G C Lichtenberg: “It is as if our languages were confounded: when we want a thought, they bring us a word; when we ask for a word, they give us a dash; and when we expect a dash, there comes a piece of bawdy.”

Shel Silverstein : “Talked my head off Worked my tail off Cried my eyes out Walked my feet off Sang my heart out So you see, There’s really not much left of me.” ~

Martin Amis: “Gogol is funny, Tolstoy in his merciless clarity is funny, and Dostoyevsky, funnily enough, is very funny indeed; moreover, the final generation of Russian literature, before it was destroyed by Lenin and Stalin, remained emphatically comic — Bunin, Bely, Bulgakov, Zamyatin. The novel is comic because life is comic (until the inevitable tragedy of the fifth act);...”

Werner Herzog: “We are surrounded by worn-out, banal, useless and exhausted images, limping and dragging themselves behind the rest of our cultural evolution.”

John Gray: "Unlike Schopenhauer, who lamented the human lot, Leopardi believed that the best response to life is laughter. What fascinated Schopenhauer, along with many later writers, was Leopardi’s insistence that illusion is necessary to human happiness."

Justin E.H. Smith: “One should of course take seriously serious efforts to improve society. But when these efforts fail, in whole or in part, it is only humor that offers redemption. So far, human expectations have always been strained, and have always come, give or take a bit, to nothing. In this respect reality itself has the form of a joke, and humor the force of truth.”

विलास सारंग: "… . . 1000 नंतर ज्या प्रकारची संस्कृती रुढ झाली , त्यामध्ये साधारणत्व विश्वात्मकता हे गुण प्राय: लुप्त झाले...आपली संस्कृती अकाली विश्वात्मक साधारणतेला मुकली आहे."

Monday, February 27, 2017

अनेक मूस, दुःस्वप्नमय स्वल्पविराम आणि नेटके मराठी...Kusumagraj@105


Today February 27 2017 is 105th birth anniversary of Kusumagraj (कुसुमाग्रज). It also is "Mararthi Bhasha Din" (मराठी भाषा दिन).

Paul Murphy, ‘True Crime Japan: Thieves, Rascals, Killers and Dope Heads: True Stories From a Japanese Courtroom’, 2016:
“...Part of the problem, especially for a foreigner seeking to understand Japan’s people, is that relaxed conversation is regulated, and usually stymied, by custom and the structure of the language. Almost every sentence carries a status marker: a word, the absence of a word, or a verb ending that indicates whether you are senior, junior, or equal in status to the person you are speaking with. It’s easy in Japan to ask a question that is considered too personal or too familiar and therefore rude..."

On this blog, on May 3 2015, I wrote: "आम्ही नेटकेची ना लिहू...There Is No Such Thing as ‘Proper Marathi'".

But I am ready to live with the propaganda of 'proper Marathi' if some delightful cartoons, like the ones below, were to come out of it.








 Artist: Tom Toro, The New Yorker, May 2016


Artist: Drew Dernavich, The New Yorker,  December 2013

Saturday, February 25, 2017

The Essence of Human...A Clockwork Orange's Anthony Burgess@100


Today February 25 2017 is 100th birth anniversary of Anthony Burgess, writer of "A Clockwork Orange", 1962


The Economist, June 1999:

‘“A Clockwork Orange”, from Anthony Burgess's novel, has been a victim of its own violence and tarred with a false reputation for sensationalism. Actually, beneath its violent surface, this challenging film is a philosophical debate on the role of free will. If ultra-violent Alex de Large is surgically altered to make him docile, is he still human? Does the essence of humanity not reside in the right to choose wrong?’




Malcolm McDowell in Stanley Kubrick's ‘A Clockwork Orange’,  1971

courtesy: Warner Bros. and Columbia-Warner Distributors


Artist: David Pelham for Penguin Books UK

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

त्या मला कायम आवडत राहिल्या: जयश्री गडकर...Jayshree Gadkar @75

Today February 21 2017 is 75th birth anniversary of Jayshree Gadkar (जयश्री गडकर) (1942-2008)

माझ्या आई बरोबर मी त्यांचा 'थांब लक्ष्मी कुंकू लावते', १९६७ सिनेमा मिरजेला आशा टॉकीजला १९६८ साली बघितल्याचे आठवते. मी बघितलेला तो  त्यांचा पहिला सिनेमा होता. रडका आणि भिकार. मी आठ वर्षांचा होतो. पण त्या  मला खूप आवडल्या.

नंतर कै. अरुण सरनाईकांबरोबरचे त्यांचे सिनेमे पाहून आईला नेहमी विचारायचो  की त्या दोघांच लग्न झालय का? आई खर सांगत असे : 'नाही'....मग गोंधळ उडायचा!

मधुबाला, नूतन, गीताबाली सारख्या त्या मला कायम आवडत राहिल्या...





लावण्यवती, महान सिनेनर्तकी, बऱ्यापैकी अभिनय, आकर्षक अदा आणि माझ्या लहानपणापासूनच्या अतिशय आवडत्या ....

courtesy: respective copyright owners

Monday, February 20, 2017

एक प्राचीन शापवाणी, Blood, frogs...and a Maharashtra-style Election Campaign

"Blood, frogs, lice, pestilence, boils, hail, locusts, darkness, death of the first born, and an American-style election campaign."

"With the formal announcement of two-phase elections to 10 municipal corporations, 26 Zilla Parishads and 283 Panchayat Samitis, the stage is set for a mini-Assembly elections in Maharashtra...Elections to 10 municipal corporations, including the cash-rich Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation, will be held on February 21"

भारतातील पुराणे आणि महाकाव्य वाचलेल्यांना रागीट ऋषी, मुनी- दुर्वास, विश्वामित्र इत्यादी  - माहिती आहेतच...बघा अशीच एक शापवाणी प्राचीन इजिप्त मधील.... 


Artist: David Sipress, The New Yorker

Among the visual artists working today, Mr. Sipress makes me laugh more often than any. I have laughed hard and often looking at the picture above...

Friday, February 17, 2017

सहावे व सातवे स्वप्न दोन्ही अश्लील असल्याने भाषांतर केले नाही...Mahasupin Jatak

चिं वि जोशींचे 'जातक कथा' हे एक उत्कृष्ट पुस्तक आहे. कै. दुर्गा भागवतांनी त्याचे तोंडभर कौतुक केले आहे: "...चिं. वि. जोशी यांचा प्रसंगनिष्ठ निरोगी विनोद कुणाला आवडत नाही? चिमणरावानं कुणाला जिंकलं नाही? पण मला पाली भाषेचे, बौद्ध वाङ्मयाचे अभ्यासक म्हणून ते आठवतात. त्यांचं जातककथांचं पुस्तक लहानसंच आहे, पण त्यात निखळ भाषांतराचा उत्कृष्ट नमुना आढळतो. मला तो फार उपयोगी पडला..." (डिसेंबर ६, १९७५, कराड)

मी ते २०१७ मध्ये वाचायला सुरवात केली आणि माझ्या लक्षात यायला लागल की जातक कथा हा केवढा मोठा मौल्यवान सांस्कृतिक ठेवा आहे ते.

त्यात पान  ४३, आवृत्ती २०११, वर 'महासुपिन जातक' कथा दिली आहे. अतिशय गूढ आणि रंजक अशी ती कथा आहे. त्यात राजाला पडलेल्या सोळा स्वप्नांचा उहापोह केला आहे. (मला ही कथा कै. धर्मानंद  कोसंबींच्या 'जातककथासंग्रह भाग १-२-३' मध्ये मिळाली नाही.*)

पान ४५ वर , चिं वि म्हणतात: "...(सहावे व सातवे स्वप्न दोन्ही अश्लील असल्याने भाषांतर केले नाही.)..."...हे वाचल्यावर ती दोन स्वप्न कधी वाचतो असे झाले!

आत्ताच्या काळात ते करण अगदी सोप होत. (The Jataka, Volume I, tr. by Robert Chalmers, [1895], at sacred-texts.com)


“....Howbeit, you have nothing to fear therefrom. Tell me your sixth dream."
"Methought, sir, I saw people holding out a well-scoured golden bowl worth a hundred thousand pieces, and begging an old jackal to stale therein. And I saw the beast do so. This was my sixth dream. What shall come of it?"

"This dream too shall only have its fulfilment in the future. For in the days to come, unrighteous kings, though sprung of a race of kings, mistrusting the scions of their old nobility, shall not honour them, but exalt in their stead the low-born; whereby the nobles shall be brought low and the law-born raised to lordship. Then shall the great families be brought by very need to seek to live by dependence on the upstarts, and shall offer them their daughters in marriage. And the union of the noble maidens with the low-born shall be like unto the staling of the old jackal in the golden bowl. Howbeit, you have nothing to fear therefrom. Tell me your seventh dream."

यात अश्लील काय मला समजले नाही!


"A man was weaving rope, sir, and as he wove, he threw it down at his feet. Under his bench lay a hungry she jackal, which kept eating the rope as he wove, but without the man knowing it. This is what I saw. This was my seventh dream. What shall come of it?" 

"This dream too shall not have its fulfilment till the future. For in days to come, women shall lust after men and strong drink and finery and gadding abroad and after the joys of this world. In their wickedness and profligacy these women shall drink strong drink with their paramours; they shall flaunt in garlands and perfumes and unguents; and heedless of even the most pressing of their household duties, they shall keep watching for their paramours, even at crevices high up in the outer wall; aye, they shall pound up the very seed-corn that should be sown on the morrow so as to provide good cheer;--in all these ways shall they plunder the store won by the hard work of their husbands in field and byre, devouring the poor men's substance even as the hungry jackal under the bench ate up the rope of the rope-maker as he wove it. Howbeit, you have nothing to fear therefrom. Tell me your eighth dream."...”

यातही अश्लील काय मला समजले नाही! हे पुस्तक कदाचित प्रामुख्याने लहान मुलांसाठी लिहल असाव  पण तसेही कै. जोशी अश्लीलतेच्या, सेक्सच्या किंचित वासान सुद्धा दूर पळतात. मी त्या बद्दल आधी इथे (१६/९/२००९) लिहले आहे. पण ह्या 'शुचिते'मुळे रसभंग होतो हे निश्चित

Another point is, I feel, most of the things described in these dreams had come to pass even when Mr. Joshi was translating and also, in 21st century, the Jataka tales have further lost ability to surprise. The future described there is already here and is being dealt with, being rationalized, is perhaps more just. 

 ह्या कथेतील स्वप्ने वाचून मला महान स्टाईनबर्गच्या एका कार्टून ची आठवण झाली...

Artist: Saul Steinberg (1914-1999), 1960's

* जाता जाता एक मजा. कोसंबी त्यांच्या पुस्तकाच्या प्रस्तावनेत म्हणतात: "...जातकट्ठकथा प्रसिद्धीला आणण्याच्या कामीं ज्यांनी परिश्रम केले त्यांत व्ही. फॉसबोल (V. Fausboll) ह्या जर्मन पंडिताला अग्रस्थान दिलें पाहिजे. जर्मनी कोठें आणि सिंहलद्वीप कोठें ! पण 'किं दूरं व्यवसायिनाम्' ह्या न्यायानें या गृहस्थानें तेथून सिंहली ताडपत्री पुस्तकें गोळा करून त्यांच्या आधारावर, दुसर्या कोणाचें साहाय्य नसतां, रोमन अक्षरांनी जातकट्ठकथा छापण्यास १८७७ सालीं आरंभ केला; १८९६ साली हे काम संपविलें..."

पण फॉसबोल (1821-1908) तर डॅनीश होते. ते कोपनहेगन मध्ये संस्कृत शिकवायचे.

अर्काइव्ह.ओजी येथे फॉसबोलांचे 'Ten Jatakas. The original Pali text with a translation and notes', 1872 हे पुस्तक उपलब्ध आहे. त्यात मला कुठेही जर्मन किंवा जर्मनीचा उल्लेख सापडला नाही. त्यात इंग्लीश आहे आणि रोमन लिपीत लिहलेले पाली आहे.

विकिपीडिया डेन्मार्क बद्दल म्हणतो:

"...A nascent Danish liberal and national movement gained momentum in the 1830s; after the European Revolutions of 1848, Denmark peacefully became a constitutional monarchy on 5 June 1849. A new constitution established a two-chamber parliament. Denmark faced war against both Prussia and Habsburg Austria in what became known as the Second Schleswig War, lasting from February to October 1864. Denmark was defeated and obliged to cede Schleswig and Holstein to Prussia. This loss came as the latest in the long series of defeats and territorial loss that had begun in the 17th century. After these events, Denmark pursued a policy of neutrality in Europe...."
फॉसबोल साहेबांना जर्मन म्हटलेल बहुदा आवडल नसत!