Friday, August 20, 2010



This post goes out for the South Indian youth , with due respect to their individual taste of music.

Even if you have a bad voice, never mind. Sing your heart out,even if it reminds people of a pregnant goat!

I have a faint remembrance of reading somewhere that music plucks the strings of our heart, and everytime i sing, i prove it right. My taste in music roots back to M.S.Subbalakshmi's renowned Venkatesha Suprabhatam(VS). Now, i am not surprised if anybody comments that i am a shithead for having called VS, my taste of music. I am apathetic to such comments from others. Nevertheless, I cant help it. I grew up with keerthans and devotional carnatic songs being called "music" at home.

Keerthans are the compositions of eminent devotees of lord Vishnu, namely Purandaradasa, Kanakadasa and Vadiraja. Purandaradasa was the first composer to include morals on ordinary daily life in song compositions. For all the enormous influence that he had on carnatic music, musicologists call him "Sangeetha Pitamaha". Based on one of Kanakadasa's compositions, it is interpreted that after he got severely injured in a war, and was miraculously saved, he quit his profession as a warrior and devoted his life on composing music and literature with philosophy explained in common man's language. I feel that their erudition on the Almighty and the life of a common man is astounding because of its simplicity.

In a performance centered world as ours , we do not have time to fraternize with our own brothers or sisters, let alone neighbors and relatives; pray to god, be it even for a few minutes; take a walk in the woods; to really stay connected with our inner-selves. Amidst such a scenario, i do not think music would serve its purpose if it just gave you some adrenaline to dance a few random steps in a disco. There is more to it. Music is attributed to have healing powers. It is gateway from the earth to the heavens.

I have been observant enough to see people avert the carnatic songs , just because such songs are not fashionable. As Indians, we are happier with western artists like Eminem even if we cannot understand half of their songs , when they hit our ears for the first time.

For me, keerthans have given some of my best moments of ecstasy, alleviated my sorrows, apart from inducing devotion towards god. Do try them. It would even give some room to nourish the moribund spirituality within us.

" We are not human beings with spiritual experiences,

We are spiritual beings with human experiences."

-Kahlil Gibran

Does that ring a bell? :)

Friday, August 6, 2010

The Moving Universities

Someone has rightly said" When life f***ks you hard, if you cant withstand it, learn to enjoy it!", though i do not recall the exact words. I would rather regard such statements as excerpts of my personal modern GITA.(Kiran,why are your words almost always syrupy?)
The Management Gurus have always been screaming out "Everybody faces difficulties and challenges in this world. And in trying to overcome such challenges, we emerge out a different person altogether, depending upon the way we think. A pessimist rules out all the growth tendencies and an optimist uses every challenge for his advantage.( I am not sermonising here to anybody, since i consider myself imperfect for that).
I pursued my high school education at Poorna Prajna High School, Sadashivnagar, placed 17 kms away from home.My parents did offer to pay for a school van, but i persuaded them not to; and to this day, i aint know the reason.

In 1997 BMTC was formed as the result of a split of the Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation, in the context of the city's expansion.The Bangalore Transport Service(BTS) became Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation and the colour scheme was changed from red to a blue and white combination.BMTC remains a division of KSRTC. And i had to cross paths with it, ulteriorly multiplying my sorrows.
Expecting a great day ahead, a high school boy named Kiran, enters the city bus every morning to travel to school. Upon reaching his stop, he gets down from the bus to find his tie missing, shirt completely tucked out, hair style messed up and half dead already, cursing his fate. Nevertheless, i am flattered to think that i have been an optimist unconsciously, as i have rambled on this earth from being a child to an adult.

Being the so called " most affordable" means of travel in bangalore, the BMTC buses are most crowded in the peak hours( beginning and closing time of offices, schools and colleges). From a construction worker to a techie, from a primary school kid to a graduate, all depend on these buses. After an year experience of travel in these buses, i helplessly submitted to my fate. I do not know about the rest of the multitude who have tasted this kind of travel, but i have, for some concrete reasons, learnt much from it, as i have from my formal education.
1. The avilability of seats is as rare as the rains in Sahara. For over 90% of my painful, yet enlightening journey in these buses, i have been deprived of a seat.
LESSON1: The early bird gets the seeds.

2. If the person seated gives a slightest jerk or even stretches his arms, a gang of men pounce at his seat thinking that the person is going to vacate his seat.
LESSON2: Always place yourself nearest to your goal( here, a comfotable journey). SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST.

3.My first hand experience speaks of such instances, where i have been offered seats on the laps of young ladies when i was a kid.
LESSON3: Childhood has its own gifts. Enjoy all of them, for you may never get it back.

4.Learning how to pay the conductor is an acquired skill, because if you pay him more instead of the correct change, you may be deceived . CONDUCTORS and CONMEN- there are very few nuances between the two.
LESSON4:Managing money is an acquired skill. Do not make yourself gullible.

I sometimes wonder what if i had Harry's Broomstick or Edward's vampire powers to run to places. But isn’t that the difference between fact and fiction?