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When I get time, I read or listen to music. If any is left, I blog!

Thursday, 16 July 2015

First Love At Second Sight

In a satirical play by George Bernard Shaw, one character tells another: "First love is only a little foolishness and a lot of curiosity." Not many might agree, at least not until a break-up. What happens later, is the theme of a short story I read ages ago. Be warned that I remember neither its title nor author, only the ending.   

In a village in France in early 1900, a boy falls in love with a girl. They walk hand in hand, whispering sweet nothings and discovering each other.  Alas, good things seldom last long. Overnight, the girl's family migrates to a distant city.  Though the lovers struggle to stay in touch, the snail mail of those days lets them down. 

Years pass.  One day unexpectedly, the boy, now a middle-aged man reaches the city.  As he waits to cross the street, a car slows to a halt just ahead and a woman alights.  Her face leaves him transfixed. Fond memories of the time they shared come flooding in.  He craves to call out to her, but by then she enters a shop.  After moments of hesitation, a plan forms in his mind.

From the florist outside the shop, he buys some red roses, walks over to her car, and quietly leaves them on the rear seat.  He then steps behind a nearby lamp post to watch her response.  Minutes later, she comes out. The first thing she does on boarding the car, is to make space for her purchases.  And without even a glance, she flings the flowers out. Soon a bus runs over them.

Crestfallen at seeing the symbol of love crushed beyond recognition, he stands unaware of what Benjamin Disraeli said:

"The magic of first love is our ignorance that it can ever end."
Benjamin Disraeli

Sunday, 29 March 2015

Oh My God!

That god is omnipresent is widely believed.  No one has seen or heard him; yet in god we trust.  Even those who don't, grudgingly though, dub him the super power that controls the universe. 

Over 200 years ago, Voltaire said: ''If God does not exist, invent him''. That was the time when sages in India were on relentless search of god. They sacrificed every single need and comfort, and pursued him with devotion.  

The irony of that selflessness is, the god who no one could realise then, is now available 'on demand'!  Thanks to self-styled godmen.  Equating god's presence with 'fragrance in flowers, oil in sesame, ghee in milk, or jaggery in sugarcane', they say though not visible, he certainly exists.  In the name of that latent divinity, they offer to liberate us from failures, poverty, and terminal illnesses.  For every god-given problem, they claim to have solutions using deft and devious blends of Magic, Astrology, Yoga, and Ayurveda.  Their concocted tales of miracles make us believe that solace and succour are easy and instant.  We prostrate before them as if they are incarnations of god, failing to notice the ungodly activities some of them pursue.

Why do we do this?  Are we superstitious, obsessed, or gullible?  What has happened to our god-given common sense and confidence?  Where has our innate ability to see, think and analyse vanished?  Wasn't Harry Emerson Fosdick addressing this state of mind when he said

'God is not a cosmic bellboy for whom we can press a button to get things done..' 
                                                                                                                                                               - Harry Emerson Fosdick