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Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Generation S

The Age of Generation X is over. We can now say with 100% surety what the value of the unknown variable X is. And that is Screaming.

Yes, the age of the The Generation S has come. In this generation, the youth have opened up and are shouting from the top of the buildings, at the top of their voices only one thing " I AM HERE. SEE ME."

In this age of communication and technology, its a matter of a few clicks to present your idea to a large number of people. And everything they do is done in a loud way. Even the music they like is loud, even the games they play are loud, even the weapons they use are loud. Everything about them, done by them and for them is made to be as loud, visible and conspicuous as possible.

The Top Social Sites like Facebook, MySpace, Tagged, Interpals are examples for this. With just a few clicks you can send a message about the most mundane, frivolous, mundane and dumb thing to millions of people and show off your talents, achievements and what not.

The well known site Twitters is too a good example. I do not deny that it is used for good purposes too, but the posts like " I am in NY.Eating a Hotdog" do not help in anyway to anyone.

In this age, we have a lot of talker, screamers and blabber-ers and very few listeners. I am not against talking out but CAMPAIGNING for yourself using technology as a mean was never meant to be. Much more good would be done if people do useful work and let their work speak for them. Rather than say " I am a supporter of Climate Change" and put it on your resume, why don't people people actually do something to help the climate for a change?

Whats more, even the preference of today's youth is all about screaming.
Take the Music: Rock, Metal, Heavy Metal, Pop.... every song is accompanied by ear-splitting so called noise that is now called Music.. What happened to Indian Classical, Oldies, and Country Music?
Take Games: Games filled with violence, gore and lots of high-definition screams, cries and noises are the way to enjoy.
Take Clothes: They are silent shouters( sorry for the oxymoron). They never make a noise but they still make people take notice of you, stare at you and look at you with a quizzical eye. Weird Slogans, Ripped clothes, mismatched clothes, gaudy clothes are all shouting for attention. What happened to the good old sense of dressing where a person's attire used to speak(and not shout) about the person?

In earlier days, we used to say " If he/she is good at shouting, make him/her a politician". Is it that we all are now a self-campaigning Politician?

Where have the more silent things in life gone? Where is the time when people were happy with doing their own work and living their life in peace and quiet. The loudest noise they ever heard was the crying of a baby.

Where is the time when people used to sit around and discuss matter and LISTEN to each others idea rather than professing their own ideas?

Where is the time when music was supposed to be Nectar for our ears and did not involve a deafness later on.

Where is the time when games were fun to play and pleasing too, rather than been given a doze of blood, gore and horrific cries all the time?

Is it that all this has disappeared? Or is it that they cannot be heard over all the SHOUTS OF THIS GENERATION?

Slow down, take a break from shouting, drink a glass of water, and for a while, try to be a listener rather than a Shouter.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

KISS Life- Keep It Simple, Stupid

Before reading the post, I would like you to read this Joke:

In this day, where is a time to sit back, relax, reflect, retrospect and enjoy the endangered phenomenon- Solitude.

Why is it that we always equate a good day to be a busy day?
Why do we equate a hectic life to be a good life?

By being busy what are we achieving? What are we trying to prove to ourselves or others? All we are achieving is losing touch with ourselves, losing touch with our friends, having no time for friend, family or foe.

The first thing in the morning you leave home, and get back in the evening, get holed up in your room for studies or for some work, shutting out all connections and preparing for another similar day.

Why don't we KISS life? Why don't we enjoy a simple day, where you do your work, relax, talk with others and go to sleep with nothing but a smile on your face?
Why can't all of us live life such that at the end we can say like Don Corleone(the Godfather) "Life is Good"

For me, Life is just 3 things: Peace, Purpose and Love.
To have a purpose in life is one of the requirements to live. Without purpose you’re just a shell without life in it.
Love: It is a feeling that is strengthened with time, made sweeter with the sweet memories of life and is everlasting.
If you have the above two, i guarantee you that you will have peace with life.

As a child we had a carefree day, we played, laughed, loved and in general life was simple.

As an elder, we sit back, relax, retrospect, love and in general life is simple again.

Then why is it that in the middle of this, we get so off the track and lose our happiness, peace and power to love to something called "A Busy Life"? Why are we always battling with Time? At what stage did we forget the KISS life and started this Busy Life?

Monday, October 12, 2009

Traditions: The Lost Meanings

We Indians have always been proud of our culture and traditions. We think that following our 5000 years old traditions shows that we are a civilized, developed and culturally rich race. But have we ever wondered why these traditions were made in the first place? What I mean is that there should have been some reason why something was done or followed even in the ancient ages. Common sense demands that. Those things and rituals that were a part of the life of the ancients are now what we call as traditions. Therefore a term "New Tradition" is a huge OXYMORON. 

I was pondering over it for a while. In case you do not know me, I am a person who doesn't take anything on the face value. Especially when it comes to traditions, customs, rituals and ceremonies. I do not follow the rituals and traditions without knowing why we are doing it in the first place. Let me give you some examples:

1) The tradition of Karwa Chauth: where a wife ( or a would-be-wife) keeps a fast for long life of her husband and doesn't eat anything all day. I asked my mom, why do you do it? and she explained to me the story behind it and how it all got started etc. I said "Yeah am aware of that. But don't you think that this ritual is a bit outdated? I mean... in ancient days Men were the only working people in a home and women used to stay at home and their well being depended on their husband's health and life. So , in that context having a fast and praying for a long life was valid." 

But in this modern day where the gender distinction is dissolving and men are no longer the sole income earner of the house, why is it that the ladies alone observe the fast, shouldnt the men too observe one for their wives? (Maybe not for their long life :P) but maybe as a symbol of Love and Respect for them? 

It so happened that there was a fast that my Mom kept for me. Presumably for my well-being and happiness. That day I too kept a fast for my Mom and we both broke the fast together. :)

To me the reason behind the tradition matters as much as the ritual. I wont do anything unless I know the significance of it. But it is now dawning on me that most people have forgot what these traditions were all about and just do it because "Its Tradition".

2) Another example, speaking of fasts, in the Hindu Calendar, there are some marked dates on which some fasts are to be kept( Don't ask me the dates or the reason, I do not know). These fasts were meant to be kept for some reason. Overtly, it was for well-being of loved ones or some Goddess, or for some ritual. But if you think about it, keeping fast is a good way to Detoxify your body and in general maintain good health. By not eating anything solid, or only taking liquid stuff and fruits etc, the body was purified and thus this resulted in well being of the person itself.

This knowledge really makes one see the traditions in a new light. Many of the traditions that are followed all around the world have been scientifically proven to increase the well-being of a person in some way. But most of them were encapsulated as a ritual to God so that at least the Fear Of Divine Wrath will help keep the people in check and observe such rituals. 

Another example:

3) The upcoming festival of Divali: Now there is a tradition that on Divali, some item of gold, silver or anything worthy of mention needs to be brought into the house( The day of Dhanteras). If you ponder over it you would realize that doing so made the family financial safe with the gold and silver acting as a safety guard in tough times. Maybe it was also a way to save for the marriages and other occasions when such items are exchanged. By wrapping this as a ritual , the ancients ensured that the people were financially secure and saved some for a rainy day.

I could go on and on about the rituals... and DONT get me started on the rituals in Marriage. They are so many and so diverse in reasons that I could write on and on about it.

Well I think I will end this post here....

The idea that I wanted to present here is that:

Traditions, Cultures, Rituals, Festivals are all good as a Society. But we should know why we are doing them. Just because it has been so for 5000 years doesn't mean it is correct. Always remember, Traditions were not always traditions. They were a way of life. Only the passage of time has made them the much beloved Traditions of our Culture. Let us not lose the meaning behind the traditions, others we are no more than blind ants following a blind leader.

Signing off for now. Adieu, Ciao, Bye, Au Revoir, Sayonara, Alvida.