Archive for the ‘asoka’ Tag


Traveler’s Destiny

Monk to Asoka “You are not an ordinary human being. You seem to have a great destiny.” “What is my destiny? To rule? To be a great king?”, asks Asoka.  “No, even bigger than that”, says the Monk. “Whose destiny is bigger than even kings”, asks Asoka. Monk, “ A traveler’s destiny, when he completes his journey.”  – from the film Asoka.

We are travelers, moving away from the single source we originated from billions of years ago. While we have no or little control over the need to move away, from the one original source, we do have the innate need within us to go back, in our own different ways. The desire to go back to our roots, from the point we started our own min-journeys in this super journey of human kind and life itself, is something that defines us.  How we deal with this basic desire, defines in a great deal, what we make of this life span.

The year was 1985, Indira Gandhi had just died, one of her murderers still being tried in court. Rajeev Gandhi was still the hope of new India and still talked about taking India into 21st century. In the summer of 1985, I set foot on the border of my village catching a bus for the first time. Little I knew that the journey I was starting on, was to continue on and one to longer and longer distances, farther and farther away, to places I hadn’t even heard before. Every step I took, corner I turned, every place I left behind, I it got fainter and fainter but the hope always stayed in my heart with a wish to go back, some day.

I was well into my adult life until I kept seeing the first house I grew up in, in my dreams. The house would be there in very vivid colors and I would be able see and almost touch every bit of detail. The smell, the texture, the trunks, the trash everything would show up. Not only that, I could close my eyes any time and transport myself back inside the house, live there for a minute or two before returning back to present moment. Then suddenly one day, I realize that I was losing those brain cells on which the house of my early years was imprinted upon. I was finding it harder and harder to remember the details; it was slipping away from me. It was not the best house, I would live in bigger and better houses, but this was the house I was born in, this is where I came from and not being able to recall the source as clearly was disconcerting at first.

Now, I remember the house through this poetry of Gulzar sab. I have no idea what Gulzar sab is describing here, but it sounds to me as if he is describing my first house, the house I left far behind, whose sand print is almost gone.

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To be continued…