We all end up at the same place in the end, at the crematorium. There is no escaping this final truth and we all try to evade, avoid and prolong the final frontier. It’s a common practice and we all do that, it is natural. Last week, I attended the funeral ceremony of a prominent citizen of the city. It doesn’t matter who he was but the fact the entire city came to pay their respects was commendable. What I found really sad and depressing was the behaviour of women in general. They were more concerned about how they looked, it was all about the hair and the nude makeup and the eyebrows done to perfection, fleek as they say, nowadays. It was more about the cream /white / off white suit and the champagne colour suit they wore to show their solidarity and their remorse over his passing away. The makeup melted under the heat and literally one lady’s eyebrow was melting in jagged lines reminiscent of Harry Potter!
However, it was all about the makeup, the subtle power play with the glint of diamonds and the whispered tones. No one bothered to be quiet to let the prayers be said, the Antim ardaas that is said. As the crowds swelled and more and more people joined in, the whisper became a hum and in the end, it became a loud voice. The priest had to raise his hand to quieten them as if they were school children! And, then the bigwigs came the lord almighty politicians, who had a retinue of their security who pushed and made way for Sahib Ji to pay his respects. It was as if he timed his entry to spend the least time in the heat.
I was getting more and more disturbed, its the least one can do, to pay one’s respect to the departed soul. I also found that people don’t cover their heads anymore, I must be the old fashioned kind. It actually disturbed the hairstyle. It was a sultry, hot and humid day and as the pyre was going to be lit, one guy wished another belated happy birthday.
You might say, what was I doing bothered about all of this drama. It just struck me how we have made a mockery of all emotions, how everything is all about looking good and being so caught up in oneself and the outer projection. The ladies wore their finest funeral wala suit, with all the power dressing done in the crispest cotton and the diamonds.
What have we been reduced to? It’s about the makeup done right as if its an armour to face the inevitable and somewhat avoid one’s time. People have changed, our ways as a society have remarkably taken a turn to be insensitive and showing no emotes. It all boils down to a formality and just a courtesy. It’s as if there are a register and one marks attendance in the social roster.
Why is that humans think that all this is not going to happen to him, and his time is different? We all are under a false illusion that it will be different for us but we all end up there and no one weeps a tear.