Kuwabara —

Incandescent rains, warm cup of coffee, a plate of banana chips, my feet firmly tucked under the cushion of the living room, I was lost in the land of intrigue and murder,

My right eye began twitching; now every blighter and blighteress in town knows that the right eye twitching means stressful situations ahead.  That’s when aunt Rajini’s favourite black cat crossed Paddamma’s path, and Paddamma the resident authority divination screeched….”apashakuna!!!” again apashakuna as all diligent viewers of Hindi TV series know is a bad omen.

One can’t help feeling sorry for the black Cat, I don’t mean the commando’s I mean the four legged feline, having to check out for screeching Paddamma’s before they go anywhere, I like to keep it simple,

If your nose itches it means it wants to be scratched there

if a black cat crosses your path its going somewhere.

I was told by relevant authorities that old wives tales need not be superstitions, for old wives tales sits deep in folk wisdom, while superstition emerges from ignorance or fear of the unknown.  I have the authority of Bertrand Russell to say so, not to mention the stringent training by Merriam-Webster.

Now there is Stuart Vyse PhD actually calls superstition, Magical thinking , you check out his book Believing in Magine: Psychology of Superstition. Back to his authority, most people touch wood, believe in witches and ghosts, daayan’s and chudail in India. I do some unguarded moments, when thoughts like what is the psychology behind magical thinking, is it good or bad, do  we suffer more when we don’t understand or is understanding in itself a challenge!! Touch wood those moments pass over quite fast.

Taking a deep breath before I start doing something is a ritual that calms me, If I take only six deep breathes with counts in place then that becomes obsessive compulsive disorder,(OCD) and if I believe that my work will be doomed if I do not do the ritual that becomes superstition.

Probably the need for certainty is the driving force behind most superstition.  At times I wonder if keeping my fingers crossed, is just positive re-enforcement and an affirmation that I have placed my faith universe, maybe the sheer discomfort of keeping the fingers crossed keeps me focused on the goal.  This maybe an emotional placebo that allows for belief enhancement.

Then there are those superstitions that trigger phobia, if hand a broom to someone you will have an argument with that person ; of course you will, I doubt if any one will appreciate being asked to do a clean sweep… or clean dirty bins superstitions can lull you into false security ask the gambler who lost the last poker game… I know of girl who stayed indoors an entire day because she sighted a single mynah when she went out and the school ditty was

One for sorrow

Two for joy

Three for a letter

Four for a boy

Guess as we grow older, along with elves, and Santa we lose faith in superstitions.  Vyse is gender biased he says women are more superstitious than men. What I understand is– People prone to anxiety disorders tend to attract superstitions. People who believe they are He-man (he is the master of the universe) tend to be less superstitious, as compared to the “Oh! The World is out harass me” believers.

Just because you rub the feet of John Harvard statue at Harvard for good luck does not make you the next study material for Sir Roderick Glossop, chill,  it could just be your source of comfort,  a way of connecting with the greater community, your loved ones whatever

When my  right twitches I know it time to quit, that is quit worrying for  my stress level are probably heading to the nearest Kanchenjunga or at least Sonsogor (highest peak in Goa.) but of course if the twitching persists, then into my mind creeps the monster called “What-if” and we are back on our way to Sonsogor, then I deliberately identify something that is out of balance in my zone, attribute the twitch to the that, cut cords, thank  Archangel Gabriel for the annunciation and move on.

But again when afflicted by the thinking disorder, I do wonder what sustains the superstitions to linger generation after generation…I have recently been told by Emma Goldman that, patriotism, is a superstition artificially created and maintained through a network of lies and false hoods, a superstition that robs man of his self respect and dignity and increases his arrogance and conceit” it’s time to ponder on this Kuwabara1superstition

Kuwabara is the Japanese/Chinese slang for superstition. Kuwabara actually means Mulberry tree forest and it is believed that the Mulberry tree cannot be struck down by lightening so saying Kuwabara; Kuwabara protects the speaker from being struck down by lightening.

This blog is written for the #172 Edition of Indispire prompt put forth by R.Ramesh who blogs at http://ramesh-randomrambling.blogspot.in/

Writing the Right Of Rites.

nanowrmo

this article is an excerpt from my NANOWRMO writing.

We Indians Give A Lot Of Important To Rituals …Visiting Temples On A Particular Day….Fasting  , now this is rather too generalized, harsh statement.

About visiting temples… well Indians who are Christians, Muslims, Jains, Buddhists, Jews and atheists do not go temples. They may or may not even go to prayer houses. My temple is the public library and I go there religiously once a week.

As for fasts some Indians do observe there Lent, Ramzan, weekly  stomach sac rest, diets, food fads etc but most of us I would say are thankful if we can get that one square meal or round roti.

Rituals actually  mean a pattern of behaviour or a thing always done in a particular situation and the same way each time. Don’t we all have them; it is worldwide and intrinsic part of the animal kingdom.  Some rituals are part of a ceremony.

Rituals need to be incorporated as important elements of our work. It ensures that work gets done without much conscious thought, so we are left with energy for growth.

We tend to confuse rituals with rites. Rites are ceremonies and rituals associated with religion.

Now rites are something every organized religion holds that certain behaviours, rituals, personalities, places maybe even books are sacred. These organized teachings are fine in their own place, but the purpose of this is to infuse devotion, on certain plane a mind tendency to servitude

Rites vary with the religion, as a dentist my daily rite, or ritual is to clean the entire clinic with disinfectant before I start and a sterilizing chemical after I finish. Our rituals tend to be rites that give us a certain amount of stability; it brings in a routine and the mundane.

In the space of religion, the mystery of religions is instated in order to protect the marvels of the commonplace from those who devalue them. These mysteries are dispensed through myths.  A religious rite is the enactment of a myth, and by participating in the ritual we are participating in the myth, we are being as it were put in accord with that wisdom, which is the wisdom that is inherent within us anyhow., the rites and rituals are prevalent to re-mind us of the wisdom of our life that makes it important.

The rites of auspicious beginning a common ritual done, or the rite of gratitude another ritual these are spiritual ceremonies that allow us as human beings to find a safe resting place for most of our complicated feelings of joy or trauma, so that we do not have to haul those feelings around forever weighing us down. We all need such places of ritual safekeeping.

These safekeeping spaces are sometimes provided by our culture or religion if they do not and we have a craving for it, then we need to adopt a DIY resourcefulness. Here is where silence, solitude come in to play they are universally recognized spiritual practises, and there are good reasons for this. learning how to discipline our speech is a way of preventing our energies from spilling out of us through the rupture of our mouth exhausting us and filling the world with words, words, words instead of serenity, peace and bliss.

Are rites relevant in today’s context.. THATS NOT MY CIRCUS NOR IS IT MY MONKEY. When it comes to my personal rituals I am fanatic about  —  sterilize the clinic before lock up, and shine the sink before going to bed.

This blog is written for indispire 29.04.2016 around the prompt we Indian give too much importance to rituals …visiting temples on particular days …fasting are these relevant  to this or are they just solace to fight all the insecurities. Prompt thrown by Maya Varde