Come summer holidays and people head north/south (relative to one’s position) in search of recluse from the so-called urban chaos, much of which is of their own making though. In fact, ‘escape’ is the new buzzword to travel on the weekends to overcome boredom and stress.
So far so good but experience shows that far from quieting the mind such escapes are manifestation of internal chaos, reflected in treating nature as the ‘other’, unmindful of what Majrooh Sultanpuri echoed in 1968 movie ‘Abhilasha’ – वादियां मेरा दामन, रास्ते मेरी बाहें. जाओ मेरे सिवा, तुम कहाँ जाओगे. Instead, nature becomes an instrument to be unmindfully played around, and bullied.
Although such short ‘escapes’ are considered ‘transformative’, these trips often turn nature upside down. Rarely if ever a connection is built with nature in awe and appreciation like what Hasrat Jaipuri had penned down for 1956 classic ‘Barsaat’ – इठलाती हवा, नीलम सा गगन, कलियों पे ये बेहोशी की नमी. The elements of nature don’t capture travelers’ imagination. What a missed opportunity!
The tragedy is that mind is unmindful of what nature has on offer. Far from hearing its rhythms, every moment is turned into a photo opportunity. A selfie moment doesn’t help in sensitizing one towards क्यों आग सी लगा के, गुमसुम हैं चांदनी. सोने भी नहीं देता, मौसम का ये इशारा. Nature’s subtle messages are lost in the din of so-called temporary enjoyments.
Rarely do people dance to the tune of nature that Hasrat Jaipuri had captured for ‘Ziddi’ Asha Parekh in the 1964 film – रात का समा, झूमे चंद्रमा
तन मोरा नाचे रे, जैसे बिजुरियाँ. It invokes oneness with nature, and equates nature’s characters in oneself and rejoices in lifting oneself to a new high through dancing with nature – नाचू, नाचू, नाचू, मोरनी बाग की. डोलू, डोलू, डोलू, हिरनियाँ मदभरी. घूँघर बाजे, छमाछम घूँघर बाजे, आरजू हैं जवान
In fact, poetry of the day is distanced from nature. Compassion, gratude and care is not part of our nature. Next time on your vacations do observe from the core of your heart – ये क्या बात है आज की चांदनी में, के हम खो गये प्यार की रागिनी में. Do recall Mazrooh’s soulful lyrics from 1958 film ‘Dilli Ka Thug’ – ये रातें, ये मौसम, नदी का किनारा, ये चंचल हवा. Tell younger generation to create their own expression for nature’s offerings, to reconnect with nature, and to become one with it.