May 20, 2002

Lines

Funny things they are. They join two far flung points. But they also separate or constrain so many others. We stand behind, in front of or beside them. And any number is never enough. They are supposed to liberate you within a certain restricted area, but as far as I am concerned limited autonomy is akin to honour among thieves. It does not exist.

Lines are necessary in most instances of life. Well, at least social where life as a society is concerned. If it were not for the strict enforcement of the silly yellow line that divides the whole road into two, there amount of chaos on the roads would be way much greater than what we experience now. But then there should be lines for the person who enforces those lines and lines to enforce the lines that enforces them too. So where is the superline? Or is it the concept of the most powerful line plus one that constitutes the superline? Yet another hypothetical situation that is used to enforce more power and nothing more.

So do we really need lines even a social system? If every driver on the road is responsible enough for his own actions and safety we would not need lines. The collective of the individual good should ideally take care of this, but we say that is not there. So, the flaw is in the realisation of the individual good. The situation where people say I can forfeit so much of my freedom for lines for a few years of morose existence within lines is what causes this. Address that and there would not be any need for more lines. After all these lines drawn by someone else, they are not yours, you are only afraid of it and fear is not with you forever.

Now, to take things to a more personal level why do people draw lines around themselves? There are lines where a friend is a better friend than most, but he or she is not a lover not because that person does not appeal to that side of you, but because of lines that say such a person cannot be only a friend and not a lover.

Then there are lines where you place people between lines. In such a case, a person is more than a friend but not quite a lover as you do not know where you have drawn the line after which the romantic faculties are addressed. There are a thousand and one lines pertaining to this. This is perhaps the most troublesome line as where person A and person B draw this often differs by a thousand miles. While you might be well within your line, from the other person's view you are way way into his or hers. All hell breaks loose.

Throwing caution to the winds and the notion of political correctness into the gutter we now venture into the realm of the line which says you are not supposed to have any sort of feelings towards the physical form of a person. Attraction of the purely physical kind is not meant to happen, once behind the line of commitment that says 'I am going steady' or 'I am engaged' or 'I am married'. You draw yet another thick line where every single unit of the opposite sex becomes a member of a nunnery or a chapel. Even when you are not behind that line, there are other lines that restrict you nevertheless.

It is indeed funny how this concept of lines fits into perfect fuzziness. There is always a line between two lines and there is never a single line, they always exist in pairs. So, technically there is nothing called as limited autonomy.

From my very short life on this huge rocking and rolling rock called earth, what I have seen is that I have broken more of these lines than ever managing to keep them, in fact I must say I have never kept any of them, maybe that is the only line that I have kept, to not keep to any lines. And the most surprising things is that, life looks beautiful without them. I do not miss them at all.