We were discussing a matter I don’t have the freedom of talking about on a public platform. The strange thing was that I was contemplating a completely different matter and the stories were exactly what I needed to make sense of my situation.
The Story of the Trader
There was once a trader of cloths. A well respected and successful trader who had travelled far and wide. For he was the procurer of some of the best cloths from his region. The story begins when he was returning from one of his trading trips.
He was happy as he entered the village limits. A good profit he had made and was looking forward to meeting his family. He had missed them a lot for this trip had taken longer than usual.
A familiar figure came up to him and greeted him. “Hello, how are you?”
The trader recognizing his neighbor greeted him warmly, “Hello neighbor. I am fine, how are you? Is everything well in the village?”
The neighbor responds, “Well everything is fine, doing great, except, your dog has died.”
The dog had been around for almost 10 years now and he almost treated it like a family member. “How did that happen?”
“Well, everything is fine but what happened was that your dog ate too much of rotten burnt flesh and consequently died.” Said the neighbor.
The Trader was very surprised, “But how is that possible, we always take very good care of it. Where did it find the rotten flesh?”
“I understandm freind, it must be disturbing, I know you really loved that dog. Everything else is fine, you know. But what happened was that your barn and cowshed caught fire and all the animals were burnt alive. That is where your dog found all the rotten burnt meat.” the neighbor was trying to be as sympathetic as possible.
“What ! How did the barn and cowshed catch fire?” The Trader had stopped walking.
“Dear neighbor, I know this is bad news. But everything else is just fine. What happened was that there has been a death in your family and according to customs an oil lamp was lit near the south end of the house. The wind was blowing strong that day and somehow your cloth storehouse caught fire and the fire spread to the rest of the house, the cowshed and the barn.”
There were tears rolling down his face. That was generations of work gone up in smoke. All the fine cloth. The family house.”Wait a minute, who died? Is my wife alright? How is my mother?”
“I am sorry to inform you but your mother has died and the lamp was lit for her. But everything else is ok. Get a grip over yourself friend.” The neighbor was squirming.
“How did my dear mother die! Oh my misfortune I could not even be there at her last rites. How did she die?” The Trader was sitting on the ground and was almost howling now.
“Well, she was already very old and weak. But what really did it for her was when your young wife ran away with one of your servants, with all the money and jewelry in the house. But have heart everything is well. Don’t…” Before the neighbor could finish, the traded had passed out.
For many hours I got stuck with it. It kept playing like a broken record. But they sang a different song…
While telling mi that my country had a budget deficit of close to 10%,
While thousands of thousands of jobs were being lost,
While The Citi died and dying was the world’s economy it’s Globalization,
While Britain decided to print the infernal little pieces of colored paper,
While the countries went bankrupt,
The day the WTO went bankrupt they were telling mi all is well.
While in my country 50% of kids less than 5 years of age are suffering from malnutrition,
While the farmers around the world had no credit to plant for food,
While the blue gold ran dry and billions went thirsty,
While the rains refused to quench the thirst of the lands,
While the continents burned,
The day the poles and glaciers melt they were telling mi all is well.
While Cantrell and Russia and Saudi Arabia peaked out on the black gold,
While there was no more gas to make the Nitro fertilizers,
While the EROI of bio fuels was calculated to be below 1,
While there was no coal to fire the electricity plants,
While there was not a single viable source of energy and no inclination to find one,
The day I spent the day sitting in darkness freezing in the cold heat they were telling mi all is well.
All is Well
All is Well
All is Well
While human beings forgot that they have a brain and are capable of thinking,
While we killed our neighbors in the name of love, religion and divisions of the human kind,
While them terrorist burned my town,
While them revolutionists burned my villages,
While the wise ones bickered in closed rooms about sharing and trading the seats, the hearts and minds of all the votes,
The day Gaia could no longer bear the pain they were telling mi that all is well.
Everything Will Be Fine
Everything Will Be Fine
Everything Will Be Fine
…something like that could not get all the details right, I was already numbed out. Which brings mi to the second story, which is actually an experiment?
The Frog Experiment
Two frogs of similar weight, belonging to the same species were brought in for the experiment. For the sake of convenience they called them Frogie A and B. I think they were not given names also because when you give names to frogs they acquire a personality and then they become your friends, But friends you don’t subject to such experiments. Do you?
Frogie A :
Frogie A was put in a boiling pot of water. Frogie A jumped right out and survived after being treated for third degree burns.
Frogie B :
Frogie B was not so lucky. Frogie B was put in a cold pot of water and once Frogie B was swimming around they heated the pot. Frogie B was inconvenienced but not alarmed at first and calmly swam around. As the water began to boil it realized something was wrong but was unable to do anything about it. He was already half cooked alive and there was no getting out. Frogie B died. May the Lord keep his soul.
You see the frog is not a sapient creature. What it means is that the frog was not capable of comprehending that the water was steadily heating up and that there might come a point in time when it will be cooked alive. Since the frog was not a sapient creature it reacted in the way it reacted. I don’t know of too many sapient creatures but I know of one that proudly calls itself the homo sapien sapien and I belong to this species. I have been very proud in the past of being one and I would like to make it very clear that I am still generally optimistic about our future. But I am not so proud anymore. Why ? Because I am no longer sure about its sapience. We have been sitting in the ever heating pot of boiling water for a while now. Adding fuel to the fire all along and swimming around merrily. What is beginning to bug mi is that, this no longer seems like a hot water bath. It seems more like we are cooking ourselves.
A few days back the forces of the universe conspired and I went to meet a Prof. of mine since he was hospitalized. It was he who did the storytelling. I don’t know the source of the first story, he did not mention it. The experiment was something that was carried out by a bunch of French students at our college, so tells my Prof. I thank Prof. Narendra Sakhalkar for sharing them with Kunal and mi.
I would like to thank Life for she has been my best teacher. I have learned this one, can we start the next one?