--BY MADAN LAMSAL
Today I feel like singing songs of praise, a number of them. As you can see, the country is witnessing, one after another, things you perhaps could have never even imagined. Those who you deemed worthy of only a thumbs down in the past are getting a thumbs up today. There is a principle in management – encouraging and praising those who do good work. So, I, too, have been looking for an opportunity to praise those doing a good job and encouraging them to never do a bad thing and to always do good things in life.
You must have listened to romantic songs, tragic songs, patriotic songs, humorous songs etc. But have you ever come across a song that serves to only praise someone, nothing else? Yes, today I feel like singing that kind of song.
In all honesty, it’s been quite a long time since I sang a song in someone else's praise. The number of those who are landing new juicy jobs has been on the rise. And again, how long should I keep complaining only, saying this is not right and that is wrong. So, I think it’s time for me to praise someone. So, I have been looking for words and phrases stronger than ‘Wow!’, ‘You are great!’, ‘There’s no one like you!’ etc.
It doesn’t make perfect sense if I say, ‘You are the only great person in this whole world’. But what else can you do? Some people are not happy as long as you don’t say something like this in their praise! So I have to go with the flow! Making people happy is not an insignificant thing after all.
I somehow managed to pen a song that can be sung in anyone’s praise. I borrowed phrases from here and there. But the problem is in the way the politicians’ stooges, sycophants and middlemen praise them; any word of praise from any other person hardly makes a difference or means anything to those politicians.
These days the job of singing songs that praise someone who deserves praise is considered the sole responsibility of the middlemen, sycophants and stooges of the politicians. If a simple person like me starts singing such a song, then s/he will be accused of nothing more and nothing less than theft. That is why, though I have made all the preparations to sing songs in the praise of someone, I haven’t been able to decide who that someone should be? Balen or Gopi? Rajesh or Renu? Who?
I am not sure as to whom I should praise. However, I feel the urge to praise someone very strongly. This feeling has, in fact, created waves in my body. These days I find myself very happy and content when I think of one of the great pieces of wisdom and virtue mentioned in our ancient Hindu scriptures – “Satyam bruyat, priyam bruyat! Na bruyat satyamapriyam!! Which roughly means, “Speak the truth, Speak pleasantly! Don’t speak unpleasant truth!!” Or in other words, “Speak the truth that is palatable, don’t speak unpalatable truth.” How beautifully does this Sanskrit Shloka unwind the philosophies of speaking truth and untruth! Also, this is not the age when you should expect ‘smooth bread and rough talk’. We are rather in the age of “rough bread and smooth talk.” Ever since this secret truth dawned on me, I have been feeling like speaking pleasantly and just praising everyone.
With compliments and buttering remarks such as, “You have beautiful rows of white, bright, sparkling teeth!”, “You have eyes as beautiful as those of a deer!”, “Your face glows like the full moon!” etc, many wiseacres have been tricking and benefitting from those in power. And this business of praising people in order to fool them has been going on for ages anyway. Even the stooges of the local goons have long been praising their bosses – the bully Bills – saying they are fit for public positions!
Many clever chaps have been getting favours from their stupid bosses for years purely by praising them. Praising someone is an infallible weapon to get your job done and move forward in life; you can try it anywhere, anytime and on anyone! So, let’s start praising all office-bearers in the country in such a way that whatever we think becomes a reality!! There are many people in power who would lend their ears just to hear words of praise. That’s why and how their sycophants take advantage of the situation all the time. When I think of all this, I strongly feel the urge to praise someone. But who should I praise? I am confused.
When I think of singing songs in praise of the ministers, prime ministers and former prime ministers, no one other than their party cadres is ready to accept that they have done any good to the country. Similarly, when I think of praising the highly-placed government officials, no name comes to my mind. When I consider praising those in literature or the music field, my mind cannot think of names beyond that of old literary personalities like Laxmi Prasad Devkota and Lekhnath Poudel and the likes. What could I possibly achieve from praising these dignitaries? Some may even insist that the past has lost its charm.
Even in the field of music, those in the know vouch that with luminaries like Narayan Gopal and Gopal Yonjan gone, the field seems to be empty. And then, what can anyone say about singing the praises of the country's industrialists and businessmen? Because even if someone has done something commendable, it would not even take one second for the advocates of a closed economy to propel a rally that would liken it to that of applauding black marketeers.
I do not know why nowadays I have these strong urges to sing songs in someone’s praise. I have even memorised many metaphors and verses which are better than those used by the great Kalidas to compose sonorous sentences of praise. And yet the subject defeats me. Who should I ask? Can one be found? Dear reader, do you know anyone who can be deemed to be worthy enough?