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Creating Happiness – Rijul Kochhar

Guest post by RIJUL KOCHHAR


It is a minute and a half long, and from the moment you see it, you will know that there is something sinister about it—a scenario of forced forgetfulness. It is displacement incarnate, and what is it doing, this aesthetic of obscenity? Is this retribution or charity, or retribution through charity, the developmental discourse of murderous sustainability through erasure? You will be puzzled and worried, harried and then it will make you sleep again in pious numbness, for isn’t the world—its deep blue sky and crystal fluid and cleansing sunlight, and bright flowery faces, its innocent time—just so beautiful! You will find that you cannot respond to it, physically, humanly, for it is not receptive to the organic. It cannot be mediated. It is a ghoul, perched to haunt and hypnotize us out of the memory of its past terrors. You remember, lenore, and wasn’t it to be nevermore? It is an electrical transmission and nothing more, or is it? It is a triumph of pre-postmodern, oily chic, so cloaked in ancient blood, that the blood has caked and turned black and fallen off, revealing the identical colour of the master’s heart, now you see it, now you don’t. The laceration has been hidden by the three-day apoptosis—the extra-cellular matrix, the forgetful memory’s collagen. But you will need to dig outward and inward from here, and very deep. It is there on my screen, this light of blood-lust, “Vedanta: Creating Happiness”, and every time a new or repeated tale from half way across the world is beamed, news every quarter of an hour, this monstrosity accompanies those facts like some leech feeding on reality. You remember Sontag, and isn’t she who had her way with those words: “Now there is a master scenario available to everyone. The color is black, the material is leather, the seduction is beauty, the justification is honesty, the aim is ecstasy, the fantasy is death.”

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