Vasco cat stretched himself- in and out. Lazy cat! Doesn’t give a damn for anyone. He behaves as though he owns the place! My mother tried driving him away with a stick. He caught hold of the stick with his two front paws and started chewing it! Seeing that my mother’s expressions had softened, he rolled on the floor, mewing like a cute little movie-cat, scratching the nothings! I like cats. But I felt that- he needed to be restricted. Can’t blame my parents! They brought me up the same way as Vasco!
I switched on my laptop, today- and I was thinking of what was the great way to waste the today? I clicked on the “Indian” movie! What great dialogues by Sujatha! Pity I never read his works when he was alive! The movie “Indian” is one of the finest movies made by Shankar. If not for the heroines or the comedy track in the movie- it completely qualifies to be an art movie! I like the modus operandi of the murders “Indian thaaththa” commits in the movie! Amazing performance by Kamal Hassan. So simple but so effective! Manorama is a great actress. One scene- and she makes such a deep impact on you. Watching someone like her perform is an out- of- the- world experience!
Then, I watched “Roja”. But only when I was watching it- I remembered that today was 14th August and tomorrow the Independence Day!
Everyday had the same sun rising and setting on us. And it’s the same life- that dawns and wanes. I remember an old Tamil lyrics that reads along the line- “The sky is my Bodhi Tree- that teaches me a new lesson each day of my life”. It is a beautiful lyrics. But I wonder what the sky teaches me? Does it teach me not to ask questions? Does it teach me to do my duty as a respectable citizen of this nation? Does it teach me to bind myself to the society- chain myself to the system and be a silent spectator of anything and everything that happens around me?
The other day- I was returning from somewhere by shared auto. There was a limping woman, who was begging- as we were waiting for the lights to turn green. A man in a car got angry as she kept banging the glass window of his car and shouted at her. She left the signal- mumbling away all her anger- her limp was gone!
A country known for its hospitality! We are taught “Athithi devo bhavah”- when we are yet to learn to talk or walk,, by our grand parents or parents. And in the recent times, our Government too is trying to help us remember these lessons. And we do remember our lessons. We’d never forget them- would we? We have organizations like “Human Rights commission” to help sustain this valuable lesson. We are the kind-hearted masses- the largest Democracy, that believes that people change- if you give them a chance to change! We elect leaders who have criminal records- not once, not twice but many times- hoping that our belief in them would change them! Even if we are not in sync with our political leader- we simply refrain from voting. The Gandhigiri way of showing our protests. We believe in our justice system so much- that no matter how long it takes- 1 year, 2 years- 20 years, 33 years- we would wait. For we do not have any law that limits the duration of a trial! We- the dormant Democracy. The eternal believers. The kind- hearted hosts.
Vasco cat needs someone who can teach him some discipline. And to sustain discipline- one must sustain the fear of punishment. An iron rod- to stop him liking to chew the soft wooden stick. He needs to realize that the doors beyond the veranda is out-of-bounds for him. He needs to realize that he can remain a cute- movie cat, only as long as he remains outside the doors. None of his mischief would be tolerated the next time he commits it. We must stop being kind to him- though it would pain us- and help him realize that he doesn’t appear so cute when he makes mistakes. It’s in our hands to help keep our home clean. For if not now- one fine day- we would realize that there are more litters than us in our very home!
It’s time to pray again. Born the way we are born- we are believers by birth. And with that belief- that the sun sets each day and rises the next day- the belief that has clutched the core of our hearts for so long- I repeat the words of Gurudev- once more, in a prayer-
“WHERE the mind is without fear and the head is held high
Where knowledge is free
Where the world has not been broken up into fragments
By narrow domestic walls
Where words come out from the depth of truth
Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way
Into the dreary desert sand of dead habit
Where the mind is led forward by thee
Into ever-widening thought and action
Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake”...