Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Losing your un-balance

A balanced life is not only elusive... but an impossibility.
The moment things start getting balanced, one moves towards un-balance to balance out the balance!

Anyway, what is it about late nights and slow music and subtle yellow lights lying undisturbed under the quilt? Its a perfect recipe for gracefully sliding into blissful reverie.

The current favorite song is Sajni (slow version) by Jal (pardon the video).

What does it feel to make music? Does the creator feel just as enchanted by that perfect symphony of notes and lyrics? Or does he drown even further into the magical spell of his songs?
Does the singer of Sajni feel a heavy heart when he listens to this song? Or are his feelings diluted by the incidents that occurred when the band was trying to come up with this song (small tiffs and arguments, different variations of the tunes etc)?

It would be a great pity if the band could not enjoy (and get entranced by) the song as much as the general listeners.

But then again, builders don't live in the houses they plan and build and put their heart into for years, or programmers don't use the programs they create for their purposes, or more interestingly, Darwin might not have seen the full implications and power of his insights?

Does the joy of creation surpass the joy of consumption?
Would you rather create the perfect symphony and be ecstatic when you come up with it, or would you instead enjoy the perfect symphony created by someone else... in your room, under the quilt, in yellow light... and shut your eyes and imagine away a vivid scene... of the monsoon... in the wild green pastures with drops shining on the slippery blades, and the rain-drops hitting your face like a strongly welcoming bear-hug given by an old friend, and your bare feet immersing in the soft mud till your ankles feel the wetness around them and you feel safely ensconced, and there is an old valley in front of you with signs of civilizations - small huts and plantations, and you look around... and you see those eyes that read yours', and reciprocate the value of this beauty.

Oh well, it is so easy to digress, and so difficult to teach discipline to the mind. It wanders into cul-de-sacs and happily returns, only to enter another cul-de-sacs, as if it has no intention of learning from 'mistakes'.

Monday, June 01, 2009

An attempt at rationalizing...

We reside in our more-or-less bound sphere of influence. The term 'influence' is the pivotal one. As I write, I think of my sub-world of influence. This sub-world has different categories of people.

There is the typical 'layman', who continues living with helplessly-acquired nonchalance. He is rarely intrigued by moral conundrums, psycho-philosophical debates or what have you. He has the formula for life entrenched in him, by societal interactions and his particular upbringing. He is not out there to challenge much, even though his particular belief system might contradict a point or two with society's. He, in general, is at peace with the world, or more appropriately, hasn't even thought of it. One may doubt if the layman's existence is exciting, but one often admires how the layman has steered clear of dilemmas that could potentially disturb a peaceful existence.

Then there is the 'loser'. Now the loser may not be very different from the layman in terms of philosophical depth and questioning. But the loser is different in that he is fatalist, and moreover, is upset that he got an incorrigibly bad fate. He is 'doomed'. Even within losers, there are blatant losers, who openly voice their concerns about how the world is against them... and then there are subtle ones. 

Then there is the 'moderate'. Of course the moderate does not know this. The moderate thinks he is crazy and living an interesting life. But he is only doing things which are 'crazy' according to the layman. He does not understand that crazy is a relative term.  For instance, it is not entirely crazy for a model to walk in a bikini... but if a somewhat conservative gujju lady were to do so, that would be outright crazy. Anyway, going back to the description of the moderate, he is ambitious. He always tries to scale up the ladders of adventure (but the problem lies in his view of these ladders). Nonetheless, he tries to tread the path between what he knows to be 'out-of-question crazy' vs 'doable crazy'. He has his head on his shoulders, and can understand, and almost empathize with other categories of people. He, in my opinion, is who my heart goes out to... simply because HE is the one who must be salvaged and helped from falling into philosophical abysses and repaired from knotted moral conclusions and psychological delusions. He is lost and needs direction, although on the exterior, he seems to be the most stable and sometimes, even the most successful.

The next more interesting category of people are those who are 'cool'. It often is difficult to find out why they are cool. I surmise that many of us find a large variety (and often conflicting) personalities cool. There are those who have a rebellious streak within them, which instantly gratify the rebellious demon within us and we take to an instant conferring of the title 'cool'. Then there are those who are cool because they seem to breeze through life. These could be 'cool laymen'. They seem amazingly happy and sorted out.

And then there is this sub-category of 'cool' whom you cant figure out. They seem deeply immersed, they seem to care two pence about society and how it works, but they actually deliberate on such issues for hours. They seem to have understood something that most of us fail at comprehending. At different stages of their lives... at each stage they have a more developed theory or philosophy... so to say that they evolve much faster. They are not scared of voicing their opinions, but at the same time, they are not over-eager to do so. Sometimes they may not have an opinion on an important matter and they confess that so matter-of-factly, that one might be relieved (if the 'cool' person is devoid of opinion on this matter, perhaps it is okay if I don't have an opinion either). They seem to be in a world of their own... and often, transcending different worlds. The typical concerns of 'how do i look with this shirt on', or 'what will people think if they find out...' hardly seem to bother them.

And somehow, almost all the people in my sub-world who fall into this (almost 'supercool') category have tried and purportedly enjoyed experiences of altering one's consciousness through different means. It seems that one is missing a lot of interesting, super-insightful, crazy, mind-boggling, life-changing experiences in the pursuit of being the 'moderate'. It is not a pro-active choice one makes. It is just a choice that demands less courage or lesser resistance to. (There was a time when I simply could not understand what could drive my very beautiful friend to diet and refrain from eating the most tempting desserts... that is to say that I could not understand the pay-offs of looking super-beautfiul versus the surreal gastronomic pleasures such delights could provide. I still don't completely relate to that friend on these principles, but I have begun to understand the pay-offs. Similarly, I could not understand why a friend refused to get into a relationship on the reason that 'that's not the right thing to do in Indian society').
There are times when one is naive and does not understand the cost-benefit analysis.
Perhaps getting a glimpse into different levels of consciousness is an experience worthy of treasuring, but at the same time, it could alter one's perception of reality to a point of no return.
Of course, there are scientific studies that can accurately describe the effects of certain consumptions.. but certainly, the first-hand experience would be incomparable.

The important point is I am not convinced that such desires are driven entirely by curiosity, which is what makes the decision a hard one. I suspect that the 'wannabe' section of my mind is playing a massive role, something that I don't want to accept. But aren't the not-so-cool people suppose to 'wannabe' super-cool?