Archive for June 2006

Late Lateef!

June 29, 2006

Yes, thats me. Late by chaar Hafta. Hafta opened on the 5th of June. Here I am posting about it now after its fourth issue is out. Anyways, better late than never I guess!

No, I shall not tell you what sort of a magazine it is, who are the other writers and what you must read (that, you must read me without fail :-), etc Coz’ that’s for you to find out.

Yours truly is part of the Metropolis team in the Hafta mag. This is a call to all bloggers, non-bloggers and will-be-soon-bloggers. If you have something to say about Mumbai city, your musings and meanderings, about locales and local trains, Monsoon, Marine drive or market (mayhem!), Shanghai or slum-bai, awe-inspiring or appalling features, your feelings, fantasies and frustrations……..just anything at all of this grand city mail me at surya[at]haftamag[dot]com.
If ‘Call of the mystic’ is not enough, here’s our clarion call. Now there, dont be late!!

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What religion is your car?

June 4, 2006

Husband: Honey, what about Black?
Wife: Nope. Denotes darkness, sadness, generates negative vibes.
Husband: the Red one?
Wife: Naah….Too bright….
Husband: hmm….hey, White looks good to me.
Wife: Very common. Our neighbours also drive a white one.
Husband: Green???
Wife: Sheeh….that’s a Muslim Colour.

The above conversation between a Hindu couple at a car showroom is based on a true-life story. Makes me think…..Religion, for some people, is in their bloods, in their mind, influences their thoughts, preferences, minutest wishes, whims and fancies. For many it also forms the basis of the most significant decisions of their lives like that of choosing a life partner.

A religion by definition is a superstition. A religion is the belief in a supernatural being or beings. A superstition is the belief in magic or phenomena beyond or outside of nature. A religious belief then is a superstitious belief.

What could possibly be more detrimental to a child than telling him/her over and over from the time he/she is an infant that there exists an invisible being who is disinclined to prove he exists but who is watching him/her every second and reading his/her thoughts. If he/she doesn’t believe in the invisible being he/she will be tortured for eternity? Yet we tell that same child that monsters/devils don’t exist so it’s silly to be scared of them. Here’s another bit of conversation based on a true-life story:

Dad: So, you want to be a doctor? Huh?
Daughter: Yes, dad.
Dad: hmm…..You must pray to God to give you the strength to be able to achieve your goals.
Daughter: But I am working hard for it. Isn’t that enough?
Dad: Oh, no no…..you must never say that again. Its only the almighty who’s given us all that we have. You must go to the temple regularly.
Daughter: But, dad…..
Dad: No more ‘Ifs’ and ‘Buts.’ Do as I say. Or you’ll never be a Doctor.

Some Observations:
The more dismal and desperate a person’s life, the more likely they are to believe in a God. Characteristically, people with otherwise empty lives, are the strongest believers. It gives them the false hope that there is a higher meaning to their gloomy and pitiable lives. The strongest of believers would admittedly be suicidal without religion and/or a God in their lives providing a mental safety regulator.
Religions seem to usually require God/Gods, Prophets/ Pundits/ Asetics/ Clergys. God is usually very powerful and influential. Not too powerful because then it might mess up convenient conceptions like free will. Too much God power makes bad things, wrong doings, and undesirable happenings hard to explain. The optimum amount of supremacy of God can be unclear, fuzzy and erratic but usually sanctions granting of certain perks, like an after life. This provides a useful motivational tool. God apparently talks through Prophets/Asetics. Prophets are like schizophrenics but since most lived before psychiatrists invented schizophrenia they were believed to be really talking to God.

Do you think your car, your husband, your pyjamas, his pyjamas, doodhwala, window panes at home, books, computer, crockery, dupattas, your bathroom slippers all need to be ‘your’ religion? Or do you think(just like I do) that religion is mental illness has nothing to do with the afore mentioned choices? By the way, is there a cure??

(The above is entirely the author’s stance on this sensitive matter. Read and question what is written above. Blind faith is for people who cannot think for themselves.)