Amma

Amma, mom, maa….

I dont recollect when I first said each of those words…its been a part of my psyche ever since I was born.

In turns, I have loved, shouted at, cried for and missed my mom. I always considered myself closer to my dad…so in a sense, I was never a mama’s boy. But then the question really is : is there any such thing as a “mama’s boy”? dont we all belong to our mothers? come to think of it, we are literally a part of our moms. My mom, for some reason, went to the pain of carrying me in her womb for 9 months and then smiled through an exceptionally painful delivery process to give this world a gift : me….ever since then, several people have argued that this cannot be technically called a “gift”…maybe more of a torment…

I have tormented my mom…angered her numerous times, got her into a fit of rage…

But somehow, she has put up with me all these years…because we both know that I am a part of her…

I do not proclaim to love my mom…I dont have to…this feeling is so much more than just love…I am just an extension of her and will remain so till I pass on from this earth..

So here’s to mom…coz I will love her more than I can love any other woman in my life!!!

Dying of Cancer

What is your first reaction when someone tells you that are dying of cancer — lets say they tell you that you only have 3 months left in you…

Do you see a sinking ship or a rising sun?

I had imagined myself in that situation several times in the last 20 years or so. Everytime I think about it, I see a new dimension to the whole issue.

Lets examine the issue of death a little closely. What exactly does death mean to us? Someone once said “I am not afraid of death…I just dont want to be there when it happens”.

One of the biggest fears that the thought of death brings is the “what happens next” syndrome. It is safe to say that no one really knows for sure what happens to a person after death.

The second most important thing that hits you when you get the “I am sorry but you only have 3 months” speech is exactly that — “I have only 3 months left in the bank”…of course, there is also the “why me?” question that pops up…but we really are unable to answer that question to any degree of satisfaction so that’s that. We shall explore this question in a later post.

The notice of death also gives a person a chance to re-route his/her life. Priorities change overnight, the mood changes (well, duh!), thoughts are mixed with a little bit of negativeness. Under these circumstances, there are those who get over the self-pity stage and there are those who dont. Some get into a shell, others feel the need to reach out to everyone before time runs out…there are the so-called “fighters” and then there are those with a “defeatist” mentality.

But why are we talking about all this? Is this really going anywhere?

The bottomline is that death is a life-changing event! It can change the way you think, it can change the way you treat the people around you, it can change the way you react in situations. And why is that? Dont we all know that death is inevitable? Did I really think I would live forever? why the shock and sorrow?

Maybe someone can give me the answer to this….

God and other stories

“Do you believe in God?” they ask me…

Over the years, I have answered that question in various tones …as a kid I used to say “yes” coz I was a scared little brat…scared that I would have to pay for all my little “misadventures”…after a while, I got smart and arrogant…I used to say – there is no God! Darwin’s theory of evolution is the only explanation!

Then you go through life’s little “surprises”…the tragedies, the comedies and you start feeling that there is a superior being watching over you…punishing you for your mistakes and rewarding you for your hard work…in your own weird way, you start worshipping “Him”.

Then you start reading the really philosophical stuff…start reading abt the true human spirit and ask yourself : what is God without human spirit….isnt it the human spirit which can keep believing blindly in something that it cannot see or touch or smell?

But I digress…of late, I have been influenced heavily by the writings of Bhagat Singh…His philosophy was simple : when you believe there is God and that by doing good and avoiding/opposing evil, you can go to heaven, you have a motivation for being righteous…but when you believe in no life after death, then everything righteous thing you do is out of pure intent to doo good to humanity and with no ulterior selfish desires…no desire of heaven or of the fruits of virtue.

Now that may sound like crooked logic, but it takes some amount of openness to digest this thought.I await challenges to this theory…

For now, I do not think the real question is whether there is a God…that I think, is immaterial…what is more relevant is whether we BELIEVE that there is a God or not. Where do we derive our desire to do good ? what gives us our daily comfort and solace?

Jack and Jill went up the hill…

You know the story – two guys go up a hill for some water and one of them broke something and was put to bed… now what the hell is the moral of this story???

Hmmm…cant be “dont climb mountains for some damn water!”, can it? (I, for one, fail to understand why anyone would have to go UP a hill for water…but I digress).

Let us try to understand this a little more closely…are Jack and his buddy looking for the wrong thing at the wrong place? or is it inefficient usage of resources (maybe, they should have designed an elaborate drainage/pipeline system to get the water down the hill thus avoiding having the climb the hill, in the first place).

Lets look at it from yet another angle : only Jack got hurt. Does that mean that Jill was smarter? or maybe it means that there are times when you should not lead…at such times, it is safer to follow than to lead…after all it helped Jill.

But I think you are missing the point (there is more?!!)…metaphors are a BAD thing..they are used to make a point and once that is lost, they story itself creates a huge mess… The Ramayana and the Mahabharata were just that — metaphors (Good beats Evil 2-0)…but somehow , somewhere we lost the point…these epics have become ends in themselves…people have started revering them…so, lets revisit these epics and learn the true meaning…the guys who wrote them were trying to make a point…lets try and figure out what that was…

Falling in love (for the umpteenth time!)

I once knew this girl in school — she was easily the cutest at our school…when she smiled, it was as if the clouds just cleared away from a cold December morning and the sun just shone through…all the world would be a nice place once more — I know what you are thinking..(if you are in your right senses, you should be saying — “crap!”)

But that’s what love is…its not losing your head over some cute girl you hardly know…its not about wanting to give away your life for her…not about feeling all depressed when you see her boyfriend. It is that empty feeling in your stomach, that adrenaline rush that you get when you see her..its all chemistry, you know…no I mean, really!

Now there are a huge number of romanticists (is that even a word?) who would want to disagree with me…but, my friends, its all about procreation…you need to get that. See, when you fall in locve with a girl and marry her, you are happy (well, in the beginning, anyway!)….and if someone else marries her, you feel miserable…now that to me is selfishness…can’t be love – no Sir!

But lets ditch all that….does it really matter if its a chemical reaction or a spiritual upliftment? In the end all that matters is, we all need to feel secure…to feel that at the end of the day, someone is there to… whatever!

So screw this argument…go ahead and shower that girl with all the gifts that money can buy (The Beatles were way off when they sang “money can’t buy me love”…I guess they knew it…guess you have to write such stuff..its good business!)