Today is the World Philosophy Day, a friend reminded
me in the morning. That friend is a philosopher. He has been a professor
of philosophy for most part of his life. Great man he is like Immanuel Kant.
The only one great person in my life who knew me from my infantile
adolescence and stayed with me until now, the autumn of my life.
UNESCO observes the third Thursday of
November as the World Philosophy Day, I learnt after I received the message
from Prof. What does philosophy mean to ordinary mortals like me? [And you, may
I dare to ask?] Philosophy died long ago. Poetry died a little later.
Prof and I were students of
philosophy together at The
Retreat in Yercaud [Tamil Nadu, India] in the early 1980s. My early
twenties. His too. But he was a mature person unlike me. I was silly. So I didn’t
learn much philosophy while he learnt too much and became a Doctor of Philosophy.
What surprises me is that he has continued the friendship till this day in
spite of my congenital silliness in contradistinction to his acute maturity. I
wonder why he continued to take interest in me in spite of all the falls I had
on my way.
Is he the real philosopher? Like
He may prefer a comparison with Jesus
perhaps because he is a Catholic priest. Was Jesus a philosopher? If Jesus was
born in Greece, he would have been a philosopher, I think. It wasn’t easy to be
a philosopher in the Jewish-Arab world, especially in those days. Even today
can we expect any philosophy from those places where Jesus grew up and preached
and teached [let me take this Shavian liberty with linguistics if only to
honour Shaw on this day of philosophers – ah, I love to see Shaw turning in his
My life is reaching a Shavian dramatic
climax and there is no romance of the final Judgment Day in my philosophy. But
my nights get disturbed by what happened in my past. That’s natural, I think.
In our old age, we look back and wonder why we were like this. Does your philosophy
agree with me, Prof? You can tick me off saying this is psychology. My problem
is that I dabbled in too many things and lacked what you all call a focus.
I should have focused. On what?
Egolessness, I guess.
And I missed that. That’s my failure.
The failure of the particular spermatozoon that won the stupid race which was clapped
on by ignorance about contraceptives!
Shaw would tell me that it was a scientific
problem with a nanosecond… a competition in which you won and millions lost
out. And Prof would call it a miracle. My philosophy begins with the loss of
millions and the idiotic miracle that