The Selfish Man

One of the reasons for not posting anything worthwhile in these last few days was an internal thought process that got kickstarted in me about a month back. During this time, I was busy trying to make sense of all the non-sense that suddenly started to glare mockingly in my face as I tried to reassess each and every thing I ever believed in. Reality to me appeared not worthy enough for a thorough analysis given its inherent randomness and futility but I found that only by realizing the magnitude of its worthlessness can it be dealt with the respect (or lack thereof) it deserves. It would be all too immodest for me to say that I have figured things out to any appreciable extent but I would not hesitate from mentioning that its atleast a start in this futile journey (because in absolutely terms, its not worth the effort).

Frankly speaking, it now seems amusing to me as to how many things we as human beings take for granted without ever questioning their rationale. How many times have we ever, with open minds, asked ourselves any of these questions:

What if there is no god and the religion I believe in is nothing but a confused heap of outdated rules ? What if the sole purpose of something as sacred as my religion is just to keep me eternally unsatisfied so that I can be made to work for the "greater good of the society" in a "moral" way. When did I start taking the tenets of morality for granted and why did I never question as to why exactly murder is such a bad thing ? Why is killing in the name of religion more justified than murder for selfish interests ? Is the reason behind considering marriage so damn sacred just an artificial human weakness given birth to by a social structure that itself is arbitrary ? Why is penitence both physical (in the form of dieting, fast) and spiritual considered desirable when the body is a perfect working machinery to begin with and the concept of soul stinks to such high heavens ? Why does working for society or animals or poor people give me such a high moral ground that I at once forget the fact that the only reason that is driving me to do social good (if I am not stupid) is my own inherent selfishness at deriving satisfaction from it ? Which brings me to the point of this post.

Every sane person is selfish.

and this can be proved very easily. The reason you do any particular thing can only be one of the following:

1. You like the job.
2. You are forced to do the job.
3. You are stupid.

If you like the job then it basically means that you are running after the satisfaction that you glean by doing it. The fundamental structure of this satisfaction is the same for a scientist or a social worker or an evangelist or a freaking animal rights activist. If you are forced to do a job then you probably have something else at stake that would give you satisfaction. A software engineer who curses every minute that he spends in his stuffy cubicle is doing it because it affords him a lifestyle he desires. The saffron brigade fights the Muslim warriors on the streets of Gujarat because it gives both of them the spiritual solace of religious uplifting. Only in the case that you are stupid, do you do something completely selflessly and I have a lot of respect for such people because they might be stupid but they are not dishonest. Everyone is selfish. Its the natural law. Every sane deed is selfish. But the problem is that along with being selfish, people are curiously dishonest about it. They try to see reason where there is none. They try to look for purpose where there is zilch. Every one tries to assume a higher moral ground where there is just a vast uniform plane of ego-hurting equality. Somewhere down below, I feel that no one is so stupid so as not to realize that it is their own selfish interests that's driving everything they do but most of us are too dishonest to accept it. And I am not saying its bad as dishonesty is just a child of an arbitrary system of rules we call morality but it would be nice if for once you stopped deceiving yourself and atleast be honest about your dishonesty.

Why suddenly this discussion ? Because I have seen people taking decisions driven by the illusion of 'higher deed'. I have seen people foolishly arguing for their beliefs and trying to put down those with conflicting beliefs when they do not realize that beliefs of all forms are nothing but social conditionings and come to think of it there is no system thats completely devoid of stinking bullshit in the form of unverifiable faith. So here is my advice for those who care to take it:

Admit that you are selfish or admit that you are stupid.

Once you are clear on the point above, things would be much clearer. You would do things because you want to do them and you would love the experience. Or maybe you would do things because you are forced to but the pain would be less. You would never do things because there is a higher moral ground, a higher purpose, a selfless hero-factor to them.


Review: Santa Claus conquers the Martians

Here is the deal. Don't watch it. That's it. That's all there is to it. If you respect your intelligence even a wee bit, if you cringe at the sight of mediocrity, if your blood is susceptible to boiling from ham-acting, this movie would easily give you a heart attack. On the other hand if, like me, you are a connoisseur of cheese, if in almost a masochistic way, you derive pleasure from the pain that a brain-liquefying piece of cinema inflicts over your personality, this movie is almost the culmination of the insistent human endeavor for reaching the abyss of creativity and meaningfulness.

The premise of the movie is very simple. Martian children, cooped up in their Martian homes watch Earth television programs and they happen to develop a liking for Santa Claus. Their Martian parents are now left with no other option but to kidnap Santa himself and bring him to Mars. While they do manage to take him hostage, Santa, contrary to his benign image, then indulges in rampant ass-kickery reducing the technologically advanced Martians to a bunch of carol-singing, incessantly-laughing, toy-loving sissy boys.

The technical ineptness of the movie is almost numbing. The Martians are imagined as dark skinned creatures but apparently the director did not have enough money to hire a make-up artist skilled enough to uniformly paint a face black when given a clean slate. The result is a bunch of sorry looking Martians who look more like the regular variety of Earthlings who have only partially recovered from a recent bout of Chicken Pox. Their sorryness is only exaggerated by their sorry costumes. Skin hugging green vest with skin hugging green pants and skin hugging green shoes and skin hugging green underwears worn over the skin hugging green pants. As if their costumes were not already hilarious enough, the director, in a rare moment of genius, makes them wear a helmet with a semi-circular antenna which apparently does nothing except become an impediment when changing clothes. They also have a Supermanesque cape and they have something written on their chests in English because obviously, English is the most widely spoken of all Martian languages. The cardboardiness of their spaceship screams at you face and the cheap boxiness of their robots shouts for your critical attention. At one point they have a polar bear and the only way you could be more convinced that it's really an actor (not even a good one) in a costume was if he just came out of his costume and shrieked 'Hey look at me. I am not a polar bear. I am an actor'.

Santa Claus's workshop in North pole has the self descriptive sign board, very imaginatively saying 'Santa Claus's workshop'. Inside this godawful place, we see a bunch of stupid elves churning out stupid toys with Santa trying to save this shipwreck of a movie by uttering nonsensical jokes which try to tickle your jugular vein almost in a pathetic begging kind of way. And you don't laugh because you stopped laughing at mere moving images at the age of 2. Here for the first time in history we meet Mrs. Claus. A run of the mill, blood sucking, authority wielding, staple middle-age housewife who made me remember that sorry figure of Hindi comics who had a brain faster than a computer but regardless got pillaged by the monster of a wife he had by the name of 'Bhaagwan' (Chacha Chaudhary).

Anyways, in summary, looking back, while moving ahead, in retrospect, taking the cushion of hindsight, having matured for the experience, to put it in a few words, jettisoning verbosity for the benefit of the innocent reader: 'This movie might just be the most heinous atrocity committed on the human intellect after Jim Davis'. Here is a link, if you are to watch it. Its the Mystery Science Theater 3000 version, therefore, bearable:

Santa Claus conquers the Martians (Part 1 of 10)


Inheritance of Loss

At this moment I have absolutely no idea what this post is going to be about. I have simply no clue as to what is it that I am going to say in the space following. The only reason I have even begun writing this post is because I kind of like the title and at this juncture, its meaning appeals to me in a way few things ever do. So here is an idea. Why not write about the title. Not on the title; just about it. After all, as fight club mentions, we are all god's middle children. The only thing our age has inherited from its illustrious past is loss. Not wars. Not revolutions. Not genius. Just the mediocrity of a meaningless existence. We have inherited the loss of everything grand. On a social scale, we have the blame of inheriting the loss of a more fundamental beauty. On the individual, we are culpable of inheriting a life marred by petty aspirations and pettier indulgences. On the personal, the continuous withering away of the social scaffold which struggles to maintain the illusion of purpose of an otherwise purposeless life. Come to think of it, life is just a collection of chronic realizations of its futility uniformly interspersed with elaborate deceptions we call social discourse. And it is when this social discourse starts creaking beneath your feet that you begin to realize the humungous gravity of it all. The numbing hopelessness. The debilitating defeat. The crushing misery. The cruel sense of isolation. And it gnaws on your sensibilities and rationality while you vainly try to maintain the false facade of composure. It nibbles at your capacity of tolerance till you cannot take it anymore. This loss mocks your strength and brutally laughs at the hollowness that fills your skin. It eats at the glimmer of your eyes, the quintessential symbol of human hopes, the last bastion of resilience, the quiet face of the will to stand. And it makes a rubble of a human being whose life does not have anything to show for its vivacity than its ability to breathe.

In hindsight, it seems like such a stupid post. I will anyways publish it. If nothing else, I at least like the images it evoked. Makes me believe in the saying that things are never so bad that they cannot get any worse. And herein, optimism, if only for all the wrong reason, springs supreme.

About Me

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Like a particularly notorious child's tantrums, a mountaneous river's intemperance, a volcano's reckless carelessness and the dreamy eyes of a caged bird, imagination tries to fly unfettered. Hesitant as she takes those first steps, she sculpts those ambitious yet half baked earthen pots.