June 18, 2013 § 1 Comment

We live in a petty world. And before you know it gets pettier and pettier, till nothing but a flaming feeling which burns the best in you is all that is left. What happens when people you know pass away?

All you want is reconciliation. But the advice given, the comfort offered is all based on traditional beliefs, even if people know you think so otherwise. How can that help me? How do you expect me to look for understanding your efforts in my grief? Or is it the bane of thinking otherwise?

The word freedom is thrown around and left to scamper any corner, anyone’s fancies. And yet it is in your moment of desperation or grief  that it seems larger than ever. Are rites bigger than the person you have lost? Is tradition more important than the love, the respect?

Why are we still caught in a web of rituals which aren’t really suited today? Some of the things would have made perfect sense 200 or even 100 years ago, but today are out of context. Some others enforce beliefs of the family, even when the person as such might think otherwise. In other words we don’t get what we are doing. And we are apparently more educated than any of our ancestors, or are we?

At some point along the way, it becomes more about those who are here, and that moment doesn’t really take long. Quickly do versions of what happened develop and are interpreted to suit our beliefs. But I want to hold the memory untainted, the words as said and understood, because that is what matters. If only we could photograph every moment, every word and stick it up to remind ourselves.

The world seems lonely without someone who understood me, my line of thinking and most importantly someone who helped me find my feet and to seek meaning and understanding. It is lonely because everyone else judges me, thinks of how it affects them, what could come of it for them. Because he was never ever angry with me, ever. Not once has he raised his voice, not once has he told me to toe the line. He was happy with whatever I offered, whatever I achieved.

He gave me hope and inspiration, he awed me with his stories, often quoting from texts in Tamil, Sanskrit and English. He told me things which no one else would or could. Life threw so many things at him, and yet he held to his own and stood his ground and brought up the family to be what it is today. I haven’t met a more open minded person, and doubt I ever will. He has never forced a belief onto anyone. And even when others would chide him, he encouraged me to think, think again and he would guide me at it. His world has windows, which did not have glass or grills but were left open.

It isn’t just all those happy childhood memories, it is also the days he helped me with school, the way he listened to me when I was very depressed, the way he was there for me through my teens. It isn’t the chocolates he would buy for me, it is the identity, the pride and self-respect he was able to show me. Through my rebellion, through my teens, through everything, he trusted me and encouraged me to make my own choices in life.

This is the most painful thing I have written, because he more is, but was. And as my tears hit the keyboard, I miss him.


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