Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Sinfully Yours.

In the very ordinary human life I have lived for my 28 years, I have felt, said and done a lot of things considered radical and not-so-ordinary for the people around me. I wouldn’t say all of these people matter. But some of them do, and very rightfully so, whether by me giving them that status in my life, or by virtue of my birth.

I do not call my life ordinary because it has been uneventful. It has been extremely eventful, more so, in the recent past – to the extent of providing a plot for a thrilling and super-racy bestseller. I call my life ordinary because like most other human beings, I have played with and been played by the seven deadly sins, as they’re very famously or infamously known.

I don’t know if this makes me a lesser mortal. I am certain that what follows is not a confession to help me go to heaven. I am also dead sure that this is not to tell anyone about my clandestine affairs with these vices and the pleasures these have given to me. Factors beyond my control have taken charge of the way I should live my life, and in retrospect, I want to know how these relationships have shaped me and the way I conduct myself.

I was always easily angered. I learnt to control it as I grew up and began realizing that it affects my close ones more than it does me. Over episodes of exercising control in the worst of situations and learning to use breathing techniques and humour to sidestep getting my mind passionately entwined with WRATH’s twisted and sadistic form, I can safely say, I have moved on. There are recalls, and they’re not pretty. But WRATH is like a drug, injecting itself into my system sometimes, to haunt me, to make me do things I don’t want to do, and to make love to my destructive alter ego, making it blossom like a parasitic thornbush… poisoning me, making me bleed inside. The sting of the pricks hurting for long after it is gone.

GREED for success in whatever I do. The ethicality of the means and the ends both matter to me. And in this case, my sense of ethicality is quite dictated by general world views of what’s right and what’s not. Cheating during exams, bribing, sabotaging of another’s efforts are just a few no-no’s for a self-respecting a person to accept anything she doesn’t deserve. GREED for more… Knowledge, love, money, respect and all the good things in life. But all of it earned, not snatched or demanded. GREED drives me. Call it ambitiousness, call it madness or call it a personality flaw, GREED drives all of us. I think my longest and most fruitful affair has been with GREED, bringing out the best in me, driving me to get ahead.

It’s close cousin, ENVY lies dormant in me, waking up shaken and agitated only when I am worried about losing what’s dear to me. Invidiousness has never been a problem for me, for coveting what rightfully belongs to another is not something that comes to me easily, or even with effort. It would only lead to discontentment and unhappiness. I’d much rather earn what I deserve. For if I have that ability, I deserve better and I know I will own it someday.

As much as I have tried to love SLOTH, it has never managed to make me feel as loved in its lazy hold, often leaving me alone and lonely on dark nights, while it has gone on to seduce the world around me, into peaceful slumber. Its touch has left me fitfully aware of my sometime over imaginative, sometimes intuitive sub conscious. SLOTH and I share a love-hate bond, with each trying to smugly outdo the other, playfully running away from each other, while yearning for each other.

My best friend through thick and thin, my closest aide at all times, food for comfort, food for joy, food to feel at my best, food to sustain me, food to thrill me, to tell me about places I haven’t set foot on, food to heal… I love GLUTTONY. Looked down upon by my gender, laughed at by most as a weakness, food is my route out of any problem, and into a whirl of some satisfying emotion. And I do not hesitate in admitting so. The tastes, the flavours and the aromas play wickedly with my senses and entice me into living in pleasurable sin forever.

So what do I say about LUST? A word that scares the conformists away, makes the traditionalists cringe and has lately become the standard one word definition of immorality. I LUST– for life, one without rules that tie me down. I LUST – for love, pure and pristine. I LUST - for a lover who will love with for who I am. I LUST – for knowledge of all that eludes me. I LUST – for peace, of my mind and in my world. I LUST – for comfort in the truth that my life is for me to live. My self-indulgence may be sacrilege but I revel in it. Living with LUST is heady. It’s intoxicating and it is addictive. For now, no matter how much I try to go back into the problem free days of abstinence, LUST pulls me back into today, with more push than ever, to strive for a life free of conventions.

In loving and hating all these alter egos, I definitely have not forgotten my love for myself. VANITY has kept me sane. VANITY has let me decide how to treat my other six aberrant dimensions. To have me look good in front of others, but definitely not to deceive; to know that I am right, although not by putting someone else down; and to keeping outdoing myself, only to keep myself ranking highest and the best in my own eyes is my VANITY taking charge of my life. And how it has dictated my life’s decisions! My silences, my speeches, my actions have all been slaves to my VANITY. The only times it has lost is when I have forgiven the wrongs done unto me by the loves of my lives. But now, like a deeply bound, but wounded soul sister, it has reasserted itself, speaking for itself and protecting our honour, whenever I begin to stumble to forgive all those who have hurt it. Ours is a respectful and respectable liaison, bordering on blind reverence. My deepest relationship yet.

The seven sins and my interactions with them define me and they have created my identity. The varying degrees of our interplay with them form our characters, making each one of us different from the other. Had we all been the truly “pious” sorts, we’d all have been mirror images, rendering the world predictable and lacklustre. Dharma, religion and spirituality should lead the way, but allow for pragmatic means of drawing inferences. I am again not claiming to be an authority on the subject; far from it. This is just my supposition in a world where I am the lord of me.

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Wednesday, August 18, 2010

I grew up being told I am free
I grew up being told I have to choose for myself
I grew up being told I am responsible
No wonder I grew up with misunderstandings, and being misunderstood

Day in and day out, as I make my life’s choices
I struggle to understand what is more desirable
To do what I would like to be seen doing
Or that that I would like to see myself do

My coterie defines me, is my identity, I am told
Oh my life has become such a reprehensible charade
As I shamelessly flit in and out of roles I am born into
As I shamefully admit to myself my dual existence

An uncanny paradox is my story
For among the numerous characters inside me
And the various people outside I aim to keep pleasing
A loneliness still engulfs me, closing in on me more by the moment

I panic, I splatter and sputter, coming up for air
Only to be pushed beneath that overpowering surface of artifice
By the doppelgangers who have gradually taken over my life
Sucking up to everything I hold dear

I cling to that fundamental part of me; the tenacity clawing into my flesh
Tearing the sinew and bruising my heart and mind, body and soul
The frightened two-faced visage retreats into its once naïve, vivacious shell
To lie forever in bloody filth… scarred by its self-inflicted deceptions

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