Saturday, November 29, 2008

Life of a Feline

Welcome! It's the saddest of all times. Maya Dolas passed away today morning. I am still mourning her death. She came into our lives as a surprise. Or more like shock. We should have known. In fact, we should have expected it. It was bound to happen. There is no real immunity from such things. Moments like these appear from nowhere and leave your hearts and minds touched forever. There was something about her eyes. They were ablaze with fire. The kind of eyes you cannot help but stare into, yet they are so powerful they cannot be stared into for long. They don't ask questions. They just force you to look within yourself. They force you to look at the world from their viewpoint. That is why I named her Maya....the eternal enchanter....
Later the kitten ventured out into the big wide world. The world allured her. She roamed like a tigress on the prowl. She walked like a royal. Nope. She was not exactly hunting. She was just taking in her new surroundings. The kids loved her. They fed her and played with her. At least that is what most of them did. A few vicious ones pelted stones at her, tied a string around her neck and tried to drag her around the place. The dogs attacked her. At night she stayed out alone. Keeping warm within her own fur.
The next day she was rediscovered by the kids. The next day she was brought back home. But now she limped from where the dogs had bit her. But the fragile body had a very strong spirit within her. She did not lay still. She kept dragging herself all over the place.
But the eyes revealed the pain withheld in her soul. But amidst the pain the strong, resolute spirit could not be broken. I will never forget those eyes. She knew she was going to die. Her spirit will live for eternity beyond.
The night passed. As the early morning sun touched the city of Mumbai she whimpered, sighed and then passed away with the passing night.
I will never forget the day she came.
The night was a night of terror for the city of Mumbai. And with the evil shadows had passed by Mumbai ... so had Maya Dolas. The memory will remain etched within me forever. Of light and of shadow. Of days and of nights. The memory shall not be allowed to die.
The stray cat that my brother brought home that day. I called her Maya Dolas.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Battlefield Mind!!

Greetings Blog Reader!
Not much seems to have changed in my life since the last time I was here.
-Barrack Obama is Officially allowed to enter the Oval Office as President. That is the good thing.
-Indian economy is also swaying with the World Economic Crisis; however, if I am allowed to opine, I personally think Indian Economy is more or less in the hands of Dr. Singh. That is the expected thing.
-My life is at a standstill. That is the bad thing.
Now, while I am supposed to be collecting moss right now, I am not exactly convinced that is the best thing to do. I mean, who could I possibly sell moss to!!?
Moving on.
For the last few days my mind is glorious battlefield of dual. I am not sure any of the sides is going to win at all - it's just that the thought itself is so...well, itchy. I keep going back to it...again...and again...and again.
Here it goes.
Most of us, at some point of time or the other - expect. We expect things to happen. We expect it to rain. We expect to pass the exam. We expect the train to come on time. We expect to not get stuck in the traffic. We expect to reach office on time. We expect our friends to spend more time with us. We expect our family to support us. We expect to finish that book this weekend. We expect the good samaritian to appear out of nowhere and help us out. We expect friendship. We expect love. We expect respect. We expect applause. We expect rewards. We expect world peace. We expect...expect...and expect.
The list is endless. From the most trifle everyday things to the big chunks of our lives we expect things to happen. More importantly, some of us even expect feelings from others - family, friends, colleagues, etc. All the same time that we are expecting (pun unintended!), we do know that the given expectation may or may not come true. Still, when the expectation does not come true we feel hurt, cheated. Why?
Let's say, we are expecting the train to be on time. Now, while we are expecting, we are mentally aware the train MAY OR MAY NOT appear on time. If the train does appear on time, we are elated. We go through the I-told-you-so-symptom. However, when the train is late by say x minutes, then we feel somewhat angry, irritated. Also, higher the value of x, higher the irritation & anger. In other words, we can say expectation is probability. In most cases a 50-50% chance something is going to happen. If we know by default then why the irritation when the thing fails our expectation?
I guess it's more to do with human nature than the laws of probability or proportion.
Whenever we "expect" something to happen, we are "wishing" that thing to happen. Technically, by the rules of probability it's still a 50-50% deal.
However, wishing is very different from expecting. Expecting is a hard-hearted word. It does not have the softness that wishing does. Expecting does not tug at the strings of your heart the way wishing does. Think about it.
When you think of the word "wish", what comes to your mind? I can't comment on what picture your mind might have drawn for you, but I can truly tell about mine. Wish, for me, is somewhere in dream land...where the "fairy godmother" will grant whatever i have wished for. Voila! Just because i wished it is true. Wish has a heart rendering softness to it - because, wish comes from the depths of your heart. When you expect, it usually comes from some kind of experience - it has something to do with the mind. But, when you wish, it's usually from the bottom of your heart.
All practical people in this world - expect(in the calculated way, of course!).
Dreamers wish.
Only the truly wise know, understand and appreciate the difference.
And yes, in case you wanted to know - morons like me - wish.
Which kind are you???

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Mee Mumbaikar...Silent Spectators!!

Warmest season's greetings!! I have been away. Busy. Too busy to look at myself carefully. No no no... not busy as in the socialite types or anything like that..... Before you call me a hypocrite, give me a chance to justify myself. I have been a silent spectator...all this while. Now I am not talking about a week, a month or a year. I am taking into leverage the entire duration of my life. More importantly, i realize i am not alone. It seems like a sad, lonely thing to do. To do nothing but stare. To just watch what is happening without ever raising a finger or moving a limb to change a thing. Surprisingly, that is what most of us actually do. Take for example the recent uprising by the MNS activists. There is no point discussing how those brainwashed individuals held a whole bustling city to ransom - they already have had more than their fair share of media frenzy. How a bunch of brainwashed idiots managed make mockery of the democracy that we boast of. Those people whose businesses were affected, shops looted, damaged, destroyed or burnt down can do nothing but look at the heavens above and try to pick up the strands of life all over again. Whereas, the perpetrators of such evil thoughts still roams freely in his A/C car... Arrests are usually not made in such cases because it is the mob that attacks. Even when arrests are made, most of them usually get out on bail very easily. Sometimes one wonders why the police needs to intervene if all they do is capture and then let them go. Enough said about the people who are trying to drive us back into the stone age. Mumbai, says Wikipedia, has a population around about nineteen million, a total potpourri of cultures, religions and trades. Also, the city has been inhabited since the stone age. (Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mumbai). When the rains poured over Mumbai, we Mumbaikars stood by each other, bringing strangers into our home. Many stood on the roads and provided food, water or if nothing else showed them the way home. That is the Spirit of Mumbai - undying. Anyone who dreams of being a someone is drawn to this city. There is something about the very air of this city, it makes you want to dream. And if you already have a dream it fans that spark within you, till the little amber turns to a full fledged roaring blazing fire inside. To try and differentiate people in a city like this is injustice. Its blasphemy. Still, however unjust the happenings in the city, most of us remained silent; watching from behind the curtains of our homes. Some of us speak now, albeit still not very openly. That is when i self-introspect. I too remained silent. I think we have remained silent too long. I think we need to speak up. Speaking up does not always kill. Look at the US, when the people turned up to vote in the largest number - democracy (& hopefully even peace) shall prevail at the hands of Barrack Obama. Somehow, the city seems to have gone into a slumber. I am currently reading "Discovery of India" by Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru. Its a beautiful book, written in a beautiful language, about a culture, a country that is even more beautiful. One of the things I learnt from whatever I have read so far is all the while when India was openhearted accepting people of all faiths and cultures, exchanging knowledge, spreading knowledge - India was at that time the most famous in the world and was know as "Sone ki Chidiya". However, when she tried to close her fist, tried to not let people come in and affect her "culture" she started stagnating. The openness of the heart and mind which had led her to her glory - whence the fist was closed - was slowly and steadily lost.... I believe that is true even today. Any one who is highly learned can tell you this, to learn, to grow, to reach the pinnacle of your success you will need to keep your mind and your hearts open to all... for a closed fist can never capture enough........... In the end all that I can say is.... while my city, my country is being held to ransom...at the present moment...i just stand like a silent spectator. However, I am sure this immobility shall not last for long....and when the moment comes...i shall not be found looking for reasons.