The fear behind…


“It’s not what we don’t know that gets us in trouble; it’s what we know for sure that’s just not true.” –Mark Twain

Voldemort was a great wizard. He did terrible things but great, like Ollivanders once said. Then why hunt down a mere baby? Why give him so much importance? His fear of death.

Many epics, tales and history is based on this tyrannical beast – FEAR. Trace Hitler’s motives, Aurangazeb’s actions. Behind the greatest war in the history of mankind of which the longest poem was written – the Mahabharata, lies the fear of a coward who unfortunately also wanted a lot of attention – Duryodhana.

Scratch that surface of power, greed and tyranny and you’ll find the actual mastermind behind these terrible actions – fear.a

Fear is a terrible catalyst. Mixed with great ability and a dash of greed it has created history in the form of war and rampage. But fear is not the property of the powerful alone. It permeates everywhere.

In the minds of mediocrity it creates the basis for many lives – excuses. Look carefully. Behind the veil of anger and busy talk and the ‘I don’t care’ lies a deep seated fear. Fear of failure, fear of responsibility, fear of uncertainty, fear of change, fear of making mistakes and even fear of success itself.

Fear is a creation of the ego. If you examine any one of your fears, you will see that it refers to a future possibility, not a current reality. Fear is almost always tied to a negative idea about something in the future that has not happened and probably will not happen. It is the emotion that is generated by thinking about some dreaded possibility in the future.

Fear traps and locks us away within our comfort zone. Yet fear often develops as a result of a lack of understanding, information, resources, experience or perspective. If you lack all these things, you will naturally lack confidence, and as a result you will fail to take the action necessary to achieve your goals and objectives. Consequently you will tend to make excuses about your life and circumstances in order to help boost your self-esteem. However, all you’re doing is creating the illusion of security. You’re simply masking the pain by taking a pain killer. The pain is still there, and will continue to persist until you finally overcome your fears.

We must become tone deaf to egos whispers of fear and its unreasonable demands of power, control and safety. Fears have great power when they’re inside your head. They grow and mutate into giant trolls. But by being aware of them, you can bring them outside where they no longer have control over you.

Movies – Healthy escapement or perverted pleasure?

It was one of those evenings last weekend when I was actually free and burning to enjoy a few hours watching a movie. I had even imagined the cheese popcorn and cola slush that I’d order. So there I was dragging my husband along to a multiplex for options. I had to choose between two movies I had no plan of watching. One was a social drama involving girl-trafficking and another was about a tornado.

We decided on the tornado and my popcorn. It was much later after the movie ended that I kept thinking about the choice I had made.

As humans we talk of being good, kind, and yet the movies we watch are horror with murder, rape, vampires and even dystopian sleaze both from this planet and the outer galaxy. More importantly, my nagging discontent on my choice of movie was, why I chose to watch one form of death to the other. What makes us watch horror, adventure and sci fi?

Maybe we feel sitting in that cozy seat we are safe from the happenings of the story. We seek the thrill like a roller coaster ride because we are confident that the seatbelt is safe and the ride will end shortly with the hero whom our subconscious mind has identified with, wins ultimately.

So I wonder, are movies a healthy escapement from stress? Is it our own perverted way of unleashing the badass in us? Seeking a thrill that in real life is frightening but in a theatre is safe?

And still my original question of why a killing by tornado was preferable to killing by man? Maybe because to me tornado is a fantasy, living in a place where it’s occurrence is unheard of. On the other hand the evils of human trafficking are real and the fear may lurk long after the movie ends.  In a movie where the tornado is the villain, the human race becomes the hero and we feel good about ourselves, but in a social drama the villains are part of our society and it becomes difficult to accept the hard truth of our species in graphic detail. So maybe it was escapement after all.


The rocks and the birds

A long weekend deserved a long drive. Not that I love sitting in a car for hours listening to kids fight on top of the blaring music, but it was still a step better than spending it in my concrete cracker box.

We decided to travel all the way to the tip of the country (that’s not really far away) and I sat there dreaming of new characters that I could create for my story. We sped through some really wonderful desert sceneries.

It was an exhilarating place. Tall, harsh, rocky mountains looming huge on one side while the other wound to a slope ending in a glistening greenish blue lake. It was a peculiar scenery, devoid of any kind of flora, at the same time complete in its own beauty.

It was like the tall proud rocks proclaim they did not need the ornamentation of greens and flowers to complete them.

As an expat, I was at once proud to witness their beauty and jealous of their permanence. I have always wondered how would it be to live in a city long enough to grow roots and become a part of it like the tall buildings, the lakes and those proud mountains. But I have always been a part of the floating crowd.

A flock of birds, small, white and totally captivating (so much that my son stopped his fight to look at them) sat near the water. These migratory birds seemed totally at ease, pecking at the sand, dirt or whatever it was that they found so absorbing in that ground. They had made their peace in their temporary arrangement.

Passing between the rocky hills and those peaceful birds, I still had a long way to go! 

Therapy or Torture?

Blogdosts…. Now I kinda like that name. Its like we are a secret team, conspiring to create the next best whatever. Today was a shopping weekend. Needed to buy a lot of unrelated, unrequired things. Of course you may ask why buy the not required? But that’s my next hobby. Buy first and through out the week try to find some use for that impulse purchase. (Read, hubby giving very dirty looks every time confessions of unnecessary purchase surfaces).

So this time I went to the kitchen items aisle and picked up a box of 25 containers. My excuse? It was on a sale. Now I am home, I don’t need 25 extra containers, the ones that I now have are already conspiring against the new arrivals by not giving an inch of a space on the shelves. Poor boxes are still in their packaging. To top it my husband is already expecting some exotic new dish to magically arrive in those containers. How the men link every purchase to a cinematic fantasy is beyond me.

OK its not called shopping nowadays. It’s rechristened Retail Therapy. A cure for my inner conflict of having a pretty constant life and the only change that happens is my occasional change in lipstick color. And don’t I just hate that? Living the NRI life, my weekends also have this call your relatives routine.

And I hate the so-what’s-happening-in-your-life question every time it is asked, sometimes a few hundred times every call. I have tried Hmm nothing much, you tell me, even the sarcastic Oh I’m a boring sort of person routine but the question has become a kind of opening statement. So I am waiting for the fantasy and inspirational anecdotes that I can conjure up.

How does seeing a mysterious looking stone in each of the 25 containers sound?

Rats on the bus

They seemed normal people. Early morning tension creating furrows between their eyes as sweat trickled   slowly down their backs. Mobiles, handbags, tie gave them ample room to fidget in impatience. Our bus approached and promptly stopped a couple of yards away from the stop. People rushed in.

The commotion began then. I could see their faces elongating, eyes darting, feet scurrying as they suddenly took on rodent like forms.

“Rats!” someone screamed.

A slim girl with too much lipstick that seemed to be melting and oozing in the heat looked up and said “do you know they are infectious?”

I made a startling discovery today. Our deeply etched genetic memory through the evolution process especially the ones got from our rodent ancestors gets triggered the minute we enter any public transport. Suddenly we mark our territory, call our friends and give hostile looks to the others.

The rats continued to scurry, occupy seats and wait for their fellow rats to follow. The bus stopped. I stepped gingerly among the rodents and got down. A few fine hairs got stuck on my bag.