A Quest on Overdrive … :)

An eccentric rambler on life's lessons and mercies, found and lost… :)


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A Woman …

Am I, am I.
And glad of it.

I’m Daddy’s Girl, still Growing Up
And I wonder if I’ll ever be
The Right Age 🙂

I’m that Little Girl yet
Who hasn’t given up on dreams,
And Carousel Rides 🙂

I wish I was stronger.
But then I might give
Mr. World a run for his money.
Thank you. I am happy this way 😀
For now. 😛

I’ve lived Sepia Dreams
And coloured them bright 🙂
I have my reasons and seasons 
And most times, I am defiant 😀

Today, too, like other days
I celebrate me. And you….
All of you, who be humane
Who loves and respects another,
Especially a woman; for then,

You truly live.

8 March, 2013
Wishing every reader here, both men and women the best of the day, and of life, as you walk through the world, sharing your respect for everyone, especially women. Happy Women’s Day.
And for a change, I shall not excuse myself for a self-aggrandizing post, linky linky one at that 😀

Listened to, as the first song of the day, “Woman” by John Lennon. Magic 🙂

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Being Humane

This post has been picked by Blogadda  for its Spicy Saturday Picks! Thank you Blogadda!

Yet another March 8th, in a day’s time. 2012 this time. Time to start wishing women one knows “Happy” Women’s Day. Time to preen and pride oneself on being the fairer/weaker/stronger/gentler sex. One whole day, and few days leading up to it, and a few days after, one ponders, and I use that word with the full weight it comes with, on what women do/want/mean/emote and how they survive/ exist/live/manage, most of the time awing/ inspiring/ demeaning (here I mean others who look down upon her 😛 ) other womanly traits, other women, and , but of course, Men. Capital Letter “M”, for the “proper” persons they are. Hmmmphfrrrrr !

This year, I choose to simply admire and comment on what I know, not think. Of women, of men, of humanity. The usual yada yada on why is it only on this day you talk / write / speak/ express argument, notwithstanding (phew whatta word :P), I still choose to write.

I remember reading on Leenuka Reddy’s FB update a couple of months ago,

“Each morning when I open my eyes I say to myself: I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn’t arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I’m going to be happy in it.”
~Julius Henry “Groucho” Marx.

It struck me then, each time I had a “down” day, only I could choose to make it better. And it became a sort of mantra “I not Events” I’d chant to myself. So onward to what I meant to write about 🙂 (As usual, I’m digressing. Sigh. I can never be prosaic, that is for sure- giveme a Haiku to compose, and I’ll do it, but prose? Dear me!)

I know for a fact that this world has so many feminists, and I don’t mean women, who shriek violently piling curses on all men, because they are men. Nopes. I mean feminists who are women and men, for they are humane and sensitive, and open minded and culturally zombies, because they are so accepting of any and every human. For all the goodness they have within. For all the love shared, openly. For the respect given to each other, for who they are , not who they want others to be. For Acceptance. For Forbearance. For the Charity of their thoughts. And most of all for the Courage to show their true feelings, and wear their hearts on their sleeves. Practically all the women bloggers who come by here, I know for a fact are one 🙂 And as for the men, I must mention Hitchy, Tito, and from comments that have touched me deeply on others’ posts, Bikram, GeeVee, Kislay, and ever so many many more. A feminist is humane. Just that. And no, one cannot be defined as humane, if one wants to “control” “judge” and “restrict” a particular sex because of tradition and convention. Bad idea, old idea, not my idea of humane. And therefore, by association, not my idea of a feminist.

I recently attended a book release function, where a cousin, Krishnakumari, Senior Sub-editor, Deshabhimani, in Thrissur, was releasing her book, in Malayalam, “Samarapaathayile Pennperuma” published by a Collective for Gender Justice called SAMATHA, a group of 29 women. (The title refers to the wonderful women who have been involved in rising against authority and against injustice, in society, not just of the Leftist Movement, but in general) Two of the invitees were persons she had interviewed. The entire book contained bio sketches of women who had undertaken such rebellions, revolts, strikes and mutinies against social injustice, successfully or otherwise. The proceeds of the book were to go to helping one of the women written about, whose name is Ittyaannum, (In The Hindu, dated 7 March 2012, read about her!)an illiterate common labourer, now elderly, 80+, to help build her house. She shared her experiences of being brutalized by the police who were hell bent on suppressing the revolt of the Left/proletariat workers on the farms, and paddy fields in Kerala. A simple woman, with the deep sense of injustice happening, and how she took it up, with no help from her husband or male relatives. The other invitee was Devaki Nilayangode, a woman of “higher” caste who also stepped out of domesticity to participate in the movements for justice in History (His story… there was much discussion on the chauvinism in the subject nomenclature too 😀 ) The book is in Malayalam, and it will take me a long time to finish it, being a slow reader in that language; but read it I will, and hopefully complete it soon enough. A positive this year, for Women’s Day.

This year I also want to remember and acknowledge someone I see daily, who I look up to, endlessly, for the sheer strength of her resolve and her determination to see that life works out, especially for her children. I write of Chandrika, my help at home, and how she has surmounted odds, against fate, an unhelpful family and husband, and society, to walk on, proud of having got both her kids to college, with one of them about to graduate as a Medical Lab. Technician, and the younger one as a Commerce Grad. She continues to make me feel that nothing can ever but ever get you down. Nothing. There is always a way, and it is always UP. I’d shared a bit about her on our other group blog, “No Gender Inequality” which is on hold at this moment 🙂

I think too, of the everyday hassles women have to face, and how they cheerfully, and without rancour go about their daily work, be it as an SAHM, a sweeper on the street, an executive in a Corporate Sector, a college student, a school girl, a teacher, a woman. Just that. Women, unfortunately, have that inbuilt mechanism to take it all. Sigh. If only we did not have such a high threshold of tolerance I sometimes feel. My take, that is all. And while men too may have all these attributes, they face less than a fraction of a percentage of the trouble women go through. Undoubtedly so, in mainstream life, in India, anyways. So, a salute to the ordinary Indian woman, for being able to survive a single day, each day. And to all the men who do help out. Salutes to you all too. Among them my brothers and Dad as well. And my sons 🙂 🙂 And my two nephews 🙂 🙂 They know better than to be otherwise 🙂 🙂 Thanks to Mom and me 😛 😛 And my wonderful and lovely sisters in law 😀 !

The other day, we had this discussion, among some of our colleagues, on how girls these days are probably the ones who are making all the trouble! How they Dress! And how they talk and touch the boys! And someone said, you see it’s the clothes. Perfect opportunity for me to get on my soapbox 😀 I spoke. Or rather ranted. And I also said, the only reason why it is happening, the violence, is that women no longer keep quiet. That, I feel is the one main reason. If we kept quiet and “listened” perhaps there would be less trouble? Maybe. And then again, Maybe not. What we needed was to be more accepting. Let go the deadweight of things said to be/ thought of as “proper”/”not right” for girls. Why only girls? Sigh. And we teachers can make that difference. I tend to get on the soapbox in class, when I get a chance, because of some prompt in a lesson, and egg on a discussion :D!

And yes, I want to dwell too, on a prayer for all of us, The Serenity Prayer, which has helped me many a time, and I hope will help anyone who faces a paucity of courage, who needs wisdom, and has to make the choice of who to be, and what to do.

May God grant me the Serenity

To Accept the things I cannot change

The Courage to change the things I can

And the Wisdom to know the difference!

I hope each day that dawns will bring home to each of us, the need to be more humane and accepting in our lives. Live, and let live 🙂 Break down in-built prejudices and open our hearts and minds 🙂 I hope women can walk in the land Tagore once beseeched the Lord to grant:

“Where the mind is without fear, and the head is held high
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way into
The dreary desert sand of dead habit
Where the mind is led forward by thee into ever widening thought and action
*In that Heaven of Freedom, …”

I hope we all can meet.

God Bless!

6 March, 2012

Edited to add:

Related post on a Feminism tag.

Also, the reference to Ittyennam… Ittennam… the 80+ lady whose biography has been included in the book I have spoken of up there, has been featured in The Hindu, Kochi edition. Unable to get a copy of the e-paper to share here, but will do so, once I get it!  

Got it! Sharing 🙂 Thank you Sneha 🙂


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A Conviction that Garnered Courage!

From this morning, I have been watching and wondering, and praying that all the protests everywhere on the expression of exercising our Constitutional Rights, would go peacefully, and successfully.

And successful this was, the Delhi meet, which was the result of the courage, and conviction born out the indefatigable heart of Namrata, supported admirably by others, as you will find at these blogs:

Indyeah’s

Aneesha Mathur’s

Poonam’s

Also, here is the video, from CNN IBN, with Namrata being the Citizen Journalist of the day!

Had to share it here :

http://www.ibnlive.com/videos/85356/cj-raises-voice-against-moral-policing.html

Congratulations and Kudos to all, for a job well done 🙂

****

Also, in the Indian Express, on the edit page, the link of which is given below is a very uplifting article, though its overtones sometimes make it rather flippant :), about a Gandhian ideal being sustained, in the loin cloth, being metamorphosized into a pink panty 🙂 It made for good reading as I waited for the day to unfold, this morning 🙂

Can’t seem to get the exact page clearly, so here is the link at which you will find it; the title will make it easy for you to get it 🙂

It’s on Page 11, of the Saturday’s edition, on the Edit page 🙂

http://epaper.expressbuzz.com/NE/NE/2009/02/14/index.shtml

The voices were heard.

Thanks to the PCC, the Protest Marches, and all the peaceful displays of affection for All 🙂

And, as Indyeah has mentioned, there have been instances of sheer violence by some SS workers, and in Ujjain, a couple beaten up, forcible marriages. But just think, a lot more that could have happened, especially in Mangalore today, was actually prevented. I think that counts for a lot.. a lot.

And this is just the beginning. That is what is most uplifting.

Kudos and Congratulations to all who wished so hard for this upliftment, the thoughts count as much as the actions 🙂


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All for Love!

Just read this morning’s paper, where Mr Muthalik , of the Ravan Sena, of the Mangalore Incident fame, has decided to play Cupid himself!

Apparently, their agenda is as follows. Five teams have already been made, and they will roam the city on 14 February, with a hidden camera, a priest and of course, their goondas [ooops, party workers!].

Anyone seen dating, cosying up, cuddling, will be, immediately, ON THE SPOT, married off, with the help of a priest, a piece of turmeric tied to a string [to act as mangalsutra, “thali”]I suppose].

On being asked about minors who are found, he said they would be counselled and sent home [after beating them up no doubt!]

I wonder if anyone asked him about the lovers being of different faith? Would he have priests of different faith accompanying him? I wonder about that!

All those who wish to be married, therefore, here is your chance! Mr M will foot the bill, and no hassles, he will even register the marriage there!

Talk of culture; talk of freedom; talk of…..

Heck! What more does one want???

6 February, 2009

Edited to add:

Do read this, and lend your voices and hearts, if you can 🙂


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For Martyrdom, Again!

January 30. Martyr’s Day. The day to observe in sombre, peaceful and committed manner our homage to the martyrs to our Nation, who gave their lives for, and protected, its Freedom.

A day that, 61 years ago, shook not just our country, but the world in shudders of grief, at the senseless killing of a great advocate of Non-Violence.

Sixty-one years on, how much further are we?

India blossomed in the newness of her liberty; she floundered, lifted herself, braced herself with her peoples’ bountiful courage and devotion. The common man’s and the respected leaders’.

A green revolution.
A white revolution.
Glasnost, Indian ishtyle.
Economic growth.
Privatization in several spheres.
Loosing the stranglehold in some areas.

But tightening them where there should have been none at all.
For now comes revolutions of other kinds.
The Saffron revolution.
The Neo-talibanization – Indian ishtyle.
Gagging voices, even in blogosphere.
Goonda Raj.
Revering culture, ala Manusmriti brand.

Progress?

Progress. Back to where we came from, when our Freedom was at stake! Only back then we knew who the enemy was, and where. Almost always, on the other side of the border.

Now, it is the face next door, the man/woman, sitting beside you on the bus, the person who passes you by, on the road, a group of inconspicuous youth, engaged in seemingly normal tasks… it could be anyone, around…

And suddenly the wondrous colours of life become just one. The shade of mistrust, of envy, of narrow minded intolerance, of villainy, of fear and anxiety.

Whither to, India?

Each Martyr’s Day, we honour those who have laid their lives down for the motherland.

This Martyr’s Day, shall we have to pledge to walk down that same road, to preserve the Freedom of Equality, of Opportunity, for the Girl Child? For the young Indian woman? For women? For, to re-hash a quote from the memorable George Orwell’s Animal Farm; All men are Equal, but some men are more equal than others! The first paragraph on this site should give you an inkling that Orwell was certainly prophetic!!!

We simply cannot bow down to this oppression. For that is what it is slowly but sure turning out to be. On the one hand, the promotion of benefits and growth of the Girl Child is touted with much fanfare, and on the other there is this dominion over girls who want to be just another normal girl in the twenty-first century!

Let us lower our threshold of tolerance to injustice, and raise our hands and voices against those who are intolerant.

I remembered this old song by Bonnie Tyler, and here is the video. Do modify the lyrics from “He” to “She” 🙂 What the song captures is certainly what we need…A knight in shining armour, :), which finally, has to be us. Each of us!! To slay the Dragons of the Hopeless Kind, retrograde, pervert, and regressive!!!

(Cannot embed the video:( An error message keeps popping up! So here is the link)

http://in.youtube.com/watch?v=7f_HsjpSVaI

Holding out for a hero
She’s got to be strong
And she’s gotta be larger than life!

Can we, this day, become that hero, for our own sakes? For the sake of a progressive nation? For the sake of humanity?

Today is also observed as Peace Day is many places, I do believe. Let us hope that good sense and good will to humanity will once more visit human hearts and the world will live as one!

For Peace!

30 January, 2009