Mar 19, 2012

One Day...


One day...
A man sat alone drenched deep in sadness. All the animals drew near to him and said “We do not like to see you so sad! Ask us for whatever you wish and you shall have it.”

The man said “I want to have good sight”. The vulture replied “You shall have mine”.

Then the man said “I want to be strong” the jaguar said “You shall be strong like me”.

Then the man said “I long to know the secrets of the earth” the serpent replied “I will show them to you”, and so he went with all the animals and when the he had all the gifts that he could take...

...he left

Then the owl said to the other animals “Now the man knows much and is able to do many things... suddenly I am afraid”.

The deer said “The man has all that he needs. Now his sadness will stop”.

But the owl replied “No I saw a hole in the man... deep like a hunger he will never fill... it is what makes him sad and what makes him want he will go on taking and taking...

until…

one day the world will say “I am no more and I have nothing left to give..”

-from Mel Gibson's Apocalypto (2006)

Mar 13, 2012

It's time to change



Its time to change, well I think the time to change has come and long gone. We are over due by a century for the change. Start to think what you want to change around you and one doesn’t need more than a second to start listing the endless issues that need our immediate attention and that have to be changed no matter what. Crimes against women, against people of different sexual orientation, against children, transsexuals the list is so long. I want the real world to become a mirror image of the blogging world. People are free to express their views; no politician can ever imagine interfering with this freedom and get away unscathed, women, men, children, transsexuals, homosexuals all alike are welcome to speak their mind with no fear of any kind of violence. Even if there is any disagreement or a grudge to settle it is all limited to repartee. There is no doubt that it is an utopian idea which can never be achieved but trying to get there may take us to place better than this present violent, chaotic and suffocating situation.


The change we require calls for a revolution. A revolution in every sphere of our society: in religion, education, societal perception, everything. Without a major revolution, minor bickerings and rantings will be of no use. The process of revolution calls for martyrs. Martyrs of every form. Women who revolt against the dowry system may have to cancel any plans of a married life, there might even be instances of lives being lost, people revolting for a more open minded society may have to become social outcasts, but in the end the supposed moral police of the society will give up and just accept the change at face of it.

I do not believe in sensitization of public towards an issue. Like the concept of reservation for minorities, sensitization calls for a primary classification and thereby segregation of the people & issues towards whom the public is being sensitized. When such classification and segregation happens then discrimination is bound to follow. There can never be ‘good’ classification and segregation. While being sensitized, people are fed with varieties of information detailing the weakness and the necessity for extra care and protection towards the persons which puts others in a special superior place as the givers of protection or the needs.

I think what is required is to desensitize people about issues. People need to stop observing others for weaknesses and start treating everyone as equals. Desensitization is the process by which the public are fed so much information regarding an issue and other co-related matter that they become numb towards it. Imagine a scene a man and a woman are walking in opposite directions and eventually pass each other. Sensitized man thinks “oh! There goes a girl. She has breasts which I must not touch. She has a vagina too which also I must not touch.” I do not see this as what we would want our society to become. This is definitely not our answer.

There is physical rape and a visual rape and any woman will tell you that both are equally demeaning and hurtful. If the above scenario happens all women would maybe be physically untouched but the mental trauma is still very much present. We will still constantly feel violated. What we need is desensitization of it. Now imagine the same scenario again only this time the desensitized man thinks “………………………………” Well, what is there to think? A woman passed by, so what? There is nothing to think about it. The way women are desensitized about men it is the best example there ever could be. When a man passes by a woman, she doesn’t think “Oh! A man. He has a penis”!!! At the most the woman might look at him but not exactly see him and nothing registers in her mind. That is what should be achieved.

Another good example of desensitization is of girls wearing jeans. Any girl wearing jeans pants would have raised eyebrows and would have become an outcast in our society some decades back. But due to the overt in your face bombardment of woman who wore jeans has led the society to become numb towards this attire. Today the jeans pant doesn’t register in anybody’s mind. Ask anybody if they remember what any particular girl was wearing and they will answer “don’t know, must be wearing some jeans and t-shirt.”.

We need to teach our children to learn to be scientific in their approach to life, accept women, people, sex etc as part of natural life and respect everyone as an individual. There is only so much the government can do but the real education has to come from the society itself. As long as mothers do not fight for their rights their children will not know the definition of respect. Of all this one can only conclude that we cannot pin point any one issue that requires change, all aspects of the society are interlinked and at the present situation only a cataclysmic revolution can rectify this society.

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Mar 9, 2012

What Generation Gap?



I know very little about my great grandmom, here is a little story I know about her life. I don't know why I am writing this, I felt like writing about her. Analysing the story that I do know about my great grandmom, I realised that there isn't much difference between us. Except of course that she was born almost a century before me. It is funny how each generation is perceived by the preceding generation to be more rebellious, adventurous and daring in comparison to them. Also the metaphors used to reprimand the kids also change  and greatly signify the biases and mindset of the current generation. But the procedure of reprimanding doesn’t change. Each family, each community has it’s own very unique way of reprimanding and scolding its children.

My great grand mother (maternal grandma’s mom) was born in 1902. Actually her mother is the real hero. She got tutors for my great grandmother to teach her to read and write. It was her wish that her daughter should know at least to sign her name. My great grandmother studied till class 3 which was unacceptable in the society then. It was impossible to educate her more because it was time to get married. But her mother fought off relatives for quite some time. She was finally married at the age of 12years. My great great grandma had to face a lot of criticism from all relatives for having such an ‘old daughter’ at home.

My great grandmom insisted that, since she was ‘so highly educated’ she should marry a man who is also highly educated and should work in the city. She did not want to marry a purohit which is the profession of our caste. She was reprimanded for having become ‘like those city people’ and for getting so corrupted by her city bred neighbor friends. She was also scolded for wanting to wear her sari with a short pallu as was the fashion in the cities during those times. Aping anything the city folks did was totally unacceptable and amounted to having lost your brahmin ways. She had to face a lot of ridicule from the villagers and relatives because she, influenced by the city ways and educated till 3rd standard had become the black sheep of the community. They vowed that she would never get married as she had become so old and made an example of her to explain the ill effects of the city to others.

She ended up marrying a man who had studied till 11th class and was working in southern railways as a manager. She moved to city had 14kids, sent all girls and boys to school, read Indian express everyday, loved Indira Gandhi and finally died at the age of 96years.

She was the voice who told my mom to get a job. She campaigned for my mom to my grandparents to send her to another city for her job. She was also the voice that told my mom to reject proposals of men who did not want their wives to work. 

Mar 7, 2012

Mother Nature's Pyre


Today was choti Holi. Today Hindu’s have a bonfire symbolic of Holika’s pyre. The story of today’s celebration is, one of our favourite, another victory of good over evil one.

Prahalada was a devout Vishnu follower. His father, Hiranyakashipu considered himself to be all powerful and demanded that everybody should pray to him. But Prahalada refused to pray to him and continued his prayer offerings to Vishnu. He ordered his sister, Holika to burn Prahalada. Holika had performed severe penance and gotten a boon from Lord Brahma that she would never get burnt by fire. Holika takes Prahlada on her lap and sits on a bonfire. Prahalada begins o pray to Lord Vishnu and it so happens that Prahalada remains untouched while Holika burns to her death. Thereby turning the bonfire into her funeral pyre.

Hindu’s have been burning to Holika’s pyre on the eve of Holi festival to celebrate this victory of good over evil. No scripture calls for this burning. Just like there is no written rule behind the burning of Ravan during Dussehra.

What I am trying to get to is that it is not mandatory to practice certain rituals and traditions if they don’t make sense anymore. Maybe we can have a small bonfire just to celebrate the festival and continue our long tradition. In this day and age where environment conservation is the need of the hour, we must take every possible step to curb unnecessary pollution. Starting from firecrackers to this bonfire.

In Delhi, different areas have unwritten competition amongst themselves on the size of their bonfire or the size of their ravan and for how long it burns. In the area where I live, each apartment complex has its own Holika bonfire and ravan during Dussehra and there are approximately 65 apartments.

This is the carnage in my apartment complex alone –





All of it chopped and burnt in the name of tradition and rituals. I am quite sure that no God will be offended if we don’t burn such a big bonfire. A similar one was burnt for Lohri as well.

I did not attend the Holika celebrations today because I can’t bear to stand there and watch the carcass of a glorious tree burn in the name of religion and tradition.

Who has seen Holika? It was really the funeral pyre of the tree and our beautiful mother nature.

Mar 6, 2012

When will Indian Politicians ever evolve



The assembly elections results were declared today. Its SP again in Uttar Pradesh. All day long reading the breaking news online or watching the news on TV and then I read this article on CNN IBN. It is always the devil or the deep sea for Uttar Pradesh. All the agitations by the civil society led by Anna Hazare, Ramdev Baba and all don’t seem to have any impact on the politicians.  


A 12year old child is killed by a stray bullet fired at the victory celebrations of Samajwadi Party leader Iqbal Mahmood in Sambhal!! How can these kind of politicians ever govern a society and protect it when the society actually needs protection from them. It will not be long for a politician from Uttar Pradesh to reach the centre.

There are always extensive debates on how to eliminate this class of politicians, but the debate always revolves around in blog world amongst educated people who don’t need any more education. It is just so frustrating.

But I must confess, I got some weird satanic pleasure reading the article.. “ha ha! Achcha hua! One more reason for such politicians to be exposed!”. Its just sad that the kid who died must have been ‘bought’ there by the party to maybe throw flowers at the politician for some paltry amount. His family may never hear about him ever again, he is not even named or identified as yet. God only knows if he’ll ever get identified, if his parents will at the least get some compensation for the sheer arrogance of the politicians. Who knows if this incident will get any more media coverage other than this little blink-and-you-miss 2 para article. maybe the now victor SP leader may get it all hushed up. Maybe after some years the link will also will not work, all related material may have been deleted at the order of a 'leader'. Who know?


Wish that Idea ad on TV "25 lakh eye witnesses from YouTube" would actually work..

And writing about all this, sitting comfortably at home is making me feel guilty..
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