Along a whole spectrum of human experiences there is a certain emotion which gets more than its fair share of hype and publicity in media, literature and pop culture: looouuuve ( and I am talking about the amorous one, for the ones who love to dissect the fucking thing into platonic, motherly and what not. Say hi to Plato and Freud from my side). Every major strata of Indian audience is plainly smitten by the Bollywood love drama:-
1) the teenagers who are still in the ‘internal discovery’ mode and appreciate the guiding light,
2) the young adults with hopes of finding inspiration, and
3) the married ones reminiscing the old carefree days when it was a constant rush.
I have always been utterly convinced about the sanctity of love and the institution of marriage. I remember Disney telling me that there is always ‘That One’ waiting for me somewhere, and my heart is actually a pair (like lungs/kidneys etc., just in a different body) and I will find the other one when the right time comes. I never questioned the premise. But as I enter into the 23rd year of my waking life, my opinion vacillates between- ‘may-be’ and ‘load of bullshit’.
To put things in the right perspective and clear the air, I admit that the humongous amount of time lapsed since the indoctrination began and my constant failure to find the other half has played a major part in my disillusionment (to the average Indian single male engineer: mat ro pagle!). But it also has to do with the bombardment of questions brewing inside the inquisitive mind factory and occasional peeks into academic texts for uncovering the origination of the sacred fountain of love. Sorry but no sorry, when exactly did we decide along the time continuum that monogamy is as natural as the Mt. Everest and polygamy is something as detestable as herpes, let alone eternal love? According to anthropologists, only 1 in 6 societies enforces monogamy as a rule. Is pure biology (chemical locha) enough to explain the shift, or do we have to throw society/culture into the mix? I don’t know. 1000 stories of cheat and hatred for every Romeo and Juliet.
But there can be an entirely different side to the story which we consciously choose to ignore, perhaps. Why does the bliss turns into tragedy as soon as the beloved decides to move on? If there is no emotion more pure than love (by its very definition), then are we just deluding ourselves by adopting a bastardized and corrupted version of it? Has it just degenerated into a healthier alternative to substance abuse, going on to fill gaping emotional voids in a culture wherein an internal storm is ever present beneath all the expressionless faces?
Our bodies are made of elements formed in the supernovas billions of light years away. If everything originated from a single source and will finally obliterate to reach the same, one is everything and everything is one indeed. Maybe we are not really all that different. Maybe love can somehow manage to rise again from the ashes to live on, gloriously. Maybe then I can afford to have a sweet lamp of hope burning.
Posted by: Rohit Gupta