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Archive for October, 2015

Joseph’s brothers in jail for 3 days!


What is indigestible to my sense of proportion regarding the Christian clergy, is their skimming over facts to sustain their impression of certain Biblical characters.

Joseph, whose history finds narration in the late 30’s and early 40’s of the Book of Genesis, is gilted by the preachers to purvey their notions of Joseph. My mom, was so fascinated by those homilies that she decided to name me after him, which for me has turned into a double jeopardy! One I am supposed to be WISE, EFFICIENT & SPOTLESS like the Genesis Joseph. Secondly, others expect me to be meek like Mary’s husband and the foster father of Jesus. Both the Josephs hardly did anything to deserve what they got!

Ten of his brothers wanted to put Old Testament’s Joseph’s dreams to test, in the New Testament matter, an angel convinced him that the child of Mary was of the Holy Ghost and not through fornication. Both the Joseph’s would have been happier had they not been put through what they had been put through providence!

The caption of this blog is with specific reference to the Joseph of the Old Testament. The preachers I’ve listened to have emphasised on three major points : IMPECCABLE PERSONAL LIFE OF JOSEPH; DILIGENT IN WHATEVER WAS ASSIGNED TO HIM; finally, HIS HOPE WITHOUT ANY ASSURANCE FROM THE CIRCUMSTANCES HE FOUND HIMSELF IN! The three points are all true, but the preachers fail to talk of how Joseph incarcerated his 10 brothers, including Ruben, for three days and close to a year Simeon!

That was what made Joseph an able administrator! He had a long memory and he carpe deim-ed superbly well, when he was offered a slight chance! He believed in his OWN DREAMS & DID NOT LET GO OF A HALF-CHANCE, WHEN IT LENT ITSELF TO HIS VIEW!

Ruben is supposed to have tried to save Joseph from his brothers, by first recommending his assignment to a pit for later recovery, instead of killing Joseph. Meanwhile the rapacious Judah, devises to get more out of the lad, than merely getting Joseph out of the way by selling Joseph for twenty shekels of silver to the Ishmaelites!

Joseph, as narrated in Genesis, was inescapably under the control of murderous, rapacious and lying brothers, except for Ruben. Joseph puts him also in jail for three days, hoping Ruben would sprout a spine. Joseph gives an intense treatment to his ten brothers, of what he himself had to go through hopelessly for more than a decade, clutching at a hope that the Cup bearer of the Pharoah, would get him out through a timely word slipped to the Pharaoh while offering his heady potion! All his efforts had been in vain. Nothing brought him the intended results within the expected time frame, which in lesser mortals could have nibbled away their Hope! Joseph persisted, by hindsight it is easy to say that he was able to sustain his hope because of his innocence. Only two people knew about his culpability, joseph being the one, and the other being Potiphar’s wife!

When he got his brothers, excepting Benjamin, he got them by what hurt them most. When the sh** hits the roof, each is on his own, in keeping with that old adage, the brothers call into remembrance their guilt of not having been kind to the desperate pleas of their stripling brother Joseph. Three days in the cooler and each cracks up – JAILED IN AN ALIEN LAND, where the Egyptians believe that they are superior to the shepherdic Jews(?)- there were hardly 70 jews by then- alive.

Joseph, gets each one to pay for his heartlessness or complicity to it. The best part was, Joseph separates Simeon from Levi! What an administrative genius. Joseph keeps them apart for close to a year! Joseph makes Judah mellow down and keeps Simeon incommunicado from his other brothers. Joseph doesn’t even reveal to Simeon that he was Simeon’s brother, till they all return for the second trip.

What amazes me is Joseph’s assessment of people and situation coupled with restraint when clothed with absolute power. Joseph was one who disproved Lord Acton’s off quoted saying on POWER, long before the saying came in!

It is time Christian preachers taught the willing, such aspects of the Jewish history instead of packaging Joseph as an icon for encapsulating their pet half-baked guilt theories!

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Flow or Force?


Flow & Force!Watching Thelonius Monk play piano is quite disconcerting. In seeking a parallel with classical western music, it is Wagnerian, disturbing and there appears to be structured violence, but violence when structured is no more violence, it is FORCE. It is violence with a clear ear for subjugating itself to a command. The command is not external, but an internal machinery which subjugates the skill to the will of the command. 

A Force is under control when so structured, yet also terribly forceful when unloosened. That’s what I see in Thelonius’ style. 

His style is not very dissimilar to Vincent Van Gogh’s twirling forceful expressions on the canvas brilliantly hued in blues and yellows, yet not esoterically themed to satisfy the cerebral itch of the cognoscenti, but there to shock them with a day to day theme, exuding a vibrant emotion. The cut onion pieces of Vincent bring more tears than a tragic moment expressed in Renaissance reality. 

It isn’t the skill, but the IMPACT, an impact on the BEING, not on an escapist mind seeking greener imaginative pastures to slake a wool gathering fancy! 

That is the FORCE, violence structured to a disciplined command, not a fanciful Jackson Pollock, let loose on a canvas – a piece of art which needs a certain amount of the colourful history of the artist or the history of the event portrayed to sustain itself and be called Art! Vincent’s common life has made more art fans to go looking for the history of those common life situations! That was Force, visible in the tones and the violent brush strokes exuding life out of the inanimate! 

It takes time to appreciate Vincent or Thelonius, as the pattern is not in the surface, but in the underlying COMMAND STRUCTURE!

The aural or visual impact is not different, it reveals itself to a mind, ready to listen or see, with awareness! 

Flow or Force?


Anxious Hope!


A caterpillar saw a beautiful butterfly and wanted to cohabit with her. The butterfly knew that the caterpillar would one day evolve into a dormant pupa before it wo

uld become a butterfly. The doubt of the butterfly was whether the caterpillar would remember his caterpillar days after a long dormancy as a pupa, this was further compounded by the butterfly’s own insecurity as to whether she’d be youthful enough to cheerfully spend her days with the newly evolved he-butterfly! The she butterfly had to decide or show patience with a hope which could turn out to be like a sip on a wine of hoary vintage or shrivel up with despair for having entertained an uncertain hope. The butterfly waited and chose a hopeful future with the caterpillar. Now the pupa is in its shard and the butterfly visits the pupa to see the first cracks to appear on the shard of the pupa! 

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