G C Lichtenberg: “It is as if our languages were confounded: when we want a thought, they bring us a word; when we ask for a word, they give us a dash; and when we expect a dash, there comes a piece of bawdy.”

H. P. Lovecraft: "What a man does for pay is of little significance. What he is, as a sensitive instrument responsive to the world's beauty, is everything!"

Martin Amis: “Gogol is funny, Tolstoy in his merciless clarity is funny, and Dostoyevsky, funnily enough, is very funny indeed; moreover, the final generation of Russian literature, before it was destroyed by Lenin and Stalin, remained emphatically comic — Bunin, Bely, Bulgakov, Zamyatin. The novel is comic because life is comic (until the inevitable tragedy of the fifth act);...”

Werner Herzog: “We are surrounded by worn-out, banal, useless and exhausted images, limping and dragging themselves behind the rest of our cultural evolution.”

John Gray: "Unlike Schopenhauer, who lamented the human lot, Leopardi believed that the best response to life is laughter. What fascinated Schopenhauer, along with many later writers, was Leopardi’s insistence that illusion is necessary to human happiness."

Justin E.H. Smith: “One should of course take seriously serious efforts to improve society. But when these efforts fail, in whole or in part, it is only humor that offers redemption. So far, human expectations have always been strained, and have always come, give or take a bit, to nothing. In this respect reality itself has the form of a joke, and humor the force of truth.”

विलास सारंग: "… . . 1000 नंतर ज्या प्रकारची संस्कृती रुढ झाली , त्यामध्ये साधारणत्व विश्वात्मकता हे गुण प्राय: लुप्त झाले...आपली संस्कृती अकाली विश्वात्मक साधारणतेला मुकली आहे."

Thursday, July 05, 2007

“Sarpa Dosha” of Sachin Tendulkar & H D Deve Gowda and “Manushya Dosha” of Poor Snakes

India’s ex-Prime Minister H D Deve Gowda did a daylong ‘homa’ at his residence on July 4 to ward off ‘sarpa dosha’ reports Times of India July 5,2007.

“The six foot rat snake’s visit to his house on June 15 seems to be haunting him. The fall-out Gowda feels the negative publicity his family has been getting in the last few days must be due to this snake. For the homa, 101 priests along with their family members from Ahobila mutt in Chennai were specially invited.”

Remember another high profile “sarpa dosha” afflicted personality?

On May 8, 2006 , India’s larger-than-life cricketer Sachin Tendulkar performed the 'sarpa samskara seva' at Kukke Sri Subrahmanya Temple , a ritual that took about half-an-hour. He also performed another seva 'ashlesha bali', which is for the general well-being and good health of the player and his family. Spiritual mentor V S Nayak told Times Of India that Tendulkar's ancestors had accidentally killed a cobra but not performed the necessary rituals. This had led to the 'sarpa dosha'. Nayak said the rituals were needed for a person's well-being. He said there was no place other than Subramanya where it could be performed. "Sachin should have performed two more poojas. But due to lack of time, he will perform only these two important sevas," Nayak said.

Others reported: the master blaster's loss of form and injury problems were traced to adverse planetary positions for which corrective rituals took place.

Gowda’s puja was not televised while Tendulkar’s was on almost all news channels.

When I lived in Bangalore, I had witnessed a longer than six foot snake slowly making its way from just outside our gate to somewhere inside the garden, chasing perhaps frogs and rodents. I was spellbound by that glorious site. I did not know I had to do “sarpa dosha” after that.

I wonder if snakes should do “manushya dosha” so that humans turned more sensible.


Artist: E L Shoemaker The New Yorker 28 Oct 1933