Monday, December 30, 2013

Faces of 2013


Janus

January is named after the Roman god of beginnings and transitions, Janus.  Janus has two faces, one looking backward and the other forward.   January is the time to look in both directions.

I am terrified and challenged simultaneously by this January, January 2014.  Because 2013 has been the worst year in my life.  In spite of the fact I am not new to the usual ups and downs of life. 

2013 was the year of FACES for me.   MASKS.  I had never seen so many masked faces in my life earlier.  I had never seen smiles that looked angelic but turned out to be diabolic – not even when my students cared to point it out to me.  Not ever to the extent 2013 undressed itself.

I saw more than half of my colleagues lose their jobs in 2013.  I witnessed the march of capitalism and religion, hand in hand.  They marched wearing the best saris or the best of cravats available in the market.  They marched on the bones of people they buried beneath the land they acquired in the process of marching.  And they recited prayers every morning and evening, prayers copied from the internet, prayers from Tagore’s Gitanjali and Hopkins’s adaptations.   They performed rituals from the Vedas and they sermonised with the help of “workshop” experts.  They brought in criminals as VIPs whom we garlanded and bouqueted.  And they raped us.  Raped us worse than what the western colonialists  did world over throughout modern human history.   And they made us take pledge every morning that we are Indians and we should love all Indians.

No, I’m not writing fiction.   

Ashvamedha is not fiction in India.  Not in America either.

This was the reality for a lot of Delhiites in 2013.

I look forward to a better 2014.

I look forward to Arvind Kejriwal. 

This is the first time in my life I’m putting my faith in a politician.

My hope, rather.

Janus had/has 2 faces.  Looking backward, looking forward.  Don’t keep skeletons in the cupboard like Narendra Modi, for example, so that you won’t have ghosts haunting you everafter. 

Can I have optimism still?

My optimism is simple.  I want to see faces.  

Faces. 

Faces, not masks.

Not the best cravat available in the market.

Hope.

Hope sustains.


“Let noble thoughts come from every side,” said Rig Veda. 


Wish you a Better New Year.


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32 comments:

  1. Sir, A post full of HOPE! Lots of wishes.
    May the New Year be fine for us all & for India too...
    May we see the better future through Janus & forget the past!
    May the AAP rise & shine & shut the mouths of the critics...
    New Year wishes to you & your family!

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    1. Thanks, Anita. I look forward to telling you a bigger story.

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  2. Wonderful post! I too have hopes for a wonderful 2014! :)

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  3. If one wants to know a person's true worth, give him a mask to wear. It's easier to catch him in the act then.

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    1. When masks begin to rule the roost, what will people without masks do?

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    2. Unmask the masked. One cannot live in a kleptocracy.

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    3. We live in a kleptocracy called India. Can you unmask it?

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  4. Happy new year Sir - very rightly said about masks and who we idolize without knowing the face we see is real or a mask.

    This yes has been very challenging and difficult for me - having to see both my father and my child falling severely ill, a tough time I had never been through and now I look forward to hope.

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  5. Happy new year!! I too hope for a better year ahead..
    (My knowledge of the political scene is embarrassingly shaky, so I will not comment about that part of your post...)

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    1. Never mind the politics, Sreesha. Let's look forward with renewed hope and vigour.

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  6. Wish you a very hopeful New Year too although I can't help being pessimistic about what is to come.

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    1. Do or die - what else is left, Brendan, when your very survival is at stake?

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  7. A wonderful post Sir..

    The year 2013 was not a good year for many of us ..but as 2014 is approaching let's have new hopes and dreams,,,happy new year to you and your family :-)

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    1. Let me reciprocate the wishes, Maniparna. I know it's going to be an extremely tough year ahead for me.

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  8. I hope you have a much better year Tomichan. The worse is over :)

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  9. 2013 has been a worst year to me as well... maybe the number 13 doesn't work out as it remains unlucky to me :P

    Anyways, loved this post! Wishing you a happy and optimistic new year :)

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    1. Thank you, Ashwin. Good wishes can work miracles.

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  10. 2013 was a super year for me...Full of new beginnings and new hopes. Hope 2014 continues the trend. Awesome post full of hopes.
    A very Happy New Year to you sir..

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    1. May you have equally wonderful new year, Preethi. And thanks for the wishes.

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  11. A great read! Like you, I too feel a glimmer of hope cutting through my cynicism. All we can do is hope that those eager faces can, and will be allowed, to remain unmasked.
    Hope you will have many reasons to celebrate in the year ahead.

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    1. I intend to create reasons for celebration, Madhu. Thanks for your wishes.

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  12. Wonderful post, Sir. Wishing you a very Happy New Year :)

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    1. Thank you, Deepa, and wish you too a very rewarding New Year.

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    1. Thanks Gowtham. May you too have a great year ahead.

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  14. Hoping for good times ahead. Happy New Year!

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    1. Here's me sharing your optimism and wishing you a wonderful new year.

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  15. Ah and on hope we continue to live! Fabulous post...wishing you and your family a fantastic 2014!

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    1. Let us not just live, Aditi, let us flourish. Wish you a New Year which will allow you to flourish.

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