Beware the tiger!! The tiger!!
Kids rushed with fearsome screams. They complained that they have been hearing roars of a tiger from different places, sometimes from behind the generator room, sometimes from the dark corridors of the building wings and sometimes from behind the wet garbage pits recently built in our society.
“What you saying, Son? I know you are afraid of dogs but this is the limit of exaggeration. You are grown up now”, I ignored like other moms on our floor had ignored. I saw my son going mad and he shouted even loudly to tell me what he said was true. Kids know by now that the protests or morchas and shouting has been a way to make ignorant authorities pay heed to the problems faced by public. Very unfortunate!. I quickly reached out to my mobile and dropped message in WhatsApp group of our society ladies with lot of hesitation: “Our kids are kidding. They saying they heard tiger roar hehe “. Waited for a few seconds to see no reaction from the ladies on my message. What a fool lady I am to drop that message!
Oops! But data connection is off. I turned it on and saw hundreds of messages were already floating on the group. Oh my god! They suspected some animal may be a leopard, which is not rare to find in areas in Mumbai that are close to SGNP (Sanjay Gandhi National Park) .
I busted in anger “What the hell the watchmen have been doing, why didn’t they inform? And where those dogs were who madly used bark on people. “
Calmly my father-in-law, Anna told me to control my anger that was out of fear and told that, everyone values his life, so the watchmen. They are not trained hunters nor are they equipped with things to face such unique situation. He further said “We have been encroaching the forest area and leaving the animals homeless and frustrated. We have been enjoying cool breeze and beautiful forest views and now it’s time to pay the real prize”.
While I knew Anna has a point in saying that I became more anxious and reacted with irritation, “Anna, this is not time for lecture, we need to do something”. I realized, we got to inform forest authorities, BMC, animal friends, whoever who can help.
I rushed to bed room to inform my husband who was getting ready for office. And in a moment we both noticed where our younger one, Ninu is? Oh! He too had gone down for cycling with Jishnu. We both rushed to the lift, Anna also rushed with us. Within those few seconds while we were going down I could not control myself, tears started rolling down my face, all weird thoughts were hanging in my mind. My husband assured me that he will go look out in garden areas. “No, no, we both will go”, I insisted. Anna said “Wait, only I will go. I have lived my life, if something happens I will be the one to face first” We all were on the verge to burst into tears at the same time we were all alert to take next actions, nothing but to rush in different direction to find the kid. Lift landed on the ground floor, watchman had closed the shutters and anxiously watching in different directions. Some small kids were there in the lobby and Ninu and his friends were there. “Thank God”, I cried, “Ninu, Ninu! Where have you been, I was about to die out of fear, my child”. “There the tiger is, he will pounce on us, and he will kill us”.
And my husband shook me to me wake up, “what happened? Are you OK? Get up!”. “Oh! Was I dreaming! Thank God I was dreaming”, I took some time to recover and pacified myself that it was just a dream not the reality. However that dream made me wander in the loop of thoughts, it made me think from altogether different perspectives.
Where the tiger is? Yes, the tiger is very much there, but not outside, it is within me, in my mind. Probably even more ferocious tiger is living within us. The tiger of fear, the tiger of anger, the tiger of jealousy and narcissism, the tiger of stress, the beast of suspect and doubt about our own abilities, the tiger of worries, the tiger of confusion. How much attention we are giving to this beast which is nicely getting fed on our ego and on our worries and day by day getting larger than life?
What actions are we doing to conquer that wild animal living in humans? He is silently killing us from within, and why just within, isn’t he fading the beauty of our relationships with our kids, parents, colleagues and even spouse. Isn’t he messing up with our success and health? Isn’t he encroaching our peace, our bliss which is nothing but our very own right?
We have to find way to control this dangerous beast who is living within us.
Sooner the better!