Is There A God?

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Am I an atheist? Am I an agnostic? Or am I a believer? To tell the truth, I have no clue at all.

I often tell myself whatever happens, happens for the best. And there have been many instances that do support my belief. But when I sit and contemplate, I have no scientific explanation as to why that would be true. We have a tendency to attribute whatever happens to us, good or bad, to a mysterious being looking upon us all from somewhere above. And that subconsciously affects our decisions.

At times I will stand before the idols in my home and pray for what I desire. And at times I will wonder how absurd it is. Believing that a mass produced industry product is capable of being the abode for the one that supposedly the creator of this universe, seems whimsical. Though, I do understand that it acts just a proxy for Him; but shouldn’t a representation of such a being be a little more, umm, amorphous? Believing that we are mere puppets of a higher power but still capable of representing him with a fair amount of unanimity among us seems contradictory to me. I cannot comprehend that how although we as humans are a fairly homogeneous race when seen through the lenses of biological anatomy, but still can have thousands of different higher powers in every different sub section of our society.

Yes, I do have many ambiguous thoughts and this is not an attempt to either resolve them or seek answers. It’s just an outlet for venting them. Like every other thing that makes me a human, this is one of them. Raised in a fairly normal Hindu family, I never questioned the existence of god. But in the last one year or so, specially after reading “Sophie’s World” and few other articles, my perspective on how I view everything around me, has changed.

I once read someone saying in an article that the most sensible thing to do if you are religious is to question the existence of god. Blindly believing its existence is against everything religion stands for.

On the other end of the spectrum , there are many who do not believe in a higher power, and science is their advocate for it. They will vehemently propose its pragmatic and arguably gospel nature. And I, in part, stand by it. But I also believe that science is not infallible. It is on a learning curve as well. Everything we know now is not everything we will ever need to know. Our existence is just a speck in the multidimensional progression of time. And what follows our existence and inevitable death will definitely falsify many of our beliefs which we today hold as gospel. History is testimony to that fact. So to believe that everything we now know is definitely everything we need to know, is a naive assumption to make.

Before I part, I will take a leave by giving words to a thought that has been on my mind for a while.

There are some perceptions and ideas in our everyday life which somehow we chance upon, and they consciously or unconsciously stick with us. Gradually we start designating them as our own thoughts, and we start to believe in them. In fact, every person is shaped by their experiences. To believe that you, as a human, are a single entity is a farce. We are ever evolving and the most explicitly obvious yet the least commonly understood fact is to accept that you change, your opinions change and that gives you credibility as someone who can understand himself on his own rather than someone who blindly accepts what others have told him about himself. I believe such a self-realization brings us somewhat closer to whatever we are supposed to learn in life, about life.

Bouncing Back

She lay still. Almost like a corpse. Suddenly everything stopped making sense to her. Her entire life was now meaningless.
He was just a part of it. But the naïve person she was, she thought her world revolved around him. She thought he was her world instead. Oh hopeless romance.

She had been a drama queen. Until then she blew little things out of proportion and laughed off the attention she got. But now, she had witnessed a big event of her life. She was not sure if she wanted to keep that as a memory.

It was three in the morning. She wanted to talk to someone, but the voice seemed lost. “Hello, hello.” She did not reply. She hung up the phone and lay still again. It kept buzzing. But she was unsure of what she would say now.

The call was from the person she built her world around. But its funny how trust once broken can make you dumb. It was like reality had slapped her so bad. Even the spirits in the room, if they could talk, would mock at her and at the same time pity her.

She took out a sleeping pill, popped it in. And God, she was wrong. The void in her made the pill ineffective. That was the first time an empty mind had caused her a headache.

Empty mind. But only one thing bounced back in her thoughts again and again. “How could he cheat on me?” Tired of thinking the same thing she slipped into a nap, also hoping she would feel better when daylight struck and birds chirped.

A fine beam of the sun pinched her in the eye and to her shock, everything was as still as it was four hours back. She was a morning person, but what was unusual about this one? The void. She was reminded of it again.

She clinched her fist and struck her head with it, once twice thrice. She wanted to cry. But she could not. She wanted to eat but this was a depression. The worst part was that, she went the same way for the next fortnight.

Until when she stood on the terrace that night, the wind brushed through her hair. She was forced to feel her breathing. She closed her eyes. It was dark. Usually she saw two faces happy. But this time, it was pitch dark. Suddenly, she saw a face, trying to make its way like the sun on a cloudy day.

It emerged clearer and clearer… and it was her face. She was smiling, in that short dream and in reality. She did not expect to see herself like that again. Two drops from each eye rolled out. She was crying. Usually one would call it mixed emotions, but she knew she was happy. She howled, she allowed all the negativity to drain out form the abyss of her soul.

She knew this would be the first and the last time she would cry over this. The future would only have her thinking of this as a lesson. And just then she realised how everything really happens for a reason and for good.

She had had a closure from a dead relationship which was only alive in her mind. Alive until he cheated on her. And now there she is again, telling everyone how she is happy about that unfaithfulness,and that she could see the reason for his infidelity.

I told you she is a drama queen. Now she says “Cheating is good, it frees at least one bird from the cage every time.”

Our Very Own Superpower!

Everyone has his or her own personal fairy tale. Some are inspired from our very own Walt Disney popular style, some from the super hero stuff (flurry with happy endings). Sometimes our real life comes close to it and at other times we strive really hard.

Someone told me we all of have undiscovered super powers. I asked how one could find what really is the super power? And I do not remember the answer honestly. Or perhaps there is no answer at all.

Imagine if we could find what really is our super power. Imagine yourself playing in the field with your power and your friends with their own. Imagine how you could experiment with it. Find how it is fearful for your own self, and then you would find ways around it, recover and explore an absolutely new side of it.

Imagine you have been clumsy all your life. People laugh at you as you call for social embarrassment when you fall into the unnoticed dustbin, or drop an orange juice on your white top or slip by the pavement as you notice someone awesome cross paths with you.

And then imagine if you realise that could be your strength. You suddenly realise how you carried your luck unknowingly through things. Like when you fell into the dustbin, it was because you were saving yourself and so many others who could get hit by a fast moving car in the campus, but because they all were busy laughing at you, the car passed away. And hello, they did not even notice that and thank you!

Or when you dropped that orange juice on you white top, it formed an amazing pattern and it suddenly became the new hot summer trend for your peers too, and you could see all those people in the canteen dropping different juices in different pattern (I apologise if it sound inappropriate).

And that time when you slipped on the pavement, I am sure you would refer to that as unwanted attention from that person. But you know how they say someone who can laugh off the pain in the ass (literally here), can attract the best attention ever. That ways, it is easy to be spunky, cool, jazzy, and funny and guess what… great easy attention transferred all at the same time. Just smile looking straight into their eyes; you never know that person might just fall too.

I know this lies in the category of easier said than done. I do not really know what fits right for me. I am the clumsiest person you will ever come across. I dropped an entire tray of food in a dark theater hall as I tripped off a stair and by the end of that millisecond thanked God that no one saw. I do not know how I could fix that. The food was spoilt and a lot of money wasted. But then when I came back to my seat and thought about it, I realised how I was standing on the cash counter and thinking, “What if just happen to drop all of this while entering?” And that happened, for real.

It struck me how my thoughts manifested into a real action, involuntary though, but it did. So I am now discovering how I can transform my thinking into positive, constructive yet involuntary action and perhaps that is my super power. (Sounds absolutely bizarre, I know)

I have read a lot of motivational books and read about how the universe manifests your thinking into real time result for what you direct it to be like. I don’t know if there is universe listening to me, or a genie waiting for my command.

But I do understand that thoughts must come big as life for good reasons. We do not want to be harmed and we do not want to be hurt. So why not strive for positive action and let the power lie in it. That might just be this humanity’s biggest super power ever.

“For my personal fairy tale, has good in store for all.”

Happy Reading.

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Leap of Faith

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I unbuttoned my suit. But wouldn’t that look too casual, if I go with an unbuttoned suit. I might come across as a passive guy. Oh, but closing both the buttons makes me look very uptight. And I’m anything but uptight, I never worry about small things. I know what I should do; I should just unbutton one of the buttons. Yeah that puts me in middle ground. I need tonight to be perfect. I need myself and everything else around me to be flawless. Should I call the hotel before I go in? I’ve already called them thrice, if I call them again the manager might slip something in the food out of anger. I’d better not call. I took out the box from the dashboard and slipped it into my suit’s inner pocket. I patted it twice for luck and went up the stairs to her house. I took a long deep breath and rung the bell. I waited a couple more minutes before ringing the bell again. I knew I would have to ring it again; she’s never ready on time. Just as I was about to place my thumb on the bell, I heard the door unlock.

I’ve read about love, about pure eternal love. I’ve heard about it in songs and I’ve seen it in those chick-flicks. But I had never really felt it until today. And it’s nothing like what they describe. I didn’t feel as if my feet had just been swept of the ground. Neither did I feel as if gravity had seized to exist. And the only thing churning in my stomach was sulfuric acid, there were no butterflies. No, I felt strong. I felt as if this is what keeps me on the ground. She keeps me here, she is what makes me stay, and live each day with the desire to live another. She doesn’t take away the ground below my feet, she makes me believe that I can stand on it more firmly than I ever have.

“Hey! What are you thinking, snap out of it.”

I winked at her and lend her my hand to help her climb down the stairs. If only I could ever put words to what I felt. I knew I never could, and she knew it too. Words were the only thing she took away from me. I was a restless and talkative man at other times. But when I was with her, all I wanted to do was to listen to her, to see her, observe the minute things that make her what she is. And today as she walked down those stairs with me, in her white dress, she made me understand why Poets, Singers, Writers and Artists try to define love. I went ahead and opened the car’s door for her. She took tiny steps when coming down the final few stairs, and it made my heart melt, for every smaller step meant that I had to wait more before she could be beside me. I adored her, as she descended down the stairs. Every layer of wind that cut across her face set each strand of her hair on a course of its own. And she didn’t seem to mind. But it wasn’t as if she looked like someone who doesn’t take care of herself. It came naturally to her. Her beauty was effortless.

“I’m surprised.”

I looked at her in fake denial. I hoped she didn’t know what I had planned for the night.
“Why are you surprised?”

“This is possibly the first time you didn’t ask me what my excuse is for making you wait”

“Well let’s just say I’m happy enough to have ignored that.” I shyly replied.

Her glistening white teeth smiled back at me. She was happy, she was happy to be with me. That’s the least I could do, I could keep her happy. I looked ahead on the road and a green signboard reminded me of the left turn that was to follow. I slowed down the car and looked for it. And just as I was about to turn back for having thought that I had missed it, a small cut in the road appeared out of nowhere. I took a sharp turn, for I was too excited to go back and turn slowly.

“Whoa! Slow down. Where are we going anyway?”

“Trust me. It’s a special place.”

She went ahead and kissed me on the cheek. It was her way of reminding me that I didn’t need to ask her to trust me. She just did. She leaned against the window pane and looked out at the lonely road that was ahead of us. I had wanted such an isolated place, and such a desolate drive, because I wanted tonight to be about just us. The place was perfect, but the journey was equally amazing. The road was narrow and was surrounded by huge majestic trees. I looked at one such tree, and realized how much it resembled every other tree. What made it different was not what was visible on the surface, it was what happened underneath, where its roots and the soil embroiled into an existence that lasted forever. Every tree was like a human, and the one i looked at, was still looking to partner with the soil. Maybe it will today. Right behind the trees the moon lit up in its pure magnificence and the landscape looked even more prepossessing under its moonlight; and so did she. I looked at her, gazing out the window, and I wanted to know what kept running around her mind when she was with me. I wanted to know what that incredible brain of hers’ thinks about all the time. But then again, I had all the time in the world to know, because she is going to be with me for the rest of my life. For tonight, I ask her to be mine.

She suddenly gasped and let out a shout. “Look out!”

As I had lost myself in her, I had forgotten about the road. I turned to face it and saw a man standing right in the middle of the road. I hit hard on the breaks; as hard as I could. The car shrieked under the constraint that was suddenly applied to it. It stopped, and had I been a moment late in stepping on the breaks, I would have killed that man today. The man moved away from the car and tried to protect his eyes from the bright headlights. I looked at him; he was an old man in ragged clothes. I needed to check if he was okay. I took out the key and unlocked the car. As I turned to open the door, a sudden thud on the car alerted me. A man had thrown himself on the back window. And then another thud, and then another. Three men were now pushing against the mirrors of the car. One of them unlocked the rear right door and got in. I froze in shock. But I knew what this was; I knew I had to protect her. I jumped on the guy who had slid into the back seat. I caught him by the collar and was about to punch him when I was pulled out the car by someone holding my legs. I twisted my neck to see who it was. It was the old man, and he did not look so helpless now. In-fact, he looked ugly, and evil. A crooked smile on his face reminded me of the most darkest and lifeless moments I have ever endured. I tried to fight back, to get my legs out of his grip. I bit at his hands and just when i had got myself free of his hold, I heard another thud. This one seemed close, very close. It felt as if someone had injected a stream of pain into my head. I touched it, and my fingers ran through blood; blood rushing out from the back of my head. And just then, I was hit again. This time the pain reciprocated. The pain was beyond what I could bear. But I had to get back to her; I had to protect her. I tried to get up, but my legs failed to respond. I tried and tried more, but they didn’t budge. I tried to punch them into life, but my hands felt powerless. The old man picked me up and hurled me into a nearby tree. I heard the box in my suit’s pocket fall somewhere on the ground. It contained the ring I was going to put on her finger as I asked her to marry me tonight. I wanted to spend the rest of my life keeping her happy, but here lay my body, with no potential to fulfill my promise. I turned to see, my vision now blinded by the weakness of the human body. Poets, Singers, Writers and Artists also write about heartbreak, and about feeling helpless in the face of love. And now I could understand what they meant, for in the last moments of my consciousness, I saw four men rip her clothes into pieces.

Delhi –> Mumbai

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I can’t really decide if it’s human nature or just my mental faculties on an overdrive. The anticipation of an event you know will turn out to be an epoch in your life is fascinating, scary and fear-inducing, all at the same time. So as I while away my last days in the city I was born in, having spent last 22 years of my life calling this chaotic city my home, I wonder as to why didn’t I ever realize that all my life I have been taking this concoction of amazing people, beautiful heritage and delectable food, for granted. Never did I wonder as to what life ‘not in Delhi’ would be like. Now knowing that I have to leave the past behind is something that I can’t seem to fathom, and comprehending the fact that I soon have to label this life I was living here as a bygone era, is a little tough to appreciate.

And as it turns out, the stage for the beginning of my fourth of the seven Shakespearian ages would be a small little hamlet in India known as Mumbai! And as of now, there is nothing new I have to say about the city that hasn’t been already said thousands of times. Maybe a few days, weeks or months down the line I might love it or loath it. And the journey from here to there would surely be something to remember forever.

And as it always has been with our kind, future seems enticing as well as terrifying, all at the same time. Broadening our horizons seems to be the obvious thing to do, but leaving our comfort zone is unnerving. Burying the familiar faces from our coterie in a trench in some corner of our brain, which we only visit when in dire need of someone to confide in, seems disrespectful to those overwhelming emotions we felt when we were with those people. But that is how it is supposed to be, isn’t it? We will promise each other, swear to be in touch, but a distant voice inside us will always unceremoniously whisper, apprising us of the slim probabilities of that actually happening. But at that time we will shush them away, with the multitude of emotions running through us overpowering those sane voices. But as passing days coagulate, those whispers assume a form far more eerie, when one day; they rudely thrust onto our face the realization that they were true all along.

But any of this doesn’t mean we do not appreciate the past, the present or the future. It is just a natural progression in which every moment we have lived is instantaneously labelled our past and every moment we anticipate is our future. And before we realise that this moment, right here right now, is our present, it isn’t.

Anywho, I did not realise when my personal monologue mutated into a prosaic credo for the discerning. Nevertheless, having got all of this off my chest, I am ready to proclaim, “Bring it on, Mumbai!”