A Philosopher’s Statements
A Philosopher’s Statements
Two-thirds of the members of the Youth Club are present in the evening gathering. It has almost become a fashion for the youths to gather in the cozy hall of the club every evening. As per the rules of the club, every boy and girl in the locality from fourteen to thirty years of age is a general member of the club. But it seems that it is the monopoly of the boys only. No girl is generally seen in the club except on some special occasions. In the Register Book, the names of a hundred young boys and girls have been enlisted. But only ten to fifteen members seem to be active members as they hardly keep absent from the everyday evening gathering.
Today about twenty-five members are present in the gathering. But why they have gathered there none can say for certain. But it is true that the gathering provides them with a means of passing their time in gossiping and sometimes it becomes the platform of expressing the whimsical opinions of the youths on contemporary socio-political problems. Out of the twenty members, only five are married recently and all the rest are bachelors. In the gathering there are college students, two teachers, two singers, a poet, an artist, two farmers, a philosopher and the rest may be called dilettantes. Among the gathering, there is a married man nearly thirty who has earned the reputation of being a good match-maker and he is so-called by the nickname ‘Mr. Match-maker’ and under his mediation already a dozen young boys and girls have entered into the holy marriage bond.
Bablu the secretary of the club, seeing Mr. Matchmaker, gave a little smile and said to him, “Welcome, you seem to be irregular in attending the congregation, isn’t it?”
He replied, “Yes, I am busy in match-making programs for which I get little opportunity to attend the daily gathering.”
“Well. You know that most of our members are bachelors. I request you to get well matches for them.”
The matchmaker replied, “I am ready. May I ask you who among the congregation is eager to get married?”
Bablu the Secretary stood up from his chair and addressing the congregation, said: “Please stand up who are thinking of getting married.”
Then about a dozen among them stood up. The matchmaker asked one of them who was a farmer, “May I know what sort of bride you like to be married to?”
He replied, “I would like to get a girl as my bride who is beautiful and skilled in household work.”
Secondly, a young boy about twenty-two who is a poet expresses his desire to be married to a girl who is charming, and artistic in nature.
There was a singer who replied, “I wish that my wife must be attractively beautiful, sweet-voiced and suitable for fashionable society.”
There was a professor of literature who express that he likes to be married to a beautiful, highly educated smart girl born of reputed parents.
There was a shy, melancholic young boy about twenty-five who had been looking for a worthy match for him for the last few months though he could not meet his luck, stood up and said, “I wish to get a good-looking wise girl enough to understand me as my wife.
Then the matchmaker stood up and said, “Everybody gives preference to the physical beauty of a girl and then passes for other qualities. But in reality, only thirty percent of marriageable girls are beautiful then what will happen to the rest of the girls? Would not they get married?”
There was a young thinker, who by nature spoke less, stood up silently and said, “Every bachelor has a weakness for a beautiful girl but hardly have we realized that beauty often beguiles us. A man’s happiness and peace of mind depend not upon his own merit but on his wife.”
Among them, there was a school teacher, who got his job recently, stood up almost with a protesting mood and said, “How beautiful figure beguiles us? I ask an explanation for it.”
The young thinker stood up and began to say, “A beautiful girl becomes conscious of her beauty only when she hears people talk of her beauty and when she becomes conscious of her beauty then a sense of pride began to be awakened in her which she thought to be her unique property and then she uses her sense of beauty as a means (instrument) to influence on her spouse and if she sees her spouse be indifferent to her beauty (the cause of her pride) then she becomes psychologically rebellious against her spouse which undermines the inner peace of the couple.”
After saying this he swallowed the saliva and resumed, “If a man wishes to be happy in his conjugal life then he must appreciate his mentality. Here to say that on the basis of mentality (personal way of outlook towards life) humankind may broadly be divided into three types: first, people of simple mentality; second, people of complex mentality; third, people of compound mentality.”
Then he stopped and turned to his left and then to his right as if to feel the response of his listeners and then resumes again to explain the already mentioned three types of people. He went on to say:
The people of simple mentality generally like to take horticulture, agriculture or any other productive activities as their occupation. Especially the peasants, farmers, and wage-earning labourers are people of a simple mentality. They seem to be content with what they have. They are people of limited ambition. They always like to lead a physically busy life. Their married life may be happy with the girls who are less educated, hardworking and skilled in household work. They prefer young girls below sixteen to be married. For them, beauty in women is a secondary thing as they give preference to the physical ability of a girl.
Secondly, the people of complex mentality comprises poets, singers, sportsmen, actors, artists, musicians, politicians and people who like to follow any light fine arts. They are the most peculiar and protean type of people in society. They are highly ambitious, wayward and obstinate to their personal whims. The chief aim of their life is to draw the attention and praise of people towards them through their arts and aesthetic creativity. They suffer a lot- both physically and mentally- in life because of their struggle for drawing admiration from people. While marrying a girl they prefer highly beautiful, smart, flirting, fashionable girls ignoring their merits. They use their wives as a source of entertainment and only after passing a few months, they begin to think of their wives to be hackneyed and eventually they become indifferent to their wives, and consequently peace of their conjugal life breaks down into pieces. The frequency of divorce between husband and wife is higher among this person than that of the rest two classes. They can never be happy in their conjugal life. Some of them only pretend to be happy to avoid public censure and criticism.
Thirdly, the people of compound mentality are comprised of thinkers, philosophers, scientists and explorers. The class of this type of people is indifferent to the material glory and peace in personal life. They have neither any ambition nor any longing for earning a reputation. They are busy with community life. They are not satisfied with the existing dogmas of life. Their main objective in life is to think out some method or ways for a better human society full of mutual peace, happiness, communal unity, common welfare etc. They are full of patience, charity, magnanimity, fellow feeling and other humane qualities. They get married for physical needs. They are indifferent to the quality, beauty, education, ancestry etc. of a girl while marrying her. They think of men and women simply as men and women. They see no fundamental difference between an educated girl and an uneducated girl, between a young girl and an aged one, between a physically charming one and an ugly one. As the people of the second class, they also cannot be happy in their conjugal life with their wives. It is because they are less inclined to material gain and more indifferent to the personal happiness of life. But as the outlook of womankind is solely materialistic so they cannot be happy with such a type of man. Here it is seen that this class of people is characterized by some noble qualities such as magnanimity, patience, fellow feeling, etc, so they try their best to be happy with any woman they marry. But it never happens. They may only be happy with the women who come forward willingly being fascinated by the noble qualities of a man of such type. The woman who comes forward willingly to be married to such a type of man remains most obedient, and submissive to her husband in any circumstances and thus she loses her personal identity.
After listening to his explanation, the image of my wife came to my mind and I came to appreciate myself that I am neither a peasant nor an artist but a philosopher and then I determined not to struggle in vain to be happy with my wife anymore. 0 0 0
A Philosopher’s Statements
N.B. The short story ‘A Philosopher’s Statements’ originally belongs to the book ‘Neha’s Confession and Other Stories’ by Menonim Menonimus.
A Philosopher’s Statements
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