Pigeon and Freedom

What should be one’s limit of freedom? Can we draw a line of
limit for freedom though? Is it possible?

Consciously and subconsciously we all get freedom. Some
people can get more freedom than others, but if we abuse our level of freedom,
then what will happen?

In the chapter 15 of the autobiography Growing Up Untouchables in India, Vasant Moon metaphorically shows what
will be the consequence if one get excessive freedom. He uses pigeons as a
metaphor that when they cross their limit of flying up on the sky they have
been attacked by a falcon. Here falcon is the metaphor for destructive consequence
of getting over-freedom.

I remember one memory of mine. Once I told my father to give
me some money. He gave me some more money than what amount I actually want. I asked
my father why he gave me some more money. In reply, he just told me to keep
that money. If I needed that money later, I would spend it. I asked my father
why you trusted me whether there was a possibility to spend that money for
nothing. My father just told me that “I know. You won’t do it.” I realized that
my father draw a limit of spending the money by showing his trust toward me. However,
his trust is hidden. If I do not ask, I will never realize it in that way. However,
many friends of mine were given an unnecessary amount of allowance in daily
basis and they just waste that money to eat in restaurant or something like
that. They had freedom of spending that money, and they just did it without any
pragmatic sense. Later their parents understood the fact and decrease the
allowance. It made them angry with their parents because it was an interruption
to spend their money with freedom.

Furthermore, in our country, some parents give their
children unnecessary freedom to stay outside till late-night. They even know
what their sons are doing. After some months, they just notice that their sons
become drug-addicted. It is the destructive consequence of giving limitless
freedom.

I have been deeply moved by the incident that described in
that autobiography. It just simply portrays that what consequence probably will
be if one get freedom and misuse it. This is a lesson for all of us.

The Story of a Bengali Settler

(1)
It was thirty-five years back when Momin Ali started for England to ensure the financial security of his family. Then there was pain of leaving his beloved family in Bangladesh, but hope for doing something for the sake of that family. There were lots of dreams in his mind when he left his country. He had a beautiful picture in his eyes of his green country, and he was crying……….
(2)
In England, Momin Ali got a work in a garments factory. He worked hard every day. Sometimes he did overtime to earn more money to send to his family because his family was dependent on his earning. There was no entertainment for him but chitchatting with his fellow roommates in the lodging house where he lived. His twenty-four hours were passed by working at daytime and missing his family at night time. He wanted to expand his income level. For that he intended to save some money. After two years he saved a satisfying amount of money to start a new business in his own. He planned to start an “Indian” restaurant where he served the sub-continental spicy dishes. His restaurant soon got huge popularity among the community and he became rich. That time he wanted to bring his family in the England. He requested his whole family to come there. However, his mother did not want to come in a foreign country. She just wanted to live and die in her own country. With all respect to his mother’s decision, Momin Ali brought his wife in England.
(3)
After thirty-five years……………………
Momin Ali returned his country after his mother’s death. His mother was the only root that connected him with his country intangibly. It was his mother’s death which made him back in his country after thirty-five years. He noticed a lot of changes in his village. People gathered to see him. They told him their sufferings. Momin Ali missed the sweet dish payesh which his mother cooked very well. He became nostalgic. He thought that there was no one who cared him from far away where he lived now. The root was cut. It was after thirty-five years when Momin Ali was crying again………………

Manners Cause Misunderstanding!!

American 1: How ridiculous it is! She is licking her fingers!!
American 2: Oh! Yes! It’s absolutely disgusting!!
Bangladeshi (thinking): Why those two foreigners are looking at me in that weird way?!? Who knows what’s wrong with them!!
Arab: Hey! What are you thinking?
Bangladeshi: Oh! Nothing! I am just eating, you know…
Arab: Look! They have not offered me anything yet! I am so hungry and want to eat something.
Bangladeshi: Okay, you can ask them to get you something. In fact, we all are eating except you!!
Arab: You know, the waiter offered me to take a dish, but I said, “No, thank you!”
Bangladeshi: Oh! What did you do? I heard that it is an American custom not to offer again and again!
Arab: But how can I know this?!?! We have a different custom. It is our manner not to take any food from dish for the first time!! If someone offers again, then we take it!!
Bangladeshi: Oh! It created misunderstanding!!
Arab (with a sad voice): Yes, I am supposed to know this………………….
Bangladeshi: Don’t worry. Just tell the waiter to bring you some foods.
Latin American (keeps a hand in the shoulder of the Arab and gives a big smile): What are you talking about guys??!!!
Arab: Oh! You know, those Americans didn’t give me anything to eat. They don’t know courtesy!!
Bangladeshi: Oh, man! It’s just a misunderstanding for following different etiquettes.
Latin American: Yeah! But those Americans are very proud about themselves!! They insulted me!!
Arab & Bangladeshi (with wonder): HOW?!?
Latin American (with anger): Before starting the party, I wanted to meet them. I stood so closely in front of them, and they just stepped behind about one arm length! How insulting that was…..
Arab: I think they don’t like close standing space. They want to keep at least an arm length space whenever they talk to other person.
Bangladeshi: Yeah, I also noticed that.
Latin American: But this is so insulting for us, for Latin Americans!!!!!
Bangladeshi: Hmm…I think this all about misunderstanding not to know about each other’s customs, manners and etiquettes.
Arab and Latin American: YES! We also think so. This is also applicable for those Americans!!
Bangladeshi: Actually we all need to learn other’s customs and manners to avoid embarrassment.

Response to the “Death of a Salesman”

Seed is one of the symbols in the drama entitled “Death of a Salesman” by Arthur Miller. Seed is a symbol of possibility, and chance of getting something from it. Although Willy Loman, one of the major characters of this drama, was failure both as a salesman and as a father, he had a hope of doing something for the welfare of his offspring. He took seeds as his last hopes for doing that. Seeds were represented in Willy’s life as his last hopes. Willy worked hard all his life-long, but got nothing except betrayal. He was self-deceived by himself. At the end of his life, he understood all he had done was just nothing but like planting seeds in a field where there was no sunlight. How could one yield anything from that type land? It was the harsh truth which Willy Loman got to know at the end. That realization led him to plant vegetable seeds in the adjoined field of his house, but it was just like the task which he had done before through his life. Seeds symbolized the failure of Willy’s American dreams. Those dreams just showed the abstract picture of material success. People ran though for this; some people could get this, some could not. Willy belonged to the second group. He aspired to gain the material success, and tangible achievement. When he got to know that he failed to do this, he loose his mental balance. Was it the definition of ‘material success’ which lead a person to the imbalance position? This question caused me to think that what was the actual solution? Material success made people impatient to get ‘something successful’ as soon as possible. People forgot the ethical values to get that. Will Loman was the example of this. However, his neighbor Charley never let his son aspiring to the material success which brought nothing but just frustration. That was why maybe his son was able to make him as a successful person.

The writer clearly shows that what the consequence of being impatient to achieve material success is. It is not the solution of being successful in this world. Patience and intelligence make a person successful in that perception.

 

A Dialog and a Thought

Father and his son are talking.

Father: What’s wrong with you, dear?

Son: Please, don’t ask me anything. I can’t tolerate you anymore.

Father: What?!? Son: Yes, because you are pretentious.

Father: How dare you to say like this?!?

Son: You gave me the lesson of humanity. You gave me the lesson of honesty…but, you did not follow these. How can I respect you? You just pretended to be an honest man, but you took bribe, you used other people for your own need. How do you expect me respect you?

Father looks at his son with an amazed look.

………………

What will happen when the trustworthiness of a father and son relationship on the verge of break? We all know in most of the cases, our fathers are the role-models to us. From the childhood, our parents give us the lesson how we can lead ourselves in the way of our lives. They teach us honesty, humanity, altruism, and so on. We expect that our parents also practice these virtues. However, sometimes we see that they advise us not to tell lie, but they often tell lie. How can we take the lesson of telling truth when our parents do not practice it?

I know one of my friends who do not respect her father at all. It is surprising fact that he loves his father a lot in his childhood. However, his view towards his father has changed when he got to know that his father took bribe. It was a great shock for him to tolerate because he always respect his father for his honesty. Dear reader, I have imagined the abovementioned scene which may be applicable for them to make understand their situation. I know it is possible. Often time the clash among the children and the parents burst when the expectation towards each other cannot be fulfilled. Probably Biff, the character of the drama “Death of a Salesman” by Arthur Miller, is one of the examples of that type situation who disrespects his father for not fulfilling the expectation of being the epitome of honesty which he knows as a truth from his childhood.

……………

Father: I am sorry my boy. Really I’ve never realized that the lesson I’m teaching you which I’m not practicing. It is my fault. I promise you I never do this. I want your respect my boy. It will be the most valuable treasure for me.

Son: Please, don’t tell anything in that way….. (crying). I didn’t want to hurt you papa. Please forgive me! Please……

Conversation between Dream and Happiness!

Dream: I don’t want to be hidden! Let me free!

Happiness: If anyone let you free, then I will come!

Dream: Why? What’s the connection between you and me?

Happiness: I am feeling surprised! Do you not really know what the connection between us is?

Dream: To be candid, my answer is ‘no’. I only know that I live in people’s minds. They desire for me…aspire for me….I’m the light which guides them to go ahead in their ways of life. They want to fulfill me.

Happiness: Yes, that’s the point. What’ll be the result if they fulfill their dreams? Do you not think so that they will get happiness?

Dream: Oh! Yeah! I got the point what is the connection between you and me!

Happiness: Yes. People always want to be happy. They can do anything for that. In this way, is there anyone who does not want to be a dreamer? Sometimes a dreamer is a happy person because she or he has a dream which leads her or him to live for something. If anyone has no dream in life, I think she or he is dead.

Dream: Okay. I have a question. What will be the result if anyone is not able to fulfill his or dream? Breaking of dreams is one of the worst parts in human’s life.

Happiness: I agree with you. Sometimes reality makes people to postpone their dreams. They do not want to do that. However, they are compelled to do because of sacrificing for other, or family. There is no scope for them to accomplish their dreams in a fruitful way. I think they become unhappy, but sacrificing for other is a good thing. They can be happy by reminding that I am doing it for the sake of one’s smile which I want to see. They can pacify their pain of breaking their dreams in that way.

Dream: Yes, it is a matter of not to be selfish. It is so important in this world because people are unhappy as they are selfish and self-centered. However, one has to try his or her best to fulfill their dreams and desire. If they don’t, they can give condolence their own selves by telling that ‘Okay, I tried my best to do that, but I never give up my hope of fulfilling my dreams.’

Happiness: Definitely! Thus we both can make this world happier with a smile in everyone’s face!

Open Your Eyes through Education!

A mother was so anxious about her only child’s sickness. She did not know what she could do for him. She was so poor and helpless. She had not enough money to give her child a better medical treatment. However, it was not possible for her to tolerate her child’s sufferings anymore. From her neighbor, she heard that there was a woman in nearby village who was famous in that area to cure people by exorcise. In return, she just received money or gold. The mother was so convinced by her neighbor’s words that she went to that village to meet with that woman. The woman told her to bring her child in her room and lock the door. The mother did so. The woman took a broom and thrashed the child with it. The child was only six years old. He was very sick to tolerate the pain of beating by the broom on him. The mother asked the woman why she beat her child in such a rude way. The woman told her that she was doing so because that child was possessed by an evil spirit and that was why he was not cured for a long time. She was beating him to frighten away that spirit as if it would go away from the child. She beat the child about fifty times. When the sick child became senseless, she told the mother she accomplished her task to run away the evil spirit. The mother gave her one thousand taka which she saved for her child through her hardship. The mother trusted the woman, but it was shocking to her when her child died at night.

It is just an imaginary story.I got the idea for writing this story from the first chapter of the autobiography Growing Up Untouchable in India by Vasant Moon where Ragho’s wife betrayed the woman as she possessed by Matamai, a goddess, because they were not educated to catch her trick. Still in many areas in this world, many uneducated, poor people are constantly being betrayed by some persons who present themselves as powerful to give them the solutions of disease or personal problems. They are used to tricking simple and uneducated people for earning money. However, the consequence of that type hypocrisy is dangerous. If we do not fulfill the theme of the slogan ‘education for all’, various superstitions and awkward beliefs among the uneducated people will lead them into the black world where they cannot see anything with their open eyes.

Portrayal of a Novel as a Movie

After completing the novel The Joy Luck Club, I was thinking how this story would be in the movie because the writer of this novel Amy Tan portrays all the characters in an intricate way. I saw some movies which use the stories from various novels and I noticed that they just took the essence or important things which they needed. I kept it in my mind when I sat to watch this movie and eager to see how this novel turned itself into a movie!

A novel is a big canvas to analyze the characters than a movie, but a movie is probably rather stronger medium to visualize the written characters, and realize their acts vividly. However, what will it be when a novel is portrayed in a movie especially such a complex novel? When I started watching that movie I was eager to find out the answer of this question. I liked the way how all the main characters were introduced in a party of the “Joy Luck Club”, and told their stories by maintaining a sequence. I think this movie clearly showed that why this novel’s name was The Joy Luck Club than the book did!

I missed one symbol of this book when I was watching the movie and that was the red candle. It was a very important thing to symbolize the pain of sexism. The parables of the novel were used a bit differently in the movie. Especially I understood the fourth parable of the novel by watching this movie when Rose told that she was died 60 years ago by taking opium as if she was her own grandmother. It showed that how the spirit transferred generation to generation before it was too late. I was surprised when I saw that Jing-mei’s father gave her the swan feather, the symbol of hope of a mother. It was really a heart touching scene and presented the first parable in a different way. I think some themes of the novel were missed in the novel, for example, the idea of abortion. In the novel Ying-Ying aborted her child, but in the movie it was shown that she accidentally killed her child.

I never thought that I wept after watching this movie. However, I did not know when the drops of water rolled from my eyes at the end of the movie. I realized the pain of a mother, I realized the pain of a daughter, and I realized the pain of not seeing one’s own mother who was founded after many years, but dead. How heart touching it was to visualize all those things. This movie also helped me to realize that The Joy Luck Club became one of my favorite books which taught me to figure out the past conflict with my mother.

Response to “Relationships 101”

“Oh! Are you MAD?? How do you expect that love can be learned?!!!? What a terrible thinking!!” I know some of you may retort me in this way if I tell you love can be learned!! It will be more accurate if I say love is a natural emotion which we have by born, but it will never be expressed if we do not know how it can be expressed. I get to know this from “Relationships 101”, an article from TIME, shows that how love can be taught in classroom as a formal course, but in informal way! It is very interesting to know, right?

Really I thrilled by reading such an article about which I never think that love can be taught in classroom! This article is about relationship counseling. It also introduces the readers with a new idea of teaching about couple relationships which is run by Marline Pearson, who is a sociologist. She teaches it in a formal setup which is really a new initiative for those people who suffers “relationship problem”. In newspaper I often see that there is a column for advising people who face problem in their relationships. I read and think how much complex it can be to handle and keep a healthy and perfect relationship. In our personal life we also often have same kind of problems, but we do not know how we can overcome these problems without hurting anyone by going in a sensible way. If we know the tactics of managing smooth relationship it will be easier for us to handle it.

I know there is debate that love cannot be taught. Maybe it is true, but is it always true? If we do not see any person to love and care for us then how can we learn that what is “love”? It is probably ridiculous to think in that way expressing love can be taught in the classroom. However, if we do not know how we can perfectly express our loving feeling, so how can others know about our emotions? Do they ever realize we have “love” for them? I think Pearson’s course is very significant in that sense. There is no any smooth way to go through a relation. Often we encounter with several problems in the path of a relationship. It is more important to know how we express our love, how we can go through our problems, and how we can balance between emotion and reality in a relationship. Formal relationship counseling can give us the support to seek the answers of our questions, and make us to realize that, “Oh! Yes, love can be taught in a classroom!”

Salute to Jing-Mei Woo

In my opinion, we are selfish in our nature. I have written this word in italics because in my sense, it is a relative term. What we consider as selfishness maybe that is not the same way what others think. However, there are some people who can change this term in a good sense. For example, maybe a mother is selfish for her own child. She wants her child to be the best of all; different from other child. However, to the child, his or her mother is the epitome of altruism. We can give up our negative selfishness by turning it positively. Though we are all selfish, we have some inner powers what we can use to change our selfishness into altruism. I got this inspiration from Jing-Mei Woo when I read the chapter “Best Quality” in the novel The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan.

Jing-Mei’s mother wanted her to make a prodigy, but she neglected her mother’s want and expectation. After then, there was a hidden conflict between them. Her mother Suyuan and she never able to understand each other until the crab party where Waverly and his family and boy-friend were invited. It was the climax for this mother-daughter relationship when Jing-Mei chose the bad crab for herself because of the intention of giving her mother the left best crab. Before that Jing-Mei was insulted by Waverly Jong, daughter of her mother’s friend. Waverly treated Jing-Mei in that way that she was in undermining position than her. Later, in dinner, Waverly chose the best crabs for herself and her family without thinking others. However Jing-Mei chose the less good crab because she wanted her mother to give the other good crab. It was the peak moment for Suyuan to understand her daughter’s altruistic nature which is contrast in Waverly’s nature. Then Suyuan understood that maybe Waverly was more intelligent that Jing-Mei, but Jing-Mei’s behavior and nature were far better that Waverly.

It is a great lesson for me to understand the example of ‘selfishness vs. altruism’. We are selfish in many senses, but Jing-Mei’s altruistic behavior has made me to understand that ‘altruism’ is the best quality. We can change ourselves gradually by sacrificing for good things. What we feel by sacrificing something for well-being for someone, we never feel that happiness by showing our selfishness. It is a divine feeling which only altruism can give us.