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Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Mein Kampf

In the process of doing some research on Hitler , i also ,but naturally, read up on his autobiography.  On going  ( read flipping) through  the book it seemed to me that Mein Kampf is more of an exposition , and a justification ,of Hitler's ideology and political views and less of an autobiography. But there were two things which i found striking : firstly, the title ,which translates to 'My Struggle' ,and secondly , an uncanny similarity between hitler's thoughts and the thought process of our politicians.
The best thing about the book , for me, is the title. I am sure if any , and all , of us was asked to pen our thoughts for a book titled 'My Struggle' we would have no problem/s in doing so. We would never experience  problems such as 'writers block' or paucity of material . This is not to say that life itself is a struggle -on the contrary life is joyous; truly a gift to be savoured .It is when we come across  some others ( please note the 'some' as opposed to 'all' ) with  whom we do not share the same wavelength,or ,to put it more bluntly, are on diagonally opposite wavelengths, that the struggle begins. The struggle of being polite, keeping up appearances, not being rude ( because one believes that life is a karmic cycle) etc . Ofcourse ,there are other struggles also -struggle for freedom ( Gandhi) ;for independence ( most asian women ); against corruption ;against cancer ...the list is endless and that is why i believe that 'Mein Kampf' is a universally applicable title.

Now ,coming to the' similarities' between you know who and whom. Consider these Hitlerisms :

"If you wish the sympathy of the broad masses, you must tell them the crudest and most stupid things."
When i look at some of the gems spoken by our politicos it is hard to ignore the fact that either they are very naive or they believe the junta is and that is why they spout the  absurdities that they do.

Another one - "Life never forgives weaknesses." Is this why our honourable and' honest 'P.M is perpetually silent? He does not want to acknowledge any weakness for the fear of not being forgiven?

 He doesn't know that the present has already judged him -as will history .
And the judgement is not very forgiving !!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

The Fourth of July

There is a familiar sinking feeling  somewhere in my stomach. Familiar because I have been experiencing it annually for the last 16 years or so - ever since the girl was school going and school was re-opening after the summer break. The girl is no longer a school kid, but the boy still is- and the sinking feeling is stronger for him. No, it's not because he is a boy- but because he is a boy who simply revels in the freedom the summer break brings . He is in and out of the house (playing  cricket in the park, cycling with friends, going for 'PSP parties, swimming ,reading ( he read 'Animal Farm' and understood it !) in and out of the kitchen( eating , eating and some more eating) in and out of his father's and grandfather's offices ( doubling up as an office assistant -a euphimism for 'helper boy') in and out of grocery shops with me ( he loves fruit and veggie shopping as much as i do ) and in and out of our hearts.
The last two days have seen a distinct drop in his appetite ( though not in the play schedule). I know that he is experiencing 'Monday  blues'. He knows that we know. I sit him down for a 'talk'.
me : wassup?
boy: don't want school to reopen
me: why?
boy; it is so painful
me: what is?
boy: the continuous evaluation
me : oh
boy :the continuous tests, homework, projects ...
me : oh
boy :there is no free time- all my time is parcelled into slots
me : oh
boy : all my friends also feel so- i am not the only one. And mom, stop saying 'oh'.
I give him the usual pep talk of how school is necessary , how it is actually fun- but just that the fun has been disguised to not look like fun ,how the teachers teach so well(!) etc. He looks at me ,patiently waiting for me to finish,gives me a kiss and goes off.
I look at the calender to check the date - yes,school is opening on the 4th of july.The irony doesn't escape me .
 Did somebody make a movie on it called 'Born to be free' ?