Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Have your ever felt the presence God so close ?

Have your ever felt the presence God so close ?

I have...

To be precise on October 20, 2.45 pm in the isolation ward of Ernakulam General hospital. I was there to write a story on the plight of patients who were dumped there by their family. Most of them were older people and suffering from cancer, HIV, mental illness. When I entered the ward, there was a man lying on a mat in the middle of the room. His cheerful face pulled me towards him. I knelt beside him to know more . 

He is Anwar Hasan from Karnataka. He could neither sit nor stand. There was a red kit placed near him which was full of devotional books. Everyday, he reads them religiously. And he was lying there for the past two years. My eyes welled with tears. But his pleasant face surprised me. There was no ranting and raving and no regrets. He was a lottery ticket seller. When he was paralyzed, his family abandoned him. But he never complained about them and said “ My father was also bed ridden and my mother had to spent her whole life looking after him. My father is dead and she is too old to look after me the way she was with my father. How could she be of any help to me? My brother is married and I do not want to be a stumbling block in his life.” 

He continued and surprisingly with no moist eyes “ You know why I have to endure this for I never prayed before. Now I do. And God comes to me everyday. Yesterday too ' Easappan',  (Malayalam word for Jesus) came and talked to me. Allah loves me. Krishna loves me. What do I want more from this life? I am his child now. Earlier, I was not.s

He was not stoic or trying to cope with the tragedy that struck his life. He was speaking from the heart and I could feel it. When he said Jesus talked to me, I could feel Jesus kneeling beside him and talking to him. I felt may be I was sitting where Jesus came and sat yesterday. I know,s I sound incredible. But that was what I felt. I am not religious but spiritual and I felt it, truly and honestly.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Deserted and weeded buildings

Deserted and weeded, there lies an abandoned building’. When I was a cub reporter, I have done several stories, which had similar introductions. I was quite adept in identifying such buildings in the nook and cranny of the city and in the suburban. However, that ended when my boss dismissed those stories saying “No more stories on dilapidated buildings. You can do much better.”

Two months ago, I came across an abandoned house (not a building this time). It is a small house but built with a keen architectural eye with many trees and flowering plants around. Going by its looks, it might have housed by a decent family once. Now it lay abandoned. A small sculpture of Lord Krishna playing flute could be seen at the top of the entrance through the window grill. It evoked in me mixed emotions but was unable to discern it. I felt a kind of magnetic pull towards it and started  taking the route of this house though it was not my usual one. 

Was my love for abandoned buildings coincidental which eventually became stories for the journalist in me. The tempt was too strong that it forced me to peep into myself.

Looking back, I realised this new-found emotion was not new but old. At the outset, I thought, may be it was the yearning for having secrets which allured me towards the mysteries of such desolate places.  I never had any secrets throbbing to pull out of my bosom. I badly wanted to keep one. May be, it is this secretive nature of such deserted houses that enticed me towards it. When I was growing up, my imaginations were too tall ( and still it is) that it could accommodate any back drop, people or anything of my fantacies. I would imagine myself doing all the possible things from unravelling a mystery to having a clandestine love affair. I have written many mystery novellas sitting in these desolate houses. I have travelled to several unknown lands with my knight in armour.

But wanting secrets was purely a superficial reason. When I scratched the surface more I comprehended that it was my earnest attempt to wade into my loneliness and build a more secure space. To create a strong space which no one can intrude. This secure space would make me resilient and fight all the odds by providing answers.

I am 31 and I do not have any best friends in whom I could confide and rely. May be this vacuum might have led me to build a space for my own. If I am confused, I would hide in this world of imagination. I used to grope in the darkness of my secure space but not for long. I could always see a  lightened candle at the end. I always got my answers from my secure space. It has helped me to cut my own path, to be myself and proceed ahead. Thanks to those desolate houses and buildings which is making my dreams come true.

Sushmita Sen Miss Universe ( 1994 ) Sushmita Sen's Heart-wrenching Speech