Being Thoughtless

I don’t like thinking anymore, and so stopped it. Yes you read it right. I have stopped thinking. There are no similar-sounding verbs to “thinking”, still for those with impaired hearing, or exaggerated disbelief on their faces, I repeat – I STOPPED THINKING!!

I know what the Indian philosophy/yoga types reading this stuff are thinking. They are imagining the descendants of Ekta Kapoor, three hundred years from now, making a television serial on me, the saint who stopped thinking – thoughtlessanand baba (the pun is, of course, intended), in which the last episode shows my soul, portrayed as thin yellow glowing gelatin-like ellipse, merging with another much larger yellow glowing gelatin-like ellipse, obviously representing the God’s soul – paramatma. (Disclaimer: ellipses could easily be ellipsoids, depending on the advancements in television technology of the time) But nothing like that has happened – I have no gelatin around me right now, and the last ellipse I saw was Yuvraj Singh’s wagon wheel, digitally representing the Kingston stadium, where India defeated West Indies. Now that you have pained your mind enough deciphering the large comma-studded sentences above, I’m sure some of you might like to stop thinking. And in somewhat similar fashion I stopped thinking. Sorry to disappoint the glowing-gelatin-ellipse-lovers.

Oh! and I don’t love Ekta Kapoor. I’m thought-less, not mad.

However, the thoughtlessanand baba has economic value. I am sure friends, families, parents of some of you seek or have sought some sort of spiritual support from some sort of spiritual beings. The world needs babas. From management to spirituality you need the babas. And like in spirituality, so in managment, the less the baba thinks the better he/she is. So the world surely needs a thoughtlessanand baba. And for you, I am sure you would be more comfortable with your friends, families, or parents seeking support from a modern baba like me, than the traditional saffron clad ones. See I sold it to you as well. I know you are thinking where does the “economic” part come from. Well the thoughtlessanand baba, like all other babas, wont charge a fee. He’d only help grow the pie. With less thought there is more pie. Now let the Peter Drucker‘s of the world explain that to you. And if you dont like the jargon-filled books, and still need to get the “less thought, more pie” funda – watch the waitress, the movie I mean.

For those who still doubts the truthfulness of this post, I am sure this post itslef must convince you that I have stopped thinking 😉

PS: I did consider “Surrealanand Baba” as the branding, but that’s a bit too much disoriented for people seeking spiritual help. Being inconsiderate is something they are anyways expecting.

Creation Hymn – Rigveda

I consider the ancient tradition of knowledge in India, the most profound academic tradition ever. One of the basic characters of this tradition, is the unquestioned belief in The Veda as the ultimate source of knowledge. And so, I naturally tend to attribute the success of the tradition to The Veda.

Vedas are not a set of books containing a set of facts. They are a doorway into the vast human capability of knowing beyond what the organs can sense and the mind can think. They are a method that gives humans the great capability to act beyond ones physical limitations, to fulfill ones desire, to overcome what is destined. They are a song capable of evoking those human emotions which open the doors to bliss. Thus, they validate the divinity of humans, and proclaim the supremacy of human endeavor over any other force in nature.

They are an inquiry into the nature of truth itself. They are like a finger pointing towards something that can be perceived but not said. They are a necklace of pearls of wisdom, knitted together by an invisible thread. If you perceive the invisible thread, you know that it is a necklace. If you don’t, they sound to you absurd pieces of poetry somehow put together. This is the same invisible thread which connects two human beings, which enable one human being to empathize with another human being. Therefor, it states emphatically “एकम् सत् विप्रा: बहुधा वदन्ति” … the truth is one, wise men say it differently. Therefore, it welcomes with open arms, everything good coming from any direction… “आ नो भद्राः क्रतवो यन्तु विश्वतः”.

For me, the Veda is not the truth. Whatever truth is, is the Veda.

And, the Sukta, which I like the most in The Veda, is the नासदीय सूक्त, the creation hymn (Mantra 129, Mandala 10, Rigveda):

नास॑दासी॒न्नो सदा॑सीत्त॒दानीं॒ नासी॒द्रजो॒ नो व्यो॑मा प॒रो यत् ।
किमाव॑रीवः॒ कुह॒ कस्य॒ शर्म॒न्नम्भः॒ किमा॑सी॒द्गह॑नं गभी॒रम् ।।

न मृ॒त्युरा॑सीद॒मृतं॒ न तर्हि॒ न रात्र्या॒ अह्न॑ आसीत्प्रके॒तः ।
आनी॑दवा॒तं स्व॒धया॒ तदेकं॒ तस्मा॑द्धा॒न्यन्न प॒रः किं च॒नास॑ ।।

तम॑ आसी॒त्तम॑सा गू॒ऴमग्रे॑ ऽप्रके॒तं स॑लि॒लं सर्व॑मा इ॒दम् ।
तु॒छ्येना॒भ्वपि॑हितं॒ यदासी॒त्तप॑स॒स्तन्म॑हि॒नाजा॑य॒तैक॑म् ।।

काम॒स्तदग्रे॒ सम॑वर्त॒ताधि॒ मन॑सो॒ रेतः॑ प्रथ॒मं यदासी॑त् ।
स॒तो बन्धु॒मस॑ति॒ निर॑विन्दन्हृ॒दि प्र॒तीष्या॑ क॒वयो॑ मनी॒षा ।।

ति॑र॒श्चीनो॒ वित॑तो र॒श्मिरे॑षाम॒धः स्वि॑दा॒सी३दु॒परि॑ स्विदासी३त् ।
रे॑तो॒धा आ॑सन्महि॒मान॑ आसन्स्व॒धा अ॒वस्ता॒त्प्रय॑तिः प॒रस्ता॑त् ।।

को अ॒द्धा वे॑द॒ क इ॒ह प्र वो॑च॒त्कुत॒ आजा॑ता॒ कुत॑ इ॒यं विसृ॑ष्टिः ।
अ॒र्वाग्दे॒वा अ॒स्य वि॒सर्ज॑ने॒नाथा॒ को वे॑द॒ यत॑ आब॒भूव॑ ।।

इ॒यं विसृ॑ष्टि॒र्यत॑ आब॒भूव॒ यदि॑ वा द॒धे यदि॑ वा॒ न ।
यो अ॒स्याध्य॑क्षः पर॒मे व्यो॑म॒न्सो अ॒ङ्ग वे॑द॒ यदि॑ वा॒ न वेद॑ ।।

Translation by V. V. Raman, University of Rochester:

Not even nothing existed then
No air yet, nor a heaven.
Who encased and kept it where?
Was water in the darkness there?
Neither deathlessness nor decay
No, nor the rhythm of night and day:
The self-existent, with breath sans air:
That, and that alone was there.
Darkness was in darkness found
Like light-less water all around.
One emerged, with nothing on
It was from heat that this was born.
Into it, Desire, its way did find:
The primordial seed born of mind.
Sages know deep in the heart:
What exists is kin to what does not.
Across the void the cord was thrown,
The place of every thing was known.
Seed-sowers and powers now came by,
Impulse below and force on high.
Who really knows, and who can swear,
How creation came, when or where!
Even gods came after creation’s day,
Who really knows, who can truly say
When and how did creation start?
Did He do it? Or did He not?
Only He, up there, knows, maybe;
Or perhaps, not even He.

You can find alternative translations here: http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/rigveda/rv10129.htm.

Another translation is this: http://www.astrojyoti.com/NasadiyaSuktam.htm.

The anvaya of the verses is here: http://titus.fkidg1.uni-frankfurt.de/texte/etcd/ind/aind/ved/rv/mt/rv966.htm#RV_RVS_10_129_(955).

The title song of the doordarshan serial “Bharat ek khoj” was Hindi poetic translation of this Sukta only: सृष्टी से पहले सत् नही था.

This is best recital I could get: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PyrXdEi8i_I&feature=player_embedded (Though there’s not so good pronunciation, and pretty superficial translation). I’d post a better recital if I found one.

And, if you have patience you can look for the 129 Sukta of the 10th Mandal in the entire of the Rig Veda here: http://www.astrojyoti.com/rigvedamp3part1.htm.

Ghalib again

Posting Ghalib after quite sometime today. It is a quite well known ghazal, and represents a state of mind which I relate to quite often. Especially after meeting a few people. 🙂

बाज़ीचा-ए-अतफ़ाल है दुनिया मेरे आगे,
होता है शब-ओ-रोज़ तमाशा मेरे आगे।

[बाज़ीचा-ए-अतफ़ाल == child’s play] [शब-ओ-रोज़ == day and night]

होता है निहाँ गर्द मे सहरा मेरे होते,
घिसता है ज़बीं ख़ाक पे दरिया मेरे आगे।

[निहाँ == indistinguishable] [गर्द == sand] [सहरा == the desert ] [The line means, that I seem to be living for so long that the sand of the desert is getting created in front of me]
[ज़बीं == forhead] [ख़ाक == soil] [Again, the line signifies that I seem to have been alive to see the river erode the soil in front of me]

मत पूछ कि क्या हाल है मेरा तेरे पीछे,
तू देख कि क्या रंग है तेरा मेरे आगे।

ईमाँ मुझे रोके है, जो खींचे है मुझे कुफ़्र,
क़ाबा मेरे पीछे है, क़लीसा मेरे आगे।
[ईमाँ == integrity, truthfulness, religion] [कुफ़्र == irreligiousness, lure of the material gains] [क़ाबा == kaaba] [क़लीसा == technically is a Church, but used here to signify place where कुफ़्र happens]

गो हाथ को ज़ुंबिश नही, आँखों मे तो दम है,
रहने दो अभी सागर-ओ-मीना मेरे आगे।
[ज़ुंबिश == motion, energy] [सागर-ओ-मीना == the glass of wine]

Many Indian and Pakistani singers have beautiful renditions of the gazal. One of the more famous ones is by Jagjit Singh from the serial Mirza Ghalib. Here’s the clip on youtube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ybAJ2xsYd4A

Onwards and upwards

Life, I say, is like, well, Vicks Vaporub.

Didn’t you expect nonsensical metaphors here? You haven’t read my earlier blogs then. Please do. 😀

Okay, so back to Vick Vaporub. You rub it on your chest, your neck, around your nose, may be if you mistook it for Zandu balm, then on your head. You do it when you are sick. It makes you feel better. And it makes you better by evaporating itself, when it leaves your skin.

Life is something that you rub on yourself superficially. Haven’t you heard people (especially brown-haired, satin-skinned, beaming-eyed woman) telling fat nerdy bearded geeks – “You’re sick, Get a Life!!”. So typically those geeks would try and get a life… by rubbing it superficially… they’ll go and swim, play a game of pool, or watch a movie, or chase girls, play guitar, sketch, paint, flirt, write, drink, drive, act, debate, code, design, orkut (v), discuss etc… Drinking following driving in the above line is purely incidental. (To be legally safe, the author does not take any responsibility for the urges emanating in the readers mind) 😀

So yes, it seems they got some life rubbed on themselves. But they still feel sick. Because, life, like Vicks Vaporub, makes you feel better only when it leaves your superficial skin. When it evaporates.

But, why?

Because, it has to get in to you, to be able to treat you, to be able make you feel less sick. And it can get in you only when it evaporates, only when it enters your lungs through your nose. It opens up what is clogged inside. That something, which is preventing you from breathing freely. That something, which is making the head heavy. It enters you, settles down and you start breathing freely.

Life is also like that. There is nothing intrinsic about those get-a-life-actions that will give you a life. Let it be, putting some colors on a canvas, or some charcoal on paper, or letting the visuals of a movie reach your eyes, or letting your body float on a swimming pool, or writing poetry for a woman, or putting your leg hard on the accelerator while driving on an empty highway. There are no measurable units of life in any of those acts. They are just superficial rubbings. You have to let it evaporate, let it leave your body, and enter you on its own.

But you still have to start by rubbing it in, and have faith that it will get inside you on it self. And remember that it would not get in, if you don’t rub it, to start with. You have to make the effort and let it go, and have faith that it will enter you … relief will follow 🙂

Good punch line for the Procter and Gamble guys … right? “Relief will follow” 😛

So, life, like Vick Vaporub, being volatile, will leave your skin and go onwards and upwards, and finally get inside you. 🙂

So, what’s the conclusion of the metaphor? It is not new. Somewhere in the planes of Haryana, some 5,110 years ago, a saarathi told a dhanurdhar – “Do your job well” 🙂

It will pass

Last time I talked a bit about Tau. And here’s something from Zen:

A student went to his meditation teacher and said, “My meditation is horrible! I feel so distracted, or my legs ache, or I’m constantly falling asleep. It’s just horrible!”

“It will pass,” the teacher said matter-of-factly.

A week later, the student came back to his teacher. “My meditation is wonderful! I feel so aware, so peaceful, so alive! It’s just wonderful!’

“It will pass,” the teacher replied matter-of-factly.

I like their expression. 🙂

Being Useless

Someone found my previous post about ‘some page’ absurd, abuse of blogging, murder of humor and ‘useless’. I was thrilled, excited, and felt an immense feeling of achievement. 😀

That someone, is a nice and close friend, and well, is quite dumb. Usually it is hard to find intelligent people who are nice and close. So, I guess it is quite nice to be dumb, as long as you are nice. 🙂 And finding that post (and my blog in general) useless, is one of the lesser dumb things demonstrated by this friend. In fact, it is a pretty worthwhile observation that my blog is useless.

So, I decided to write about ‘being useless’.

Being useless, is probably, the highest form of existence one can think about. I know that people would not quite appreciate finding philosophical imports on a useless blog, of course, except those who find philosophy useless. 😀 So, I decided to quote someone else. And this quote is about someone who never liked to be quoted – Lao Tzu. So, here’s something indicating his views about being useless:

Lao Tzu was traveling with his disciples and they came to a forest where hundreds of woodcutters were cutting the trees. The whole forest had been cut except for one big tree with thousands of branches. It was so big that 10,000 persons could sit in its shade.

Lao Tzu asked his disciples to go and inquire why this tree had not been cut. They went and asked the woodcutter and they said, “This tree is absolutely useless. You cannot make anything out of it because every branch has so many knots in it – nothing is straight. You cannot use it as fuel because the smoke is dangerous to the eyes. This tree is absolutely useless, that’s why we haven’t cut it.”

The disciples came back and told Lao Tzu. He laughed said, “Be like this tree. If you are useful you will be cut and you will become furniture in somebody’s house. If you are beautiful you will be sold in the market, you will become a commodity. Be like this tree, absolutely useless, and then you will grow big and vast and thousands of people will find shade under you.”

I thought about it, and realized, that the tree is not useless. It is useful – you can find shade under it. But the point is – it is just not ‘trying’ to be useful.

Aaj Bazaar Mein

I have posted ‘intesab’ by Faiz Ahmed Faiz earlier. This is another one of his very popular poems. It was written during the rule of General Zia in Pakistan, and has a very distinct revolutionary fervor. It urges everyone who feels dejected of the happenings around him, to come out and get heard, inspite of the odds. And the feel is surprisingly similar to the spirit of Gandhi’s satyagrah, rather than that of call for a violent revolution.

आज बाज़ार में पा-ब-जौंला चलो।
चश्म-ए-नम जान-ए-शोरीदा काफ़ी नहीं,
तोहमत-ए-इश्क़ पोशीदा काफ़ी नहीं,
आज बाज़ार में पा-ब-जौंला चलो।
[जौंला == बेड़ी, shackles; पा-ब-जौंला == shackled feet]
[चश्म-ए-नम == eyes with tears] [जान-ए-शोरीदा == distressed soul]
[तोहमत-ए-इश्क़ == blame of love] [पोशीदा == hidden]

दस्त-ए-अफ़्शाँ चलो मस्त-ओ-रक्साँ चलो
ख़ाक-बर-सर चलो खूँ-ब-दामाँ चलो
राह तकता है शहर-ए-जानाँ चल।
आज बाज़ार में पा-ब-जौंला चलो।
[दस्त-ए-अफ़्शाँ == with swingin arms] [मस्त-ओ-रक्साँ == dancing merrily]
[ख़ाक-बर-सर == head to feet covered in mud] [खूँ-ब-दामाँ == with blood stained sleeves]
[शहर-ए-जानाँ == the beloved city]

हाकिम-ए-शहर भी, मजमा-ऐ-आम भी,
तीर-ए-इल्ज़ाम भी, संग-ए-दुशनाम भी,
सुबह-ए-नाशाद भी, रोज़-ए-नाकाम भी,
पा-ब-जौंला चलो
आज बाज़ार में।
आज बाज़ार में पा-ब-जौंला चलो।
[हाकिम-ए-शहर == rulers of the city (shall watch)]
[मजमा-ऐ-आम == flocks common men (shall watch)]
[तीर-ए-इल्ज़ाम == (so that you get) arrows of accusations]
[संग-ए-दुशनाम == (so that you get) stones of insults]
[सुबह-ए-नाशाद == (do so despite) depressing mornings]
[रोज़-ए-नाकाम == (do so despite) unsuccessful days]

इनका दमसाज़ अपने सिवा कौन है?
शहर-ए-जानाँ में अब बासिफ़ा कौन है?
दस्त-ए-कातिल के शायाँ रहा कौन है?
रक्स-ए-दिल बांध लो दिल फिगारो चल॥
फिर हमीं कत्ल हों आएँ यारा चलो।
आज बाज़ार में पा-ब-जौंला चलो।
[दमसाज़ == friend] [सिफ़ा == good reference, so बासिफ़ा == trustworthy]
[दस्त-ए-कातिल == murderer’s hands] [शायाँ == safe]
[रक्स-ए-दिल == heartbeat] [दिल फिगारो == with a broken heart]

For the whole last week, I have been haunted by Nayyara Noor‘s rendition of this song. You can listen to it here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Majaaz

Majaaz, the Keats of India, died alone, off heavy drinking, in a tavern in Lucknow. But he is probably one of the very few ‘progressive’ urdu poets, for whatever it means or whatever is left of it to mean. Best of his works are primarily romantic, with heavy-duty mushiness, like this one:

हदें जो ख़ींच रखी हैं हरम के पासबानों ने ,
बिना मुजरिम बने पैगाम मै पहु्चा नही सकता।

But I’m going to post here a very different kind of his poem, its called Awaaraa. If you concentrate a bit, you might find a second, and sometimes a third, level of meaning out of the lines. Here it is:

शहर की रात और मैं नाशाद-ओ-नाकारा फ़िरूँ
जगमगाती जागती सड़कों पे आवारा फ़िरूँ
गैर की बस्ती है कब तक दर बदर मारा फ़िरूँ

ऐ ग़म-ए-दिल क्या करूँ, ऐ वहशत-ए-दिल क्या करुँ

झिलमिलाते क़ुमक़ुमों की राह में ज़न्जीर सी
रात के हाथों में दिन की मोहनी तस्वीर सी
मेरे सीने पर मगर चलती हुई शमशीर सी

ऐ ग़म-ए-दिल क्या करूँ, ऐ वहशत-ए-दिल क्या करुँ

ये रुपहली छाओँ, ये आकाश पर तारों का जाल
जैसे सूफ़ी का तसव्वुर जैसे आशिक़ का ख़याल
आह! लेकिन कौन जाने, कौन समझे जी का हाल

ऐ ग़म-ए-दिल क्या करूँ, ऐ वहशत-ए-दिल क्या करुँ

फिर वो टूटा इक सितारा फिर वो छूटी फुल्झड़ी
जाने किस की गोद में आये ये मोती की लड़ी
हूक सी सीने में उठी चोट सी दिल पर पड़ी

ऐ ग़म-ए-दिल क्या करूँ ऐ वहशत-ए-दिल क्या करूँ

रात हँस हँस कर ये कहती है के मैख़ाने में चल
फिर किसी शहनाज़-ए-लालारुख़्ह के काशाने में चल
ये नहीं मुम्किन तो फिर ऐ दोस्त वीराने में चल

ऐ ग़म-ए-दिल क्या करूँ ऐ वहशत-ए-दिल क्या करूँ

हर तरफ़ बिखरी हुई रंगीनियाँ रानाईयाँ
हर क़दम पर इशरतें लेती हुई अंगड़ाईयाँ
बढ़ रही है गोद फैलाये हुए रुसवाईयाँ

ऐ ग़म-ए-दिल क्या करूँ ऐ वहशत-ए-दिल क्या करूँ

रास्ते में रुक के दम ले लूँ मेरी आदत नहीं
लौट कर वापस चला जाऊँ मेरी फ़ितरत नहीं
और कोई हमनवा मिल जाये ये क़िस्मत नहीं

ऐ ग़म-ए-दिल क्या करूँ ऐ वहशत-ए-दिल क्या करूँ

मुन्तज़िर है एक तूफ़ान-ए-बला मेरे लिये
अब भी जाने कितने दरवाज़े हैं वा मेरे लिये
पर मुसीबत है मेरा अहद-ए-वफ़ा मेरे लिये

ऐ ग़म-ए-दिल क्या करूँ ऐ वहशत-ए-दिल क्या करूँ

जी में आता है कि अब अहद-ए-वफ़ा भी तोड़ दूँ
उन को पा सकता हूँ मैं ये आसरा भी छोड़ दूँ
हाँ मुनासिब है ये ज़न्जीर-ए-हवा भी तोड़ दूँ

ऐ ग़म-ए-दिल क्या करूँ ऐ वहशत-ए-दिल क्या करूँ

इक महल की आड़ से निकला वो पीला माहताब
जैसे मुल्ला का अमामा जैसे बनिये की किताब
जैसे मुफ़्लिस की जवानी जैसे बेवा का शबाब

ऐ ग़म-ए-दिल क्या करूँ ऐ वहशत-ए-दिल क्या करूँ

दिल मे एक शोला भड़क उठा है आख़िर क्या करूँ
मेरा पैमाना छलक उठा है आख़िर क्या करूँ
ज़ख़्म सीने का महक उठा है आख़िर क्या करूँ

ऐ ग़म-ए-दिल क्या करूँ ऐ वहशत-ए-दिल क्या करूँ

मुफ़्लिसी और ये मज़ाहिर हैं नज़र के सामने
सैकड़ों चन्गेज़-ओ-नादिर हैं नज़र के सामने
सैकड़ों सुल्तान जाबर हैं नज़र के सामने

ऐ ग़म-ए-दिल क्या करूँ ऐ वहशत-ए-दिल क्या करूँ

ले के इक चन्गेज़ के हाथों से ख़न्जर तोड़ दूँ
ताज पर उस के दमकता है जो पत्थर तोड़ दूँ
कोई तोड़े या न तोड़े मैं ही बढ़कर तोड़ दूँ

ऐ ग़म-ए-दिल क्या करूँ ऐ वहशत-ए-दिल क्या करूँ

बढ़ के इस इन्दर-सभा का साज़-ओ-सामाँ फूँक दूँ
इस का गुल्शन फूँक दूँ उस का शबिस्ताँ फूँक दूँ
तख़्त-ए-सुल्ताँ क्या मैं सारा क़स्र-ए-सुल्ताँ फूँक दूँ

ऐ ग़म-ए-दिल क्या करूँ ऐ वहशत-ए-दिल क्या करूँ

जी में आता है ये मुर्दा चाँद-तारे नोच लूँ
इस किनारे नोच लूँ और उस किनारे नोच लूँ
एक दो का ज़िक्र क्या सारे के सारे नोच लूँ

ऐ ग़म-ए-दिल क्या करूँ ऐ वहशत-ए-दिल क्या करूँ

Ranbheri (the battle cry)

Poems are like beds. They come in all forms – from extremely pink, furry, mushy and soft to back-painingly rock hard. You can always add cushions to make them better. They can be used as decorative pieces in drawing rooms, without much utility though. And they seem unnecessarily clumsy when used as decorations. They have their own roles to play in love affairs (okay don’t look at me like that… they have nice and legitimate roles to play… you pervert). They can be hollow when they come, and the ‘user’ can put substance into them by his imagination. If you don’t want others to see a broken piece, you always have sheets to cover them.

And of course, you can sleep over them.

So here’s a poem which I wrote the day before, clad it in a big white sheet yesterday, and I slept over it the yesterday night. Take it:

पथिक! क्यों रणभेरी बजाता है?

बिखरे हुए इस राज्य को,
क्या जीत कर मिलना तुझे।
हारी हुई सेनाओं से,
क्या सोच भिड़ना है तुझे।

हराकर इन मृतों को,
क्या जीत तेरी हो सकेगी?
या तुझे भी जान निर्दय,
वह भी रुख कुछ मोड़ लेगी।

जबकि इन सब बैरियों को,
वह चुका है मार,
औ’ तुझे बतला रहा
बस निमित्त लाचार।

फिर भी पग क्यों लड़खड़ाते,
हाथ से गिरता धनुष क्यों?
ईश्वरेच्छा से बंधा,
हर एक युग मे यह मनुज क्यों?

कर बंधे हैं, चरण हारे,
दोष फिर भी स्वयं मे ही पाता है,
पथिक! क्यों रणभेरी बजाता है?

कर रहे इंकार शर अब,
चाप से ही छुटने को,
जबकी भौंरा भी विकल सब,
सौरभों को लूटने को।

क्या यह पहली बार है,
कि हो रहा है मन विकल?
कर रहा इंकार है अब,
प्रेरणा को भी निगल।

क्या देखा है तुमने पहले,
निमित्त को किसी,
किसी युग मे,
स्वयं को निमित्त मानने से करते इंकार।
या देखा है उसे,
गहरी सोच मे ड़ुबे
पहचानते टटोलते अपने ही ध्येय का आकार।

या फिर उलट कर,
जवाब देते, कर्ता को
अपने ही ।

क्या यह केवल,
इसी युग की सच्चाई है?
या फिर होता रहा है युगों से यही निरंतर।
या शायद,
प्रत्येक युद्ध के पहले,
मिट जाता है कर्ता और निमित्त का अंतर।

सारथी और धनुर्धर मानों,
जान पडते हों,
एक ही।

तीक्ष्ण दृष्टी है, सोच प्रबल,
फिर भी स्वयं मे कर्ता नहीं देख पाता है,
पथिक! क्यों रणभेरी बजाता है?

जब कर्ता की आवाज़,
हो जाती है पुरानी,
तो निमित्त खुद मे ही
खोज लेता है कर्ता की बानी।

गु्नगुनाते हैं सैकडो
अंतर मे छुपे साज़,
जब सुन पाता है वह
अपनी ही नई आवाज़।

पर वही आवाज़ें पुरानी और विकट,
प्रतिध्वनित हो लौट आती है,
और कानों के आकर निकट,
खोए विश्वास को समेट रणभेरी बजातीं हैं।

सच्चा युद्ध नहीं जीता
बाणों की पैनाहट से जाता,
धनुर्धर भी कभी क्या,
जीत का श्रेय ले पाता?

कुरुक्षेत्र तो केवल, गुँजती
टकराती आवाज़ों से बनता है।
और विजय ध्वज उठाने वाला,
निश्चय ही नया कर्ता बनता है।

और फिर,
वही निमित्त,
जिसने कभी स्वयं मे,
नया कर्ता खोज लिया था,
फिर से,
मूक धनुर्धर बन,
नई आवाज़ मे,
पुरानी प्रेरणा पाता है।
पथिक! क्यों रणभेरी बजाता है?
पथिक! क्यों रणभेरी बजाता है?

The Messiah

Once there lived a village of creatures along the bottom of a great crystal river.

The current of the river swept silently over them all — young and old, rich and poor, good and evil, the current going its own way, knowing only its own crystal self.

Each creature in its own manner clung tightly to the twigs and rocks of the river bottom, for clinging was their way of life, and resisting the current what each had learned from birth.

But one creature said at last, ‘I am tired of clinging. Though I cannot see it with my eyes, I trust that the current knows where it is going. I shall let go, and let it take me where it will. Clinging, I shall die of boredom.’

The other creatures laughed and said, ‘Fool! Let go, and that current you worship will throw you tumbled and smashed across the rocks, and you will die quicker than boredom!’

But the one heeded them not, and taking a breath did let go, and at once was tumbled and smashed by the current across the rocks.

Yet in time, as the creature refused to cling again, the current lifted him free from the bottom, and he was bruised and hurt no more.

And the creatures downstream, to whom he was a stranger, cried, ‘See a miracle! A creature like ourselves, yet he flies! See the Messiah, come to save us all!’

[Words: from Richard Bach’s Illusions]
[Image: Taken by me at Rock Graden, Chandigarh, 2006]