14 February, 2005 at 01:51 Leave a comment

On a Theory of Love

Note that this is not a theory with equations. That is a work in constant progress. This is more of a rhetorical post. Right, best proceed…

People often ask me of why I am not in love or in a relationship. I do not know why although I am always confused if I should be flattered or embarassed. I get this question probably because I keep questioning of their bf/gf relationships which I do not have a high opinion of. When one cannot answer a question, the obvious thing to do is to pose back a question. It is lame but it works if one can manage to ask a smarter question. It works for me 😉 or, I think it works. Anyway, coming back to why I am not in love. If I am forced to answer back and in the rare occassions that I do, I typically say in Matrixian way – “because I choose to”.
Now, I guess everyone knows that is not at all a true answer. Because no one can choose to be in love or not to be in it. Like everything else, love happens. And it is also not true because I am never NOT in love. It is another matter that it could be that I am not being loved by someone out there but the truth of the matter is that one can take Srikant out of love but never take the love out of Srikant. Enough of this ego-trip and let us get back to the post. Theory of love.

OK, here is my theory. If love is a dish, one of the key ingredients (probably more important than the two people in question themselves) is ‘serendipidity’. A story can only become a love story when one utilizes the opportunity thus provided to maximum effect. Period. History speaks for itself. Every great love story (and any love story because one can fight over the definition of greatness) in literature has a twist of fate and destiny showing its sense of humor.
That is a truism. And no fiction is without a hint of reality. Nor any reality without a trace of fiction! Cannot believe I made that sentence up. Neat. Anyway, what does this theory mean in laypersons terms? Does it have an application or a scenario?

Of course, here’s the deal. If you are attracted to someone and feel like “gosh, she could be the one”, do not make a move. Yes, you heard it right. DO NOT MOVE. Live in denial for a while and do not get diverted too much. There are two reasons. One is that even if you wanted to move, you cant. Time seems to stop. Heart beats faster. Pulse races. You become self-aware (always a bad thing). Do you know why? Because when our love bells ring, we try to become a better person. It is like a steam engine trying to push its pistons too hard to go faster than it is designed to and as per the “pyaar jo haina, insaan ko acchaa bana detha hai” quote.
The second philosophical reason in more in tune with the fate, destiny and serendipidity thing. The reason is that we should give cosmic mysticism to play its tantric cards  i.e.  if she is really the one for you, events happen in a strange sort of way which will utlimately bring her to you and present the opportunity to talk to her. If you are smart, you will use this as a launchpad and at some point, you will both realize at a magical moment that you are in love. As I said, love happens!

You can say this is all crap but think awhile. I am sure such a thing happened to you. It happens to everybody. Did you never see a person somewhere who made you go ‘wow’? And then you had the opportunity to talk to her in some twist in totally unexpected circumstances? For example. You see her in a party. You get a chance to shake hands and that is when it hits you. It feels special. But after that no matter how hard you try, you just cannot get to talk to her. Days pass. You almost forget with emphasis on the almost. It is a typical day. You get into an elevator and there she is. Strange thing is that she is the only person and this is the first time – ever – that an elevator is but with one single person. She smiles and says hello and you say hello back. Then as you are going up/down, you thank your God and stammer –
“did I see you somewhere?”
and then she answers in a giggling tweetishly –
“yeah, in (that) party last week”
Please give no attention as to the specificity of the cited example or that she remembers but try to get the point and acknowledge that such a thing happened to you. You would be lying if you say no. Think harder mate. Good. Now if you are with the person as we speak, good for you. But then, most people (like me) always manage to let this opportunity pass right through them.
Like in the example above, you wait looking at the floor numbers not knowing what to do. Silence. Awkwardness. Just when you are about to ask her name or try to start a conversation, the lift door opens. She says –
“this is my floor, nice to see you again”
and then you reply –
“your floor? boy, you must be rich”
You both laugh and she looks expectingly as if you would jump out of the elevator and keep things going but then you dont. You just give a superman-just-doing-my-job-maam kinda Colgate smile while she looks at you with flushed cheeks in an amusing sort of way while the lift doors close. And all you were doing is getting back to your house – all alone. Agreed there is sweet pain in the joy of a guy who goes home alone but then you realize the folly when you get out of the lift and the doors close. You try to rush back and press the buttons frantically. No avail. The lifts are bound to the topmost or bottommest floor imaginable and sometimes just plain broken (hmmm… Murphy’s Law?). You have to wait more than average and then you rush to three floors with fatalistic optimism that she would be still there. But then, as we all know, she isnt there. You search frantically all around. All doors are either closed or the peek you get into the rooms bear no signs of her. You pinch yourself if it is a dream. Correction, you want to think this is a dream. It isnt.
Again, without going into the specificities, all I can say is that people who let such opportunities past them are quite dumb in the matters of the heart. And the world is full of them. Some are of course, dumber and dumberer than others. Not that they are thick-skinned because it feels like the heart is ripped (not literally) with a red-hot knife and this happens more than a couple of times but still they cannot learn. Of course, it hurts. A lot. Dumb because when you think about it later, it makes you happy because the realization dawns that you have the capacity to love. And that there could be another chance. Perhaps.
Theres more. The best you can do is you write this incident into your diary which is slowly getting bored and/or pour it out to a friend who is obviously too drunk/pre-occupied to empathize with you and even if not, tells a similar story. And then you wait. For the next person and the next wow and the next cosmic opportunity. Life is unfair. Especially to people who could use a bit of luck. Oh well, now that you are aware of this theory, do not let it miss.

Everyone gets an opportunity because destiny is an equal opportunities thingy. If you make serendipidity the cupid, your story becomes a love story. That is the theory anyway. But till then, just satisfy yourself by thinking – “if it did happen, its magic and the world is all colorful and wonderful and if it did not happen, it was perhaps not supposed to happen anyway”. Yeah, yeah…

Addendum: Was waiting at a bus stop and thought that I should probably put a few pennies worth of validtion or a proof. The reason I believe that love has to do with twists is because the ingredient that sustains love is ‘magic’. If one sees a person in a bar or somewhere and immediately hits-it-off (so to speak), it is not love but lust. Evidence is the apalling conversion of University romances into marriages and the rather high divorce rates in the Western world. This is supposed to be a feel-good post. So, let us leave things where they are for now.

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