A few days ago, a 17 year student at CNA – a English language school in Campinas, asked me if I have ever been afraid of being rejected. There is a strong tendency in us to associate with things we know. Fear prevents us in exploring the unknown. Fear impedes exploration. There must be freedom from fear.
I spoke with a person who is very religious and all the time I was afraid of being rejected because of who I am. Does the religion she believes in, support who I am ? I was moved when she said that God loves every one. It is a remarkable thing to say and it could only come out of deep intelligence. Organised religion is clique forming and by very nature divisive. But I ask myself, ‘Is having any form of belief religion as well ?
I spoke about the way women in India are treated, including the women in my family. Indian women have immense patience in them. From the time they are born, they are seen as burden, to be married off at a suitable age, lest parents feel their responsibility is not over. Families start saving for over 20 years so that they can pay dowry to the girl. Why do we trade women like this ? But a son in a family is held on a pedestal. He is treated like a prince.
I have been in Brazil for just over a month and I feel very much at home. Although I am touched by the generosity of people, I am constantly reminded by people that I have to be careful in Campinas. I am sad to hear this. I see beautiful bungalows just outside Unicamp but the electrified fence which surrounds the house are all over 2 metres high. Is this freedom ? What difference do we have compared to a prisoner in a cell with no windows ? Some of the Kitchenettes that I have seen are crammed and have less privacy and space. Space and Nature are very essential.
I see men and women sweating out in the gyms next to my building. Everyday the same routine. The same exercises. I wonder what makes one (and me) to follow a routine ? Is it out of habit ? Are we afraid of being alone with our thoughts ? It is terrifying but also deeply energising. I live alone here and some times when I come home, without a TV to watch or with no internet to distract myself, I seek refuge in my thoughts. It is good to go inwardly, in our minds. After all, we know ourselves only when we are awake. A good chunk of the day, for a good sleeper like me, for around 8 hours, we have no idea what we do with our thoughts. Then I wonder what life would be when there is an app that records all neural activities of the brain.