Sunday, December 4, 2016

Questioning 'Focus' - Mistakes and Celebrations

A brief archaeology:

Focus has always been a focal issue in Kaleidoscope's time of growing up! Lucky that he has been asked to be focused on one thing only - study, and that was good enough to make his life miserable. He can barely forget those days and evenings when he tried hard not to fall in the trap of being instructed "FOCUS KALEIDOSCOPE!" He cannot actually empathise with today's kids who are asked to focus on whatever they do, study, games, swimming, drawing, and yes that hurts!

Although as he was told and experienced, it was not difficult for many of his friends to focus on girls and pronographies! Yet, most of his friends have done pretty well in studies and careers!

Reintroduction of FOCUS:

Focus -  as a matter of fact, gets reintroduced ever since Kaleidoscope has managed money to buy a good camera. He always wants to have a focus on things he wants to capture through his lens. Well, he usually succeeds to do so. With Canon, it is so damn easy, all Kaleidoscope has to do is to half press the shutter and green box appears to confirm that its done!

Well, quite often, the result becomes just quite the opposite, and the chance/luck factors remind that notion of 'focus' is alive and well. For example, he once tried for about a few dozen frames to capture a small bright beetle to focus. No matter how hard he tried, the beauty remained out of focus. He tried automatic focus, which is like oh my goodness, most often precisely accurate, failed! His manual endeavour has been equally miserable! So, was it a mistake? Kaleidoscope for quite long believed that it was a mistake and he even tossed in the category at JPG Magazine as "My favourite Mistake" (please click, its fun)! 

The mistake which is supposedly favourite!

Questions:

The point is, should these happy go out of focus things be considered as an outcome of mistake? If it is a mistake, is it a mistake from the perspective of the camera? or the person behind camera? 
If it is the person behind the camera, and if the person tries hard to focus on it, is it a mistake? Or sheer luck/chance! Just like other posts, Kaleidoscope does not have the answer to it. But he can, related a few oops moments with focus:

1. You tend to focus on something (your career or the person you want to be with!) and it gets slip away - focus/out of focus liminality

2. You tend to be in focus (to your higher authority/your lover!) and you are out of the frame - inability to remain in focus - you, the 'proletariat' looser

3. You tend to focus on something and end up focusing on something else, which you did not want at all, and you hate it/ or on a positive side, you end up having something you desired but never dared to chase - Needs for focus dies here, RIP

Now, don't tell Kaleidoscope, that he has made a discovery of how brilliant life is going in parallel with his camera and focus.

Meanwhile just see how badly Kaleidoscope failed to focus on a beauty and end up focusing on the ashes (do not remind him his point no. 3, it hurts!).
This is a beautiful Red Avadavat on a ash background, well the focus was reversed than originally intended, and it happend for a million times!

The bird when finally Kaleidoscope could focus on, but the ash background is gone, the award winning contrast is gone for ever!! 


Now, if Kaleidoscope wants to take another step forward, its analogous to what he strives to call life, and of course, this is why its beautiful to be alive! 

Friday, November 25, 2016

Civilisation and question of love: Part VII Vanishing beliefs

Yes there are many philosophies of life. With the increasing rationalisation of life, kaleidoscope finds himself in a world of present. Where there is no after life, reincarnation or heaven exists, the belief of which used to be so powerful that people used to undermine the hardship of everyday life. Increasingly the hardship and battle for everyday life has become less physicallly challenging and more intellectually and cerebrally exhausting.

Since kaleidoscope, like may others have started to live in a society of wiping away of belief systems, they are living in an eternal present! Therefore, the philosophy says there is no eaternal beauty  and 'beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder!' There is no after life and thereforw, enjoy today, be engulfed within the present!

Therefore, kaleidoscope is taught to live the life at its fullest, making everyday count as if this the last day! Interestingly, kaleidoscope thinks, if he would knew it was really his last day he would have done things which, as such have not relevance to the world in which he tries to live in! The saddest part is one day would be the last day and it would not be as Kaleidoscope or any one dreams of, it would definitely be one of those depthless present days continuing in the endless succession!

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Letting go 5: One surreal fall

Just on the other day Kaleidoscope met with one random person on his way to work. It's usually a short trip to his workplace at the heart of the IT land! However, on that particular day the short trip became unusually long because of two reasons. First, the road through which he travels became unusually congested with traffic. The reason being the sudden breakdown of one of the machines working for future Metro railway projects. The second reason is narrated below.

To make a small story big, the random person was sobbing desperately at the back sit of the car in which Kaleidoscope was lucky enough to get in. Kaleidoscope became a little concerned for the gentleman at the back sit.

When he tried to look back intending to ask if he needed any kind of help, the gentleman described the event of missing himself. He narrated that he just had found out he doesn't love the person he thought he loves for so long! No, not surreal, he was sobbing for the loss of his love. And amazingly when he tried to break the news to his partner, his partner said the same thing, that she also feels the lack of love from her side.

Thats the end of the story. The gentleman got down a couple of stoppages before the place where Kaleidoscope had to get down, saying 'its not always the break up that matters, sometimes its the inability to love that matters too!'

Kaleidoscope asked if there is another person in his life already! He said 'no' and banged the car door.

Well even if there is no other person, yet there is a dream of the other person! Kaleidoscope thought.

Well it was then time to wake up from Kaleidoscopic sleep, the smart phone was smart enough to wake him up.

Yes of course it was just a dream. Surreal... just like the dream of the imagined other person, he thought in his dream!

Kaleidoscope went for his workplace thinking about the dream. Its winter and some leaves had fallen over the pitch black bitumen creating a random mosaic pattern. With wind being blown, the pattern kept changing which was so wonderfully described by the river as Kaleidoscopic mosaic. Yes a surreal river is always with Kaleidoscope. Suddenly a car stops near him exactly like that dream. A gentleman sitting at the back sit. Kaleidoscope sat on the front. Of course nothing happened! Kaleidoscope hoped for a dream matching day... but it never happened - yes, it never happens. Perhaps that is why Kaleidoscope has dreams! Perhaps that is why everyone has... dreams!

Monday, November 21, 2016

Letting go 4: Can you talk of love at all?

So, how many times did Kaledoscope find himsef falling short of words to express what is going on inside his head? Well, it's countless. Kaleidoscope often have felt that there are lot to say, lot to make the other understand. He often has made  plans: a checklist of words, sentences  and points that he wishes to tell, to share, to make understandable by the other. However, when the moment comes he often fails miserably.

How does he fail?

1. He tries to put his thought into words and then after some time he finds so many fill in the blanks in his script! May be he expresses through his body language but such language often remains undeciphered or may be he is equally poor with his body languages.

2. With repeated failure he often stops talking. He often gives up saying things that he used to say regularly. Then all that are left in a conversation is idle chatter!

When the question of love comes Kaleidoscope can only utter the words to express the way he is dragged towards the image of love and not the love per se. In his intimate moments with person, places and the like he finds himself in an absolute shortage of words. He describes the situation as silence! Yes an word to escape from himself! Yes it is silence outside and a storm of ignited passion inside. He often asks himself 'what you talk of when you talk of love?' he has also documented in his earlier post that its the 'Silence.'

Well, silence of what kind?

Silence because of the shortage of words?

Silence because the other as Kaleidoscope perceives can read a lot from a silence?

Silence because of the pain he has to take up?

Silence for prolonged broken promises?

Silence because of memories and inheritance of loneliness?

Or perhaps a combination of so many things of compatibility and incompatibility with kaleidoscopic self , the world and the imagined world.

Kaleidoscope just like others still searches for the answers to one of his primordial questions now 'what we talk of when we talk of love?' In addition to another and more persistent one 'did we know what love is? Do we have the capacity to even imagine, the feel the passion the tenderness of a state of being we so reluctantly label as love?'

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Letting go 3: what you talk of, when you talk of love?

Its another visit to the river to the wonderland. Kaleidoscope cannot get over the disruption caused in the name of 'public services.' What makes this departure so painful? So far Kaleidoscope understands it's primarily because the wonderland was perhaps the first place where he felt to belong truly! The river is the only entity that makes kaleidoscope believe that he is wonderful as he is. Kaleidoscope tries to make sense of what he talks of when he talks of love?

So when he visits and comes back in the twilight moments in liminality,  makes love, cries, laughs and hugs he is alive again. The liminality defines kaleidoscope, if ever the space changes, the river changes kaleidoscope ceases to exist! So, the question remains what we talk of when we talk of love? Its usually the silence!

Yes, the twilight is good when you see the colours no matter if its dawn or dusk; the rest is monotonous.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Postmodern Encounters: Dumb Professors and Brilliant Painters in Kolkata

In Lalitkala Centre, Kaleidoscope had a friend who used paint masterpieces along with a group of brilliant guys. Kaleidoscope was a regular visitor there, during his university days. Often after long days of boring and endless lectures he used to spend hours looking at work of art in progress, plus he also loved the mixed smell of paints, inks, cigarettes and expensive perfumes which Kaleidoscope believes only painters could afford to! Not because of the price, but because of the right kind of smell.

Once, he saw one of the well known handsome painters framing a canvas with a simple yet elegant scratch mark. The painter declared it as an work of art! Kaleidoscope couldn't understand any part of it and let it be because that handsome painter was already famous for his swinging mood! However, Kaleidoscope managed the courage to ask a disturbing question - 'why should we call it an work of art?'

The Painter was irritated and replied 'an object is an work of art, in so far as people believe it as art!' He continued 'my task is to make them believe that this is art!' - you stupid!

During that period Kaleidoscope was taught postmodernism in an workshop and he shared the story of 'scratched canvas' with one of his professors. The professor said 'these are bunch of bullshits, you should avoid mixing with these people!'

The same professor tried to make Kaleidoscope and others understand some part of the postmodern philosophy! Quite obviously most of them found it dumb and bogus, and since then many of his friends have made fun of postmodernism as a philosophical position (not that Kaleidoscope is an admirer of it! but the point is, they hardly knew what it actually refers to!!).
Well, Kaleidoscope continued to mix with those 'bullshits' to understand the very nature of democratisation and postmodernisation of art. A work of art is anything that people think as an work of art, period!

After a very long time gap (almost 12 years) Kaleidoscope had a chance reunion with that handsome artist, who is now a bit old and wise to control his temper. He informed Kaleidoscope that 'scratched canvas' was sold in some 28k in 2005 and referred to one of the classics Duchamp's fountain. Kaleidoscope sincerely hopes that he would never become that professor in his life, but then he also knows, unlearning something is really difficult!

Duchamp's fountain, it is one of Duchamp's most famous works and is widely seen as an icon of twentieth-century art.   Taken from http://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/duchamp-fountain-t07573

Friday, November 4, 2016

When You Curtail Our Freedom: NDTV and Beyond!

Taken from http://www.cartoonmovement.com/cartoon/14091

Well well, this is it! This is the time we were all waiting to come. The ban on NDTV, the penalty of showing things which disturbs (allegedly reveals “strategically sensitive information”of Pathankot movement!) some people with power! The ban is based on Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act of 1995, which was amended in 2015 to prohibit "live coverage of any anti-terrorist operation by security forces... till such concludes." However, as Kaleidoscope, like many finds, such information as where the operation was being carried out, how long possible it could continue, bla bla bla was also broadcasted by other television networks as well. Moreover such information was also made public by the security forces themselves (Click here). Instead of following legal action agaist the television channel putting a ban on NDTV which has been critical of the government is seen by many, a dreaded sign of the decaying freedom of expression and media freedom. India ranks 133 among the 180 countries in the lastest Annual Press Freedom Index released by reporters without borders in 2016!


Journalists are often being attacked, it is needless to mention the recent ban on newspaper in Kashmir, arrest of journalists in Chattisgarh, reminds many the undeclared emergency. 

The nature of history with revolutionary changes:

Why does a government curtail the freedom of media? Plain and simple answer is that of intolerance towards opposition and an attitude of 'might is right'! The question is what happens when you continue doing what you think in your opinion - the best! You curb the spread of alternative views. Such strategy is usually adopted by people who are afraid of the voices against them. However, this strategy usually fails (but how long would it continue is a question!!) where the society is incredibly heterogeneous. The people in power foolishly believe that until a mass movement against a regime takes place there wouldn't be any change! This is also a popular connotation about movement based protest politics. History tells often quite the opposite story! Kaleidoscope was looking back the history, the interesting fact that comes out is how many people support your view is not that important! 

In 1914, for example the Russian elites and 3 million noblemen knew how not to allow 180 million peasants co-operate and launch a revolution. Although, the revolution began with 180 million peasants launch a revolution against Tsar. It was made possible by a handful of communists who could place themselves at right positions. With 23000 members of communist party the revolution began against 3 million people (Black 1970).  

And we can never forget the famous 'boo' in Ceausescu's speech to understand the history in action. People still question who was the first person to shout out the loud 'boo'. See the history in making, watch the youtube video attached below (if you are running short of time drag it to 2:50) and hear to boo and then 'silence silence silence'!


It is intriguing to note that the ruler continued to rule for decades and then collapsed in such a spectacular manner! 

Why do people support bullshits? 

At least the above video refers to the domination of 20 million of Romanians was ruled primarily because Ceausescu and his cronies  a) controlled all the networks of co-operations (political, economic and social), b) prevented the creation of rival organisations, c) continued to get supports from sister communist parties in the Soviet Union and eastern Europe.

However, coming back to the present situation, there are protests coming from all the corners, and this is perhaps not a single boo!


Black, C. E. (ed.). (1970). The transformation of Russian Society: Aspects of Social Change Since 1861. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.