Be Curious, NOT Judgmental

Curiosity and judging others, though poles apart, are innate qualities of human mind. As a child, we all have pestered our elders with piercing questions, about life, about nature, about adulthood, to which they sometimes had answers and sometimes not. All our childhood experiences, our upbringing, our schooling, has contributed to being the person we are today. And on our way to adulthood, we all learnt to form something that we were most likely better off without – judgments.

It starts innocuously, possibly at the onset of teenage, when we learn to form opinions about things around us. I don’t know about you, but me, I was very very vocal about my thoughts since my childhood. I had a very clear sense of what was right and what was wrong, and I spent a lot of my childhood picking fights with those who didn’t agree. It was not good, and I remember long lectures by my parents about how there was no need to fight with all and sundry, simply because “I could”.

Throughout school and for sometime in college, I continued to air my opinions and pick fights. It would also disturb me, since a fight is almost always extremely emotionally draining, and standing on the other side of the crowd, alone, was very trying.

Things improved with time, I met some genuinely nice people in college, whom I am still firm friends with. I grew a little more tolerant, but it was my experience at my Masters in Manipal, that really changed my outlook to different people and their opinions. Manipal is a student town, and if you ever have been there, you will find all kinds of kids doing all sorts of things under the sun. Initially it was awkward, watching girls smoke openly, or boys hanging out with girls in public, and yet seeing same people literally rubbing their noses in their textbooks at the library, but I learnt to not judge people on their looks. I learnt to just let them be.

After 2.5 years as a a working professional, I have learnt that people are not always what they seem.  And hence, therefore, it is just wrong to judge someone just like that. I am learning to let my judgmental behavior give way to a genuine curiosity, to understand why someone is the way they are. Of course, that might not justify their actions, but still, it is a better outlet for all the unnecessary negativity.

Because it is not worth it!
Because it is not worth it!

It is not like I am surrounded by perfect people. Even if I am not judgmental, sometimes I still have fights or confrontations with people who just won’t let me be. Sigh, if only people understood what we learnt by rote in Science in school, that “Energy is constant”. If we let out negative energy to the universe, it will come back to us in some form, and always negative. It is so much better to release positive energy in the Universe, and wait for it to come back to us, as an unexpected bonus.

While it may be fun airing your opinions all the time about someone’s job, their lifestyle, their love life, their spending capacity, it is often a good idea to just SHUT UP and observe. Be curious, try to learn more. But never ever be mean enough to judge someone on the basis of their looks or the money they make or anything else equally superficial. Don’t feel offended if they don’t think the way you do, just let them be. There will be so much more peace around if we don’t try to control everything.

What do you think about this Friday Gyaan? Have you judged someone, only to realize you were way off the mark? Has anyone judged you unfairly? Share in the comments below! 🙂

Image source: Pinterest

Motion se hi Emotion – Piku

Movies are supposed to be a mirror to our lives. Over the decades, Hindi commercial cinema has produced and promotes movies that portray and ideal, Utopian world, where children love their parents selflessly. According to Hindi movies, there is no greater sin than not taking care of your old parents, after all, ours is the land of Shravan Kumar- the ideal son. We have grown up seeing movies  where “Maa-Baap” were the ultimate epitome of love and sacrifice, who are loved equally selflessly by the “Hero”.

But what happens when you realize that an old father can be selfish enough to keep his young daughter to himself, trapped in his daily tantrums regarding his health, especially his bowel movements? It is with this view that Piku, directed by Shoojit Sircar of “Kahaani” and “Vicky Donor” fame, creeps in stealthily and captures our hearts.

Piku is the story of a young, independent, working Bengali woman, Piku Banerjee(played with absolute finesse by Deepika Padukone), who lives with her eccentric father (and this is the reason why Amitabh Bacchan is a living legend) in Delhi’s CR park (where else, apart from Kolkata? 😛 ). By now you must have read raving reviews of Piku, the superb acting of Irrfan Khan and others, and how it continued to rake in the moolah at the Box Office, till “Tanu Weds Manu Returns” ended its winning streak, and quite rightfully.

A simple story with a beautiful narration, Piku tugged at my heart and by the time it ended, it left me with many things to ponder. In a society like India where families are so close knit, often we see that even after children are grown up and independent, parents tend to hold on to them. They expect their children to revolve their lives around them, and to them it is only fair, since they did that for them too!

Image Source : www.bluegape.com

A lot of people celebrated Piku as the modern Indian woman, independent and self-reliant, brought up with a broad mindset. And yet, they ignore the fact that Piku’s Baba uses her active sex-life as an excuse to drive away potential suitors! Of course, there are a lot of ways to interpret a cinematic experience, people say that Bhaskor Banerjee was quite progressive, but if you ask me, he used “empowering women” as an excuse to tie down his own daughter into shackles of responsibility and loneliness.

At the end of the day, everyone is selfish to some extent. It takes a great amount of love to be truly selfless, letting someone you love go to find their own path. Piku too tried to tie down her father into the customary old-age restrictions of not walking too much or eating oily/spicy food, but she did let him go, eventually. Love is weird that way.

If you haven’t watched Piku yet, do watch it. It is good to see Hindi cinema revolving into meaningful and enjoyable cinema, without being preachy or boring.

Rating: 4/5

Featured image source : Koimoi

Hauntingly beautiful : Bikhre Bimb

A moving depiction of a woman, in conversation with her “evil” broken image.

Well, hello there!!! I know it has been long, but they(okay fine, I !) say to be a good writer you need to keep experiencing new, exciting things to write about, and therefore I have been off my writing pad for past few weeks. But I am back, with a lot of stories and experiences to share, that can easily be content of this blog (that I insist you must join/follow/like on FB) for some weeks to come! 😀

So first up today is an experience of a lifetime that I will love all of you to have – watching Arundhati Nag live in action in Girish Karnad’s production : Bikhre Bimb (Broken Images). It is originally a Kannada play and has been translated to Hindi and English too. I caught this on a Friday, at one of my most favorite places in Bangalore – Rangashankra, a lovely theater right in the heart of JP Nagar. Me and my friend have been longing to watch a nice production, and when we got to know about this, we just had to go!!!!!

The premise of Bikhre Bimb is quite interesting – Manjula Nayak, an unsuccessful Kannada writer, suddenly becomes literary world’s favorite child after publishing a bestseller in English. At first it seemed like a play about the conflicts of an Indian writer – born to speak Hindi/Punjabi/Kannada et all and still dares to write in English! How can someone who has learnt to think in a language, write in a foreign tongue? Manjula Nayak has been beautifully portrayed by one of the finest actors alive – Ms. Arundhati Nag. She plays a character who comes across as confident, and to some extent, even arrogant. She mocks at those who question her “loyalty” to her mother tongue, and laughs off all suggestions that she might be ever so slightly be guilty of abandoning her own language.

As the play proceeds, in a TV studio, there occurs another layer to the story – Manjula’s relationship with her sister Malini Nayak. Malini is beautiful, young, intelligent, and physically handicapped. She is everything Manjula isn’t. Manjula talks about the struggles of her sister, and describes tearfully how she tried to depict her pain in her novel. But her doppelganger traps her into revealing more, and then all skeletons from the closet come tumbling out. How Manjula had always been jealous of Malini, growing up in the shadow of a sibling far better than her. How Manjula’s own husband felt more at ease talking to Malini, than his own wife, which drew a wedge in their marital life. Childless and resentful, Manjula disliked Malini for being better than her, and secretly wished to be her.

BrokenImagesGal3
Image Source : www.rangashankara.org

I will leave the climax of the plot out of this post, since I really, really want you to watch this. But I will tell you one thing – Arundhati Nag is just fabulous. It is a gift to see such a veteran actress onstage, portraying such complex emotions with apparent ease, compelling you to stick to every word of interaction between her and her sub-conscious, making you gasp at her story, and yet feeling sorry for her. You feel pity for Manjula Nayak, a jealous sister who tries hard to one-up her own sister, and just when she thought she won, she lost it all.

The strength of her Arundhati’s acting is such, that you can’t leave Manjula in the darkness of theater. She comes with you outside, and stays in your thoughts, forcing you to think if good is indeed always good or if bad is really that easy to define. She haunts you long enough, to ponder on realities of life, and to wonder if we are too quick to pass a judgement on someone, based on their physical appearances, without knowing their truth.

Apart from her expressions, what I loved the most about Arundhati Nag’s acting is her voice – you can hear her till the back of the theater, and her diction is clear and powerful. The Hindi used in the play is pure, and yet easy to understand. Of course, a play is no good without a great direction, and Girish Karnad and KM Chaitanya deserve all credit for such marvelous interpretation of human emotions and relationships.

Do watch this if you can, I have heard the Kannada and English versions are pretty good as well, although the English version has a different actress. But don’t miss this experience at all!!!

Rating: 5/5

Featured Image Source : BookMyShow