There comes a time in your life when you realise that there is a horrible recurring pattern chasing you at every step that you try to take forward. This Black Cloud has a dogged determination and a relentless spirit. It might choose to dispel itself on a whim for a bit. But makes it comeback soon enough.
We all know, and even if we didn’t, the religions of the world have taught us sufficiently – that faith versus doubt, good versus evil, peace versus suffering are unending definitive tropes of our lives that can’t be denied their rightful place under the sun.
If only the definition of happiness hadn’t been so subjective. If only we were all trudging towards the same goal. If only we had xeroxed identities, personalities and destinies. If only ONE singular entity would have laid down scriptures, gospels or diktats that had to be followed for a unilateral and undisturbed existence. Because even these are then liable and open to interpretations galore. If only we came into this world, and with the dawn of our consciousness and general awareness, suddenly KNEW that this is what we NEED to do. All of us. On the same page. From day one. Everything an identical reflection of the other. Identical social mores, traditions, customs, wishes, desires, ambitions, needs …
If only we all wanted the same thing.
But, bless our souls, that we don’t. If there is a higher power up there, or even if it is us ourselves, we really have done ourselves a gigantic favour by not wanting the same thing. Each one of us. And by that, we have taken the first big leap of faith. Where we all establish, highlight and cherish our differences.
And, differences should be something we are happy and proud of. Because it’s a direct indication of us using our gifted faculties of thinking, feeling, sensing and expressing. If we all wanted the same thing, we would be talking about the same thing, working towards the same thing … and where would then life be upheld for the reason it’s granted to us?
History is witness to the fact that societies, communities and civilisations are created, build upon, and flourish when the people work towards a common goal. One may argue, that if everybody wanted to harbour a different vision and goal for the future, then that would be the birth of unending chaos. And that may as well be true.
But the goals for living together in peace, not harming any living being physically or otherwise, working industriously towards a prosperous future are probably some goals that we all can have in common, and not be begrudging of it.
We can share some goals, and then have some of our own. And it should be OKAY to have some of our own and work towards those. How difficult can such a thought be?
But it is. The human species has never been a peaceful species. It is okay to want more and better our lots. But to survive, live, grow or thrive at the expense of someone else? That has unfortunately always been the path forward for us, when all else fails.
If your parents bring you into this world and endeavour to educate you to become independent thinking and self-sufficient individuals … as soon as you start using these abilities, more often than not, those very same parents begin to question it. They always have dreams and aspirations for the by-products of themselves that they give birth to. And that is perfectly fine. Like I said before, some goals can be common, and some can be personal.
But it is when these lines can’t be drawn and begin to merge and blur, is when the problem arises. This problem at a microcosmic level is what expands and multiplies itself into a forever expanding seed of thought and spreads through societies. It’s an unending attempt to align, streamline and prevent from crossing any lines.
Every individual has an unbelievable amount to offer and live. But for almost everyone around the world, we are constantly trying to curb and stem the flow. At times, due to all the curbing and limiting, we get tired of it all and want to let go. That “letting go” may be healthy, but may also not be healthy. And as a converse theory, if every individual were also allowed to do everything they want to, then that as well would not be healthy. Moderation and balance is key.
The need to align should not restrict and suppress the many sides of a person. There are people out there who will qualify to be “flat” / “linear” characters in a story. People who are probably fine with living life in the way its prescribed to them. Because that is the only life they have been allowed to know, or be a part of. And this again, would not be due to a fault of their own. It’s just how things have always been. They could be from financially and socially disadvantaged families and grappling with societal pressures in general on a daily basis. They could have inherited this baggage as an unavoidable debt from previous generations, and been told that whatever be their karma, this is the fate that they had been allotted. And, they would be helpless but to go along with it. If they never get the time or opportunity to experience a different life, its either due to circumstance, obligation, or in extreme cases, force.
And then there are, “rounded” / “complex” characters who would just point blank refuse for their destiny to be decided for them. They may arise from a similar set of factors described above, but somehow dredge up the courage, obstinance and irreverence to rebel and carve their own plot. These people may not have the fortune of meeting and greeting “success” in its most traditional definition, but at least derive satisfaction (for as long as its possible) for living life on their own terms. They fall off the edge, dangle precariously, get back up with blood, sweat and tears blinding them – and yet believe strong in their convictions. They know how to be rooted to the essence of who they are and stand true to it. Even if it means, standing alone forever. It’s not a decision that simplifies their life by a long shot or brings any sort of peace to it. It’s just a decision that makes them what they are. Without their personal ideals, they would be hollow caricatures of themselves.
It’s usually not easy for families, societies, and people in general to understand and accept such people. Call it going against the norm, swimming against the tide, upsetting the apple cart or walking alone. It all points towards the same meaning. All of us were not meant to be the same. And this fact in itself, was also not meant to hurt the people we are different from. It’s just a fact. Plain, simple, and naked in the cold truth of it all.
We, as people today, need to understand that if we were all the same and wanted the same things, and aligned to expectations – then we would essentially be a dead civilisation. Or, world for that matter. We have to stop curbing other people, and begin with curbing ourselves. Stop controlling others, and control ourselves.
If there is misery, sadness, suffering, and pain destined to come our way, it will. We can’t stop it beyond a point. But there is absolutely no need to go out of our way and invite more. Especially, when we know we are going to be hurting somebody else. Because, as has been proven time and again, every action has an equal and opposite reaction. We are human at the end of the day, aren’t we?