Friday, November 19, 2010

rumbling crumbling

Temper flew like a free-spirited Superman. It simply had a mind of its own. Or, so I thought.

My father, till date, has given me a single advice - be patient. For me, however, to be patient was to be silent, and silence seemed to imply weakness. It seemed logical that being patient was to be vulnerable. Patience seemed to mean acceptance, and hence a way of permitting the causes of agitation and disturbances to continue approaching the self. Temper was a shield. A cocoon to save the self from the blows.  

Then, Professordadu (dadu means grandfather, in Bengali) said something about it. He said, if,anger empowers to create something constructive, then it is of use. Or else, it is best to dump it. 


Around the same time, I came across the poetry of William Blake. I got introduced to a strange concoction of poems which used simple language, as if that of children's poetry. That was my first experience with Blake's Songs of Innocence and of Experience.

front cover of that book, hand-painted by Blake @WEB

Blake had created the two sets of poems - The Songs of Innocence and The Songs of Experience - where, each poem in the first book has a mirror poem in the next. For, example, while a poem titled "The Lamb"
was part of the first book; its mirror poem in the second book was titled "The Tyger". The meekness of the lamb and the ferocity of the tiger are instances of the two "contrary states" that Blake wanted to express. In between preparing essays on 'how' the selected poems in the curriculum expressed "the two contrary states of the human soul" (the words are written above the two human figures in the given picture; "shewing" means showing), I was intrigued by the thought: are things truely so mirror-like in life? Does patience really imply weakness? Does being patient means the absence of anger? Do we really have no choice but to be either

The Lamb by William Blake @ WEB


The Tyger by William Blake @ WEB



Shiuli said...

Interesting perspective....waiting for the continuation....and congrats on your engrosssing blog!

Susmita said...

@Shiuli: Thank you for your encouragement :) Do keep reading and please put in your inputs wherever you wish to ... Thank you once again for joining the journey of these 'little lustrous lives' :)

Shinydewdrop said...

Wow.. you just took me back decades to when I read Blake, and Wordsworth, Shakespeare and Shelley! Yes, I agree that I have wondered about patience, anger and the various shades of similar emotions thereof. I have never been known for patience - in fact I have and still am mostly impulsive. However, this could be a great topic for debate - is patience weakness, or is it wisdom? Or, is it power - the ability not to respond/react? Or is it a state of inertia because we're afraid of change? Dunno..

But you raised great thoughts!

Susmita said...

@shinydewdrop: am having that debate within ... and hence the posts :)
feels good to know my writing strikes a chord in you ....

Shinydewdrop said...

it does, it does! Keep the thoughts flowing ... :)

Susmita said...

:) thank you!