Friday, October 30, 2009

But You are a Mommy !!!

This is for all those self glorified/magnified/inflicted moments spent in doubt, dilemma, and misery. The moments wasted wallowing in self-pity. Moments used for making others lives around me painful too. Those moments throughout the years at various stages in life wondering....who am I, what is my purpose in life right now, what am I supposed to do or rather what is the right thing for me to do, what role do I play right now. Moments feeling unfulfilled and dis-satisfied.

And not so surprisingly the varied roles I have identified for myself have been determined by how its going to be seen and rated by the society around me. Most of the times my gut feeling and my true inner voice is muffled, strangled into silence, by all the noise outside.

I increasingly have been thinking that life would have been simpler was I born in times when the 4 ashrams were the order of the day. No room for confusion whatsoever. Each one has their Dharma/duty to fulfill according to their age. Brahmacharya ...a student's focus would only be in inculcating good values and learning, not worrying if their course will result in an accepted, well paying career. As a Grihasth, the family being the primary focus removes all debates about whether we should live in separate cities so that the pursuit of material and monetary success which we have fooled ourselves into thinking is much more than that....self esteem, independence, a sense of usefulness etc etc.
It also removes the self justified 'practical' reasons for which we choose a certain way of life at the cost of our people and parents.
Vaanprastha and the clearly defined roles would result in peace at home. In laws and parents would realize that undue interference is not what they should be indulging in at this stage of life, Instead the quest for true knowledge which anyways should have been a continuous effort in life, should pick up speed now. It is the time when reins should be handed over to the generation next.
Sanyaas prepares us for the inevitable...death. Gradually loosening the ties which bind us and cause us grief at the thought of leaving this particular human form.

Since I am not born into such times, I am your typical person, beset with confusion and self inflicted pain over what is my role and purpose in times. It gets only better as I know and hear more of our brilliant texts. But it is slow though a steady process.
In the meantime my innocent 3 year old who is sans these issues in life is a big help. Only recently I was telling my 5 year old how mommy wanted to become a Doctor once upon a time. My 3 year old, upon hearing this immediately said "You cannot be a Doctor". My suspicious mind thought there was some gender stereotyping going on here and I explained to her that "Girls can be doctors, I could be a Doctor". Adamantly and emphatically she declared "NO!, But you are a Mommy".

Thanks my little one for reminding me of my primary role as of now and its supreme importance. For her I am a Mommy, and the rest is inconsequential.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

For The 'Mother' in the Motherland

How filmi is the 'Mother' in the 'Motherland'? I would say its a lot. When we find the suffix Mata overly dramatic, Janamabhoomi just plain rhetoric, its time for some hard, cold honesty.

As the time approaches for us to return to our home country, I think I have heard it all. From plain selfishness, to hurtful statements meant to make the speaker feel better about their own decision to outright denial. This particular onslaught has left me hopping mad, frustrated and really, really scared for the future of good solid, plain old fashioned, value system.

Of course I am not expecting the pick-up-the-mud-and-rub-it-on-your-forehead-teary-eyed type of fervour. But some feelings which surpass the "my vote is for whoever gives me better roti-kapda-aur makaan" is asking for too much, is it?
Shifting your loyalties and allegiance because you expect a better deal in terms of lifestyle, education, money, success material and otherwise is a little surprising to me (to put it mildly).

I am aware of political asylum seekers, people who have been forced to migrate to avoid abject poverty. Victims of natural disasters, war and terrorism. But the profiles of those who I have been talking to or rather who have been talking to me about this issue are very different. Yes they definitely feel they have done better for themselves by adopting the new country and maybe they have.

But I still do not have the heart in me to congratulate them the day they acquire their precious new citizenship. That day they raised their hand and solemnly swore that they will have loyalty to only one country...not the country of their birth but the country of their choice. The have promised to stand by their new country in times of war etc. Many have described guilt r-idden, sleepless nights before this event and many have said they did not really say the difficult 'bits' of the oath. But then that's even worse. You could not remain loyal to the country of origin and you could also not be faithful to the adopted country. Today I choose to call a spade a spade and yes if patriotism is a sin I am guilty.

I have respect for those who say their philosophy does not match with their country of birth and have sincerely sworn their allegiance to their new country. Those who identify themselves first as Americans and then as Indians by race.
Just the way one cannot have Friends solely for profit or pleasure, one cannot have Nations for profit or pleasure. You made a choice stand by it. If there is a war between the US and India tomorrow (God Forbid! Now with the Nobel Peace Prize and all maybe US will give up their attack first-think later policy ), You, the new citizens have the courage and the strength of character to stand by your new country. Honor your commitments for once.

I too would prefer a world without borders. One Nation, One World. But till that happens I am an Indian and my loyalties remain fixed with my 'mother'land. Despite our differences, and even the secret guilty longing for a different mother especially as an angst ridden teenager I would want to 'change' her but never 'replace' her.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Another Reason Why I Believe in God

Amother Reason Why I Believe in God...........

Not that I personally need any reminding and reasons to believe in God. I thought that in a world where agnosticism is in vogue maybe the above pictures may bring about a change of heart in a die hard non-believer or two :)
For me the fact that I get up every morning and still remember who I am, the fact that the entire mechanism of eating, digesting, filtering out toxins happens, the fact that my Gynaecologist admitted that there are only so many things they know for sure about conception and delivery is enough to reiterate my faith in a Supreme Being. P.S there are many more better reasons too, but this will have to do for the time being :)

The changing seasons only add to my awe of the creator.I have just come back from a trip to the New England region of USA and I have been suitably spell bound by the work of the Master Artist. The yellows, burned orange, reds are the colors favored by God this month. I thanked god and praised his artistry as I breathed in the crisp, chilly air and took in the splashes of color on the once green landscape. I am no poet and it will probably take poetry to describe what I saw. I am no Pandit Jagannath who in 'Gangalahiri' took poetry to new heights and did justice to the beauty and meaning of the River Ganga.

Anyways so I took the easy way out and am letting the pictures do the talking. I see miracles everyday,around me.What you see in the pictures is what I consider a Miracle !!!