as and when the time comes to work on yourself; cling to that opportunity. it is important we evolve. important we change our ways & become better. i have quite a few lessons from my past that have taught me; i have had an amalgamation of relationships; all different from each other. i have been pleasantly surprised, other times i have been utterly disappointed. you never know why something happens. i have been the talk of town and a crowd of one. i have been boastful and i have been humbled. in all of these extremes, i have realised that there is a theory of balance that is always at play. if you love too deeply, something will happen that will detach you for your own good. if you are feeling weak, something will happen that will become your strength.
in this whole process, the balance will prevail. within this, is the challenge of working on yourself and bettering yourself. many don’t. for even if they do (or don’t), the balance will remain. this mindset has left many a people without growth and without flavor. they keep toiling around, looking for dopamine hits cause they are nothing without them. they will not think; they will just be. and there in lies there death. and deaths of many a beautiful relationships.
i see so many old friends of mine leaving instagram, going ghost; accounts deactivated; or completely deleted. probably because life did not work out the way they thought; or the way they wanted to project it. or they realise the sham that this app is and looked somewhere else for happiness and contentment in the real world; or because of their insecurities, how they look, how they feel, what they write, and the constant pressure of how what they do put out is gauged. probably real life happened and they just did not have time to get to those targets and goals they had set out. happens. happens to the best of us sometimes. it is not a verdict on them or their character. it just is. life is unpredictable. some things are beyond our control. or maybe they are the real ogs’ that don’t need this facade of social media anymore. maybe? i don’t know. i am the same cork in the ocean trying to find direction;
as it says in dover beach:
“And we are here as on a darkling plain
Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight,
Where ignorant armies clash by night.”
i do not know what is the answer or the right balance; all i know is, i feel for those friends of mine, miss them and hope they know they are in my thoughts and doing well.
maybe they will come back someday. having conquered what they wanted, or they would realise the littleness of the public’s gaze and choose to not return. whatever they do, they are in my thoughts and i hope they are doing well.
what is a cult of personality?
“A cult of personality, or a cult of the leader, is the result of an effort which is made to create an idealized and heroic image of a leader by a government, often through unquestioning flattery and praise.”
now, having taken in that definition, think close your eyes and think of a person that fits that description? the blind followers going to the lowest depths to support him; working incessantly for a cause that has no justifiable results, just small dick energy, unemployed, brash toxic masculinity fueled useless assholes having their 2 minutes of fame thinking they are in control while inherently hating the whole order for they know deep down they do not believe what they are saying. this cult of personality has 2 types: one is the young group, that has blindly followed his/her parent’s orders, thinking that that makes them righteous and better than the rest; their opinion are a copy paste of their parents: no thoughts involved, just drowning in theri feelings. the other group is that of 35-55 year old (usually upper caste) male men, that live vicariously through their leader, who feel that the real azadi has been attained now for they can say things openly now, which they used to under the influence of alcohol & drugs: everyone knows what they say: sexist, casteist, vile, communal hate inducing and shameful conversations where they rate breasts and ass and over-drink to make out among themselves for they are closeted and not even “man enough” to own up to that! this loud and brash behavior is a coverup to compensate their weak and fragile souls and life; they use this to feel they belong, that they have a purpose, and the leader exploits this need by making it known that he is there for them; while in reality he is also just a weak and shallow man that has no talents: just a talented pr company.
who do i see when i close my eyes? i see myself, and me clapping for myself to become a better man, a better human being that serves this country, serves humanity and is ready to live and die for his values, for the people he loves. in this world that is a song, he just wants to contribute a catchy verse and perish, and at the time of his death, he wants to be laughing, in love and hopefully a little late.
there is a trend that consumes the thoughts; an exercise of awareness that is to be practiced over and over again, might i add, religiously, for it to work. the practice is to control the mind; it is a catch 22; the philosophical & medical question of what is controlling what? isn’t the consciousness stemming from the mind or is it the other way around? no matter the answer, controlling the mind and the impulses that originate from it is the answer. find it. work towards it.
We have to become what we looked up to. White Collar Gangsters. Physically, mentally and emotionally fit and stimulated. Working hard. Hustling. Always learning new hobbies. Reading. Being curious. removing relationships that are not relevant. getting rid of toxicity. suppressing the urges. being an attached and detached human being: a civilized monk.
what is the point? this loaded 4 worded, innocuous question has made & ruined lives. there are two extreme stands people live out with the answer; one is complete surrender, to be corks floating in the ocean, or sand in the wind, letting whatever happens: this also gets divided into two: one side becomes submissive, goes inwards, becomes depressed; the other starts living with reckless abandonment, stops caring to a point where they start living lavishly, burning out rather than fading away, and yes, in solitude, becoming depressed.
the other category goes on this difficult journey to find themselves: now, this is not something that can actually be put into words; it is a mixture of giving in while being in control, being attached yet detached, being free while being tied to this chain of finding the answer, it is a contradiction while being the simplest explanation, it is a torment & the cure, it is love & hate. it has good days and bad, just like life. hence, the journey itself becomes life. this also becomes intermixed with bouts & periods of the first kind of life, it is not as straightforward a segregation as it seems. life is not a straight answer. movies, paintings, poetry or even these words, will never be enough. we are the canvas. we are the screen. we are the ink. we are the real artists that the artists attempt to emulate. keep at it.
though one rule i absolutely live by is, when in a crowd, on the stage, with family, with a loved one, or within the confines of your solitude in your large bedroom, there is no excuse for being boring. it is a moral obligation of yours, not just to others but more to yourself, to never. be. boring.
because before you know it, all the memories, moments, unsaid words, inhibitions, trials, attempts, rewards, trophies, money, land, sex, laughs, tears, all will be lost, like a needle in the haystack or a lover’s unkept promise. nothing will matter. might as well go through it all while amusing & entertaining yourself for yours’ and others delight.
how far do instincts go? in this world we are our best friends. the subconscious always gets it right. most political and social relationships work on instinct. it is never about the academics and talent. eventually, it is the social bonds and how you come across that matter the most. a persons’ values are the most important asset. i, luckily, feel i have a good knack for it. most of the times, my instincts have led me to the truth. christopher hitchens was once asked what brings him happiness in life and he said,” love, literature, needs and the satisfaction once we fulfill them (casual sex!), along with the knack of being proven right.” i find it extremely uncanny (!) that the same things bring me happiness too. our instincts are a portal into our subconscious which is a gateway to our wants and desires. follow your instincts. the gut feeling is usually true. i usually tend to develop how i will eventually feel about a person within a few meetings, and the person may be the greatest soul on earth, but it is about what you feel and your equation with the person. your perception is not a moral compass or a proof of their righteousness. but it is your life and you cannot live it living someoe else’s life. be you. decide for yourself. even if you have to stand alone for it. your reasons define you. once rationalized, do not hold back on your values. stick to them. if the time comes and they change, be open to change too. but learn to take stands. “changing your mind when presented with new information is a sign of genius”
back to the gut feeling. barrack obama, the then president, went with his and got osama killed. in the greatest tv series of all time, sopranos, tony, the protagonist/antagonist went out on a limp, kept avoiding his inner voice for he did not want to find out if his best friend was a government mole, and once he did, he did find it to be true. most of the times, it boils down to how you feel about something or someone. decisions like marriage, work, job are decided by something as minute as that little voice in your head. use it. meditate. listen to it. do not give into impulses and short circuit your life away. and if the instinct wants you to act on impulse, do it and never regret, for that is what you wanted anyways. you just didn’t know it..
the truth is we are all on a journey. marshall mcluhan , noted canadian philospher predicted the internet by quoting,”the medium is the message”. now, it can be argued that this was a co-incidence. if you throw enough pizzas at the roof, one is bound to stick. when breaking bad was being shot, one of its most iconic scenes is walter white throwing a pizza in angst at the roof of his house; he did that on the first take. but shouldn’t we as human beings that are in constant search of meaning and experiences be mesmerized by the co-incidences, instead of the contrarian approach of disillusionment and just brushing it off as something that can be proven with science. now, i am a true non-believer too, i renounce god, religion and consider the belief & faith of the same as useless and a waste of time. i understand the concept from where disillusionment originates. but beauty and magic don’t need faith and belief. they require eyes and a deep sense of feeling. i feel. i consume. i love. science can explain all of this but sometimes i do not want to know. it is okay to not know. i sometimes do these juvenile card tricks that create a sense of wonderment on people’s faces. i like that look on their face. then, the trick is revealed & the glass shatters. the card trick loses its charm. our lives are a magic trick; the secret is to keep exploring, be fascinated and in wonder of it, instead of finding meaning out of it. disillusionment should not replace curiosity once we get the answers.
people project their deepest and darkest vulnerabilities that they hide when they talk and eat alone with you. it has to be the two of you. three is a crowd. listen. their whole lives, with all memories and moments lived are available on the table that you two are sharing. i am my memories and moments lived too. i read a long time ago that someone that can sit and eat alone in a restaurant is a dangerous person that can achieve anything. maybe to imitate and eventually emulate, i did it quite a few times too. now i prefer eating and living alone. being alone should not be confused with loneliness. the people i trust, love and consider friends and family are still always available. the problem is you eventually make less friends as you grow older because we become fixated on our ticks and personalities that we refuse to change and improve; the ticks and shortcomings eventually come through, and then, the people run away from each other, because “the trick” has been revealed. the people have become disillusioned (or so their insecurities assume). it is a sad reality that people live through every day; distancing themselves to hide themselves. behaving the way they do and rationalizing it as a strength, or a trait that is a weapon, or just their “unique” personality/ego. some fake; they use the mantra of “faking it till they make it.” i hold the latter in higher regards. at least they are trying. the former have given up. they hold the faux belief that they are beyond repair.
i know the past can be shed off. the dark cloud some feel consumes them can go away. it is all about continuing. bhagat singh, the great revolutionary, wrote a letter to sukhdev, while both were incarcerated during the colonial rule, highlighting how suicide is an act of cowardice; the exact anti-thesis of revolution. i believe stagnation is the anti-thesis of growth. whatever life gives you, refuse to accept it; make your own life. fuck the circumstances, fuck the job, fuck the relationships, refuse to give in. whenever i chose to do something, set my mind and soul to it, i achieved it. nothing tastes better than the drink of achievement. hold yourself in a higher regard and keep growing and fighting. learn new traits, hobbies. evolve. refuse to explain yourself. i do this exercise in my head to be off social media from time to time. i don’t do it to see how many people reach out to me or still remember me when i am off it. i do it for growth; i do it for my betterment. to go inside myself, to figure myself out. to find peace. i once remember reading a quote that virat kohli said about how he wants to live like a monk in the civilized society, attached yet detached to it all. no one ever needs anyone. even an orphan survives. do not let “the trick” be revealed. live your life with your eyes open, and be in wonder at the beauty of it. explore, travel, laugh, love. your memories will keep the beauty intact; may that be of skyscrapers, deserts, oceans, mountains or someone’s eyes.