I once had an About-me page on this blog. It spanned over 10 points about my likes and dislikes and I tried to explain what kind of a person I am and I hoped it sounded “cool”. I still remember what drove me to write that — it was another About-me page that I had read on a blog and I thought that it was totally awesome. That page had two sections, a shorter introduction and a longer introduction and I loved how that blogger described himself. This was about five or six years ago. But after a couple of years, I took down that page because I thought I sounded a bit narcissistic and egotistic. I still love reading About-me pages and those little Twitter statuses. I wish I was someone and I could describe myself perfectly like so many others. Now this leads me to the question, “Who am I?”
A question that I have been asking myself eternally. I was thinking about this just yesterday and my impish mind immediately gave an answer — “He who cannot be described!” You know, like You-know-who. Pretty cool, right? Except, I am still unsatisfied with this answer, and yes, there is a bit of egotism even in this. At least even if I had some talents, I could label myself as a “pianist” or a “Kung-Fu master” or a “programmer” or a “writer”. I wish I had all these talents, but I don’t. I am a talent-less lump of a being. But, but, what is the need to label oneself? I don’t know, it just feels good to know who we are. It feels good to have a purpose or a role to play in life. I hate groping around in the dark and I wish I could categorise myself under some banner that I could proudly stand under.
But this doesn’t mean that people should be labeled like commodities and treated and judged as such. I have come across such people who refer to others as “Cancerians” (is that even a word?) or “Leos” or “Liberals” and the list goes on and on. I get irritated when people do this, and some people ask to be referred this way which is even more pathetic. “Liberal” reads a Twitter status. This is just pure madness.
I am neither a conservative, nor a liberal. I don’t have rigid views as I understand that each situation is different and so our rigid views cannot be a solution to all situations. One size does not fit all. What this world requires is common sense. I understand that I need to be a capitalist in one situation, and a communist in another. I will be a liberal in one situation and a conservative in another.
Please do not confuse this with adapting to different situations; I am not talking about adaptability. I am talking about having common sense.
All of this is delusion, all of this is pure madness, and the problem with labeling oneself is that it adds to this delusion. How much more deluded do you want to be? This is literally inviting delusion inside of us. Even atheists sound so religious in their belief of non-existence of God.
Hold on a second, hold on a second, let me think about myself before I continue with this rant. What are the labels have I given myself or I have acquired naturally through my birth? I am an Indian, a proud Tamil, and……. can’t really think of anything else…my mind just prompted me to add Raja Yogi and Kriya Yogi, but I think that would be an insult to all the great Yogis who lived before me and are living right now. Let’s dissect this for a moment — Indian and Tamil.
I have a sense of loyalty to this country that I live in and I take pride in being a Tamil. Is there anything wrong in this?It would be wrong if I think people from other countries/states or people from other races or people who speak different languages are inferior to me. I don’t think that. Some people may say that a country is an artificial man-made entity and so there is no point in being patriotic. I completely disagree to this as it is this man-made entity that protects us from the barbarians out there. If you live in one of those villages that is located near the India-Pakistan border and if you rely on the Indian military for your protection, I am 100% sure that you would be more patriotic, but since you are able to sit in your comfy chair, inside your cozy home, you make such mindless comments. All your reasoning, and all your philosophies and principles and labels will only work with people like me. Why don’t you go to Libya and proudly unfurl your banner and appeal to the poor misguided ISIS souls with all your individualistic charm? I am sure it will work out and the world will be a better place for all of us. Please do us this favour. The world counts on you. And don’t forget that selfie.
So, is it wrong to call oneself a pianist if one is good at the piano? Not at all. All I am saying is, just don’t go too overboard with it. Don’t become one with the piano and think that guitarists are part of the problem. Do not constrain yourself under any category. Don’t be this or don’t be that. Human beings are more than just labels.
A special note to people who label themselves as vegans, atheists, and nihilists:
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Don’t be a condescending prick.
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