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Thursday, January 23, 2014

Of Time and Me


There are a few things I want to write about. About how you perceive time and yourself in it. Your future, your past and the present.

There are so many moments in our lives where we quite slip away from the present into a fantasy. Amidst a conversation a simple phrase, a simple gesture or even a simple emoticon can trigger things so beautiful and immensely pleasurable. Situations you see yourself in, places you imagine to visit or feelings and sensations you desire. Things that are very raw & momentary, or sometimes just hidden deep within your heart, that leap out and pull you into this world anew.

Then there are moments of nostalgia, moments you had cherished and moments you wish lasted longer than they did. All lost in time and our so called busy busy lives. They too come rushing back with simple triggers. A simple sign, a familiar number or sequence of numbers you relate to, a name in a book as you flip through its pages, the song playing in an advertisement or even a picture as you flip through the old albums. All true moments that you lived through and are glad to have had. They are proofs to things that built you into who you are. They are what shaped you to face the world today.

I recently saw 2 movies, yes I learn from the movies too, that really touched and got me thinking. One (About Time) was a long time recommendation by a close friend and the other a recent release (Her). Both of them dealt about the same thing I’m trying to put in writing now.  ‘About Time’ deals with the present in the sense that you can re-live it & mould it (to an extent) by travelling back and living the moment again. ‘Her’ deals with how the past is always “a story that we tell ourselves” (just like the fantasies of your future). This story of the ‘past’ will only guide you, it cannot change the future that lies ahead. And also a big reminder from the movie is that ‘we are only here briefly!’

Both your future and your past are important! Both have to be thought about and pondered upon. But never restrict yourself just to them. This will sound cliched but live the moment. Facing what is in front of you is what builds you. Understanding each other is what builds relationships. Presumptions and assumptions will only cause you to wander. A bit of fantasy and a bit of reminiscence is definitely called for. But strive to care for your present and to enjoy every fresh second as it happens.

If you were to ask me what triggered this write up, read on.

Few days ago, I met a 7 year old girl. She was travelling along with her family on the same train as I was. A very cheerful, naughty and curious girl. She saw my movies and was particularly fond of ‘Life of Pi’. She asked me a lot of questions and was intrigued by every answer of mine.

Sometime in the journey, I overheard her preaching a little wisdom to her younger brother. She said, “You shouldn't remember everything. If you try and remember everything you will not have space for what you study…”. She was advising her brother because this little 7 year old shared a dream with him. The brother wanted to grow up to be an IPS (Indian Police Service) officer.

Those few words actually took me by a storm. I realized I was caring and worrying too much about the past and at the same time I was very very anxious about my future. I have not really been living my present to the full extent. I’ve been avoiding a few conversations, avoiding many questions and most importantly missing a few special people and important conversations. Thanks to this piece of ‘kid-wisdom’, I will try and correct myself.

Thank you Pari! (‘Pari’ in hindi means a fairy)

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