Scribble

Up/Down

I used to love getting high,

Thought I could leap out & fly,

Never do I once recall worrying

What if flying would turn into falling.

What was once laughed off as fear,

Is now a way of life & called caution.

Looking up, dreaming & taking leaps,

Has given way to looking down, calculations & breathing deep.

2 Many Voices

What do you believe in?

“I remember the first time I saw The Dark Knight. During the opening sequence, towards the end of the that perfectly executed bank robbery, right before we get to see the Joker’s beautiful face for the first time. The bank manager goes on a weird kind of rant, something on the lines of…’Criminals in this town used to believe in something. But look at you. What do you believe in?’. Since then I’ve always thought it to be a very profound question.”

“How the fuck can a question be profound! It’s the answer that is either profound or mundane. But a  question- it’s just an empty vessel which can filled with either. I think it has the ability to invoke profound answers. Just like it does in the film.”

“May be you’re correct. But nevertheless, I think it’s a very important question. Each one us, does believe in something- consciously or subconsciously, sometimes by a choice or sometimes by a simple choice to go with our social conditioning.”

“I get what you’re trying to say. Without a belief system things would’ve gone haywire. We probably would’ve eaten each other at the first hunger pang had it not been for the belief that doing so is wrong. Isn’t that how religion & consequently, all other belief systems came into being. To lay down a basic guideline for the better- sometimes for those doing the believing but often for the believed.”

“Umm…that’s one way to look at it. But then, without a belief what would even separate us from the animals. We’d just eat, sleep, shit & fuck!”

“And that’d be bad because…?”

“That’d be bad because that would single-handedly be the death of evolution & progress. The early man wouldn’t have created the fire & the wheel if he didn’t believe in ‘making life simpler’ as the purpose of his life.”

“I think that he or she- let’s not be sexist- would still have worked towards making his own life simpler because that’s an intrinsic human attribute- the desire for something better.”

“Ok, may be he would’ve. But do you think he would’ve bothered passing down that knowledge. Do you think the cave walls would’ve been painted in so much detail had he not believed in the concept of humanity, had he not bothered about ‘how he’d be remembered after dying’. For that matter, would any artist- a writer,  painter, or a sculptor or that snapchat celebrity bother themselves with the process of creating had they not believed in something- the power of story telling, the belief that somehow that story could affect others, or that sharing that is the purpose of their being.”

“I don’t think that’s the only possibility though. It’s vanity. Each one of us has a desire to be noticed & be liked, by ourselves, by those around us, by people who don’t know us yet, by people whom we have no intention of knowing. And that’s the primary reason why anyone creates. Granted a story might just ‘come’ to an author as a dream, a  thought, an epiphany, or an acid trip, but the desire to share it with others- that’s just pure vanity.”

“Or can we say, it’s a belief; that doing so, i.e. sharing that story would affect the way the way the world us perceives us. I am sorry,  but I forgot what was the point I wanted to make by all this”

“I believe you’ve had enough to drink for the night!”

Scribble

Why do I write

​I grew up believing that writers write because they love to write. But as I grew older & a bit cynical, I became confident that writers write because they love being read. Somewhere & for sometime between these 2 ends of the spectrum, I also believed briefly that writers were people who cannot not write & hence they wrote. 

I think that we expect the world to be a reflection of our own self, though one might also argue that we are a reflection of the world around us. Yet another version of ‘which came first-the egg or the chicken’! But coming back to the question, me believing that writers write just out of love was probably my naivety & an innocent idea of a world where people’s actions are governed purely by their desires. The other possibility, the belief of people writing for the sake of being read must have most probably been formed when I started realising consciously or subconsciously the importance of external validation.

But looking back, the thing that troubles me the most is the phase where I believed that writers write because they just have to i.e. it just comes to them. Because though it seems utopian- stories coming to your head through a magical story spirit- it is a defensive belief as a writer. Defensive as in-the day I stop writing, it’s not actually me, but this magical spirit of stories that has failed. It’s a prelude to all the ‘I know what to write but I am just not feeling ready in my head ‘, ‘I should start writing tomorrow morning, because tomorrow morning is always the best time to write’, ‘I will start writing with a fresh mind after I buy a new pen, notebook, MacBook, table, chair and an island’ & the classic ‘I need to experience life before I start writing about it, so let’s get high first’.

This is probably the point where after so much blah-blah I finally tell you based on extensive research & life experiences, both mine & collected; that why do writers write? I have an old escapist habit- when you can’t answer a question, prove that the question itself is pointless! So what I believe is this- all writers are not governed by a thumb rule, some write because they love writing, some write because they love being read & some like me write because they love getting paid for it & most of them for reasons beyond my comprehension.

But the reason I am writing here is different- it’s to stay sane, it’s to clear my head of these thoughts which are constantly in my head but have no constructive effect. It’s to become a happier person or at least trying to find out what can make me happier. In the least, it’s a way to accept that I am not happy, although I am also not unhappy. It’s a way of accepting the possibility that what I am going through is not a phase but probably something which might require therapy & this might be a good start. It’s a way of accepting & reiterating the fact that this state of mine needs to change & that does not need a miracle, but just action. 

But the best part is that all the heavy-duty analysis of my new-found belief tells me that even if writing about my current state won’t change anything, the fact that I’ve started believing in my power to change it, is a great start in itself!

2 Many Voices · Eclectic

NaMo for PM

(Originally written on 30th April 2014)

 

I am really excited today. It’s voting day here..

Here? Where?

Here. Right here. At the epicenter. Where it all began?

Began? What began where?

Well, not here exactly here, but that doesn’t matter any more does it? Here is where it has been brewed for the last 10 years.

I remember it vaguely.  The dark ages. Before his highness graced us with his presence. Things haven’t been the same since.

We’ve had so much development. So much of it that sometimes I don’t recognize it anymore.

We had roads. Good roads, but only a few of them. Now we have more. And yes sir, A1 quality ekdum.

We had buildings. Tall buildings, but only a few of them. Now we have more. And taller than before.

We had industries, factories, businesses. All good, but only a few of them. Now we have more. And yes sir, bigger than before also.

We? Who the fuck is this we?

Arey we bole toh Vibrant Gujarat.

Oh. Yes. Lots of development. I’ve heard a lot about it. Read in the papers also. And the TV also seems to talk a lot about it. Is it true?

What kind of a silly question is this? Of course it’s true. Don’t you trust the sources that you mentioned?

No. Forgive me. I didn’t mean that. Of course i do. How can I not? Anyways where was I? Oh yes. Development. So as we can see, there has been so much of development in the state of Gujarat. And as we all know that any development that takes place in a state is solely because of the chief minister of the state. So modiji is solely responsible for all the developments in Gujarat.

But wait. What does that have to do with you being excited?

Again a silly question. But listen. Modiji is trying to become prime minister of the state of India. And he has promised to do same development in the whole of India. And that is what I want. Development for all of India.

One last silly question, but tell me aren’t you also sad that might mean a little less focus on the development of Gujarat?

Okay. You got me this time. That’s exactly what I want. Because frankly speaking I don’t think I need so much of development. I don’t want so much development. I am tired of this development. And I am also tired of listening to debates on TV about this development. I am tired of Modi and I am tired of all his bhakts.

Hmmm…but that still doesn’t explain the excitement.

You see. I live in Gandhinagar. The capital city of this Vibrant Gujarat. So, you can imagine the amount of development in the capital. Roads, buildings etc. But I vaguely remember learning the word ‘development’ as a kid. May be times have changed but I am sure it didn’t just mean roads, buildings and industries. In fact there was no mention of these things. It sounded like a good word, a positive word. But, it seems they’ve developed the word itself to mean something entirely different.

2 Many Voices · Scribble

Square 1

“Life is a journey. Of self discovery.

Away from our imagined identities. Towards the truth. Or sometimes its the other way around. Depends on your perspective. But its dynamic. Continuous change.

Everything keeps on changing and exploding exponentially. The to-do lists. And the unanswered questions. Sometimes it becomes difficult to understand the changes and the resulting new version of myself. So how can anybody else understand me!

And that is the root of all the problems.”

“Did you know that there is a simple solution to all the world’s problems?”

” And what is it?”

“What is the one thing that keeps all living things alive?”

“Water?”

“No…Oxygen!”

“Neither. It’s an idea. A belief.”

“Which one is it? An idea or belief?”

“What’s the difference?”

“Ideas are universal. But beliefs are personal. ”

“Either way. But what is it?”

There must be a better life somewhere.”

“But where?”

But there was no point pondering over that question. Sometimes, the promise of that wonderland, or rather the wonderworld is all that matters. They looked at him with hope as though he would take them there or at least give them proper directions.

He continued “All the greatest explorers, inventors, adventurers were haunted by this idea. That’s why the hunger to find something new.”

“But people like us wouldn’t know what to do with that. We would still be haunted by the idea of ‘better”.

“Exactly. It’s a process.”

“Na. Routine.”

“Call it whatever you want. But what other reason can you have to wake up in the morning?”

“To enjoy the better life you already have.”

 

“There must be a better conversation somewhere…”