Democracy? or a "demo" turned crazy?

Its amazing how our attitude changes when we think of the deep rooted corruption that's prevalent in Indian society today. There is a deep sense of hatred in us for government workers, politicians and everyone who has some authority in the system. When I discuss this with my friends and colleagues, there is a sense of desperation in their words and actions. They want to move to a country in which the system is free of such issues and there is a considerable amount of security in the society. Question I ask myself is that, are we Indians gone into a deep abyss in which the society is fractured? are we heading to a feudal state again where in we are mere servants to the pompous few? If this is the case, then  what did we get on August 14th 1947? more importantly. why did we even get it?

  India for over 2500 years, has been in some sort of a system where its citizens are in some sort of an autocratic rule. Be it in form of a king, or invaders who came from distant lands. The political geography has always been the same with little or no changes. This includes the missing 4 centuries of little history being recorded. So, we seem to posses a gene which makes us great followers than leaders. That does not mean we never had any leaders, but while we did have some true leaders, they again had a generation of forefathers who led people. After we gained independence, the scene never really changed. The village chieftains started representing their people in the representative councils of state and country. Then came along the caste based representation which is the most manipulated in our political scenario.

Leaders who fought for our independence had a vision of freeing India from Britishers, there was a fixed objective in their vision. But if we see in the later years of the freedom struggle, there was a little bit of incoherent thoughts on the way forward. That for me, defined the outcome that went on to plague us for the next 67 years and shall continue to do so in coming years.

  What's wrong with our system of politics? Is it the way we choose our representatives? or is it the lack of right of calling them back when they fail to perform the duties? I watched the movie satyagraha this past weekend, the story which was based on the popular Anna Hazare movement which happened couple of years ago. There is a scene when the film's protagonist slaps a person in power out of sheer desperation and makes him realize that he is people's servant. I guess, that's a very strong message to all of us. Democracy is the power given to people to choose representatives to represent their them and ensure as a society can take them forward economically, socially and intellectually. This is a sort of pyramid structure. The problem with this is that, the person on top of the pyramid is given facilities and powers which is elusive to the bottom of the pyramid,and that's where the actual problem lies. People tend to believe that they are above than others in a lot of ways.That will be expressed in many ways when power is given to them. Power as they say makes anyone corrupt. That is the root cause of the issue what we have.

Imagine an Ideal world.. Same system with minor changes. Let the voting system be intact. let there be people electing representatives. However, let there be a system where there are no additional powers given to these representatives, and the system of politics be stripped as a profession. Will that be enough to start a different page in our democratic system?

Are we Religious?

Last month and a half has been very interesting for me in terms of trips. I did a temple circuit of Tamil nadu and Kerala and had a chance to visit some of the most prominent temples.During one such visit, I was questioning the logic behind kings building these huge granite and stone structures for a single (or family) deities. I was then drawn to my school history books which outlines "whose god is greater"? quarrels. One of the most prominent one was the shaivite and vaishnvaite sects battling for their gods. I am not sure which god prevailed at the end of such battle, but these symbols for me are nothing but just dominating a specific god. Nevertheless, they still are architectural marvels which we need to be admiring.
              I attended the house warming ceremony of my sister's new house 10 days ago. I am drawn towards the various hymns that form the nucleus of such rituals and I was listening to one such hymn which appeases the eight dikpalaks (lord of each direction) before entering the new house. While I stood there listening and interpreting the hymn, I began thinking the need for such a request. Ideally, the modern day lords whom we need permission to enter a new house and own one are sub registrars, bank managers and land lords. However, when we shift back to past, we realize that all our our ancestors were just nature worshipers. They had a very intricate bond towards the nature and they treated each element with utmost respect. I am not sure if that respect was stemmed from a fear deep within. Nevertheless, the prayers and chants were invariably for the gods who governed the land, water etc.. The next question I had was if this prayers and chants hold good in today's world to predators who think they are above nature and everything else. Again, we are so used to carry the past rituals exceptionally well without any questions asked or understanding the real reason behind it. That thought of me prompted another question. Are we really religious? is there any sense left in us to follow what we pray or preach? The indiscriminate land use is nothing but abusing the god of earth, Polluting the air and water bodies is a spit on those governing gods. yet, every morning, we begin our day by saluting to these gods. isn't this a parody? Religion what we follow and preach is totally different than what we end up doing every day. I am not against development or the lifestyle here, but all I am trying to put a point across is just how ignorant we have become towards our surroundings while boasting that we are very religious and spend thousands or rupees on religious ceremonies.

      There was a time when I strongly wanted some of these rituals be re-visited to suit the current society. I thought that there was to much of a redundancy in the rituals which amounted to mindless steps that wanted to be followed which made it more laborious. Now I am beginning to think that it would be better off, if someone made an effort to make people understand the logic behind such rituals, which can then be tailored to suit the needs of our generation on the whole.

Trying to get back to Writing mode

Do I still have an ability to put words to my thoughts? Will try to post something beginning tomorrow for 30 days just to see how articulate I can be. Oh! yes, I went back to all the posts of yester years.. music and office ruled most of my life it seems. But now, there are few more things on my plate to dish out to you all. Lets see how this works out to be.

Random Ramble

I almost forgot that i do have a blog. Just one entry in whole of 2010 is way too horrible. but to admit the truth, there have been couple of other online mediums where in i can express my nonsense ( twitter being the best).
However, I feel Jan/Feb is officially my months of reinvention. Last week my office campus had hosted Bengaluru Habba. And there were couple of bands which played to a largely pompous north indian "I love shaan Sonu nigam concerts" and Gult crowds who knew all about NOTHING!. but crowds apart, I noticed a distinct progression in our rock scene. I still remember the strawberry fields days where death/Doom Metal was all that was being played. I am not sure if still is. but there is a wave of a rock fusion with indian classical and folk. And that is a very good sign

The second Band which is worth a mention is "SLAIN".initally i dismissed them for reasons stated above. but boy they can seriously play some good music. check out their composition called "beyond the conquerors". I am loving these kids.

Its amazing that i now belong to an old generation and there is a new wave of music thats hitting the shores. I see bands which are relatively new, more bolder, more innovative than what it was during my college times.

Nice beginning to 2011.

(no subject)

sometimes it feels nice to step into those dirty shoes. dirty shoes of those individuals who "almost" made it. who would say "wish i could do this" on everything they look and see around them. I have been lucky enough to get almost all basic amenities in life... a screwed up job, nice family, bunch of frens, music to hold my hand....... but there is this person within me who is dormant for most part of the week or even months... but all of a sudden he wakes up! and makes what we call "right" noises. the wish list that he has is very scary. but he represents my dreams over the years, dreams of me being an ice cream vendor to Phd in aerodynamics. during those times, I become very edgy and start doing some outrageous things, I start to go according to him and want to chase those dreams. these are the times where i hate my instinctiveness. regardless of the repeated warnings i give to myself, i go out and do something stupid.

2009 for me has been a year of experimenting with my eyes and hands tied. just trying to pull out a miracle out of thin air, placing my thoughts and my mind to whatever the demon inside me says. in that process, i have lost many a sleep. made enemies and not to mention some beautiful ideas that sprang out... some of them are really special... now, I am little afraid if my creativity is swirling down and hitting a dead end....

i feel a numbness now, a vaccum... a time zero on my thoughts....
the voice inside me says.... "pick up the quantum theory... read that...... write a paper.....
I am already searching.....!!!!!!!!

There is somthing about it!

while I effortlessly sift through the musical genres, most times i encounter music with a repeated rhythmic  pattern. it may be plain simple trance or for that matter any vedic chants. when i listen to these, i feel like a concentrated energy being directed to me. I feel those are packed with concentrated energy which tunes mind to a certain state. next time when you are listening to a trance number (party freak) or a vedic hymn (religious person), try to look for changes within you. you will be either elated or in peace.

I guess the reason for such an effect would be due to the repeated rhythmic pattern in them. just like particles layed out in one uniform way, made to move in same frequency, in same amplitude....  then it hits our ears, hits the right note and the mind tunes to the mood of that song.
  • Current Mood
    curious curious
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Travel time to office and back

Unlike many of my frens who spend 60-80 mins one way traversing to office and back, I must say that i am lucky as my total time in travelling wont exceed 45-50 Mins (2 way). I am quite happy with my new found work cycle :D. the evil which comes along with the cab travel is the ever blabbering FM stations with god knows what playing music and stupid contest questions. but once in a while, i do get exposed to some catchy tunes and i quite like that part of the journey. today, there were 2 songs which captured my attention. one was called  "ahistha ahistha" and another one was "lets rock the party".

for me a song is audible, if it breaks my chain of thoughts at that time. and these two have done that for me today. its a pleasant surprise coz there have been innumerable times when i had to restrain myself from breaking the window pane of the cab listening to the crap lyrics and mundane tunes.


Indian Democracy- an Intricate example

the feelings towards the elected representatives of Indian democracy is pretty well known. After all, we choose to close our eyes, mutter some curses on them and move on with our lives. I strongly believe that the 20 something Indian is pretty isolated to the Govt Interaction ( to be more specific, the working of the indian bureaucracy). I am cynical about the very functioning about this mechanism, often relating it to a SICK WHITE ELEPHANT which can barely put its foot forward but is loaded with all possible filth over it (PETA please excuse)

However, there were some interesting things that happened during this week, a bunch of people (Dad included) had a list of  grievances that they were to submit to our "representative" . as usual, they went with big battalion, with the letter having all possible adjectives and a lot of emphasis on the "babugiris"

surprisingly, the very next day, i woke up to the chaos in front of my home. there were 10 odd cars, 50 odd people and they were all on the mobiles scurrying through. we had our representative at our doorstep. I was bemused to see that guy all dressed up and speaking in a very assuring manner (so typical of a politician)!! then they set out to inspect the pot hole riddled, weed ridden fringes of our locality. as usual,  there were assurances, calling of the corporation guys and promises of swift action.

Next day, there were people inspecting our locality and some JCB's cleaning up all the trash. this is when I really felt we are changing, we are changing to the better. we can come out of the shells and make things happen. My dad and others stood all day long to have the work done. this continued the next day but today there seems to be no one who is inspecting or cleaning the other stuff!

I am finding hard to understand the nature of this elephant. should we shove them to make simple things happen? should we remain cynical. what should we do to make things better? how can we do it?

our locality has a non functioning RWA with its president squatting all day long, has another bunch of enthusiastic people who would like to have things done.

nevertheless, yours truly wasnt just sitting and laughing at the functioning of those lazy asses, he was busy filing the taxes and dumping the trash from inside :)

just wonder if we can infuse that culture in our system which we want to see :)
  • Current Music
    Solid Globe - North Pole
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Seems I am stuck in a maze of musical notes and the genre of music.I feel i am developing a cyclic tendency of listening to songs and the bands. its the same feeling when i search for the next note on my string when i play some random notes, I try to see where the next note is, but the thing with songs is that when i get enough of a band i move on to a previous one with their stuff

Help needed, need to know some new songs, bands and genres :(
  • Current Music
    livin on a prayer-Bon Jovi
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A Bus Journey

As part of my eco awareness (still nascent), i have taken up couple of resolutions.One of them is my plan to travel to office by BMTC bus once a week. This initiative is also aimed at what i call is  "connecting" with the out side world as i had reached dangerous proportions of staying in a little cocoon surrounded by sticky office stuff,

Nevertheless, these journeys are not new to me.. 95% of my student life has been spent in standing/clinging in these buses to reach to school and college. I have seen the dirty little Red bus transform into the light blue ones and making life little (just a little) easy for its commuters.

However, I stopped using these 6 years ago. the last time I used a bus was to attend an Interview in Koramangala in 2003, then I so very wanted to own a bike and go to places at my own will and not bound by the erratic times of these vehicles. Now, the Tables are turned. I am sick of the "door Service" of the cabs and a sinking feeling of traveling in a coffin surrounded with just the office atmosphere. This  was making me too sick and too boring. and as always, I wanted to break away from the vicious cycle of these things.

its been 4 weeks since I first started traveling in the bus to office. its been a pleasant change and honestly I am really getting the feel of connecting to the outside world. gone are those fridays where everyone goes out on a plastic "friday night mode" of binge drinking and partying to the real life of the individuals around me. this is what i saw last friday. It was 10 in the night and i could see some tired unknown faces, just heading back home and being in themselves. I thought nothing much has changed.Yes, gone are the days where people would strike up a conversation with you to pass time. thats now been replaced by mobiles and handsfree devices to listen to FM. some little technological advances, as if they are trying to live up to Bangalore's tech savy image.

all in all, its been really helpful to break the cocoon that i had built around me. I can safely say that this is one among many initiatives in coming months for me. I will start doing things like these.

amazing how things can pep me up and put a smile on my face :)