Death

The only thing more devastating than death itself is eternal life. Well, we haven’t seen examples of the latter lately.

Or have we?

Death is always surprising.

Any sort of death.

Even impending death.


But then again, that’s life after all, a promising euphemism for the phrase ‘impending death.’ 





Death is painful. Untimely death is unimaginably so. But then again, how’s death not untimely?

Death is untimely.

It is what defines death.





A voice inside us whispers, I will live long. It is a voice of hope, bordering delusion, and it smothers the voice of reason which bellows, Nothing’s permanent dude, life’s great, but death will be here, anytime now.

We so easily cling ourselves to the sheen of the possibility of life, to the wobbly promises of our heart, that we fail to accept that death does not differentiate, it comes for every one of us, any one of us.

All our lives in the back of our minds, we keep bartering with destiny (God), we pray to live long and then die peacefully, and even if we were to die unexpectedly, we plead to make it less painful for us and our loved ones.

So much for logic.

We don’t accept the fact that we are a sitting on top of our respective ticking bombs, with different timers. And we’re all going to die, sooner or later, in ways we can’t fiddle with.





And sometimes when we brood about it, it feels so depressing. Its not, but our fragility makes us see this fact from such a lowly perspective, and we’re so terrified, we compartmentalize it and any thought of it and tuck it away in some deep closet in our minds.
Our worst mistake.





All our lives we are scared of that yawning void, that endless abyss, that we might trip and fall into.

The unflinching constant.

The invisible fundamental.

The only truth if there ever was one.

And we take life for granted.

We learn to sail through the caprices and brace for the challenges. But we fail to live the moments. As we always have an objective, a will o’ the wisp, at every stage of our lives, which derails us from our reason of being here, to live, to imbibe these memories and moments.

Life becomes a tick-box regime. Desires, objectives rule here, mechanical dreams, delusionary safe havens of basic minimums. 




But the irony is that, we endear ourselves to this life (and our dear ones) so much, that we find it so difficult to accept the sheerness of death. The unbearability is astounding


The only thing that is more devastating is suicide. Probably the most devastating thing there is.





Its beyond my imagination how excruciating it is for the one who commits it. How shocking it is for the person’s kin and friends and acquaintances.
Suicide the utmost form of denial to a way out of the mire.

The mire of your sorrows, regrets, the vortex of your memories, the ashes of your failed dreams.



I honestly don’t know what goes inside the person’s head. That he actually deliberates upon this, actually plans this.

Of course, there are no brownie points for guessing that the person isn’t stable, he needs help, he has no will power, no thought of his family, he is a big big fool.
Right. Absolutely.

He needs to speak out.
Yes. Totally.

But in a very subtle manner, we shrug off our responsibility and obligation towards him.

Not every person actually speaks out, oh but he screams in other ways, we unfortunately fail to see sometimes. There are many such junctures. 

And suicide is an agglomeration of such junctures.





And oft times even before looking at his circumstances, we start branding him.
Mad! Stupid! Callous! No heed of family!
That’s understandable, in our rage we do this. But this rage is partly directed towards us, our inability to prevent a suicide.
We sympathise, we understand.

But we don’t empathise, we don’t feel.
The circumstances, the shame, the pressures, the conundrums.
No. We don’t delve that deep.
Human mind. Emotions. Our actions. Our fancies. It’s complex. It’s not something to be taken lightly. And certainly, no one or no action of this sort should be branded whimsically and prematurely.

Nothing is sadder than someone fiddling with the death timer he sits on top of.

Death comes for all of us. 

Lets not wrestle with that.

Neither the fact. Nor it’s manner.

 

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Smile …

Smile and sway and don’t obey…

The foolish rules of the world…

The laughable decrees, the despicable commands… We bear so painfully…

So shun them… Its that easy…

But it isn’t… Is it ?

Snagging those cobwebs… Those rusty iron gates which you need to pulverise…

But which stand still like an undeserved, old king, unwise…

Refusing to give way… To your dismay…

So smile at your fate… smile at this hate, that is bred so easily…
Smile at the irony… Smile at your felony… That is smile.

Smile at the pain… Because smile is the only gain…
Until you decide to change all this… break all this…

brave all the struggle that will come your way… When you won’t obey…

And then smile… More broadly…

And sway… And have things your own way…

Why do we have to squint to find beauty in an Indian marriage??

Marriage.

Ideally- A communion of two souls.
Happy? Very.

Colorful? Exuberantly.
Sacred? Depends.
Though it understandably warrants some  serious reverence and veneration.
Now.

An Indian marriage has everything. Period.

It’s like a small-scaled simulacrum of India. Of us. So many dimensions.

You can see everything. You could see nothing at all. Depends on what you want to look for. And when. And where. Or do you want to look at all?? Just letting everything carry you. Nudge you. Push you. Yank you. Caress you.

You could see a multitude (that’s a small word) of people you have to be polite to. And cringe in revulsion. Or you could see a lot of new faces, new friendships in the offing, you could observe, overhear, it’s… entertaining surely, if not anything else.

Though, I prefer the second set of glasses, but I’m stuck with the first. (Introvert issues.)

By the way. A grand party, a grand scheme of things, a grand days-spanning preparation, where people move erratically, talk profusely, trample over each other to have a photo taken, gyrate in mass hysteria to utterly obnoxious (or so fucking amazing) drum rolls and dholaks and even crackers can be hell for an introvert. Or all this could be his or her initiation. The blooming moment.

You could see the incredible amount of money wasted (spent) on ridiculous (fun) rituals, ceremonies and cringe (revel). You could see the plethora of food items which taste the same (or uniquely amazing).
You could see gaudy, kitschy costumes, blinding (vibrant) sarees, sherwanis, glistening coats and choke (or smile).
In all this, you judge, you feel people judging you. Those eyes, you can so easily sense it. Relatives, uncles, aunties, kids, opposite sex, which is your age. That’s a lot of pressure ( or a lot of fun.)

You could see the amount of work that needs to be done, it’s always huge, and you can lend a hand (or you’re told to.)

Or you could find nothing that interests you, so you lie in corner (whatever space you get) and wallow, and pull faces and curse yourself, as people pay no heed to you (not that you wanted it anyway.). And you keep on scrolling that phonescreen, or just write something you have excessively thought so many times. I was talking about myself.

But as the focus, gravitas on actual wedding, those mantras and havans, I do’s and kubool hai’s are subsiding. An excessive and exaggerated attention is being guided and tethered to the secondaries and somewhat needless and flamboyant and ostentatious revelries, (That’s the ever continuing trend.)
You …. You find it hard to find some actual priceless moment of innate happiness and those moments of unaddled beauty.
Yeah. Beauty could be someone who looks actually beautiful. (Away from the rat race.) Beauty could be a smile. A gaze. A tapestry. An anecdote of an old lady. A  joke from an unlikely source. A differently beautiful song in the background (Not what they play now-a-days.). The look of actual happiness when you see your relatives, and meet long lost friends and forget those drab formalities and cordialities for a moment.                           And dance. And eat. And laugh. And cry. And what not. That beauty.

Marriage… huh! It could be the synonym for happiness. Only, it isn’t.

 

It’s so intimate. Yet so inclusively social. It’s emotional. Very emotional. It’s aesthetic. NOT materialistic. It’s about two people. Two hopeful, smiling, beautiful souls.

 

Why don’t we just focus on that, and that only?
Because marriage is about people. About our inner beauty.
Nothing else.

Opinion. Belief. Adherence. Dissent.

Every one of us has an opinion. And there are so many factors, so many variables that shape it.

That opinion can be objective, or visceral. And its yours, and only yours, so is the reason that shapes your opinion. 

In this world where we are so fundamentally identical and so uncannily unique, our opinions and our reasons are the brightest and the biggest beacons of our individuality.




The best thing about opinions is that they change. With time, with experience, with a greater perspective, sometimes with a sudden change, a sudden revelation.
And it’s never wrong to voice our opinions. Never.
  What’s wrong is denigrating others and their opinions. What’s wrong is the intent to influence others and robbing them of their opinions. 



And we have to draw that line ourselves.
Conviction is a stronger proclivity. It is much more visceral. Changing an opinion is much easier than letting go of a belief. Because, though intuitive sometimes, an opinion is a more factual outlook and a more balanced conduit to express oneself.


You are not always associated to your opinion. You are not always identified by it. You are not your opinion. You are how you teeter on that edge of changing and sticking to your opinion.

And a belief brews when you stick to your opinion, despite its flaws, you view it unilaterally, you believe.

A belief is very hard to let go. There has to be some sort of epiphany. Or a serious trigger which topples the palace of your inclinations, thoughts and value systems.

Adherence to a belief is not harmful, unless it bypasses and overlooks the unchallangeable entities and constants. And that happens more often than not.


And with social media joining the fray, the whole world has transformed into one big sea of opinions and beliefs to find our answers, and maybe ourselves.



Conflict arises when your opinion is not in congruence with the opinion of someone else. And it gets ugly when when your opinion is pitted against a belief.
 Its not a conflict anymore, as

Dissent is viewed as an insult. Question, as an insinuation and even blasphemy!

And if a belief goes against a belief? Hallelujah!