Jul 26, 2010

Tribute: Murli

So Warnie boy thinks no one will be able to beat Murli's record in test cricket. As much as i like Warne or admire Murli, there is something depressing about this statement. When you cap the range of human accomplishments, you are limiting freedom, you're limiting aspiration and all that makes us truly great. Anyway, only time will tell.

While statistics are important and a vital way of proving ones supremacy, they never tell the entire story why guys like Murli, Ganguly, Sampras and yes, even Sachin, stand out. HT did a feature on the number of times Murli was attacked by prominent fellow cricketers, columnists and even ex-stars of the game. From Nasser Hussain to Bishan Singh Bedi to Steve Waugh - they all called him names, ridiculed his 'throw' and all but wrote him off. Even when he was declared innocent of ball throwing charges in an independent inquiry, then Australian PM John Howard declared that Murli had been proven guilty of foul bowling tactics! How does one emerge from such mess and go on to record such feats? What about self doubt? What about the burden of being publicly shamed? Is this simply the magic of indomitable will or something deeper - a spiritual awareness, a deep seated knowledge that one must simply keep doing what one was sent on earth for? I dunno.

There's a wonderful scene in 'Dead Poet's Society'  - that wonderful film about  John Keating, an English teacher at a uptight Brit boys boarding school who encourages the hitherto over-disciplined boys to think for themselves, seize the day and try all the things they ever wanted to, before they finally find their place in the world. There’s a scene in which Keating leads the boys out into the school courtyard and orders them to start walking about. As the boys shuffle out, you can see some of them are unsure, some skeptical, some plain bored. Their strides unmatched, they walk around the school yard and then gradually fall into rhythm and start marching together. Keating asks them to stop. He explains how when they’d first started out, they were all trying to walk about in their own way but the power of conformity is so overwhelming that it seduces us of any iota of individualism and we fall into stride with others. He says, “Now we all have a great need for acceptance, but you must trust that your beliefs are unique, your own, even though others may think them odd or unpopular, even though the herd may go.” 

We spend so much time teaching numbers and letters and days of the week to our children. Hell, we even teach them about BT Brinjal and Swine Flu these days. But what of this? Am i able to make her understand that there is a world within her that is precious, private and no less worthy of consideration for being ordinary? 

Self doubt is a luxury for the assured, for some it is a curse you live with every minute. Second guessing and pushing to better what was left undone. Sometimes words help:

"You are my angel,
Come from way above,
To bring me love.

Her eyes, she's on the dark side,
Every man in sight.

To love u, love u, love u"

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