Do we need to be obsessed with ritualism?
I have always said and maintained
that our birth is an accident. It is the accident of being born into a
particular family, to particular parents, following a particular faith.

On the basis of our accidental
birth, we are made to adopt a faith and taught rituals to follow to which we
start becoming obsessed.

We get so obsessed with ritualism
that we start imposing it on our children and our family too. Surely, we may be
doing it unknowingly, honestly assuming that we are trying to evoke and teach
the importance of devotion in them, generally our children, but what we don’t
realise is that we are forcing them to adopt the rituals almost blindly.

What we don’t realise while we do
this is that we are making them addicted to the ritualism, rather than making
them understand the real meaning of the faith that we want them to learn. We
are making our children fear the consequences of not performing a ritual,
rather than explaining them the real reason behind it. What we fail to
understand is that by doing so, our children would never be able to fathom the
real purpose of these rituals but would blindly follow them.

I have been confronted by many
hard core fundamentalists that they find reasoning in forcing their children to
compulsorily follow rituals. Though not really convinced by their
fundamentalist reasoning, the only good thing that I can think of by forcing
children to follow rituals is that we at least ensure that these rituals are
safely transmitted over the generations. It would give the parents the false
pride that what has been taught to them to blindly follow by their parents have
been handed over by them to their children to be transferred to their next

 What I would want to tell these people is that
by doing so, they are just transmitting hollow shells of well dramatized and choreographed
stage performances, one performance after another, without any meaning attached
to them and consequently absolutely no understanding of what it really means.

Why can’t we make our children
real devotees of a faith, a faith of love and brotherhood, rather than forcing
them to follow rituals?

Let us understand that if we are a devotee we would
go to a church, a temple or a mosque depending upon the faith we adopt, but if
we just go to a church, a temple or a mosque, it does not make us a devotee.

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My Interview with God
I dreamed, I had an interview with God.
So, you would like to interview me, God asked.
If you have the time, I said.
If you have the time, God replied.
Hello everyone,
Today I am honoured to have a dialogue with the most controversial character ever in human history. A person in whose name, has the most number of divisions happened, in whose name the most wars fought, in whose assumed honour has this world witnessed several killings.
Let’s welcome, the omnipresent, the omnipotent, the God. And with the permission of his Honour, may I start my question-answer session with Him.
Question to God: Where do we seek you?
God’s Answer: Why do you want to go seeking me? Don’t you see me in the dog wagging its tail in happiness when you enter your house, your little kid who comes running to hug you and clings to you when you reach home after a tiring day, your wife who takes care of your every needs without a sigh, your husband who struggles hard to give a better life to you and the family, your parents who supported and encouraged you in whatever you did, your friends who care for you and stand by you against all odds. Do you still need to go seeking me elsewhere?
Question to God: Are you really the invincible, the strongest?
God’s Answer: How can I be only the strongest? When I am there in each one of you, am I not there in the weaklings too. I am there in the helpless old man on the streets who doesn’t know where his next meal will come from, in the destitute woman who is desperately looking out for a little space to hide her modesty, in the little urchin on the road who wishes someone can adopt him and make his future. When I am there in these helpless creatures, how can I be invincible? The truth is that I need you as much as you need me.
Question to God: Why are so many wars fought in your name? Why do people kill each other in your honour?
God’s Answer: You fight with each other because you have cut me, divided me in many pieces, each one of you trying to take your share of the pie. Have you ever realised, how much it would have pained me when I was being cut into pieces, when you were mercilessly tearing me apart. When you cut me, each one of you got their share that you could lay your hands on. Now you feel that the other perhaps has a better share than you, and so you fight with each other for the better share.
Question to God: Why do you have so many names?
God’s Answer: I have never given you any names to call me. It was you who started naming me as you wished. When a child is born, he/she doesn’t tell you what name he/she should be called. You decide and start calling him/her by that name, then the family, the friends start giving him/her further pet names and before the child realises, all these names get stuck to him/her. As the child grows up to be an adult, wouldn’t he/she feel embarrassed being called by so many names; So do me. I would rather prefer just one name, short and simple, easy to remember, “God”.
Question to God: What is your religion?
God’s Answer: I have no clue what you are talking about. What do you mean by religion? It’s nothing that I have ever propagated. You starting cutting me to pieces; dividing me; it was you who have given names to those pieces, and starting calling them religions. I am a single ONE, how can I have all these different me, these different religions?
Question to God: Do you really reside in the churches, the temples and the mosques?
God’s Answer: I think that you people never have taken me seriously. You haven’t ever understood fully what I have always wanted to tell you. Hadn’t I say in the reply to one of your earlier questions that I am in each one of you. Then how can I reside in these artificial structures. It is you who go seeking me at places that you have created as my abode rather than searching for me inside you.
Question to God: Do you feel happy when we come to meet you at these places of worship we created?
God’s Answer: I feel happy when you meet me anywhere, be it on the streets, in your home, inside you as well. When you wake up every morning without having committed any sin the last day, and look at yourself in the mirror, you are really looking at me. These structures that you created is just one of those places. I feel happy when you meet me, irrespective of where it is.
Question to God: Do you really want us to pray?
God’s Answer: May I ask you, what is the meaning of prayer? Is it not asking for favours? Can you not do it yourself, help yourself and others and make a prayer. When you help others, their prayers are answered and in turn when someone helps you, your prayers are answered. I work through you; you are my hands and legs, my limbs, my body, my soul. Honestly, I would be happier seeing you praying with your hands than with your lips.
Question to God: Do you want us to be God-fearing?
God’s Answer:  What is the benefit if you desist from doing something out of fear? I shall give you an example of you driving a car. You are tempted to jump a traffic signal but you don’t do it because you fear that there would be a traffic cop round the corner. I am not really happy you having done that. Now imagine that you never thought about the cop, but never jumped the signal because you felt that you may hit someone coming from the other direction who is following the traffic rules. I would be happy if you had done that. You don’t have to fear, you have to love. If you really love me,  and understand that I live in another person as much as I live in you, you will never harm that person. I would want you to be God-loving and not God-fearing.
Question to God: Do we need to follow rituals?
God’s Answer: Oh! There are so many of these, even I have lost count of it. All these rituals were created ages ago by someone either to suit his requirement or to suit the circumstances that prevailed at that time, whether for good or for bad. Situations and circumstances have changed drastically since then, but we are still clinging on to the rituals, the traditions. I would ask you to follow the right principles that I  have taught and you believe in and not the rituals.
Question to God: Why are there so many variations of your scriptures?
God’s Answer: My scriptures? I had never written any autobiography. The scriptures that you are talking about are just personal interpretations of my life, assumed by the people who have written them. Each one of them has unfortunately assumed it in their own way and so there are so many variations. Isn’t it a simple logic to understand, that when it that it is one life, one personality, how could there be so many true variations.
Question to God: Why are your scriptures so difficult to understand?
God’s Answer: You are again misinterpreting what I say. I had clarified that these are not my scriptures. So it not being mine, I have no control over its contents. The words, the verses used are the personal words of the authors who probably wanted to keep it complicated so that the common masses do not understand it fully ever and keep flocking to them for their interpretations.
Question to God: Do you really want us to understand you and speak to you through these interpreters?
God’s Answer: Why should I ever make it difficult for you to understand me, to speak to me? I understand your language; I speak the language that you speak. How can I want you to speak to me only through these interpreters when I am one of you? I have not appointed anyone to convey my thoughts and words to you when I know that I can talk to you directly. Those who say that are their own self-appointed agents.
Question to God: Why do you change your attire, your looks for the people?
God’s Answer:  I have never ever changed my attire. It’s your perception of how you look at me. You see me in the attire that you want to see me, because it depends upon the spectacles that you are wearing. You may see me sometimes as crucified on a cross, you see me sometimes holding the weapon to destroy the evil, you see me lying in the tomb, and it’s how you want to see me. I have never changed and I never will.

Hey God! I thought you were here with me all throughout this interview session. I could see you right there but now I can’t see you. Where have you disappeared?

I hear God whispering in my ears, “My Child, look inside you, look at the people next to you, look at nature, the animals, the destitute, the aged, the orphans, the poor and the needy. And if you still don’t see me, stop believing me.

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My expressions of Love
It’s an amazing year of valentine
for me this season as I complete the 20th year of togetherness, me
and my better half.

Twenty years is a pretty long
time and there had been several occasions and opportunities for me to express
my love for my wife. Believe me; I have done it in the craziest of ways. When
we say, driving one crazy in love, that’s literally what I have done.

Hey! There, it has not come
without warning signs. She had known of my wild persona before she said yes to
me and so it is like expecting the inevitable, every single time.
Of course, I am feeling a bit
jittery, flaunting all my secrets out here, but then 20 years was hell of a
journey, the roller coaster broke down many times, the downs were steep, but we
both held on and as we chug along this amazing journey, I am sure she would not
mind reading this post and reminiscing all the fun we had over the two decades.
The most amazing thing I have
ever done was on the day of our wedding. The wedding ring that I gave her, on
which she had expected my name to be there was engraved with the most endearing
nickname that she used to call me. She was so embarrassed to show the ring to
others, but I saved her the blues in the nick of time by getting out another
ring for the occasion. Of course, the nicknamed ring is her most treasured
personal possession till this date.

Yeah, it was one of those days in
the low of our personal lives, that I suddenly decided to buy her a guitar,
knowing that singling and music was her passion, which she could unfortunately
never pursue. As I saw the glitter and the tear drops in her eyes, I understood
how important it felt to her that I took an interest in her passion, even for
that day. How I had come to know of her childhood passion, is a closely guarded
secret till this day.
The day when I decided to wake
her up early morning, put her into the car, drove down for two hours, to her
absolute confusion, was also a crazy moment for us. I had told her that she
needed to trust me, and so there it was, as she sat in the car, I blindfolded
her. And I should respect her faith in me that she never insisted on removing
her blindfold for the entire journey of two hours. And when she eventually did,
she was amazed. It was the scene of our first date and I made sure that we sat
at the same table, ordered the same food that we ate that special day and I was
so thrilled to see her blushing the way she did on our first date.

Yeah! The crazy little fun box
that I gifted to her last Valentine is also something we both will savor for the
rest of our lives. The fun box had every little bit of our journey over the
years. It had the mementos that I have saved from our relationship, tiny little
things, but which had a deep meaning and remembrance value for us. They were some
movie ticket stubs, cookie fortunes, and some dried flowers, even hate you
post-its on the refrigerator doors, that we had written over a fit of rage. It
had all the emotions packed into a tiny little box which we still hold on to
our chests.

There are so many, the expressions keep changing but my emotions have and will always remain the same.


This post is for the #SoundOfLove  activity for BlogAdda  in association with Bluestone.
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