What it means to you to be a Chennaiite?
A very casual query that any Chennaiite – a rich person or an average layperson – will be able to talk something passionately about the bond they have with the city or the way they grew up in the city. But not so with Ms Kanimozhi.
She could not say a single word on what Chennai gave her or did to her, nor on the way she felt as one who grew up here (or she grew up elsewhere, I don't know). She seems to have no emotional bonding with the city. All that she knew was how to thrust her concocted beliefs to take a dig at Brahmins and Hindus.
Chennai is popularly known for filter coffee, The Hindu and idly- saambaar. The Hindu nowadays looks like their party newspaper and idly saambaar is a non-issue. What is left is filter coffee, and see how she has used that GK to mouth the horrible things! (given at the end of this post)
Filter coffee is connected with 'maami' (usually referred to the married Brahmin woman) according to her.
Kanimozhi sees this maami married to a Muslim or a Christian!
This is her image of Chennai or rather what it means to be a Chennaiite.
Can a maami serve filter coffee if she is married to a Christian or Muslim?
Avanga appo coffee poduvangala illa karuvaadu samaippangala? (Can she make coffee or karuvaadu / non-veg?) Where could Kanimozhi get filter coffee if the maamis go after Christians and Muslims?
Kanimozhi also says that we have not made religion political. But she is making every bit to snub Hindus and takes a peculiar satisfaction in seeing Hindu religion losing its character. Her Chennai must have only Christians and Muslims and no Brahmins or Hindus, it seems.
Why maamis, aren't there women from other castes who have made a mark for themselves? Why single out maamis?
Kanimozhi even takes a solace that there are no honour killings in Chennai (or Tamilnadu?). But there are other killings and deaths. The horrific suicides reported in Chennai in the last 30 days were mostly about Christian women and young school going children who could not bear study-pressure. What does her government do to avert such deaths?
Kanimozhi must also ponder over why there are no honour killings in Tamilnadu in general. She need not whack her head to find the reason. It is enough she sees the Tamil Movies that show the reality atleast in marriage issues. There will be a maaman (uncle) or father who would drag the eloping girl back home and get her married to the one decided by them. In rural Tamilnadu inter caste marriage is still not tolerated. If we go by the surveys brought out by English magazines, Chennai and Tamilnadu still continues to be conservative in marriage issue. Even the city groomed people go through matrimonial columns through 2 levels of vetting – one done by parents on social and other issues and then only the prospective guys and girls come into the picture.
Marriage is not a social approval for a man and woman coming together. It is thought to be so in the present day world. But Hindu marriages have a lofty ideal of discharging duties of dharma, artha and kaama as a man and wife. Then only the final goal of Moksha will become possible. Of these 4 ideals called Purusharthas, Dharma and Moksha stand on extreme ends. Artha (material life) and kaama must be conducted with dharma. Only then Moksha will be a smooth reality. This mentality makes one tolerant to ups and downs of life and accept each other than expect the other to fulfill one's fancies.
This is the basic idea of Hindu marriage and the ideology of ancient Tamils too. Puranauru tells about a king who conducted his daily routine by adhering to Dharma, Artha and kama. Those who sought gifts from the king need not wait at the entrance of his palace to meet him. The king divided his day for Dharma when he used to meet people at a specified time and present them with gifts and the things they wanted. Then he would spend time with his courtiers to discuss about how to conduct the affairs of the state (artha). Then he would retire to his apartments to be with his wife. So the one longing to meet the king to receive gifts from him could go at the time allotted for dharma related issues and get satisfied by the King's generosity.
These 4 purusharthas are unique for Hinduism and are universal in application. The institution of Hindu marriage is built on these purusharthas only. Arjuna was ready to quit fighting mainly on this plank – that the women widowed due to the death of the men in a war would not be able to live in dignity and would be led to trespass the Kula dharma. As a result, the oblations to the Pithrus (departed souls) could not be offered. When oblations are not offered, the future generations would be afflicted with incurable diseases. The causative person who made all these would have to incur terrible karma. Arjuna did not want himself to be the causative one for these things. He was ready to live the life of a despondent than to become the cause for such a scenario.
The Purushartha connected to Hindu marriage is not a mere belief, we can see the misfortune occurring from the 3rd generation onwards. Oblations to Pithrus is the main issue. A Hindu marrying a Christian or Muslim or an atheist of the Dravidian mold or a Hindu converting to these religions would cease to offer the oblations.
The 3rd generation offspring of these people start showing up symptoms of incurable maladies.
As an astrologer I am receiving the 3rd generation people of the Dravidian atheists of the 20s and 30s and also converted people. Jupiter, the lord of Dharma is found badly afflicted in their horoscopes. They also complain of peculiar diseases that have no cure. Kanimozhi can recall the life of some Dravidian politicians who have such instances happening in their families. As a humanist I feel sorry for them, but as an astrologer I can not say any remedy for them other than telling them to fall in line with the Hindu way and wait for one more generation to pass off for better fortunes to return to the family.
Don't undermine Hinduism Ms Kanimozhi. Your father's favorite Silappadhikaram says more vociferously how karma comes back ferociously to the one who initiated it. Taking glee at maamis or Hindus becoming Christians or Muslims can not do any good to you in your karmic long run. You may dismiss this as rubbish. But that is what Kalapurush wants people to do. The trespassers or wrong doers are not punished immediately. They would have their free run in this birth or at the current period. Kalapurush would wait for the immediate memory to die down and then strike at an unsuspecting moment later. No one can escape its dragnet. That is the real lesson that everyone must remember.
Celebrating a special bond.
Rajya Sabha member
Outsiders perceive Chennai as a very conservative city, they think of a maami serving filter coffee. That's the image of Chennai outside. But then, the maami could still be married to a Muslim or a Christian, be a top surgeon and a social activist too. That's the real Chennai.
We might be a city of a million kinds of people, yet we live in harmony and can look beyond our boundaries such as caste, class and so on. I don't think anyone here -politicians included, can even dare to dream of justifying an honour killing or such retrograde aberrations seen in some other places.
We are very inclusive and this has not happened overnight.
Chennai is one place which can celebrate a Tamil film and also the December Carnatic music festival, along with the world cinema.
Of course, there are things that have to be done. It would have been wonderful to have our satellite city and it is sad that even expanding our airport is becoming a very political thing. How would you get investments without a good modern airport? And where is the employment then?
I think in certain ways we have to open up and stop making everything political. Thank God, we have not made religion political. And in spite of our pride in Tamil and Tamil culture, Tamil Nadu is one of the very few states and Chennai one of the very few cities which are so inclusive. We have respect for other languages and cultures, and the courage to celebrate them.
Our culture is way ahead and has a more human face. And we are justifiably proud of that.