#selfmusingsofj

28 posts
  • jaya___ 55w

    A THOUSAND FLAWS

    (My Thank YOU Post for 1k followers)

    So many thank you I have to convey, that I am seriously at a loss of words.
    But still I will try.

    Firstly @mirakee thanks for this beautiful app, truly a Writer's Paradise.
    Secondly @writersnetwork for all the nine reposts, each time it only motivated me to write better and more.

    It was March 2019, when I started using this app on the recommendation of a friend, and the first post was "Aib Hazaron" which loosely translates to "A Thousand Flaws". I have deleted it now. But it was the first one and how excited I was to be getting around 5 likes for it!

    I remember how I lost my shit when I received my first repost. I wondered how can someone find my post worth reposting? So thankful for those initial encouragements.

    I only posted 7 poems that too very small ones, whole of 2019.

    Then came the historic lockdown. So I picked up mirakee again. And started writing again. Initially I wrote for the Writing badges, and gradually achieved all six. It was a major motivation.

    I used to read, with wide eyed wonder, those posts with 50 reposts or the posts getting WN reposts and PODs. It used to look like a dream, unreal and unachievable.

    So the feeling when I received my first WN repost (March 2020) was INEFFABLE.

    I still remember my shrieks when I received my first POD in August, 2020. With that I had achieved all this place had to offer as rewards for good writing.

    Of late, I have stopped worrying about reposts and likes. I now write on topics close to my heart. On Feminism, Caste Discrimination and my LGBTQIA+ mates. And since I stopped fretting over these, I gained so many friends and sisters here. So many.

    I also got a brother #kehta_hai_joker who taught me a lot through his life and words and even his passing away was so surreal, that he lit not only in me but in all those he talked to, a flame to keep reading and writing.
    Cheers to him!

    In this journey I changed my pen name to HARFKAAR, which is one of the best moments I had here.

    I used to think what would motivate me once I have achieved the POD, but the love you all give me is what keeps me running, pushing me to write, to tell about people who keep fighting despite limitations society puts on them.

    Thanks of for the love, courage and support. I need it. And I am grateful, happy and humbled for all of that.

    Because of the love and team work I did and still do so many collabs. They are my best posts.
    ___________________________________
    Now I mention my friends who have helped me write better and stay here (tagged in comments).

    Asha Murali, Kini, Tardigrade, Sunena, Yin, Sanam, Bidya, Anushka, Dolly/Bhargavi, Zaalima, Anshika, Udit, Anand, Nida, Manasaa, Bhavya, The_procrastinating_poet, Hafeezhma, the_speccy_outsider, Bertha_beryl, Adithir, Pato, Charvy.

    AND so many more, that I can't even name them but for whom my love is no less.

    Again a big thankyou and God bless you all.
    Thanks for 1000 followers. Sending all my love.

    © Harfkaar 3-1-2021
    #selfmusingsofj

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    Thanks Mirakee

  • jaya___ 55w

    SKIN

    It’s since childhood that I have been seeing creams (which people buy like mad) that makes girls fair so that it leads to loveliness (Hello “Fair and Lovely”!). Because obviously, for Indians, dark skin is not lovely.

    I was once called “wheatish” by a professor in college. That was the first time I had heard that adjective for myself. I thought fair and dark were the terms for skin tones. Now there was wheatish. I was seen by my darker friends with some palpable envy. And I saw some smirk on the faces of the fairer girls. So there I was, somewhere in the middle of the newly discovered beauty scales.
    I also remember how angry/ hurt/insulted I felt for not being considered fair by the professor. Even though I did not place importance to fairness, but now I realized I subconsciously did.

    My dearest friend used to say, as a small wide eyed girl, when we were in fourth standard, that I was so beautiful, and by beautiful she meant that I was fairer than her. She told me how her mother used to apply “ubtan”, which is a homemade turmeric pack or something, to clear her skin. I had innocently asked her, “Your skin is already so clean, why clean it more”?”

    By that time I had not realised that fairness is seen as pure and darker skins are meant to be cleaned, made to glow.

    Thanks to “Black Lives Matter” movement, light has been shown to the discrimination girls face simply for their skin tones. Here in India too. But still the creams are being sold. Not as “Fair and Lovely” which is explicitly rude and demeaning to Indian women, but as “Glow and Lovely”.

    And it is still demeaning. Why can’t we live as our normal selves, why do I need to be Fair/Glowing to feel confident. Or for me to become an air hostess, a model, an actress and even a news anchor? And primarily to be married?

    All our self-worth is accumulated on our looks. If a girl by chance is fair, then we start scrutinizing her figure, and start fat shaming or preaching her to clean her body hair, or start smiling more.
    (For example, I am so criticized for my acne filled skin and for cutting my hair short, and of course for my fat!)

    Basically Indian society is stuck on the narrative of girls existing only for pleasing other people’s eyes. Not as individuals, with a mind and sense of humor but with a sense of inferiority about looks.

    I look up to Deepika Padukone, Mayawati, Phoolan Devi, Nandita Das, Konkona Sensharma, Smita Patil, Beyonce, Maya Angelo, Michelle Obama, P V Sindhu. These are tremendous forces of nature known by their work, not their skin tones.
    //It describes them, but does not define them.//

    Let’s celebrate our bodies, skins and education and fitness.

    Girls, we cannot expect society to change overnight nor the boys to start loving us as dark and fat.

    It is on US GIRLS to start appreciating ourselves and our sisters irrespective of looks. And start loving our skin without the use of fairness and skin brightening creams.

    “Your skin is not only brown
    It shines and it tells your story” ~ Beyonce

    © Harfkaar 29-12-2020

    For @adithir and @bertha_beryl who are angels scolding me to write ;) #selfmusingsofj
    I read somewhere the lines in //.//

    Edit: My second POD. Check the other one #pod_of_j
    Deeply grateful and equally surprised.
    My Ninth WN repost check others at #wnrepost_of_j
    All thanks to my sisters and friends here!!

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  • jaya___ 56w

    PERIODS

    My period started during school hours. I was in sixth standard and when I came home, I saw my panty bloodied. I was petrified and called mom. She came running and along came dad.

    They understood the situation and did their best to calm the horrified me. Once I had washed and cleaned, I was introduced to the world of sanitary napkins and careful advices of not spotting car seats, school chairs, neighbour's sofa, my bed during those long 5 days.

    Though the topic was luckily not taboo in my home, in fact, my dad has always bought me my pads and still does. He was very informative with regards to the exact biological process happening in my body which I partially understood and widely resented.

    It meant not jumping like a monkey, which I was and continue to be. Being super conscious of not spotting my dresses and places I sit on. I still always look back at the chair I get up from to check if I have left evidence of my reproductivity.

    All women more often than not bleed and still it seems like nobody talks about periods and as if men do not even know periods exist.

    It’s been a tough journey to accept that periods will continue to happen to me till middle age and I will have to be prepared for them wherever I go and remember dates and cover up if I mess.

    It’s a bodily function which is responsible for the existence of US ALL! Yet look at the taboo associatied with it. We hide pads as if they are atomic bombs or something.

    Let’s begin being period proud by stopping to shame girls who spot places and lending a pad when a sister needs it, looking after the period poverty (lack of menstrual products due to their high prices) of domestic workers and their daughters.

    I still try to not feel ashamed and it's tough, given the years of conditioning to feel shame and guilt around periods.

    Know about period related diseases like PCOD, UTI and be very helpful and empathetic to those suffering from them. Don't shame them on being full of acne and being fat which are the most common symptons of these diseases. Go Help Other Women and Little Girls Out There, They NEED YOU!

    I am working on myself to love my periods as much as I love my body when it’s not bleeding. It’s Only Blood After all!

    © Harfkaar 24-12-2020 Merry Christmas!!! #yesallwomen #selfmusingsofj

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  • jaya___ 57w

    STAND UP FOR GIRLS

    Hi girls!
    In this war against injustice and gender discrimination show a lot of *SOLIDARITY*.
    Support all women.
    *ALL*.
    Support your mother, aunts, cousins, sisters, friends and especially women speaking on our behalf.

    Support Dalit Women. Trans females.

    Stop body shaming and blaming women and stop ignoring all (even what others call small) acts of sexual harrassment.

    Speak out. Read and write. Let everyone know what women hate.

    Start by normalising periods. Start by accepting yourself as you are dark, fat short, tall, skinny, cool or hot...don't care about label.

    Just like boys are always there for their friends (bro and all) and show solidarity even if their friend is a rapist or they all together harass girls outside schools and colleges. They are torturing girls together. They bad mouth girls and women.

    Boys in India are brought up so entitled they will never care for us. For most of them we are mere sex objects. Most care only about our boobs and vagina.
    And our virginity.

    Stand in solidarity against such crap. If you support a sister in distress only then can you also live freely. Boys might never care for our issues. Understand this.

    Men say women are so tough/complex to understand.
    Aren't men also?

    I mean why the hell do they harass little school girls? Rape women and now even 6 month old babies?
    Why do they ask for dowry?
    Why do they commit domestic violence?
    Why do they discuss women virginity?
    Why do they stalk college girls?
    Why don't they cook/change surnames/leave their home or city after marriage?

    Disclaimer: yes I know not all men. But mate, this is the story of yes all women. So congratulations if you are a cis het male and not biased. Otherwise let me speak. #yesallwomen #selfmusingsofj
    #women_i_love

    WOMEN DON'T NEED TO CHANGE THEIR WAYS AND THEIRSELVES.

    MEN AND SOCIETY NEED TO QUESTION THEIR MINDSET AND WAYS.

    DEAR MEN, QUESTION YOUR PRIVILEGE AND SMASH PATRIARCHY.

    © Harfkaar 15-12-20

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  • jaya___ 62w

    ME--THIRD PERSON

    Seeing life from the point of view of a third person, in my opinion, is the biggest gift, skill or achievement for a mortal human. For being able to detach oneself from one’s own pain and analyse its cause and ways one can diminish the hurt is so empowering.

    My favourite music band is Cigarattes After Sex. The most striking thing about the band and its songs is the lyrics, they always sound as if the writer is in a lot of pain and has gone through major heartbreak or loss and still is not resentful for the person who caused the hurt.

    Not revengeful , not sarcastic, not abusive, not remorseful, not even blaming oneself for the misplaced trust or unrequited love. It just seems to be observant of the pain, and all that it entails, receptive of the good and bad and ugly aspects, while not being bitter, and still with some goodness for self and for the other one.

    For example, read here the lyrics of one of my favourite Touch

    //Couldn't say you didn't want me there
    When we were lyin' in my bed that night
    You were acting like a different person
    As if, suddenly, you wanted to just be friends
    I was hurting so I took a shower
    So you couldn't hear me, knowing I had to cry
    Sad to know that while my heart was breaking
    You were sleeping or just faking//

    Everyone has problems, sufferings and learnings, yet most take a very personal and hurt view of the world, not understanding that the problems affecting you have affected millions before you, millions right now and will keep on affecting many more so.

    Take pride in all the sufferings you are undergoing and be worthy of them. Don’t get too self centered and obsessed about your happiness. Being sad, in trouble, is more normal and human than being happy always. After all, life is about falling and rising. See your current pains as problems that need to be tackled and find solutions for them analysing them as a third person.

    //Let everything happen to you
    Beauty and terror
    Just keep going
    No feeling is final...
    RILKE//

    © Harfkaar 10-11-20

    #selfmusingsofj @writersnetwork

    PS. My other CAS favourites are Sunsets, Sweet, Firefighter, Affection, and Sesame Syrup.

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  • jaya___ 63w

    ME, TOO CASUAL

    Many dismiss me as too casual, cold and mostly indifferent. And frankly, I am mostly that for most of the time. It’s a life choice I made after falling many times, many a ways. From naivety, which I thought was innocence, to being responsible for my own mental hygiene, being misunderstood as being casual or wannabe cool or whatever.

    //Lick me up, I'm sweet and salty
    Mix it up and down my body
    Love to hate me, praise me, shame me
    Either way you talk about me//

    It just means I have particular tastes, in music and literature and certain ideologies, while of course being open to new ideas, yet not a general and ignorable presence. It means that I CAN speak when I want, I can shut my mouth as and when I deem fit. I won't agree to what the norms have defined for me, while at the same time having my priorities set at the beginning.

    So when I don’t give you an agreeable comment, means that I don’t agree with your views or art, at the same time I can't be dishonest if asked and neither am I heartless to go about diminishing your effort by wagging my tongue unasked.

    It's a complex world, and most often than not, women and the queer mates are targeted to vent out frustations of cis dominant males and anxiety as the confidence we exude, a the pride we have at our choices, and on rejecteing to be walked upon by them.

    //I'd rather be diggin' out my own grave
    Than listen to the words that they say//

    So the onus of spreading peace and cheer is on those who are judging us and ridiculing and abusing us. As for us, we need to stay as we are, in fact grow more rebellious if asking for our rights is a rebellion.

    Be free, feel you, be you!

    //I'd rather be hated for who I am
    Than waste it all giving a damn
    You better find out who your friends are in disguise//

    © Harfkaar 08-11-20

    PS. Lines in //.// Are from songs In Disguise by my one of my favorite singers Ashe and Wasabi by one of my favorite bands Little Mix. #selfmusingsofj

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  • jaya___ 64w

    OF MISTAKES AND US

    Our lives are made up of defeats. Intricately woven into our daily lives. You encounter them at every turn. Most of us are lucky enough to taste a few victories as well. But for most part it is defeats that we find and live through and live with.

    The fun fact is that they don't really bother us, we are at ease with them subconsciously. The key word is subconsciously. We are not actively aware that defeat is not that defeating, that it is bearable and even enjoyable at times.

    The narrative woven around us makes us conscious of our faults, defeats and failures, we can't shake them off and move on. The perceptions created by people around us and the news we hear celebrating the few achievers, make us uncomfortable of our shortcomings.

    A child attempts to walk and keeps falling but is never demotivated to stand up again. It falls, tumbles, hurts itself, yet keeps on trying. But soon, it is mercilessly pushed into competition. Never again are we able to be laugh about our failures, or let them pass as a normal event.

    Even if we aren't as disturbed by our failures, we have to show that we are or sometimes we actually start feeling the heat just because we should and then we are jealous of those who have not yet failed or not failed as bad as us, or those who have been successful enough times to not worry about failures much.

    The thing is-- we now believe that we can't be wrong or a loser or be at fault even with as small a thing as carrying an accessory.

    Anything that we create can never be perfect, because with each passing moment, we learn something new and our creation contains our knowledge and views till the point of creation, once done, it ceases to incorporate the new things we learn.

    So it is not possible to run after perfection, it is possible to learn from such creations, because we are at such different stages of understandings.

    Commit mistakes. Own mistakes. Mistakes are normal. YOU are fine!

    Copyright Harfkaar. 28-10-20
    BG. OTTOKIM on IG
    @writersnetwork #selfmusingsofj

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  • jaya___ 64w

    MAYBE

    Changing our destinies is a mammoth task. Maybe we can never change it, or maybe we can, if that is what we want.

    All our lives is a maybe. The most pathetic lives are of those who hope that maybe achieving the next big thing, or earning some more will make them happy and they keep living in this maybe.

    Our lives are spent and lost for causes that exist irrespective of us, gender discrimination, racial discrimination, financial gap, lack of opportunities and so on.

    We fight thinking we are the most knowledgeable, only to realise at some point that our arguments are hollow, that we kept hugging beliefs that have been proved wrong. It must be sad to live a life that was spent on false ideals and ideas. But at that time we hugged them with great passion, risking friendships and humanity over them.

    I fight fervently for issues I find precious, but now I often wonder whose beliefs can I change? Do I try to understand their point of view which are as rigid as mine? Who wins the argument? And the answer comes that I am as rigid as the ones I fight and I might as well be wrong at my stances.

    Maybe at some point in the arguments the purpose was only to win rather than to understand and learn. Will I ever win this way? What will this victory or any other mean, in terms of peace and knowledge? Which opinions have survived till date? None.

    Opinions change. With the level of advancement in sciences today we are discovering faults even in those facts that we considered so solid and true. Is it not a virtue then to not argue to win and remember that we can never have enough knowledge and perspective.

    I myself will try to do this. Maybe I will be able to incorporate it? Maybe.

    Copyright Harfkaar 28-10-20

    For my mates @tardigrade and @yayinology

    @writersnetwork @mirakee #selfmusingsofj

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  • jaya___ 64w

    //ARE YOU OK?

    In a dumb society like mine, where fucking is taboo, having daughters is taboo, having period is taboo, living-in is taboo, loving is taboo, homophobia is norm, women being subdued is religion, worshipping money is second nature- it surely takes balls to tell with honesty what you are thinking.

    Go straight, study, earn like Gates or Musk, sound cool (this word is next to cringe now) marry the choice of both set of parents, waste money on all things respectable, have sex with the only option allowed, have sons, earn till you die.

    Now this depressing routine of living in a bog has seriously taken its toll. Since we cannot be what we would want to be-- we have started pretending to be what we want to be! Not a good choice but sometimes the only choice most people have.

    This pretending community is even more suffocating than the dictated community. It is still all going spiral downwards, just that the fall is glossier now, deafened by catchy music and blinded by glamorous photographs so that people are somewhat able to enjoy falling.

    Are you ok sweetheart? Being this fake and robotic? Will you wake up honey? Rise up and see your fall...realise the futility of creating impressions on other people's minds...be you and just be!

    BG: paintingbysnehal on IG
    #mirakee @writersnetwork #selfmusingsofj
    © Harfkaar 28-10-20

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  • jaya___ 64w

    //Stop putting filters to your face//

    Life nowadays has become all about pretence.

    Everyone and anyone I see or talk to, is trying their very best to outshine me. Many times I guess it's involuntarily so. People cannot just praise anyone now, they seek the praises for themselves instead.

    They want to show off that they have in-depth knowledge of music, literature and they do not stick to the mainstream anymore, rather they have tastes that are finer than the rest. How they know the best about the nation and its good.

    They do not hesitate in calling the other person's choice in music or films as lame. They've already seen any and everything that is trending on Netflix and Amazon (while I pass time watching harry potter memes on Insta, while being partly worried over the rising net prices.)

    They call your dreams cheap for lacking the lustre of cash and the gloss of Switzerland. Sitting tight over their glorious surnames, they are ready to get offended by the second. It's a difficult time to be funny and doubly so to be sarcastic.

    Ordinary though is everyone, extraordinary feats that are being accomplished, even if in words alone. Hundreds of trends, followed by people with more fervent than goodness ever was.

    Your status is on crutches of your familiarity with the latest and the best of singers, the movies proclaiming the most intelligence and charisma, books that are complex for they have lost all the basic simplicity of breathing in us, Silicon valley hustle, Washington elections and all things left and centre.

    The cosmos and parallel universe is the cynosure of discussions, though failing to understand what your parents want and no knowledge whatsoever of the desires of your scared heart and maimed mind. Everyone's a coder, hacker and mind mapper, even if all they get excited about is getting a few more currency notes in their wasted wallet.

    When they ask you how you are, brace yourself because the next question will be about where you live and what you do. If you do not live in a metropolis, half of your image is down the drain, and if you are a clerk, then heaven forbid, you will be asked to DND. Collected money is better than knowledge today. And fancy filters.

    Image is the keyword of existence now. Maybe it always was, and it's increasing exponentially.

    I have to worry about the image my Insta is creating in the mindless monkeys called youth, the image my stupid resume makes on the dumb-f*ck minds of the interviewers, the image my salary makes on the minds of my relatives and neighbours and college mates, the image I make on probable boyfriends and so on.

    So much is fake in my being, that I wish to rip off even the last bit of skin on my bones now, naked honesty, your original thoughts, no filters in reality.

    In this brief turn at living, we must try to talk the truth, accept our reality.

    Not everyone will have the same taste in movies and songs and dresses, no one is allowed to define beauty for you; it's all a trap of capitalism, where if you are not ashamed of your phone, why will you buy a new one? Buy a MacBook Pro or iPhone by raising a debt only to get the few envies due to a mirror selfie with the new candy.

    Come on! Read, but for yourself, not to upload the latest confusion selling as hotcakes. Listen to your favourite songs, however old or out of trend, love your face, if fat-- genuinely try to get fit, sweat it out and be patient, rather than raising debts again to go under the knife.

    Remember that a warm hug from your mother or a hi-five from your old friend or the act of cleaning your pet's poop, can make you a lot happier than a million views or likes on your posts.

    Whatever job you do, if you enjoy it, do not be tempted to glorify it, just keep it. And there is no harm in being ordinary.

    Not being able to play the guitar or to visit Maldives or having the coolest handbag or being able to do 50 burpees a day, don't make you, the ability to be content with your resources, while trying to figure out things for yourself is what makes you- You.

    #mirakee @writersnetwork #selfmusingsofj #daadigotyourback
    BG: paintingbysnehal on IG
    © Harfkaar 28-10-2020

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  • jaya___ 64w

    ALL DREAMS ARE VALID

    Since the dark days of ignorance people who have voiced opinions and doubts have been stoned, burnt alive or crucified, cheated and plotted against, and murdered.

    Today as we bask in the glory of our development, complete with all kinds of thick pollution and tons of wealth, we still cannot stand people being confident about themselves, having strong minds and loud voices. We continue to glorify mediocrity.

    Glorifying the commonly prescribed path of studying, getting a 9-to-5 job, and losing out to ordinariness and obeying orders. Life was meant to be simple, but a lot of unnecessary aspirations were packed in the median, and they became the norm.

    Instead being satisfied with what one did, one was forced to conform to the whims and standards of neighbours and peers and family.

    Instead of being happy individually, marriage and life-long companionship and dependency were idolised and converted into essentials, instead of pursuing dreams and arts- chasing money was made into most respectable and desirable.

    The happiness of billions stands on currency notes today.

    Having hundreds of acquaintances, but not a single friend brings such sadness, which no amount of money could wash away, having no one to laugh with and share food with, brings back such moroseness, as no amount of likes and subscribers can wipe away.

    So be kind to yourself and hug the way you are. Remember that all dreams are valid. You are not going to succumb to the commands of the society. Rise up and shine or drown and weep....but always stay true to your identity and calling.

    © Harfkaar 27-10-20

    #daadigotyourback #selfmusingsofJ

    BG: yuugi83 on IG

    Editor's Choice honors! (11th)
    Catch my other popular section posts at #popsec_j

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  • jaya___ 64w

    As a society we did not grow much from the generations of the cave men. In fact we might have deteriorated from their level of humanity.

    We are praising French wine, and savouring finely cooked sushi while toying with the MacBook and taking care of the profits of our empire selling security software. Our sophisticated debates on Presidential elections, while discussing Murakami amidst intellectual arrogance with the several acquaintances (because friends are a luxury only a few afford now), we look so much developed.

    With clothes freshly ironed and coffee freshly brewed and houses smelling of fresh roses from the newest home fragrance, we live with machines more than we do with humans today.

    With so many lives being saved by sophisticated ventilators and bone marrow transplants and surrogacy babies coming out from poor young wombs, healthcare is so advanced.

    Still we have no breathing space, trees have become items of the museum, as animals of the zoo.

    But those cave men did not push back the sea waters to claim land on which to build sky scrapers, they did not cut down the forests to claim timber to build huge churches and temples and domes and rail tracks, they did not blacken the skies with soot to run plastic factories choking my throat and poisoning my water, they did not create boundaries of veils and traditions for girls like me. We did.

    Infinite traditions, wars, births and deaths later, we stand almost at the same mental evolution level. Leave aside the science, and stock market festivities, what we have is a more deeply divided and unsatisfied existence.

    While the richest in the country have access to world class education, nutrition, entertainment, security, and healthcare, the other 98% has no more than open sewage to take care of their necessary needs- drink and wash.

    With no schools- leave alone education, no clean drinking water, no proper food even once a day, no decent clothing- the city's poor, and the villagers in most part of the world are living in conditions that would shame even the most shameless.

    A population that is expanding exponentially without any arrangements for the food and sanitation and employment of those coming into the world each hour, we have progressed only in those bits which blind us in social media and movies and prime time news.

    High time, we take stands for betterment. Look above race and religious beliefs. Look above gender and caste identities. Use less of AC, cars and leave less carbon footprint. Wake up!

    © Harfkaar 27-10-2020
    For my friend @ashamurali #selfmusingsofJ
    BG: yuugi83 on IG

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  • jaya___ 64w

    ARE YOU JUST NORMAL?

    Chasing after the elusive happiness, we don't even have a clarity as to the source of money to feed our families. Educated to be programmers and working overtime to get machines do the thinking for us, we have lost basic humanity.

    Compassion is replaced by competition and empathy by envy.

    What we created was a greed fuelled and decaying "Median Junta". Acceptable standards were created. All those things which were considered to be the normal were documented, either in scriptures or in minds. The number of those accepting and following these standards amounted to a huge number, they were to be called "Normal".

    In any society, the badge of being "Normal" was bigger than anything, and a sure shot guarantee of a comfortable life. That also led to the creation of equally large margins. People falling out of this zone, that is, those above or below the median were the outliers, "Abnormal" janta. They were tormented and destined to a life of painful grinding.

    The Median Junta rues the ultra-rich and despises the poor and the sick (more hate for the mentally sick). They secretly aspire to be extraordinary- to rise above the median but since that is a real challenge, they do not hesitate from creating insurmountable hurdles in the paths of those who are.

    It would be very wise, though very painful too, and not at all easy, but still the most fulfilling decision you ever made, if you choose to disagree and belong in the median junta. If you choose to make yourself able to look into your eyes first, without guilt of letting it down.

    If you follow love and compassion for others, not being ashamed of your looks, decisions and failures, choices and being OK with less money.

    If you love yourself and do not fall in the trap of waiting for the special someone who would make you feel great and happy.

    If you choose to be responsible for your well-being by doing whatever you do because you wanted to do it, not because you were dictated to do so.

    If you could stand for the fallen and be caring and empathetic, and accept your faults and not be ashamed in saying sorry first.
    Then, my friend, you are out of the race of the Median world and its mediocre junta.

    © Harfkaar 27-10-20
    BG: yuugi83 on IG
    For my friend @yayinology
    @writersnetwork #creativearena #selfmusingsofj

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  • jaya___ 64w

    DETAILED MEANING OF HAPPINESS (TO ME) AND HOW TO ACHIEVE IT (WE ALL CAN AT LEAST TRY)

    I have this urgent requirement to be on a train. Except that this urgency is not urgency to others. Only to me. And so it makes no sense whatsoever. Instead I have to look for a job. That pays something. Unlike day dreaming, which pays nothing. Except some more urgent requirements. Like flying. Not in an aeroplane, flying as a bird, freely, with my own wings. Again, this makes no sense. I need dipping my feet in running water, of a river or sea.

    I have this desire to soon start earning, amount doesn’t matter, and it never did, so that I get free from the hustle of this job-seeking loop. So that finally I get to enjoy travelling. I just love travelling, I mean love reading too, but there is another kind of high that kicks in once I begin a journey. After deep introspection, I sometimes think that my love for stories, and reading is because I feel like I am travelling to those places described therein, to get to see the lives and routines of the characters, as I see outside the train window. And I am happiest then.

    But people imagine that happiness is linked to money, status, and reputation. It's never believed to be growing out of ones dreams, their fulfilment, the whims and little things. That is why many people are rich, with brilliant spouses and kids and swanky mansions, still they are not happy. But in our eyes-- the eyes of people used to lack of money-- they are successful and tension-free, happy. Though we never really cared asking them about the same, for most of us, a fat salary is enough to be happy.

    No doubt money is necessary for living, for food for our stomachs, but apart from our stomachs we also have a heart, a soul. We need food for the soul as well. Otherwise, why would be so many people, who have full stomachs and enough savings to be well fed for another few years, be so unhappy, tensed, and anxious? We know for a fact that the poor workers, migrants, labourers have no money and shelter and returning home and are miserable during the Corona lockdown. But why are we-- people with food, homes, jobs, fridges, ACs, TVs, Internet-- why are we getting panic attacks, anxiety pangs; why is our boredom, loneliness, and moroseness magnified?

    Why is the dream of millions of us just a flat (or maybe a mansion with swimming pool), a BMW and a piano? Why are we not actually dreaming? This is one of the goals you wanted to achieve-- good grades in school and college, a great job and money to buy stuff. Is this a dream? In my opinion (open to criticism and counter opinions) it is certainly not a dream.

    Dreams are wild that is why they are dreams! Flying, crossing the English Channel, becoming a movie star-- things that often come to your mind and which you don't share for fear of being ridiculed. They actually give a sneak peek into your psyche-- your angst, and desire to free yourself. Mostly dreams are free from the shackles of money.

    Earning is different from living. You live after you have eaten, and slept. Suppose your stomach is full and you have also slept well, what would you do now?

    If you are happy with the way you spend that time, you live-- otherwise, you don't.

    People go to jobs, have household chores to do, study and shopping, time for family and some for friends (if you are super lucky to have friends and family) and they tell themselves, once they get a few minutes, they will enjoy.

    That is the problem with us-- since we are not enjoying for the major part of our day-- we hate our jobs (unless you are God's favourite child and love your job), we mostly hate our spouses (arranged marriage woes), lose our prime time youth and attractive bodies while having kids (specially for ladies) and have wasted our entire childhood and teenage studying for long hours and preparing for hundreds of exams, and drag ourselves each day-- we are overpowered now with an insatiable need to enjoy. We want entertainment all the time, we want to be happy all the time, look good all the time, get perfect pictures all the time and then feel good all the time. But that is not possible-- at all. Not with this kind of existence.

    This happens because we didn’t dream well. We became blind to others' dreams as well. We have lost empathy for the poor, for the sick, for ourselves. We just want physical comforts bought with money and then show it off, wanting to feel happy. But that is not where happiness is hiding. We need friends, family, to enjoy. Most of all we need ourselves to enjoy ourselves.

    Are we happy with the job we are doing and will be doing for the rest of our lives? No, then leave it! But loss of permanence scares us. We hate routines but secretly, we lack courage to adopt randomness, creativity, and freedom. We cannot move without our boundaries. We cannot dream of living in a small house, with no car and no AC. We need things to show off, even if we lack even a single true friend, who can come to help you if you are in trouble.

    We value our Insta image more than we value our spirit of charity, or love for travel only for introspection or reading and writing or our ability to help someone achieve her dream.

    We are self-centred and unless we leave this obsession with more and more money and status and selfies, we can't really be happy. Our greed for fame, money, and even happiness will beget only more greed (just like the curse of immortal greed of Hastar in Tumbaad; for those who have not watched it yet, Tumbaad is a remarkable movie one shouldn’t miss).

    Don't bother about what others think about your pay package. Rather believe in yourself, ask yourself if you are able to do something that makes you happy, on a daily basis, be it singing, swimming, driving, writing, cooking, making plans to travel.

    If you are only earning and get so tired at the end of the day that you cannot do even half hour of exercise to keep yourself fit, to even read a single page or do whatever makes you happy-- then you are not living, just existing.

    So start being grateful for what you have. You don't need much to be happy, just few dreams and hard will to be able to live them-- daily.

    © Harfkaar 27-10-20 (May 26,20 old by 22weeks)

    #selfmusingsofj #mirakee @writersnetwork #creativearena #daadigotyourback #genuine_readers
    BG: paintingbysnehal on IG

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  • jaya___ 66w

    Sometimes you just have to return.. to your home to your heart...

    //Another day, another door
    Another high, another low
    Rock bottom, rock bottom, rock bottom
    I'm going back to my roots//

    She briefly looked out of the window. Clouds drifted by in several amusing and pleasant shapes. It hurt her eyes when she looked for long in the stark brightness outside. She returned to reading the book propped up on the tray table in front of her. The plane slanted slightly to the right and the sky cleared. She could see the ground with umpteen houses looking like pepper sprinkled on a piece of toast. There was a river, thin as a ribbon, swirling its way through the land, with green patches of farms on both sides of it.

    Her thoughts went berserk every now and then. From the time she had spent in the stranger city to what lay ahead of her now. The time spent in the stranger city looked both long and short at the same time. There were days which were too long to be even called a day- seeming like a never ending chapter on hyperboloids and yet it seemed to have gotten over so quickly. Those crazy nights spent partying amidst crowds of faceless people, a crowd of a collective mood and a single identity. Those evenings spent watching movies in a local theater, hooting and cheering with the audience, all of them shouting as if from a single powerful throat.

    Yet there were uncomfortable days and experiences writhing below the surface of these occasional highs. Those long and unnerving waits in a sluggish traffic moving with the pace of the period of your most hated subject. Those toils of acting an adult voicing intelligent opinions and trying desperately not only to fit in but also to excel in the roles and expectations set by the palpable yet faceless society. There was discomfort lurking in every nook of the stranger city. Hordes boarding and deboarding buses and taxis and metro and vehicles of own. Competition to earn better, look better, accumulate more and enjoy more.

    Amidst all this she could hear a lot of noise and discordant notes. Notes of different frequencies, voices in varying pitches, the playing of different instruments- an orchestra made of the country's finest musicians and instruments but left callously unattended.

    There were powerful songs waiting to be played, some were already playing. Songs that were poignant, ambitious, playful and morose. But there were no ears to hear, no hearts to feel and no intellect to interpret. This cacophony gets louder every day as artists keep adding to this pitiful orchestra of the finest of quality but poorest of harmony.

    She drifted fast from the mayhem. She was happy but her thoughts, having finally found time to stretch, were discomforting. Ahead lay a bare stage. "Go play your song", suggested her soul. And there she stood wondering how did she forget the lyrics of the song she wanted to play for so long. She remembered it in bits and parts but there was no heart in those words now.

    She gathered her instruments and her thoughts too and heaved a sigh. Her new song was no more than banter at the moment but she will set down to write it. She will try to play a new tune even if never played before. There was a stage before her- scary and empty- with an audience ready to judge and rip her down if her song was not up to the mark. But she is resolute- it will either be a new song that she wants and will play or nothing at all-she will remain mute. She is searching for her first words.

    Looking out briefly from the window, she smiled at a cloud that funnily looked like a harp. Humming to herself, she bent down to scribbler the first line.....

    __________________________________
    Copyright Harfkaar 14-10-20
    (Thoughts of July 2019)

    BG. My sister and I... best of memories...sometimes there is no life without a few people and their smiles...

    #selfmusingsofj #daadigotyourback

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  • jaya___ 67w

    Today when I analyse people around me, I find them all sad. It is surprising, because now, more than ever, we see happy pictures, happy songs, and motivation flowing in our faces. Nobody is asking anybody how they are doing because they imagine that the other person, if fact, everybody except them is happy and doing amazingly in their lives, but only they are faring miserably.

    And it is considered the biggest sign of weakness today to accept that we are sad. Alone and helpless, every other person is like that, what a pity!

    And we have become so stupid that love for people today is only concerning romantic love, that between lovers.

    Please understand, you can love a pet, your books, your parents, or grandparents, or siblings, or a friend (as a friend ;) only) or the poor. Try to expand your love to the people and plants.

    People today agree to stay in toxic relationships, just because they think they will appear happy, cool and complete when they are with their partners. If you somehow are caught up in some shit like this, please take my word for it-- you will be much better when you are on your own, even if you don’t have a single friend, and family member to help you out, or to listen to you-- do not worry, Mother Teresa did not stay happy by being with friends or family-- she lived and loved the poor and the sick.

    No, I am not telling one without partner to turn into a missionary or nun, what I mean is that you can stay happy if you start looking above yourself for purpose, stop being self-centred, you are so blessed with food and money and a place to live in, millions are not, you can start with them.

    You can become someone’s voice-- don’t be afraid of the hurdles, today if you speak for women you will be labelled as a feminist, if you talk about Muslims you are a Pro-Muslim, if you talk of LGBTQ rights, your sexuality is played with. But speak, because that is the path to liberation and joy.

    We have become so obsessed with love for things, expensive clothes, MacBook, iPhone, houses, cars, flights and booze.

    Life is in togetherness, get it straight. The best of things, even the most expensive, will only go so far, because then and forever, till you die, you need someone living to root for you, to need you, and giving some meaning to your life. Take care of them.

    Many times, love, money, life itself can consume us, make us blind to our weaknesses and the weaknesses of the people we love, and how much someone tries, we cannot remove our blindness unless we are ready to do that. No one else can make us see- the reality of our faults, our prejudices, because it is painful to accept that we made a mistake. But if we are lucky, we might learn from our mistakes and gather enough courage to accept it and apologize and stop suffering.

    © Harfkaar October 12, 2020

    Popular section honors! Catch my other popular section posts at #popsec_j

    #selfmusingsofJ

    #daadigotyourback
    To my brothers and sisters @ashamurali @kehta_hai_joker @lovethatneverfades @sunenasharma @wild_aish

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  • jaya___ 67w

    So I really love Harry Potter (anyways, how can you not, eh?) and I love orgasming to different ships therein… and If I could only have it in my hands, I would land Hermione with Victor (yeah, you got that yummy, yum, that yummy yummy, Krummy, no? Never mind!)

    Yes of course, think logically (asking too much of Indians nowadays tho!) Victor liked Hermione and asked her for Yule Ball when she had not yet metamorphosed into the gorgeous gown wearing Bella types Disney princess….he liked (how I hope it was loved) her with her big, buck-teeth, curly hair, studious nature and all the smarty vibes.

    On the other hand, Ron, the one who actually took away Hermione, was the one who realised on the day prior to the ball, that she was a girl! Also clearly intimidated by her intelligence and obviously jealous of Krum once he danced the night with her… so I guess, Ron had always be a little less deserving of my girl (offended? Can’t do nothing)

    My personal advice to myself and my friends here and everywhere (coz I have a blog too, do read it ok?) life is just enough with yourself being yourself and with no one else. If you get someone who admires you as you are, which is very rare, too good (to be true, ha-ha) yet if you don’t , it’s better, trust me! It’s a propaganda to make you believe that you need that someone special, while actually you don’t!

    Life is just a circle, blooming of flowers to falling of ice...the dying of summer to petrichor in mind...and it goes on. Holding on to somebody else’s hand instead of yourself in all these times, can be too limiting. So I guess you got my point.

    Also , this country where we are literally living in stone age and consider Brahmanism as something non-existent and the practice of untouchability still prevalent in many areas (if you don’t practice it, it doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. You don’t go to mars, it still exists). It feels like the wizard and muggle born discriminative distinction in Harry Potter.

    I would advise, don’t give any fucks to what people teach you to believe, that you can’t be single, that you are special coz of being upper caste etc. Apply mind and be liberated. Any such person should have this knowledge that you will be labelled mad ofc, just like my Most Favourite character Luna, coz giving zero fucks to norms makes you mad in the eyes of the world.

    Also guys, all who ask me how may siblings I have and I reply, one more sister. And they respond (more often than not) no brother? I want to ask them why don’t they ask the same question to boys and girls, who have no sisters? It’s such a suffocating society! If only having brothers could save us from rapes and harassment!

    Well that was just a roll on…

    Coming back to our shitty lives, girls and boys choose your partners wisely, and most preferably, choose yourselves over any other person. And choose humanity and not caste!

    Cheers and lots of love
    © Harfkaar
    9-10-2020

    #daadisbae #octobermusings #selfmusingsofj #mirakeeforhathras #pod #genuine_readers #icanandiwill

    A big thanks to @ashamurali @sunenasharma @anecdoche @_gonewild @kehta_hai_joker for writing for #iamfordalits

    PS. Link in bio. Read my blog.
    PPS. Use hashtag readthisJ. Can't (won't) read tags.

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  • jaya___ 67w

    LOVE YOURSELF

    Period dates are treacherous. They can arrive early or shock you a little late. Whichever the case, they are a nightmare, not so much now as they were when I was a teen. I clearly remember, I was in eighth grade and it was the week when I was expecting my period to start. Every recess was a rush to the washroom to check if I was or was not bleeding. I remember it was history class, when I was sure, that period has started. I rushed to the loo, only to confirm the nightmare. Reckless as I am, I didn’t have a pad, and by the two years I was having periods I never had the occasion of saying the goddamn word- “Sanitary Pad”. And now I had to actually ask for it! I was close to tears, as if I was about to die. I just went back to class and sat on my seat. After a tormenting five minutes, I asked mam to again go to the washroom, a little vexed, she allowed. Freaking out, I thought of thousand things, that might happen if I go on like this, shaming on spotted skirt, scolding on being so clumsy and what not. I returned to the class and asked the cupboard in charge, as to give me a napkin in hushed voice. She was a little confused and handed me paper napkin. I said, “No, that…” and she understood and said, “Oh….that..” and she handed me a pad as if it were an AK47 and we exchanged glances as if we were RAW agents dealing with Al-Qaida documents.

    Asking mam for the third time in a single period was itself a suicide bombing mission, that too from one who was like Taliban chief. She was visibly angry and growled, “What’s the matter with you?” And I was dim-witted and replied, “I have loose motions, miss!” and made my cutest face, and she was palpably disgusted and allowed. I rushed and did the needful, yet today I wonder the shame we have been taught since such a young age. So needless….

    Also I remember, it was sports day and I had just come back from my routine corridor duty, and one of my friends commented, “God J you stink!” And I was ashamed, it was not as if I had not bathed or something, it was just natural that after a hell of working and jumping, I’d smell so would anybody, yet it is seen as esteem issue. Parasite movie dealt with the concept exceptionally well. So many people today don’t bathe yet smell good just coz they spurted loads of money on chemicals that lend them that odour. No issues with that yet, one should not be made so ashamed for something so natural and human.

    Again I remember a day when returning from the morning assembly one of my friends told me I am so hairy. It really affected my self-image and confidence. I don’t call my body hair beautiful or ugly, they just are what they are- hair, and I love them as my body. Yet this abnormal reaction to body hair is so suffocating, people going for waxing and pain just to please the eyes of others.

    Again the constant shaming for being one of the fattest girls in class, all this is something that shook me yet I sustained and the confidence I have is organic and made above all these constant ridicules.

    Today, I want to tell teens, young girls, to own their bodies, their changes, smells, hair, fat, and everything. Invest in your mind and knowledge. Superficial things will suit the shallow ones, be one who is full of depth. Carpe diem!

    With loads of Love :)
    _________________________________
    Copyright Harfkaar 8-10-20

    #selfmusingsofJ
    #icanandiwill #genuine_readers #daadigotyourback

    PS. Read my blog. Link in bio.
    PPS. Use hashtag readthisJ. Can't read tags!

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  • jaya___ 67w

    //माना कभी-कभी सारे जहाँ में अँधेरा होता है
    लेकिन रात के बाद ही तो सवेरा होता है//

    I am not the sweet types...I am the bittersweet types. I am not the girl who says yes to please...not the one who acts innocent as sheep...I have opinions that sting...that makes the person I am interacting with conscious...nervous and doubt himself...I judge him by the knowledge he has....I judge by the civility he has...by the amount he lets me speak..the amount of tolerance he has for opposing views...by the way he spends money...and ofc his interest areas (especially the songs he listens to!! And Harry Potter padhta hai ki nahi?? And does he loves chocolate almond fudge?? And t-shirt pe Kya likha hai iski????).

    So basically I love you means you are awesome. But I rarely love. Coz love is overrated. The best of it is in the self love version, which obviously everyone ignores (including me sometimes). So to value the upgraded version...raise your goddamn priorities and choices. Don't love easily. Especially be wary of being impressed...coz fancy shit attracts a hell lot...yet it's still the stinking shit...so better bake a cake rather than make do with stale cake from somebody's arse..

    So yes, if I love you..you are Zeus (or Ethan Hawke). Oh I am Meow waiting for my rats (idk Jane tu ya jaane na, LOL)...or Geet waiting for Aditya (coz mostly when I am sober..main apni favorite Hoon)....yet in my heart of hearts I know I am Rani who doesn't give a fuck about the guy who was a chicken heart!

    खाली है जो तेरे बिना
    मैं वो घर हूँ तेरा
    घूमे फिरे तू चाहे सब शेहेर
    तू है मेरा
    खाली है जो तेरे बिना
    मैं वो घर हूँ तेरा

    So see you later alligator!! By the way, I have a mirror too!!

    ©hi_its_harf 6-10-2020 #selfmusingsofJ

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  • jaya___ 68w

    Life is beautiful. Only till we are still sucking milk from our mother's chest...then it whirlwinds into a rollercoaster of expectations and desires...when will the infant start speaking? Whose name he'll take first? When will she start walking? When will she start smiling perfect for a selfie?
    Desires like...My child will love pink coz she is a female! My son will start coding coz I am a techie! My baby will eat green crap I serve with patience deserving of Oscar! My child will love maths! Play like Beethoven...kick soccer like my boss kicks my arse..
    And so on....

    So the Crux is ....parents are our best well wishers...coz they they think so obviously...yet they don't realize that the child is born with some thoughts of herself..that he might want to do things his way...that he loves lipsticks and she wants to play Lego...that she might want to be a model and not an IAS...that he wants to write scripts (and sometimes scribble on walls while shitting in Indian railways...)

    If you are lucky enough to have cool parents...they'll let you be...otherwise...you take your bag and walk your way...and trust my words (I have no reasons as per why) but still..doing what you dream of doing ...is the best decision ever....at least you enjoy the process...the feeling that you are charting your own fate...that the results now will be your own doing...

    So cheer up (with a Budweiser) and hoo-ah!! Hop on to a journey of true life!!!

    From Aditi to Amit!!
    _______________________________
    Harfkaar 5-10-20 #pod �� #jandjforever #selfmusingsofJ #daadigotyourback #genuine_readers

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