22 Oct 2008

Maslow must be wrong

I was so hungry as I stopped working and went to get some food.  Before even I could reach the cafe, I started missing you.  And I couldn't eat anymore.

Maslow must be wrong! :)

21 Oct 2008

Love, sacrifice, and purpose

I read this Tamil novel பின்தொடரும் நிழலின் குரல் (literally translates to Voice of the dogging shadow) sometime back.  One of the best novels I have ever read.  One thing that I took from the novel is the idea that we do things just for the sake doing them -- nothing has to be expected as a result.

The novel is based on a historical incident in which thousands of people were killed and millions were locked up in jails and tortured.  All these people had a dream.  They all worked and sacrificed everything they had for a noble cause.  Much later, after so many people had died, people realised that their leaders were purely selfish and cunning.  The leaders were only interested in gratifying their ego and getting unlimited power.

After explaining the incident and facts, the novel explores the mental state and feelings of people who suffered because of their sacrifices.  Reading the novel was a tremendous experience which I won't try to explain here.  But my most important learning was that we sacrifice only because we want to sacrifice.  There is no point in looking for a purpose or meaning.  One chapter of the novel explains how these people realise the fact that there is no meaning or purpose for their sacrifice in the external world.  A sacrifice, like many other things in the world, is complete in itself; it doesn't need to get its purpose from the external world.

Sapnay is one of my all-time favourite movies.  When I saw it for the first time, I was a school kid and I didn't understand the movie much.  After a few years, I happened to see it again and fell in love with the movie.  I am very much amused by Kajol's love and Arvind Swamy's love.  Kajol falls in love with Prabhu Deva who is completely incompatible with her values and views about life.  This is an odd truth that has been disturbing me all my life.  How can it be so illogical, I never understand.

Arvind Swamy's love is something I can personally empathize with.  His love was never understood by anyone.  His parents, his friends, the girl herself.  Not a single person understood what Arvind Swamy meant by the word "love".  Then what did he love for?  His love just stayed with him like an unsaid dream -- fuzzy inside his own mind and inexplicable to anyone else.  I wonder how heavy his heart felt with his unrequited love.  Was he ever able to drop it all and live peacefully?  So many questions arise inside me.

After reading this novel, whenever I think about unrequited love and all its pain, my mind comes up with a readymade answer: purpose of love is loving itself.  We don't love to get someone.  This idea seems logical and my brain accepts it; but the mind is purely illogical and it never accepts it.  Maybe it will, sometime in the future.

17 Oct 2008

Forget your perfect offering

Osho says that perfection is death. Anything that is perfect cannot improve any more (because it's already perfect and there is no room for improvement) and it is as good as being dead. Leonard Cohen writes in his song Anthem:
Ring the bells that still can ring. Forget your perfect offering. There's a crack, a crack in everything. That's how light gets in.
We hear people saying things. We understand the meaning. But there are moments when we see the meaning with your own eyes. I always get such revelation in the mornings -- as soon as I wake up. Today morning I kinda found out something about perfectionism. Yesterday was one of those painful mornings for me. While I was riding to work, I was thinking of so many different things; but they were all centered around one thing -- perfection I wanted to attain. I have always wanted to do and have The Best things in the world. When I used to play cricket, I wanted to be a great bowler whose typical one-day score would look like 10-3-19-4. When I learned to write programs, I wanted to become one of the best programmers about whom kids learn in their "history of computers" lesson. When I was in love, I thought my girl was the best of the bests in the world and that I would once become another Majnun. Yesterday, as I was riding, I thought about the things I have been doing recently. I am not doing my best at work. I myself don't know if my love for that girl was real. I don't know if I ever was/still remain a good friend. At one point I somehow convinced myself that I was just another piece of crap lying on Earth. And it was painful to think that way. Later in the day, work and friends [oh, I have some awesome friends here] made me forget all my idealistic worries and the day was productive. Now, when I think about it, this shirt I bought a year or so ago comes to my mind. I think the shirt kinda reflects who I am -- wannabe perfect, but understands and accepts to fail with a smile.