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!"

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."

Chris Ware: "Being a cartoonist means you don’t consider yourself too fancy."

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

Thursday, November 25, 2010

असेच होते गांधीजीही, येशु क्रिस्त अन् कृष्ण कदाचित् कालिदास अन टैकोब्राही

Jill Lepore: The life of Potter is the story of a man fated, at death, to be buried in a potter’s field. To the American Plutarch, it was rubbish. There is no humility in monumental biography. But there is humility in nature, in time, and in history. The same sun that shines on the Bunker Hill monument, Melville pointed out, shines on Potter’s unmarked grave. Come winter, the same snow falls, dusting us all. (The New Yorker, September 27 2010)

One of B S Mardhekar's (बा. सी. मर्ढेकर) poems: 'Mee Ek Mungi, Ha Ek Mungi' [मी एक मुंगी, हा एक मुंगी), poem 16 from 'Anakhi Kahi Kavita' (आणखी कांहीं कविता), has these lines:

'ह्या नच मुंग्या : हींच माणसे :
असेच होते गांधीजीही,
येशु क्रिस्त अन् कृष्ण कदाचित्
कालिदास अन टैकोब्राही.'

(They are not ants : they are humans :
Gandhiji was like this too
Jesus Christ and Krishna perhaps
Kalidas and Tycho Brahe too)

I have already written about this poem here.

After reading DAN BILEFSKY's article in The New York Times on November 19 2010, looking at Brahe's remains, I realised how human Brahe was!

In India, majority of Hindus are cremated and hence have no graves, and even if they had, we wouldn't allow opening of them. There would be riots even at the mention of it.

But if there were to be graves for Krishna or Gandhi, their remains wouldn't look very different from that of Brahe.

Niels Linnerup of the University of Copenhagen examines the remains of Tycho Brahe in Prague,

Pool photo by Jacob Christensen Ravn/Aarhus University, via European Pressphoto Agency courtsey: The New York Times, Published: November 19, 2010