My friends have voiced their concern over my last piece "To Love or Not to Love". Let me just clarify that I am not an Israeli sympathiser. I only found Benjamin Netanyahu sexy because he looks like Mr Italian and NO I do not know him personally nor do I indulge in telephone sex with him. Puhleez....people, get a grip of yourselves....I have sponsored (some form of adoption) 2 Palestinian children from a young age till they reached 18. On the otherhand, I do not hate Jews either. After boarding school, I lived with a British Jewish family for 2 years and loved them very much - they treated me like their own daughter.
Others are wondering who Achillini is and where one could find his works. Yes, I must admit his works are not easily accessible so try someone more current like Lauro Martines. If you think I'm going to create some internet link thingy so that you can find Lauro Martines' works then you will be disappointed. Google lah sayang...do I have to do all the work here?
She Who Should Be Blonde is now distraught that I have somewhat dampened her ardour for her super nerdy idols. After reading my last piece, she kept picturing her Idol lying down at the beach, sunning his pale, painfully thin body, clad in baggy Hawaiian print shorts and having some big brawny sweaty bloke kicking sand at him. Who asked her to have such a vivid imagination? Did I mention him in any semi-nude position? (I don't fantasize about Netanyahu in lycra thongs. There has to be some line drawn on one's fantasies!) Oh, and I was also informed "Men don't use brylcream (still don't know how to spell this...) anymore lah...they use mousse or hairgel" Whatever.....don't fancy running my fingers through brylcream, mousse or hairgel...
Am totally zombified today. Went for a Yash Chopra movie with She Who Should Be Blonde and She Who Should Be Blonder. Normally I wouldn't go out on a week day. Ok lets be more specific - I would only go out on Friday night. But She Who Should Be Blonde booked tickets for last night. We had no clue what the movie was about - only that Aamir Khan was in it. That's good enough for us. Have not seen an Aamir Khan movie since Lagaan. I missed Mangal Pandey on the big screen. Tried to buy the DVD/VCD but didn't quite get the title right. I asked for "Pagar Mandi" and the VCD shop guy obviously didn't have a clue what I was talking about but didn't want to appear as though he is not abreast with the latest movies so he fobs me off by saying "Oh....that movie has been banned here...that's why we couldn't bring in the VCD..." This is quite believable in this country where they even ban a kid's movie based on one piglet. Perhaps it's because the lil' piggie was butt naked...showing its cute pink tush wriggling about provocatively. Just as well or this movie will later be blamed if another teenager is caught committing bestiality in Kelantan.
So there we were watching Fanaa. She Who Should Be Blonder and I were the only non Indians in the cinema. We didn't know what to expect but as it's a Yash Chopra movie we assumed it was some heart wrenching love story. I was hoping from the title that there would be some underlying Sufi content. The poetry/syair they recited were lovely and so were the lyrics to the songs. There we were, lulled into this false sense of security that it was a love story. I was rather puzzled that Aamir Khan had let himself go so much - he looked so podgy and was wearing the most awful shirts. After one hour of song & dance, them falling in love etc AND a scene of premarital sex (!!!) What? The parameters of Indian movies have been radically changed ....Well, Aamir Khan did promise her that the next 12 hours will be the best time of her life...(in that awful shirt??) Why are men so confident of their ability to give women pleasure? Can women stop faking orgasms and tell them the truth? Then the movie changed completely and the lead actor morphed into a James Bond meets the Matrix hunk. And THAT, for us was the BEST part of the movie. Aamir Khan dressed in all Black with flowing black coat like Keanu Reeves in the Matrix striding in black leather boots in...yes..it is...KLIA! Aamir Khan was in KLIA tearing up his beloved's photo and littering at KLIA. The whole movie turned into some kind of Indian James Bond thereafter. Our hero is a "terrorist". A Kashmiri freedom fighter. Aah, I knew there had to be some political message somewhere looking at his past 2 movies... Lagaan, Mangal Pandey. Swoon... he looked soooo.....soooo.....sooooo.....I just can't find the words to use to describe it....am in tears now - very emotional at the sight of Aamir Khan in this all black ensemble. I think it's those black leather boots that clinched it for me...
Just in case the audience still thinks its your run of the mill Hindi movie love story, they show the security forces walking into this impressive building with a HUGE logo in front which says "ANTI TERRORIST AGENCY" or something like that. A few seconds later, you see them walking on polished marble floor with a HUGE logo on the floor which says "ANTI TERRORIST AGENCY" - just in case anyone still harboured any hopes that this is a soppy love story. Then the rest of the movie is similar to my Tamil movie plot from my "Bench & Bar Games". Hero is gunned down & killed in open air...when everyone is dead the security forces arrive via helicopter. They obviously had a much bigger budget than my Tamil movie. There were 2 helicopters. There was also a sweaty armpit wet patch under the sari blouse scene. My 2 friends gave me this sideways glare when they spotted it. They say I have ruined their enjoyment of Indian movies after my Bench & Bar Games - My Tamil Movie Debut piece as they keep spotting/looking out for all the things I depicted in my Tamil movie.
For me this movie had the following message:-
(a) Freedom Fighters are terrorists. (Is India going to rewrite history now and call Bhagat Singh a terrorist? Or is there a difference? Those fighting for India's independence are martyrs/heroes whilst those fighting for Kashmir's independence are terrorists?
(b) Muslim terrorists indulge in premarital sex then proceed to blow up a building killing many people.
(c) KLIA is a transit point for terrorists.
Can Yash Chopra stick to his usual Kush Kush Hota Hai, Khabhi Khushi Khabhi Gham type of movies? (did I get these movie titles right?)
Can Aamir Khan keep wearing that sexy black outfit?
Can Maxis stop sending me these football results?
I hope Sanjay Leela Bhansali never gets confused on what type of movies he wants to make. Such a shame. I loved the syair/dialogue during the 1st hour of the movie... I feel it was wasted when the movie turned violent. You can't waste such beautiful poetry in a movie with a political agenda. I don't want to see James Bond spouting Byron, Keats or Yeats. I suppose Yash Chopra wanted to cater for all in this movie - love story for the womenfolk and action movie for the men - something akin to buy one get one free concept....
On top of that we have this stupid woman - the wife who shoots her husband. She professes to love him sooo much - more than life itself. In the beginning of the movie, this blind vestal village virgin falls in love with Aamir Khan almost instantly upon meeting him. Then she proceeds to seduce him, sleeps with him, has his child out of wedlock and when she is reunited with him 7 years later (after believing he is dead from the bomb blast) and discovers he is a "terrorist", she shoots him!!! What happened to love?? How shallow can you get? Love is a much maligned word. She loves her idea of love and her idea of who he is. When he doesn't fit into this ideal, she kills him so that she can continue loving what she believes is her true love...
Don't we do this all the time? Fall in love with a concept? An ideal? Just like the God we purport to worship. Do we know who we are praying to or is it just an idea of who we want Him to be? Don't we kill our saints, our prophets when they don't fit into our idea of what they should be like? Once they are dead it's much easier for us to develop this "concept" of who they really are and form a religion based on this concept. Ask yourself this question - do you know who you are praying to? Do you know who God is? At the end of your prayers you ask for more money, you ask Him to increase your business opportunities etc. Who is your God? Is money your God? Ibn Arabi once entered a mosque where a congregation was praying and announced to them "Your God is underneath my feet!". Enraged at such an insult they beat him to death & threw his body at a rubbish dump. Many years later the country had a new king who demolished the mosque. They discovered that underneath the mosque lay a hidden treasure.
How did this Yash Chopra movie lead to Ibn Arabi? Fanaa is a Sufi term for self annihilation. It is what I mentioned in "To Love or not to Love". The act of dying before you die. So think about it carefully. Do you really love your husband, your wife, your boyfriend, girlfriend etc or do you love your "idea" of them - your perception of who they are and not who they really are...because you are so preoccupied with your ideal concept of what you love that you fail to get to know who they really are. Am I making any sense here? Or am I just rambling inanely? I know that those people who have declared that they love me only love a fraction of me or not even that - because they don't have the capacity to discover who I really am. So be careful when you declare & boast your love for God. Do you really know WHO he is? Can you accept Him for who He really is? You don't even know who you are praying to. Are we so incapable of sincere thought towards Him? Everything is a ritual. Your prayers, your fasting, your pilgrimage. Ask yourself why you do these things. Your answer will be:-
(a) Because its compulsory;
(b) Because I want to go to heaven;
(c) Because I don't want to go to hell.
Try this answer for a change:-
Because I love Him.
Then everything else means nothing. Heaven or hell, life or death, good or evil. There is no difference.
"There's an ordeal, some anguish & suffering, essential to a soul's growing into deeper love. Life must be lived." - Jalaluddin Rumi
"Someone who does not run toward the allure of love walks a road where nothing lives." - Jalaluddin Rumi
"The minute I heard my first love story, I started looking for you - not knowing how blind that was. Lovers don't finally meet somewhere - they're in each other all along." - Jalaluddin Rumi
"Whatever may engross your thoughts away from God Almighty is ominous."
Meaning, should practising His remembrance (zikr) distract you from focusing on Him, it will become ominous. Your prayers, fasting , pilgrimage to Mecca or any good deed, should they shift your focus away from the True Doer become ominous.
If His favours distract you from focusing on Him, they will all turn ominous.
Any deed which is void of sincerity is like a hollow nutshell, a husk wihout a kernel, a discarded scrap of wood, a corpse without a soul, a picture without meaning. That is the work of hypocrites." - Shaikh Muhyiddeen Abdul Qadir Gilani : Al- Fathu Rabbani.