Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Ordinary Love !

I love watching Award ceremonies.

I guess my interest in them started at a very young age, 8 to be precise, I was watching the Oscars, the main competitors that year were Mel Gibson’s Braveheart  and the Tom hanks starrer Apollo 13, trust me guys I didn’t have a clue about either film or why these names were being called out again and again in almost every category.

My brother and I have a weird sense of competition, we don’t really need a reason to be disagree on something, brother was clearly supporting Braveheart, he has always been very passionate about history and understandably the epic based on the life of William Wallace was his choice to win in all the major categories, I didn’t know what Apollo 13 meant but when my brother told me that the film chronicled a failed space mission to the moon I decided to support it instead, My exact words were "I hope that atleast the Oscar wins will cheer them up, you know, because of the failed mission and all" !

Braveheart walked away with 5 oscars that night and I fell head over heels for the woman I still consider to be the funniest lady in Hollywood – Whoopi Goldberg.

Ever since then watching some of the most popular award ceremonies the Oscars in particular has been a yearly tradition for us, we argue over the nominations, the surprises, the snubs, the best acceptance speeches, the one liners, the zingers so on and so forth.

Last Sunday the 71st annual golden globe awards were given away, like every year there were some unexpected wins but the one win that impressed me the most and became the inspiration for this post was the golden globe for best original song for a motion picture which was given to 'U2' for the song 'Ordinary love' from the film 'Mandela-Long walk to freedom'.

Bono has a very beautiful voice, it has a very indescribable quality, sort of an amalgam of high pitched operatic singing with a very soothing baritone attached to it.
Some of U2’s songs have been very influential in my life, 'With or without you' from the album 'Joshua Tree' continues to be one of the most eerie yet enchanting songs I have ever heard, 'Walk on' helped me in my understanding of some of life’s pursuits, 'Stuck in a moment' taught me the importance of letting go.

The Band has also been very active in pro environmental and other socially relevant campaigns focusing on human rights, treatment and prevention of AIDS and so on.
Ordinary love is a song the band wrote and composed for Nelson Mandela, they released it one week before 'Madiba' passed away.

I hadn’t heard the song till it won the globe on Sunday, and I’m not lying to you when I say that ever since I heard it I haven’t stopped listening.

Albeit a wonderful song, it was what Bono said while accepting the award that made me think really really hard about the way we tend to perceive things and react to various situations in life.

He said "This man turned our life upside down, right side up. A man who refused to hate because he thought love would do a better job”. 

The words 'He refused to hate because he thought love would do a better job' kept repeating itself in my head.

The lyrics of the song too blew me away.

Initially in the song Bono recites the lines ‘I cant fight you anymore, its you I’m fighting for, The sea throws rocks together But time leaves us polished stones’
The chorus follows next-
“We can't fall any further If we can't feel ordinary love
We cannot reach any higher, If we can't deal with ordinary love.”

Talking about ordinary love producing extraordinary results, I am reminded of a story a priest at church told the congregation about a year ago, it was an incident that occurred during Mother Teresa’s initial days at Calcutta in India, she was still in the process of starting a home for the destitute when she approached a rich merchant asking him for some money to feed some orphan children. 

The merchant sat on the porch of his mansion reclining on an easy chair chewing on betel leaves, She pleaded with him repeatedly but he didn’t listen, when she finally stretched out her hands toward the man who didn’t even look at her as she spoke, he leaned forward and spat into her cupped right hand before leaning back on his chair.

Mother Teresa closed her hand looked back at the man and said; "This is for me, thank you". She then held out her left hand and asked him -" Now, what do you have to give for my children"?

The same merchant eventually became one of mothers earliest and most ardent followers.

I might be going too far when I say this, but to some extent at least, aren’t our feelings under our control?

Over the course of my short life thus far I have come to realize that there are always more that one reaction possible to any event, sure, we can choose to fight back but have we ever considered turning the other cheek?
And although I haven’t always made the right choices in life I now realize in retrospect that love would’ve done a better job.

U2 is also nominated for an academy award this year for the same song, they will probably win, and for once my brother and I and voting for the same team.

The song ends with a question, a question I would like to sign off this post with - Are we are tough enough, tough enough for ordinary love ?

As Always
Your’s truly