Monday, March 27, 2006

Change of address

You know how familiarity seems to breed contempt, especially when you've been leading a very automated life...Familiarity also breeds a sense of safety and when you're [to be] removed from that little mini-world you've created for yourself, you realise it more than ever.

Oh, and if it wasnt obvious already, I am terrified. Thought of leaving makes me sick to my stomach [literally].

Still, I have to go. Dont know when I will be able to continue blogging again [depends on very many factors] but hope to be back in full force ASAP [which should also be banned from usage along with EOD and .etc.]

Flying Away,

PS: Nope. Still not talking about marriage.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Paradise Lost

I have just broken the cardinal rule of blogging. A new post when most will not have had enough time to read the previous one, thus ensuring that it will not be focus of the casual visitors' attention and therefore will be ignored.
But the frequency of my posts does more with my wanting to say something than with anything else.

On Friday while on my way to Chepauk, I happened to spot a march by about 30-40 people on the opposite side of the road. All of them carried this flag and placards bearing the legend "Free Tibet":

I marveled at the strength of conviction that these guys had to take a march with so minimal a number just to make a stand that probably went into ignominy like my previous post.
It also made me very curious to watch the news item that China, in the ongoing Indo-China border dispute settlement talks, is adamant in claiming the Tawang area of Arunachal Pradesh as its own. Incidentally Tawang is one of the most developed areas of the eastern state; but that takes the backseat to the fact that it is home to the Buddhist Monastery who's occupants and supporters are scared to death of what could happen if the Chinese have their way again.

Coincidentally, I discovered that the only movie in my personal collection that I hadnt already watched already was "7 years in Tibet". So I spent roughly 2 hours last evening watching that movie and found that it was by no means a waste of time.
Here are the basic facts of the movie [in accordance with Akshaya's suggestion], Source:IMDB

Directed by
Jean-Jacques Annaud

Writing credits
Heinrich Harrer (book)
Becky Johnston (screenplay)

Released 1997

Cast overview:

Brad Pitt


Heinrich Harrer

David Thewlis


Peter Aufschnaiter

B.D. Wong


Ngawang Jigme



Kungo Tsarong

Danny Denzongpa



Victor Wong


Chinese 'Amban'

Jamyang Jamtsho Wangchuk


Dalai Lama, 14 Years Old

The story is the account of the Austrian Climber Heinrich Harrer,( the all round Alpha Male) who seeks to conquer the Nanga Parbat and is captured by the British at the wake of WWII. He escapes with his Expedition leader Peter Aufschnaiter, with whom he first has a hate-hate relationship that turns to great friendship. The duo land in Tibet, which is closed to all foreigners because their prophecy tells of the 13th Dalai Lama having to lose his place and his country to invading foreigners. The kindly minister Kungo Tsarong takes the men in.
Harrer does the survey of the Lhasa city and also get to build a movie house for the young Dalai Lama, who he comes to look on as a son-substitute [his own son, who he has never seen, refuses to accept him as the father].
His Holiness is a vivacious young man, so full of curiosity about everything micro and macro that Harrer once exclaims- "Do you know of other sentence constructs, besides Questions?"

China begins its relentless attack on the peace-loving, non-violent and entirely non-militaristic Tibet and the 14 yr old accepts command of his country and people, who have intense and simplistic faith in their religion helping them overcome the onslaught of the enemy [they revere enemies in Tibet and consider them teachers of patience and faith].

Chamao, the gateway to Tibet, falls after a unevenly matched slaughter of the poorly equipped Tibetian army, and the young, ambitious Governor Ngawang Jigme gives into the politics of the matter and signs a surrender. Thus heralding the occupation of Tibet that has lasted on to this day.
The present Dalai Lama, is a consummate Media man. He is able to make followers of everyone he meets all around the world, so much so that many of the glitterati of Hollywood have turned Buddhist and are taking up the cause of Tibet. The ordinary people of Tibet are also wonderful in their innate ability to mesh with the locals wherever they settle, while still raising their voices to the liberation of their Homeland- Tibet [or paradise].

Nevertheless, China is still the Big Brother of this part of the world. India, despite its emerging strength is unable to effectively oppose it for the sake of the Tibetians, for whom it has maximum empathy and support. If Arunchal Pradesh were to cede to China, we would be doing the same thing that Ngawang Jigme did in case of Chamao. Soon there will come a time when the Chinese will also swallow the vastness that is India, in its entirely; right down to the safe Tamilnadu. Then we will ask the same question that the Lama asked Harrer - "Will people come look at the movies of us and wonder what happened to our country, one day?"

If the Japanese were cruel to the Chinese in Nanjing[for example], the Chinese have also shown their utter lack of mercy for the Tibetians and the Indians (remember our BSF, so many regiments who died right down to the last man, in their efforts to keep away the vast chinese army). When it comes to war, violence and accession - it is always the fight between the Powerful and the Peaceful; the nationalities never matter.

We are peaceful people. We revere our non-violence and our respect for all life. But we should never yield; otherwise we may one day face the same fate as our other peaceful brethren - the lovely people of Tibet.

Free Tibet from Chinese oppression,
PS: I think I have just been marked by the People’s Republic for my pro-Tibet stance. These guys apparently block content with the help of Google [Et Tu, Brutus?!]

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Illusion of free will

A concept not accepted by many because that would mean that man is not in control of what is to happen to him. It would mean we have to accept that there are many random forces acting on you in many ways that make you steer in the directions, not necessarily of your a leaf in the wind.

I believe that I choose everything with respect to me.
Although, I admit, that of late, that belief is getting shakier. I ranted and raved in this very blog of inertia and time being ripe for changes that would take me to the next level.
What I didnt see coming, in my expectation for a staircase, was hundred floor elevator that moves at the speed of light. Now, although rising high is a good thing, the ingrained paranoia wonders "is this too much of a good thing?"
While still battling that, the next surprise rolls in, hardly giving me enough time to even take it all in. Oh and this one is a good thing too. And yeah, they are mutually exclusive.

Decisions Decisions...
pro-cons analysis, SWOT listings...all that funda still falls short when its time to take a step in any of the 2 ways.
Then you realize what you knew all along; there was never any choice. Ever.
You only go the way that is for the greater good, a popular choice of the ones you care about.
This cannot be termed sacrifice, for you cannot say for sure if you'd have struck gold if you had gone the other way. Also, there is a good chance that the path that your people are urging you to tread in may be the one path that leads to your personal destination.

This is the point where I lament, and todays theme is : "Why do good things come in mutually exclusive pairs" or "Why can't I have the cake and eat it too?" [what is the point of the cake other than eating it?]

A new phase is starting, the one I chose with the illusion of my free will. I accept the consequences. It will literally be a new world removed of anything I find familiar.
I am brave or I hope I am. I will face things the best way I can.
If I am a pawn of destiny then I will act with the thought that I am destined to be the best I possibly can be. Still human enough to be scared of new things, but not enough to be deterred by them.

Fighting for control of my life,

PS: No, I am not getting married.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Why he couldnt sleep...

"A little guilt, goes a long way" - says Trevor Reznik to Maria (the name of the holy mother) and just about sums up the psyche behind the very interesting movie - "The machinist"

Having seen the fight club, you know what is coming when Ivan (the guy who does not exist) comes into the life of Trevor who is -
a) suffering from insomnia for over a year,
b) rapidly losing weight,
c) Having very fixed movements in a lonely existence,
d) Writing notes to himself.

But still we
need to appreciate the effort put in by Christian Bale to get into the skin and bones (for there is nothing else) of his character.

There are 2 women in his life- a lover (Stevie) and a mother(Maria), her little boy Nicholas, the cheerful psychopath Ivan and the men in his factory, But lots of suspects that will fill the hangman puzzle of _ _ _ _ ER (Tucker, Miller, Mother... ??).

Ultimately, Trevor finds redemption and sleep when he embraces his guilt (that has caused all this trouble all along) and turns himself in.

Although 'guilt trips' are discussed so much, it does not do justice to the impact it has in the life of a person. How much of the guilt is shaped from nurture, from nature, morality and societal effects and just how much is plainly voice of the invisible component called a conscience?
All these questions raised themselves when I saw this movie.

Plus it creeped me the slighest little bit because I find it hard to sleep sometimes and I dont know why...

Time to take a trip,