10 March 2013. 8:17PM. "Question"

With you around, I hardly get time to to write nowadays.
Or, one could argue (and I honestly think this may be the case) because I get so little time, I only write the things that really matter.

Not the avalanche of bullshit I had the luxury of churning out.

Today Mimi, I'd like to talk to you about questions. I'd like to talk to you about beliefs, about customs and about traditions.

You see baby, the more you grow, the more you'll find people trying to teach you things. They'll tell you about astrology, about how the stars have all got it planned out for you. They'll instruct you to touch your elder's feet. They'll mark the little space behind your ears with kajal, just so nothing happens to you. They'll tell you to fast when someone in your family has died.

Don't dismiss what you hear. But don't blindly follow everything too.

Try and think about things. Don't just do things because your family has been doing them. Or because your forefathers did them. Find out why the customs came into being. Read about it, talk to people - but most importantly, ask yourself.

The secret to inner peace isn't about staying true to your traditions. It's about doing what you think should be done.
For example, when your dadu (my dad) passed away, I was a young man, just stepping out my teens. All my relatives told me to shave off my head, to keep a month long fast, to avoid ginger, to sleep with iron.

I was supposed to mourn. And I was supposed to make a showcase of my mourning to the world.
So I asked myself, "what was there to mourn? Sure, my father had passed away, but he had lived a full (albeit short) life."

So this is what I did.
I invited some of his friends over, got my mom to cook a meal that he loved, and got some rum (his favourite drink) And instead of mourning his death, we celebrated his life.

Was it true to tradition?
But did it make me and my family happier? Did it make him happier, wherever he was? I think it did.

How does shaving one's hair off solve anything? What does it do?
Ask yourself. Everyday, ask questions.

When you would have grown up a little bit, you would know I'm fondly called a 'disbeliever' in my family circle. I don't like visiting astrologers (your dida swears by them by the way), I don't worship any idols (I do believe in God, but it's that one Power) I'm not much for touching feet.

Your mom's side of the family are very staunch believers in this sort of thing. For them, it's social protocol, it's something they and their family has been doing for years, and they have no cause or reason to disbelieve it. They've seen proof of its workings. When there's negative energy around a person, a red dry chilly after being waved around him and burnt gives out no odour. If there's no negative energy, it gives out its usual pungent odour.

Are they wrong for believing in such a thing?
No, absolutely not.

Am I wrong for disbelieving it?

Because here's thing darling. Imagine you're at a bloody big buffet. There are rows and rows of tables laid with food from around the world. There are hundreds of dishes. Unfortunately, you only have one plate. And even more unfortunately, you have one stomach.

So what do you do?
You pick and choose what you like. You load your plate with what you find interesting, what intrigues you, what takes your liking, and you eat.

And so it is with life.
There are thousands of beliefs in the universe. You, me, anyone is a tiny dot in the cosmos. We can't even begin to imagine all there is and all that exists.

And trying to know all is futile.
So pick and choose from life, philosophies and customs that  you think will make you happy.

Because at the end of the day, that's what matters doesn't it?
That's what each of are striving to find.

The day you do find it baby, buy your old man a drink.
And you don't have to touch my feet after.

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