Body Electric: Tribute to Self

The Kishore Kumar in me beats my Manna Dey hollow on most days. I am the King of the Hill, even when I am the only one in the tournament. More often than not, that is how it is. I am contented and productive by myself. I am yet to know what boredom is, and given the years I have clocked, it seems more and more unlikely I will ever find out. I am a perfectionist and a control freak, and would rather do something myself than risk having to tell someone that it could have been done better. I over-aspire and challenge my limitations as a habit. Sometimes, it tells on the nerves. Why do I do it then? Because that is who and how I am now. Because who and how I am pleases me now.

(c) Sandeep Ingilela of http://singilela.blogspot.in

YOLO. So much to do and so little time. I choose what I will fill my unforgiving minute with, and I am never at a loss. I would rather die trying than never at all. Have I always been this way? Nope. I have had my periods of living cautiously, sticking to the middle of the road, and licking at my regrets. Have I got it figured out? Maybe not. The phenomenal sum of all my mistakes - that's me.


Maybe I was born this way. As a kid, I had a workaround and a ready explanation for everything. I grew ants, earthworms, and whole flowerbeds full of glowing mustard much to our gardener's discomfort. I would lose buckles (those little hook-like things that kept my trousers up) on my school uniform almost every day, and my mother tired of getting new ones and sewing them on. I tried growing buckles along with the mustard, but the darned things wouldn't germinate. So I switched to a stapler. I figured out early that time lost in complaints and regrets pales in the face of working diligently towards ambition and dreams. I poked my nose into everything. I kept my eyes and ears open, and when people couldn't find things they had hidden so that I wouldn't get to them, I helped find them in a jiffy, since I always knew where they were. I preferred to tune in to the mysteries of the universe, rather then revel just in what my world thought was pertinent. I knew that somewhere in the magic of the night sky, in the silence of the mountains, in the vibrancy of the winter mornings, lay the answers to the million questions that plagued me so.

Sure, I lost my way more than once, ending up bruised and let down. Even when it seemed like I had found the way, the comfort of the familiar taunted me so much that I again sought out the path less trodden, only to lose my way again. I am blessed in having been taught to honor my lessons. Am I proud of those years when I challenged the boundaries of reason and compassion? Not particularly, but to be ashamed of them or to regret would dilute their importance. They made me strong enough to embark on my present journey, and I can only express my thankfulness to all who helped me learn those lessons.

Are there things I truly regret? Yes, there are. Am I truly contented? No way! I feel like a kid who has been told about a magic candy store, taken up to it, and then been kept waiting at the door. Am I truly on the right way? Who can know till one gets where one is headed? Am I truly the King of my Hill? The mystic complexity of cause and consequence blunted my arrogance long back, and I am glad for it.

There are days when I wake up and all seems perfect with my world, and there are days when, well, and there are days. I still do things that my heart and sometimes other body parts do not agree with. If I had the chance to live my life over, would I chose to do things differently, leave out the unpleasant bits, ease up on the hurt that I caused others or the hurt I experienced? I think not, but I would go through every bumpy patch with greater panache and gladness, since I know now that at the end of the road, I invariably get to where I need most to get. I would do it all exactly the same, and bring greater joy to my world in the process, rather than make changes and not be sure of where I would reach.

My Dad, who taught me that God lay in how I looked at another person, would tell me the story of Madhusudan-dada as he carried me on his shoulder on long walks. The story can wait for another time, but the crux of it is that the universe conspires to delude those who wish to remain deluded and enlightens those who choose to pursue penetrating insight. I spent many years not understanding the story but it still resonated with me. Maybe I am yet to understand the story in its fullest sense. Yet, it is the one story that I pass on with my life.

I am glad for all that has brought me to where I stand today. As for my tomorrows, I am ready and determined not to be found wanting. My to-do list is jam-packed and endless and yet, it contains just what I know now I want to do. Each day brings newer vistas to explore. This work in progress is bent on becoming all that he was meant to be, and he still has a long way to go. And I know I will. Yet I also know that the ultimate reality lies in this moment, in the magic that is happening as I am writing this and you reading it. Like the click of a mouse, the batting of an eyelid, the creaking of the chair, it is here and then it is gone.

subhorup dasgupta, shubho,shubhorup
(c) Sandeep Ingilela of http://singilela.blogspot.in

So I am sipping at my tea and smiling, waiting to realize what it is that is making me smile, even as what is making me smile creeps up on me. In this magical mystery moment, I am me. By choice yet by grace. By intent and by the way too.

Sometimes you read a line, and no matter how hard you try, you can never dream of writing such a line yourself though you desperately wish you could. No matter how urgently you invoke your muse to grant you that special line, she cannot. That uniqueness is the essence of the magic that is me, the magic that is you. And for the record, my life really is an open book written in Braille, you just need to keep your eyes closed to get the feel of it. Wanna read?

*****

This post is a writing exercise undertaken as a tribute to one of the finest writers in the blogging world. You know who you are and I thank you for filling my life with hope and determination.

33 comments:

  1. You ought to be in trouble, brother! If you are not, I will ensure you are! In btw, you do write magnificently! hahahaha

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    1. This was a deal I had made with myself long back when the blogging battle for copyright was at a particularly high point. I am hoping this will slip past everyone's notice. :)

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    2. Wow profound thoughts and at least the linkback is there. Or you would not have known what hit you :). I like Bhavana's comment :-p.

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    3. Ladies, thankfully he kept his promise....else he would have been in trouble had he not done this :P

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  2. This post is truly inspirational. Your mind is very beautiful, Subho ji, in awe of your wisdom. Wish I could be in such a state spiritually 20 years from now. :)

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    1. Akshay, you overrate me entirely. I am more of a smart aleck trying to look wise by borrowing the ideas of others. Especially so in this post. I believe that by faking it again and again, I will make it some day.

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  3. Sublime writing. I treasure the times I spent with beautiful minds in your home.

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    1. Thanks, man. You know that the feeling is mutual. The continuous addition of nutcases to our tribe worries and pleases me equally.

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  4. hey subho, hope you are doing great. thanks for the invite. i have dropped you a mail on the email id that is shown in the facebook badge on your blog. :)

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    1. Or you can let me know the time and venue, here.

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    2. It is so nice to see you here, Gautam. We all owe you a debt of gratitude for your efforts to get us together. The date and time is still early evening of Jan 20. Venue is still being worked on. Got your mail. Will keep you in the loop.

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  5. liked in a typical FB way

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  6. Well written...Only if the world had the same perspective as you Subho ji, to live life over again without making any changes... Truly inspirational

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    1. Thanks, Danny. There is nothing that can destroy the spirit like regrets. So glad that you liked this post. The strange thing is that I have little to do with it. This is what I have learned from reading my fellow bloggers, and I am so thankful for the way I have grown thanks to them. :)

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  7. Beautiful. During my initial blogging days, i had written a post - called On a Gloomy Saturday. Dark Clouds outside, rains about to begin, i was at home alone- this atmosphere inspired me to write.
    This post of yours, reminds me of feel i had that day. Each line is well expressed, and thats the beauty of this article.
    Coming back for more- Follower No 126

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    1. Thanks, Vyo, for your encouraging words and for following. You might remember me from the time when you switched feeds and domains, maybe a year back. I am going back now to look for your gloomy saturday post.

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  8. Good post but alas! your text as well as the link of singilela given below the pics can't copy it, since it is copyright protected? why and what for you protected this? in that case give the link in the text itself with html code, so that one can visit the blog page directly.
    Sir, I can't understand why few of us do this in their blogs? what’s the use? if some one want to comment on your page by quoting few words or sentence from your text its not possible at all, and people hesitate to comment, and another thing i noticed here at this comment box is that the spell check facility is totally not available so pl/ note these and do the changes, since we are living in a busy world, and every one got their own busyness no one will take pain to type it on their computer’s MS Word and do the spell check and post it!!!
    Have a good day
    Philip

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    1. Thank you, Sir. You have raised a very important point, and my answer might not convince you but it is the truth.

      The spellcheck in the comment box is active. Not sure why it is not working for you.

      There was a time recently when post URLs were being picked up and reproduced in their entirety on a new URL by an aggregator. I protected my text on the spur of the moment and following the hue and cry in the blogging community since I realized that they were doing it manually and not through a feed. After a few days, when my sense of violation diluted in the light of reason, I began feeling it didn't matter, since they were not claiming the post as their own, and also leaving a link to my blog. Since I do not like making changes to my blog settings frequently, I made a mental note to revert it.

      Time passed. Now the problem is I forgot what I did to make this happen. I am too lazy to look for and apply the fix. Now that you have brought it up, I have a little more motivation. Thanks again.

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    2. Hi Subhorup,
      Thanks for the response,
      I fully agree with you
      in this regard, its no
      doubt a great concern to
      any writer, very recently
      i read one blog post in this line
      it gives lot of insight on this issue
      here below I am giving the url of that post.
      And ha now the spell check at comment box is working
      Have a good day.
      Best Regards.
      Phil
      http://lorelle.wordpress.com/2006/04/10/what-do-you-do-when-someone-steals-your-content/

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    3. Hi,
      I missed the meet.
      Well where are the pics?
      Of course i read one on this line the other day, but still your pics will no doubt be a special one. When can we expect.
      Best
      Phil

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  9. Hear Hear Sir.. indeed I for one would also not want to change anything whatsoever in my life , the ups and downs have taught me a lot of things and have made me what I am today and If given a chance again I want to be what I am today :) .. and to be what i am today I have to go through the same drill ...

    Bikram's

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    1. Thanks, Bikram. This post and its inspiration appealed to me at the present time, since there seems to be a tendency to demonize the undesirable in us without realizing that it is an integral part of how things are today. To disown it only postpones the learning to a later time, and who knows if the difficulty of the lesson will be any more bearable then?

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  10. Subho, you took me on a journey, a unique one....the words were yours, but it flashed in front of me as if I'm a part of it...sometimes when you write what you really want to write, it creates an unbelievable impact on others as well..something you might not have even imagined...this is one of those posts! I feel I'm blessed after reading it!

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    1. Vivek, this blog is humbled by all the stars who have been leaving comments on it. My journey here was made a cakewalk by the master who wrote the post originally; all I had to was hang bling on it. Part of the reason I chose this post to honor an old wager was the very same resonance that you experienced. I read it for the first time and said, how is it that someone can express exactly what I would have said about my life. Glad you liked it, and trust you have enjoyed the inspiration too.

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  11. Thinking of what you would have wanted changed in your past is of use only when you use it to change how you would think/feel/behave in the present and the future. And if it does alter you for the better, it was best that it did happen the way it happened in the past, was it not?

    Merely reliving the past in a welter of 'if-only's is to sink yourself in the 'Slough of Despond'.

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  12. So, should I applaud you or the writer who inspired you? Wondering how I managed to miss this brilliant piece of writing.

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  13. In my defence I was at a beach wedding when you penned this gem. And since then have been running late on all the responsibilities people think I oughta complete.

    Shubho, from all the compliments I have received in my life....this one tops it! Thank you for making this moment memorable for me. I promise to tell my grandchildren.

    And even though the template might have been there, you still own this post like no other. I swear if people could do a job like this, remakes would be a matter of prestige!!!!

    For once I am at a loss of words........let me come back after a cup of coffee!!!! :)

    Loved this and thank you for keeping your promise.....Now I so feel like a 'worthy blogger' :D

    Hugs, Prayers and Blessings!




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    1. Thanks, Blogwati Gee. I am so glad you liked it. Totally agree with you that remakes should only be attempted when you are certain you have something special, something new, something very-me to say about the original.

      I felt so connected when you wrote this post, I emailed it to close friends who don't facebook or blog, and bookmarked it - perhaps for my grandchildren. And then, I stole it!

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  14. Since you are a Perfectionist and the Kishore in you rules, I would love to hear you sing.A delightful read...esp".....the sum of phenomenal mistakes....that's me."

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  15. I am in awe.
    Waht hit me was "the crux of it was that the universe conspires to delude those who wish to remain deluded and enlightens those who choose to pursue penetrating insight." Grand!

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  16. hey i liked the way the first pic was shot .. !

    nobody knows whether they are on the right path or not till they achieve it and once they are there, they look for new goals in life .. so i guess no one ever knows the right way or the right path ..

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