Archive for December, 2010

The Time Traveler’s Wife
December 26, 2010

CLARE: It’s hard being left behind. I wait for Henry, not knowing where he is, wondering if he’s okay. It’s hard to be the one who stays.

I keep myself busy. Time goes faster that way.

I go to sleep alone, and wake up alone. I take walks. I work until I’m tired. I watch the wind play with the trash that’s been under the snow all winter. Everything seems simple until you think about it. Why is love intensified by absence?

Long ago, men went to sea, and women waited for them, standing on the edge of the water, scanning the horizon for the tiny ship. Now I wait for Henry. He vanishes unwillingly, without warning. I wait for him. Each moment that I wait feels like a year, an eternity. Each moment is as slow and transparent as glass. Through each moment I can see infinite moments lined up, waiting. Why has he gone where I cannot follow?

-Audrey Niffenegger

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Conversations with the Others
December 16, 2010

S: What can I say,  that push to overcome such days has to come from within you. One fine day you will say to yourself, “I understand and acknowledge this pain. But I will survive, for those who still care about me. And by doing that I’m not being disrespectful to this pain.”

Me: u cant understand my situation… i hope u never can..

S: I know I know…..nobody can understand anybody else’s pain. This will always be a part of you. But everybody, including the one who’s not here, would like you to take care of yourself and go on. Grieve, but more important than that, honour the memories. The best way of that is to emerge stronger and atleast give small joy to those that ARE there.

****

Me: what do u think of life… why do u live, what is the purpose…

S: The purpose of life is not clear even when we grow old and fade away. At our age, we don’t have any idea what lies in our paths. The beauty of life is that we don’t know what lies around the bend. Something may happen tomorrow that may make our lives entirely and beautifully worthwhile, in ways we can’t even begin to imagine. I guess that is reason enough. We didn’t create our lives, we have no right to take. As none of us is an outside observer to life, we are unable to answer this question. So let’s live out our lives and see how it stacks up at its end. I suspect we should live on if only to attempt to have even a remotely positive assessment of our lives.

Me: u know…. i knew the meaning of my life, the purpose.. it was very clear. and therefore it haunts me now, because i have lost it forever. no matter what i do, where i run to, i can never find it. Life is unfair coz whether u do good or bad, u r as vulnerable…

and somehow i am the chosen one to get the best for few moments followed by the worst for a lifetime. Its not so dark if there was never any light…

S: I can understand. You were fully sure of your life. Everything was in place. But this is also true that you did not know that your life would be like this say 15 years back. Maybe the purpose of your life (as you understood then) was completely different then. The good things that came your way were as much a surprise as the unfavourble ones. Such is the nature of our lives. Life is always dynamic, challenging our assumptions at each step. we can’t plan too much, we can’t forsee anything. The only thing we have is courage to face anything that comes our way, and resolve to make it count, no matter what. Give yourself some more time. Give life some more time.

Me: your experience of life is quite different from mine. but ur thoughts are good and i appreciate.

S: Nobody’s experiences are alike. But don’t let that be a mental block in wholeheartedly accepting a point. I’m sure there are all kinds of people on earth. Some have seen grief and pain we cannot even imagine. But they too at some point of time understood this point in their own different ways. The key is acceptance, without looking for exact parallels.

Me: i know nobody has and can ever experience what i have, and i also realise that i have no idea what others have faced… its always very ‘personal’.

****

Me: u know, u cud become a motivational writer. seriously

S: Apparently I’m not good enough….I can see that.

Me: there wil always be the odd disgruntled specimens

S: As I said earlier, I would rather succeed as a friend, than look for an alternative vocation…

Me: ya i know. am not mixing the two. just telling u that not everyone can think like this

S: Everybody can. It’s a choice one makes.

Me: u think highly of all humans

S: Every human can be as godly or as fiendish as you can imagine. It’s all inside of you, tremendous strength and utter helplessness. And you actively make that choice.

Me: i dont think all humans are equal-mentally n emotionally. i dont find depth in most people. Most people are not mature and they fail to understand the real meaning of life, indulging in their obsession over petty things, wasting their lives over meaningless issues. i respect everyone and can love everyone, but i cant agree that they are all equal as human souls..

S: “Aham Brahma Asmi” (I am Brahma), “God created man in his own image”…. cultures, religions across the world resonates with these thoughts. This is the biggest secret and yet in plain sight. When I say “Namaste”, really I’m not saluting you, I’m saluting the god inside you. This is the biggest secret and yet in plain sight.

The soul is noble. But you can use a knife to help you cook for a life-giving meal or use it to end a life.

Me: if u believe in all this, you must also be believing in the evolution of souls over lifetimes… some are ahead in the journey, some are just starting. Its nobody’s fault really… at the heart of it perhaps as they say, all are just part of the One.. so essentially everyone is same. But in this earthly journey, everyone is at different stages of evolution. (not that i believe in life after death)

S: The journey of the the soul is neither a linear process nor a one way road. There is both regression and progression in this long journey. While the soul is the essence of life, it is not the only determinant of character or intellect.

If your soul has achieved something in your previous incarnations (yes I believe in re-incarnations), it will find its way up again. HOWEVER, what you might not know is that there are forces that do not like a soul to progress higher. Therefore, the life of a soul on the path of enlightenment is always full of thorns.  There will be guardian forces also, but its always a struggle between the two. The secret is to emerge stronger that before, mentally, spiritually and morally….gradually you start to become untouchable.

Me: so at practical levels, do u think all the people u  meet/ have met are same at heart/ intellect?

S: Soul yes, heart maybe (but heart is often subservient to intellect or conditioning), intellect no. This makes for a complex soup.

Me: soul- no (depth, understanding, compassion)
heart-no (criminals, terrorists?)
intellect-no (no explanation reqd)
it differs in everyone.

S: Understanding, compassion is not limited to soul. And in most people, between soul, heart & mind, one is dominant  over the others, so you cannot implicate any one. What I mean is that the soul in everone has the potential for greatness. It may not lie subservient to the other two throughout life.  Therefore, we cannot give up on anyone. But we’ve digressed from the topic we initially started.

Do you think animals commit suicide ?

Me: i havent much idea.

u speak abt the potential of souls. that is different from what it “presently” is. I am saying i dont blame them, coz for whatever reasons they lack depth.

by soul- i mean the depth of a person, his understanding of others, of life, of things.. compassion, kindness, gentility, thoughtfulness.. stillness.. this is what depth of soul means to me.  everyone may have potential. but they r not same. its a practical experience for me, no philosophies.

S: That is not the function of the soul alone. Usually it resides at higher plane, very difficult to perceive. What can be gathered on the surface easily from pratical experiences is common sense. What is formulated by constant reassesment of practical experiences, is philosophy.

But coming to the question of suicide, why is it that animals do not posess the faculties to contemplate suicide ? Why do only humans possess this capability.?

Me: i can try to find reasons. but i dont know coz i havent researched. whats the reason.

S: No research required. Just think on the subject. And we will discuss it later. YOU NEED TO HAVE YOUR LUNCH NOW !!!!

****

S: Had anything ?

Me: ya forced-fed at 7th floor

S: That’s a like a good girl….!!

Me: i dont knw whats this conspiracy of trying to fatten me.. (like for some ritual sacrifice)

S: Our conspiracy to fatten you or your conspiracy to flatten yourself ? 🙂

Me: both i think

S: I hope we win ! Down with anorexics !!!

Me: i am not anorexic. am healthy

S: Yeah… by Somalian standards !!

Me: thats something

S: Really ? By indian standards of calorie intake, you must be below poverty line.

Me: yes i am very very poor… poorest of the BPL. i like that.

S: No dear… these days you just like to put your foot down on everything. Just relax and give some breathing space to yourself

Me: i wud need the whole world to be empty to have enough space

S: Ha…. then you definitely need to be fatter to deserve that much space…. 🙂

Me: wats the point if i fill the space. i need emptiness

S: Besides, we don’t leave kids unattended…  🙂

Me: if theres noone on earth, u cud leave me unattended u know… no danger

S: No baby…. there’s a much more dangerous creature on earth than all the world put together.

Me: what

S: In your case, its named M…. In my case its named S….. In complete isolation, they can destroy us….

Me: am i 2 diff entities in 1?

S: No, actually 3…

Me: name

S: The left, the right and the centre !!!!

Me: dont speak in puzzles. name.

S: It’s nothing technical dear…. we are always pulled in two different directions. Sometimes its the head Vs the heart, sometimes its logic Vs instinct. And in the end, a part of us mediates between the two. This mediator is generally our value system. So all of us are basically 3 elements. Now you can name it anything technical.

Me: no. i am only one- completely unified in heart, mind.

S: That’s because these days only one of yours is dominant over the other two. Its a false sense of unity. And you’re fighting to prepetuate this unbalanced situation.

Me: why wud i fight to make myself suffer.

S: Ask yourself this question. But in order to ask yourself this question you have to be brave enough to acknowledge it in the first place. Sometimes, pain feels strangely preferable. And lack of pain feels like betrayal to the cause of pain.  It keeps you hostage and soon one starts to develop a kind of Stokholm Syndrome.

Me: ofcourse not. i am not a fool or… delusional. and its not a joke. this is beyond what no one can even imagine. its futile to even to try explaining

S: Don’t explain.

Only humans live for others. Only their existence extends beyond the purview of self preservation. Our family, our loved ones, well wishers act as a failsafe. We feel the need to preserve ourselves for others. That is why the faculty of contemplating suicide resides with humankind only. Such an ability without a failsafe would lead to mass extinction.

Me: would u want to die if u didnt have a family…

S: It would have been much easier for me to do that, when faced with a situation which at that time seems like a no win predicament.

Me: I agree

S: That’s the beauty as well as the burden of a human life…But I would rather consider it a boon.

Me: for most yes.

S: The Ayodhya decision is apparently out…

Me: tel me.

S: The site is to be divided into 3 parts. The main area for ram temple, 1/3 for masjid and 1/3 to Nirmohi akhara

Me: thats the verdict?

S: yup

Me: whrs the link

S: A ticker on www.timesnow.tv

M: ok…

****

Note: Unedited conversations

Silence
December 4, 2010

The moon is quiet
The night is still
Noone hears the cries of the heart
Dead souls linger on in the darkness
A shiver brings their message to me

The fowls know it
The eyes seek them in the darkness…
Living souls have no rest.

Musings in the Dark
December 2, 2010

Last night, lying in my bed, wrapped up in a soft blanket that belongs to him, I looked out into the darkness in my room. A faint light streamed through the window… whether it was the moon or a night lamp in the next home, i couldnt tell.

Outside, the rain drizzled onto my window sill and i could hear its sound so clearly in the silence of the night. Inside, the tears were flowing down my face as the terrible reality of his absence again gnawed and cut into my disappearing insides. 

The night felt cold like a dead body… a coldness that no fire can warm, a frightening shiver that refuses to go away… When the cries died, i asked myself why i was crying… for what… why were my insides aching so much when physically i was alright… How can someone affect my life so much.

What is this love-thing? Its not physical, we cant see it, yet its so strong…. so infinitely powerful that my life means nothing to me without him. Have i lost a good life in future? No. I can still have a good life… have success, be famous, have a family and i can look beautiful. I still have a good job, am an extremely valued employee at my workplace, i have a good big home all to myself, i have people who love me, i have not lost anything, and i can have everything….

But the truth is i have lost everything and i can have nothing at all.

Love happens only one time… the kind of love that we had happens only once on earth… i know it and its the heaviest feeling that a heart can feel…

How strange it is… what kind of matter are human beings made of, that we feel such emotions… we extend beyond ourselves… we are more than we realise we are. Because very obviously, he had a part of me, a very concrete part of me… Or was i actually a part of HIM? It hurts so much… even though i am not bleeding or wounded. Am i crying because i have lost a part of me, and this thing went with him. Or have i lost the whole of me, and whats left is only this body?

What was it!!! What was it so important that i dont want to live with the rest of myself any longer? What thing is this love? Does my inner-most soul know something that i consciously dont? It is clear that what i have lost was the most valuable thing in life. Love is the most precious thing in life. And somewhere my soul knows it, and therefore it has no wish to go on any longer, having lost the meaning of life.