Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Stray Thoughts on Faith

Stray Thoughts on Faith

This work of putting down the tattered and scattered legacy left by Surya had come to a grinding halt.

I dare not discuss one major reason but let us say that my resolution of that conflict is as follows:
A good thing needs distributing.
Good things belong to all.
The person who wrote these wonderful things is dead. Were he alive it I would need his permission. In the wake of his death there were the usual conflicts which reminded me of the story of the Blind Men and the Elephant

One of them touched its leg and decided that an elephant is a pillar while the second insisted it was like a rope as he touched the tail. The third argued that it was like the thick branch of a tree since he had touched the trunk of the elephant and as for fourth he compared it to a big hand fan having touched the ear. The fifth likened it to a huge wall by feeling its belly but the sixth one was sure that it was more like a solid pipe when his hands explored the tusk.

Thus each of us is so sure we know something or someone and at the end of the day, it is just our narrow point of view. The thing in itself will always elude us.
I shall just take courage from something he often said in his last years, that he just wanted someone to dump him on the roadside so that he could talk to people.
Perhaps I’m the fool but I really don’t care if someone “plagiarises” stuff from here. That person is doing a good deed by passing on these interesting thoughts.
Anyway, to return to my focus (Faith), I would like to say that I always found the word belief hilarious. And I was ever so grateful to Shri Manoj Das for a short story of his. I do not remember its name nor to which collection it belonged. The gist of it is as follows: a scientist form the West visits a village in India to find out about rural superstitions. He asks a villager if he believes in ghosts. The villager replies hotly that he does not. He adds that one should not believe ghosts as a ghost had once promised someone something and fooled the poor man.

So what do we mean when we speak of Faith? Of Believing?

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