Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Personal Islands



Back in high school, and even during medical school for that matter, I was always notorious as a student who never paid attention in class. I would spend the long hours during dreadfully boring lectures, engrossed in drawing, or doodling if you may call it, on my notebooks. While on the absolute contrary, my over zealous colleagues, would be scribbling away every word that our professor would utter, irrespective of whether he was making any sense.
Human psychology interests me to a great degree, and being the truly self obsessed person that I am, there hasn't been a day when I have not over scrutinized my self, over every trivial detail.
Now as I look back, the one thing I would constantly draw in my book, were islands.
I was, and am obsessed with them. I would draw islands of various shapes and sizes, make up stories about island kingdoms, and so on and so forth.
I suppose it never occurred to me so as to why I was so obsessed with the concept of an island. But now as I look back and try to comprehend my juvenile leanings, it makes all the more sense.
They say you are what you eat, or in this case what you draw.
Frankly, any creative outburst if I may call it so, is personally a reflection of your inner self. Even the clothes you wear, the food you eat, or the way you arrange and choose furniture can speak volumes about yourself.
And therefore, in retrospect, in my case what reflected me was what I drew.
And that was an island.
Now, what is unique about an island?
I suppose, is its sheer isolation. Apart, aloof and untouched by all and sundry.
Inaccessible, remote and unscathed. Beyond anyone's reach. And surrounded by the vastness of the ocean. Nestled amongst its great waves.
To me an island signifies isolation and security .
And I suppose that's who I really am.
To me, seclusion meant comfort. It meant security from a dozen prying eyes. It meant being by my self. Rather than hobnob with those I had little or no interest in.
I am not a loner though. I made a ton of great friends. And though I claim myself to be anti social, I am quite friendly and approachable by default.
But by the end of the day, I always craved solitude.
To be alone, unwatched and beyond anyone's scrutiny.
Somehow I found it to be more of an ease to be by myself than to be burdened by social obligations. I always have loved being on my own personal island.
Though not meaning to sound pompous, for most of the time, humans have always bored me. I cannot say why. It could be on account of not having any siblings, or the fact that I have more or less lived in hostels and boarding schools for a great deal of time. Either way I have always ended up feeling that no one has truly understood me.
I always detested going to parties and get togethers and make small talk with people I barely know. My first instinct on such occasions, would be bolt away as soon as possible.
There is a reason I like to blend with people I am intimately close to. And that's so I can be myself. A few choice guests on my private island if I do say so myself.

The thing about being on an island is that you are your own master. Its your own world that no one can trespass. No one can question you, or judge you.
Yes, humans are social by default. But than not all of us are born with human instincts.
Given the choice I would rather be on my island than allow any trespassers.
But I have been often reprimanded for that attitude.
Its just that when I meet people, I feel obligated to act and behave in a certain way, so much so that I have ended up putting on so may masks, that even those who claim to know me might not know me at all. When in society, one is always expected to be something what society wants one to be. To be consistently charming, productive, sociable and bendable to their every whim. You spend so much time being someone you'd rather not be, and in consequence lose out on being yourself.
Like Shakespere said, "All the world's a stage, And all the men and women merely players"
We don on masks to be identified and sought out, but frankly to me, the more masks you don, the more distant you become from your true self, and lose out on being an individual.
As all things in life, everything comes at an advantage and a disadvantage.
While not everyone can remain secluded, there are times when one ought to be by oneself.
If we let hundreds of people define who you are and what you are meant to do, there may come a time, when you realise, that you have been living someone else's life all along.
I suppose everything needs to exist in a certain balance. Be it seclusion or socialization.
Now when I look back, a lot of artists, thinkers and leaders, were often dubbed to be eccentric. Because they would always appear aloof, babbling to themselves, because, they would prefer their own company rather than be amongst those who could never understand them. They despised influence and were rebels in their own right.
If they had allowed trespassers on their islands, it would have yielded to influence, and the dilution of the individual spirit.
The world then would have never heard of a Picasso, or an Einstein or a Mozart.
I do not wish to don on myself the tag of a genius, but I certainly do brand my self to be individual in my own right. And for the time being I cannot allow anyone to trespass on my land.
I am what I am. And not what someone makes out me to be.
For those who wish to judge me, they shall never get to see the real me. The masks I own are plenty. But I do make it a point to remove them when I am by myself. And retire by the end of the day to my island.
Untouched, unseen and unscathed, far far away.

Image credits: http://www.flickr.com/photos/pixellou, http://www.flickr.com/photos/storm-crypt, http://www.flickr.com/photos/elijah, http://www.flickr.com/photos/todojuanjo, http://www.flickr.com/photos/tomasfano.

29 comments:

Shadowthorne @ Ramzu Zahini said...

:) I used to dream living on an island with people who interest me. But that dream had long since drowned by my new notion of world domination :)

I like to doodle during meetings too :P

And one day if you finally struck gold and became filthy rich by being a specialist doctor etc and then bought an island of your dreams.... do not forget to invite us bloggers to visit you!!

Lazy Pineapple said...

Vyazz: I think you are in the phase when you want to be melancholy and by yourself. It happens to all of us. About the masks we wear..I feel each of us wears one so as to protect our loved ones too...if we always behaved the way we want to then we would end up alienating ourselves.

Varsh said...

I wasn't very good at doodling and stuff...but I did write poems during classes...which were mostly on the special someone and my undying love for him :P

I can safely say you said all that I'd like to write about myself...its a difficult dream to harbour since marriage kids and responsibilities don't let you retire to your own world as and when you please...i hate being branded a loner 'se I'm most certainly not one...very simply..I don't like to compromise my privacy for anything :)

Thousif Raza said...

those are awesome thoughts yaar... makes me wish i had a island of my own... with just one person more my gf... but seriously... i wish i had one where i could listen to loud music... with no one to bother me :)


take care and keep writing.............

Gayathri said...

Nice post..felt more like my case.. i love being solitary than be amid people who dont match my wavelenght and pretend myself to be someone else..and for that im sometimes called lonesome or reserved though that prevails only until the person gets to know me.!

Rajesh said...

Wonderful and interesting.

Choco said...

Two things struck me in this post:

They say you are what you eat, or in this case what you draw.

If we let hundreds of people define who you are and what you are meant to do, there may come a time, when you realise, that you have been living someone else's life all along -True for most of us.

I dislike forced company too. Always have. I interact with everyone. But not everyone is welcome into my life. Something about the wavelength. :)

Lovely post.

Nalini Hebbar said...

whoever you have in your life, you are truly alone...so make peace with yourself...love yourself and endure the rest!!!...:)

rads said...

This was like reading about myself...i had to put on a show of enjoying parties many a times...but truly i hate making small talk with strangers and i always carry a book/mp3 player to a party...i was back bencher at school n college and usually i was reading a book or writing something...i was thrown out of classes too for not paying attention...i also loved drawing shapes and sceneries...it was like i'm not connected to anyone around me n i lived in my own world...love being alone too...my friends still think i'm peculiar n wierd but at the same time they approach me with their problems and are very close to me...looks like ur an INFJ too...gr8 post!

sammythewizzy said...

Nice read! I guess much of the affinity to islands has got to do with having no siblings.. (Even I have no siblings, and Ive been most comfortable when Im alone - but Im not a loner, as you said)..

brocasarea said...

interesting..by ur snaps in fb u dont like a loner..!!

nothing wrong in that..just tht people misinterpret it..i too dont like going to parties except for family functions and friends get together:)

Sumi said...

the post says u r special n quite different from d rest which is great. i have to agree wth wholly in one thing u said, human beings bore me, totally! i was wondering is it just me :)

About Vyo's World said...

Hey thats makes an interesting read!! Reveals so much abt yrself!!

AS said...

Vyazzy.....loved diz post,n i think u know what i mena when i say i can relate to it in so many ways.......:)

Vyazz said...

@Shadowthorne: Glad to meet a fellow doodler!!! :)
And I assure you...if I hit the jackpot and get myself an island......you're very much invited!!!! :D

Vyazz said...

@Lazy Pineapple...I guess ur right!!
It could be a phase!!.....Like I said.....have no intention of being a loner....but just like to be in solitude once in a while!!

Vyazz said...

@Varsh: Wow....a budding classroom poet.....now thats something!!
Yeah...I know you can't be alone when you have a family.
Neither can I!!
But you can hope for solitude once in a while!! Or else express ur emotions through other means!!
I guess thats what blogs are for!! :)

Vyazz said...

@Thousif: Thnx man!!
Yeah It would be cool if you get ur own private paradise somewhere out there!! :)

Vyazz said...

@Gayathri: True....I guess all of us somewhere feel the same!!
But its always wonderful, when you can be ur self with people who match ur wavelength!!
Its better than being crowded 'round those who never get you!!

Vyazz said...

@Rajesh: Thnx....and welcome to my blog!!! :)

Vyazz said...

@Choco: Thnx......glad to know you feel the same way!!
Yup its all about the wavelength!!!

Vyazz said...

@Nalini: interesting thought...
True I guess you can make peace with ur self only when you love ur self!!
Welcome to my blog!! :)

Vyazz said...

@Rads:People think I'm weird too...but as long as you get to be yourself....public opinion matters little!!!
Good to know you feel the same way....I guess great minds run through the same channel!!! :)

Vyazz said...

@Sammy: I suppose the sibling thingy might have a role. But if you go about introspection....it can take ages!! :)

Vyazz said...

@Brocasarea: Yup...my FB photos dont inicate I'm a loner. But then again, just because you need to be alone once in a while, doesn't make u a loner.
Just gives you a chance to be with urself and beintrospective. It can be very therapeutic!!

Vyazz said...

@Sumi: Thnx.....glad you feel the same way!! And welcome to my blog!!! :)

Vyazz said...

@Viyoma: Yup it does. Like I said.....writing or drawing or any creative outburst can revealk volumes about you!!!

Vyazz said...

@AS: Thnx.....appreciate it!!!! Alwayz look forward to ur comments!!! :D

et said...

I wanted to read this post of yours since I saw the title. And now I've read it, and liked it.
Geniuses, Loners, Rebels - the 'crazy ones' as we call them, have been widely discussed throughout the history of innovation. But you've cut deep into the situation and examined the finer details, which I'm really glad to know!
Doodling in class, is what I always did, and still do. But unlike you, its apparently too random. Well, may be there are some patters, I think now. I should really analyze them from now on :)