Posted by: gdevi | December 26, 2014

Day 9

I got a lot of wonderful books on ancient India today both from Current Books and Desabhimani Book House. I was actually quite surprised by Desabhimani Book House–it was the Marxist book house when we were growing up. I stopped there just to check and see if they by chance had Romila Thapar’s History of Early India from origins to 1300 AD. I misplaced my copy somewhere and it is grossly expensive to buy in the states. Anyway, I stopped at Desabhimani to see if they had Thapar’s book. They did. But then they also had all these other “capitalist” books — they had all kinds of books. They had books about religion. They had books about America. They had mythology and spirituality. They had all kinds of books. It was unbelievable. It was sort of like China; I don’t think there is a more capitalist nation in the world these days than communist China. Amazing. Anyway, I bought all kinds of great great books–I got Majumdar’s book on Ancient India. A very productive day.

It is not a great translation, but I picked up a translation of Rumi’s Robais at Desabhimani. Here is one that I particularly liked:

this isn’t spring

this is another season altogether

the spark in every eye

comes with its unique flavor of union

every branch is moving

but each one stirs for a different reason

moved by a different wind

I really like the concluding tercet:

every branch is moving

but each one stirs for a different reason

moved by a different wind

The poem juxtaposes a totality, a whole against “parts,” for lack of a better term. “Spring” (whole) against “every branch” and “different wind.” It is the fractal view of nature. It is less convenient and less conventional than “spring doing something to the trees” etc. But it is really beautiful. Things that are seemingly part of a whole –tree or branches or spring, whatever–seen as entities that contain unique nodes of development, unique histories etc. That is very beautiful. It is at the root of symmetry and harmony from a fractal perspective. Very beautiful.

I never watch television, if I can help it. But I have been watching television here. Fifty seven channels and nothing on. For instance, there were seven shows this evening, one after the other. As far as I can tell, they are all about mothers-in-laws–good ones and evil ones. It is unbelievable. This great state is obsessed with mothers-in-laws. The wives and the mothers are all the same age. The mother looks the same age as the wife. Or vice versa. It is hard to tell just by looking at a man with two women who the wife is and who the mother is. It is all unbelievable. Who is writing these stories? And why? Is anyone watching this crap?

I am glad you loved all of your gifts, honey. Send me more pictures. I miss you. Love and kisses mama.




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