12 April, 2014

Imagining beyond being - Introduction

We are no strangers to imaginations. Imaginations are like the breaths we take. They are there every moment in whatever form they come in. A life without imagination is like a flower without a color or fragrance. They are a part of us. Sometimes they make sense, sometimes they do not. Sometimes we wish for them to go away, or to stay for just a while, and sometimes to stay forever - sort of a second life. The roots of imagination never leave us, but the branches reach worlds apart, and the flowers they bear are intoxicating. No matter how reasonable or wishful - depending on whether they are driven by thoughts and reason, or by pure emotion and feeling - our imaginations seldom stay or go away to our whims and fancies. They are just there around all the time and we constantly fight for them to stay or leave. On attempts to avoid all this, there is no dearth of definite ways to control the mind, and thus the imaginations; all the methods of self-control. But how far do we go to achieve the levels of control we like to exhibit, with people and things alike?

I must say I'm a bit overambitious to aspire for the highest levels of self-control, my personal definition of which is becoming increasingly complex. Paradoxically enough, the possibilities of deeper meanings and eternal consequences extend or contract the definition, based on the stakeholders and the circumstances; just like an archer who knows he is responsible for where his arrow lands. I wonder if I'll ever define self-control completely. All that is driving me now towards whatever I wish to define it as, is a ray of illumination on a cleaner path, away from the dirt and darkness around, (which I will call the society, for want of a better comparable. Don't get me wrong, I do not hate the society, I'm just better off away from it). I know neither the source of the light nor how long the path is, but that light is a better guide, and that path a better alternative to an infinite vicious darkness. And, now and then, I'm tested to my limits to sway from this path. I hold steady sometimes, and I break down at others - reminders of the human nature, only with a strong sense of awareness that I both succeed and fail, and that this cycle will never end. Just being human.

The true purpose of this complex self-control, as I see it, is the constant endeavor to be beyond human; one that is a bittersweet journey; and one that is a constant tug of war to break away from the social-collective being and become the solitary-individual beyond. The irony of this endeavor is that, when I feel I have won over the commonplace desires and passions of the crowd, and stood steady as the individual I am, the resulting exaltation and pride break the very meaning of my having exercised my mind to break away from the being and become the beyond. I try my best not to be exalting or self-gratifying, but I also allow myself the latitude to feel these emotions, and let them ride the wave. In short, a proud beyond becomes just another being, defeating the whole point of it all. The beyond should not be the opposite of being, but the absence of it. The other side of the irony is that if I end up letting myself down, staying just the being that I am, the resulting pain of having failed in the exercise to be beyond takes me out like a boat caught in a storm. And so it has been for years and years, on one occasion after another. After all these years of this tug of war, this is what I have learned about self-control.

All said and done, come what may, the journey to becoming the beyond will go on forever. The ironies of this stormy journey, filled with its surprises and shocks, may rock the boat so much so that it can capsize into the vast sea any minute and take me down with it. But the awareness of the endeavor will keep my hands steady, my feet firm, and my eyes straight. Every storm ultimately subsides. And there I see the light at the horizon!


Shankar Ram U said...

What profundity in the third para ! I love it !!

Rajaji said...

Thank you, dear brother..All your blessings only! :-)