April 19, 2003

Of idleness and indolence

Things have been extremely slow of late. I have not been coding, not updating my main site, The Developer’s Corner, that I’ve been regularly updating for over two years. Basically, I’ve simply been content to be idle, watch movies, speculate on stuff and play with software. This has given me the opportunity to learn a few new things and to explore a few areas that I had not explored before but I find myself asking, "what about the people who are so eagerly awaiting the next release of my software?". I have a responsibility to them too. Yes, it is free software but just because the software is free does not mean that I have no responsibility to my users. It is a dilemma.

That is just one dilemma out of many that seem to confront me suddenly and I seem to be content to think about these matters and yet come to no decision. The others? What am I going to do? Where do I go – stay in Sri Lanka or move to another country? And most of all, what is the purpose to our existence? These are just a few of the questions going through my mind suddenly. For some strange reason, it seems to me that we are at a critical point in history – a cusp if you will. I don’t want to make any decisions right now, I just want to live life day by day, as it comes, since to me it seems that future events will dictate my course. It seems a little indulgent at times and also laggardly to think somethingelse can control my life instead of simply taking charge of my own life and going on with it, no matter what. But my sense of historical forces seems so strong right at the moment (maybe I’ve been reading too much Gordon R. Dickson and his "Childe Cycle" is beginning to affect me …) that I just want to see how things play out before I make a decision. But how long can you stay inert and indecisive anyway?

Another reason for my inactivity (at least as far as moving out of Sri Lanka or staying on here is concerned) is the same old one – my parents. I’ve had this debate right here about talking about other people on this journal and so will not go into details but my parents have their own reasons for wanting me here – some of it emotional and some of it cultural. They unfortunately are very true-to-norm results of their culture unlike me and so their perceptions, feelings and actions are ruled by their culture. While I can understand their actions, I still can’t say that their beliefs and their perceptions are their own and leave – they are my parents and I am their firstborn … believe it or not, that (being firstborn) carries a certain responsibility with it when you are over here :p

One more thing that seems to be brought home to me again and again is what Terry Pratchett would call the gods-playing-dice-with-us-as-pieces syndrome :p I find that there are certain actions of mine which almost always results in a counter-action by fate, gods, happenstance … whatever you may call it. It seems almost inevitable and seems to have the kind of precision which makes me believe more and more that there is a pattern to it. (Yes, my insanity begins to show through as I expose more and more of my mind <g>) There is a collection of stories (I think by Frank Herbert .. not sure off-hand) called "Case and the Dreamer" – one of the stories in it is about this woman who loses her one true love to death and embarks on this quest to regain him by cloning him and making sure that his life follows a certain path while she remains the same age by going into suspended animation – one day, she will awaken and come back into his life but till then his life will be steered in just such a way as to make their first meeting one where they would fall in love … or something like that. That is an intriguing thought and coupled with this whole being-blocked-at-certain-points thing, I can’t but wonder maybe if my life is controlled in such a way too? OK, I will stop now before the men in white jackets come for me :p

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Posted by Fahim at 7:07 am  |  1 Comment