Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Snippets from a Monsoon Sojourn


“I love quotations because it is a joy to find thoughts one might have, beautifully expressed with much authority by someone recognized wiser than oneself.” These are not my words and I must confess to my meager wisdom and wit. That would tell all about why I’m fascinated with quotations.

It was a pleasant stay in Kerala the past two weeks in the skin soaking ambience of the beautiful monsoon rains. When was it last, that I spent about two weeks enchanted by the monsoon spell? Must have been years ago in the past when I was in the teens. The past week, cuddled beneath the sheets in the bed at night sliding into the soothing comfort of sleep, listening to the relentless drops of rain outside was the perfect lullaby even for a middle aged fellow like I. It was then that memories of the many walks, and rides in the rain fleeted in reverse and in time through my mind. The sheer happiness of aimlessly walking about in the rains through the coconut and mango groves caressed by the overflowing ponds in Ambalpuha during the sojourns there on vacation from school; the bicycling in the rains; the ride up the mountains on the JAVA motorbikes and the honey moon ride with C to the hills in heavy rains on the Yamaha 350 cc of yore immediately after our wedding…!

“I don’t chase people when they walk away. It is not that they all are not important to me. I just believe that if they want me in their life they will stay. No questions asked.” Again not my words precisely, a quote certainly!

Over the faithful Indian whiskey at a nondescript bar in Thiruvanthapuram, one evening the previous week, I, B and my cousin and B’s name sake, let the spirit of the alcohol sink in us and used the moment to debate on the estranged marriage of the later. Little B, married a pretty lass after a chanced meeting , call it courtship or dating some thirteen years ago. What they did not realize under the unequivocal onslaught of Cupid was that there was bound to be matters of incompatibility that will act like little storms and tempest inside a wedlock. Well that stark realization may have dawned in them after the first few year of wedlock. They have two pretty little girls is a matter apart.The damsel prefers to don the robe of the "damsel in distress"(sic),while the fellow seems to be wearing the cloak of  the innocent and the offended. The fascinating observation came from the advocate who the dame approached to be her counsel in the filing of the petition for divorce. He observed, “She was in my office and went on a monologue that seemed to never stop. She sent me a thirty page official mail citing her points and case for annulling the marriage. But I could not even in the many words she spoke and wrote, notice an iota of  substantial reason for seeking divorce”. 
To me, ironically and rather sadly they seem to be as immature as they may have been in the early days of their marriage and their courtship.

“My wife Mary and I have been married for forty- seven years and not once have we had an argument serious enough to consider divorce; murder, yes, but divorce , never.” Again a quote!

That brings me to the betrothal in the family and wedding bells after many long years. It was astonishing and a matter of amazement how a girl could with open heart accept a person to wed her, someone who she saw and spoke for a while on the phone a little before and after the complete approval from her parents.  Does this expressively rubbish the dating, living together and amorous courtships that precedes betrothal and marriage  and are an accepted aspect in the West , while increasingly replicated in India, these days? It is quite a wonder how the physical law of gravitation and attraction works in the matters of earthlings!

Now the ultimate quote of Osho! ”If you love a person, how can you destroy his or her freedom? If you trust a person, you trust her or his freedom too.”
Osho continues,"One day it happened that a man came to me who was really in a mess, very miserable. And he said, 'I will commit suicide.'
I said, 'Why?'
He said, 'I trusted my wife and she have betrayed me. I had trusted her absolutely and she has been in love with some other man. I will commit suicide' he said.
I said, 'You say you trusted her?'
He said, 'Yes, I trusted her and she betrayed me.'
What do you mean by trust?—some wrong notion about trust; trust also seems to be political.
'You trusted her so that she would not betray you. Your trust was a trick. Now you want to make her feel guilty. This is not trust.'
He was very puzzled. He said, “If this is not trust? I trusted her unconditionally.'
I said, 'If I were in your place, trust would mean to me that I trust her freedom, and I trust her intelligence, and I trust her loving capacity. If she falls in love with somebody else, I trust that too. She is intelligent, she can choose. She is free, she can love. I trust her understanding.'

“And if she finds that she would like to move into love with somebody else, it is perfectly okay. Even if you feel pain, that is your problem; it is not her problem. And if you feel pain, that is not because of love that is because of jealousy. What kind of trust is this, that you say it has been betrayed? My understanding of trust is that it cannot be betrayed. By its very nature, by its very definition, trust cannot be betrayed. It is impossible to betray trust. If trust can be betrayed, then it is not trust. Think over it.If I love a woman, I trust her intelligence infinitely. And, if in some moments she wants to love somebody else, it is perfectly good. I have always trusted her intelligence. She must be feeling like that. She is free. She is not my other half, she is independent. And when two persons are independent individuals, only then there is love. Love can flow only between two freedoms.”

I write this few hours after posting the Post and coming back to read it all over again  I wonder , if Osho's statements have clarity and if I could agree with him perse. The observation on trust seems to be fine. But this acceptance of liberalism in letter and spirit in the name of freedom and individual freedom is rather inexplicable and foggy. Don't you think so?

15 comments:

jijo moolayil said...

“My wife Mary and I have been married for forty- seven years and not once have we had an argument serious enough to consider divorce; murder, yes, but divorce , never.”:):):)

Meera Sundararajan said...

Anil, you are really lucky to be in Kerala now. We in Chennai have to wait atleast four months to hear that lullaby of falling water. What you say about Osho is true. Betrayal of trust is probably something like an oxymoron. But then that is Osho speaking and we are only lesser mortals. Marriages are made and sustained on different things. A marriage decision taken after a phone call can sometime result in a relationship that can last a lifetime while a long courtship may actually give way when replaced by marriage. Each one to their destiny!

NRIGirl said...

Most of our American friends have real difficulty understanding 'marrying someone you don't know'. To them my usual response is, 'you have got the whole life ahead to get to know them'.
'What if you don't like him?', they ask. 'What guarantee you will like the next one?',I counter.

Everyone deserves to be loved. Period. If one can't truly love, it is better to free the other to find love rather than staying put and making life miserable for all involved.

Coming to Osho, I believe his subject seems to have used the wrong word 'trust' which made Osho go on and on and on. The correct word is 'love'.

No man or woman will walk away from a marriage where they are much loved, that's my take.

Best wishes to the newly wed!

rama said...

I don't agree with what Osho said. Maybe it was suitable to the culture he was propagating. His explanation seems to be vague, and i don't think he is an authority in such feelings/ situations in life. Well, for that was his way of dealing with the situation.
And many of us have been married by just looking at the person to be married only once or twice, and some have married even without looking at each other(recently by just knowing each other through video chats etc.) and our marriages as well as the recent one are pretty strong. There is a maturity in such arrangements, not to have got in on just an impulse.
Now we see more and more people of the west liking the idea of arranged marriage, for they feel they are better off in going through such arrangements than falling in and out of love with many people in their lifetime.
Marriage is a life time commitment, and a person breaks from it only if the situation is beyond repair.
I remember, watching a program in Travel and living channel, where a English woman was shown searching for the right partner through the wedding portals on the internet, and selecting and rejecting just as we do when we are faced with the selection of the partners in India.
After 5 weeks she had still not found the right person, and was still searching.
There are so many marriage portals in the net catering to the west, it shows, that somehow people have got fed up of the idea of falling in love to get married, for they all want to start a relationship based on a solid ground, and they seem to have embraced arranged marriage as a better choice. Not that such marriages have the guarantee of a long lasting loving relationship, still they offer much more stability in the long run.
I have a niece who has been living with her boy friend for 17 years, and only now they have got engaged, and would probably get married next year. And one more niece, who has lived with her boy friend for almost 19 years, and has now broken up with him. Strange things happen and one must always be open for all kinds of situation, and not give up on anything so easily.

Renu said...

I dont believe in Osho..Thats not trust. And marriage cant be sustained with that sort of freedom and trust.

I have seen many arranged marriages like total bliss and love marriages going kaput in few years.

marriage needs constant working on it with lot of love, adjustments and hard work and commitment.

anilkurup said...

@ Jjo Moolayil,
I agree with the quote as of good spirit and not because of matters of diktat of faith.Ironically look at the outlandish ruling of the Madras High Court yesterday.

@ Meera Sundarajan,
Yes I was enlivened by the rains.
Indeed marriage is a matter of luck and good luck of great proportion. Marriages borne out of dating and courtship flatter because, the illusion that was created while courting will fade .

@ NRIGirl,
I agree with you word by word.
Well the wedding is not done yet only the engagement got over.thanks

@rama

I do not agree with the Osho's easy liberal ways for the sake of what he calls freedom. Even the wise , the adult and the intelligent will and can falter or stumble. To let them go the path fallen is rather stupid and obnoxious even for what he calls freedom sake.
However there is an element of truth in what he referred to as trust .
Even in an arranged marriage there can be tremors and irretrievable positions. I guess by far arranged wedlock have clicked . However it is all matter of luck.


@ Renu,

Yes marriage needs constant work. It is the matter of love and affection that must persevere. I do not agree with Osho's suggestions either.

BK Chowla, said...

I am married for decades.
I am happy for so many decades.
My wife hasnt told me to write this.

Happy Kitten said...

Osho can preach all he wants but only a marriage built on trust survives happily! But then Osho was actually asking the fellow to leave her alone and get over with it.

Waiting eagerly to taste the monsoon and hopefully she will still be there in July.

Wish the married couple all the best.

From the comments I assume that West is trying out arranged marriage which Indians want to do away with. But when even live-ins are approaching courts for help marriage is here to stay and arranged marriages are the most convenient for the time being.

....Petty Witter said...

So beautifully and eloquently put, it makes me think of the amount of time my husband spends talking with students trying to get them to understand the differences between an arranged marriage and a forced marriage - a concept they can't seem to get.

Usha Menon said...

Marriage is like a gamble.Nobody can predict which will survive, love or arranged. It depends on the couples and their mutual love, understanding and trust, which is a recipe for the success of any marriage.

Insignia said...

Anil,

Sorry for being a late here. Just been a hectic week at work.

Monsoon brings in those long lost memories that are always pleasant to relive - with a hot cuppa. The smell of earth, the dripping water and the weather...just wow!

Marriage - I've known couple who have got married in a temple with just a yellow thread who are still living together happily and also of couple who searched for years before finding a perfect match and then break apart in a couple of months.

Its just mutual respect, absence of ego and compromise. I think with these 3, even an occasional fling otherwise would not be a big deal.

anilkurup said...

@ B.K.Chowla,

I love this, what you mentioned.

@ Happy Kiiten,

Good luck, but I'm afraid you may have missed the intense period of the monsoon, perhaps in the hills it may persist. It was wonderful. Wish I soaked and melted in the rains.
I do not agree with Osdo's wisdom, though one can debate on the matter. Instead of the word trust and faith perhaps love, affection and care may be appropriate!

The West I guess is correcting , and we may be aping their past.

@ Petty Witter,

Yes there is a misconception in the term arranged and forced. As may in the West believe or think arranged is not forced. The difference is like day and night. Forced marriage are often noticed in tribes, such as the ones in the tribal belts, where people are in blinkers.

@ Usha Menon,
Yes indeed it is a gamble and matter of luck. The rest is up to the people in it. I agree.

@ Insignia,

Thanks B. Comments from people such as you are always awaited and appreciated.

Rituals are just to remind us , the essence is I feel more important.

Ashwini C N said...

Wonderful post. Loved the quote at the beginning of the post. And yes, some of his principles might still be relevant in today's world. THat trust cannot be betrayed and the explanation that it follows, Wow!

veeravista said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
anilkurup said...

@ Ashwini.C.N

Thanks for the comments. I appreciate it.