Showing posts from September, 2017

Crossing the North-South Divide

Animals are territorial by nature and humans belong to the Animal Kingdom! We take our borders very seriously- the ones beginning from personal space to national and international borders and beyond. We tend to quickly form groups and identify with it and almost immediately, become hostile to everything else! Each group stands together against a threat and the group gets larger against a larger threat- there are exceptions to the rule- one look at North Korea would tell you that! I am about to address the issue of the great North- South divide, in our country. India is a country which practices Unity in Diversity. We stand together as one but just as in school where our teachers scream over the microphones to maintain one arms distance so also we carry that concept forward into all our associations in life- the distance varying with trust. When it started, how it started or why it started, I have never bothered to find out. Possibly, it stems from the inferiority complex each

Of Rainbows and Contrails...

As a child, one of my favourite songs used to be “Raindrops on roses…” from the classic movie “The Sound of Music”. It made me smile. I’d learn stanza after stanza on my own till I knew the song by heart. (It was only after Google that I found out what schnitzel and apple strudel looked like) Lyrics were very important to me-they still are. I am in no way suggesting that being fascinated by lyrics meant that I listened to only “deep” numbers. We had lousy Hindi Songs as I grew up in the late eighties and nineties unlike today, where our industry is churning out brilliant numbers both in terms of melody and lyrics. I quite enjoyed those songs too (all Govinda-Karishma numbers with their cheap and meaningless words). It is just that no matter what the words are, I need to know them. I am not writing about songs and lyrics though but of all those things that uplift my spirits; and music, perhaps, tops the list. From grade six (that is when I got a room to myself) till date, I need a

Selfies: Narcissism in Vogue

“Mirror, Mirror on the wall, who is the fairest of us all?” Vanity exists from time immemorial and has been the very part of our fairy tales as you can see! Yet, I grew up in a family where modesty and modesty alone was acceptable. I learnt the word narcissism when it was thrown at me in grade four- the word, its meaning and the etymology! All I did to deserve that was to drape myself in a dupatta (a garment worn by Indian women over their salwar kameez to cover their modesty), which for my small frame acted as a sari, with a pillow crooked in my arm (my baby) and perch myself on a stool in front of the mirror. It was my favourite pastime to act like Mrs. N (my mother) but my husband, almost always, died in the war (somehow the husband never seemed to fit into my scheme of things as a child and losing him in the war was the best way to kill the embarrassment of having one) and with my baby, I would talk to different people I’d imagine, in the mirror. On this particular day, I was

The Trishanku Generation

As per Hindu Mythology, Trishanku was a noble king of the famous Sun dynasty of Ikshvaku. He was noble and righteous like most of the great kings of his lineage. However, he had one wish- one that was unheard of! He wanted to enter the gates of Heaven with his mortal body. He went to his “Kulguru” (family priest), Sage Vashishth with his wish and he was turned down for the wish was bizarre indeed. Not to be deterred, he went to the sage’s hundred sons and asked them to oblige. Instead of obliging him, they took it as an insult to their father that he should even approach them when their father had turned him down. The King said that he was left with no choice but to find someone outside the family priests who would help him out. Enraged at hearing this, the young sons cursed him and made him a “chandaal” (a lowly caste that dealt with the disposal of the dead). Credits: The woe befallen king was driven out of his own kingdom for no one recognized or believe