Remembrances

The flu has me. For some reason, it tends to keeps jalsa at bay. Thus the strange diversions into deathly matters.

My grandmother (yes, the curious one) has this macabre daily habit of reading the Hindu obituaries column. She scans the list for familiar names and implores my dad to call the bereaved family even if they happen to be relatives as distant as the Andromeda galaxy. Not one to miss social graces even at the age of 90.

I took a look at today’s column and made a list of the phrases Chennai uses to describe death.

died 

passed away

expired

attained Sivaloka Praapthi

attained Vaikunta Praapthi

reached heavenly abode

attained the Lotus feet of Sri <insert name>

attained Acharyan Thiruvadi

slept in Jesus

It’s all about telling stories. We mythologize our births, our lives and our deaths. Our language reflects our story-telling heritage. We don’t just die. We simply move on to another, even more exciting adventure. In the world of imagination, Death is dead.

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