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Tuesday, June 10, 2014


ABC Wednesday

We are lucky, friends, to have inherited fully developed languages. All languages have words that convey the subtleties and routines of our lives so fondly and precisely that reading structured words in myriad contexts touch our sensibilities instantly. The unique expression of the height of joy, the solemnity of sorrow and the pain of tragedy makes us relate to the gravity of the specific emotions.

Words are priceless gems in the firmament of communication. They are living entities and keep expanding their existing semantic boundaries. New words are coined and assimilated. Some popular ones from other languages are borrowed to keep pace with the need to articulate about the ever-progressing universe.

Here is the tale of two words which are partially homonyms but denote entirely different semantic fields.

The word vegetate sends shivers down my spine as it often refers to the luckless ones- victims of tragic events passing into a medical coma. They merely breathe. Time spins around them without their noticing anything. For them time actually stops from the moment of some terrible happening. They are just like a clod of clay.  They present a sight, tragic and pathetic beyond words.

There is  less severe perspective to vegetate also.

There are those who have everything going for them but they prefer to be passive and indifferent.

Some parents are too busy to supervise and guide their children about things, which matter.  Children gorge on large portions of the  processed or junk foods. They switch on the TV and sprawl on the sofa with an iPad or smartphone, play all sorts of addictive games, while managing to watch the TV as well. Here the 'id' (ref.Freud) plays the pleasure principle. Such couch potatoes invite obesity and consequent image problems. This syndrome is fast catching up in India too.

There is the nouveau riche class in India who bid adios to their reasoning and harbor twisted notions about status. Their wives watch soap operas lounging on sofas, while a couple of domestic helps do chores and even prepare food. Household tasks are beneath their status and frowned upon.  No wonder, the seams of their tops come apart frequently. On doctor’s advice, they try to sweat it out in gyms or parks. Their husbands hire village urchins to wash their cars every morning and flood the roads.

Their euphoric state makes them indifferent to political and social tidings.

Old parents living with their children become so much engrossed in their wards lives for whatever reason, that they sacrifice their own interests. Mental vacuum due to the absence of any hobby of their own turns them into lazy blobs. Their passive life results in poor health and overall degeneration of their faculties.

The word vegetate connotes negative elements existing in our social fabric.

 On the other hand, the word vegetation transports me to a joyful mental state. It conjures up beautiful images of dense forests, home to ambling animals, exotic bird species, orchestra of insect sounds, botanical marvels and indefinable mysteries.

Picture the sprawling gardens with stately trees, flowering bushes, mesmerizing variety of roses and manicured beds of seasonal flowers.  The small herbal kitchen gardens cared like gems by the dedicated few, enrich the ambiance. Surely, these are the images of which dreams are made of!

Mother Nature sustained and secured the first inhabitants of earth with its fruit and sheltered it from inhospitable conditions and dangers lurking at every step of   their  living.

If there is a lesson in hope and resurgence, it lies in nature‘s endowment of cyclic presentation. It has variety and dynamism as its permanent avatars.

Winter ushers in snows, shivers, family reunions, good food and gala festivals. Spring is kingly with its glisten and gleam of rebirth of plant life. Summer hosts us with cool drinks, exotic ice creams, lemon sherbets, juicy watermelons and honey sweet mangoes.  Autumn glorifies the atmosphere with shed leaves of golden hues. The miracles of nature are mind boggling.

Vegetation in some form or the other is the principal actor in all seasons!

Friends,your views are awaited.

1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed the intellectual exercise leading to my take on two 'V' words!