12 June 2008

The Hundredth Post: To Dona Nobis Pacem

Prometheus has the honor of having participated in the first ever Dona Nobis Pacem instituted by Queen Mimi. And though he didn’t (couldn’t) participate in its first rerun, he is proud to participate even if belatedly in this edition of DNP. And Prometheus dedicates this, his hundredth post, to Dona Nobis Pacem.

If you don’t already know Queen Mimi and her DNP revolution, you might want to crawl back into your nuclear-proof bunker and wait for the radio to tell you if it’s safe to venture out. Oh alright! DNP is Queen Mimi’s royal snub for all the ‘guts and glory’ boys and their wehrmacht.

Prometheus has no solution to end war. But he has a burning desire for peace. If one caveman bonking another on the head with a club can grow into Polaris missiles that can wipe out the earth before you could say ‘Dubya’, then Prometheus hopes that Queen Mimi’s DNP that started off with a few bloggers signing some JPEG image can surely grow into a movement so large that the wehrmacht grinds down to a halt and the warheads will all rust in peace.

India, homeland of Prometheus, and Pakistan the neighbor, have been at veiled war for decades. Prometheus will not discuss politics and warfare here. He leaves you with a song. A Sufi song by Bullay Shah. Yes, Sufism originated in what is modern day Pakistan and Bullay Shah was from Bahawalpur. This beautiful song, called Bandeya (addressing a man or mankind) rendered beautifully by Khawar Jawad and Faiza Mujahid tells the tale of Bullay Shah and his guru, who was of a caste deemed lower by those of Bullay Shah’s community.

The lyrics and translation from Saraiki to English, thanks to assorted webpages spawned since the song appeared in a Pakistani movie:

Bullay Noun Samjhawan Ayaan
Bhenaan Tay Bherjaayaan (Bullay’s sisters and sisters-in-law came to advise him)
Man Lay Bullaya Sada Kaina
Chad Day Pala Araiyaan (“Listen to us and stop associating with that man of the Araain community”)
Aal Nabi Ulad Nabi Noun
Tu Kyoun Leeka Layaan (“Why do you insult our tribe the descendants of the Prophet Mohammed”)
Jera Saanoun Syed Saday
Dozakh Milay Sazaiyaan (Bullay replies: Those that call me a Syed (the tribe of the descendants of the Prophet) will be punished in Hell) (Indicating that he’d rather denounce his tribe than denounce the peer, his guru)

Bandeya ho, Bandeya

Araain Saain Sabi Thaain (People of Araain and Saain clans are everywhere)
Rab Deeyaan Bay Perwaayaan (God doesn’t care (about placing them together in this world))
Soniya Paray Hatayaan tay
Khoojiyaan Nay Gal Layaan (Those that are beautiful (in heart and soul) do not find such differences (in castes), only ugly people do)

Jay Tu Looray Baagh Baharaan
Chakar Ho Ja Araiyaan (If you desire paradise in the afterlife, become a servant of the Araiyan) (Indicating ‘serve the poor and downtrodden, if you seek heaven’)
Bullay Shah De Zaat Ke Puchni
Shakar Ho ya Razayaan (Ask not what caste Bullay Shah comes from)

Bandeya ho, Bandeya

Food for thought?

Happy belated DNP day, Mims.

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08 June 2008

Communism Inc. A study in Irony

Ernesto was a doctor. One day he took off on his motorbike and travelled across South America. The journey gave him his 'Buddha' moment. Like the truth dawned upon Prince Gautam, transforming him into the Buddha, Ernesto's realization that 'government' is a cuss word transformed him into Che. Che Guevara, Guerrillero Heroico. Fidel Castro's main man, Che was killed in a CIA sponsored attack in 1967, much before this latest incarnation of Prometheus.

Some say he was a tyrant and some call him the Butcher of La Cabana. Some like Jean Paul Sartre called him 'not only an intellectual, but the most complete man of our age'. Nelson Mandela called him a champion of freedom. Che was a voracious reader, reading the works of greats as diverse as Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels, H.G. Wells, Jawaharlal Nehru, Jean Paul Sartre, Franz Kafka, Nietzsche, Aristotle, Budhha, Jack London, Freud, Kipling and Keats. Che lived for the Revolucion. So much that when he was about to be executed and asked whether he was thinking about his immortality, he replied that he was thinking of the immortality of the revolution and that his executioner would but kill a man, not his thought.

What is Prometheus' connection with Che? Prometheus is even less communist than Dubya. So what gives?

Prometheus saw a cool dude on the street today. Dude (pronounced d-oo-d) was armed with an iPhone, an iPod, Oakly eyewear, RBK shoes, the US flag in a bandana form. And Che on his tee shirt. That most famous photograph of Che, taken by Alberto Korda and titled Guerrillero Heroico. That star on the beret, that intense look, the intelligence in the eyes, that resolve on the face.

And Prometheus was again reminded of the greatest monument to Irony. The man who called capitalism 'a contest among wolves', being used by capitalists to shift everything 'from t-shirts to coffee mugs and even bikinis'.

Prometheus' brush with governments has not made him militant. But the left-leaning ideology of India and its failures does make him tend to veer away from socialism. In one of his travels across India, Prometheus met a semi-militant revivalist. Though Prometheus disagreed with some this man's ideas, he remembers something that was till then never so succinctly stated. "The Bureaucracy was installed by the Colonial rulers to serve their interest and to oppress the natives. The Hand that Rules has changed from White to Brown, but the Machine was made for the purpose of oppression and oppress it still does. Changing the hand cannot change the function of the machine." The other monument to Irony. The Socialist, Secular Republic of the people, by the people and for the people.


05 May 2008

Fresh Manic Monday

Prometheus has done Wordless Wednesday in the past. He has been wanting to do Morgen's Manic Monday. On the subject of memes, Prometheus is tired of stale ones like "What pizza are you?". Though Prometheus would rather appreciate being termed delectable, he is no pizza. In his search for fresh memes. He came across some rather strange ones like "How many 5 year olds could you take on in a fight?" Grossed out at the thought, he searched further till he found this one. "How many countries can you name in 5 minutes?" Now this one, thought Prometheus, is something that would require synaptic activity. And one that brings back old memories of competitive exams.


So this here is a double meme. All ye who enter here are double tagged. With Manic Monday and Naming Countries. And do tell Prometheus how you fared.

25 March 2008

Prometheus - Rockstar

Prometheus stole (yeah, us divine fire thieves have withdrawal symptoms too) this meme from Lizza who was tagged by Her Royal Highness Mimi, Queen of Memes (whose attention it skipped to tag Prometheus, Knight Blogger in Absentia).

Wayll, this meme here goes like this:
"You are about to have your own band's CD cover. Follow these directions to the letter. My tagee list is at the bottom of this post. It's fun and requires no thought at all. Go to......

1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Random
The first article title on the page is the name of your band.

2. http://www.quotationspage.com/random.php3
The last four words of the very last quote is the title of your album.

3. http://www.flickr.com/explore/interesting/7days/
The third picture, no matter what it is, will be your album cover.

4. Use your graphics program of choice to throw them together, and post the result as a comment in this post."

So Prometheus, dried up of his wit and original writing, hath resorted to a meme and knows his devout following comprising of about two and a half readers are dying to see the results. So here goes, the jacket of the multi platinum album "The Destinies of Stars" by death metal band Counterion wherein Prometheus plays lead vocals and lead guitars.

Prometheus thinks Counterion (the ion that accompanies an ionic species in order to maintain electric neutrality) is a nice name for a death metal band from an engineering college. The album name "the destinies of stars" comes from the quote "It may be that the old astrologers had the truth exactly reversed, when they believed that the stars controlled the destinies of men. The time may come when men control the destinies of stars" by the most revered Arthur C. Clarke who passed away into the great beyond recently (but the entire quote and Arthur is a matter for another post altogether).


20 March 2008

From Prometheus To The Moving (Middle) Finger

No. This blog ain't dead yet. Begad it won't be dead anytime soon.

Is there anybody else in here, who feels the way Prometheus does...

Hello.. Hello.. Hello...
Is there anybody in there?
Just nod if you can hear me.
Is there anyone at home?

Come on, come on, now.
I hear you're feeling down.
Well, I can ease your pain,
Get you on your feet again.

Relax.. Relax.. Relax...
I need some information first.
Just the basic facts:
Can you show me where it hurts?

There is no pain, you are receding.
The distant ships smoke on the horizon.
You are only coming through in waves.
Your lips move but I can't hear what you're saying.
When I was a child I had a fever.
My hands felt just like two balloons.
Now I've got that feeling once again.
I can't explain, you would not understand.
This is not how I am.
I have become comfortably numb.

Ok.. Ok.. Ok...
Just a little pinprick. [ping]
There'll be no more --aaaaaahhhhh!
But you may feel a little sick.

Can you stand up?
I do believe its working. Good.
That'll keep you going through the show.
Come on its time to go.

There is no pain, you are receding.
The distant ships smoke on the horizon.
You are only coming through in waves.
Your lips move but I can't hear what you're saying.
When I was a child I caught a fleeting glimpse,
Out of the corner of my eye.
I turned to look but it was gone.
I cannot put my finger on it now.
The child is grown, the dream is gone.
I have become comfortably numb.