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Psalm 23

Psalm 23 is easy to recite and a marvelous poem. One of the psalms written by King David. Being David’s favorite psalm, which portrays God’s holy, divine and unfailing love. This psalm can be read during times of joy, sadness, loneliness or hopelessness. After meditating on each six verses of the psalm, you shall seek comfort and peace.

Psalm 23 speaks about the Lord Jesus (vv.1-3) and to the Lord Jesus (vv. 4-6). We (sheep; see also Jn 10: 1-5) identifies Him as  my shepherd (vv. 1; see also Jn 10:14), thus indicating a close relationship with Him. And in this relationship of shepherd and sheep, we lack nothing, for example, the green pastures of kingdom life (v. 2; see also Jn 10:10) ;the still waters of baptism (v.2; see also Jn 3:5) and the conversion of the soul to the paths of righteousness (v.3; see also Jn10: 3,4 -7). In speaking to the Lord, we are grateful to Him

(1) for deliverance from the fear of death (v.4; see also Heb 2 :14,15)

(2) for the Eucharist (v.5; see also Lk 22:14-20)

(3) for a lifetime of mercy (v.6; see also Lk 1:50,54).

Christ, our shepherd.

Psalm 23 helps us to understand mercy and kindness of Lord Jesus. King David was not only a poet, but also was a prophet who prophesied about Christ in his psalms. David who , with profound love, claims God as “my shepherd”. Showing a sweet and caring nature of our God, we need to fear nothing. We will be taken good care by our Lord.

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Testaments promises us salvation and new testament fulfills old testament by the coming of foretold Messiah. Above references is a proof that all things are carefully and majestically orchestrated by our Lord through judges, kings, queens, prophets and prophetesses. Jesus came down from heaven, became man, sacrificed Himself, died on the cross, rose again from dead, ascended into heaven, is with Father Jehovah and shall come again to take us to a new heaven. Christ redeemed us from our sins. God, the father, sacrificed His only son for mankind. His love is the greatest gift to us all.

For God says my sheep knows my voice, they would follow me. We all are his sheep, aren’t we? All we need to seek Him and He will answer. For He has the power and authority which no one has. For it’s written in the bible, a good shepherd for his own sheep would fight wild animals to protect his flocks. “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.” (John 10:11) Though a hired servant would prefer to run away for his life leaving the flocks to wild animals. Christ for us fought Satan. It’s not hard to be His sheep, repent for your sins, love and honor God. Start talking to God, through prayers and hymns, you will be surely answered. God loves us all, you, me and everyone. Love God and you shall seek peace.

I am from Indian Malankara Orthodox Syrian church, one of the sisters of oriental orthodox church. I believe God Jesus is my eternal Father and He wants us to be with Him by believing in Him, by calling out to Him. Satan tempts us with earthly pleasure to separate us from our heavenly Father. It’s not the length of prayer or your offerings God needs, but a good heart. You know why psalm 23 uses shepherd because king David was a young and good shepherd of his father Jesse’s sheep. This psalm is very personal to king David. Notice the striking similarity, how Lord Jesus is a good shepherd of Father Jehovah’s sheep and we are His beloved sheep.

Interesting science fact, the sheep are usually very quiet and gentle, holding themselves aloof from the world. In a herd, all the sheep tend to listen to their leaders and show esteem to them. Because of the obedient character, sheep are among the most popular animals beloved by mankind.

Today, everyone thirsts for affection but ironically we sometimes take someone for granted knowing deep down in our hearts that they are always there for us. Someone who cares for you like parents, siblings, teachers or spouses, anyone. Although, human love is imperfect, complex and can be conditional. Knowingly or unknowingly human emotions can corrupt or change with regards to worldly influences. Christ’s love is simple, divine and pure. Christ loves us unconditionally, we are not perfect but seek near perfection to praise perfect God. For Christ highlights two important commandments, love your God with all your heart, mind and soul. Second, love your neighbors as yourself (Good Samaritan parable was told for explaining who ought to be our neighbor and the moral of the story was that every human, despite the differences, is our neighbor who requires our love. ) Love and kindness heals any ailment, mentally or physically. Love God, believe in Him and be good to others. Hope nothing in return, for expectations not met causes immense pain. I do hope that this was helpful. I want to conclude by quoting, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” (v. Mt 7:7)


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My Song (A Poem)

I sing my song,

passionately all along.

I allure to appease;

not to please.

Burn me blue,

is my ado.

~ J George Thomas (aka Aebin R Thomas)


Rubik’s Cube (A Poem)

Sweet Sara is surrealistically witty.

Enthralled by Ernő’s cube.

A riddle with raw abstrusity.

Siphoning her soul to the cube.

An enigma that meets the eye;

the toy of trickery and lies.

Sara’s sight set upon its simplicity,

confronted and read its complexity.

Green is for vigor, so for envy.

Blue is for calmness, so for sadness.

Red is for love, so for war.

Orange is for balance, so for exigency.

Yellow is for optimism, so for fear.

White is for tranquility, so for dreary.

Six centerpiece is like the six core emotion.

She compared and contrasted the shades.

Blee she faced, barricades her vision;

phases of the cube pervades.

The shift in paradigm is seen as she progresses.

Contemplating the combination.

Unraveling one tier at a time as it successes.

Panning out pieces at a periodic action.

Turns and twists created contingency.

Choices actualized consequence.

Perfecting it proved her brilliancy.

Acquired the answers in her percipience.

As galaxy gyrate around barycenter.

Civilizations built, revolves to a creed and conviction.

The cube moves in its pivotal mechanism at its center.

Deviate and destruction is destined like damnation.

~ J George Thomas (a.k.a Aebin R Thomas)


Tom (A Poem)

Puny Tom prefers silence over profuse speech to tell,

his eloquent reticence has his own enigmatic fare.

Minotaur of melancholy rampages inside the psychic lair he dwell,

the secret of his sadness are solitude and despair.

Smirk of serenity he wore hid the scowl of sheer agitation he felt,

still the seed of hope sprouts in him like spring in sunbelt.

~J George Thomas (aka Aebin Thomas)


Agape, the God’s love. (A Poem)

When I see You I smile, knowing I have someone to fight for.

When I think of You I testify, feeling how blessed I am.

When I dream about You, I deal with the void I abhor.

When I bother You I brag, to your heart I need no battering ram.

When I chanted these, some conceded to criticize it as a fool’s love.

When You glanced back at me, I was in glee, grasping your true love.

~J George Thomas (aka Aebin)


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To an isolation (The exit, A story part 6)

*{This literature work contains mostly fiction induced with some of my own experiences. I wrote this just for fun. The characters are fictional, if any character or incidents are similar to anyone. It is pure coincidental. It’s just a piece of literature. Hope you like it.}

Nippier than usual, Aamir looked lively like a bunny as he recounted the past nine days he spent here. Reminding that tomorrow he would bid us adieu for being the eleventh day he would leave us to unite with his family. I thought it was a fourteen days quarantine but here they have letting healthy people out on the eleventh day. Mathematically speaking a day is accounted to be a 24 hour period but he was counting the day he stepped in this room in his eleven days isolation period.

My hands was still busy holding on to my phone to decipher the cryptic biblical message send by my aunt. “Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” (Ps 90:12) If I’m right the verse means to utilize the given time of our life in most productive way to gain wisdom. Why would my aunt send this to me? I, who was spending my time in an isolation center and not feeling so well, how should I make my situation progressive? That was a puzzle yet which I needed to solve. I straight away fired the question to my aunt to which she said I will come home after three days and should change into something new. I was furious, not for asserting that there was something wrong in old me which I need to change but she too was calculating the first day I stepped in here in the eleven days quarantine. I never argued with my aunt as she worked in the medical field for past fifteen years and I always politely accepted her word of comfort or advice. As she is few of the dearest and closest people to my heart among my other relatives. Although, It was my mother to whom I openly argued with and she countered my theory with an explanation,” the day you start your HCQ and other meds is counted as day one in medical terms of your isolation time. Also we want you here not there.”

As the doctors knocked on the door for their morning routine rounds to check on us. Aamir pushed us aside and ran for the door from his room to meet the doctors. It was little awkward for me but Nagesh bhaiya didn’t make a deal out of it as he understood that Aamir was excited to meet his family by tomorrow. As we all noticed there was different medical staff attending to us today all because of their increase in the height. People wearing the fully equipped PPE kit could be differentiated by their height and sound of their voice. If someone had a sharp eye as a hawk they might pick on their mannerism, the dominant hand used for holding medicine tray or the pen and pad which had a sheet containing our details.

Doctors called out our names and inquired our health respectively, “Room 1204. Peter George! How are you feeling now?

I answered with a head movement approving my statement, “I’m good.” Just my thoughts, even though I just vomited this morning I ain’t going to report it as their solution to every problem is just to drink boiled water and I’m afraid they would note my comments into some government records to elongate the days of stay here.

“Nagesh Yadav! How are you feeling?”

Nagesh bhai learning from his mistake replied with a smile, “I am good as well.”

“Aamir Sheikh! How are you feeling?”

Aamir replied, “I am fine. Excuse me doctor, I will complete my eleven days tomorrow. I can leave by tomorrow afternoon, right?”

Doctors with no time to spare said, “Oh! You can’t leave tomorrow as we have to check on your status as the virus shows symptoms on eleventh day. You can leave when you complete eleven days in here”

“But the guy next room left on eleventh day.”

“I can’t let you off before completing the eleven days as you are here under observation.”

Doctors took the stairs and left Aamir alone to his misery. He face reflected his disheartened heart. To ease the tension in the room Nagesh bhaiya joked, “you shouldn’t have sought permission the day before your leave. You should have left for tomorrow without discussing with them.” Like a child being denied his promised candy Aamir sulkily nodded to it. He went to his room silently and the joke wasn’t enough to lift his spirit.

Nagesh bhai and I were discussing about the dinner we would order for today. Nagesh bhai has a sweet tooth and this whole time it was him ordering the food. Aamir too got food from his house but Nagesh bhai was adamant to cheer him up so he took upon himself to buy something for us three. I looked into my bank account to buy something just to avoid the guilt of being a free loader. I had bank balance less than minimum amount. Thinking about it I just lifted my eyes towards the heavens.

We were browsing through food filtering through price, ratings and the menu. I got call from my cousin, Abin, one of the few cousins I loved to talk to. I have a older cousin whom I look upto, a younger cousin who looks upto me and Abin, who is somewhat the same age as me so we shared a different special brotherly bond. If I’m a wannabe detective, he was a wannabe comedian. He is like a fish out of water, silent and awkwardly goofy. Although we share a common zodiac sign Aquarius, we are two years apart, he being older to me but still we behave like we are some kind of twin. He called to tell me that he too was in an Isolation center in Sanpada not so far away from me. One thing I learned that God gave us trials and tribulation in our life so that when others are in same spot we could have empathy for them and help them. Hearing that he was in an isolation center which was worse than here made me pray for him.

He said he was in dormitory like place with no proper privacy. Thirty people shared a room with a common toilet. He also said that there a long queue to charge a phone there was only one plug point. Even though his conditions were worse than mine but he was optimistic and saw fun in that. Unlike me he was prepared to go to an isolation center. He was sharing his experience with me that someone had called him inquiring about his current situation. He said that while he was in the call delineating the matter which he was asked about. He coughed a little bit, while he was talking he took a sip of water to wet his lips, the water accidentally went in his wind pipe. Technically he was chocking for a second or two, the caller on the other side of the phone upon hearing him hurriedly ended the call. Abin joked that he must have mistaken a biological virus transmission with a digital virus. We both shared our laughs. I was happy to know that though things are bitter at his end he was managing and was doing fine, he had the knack to keep his spirits high even when the going gets tough, he gets going.

It was our lunch time. Aamir seemed gloomy. We three during lunch were discussing about doctors. Nagesh bhaiya and I went to the same hospital witnessed the ruthlessness of the doctor in charge. Surprisingly so Aamir had a different experience the doctors he visited was just wearing mask, face shield and a pair of medical gloves. His doctors behaved as humanely as possible and was down to earth. There were two doctors who were in charge and both were young, Aamir’s situation was analytically explained to us in detail. He opened up a little, telling us how he got married. He got married to his childhood friend. They never thought they would end up together. He was boasting how his love was some kind of mythical true love. They were in same junior college but later he did IT while she completed her Masters in Business Management with rank.

He also completed some course in art and banner making. He said the marriage was arranged by both their parents. He said she didn’t object and was happy to marry him. He had assets in city as well as village, mostly everything he owned was ancestral assets. His great great grandfather was a school headmaster and according to him in those era, being a headmaster was treated with prestige and was given high social status. He should be working in field of artwork and paint but now he is working in a comb manufacturing company where his wife was working. It was she who recommended his name in stocks department, handling data entry. Before marrying he even worked offshore to paint but now he works in an office because of his wife. It was indeed some kind of a fairy tale love story of two Maharashtrian Muslims.

Lending my ear to him and his tales, gave me temptation to check upon Priyanka. Well guess who unblocked me, she might have finally regretted avoiding me and wished to apologize for her action, was my thought. Oh boy! So wrong I was about her. She unblocked me to share a Will Smith quote status and dumped me via message.

Will Smith quote

I was upset and pinged Abin to help me with the pain I was dealing with. It’s funnier he cracked up some jokes which weren’t that funny but his thoughts behind those words, his way to console me made me feel good. He helped me see that every cloud has a silver lining that is I deserved better and with his optimism he found humor in the quote. Will Smith is a reputed and a talented actor, no doubt about it but when he was married with his first wife, he fell in love with an another woman. His then wife divorced and he tied knot to the same woman whom he loved during his first wedding. His second wife and him were claimed as dynamic couple by the media until recently it was unraveled that his second wife committed adultery and sweet coated it as -“entanglement.” Using his quote whose married life wasn’t quite the ideal one was a mistake to be used in her breakup status. Also she used a quote saying “Don’t chase people…” and after using the quote she messaged. She contradicted herself as she chased after me to ditch me and it was hilarious. He shared his experience about how he was a part of a rumor. The rumor was that there was something between him and a girl. The rumor had been circulating for years but recently it reached to him. He thought the girl in the rumor liked him so he asked her out one day hoping to get a positive response. She bro-zoned him which pretty much stung him bitterly as earlier at least he was in her friend zone. We both laughed meanwhile he cussed all those who fueled to spread the rumor which even involved some aunties too. He went off to charge his phone. This was enough to uplift my soul and I moved on accepting it rationally.

It was evening, we were having our tea, the pinkish fluid. The senior vicar of my parish offered to arrange a meal by the same Varghese family, residing in Govandi. The one time homely cooked meal would reach to me by tomorrow. As for cheering Aamir program by Nagesh Bhaiya, he ordered panner thikka curry, Aamir preferred spicy food. I was sad that I couldn’t get anything. I got message on my phone that the online item which I had ordered was cancelled as it was out of stock and they had reimbursed my money back. Now I could buy something rather than being in debt to Nagesh bhaiya. We ordered for dinner and it really helped Aamir to get his smile back.

Aamir opened a bit more about himself that he wrote blogs, preaching about his religion in Urdu and English. He used computer coding for his blogs. His wife helped him with coding and he did all the literature work. It was for the first time I got to know that muslim are categorized mainly into two- Shia and Sunni. Lately, Abin was talking about blogging too. So, I had paired with him to write blogs but sadly we didn’t quite make any progress. Now knowing Aamir has lot of readers for his blog than ours, this was making me feel a little jealous. I was impressed to read the google translated blogs as they were interesting and enjoyable to read. After having our dinner, we three slept off peacefully.

The eleventh day of Aamir’s quarantine period. He was watchful and prepping up to leave with or without permission. I have never seen him kneel and pray before. He was reciting verses of Quran from his memory. Nagesh bhai and I wondered and asked him what’s with this sudden pious approach. He said that he feels the doctors were trying to keep him in here for some more days. Also he believes some black magic, the evil look or stare believed to cause injury or misfortune to others is afflicted upon him. The presumed power to cause injury or misfortune to others by magic or supernatural means.

I asked Aamir, “You believe in such superstition?”

“I didn’t used to believe in these things but one day, I was sitting on my balcony without covering my torso, unintentionally exposing my muscle to the residents of my place as I thought I was in my house chilling and I’m a guy.”

“So…So what?”

“Later that night out of nowhere my body started to pain and I had severe fever. Upon telling it to my parents they concluded it was someone’s strong desire to inflict damage in a supernatural way.”

Nagesh bhaiya agreeing with Aamir said that he too believes it.

I asked, “Anyways, Why do you feel doctors are devoted not to let you go?”

“It’s simple, Think about this, the State government decides to spend lakhs on a covid patient. If they make me stay longer before getting two more patients they won’t get the lakhs per head. There is a scam in this and these medical officers are in it too. They might be getting their commission for each patient they send here or make them stay.”

“That’s heavy accusation without circumstantial evidence. Don’t keep on yapping this to everyone about what you just think on the top of your head. Someone can really harm you physically or financially by filling a lawsuit for destroying their esteem reputation than harming you in a supernatural way.”

Nagesh bhaiya interrupted saying , “It’s ok! I too believe in this and we won’t be telling this to anyone. Did you notice the doctor had shift after three day? Today a totally different doctor approached us.”

“Yes, I noticed it too. Our regular doctors checks us on consecutive three days and the fourth day it is someone else and again followed by three continuous days of rounds by our regular doctors. This cycle goes on. ” I turned to Aamir and continued, “You just spoke to the wrong set of doctors. That’s why their tone was little rigid towards you.”

Aamir nodded with a sigh.

It was a normal day we were discussing about guns, liquor and every state of our country. Nagesh bhaiya was in Security Force and always gets deputed to different states after the interval of every three months and because of him we were discussing about these topics. Eagerly wanting to know his experience and his story. He did justice and had a pretty good story telling skills which we appreciated.

The weather was very beautiful today, the sun was shining bright yet it wasn’t too hot or too cold, ideal weather for a perfect picnic. Birds chirping and air as clear as a sky blue due to lockdown the mother nature did indeed replenish itself. Everyone was happy and we helped each other. Aamir didn’t repeat the same mistake of reproaching the doctor to spoil his mood.

He was determined to leave by tomorrow on his twelfth day in hook or a cook way possible. Nobody discouraged him and hoped he would leave on the twelfth day. If he leaves on twelfth day so could we. That night it was like a feast either a send off party or the last supper only time can really tell us what feast were we commemorating. Food arrived from Aamir’s house, Nagesh bhiaya had ordered food online and I received my one time homely cooked meal.

We took no chances of getting infected again of viruses so we three used the sanitizer, the concentrated blue alcohol liquid, sent by my uncle to sanitize the parcel. I usually resisted using alcohol as heavy usage of Methanol alcohol can result in loss of eye sight, headaches, muscle problem and can even temper your memory. To disinfect corona virus 90 % above concentrated alcohols are used. To be honest the alcohol solvent used for disinfectant are mostly Ethanol but I didn’t want to put my trust on any market product. I took risk of using the sanitizer. Hey! Better blind than getting infected to dead. We sat on the floor, like always with our crossed legs and with the plastic containers used for our parcels in front of us, we created some sort of a ununiform circle. We shared our food together. Having meal with a good company makes the food tastes even more delicious. Nagesh bhai had become pure vegetarian but he was okay to have food us. After finishing our supper, Nagesh bhai and Aamir strode off for their walk but I stayed inside the room reporting to my folks. I didn’t tell out the whole thing as Abin wasn’t really getting much of this liberty and food. I didn’t want to rub into his face that how lucky I was than him.

The next day, Aamir was ready to face the consequence and was prepared to fight for his freedom. I don’t know why but my head played a war hero trumpet for him today. Doctors knocked onto our door and he remained focused and composed.

“I have completed the eleven days in here and I am completely fine. I want to go home.”

Our regular doctor on the round said, “We need to get the report from higher ups whether to send you off. Call us in this afternoon and hope we get your report with instruction provided to leave you.”

The sleepy war hero had just won the battle but would he win the war? We’ll see about it just this afternoon. He called in the afternoon and they tried to tie him down to this place but he was adamant to leave. He fought his way and finally won the war too.

We wished him luck and shared our number promising we three would stay in touch. Now when Aamir left his room I took his room as it was settled between me and Nagesh bhaiya that I take the elevated bed. Now we had certain hope that we could leave after two days.

Two more people from our 12th floor left us. Now as our neighboring occupant too left us, there was a silence like we were in a deseret. The events afterwards felt gloomy. Everyone felt the urge to leave the place. The water supply was cut for a day and on the next day they added something to water which gave the water some translucent white color to it. We were really praying to almighty, expecting those higher ups knew what they were doing with water and hoped that those water won’t give rashes to our rear end. That same evening three doctors came in that unusual hour to do some exercise and they took snap of it. It was fun as we had been not moving our muscles lately, our muscles were stressed out and after doing the exercise we felt refreshed. Though it was very conspicuous that those medical staff are trying to get their report done with some evidence.

Nagesh bhai bravely asked permission on the previous day of our departure. Doctor pushed it for one more day with an explanation we need you to take rest here for one day. Gautam bhai was becoming hyper and didn’t want to stay here any longer. Nagesh bhaiya’s courage didn’t reap any fruit but he said that he didn’t want to ruffle some feathers with those authorities as they can make us suffer. I told my mother that I may be able to come home by tomorrow and she said it is good news. She would pray and ask others to pray for me too. I hastily inquired that does she thinks that they would genuinely spare their time for me. She said that she knows, like a mother they won’t be praying about me for an hour or so but if they just remember you and pray for one second. That is enough. As it is written in Matthew 18:19-20, “Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.” I was satisfied with her answer and I was in complete delight in her belief.

Now Gautam bhaiya, Nagesh Bhaiya were having our dinner tonight. We were discussing about tomorrow’s strategic way to deal with the doctors. Later the discussion side tracked to barracks they lived and they were bitching about their seniors in command.

The next day, the doctors kept us hanging for another day but Gautam bhai couldn’t take it any longer I thought he was the unselfish vocal leader type guy who will lead his companions and fight for their rights. BOY! Was I wrong, Gautam bhai was little bit addicted to chewing tobacco especially to betel quid. I should have known his spoiled rotten teeth gave the tell sign. This whole time he was vocal to get out of here to get some tobacco. If he was provided tobacco here, he might have stayed here rest of his life.

His raging temper was advantages for our purpose he called onto the number literally threatened them saying he has various proof that you left people on eleventh day and also he is working under central government as security force member. The doctors surrendered before him. We were allowed to go and within a snap of fingers we packed up our belongings. We were ready to go because we knew if we wasted more time, they might get more chances of making us put in here. Finally the freedom to go to our own place, the sweet freedom that we got. All this time I spend with them, knowing them I felt blessed as I felt safe and secured here. During this pandemic everyone was affected so was I but I survived and soon I will reach home. In Bihar, HIV aids and tuberculosis patients shared a common room in an isolation center with other covid patients. No wonder my aunt was worried sick when she heard for the first time that I was sent to an isolation center. Along with thanking the mighty God, I also thanked those doctors and everyone that they were kind too. At the gates of the isolation center I took selfie with three us in it, to remember the memorable moments spent together. In these time of deadly disease few have even lost their life but we three were healthy enough to go back to our homes. Once again I thanked God for His kindness and remembered all those who helped as well as prayed for me. I hoped best for Abin too. Now, I was really understanding the meaning of Psalm 91:7 which I recited under my breath, “A thousand shall fall at your side, and ten thousand at your right hand; but it shall not come near you.”

~ J George (aka Aebin Thomas)

THE END


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To an isolation (The settlement, A story part 5)

*{This literature work contains mostly fiction induced with some of my own experiences. I wrote this just for fun. The characters are fictional, if any character or incidents are similar to anyone. It is pure coincidental. It’s just a piece of literature. Hope you like it.}

The days seemed longer for us but still we managed to kill the time eloquently with our phones and internet. Aamir and Nagesh bhai were always on calls with their wife, parents, friends, siblings and their own children. While my mobile would swing from 2G to 4G network in some unanimous pattern which annoyed me but still I was connected to outside. Day one to day five was the period required for us to adapt to this new place but now we have co ordinated in such a manner as if we own this place. The electric kettle which was lend to me now has became a private property of room 1204. Nagesh bhaiya woke up early and completed his morning drill of self cleaning. Then he would drink hot water from the electric kettle and having his an apple he would complete his secret diet as an immunity booster plan against the virus. He got his supplies from Gautam bhai’s relative, he had asked for fired packed readymade fitters and a dozen of apples. Later Aamir woke up and afterwards it was my turn, till I got ready, the lukewarm breakfast gets cold which I usually would skip.

Somehow, all this made me feel that I was in a boy’s dormitory with no bullying or ragging in it. As we were here in this place as apart of system to stop others from getting vulnerable to virus infection and not to proclaim our territory like some wild beast or portray our dominance over other. I was not so thrilled to be here but wasn’t despising it either. We three were enjoying our own apples by now but it was not all enough to get back on being as healthy as a horse according to their theory. Comparing their physique I looked as weak as a twig, Nagesh bhai was tall and healthy. While Aamir because of his regular gym visits had a neat muscular torso. If those two people complained about the intake of these foods were not sufficient then I was there just to nod to their statements.

All this time I thought Nagesh bhai only had his comrades on twelfth floor as I was wrong as most of his colleagues who stayed in the barracks had contracted the virus and half of them were in these building. I thought to myself I was one heck of a bad detective in this isolation center, until no one reveals me something I don’t deduce anything on point. Those fictitious characters like Hercule, Byomkesh Bakshi, Marple, Hardy boys and Sherlock must be disappointed in me by now. Although I think I was having my peace of mind back as I wasn’t talking to me in third person much these days. Either my sanity and tranquility has returned or those meds have screwed my head pretty good but still my over thinking defect which latched in me has it’s course on me.

Everyday during morning hour minimum two doctors in their fully equipped PPE kit had their rounds on every floor, I wasn’t sure that they were full fledged doctors or nurses. Forget about their degree qualification to doubt upon we couldn’t determine their gender until they approached us with questions of our health. Usually we three would say we were completely to make things less complicated but one morning Nagesh bhai complained about having a aching on his leg muscles. One of the covid medical docs gave solution to drink boiled water and then handed a loose pill of pain killer with no cover to Nagesh bhai. Officials placed the loosely opened pill on his palm while Nagesh bhai took it with such reverence looking at it I laughed in my head, it looked as if Nagesh was receiving prasadh (Prasadh, variantly spelled as Prasādam, Prasād and Prasāda, is a material substance of vegetarian food that is a religious offering in both Hinduism and Sikhism. It is normally consumed by worshippers after worship.) from temple pujari (Pūjari is a designation given to a Hindu temple priest). Nagesh bhaiya didn’t take the pain painkiller as it was very suspicious to be taken as Gautam bhaiya had complained on his first day that the HCQ tablet he received had expired and the doctors didn’t change his medicine explaining that it’s effects will be the same. Sagar Sahab had been shifted to hospital as he had been reporting his sickness and fever for over continuously three days on record. It took three days for them to get convinced that his health was severely bad to be admitted in a hospital. Adding more humor to our situation was if anyone reported their sickness the solution provided by our medical volunteers would be to drink boiled water. I can understand us having electric kettle for boiled water but where are others going to get their boiled water from? We all, inhabitants of twelfth floor agreed that we have to look upon ourselves to get out of her.

We started to order food from online to get our vitamins. Aamir had upper hand in this situation as his own house was near this isolation center food arrived to him from his home. And because of him being our roommate we enjoyed that blessing of homely meal. Few people completed their 11 days and were allowed to leave and as soon as they left new recruits occupied their bed. Two new people who had come to our dorm worked in Security Force and Nagesh Bhaiya knew them pretty well. One named Babu was tall like Nagesh bhai, had dark brown complexion and dark circles around his eyes, if he didn’t had that constant friendly smile on his face I bet he would make a good movie villain. The other one was an inch taller than me and had a oval rounded shape type body with an unfriendly expression. There was a witty contrast between their features which I found amusing. The other wasn’t very social and was always to be found around Babu bhaiya even though they were assigned different rooms.

The atmosphere was now becoming vibrant and we all were having our backs covered by each other. Gautam was the vocal guy amongst us, whenever there was a delay in our meals he would call up the officials and gave firing on behalf for us. Me being an introvert opened up a little bit as tortoise coming out of his shell I unraveled my thoughts and opinions to them which was bottled up for a long time. I recited Hebrews 12:7 to myself, “It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline?” Nagesh bhai, Ammir and I discussed about guns, religion, politics during our meal. Nagesh bhaiya and Aamir shared their stories of their village about the farms, cows, buffaloes they own. Aamir and I seemed like siblings who has negligible age difference so, we had a little sibling rivalry. In those perception, Nagesh bhai was the eldest brother who looked after the two younger siblings.

Once the we were going to have our meal but floor was unclean I took it upon myself to clean the floor with a broom lying in our floor. Why though, What was I thinking? – I didn’t bother to volunteer to clean my own home. I took the broom and cleaned the floor. Aamir criticized and then cleaned himself. I would have genuinely accepted the criticism of his if he had done better, I noted to myself that we had some sweet rivalry to which I won’t lose. This was all in fun and playful manner, we talked to each other and shared a lot even after that day. His wife had prepared dal tadhka and fried pomfret fish, garnished with coriander leaves and lemon squeezed on it, a Maharashtrian touch. Nagesh bhaiya had stopped eating non-vegetarian after getting married as in practicing some religious belief of having a child. He could consume meat only after he visits a particular Devi’s temple in Srinagar with his child. So far he couldn’t travel to Srinagar with his family even after having a son.

Aamir after learning this provided his share of dal to Nagesh bhaiya. Aamir turning to us asking about his wife’s culinary skill. I and Nagesh bhaiya sincerely appreciated the food. I was happy as I made some new friends but I knew this would end the day we walked out of this building. I got messages and calls from my cousins, aunt, uncle. Miraculously some old church acquaintance took their time off for me. I understood one more thing it’s because of my parents I got this calls and messages as if it for my social skills no one would care to approach me as I am an introverted guy, wanderer in my own world. I am really bad at maintaining my friendship with anyone and even if I try to maintain with putting some effort in it, it turns into some sort of enmity. Meh! Must be me just overthinking about it.

Each day we would engage into various topics during our meal hours but otherwise I would avoid moving from my bed much. Just lazily I sit on my bed attending the calls. One afternoon during our tea time, the pinkish fluid which cannot be distinguished as tea, the volunteer as they were providing us our tea. Nagesh bhaiya out of nowhere asked for biscuits, those volunteers froze for a moment and looked at each other and reluctantly gave us two packets of glucose biscuits. It was fishy and we discussed upon it for a while.

Nagesh bhaiya narrating before me to Aamir , “You know today I asked if they had any glucose biscuits with the tea and they acted weirdly.”

“Weirdly?!”

“Yeah! There was a slight hesitations to give us our biscuits. Knowing that they gave me three cups of tea, they gave me only two packets of biscuits.”

I interrupted sayin,”Yup! That’s true.”

Nagesh bhaiya continues, “Gautam had earlier asked biscuit for himself before and those volunteers hurriedly gave him his biscuit packet as if a drug was secretly passed by a dealer.”

I, who was listening to it carefully said, “So? We’re granted biscuits everyday with our tea but it’s just that we get them occasionally rather than everyday.”

Gautam bhaiya joined in our conversation, “They are taking our biscuits and disturbing it to their family.”

Nagesh bhaiya quickly disagreeing with Gautam bhaiya said, “Arrey! No! How much biscuits do you think they are going to take for themselves? They sell it in the market.”

Aamir adding to it said, “It’s a scam. We are to be given biscuits day. Each covid patients should receive one packet of their glucose biscuits. So when government assigns the funds for this program. These people in their stock record show that they provide it everyday. So, they grab money meant to buy the glucose biscuits for covid patients.

I inquiringly asked, “But some days we do get biscuits, what about …”

Aamir sharply cutting said, “They can’t misuse the whole money as it may look suspicious and draw a lot of attention. To show their work done, they would buy some biscuits and give us on some day. Meanwhile, most of the biscuits are saved in the end of the day as they won’t give it to every floor, they would sell it to the open market which gets them double profit. I work in stock’s department so I know these stuff.”

We were all bewildered hearing this from Aamir. I was thrilled as my taste for crime mystery is happening just before my eyes but it saddens to realize that I was playing the part of the fool, the guy at the receiving end rather than the solving guy. Next day we all were waiting for the tea, it wasn’t about the tea anymore but the biscuits mattered to us. Those volunteers were ahead of us. Instead of a whole packet, they tore the packet and gave five biscuits to each one of us. We didn’t protest but laughed discussing about it as we weren’t paying for any services here. Aamir was happy as his isolation days were soon going to be over and he could reunite with his child and his wife. He counted it out for us and told us that he would complete eleven days after two days. My aunt with no context messaged me via whatsapp,” Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” (Psalm 90:12)

~J George Thomas. (a.k.a Aebin Thomas)

(to be continued…)



To an isolation (The survival, A story part 4)

*{This literature work contains mostly fiction induced with some of my own experiences. I wrote this just for fun. The characters are fictional, if any character or incidents are similar to anyone. It is pure coincidental. It’s just a piece of literature. Hope you like it.}

The beautiful golden rays of the sun reached out of the window and gently touched my face. I opened my eyes, laying on my back I realized that it was morning and no one was in the hall room except me. While rubbing my eyes I remembered that I had texted something to Priyanka but couldn’t exactly recollect what I had replied. In a hurry I took my phone which was placed at the side of my bed. Going through my phone and seeing no such messages, I understood that I was just had an exhilarating dream.

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Nagesh Bhaiya entered the hall wearing his polyester t-shirt and a thick wool towel wrapped around his waist. The towel was big to cover till his knees, he then quickly slided his shorts swiftly within a fraction of seconds. He had been provided barracks and had been spending his time among his fellow male colleagues. They all must have customised themselves for spontaneous, decency and discipline which he didn’t stop to follow even in here. Some habits don’t die so easily, his security force trained mind should be reason he got up so early and he looked so much ready for the day. I must have been observing his steady military decorum resulting in a long stare that he gleamed at me with his mischievous smile. I turned away breaking the eye contact from him towards Aamir. He walked out of his room holding his towel, soap, brush and toothbrush. It appears as if he was waiting after Nagesh bhaiya for his turn to go to the bathroom. Again, I took out my phone and was scrolling through my social sites to check for any new updates or information sent by anyone.

My notifications being blank or has nothing useful to me didn’t let me in any disappointment but I wasn’t very happy about it either.

Nagesh bhaiya noticing my gloomy face asked, “Do you have any girlfriend?”

I shook my head side to side mumbling, “No…No I do not. ” Thinking about Priyanka I reassured to myself that technically I was not lying.

Aamir who was just about to enter the bathroom joined in our conversation projecting his bare upper lean torso. Aamir unknowingly poking into my wounds inquired about why I didn’t have anyone. Now, Aamir looked so young and inexperienced. He was not exactly the person whom I was expecting to get a relationship advice from. The puberty hit beard on him hid his fair baby face but his body was lean and muscular, enough for Michelangelo to get inspired to sculpt a body, said otherwise

I asked in soft voice, “So?… You…You have any girlfriend?”

He chuckled, “Girlfriend?! I’m married and I have a son.”

Nagesh bhai and I was shocked to hear that cause he looked like he must be in his late adolescence. What’s up with this young looking married people showing up before me?- was my thought. I never thought to pry in someone else private affairs. So, I never bothered to ask Nagesh bhaiya about his private life and he never shared his whole story with us. I assumed he must have not been able to get a bride for himself and was waiting for the right person. It so happens that Nagesh bhaiya was married and he too had a rightful heir of his own.

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Our short morning revelations got over soon. Nagesh bhaiya was drying off his wet towel by spreading it on the red pipe of fire sprinkler which ran up his bed and led to the kitchen roof. Meanwhile, the happily married young blood was taking his bath, I stretched myself up and went towards the kitchen sink to wash myself up and brush my teeth using my index finger. We three, after completing our morning routine headed back to our corners. Attending calls and reporting everything to my folks, talking to my parents, aunt and my granny has now become a chore which I enjoyed and hated at the same time.

When things settled down and I was idle again. The dream which I had and the thoughts of Priyanka really bothered me deeply. It has been a long time since she talked to me. Priyanka Thomas, a beautiful girl with silky short hair and pale skin would always gets noticed even among the crowd. She is loud, very competitive and had a keen observation skills. We met each other for the first time in a small christian convention event in Mumbai on 2016 where I was introduced to her and her whole family too.

She has two younger siblings, a girl named Divyashree and the youngest brother named Tony. She had come to the convention event for the first time with her parents who had compelled her to attend it and so did my parents forced it on me. We became good friends and we were still in touch because of facebook. Soon she went back to Goa as her father had to move in as per his job transfer requirements and also her mother got a new job there. We both still maintained a healthy reaction like good friends. Though we verbally fought every time, we respected each others view.

One day out of nowhere she asked me out and on 12 January 2020, sunday, I secretly went to Goa with a friend, boarding an unreserved train to meet her. Meeting her after a long had fallen head over heels for her for on that day. She confessed her love and I thought for awhile and went in with it. That day I had spend a considerable amount of time with her and it was a like fairy tale which became a reality and now turned into a beautiful moment to look into. Now, it’s all vanished, I have no idea what has become of her. Lately she had been accusing me of not loving her and ignoring her but it was far from the truth, I loved her very much and I didn’t want her to be distracted or lose her valuable time because of me. I had even openly reasoned my thoughts but she objected it by stating that I was lying. Last time I talked with her, we didn’t even quarrel or put up any fight. This happened out of nowhere that she completely stopped talking. In her ignorance period she kept posting her happy status and later I was blocked out.

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On January we were committed and on February a Malayalee, South Indian, Kerala guy from Canada, who was her college friend’s distant relative wished her happy valentine’s. He wished her even before I did and also knowing that she was seeing someone else was killing me. She shared up with me but it bugged me off as she didn’t shut him off completely by stating that she was committed but rather replied him with a – thankyou. If it were me in that situation, in some kind of role reversal roleplay, I would have been have tagged as some dubious fake lover. I wished I was over thinking as my heart ached so badly that my tears rolled out of my eyes. I was lucky that no one noticed me like that as everyone had left the room to visit the neighboring room. Like memories flashing before the eyes of a dying person I remembered things about.

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I felt weird as she did everything in an oddly planned order. During the time I had been ignored, first she did was to unfriend me from facebook, then blocked me on instagram and later on whatsapp. Me, patiently waiting to hear her reasonable excuse was left hanging. So finally,I asked her about the everything. She played the complete Uno reversal card like always blamed it on me saying it was my fault. I blocked her as my anger flared up to it’s peak but later upon forgiving, I unblocked to find that she had already blocked me there too. Virtually I was blocked by her on every possible social platform that I was in contact with her. She could have at least tried solving out or ended the realtion by simply speaking out her mind, I believe that either someone is giving out her some stupid advice or she really likes someone else who has replaced me. She has been spoiled by lot of pampering and unwanted attention which she receives from a bunch of friends, followers, relatives, seniors, acquaintance and I, being a complete loner, now feel that I didn’t appreciate her presence much. Funny even my friend with whom I went with to meet her has suddenly sided with her. Anyways, I accepted her actions as she has taught me a very valuable life lesson. If she feels safe and secure away from me then I’ve forgiven and forgotten everything, that’s all to it. If I were to reason that my parents, cousins, aunt, uncle and granny are with me it would be hilarious too as their way of loving me is always with a statement that I can’t do anything on my own. Before I could sink in my degenerative and depressing thoughts any further both Nagesh and Aamir bhai entered the room as it our breakfast was delivered to us by the covid volunteers.

Our cold Upma (Upma is a thick porridge from dry-roasted semolina or coarse rice flour.) was served openly on a disposable plastic plate for three of us separately which included a wooden ice cream spoon and the peachy pink tea for respective person. Why I don’t know each time I have a hope that the tea would be better but it still proudly maintains it’s distinctive sour medicinal taste every time. I took the first bite of my breakfast and I could swear that it tasted the same as the dinner I had eaten the previous night. I asked others for a reaffirmation as the coronavirus can also really affect our taste buds. Calmly having his meal, Aamir explained to me that the basic masala ingredients they used to make the curry last night is also used in my morning breakfast. My will for existence was decreased effectively after eating that but I was relieved that it wasn’t the virus’s fault and my health hasn’t got any worse. Nagesh bhaiya after having his breakfast remarked that we won’t be able to recuperate and survive on this breakfast in this isolation camp. By stating it loud, he crumbled his disposable plastic plate to throw it out in dustbin.

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After having our stale upma for breakfast we each had our medicines. Those pills made me feel nausea and made me sit again on my bed. While Aamir went iside his room, Nagesh bhaiya visited his companions. I was feeling like a lost cost soul as I was surfing on web through my phone it didn’t help me feel any better. So, I just powered off my phone to stand by mode to save my phone’s battery.

I reached out for my jute bag to get my water bottle only to find the sterile boiled water from my home will be over soon. Placing my bottle back inside my bag I found an old brochure folded unevenly which I unfolded it. A childish smile appeared on my face the brochure was from a church seminar which was organized a youth organization. I was part of this organization, only as a seat filler and to pay their registration fee. The brochure covered topic of Mathew 6:25-34.

25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? 28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. (Mathew6:25-34)

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I remembered the part of the same verse which I dreamt about Priya’s text. I raised that I never called Priyanka as Priya in my whole life. Maybe I had some divine premonition or something. Priya literally in hindi or sanskrit means beloved. I had a vision of a holy biblical verse from Priya that is my beloved God sent as a assurance. I raised my eyes towards the heaven and thanked God for not giving up on me as everyone did.

My phone rang, it was my own “beloved” father’s call. He informed me about things happened on his side. My clothes, a bedsheet, a towel, soap, toothbrush, phone charger, sanitizer, an extension board and a toothpaste were arranged. My father’s cousin felt sorry and offered to help us on his own. Also, the highly revered senior vicar of my parish church have arranged an electrical kettle, electric steamer, lemons, coffee powder, a extra bedsheet, spoon, a steel glass, fruits and some biscuits. Both of them have handed it to covid officials and these officials would hand me any time soon. I was so thrilled that I jumped off from my bed and started grooving to my own beats for 5 seconds as no one was in the room watching me.

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I heard a covid volunteer calling out my name loudly from the elevator- PETER GEORGE! ROOM 1204! Nagesh bhaiya opened the door and was holding onto my bags. I acquired my parcels from him and seeing that several bag have arrived for me, differing various size from small to big. Most people staying on the twelfth floor left their room and gathered at their own doorstep to form a small crowd who where there to witness this all. Nagesh bhaiya approached me and taunted saying, “Are you planning to stay here forever?” A demure guy like me blushed. I thanked God and prayed that my uncle and priest be blessed for their kindness. Later on, I learned our church vicar had sought the help of Varghese family for certain items, a fellow church member from Govandi, an area by the isolation camp, whose son was in same youth organization that I participated in. They provided the vicar with electric steamer and other eatable items. I really felt grateful and wanted to thank them all properly someday.

My father’s cousin, my uncle called me up and listed out things that he sent out to me. Before ending the call he he also said that he has kept a KJV bible and a notepad with pen for me. As I took the holy bible carefully and I opened up the bible to read random verse which first came in my sight. The verse I read was – “Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.” (Joshuva 1:19) Unaware of all this commotions, Aamir came outside of his room offering me an apple…

~J George Thomas

(to be continued…)


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To an isolation (The inquest, A story part 3)

*{This literature work contains mostly fiction induced with some of my own experiences. I wrote this just for fun. The characters are fictional, if any character or incidents are similar to anyone. It is pure coincidental. It’s just a piece of literature. Hope you like it.}

My tiresome body was resting itself upon a bed on a floor and my eyes were locked onto the screen of my mobile phone which read typing. My soul was eager to read but my brain didn’t let me concede any high hopes. I blinked, my phone buzzed and I read the received the message from my cousin which he was typing this all time – “Yea it doesn’t makes sense at all.” All I could think was, “Wow! you took this whole time to reassure my own statement.” No wonder, my head warned about this, as I was expecting a little more humor to it but still I was in delight because one of my favorite cousins took his time to check on me.

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The conversation ended pretty soon. I kept my phone to my side and thought this is a big deal, to contract a deadly virus and to be sent in an isolation. I am on empty stomach and I didn’t have any spare clothes for my fourteen days exile. Forget about thinking ahead of time, I had no lunch and it’s going to be evening soon. I’m completely worn out, if this is some kind of karma then I don’t deserve it. My eyes were staring into the space as if I had some absence seizures. With a thunderous bang on the door of our room following three similar sound from other rooms, I trembled in shock and I was brought back to my own senses. I and Nagesh bhaiya, who was sitting opposite to me, looked at each other in surprise. Before our body could react, Aamir sprinted like a bullet fired from a gun he rushed towards the door. He opened the door quickly and as his back was facing towards us we could only see him signaling three with his fingers. Confused, I thought why was he playing dumb charades at the doorstep?

Aamir turned towards Nagesh bhaiya and said something in hurry. Because of his green face mask and the haste, the words didn’t quite make sense to our ears. A figure handed out two disposable cups filled with tea and waited to hand the third cup. Nagesh bhaiya took one cup and handed it to me while taking other for himself. Aamir took the third tea cup and headed into back his room to place his mask safely. He came near us with the tea in his hand and explained the schedule to us like some tour guide explaining some tourist. Breakfast is served at 10’o clock followed by lunch at 1 p.m, around 4 it’s tea time and dinner will be served at 9. I quickly glanced outside the window and then towards my peachy pink tea. With the first sip from the cup of my tea I got the complete picture of my current scenario and that is we would never receive our meals on time and the food is going to be awful. What else was I expecting, I am in an isolation center not in a private resort. Again I thought, I really didn’t deserve this. I could have been home quarantined. We finished our peachy pink drink, which supposedly meant to be a tea and we each headed back to our corners.

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I asked Nagesh bhaiya when was he taking his pills. So I could follow his routine and never miss my medications. He replied saying that he would take right now and took two HCQ, Hydroxychloroquine tablets as prescribed by authorities on day 1. Those meds really made me feel uneasy. Can’t blame Aamir returning to his bed very often.

Nagesh bhaiya and I, often had our interactions with each other because we shared the hall room and we had nothing else to do. I was really bad in conversations and my soft spoken voice didn’t make any positive impact either. Sometimes I felt sorry for him as he had nowhere else to go and I thought he was compelled to talk to an awkward guy like me. Nagesh bhaiya was a proud Hindu who worked in as a industrial security force but his memory regarding the subject matter of certain events of history was little bit off. Somewhere somewhat he reminded of me. We would discuss about Mahabharata and Ramayana. He explained me about Vedas and Upanishad. His teaching regarding the subject of Vedas was little vague but later I found that it couldn’t be described in short conversations as the topic itself is vast and he was kind enough to simplify it for me. For me it looked like some ancient Indian education system where the guru sat on an elevated seat while his pupil gained knowledge about Vedas sitting around him on the ground.

We got over with the QnA session, later he left the common hall room and went to bathroom to change his dress, to freshen up. He changed into his shorts and his t-shirt. I didn’t move a muscle and sat there again questioning my fate. My phone rang it. I picked up the call the call, it was my granny. It had been really long time since I had a heart to heart talk with her. I narrated my story and assured her my well-being in this isolation center to comfort her. We talked a bit longer and it made me feel good.

I was in joy to talk to all my folks but sad at the same time to realize that I had to pay the price of a poor health to reconnect with them. My aunt had warned me to not to have any negative thoughts as our thoughts and feelings can also tamper or boost our immunity. After all we are all just biochemical living mass with hormones, cells, etc.

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Time passed by, it was 9 p.m and I had not even budged a little bit after having my tea. The hall room was occupied by my presence only. Nagesh bhaiya left the room to meet his fellow comrades who were in the adjacent room. There was a commotion outside and both of my roomies came inside the room, I never realized that the sleepy head had left his room. The drill continued with a loud knock on the door followed by gestures accounting the number of occupants in the room. The covid volunteers handed us our dinner. I was shocked to see the dinner, out of my expectations the dinner was neatly packed in a plastic container with a lid on it. It looked so royal. We collectively decided to eat after sometime. I got up to wash my feet and my face. As soon as I entered the bathroom and thought to bolt the bathroom door behind me. I noticed that there was no latch for the bathroom as well as the toilet door and the worst case was that both the door didn’t shut completely as it’s hinges made some spring reaction to slightly let it open up, enough for someone to peak in. Feeling not so royal anymore, huh? – was my instant thought.

We three took our packed meal and sat down with our legs folded. It was not predetermined or discussed we did it naturally like even though we three represented different religion we respected our Indian culture. We sat, ate together sharing our opinions and stories. Though the meal was awful but edible enough. I was really happy to share it with these two. I recited to myself from proverbs 16 verses 1, we make our plans but God has the last word. This whole time I made fuss about not being home quarantined but the truth would be that I was enjoying this. Lately, I had been feeling blue and out of the place. My home never provided me any mental peace nor I had any trusted good friends or acquaintances to turn to. According to Carl Jung “Loneliness does not come from having no people about one, but from being unable to communicate the things that seem important to oneself, or from holding certain views which others find inadmissible.” Carl Gustav Jung was a Swiss psychiatrist and psychoanalyst who founded analytical psychology. Jung’s work was influential in the fields of psychiatry, anthropology, archaeology, literature, philosophy, and religious studies.

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It was midnight, both Nagesh and Aamir bhai went out for their after dinner walk. I too had joined them but I just went with them to take some pictures of the nearby landscape on my phone to send it to my parents.

Outside our hallroom, the common hallway passage, connecting to all other three occupied flat, was spacious and wide enough. There were stairs to the south, two elevators to our east and west. Our 1204 room was facing towards east and the common hallway passage led stairs to a large common window to our north where I witnessed the night view. I took the digital photos on my phone till my heart’s content.

The pictures in my phone didn’t look like we were in a locked down. Rather I saw a busy street with people roaming care free. Aamir justified stating that it is usually more crowded than this as he lived around about two blocks away from our current building. My parents called me and I reported to them everything while lying down on my designated bed. Nagesh bhaiya and Aamir returned to the room.

Nagesh bhaiya took out two blankets from his bag. One he used it as a bedsheet and the other he covered upon him to make himself comfy. Before he twirled his blanket on himself. He asked me politely if it’s okay to switch the lights off and with my acknowledgement he motioned towards the switch board as he switched off the lights to sleep. I was wearing the same dress from the morning till now. Knowing that I had worn this dress in the covid hospital and journeyed in an ambulance used for transportation of covid patients made me feel little icky. I really wished I had a spare dress and a blanket while lying down on my back. My phone beeped and it was a message quoting from the verse of Mathews- “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin.” (Mathews 6:28). I smiled like a fool and replied to the text from Priya….

~ J George Thomas

(to be continued…)


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To an isolation (The introduction, A story part 2)

*{This literature work contains mostly fiction induced with some of my own experiences. I wrote this just for fun. The characters are fictional, if any character or incidents are similar to anyone. It is pure coincidental. It’s just a piece of literature. Hope you like it}

It was now late in the afternoon and we both were standing opposite to the door of room no.1204. My sapped brain was just reanalyzing and computing the circumstances which led me till here.

Recounting my events I thought, I reached the hospital on 10 am only to collect my Covid positive medical report and also to get some prescribed medicines. But all I received was a shock treatment from the doctor to get admitted in an isolation center. Neither getting hold onto my medical report nor getting any meds. I just had a half filled water bottle wrapped in a plastic polythene bag to contain any leakage and my documents proving my identity. All of these were in a jute bag which I carried over my shoulders, my only possession for this trip. Travelling in an ambulance to an isolation center with five fellow covid patients. The unknown destination and the company with me were a complete mystery to me. Meanwhile, reciting my anecdote in the same ambulance before others to my folks and keeping track of my route at the same time was really tiresome. Standing in an isolation center building on an empty stomach and to be greeted by two stern female covid medical staff who were incharge of this isolation center was no thrill either. They handed me my medicines with my covid medical report and also broke the news to me that my lung x-ray copy had been misplaced. I kept my cool, got in the lift, walked to my allotted room silently with a 6 ft tall guy and now all I am doing was thinking.

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The rhythmic gentle knock has now turned into noise and at each interval the amplitude of the noise would increase a bit. Nagesh bhaiya and I, both were knocking asynchronously now. As if we were trying our luck out or proving each other after every consecutive knock that the intensity of the previous sound wasn’t enough. Nagesh bhaiya was closer to the door and I was behind him making a to and fro motion to tap the door.

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My head reassured me with a bible verse – Knock and the door shall be opened for you. Amongst that noise, the door of the opposite room opened wide and a person in a shaggy look, wearing a dark loose t-shirt and a black three fourth, approached us. He was looking rather amused. He told us in Marathi that the room was occupied and he must have fallen sleep. Those words with a single blow from that stranger was all the magic phrase needed for the entrance door to be opened. Now it was just the matter of time, the guardian of the hidden treasures behind the magical door would be revealed to us. Who will it be, a thief or the woodcutter as per the Arabian Night tale?

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A lean fair complexioned guy in his mid twenties with a greasy black hair, wearing a green mask and dressed in a perfectly fitted orange polyester jersey opened up the door. He had a confusion in his look which quickly faded away and he apologised immediately explaining his delay to open the door was because he was asleep. Nagesh bhaiya softly yet steadily charged inside while I followed his lead. The lean guy headed inside to his room inside and stood there while I and Nagesh bhaiya stood in the hall reassessing our situation.

The room had one bedroom which was occupied by our roommate while hall is to be shared by two of us. Now the only problem was that there was only one bed visible in my sight in the hall. Both of our heads turned around the room to find the other hidden bed which was later brought into my attention by my lean roomie that there was no bed but a mattress folded and safely kept on the kitchen top. I felt lucky to find that it was farther away from the sink. My Hercule Poirot was acting up but before investigating the crime scene I needed the some brief details, just to check upon my informant’s identity and with my new case partner.

“Hi! Myself Peter….. I’m Peter George. “

“Namaste! My name is Nagesh Yadav.”

Turning to my right I asked,” Hi! What’s your sweet name?

“Hello! My name is Aamir Sheikh. “

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I noticed that two beds had a cardboard bed frame along with mattress while only one mattress was rolled over. Aamir narrated to us that when he had come here, there were two completely fine beds and one loose mattress was already been placed on the kitchen top.

“What should we do now?”, I asked with sincerity like an innocent child. My head taunting me asked in which universe was I enacting like Hercule Poirot or imitating his persona. This was all I needed to get humbled.

Aamir suggested to call and seek help from the isolation medical incharge whom we all had met before getting to our room. I agreed, only to realise that to call the lady incharge I need her mobile number which I didn’t acquire. Aamir took out his phone and shared her number. He said that they provided a mobile number incase of emergency to everyone who were admitted to the isolation center with him. All my head could comment was those lady staffs, covid medical isolation incharge, must have received a lot of these complaint or inquiry calls for which they have stopped giving out the mobile numbers to anyone. The call got connected and a sweet feminine voice responded my call.

“Hello! Madam I am from room no.1204 of this isolation center. Myself George.”

“Yes?!”

“Madam in room 1204 there are only two beds and one mattress.”

“So?”

“Madam I…. I wanted to know if I can get a bed?”

I heard a slight chuckle “Bed? We don’t provide beds.”

“Madam, I know that. I am talking about the cardboard bed frame. The bed frame which holds the mattress and which helps people to sleep above ground level. I don’t want a new bed I want the cardboard frame.”

“Just borrow those frames from nearby rooms.”

“Oh!?” Not waiting for my response she cut the call from her side.

I sighed and whispered to myself, “So two beds and one mattress, it is.” The lady’s solution to my problem was implausible and typical Indian thing to say. It isn’t like I was borrowing some sugar from my neighbours or anything. Nagesh bhaiya and I stood there discussing about it while Aamir went back to his room to complete his slumber.

“Peter, You take the bed and I will take the mattress and sleep on the floor.”

“No! It’s ok I will take the mattress. Nagesh Bhaiya you take the bed I am comfortable sleeping down. “

This went for couple of rounds till it was settled that I would sleep on the ground and he take the bed. I fought it for it like I loved sleeping down. All my head could say that since when did I become so noble? Nagesh bhaiya put his bag on the bed which was adjoined to the side of the wall and he settled down quickly. I took the mattress from the kitchen top, unfolded it near to the window parallel to his bed. The distance between my mattress and his bed created a sufficient passage way from the door to the bedroom where our sleepy head was. The aisle connecting hall room and the bedroom had a small kitchen onto it’s right while onto it’s left after walking four or five steps away was bathroom and a small eastern toilet adjacent to it which created a 90 degree angle to the bathroom.

Taking my seat after placing my jute bag at the foot of my mattress gave my shaky legs some relief. Nagesh bhaiya handed his extra thin pink mattress, his heart must have melted a bit before my nobility, I guess. I didn’t hesitate a bit or made a fuss rejecting the extra supply, I am not that stupid. I took it instantly while thanking him. We both were total strangers but we were naturally behaving like we were some siblings and were having some kind of understanding between us. I realised that the cardboard bed frame didn’t look so safe or sturdy, the mattress was on a cardboard hollow cuboid piece which was again on four rectangular hallow cuboid. Two hollow cuboid cardboard at the end and two hollow cuboid at the center, each has an equal space between them. It was using some kind of honey comb structure technique. Aamir like a ghost appeared out of nowhere to warn Nagesh that the bed might give him some discomfort in his spine. My head, “Okay! For the first time ever your nobility has yielded some good fruits.” Nagesh beamed saying it was fine and he can adjust his pillows to make himself comfortable.

“So Nagesh bhaiya? What do you do? “

“I’m working in Industrial Security Force controlled by the central government.”

No wonder, a 6ft guy with short trimmed hair and well build body was working in an armed force of the Union established under an Act of Parliament which is somewhat like policemen but both having different purposes. I asked him about his companion and upon which I learnt that he knew both of them, the other guys who accompanied us to the isolation center. Gautam and Nagesh bhaiya shared a lot in common, they are of same age and they are both from north state of India but from two different states. The companion of Nagesh was little senior but was in his barrack and Nagesh referred to him as “Sahab”, a title given in hindi to call him sir.

After learning about the Sahab and his companions, Aamir introduces himself once again and shared his occupation with us. He is currently working in as a stock accountant in a factory which produces plastic combs. His employment status pricked my heart cause he might be little older than me, I was completely broke both mentally and financially. All I could tell them was that I was still a student.

My cell phone rang and it covered up my awkwardness. My aunt was on the line, she had called me earlier and was weeping on the call when I had passed down the information about my whereabouts. Now she seemed very calm and composed. I send a soft copy of my medical report and a pic of my medicines. She checked both and said my report stated that my x-ray of lungs was normal within limits, also my heart rate was normal too. I was happy to know that my condition was not extremely bad and my aunt is talking to me normally. Her sobbing and blaming was not really helping me very much. This was better. She instructed me that my prescribed medicines contained HCQ tablet which is used in case of malaria. Though those medicine is not very effective, it had showed some sign to help human body recover corona in it’s early stage. Over the course of time the coronavirus is genetically mutating itself and is becoming potentially stable. Those aren’t a complete answer to covid but something was better than nothing, right? She also warned me about the side effects of this medicine as this medicine can cause hyperglycemic effect and my blood sugar level would decrease. After my conversation with my aunt ended smoothly my cousin pinged me on whatsapp. I told him how they moved me to an isolation center reasoning that my parents and I, we three, living in a 1bhk room sharing a common toilet for three was unwise but here in this isolation center everything was the same. So what was the logic of sending me here then? My head interrupted me with – ‘The preparations of the heart in man, and the answer of the tongue, is from the Lord.’ -(Proverbs 16:1 KJV) This means, we may make our plans, but God has the last word. My cousin then replied…

~J George Thomas

(to be continued…)


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To an isolation (The prologue, A story part 1)

*{Before I start, let me tell you something. This is not the usual stuff which I post in my blogs. This literature work contains mostly fiction induced with some of my own experiences. I wrote this just for fun. The characters are fictional, if any character or incidents are similar to anyone. It is pure coincidental. It’s just a piece of literature…Hope you like it, fingers crossed.}

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I was standing impatiently thinking about how my chest x-ray report might be. Like me there were people scattered around waiting for their names to be called out by the doctors or the medical officials. The ambience of the place made it look like we all were attending a funeral where we need not be. Tension and less humidity present in the atmosphere made it somewhat even worse. My restlessness and the tiny beads of sweats forming on my forehead was now becoming clearly visible to people around me. To my right, an auntie who was sitting on a seat asked someone, “So? Tested out as Covid positive, huh?” The reply of that stranger came with a vigorous nod saying, “I was so over protective. I don’t how I became positive. My husband and I sanitized everything. May it be a tiny needle to all our vegetables. Everyday I assured every nook and corner was sanitized because of that now my back aches.” With a sigh she continued,” But still I became positive.”

Being a Covid positive person myself, all I could emphasize on her sentence was that she was married. Earlier, I had heard her name being called by the doctor by which I noted that she was a hindu. She looked very young, simple and elegant girl. She being a hindu, I didn’t notice any sindoor (Sindoor is a traditional vermilion red or orange-red colored cosmetic powder from the Indian subcontinent, usually worn by married women along the part of their hair) on her forehead and like those Santhoor soap commercials she turned out to be married. Now like the advertisement goes, all I was waiting for was a kid to approach her out of nowhere just to say mummy. Nothing sort of it happened. If it had happened I might have chuckled a bit. My earlier deduction about her was that she must be some college student doing bachelor’s degree. My intuition are mostly on point which now was going south. In my head I was a Hercule Poirot with more intuition than logic. (I know he worked with superior logic and observation somewhat like Holmes but Sherlock’s detective skills were on different level). Me being so wrong on judging a person was now eating my ego. My train of thoughts stopped at, how on earth Agatha Christie and Conan Doyle came up with such a brilliant characters and plots?

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In the midst of my thoughts, my ear could hear a name being called out repeatedly but my brain was filtering it out and was busy processing on something else. Until there was a loud shout, “PETER GEORGE!” I jolted, my thought bubble popped and I realized that’s me.

After getting inside the room there were couple of doctors inside. One of the main doctor was on computer and operating the phone too. The other two were handling test and jotting down details on register. Another doctor was controlling the crowd and explaining their queries but later he vanished somewhere. I was smiling because medical officials in the PPE kit reminded me of a blue avatar in a game called “among us”. Hey I needed some humor in this dead environment. The Doctors were really grumpy, the main doctor was rude too as if I committed a grave mistake coming here, trust me if I had the option to be at my own home, I would have opt for it. Their behavior made me retract my smile and I went back to my poignancy.

One of the doctors asked me why I was here. My instant thought was, I came in a hospital at this time of pandemic just to check you guys out. Though the words came out of my mouth were totally different. All I mumbled was, “because it was the instructions provided by higher-ups that if I was tested positive I am supposed to report here, do some more medical examination and collect some necessary medicines like cough syrup or vitamins tablets if told by authorities. ” I am pretty sure that they didn’t care for my reply much. Then they fired a next question – how did I feel now? I was fine but waiting for hours on an empty stomach made me tired. I said that I felt little tired. That’s all they needed it and they wrote it officially on a report that I was feeling tired because of covid. I was completely blown away, I should have seen that coming.

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I was asked again to wait outside. After me they called Priyanka, the married stranger who had been complaining about her aching back. She had come before me and been waiting in the unseen queue before me. She collected her medicines and left. The medicines also included Hydroxychloroquine, HCQ. A man accompanied with someone caught my attention. He was about 6 ft.,well built guy, short black hair, with dusky complexion, a mischievous smile frequently appeared on his face and he had those peering black eyes. Sometimes it is good to see some genuine smiles in these tense moments as it elevates half of human stress.

This man approached the main doctor as his name was called. The conversation between him and doctor now drew more attention than it required as the great doctor started yelling at him. His smile vanished while talking to doctors. Communicating with the doctor was futile because the doctor was not ready to hear him out. He was furious and stormed near the person he was with. I was standing near a ward attender who was in a full ppe kit, at this time of corona and place 3 ft apart distance was standard distance to say that I was near him. The attender who made some gesture disapproving the doctor’s action. All I could say was that this ward attender and the other two doctors were little kinder than the main doctor in the room.

Again my name was called, all I had to do now was to collect my report, get my prescribed medicines including HCQ, head back home and follow their instructions. The main doctor now was speaking to me very friendly. I must have judged him too quickly, I thought. Then he dropped the bomb on me that I must go to an isolation center. He had just put up an act to send me to an isolation center for fourteen days. I asked him that was he sure about this and openly said I must have other options because I have no extra clothes or anything in my possession to go stay in an isolation center and told him everything. He was stern and there was no bargaining. I was lucky I didn’t have to deal with his anger which seemed like some erupt active volcano. He said arrange your clothes via someone who will send it there and I have got no other option.

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I sat in the designated ambulance with other five covid patients. Out of these five people there included the 6 ft. stranger along with his companion. I dialed and told every instruction which I got from doctor to my folks at my home who were by the way already been tested covid positive. They got worried and cried, “You only had to collect a report and some medicine. You should have talked to the officials promptly and made your point clear. We all are positive. So, what’s the point of sending you alone?” I had narrated this same thing to the doctor and doctor replied that all three (my parents and me) being in a 1BHK house would infect each other and make it worse for each other.

Off I go to an isolation center, I got off from the ambulance as soon as it reached it’s destination. Not everyone who boarded the ambulance exited the ambulance. Excluding me three of them got out and headed to the entrance of the building. We were stopped at foot of the building so that the covid medical officials could hand our reports and medicines. Two lady with just face mask and gloves came down via lift. One of them wore a hijab and other one was in simple chudidar(an Indian attire). There was a barricade inbetween the officials and patients. Lady in the hijab called out each of our names and the other handed us our reports with our x-ray copy and our prescribed medicines.

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The companion of the 6ft. was called first but my ears couldn’t pick up his name, later they called Gautam, then Nagesh and then my name been called out. My report and medicines was handed but they misplace my x-ray copy. They gave us instruction to complete a five day course of HCQ along with zinc sulphate and allotted each of us to their rooms. I was to go to room no. 1204 and guess what who was I sharing my room with? The smiling 6 ft guy, Nagesh was sharing the room with me and the other two in other room. My head responded and said that’s interesting.

Other two got in their rooms but our room was locked from inside. Nagesh bhai and I knocked the door one after other. This time my head was recited a verse of the holy Bible – “Knock and door shall be opened for you.” Yes! The door did open up and…

~ J George Thomas (aka Aebin)

{Please let me know if you like what you read and found it interesting. Also do mention if you want to read the rest of the story. Please do let me know your thoughts in the comments section.}

(to be continued…)


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I tested out positive and then Heaven filled me with positivity!

This blog is one of my personal blog post, like my “Why these blog?” post. No, it is not a click bait, as the title suggests the post is what it is. The more logical evidence to it is that I still haven’t figured to generate revenue out of this, I would love to (you know, we all need some bonus for our sustenance or for personal reasons) but that’s something we’ll see about someday later, I guess.

I decided to share my experiences regarding my covid-19 positive days as it contains fun, little awareness, some drama, a lot of comedy, testimony of miracles and few realization of certain truth in this span of time. Though I declared from the start that I am not doing this for any other petty reasons and this would be fun but I hope in this process this post won’t be lame long winded explanation of events.

{Before we start let’s check on some facts}

A virus unlike a bacteria is tinier, it is in different shapes and made of proteins . It can’t survive own it’s own but as soon as it gets a suitable living host it acts as a living organism replicating itself. It can have a parasitic relation with it’s host.

Coronaviruses are named for the crown of protein spikes covering their outer membrane surface.

For novel covid-19 or coronavirus our human body is a suitable condition for it’s growth and human to human contact made it spread. It is a respiratory virus affecting our respiratory system i.e mainly our lungs. So an affected person when sneezes or even talks, their tiny droplets of nasal or mouth liquid can contain these active virus. Symptomatic people shows symptoms of the virus like breathing problems, high body temperature, sore throat, fatigue, body pain, etc.

NAMASTE ! An ancient Indian culture where we got social distancing into greeting gesture. Also spiritually respecting other.
Funny and satirical way of greeting with a non contact handshake

While asymptomatic people doesn’t show any symptoms. But when tested, they come out to be covid-19 positive. Asymptomatic people acts like a carrier of these viruses without their knowledge. That’s why the mask and social distance. The soap and concentrated alcohol applied on your skin or surfaces breaks the molecular structure of the virus. (Please, me telling about the breaking of structure of a virus, doesn’t mean you to drink highly concentrated alcohol as doing so you will die or don’t try to drink soap water either which is unhealthy).

Wash it like you mean it.

Virus can survive on surface for certain amount of time for different objects and our human contact to those surfaces can be also be one of the mode of transmission. This is where sanitization, gloves, PPE kit comes in. Worst thing about this virus is it is genetically mutating itself, making itself sustainable and making hard for humankind.

Sanitize it all

How did it all start and how did I contracted the virus?

This is the truth now, you like it or not.

By now the knowledge of novel coronavirus or Covid-19’s origin and it’s precautionary measures are byheart to everyone (if not, let me be kind enough to help you, https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/coronavirus-causes) due it’s massive devastating impact such that it has been proclaimed as a global pandemic. Me yapping about the wet market in Wuhan, China, won’t do us any good. Even though now Chinese government is getting on our nerves with their missile threats and annexation.

But what I want to shed some light is on a whistleblower in China. Dr. Li Wenliang, he was a Chinese ophthalmologist who worked at Wuhan Central Hospital. On the month of December 2019, the Wuhan hospital witnessed numerous patients with mysterious pneumonia. Dr. Li inspected the medical reports by curiosity and concluded that this was again a SARS outbreak. He shared his opinions with his friends but asked them to keep it a secret. This message got out and was on Chinese online platform. Dr. Li was admonished and his discovery was suppressed by higher officials, though he got some online support. He was removed from his job.

He got his job back when the virus was recognized but it was not SARS, similar but worse. It was termed as novel-coronavirus 19. He died from the disease on 7 February 2020, at age 33. A subsequent Chinese official inquiry exonerated him, and the Communist Party of China formally offered a “solemn apology” to his family and revoked the admonishment of him. By early June 2020, five more doctors from the Wuhan hospital, since nicknamed the “whistleblower hospital”, had died from COVID-19.

R.I.P Dr. Li Wenliang

No! I have no secret agenda or any propaganda to promote. Neither have I any intentions to hurt anyone’s feeling or obstruct their truth to throw shade at anyone. If by any chance I happen to offend you by any means please do forgive me, I apologies beforehand as I do not intent to upset anyone.

So? Where is the fun, drama and all the other things said, you ask. Well, here it comes…

ABOVE: Comparatively young and an iphone user ‘s enthusiasm.
Old and traditional valued lady is on par with the above youngster.

Now, how did it I contracted the virus? This is going to take a long, to help you picture my scenario. Buckle up! When Covid-19 cases in India started showing up and lockdown was announced in our country. We were locked up in our homes and were following instructions. Oh also, it was the previous day we had newly moved in, so we were told to be quarantined by our colony. So, we did. There were some weird instructions on the month of March which involved banging metallic utensils and chanting “Go Corona Go!!!” at 5 pm. Random strangers explaining on social platforms that by doing so for few minutes would eradicate virus because of it’s vibration or resonance. Okay! chanting with metallic or any other percussion, provided with that explanation was little dumb but hey we did to prove them that’s not how antigens are dealt.

Later on April, a new instruction came, switching off all lights and lighting diyas (Indian lamp) or a candle at 9 pm for nine minutes. This was more like a vigil and I personally respected it. As sincere prayers of our whole country for a good purpose, different belief united, can do miracles. Yet still, Corona cases spread like a wildfire. God always has better plans, I believe in His wisdom. Humans must have really messed up so bad that God gave us all a big timeout. Lockdown was extended for sake of public safety.

Isaiah 26:20

Picture this, newly moved (not much food in stock as we tried to reduce the load), extended lockdown (where one family member can go out to get necessary food supply in ration), whole family home quarantine (so no one can leave the house till 2 weeks) and our fridge stopped working (for a week or two). By God’s grace and kindness of a church family friend we had a perfect lavish meal packed for us by them on the first day in our new home.(I should have mentioned their name here but I would rather appreciate their safety and privacy). Though from third or fourth day on, me and my family were becoming grumpier. We were on some kind of Hunger Games survival mode, one turning on other maybe our primal instincts were acting up. Our mental and physical health was shaky but we hold down our forts well and good by the mercy of God. Here I should add that situation everywhere around the country was upsetting too, the poor and daily wagers really hit the bottom in this situation. Transportation was completely shut to which most of the people walked kilometers to their village i.e days and days of walking with mere supplies with them.

Things got little worse on the month of September for us, by now lockdown was partially lifted up and office was opened up to be physically reported in. (Till then it was work from home for most). Father got back to work, now mental stress was building upon him and rubbing on us too because of his work in his office. It was bad outside and inside the house. On sunday, 20 September 2020, my father woke up at 5 and fainted on passage way to bathroom. None knew any of this, after sometime he himself woke up. When he opened his eyes, he was confused for few seconds as where he was sleeping. He got back to his bed and slept for some more time. He narrated us his morning escapade to bathroom. We took our car and headed straight to hospital, the right as well as the worst place to be at this time of global distress.

Doctors who checked him where genuinely gentle, there two male doctors who just wore a face shield, medical mask and pair of medical gloves. They were kind and patient to listen his narrative symptoms. We were told to stay back in our house and wait till we are informed about the test results via call.

It was approximately one day chore for three of us to check up one among us. We were dehydrated and hungry as we felt it was unwise to intake of any food outdoor.

We waited for whole day and then decided to call the next day but the hospital line didn’t quite entertained our calls. So my father decide go to hospital and directly get his report but it backfired as when he traveled back to hospital with my mother. I was visited by government officials who were tracking my father’s route map as he was tested positive. I was rudely treated by those great people but the greatest surprise to me was that among those government officials included our colony secretary who bombarded me with insults. I was furious but scared at the same time. I didn’t go with my father as I wasn’t feeling too well but these esteemed personality have just sold their humanity to devil. Seriously, I have known parents being blames for their children’s action but never have I heard it going other way around. Meanwhile, my mother was told to be tested and they said the results would be telephoned to us on the next day.

My parents came in ambulance as they were now symptomatic patients but they had to pay Rs.5000. 5000 rupees or 68.31 US dollars for one way trip from hospital to home which surely must be the double the regular fare. That was somewhat a luxurious ride as we are a middle class family. My father who was sick but paying out this much made him more paler than usual. It wasn’t because he was miser but the country’s financial circumstance wasn’t smooth. Conditions we read or heard on news were that there were many who lost their job which led to committing suicide or like us have been deprived of health and have lost lot of money to the medical.

Those services really gonna cost you.

We were again quarantined and worst case the whole colony shunned us or to say we were black listed. We were going through physical as well as mental trauma. Mother was handling the situation, maybe the maternal hormones was acting up as even though her health was not so better she sacrificed herself to make sure we all could recuperate with healthy diet, sanitation and circulation. It was like the mother hen protecting her young chick including my father. She really was brave but I never acknowledged it to her face.

It is really beneficial to you and people around you. So always put on those mask when you are in public place.

So, my mother’s result came on next on a call followed by the instruction that I need to be tested for covid too. As per the orders given to me I too went to the hospital with my mother to get tested, taking all the necessary precautionary and following the mandatory laws i.e wearing mask and carrying a hand sanitizers. Like a warrior equipping his armor before he goes to a battlefield, I was prepared to face the consequence with my face mask and latex medical gloves.

This time moving out from my room, I realized there was a barricade which blocked the path while marking us quarantined. Colony had arranged a car for us but this wasn’t an act of kindness or something for them but we were in need of that desperate favor. We were on heavy criticism, also under continuous monitoring.

Way to hospital I vomited in the vehicle but luckily we were carrying plastic bag for some other purpose. Lately, I discovered that I been having vomiting sensation while sitting at the back of the car usually because of motion sickness but it wasn’t the case for every car’s back seat ride.

The hospital didn’t allow me to tested directly, I had to fill a form from a dispensary from the previous location I lived, i.e the registered locality dispensary which I couldn’t change due to pandemic. There was the very same form at the hospital and no I am not saying the forms were similar but the exact form was available at hospital and the unnecessary travel to dispensary could be avoided. In the name of pandemic and undeserved respect some people get they exploit it to make people suffer.

They swabbed from my mouth as well as from my nose, the length of the cotton swab put inside deep in my nose was scary. I literally had teary eyes when the the swab scrapped my nasal passage. My mother collected her results as well as her prescribed medicines which was a HCQ tablets, Zinc tablets, cough syrup and some vitamin medicine.

We got back to our home via the vehicle provided and I was supposed to collect my report on the following day. The next day I was alone to the hospital. I was just told to collect my prescribed medicine and x-ray report, that’s all to it.

Doctors had something else on their mind, they suggested me to isolation center. I called my folks and my aunty, who is in the medical field. My parents freaked out but it was my aunt who was petrified. She explained the lately the isolation center, somewhere in North India, was inhabited by HIV positive patients with rest of covid patients. I turned to doctor but they adamant this time to send me to isolation center while one of the patient who was chosen for isolation center but he opted for home quarantine.

Fate was kinder to me the person who I befriended on the same hospital, a six foot guy became my isolation center room mate.

At first it was difficult for my parents to digest but slowly along with we all adapted to the situation we were. I always had wished to live in a hostel far away from my parents. Like the Monkey paw story, I should be careful what I wish as it may come true basically became so true for me. I wanted a hostel life, I got one . I thanked God as my all boys hostel life didn’t have any ragging and far from it my six foot friend treated me like his younger brother.

The 14 days quarantine shortened to 12 days. The food was awful later we ordered food online. My vicar and father’s cousin helped me providing essentials like cloth, food and other items. I survived the wave. By the end I reached home safely. I thanked God for keeping me safe. When I reached home, my father had burnt his own thigh as he himself spilled boiled water on himself. So things weren’t ended happy. We were really fighting to settle in by now things had reached far south. Yet, we held on tightly to God.

When things started to cool down, the phone rang for my father’s covid retest. It was horrifying because even the day before the test my father was coughing up and complaining his tiresome. We three prayed to God as only God could save us now.

The results came via a call the lady consultant confirmed that my father was covid negative. According to the new law imposed, only working govt. member are to be tested rest of the family need not test until they are working away from home.

Phew! There was some good news as vaccine had completed it’s final stage and was sanctioned to be deployed amongst crowd in full scale but the Indian vaccine requires storage extreme cold temperature. So transportation is really difficult and mass production is expensive. There was a major twist, a new strain of coronavirus was found. The virus has itself modified and the new virus happens to spread a little faster. More to the amusement the vaccine also has some mild side effects but maybe this time doing something is better than doing nothing, I guess. Now, when I relive the past I feel I can face any massive storm when God’s mercy is upon me. More importantly I should be with God, as in I should be righteous and unlike pharisees or sadducees I shouldn’t be a hypocrite which God despises. As Abraham Lincoln once said, “Sir, my concern is not whether God is on our side; my greatest concern is to be on God’s side, for God is always right.” Sadly, I know I am hypocrite but God still forgives me and He allows me with plenty of opportunity to repent. I know for sure that it was God’s grace that I could endure everything with a pretty big smile on my face.


The Pearl (A Poem)

Procured the precious pearl of poise by the Prince of Innok.

The jewel was adored by all and adorned some jealous in few.

The Prince laden with love, laughed when they used to gawk.

They brew up for the pearl but it was more than they could chew.

For neither could they steal nor could they seek anything similar.

Pompous Prince strode around the place as proud as a peacock.

Soon the pearl lost it’s luster because of Prince’s pride and stupor.

None fancied the deteriorated gem which now all fetched to mock.

~J George Thomas (aka Aebin Thomas)


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O Anne! (A Poem)

O Anne! O Anne! You look so weary and in loathe you weep.

The poisonous pain which you want to purge, is it too much, too deep?

You lie to hide your hideous truth and say it’s a silly act.

Confused in this chaos and conundrum, you have no tact.

Here in left where nothing is right, there in right where nothing is left.

In these illusions, you lost your peaceful sleep and the promises kept.

Secluded you stay to see who your real fellow, friend or foe be.

You played their melody on your lyre to appease those liar’s plea.

Taunting your wailing, they sung she got what she deserves in best.

O Anne! O Anne! This too shall pass, just trust the heavens to be blest.

~J George Thomas (aka Aebin Thomas).


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Canonical hours of prayers

Indian Malankara Orthodox Syrian church has focused it’s belief mainly in serving Christ with all their mind, soul, heart. Which involves discipline and unadulterated faith. In doing so we have beautiful traditions made by our early church fathers. Traditions which signifies life, death and the second coming of Christ. Traditions which are the sole essence and backbone of our church.

Today, I am sharing one such religious tradition which holds a beautiful meaning to it. The canonical hours of our prayers. Something which might look so unadorned at one simple glance but is really very symbolic. You wonder, Why? Let’s not waste anymore time and get straight into it.

In Indian Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church, we have 7 canonical hours of prayers. Roman Catholic Churches also practices similar canonical hours of prayer but our prayers are different from theirs. We all should pray incessantly; as talking to God or doing good deeds is also accounted as a part of prayer to God. St. Paul teaches us to pray incessantly (1Thessalonians 5:17).

Reference: Ps 119:105 ; Prayer consists of word of God, which will lead and guard you.
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The seven canonical hours of prayers are:

1. Matnis/Prime (morning prayer, 6am)

2. Terce (third hr, 9 am)

3. Sext (sixth hr, 12 noon)

4. Nones (ninth hr, 3 pm)

5. Vespers (evening prayer, 6pm)

6. Compline (soothara, 9 pm)

7. Nocturn (night prayer, 12 midnight)

Chapel of Mar Gregorios Orthodox Syrian Church, Chembur

~pc: Aebin Thomas

Mar Gregorios Orthodox Syrian Church, Chembur also known as Mini Parumala Church. Bishop Geevarghese Gregorios of Parumala is the patron saint of this church. Special intercessory prayers to Mother Mary and Parumala Bishop is done on fridays. Evening prayers are seldom held here. One of the holy churches were people of different faiths have witnessed the power of Christ and have testified, sometimes in form of discrete letters.

In ancient India, time was measured using units of twenty four minutes known as “Naazhika”. One day was divided into sixty “Naazhikas”. the present day measurement of time using ‘hours’ was nor prevalent then. One hour was equivalent to two and a half “Naazhika”. A time unit consisting of seven and a half “Naazhika” was called a canonical hour (i.e 3 hours interval).

Naazhikas units in minutes and hours.
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Prayers of canonical hours are related to the Passion of our Christ. Jews prayed three times a day. But King David used to pray seven times a day. (Psalm 119:164)

Nocturn – Jesus Christ is taken captive (St. John 18:12)

Matnis/prime – The trial of Jesus (St. John 18:28)

Terce – Pontius Pilate sentences Jesus Christ to be crucified. (Three hours after dawn; St. Mathew 27: 2-26)

Sext – Crucifixion of Christ (St. Mathew 27:45)

None – Christ dies (Three hours after noon; st. Mathew 27:46)

Vespers – Jesus Christ is taken from cross (st. Mathew 27: 57)

Compline – Jesus Christ is entombed (compline means guard; St. Luke 23:54)

In monasteries and convents, canonical prayers are said in specific hours. In homes the prayers of seven canonical hours are allowed to be said as morning and evening worship.During Three days and Great Lent fast, the prayers of canonical hours are said in three sets- Morning, noon and evening worship. the prayers for the canonical hours of Terce, Sext and None are included in noon worship. At the end of noon worship forty prostrations are done during these lenten days. Those who won’t be be able pray during working hours should do this worship along with morning prayers.

Sometimes for lay person it might be difficult to keep up the prayers with respect to time. Sometimes the prayers are skipped because of several genuine reasons. Many a times churches can reschedule the time for convenience of people or for the sake respecting the law of the country. So one might ask if prayers can’t be held on time so what’s the purpose of the organized timetable. I remember a joke, once a man wanted to board a bus but the bus was very late and behind it’s schedule. He approached ticket checker and angrily said,” if buses are so late, what’s the purpose of the time table? The ticket checker calmly replies,”if you didn’t have a schedule then how would you know that the buses are late.”

Law and order are made to avoid chaos. It also makes things easy and controlled, so does timely prayers with good heart. Pharisees and Sadducee prayed to display. But John, the baptist and our Christ referred them as vipers or hypocrites for their heart was not right in the eyes of God. For God said their action would be rewarded as in punished.

“And when you pray, you shall not be like the hypocrites. For they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the corners of the streets, that they may be seen by men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward.”

– Mathew 6:5
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The parable of pharisee and the tax collector (Luke 18:9-14) by our Lord Christ teaches that pharisee who paid his tithes in time, was arrogant. He considered himself superior than the tax collector and was full of pride. Meanwhile the tax collector, who stood little far and dared not to lift his eyes towards heaven, prayed to God to forgive him cause he is a sinner. Christ assures that God heard the prayers of the tax collector rather than the phony pharisee, this parable teaches that a prayer with a good humble heart is heard than than the haughty hearts which follows all the rituals. Also, let’s be honest in this time and day of pandemic, earnest prayer is really required.

Pray to God for His mercy.

A prayer to God at specific time also symbolizes the conversations that used to happen in Eden Garden with Humans and God.(Genesis chapter 3:8) When Adam and Eve talked with God, before the grave sin they committed. God along with His creation, made in His image, walked in the garden together and shared everything. We pray hoping to walk with God in this world and in His new Heaven. I conclude this blog by praying that may we all be blessed and our sins be forgiven, so that we be reunited with God.

St. Ephrem, the Syrian, quote’s.

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Love is patient, love is kind…

So powerful and poetic title of the the blog post, right? Some might disagree about the title wholly but it’s okay, I guess. I think I will able to help you and persuade you with my insight for love. Let’s just all agree though that love has been discussed from ancient times and still remains debatable for it’s unique experience to each individual it touches. Hope I can present this post as interesting and differently as I intend it to be.

A melody to sum up God’s love.

I only want to project what I came across or learnt. Feel free to join with me. Christ is all about love and forgiveness and I happen to witness that love. So, I share this post with nothing but with love.

1Corinthians 13:4-8

How do we know we are acting in love? (1 Corinthians 13:4 ) The passage,1 Corinthians 13:4-8, gives specific characteristics of love:

  1. it suffers long, is patient (1 Th 5:14);
  2. it is kind, gentle, especially with those who hurt (Eph 4:32);
  3. it does not envy, is not jealous of what others have (Pr 23:17);
  4. it does not parade itself, put itself on display (Jn 3:30);
  5. it is not puffed up, arrogant, proud (Gal 6:3);
  6. it does not act rudely, brashly, mean-spiritedly, insulting others (Ecc 5:2);
  7. it does not seek it’s own way, act pushy (10:24);
  8. it is not provoked or angered (Pr 19:11);
  9. it thinks no evil, does not keep score on others (Heb 10:17);
  10. it rejoices not in iniquity takes no pleasure when others fall into sin (Mk 3:5);
  11. it rejoices in the truth, is joyful when righteousness prevails (2 Jn4);
  12. it bears all things,handles the burdensome (Gal 6;2);
  13. it believes all things, trusts in God no matter what (Pr 3:5);
  14. it hopes all things, keeps looking up, does not despair (Php 3:13);
  15. it endures all things, “puts up with everything” (John Chrysostom), does not wear out (Gal 6:9);
  16. it never fails, the only thing love cannot do is fail (1 Cor13:4).
For true love never fails; 1 Cor 13:4

Love lays as an important core in a good heavenly virtues. It happens to be the foundation in any relationship like parenthood, marriage etc. Everyone has their own perspective and experience towards love i.e to some it’s sweet or to some it might have been bitter or left a scar. I recollect a joke in a newspaper comic strip, an English teacher asks students, “If you see me stopping a donkey getting beaten up by his master. What virtue do you think I have? ” A child innocently replies,”brotherhood!”

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According to Aristotle, virtue is essential to the pursuit of happiness. We can acknowledge that love towards parents isn’t same as love towards spouse, teachers or siblings. So there are different types of love, right? For in English love remains as an only word but in Greek, for love is specifically categorized in four different words.

The four loves in Greek

  • Storge – empathy bond.
  • Philia – friend bond.
  • Eros – romantic love.
  • Agape – unconditional “God” love. (Agape is the highest form of love)

Once a lay person asked a monk what is the difference between love and like. Monk replied,”It’s simple, when you stroll in a garden and see a beautiful flower, when you like the flower you pluck it. But when you really love the flower you let it be and adore it for it’s beauty. ” Love is divine and can be intensively laborious.

For Love includes:

  • Trust & Respect. (How much trust you have, the more respect and hope is exhibited )
  • Forgiveness & Patience. (How much patient you are and willing to forgive )
  • Privacy & Intimacy. (How much you are willing to share )
  • Compassion & Devotion. (For Compassion and devotion goes hand in hand )
  • Saving & Sacrifice. (How much you are willing to give up or give in)

Let’s try this in some scenarios. We love our parents but as we grow older our privacy or seclusion with them also might naturally grow as to make them less worried but there is still love and respect for them.

While in siblings or best friends, the respect would be less as compared to the amount given to parents. But trust and intimacy might reach to its highest peak than towards your parents. Later it might diminish to half with respect to your increasing age as you intend not to trouble them but still there is love.

Marriage is slightly different, as every aspect in it should be in decent ratio to make it successful. It’s more like a team of tennis players in doubles for the rest of life. If one falls short other has to compensate. It’s challenging and fun. Might be a good time to be thankful to your parents or to wish that you could be a heavenly couples as you desire it to be. God’s love, Agape is the highest form of love cause it is sacred,it is present in every love and without it other remaining three form of love losses it’s essence and purity. Agape is the beautiful truth which can’t be denied.

“Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” (Ephesians 5:31). Here let’s give emphasis on becoming one flesh or soul rather than on leaving your parents for its just a figure of speech or a comparison to highlight the importance given to your spouse as they are a part of your own soul. Please refrain from completely abandoning your parents in this pursuit cause it’s wrong and Bible never encouraged it in the first place. Read Ephesians chapter 5, a portion of St.Paul’s epistle speaks about marriages, as one of the verse goes- “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.” (Ephesians 5:25)

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When it came to love, Aristotle believed that self-love is a prerequisite to loving others… Yes, but there is an unseen boundary for that too. For less self love and you will be less confident or have low self esteem. Too much self love and you will be coined as narcissist. Aristotle was a philosopher. Even concept of love can differ because of exposure in professional interest or knowledge.

Medical field might just comprehend humans as an interesting cluster of cells. For some rationalist love would be just secretion of certain hormones one of it is – Oxytocin (Found highly in women and also present in men). Also called the “love hormone,” oxytocin is a naturally occurring hormone and a neurotransmitter that is produced in the hypothalamus and transmitted into the bloodstream by the pituitary gland. Other happy hormones are dopamine and serotonin. While “I love you” to some people associated with software and internet would remind them of a computer virus found in mails. FYI! When you feel depressed you can hug a pillow, as hugging releases oxytocin which might be a temporary solution. Did you know when patients are treated with certain care and love their body recovers faster or has high chance of recovering from illness. It’s called as Mother Teresa effect.

Fascinating, right? Some thought to manipulate your feelings and hack your data by sending spam mail while other can breakdown your feelings into simple chemical compounds. We are not here for chemicals or computer viruses but we are here to know what love really is.

Love is not love which alters it when alteration finds, or bends with the remover to remove: O no! It is an ever fixed mark that looks on tempests and is never shaken; it is the star to every wandering bark whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.

William Shakespeare, Sonnet 116.

Christ’s life on earth revolved around teaching love, humility and forgiveness. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believed in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believe in him should not perish, but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)

Lord Jesus Christ shared His heavenly love to everyone. For we were God’s servants but by Christ becoming unblemished lamb, we are blessed to be called the children of God. God’s love is so divine and pure as it also instructs to love our enemy. “But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you” (Matthew 5:44 KJV). Christ told to love thy neighbours when someone tested Christ asking, who my neighbour is? Christ replies them with the parable of the Good Samaritan.

The parable of Good Samaritan is, when a Jew was badly hurt and robbed. His own nationality people including a Levite (priest) left him to die but a Samaritan; for in those days Jews and Samaritans were not on friendly terms. In the parable the good Samaritan pitied on the wounded Jew, helped him and payed a very good amount for his treatment. After replying in this parable Jesus asked the man, who he thinks in this parable is the neighbour? He answered that it eas the Samaritan.

Jesus Christ being born as Jew, descendant of David tells this parable which symbolises that even enemies are our neighbours who should be loved. So, love and respect everyone.

Christ’s sacrifice exemplifies His divine love for mankind; Jn 15:13

Talking about love and skip about Valentine’s day, that’s inevitable. The whole world celebrates or knows about Valentine’s day, the day when shops offers discounts on sales, couples go merry and singles sober. Valentine’s day is romantic and dedicated for couples. Ever wondered why? To answer that I might have to start from the origin, don’t fret cause I will simplify the story of St.Valentine.

The popular phrase used by lovers.

February 14, the valentine’s day commemorates to remember St. Valentine, a roman catholic saint of Terni, an important town of Umbria, in central Italy. There the king and his kingdom were in a war with other nation. They happen to be losing the war. The King inquired with his ministers what the reason was and they came to a conclusion. That there were few new recruits, as less young soldiers in the army and these youth didn’t prefer war. As they would rather marry and settle for a peaceful life. So King banished marriage in the entire kingdom. St.Valentine secretly consecrated or officiated the marriages of young couples and was once caught. He was sent to prison and later charged with execution sentence for spreading Christianity. At nights, the saint would receive flowers through his prison window. As the young couples who got married by him were expressing their kindness and support in this manner. In prison he met a jailer and his daughter, who was blind. St. Valentine healed the jailer’s daughter in Christ’s name. Both jailer and his daughter confessed Christ name and accepted Christ. St. Valentine signed a letter “from your Valentine” to his jailer’s daughter, whom he had befriended and healed from blindness. Thus the famous line,“your Valentine” was adapted by lovers and is still used. Because St.Valentine was martyred for marriage, romance and love. The world celebrates his martyrdom as Valentine’s day.

A valentine post which I found on internet.

Though there are some confusions about history of events in regards of place and order amongst historians. Yet centuries pass by Valentine’s day is still celebrated for love and nothing else.

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Gifts and fruits of Holy Spirit.

Love is divine and we, Christians, actually acknowledge it as a gift of the Holy Spirit. “And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.”(1 John 4:16)

So, if you are having problems in your relationship i.e with your children, spouse, siblings or friends, anyone. Just pray to God and I must admit it works effectively. For some rationalist it takes intense prayer to miraculously secrete certain hormone, as certain humans have shunned their emotional side and excuse themselves as modern scientific or consider themselves as epitome of evolution.

We humans love something or someone either we love a person or music or literary arts or vehicles etc. For without love one would lose the meaning of life. But falling in love over earthly materials are foolish and can lead to huge spiritual and mental crisis. Christ teaches to love everyone, forgive one’s enemies and genuinely appreciate everything by thanking the Triune God. For God has best interest for us all as He loves us dearly even if we don’t deserve it because of our sins. Learn to appreciate goodness in everything and be humane, that’s all it is in love. Love is divine as it is one of the fruits of Holy Spirit. (Gal 5:22-23)

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.”

(Galatians 5:22-23)

“Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.”(1 John 4:8 ). Before I bid adieu to all you readers in this post, I would love to share two YouTube videos below to all those lovers around the world. (Dedicated o everyone, in or not in a relation, it’s just my way to say -You and I are loved). The link contains very beautiful songs with admirable lyrics. One by Matthew Mole, a South African artist from Cape Town and other by Mack Brock,  a founding member of North Carolina-based Elevation Worship before launching his own solo career in 2018 with his debut album for Sparrow Records, Greater Things.

Matthew Mole – you are loved (Lyrical video ) [DISCLAIMER: I hereby declare that I do not own the rights to this music/song. All rights belong to the owner. No Copyright Infringement Intended. No copyright intended.” “I do not own the music in this video/rights to this music.” “I do not take credit for this video.]
Mack Brock – I Am Loved (Official Lyric Video) [DISCLAIMER: I hereby declare that I do not own the rights to this music/song. All rights belong to the owner. No Copyright Infringement Intended. No copyright intended.” “I do not own the music in this video/rights to this music.” “I do not take credit for this video.]

I would like to conclude this blog by saying, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.”(Mark 12:30) For God’s love is most beautiful and doesn’t corrupt with time. For His love is highest, purest and most reliable form of love which can rejuvenate your wisdom and your love for others.


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Song of Life (A Poem)

Hear the mesmerizing melody of your life.

Lost among loud noises, is your story, your shrine.

Dance to your rhythm, in this timeless strife.

For your song is waiting to shine.

Sing your symphony aloud, my dear.

Rock n roll than ruining everything for those unreal.

Play your soulful chord with no worries nor fear.

For your music is mystic that none can steal.

~J George Thomas ( aka Aebin)


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The Lore (A Poem)

The tramp of Troy set off to a tedious trip.

More he tried his luck the more misery was he in.

The shy fool flustered sly foxes, even his own kinship.

Scars to his soulless shattered heart was his best win.

Lessons he learned from his life were yet to be told.

Far out and far wide he fetched wisdom for his senile soul.

Lo, pretty lies preached to cover petty truth were much sold.

Saw obnoxious visionaries with obstinate minds extol.

Said sinners like him might survive the fall as a sail in a wild storm.

His bestowed curse became other’s renowned cure.

Memories of his mistakes they sung to keep wise inform.

The tale of the tramp was a lore of the twit traveller’s tour.

~J George Thomas (aka Aebin)


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Why these blog? (Personal)

The post which no one asked for or to put it precisely no one cared for and with my intensions to entertain you though it may just be my blunt hopes that I carry upon. Let’s just see where it leads us.

If I had a perfect pretext for my blogs it would be – Well, I am so simple minded and spiritually enlightened that I thought to share with all via blog… No! That is just so wrong and hypocritical that I might even make myself laugh in hysteria. I enthusiastically worked on all these blogs to present the things what I was taught to abide by from my childhood, something which really makes me happy to share about. I share to you all about Jesus Christ in an Indian Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church perspective.

Random laughing cat

Let’s just start with how I stumbled upon the idea of blogging. Say you believe in fate and find it funny sometimes? Well I do and so it goes, I once eavesdropped a conversation between some random strangers about creating a website but it required some coding skill. The idea of owning a site made me all excited except I never actualy had knowledge about it. So gradually the idea left me.

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A year or two passes by, now a guy from different department of my college again induced into me the idea of making a site but this time it came with a hefty price. A price of making me join in a money chain laundering scheme under him. Yeah even the idea of getting a penny, that too being able to spend it unreasonably or to be unaccountable for it from my beloved parents is a nightmare, something I have as the definition for the word impossible. I ain’t sure but I think money chain scheme is illegal in India. That plan was presented before me like brilliant wild storm but eventually it brushed away like a soothing calm wind for I had dropped the plan and sobered up quickly.

Later time leisurely took it’s toll on me and then it happed. SSO(https://theartisticsoulweb.wordpress.com/), a friend of mine shared her site which had her poems. I was so smitten by her expressive poems, the vocabulary she used and they way she presented it in her site. Never in past I knew that she was a such a good poet. But for her site, did she do coding? Now SSO, not knowing that she is an angel in disguise to me. I genuinely appreciated her poems and seeked my answers. To my surprise she was humble and patient. I knew she and her sister were a vivid readers cause in my childhood when I happen to visit her house on the occasion of Christmas carols and prayer meetings I always noticed lots of children digest magazines, Twinkle magazines and some thick hard bound children books.

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Yep, now I got some lead to build a site which might even charge me nothing but wait, what will be my site about? It never bothered to me to have a definite plan for my site. So, the dilemma begins.

Mother Mary and Joseph with Lord Jesus on whom Holy Spirit is bestowed upon.

Then it hit me. Hey, I can write about Indian Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church. Why? No, not because I am an expert at it or I acknowledge myself a saint. Far from it, it’s because I was a Sunday school teacher who taught teens on Sundays about their Christian beliefs for around 3-4 years. Taught bunch of teens in my adolescence, then I found I had a knack for it. Teens can be a bit rebel but I managed to handle it. To them I was lenient and interesting. Here I am not boasting that I was too good but rather implying that I wasn’t bad either. This was enough to boost me up, my impulse took me off and it seems that I finally began to get back on track.

Let me tell you, I started as a substitute for a charming model teacher Mr.J Thomas who was tall, handsome, lovable by all and a good orator. Every trait I found, he was good at it and It was clear that I had big shoes to fill.

I was assigned to teach class 8, I was thrilled cause my favourite sunday school teacher taught me in same class. Back then my teacher for class 8 was Ms. Bincy Benjamin. She was young and cool with us. I saw this as a good omen and decided to adopt her teaching methods. Then slowly I got the complete charge cause he got busy and shifted away due to his office work. First it was chaos later I got the hang of it. The sunday school wasn’t such walk in park for young me. There was an invisible unwritten judgement panel tier. Panel starts with every vicar of my church, then teachers around me, then students, then the parents and later the rest of the esteemed church members. Can’t blame them cause to them I am a just a medium built guy with a medium complexion who smiles a lot, talks very less and is goofy who is in his mother’s shadow(My mother is a social jolly person while I am a shy introvert. Apparently they didn’t care to know about it). I didn’t bother to correct them much, hoping that my work would speak up for myself. Somehow, somewhere it did but many a times it was a disaster.

I analysed everything and I convinced myself that I can be credited about the context I write even as a lay person. Also I had some trusted sources. I always loved Lord Christ for this that I can be me with clear conscience – just me with good conscience for He loves us and forgives us all. Back to the sunday school class, one or two batch of students were real horror. But to be honest I had my share of fun and got some real good opportunities too. I am thankful for everything to God.

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So, it was settled that I will just post about Christ and Christianity. Why blogging? Cause it might be something that when I depart and be in a wooden casket that people might say hey he was silent but wasn’t that bad and had interesting perspective. I posted my first post from few sources which I could really rely upon. Unacceptably the first post got some real good response but later my audience wavered which was painful.

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Then I started to share my site personally on social app to few of my Christian contacts. Earnestly, I only did that to tell them that I am alive and hoped to know about how they were coping during this pandemic. I really regretted after sharing the site. I felt that I was forcing my blogs onto others. Many of my friends weren’t so called readers anyway, then the idea of sermons isn’t exactly they are really into. Forget about others my parents didn’t bother to read much. I really got furious cause they took time to read my personal diary. Something which was cringey and I was unwilling to share but blog which I want them to read, they won’t read. The diary which I had tried to write for once to vent out my frustrations, organise my ideas and thoughts as per some motivator, had miserably backfired. For the first time I jotted down something embarassing and they happen to read it but my blogs – No!!! Being a single child with no siblings and my 90’s parents with their parenting techniques of trial and error methods were costing me more. So of all people I really felt the urge to seek God otherwise I knew I might doom and I would have to owe it all. God save my soul!!!

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I never wished to post poems cause that wasn’t my cup or my thing. Then I feared that I might make SSO feel that I am stealing her thunder or might portray myself as a creep stalker to which she might be uncomfortable to share her poems. Then I realised she doesn’t overthinks like me. I don’t have much real good friends (Me, a shy introvert) or in touch with them (my friends). So, losing a friendly face is more like getting a bullet in my head now. That’s why it makes a big deal. I saw the difference in her and my work. I smirked accepting that her posts are too good and neat. I can learn much from her.

The first poem I penned down was somewhere near 2018 when I was feeling blue and suddenly out of mind came the first line – They talk while you mumble. They walk while you stumble.

I developed few more lines and felt I might even get few accolades or recognition. Nothing such happened. Till then I had developed some immunity to disappointments in my expectations. By then, I had expectations to build a time machine or was expecting to get hit by some random meteors. Many absurd expectations that didn’t catch up. Soon I had came across an Italian movie called,”Life is beautiful”. This movie thought me innocence, sacrifice, love and perspective does matter.

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Now with my primitive poetic skills I got, it came in handy to write riddles for treasure hunt for mgocsm bizonal conference, a christian youth meet held on 2019.

One of the clue chit, riddle for fire extinguisher spot.

The first poem that I had written earlier. I uploaded it to a community of wannabe poets like me. Handful yet upon receiving decent response I was happy. Soon I thought I can fill my blog posts with poem to make people entertained. Again to which I felt I might be pushing my luck too much but it takes time to make certain relevant Christian blog and poems are good filler posts.

I only want to share about Christian community beliefs. I have nothing to be preachy about or to change anyone, it always depend on their own choices and their approach. Though some posts looks like a sermon but I just meant to present what I came across or learnt. Nothing more or nothing less.

The reason for this particular post is to open up a bit of myself, to compensate for a future relevant post, to entertain and to learn to improve my site. I also have a blog post in my mind which might take sometime. Hope this was as funny and interesting as I had in my mind. Take care, God bless us all and praise to His holy name.


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CHRISTIANITY TREE

Christians are the ones who steadfastly believe that Christ is indeed the son of God, the prophetic messiah. The universal church is founded by our Lord Jesus Christ. It was in Antioch that the believers were first called Christians. (Acts 11:26).

The internet today brief Christianity just as an Abrahamic monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth. Sure, but there is more to it that meets the eye.

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Me, being asked which christian I am and upon learning that I am an Oriental orthodox christian. Many give me a puzzled look as if the idea of existence of something other than Catholic or Protestant christian is unfathomable. I simply smile and explain to them that St. Thomas, one of the chosen apostle of Christ, traveled to India in AD 52 and converted the inhabitants with their own will and consent. Thus we came to be known as Orthodox christian. This is true about orthodox but not the whole truth. For it may require a real substantial amount of time to explain it properly. So, let me. I really hope that I keep it to the point.

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I am from Indian malankara orthodox syrian church, under the patron St.Thomas ( one of the apostle of Christ). The history of my church is very interesting and if I do happen to share it some day, you would surely be intrigued. Cause the history of my church contains fight for our own heritage, oppression from other christrian missionaries (they thought we were not authentic christians and burned most of our religious texts and relics), honorable martyrs, internal division, a famous oath we took, the legal battles and atlast the sweet victory we deserved (For St. Thomas had built 8 churches in south of India, which would have been lost and in worst case scenario we would have been termed heretics or would have been non-existent). But today, I just want to present the whole christian church denomination.

Like most of the other widely accepted religion have denominations or hierarchy among them, so does Christians have denomination.

There are three main groups :

  • The Orthodox Church
  • The Catholic Church
  • The Protestant Church

These three are the main parent denomination while there are subdivisions. The denomination had occurred because of difference in religious or theological opinions.

Our lord Jesus had been preparing His beloved apostles for the ministry of Christ, foretelling them everything about trials and persecution that they must endure in His name. Remember what I told you, ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also. (John 15:20)

After our Lord sacrificed Himself on the the cross till the time of His resurrection, His apostles couldn’t really spread God’s message. Cause they lacked courage(gift of Holy Spirit), fearing the Pharisees, Sadducee, Roman officials and Jewish chief priest. Lord Jesus knew their tender heart. He gathered His flock together which were scattered, comforted and guided them.

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On the day of Pentecost, Holy Spirit descended upon Mother Mary and the twelve apostle in the upper room, Jerusalem. The Holy Spirit came like strong wind then what seemed like a tongue of fire rested on each one of them. After receiving Holy Spirit apostles started to speak in different tongues which was understood and marveled by the other foreign crowd who had came to Jerusalem for pilgrimage purposes. People from Parthia, Medes, Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, Judea, Cappadocia, Pontus, Phrygia, Pamphylia, Egypt, the parts of Libya near Cyrene; visitors from Rome (both Jews and converts to Judaism); Cretans and Arabs (refer Acts 2: 1-12) heard the apostles speak in their language. St.Peter, now full of Holy Spirit, proclaimed about Christ. The crowd received the word of God, willingly repented their sins and got converted to Christians. It is accounted that 3000 were converted that day.

The Apostles and evangelists preached the word of God around the world. Thus many new believers continued to profess the love of God even amidst tribulations faced. Through the fierce persecution the word of God still bloomed and spread around everywhere. Churches were built with the blessing of their patron saints. Bishop, priests and deacons were appointed to look after the flock of Christ. Those era there was only one faith and one widely accepted church i.e Christ till there were certain theological dispute which created several fraction.

In AD 330, the Roman Emperor Constantine (now a vivid christian believer) shifted his capital to Constantinople. This caused a lot of political and ecclesiastical changes. In AD 395, Emperor Theodosius divided his administrative setup into Eastern and Western segment and this was one of the causes for the division between East and the West.

In AD 451, the Council of Chalcedon was held after the council of Nicea, Constantinople and Ephesus. The Council of Chalcedon was a church council held from 8 October to 1 November, AD 451, at Chalcedon, a town of Bithynia in Asia Minor. The Council was called by Emperor Marcian to discuss the human and divine nature of Jesus Christ. The council concluded with adapting that the Christ had two perfectly combined nature but some strongly disagreed to the council and rejected it. They believed that Christ had one and only one nature at a time. That Christ is complete God and took complete human form on earth. Thus there was a split, the oriental orthodox is the sect that rejected idea council of chalcedon. I am from Oriental orthodox church, Indian Malankara orthodox syrian church is what I represent.

THE CHURCH DENOMINATION TREE CHART
Sister Oriental Orthodox Churches. (Eastern, non Chalcedonian Churches )

Later, the christian church got divided into eastern and western in AD 1054. The Roman catholic church stood with the western fraction whereas the orthodox (eastern) churches stood with eastern group.

The causes of this division is as follows:

  • Changes in faith and rituals
  • Political differences
  • The Pope’s and Patriarch’s love for power
  • The controversy of filioque (the question of the procession of the Holy Spirit).

The arguments between the western and the eastern churches reached to it’s zenith when heads of churches issued censures and excommunications against each other. In 1043 AD the patriarch of Constantinople Michael Cerularius and in later years Pope Leo IX of Rome issued excommunications against each other. Pope asked the Patriarch who turned against of the Roman church, to appear before him. The Patriarch refused to receive the Papal representatives and these representatives excommunicated the Patriarch in the name of Pope. The Patriarch retaliated by excommunicating the Pope and his delegates. Thus the Roman church and Byzantine (Eastern Greek) church got divided into two.

THE CHRISTIAN DENOMINATION TREE CHART

The consequences of the divisions:

  • Ecumenical activities were disrupted.
  • The mutual relationship between the churches was shattered.
  • It activated missionary work.

Latin became the official language of the western church and greek became the accepted language of the Eastern church. The western church added new faith like purgatory and filioque, the eastern church denied them and remained faithful to the unadulterated Apostolic faith.

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The further division of Catholics is one of the major event occurred in the history. It all started when Reformation took place, 500 years ago, as Martin Luther (1483-1546) tried to reform the Catholic Church. His attempt to do so instead led to a schism in the church.

Roman Catholics at some point was not just a dominant religious group but also had become politically powerful. They could control the administration or were so influential that they governed a kingdom. Roman catholics believed that their patron saint St.Peter, being eldest among the twelve apostle, makes them superior over other Christians. They proclaimed Papal dogma which gave the Pope the ultimate power and so no lay person could question Pope.

So now bishops and priests started enjoying their new power. This lead into sins like gluttony, greed and hypocrisy. Questionable traditions were practiced, among them were the buying of pamphlets to absolve the sins committed.

The monk Martin Luther (1483 – 1546) is frustrated by the Catholic’s Church practice of selling indulgences, which allows people to buy spiritual salvation. He finds the practice fundamentally wrong in terms of theology.

His Bible study has left him with the unshakeable realization that a sinful person who believes in an all powerful and absolute God is made righteous in the eye’s of God. This very belief and God’s mercy and not through money, God pardons ones sins.

Luther is convinced that the faithful can turn to their creator directly through prayer. They need neither church nor priest as a middle man, a radical idea that breaks the power of the Catholic Church, starting with its religious doctrine.

Luther’s conclusions open the door for new freedoms. But the decades following his famous“Ninety five Theses”, supposedly nailed to the door of the Wittenberg Church on October 31, 1517 . Thus the birth of Reformist or Protestant Christians occurred. There are many reformists churches, each differ slightly with certain belief and order of worship. The Caholics for few short span of time really tried to subdue the new reformist christians but they failed miserably. Reformist churches are today very well known in the world and among other Christian group.

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I really do hope the you got the gist of schisms or denominations among christians. I just wanted to throw light at the major Christian denomination. I have no anti-catholicism agenda, later history also witnessed that Catholics made peace and regretted their wrongdoings. Pope and Patriarch are in friendly terms. I pray that there be tranquility and harmony among humans irrespective of different beliefs.

This is really interesting to understand that even though the path of our religious practice or the wagon of belief is different but our destination is the same, i.e Christ’s new heaven, to sit at the right hand of our heavenly father. We all are meant to be called children of our lord Jesus Christ. For now I can truly contemplate and understand when the Christ’s disciples (Here the the disciples can portray our church denomination of different saints) argued about who is greatest among them all. Christ took the little child and set an example of being humble as the child, for that is the true sign of being greatest (refer Mathew 18:1-6).

For humility, faith and repentance before God is everything which counts. And He said, Thy faith hath saved thee; go in peace. ( Luke 7:50) I would like to conclude by saying let’s love our God Jesus and be humble before Him, for everything belongs to Him.


Psalm 51

A soulful psalm written by king David, a psalm with intricate emotions and metaphorical lines which earnestly seek God’s mercy.

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Our Lord so loved David for his dedication, reverence and humbleness that God had abundantly blessed King David. Yet, David committed a grave sin to which God has furious and to which David repented, as psalms 51 can testify itself. God forgave king David, for his heart was seen by God. Psalm 51 is read to reconcile and reconnect with the most high. Let me be honest, during this epidemic, we are in so much need of this psalm at this day and age. This blog is to provide a brief about psalm 51. Everything around about psalm 51 is presented, hope I could make it as interesting as possible.

Historical background

Psalm 51 teaches the nature of genuine repentance which is the reason it is used so often in the services of orthodox church. Historically, King David committed the transgression of adultery and murder. However, He obtained mercy from God because of his repentance. Many fall into sins but never come to repentance: therefore, no one can use David’s sin as an excuse to sin. For sins and transgressions in themselves do not draw down the mercy of God. Genuine repentance, characterized by such things as confession to God; inward purity and inward humility draws the mercy of our divine God.

Icon of holy prophet David.

Ps 51 is used daily in our services of Orthros, the Third hour and Compline and it is also recited in every Divine Liturgy by the priest as he censers before the Great Entrance.

The sin

The treacherous sin which made King David compose this beautifully repentive psalm. The story of David’s adultery with Bathsheba, the wife of Uriah the Hittie. This happened during a war against Ammonites. A King who should have been leading the armies and commanders into battle but king David had stayed behind, this blog will be used to ellaboratively explain the sin in proper sequence.    

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The roofs of early Israeli house were typically flat and allowed it as a cool place to relax in the evening. David spied Bathsheba, bathing atop her house and was smitten by her beauty. He had her brought to him for the purpose of adultery. Bathsheba conceives and sends the word of her pregnancy to David.

David calls for Uriah, Bathsheba’s husband, to be brought home from battle so that Uriah would sleep with his wife, hoping to cover his own sin in this fashion. Uriah, however, refuses to sleep with Bathsheba, as soldiers in battle were prohibited from doing so. (Levi 15; 1 Sam 21:5)

His first plan having failed, David arranges for Uriah to be sent forth to the front lines for battle and then to retreat from behind, virtually ensuring his death. David’s second plan to conceal his adultery has succeeded through Uriah’s murder on the battlefield. Hearing the death of Uriah, his wife Bathsheba mourns. Following the mourning period, David takes her as his wife and she gives birth to a son. It is clear David’s actions were evil in God’s sight.

Realization and reconciliation

It is the Lord himself who sends Nathan, the prophet, to rebuke David for his sins of adultery and murder.

When prophet Nathan came to him, he narrated a parable, “There were two men in one city, one rich and the other poor. The rich man had many flocks and herds. But the poor had nothing but one little lamb he had brought and nourished and reared; and it grew up together with him and with his sons. It ate of his own food and drank from his own cup and lay in his bosom, and it was like a daughter to him. And a traveller came to the rich man. The rich man, who refused to take from his own flock and from his own herd to prepare for the foreign traveller who had come to him; but he took the poor man’s lamb and prepared it for the man who had come to him”. (2 sam12: 1-6)

David listens to Nathan’s parable and then pronounces the sentence on his own head. Nathan propheises to David, saying you are the man in the parable.

There was a twofold punishment: warfare for all the rest of David’s days’ and rebellion from within. Additionally, the child born to Bathsheba would die.

King David grieved and repented for his sins. God forgave him and spared his life but he was punished. Now, this line doesn’t make sense, I know. God has laid rules for his every creation, to which planets, mighty wind, gigantic mountains, oceans, flora and fauna obey and follow. This rules are set to keep the balance and peace in check. When King David took a life, God spared his life but his son conceived by Bathsheba, was born feeble, had died. The current situation, we are in, justifies the rules of restoration and balance.

This epidemic is harming humans but the nature is recovering. The injustice, crime rate, pollution, destruction of nature all went down. God is not only the master of humans but to all the things visible and invisible. Best way to put, “Do not be deceived; God is not mocked. For whatever a person sows he will also reap”. (kjv Gal 6:7)

Psalm 51 is prayer from a king, a prayer for us all to apologize for his/her transgression. Psalm 51 consist of parts, like it opens with seeking mercy, for our God is merciful. Later comes acceptance, accepting the sin committed with humility.  Then comes heartfelt repentance following reconciliation and ends with offering. ( Observe the psalms clearly states God doesn’t need your material offering but your heart He sees, He knows you. He needs a just, a contrite heart ).

The parable of prodigal son (Lk 15:11-32) in the new testament tells us when a human sins, they drift apart from their eternal Father.

Icon of The Prodigal Son.

The Father who is waiting for His son, patiently at the gate, for his prodigal son’s return. Where the return of the second son, the depiction of the sinner, is celebrated with joy. So, even the return of one sinner is rejoiced in heaven. Seek God Jesus, He forgives you cause you are His child. You know what I like about Christianity than human rational minds is that the concept. The concept even you among the zillions, among this vast expanding universe, does matter to Him, the most. While the rational minds prefer making choices like, “millions can be sacrificed for billions sake”. The parable of the lost sheep, in which the master leaves 99 of his sheep to find that one small lost lamb, tells us everything about God’s love. (refer Luke 15:1-7)

This epidemic, we all should remain calm and pray in our homes. Seeking God and repent like people of Nineveh did during the times Jonah (refer Jonah 3:5-6). I would conclude this blog with quoting from Luke 1:37, “For with God nothing shall be impossible.”


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For that’s all I wish. (A Poem)

For that’s all I wish.

Silently staring at night sky.

Enjoying every peace and prosperity desired dreamlike.

For everything is fine, with no sudden sad goodbye.

Sharing sweet innocent smile with strangers and beloved alike. 

For that’s all I wish. 

No policies, pacts or promises but humanity is all to unite.

Neither strong walls nor sick wars in sight.

Mother nature is well nourished and her beauty is bright like she is in her prime.

Human,beast and birds are treated fair right, as neither there is a victim nor a crime. 

For that’s all I wish. 

Hate, hypocrisy and hunger are myths.

Together in pain persevered to gain what was preached.

Goodness hoped in glory and in grievance, in equal bits.

For care and compassion are not just mirages but a major coup accomplished. 

For that’s all I wish. 

Wanderers under the glittery night sky.

Lovers of peace, waiting patiently for her passionate kiss.

Simplicity  sets the mysteries of life to untie.

Searching for the shooting stars to grant all these wishes of bliss. 

For that’s all I wish. 

Venturing in our dreamy wishes.

Vast is the universe, little are we.

Yet we are bound to take deadly destructive choices.

Redeem and repent so free we be. 

Yes, that’s all I wish for.

~J George Thomas (aka Aebin)


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Life is more than you can perceive.(A Poem)

They talk while you mumble,

they walk while you stumble.

Narrow n noisy is your path,

sorrow n sadness is your truth.

Loneliness blinds your sight,

light of hope conquers dull dark tomorrow.

Shallow n scared yet you smile,

knowing there’s none to lend but all to borrow.

Past is past singing you passed a mile,

carrying your cross for you are a sinner undivine.

Love you seek but hate you receive,

life is more than you can perceive.


~ J George Thomas (aka Aebin)


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The Passion of our Christ.

Since the birth of our Christ till His ascension to heaven, is a testimony of God’s love and mercy towards mankind. This love (Agape, the highest form of love and “the love of God for all humans ) is pure,holy, divine and truly the most valuable treasure to us.

Today, through this blog, I want to share small but important details and show wider perspective from Indian Malankara Orthodox for the spiritual growth. Stay strong and continue believing in Lord Christ. For Satan even tempted our Lord Jesus Christ thrice, during 40 days fasting, in desert. (Mt 4: 1-11)So we, his mere creation, too will be tempted, tested and persecuted. So we need the spirit of God to fight Satan. I hope this blog would be helpful to enrich the souls and to attain the spirit of God.

THE PALM SUNDAY

Christ’s triumphal entry into Jerusalem is celebrated by the church on Palm Sunday. During Christ’s era, Jewish nationalism had led to the expectation of a political Messiah to deliver them from Roman control and to reestablish David’s kingdom. What they couldn’t grasp is, Messiah did come but not to save our mortal bodies but our soul. Through parables and acts of humility, Jesus shows that He has not come to establish an earthly kingdom rather prepared for us a heavenly kingdom. He did not ride on a horse nor in a chariot (like earthly kings and queens), but on donkey- a sign of humility and peace (Zechariah 9:9), thus again Christ fulfilling the old testament prophesy. This entrance into Holy City declares the establishment of the Kingdom of God. It is also a promise of Christ’s final entrance into the heavenly Jerusalem with all believers and of His accepting the new Jerusalem (promised paradise) as His pure bride (Rev. 21:2).

Palm Sunday: The Messianic King.

Donkey, has been used as a working animal for at least 5000 years, who is untied portraying that we too are untied from the bondage of our sins. The colt and the donkey, both representing faithful Jews and gentiles who are brought together in the kingdom. At our Vespers(Indian Malankara Orthodox’s evening pra) of Palm sunday, we sing. “You are riding on a foal prefigured how the untamed and uninstructed gentiles would pass from unbelief to faith”.

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A story goes like this ( just an animated fictional folklore, a tale to convey a moral ), the donkey, on which our Christ chose to ride , was enjoying all the attention by the people of Jerusalem. The donkey started to believe that it was the donkey for whom the carpet of clothes and palm leaves spread. Here we are this foolish donkey, who gets all the praise and attention by others and forget that it is only because of our Christ, the merciful giver, we receive this short lived recognition. Let’s be humble. For Christ our God, taught us humility, our savior had chose a donkey to ride upon and not a horse. We must thank God for every talents, gifts and blessings.

The people who spread their clothes before Jesus did so as paying reverence to a King. It is spiritually interpreted as our need to lay down to our flesh and indeed our very lives for Christ.

“Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!” (Mt 21:9), this cry comes from Psalms 117:25,26. Hosanna means,”Save, we pray!”

THE PASSOVER MEAL

The Passover (Jewish Passover ) commemorates God’s deliverance of Israel from slavery in Egypt to the Land of Promise.(Ex 12-14). In remembrance of this, the Jews would slaughter an unblemished lamb and partake of it with unleavened bread.

Passover commences on the 15th of the Hebrew month of Nisan and lasts for either seven days (in Israel and for Reform Jews and other progressive Jews around the world who adhere to the Biblical commandment) or eight days for Orthodox, Hasidic, and most Conservative Jews

The Last Supper icon

The Passover prefigures the Passion of Christ, in which the only-begotten Son of God is slain (God became man, from shepherd to become a sacrificial unblemished Passover lamb) in order to deliver His people (all believers ) from their bondage to sin and death. The new Passover (christian passover) also indicates, God’s redemption of all humanity from sin and death, and entrance into the promised Kingdom.

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Whether the first day of the feast was Passover or the day before Passover is debated among the Fathers. What is certain is that lord Jesus regarded the meal with disciples to be the Passover meal.


Pesaha Appam or Inriyappam or Kurisappam is the unleavened Passover bread made by the Saint Thomas Christians of Kerala, India (PC: N.Ann).

Passover meal is one of the very emotional and painful segment, for Lord Jesus knew that His time has come to fulfill the prophesy and one among His own disciple would betray Him. Again here Christ taught disciples to be humble by washing their foot, saying he has not come to be served but to serve. Even foretelling them about the crucifixion of our lord Christ and His second coming.

Christ has a fervent desire for this Passover because this meal will impart the mysteries of the new covenant to His followers and also this event will inaugurate the great deliverance of humanity from sin ( Adamic sin) through power of the cross.

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Jesus institutes the Eucharist, the long- awaited messianic banquet, to which He admits even Judas (compare Est 7), seeking by all means to save him. Because of his wicked heart, Judas’s participation leads to his condemnation (1cor 11:27-30).

Christ’s words are repeated in the divine liturgy, inviting the faithful to receive His body and blood. In holy communion, we are truly united in Christ. He gave thanks (from the Greek word for “Eucharist”) to teach us

  1. how we are to celebrate this sacrament,
  2. that He comes willingly to His Passion, and
  3. to accept sufferings with thankfulness, knowing that God can use sufferings for ultimate good.

The old testament was sealed with blood of bulls and goats. The new testament is sealed by the gift of Christ, who shed His own blood to conquer sin and death and to reconcile us with God. Christ calls it the blood of the new covenant, which is God’s promise and the fulfillment of the law. By new, He means this covenant brings immortality and incorruptible life; this covenant will always have the quality of newness (in heart, mind and soul).

GOOD FRIDAY

One of the most important day in a Christian’s life. Not only we are saved are from our sins but have become His children, by being able to participate in His holy communion and through His death on the cross we are cleansed.

Crucifixion of our Lord Christ.

Cross was used earlier as a means to punish killers, thieves and bandits, by publicly disgracing them. Christ completely changed the meaning of cross, which now is sign of hope and salvation. Moses made a bronze serpent in midst of desert, by the command of God Jehovah, for one’s who look at the bronze serpent would be miraculously healed from the venomous snake bite (Numbers 21 :8-9). Likewise those who look at the holy cross with belief would be saved.(Jn 3 : 14-15). The parable of the wicked vineyard tenants (luke 20:9-19) is about heavenly Father sending His only son to tend His work and Jewish leaders casting Him out, eventually killing Him.

Iconic representation of Holy Cross on Golgotha hill used by Saint Thomas Christians of Kerala, India, in their service. (PC: B.Varghese).

Messiah sacrificed himself willing and knowingly on cross like a blameless sacrificial lamb. To redeem us from our sins, Adamic sins and now we are cleansed. He was crucified between two thieves, the one on the right repented and he received salvation. Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor, inscribed a note on Lord Christ’s cross, on which it was written INRI.

The initialism INRI (Latin: Iēsus Nazarēnus, Rēx Iūdaeōrum) represents the Latin inscription (in John19:19), which in English translates to “Jesus the Nazarene, King of the Jews”, and John 19:20 states that this was written in three languages—Hebrew, Latin, and Greek—during the crucifixion of Jesus.

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The title “King of the Jews” is only used in the New Testament by gentiles, namely by the Magi, Pontius Pilate, and the Roman soldiers. In contrast, the Jewish leaders use the designation “King of Israel”.

Lord Jesus Christ’s last seven words on the cross

Lord Jesus, our God became complete man and was born from a virgin as foretold in scriptures of Isaiah. Mother Mary, even though knowing about the fate of her holy born child from beginning was very disheartened and in immense pain during the crucifixion because of the maternal nature but knew this had to done.

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St.Mary along with Mary Magdalene, St.John;the beloved and few other women followed Christ weeping and witnessing all the cruel things that had been happening to Christ. Lamenting about humiliation of Christ, lashing, receiving the five holy wounds on Christ, the provision of vinegar when Christ was thirsty and till Christ’s burial.

When Mother Mary, mother Mary’s sister, Mary; the wife of Clopas, Mary Magdalene and St.John were at foot of the cross of Jesus. He saw His mother and St. John, said to His mother, “Women, behold your son!”. Then He said to St.John,”Behold your mother!”(John19:37). In calling Mother Mary “Women”, Jesus is using a term of dignity and affection. Contrary to the certain modern usuages, this is a sacred title in scripture, an address conveying deep respect and distinction.(Jn 2:4; 4:21;8:10;20:13; compare to Genesis 2:23). This shows that Christ cared for His mother, as he makes sure His youngest disciple takes care of His mother after His death (wedding at Cana, also depicts His complete love towards His mother).

It is believed when the sun lost it’s light and there was complete darkness. When no one was able to comprehend the situation, for short period there was a small secret conversation between Christ and Mother Mary. On the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice saying ,”Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?” that is “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” Jesus had quoted Psalm 22, which foretold the very details of crucifixion. Taken without the rest of the psalm, His cry of “Why have you forsaken me?” could be misinterpreted as a cry of despair.

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When Christ to fulfill a scripture said He thirsts, instead of water He was given the sour vinegar soaked on sponge. So, when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said”It is finished!” And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit. “Finished” is better translated “accomplished” or “fulfilled”- not meaning Christ’s life is ended but showing His divine plan of salvation has been completed. St. John Chrysostom emphasizes that Jesus Christ first bowed His head amd then willingly gave up His spirit.

EASTER

Easter is the most beautiful elegant thrilling climax. As on Easter, three days after the death of our Christ on cross, Christ defeated death and was resurrected.

Here lies the beauty of Christianity, not only Christ was born as a human amongst us. Shepherd (God Jesus) became the sacrificial lamb (incarnated human) who willingly sacrificed for everyone on the cross, died, was buried and was resurrected on the third day. For so much He loved us that he gave His own life and redeemed us, defeated death and made a place for righteous ones in His new heaven.

The Resurrection of Christ, by Robin Armstrong

Easter was symbolically foreshadowed in old testament by Jonah. As when Pharisees even after witnessing Lord Jesus Christ’s miracles asked for a sign from Jesus to prove them that He is the real Messiah. Jesus replies –

39 But he answered and said unto them, An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonah:

40 For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. (Matthew 12:39-40)

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The sign of Jonah is

  1. the fact the rebellious Ninevites were willing to repent at Jonah’s preaching and
  2. that Jonah coming out of great fish prefiugres Christ rising from the tomb.
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Similar new testament passage symbolises resurrection. Jesus Christ’s authority was once questioned by Cheif priest and Jews, in Temple of Jerusalem. They asked Christ for a sign of His authority upon Christ openly protesting that the house of His heavenly Father is now turned in a house of merchandise.

18 The Jews then responded to him, “What sign can you show us to prove your authority to do all this?”

19 Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days.”

20 They replied, “It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and you are going to raise it in three days?” (John 2:18-20)

Here the temple is Christ’s body. Lord Christ is careful not to reveal Himself to scoffers, He answers in a hidden way: the ultimate sign will be His death and resurrection.


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