As You Like It.

When one is a busy housewife with four children and a long distance commuting husband, living in a joint family in India, finding time to spare for intellectual kite flying is difficult. So, when I urged Maria G for some topics to be included in the list for the year for the LBC posts, in an inspired flash of originality, she came up with a list of Shakespearean dramas. Readers will remember our post on Much Ado About Nothing some time ago which was the beginning of this series.

This is the second of a series the rest of which my readers will come to read eventually in the weekly Friday Loose Bloggers Consortium where five of us write on the same topic. The four other bloggers who write regularly are, in alphabetical order,  AshokgaelikaaMaxi, and Shackman. Do drop in on their blogs and see what their take is on this week’s topic. Since some of them may post late, or not at all this week, do give some allowance for that too!

I don’t quite know if like Roasalind in the play, Maria G has plans to flee persecution, but I love the play for its many melancholy speeches the favourite of them all being:
“All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts……”

This opening, ties in neatly with Vedanta which propounds exactly this as a philosophy. This also ties in with my earlier post When Are You Leaving? Vedanta names Truth as The Witness that is simply Consciousness and everything that we see is illusion. Realisation by internalisation of this is liberation, moksha, nirvana etc. I like it very much thank you.

I have always suspected that Shakespeare was a Vedantin. In fact, there is a story in our part of the world that says that he was originally Shaakeppa Iyer who decided to travel West, and in Persia became Shaikh Peer and eventually found his way to England where the transformation was complete.

And let us see what my favourite philosopher has to say about this great play. Please click on the image to enlarge it for easier reading.

all the world is a stage

18 thoughts on “As You Like It.”

  1. I do like your “favourite philosopher”, Ramana. Though my own life most certainly does not need any “special effects”. It [my life] fires on many a cylinder without prompting. I dare say quite a few people would (not) offer themselves as my understudy. Courage, Sweethearts, courage! Courage is what’s needed to propel you … somewhere, anywhere. How you climb DOWN a tree, without breaking a leg, is up to your own inventiveness.

    Having been on stage (literally) I also, and luckily, understood early that life is most certainly NOT a dress rehearsal. It’s curtains up. Freestyle.

    Applause? Maybe, maybe not. You may be asked for an encore. And when the final curtain falls the audience will leave. I hope with a lasting memory.

    Ursula recently posted..Vibrant

    1. That reminds me of this famous start to a very popular Sinatra song.
      And now, the end is near;
      And so I face the final curtain.
      My friend, I’ll say it clear,
      I’ll state my case, of which I’m certain.

      I’ve lived a life that’s full.
      I’ve traveled each and ev’ry highway;
      And more, much more than this,
      I did it my way.

  2. I don’t know that play at all, though of course I’m very familiar with the quote. The world is indeed a stage, as too many men make very clear, strutting and preening and trying to dominate whatever audience they’re among. But we all tend to “perform” in some way or other when we’re with other people.
    nick recently posted..Beyond belief

    1. Nick, At a very young age, I was exposed to Shakespeare because of my uncle, a Professor of English who was famous for being an authority on Shakespeare and his son and my cousin also a Professor of English who stayed at our home and studied for his MA who would read the Bard aloud while studying. And that exposure helped me in my own BA studies!

    1. Agreed Alan. If we are brutally honest with ourselves, we realise that we act different roles as child, employee, employer, spouse, parent, boss, subordinate etc but there is one unaltered thread that runs through the experience of ME!

    1. Yes, in the absence of a writer or a director, we are left to fend for ourselves and this is where our own morality and sense of right and wrong has to pitch in and see us through difficult situations.

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