Saturday, March 3, 2018

No Sympathy Only Violence

Surviving a storm in the ocean,
or the darkness of the universe.
Here’s a verse, to express an emotion.
One that breaks a heart,
one that leaves a scar.
It’s a dying star
that becomes a wish.
I wish I saw one today.
It shines, it shows,
it reveals the way.
A way out for
tears that break down,
in your empty lap.
A smile that’s somewhere lost,
in the communication gap.
It’s all melancholy.
Nothing holy.
It’s a cruel world and you stand there.
All alone, gazing at the sun,
with your naked eye.
It shows no mercy, no sympathy.
No matter you are human or not.
No matter you are happy or not.
No matter you are alive or not.
The sunshine hits you hard,
deep within.
Your soul craves for more pain,
and the clouds refuse to rain.
What more can the universe conspire?
What more can be furious than fire?
You feel the rage? Frustration? Wrath?
Or did you forget your math?
Who do you think outsmarts us all?
Who listens to our prayers in silence?
Do you feel you are heard enough?
Or do you feel there should be violence?
Only violence.
To live a life of suffrage.
To die a death of an outrage.
Or just survive like a ray,
till the dawn of the night?
There cannot be any more anguish,
I wish!
But, the truth is bitter.
Life is no longer better.
Without you.
Or without me.
The singularity just doesn’t seep
in the minds of a poet.
So the entire world seems like a deep abyss
of an unknown unrest.
It kills you.
It fills you
with the most innate feelings
of love.
But now it’s all over because,
such is life!

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Religion Marketing

It all started with a handbook created in each major religion. Though there were many other handbooks that propagated the idea of peace and salvation, these ones really topped the chart, just because they were the first to be published. First-mover advantage, huh.

Anyway, as the mankind progressed (or regressed), they began to fall in love with their religion (which is quite normal). Further, every religion felt the need to outgrow other religion (which was again, nothing different from the rest). How can just one ideology of “peace” be conveyed in different ways by different religions, was the paramount challenge. That’s where the creative thinkers, the mavericks, the eccentrics bathed in the spotlight. Someone somewhere created a concept of “riots”. The person challenged the very nature of peace. How can peace exist without a little unrest? They are like two sides of the same coin, aren’t they? There can be only one possible outcome. There can only be one religion. That was the entire hypothesis on which the cynic operated. So, what did that person do? He filled people’s minds with doubts. A human brain is only fragile when it comes to external forces. Internally, it can take blows and explosions similar to a nuclear blast (hypothetically, and metaphorically). Pain, rage, anger, wrath, darkness, were all inbuilt in humans from their birth. The cynic just triggered those negative energies by striking the right (rather terribly wrong) chords to create a perfect imbalance. NOW WE’RE IN THE GAME! It was all about the numbers. Who has the most followers? It was a sort of Ancient Era Social Media War, backed by highly political agendas.

The war took many ugly turns through the passing time - Holocausts, Plagues, Assassinations, Famines, The Great Depressions, and so on. Darkness challenged every religion in every possible way. Not many religious leaders could solve the problem. They just created an invisible conduit to channel their outrage through spreading infectious doctrines of their mindless philosophies. People in every generation, in every era, knew that peace could be attained. But, none of them succeeded because “religion” always overpowered “spirituality”. Religion always disguised itself as a “spiritual way” to attain Nirvana. The religious leaders failed to relay this ideology throughout generations. Religion became more of a weapon instead of a shield. Something that I believe “Gods created” now seemed like something like just another product/service in the market available for sale. In some places, religion is directly marketed where they accept cash/cards as payment. And in some, it is sold through surrogate advertising. Some religions make you dive into Holy Water, some make you sacrifice non-vegetarian food, wear a thread and grow a ponytail. Some religion makes you kill animals in the name of God and to an extent, indulge in conscience-free polygamy, even without seeing the woman’s face. And if someone wants you to join a cult, they’d even want you to sell your soul and sign the bond with your blood. The payment methods vary, but everyone wants you to buy their version of “peace”. Many kingdoms have fallen. Many governments have been toppled. Many human and non-human lives have been lost. Just for the sake of making their religion the bestseller in the world. This is the extremist’s angle. Looking on the harmless side of this business, here’s another perspective –

There are religions that have created innumerable foundations in the name of God. They are laundering millions and billions, just to evade tax. There are fake religious leaders who have become a laughing stock with their ridiculous actions. Some arrested for rape, some sitting in their ivory towers and shooting Fatwas at anyone and anything who/which doesn’t please them. Some simply declare their religion as the best in the world and nonchalantly sit on a golden throne. They even dare to preach the world about poverty, while they collect heaps of cash as a donation from billions. These ironical states of affairs are all sadly funny (yet another oxymoron). Sure, there must be a comic version of every religion. Or else, how could one read such serious books which aren’t fun at all? All this brings me to one vital question: Is marketing of religion necessary at all?

YES! Because not every religion was created with the same intention and not every human being is the same (except for your seven doppelgangers throughout the world). Religion can give humans a reason to wake up in the morning every day. It can make humans feel grateful for existing. It can fill them with an equal amount of rage. It can invoke every emotion – the one they have while they watch a movie. But then, religion should just be a way to live life. It shouldn’t empower them with energy that can destroy another human being’s belief systems. What religions are doing today is, they are manufacturing goons who act more like “Loan Recovery Agents” rather than “Torchbearers of Wisdom”. Imposing a religious belief on another human being has become a fashion and people have accepted it as their inevitable fate. Though everyone has the right to choose who or what they wish to follow, some of them find it impossible to go against the religion they were born into. On the flipside, some sacrifice their entire lavish lifestyle to become one with God. It is entirely their choice to become what they want. Nobody would stop them. But again, nobody would want to lessen the number of followers in their religion. There is a number game going on – who reproduces the most number of children in their family (read religion)? Is anyone still playing this? What’s the ultimate prize? Is there a coupon system? Is there an exchange?

Yeah! Speaking of exchange, the exchange (conversion) rate in religions is increasing drastically these days. Take a wild guess, why? RIGHT! Caste-based advantages offered by the government. Nobody today feels proud to be born in General Category because all the perks would have been swallowed away by the OBCs and SC/STs. If you ask, what’s the catch for buying the particular religion here’s a carrot. That’s how you get easy money and easy conversion ratio. Just play your caste “Trump” card and you’re walking away with wads of cash. “Do I have to pray every day? Do I have to circumcise myself? Do I have to remove the Holy Thread that’s on my body? Do I have to become spiritual?” NO! Just change your name and religion in the Application Form and BOOM! No! Don’t take it literally or we will get stereotyped as terrorists. But, we don’t kill people based on their religion, right? We don’t discriminate. We are spiritual beings who have reached self-actualization. Is spirituality free? Or do we have to pay a premium to have it? Nowadays, spirituality too has become highly commercialized. There are temples created by religious foundations that look like a replica of a multinational supermarket. There are illiterate, yet “religious” humans hiding in deserts and mountains learning how to operate guns, rocket launchers and heat-seekers, more than learning simple acts of kindness. There are people sitting in the highest corporate chair, and marketing their idea of “Religion” through a media that’s corrupted with insolence. There are organizations that run purely on religious fuel. Faith-based marketing is estimated to be a trillion dollar industry in itself. Religious Tomorrowlands, Miracle Performances, Religious Resort Living, Mega Pilgrimages, etc. All seem to be worthless without religion (and money, of course).

There are people still trying to figure out their career path and surrendering themselves to God, just because they are too weak to do anything on their own. Rather, there are people seeking help from God because the world isn’t as kind as they imagined it to be. True! The world is not imaginary. It is real. And reality sucks! And what’s real? Religion = God? Or, Spirituality = God? Or, Everything = God? Or, Nothing = God? Though “Religion” is a fast-selling product in the market, it is also the most used, misused, abused product in the market with a variety of brands. Though the products have all the brand identity, brand image, brand recall value, and even globally acclaimed brand ambassadors, they lack one common element – conviction. If the book had instructions on the usage, many lives would have been saved. Rather, it should have had just one simple instruction – “Don’t be a douchebag to anyone.

Thursday, February 15, 2018


कभी पुछा है झरनो से,
वोह नदियां बन जाती हैं?
परबत को चीर देती हैं?
वोह किसीके प्यास को बुझा देती हैं?
वोह बारिश की दुवा नहीं करती हैं?
अपने हर ज़ख्मो को छुपाती हैं?
ज़िंदा हो अभी तक,
अगर पुछा नदी को,
जवाब उसका यही होता है.
नदी को समुन्दर से मिलते देर नहीं लगती,
अस्तित्व अपना पल भर में खो लेती.
जब तक बहते रहोगे,
तब तक शुद्धि से चहकते रहोगे,
जब तक निर्मल दिखोगे,
तब तक अपनी कहानी खुद ही लिखोगे,
जब तक संसार में रोष भरा रहेगा,
तब तक तुम्हारे अंदर नीरव कोष रहेगा.
ये असंभावना को संभव हो सकता है,
अगर पुछा नदी से,
तो नदी चमकेगी,
सूरज के किरणों को हीरों में बदलेगी,
हम सबको यही कहेगी,
आशा करो,
ख़ुशी मिलेगी.
निराशा तो सभी करते हैं,
तुम बस बहते रहो,
और खुशियों के आसुओं को बहाते रहो!

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

“Who will pray for us?”

Perhaps, this is a very relevant question to be asked by most of the women nowadays. I was asked this question for the very first time by my wife and I honestly had no answer. I began introspecting and I questioned myself, “WHY?” Why don’t we, men, do it like women do? This must have been a medieval practice where women pray for men’s health, prosperity and long-life. There are rituals that compel women to fast all day, go to distant places of worship and offer prayers, before sunrise and after sunset, etc, etc. When women at home are ailing, men, do provide financial support, moral support and all kinds of support, but there are no such rituals that reciprocate the rigour what women go through. I might be speaking with half-experience and half-knowledge about the context, because I am at that point of life where I am not considered fully experienced or fully knowledgeable unless I go through everything that I am questioning.
Crossing the age of thirty has its own advantages and disadvantages. Many friends and family members of my age would agree. Though everyone must be going through a battle of their own, but the question remains, “Who will pray for women?” There was a time when I was unemployed for almost three months and everyone in my family was praying for my job. In every family, the job of men is always the first priority. It’s considered to be OKAY, if women don’t work. They are kept aside as “Default Contingency Plan” to take care of the “growing” family in the future. It is their duty to look after the family, manage household chores, keep the house neat and clean, prepare the kids for their homework, tidy up the wardrobe, attend family functions around the globe (if necessary) on behalf of men and whatnot. The bigots in the male dominant society have made certain rules that create ripples of revolution these days, if not followed religiously. I can even guess the answer for the question, “Who will pray for us?” They would reply, “Why should we?”
It’s not that women do not deserve equality or men do not deserve to be cared for. Today’s women do not blindly follow men into the pyre. They see everything and know even more. I don’t feel ashamed in admitting that women are smarter than us. But, not every man feels likewise. There are some, living in stone-age who thinks they are above the law; even God. There are heinous rapes, murders, domestic violence happening across the world that proves this mindset. And, somewhere in one tiny corner of that world, there are men who respect women and treat them like Goddesses, and there are those who give birth to “Angry Goddesses”. They are born to be annihilated by women someday. I feel, we men are a greedy breed. When in pain, we pray for the pain to go. When our family is in trouble, we pray for us to get out of it, and when we are happy, we are blinded with joy and forget to see everything else around. Some pray for more happiness, and some forget to answer the very question women have been asking all this while, “Who will pray for us?”

It’s not a very philosophical question. It’s a crystal clear, dead straight question, and that’s how the answer has to be. “I will pray for you. I won’t let you suffer alone. Whatever qualms you are facing, I will be with you. I will do my best to make you feel better. I won’t avoid the little things that bother you or make you happy. I will see to it that you smile every day. I will pray for your happiness, your success and your long-life. Because, I won’t leave you so easily, so soon.” That’s the answer we should be willing to give unhesitatingly. The prayers should never be gender-specific. The world laughed at the Mayans for predicting the apocalypse in the year 2012. But, the very people who turned those predictions into a laughing stock are outrageously violent and lethal when someone tries to put an end to an already dying age-old superstitious belief system. This ferocity should end first. To a generation that’s inspired by gangster movies, sex, gore and blood doesn’t seem like a bad thing. It’s seen as an extreme sport. To put a dent in such a convoluted universe, it takes more than just thoughts and prayers.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Iron Rose

So, you are made of metal,
and proved your mettle.
Kudos, dear friend!
You’ve done a great deed.
You’ve freed yourself
from dreadful greed.
But, I’ve been in cages,
and written pages,
about evil sages,
for ages.
Where do you think
my heart lives?
It bathes in crimson red
and not baby pink.
The bars in the cage;
the ribcage
is made for the dead.
Well done, my friend!
You won in the end.
Perseverance persevered.
Love; severely severed.
Emotions are a life peril.
The stories; written with quill
Oh Friend, do not be afraid,
you will succeed, to persuade
death with a lovely charm
because love, causes no harm.
“Come hither to me”,
it says with open arms,
ready to bulldoze
the pretty and gritty

Friday, January 19, 2018

I feel infinite

It’s the stars, and my scars
that steal the light, heal the heart.
It’s all there is
It’s all I am
I feel infinite.

It’s neither the sky, nor my eyes
that’s raining or draining me of life.
It’s all love in the world there is
It’s all me.
I feel infinite.

Where’s the string, and the ring
that brings me peace and brings together my pieces?
Music is all there is
It’s all I listen.
It’s all I am.
I feel infinite.

Oh dear God! What is love,
on this earth and up above?
Faith is all there is
It’s who I am
It’s all me.

I feel infinite.

Friday, January 5, 2018

It's Different

It’s different
how the world looks at you
when you don’t play
by their rules.
It doesn’t let you stay
sane amongst the fools.

It’s different
how the world works.
When you work hard
to survive,
it stops working out
for you.

It’s different
what the world makes you do
when you’re all alone.
You either become an obstacle
or a stepping stone.

It’s different
what the world gives you
when you make it big.
You lose something great,
yet call it an achievement.

It’s different
what the world teaches you
when you think
you know it all.
You learn to fly high,
yet struggle to even crawl.

Before and after science: Vital signs of a fallen world

 It’s not easy living in a world where colours differentiate between good and bad. It’s hard to live in an era that defines you by your colour, caste, creed even after 70 years of its independence. Though we proclaim ourselves to be one of the most developed countries, but deep inside, we are still that hungry old vulture craving for dead meat. Science and economy might say that we would be a superpower by the end of the year 2020. Even our former President of India, urged the whole country to spread our wings and set it on fire, but in a metaphorical way. But, we are a sensitive breed. We take things in its literal sense and we take offense easily. Because, we have nothing better to do, right?
Science evolved through ages and we went from tablets to laser treatments, but our ideologies on religion, caste and sub-caste, and their sub-sub-caste have become fragile than ever before. The country has done great deeds as far as scientific explorations are concerned. They have reached the moon; even crossed it and landed on Mars. But, the reason we are creating a religious apocalypse on our land, is because of our thinking. I may not be an expert in educating people about religious doctrines. I may not know the intricacies of any caste, why and how they were created. But, one thing I do know for sure, and the whole world knows, is that, the world won’t develop if there’s peace. Chaos is the fuel for progress. Even if an artist wants to create a masterpiece, he/she has to disrupt the creative thinking process in order to design something extraordinarily magnificent. This ideology doesn’t apply to politics. It doesn’t appreciate beauty of positive vibes. The reason we still lack behind is simple – we don’t let science decide our religious inclination. We have to accept what we are and that’s getting difficult in these days too. Why do we succumb to easy violence? There are some vital signs that show us that we are living in a fallen world –

We are easily offended
It is not that we are weak, but it is our sentiments. It’s the same analogy that says, “People don’t kill, guns do.” We are a country with population that has given the Americans and British, a decade full of nightmares when it comes to employment. On the contrary, we also hoard a population that doesn’t have any jobs or have chosen not to work at all. Reason – they get handsomely paid for leading some of the most controversial protests and dig for content online and offline from where offense can be taken easily. And who pays for creating this entire ruckus? YEAH! You got it right!

We are a greedy, insecure breed
No matter who runs the business, who runs the nation, or who runs the world, everyone thinks that they could have done it better, if they had a chance. It’s not the position they are interested in, but it’s the greed for the perks attached to it. Nobody wants to develop a village and bring it at par to the metropolitan cities. Instead, they invest millions and billions in developing a city that’s already developed. For instance, Mumbai had local trains functioning perfectly well. The introduction of Metro did lessen the burden on local commuters. But, so did BEST; and monorail. The authorities might have their own reasons to justify their investments. But, did it do any good? The stampede at Elphinstone Road Station is just an example of what really the authorities care.

Creativity has no value
There was once a man who made an impact by protesting differently. He chose non-violence. I wouldn’t say he became the “Father of our Nation” for his creative approach, but I appreciate the creativity he chose to implement. I there were more creative ways to protest. Blocking the roads, torching public and private transport, and causing inexplicable hindrances to public in general, have seriously become a passé. And even if someone tried to conduct a ‘peaceful protest’, authorities would just laugh it off and treat it as a joke. Why do you think stand-up comedians these days are jailed more often than any corrupt politicians or government officials? (Read vital sign #1) Their lack of creative understanding hangs on one side of the poetic justice. On the other side, is the brain-dead justice system performing a ballad of war-cry. The Censor Board bans every movie that points out the loopholes in our country and promotes movies that films maximum cleavages. When the Censor Board Chief was taken over by a person who was eponymous to creativity, the whole country had high hopes that the future of Indian Cinema was about to change, but in the end, even he turned out to be an upscale Pahlaj Nihlani (statement copied from a tweet).

There is no life
Whether it’s about the safety of women, roaming at night (or their freedom to do so), or safety of children going to school, or even about elders going on a pilgrimage - None of them have a choice to live their life freely. The male-dominated society has very little to offer to the safety of women. It is always the women’s fault for being born a woman. The misogyny in this country has no end because we all want our sons to carry the name of the family forward. But, if their son’s sexual orientation is not in place, he dies too. Every old-mentality person in the country who rules the constituency; the chair; and the rulebook, has to go. Only then, there will be change. The country with the second largest population in the world is shy to utter the word - SEX in front of their children. That’s where the education system takes a colossal descent. They skip the “Life Process” chapter from text books. “How do we pay our taxes” is not part of our curriculum, but “How to draw a rhombus” is. When these children grow up, they will become a flagrant generation full of misinformation or a curious breed that’s hungry for sex. In the race to make our children hip, well-versed with the trends on social media, we lose on feeding them with family values and keeping them in tandem with the harsh reality of the world. Either way, we are at a tremendous loss – the serial rapes led to the loss of faith in humanity, the education system led to the loss of childhood and most of all; the loss of respect for elders. Because, in the end, they are the reason for us to become what we are today, right?

After everything that has happened in the past, and everything that’s happening today, one thing is crystal clear. No amount of scientific explorations can find a cure for the chaos caused by religious outfits. Religion, in itself has its own atmosphere. People living in that planet, eat, live and breathe the air of ignorance. Change is something allergic to their system and talking to them about logical progress is Greek and Latin. On a lighter note, there are people in this world who can even speak Greek and Latin, literally.