Wednesday, June 13, 2007

The Zahir - Excerpt 1

An excert from the book 'The Zahir' - one book that has kinda made me read and THINK!

Yes, it had disappeared, but now I realized that the zahir was more than a man obsessed with an object, with a vein in the marble of one of the twelve hundred columns in the mosque in Cordoba, as Borges puts it, or, as in my own painful case for the last two years, with a woman in central Asia. The Zahir was a fixation on everything that had been passed from generation to generation; it left no question unanswered, it took up all the space; it never allowed us to even consider the possibilty that things could change.

The all-powerful zahir seemed to be born with every human being and to gain full strength in childhood, imposing rules that would thereafter always be respected:

People who are different are dangerous; they belong to another tribe; they want our lands and our women.

We must marry, have children, reproduce the species.

Love is only a small thing, enough for one person, and any suggestion that the heart might be larger than this is considered perverse.

When we marry, we are authorized to take possession of the other person, body and soul.

We must do jobs we detest because we are part of an organized society, and if everyone did what they wanted to do, the world would come to a standstill.

We must buy jewellery; it identifies us with our tribe, just as body-piercing identifies those of a different tribe.

We must be amusing at all times and sneer at those who express their real feelings; it's dangerous for a tribe to allow its members to show their feelings.

We must at all costs avoid sayin 'No' because people prefer those who always say 'Yes', and this allows us to survive in hostile territory.

What other people think is more important than what we feel.

Never make a fuss, it might attract the attention of an enemy tribe.

If you behaved differently, you will be expelled from the tribe because you could infect others and destroy something that was extremely difficult to organize in the first place.

We must always consider the look of our new cave, and if we don't have a clear idea of our own, then we must calll in a decorator who will do his best to show others what good taste we have.

We must eat three meals a day, even if we're not hungry, and when we fail to fit the current ideal of beauty we must fast, even if we're starving.

We must dress according to the dictates of fashion, make love whether we feel like it or not, kill in the name of our country's frontiers, wish time away so that retirement comes more quickly, elect politicians, complain about the cost of living, change our hairstyle, criticize anyone who is different, go to a religious service on Sunday, Saturday or Friday, depending on our religion, and there beg for forgiveness for our sins and puff ourselves up with pride because we know the truth and despise the other tribe, who worship a false god. (love this paragraph !!!)

Our children must follow in our footsteps; after all, we are older and know about the world.

We must have a university degree even if we never get a job in the area of knowledge we were forced to study.

We must study things that we will never use, but which someone told us was important to know: algebra, trigonometry, the code of Hammurabi.

We must never make our parents sad, even if this means giving up everything that makes us happy.

We must play music quietly, talk quietly, weep in private, because I am the all-powerful zahir, who lays down the rules and determines the distance between railway tracks, the meaning of sucess, the best way to love, the importance of rewards.

Reinstates the fact how granted we have assumed the rights we exercise and how meekly we have surrendered to the constraints/rules imposed upon us by the society's practice, without considering why they should restrict us!

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Am sory, I tried ..

It was lying with its tongue swaying wild under the hot sun. Infact, the heat was just too much for it to even live that much. All it did was to momentarily lift its head n squeak for help. I was afraid to touch it first, coz it was astray - might be having any kinda disease. Or it could just bite in self-defence. But it was too much for me to just walk off like that.

Dear God, I lifted it and put it in a spot that was under shade. It was relatively cooler there. Dear God, I bought it food and water. I even lifted and put its mouth on the food. It couldn't eat. Dear God, I poured water all over it, I even made it drink some, but that's all it could muster to do. It swooned again. Dear God, I called the blue cross. They said the van is on its way, but the way never was made for the dog. Dear God, I stood there crying in the middle of the road, praying to you. Were you able to hear me? The dog was dying right in front of my eyes and all I could do was pray harder. By now, it wasnt even able to open its mouth to gasp for air. Its eyes had dilated and the limbs started becoming stiff. I was clutching it, massaging it, still praying. Were you able to hear? The blue cross was nowhere in sight yet. Its breathing came down, almost to nothing now. I couldnt stand there anymore to see it breathe its last. Dear God, I prayed one last time, this time for its soul to rest in peace. Were you able to hear? Without looking back, I walked away, leaving the poor dog to die in private. There is no use even if the bluecross arrives now, it is already on its way to you ..

Dear God, I was powerless. All I could do was cry and try. I did both ......


Friday, June 01, 2007

Annie - Mahia

The live show of Annie at IIT. This pakistani album song is now runnin in a loop in my winamp.

The original album may be viewed here