“through the act of living, the discovery of oneself is made concurrently with the discovery of the world around us. . ."

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Moral of the story

(c) http://chennaitamilnaduindia.blogspot.com/

Subbu had commented in my post, ' Riding into sunset' that all my posts have a message; it could be true if one looks for a message. But yes, I guess a moral or a message appears in them. This is probably due to the reflective nature of my posts. That is my ego at work.

In the last post, 'Jack of all trades etc', I had said that my ego had taken severe beatings at times. The word ego is one among the most misunderstood words. We have given it a negative colouring. Mostly we mean 'egotist' or 'egocentric' when we say 'egoist'. I will not bring in Freud or Jung here, but my old Collins dictionary. 'Ego' is the self or the 'conscious thinking subject'. 'Egoism' is the theory that bases morality on self-interest. Coming to 'egotist', the negative sense of self-conceit or selfishness or self-centredness appears.

Sometime ago a friend asked me how I 'dare' to right such personal, intimate thoughts in the blog. I replied that, that I find a universality in many of my experiences is the reason. When I write about family matters, relationships with others, connecting with nature, of romance, of personal grief – when I write – it takes on a universal dimension. I realise that my petty problems or simple pleasures are not unique but common. In my poems too, I have tried to convey something more than the obvious. Like Subbu or Sandy if others too sense it, I am happy. I try to connect, you see. I share. This is egoism at work, not egocentrism.

Long ago in one of my solo trips to Himalayas, as I sat in the bus that rode through the foothills of the mountains, I saw a hoarding. It said – 'Share your Joy and Double it!' I do not remember whose ad it was, but given to solo trips, it struck me somewhere.

Today I gave away my spare 14” colour TV to a friend who lives in the forests. He is a Kani, an indigenous people. They have solar power, but no TV channel. He has grown-up children who would like to watch movies in a CD player. I gave him K's bicycle, old but serviceable which the kids in the hamlet can ride. My friend's family and mine know each other for more than 20 years. His daughter is at K's age. His father was P's tracker and guide during her reseach days. Whenever the city gets too much for me, I run away to this little patch of solitude in the woods.

I don't know about doubling my joy, I can't be bothered with that. But with a shy smile, hoping that it will not have a tinge of patronisation or condescension, I would like to imagine my friend and family sitting in front of the TV and enjoying the movies. I would like to imagine the little boys and girls vying for a ride on K's BSA Champ which would go jumping and hopping and clanging over the unpaved paths and the dogs barking and running after them. I would like to imagine their laughter, the laughter of freedom.

********** Balachandran, Trivandrum 6-03-2010


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Depends on with whom you share your grief. I have found dogs to be the best to share one's grief; they alleviate the pain.

  3. Bals, I guess you mean that share your joy and harvest more of it. But will sone one be willing to share grief. Im sure not

  4. You are correct in that judgement. But unlike the human lot the poor Canines do not expect gratification for their helping to alleviate your pain .

  5. Dear Balan Sir. First of all thanks for referring to my comment. You certainly understood my pulse.
    I for sure know what kind of person you are and you are one of the persons whom I respect because of the way you preach after practising it.
    Another enlightening session on "ego" followed by a nice gesture which would have surely doubled up the joy of that family especially the kids who got that bicycle.
    When are we going for the next ride?


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