Friday, April 23, 2010

Friday Tag

Since I want to write and don't know what to write, am doing a tag by my friend.

The tag goes.. "If I were..."

  • If I were a month: I would be August. Because it is unpredictable, sometimes hot and sultry, sometimes pouring with rain, thunder and lightning, carrying both the lingering heat of summer and the promise of a coming winter.
  • If I were a day of the week: I would be Saturday. When half the weekend and its joys are gone, and when responsibilty comes knocking back. Yet, knowing that Sunday is yet to come. Tinged with sadness, yet full of happiness of the present.
  • If I were a time of day: I would be night. Calm, quiet, contained. Contented in itself.
  • If I were a season: I'd be the monsoons in India. Waited for desperately to take away the heat, they come all noise and flashing light, awe-inspiring, flamboyant, loud.
  • If I were a planet: I would be Venus. Woman all through!
  • If I were a direction: I would be North.
  • If I were a piece of furniture: I would be a cosy one-seater sofa. On which one can curl up and read a book.
  • If I were a liquid: I would be Tea. My elixir of life. My caffeine fix. Aromatic. Deep.
  • If I were a tree: Eucalyptus. Because there were a lot of these where I was growing up. And I love the smell.
  • If I were a tool: I would be a hammer. Blunt, driving the point home without finesse. No diplomacy- that's me!
  • If I were a flower: Chrysanthemum. Showy, decorative, big and pretty :)
  • If I were an element: I'd be Mercury. Sometimes liquid, sometimes solid. Quicksilver!
  • If I were a gemstone: I would be Pearls. Born of oysters. In all colors from black to pink to white. Artificial or real. Round and pretty.
  • If I were a kind of weather: Rainy and/or cloudy. Sometimes wistful and tremulous, sometimes dark and threatening.
  • If I were a musical instrument: I would be the flute. Because that is how I want to be: tall and thin and beautiful.
  • If I were a color: Red. Rich, flamboyant, vibrant, alive, sultry.
  • If I were an emotion: Anger. Can never control it and it takes me over. I only wish I had better control over my anger!
  • If I were a fruit: Red Grapes- round, plump and ripe. Asking to be bit into to release their juices ;)
  • If I were a sound: I'd be a car horn: impatient, irritated and a little angry.
  • If I were a car: I would be the red Prius Hybrid. Environmentally conscious, innovative shape and form, sleek and beautiful.
  • If I were a material: I'd be a woven shawl. Warm and comfortable.
  • If I were a food: I would be coffee ice-cream. The perfect blend of bitter and sweet. And melting in warmth.
  • If I were a taste: I'd be sweet. I am sweet.
  • If I were a scent: I'd be citrus. Lemony, tangy and fresh!
  • If I were an object: I would be a mink blanket- warm, supersoft and luxurious, but sometimes smothering and suffocating.
  • If I were a song: I'd be "Mile Sur Mera Tumhara". I have friends from all communities, regions, states and religions of India. And I strongly believe that real people and real friendships transcend petty boundaries of divisiveness.
  • If I were a body part: I'd be the eyes- wherein you can see the depths of your soul.
  • If I were a place: I would be India. Torn, conflictiong, ravaged, and yet rising despite all odds.
  • If I were a facial expression: I would be the look that goes with "Paying attention". Listening. Because that is what I am for all my friends. A person to talk to.
  • If I were a pair of shoes: I'd be Mary Janes. Demure and young, budding with promise. And then add some heels- they become hot and attractive.

Friday, April 16, 2010

And mine is...

A few days ago, I thought I would right a short piece on all the five sins: Kaama, Krodh, Lobh, Moha, Ahankaar. In that order. But being the capricious person that I am, I decided that I only wanted to write about mine. Yes, the one in the above list over which I have very little (make that minuscule) control: Krodh.
That's true: Anger is my greatest enemy. My downfall.

It has been said that of all the sins, anger is the only one that hurts the doer more than the receiver. Its true. Anger can burn you make you unhappy keep you smoldering resentful fuming-and exploding, but still- you are the epicenter of the explosion. You are the one who holds all that negativity and pain inside you which is regurgitated as anger.

Yes, I get angry very easily. And when I get angry, I get really angry. I scream and shout and cry- all at the same time. I hurt. And most of all, I hurt myself.
For as soon as it comes, it goes away. After a bout of screaming and shouting, I'm fine. And then I really regret my words. But as some wise person said "Words are like arrows shot from a bow. Once they leave, they can never be recalled"

Anger is really the most destructive emotion. Not because it hurts the person you are angry at; it destroys you.
I was reading CBD a few days ago. And in her book, she talks about how Draupadi held on to her anger for thirteen long years. How this single woman's anger brought about the Mahabharata. How she never let go of her anger, how she used it as a weapon. CBD then narrates the following scenario between Krishna and Draupadi :

"Krishna visits the Pandavas at their forest dwelling. Draupadi is cooking for him, when he suddenly pulls out a smoldering wooden log from the choolha and thrusts it at Draupadi. She lunges back, and then asks him, what is this?
He replies- this is what anger is. The fire smoldering inside this log. It smolders inside you and reduces you to nothing. "
(The Palace of Illusions, Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni)

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

The Five Sins

Remember class 8th? When we had to ratto a lot of Hindi grammar. One integral part of this was learning Hindi muhawaras, or sayings. Then we also had things which came in sets of three, four or five, stuff that came out of our ancient literature. I don't remember much, though there were the Three Doshas (Kafa, Vaata, Pitta); the five senses; the triumvirate of Gods, and, the set I want to talk about, the Five Sins. These were Kaama, Krodh, Lobh, Moha, Ahankaar. And at that time in my life, I did not understand, I did not know how these were THE five sins.

Now, I know. I get how these are the definitive sins not because these are just evil or bad, but because these are the most difficult to overcome. These come from within, self-generated thoughts and feelings and emotions. Which consume you.
Yes, these are the sins because to overcome these you have to control the self. These are not committed against you- these are you. Manifestations of your darker side. That erupt and explode and devour you, leave no place for rational thought and burn, burn you through!

So, in a way, I am starting a mini-series on this blog. Where each post will talk about one of these sins. I know which one of these is my besetting sin, the one that I can never control. That takes me over and turns me in to my Mr. Hyde.

What's yours?