Sunday, February 12, 2017

That Moment When You Feel Angry (but cannot do much about it)

Some people made me angry today. No, wait – that’s not true – from neither end. I should have really said that a LOT of people have been making me feel angry since quite some time now. Who are these people? And what in God’s name have they done to make me feel SO angry, after all? And since when? These are the three burning, urgent questions that are presently not letting you sit up (or just lie still) properly while you’re reading this. Let me fancy that you are shifting positions, or maybe rolling from one end of your bed to another, all because me – your beloved author (who they say does not exist, who they say is already dead and pushing lilies – or polluting the river Ganges – I am a Hindu, after all!) feels angry; like really angry; really, really angry. I would like to say that again: I feel very angry. Don’t get bored yet by all these repetitions of similar-sounding phrases. You see, I’m trying to make a point here. I am talking to you, my dear reader, from the other end of this page which unfolds at a time that is a bit tilted away from your here and now, towards the past. Believe me: that’s the only thing that separates you from me – time. You are reading this at your own lazy or slippery moment which will come at a later time than the one which I am in – at the moment of this act of writing. This is no bigger a deal than the separation that a caller has to afford when (s)he is making a phone call from the other end of the line. (S)he uses words from a language to articulate her/his fine feelings – well, I’m doing the same stuff here, expressing my very own boiling feelings through words borrowed from a language. In other words, both of us are doing a verbal exercise. It involves the use of words; it involves employing language – that finest of all human inventions – to communicate with a fellow human being. And such a real blessing it feels like, to be able to make another person – another sentient human being – understand how you think, how you feel, what you want! Praised be Vāg-devī, the Goddess of Speech, for she came upon my tongue, she resided within my vocal cord (and often on my fingertips which are typing these words now) and blessed me with the unique ability – among all the members of this big animal/botanical family – to so efficiently and effectively articulate my desires and emotions! Never does a human child feel so powerless in her/his whole life other than the time when (s)he cannot form a word, even if (s)he can perfectly find it from her/his father’s familiar mushy vocabulary, simply because (s)he cannot bend a few muscles the way they should be to utter that word, and as a result gives out a loud cry of protestation – even breaks into tears – oh, baby! That’s the reason why I am counting my blessings presently, and you should, too! You better count the numerous ways which you take for granted a little too much and a lot too often.      

But enough on the subject of human inventions and the Goddess’s intervention in bestowing them with the tools to innovate with. Let’s now get back to the much-debated (and long dubbed cold) topic of the Death of the Author. Do I sound like a dead person, now? Here, lend me some attention on this page. Do I sound like some dead cuneiform codex that you cannot make head nor tale of? Do not worry too much; I’ll probably turn into one when I’ve run my course in time – probably a few thousand years down the line (or worse, a few hundred, given the ever-increasing acceleration that Change has gathered in our times). But so will a species of dog – one that you find perfectly normal and classily pedigreed to pet in your own apartment – it will turn into a fossil in a matter of a few thousand years or more, a something that doesn’t look very different from a cuneiform codex to be honest. Profoundly sad (just pretending!), but true. So, rather than thinking too much about the future, where we may not be fortunate enough to cohabit, let us invest our time and energy on this mortal lifetime. I talk to you, I directly address you while doing so, you are listening to me and you understand me fairly well. I am using a tool – a language – to do so effectively, so that you don’t miss out on either the major themes or the finer details of my communiqué. Let us call this language English for the time being. Within the common user-interface that the English language is providing us, I can attempt to communicate that anger which I was ranting about since the beginning of this article (or letter, if you may) and it is quite expected that you will at least get a decent understanding of my situation – if not realize all of it. I will draw a very important distinction between ‘understanding’ and ‘realization’: understanding may or may not arouse an immediate response in you; but realizing my situation definitely will – it will compel you to feel empathy for me (if you are not outright evil, that is) and you shall feel as if you simply cannot do without doing something about the situation. Now I better remind you one more time that I feel very angry. I really do. And I cannot do much about it, except for talking about it. So what do I do? Well, of course, I tell you about it. At certain times it would not even matter if you are interested in listening to me, or even have got the time to listen to me – I will still do it somehow – just because you, another human, is readily available before me.                                      


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