Monday, 15 December 2014

So Whats Up ??

We all need more than anything today is wisdom. And one of the thing that is making it harder to connect with our wisdom is our increasing dependence on social networking platforms. The quest for knowledge may be perused with higher speed but wisdom is found no more readily than it was three thousand years ago. In fact, I find myself too bloated with lots of information and so generally strive for wisdom. Even I have found that now most of us have developed a kind of psychological relationship with these platforms so I usually try to keep myself away from these applications. Cause somewhere deep in my heart I know that these things are nothing but a distraction in the path of my journey. Moreover I feel that these applications are making us more hollow than a complete human by increasing our dependency on them. These little exaggerated version of utopia are nothing but an illusion. Hence earlier I was not on any social platform but just because of one harsh truth of non availability of some good amount of balance in my mobile phone, to contact people on  regular basis, had too tried one very popular mobile messaging app of these days i.e. “Whats App”. I think everyone who are using a smart phone is quite aware about it. Don't you ??
Whats App , a cross platform mobile messaging application which provides us with several benefits as we can have conversation by just signing up from our phone number and that too in a very user friendly manner. We can immediate share our things(Photo,video,voice mail or mp3) from anywhere around the world. A communication having no face sometimes proves more effective.But beside all these features, I have found one another angle of this application i.e. It can prove quite addictive for the people and can contribute to the distress which can affect the people's psychological functioning, if not handled properly. Here I am mentioning its few contradictory features depending upon my personal observation which are having potential to create intense emotional problems.
  • Stating its first "Status" feature of showing you online no matter whether you are on it or somewhere else reading any article on any other website. This fault of showing you online can backfires sometimes like this: Suresh is online but not yet responded; Sangita is always online and gives instant response;Why my boyfriend/girlfriend is online this late? :-P ;-) ( the most killing thought).Here I would like to mention one recent incident from my life. Few days before,on my way to Lucknow,I had signed up from my mobile for the purpose of reconfirming my PNR status. In the meanwhile one of my friend pinged me,since her name was displaying,so I had immediately sent her one SMS that she will be contacted by me with an hour. But up-till now,much of the damage had already been done. As she had sent me some not so good lines in the misconception of my inattention. Although I had sent her one long explanation afterwards,but things don't fix out this easily especially among girls.
  • Its another feature of displaying your last seen proves more deadly than anything else. Although recently they have provided us with an option of hiding our last seen but on the very cost of sacrificing our desire to see their last seen.:-D. Lets take few examples: My boyfriend/girlfriend was last seen on 23/11/2014 at 3:00 AM, Why Swati status cannot be seen?? ; She might have been blocked me etc..(Very rude) ;Her last seen is of three days before. What happened to her??It generally leads to unwanted anxiety and lots of negative thoughts.
  • One more basic feature of allowing the user to put some thing very catchy or simply absurd on the "Footprints" (Status) of Whats App is having enough potential of making you fall in LOVE, Misunderstanding, Hatred and many other psychological responses. Automatic addition of your contact on someone's chat list can sometimes proves very dangerous for girls. Since option of blocking people is available,but he can again annoy you by adding you in his another mobile no. It might seem not a big issue for many people but for a girl,it can lead to emotional strain. Moreover I have observed many people around me who check their mobile with a frequency of 5 times/min. And I think it is the major issue of this addictive Messenger where its impact are so strong that user sometimes left the real world interest,their emotion is restricted to the App,they get happy or sad depending on the reply they get from their friends and are generally controlled by others. They are so into it that they obtain their oxygen from constant chatting,replying and sharing,regardless of the scenario. You can too find some poor souls like these who frequently change their status and pics. On this application,a good text can create significant impact and an irrational text can be disaster as you can easily hide your actual feeling and make trick others.
If I try to analyse this whole thing from psychological angle then firstly I would say that in today's world,the lives of people are generally so empty in real,that they are in the constant need of love,attention and approval which they get into this virtual word. Even there are various studies conducted by many psychologists to find out the impact of these applications. I am mentioning only few for giving some gravity to above mentioned things. Otherwise you will get bored.
Ms.Kelly McGonigal, a psychologist at Stanford’s School of Medicine found that. “People feel not just addicted, but trapped.” they are finding it harder and harder to unplug and renew their selves. Another Professor Mark Williams found one interesting fact of “rushing around” by examining the brain scans of people of these days. According to him that dependency on technology has really increased this phenomenon as he has found more people around him who never taste their food, who are always going from one task to another without actually realizing what they’re doing .Moreover people are encountering huge amount of information without any verification.
My only concern of writing this post is to express my worries as few days before, I had observed myself too being lost in the world of Whats App (Used to leave my tea on the stove for hours because of getting deeply involved into the Whats App) .This was not the healthy sign for me. So now I've started reminding myself everyday that I ought to use this platform in a controllable fashion. And will only allow myself to open this at particular times. I had removed that option of automatic downloading of videos and images in order to have some control over my gallery. Otherwise some mad souls are in the habit of blindly forwarding you essay types messages,poor jokes,senseless videos which all are brand new in the market. I also avoid waking up by reading Whats app messages and usually turn it off while being with my loved ones or at some productive work.

In my opinion everyone should try to be careful as big data ,insensible videos,unfettered information,the ability to be in constant contact and our growing reliance on such social platforms are all conspiring to create a noisy traffic between us and our mental peace. Call it an paradox; but these platforms are actually acting as an hindrance to our path to wisdom.

PS: This post is my personal view which can be countered by any of you. If anybody is hurt,I apologize.

Indian Cinema and Society

I don't like Indian cinema of these days and I have my own reasons for this. Even I feel bad for the way they are doing their business. Thousands of movies are made every year without making any sense. I am not denying the fact that yes, some good movies are too made but it has become the rarest of rare act. And the maximum are made only by keeping our hero with six pack body and heroine in purple bikini and shoot in some foreign location. We can notice that the quality of the story, lyrics, music, acting... everything is declining. Our wholesale stealing from Hollywood began which is still continuing. Now they can't steal so they are remaking movies, the movies which should not have been made in the first place. 

Anyway the most important thing which I don't appreciate about Indian cinemas of these days is the way they are manufacturing perception of people about women. While there is no study to prove any direct correlation between cinema and insensitive male behaviour towards women. But there in no doubt that long term exposure to regressive images does play a crucial role in a country where a large number of people still use their eyes over their ears while judging any female. Even few days before I had asked one of my intellectual friend about the significance of items songs and the need of those bikini girls behind our heroes who even don't know the lyrics of the song. After trying his best he couldn't be able to give any correct justification for that. Not his fault,after all he is also the product of  this patriarchal society. Here I am not contradicting that our cinema is only the reflection of our society.Otherwise Deepa Sahi could have found one producer to fund a biopic on Rani Laxmibai and actresses like Tabu and Rani Mukerji must have found some good scripts instead of ‘adult’ film star Sunny Leone, who self admittedly can’t act or dance, has many films in her kitty. But can we question her when we are allowing Katrina Kaif to learn on the job for a decade?A place where pervert Honey Singh is marking his presence everywhere and singers like Shaan are still struggling to regain their lost identity by dancing or anchoring on reality shows. Quite ironical for this so called ethical Indian society. 

Now lets try to find out some movies of last decade and the way they've stereotyped our females and reinforced already established prejudices for them. Even you could compile an encyclopedia about scenes and plots from our cinemas where women are viewed through a patriarchal gaze and advise to stay safe and pure.

A huge hit of last year named “Ranjhana” which had been applauded by the Indian audience,was nothing but an attempt to intensify the sick mindset of males .Being a female,I was not at all delighted with the story of a besotted lover. Telling you very honestly that I will never fall in love with the man who ever tries to do what Dansuh did in the movie. Even I would have filed a police complain against this stalker at the very initial. But people see him as a man who was led on by the actress,had she not embraced him like a friend by putting colours on his face on the occasion of Holi. He wouldn't have come on so strong. This is a bit like saying that girls stayed at home in order to avoid incidences of sexual assaults. Another one in the same league is the famous “Rowdy Rathore” where Akshay Kumar describes his girl as maal and turns her ‘no’ into ‘yes’ within minutes. Undoubtedly this film has verified the well famous notion among Indian men that in a woman’s refusal of a man’s advances there is an implicit ‘yes’ hiding somewhere. We can question that who knows ? Impressionable minds might like to copy his style if they are so predisposed. 

Now one of the image of new female protagonist in our Indian movies is someone who enjoys her vodka,doesn't believe in the institution of marriage and shows an inclination towards the physical side of love. As we saw in the movie  “Cocktail”. This was very strange in the movie that after the intermission, Deepika tries to conform to traditional customs but still doesn’t get the guy, who is equally ‘liberal’ but ultimately marries a prototype of the Savitri. Yep ! again approved one very  popular impression that so-called outgoing girls are meant to be used and the ultimate aim of every girl is marriage.In addition to it,our movies never give much opportunity to the actresses to prove their acting skills once they get married where as in the West, Jennifer Aniston is still rocking even at  the age of 45. Why an older actress can not be projected against a younger actor?where as Sharukh and Amir have full right to work with the actresses who are 20 years younger than them. Why remuneration of Indian actresses is always less than the actors ? where as Angelina Jolie charges and get paid more than what our all three “Khans” take in combination?Why our industry has no script for ageing actresses?Even after all this discrimination, we are not suppose to question our holy directors for their incorrect ways of portraying Indian women as a commodity. 

Although I must admit that there must be something wrong in today's society too and so they can't be held responsible for everything. On one hand where we Indians are espousing woman's rights by  saying that assault on women in real life has nothing to do with what they wear, but on the other hand we criticize our filmmakers for objectifying women. Moreover how many of us are actually respecting the ‘A’ certificate? One has seen families going to watch films like “Murder, Jism and Delly Belly. Why is it that young mothers ask their three-year-girls to sing  “Chhoti Dress Mein Bomb Lagti Mainu” instead of any nursery rhyme ,these little girls never knew the meaning of the song but their mother felt very proud.Why we Indians give so much value to the face value of actresses?It usually compelled directors to cast only good looking baby dolls.Don't you see any link between the two. The questions are many and the answers are not easy. I think we all need a little introspection.

PS: Being a native of north India,my focus was mainly on  movies of Bollywood ,even I know that it is  only a part of Indian Cinema. But still somewhere down the line, the story is same everywhere.