Sunday, August 8, 2010


Three and a half years ago, I bought a laptop and named it Hanuman. It revolutionized my experience of life - Seed of Devotion took off, I edited books, edited all my photography, stored all my dance music and experimented with video-editing. My laptop literally circled the world with me. Next to my pen-and-paper journals, Hanuman held the most treasured content of my life.

Then, several days ago, I came home to find my laptop gone from the kitchen table.

"Jivi," I asked my roommate, a little unnerved. "Where's my laptop?"

She came out from her room, a perplexed look on her face.

"And," I said, "where's your grandmother's quilt?" I gestured to the sofa - the pillows had been thrown to the floor; the handmade quilt was gone.

"The door was ajar when I came home," Jivi said quietly. She picked up her cell phone and called the police.

I began to pace. As my loss hit me full force, I dissolved into tears. "Why? The machine was old and beat-up, worth nothing. But... but... all my writings... my photography... unfinished videos... all my editing for Jadurani's memoirs... it's all gone! Take my camera, take my cash, take my jewellry, take it all! Why this?" Jivi held me while I cried. "It's all gone."

It was an act of a desperate drug addict - Jivi later found that her prescription medicine had also been stolen. The police came and took fingerprints and asked questions, but I knew: I would never see Hanuman again.

The thief did not steal my laptop from my bag or from a bookstore table. The thief broke into my own locked home. All week long, I have tried to feel angry, but all I feel is a deep, deep sadness, like grieving the loss of a loved one.

And I realize that this whole experience is like death. Death does not ask to come and does not annouce when he will steal what I hold most dear.

Death just comes.

I understand that this post is grave. But I feel it is my duty to share my sense of urgency to not take one moment in this life for granted, as many of us have realized with the sudden, tragic loss of Aindra Prabhu.

One day, death will come for each and every one of us, and we must ask ourselves every morning: "Am I ready?"

"When death, like a gypsy,
Comes to steal what I love
I will still look to the heavens
I will still seek Your face."
- The Valley Song
by Jars of Clay

1 comment:

Alphanso said...

Am I ready to die or not yet. I just couldn’t handle the truth that any second might be my last for me. "Lead me from darkness to light, from death to immortality." This famed Vedic prayer proclaims the human urge to survive, to conquer death and to know the joys of illuminated consciousness. People often pilgrimage to an isolated place in expectation of a vision. But for most souls, at the time of the great departure, a vision comes as a tunnel of light at the end of which are beings of divine nature, "Where eternal luster glows, the realm in which the light divine is set, place me, Purifier, in that deathless, imperishable world. Make me immortal in that realm where movement is accordant to wish, in the third region, the third heaven of heavens, where the worlds are resplendent" (Rig Veda, Aitareya Aranyaka 6-11). So eternal and so blissful! But for now, the one thing I ask of the LORD--the thing I seek most--is to live in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, delighting in the LORD's perfections and meditating in his Temple.
OM Shanti,

To write is to dare the soul. So write.