August 30, 2010


The subject of beauty

August 27, 2010

I leave books half-read and unfinished, simply because I read them all at the same time.  At times when I think of these books I get momentarily confused, like now I ponder the Higg’s boson’s philosophical implications, as I am reading Kant simutaneously and he questions mathematics as synthetic judgement a priori, which leads to ultimately if God plays with dice.  And if She does, how will She think of man’s compulsion of the seek for knowledge as he rebuilds babel, drawing closer and closer to Her, and imagine if he finds out that God does not exist.   Sometimes I mix up the storylines – were the crocodiles and monkeys and hyenas in Vishnu Sarna’s book of parables and fables, or did Anthony Boudain eat them?  

My current unfinished books are;

  • The Strangest Man – The hidden life of Paul Dirac, Quantum genius.  Graham Farmelo.
  • Medium Raw – A bloody valentine to the world of food and the people who cook.  Anthony Bourdain.
  • The gospel according to Jesus Christ.  Jose Saramago.
  • Sunrise with Seamonsters.  Paul Theroux.
  • Hullabaloo to the guava orchard. Kiran Desai.
  • The Adventures of Amir Hamza.  Ghalib Lakhnavi and Abdullah Bilgrami.
  • The Panchatantra.  Vishnu Sarna
  • The critique of pure reason, and;
  • The critique of beauty.  Immanuel Kant.

And the subject of beauty, the Dirac equation that led to the prediction of anti-matter and positrons,  in the form originally proposed by Dirac is:

(From Wikipedia)

\left(\beta mc^2 + \sum_{k = 1}^3 \alpha_k p_k \, c\right) \psi (\mathbf{x},t) = i \hbar \frac{\partial\psi(\mathbf{x},t) }{\partial t}
m is the rest mass of the electron,
c is the speed of light,
p is the momentum operator,
x and t are the space and time coordinates,
ħ = h/2π is the reduced Planck constant, also known as Dirac’s constant.
β is the amount of honey on a waffle.

Flight attendents

August 18, 2010


August 18, 2010

There are things in the world that one holds precious, for me it is the peace you get when you are still, when time passes by slowly and it seems everything can wait. Here, there are memories that flood your mind and maybe out of all that you’d single out one thought, or some scene which you’d play over and over again – a barely audible whisper in some conversation, a gesture, a look in somebody’s eye, a goodbye. 

Yet sometimes you could empty your mind and it is so easy not to have a single thought in the world.

Recently I feel as though drugs were coursing through my veins, and I float about like I am living a dream. But unlike real dreams where I would wake up not remembering anything, events and conversations are vivid and real.  

But he-who-walks-in-his-sleep often wakes up with a taste in his mouth that disappears too quickly, like ice-cream that melts.  I am a somnambulist who must believe in my dreams, for those thoughts, however impermanent, are what I hold most precious.

Rilke’s der panther

August 17, 2010


Jardin des Plantes, Paris.

His vision, from the constantly passing bars,
has grown so weary that it cannot hold
anything else. It seems to him there are
a thousand bars; and behind the bars, no world.

As he paces in cramped circles, over and over,
the movement of his powerful soft strides
is like a ritual dance around a center
in which a mighty will stands paralyzed.

Only at times, the curtain of the pupils
lifts, quietly–. An image enters in,
rushes down through the tensed, arrested muscles,
plunges into the heart and is gone.

The road

August 5, 2010

The road that we were about to take was precipitous and predictably unpredictable, but we took it because it felt inevitable, that there was no turning back, for what we discovered in ourselves was this irresistible urge to see into our futures, and that maybe, just maybe, we hold in us the will to wrest control of our destinies.

It started to drizzle by the time the man delivered the scooter to us, and I think now that he was renting out his own ride, for the fuel tank was almost empty, and I had to pillion it out to a nearby gas stand to get it filled, and then drop him home.

When I first met her I thought everything she said was what I liked hearing; she was articulate, concise and interesting, and she radiated intelligence. I sensed humility. Since then, and as is now, as she got on the bike behind me, and insisted I wear the raincoat because raindrops would pelt the one in front, I looked at her and thought, ”Wow”. Wow wow wow.

As the rain fell it had become more difficult to see. We passed groceries, small furniture stores, shophouses, gargoyled temples and homes with huge satellite dishes in their lawns, and traversed over potholes and bumps in the road as I struggled to keep balance.  All the time, we talked and joked and laughed as if we were just sitting in a coffee shop, only but shouting a few octaves louder.  As the rain fell harder, obscuring my helmet visor, it seemed that my heart had become ostensibly clearer. 

That in my heart all our gestures of recklessness is a picture in my head that storms will eventually give way to calm seas, that the duel between the rational man and Lord Krishna, the destroyer of worlds, brings about satcitananda, a new conciousness.

And yet it is a generous god who gifts once-in-a-lifetime chances like the ones on that bike, a whole day spent in close proximity, at once conjuring confused emotions and simple bliss, creating situations that test the endurance of our relationship, and in the process, unforgettable memories.

That the trip was probably the start of a journey of a million miles, and that road, which is precipitous and predictably unpredictable, will eventually make sense, and vindicate our actions.

Wow wow wow, says the bike.

I have always gravitated towards brave and innovative musicians who pushes boundaries and creates magical sounds.