Archives for category: States of Mind

The river is ever new, however long it has been flowing. Except that, now, it runs far deeper and has a much greater reach than it did, when it first started as a rivulet, off a mighty glacier. Sucheta is that river, ever new, fresh, and life giving, more so now, than ever before, spawning a whole new generation of rivulets, which, in their turn, would become mighty rivers. No wonder then, that when they speak of her, they speak in the same breath, of ‘Nritya Ganga’, the sacred river of dance.

If it’s true that our true nature is bliss, then nowhere is it more clear than in the dancing form of Sujata Mohapatra. With her bewitching smile, the grace and beauty of her movements, in the drama of her story telling, where divinity is ever at play with the human, in the poise of her being, in the power that holds us, from looking elsewhere, or, from thinking of other, unthinkably, mundane matters, she made us remember, the while she danced, the reason we were given the gift of life – to find in ourselves, the happiness shining through her being, the sound of her anklets, waking us from unconscious slumber, opening our eyes to our own immortal selves, timeless and free!

I sit in the darkest corner of the unlit room, with my thoughts, so that none may know, so that none may see, though it’s all the same darkness, the same thoughts seeking to remain hidden, in others’ minds, like a secret everyone knows, though each would make of it, something truly and terribly personal. Our secrets live, like prisoners condemned to a life of darkness and isolation, without the possibility of parole, or, like hidden wounds, unseen, and yet, never forgotten for the effect they produce, on the rest of the body. Who’s to turn on the light inside this room?

If you’re a passenger, sitting next to a really bad driver, who just won’t listen to you, you know that the probability of a crash is high, and it would be best for you, if you could somehow get the driver to stop the car, and get out while you are still in one piece. It is the same, if you’re with someone, who’s constantly filling you with negative emotions, about all those people who are part of both your lives. It’s best you slip out of such company, while there’s yet some positive feeling left.

However, in stopping the car and reviewing the drive, with the passenger, the driver could perhaps get another chance at driving, with a greater sense of safety, comfort and well being. The best drives are those, where there’s pure communion, within the car, and with all that’s speeding past, even in silence.

The bees have offered up to me, a bouquet of stingers, and with it, some flowering pain. How often I’ve had the honey they bring! They who brought me so much pleasure, bring me now, a hive full of pain. Who am I to complain?

There’s one coming who frightens the day lights out of those who wait for her. There’s no saying she’ll sing. No saying she’ll stay. All it takes is one imperfection, one false note in the way she’s received, for her to turn her back upon them. They make her a special stage because she’ll not sit where another has danced. She needs the right amount of flowers and fragrance, just enough to put her in the mood. They wait, daring to hope for the rapture of her music, as unsure, as the rain that has been predicted by the local weatherman. They wait, for perfection, in an imperfect world.

A pigeon was trapped in the large hall where the Monk was sharing some thoughts on the Buddhist way. It flew about here and there, dangerously close, above the whirling fans, while the Monk calmly spoke, of how our senses are constantly at siege, by the world of objects, the aggressive advertising that makes us want more and more things and how it’s all taking us away, from achieving true happiness and peace of mind. Just then, the bird found an open window and flew out, unharmed. The monk stopped speaking, sat for a moment in silent contemplation, then said, “You and I, are like that bird. This hall, with its whirling fans, is the world, where at any moment, you may lose your wings, or, even your life. It is your vigilance and awareness that leads you to that open window, from where you may fly free and safe, into the clear night sky”.

I’m watching it all bubble up, those little wrongs that others have done me, that I haven’t been able to forgive, or, to forget. They are like strings tied to a rather large balloon, straining to break free of the earth and float away. If only I could remember, to place one wrong I’ve done another, for every wrong I perceive done to me, I might grow tired sooner, of this accounting for pain!

It was his last day at work. He told me that from the morning of the following day, he would be in the realm of ‘the Unknown’, referring to the break in the routine, of a life time of going to work. I asked him, if he had not already experienced ‘the Unknown’, in his daily routine, in all this while. He stared at me, seeming thoughtful, and then spoke slowly, “It’s not that. What bothers me is, starting tomorrow, I wouldn’t know what to tell people who ask me, “What do you do?” I cannot tell them I’ve retired, because then, they’ll no longer care to knock at my door and I’m frightened that there’ll be no one wanting to talk to me”.

He offered me a drink, unsurpassed in its colour and fragrance, with great promise, of a most pleasing taste. I held my precious glass and waited for him, to fill his own. I watched him add to this exquisite drink, yet another beverage, common and without mystery, with the ability to sweeten, to fill with bubbles, anything to which it was added, and even to mask, the presence of the original one. To mine I added, just some ice, to soften the fire, because I knew there was some burning involved, in this slow sipping, of a rare and unusual gift. Its passage awakened in me, the delight of a life on the rocks, with no further need to make it sweeter, or, to alter in any way, the true nature of that original elixir!