ArpitGarg's Weblog

An opinion of the world around me

Posts Tagged ‘God

My God, Your God

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It was waiting to snap any moment. Whether a prominent Fakir is God or not, has been debated for some time. However the level of discourse seems to have come down of late. With self-proclaimed representatives on either sides uttering choicest of expletives on prime-time, it has become an embarrassment for the followers.

My parents are practicing Hindus and heed to every temple under the sun. They also go to Baba’s shrine to pay respects. I am agnostic to idol worship and have never given too much thought into.

More than faith, the issue seems to be the struggle for power. With the rise of the followers of Baba, a new religious authority has come up with equally fat belly and equally fat purse. So who takes the cake?

Whether Baba can be considered a Hindu God and can be placed in Hindu temples is the contention here. The body that guides the temples says NO with the other side lobbying for it. There are allegations of power play, money changing hands and what not.

As if it was not bad enough that successive generations have become disillusioned with idol worships, these fights have made it worse.

Pro-Baba lobby says, “Our sentiments are hurt; when you say remove him from temples”. The other side says, “Our sentiments are hurt; when you force his idol in our temples”.

I say, my brain hurts. Help me God!

Written by arpitgarg

September 11, 2014 at 6:26 pm

Posted in General/Society, God

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Worship Oneself: 330 million Gods

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330 million. The number of Gods in Hindu mythology. It has always intrigued me. Who came up with this number? Why it is not 340 million or 350 million? Why is has to be 330 million?

I have been doing a bit of reading on this of late. I have not really understood the rationale behind this number. The only interpretation is that it represents infinity (a very large number). It is said that we do not have 330 million Gods, but 330 million gods. There is only one God, the unison of Holy Trinity, Brahma-Vishnu-Shiva. All other are demi-gods, who themselves worship God.

This very large number is used to represent that Hinduism believe everything is created by God and thus is divine. So everything we see (living/non-living) is divine. We worship all. Thus there is no concept of devil in Hinduism. As devil himself would have to be created by God and would thus be divine. In fact you will find that Shiva never differentiated between even good and bad people. Anyone who did tapasaya was granted a var. It led to even Shiva being threatened once, when he gave an Asura power to kill anybody and that Asura tried to kill Shiva himself.

Hence there is freedom in Hinduism to worship anything and anyone. We worship cows, sun, moon, flowers, stone, water etc. The list is endless. Thus all the egoists, who worship themselves, do nothing wrong. We are created by God and are ourselves divine. Self-worshipping not only takes less time buy also saves money.

Written by arpitgarg

November 17, 2013 at 10:47 pm

Posted in Funny, God

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Sachin’s Fan(atic)’s

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The unique thing about Sachin is that everyone has an opinion about him. Such has been his presence that no one is left untouched. Maybe be that’s why he is regarded to be God. Though Sachin himself has said, “I am no God. God don’t make mistakes. I do“.

There is a common thing about highly revered personalities. It is the barrage of fans. Be it Gandhi, Mandela, Bradman earlier, Or Obama, Modi, Sachin in today’s times. Each one have/had huge number of people who followed them and revered them.

We don’t realize when this fan-hood turns into devotion which turns into fanaticism. Just try saying anything against Gandhi, Modi, Sachin and you would understand what I mean. You would be ganged upon and berated and made to wish that God wouldn’t have given you a tongue in the first place.

Fans are earned by hard work. And such fanatic fans are earned by hard work over a long period of time. Sometime these fans tend to go overboard. They end up giving bad names to their Hero. Modi fans demanding scalp of anyone and everyone who say anything against him, are doing bad for his image. They just don’t get it. So are Sachin fans.

I remember a conversation with a Belgian who had read a lot about Gandhi and was a great fan. We started discussing about Gandhi’s personal life. I told him few things that I didn’t like in Gandhi’s personal life. This guy felt offended and saw a devil in me for saying so. He ended up saying few things to me which I am sure Gandhi would have never said himself.

Sachin is/was always open to criticism. This is what makes him a Hero. His fans on the other hand are not open to any criticism. It takes away some sheen off Sachin and reflects badly on him. Sachin himself hasn’t spoken ill of anybody. His fans should follow the same if they are his real fans.

Written by arpitgarg

November 17, 2013 at 9:40 pm

Posted in Cricket

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मानेगा रब

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शाम थी कुछ अनजान,
थम सा गया था समां,
दूर कहीं एक अहाट थी,
दस्तक देने को तयार|

बेरंग जिंदगी थी जो मेरी,
तेरी नजरों को चुभ सी गयी,
हुई तभी से तू इसमें,
रंग भरने को तत्पर|

तेरी मुस्कराहट में ऐसा खोया,
आज तलक न मिल पाया,
डूब डूब कर मैं जानूं,
सच है, कोई ख्वाब नहीं|

परछाई से भी डरता था,
अब हठ कर ऐसा ऐंठा है,
बिन तेरे सब कुछ सून सून,
संग में ही जीवन जीना है|

गोभी का वो फूल नहीं,
दिल था मेरा जो तुझे दिया,
तू रूठ रूठ के मान गयी,
मैं मना मना कर थका नहीं|

एक झल्ली सी पहली बार लगी,
तेरी लट में, मैं अटक गया,
तब कमर पे तेरे हाथ रखा जो,
आज तक वहीँ रखा है देख|

कुछ गम था ऐसी बात नहीं,
कुछ कम था पर जज्बात सही,
कुछ नम फिर तेरे लिए हुआ,
कुछ थम गया, समय था वो|

तेरी गर्दन पे स्नेह किया,
प्यार से तू करहा थी गयी,
मीनू, रिंकू औ पिंकी सब,
जाने कब मेरे अपने हुए|

लबों की तेरी लाली थी,
मेरे लबों पर चमकी देख,
तेरे मुहं का स्वाद भी अब,
मुझको रह रहकर आता है|

साँसों की तेरी गरम हवा,
मेरी साँसों से टकराई जब,
झुक गए सारे नैन तभी,
सीने से तुझको लगा लिया|

छुपा ले अपने आँचल में,
यह दुनिया सब बेगानी है,
संग तेरे जो जीना पड़े मुझे,
वो जीवन मुझे बेमानी है|

एक बार जो थामा हाथ तेरा,
एक बार जो तुझको स्नेह किया,
अनंत तक न छूटेगा अब,
चाहें न मानें सब, मानेगा पर रब||

Written by arpitgarg

January 3, 2012 at 11:31 pm

Posted in Hindi, Love, Personal, Poetry

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Reincarnations of the Modern Kind

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When a Rajinikant movie is released, there are poojans and processions all around. The fans have relegated a mere human to the status of God. In fact over the period of history, there have been several such cases when humans have performed such feats that the followers became worshippers.

They say there is God in all of us. Let’s consider it true for a while. Let’s try and identify the almighty who walk among us and whose reincarnation are they.

1. Shiva America
Partition The Destroyer. A handsome young man, meditating and minding his own business, when disturbed unnecessarily, opens his third eye and wreaks havoc on the world.Who more similar than America, A place for opportunities, an inviting habitat. But when Japan carried out an unprovoked attack on Pearl Harbor, retaliation was swift and deadly. Even Taliban would agree! Revered and Feared Partition
2. Rama Sachin Tendulkar
Partition The Maryada Purshottama. Unswerving self control and virtue. The composure and patience never wore out. Perfect adherence to dharma.The choice is unanimous. Sachin Tendulkar. An ideal man and a perfect human. Need I say more? Partition
3. Ganesha Pranab Mukherjee
Partition Vighnharta. This son of Shiva, hailed as the Remover of Obstacles.For the past 7 years of UPA rule, Pranab Mukherjee is the one to whom Congress run in dire situations, he is Vighnharta for sure. Partition
4. Hanuman Manmohan Singh
Partition The devotee. Served Rama from the heart. Manmohan Singh was the right hand man of Sonia Gandhi when she was bidding for PM post. Once she decided to sacrifice, her ardent devotee was rewarded. Ever since 7, Race Course has hardly disobeyed 10, Janpath. Partition
5. Durga Mamta Banerjee
Partition Feminine Force. The Devi riding a lion with a smile. Fearless.Mamta Banerjee has fought against the system for last 35 years in West Bengal single handedly. Her only weapon being her fearless and killer attitude. Durga came into full force in 2011 assembly elections when she ran over her opponents. Partition
6. Lakshmi Jayalalita
Partition The goddess of wealth, wisdom, prosperity. Sheer good luck and wealth to all the devotees.When IT dept. raided Jayalalita’s premsies, everyone was astounded to see the wealth. She promises her voters cash and kind if they bring her to power. Partition
7. Krishna Akshay Kumar
Partition The prankster. The raas-leela. An ideal lover. The Supreme Being. The Gyaan of Geeta.Akshay Kumar has always been known to be a ladies’ man. The pranks played by him on his co-stars are a part of a legend. The wit and humor is unquestionable. Partition
8. Annapurna Big Bazaar
Partition Goddess of food. Supplies food to people.In today’s world its Big Bazaar which fills the hungry stomach. From food to fruit, everything you get by making a wish to Big Bazaar. Partition
9. Vishnu Common Man
Partition The preserver and protector of creation. Mercy and goodness. It’s a self-existent entity.The Common Man by R K Laxman has been the face of aam aadmi since eternity. As witty as Vishnu and representing the facets of humanity akin to various avatars. Partition

Grandparents

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There was a village amidst the mountains. Total population would not have been more than couple of hundred. It was like a family living in harmony since generations.

Witness to all these years was a banyan tree. None knew exactly how old it was. Prevalent folklore varied its age from thousands to millions of years. All sorts of carvings could be made out from its trunk. Some looked prehistoric, some recent. The tree was so spread out that it acted like a city centre. Everyone hung out, celebrated festivals under it. It was an integral part of village life; a group of happy populous.

One morning people woke up to something. It was a windy day alright; but apart from sand and dust, there was something else in the air. Thousands of banyan leaves were flying around. Whole village soon gathered underneath the tree. It had lost half of its leaves overnight. The freshness of the morning soon turned into realization of a shock.

The tree was dying. The suddenness of the situation was more than anyone could handle. Ladies started weeping. Men could hardly speak. They prayed, pleaded with their Gods. Every avenue possible was explored but to no avail. It was two weeks when the last of the leaf was seen. It was now a dead wood. The life was not the same anymore.

Suddenly the sun seemed hotter, rains heavier and stars aplenty. Years went by and the tales about the age of the tree changed into tales about existence of it. People started to live indoors. There were no community gatherings anymore. It was like the societal fiber just vanished, the thread broken, the elastic snapped.

Similar is the impact of elders in a home. Grandparents we call them. No one knows how old the grandmother is. She was born this old, with wrinkles, for all we know. Nobody knows from where the wisdom of Grandfather comes from. He is The Britannica for all we know.

They are the root that symbolizes the family and keeps everyone together. Once they leave, the sons/daughters become a self existent entity. The family gatherings become less. The circle of life springs into action. Each of those offshoots starts their own family, become old to be called grandparents themselves. The vacuum remains but the life moves on.

Soon number of trees cropped up under the dead root. The city centre was vibrant again. The banyan tree gave way to multitude of trees. New fruits and new flowers; New pours and new showers.

Of Cricket, Suresh, Sachin and Serbian

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Netizens woke up today to “Suresh Raina is God” updates on social networking websites. Apparently when “Suresh Raina is God” is translated to Serbian and back to English, Google Translate, gives us “Sachin Tendulkar is God”.  Sachin fans are going crazy ever since, reaffirming their faith in all what is Google.

Let me jot down in brief, what Google says, how Google Translate works.

Not Word By Work
It’s not a word by word translation. In the sense that “I am God” in Hindi does not translate to “मैं हूँ भगवान”, but Google Translate does it perfectly to, “मैं भगवान हूँ”.

Machine Guess Work
It’s all a guess work. Large amounts of documents already translated by human translators have been scanned. Google Translate analyses the patterns to find best suitable translation. Google calls it, “statistical machine translation”.

Correct the Mistakes
Google asks for your contribution to make Translate better. If you come across an anomaly, select the better alternative provided. This is fed back to the analyzer for future reference.

I did some investigation on my own keeping the above explainations in mind. Below are the results with my weird theories.

1. Cricket, Sachin, Suresh and Serbian

English Serbian English
Suresh Raina is God Суресх Раина је Бог Sachin Tendulkar is God
Suresh Raina is a match Fixer Суресх Раина је меч Фикер Sachin Tendulkar is a match Fixer
Suresh Raina is bowled out Суресх Раина се докотрљао се Sachin Tendulkar is bowled up
Suresh Raina is run out Суресх Раина је понестало Sachin Tendulkar was run out
Suresh Raina is playing cricket Sachin Tendulkar Суресх Раина игра крикет са Сацхин Тендулкар Sachin Tendulkar playing cricket with Sachin Tendulkar

If we associate Suresh Raina with cricket in any sense, Translate interprets it as Sachin Tendulkar as far as Serbian and English is concerned. If we recall, Suresh Raina was hailed by Wisden, Bible of Cricket, as one of the most promising lad when he first surfaced on the cricket arena. He was hailed as the next Sachin Tendulkar by cricket enthusiasts and pundits. Google Translate might be looking into those very reports for all we know. Also Suresh seems quite similar to Sachin even in English language.

2. Others are fine

English Serbian English
Virender Shewag is God Вирендер Схеваг је Бог Virender Shevag God
Sourav Ganguly is God Соурав Гангули је Бог Sourav Ganguli God
Rahul Dravid is God Рахул Дравид је Бог Rahul Dravid is God
Mahendra Singh Dhoni is God Махендра Сингх Дхони је Бог Mahendra Singh Dhoni is God

With other cricketers there seems to be no goofiness at all. I was expecting some trick with Virender Sehwag given that he has been hailed as duplicate Sachin. Alas! I was wrong.

3. No Cricket, No Confusion

English Serbian English
Suresh Raina Суресх Раина Suresh Raina
Suresh Raina is a doctor Суресх Раина је лекар Suresh Raina is a doctor
Suresh Raina eat Суресх Раина једу Suresh Raina eat
I met Suresh Raina Сам упознао Раина Суресх I met Suresh Raina
Suresh Raina met Sachin Tendulkar Суресх Раина састао Сацхин Тендулкар Suresh Raina met Sachin Tendulkar

If we use Suresh Raina, independent of any cricketing context, there is no funny business at all. Raina will not be able to catch up with Sachin in his off field life it seems.

4. Another of Google’s Prank

It might have been hardcoded by Google as a prank on cricket crazy net users in India. They are well known for such jokes. If it is a ploy, it sure is working. Wait for a press release, they will admit soon, if there is anything to it.

Google Translate has a lot many tricks up its sleeve. Keep exploring. Coz that’s what Jesus (Google) wants us to do. One of them being:

English Vietnamese English
Will Justin Bieber ever hit puberty Justin Bieber sẽ bao giờ đến tuổi dậy thì Justin will never reach puberty

Now that’s nasty of Google. What has Justin done to anyone?

The Day the Earth stood still

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1996 was year that marked my generations tryst with cricket. Kirsten’s 188; Jayasurya’s revelations; Indo/Pak Q/F; the Eden heartbreak. It was a roller coaster ride of emotions. It had all, save the Heroic ending. The script seemed flawed; a job left unfinished.

Post ’98 Sharjah exploits, the team fell apart under the match fixing allegations. We were no longer a force in the world cricket. Two of the most controversial figures of Indian cricketing history the Raja and the Senapati fell and gave way to yet another controversial figure of all times. Though his were the controversies we took pride in.

Eden curse was cured by a Lanky personality who gave us reasons to be proud of. The high moon, the tide, the ebbs, the flows all became but adjectives when the cricketing history was re-written. A giant was born. The journey culminated in Jo ’burg when the mighty batting lineup was but a step away from laying its claim.

Albeit, that was not to be. Undone by a legend from down under, it paved way to of one of the most hate-filled cricketing rivalry. The Sydney fiasco was just waiting to happen. It turned out to be the Pearl Harbor of Indian cricket. We have never looked back since. The zeal, the aggression, the will has never been higher. Post 3 IPL’s, high dose of Indo-SL matches and a resurrection of The God of Cricket, it’s time to cross the final hurdle.

The SF match between Indo-Pak, was the most anticipated and followed match in the history of cricket. Everything was to its maximum. Imagine anti-aircraft guns around the stadium! I travelled from Mumbai to Pune to celebrate the festival with friends. With Holi/Diwali/Ganesh Pooja being celebrated with varying vigor across the country, the festival of cricket is the only one which whole nation celebrates equally.

The scenes I saw in Pune were unparalleled. The roads were jammed post the win. I could see thousands of bikes/cars/tempo/buses parading round the city. Flags/colors/sweets aplenty. The whole city was one. It was the day for no hatred.

On field/off field the camaraderie between the two nations was a sight to behold. The old sins were washed off. The 26/11 seemed a distant memory. One match turned the hostile relations between two nations onto its head, into Aman Ki Fuhaar.

My feet were trembling and emotions flowing unrestrained. It was day when 1/5th of humanity gasped in unison, It was a day when the Earth stood still.

Why do we Celebrate Birthdays?

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Like always, I threw a party for my friends this birthday. We celebrated, ate, I got gifts et al. This year was different though. I turned 25; a quarter of my life gone. According to a legend, man lives total of four lives. First 25 years “life of a human” when he enjoys, next 25 years “life of a bull”, when he works like hell, next 25 years “life of a dog”, when he barks and no one listens to him. And the last 25 years “life of an owl” when he is awake at night and listens to everyone without his own existence.

Accordingly I am done living the enjoyment part of my life. During early years of my life I used to wait eagerly for this day. New clothes, gifts, money. As fate should have it, I started falling ill on my birthdays regularly. At the age of 8 my Grandma decided enough is enough, no more celebrations. “Logaun ki nazar lag jaati hai chore ko”.

From that day, I avoided opulent celebrations, a tradition which I have carried on since. It has been just a few close friends, raising a toast and a small cake cutting; personal and close. Inadvertently I have moved on from opulence to sobriety.

I often wonder why we celebrate birthdays at all. When and how the tradition started? It could not have started before the advent of calendars, right? We just celebrated birth and death prior to that. At birth God gifts life, at death God takes it away. Both events take us closer to God. Hence the celebrations.

During winters, days get smaller, and as summer approaches they start getting bigger. Early people thus considered advent of summers as rebirth of Sun. This was among the first annual birthday celebrations by man. When calendars came into existence the same was applied to birth of the son (sun, Jesus) and effectively to every human being.

So what does birthday celebrations signify during our modern times? Are we celebrating the coming year, are we celebrating the accomplishments of the past year, are we celebrating surviving yet another year?

If we are celebrating the future life, than with each passing year, we have less and less reasons to celebrate. So should a septuagenarian celebrate any less than a guy in his twenties? If the answer is no, then one thing is quite clear that we are not celebrating the future life.

Are we celebrating the past year? But why? The past is past. It is gone. It is a like the sand which has dropped out of the hand. It is like the wind that has passed. We could have admired it as it was happening but why should we celebrate the past. Though we often raise a toast to the past years accomplishments during the party, it’s just a filler.

Since we move one year closer to death, we are for sure not celebrating the gift of life. Coz we are one step closer to that gift being taken away. It will be a delusional stunt of defying death if that is what we are celebrating.

What I feel is that birthdays are just a timely reminder of our existence in this vulnerable world. It’s a way by which we feel ourselves. We realize our existence. “Look, I am still here, despite what life has thrown at me. It’s just another way to celebrate who we are and where we have come from. It’s just another way to announce ourselves.

Checking the Trends

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Who do we love more? Mom or Dad. Who do we think about more? Jesus or Satan. Do we Love more than we Hate? One would agree, these questions are quite vague to answer. Not any more. Thanks to Google’s insatiable desire to hold more and more dough over its users, we are now able to analyze the search pattern traffic over the years via Google Trends. As much as I hate Google for storing private data, I love the way they use it.

 

Mom vs Dad

Mom seems to be the favorite here. Time for Dad’s to buckle up or lose the battle.

 

IPad vs Kindle

Since IPad is quite new, let’s consider just the last year’s data. IPad beats Kindle quite easily. Despite being a new entrant, people prefer it over Kindle. It seems IPad will put out this Kindle soon.

 

Engineer vs Doctor

I have always taken pride in being an engineer. But my doctor friends can smile now. I concede. You win. You are more dear to people than me.

 

Apple vs Microsoft vs Google

No prizes for guessing. Google beats Apple and Microsoft by a margin. Microsoft seems to be on a decline and next year’s data might though some shocking statistics.

 

Twitter vs Orkut vs Myspace vs Facebook

Facebook is way ahead of its peers. For Twitter/Orkut/MySpace, seems a tough life ahead.

 

BJP vs Gandhi

I tried Advani, Vajpayee etc v/s Gandhi. They never stood a chance, anyways. I then decided to put the whole BJP against the Gandhi surname. BJP lost quite heavily. No wonder they lost the election. A surname seems mighty.

 

Cricket vs Football vs Basketball

Football dominates globally. Cricket and Basketball have a long way to go. As far as Indian subcontinent is concerned, it’s the other way round.

 

Beauty vs Brain

The age old question has been left in the deadlock again. It’s a virtual tie between beauty and the brain. It seems we still have not been able to make up our minds b/w Female beauty and Male brain.

 

Oil vs Blood

Oil and Blood go neck and neck showing their equal importance. Given that so much blood has been spilt because of oil, this seems hardly surprising.

 

War vs Peace

Man’s violent nature and urge for war is evident here. Peace seems to be the last thing on the mind.

 

Love vs Hate

Well there seems to be some hope left. Despite the urge for war, man has not forgotten the cardinal urge to love. We still haven’t learned to hate each other as much.

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