Isn’t it what we have turned our lives into? A fool’s paradise. As long as we are children we stay blessed with innocence. But, the moment innocence starts draining out as we grow up, foolishness starts taking its place. Yet we stay unfazed basking in our own foolishness, thinking there is none that stands in front of us. Funny thing is the other is also thinking the same thing. He is equally good (read fool). The stupidity to think ‘we know’ anything and everything. The folly to think we are so intelligent that we have an opinion about everything. And we don’t stop here. We open our mouths to eagerly opine about what’s being discussed, which clearly shows foolishness written in caps and bold. But, what’s there to lose and why feel scandalous about it because whom are we addressing? A fool or a band of them like us. So it occurred to me that perhaps today, April Fool’s Day, is the best day to share my acknowledgement of this foolishness which has stayed with me like my shadow with all of you.

 

While we are kids we believe in fairy tales, miracles and legends. Our innocence has such strong hold on us that the whole world seems beautiful. The tendencies of the mind though present don’t seem to bother us because we are so simple. We tend to forget easily and before we know we are already with our guileless self once again. How easy as pie is to let go. Literally a child’s play. We just live life carefree and full throttle. As age catches up with us we gain logic, the first brick in the castle of foolishness that is in the offing and shall be up in almost no time. Say anything sans logic and up will come the response that you shouldn’t be talking like a child. “Hell, what’s wrong with the child?”, says a soft voice inside us as the newfound logic has not gripped us that strong yet. But, we ignore the voice and try befriending rationality. Why? Well, because everyone else is doing pretty much the same thing. So merrily (apparently) we join the rat race. ‘Mirror mirror on the wall, who is the most logical of all’. Our own reflection beaming at us makes us smug. That’s it! The child inside us bids us a silent adieu and hides with that soft voice which stood up for him. That is how ignorance takes over innocence. The simple starts getting complicated.

 

There is another thing with logic. It seems to grow in geometric progression. This rampant growth provides an ideal breeding ground to the tendencies of the mind. And the tendencies desire, lust, anger, greed, attachment, ego, envy, fear, jealousy, shame snowball like a virus. Logic seems to like these tendencies. So they work hand in gloves to fatten the fool in us. The grip thickens and the ignorance continues to swell as well. And all these conspirators get another one coming to their help. ‘BUT’.  “I could have controlled my anger but……, I could have restrained myself but………, I could have appreciated but………, I could have helped there but……..”. This BUT ultimately makes one BUTT OF A RIDICULE. Since it is a fool’s world everyone seems to find sense in these buts. A fool sympathizes with another for all the wrong reasons. Grime keeps heaping on us and we ignorant fools keep considering this as reality. A fool’s paradise which can’t get any better because we are, each one of us, the best.

 

Then, sometimes something happens. Someone comes and jolts us the hell out of this fooldom. He shows us the clear picture. He shakes the walls of the castle of foolishness that we had built. He leads us once again from ignorance to innocence, from darkness to light. He shows us the real grotesque face of this fool. It is then that we realize the hollowness of the life that we had been leading. We shudder but He gives us hope and tells us it is doable. He lays the path to freedom. Are we ready to walk? Once again like a toddler. Does that happen to everyone? Well, let’s say it happens with grace. This April Fool’s Day let us all have the courage to accept our foolishness and laugh at it in acceptance. For acceptance is the first step on the path to freedom.

PS: Please ignore the ‘buts’ I used. The fool that I am knows not much.

 

 

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Mallika Pandey

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