Thinking out loud

Thursday, July 06, 2006


A creeping sense of despair and ignorance has taken me over. I've been reading Suketu Mehta's Maximum City. Here's a man who claims to have met Bal Thackery and asked him personal questions, has spoken to Chhota Shakeel, has spent several days with the top hit-men of D-Company. He has Vidhu Vinod Chopra as a personal friend and a dance-bar dancer as a friend. Here's a man who claims personal interaction with Gulshan Kumar's murderer. That is just two years after he has returned to the country. I spent the last 4 years here without a clue to what goes on in this city. I wander out, lost, onto my terrace. My head reeling with a new perspective of this hybrid city, New York and Los Angeles rolled into one. The wind is gusty and the rain gods have held their fury for a day giving us respite from the continuous downpour. I look across lake Powai, at a shimmering Hiranandani colony. I could be a writer I think. I should have been one. But then, how little I know and how much courage it would take to try and find out and more courage still to write it down. A friend complains about how he cannot understand what to do about the girl he loves. His helplessness is genuine, but it seems so trivial, so immaterial. How would it matter. The world seems so complex. Have spent the last few days trying to understand monetary theory, financial markets. There seems to be so much at work here. So much on the surface and perhaps so much more under the covers. And then suddenly the moon breaks out from the clouds. The city melts away and my attention is turned towards the heavens. Suddenly, even the gangsters, the financial markets and national politics seem trivial. There is the explanation of the universe which is still missing. There is the eternal question of who we are and why we are here. Somehow, suddenly, the quantum- and astro- physicists seem to be the most important people on earth. They are the ones trying to answer the hardest questions. Yet here I stand, knowing nothing, reaching out with open hands, grasping nothing. With what little more I learn, my appetite grows. More. More I scream. I wish to move out of my body and spend the rest of my life just watching the world; absorbing it, every detail, every nuance; learning the ways of the world without having to be part of it. Gathering every last bit of knowledge to be had yet without a desire to use it. A dangerous desire it is at this age and I cannot understand the source of this desire; but then knowledge of the self is perhaps the hardest to have, awarded only to the truly blessed....


  • Do you know about Sherlock Holmes perspective of "knowledge"?

    It summarizes to: When what you are going to work on is very limited, why bother about the rest of the world, unless it'll influence you directly?
    Consider this: Holmes didn't know Copernicus' theory about the sun being the center of the universe.

    What do you say now?


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:30 AM  

  • Yes, and he also took cocaine injections. What I mean is that he's not a model to emulate in every sphere of his life.

    More importantly, as I say in this post, I would perhaps even be satisfied by just knowing everything and passing on different parts of it to those who need it. That would be my life's work. Manas helped me narrow down my goal from being an encylopedia to be an index into one. That should be good too :)

    By Blogger Parijat, at 3:44 AM  

  • Yes that's right i understand oneself is the most difficult job to do.....although it may seem trivial to many people who have no idea what it is....perhaps that is the reason that the one's who can achieve self realization truly are worshipped by rest of the people in the world......

    By Blogger Anand Singh, at 12:36 PM  

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