Sunday, June 20, 2021

Ask Auntyji: Prayers or service- what’s useful?

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Dear Auntyji

Last week I was having meatballs and spaghetti for lunch while sitting in the garden with Kaali Billi and Sher Raja (my pet cat and pet pug). I read on the Guardian website that the pentagon will be releasing a report in June that essentially tells us that aliens exist. Even President Obama said so. I am really very excited that we will get to see aliens in my lifetime, but when I told my kids, they laughed at me.

I am truly excited that the mysteries of the universe are unfolding. I told my friend Meera about this and she was a little more reserved – she wanted to know if the aliens would be hostile. This is all so exciting, Auntyji. What are your thoughts, are you also excited? 

Auntyji says

Hey Bhagwan, Prez Obama said no such thing. All he indicated was that there are unidentified aerial phenomena that we are unable to explain. What are you expecting the Pentagon to say, you jaahil bewakuf? That there are little green men?

Think about this. Why is the US now talking about UFOs/UAPs? Why is there only US footage? If there were aliens, why are they choosing the US to make themselves known? But allow me to indulge the shaitaan in me by asking you these questions.

You know how you took Kaali Billi and Sher Raja from their mothers at birth and you put them in your house with strong smells? And you know how you neutered your pets, and that Sher Raja exists because ignoramuses like you specifically selected breeds that look cute but can barely function?

Well, listen up, you nasamajh ganwar, here is the idea you need to ponder further. The aliens are coming because they are looking for exotic pets and a new food source. So, they will take our beautiful babies at birth and keep them as pets. And when our kids grow up, they will mate them with exotic people, so that the offspring will look beautiful. Then those of us who are fat, they will make into koftas and have them for dinner. So put that in your chai and drink it.

Next time you decide to eat a meat dish, and next time you look at your pets, think about what gave you the right to eat animals, and own them for your entertainment and pleasure. How would you feel that some superior being treated you and your children as pets and food?

READ ALSO: Auntyji: On smoking and on office politics

Diwali Barfi's
Diwali Barfi’s. Source: Canva

Dear Auntyji

I have a situation from last Diwali that I wanted your rai on. Generally, because I am married to an Australian, I don’t really do anything for Diwali. My sister-in-law celebrates it every year and goes out of her way to make all sorts of sweets. Now Auntyji, in the 25 years I have known her, I have rarely asked her for anything. In fact, I am always giving her stuff – because it’s the right thing to do.

Anyway, last Diwali, I asked her to make me a batch of barfis. Sneha is a great cook and her barfis are to die for. She is from Fiji so her barfis are different from ours. But she politely declined, saying she wouldn’t be able to make them because she would prefer to use that time for worship. I nearly fell off the chair when I read that text.

I am not a religious person, but I wondered to myself, what is the point of sitting in front of a statue praying to be good, when you can do an act of service and earn good karma that way? Still, I sent a polite text back saying I understood and all. But, Auntyji, I really don’t understand. What is the purpose of prayer without a practical application of an act of service to others? Isn’t service to others a form of prayer? Am I the jaahil in all of this? 

Auntyji says

Oh my plateful of chamcham, how nadaan you are to have such an intelligent viewpoint on religion when you are surrounded by jaahils. Yes, I completely agree with you. If there was a devta, I would expect that of all the prayers and supplications, the most cherished act would be one of service to a banda.

So your Sneha has fallen into the trap of religious people everywhere who believe that spending time in sisdha or in front of a murat is an act of worship. These people feel that thinking about god and trying to be good and praying to be good is the way to godliness.

If only they spend one minute thinking about this, they would realise that an act of service to others is a hundred times better than 5000 wahegurus or a thousand rakats. But let’s be charitable and look at it this way. Let Sneha have her up close and personal with her devta. And you can thank her when you have your up close and personal with your bathroom scales – because you would have become an elaichi-scented gola barfi yourself. And yes, I know exactly what you mean about those Fiji barfis. I believe they make them with powdered milk and elaichi and ghee and sugar. Sadly, neither of us will know because snarky Sneha is unlikely to share the recipe with us either – may she sit in front of her devta until she becomes a baingan from the lack of exercise.

READ ALSO: Ask Auntyji: Should I turn vegetarian after all?

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The original Australian sub-continental agony aunt. Email: info@indianlink.com.au

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