Get Imperfect

“Did you guys catch up for the second time”
“No”
“Why? Didn’t he call?”
“He did. I did not take his call then.”
“Why?”
“He is perfect. He is funny and intelligent and handsome. I don’t want his image to be ruined after I meet him many times and he turns out to be a banal boring guy.”
“No. You think you are perfect and you don’t want him to know that you ain’t always the same.”

I haven’t been a quick-hookup kinda person. I take time making friends. And that is the reason that I initiate with many, but I only end up with very few. Gradual meetings turn things down for me. And I know that I am not alone in this.

It’s time we accept that imperfection is nothing but an allusion. Mind this. Allusion not Illusion. Because perfection is an illusion. It’s just a half stated fact that directs us to something that is not completely known and felt. But when we actually attempt to give in and just be real, like we do with our best friends or the love of our lives, we find that all that the world is trying to do is to “Portray an Illusion”. The most famous influencers have been the people who spoke about daily things that people can relate to. Stand up comedians who mock not the truth but with it, are the favorites.

So, I have just started enjoying it. The indecencies and the idiosyncrasies of the people when they open up to me after I do too. And trust me I am trying to getting there soon after I meet someone.
And here is what I have to mention (or tempt you with) some of my own personal experiences:-
1. The boy who brought me flowers and wore a suit on our first date, now enters the room with dirt in his shoes and bad hair, and I love him more now than I have ever loved him before.
2. The girl who claims to be my only best friend in this city, danced and cracked funny jokes to make me stand her company. But now she is cranky and angry and I know her weaknesses. And I feel more connected to her.
3. I had a very superficial relationship with my dad until I left home. Then he started calling me up and we talked about little things. I still can’t imagine how we never even smiled together and now he cracks same shitty joke 10 times and I give him a look saying “daddy, kitni Baar?” And he laughs saying “Are ye vaala thoda alag hai.”

It’s all about the little things that unite us and make us all one. First impression is always a bullshit. So get real. Get Imperfect. You will be loved.

#MakingImperfectionGoViral

You are a Rapist

Brothers, Fathers, Mothers, Friends, Boyfriends, Aunties, Uncles and all the individuals who feel obliged to protect their girls are subjected to being a part of the problem that causes rape
????

Reasons of rape (that we believe)
1. Presence of a gender specific individual at the wrong place at the wrong time (Female obviously, transgenders are not even a gender in India)
2. The outfit declared inappropriate worn by the victim
3. Breach of cultural decorum by Western infiltration
4. Incapability of the male counterpart to protect the female counterpart (wrt the video that went viral saying “Protecting women is a religion”)

Why are you a part of it?
BECAUSE YOU BELIEVE THAT THE AFORESAID POINTS ARE TRUE (At least everyone does feel the same about the 4th one)

Our actions based on the mentioned beliefs
-Gurugram restricts female employees to work after 8 pm
-Khap punchayat orders to gang rape the sister of a man to punish him on the offence of molesting another girl.
-Skirts, shorts and Cropped tops banned in colleges
-A man should accompany a woman while out in night

So I want to elaborate the video I was talking about. There’s a girl walking down the street at night, two men approach her
with lust in their eyes, a man dressed in hindu attire shows up and stands between the girl and the men, a muslim man joins hand, followed by a sikh and a christian, and then they make a circle around the girl and the girl smiles at being protected.

“MEN ARE THE PROTECTORS AND MEN ARE THE VIOLATORS.”

“HYMEN IS THE ONLY INDICATION OF A WOMEN’S HONOR”

“MARRIAGE IS AN INSTITUTION GRANTED LEGIT BY FAMILY, TRADITION, COMMUNITY AND NATION. MARITAL RAPE, IS IT REALLY A THING?”

“GHANIYA, YE KYA KAPDE PAHAN KE AAI HE TU? SAB GHOOR RAHE HAIN”

“GHANIYA, APNA CROP TOP SAMBHAALO, NAZARE DIKH RAHE HAIN”

You want to hide me
You want to restrict me from going out alone
You want to form a circle around me to protect me
You want to save me from being molested and raped
And if i do, you want to prohibit me from marrying (well this would only save me from being raped everyday)

Enough of it
I am out, all alone, wearing whatever I want, taking my honor, my safety and my will in my own hands. Next time when two men with lusty eyes approach me, you stand and watch me kicking their balls. Because not them, you induced it in the first place.

The Invisible and Invincible traps

Let me come around with a few stories, the real ones.
Two people were profoundly in love with each other for many years. When they reached an age suitable for marriage, were parted by their parents. In India, parents love and invest on you throughout your childhood, so that you are indebted one day to return them their favors by stepping into a trap for the rest of your life. Both wept in each other’s arms, and parted. The energy that pulled them together was always weaker than the energy this trap possessed to break them, because there were two innocent hearts striving to being together and a whole load of world pulling them apart.
They were in their 20s when the world burdened them with responsibilities. Career, yes a 21st century invention and even if they never wanted one, they had to deal with it. Because the world works that way, You got no money, you got no life. But they wanted to go round the world, love and explore, drink through the streams and bathe in the waterfalls, they wanted to build a treehouse and chase the birds. Not everyone is Alexander Supertramp, and not everyone is brave enough to escape. So they now worry about their future securities and seek occasional escapes through poetry, philosophy, spirituality, or a simple ride on the weekends to feel alive. Nothing is more dangerous than this. Millions die leaving them behind, and no cemetery is huge enough to contain these trapped dreams.
She walked away from her mother one day, fearing she will also acquire her trait of surrendering and keeping others above herself in life. She fought and argued with every one who stopped her from doing things she wanted. She wore clothes of her choice, she walked and ate the way she wished. She wrote bold and read Sylvia day, Ismat Chughtai and Taslima Nasreen. She loved many and ended up on the right one after so long. She read the scripts of holy books and never found any of them ideal enough to stick to. So she became a believer of facts (atheist, everyone called her). She smiled sarcastically on men and thought low of those who did not approve of her being. This was her trap. She was alone in this world, seeking approval for long, but always found herself rowing alone against the winds.
You see any man or woman, pick up any goddamn story and you sit and relate it to one of the above. Every sample you pick is gonna drop into any one of the above premises. So, what do we decipher?
We come up with the biggest crisis of our times. Neither Climate change nor war is bigger than this. I sat with the happiest looking people and they gradually tend to give in, telling about their traps. We are contributors in making of these traps around ourselves and others. So what will it take to cut them down. Well we gotta stop thinking that someone else will come and fix this for us. We gotta take chance risking what we love and want to hold on to or to drop our liabilities for some time and head towards what we really seek. One generation has to be on the wrong side to pave right for those to follow. So why not us? Let us start with ourselves and be the heroes in our world, even if half of them don’t approve. And don’t worry about those who don’t come along, for “a coward die many times before death, but a valiant never tastes of death of but once.”
I am so sick of this same old world 🙂
G. Aureen

The last lesson..!

 

The day I visited the library for the last time..!

June 30th 2016-The date printed behind my i-card as “valid till”.
We were already given a “Happy Farewell”, an overwhelming concluding ceremony was performed, all said and done. We are remaining with the convocation and I am still wondering when to exactly feel ‘that this is my last day in Amity!’ So I decided to give it a reasonable ground and thought I would take it today. Something in print is as much reliable as all the books ever written that shaped human life and history. So I decided to make it good and went through the gates for the last time with tapping my i-card. For the first time in 2 years the guard at the gate smiled back at me (you know I have a jolly face and people usually don’t smile back, it’s a a frustrated world).
I wanted to spend this day in the same way as I spent most of my time while in Amity. So I went straight to the LIBRARY!:D

I tell you something about this place.

If Amity is literature, library would be Shakespeare. If Amity is music, the library would be Mozart. And welcome inside it, take the escalator and walk straight up the second floor and take left. You would see the wooden floor feeling your feet lighter, the couch, and the corner that was home to me. I always avoid human interactions and gradually understood that I thus attach more to places and things than I do with people. I completed around 4 books sitting here in the ‘blank spaces’ between the classes (perks of having library just the next door to ur department).
So I walked there, smiling, reached the floor, stood facing the shelf to pick a book, and there I was….frozen!

Civil Engineering

Strength of Materials

Designing sewer systems

“Sheeeeeeeettt!”
I stood there for a minute trying to understand what just happened. Did I take the right stairs? Did they just change the setting of the couches and I got confused?

No!

They took the whole literature section to somewhere else. My last day in here and I don’t even get to spend a moment in nostalgia.

I walked to all the good corners and found it nowhere. I finally decided to take help. I went down the enquiry and asked them. “Excuse me sir. May I please know where the literature section is shifted to?”

“Ummm.. yes, on the second floor, where all the cabins end.”

“Is it where all the unsorted books were kept?”

“Yes exactly, behind that mess!”
These are the actual words that he spoke, “behind that mess”.
I ran to the section, and there it was, where everything ends, all the books that deserve to be kept on the foremost displays laid unsorted, amidst the trash, somehow finding place over a shelf (thank god for that), facing the huge wall denoting the end of the library.
I stood there, with pounded heart, eyes filled searching for something to read. I left few pages of a book by Jean Sasson, struggled to find it and took it along to go back to the wooden floor and easy couches corner, wiping a tear off my cheek.
And this was a perfect day, the last day in Amity, the day I understood how suddenly things change, they would just leave you frozen and weeping and then, life gives you a chance, to take the memories with you to the place you like, it allows you to take the book from anywhere in the corner and sit where ever you like. You can always pick a book from a trash and sit on the most comfortable couch and read it!
“I would make a house by a river someday, amidst the mountains, grow my own vegetables, have all the books I want to read and then I will have everything I ever wanted”

A Monsoon Letter

was sitting by the window of my room. It was the first week of July and the weather was still warm. I was going back into my life of the last few years wondering how I changed the subject from my undergrad to post grad and how I struggled to keep my energy and fantasies up even when I was pulled back by the realities and limitations that echoed everywhere around saying ‘your dreams were so unreal’. The world makes it hard for people like me to keep pace with the imaginations and realities. It’s like living in a dual world of trans events where you are compelled to participate in each of them.

Suddenly all my thoughts were interrupted by a knock on the door. It took me a while to come back to life and as I reached to open the door the one who knocked it was already gone. I was about to close the door when I saw a post card lying down. I picked it up to check the name of the sender. It was plane. Even the name of the recipient was missing. I had never received any letter in my life before (except those ridiculous love letters I often found over my table in school or those in my bag that my mother discovered;)). I took it back to sit by the window again. It’s a bad habit to open a letter not addressed to you but it’s a curious mind that compels you to open a letter not addressed to anyone. And I listened to it. I tore the envelope and took the letter out. It went like this:-

Hey,
You are missed in the south. It’s numb enough to start this letter like this. But it is worth telling you. I am the most vulnerable of all. I miss you everywhere. But now that I am about to depart too, I think this is the perfect time to tell you things that I never told you before. You are a wonderful person to have in one’s life. I remember how you would sit and listen to every story that I had to recite even if it’s for the 20th time. You would listen to all my experiences with similar excitement as if you were listening them for the first time. I want to tell you something. I always pretended to forget that I already told you a story. I would deliberately repeat them again and again. And you know why? Because I had so little to tell you about my life. I had to go back to all the years and find that I had so less a number of things to tell you that could impress you or make you laugh. I always wished if I had lived a more exciting life or if I had taken more risks in my little life just to be able to recollect them and tell you. But I failed at it.

Remember when I told you I had everything that anyone would ever wish for. A big house, servants who work for me all day and night, all the luxury and comfort. And you smiled and said “now you even have me”. Now that you are gone and even when I have everything else left here, I feel like I have nothing left with me. Remember the story about the horse I told you a day before when you were about to leave? I made it up. It took me the whole night to make it sound real. I chose horses to make it interesting for you because you always said you love them. I even told you I could buy one for you and you could learn riding it in the garden. And you laughed at it. That was my final attempt to make you stay.

I was wrong to feel that when you earn and settle you have your life sorted. I was even wrong when I thought I had everything. When my wife died, I had nothing left with me. My children were away with their own families. I wanted to be at the centre of their lives but I was just a periphery that surrounded them and kept them safe until they were grown to be gone. I remember how you once said, human relationships make you vulnerable. You stop looking above them and you miss out on the vast beautiful world. I wish I was young enough to start it all over again. If I could I would live it right this time. 
I write to you to ask you a favor. Please promise to yourself that you wont give in to the world. You would always live above things that hold you back. Don’t settle for anything that you dont think is right for you. I know you would visit the world and find the light of wisdom. But even if you fail at it, do not live a slave’s life, hustling back and forth, working for something you don’t believe in. Live the most exciting life that you can. Make stories that would help you smile in the final years of your life. Make sure that people love you when you are old for what you were when you were young and also for what those days made you then. A woman of stories, a woman of energy and humor, a woman who travelled and made friends and knew places. Make sure you don’t run out of stories to recite to people or you don’t have to repeat them.

You are the last person in the world I am talking my heart out with. And I know that you will not be the another me. You will have people when you are old and even if you don’t have any, you would have your passion and your love for the world with you. You would be happy with the sky, would dare with the mountains and you would smile with the rains.

Rain! It’s already here in the south. And by the time this letter reaches you, it will be there too. Get away with it, visit where it gives you the most colorful rainbow and you would find things in order. Do not doubt your dreams and way of life under the greys of worldly storms. You are making stories and you are making history.

Love
Your Uncle Pablo

I had to fight an urge of weeping. It was tough for me to stop myself from breaking into tears. And then I cried, aloud to detoxicate the thoughts that I collected from whither and whence, I wiped them away and smiled. I looked outside the window. The sky had turned black. There was a chill in the air and geosmine all around. I looked at the flower pot in which I had grounded a seed a few days before. The tiny green sapling was out. The rains were here, finally!

All that was green is gone

I remember playing under a tree,

with little yellow fruits,

that my mother said were bitter.

I remember my father

collecting the leaves that fell,

he burnt them to fly mosquitoes away.

I remember my grandfather

chewing the green leaves,

as punishment for eating lot of sweets.

I remember we cooked under that tree,

And ate there in winter afternoons,

We were happier there than under the roof.

I remember we parked our new car under that tree,

And one day I found those little yellow fruits

were crushed by the wheels.

I remember leaving home to study abroad,

Saw my mother standing under that tree,

Waving at me with tears in her eyes.

I remember when I returned home one day,

and saw a tall building standing

in the place of that tree.

I remember the credit cards in my bag,

Weigh lesser than those little yellow fruits

in my pocket.

I remember how my grandfather

Stayed happy chewing those bitter leaves,

And he died eating dozens of pills one day.

I remember the food in best restaurants

was tasteless, before the one

we cooked under that tree.

I remember I looked around,

Hoping I would find other trees,

But there were none.

I remember I got inside my home,

With a lump in my throat,

And my mother said, ‘nothing has changed’.

I remember that evening as I walked to the tall building,

I saw a kid digging a hole in the ground,

There were some dried Neem seeds and a watering can placed beside him.

 

-In fond memory of a neem tree

A stab so deep..!

A series of events after Dadri has gone way too far to comprehend, where is our country heading to?

I personally have rage in mind, reading such news every day and thinking if someday, being so sensitive, I speak something, that people around don’t agree with, I would be killed or taken to the police, who will, rather than protecting my rights, will accuse me.

My heart pounds when I remember those beautiful lines of Gurudev-
“Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high…”

Let’s not talk about the beef-ban thing. If eating it means to be killed, one can eat grass for survival. But lets get straight to the point of what are our rights as free men?

I visited The North East festival yesterday (‪#‎Love_NorthEast‬), I saw how people enjoy being what they are. The seven sister states, actually are a habitat of the sibling-like residents. They booze around, dance, sing, read, and live. I enjoyed being there, as there was none to question my or their freedom.

A debate last week, with few North Eastern students involved, put forward a question, why is it not with this part of the country, that people never encounter rapes, harassment or assaults?

I cannot trace the root of this happening, but I have a better explanation to this. Ever seen a North Eastern boy staring at a girl wearing shorts? smile emoticon
I don’t know how it occurred to me to observe this trend, but I did and found out, that people there, are much more open to adaptations than us.

Observations are just ‘yet to be proven’ data. But, the fact is here.

We have become adament enough to boast around the supremacy of our so called culture. We are people who so nicely embraced westernisation in the contexts of international brands and products. We are people who carry iPhones and stare like hungry dogs at girls. People who are so carried away with continuing the traditions of Pardah that we punish girls who come out without a veil. We, as a society, have filters to adaptation, that filter out things that question the supremacy of Man.

And this sense of supremacy has come way too far, that we now feel free to kill those who do not act the way we wish. We have become beasts who kill and humiliate. And for no surprise, these beasts exist in the well educated civilians as well.

So what do we have on the table?
A rape every hour?
A murder in the name of religion?
A foreigner being humiliated, who visits India, with a tattoo of Indian Goddess?
A virulent “freedom of expression”?

Let’s not give it to the future, let’s try to eliminate the root cause. And what is it?
It’s one single thing, we need to have in mind..

“Let all be free”

If only, men close their eyes to girls, wearing anything they like, If only people who close their eyes to the menu on the table, if only we keep our opinions and let others keep it to make a diversified melange of art, if only we welcome people with their weird hairstyles, attire or tattoo…
If only, this happens, we will make a beautiful world.

Let people eat, wear, drink, visit, and speak. This life is too short to fuss about what others are doing. Let lovers marry and stay happy, let your agreement add charm to people’s life, let your one single smile to people from some other part of the world make their trip worth, for it takes nothing to be good, to let others live free…

The pilgrimage by an environmental ‘HERO’..!!

Among the greatest pilgrimages is going to be this strange pilgrimage by Dr. Vandana Shiva, entitled by Ford as An Environmental Hero, one of the strongest women in Asia.
Travelling in burgundy sari and a shawl she is speaking words that can make people aware about conserving the traditional agriculture practices around the globe. She stood in front of the mob in several countries and spoke:

” The global food supply is indeed in danger. Feeding the expanding population without further harming the Earth presents one of the greatest challenges of our time, perhaps of all time. By the end of the century, the world may well have to accommodate ten billion inhabitants—roughly the equivalent of adding two new Indias. Sustaining that many people will require farmers to grow more food in the next seventy-five years than has been produced in all of human history. For most of the past ten thousand years, feeding more people simply meant farming more land. That option no longer exists; nearly every arable patch of ground has been cultivated, and irrigation for agriculture already consumes seventy per cent of the Earth’s freshwater.”

Environmentalists, Agriculturists, bio-technologists,

And everyone who is logical and is concerned about earth, do follow up the news..

Dreams..!!

Something of the great human imagination is a very familiar yet mysterious term- DREAM..!!
*A home on a hill top with bookshelves all around= dream.
*A cacophony of claps and my name being called out for the noble prize= dream.
*Watching my dad in his study without a single worry to earn and sustain=dream.
*To be able to practice magic successfully and see people believe it as I do=dream.
*To walk into church with pride equivalent to a White Catholic=dream.
*To see my son grow into an oxford scholar=dream.
*To breathe last of my life’s moments at the shrine of Mecca= dream.
*To be called a ‘Shaheed Captain’ after fighting and winning a war=dream.
……..and there are thousands of them…….
I have heared people speaking it to me when I say I love collecting dreams
I suggest, have a diary, write nothing, but at the end of each day when you feel you are made to do something, write it down..
“Dreams are like sins. We fear to admit them. But after all dreams are sins you are destined to commit.”
No matter how stupid, small or humorous it is. No matter you will ever in the world be able to fulfill it. No matter how far you need to go to find it. I say dream and dream and dream..! And on the way to your dream you will find people, things, words and omens that will guide you along. Because when you are seeking something, that thing seeks you too. From the Alchemist by Paulo Coelho “Dream and follow your dreams. For they are the only reason for your existence in this universe”.
And when you dream you are ultimately fulfilling the purpose of your existance. And here i say dream a dream that no one else is dreaming. Because its not in every one to find a spark in a stone, to mix the aroma of two flowers, to land upon moon, to find Tutankhamen’s tomb or to describe the origin of universe in a particle…
May all your dreams come true..!

Amen..!!

Amen..!

And when you lose your way..!!

And you always know where to go
And you always know where to go.

“You are my north. You are my home. I always want to come back to you..”

Each one of us has experienced the loss of our loved ones. In times as hard as this, we totally fail to comprehend the happenings, its just that glimpse of time, that flash of an accident that makes our life hollow. And this is when we learn to stand. But also do we realise what people around mean to us.

Think of a person you accompany most of your outings. A person you rely on for your petty decisions. And now imagine a single day without that one person.

I tell you a story. A girl and a boy used to talk on phone. For year or more they were best of friends. Realising that they Aur meant to be in love. Never met before, the boy plans to visit the girl. Talks about her at home, buys a ring, and confirms the tickets. A day before his visit, he meets with an accident. Crashed into a loaded truck and dies. People said he was in a hurry. Yes he of course was. I see the girl still asking people that did he call? Did you see him? Talking to the moon and complaining about the boy.

And this is what life becomes. we call on a number which is never gonna be picked up again, we take their name hoping they would know. We even visit places we visited together and wait for hours for them to come. It is just like never accepting what we lost. I don’t know what consequences are, but I know about the releaf in that relegating hope.

I too have some things to say to the one I lost, hoping this may reach him like a message in a bottle.

Whenever in life, i miss you, I speak to myself that you were the one I was born to love for the whole of my life. The only thing that I can give you in return is gratitude. But you must know that I always visit to see that lake, to watch the birds fly over it, I close my eyes, and wait for you to pull my hand towards you, but you didn’t. You don’t even speak of how you cracked the nuts even with your half fallen teeth. You never speak of how I can love daddy more than my mum does. I always wait for you to tell me stories of how you trained your horse. Grandpa, I once went to that lake and lost my bracelet that you gave me. I searched it everywhere. And I returned weeping. The next day when I went there, it was kept on the bench exactly where you used to sit. Is this another game of hide and seek? If it is I loose. Please appear before me again.

But I know you won’t. This time also like all the other times you won’t let me win by seeking you so easily. I know you want me to be strong. And I am being one. But you must know, “you are my north, you are my home. And one day i will come back to you..”