My last blog was on rain, so it becomes kind of weirdly predictable that I would be the one to write a blog on rainbows! However, this was totally unforeseen- much like rainbows themselves but unlike the certainty of pleasure that rainbows bring along with themselves, my post hesitates to assure the same. Moreover, I would like to believe that tonight the rainbow was my muse, the catalyst for this virtual rant.
Rainbows arrive with the promise of fair weather- I remember my mother telling me about how the rainbow epitomises the word of God on the issue. Kind of “cool” I opined, seeing our favourite Big Guy hold onto His prehistoric promise almost every time. Come to think of it, God is like that only- He revels in the huge multi-hued multi-layered canvas structured for this very purpose. Every sunrise, every sundown, He has a field day, using the boldest brush strokes and the wildest of colour schemes. He enjoys that surely to be doing it for “God-only-knows” how many eons And what about thunderstorms? The silver-blue swords that strive endlessly to halve their bit of the sky, who in turn, roars back angrily in the voice of thunder! Impressive! But I digress- rainbows are my raison d’ etre for this blog.
Scientists have long explained the whys,hows,whats of rainbows and they lie dissected in science books, unnaturally colourless and insipid. Much like diet soda- not the real thing at all only a compromise. But it will have to do for us and the generations who follow us in this pageant of the sublime and the ridiculous called Life. That not many of us look skywards is a given- our work and our smartphones make sure we don’t stretch our necks beyond a certain periphery, “the comfort zone of our consciousness” as I describe it. We notice the sun because it is blazing hot, we register earthquakes because they shake our very foundations, we observe thunderstorms because of the noise and fury- that’s who we have become. Unless you are loud, noisy, threatening, I may not really notice you. So, our common sparrows are dwindling in numbers cause our mobile towers are more noticeable by their absence if the network is erratic; our ears are tuned out of natural, subtle sounds like the rustling of leaves, the twittering of birds and the rhythmic buzz of crickets. And the irony of it all is, every year or as and when our finances permit, we plan our vacations to places which offer us the sparrow, the rustling leaves and the buzzing crickets- all at a price of course and we are beside ourselves with wonder and awe! But I digress once more- rainbows it was…
This wasn’t supposed to be a rant about how Man has estranged himself from Nature and all that…but about the prettiness of droplets of water that are amazingly altered when the sun, (hidden by the clouds but still not despairing), decides to show those miniscule atoms of hydrogen and oxygen, that they are more than they imagined themselves to be! I like this thought- we are all these insignificant atoms, made beautiful when a catalyst plays prism to our latent potential, and voila! We are transformed, we are the colourful protons, neutrons and electrons of a rainbow!
Our lives are modelled on this pattern as well, if we pause to delve into the details. There often is a turning point, after the endless nothingness and meaningless of our existence, when we realize who we can be, by merely allowing ourselves to become a part of the unravelling. The spectrum lying dormant within us, unfolds and we become more than we ever hoped to be. There is a Sun, a hidden source, a muse in our lives, which arrives unannounced but tempts us with a fleeting glimpse of the vibrancy that lies within.
In reality,we are all in pursuit of ourselves. We seek ourselves amid the laughter of friends, in the treachery of enemies, amidst the pages of books, between the lines of a song. We are in constant motion, within and without. Within, there are masses of restless nebulae swirling to form us- and as long as this takes, often an entire lifetime, we shall remain in pursuit of ourselves.
So how does a rainbow fit into all of this- well, we are the latent rainbows aren’t we? So this quest works undercover – eventually, we are all chasing rainbows…