For the Sake of Creation

I’ve spent the whole day analysing art and literature. And that’s really made me think. Not about the art I saw and the literature I read, but about analysing in general.

Do we all really have clear-cut intentions while creating? Do we all really think of complex ideas before picking up a paintbrush or fountain-pen? Is there really meaning behind all works of art?

Personally, I create for the sake of creation. I feel that creating is the best thing anyone can do, and that art is free to be interpreted in any way. Heck, it can even be interpreted to have no meaning at all. Once, I would like to see a painting, that I can just analyse as a painting. Just colours smeared on a canvas.

Just because the artist felt like.

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Light

Maybe we’re all just

Tiny, minuscule balls of light

Disguised as people.

And maybe the static that comes out

Of our mouths,

And the thoughts that consume our minds,

And the feelings we think we

Experience,

Are all nothing but that tiny little ball of light

Screaming in a muffled voice,

“I’m real. I’m real. I’m real.”

And maybe,

The light in me

Just wants to know if you’re real too.

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One Last Time

Last week, I went for a rafting expedition with my whole class. It was our last adventure camp, ever. This is an account of that experience.

Between waves of sandy wind and tides of lost memories, we set off to raft from Alaknanda to Shivpuri with nervous smiles and determination. Little did we know that the nervousness would soon turn into excitement, and the determination would turn into pure satisfaction.

As we passed the hills and valleys on our way to our first campsite, we saw the skyline dotted with tents and campfires. It was almost as if we were reliving all our previous experiences out in the wilderness; it was a sight that was heartwarming. As we arrived at our campsite, we instantly associated it with that familiar, homely feeling that comes with adventure camp. We stargazed under the raft-shelters and could hardly contain the excitement for the days to come.

The next 4 days were a whirlwind of water and exhilaration. Between ‘Forward Paddle’, blaring songs, and muffled whispers, we took on the river and refused to leave our rafts. There wasn’t a single day where we didn’t have full-fledged water-fights or cheer with our instructors. Apart from rafting, we helped set up our shelters, and put up the rest of the campsite. It was exciting to play different roles and see the campsite come together.

One moment that really stood out, however, was the day we went cliff-jumping. To jump off a 20 feet-high cliff, into the crystalline-blue water was almost life-changing. We experienced an unadulterated surge of adrenaline that will forever be etched in our minds.

During the expedition, the mornings were action-packed and nervous, and the nights musical and fun. We played countless hours of charades, made up movies that wouldn’t even make sense to half the world, and sang in our hoarse voices. We counted the stars and remembered each and every moment that we had gone through, as individuals, and together, as a batch. Maybe we didn’t cross every rapid or encounter every possible experience. Maybe we didn’t tick every box or climb every single mountain. But when we crossed all the campsites, all the trees, rivers, hills, and valleys on our journey back, there was one thought that rang in all our minds. We had come full-circle. We had enjoyed this camp to its fullest, we had learnt from all our past experiences and encounters. We had changed as individuals and had definitely changed as a batch. And between waved of sandy wind and tides of lost memories, we had the best, most apt, and most exhilarating expedition we could have ever hoped for.

Live to fight another day,

But did you really fight today?

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Retrospection

Some people say that happiness only exists in retrospect.

I don’t think so.

I don’t want to wait for a moment to be over in order to feel it.

I don’t want to smile in memories and thoughts.

I want joy and sadness and anger and excitement to exist in the present.

I don’t want to live my life in retrospect.

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10 Things I Wish To Tell You

1. You are going to feel lonely. It will feel unbearable. You need to learn how to love being with yourself, because ultimately, no one has the potential to love you like you can.  It is beautiful to love and be loved, but these are just hints as to how to regard yourself.  Regard yourself highly.

2. Find something that makes you feel like the world makes sense, even if you can’t justify it intellectually to yourself or anyone else.  Read a book, hear the same song on repeat for three hours. Write, dance on your bed- find what works for you

3. Have have a soul-shaking, satisfying conversation at least once a week. Language was made to be used- use it well.

4. Be a translator. Give others access to your world of ideas. Don’t leave them in the dark.

5. You need to learn to really listen. This means listening without thinking about how it relates to you, or planning the next thing you are going to say.

6. Know yourself. Not just on some touchy-feely fuzzy pretty-on-the-inside tip, but knowing who you are is a source of your power.  You define that for yourself. Don’t ever let anyone else tell you who you are. This may change in time, as you grow and learn more. And that’s ok.

7. Its okay to leave any place that makes you feel like shit. It’s hard, but you don’t have to explain everything.

8. Vent.

9. Create things for the sake of creation. Create yourself.

10. You are inherently valuable. You have worth. Ask no one for permission for this. You’re going to make it.

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The Best Form of Rebellion

My Two Cents on Originality

If you were to walk on your hands with your feet in the air, some evening, from the grocery story to your nephew’s play school along Sixth Avenue, you would not be doing an original thing. You might believe it to be original because you were the first to do it, or that it was a different, unique thing to do. But you have my assurance that it has been considered thousands of times by many people, some of whom were almost in their senses, and been abandoned because they didn’t consider it worthwhile. You might think that making an excuse for attending a lecture late, or dying your hair rainbow is original. However, originality is not merely doing something bizarre and different. Originality is doing something different, something new, something worthwhile. Originality is reorganising the ideas that exist, into the ideas of tomorrow.

The fire of originality is the undying tinder of curiosity, of ingenuity, and independence. Originality is nothing but inventive creativity. It makes the world go round. But why is originality so coveted? Why is it restricted? Why do we speak of originality like it is scarce, and should remain so?

It is the power that snatches the floppy disks from our hands and replaces them with flash drives. It swallows typewriters and allows you to read the text that you are reading this very moment. Originality somewhat a mystic force, that jumps from between the lines of single-lined journals. It dwells in shining light-bulbs in the corners of our minds. And that is why we are scared of it. That is why we diplomatically term it ‘artistic’ and ‘chaotic’, and mentally assign it to a box of rejected, unconventional concepts.

Our world lives in routine. From publishers, to playwrights, to editors, movie-makers and businessmen, we are stuck in a spiral of mundanity. And it is this very mundanity that helps us achieve perfection, and a state of comfort. But isn’t change what makes us human? It keeps us from approaching equilibrium (in simpler words, death), and helps us adapt to our surroundings. Originality is not comprised of a ‘Eureka’ moment followed by a visit to the Patent office. Originality is a constant reshuffling of ideas, thoughts and practices, that change the way status quo works. And since most of us are hand-wired into conventional thinking, we look at originality like it is a statue of brilliance.

Originality is rebellion. It is the notion that drives us to break free from the shackles of mundanity. It is the drive that turns fantasy into reality, and blurs the boundaries between facts and fiction. Originality is that stubborn child who wishes to take the long route home for the sake of exploration. Originality is the farmer who creates a way to power his tractor with solar energy. Originality is a state of mental activity that is triggered by creative thought and divergent thinking. And between necessarily arbitrary pages of conventional knowledge, it is originality that makes life worth living.

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