Déjà vu refers to the feeling that you have already experienced your present situation. While it is a fairly common experience for many others, for some strange reason, I have not had that kind of experiences other than just a few times.
The first time that I experienced déjà vu was way back in the mid seventies when I had gone to North Kerala on a business tour. I spent a night at a Dak Bungalow which was located on a cliff top adjacent to the Arabian Sea. One could not go down to the shore directly from there but one could hear the sound of waves crashing on the boulders strewn below the cliff. This was the background music to my experience. It was a moonlit night and my local Agent, our local Sales Representative and I were on the lawn having our evening pre dinner drinks when an elderly gentleman came up to me to enquire if I was interested in buying some real estate nearby. It occurred to me then that I had experienced this exactly same experience in exactly the same place before. I had however not been to the town ever before, at least, not in this life time. I mentioned this to my companions for the evening who in turn shared their experiences of déjà vu. Their stories were fascinating to me for the reason that I had none other to share with them.
The next time was a decade later when I visited the Amer Fort in Rajasthan on holiday. It was not restricted to just one experience however and during all the three occasions that I went there I experienced the feeling that I had been in the fort before with vague uneasy feelings of dread. Perhaps in a previous birth I was a soldier defending the fort!
Other than these experiences, I have never experienced déjà vu as defined above. I have tried to understand the phenomenon through google search but am unable to come to any conclusions about my specific experiences. I have certainly had the attentional varieties which focus on attention. The basis of these theories is that a scene is briefly witnessed without full attention being given. Then, shortly after, the same scene is perceived again, but this time with full perception. The second perception matches the first and is accidentally assumed to be older than it truly is, thereby triggering déjà vu. It is like trying to unlock the front door mechanically and being distracted by some activity on the road and returning to unlock again when it occurs as though one had done this before.
On discussing this with some friends, I found that I could possibly get some information about the Rajasthan episodes from a Past Life Regression Counsellor. I haven’t however found the necessity to go to one. Not as yet anyway!
An interesting topic thought up by my co 2 on 1 Friday blogger Shackman. Please do go over to his blog and see what he has to say on the subject.
I understand that it has not done very well at the box office in India during the first few days of its release, despite the subject being of great national importance in the present day India where feudalism and patriarchy is increasingly under pressure from modernists. I hope that it will change soon and more people here will see it for the message that it carries. Hope for Indian women and shame for Indian men.
It is a powerful story dramatically brought alive on the screen by excellent direction, acting, editing and photography. It would help if one has been to this part of India and has some knowledge of local customs and practices including bride price being paid instead of the more common dowry. If one does not have that background, it does not matter as many universal truths are tackled effectively.
As I have been saying in my recent posts on Indian films, there is a dramatic shift in such films being made and I am very excited about this development. I hope to get to see more such films in the future.
If you possibly can get to see the film, please do not miss it.
Srikanth, a neighbour of my sister Padmini recently visited Khichan and shot this video. I am grateful to Srikanth for giving me permission to blog about this.
He had this to say about it – “Khichan village in Rajasthan witnesses every year a unique symbiotic co existence of Man and Birds and a generous sharing of environment and resources . I had read about this and therefore made it an item on my itinerary of my Rajasthan Trip.”
More exhaustive information is available in Wikipedia.
Conrad, here is an instance of interconnectedness!
Thanks to Ranjan offering to stay at home and encouraging me to go out for a well deserved break, I went to see The Best Marigold Hotel, earlier this afternoon.
I thoroughly enjoyed the outing and the cinema was better than my expectations. British acting at its best, with good performances by the supporting Indian cast, fantastic camera work, and nostalgia generating photography of Jaipur and Rajasthan. A passable story line brought to life by some very good direction and excellent editing.
I must also thank my regular commentator Tammy who inspired me to go and see it.
My friends Nat/Usha and Anil/Nina were recently on a long motoring holiday in Gujarath and Rajasthan. They had an absolutely grand time as Anil has repeatedly told me on the phone and email.
His latest mail adds a bit of spice to the travelogue. The text that accompanies that photograph makes for fascinating reading.
“At Udaipur where we stayed I saw this sight in the morning.
Husband & wife team of Municipal sweepers came on their motor-cycle with a huge broom and with their daughter to sweep the streets around the place. Their daughter came ready with her school bag for the school due to start some time later.
They were around for over an hour claeaning the place and then drove off to drop the child to school.
On request they posed for the photographs. Soon I need to send them a copy too.”