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.”

W H Auden: "But in my arms till break of day / Let the living creature lie. / Mortal, guilty, but to me/ The entirely beautiful."

Will Self: “To attempt to write seriously is always, I feel, to fail – the disjunction between my beautifully sonorous, accurate and painfully affecting mental content, and the leaden, halting sentences on the page always seems a dreadful falling short. It is this failure – a ceaseless threnody keening through the writing mind – that dominates my working life, just as an overweening sense of not having loved with enough depth or recklessness or tenderness dominates my personal one.”

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."

Art Spiegelman: "You know words in a way are hitting you on the left side of your brain, music and visual arts hit on the right side of the brain, so the idea is to pummel you, to send you from left brain to right brain and back until you're as unbalanced as I am."

विलास सारंग: "संदर्भ कुठलेही असोत, संस्कृत, इंग्रजी, बुद्धिवादी, तांत्रिक, इतिहासाचे, खगोलशास्त्राचे, आधुनिक पदार्थविज्ञानाचे, शिवकालीन व पेशवाईतील बखरीचे, अगणित ज्ञानक्षेत्रांचे, अशा वैविध्यपूर्ण ज्ञानावर लेखन- विशेषत: कवितालेखन- उभं राहत."

Monday, March 15, 2010

Will Vinda usher in Marathi Woody Allen?

When I finished reading -‘ASHTADARSHANE’ (अष्टदर्शने), 2003, I wrote a letter to Lalit (ललित) and sent a copy of that to Vinda Karandikar (विंदा करंदीकर).

Lalit published it and Vinda wrote back thanking me for it.

Following is based on that letter of mine.

In Marathi, M P Rege (मे पु रेगे ) has written a lot on the subject of philosophy using formal prose. It's tough for the writer. And reader!

But writing on philosophy, in any other form is even tougher for the writer.

Particularly, if one wishes to deploy quality humour or poetry. The way Woody Allen does in English.

But for the reader, it's easier.

Unfortunately, in Marathi, I have hardly come across such writings.

I remember one example from P L Deshpande's (पु ल देशपांडे) book.

Pu La imagines that the famous argument between sage Vasishta and sage Vishwamitra- 'Who is Brahmin?' (One: Brahmin knows Brahma, The other: the one who knows Brahma is Brahmin)- took place while both were chewing pans!

Vasant Sarwate (वसंत सरवटे) has drawn a beautiful illustration for it.

It reminded me of Mel Brooks: "Nietzsche whispers to you: ‘Without audacity there is no greatness.’ Freud whispers to you: ‘Why must there be greatness?’ That fight’s still going on. And you don’t understand either one, because they’re both whispering in German."

Frankly other than Charvak-darshan (चार्वाक), there is little information in Vinda's book that is not there in Will Durant's 'The story of philosophy' (1926).

However, Vinda's usage of abhang (अभंग) format to write on the subject of philosophy was at the bleeding edge of innovation.

Vinda had good sense of humour as is obvious from many of his poems. Vasant Sarwate too vouches for it.

I hope, some day, his ASHTADARSHANE ushers in Marathi's Woody Allen.

I also suggested that Vinda himself was 20th century's Charvak!

p.s. Read Vilas Sarang's (विलास सारंग) essay- first published in August 1973- on Vinda's poetry from 'Aksharancha Shram Kela' (अक्षरांचा श्रम केला), 2000. Sarang explains the good and the bad of Vinda's poetry.