Re-Energizing The Self

November 3, 2010 at 9:15 AMNov (Cinema, Friends, Literature, Media, Music, Musings, Poetry, Slice Of Life)

I felt exhausted but i was restless and feeling uneasy. I took a political book and being unable to read more than two lines pushed it back to its place in the book shelf. Then i took out a philosophical book and did the same. I switched on the t.v, which is the opium of the masses in the modern world. Taking a tour through 90 channels twice, i switched off the t.v. I called a friend of mine and spoke for a few minutes. No, i wasn’t feeling any better. I came back to my room, pulled out Macbeth and read those beautiful and favorite lines of mine:

Tomorrow And Tomorrow And Tomorrow
To The Last Syllable Of Recorded Time
And All Our Yesterdays Have Lighted Fools
The Way To Dusty Death. Out Out Brief Candle!
Life’s But A Walking Shadow, A Poor Player
That Struts And Frets His Hour Upon The Stage
And Then Is Heard No More: Its A Tale
Told By An Idiot, Full Of Sound And Fury,
Signifying Nothing.

Ah! What a thrilling experience it was reading those lines! And I could feel my heart, my mind and my soul flower again. I not only felt fresh and at peace but also felt re-energized.

Resting myself on the bed and my head on the pillow, i started reflecting over the lines of Shakespeare and from the silence that followed, the story recently narrated by Ananthamurthy Sir came back to me.

In the discotheques in China, told Ananthamurthy Sir, they sing songs in praise of China and similar ones early in the evening but as the world goes to sleep and as the discotheque is becoming empty the singers there start singing old Tibetian songs and as they sing, their eyes water and throat goes parched. Even the listeners, who wait for the late night Tibetian songs (who spend time until then, consuming alcohol) melt into tears as the birds of melody fly into their hearts through their ears.

Previous night Sony t.v played the film Aaja Nachle which has the story of a girl’s fight to save a theater from being converted into a shopping mall. The protagonist in the film fights for the theater because of personal attachment but we the people have to fight for theaters (here i see theater as a metaphor) in this ear of shopping mall (this again i see as a metaphor) not just because for cultural reasons but also because it re-energizes us in the world of shopping malls.

Rabindranath Tagore in his essay ‘What is Art?‘ dissects human being into three layers in the beginning of the essay. Tagore says that there is a physical person and the person of the mind and then speaks of a personal person who’s hunger and thirst is beyond the physical and intellectual needs, that is the hunger and thirst for art.

Karl Marx calls religion as an opium of the masses. My senior friend Rahmat Tarikere says “Popular cinema is the opium of the masses”. Any kind of opium will give ventilation after the day’s struggle. It acts as a stress buster for the physical person and the person of the mind but doesn’t re-energize the personal person cutting through the physical person and person of the mind. Probably that’s why people in the discotheques of China wait for the Tibetian songs, feeling the need for something more than just opium, in the era of shopping malls.

30 October 2008

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