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The rabid dog

saw 'pom poko'. Its a story of how an able, happy community of tanukis face their extinction in the face of rapid urbanisation that causes the loss of their homeland, their lifestyle and their food.
Its really amazing how Japanese movie makers so empathetically voice dissent while fully cognizant of the futility of it all. The sense of capitulation at the climax of many such movies are scripted in a way to invoke not a sense of loss, but a sense of preservation of whatever small life, pride and identity is left. Under the mask of laughter, there is a vigorous attempt at forgetting the loss and making the most of the present. I wonder how deeply has Hiroshima affected the Japanese psyche, or does this sense of 'interal triumph in face of imminent capitulation' goes beyond Hiroshima, in their amazingly rich culture?
____
while thinking of this, got reminded of the Japanese response to the Tsunami in march 2011. Had read about their belief of 'wa wo mottte toutoshi to nasu.' (regarding the importance of consensus and harmony) that was the hallmark of the amazingly dignified response to the catastrophe.
But while this consensus and harmony was exercised by Japanese in the face of a disaster, the disavowal of the same principle led to the nuclear disaster. At the heart of nuclear technology is the removal of natural effects from the equation of harmony. Without clear answers about nuclear safe disposal, its risk, the modernity bogey has been pushing the world to consume more n more of energy.

Modernity first erased nature and life of animals from the equation of 'consensus and harmony'. While most ancient cultures through out the world appreciate the importance and relate to a life of co-existence with nature, the 'New world' methodically reduced the world outside of humans to nothing more than a 'resource'.
As the resource got scarce, the second wave of reduction from the equation came in the form of negating certain sets of people from the consideration of 'consensus and harmony'. So adivasis, minorities, eocnomies outside of the connected world... started facing the 'othering'.
As the pace of change accelerated, there remained no place for the equation at all in the world. The world is now an anarchy of economic interests. The world does not recognise any other interest at all. Its a blind raging animal. Its like the rabid dog, that is driven to its doom.

Comments

wasn't it always? the terminology is new whats being said is same. weapons are new wars are still the same. so many civilizations have sprung and perished on this earth. much like so many lives human and others. what comes goes. nobody harps on about what was lost before the age of "information". things of equal beauty, if not more, razed and forgotten. and not all of that is at hands of people.
saying we are capable of changing the way the world is changing is too much pride i think. we are naught but a part of this machine. not alien, not outside context. if we destroy ourselves, it'll be because it has to happen. not because we did or did not do something.
Ajinkya Pawar said…
true.
But i am talking about our consideration getting narrower. That our world
view is not accommodating anything other than our economic interests.
I am not talking about our responsibility of change here at all.I am just
appraising what we are losing in this methodical amputation of senses we are
subjecting ourselves to.
BTW, do watch that movie.. its amazing.
will do!
@comment: thats just the thing. when you say "...we are
subjecting ourselves to.." I feel like you are given way to much credit to our freewill to do, good or bad, anything! we, as a peoples, just dont have that vision or view of the world in our world view. (i think!)(i think, scratch that, i feel, i could/should but may not, add  "i think" at the end of each argument i make.) we just follow our basic instincts and the other constructs that have come to be on them. the amputation or gangrene like degeneration as i perceive it, is happening. no arguments there. but its not our "conscious" doing. the degeneration of our cultural multifaceted multicoloredness is as natural and as inevitable as the rise of it. and sometimes i think it is as important as well...
Ajinkya Pawar said…
Bleh. we very well have the power to affect change. the change i am talking about has a scale that is relatable to us. when you say that we can't affect a change, you are right too.. but on a scale that is bigger and on a timeline grander than a human life. Its an outsider's scale. Our efforts certainly are changing 'our world'. the degeneration is largely  an effect of modernity. which humans brought about. its not inevitable. This in just among one possibility among many that came about. How we respond also will have a large bearing on our survival: cultural, literal, sociological..

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Withdrawal symptoms

Ctrl-tab
Ctrl-tab...
Scroll Scroll Scoll..
Alt-tab
Alt-tab...
Catch yourself slipping away.

Deep  breath. 

Close the browser. silence the mobile and turn it away.

Open an offline-real-paper diary. Stop your thighs from lolling impatiently. Stay still. 

Pick up a pen awkwardly. ahh, the fingers are stiff. It will take a  while for them to get used to holding a pen. Quick finger exercise - open the palm, stretch finger outwards, close into a fist, dig the fingers in. Repeat.
Ok now.. about to pick up the pen again, but eyes dart towards the screen. Tempted to check email.

Shut up. The last consequential email came two months ago. Nothing of consequence is online.

Pick up the pen. Don't fetishize the object now. Get on with it. Put it on paper, write a word and start it already. If I get to a sentence, perhaps I will get into a flow and won't have to look up from the paper at all. 

One sentence later.

Ahh. That was good. I am feeling good about myself. The sentence makes sense. …

Value

Things turn into cash
once they are stripped of their lives -
their breath,
their freedom,
their dignity
or their joy.

A fish on the table
and a cubicle dweller..
both are united in their solvency,
their ability to be stripped of their lives and turned into money.

This solvency is our own making
Hold up your hands against the sun and your favourite gods
Do they dissolve? 
Hold up your heart and see if it beats for them
Hold your joys in your hands and fling them towards the system,
does it stick?

For a better world
first we need to walk away from this world.