Friday, April 22, 2005

Just read..

Thursday, April 21, 2005

Are we ready?

Will we ever be ready for death? I have been thinking about it for a week now and I still have not been able to figure out if we can ever be ready for death.Actually what does it mean to be ready for death?Bhagyam(the director of our next play) passed away last week when she was reading on stage. There have been a number of people who said that she went away doing what she did best and what she liked doing best. But was she ready when she went?Will we ever be ready to die?By ready, could it mean that she had achieved all that she had set out for. Or could it mean that she had conveyed exactly how she felt to all the people who mattered to her. Or could it just mean that she was content with life.I don't know...

Bhagyam for me was an unending quest, an eternal question, probing, searching...Our readings with her were a revelation. We would be discussing a contentious issue and I would shake my head listening to somebody and she would smile, seeing me dissenting and say,"Yes, Saraansh, go on." and yet was she ready when she went??? She wanted to make evam Indrajit as relevant today as she could and she went about doing this with a fervor I have not seen till date and that's why I ask, Was she ready??Will we ever be ready??

Wednesday, April 20, 2005


Bhagyam, we miss you.

Monday, April 11, 2005

Way of life

I was talking to a close acquaintaince of mine and at some point in the conversation, she used the phrase "Way of life". She was actually telling me about her weekend routine in Melbourne where she went shopping and invariably ended up buying more than she set out for and she said its almost become a "way of life". I'm sure she meant the whole thing in a lighter vein but could not help think about what a "way of life" actually meant.

There was the colonial way of life in which men were given their due on the grounds of colour and nationality. Just the colour of your skin could mean a "different way of life"(not necessarily for the better) On the same thread was the Gandhian way of life in which every being was considered equal and in the whole "means to an end" scenario, the "means " acquired greater importance. There was the Communist way of life in which everything belonged to the state and our existence as individuals counted for nothing. These days there are two subsets of the above mentioned- one followed by Wen Jiaboa, the esteemed Premier of China and the one practised by our dear Prakash Karat of the Communist Party of India and inspite of being in the same subset, there are more differences that similarities in the above mentioned way of life. There is the American way of life where the legend has grown of migrants coming with zilch in their pockets but with their hearts on their sleeves and today have turned into millionaires. There was the Hitler's way of life which reminded one more of the whole Harry Potter scene where the pure bloods had more rights than the other "mud bloods" and where the extermination of the impure races seemed a perfect solution to cleanse society of this scourge and diametrically opposite was Mother Teresa's way of life where beauty existed in everything and in every being and where giving was the greatest joy. Today there's the city yuppie's way of life who has all comforts and belongs to the "I, me myself" generation and then there is the soldier's way of life who does not know when he will be home again.

All this from an innocuous phrase such as "way of life".Hmm...mine??I am still trying to figure that out.

Sunday, April 03, 2005


In the last month or so, I have a attended a variety of theatre workshops ranging from body movement to voice training to several readings of the play, evam Indrajit. However, I think the most interesting of these has been the mime exercises. Its a simple enough concept when you think about it, however the execution was not as easy as I thought it would be. The first mime exercise we did was when we were asked to carry out a sequence of activities that we did at home that day, in mime. What this meant was that I was supposed to be oblivious to the presence of the 15 people watching me and walk through some daily activity of mine. It could be as simple as brushing my teeth or taking a shower. I realized as to how difficult it was to shake away the idea in my head that there are people around me, watching. It was interesting also in the sense that when there were people who performed this exercise in complete isolation of their audience, it became a pleasure to watch them, even if it was as banal as them getting up and choosing what to wear.

The next exercise was one in which we were divided into sets of 4-5 and one person from a set came up and was asked to mime something written on a paper, in the sense that they were supposed to show the activity and not the words on the paper. It made me realize that how a simple act of somebody stopping his cycle, getting off and throwing something made my mind correlate it to a newspaper boy. It was an excellent exercise in exploring the patterns that our brain forms over a period of time. How a simple action can make us see the activity in its entirety.

Next was an exercise in which each person was given an activity and as he/she performs that activity, the others in his set, look and identify what he is doing and then join him in the activity. It was a brilliant exercise of team cognition in which, lets say a person got volley ball, then as he showed a player serving, the others in his set rose and took position as other players, the net and the referee.

Its been a very interesting last month attending these workshops because its made me realize what attention to detail can do to an absolutely trivial situation and the metamorphosis has to be seen to be believed.