There comes a time. When you heed a certain call. And Vee, my friend. Tujhe bulavaa aaya hai.
For every desi person toeing the line, the path is very clear. Education, Job, Marriage, kids. Voila. Proud Parents. Much blessings from the traditional culture front. Poster child for the great Indian dream. Check, check and check.In my 30s and been there, done it all.
And now, at last, the rest of my life is mine. To do as I please.
Ah, No. Not so fast, my friend.
Because vidhi ka vidhaan and all that. After you toe the line, you are responsible for the line. Yeah. You, now the apple of the great indian family’s eye, need to either wholeheartedly endorse the line you walked or fight to change it. WHAT?? Why does no one warn you about this shit?
Nobody likes the line, you know. You walk it to keep the peace. Like touching someones feet to seek blessings. You do it to calm the obligatory familial sanskaar police. You toe the line because the sanskaar beast bloody won’t die. There is no fighting it and surviving. As old as time and all that.
So….. if one has to do this in order to reach that mirage of a life lived for oneself, as one wishes to live, then fine. One more check to earn. You would think the universe would cut me some slack and give me something simple like an elderly unit ruing the day they gave birth to the snake that cut their proverbial nose. Or an elderly unit just not being able to handle a baby duckling that knows her own mind. These are the fights of our time. I could just join the social media bandwagon and win these checkmarks.
But No. In all its wisdom, the universe decided that I need to fight the straight, the honorable, the backbone of the great Indian middle class. The very thing that allows one to live an honest life in a very corrupt mileu of India. And unfortunately, the very thing that is the upholder of every existing chronic moral and cultural bigotry. A generation of people who worked towards building a new India in their youth and retired to being stereotypical upholders of the great indian culture in their golden years. [India is 70 years old, people. Do the Math]
Living the Ram and rooting for the Ravan, truth and honesty goes tel bechne with them. Them the supposed last bastion of truth and honesty in India.
There is no fighting self-righteousness, you know. There is nothing worse than middle aged people believing they are right and represent the truth. At this point, there is no talking to them. There is just putting them on a pedestal and forgetting about them. Other than for the occasional ‘peri pona’. Another addition to the line that never seems to completely fade away. Another Ideal to live up to. One that no one truly wants to live up to.
Time showed them a dream too. And when it was their turn to endorse the line or go for the dream, they represent a compromise. An agreement to toe the line in order to keep the dream alive. With no time limit. And when it is time for them to pass the baton to the next generation who has its own dreams, the struggle is the agreement. The line that still exists. The dream that is barely alive and a new generation of dreams that seems to be washing away everything the compromise stood for.
How do you show this group of people that they are their own worst enemies?
That they are the ones that will not allow the very dream they saw live in their backyard.
That honesty comes in many forms. An honest acceptance of people for who they are. Rather than what they ideally should be.
That honesty would be giving up the hypocritical mantle of carrying the sanskruti torch. Honesty would be being able to categorically point out where the culture fails us.
Honesty would be wearing your true dismissal of this entire cultural sham on your sleeve.
When you take on the mantle of the culture, the choice is not just to uphold it. It is a chance to make it what you want it to be in your world. Break out of your compromises. Live the life you always wanted to live. humko bhi jeene do.