Monday, 1 September 2014

Goodness... The esoteric labyrinthine.

"The majority of people spoil their lives by an unhealthy and exaggerated altruism."-from The Soul of Man Under Socialism by Oscar Wilde

Now, if I have garnered your attention, let me get one thing clear.
I do not believe in the theorems of Sir Oscar Wilde. ( Half truth)
Quoting famous messed up people in some way creates a hallow around the writer's head.
 The presumption of  the so-called, 'something good' is coming by.
Unfortunately ,I seldom know if I can offer that in my perceptive writing.
* Sheepish Grins*

I decided to write about goodness of all the universal things under and above the orb, primarily because of my rendezvous with a startling incident that happened a couple of days ago. 

After going through an unmentionable clump of chicanery by the trusted ones and 25 minutes of introspection, I firmly decided that I am done being benevolent. 

I had been taken for a ride on a mad horse. So, this was it. 
I  stood right in front of the mirror, imagined myself  as a character in a Shakespearean play and embarked on with my soliloquy . 
I said, " My dear stupid woman staring back at me from the other side; You, my honey are going to be smart,ungiving and unforgiving". 
What a major breakthrough it was.  I felt light, like I was being ambushed by a vanilla flavored refinement. 
Thus, with a new found confidence I got dressed and got my grocery list ready.

My walk to the department store was flawless, I mean my cerebral walk.  

During that entire 5 minutes and 28 seconds I was plotting my shenanigans and spot on reflexes towards people who were not so kind to me. * Angry Smiley*
I reached the store, picked things on my list and before I could move to the billing section, I met a well dressed middle aged french woman.

She was blonde, impeccably dressed in knee length black skirt, a beautiful white semi formal top, neat flat shoes. She had a thin glittering chain around her neck. Her brown eyes were deep and seemed in pain. 
She was watching out for the rest as if she had stolen something. 
I was wondering what was wrong with her and then I saw her moving towards me like a tortoise ( I meant the speed, not the posture).
She said something in French. I replied to her that I was incapable of making a conversation in french and all that I knew was Bonjour and Je m'appelle Preeti.
Surprisingly, she spoke to me in English. She said " Could you please lend me some money, I need to buy Milk'.
In a couple of seconds my mind did a lot of maneuvering ... * Enlarging eyes Smiley*
A) She is from the FBI and all that drama was because I caught her in the mood.
B) She is a terrorist trying to insert a bomb in the milk section.
C) She is trying to poison the milk .
D) She is a journalist working for a top production house, questioning public's social responsibility and if I refuse to help, the whole of France will spit on my grave.( Good gracious, I am going to be on TV ) * Excited Smiley*
E)She is going to loot the store at gun point and her gun is in the milk section.
F)She is cheating people and
G)She is honestly hungry and penniless.
PS- For some odd reason I count in alphabets ....

I quickly retreated from my smart thinking while she was looking at me oscillating between the counters. 
I walked towards her and said " I can pay for the milk, do you want anything else'
She had tightly clasped a small packet of half eaten cheese. 
It just seemed that I had to pay for the cheese too.
I asked her what else do you want.. She replied, "Some water"..
All of a sudden a flock of people charged towards the milk section and the lady sprinted away.. Everything happened so soon;I could not fathom anything.

I was standing there for a while and could not get a glimpse of that lady.
Hence, I walked to the billing section facing the milk counter, hoping to see her .. * Funny scene*
Just before my turn I saw her moving swiftly with a lot of goodies in her hand... I ran towards her and offered to pay.
The lady politely declined and moved towards another section.
I presumed someone helped her but it was unlikely as there was a certain level of capriciousness in her body language which made it obvious.
Anyway, I just waited for a couple of more minutes, paid and left.

 On my way back home, I was trying to analyse what had just happened. 
My tenacity to be ungiving had failed me. 

The fact that the lady had declined my help troubled me so much that all the anger that was piled up in me, evaporated... My mind was steaming with guilt.
I was questioning myself, why am I so hung up about being kind, being generous or for that matter being good.

What is goodness ? How does one define it ? Why does being good involve an amount of sacrifice?
I know of many people who work honestly, who are diligent, who abide laws, who are loyal to their family and friends; however ,they do not help people in need. It is ironical that they are not considered as good people.

I know of people who are none of these but have sacrificed their life for the common good and surprisingly they are celebrated as the epitome of goodness.
An Individual works hard, makes an ample amount of sacrifice, earns a good living but if he refuses to help a stranger in need why is he not considered as a good person ? why is not willing to share such a bad thing ?
A dirty politician who was running a line of liquor shops in a vicinity got himself some brownie points by donating food to needy people. The fact that he was responsible for supplying liquor and ruining lives was off peoples' mind.. the food he donated made him the finest person in the town.
So, what exactly is good and bad? Who defines it and by what parameters?

The likes of Buddha, Gandhi, Mandela, Mother Theresa...
Would you , a common person ,love to have a parent like the aforementioned....?
 Someone who would have absolutely no time for you but just for the common good? Someone who would give up on their family to change the world...?
Why does my mind shriek... * when each one takes care of himself the world will be a better place*
Our human mind is dichotomous .
Being Good is what each one wants... 
But, how practical is this with such huge disparities and implementation challenges?

I am just like this donkey in the picture above, who can see his food to self actualization somewhere.. 
Likewise,I see a pile of entwined tunnels; the tunnels of the perceptive good and bad.
What do I choose and how ? This is something I am endeavoring to explore... 
I retreat and start all over again.. I find my way , 
I presume I am going to reach my goal soon but again I see a block and I return.

Pardon my too many 'I' 's but the realization that the road to satiation is about the journey and not about the end of the labyrinth,settled in pretty late.
There is nothing wrong in being selfish, keeping what you want for yourself
Nevertheless, make sure that when you are in need, these are the kind of people you are likely to meet.

I went back home, stared back at the mirror and said, " My dear stupid woman staring back at me from the other side; You, my honey are going to be smart,giving and forgiving". 
I just broke through my breakthrough to refine myself.

The road to happiness is how you define it.
Introspect, talk to yourself more, evaluate your perceptions and listen to your voice.
Travel the labyrinthine of Goodness, make that tiny little sacrifice when you can. 
You may reach somewhere , maybe not a place you had premeditated but the journey is worthwhile.

If any civilization is to survive, it is the morality of altruism that men have to reject- Ayn Rand

I presume I have garnered your attention yet again... Ah!!! the power of fame !
For the ones who have read the first and last lines, just like how I read my textbooks.. Trust me, you have no clue what this piece of rambling is all about.

Never mind.. nothing really matters !!!

- Preeti Venkateshan


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