Sunday, April 08, 2012

A Wandering Mind

"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken." - Oscar Wilde

Such a simple quote that sets you free from the shackles of "have to be" and you start floating freely and aimlessly in celebration of this freedom "to be".

Celebration, as usual, lasts only for a few moments that make you happy and cheerful - make you forget the pain that you had to go through number of times to earn this moment of celebration. In this moment, everything is forgotten and everyone is forgiven. Sadly, this moment is also destined to the confines of good, cherishable  memories.

Memories are deceptive. Moments that you really want to forget crop up every now and then and make you cringe. Hastily you try to shrug it off by getting busy in doing something that you did not plan to do. Somehow those painful memories cry out louder to get your attention.

Once it succeeds in getting your attention, it curses you for causing such memories! How thankless these memories can be! You start protesting helplessly and put the blame on circumstances, people, god and those stars and planets where life is not known to exist. Naturally, the memory retreats unconvinced to return later with more questions, like an innocent child.

Children! They have lots of questions. The moment they start talking in their cute broken language, they start asking "what is this?" and "what is that?". You happily tell them the names of those objects which does not really mean anything to them. So, they become curious and try to get closer to those objects to investigate with their curious little minds and hands. You are horrified and scream - "its FIRE…don't touch!". The child turns back, looks at you in bewilderment and starts asking you a series of why questions. Why!? Because its hot! Why? It will burn you! Why?!  Why?!  Why is it this and why is it that?! You run out of answers and more importantly patience and throw up your hands and say - I don't know!

After many years you realize that you shouldn't have uttered that phrase. "I don't know" comes back at you like darts and bullets from every conceivable angles from the child who is now grown up. Who broke that glass? I don't know. Why did you fare so badly in your exams? I don't know. When will you be back from the party? I don't know. And you start banging your head against that "I don't know" wall in exasperation.

Controlling an exasperated mind is a real task. Sometimes it makes you sulk and go silent for days and sometimes it makes you yell at the top of your voice. Whichever way, it causes darkness of unpleasantness all around and envelops you. You become blind to everything. Love, joy and peace become invisible. You start feeling lonely, depressed and you stretch out your hand in darkness and hope for someone to bail you out. You try to shout out in desperation to get help, but your ego strangles you, chokes your voice. You wrestle with your ego for a while and finally give up and slip into a state resembling coma.

This bloodless, fleshless, shapeless ego is quite peculiar. It is always with you, 24x7. Its like a balloon. It grows bigger with every blow of appreciation and acknowledgement. Many times it takes help of wind of malice to rise higher. Its so fragile that a pinprick of criticism can take its wind out. But, it keeps coming back like a bad penny. It claims to be your only savior, but more often than not it is trying to drown you. It keeps you drowned in the cesspool of false glory mixed with unfounded fears.

I sit down and think about being free from the clutches of this fragile ego. In order to be myself, I need to come out of this cesspool and let the harsh realities strike me like rays of afternoon sun, burn every drop of false glory and unfounded fears from every pore of my existence and tear off that deep seated mask of pretense from my being.

In short, I need a break ;-)

Musten Jiruwala


Neera Dhawan said...

Lovely! Yes. You do need a break...

Neera Dhawan said...

Lovely! Yes. You do need a break...

Musten said...

Thank you, Neera :)