Dil Dhoondhta Hai

I’ve been very restless lately. I’ve wanted to read the Gita for the longest time (even though I have a theory about the timing of it, but then that’s for later), BUT then there is also Tolstoy, Pratchett, Ludlum, Ken Robinson, Nietzsche, Bukowski, Kahneman, Ayn Rand, Bono, Milan Kundera (and more) on my bedside.

Hold on.

There’s Sahir, Manto, Amrita Pritam, Swanand Kirkire, Faiz, Premchand, Kaifi, Manav Kaul & Rumi too.

I mostly end up frantically reading a little bit of everything almost every day.

That’s a terrible idea, by the way.

Honestly, I think I’m mostly gripped by the fear of not doing great things. I’m a millenial (there’s SERIOUS pressure), and I’ve been blessed with a good life. I’ve had oddly cool parents, my education has been pretty sorted, I’ve exposed myself to art & spreadsheets and grown to like both, and I’m mostly a good human being.

But then what’s my reason for existence? What’s the great thing I’m destined to do after all this?

Maybe there isn’t one. Maybe I’ll see it only on my deathbed. Maybe I’ll find one tomorrow. Or maybe it’s all shaping up as I write this blog and on a certain day, at a certain time, I would discover it.

A friend once gave me a beloved book of his as I was about to start my first job, and in it, he wrote this:

“Dare mighty things. Never because you must, but because you can.”

Every time I remember this, I calm down. I listen to some Coke studio, or flip through those writers’ books or watch a documentary on Netflix. I speak to a friend in distress or I clean up my room or binge on TED talks and Brainpickings.

And then.

My eyes fall upon those unread books that I’ve hastily bought (that’ll last me a lifetime), and I begin to wonder.. “What was their greatest thing?

And so it begins. All over again.

Frankly, I don’t think I understand the meaning of fursat. Fursat literally translates to freedom or leisure.

I  think that my struggle is to define: ‘freedom.. from?’ or ‘leisure.. in?’ and create. (That’s just me)

Leisure literally means “opportunity afforded by free time to do something”

Whereas, freedom literally means “the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants.”

My fundamental panic system kicks in because I find both these words burdensome. (Aren’t they?)

In Nandita Das’ film, Manto, Nawazuddin Siddiqui says a very unsettling dialogue:

“जब गुलाम थे तो आजादी का ख्वाब देखते थे, और अब आज़ाद हैं तो कौन-सा ख्वाब देखें?”

(When we were enslaved, we dreamt of freedom, but now that we’re free, what more do we dream of?)

Yes, there are a lot of things to do. A lot of problems to fix. A lot of good that the world needs.

Yet.

Sometimes I feel guilty of not wanting to do ‘great’ things.

I want to do the simplest ones.

I want to sit under a tree and write.

I want to cook amazing food.

I want to travel around and learn languages.

I want to cry in art museums.

I want to study physics because I’m generally curious these days in laws of the world that weren’t man-made.

I want to be free.

This song hints at what freedom looks like. What leisure is used for. How simply great simplicity can be.

But I’m conflicted. Between the great things, and the little ones, life’s going to slip away, isn’t it?

This version is a slow one, sung by Bhupindar Singh.
Gulzar Saab
ka likha. Always, and forever mesmerising.

gulzar (1)

It’s funny how every great problem finally comes down to love.

Love, after all. It all begins & ends with. My conflicts and resolutions too.

PS. Keshav! Remembering one of our first letters! You’d mentioned this song 🙂 Here it is.

 

 

Dil Dhoondhta Hai

 

Dil dhoondhta hai 
Phir wahi fursat ke raat din

My heart wanders away
Wishing for those days filled with spare moments

 

Dil dhoondhta hai 
Phir wahi fursat ke raat din
Baither rahein
Tassavur-e-jaana kiye hue

My heart still searches on
Those days of plain freedom
I wish I could just sit here
Sitting. Watching. Watching.. you.

 

Jaadon ki
Narm dhoop aur
Aangan mein letkar

Jaadon ki
Narm dhoop aur
Aangan mein letkar
Aankhon pe
Kheenchkar tere
Aanchal ke saaye ko
Aundhe pade rahein
Kabhi karvat liye hue

Borrowing some
Of the sunshine in winters
Lying here, in the courtyard of my house
On my back
Or slightly turned on my side

 

Dil dhoondhta hai 
Phir wahi fursat ke raat din

My heart yearns for it
Still
Those days of peace and calm.

 

Ya garmiyon 
Ki raat jo
Purvaaiyaan chalein

Ya garmiyon 
Ki raat jo
Purvaaiyaan chalein
Thandi safed chaadaron pe
Jaagein der tak
Taaron ko
Dekhte rahein
Chhat par pade hue

Or even those summer nights
When the hot winds from the East would blow

I want to lie with a cool, white sheet
Up all night
Staring at the stars
Lying there on the terrace

 

Dil dhoondhta hai 
Phir wahi fursat ke raat din

I wish.

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Barfeeli sardiyon mein
Kisi bhi pahaad par

Barfeeli sardiyon mein
Kisi bhi pahaad par
Vaadi mein goonjti hui
Khaasmoshiyaan sunein
Aankhon mein bheege bheege se
Lamhe liye hue

In icy cold winters
On any hilltop we could go to

We could hear
The silences
Echoing right back at us from the valleys
And we’d find our eyes
Moist
With feelings

 

Dil dhoondhta hai 
Phir wahi fursat ke raat din

Dil dhoondhta hai 
Phir wahi fursat ke raat din
Baither rahein
Tassavur-e-jaana kiye hue

My heart still searches on
For those days of happiness

Where I could just sit
Sit, and watch you
And that’s all I do.

 

In Devnagri:

दिल ढूँढता है
फिर वही फ़ुरसत के रात दिन
बैठे रहें तसव्वुरजानाँ किये हुए

दिल ढूँढता है फिर वही
फ़ुरसत के रात दिन

जाड़ों की
नर्म धूप और
आँगन में लेट कर
आँखों पे
खींचकर तेरे
आँचल के साए को
औंधे पड़े रहें
कभी करवट लिये हुए

दिल ढूँढता है
फिर वही फ़ुरसत के रात दिन

या गरमियों की
रात जो पुरवाईयाँ चलें
ठंडी सफ़ेद चादरों पे
जागें देर तक
तारों को देखते रहें
छत पर पड़े हुए

दिल ढूँढता है
फिर वही फ़ुरसत के रात दिन

बर्फ़ीली सर्दियों में
किसी भी पहाड़ पर
वादी में गूँजती हुई
खामोशियाँ सुनें
आँखों में भीगे-भीगे से
लम्हे लिये हुए

दिल ढूँढता है
फिर वही फ़ुरसत के रात दिन

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One thought on “Dil Dhoondhta Hai

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  1. Somehow these lines started playing in my mind as I read post -“Pehle fursat thi ab hasrat hai samakal, ik aisi uljhan hai meri…” – Lucky Ali.

    Like

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