When was it not ours? I remind myself often that the ‘Moon’ has always been a part of our lives and do that even today when the indefatigable spirit of the Indian Scientist has selflessly embraced the ‘Moon’. Look at the blackened sky; I have looked at it before and this vast expanse of infallible sheet nestles in its womb a high falutin circular impression, gelid to many and to some a gargoyle of semantic pores.
A story goes as such, heard many times but now invoked with an emotion I have seen happening, and makes me stumble with astonishment.
The obscurity of the mind harrumphs at the hag-ridden impulses that straw a pinch every now and then. She feels the intrusion, moans the incessant struggle of the past profligacies; her lover has left. The beleaguered soul cries for him and so she finds solace in the moon. The leitmotif of poignant scuffles and the importunate pummels by a laggard voice searches for answers; the moon has none to give but what is in it that the stoic bereavement pulls the hapless chap to be a part of her tragedy?
How puerile? How can Moon hear her piteous calls? The romanticized affinity she once shared has been driven in the ecstasy of unbridled refutes. She actually sees her bleak reflection in the moon or perhaps the sadness that has lost the courage to undress itself in front of the mirror. She has made ‘Moon’ her confidante till the glory of darkness drowns in the shimmer of the morning hues.
How does the Moon get the better of us and how we all pledge to make it ‘anthropomorphic’, is invasive but irrational?
A figure so eluded by our whims and fancies appears in the astrological charts as ‘native’. It scrimmage with other planets can make us moody or emotionally unstable. Astrologists have made the ‘Moon’ a soloist that the cadence it plays is a cause celebre for the believers. There are these unbelievable stories in ‘Hindu Mythology’ that make a Moon powerful satellite in the Cosmic; the esoteric expounding in ‘Vedas’ identifies ‘Moon’ as a vessel containing the unusual ‘Soma drink’. Not to forget the perfidy of the Earth to come between the Moon and the Sun that is censoriously looked up by the prescriptive—avoid the ‘Lunar Eclipse’ for the possible threat it may impose.
In India these interpretations, an anachronism, are sinuous by a puritanical mindset, demonstrating an indelible control over the revelatory Moon. Maybe I am being too judgmental but it’s the narrative I don’t believe in; the imperturbable existence of the Moon is a reality but the intransigent dominion over it is a rout. The ‘pundits’ may have their own prejudices or the desolate lover finds the forlorn Moon a perceptive crony but actually it’s the sophistry of the human mind to make a far-distant scalar in a propinquity of an irrational living.
Another story fell on me through a personal experience.
I still remember being rebuked during my pregnancy on the day when the mighty ‘Lunar Eclipse’ was about to turn the tide of the day. I should not venture out; it was a clarion call by the elders. Frivolous!! How is the ‘Moon’ bothered if I carry a baby in my womb? Will its darkened spirit harm the evolution process? The flounce on my face said it all; how nonchalantly we have deprived the Moon of its indigenous existence and made it an acrimonious giant ready to ruin our lives.
Today, when ‘Chandrayaan 3’ mission lambents its success to reach the Moon, it finds no lover’s paradise or bedeviling intrusions. The fibrillating maneuver of the ‘Pragyan Rover’ finds on it the presence of Sulphur, Iron, Aluminum, Silicon and Oxygen. Wonderful! And all these centuries, it had been made a scapegoat for nothing. What we have created, in retrospect, is a ‘make believe culture’ around the ‘Moon’.
How can we not talk about the women caparisoned on the festival of ‘Karvachauth’ trying to achieve the chimerical—kindly understand that longevity is only in the hands of the creator and not the ‘benevolent Moon’? I fathom what is there up that deceives us from a distance. What does the ‘furious from the fast’ ornamented woman hears from the moon; maybe “your husband’s long life granted; power to the bludgeoned domesticity.” “Cut the cadence”—I say! How is that possible? We have proof now! Pragyan was alone on the Moon, not even a glimmer of hope in rescuing your husband from the noose of death. It would be better to look upon to ‘God’, even that is questionable to many now so ‘Whats the palaver about the Moon’.
One of the famous verses by the legendary poet, Amir Khusro, goes as:
If I can’t see the moon-faced, I’m glad with her memory
There is no candle better than the moonlight to a Darvish’s house
The poet equates her lover to the Moon; how these poets, due respect to all, get enchanted by the Moon is actually a gnomic. There is hardly anything similar between a woman’s face and the heuristic Moon. Nevertheless, the ‘Moon palimpsest’ has been an impassioned culprit in our lives. What if the woman is not white as the Moon? A Dark-skinned woman would hardly be a poet’s muse! How efficiently Moon has been ours for our own delusions?
On August 23rd, 2023 India finally made a landing on the Moon—enduring and emollient. Now it is ours, I say blatantly, that we have accepted its originality and belonging in its own natural space. The piles of lovers, the felicitation by the poets and the scrutiny of the empty stomach women; kindly have a look at the Moon again, it’s just a satellite orbiting around the Earth.