Friday 19 November 2010

Religion, Menstruation, Frustration.

So, what's your religion? Every social networking site gives you the option to flaunt your religious views. Facebook friends will post a religious scripture everyday, telling you what a commandment has to say. (At such times, I have to question myself, is he/she actually on my friend list... why!) Close friends would probably ask you, 'Are you religious?'

My answer is that I don't know.

Right from when you're very young, you're taken to a 'place of worship', you're taught a 'way of worship', you're taught a 'way of life'. Or you learn. Because you see others doing it. You see your mother or grandmother or aunts going to the temple, you see your father or grandfather or uncles sporting a vermilion mark (tilak i.e.) on their head, you see a room in your house where according to your religion, Hindu idols and Geeta or Quran or Bible or Guru Granth Sahib is kept.

And when someone asks your religion, you answer what you have been taught.

There are many people who will, to the end of their lives, answer this question the same way. Reason? They will never question what their elders tell them with respect to religion. They will never question why you have to worship a fixed number of times each day. They will never question why you have to wash your hands before appearing in front of an idol/touching a holy book, or why you cover your head. But these do not disturb me to a very large extent. Mostly, because I ignore them. No, not the questions, the supposed rituals.

But what does disturb me is the fact that they will never question why every month for four days their mothers/wives/daughters are made to keep away from kitchens and the so called 'places of worship'. That they will never question why the women folk in their lives undergo discrimination over something which, given a choice, they would never choose; and something which is natural, as natural as natural can get.

When I learned of these things, as every girl does, my first reaction was amazement. Amazement at how low some people can get. That they have the audacity to term me, for four days, unfit to worship at that altar, where otherwise I am supposed to bow and pray, and offer my servitude. That they have the audacity to instruct me on what I should do and what I should not do, because they think they know better; and because they are rules.

Rules: something I haven't been fond of, ever since I learnt how to break them.

But, ok, let me ask you a few questions, you know, not because you're going to change my attitude, but just to see, how much lower can you really get. Humor me.

Most religions suggest isolation during 'those days'. So, you mean that for 4 days, I should sit and stare at the ceiling? Like I am in prison, because I have committed a crime and I am a threat to the society; because your pea-size brain thinks I am impure and as a result whatever I come in contact with, I will contaminate it.

Anyway, we'll gloss over this one, because nobody gives a damn to it these days. Women work at all sorts of posts in every sphere, and there's no way they're wasting their 'leaves' for stupidity.

Next, most scriptures do not let you cook food. So, you mean, that I can control the economy of the world and I can control the crore employees that my company/organisation employs (Hillary Clinton, Indira Nooyi, Chanda Kochar) but I can't fix myself a plate of pasta? In the earlier days, in bigger households, where you had lot of housework to do, resting and not cooking during those times made sense. Today, all I have for you are expletives that I will not state here, because unlike you, I have been taught manners. Manners, you know the thing you require to build relations, the things which are the actual mirror to a personality, not the baseless ones like your hypocritical philosophies.

My folks do not believe in this. So I'm good.

Next, they don't let you enter places of worship. Now, not exactly the way to create fans, as I am sure you would agree. So you mean, while I am required to pray twice (five for Islam) a day normally, I am for four days, not eligible to touch that idol or that holy book, because my aura has a lot of negativity and dirt, and that would spoil your environment. Now had I been a cigarette, I could've agreed to this, because when I am burning on the inside uttering the choiciest expletives for you and your level of soch, I might've had a smelly aura, that could've spoilt your environment. But then I am not one, so we won't delve deeper into that.

My way of showing that I so don't care about what you believe in: I shun every religious place of worship in the world! Where you say you won't admit me for 4 days a month, honey, I say I won't admit you in my life for a single moment.

Having said that, let me add on. The earliest scriptures, the Vedas, (as far as my internet search revealed, i haven't read them... yet ) do not say anything about this. And I believe, that every so called religious book is a farce.

And did you know, there actually is a Menstruating Goddess in India. Want proof?

When we're menstruating, the body is weaker because we're losing a lot of blood. Of course, the discomfit can't help. Obviously, it's not by choice. So when you see a PMS alert, it is the frustration of this lack of choice, that is causing that alert.

Another grouse I have is that people refuse to discuss these things. Because they should be in the closet, knowing fully well how stuffy it can get in there. So before you choke, unsolicited advice which is also common sense: get out of it. So when I put this as a topic for GDs, don't deride it because you think at 19-20, people are too young to have an opinion about it. Otherwise, because of you, they will never have one.

Coming back to my religion, I am disillusioned. I believe in The Secret, and try to follow it, because it is so free of anything that even remotely reeks of religion. I believe that what goes round will come round, but I know that YOU or your sorry rules, will have had no hand in it.

P.S. If this sounds acerbic... the reason is... it is.
P.P.S. I have been wanting to write this for the past 3-4 months, but because I wanted to do a bit of search, I had postponed it. And now that I have researched, every "rule" I have stated is true to the best of my knowledge.
P.P.P.S. If you're someone trying to make me change my point of view, my suggestion, don't bother...

Added later on her request: And oh, totally unrelated: Madhuri Iyer aka Mads's new URL is http://arienthoughts.blogspot.com

Monday 15 November 2010

Mumble Jumble.. lots of it!

I suppose there's really no point in my apologizing for the absence, first coz I am not sorry, and second coz there's nobody to apologize to :P

And FYI, I am writing this post for myself, and not for you. It is to get some things out of the system.

If I have to describe the past few months of my life in one word, it has to be busy. And now it is tired, fatigued, and with no end point in sight. It's just one thing right after the other. I'm not complaining... yet!

CAT is finally done with, not to my satisfaction, but anyway, it's not coming back. Up ahead are the other exams, campus placements and the remaining university exams... sigh!

The blogger in me has been forced to sleep, and mind you, not for the lack of topics, but for fear of spending too much of time researching, something I do tend to do. I actually laughed when I saw that the number of followers of my blog had increased. Who follows inactive zone, I wonder...

Am I sorry for not blogging for this long?

Frankly, no.

Do I need to justify my absence?

I don't know. Not to anybody else, I suppose. But just for me, I feel some things in life are more important than the others, and yes I resented the comment to the contrary.

And, inspite of being absent, I think I am a little chary now... sugar coated words, false praises, affectations... watching from the sidelines can be very advantageous sometimes.

And in the middle of things, maybe I am rediscovering some of the dormant creativity, with a new Cybershot, (Sony TX-1) jiska muhurat hua hai, 3 months after being bought! I plan to play around with it a bit... joined flickr to set the ball rolling, and I hope I'm going to keep at it.

And on the book reading front, things have been quiet, but I still managed to finish two, The Glass Palace by Amitav Ghosh and The Confession by John Grisham. The former again impresses with its details and after The Hungry Tide and this one, I think Amitav Ghosh is a must-read author on my list. For the latter, this was only the second John Grisham book I read, but it makes for a good read; a little saddening story, but then who said laws are flawless, of course it's the US law system he's talking about.

Movies, my to-see list grows by leaps and bounds... and I am missing some really good ones! :(

A huge advantage of having diligently prepared the word lists for CAT is... you can use heavy vocabulary without people realising upfront if it's a praise or an insult *evil grin* So keep that dictionary handy, you're gonna need it... *smug*

For the rest, check the pic, because the pic says it all...