunshine that lightens up my valor

The path indeed looks new and unknown But let there be no fear                             When the right seeds are sown               There is joy and my being is clear

Come my beloved, let’s stand by side        And expect only peace and happiness.          If there be but rare bumps in this ride    Let’s gladly tide over them thru oneness 

That which lasts

Not very long ago I thought life was complex with a certain sophistication which made it worth the journey. This false notion of life was gently ebbed away by nature as I encountered her direct ways.

The first rays of the morning Sun are always direct yet gentle. The light reflects what is there and leaves nothing to guess work. It’s simple and direct. So is the morning greeting from nature. Her way is direct.

The routine in play with nature is uncomplicated quite contrary to the ego of humans. The pigeons gather their lot in the garden and feed on the grains generously spread out by the unknown passerby in her morning walk. The reason behind the generosity of the passerby and the intelligence of the birds to gather around for food at the precise time dont require intellectual analysis but a humble observation of nature’s rythm.

The evening sky turns an orangish grey at dusk as the majestic sun sets for the day in the horizon. Yet again she gently taps our head to remind us in the futility of complication.

All great things in life are direct and simple.  After all the complication unravels, that which lasts is simple. Only simplicity is that which lasts. 

Fin.

The Touch of Ἀφροδίτη

Is it not a matter of pathetic humor ?
When you whine away as life flows by?
You dwell upon empty wit and worthless rumor,
As her majesty dances in the infinite existential sky!

The rhythm of the fountain and the smile of the child,
She remains hidden in these insignificant facets,
Perceived only by the carefree and wild,
The fool who is unafraid of life’s vain droplets.

Rare is the lover who is touched by her grace,
He neither holds nor lets go of each moment
Every apparent emotion pours through his face.
His being captured by her presence – a smile and a lament

For she is the Mother of contrasts, this Goddess
Wears both Helios and Artemis on her flowing hair
A smile most beautiful and a rage like Hades!
Yet betrays her stoic when beseeched with love, tender and care.

The wail of the lover

Many are the voices in which you speak,
The words sweet and soothing to my battered soul
Tis but with the knowledge that I’m weak
That you dance like the mad dervish who hath realized his goal

I can’t fathom your ways, which are sweet as they are cruel
You make me wait pining for your attention
Yet each moment of expectation is but delicious fuel
For my being that is tossed in exhiliration

Tell me my dearest, is it my fault that I can remember
Familiar scenes from a past existence though hazy and vague
Despite your efforts to keep me in deep slumber
How can I be a stranger to the acts of the playful rogue?

Millions of times have I cried out your name
Sometimes loud and most in silence
You fail to reveal yourself betraying your fame
Is it just? To wait till I’m cured of my ignorance dense?

Tell me my dearest, who else do I know in this world?
What else is worthy to think or do?
But to pine for your attention in the heart as the greedy yearn for gold
Enough of the wait, come and claim me as your own, why let me rue?

Thank you but I’m fine!

Thank you but I’m fine. The ocean looks nice and cool, but some other day surely. The surfers seem to be having fun riding some waves and toppling over many. But surely they are wiser by experience and not an amateur like me. Some other day surely.

Thank you but I’m fine. The sand castles look lovely but they might tumble down from the force of gushing waters or the kids’ play. The builders are joyously creating the huge entrance towers that alas, can disintegrate any moment. Some other day surely – when the kids are few and water less forceful.

Thank you but I’m fine. The guys are playing ball by the sea and their enthusiasm is contagious. But little do they realize one team must lose for the other to win. I’m better off by not losing than winning. Some other day surely when I’m much more confident of winning.

Thank you but I’m fine. The lovers are having a selfie moment with the picturesque sunset. Love is but an endless drama with more downs than ups. It is better to remain strangers than hate filled companions. Some other day surely when I find the right soul to have vodka by the sea.

Thank you but I’m fine. Surely someday the world will bend according to my lazy will and complacent heart. Someday surely.

Why each one of us should be a feminist at heart.

It would have been just another Sunday afternoon for Sharanya had it not been for the awkward matrimonial alliance meet. She hardly expected the probable groom’s family to be modern liberals given the fact they belonged to a dying-yet-limping-on hypocritical Tamil Brahmin community. This in no way implies other communities are forward or that Tam-Brahms  (as they like to call themselves) are regressive cave men. It just so happens I supposedly belong to this community that takes pride in outward rituals rather than imbibing the spirit of such KAmya KarmA.  It came as no surprise to Sharanya when the possible groom’s dad was boasting about the vegetarian fanaticism of his son who was a successful IT engineer in Germany. She had gotten used to these not so occasional boasts of

“Avan Teetotaler” “Non veg ellam sutthama sapda maatan” “He shuns mixed kitchens”.

But what took her by surprise was the following conversation.

Grooms Dad (GD): What do you plan to do after getting married?

Sharanya (SH): I would definitely work. I’m not the type who can sit back and lounge all day.

GD: That’s very nice. It would be boring to stay at home in Germany.

SH: I’m not sure if I would be able to progress in my career in consulting in Germany.

A bit of a background about Sharanya – Aspiring millennial, an MBA graduate from a premier institute, working for a prestigious consulting firm.

GD: Why? What do you mean? You can find a job that suits you in Germany.

SH: I don’t think I can make a career in consulting there.

GD (Now visibly surprised and irritated): Looking at Sharanya’s mom. I think she can get a consulting job there, we have to adjust initially illiya Maami?

These words hit a home run. Sharanya made up her mind not to entertain this guy anymore. She politely turned down this proposal.

Now lets rewind  a little bit and cut to the subtle aspect of chauvinism which is very easy to miss precisely because it is thought to be natural or okay.

The very first question which is countered by Indian girls looking for an arranged marriage match is what do they intend to do after they get married.

Why do I feel this is wrong? We still continue to  unconsciously ACCEPT that a woman is defined by her nuptial status. Even women think that it is so. In a society where gender roles are getting blurry, the least a human being can do is observe this change and respect this transition. It is not a fault if a woman wants to stay at home. It is her choice. The same treatment should be applied to women who want to work. I believe this is a very personal choice that is decided by the individual and NOT by family, society or other institutions. Asking such a question is an absurd and ridiculous violation of personal space. It is akin to asking a person if he would shave his head when he turns 40.

The other part of the story is the women’s response to such border-line offensive questions. Sharanya’s response is not having an assertive tone but almost an apologist one. She does not want to offend the old man by telling him she had outdone his son in academic qualification so it is quite obvious that she aspires to be a high ranking career woman in a corporate world. This unconscious conditioning of women towards such glaring violation of personal  space needs healing.

The next subtle form of chauvinism is the condescending tone “It is better to do something than staying at home – which is quite boring in Germany”.Every individual has a right to aspiration irrespective of gender. This aspiration is exemplified in actions, in this case Sharanya’s credentials in her academics and career. That is not to say a person’s historical credentials alone would justify her/his passion. It is an intangible that cannot be quantified in words. In this case, the guy’s ignorance of consulting business can be forgiven but he would be really stupid if he thought a person would forgo his/her career just to be with another person who in this case happens to be a complete stranger.

Something inside of me urged me to write this post ever since I listened to one friend who assumed her goals and ambitions were the fault that needed correction.This was an unpleasant and sorrowful experience – to listen to a highly motivated individual made to feel like shit precisely because she was ambitious.

It is because of such subtle thought patterns both in men as well as women that each of us have a  collective responsibility to ensure equality. It is an urgent need that all of us must become feminists. It is quite natural now, isn’t it?