Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Karn of MahaBharatha

From my childhood  , I have always known and talked about the story of Ramayana. But somehow Mahabharatha was not quite clear. I mean , as a child I probably couldn't exactly understood the numerous plots and enmity etc etc portrayed in Mahabharatha and too many characters you know !! Very difficult to remember.

But when Star Plus was showcasing Mahabharatha and then eventually the story of Karn , I and Ravi thought it is a good idea to watch. Well , at least I don't need to read the whole  fat book :). We starting watching and it was quite interesting. You know , its like , in Ramayana you see the positive side of relationships , so you feel like having siblings and a close knit family. But in Mahabharatha , you see the exact opposite. Such hatred between cousins and siblings and countless plotting against each other. God , it can be exhausting but it is more close to today's reality.

I was particularly fascinated with the story of Karn. If you know me , I have extreme sympathy towards people who are in need and there you go , Kunti leaving Karn in the river was enough for my focus to drift to Karn. Such a sad start and an unfortunte thing to happen , no ? So much of talent !! In my eyes, Karn is greater than even "Dharma Raju" for all that he endured and had to face. Talent wise as well , Karn was higher and stronger. He also believed in "Dharma" and especially equality because he hates the way he and his foster family get differentiated from his childhood. Talent doesn't matter , it is the caste that you are born that matters. If you are not born in the right caste , so many opportunities are denied and you are already judged no matter what you have to portray. I was very surprised to see Bheeshma Pitamaha and Dronacharya being so biased. Of course these are just my observations. The fact was that he was always an odd man out and always a victim of these inequalities. So , the urge to fight back was immense and it makes him look like a "Rebel". I feel that there is no other person who was as talented and as kind-hearted as Karn but because he questions everything bad that happens in his community , he is termed a rebel. Keeping mum when things are not going according to the plan can be easy but fighting back is so difficult. It takes away our lifetime to swim backwards to the current of the river.

I always wondered why Karn had to die at the end. Lord Krishna helps Arjuna and saves him from Karn so many times. Why ? The only answer that he gives Karn before Karn dies is that he was on the wrong side. He had been a very loyal friend to Duryodhana , to the extent that he could not see atrocities of Duryodhana and was blinded by his pure friendship towards him. But I still feel that it is injustice towards Karn and he did not deserve this bias or what he endured in his life. Kunti knowing that he is his eldest son doesn't budge and express her love towards him. He never ever gets pampered. he always had to fight the whole of his life and in return gets nothing. Just because he was on the wrong side , he had to answer for his Karma. This was so depressing to watch.

I feel so much for only this particular character probably because I strike a chord with him. Some people have to keep fighting always even to get the minutest of things in life and for some people , everything falls into their lap as a blessing. Why is it like this ? Its like , in this world , fighting for the right thing is always wrong. People just don't appreciate it. Sigh!!

Ganesh Chaturthi 2016

This time , we welcomed a family of Ganesha's to our home as per Mahati's request :). Fortunate enough to have continued this tradition of making eco-friendly Ganeshas from the last 4 years.  There is something so therapeutic in creating things with your own hands. It can get you to such a high that even alcohol cannot. Excuse me , I don't even know what it is to get high on alcohol , it was just a casual comparison okay ? First I made one and left it for drying. And then from inside of her cupboard Mahati brought out a small Ganesh which I made last year in one of her pottery classes , which she painted after it was baked. And this was our baby Ganesha. So now , she had a Daddy Ganesha and a Baby Ganesha and only the mommy was missing. So she persuaded me to make the mommy. So , I,  like an obedient child listened to her and made exactly a mommy , keeping in mind not to be make it bigger than the daddy and slightly bigger than the baby.

When we look at it now , it was such a novel concept. Welcoming a family of Ganeshas :). I am amazed at the way children can think and create things. If not for her , I would have never understood that a family of Ganeshas should contain only Ganeshas , because from our childhood we are conditioned that Shiva and Parvati are the family of Ganesha :). Well said , no :).

This day is also special for another reason. Mahati started going to school on the very same day 3 years back :). So grown up , she has become. Only one thing , she just doesn't stop talking ;-).

So , here goes the pics this year.

Friday, September 2, 2016

Meaning of God !

I have always had this agnostic relationship with Idol Worship. Since we are brought up traditionally and culturally , it becomes a habit to sit in front of that idol god or gods or goddesses and pray , but otherwise God has always remained an unknown super natural power in my mind. For me , the super natural external power that controls us is GOD. I don't know if he is inside us or everywhere , but for me, whatever that we cannot do or control even if we want to, resembles GOD. You know , the power that controls a ball to only move downwards when thrown up  , people who understand Science might say , it is gravitational energy. Well for me ,that gravitational force is GOD. Why do things happen only in a certain way even though we want it to happen otherwise. That is GOD.

There have been many instances in my life where I wanted something , but I got something else and eventually I realized that the latter was better and how foolish was I to have wished for the former. Yes , this has happened and a lot. And the only way to explain this is the external force/power that governs us.

For me , the "Pancha Bhootalu" or the 5 elements of nature ( the wind , fire , water, sky and earth ) is GOD. We went to the beach in Durban for Easter and had a very nice time playing in the water. The whole time that I was in  the water , I couldn't help but be very aware of the force of the ocean and the power of the waves. How can anybody challenge this force. WE as human beings are nothing in front of this force. Its a very similar analogy to when someone gets caught in fire or in a tornado. WE have no control over these forces that govern the earth right. As Human beings , the only thing that we can see and touch is this earth and probably the only thing we can see is the Sun and Moon. Do we have control over them ? No. Then how can anybody not believe in GOD ? Did we come on to this earth just like that ? If you have actually seen a mother give birth , I am sure you will agree that it is no less than a miracle. A baby who has lived in the water for 9 months suddenly comes out and starts breathing air.  This for me is GOD.

Its okay to give this force or power a form and workshop it in the form of a Shiva or a Allah or a Jesus. But again , blind faith and extremely conservative behavior is something that I don't strike a chord with. I will get this only if I break 100 coconuts in front of Shiva , I will attain salvation only I go to Mecca. I don't believe in these kind of things.

For me , GOD is the everyday air that I breath , the everyday energy that we can never control.
When you leave something out in the universe , it comes back to you. I believe in this. I believe in surrendering to this power and nothing else.