Friday, 3 May 2013

The Hiatus

“Begin at the beginning," the King said, very gravely, "and go on till you come to the end: then stop.”
Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

One fine day in 2008 I had an epiphany. In my diary I noted down the precise words– “You are not my audience.”* It was a liberating thought. It was as if I had broken some unseen barrier. Suddenly I was free and beyond the reach of any particular individual or social constraint. The only constraints that remained were the one’s that take birth and die almost daily within one’s conscious and subconscious being. I began posting online in 2008. It was to mark a pause: A pause to think, if you will. It has been five years since.

Did I succeed in making someone read beyond 140 characters? Did I open a tiny window to other ways of seeing, other ways of being– even if only for a moment? Did any of it matter, not on a cosmic scale but on a very thinly sliced sliver of time?

If I were to be honest, then the answer would plainly be, “It isn’t important.” Nor was it the intended purpose. The exercise like all physical and mental excursions was purely for personal benefit. However, regardless of the best-laid plans of mice and men, life keeps breaking in and randomly moving the chess pieces. Even if one refuses to play the game, by being a mere bystander (by doing nothing) one influences and is influenced by the proceedings. One doesn’t need to master sociology to understand that. But one needs good sense to recognize that there are no more moves left on the board. That it is time to fold the board, pack away the pieces and go home. Have a cup of tea, or eat an orange. And then reflect back on what one has experienced. But not for too long. For tomorrow lies ahead and with it will come new games played out on some other new arenas.

Or maybe upon reflection one will simply say, “To hell with all these games.” And go sit by the creek with the flowers and watch the clouds and the birds.

* “…We neither of us perform to strangers." –Mr. Darcy to Ms. Elizabeth Bennet, Ch. 31, Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen.
After writing this post I recollected this dialogue from a book that I keep coming back to almost every year, ever since I first read it when I was around 15 years old. Which only reconfirms what Proust said about reading: Every reader, as he reads, is actually the reader of himself. The writer’s work is only a kind of optical instrument he provides the reader so he can discern what he might have never seen in himself without the book. The reader’s recognition in himself of what the book says is the proof of the book’s truth.

Afterword: Is this the end? Or does a sequel lie beyond? I don’t have any answers yet.
If ever you are curious and find yourself wondering the same then you could stop by the facebook page and piece together something like a story.