Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Scratching an Old Wound

Death, they say is a great leveler and it is also the final and ultimate step through which all beings have to pass, which is a proof of the impermanence nature of life.  But, however natural occurrence death is, no one looks forward to it and everyone mourns the demise of a beloved one.

Night Hunting – The Other Side of the Story

The practice of Night Hunting has been popularised, or rather disreputed by many articles and reporting in the media.  They made the practice look dirty, male chauvinistic in nature, and et al, except good.  And I tell you, nothing is farther from the truth.  I may be wrong but I have my side of the story to tell.
This practice has been there generations before and was a socially accepted thing.  It was the accepted courtship ritual in the villages and they still are in many parts of the country, still untouched and unpolluted by the so called modernisation and westernisation.  It got a bad name, when the villainous outsiders, usually the visiting government officials, took advantage of the innocent damsels, sired children and left them to their own fates.  Many fatherless progeny were left behind this way.  Thus, this practice came to be labeled a notorious practice.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Difference in Perception

On his recent visit to my place, my dad was shocked to find, or rather not find a phallus outside my house.  He insisted that I should display one, either outside the house or hanging from the door top.  He had an explanation for why my wife was always sick; that evil eyes are on us since we didn’t have a phallus to guard against them.
            To please him, I asked a friend to make one for me.  The artistic, nasty practical joker that he is, he made one that looked obscene, pornographic and indecent.  It did not resemble the ones back home, which were a simple one, in fact a symbolic one.  The one he made had all parts, including the throbbing veins and nothing was left to the imagination.  I must admit that he did quite a good job.  Had this been for some other purpose, other than hanging above my door, he did really deserve applause.  Since I did not have any choice I hung it from the door top.  That silenced my dad.
            A few days later my children’s friends came to our house.  They are all below ten kids.  They did not seem to be bothered by the new “item of decoration” on my door.  Curiously I asked them what it was.  Without blinking an eyelid, they replied, “Uncle, chu tang ni gi eembay”, meaning that it is an object to urinate with.  They knew it by its basic functional utility and beyond that it’s just another piece of anatomy.  Ah, the innocence at its peak!
            But it’s a different story with the adults; visiting friends of mine and my wife’s.  They grin, giggle, pass comments, some even pass sexist remarks.  I heard one friend of mine saying, “the one eyed monster taking its post!”  My wife thinks that it is disgusting and wants to throw it away.
            I was looking at a picture of a gold chain and a locket, strung around the neck of a lady.  The photographer has intentionally shown the cleavage of the model wearing a sports bra.  The face was left out.  I must confess that more than the gold chain and the locket, my attention was drawn by the cleavage of the lady.  I showed the same to my friends and even they saw the cleavage first.
            I showed this same picture to my three years old son and instantly he replied, “Sung koed (sacred thread strung around the neck) eembay.”  He took the chain and the locket to be a ‘sung koed’.  He did not notice the cleavage, which we adults did before anything.
            The difference in perception is glaring.  Children see things as they are; in their pure unadulterated form.  We, the adults, see things in a different light, beyond its basic meaning. Ours is a bit prejudiced by our “adult” minds.

Monday, August 13, 2012

If only: Reflections on Life and Living

I am sitting under an old gulmohar tree (delonix regia), that resembles a large green umbrella, that is a part of the boundary fencing between where I live and my neighbour’s house.  The tiny leaves on the stems are neatly arranged like the plumage of a bird giving it a very gentle and peaceful look.  The mild breeze on them creates a movement like ripples in a pond that has been disturbed by a falling pebble.  I wonder how many tired souls this particular tree must have helped rejuvenate under its cool shades.  If only it could talk…