“…just cant seem to concentrate on studies man. Really gonna get screwed this sem…”
“Chill yaar. Tried meditating?” said Wegit.
“Well, no. Wait a sec, what? Hahahahahah!”
“Abey it works…seriou…”
“Yeah yeah…So what Asana do you excel in? Taking your own pecker in your mouth?”
“Fuck you. Yoga doesn’t even have to be related to it. It does work man. Try at least once. You will feel the difference within.”
“Will see. Hey gotta go mug a little now. Catch you later.”
“Yeah chal bye.”
I pressed the end call button. The MA 205 lecture gave way to Wikipedia on the desktop. I wasn’t completely oblivious to this ancient Indian practise that gave Gyaan, Dhaarma, Youvan and other spiritual shit to individuals. At some point in my life Mater would rouse me at 5 am every day to emulate a certain heavily bearded man contorting his body in a sedentary position. That man would laugh real bad, proclaiming it to be an exercise, and thereafter sing bhajans in an even worse tone.
But then, I used to score well in exams during the time.
Maybe Wegit’s advice had a point.
Meditation wasn’t indigenous to Hinduism as I found out. Everyone did it. Maybe there was something to it. Delving deeper, I found out about a form of meditation by the virtue of which you could experience an out-of-body (OBE) state, wherein you could project your soul outside your body and see yourself from an astral plane. I read accounts of people who had undergone the state, and even though each story screamed the word ‘Hoax!’ out aloud, I couldn’t help but feel a little excited.
That was it. I decided to meditate the very next day. I set my alarm to 4.30 am and dozed off early.
Cacophony surrounded my awakening. I was surprised that I didn’t kill off the alarm and go right off to sleep. I guess it must have been the anticipation that kept me going; right through the ablutions to clearing my throat in a passionate eviction of sputum to splaying some aftershave on myself (the room stank, a little). Smoothing out the bed sheets, I gradually brought my legs together in the Lotus position, and closed my eyes.
Silence. Gentle whirring of the ceiling fan above. Pitch darkness. Breathe in, breathe out. Rhythm set. Intermittent snoring sounds from my Gult roomie. Brisk air. Ruffling of my bodily hairs. Silence. Crickets chirping. Naked Penelope Cruz.
My eyes scrunched up. I was not supposed to think, and definitely not about this.
Vanilla Sky. Boobs. Salma Hayek. Bandidas. Meditate you motherfucker! Naughty America. Jenna Haze. Curvaceous contours. Poles and residues. Maths. Damn I am so gonna get screwed. Silence. Coke Studio rocks. I love Zeb. So cute when she smiles. Silence. Breathe in and out. Aaaargghhhh meditate, meditate, meditate!
It wasn’t working out. It was then that I had the brainwave.
The fusillade of thoughts started being subdued one by one, as if the utterance itself was subconscious command. The heartbeat laundered out to a smooth, delicate pattern. The sounds in the vicinity faded gradually.
The long chant reverberated deep within, transporting me to some hillock in Sikkim, to a monastery where thousands of bald monks prostrated, all of them emitting the same mantra. They seemed to be in some sort of a trance, slightly rocking back and forth on their knees. Numerous bells tolled in euphonious succession. Light from an unknown source dazzled my eyes, and then, just like that, gone. The termination of my chant had immediately led to the silence imploding into existence. I inhaled.
Just silence. Emptiness. Suspended.
Peace. Tranquillity. I could imagine myself at the moon now, surrounded nothing but by the stars, not unnerved in the least by the desolation. On the contrary, I savoured it. I felt enlightened, sprightly, as if the worldly possessions and qualms couldn’t harry me any longer. I was severed from the system, but I could manipulate it. The entire race of humans now basked under the rays of my transcendentality. I was above all.
A room. Looked pretty much like mine. I hadn’t opened my eyes yet. Srinu drooled on his pillow. I just regarded it with nonchalance, and wasn’t amazed at the fact that the sight hadn’t disgusted me. But after all, I was above such things.
In fact, I was rising above. While sitting cross legged.
I swerved around to see myself enunciating “Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaoooooooouuuuuuuuuuuuuummm”
This was the astral fucking plane.
I didn’t bother to yodel a mundane whoop of celebration. One must not highlight one’s achievements audaciously, I contemplated. After all, this is just another one. And there might be more in the future, each one of rising magnanimity, such that this one would be dwarfed beside it. I hovered just beside my material manifestation, looking at the lines of my forehead dimmed under this serene influence. I glanced at the door.
Nice, I thought, as I passed right through it. I raised my hand in the hope to behold a translucent entity, but a stark void greeted me. I drifted on ahead, coming to a halt at Mistri’s and AKG’s room. Mild curiosity assailed me, and I drifted right in.
Mistri, the Topless One, didn’t leave anything to belie his nickname. He slept on, ignorant of my presence. AKG still clutched his cell phone, which was dead from the relentless messaging to the ladylove from previous night. He also displayed fits of somniventriloquism, most of which came out garbled. I tried catching snippets; “…mera room chhod do…”, “…infi muggna hai bhaai…”, “…aisi cheeze mat daala karo mere bed pe…”, “…darwaaza khula rakha karo, warna room sm-ae-ll karta hai…” were the best I could manage.
I went next to Haridwar and Farma’s room. Farma was sprawled on the bed in quite a decent position. His gaping mouth, however, depicted the chasm of foul early morning breath. Haridwar had cocooned himself with his blanket, curled up tightly akin to a cat. His mouth puckered, he was emitting noises that sounded like kissing to me. Must be enjoying wet dreams about the Pratham satellite they were making, I thought. Girls had ceased starring in his dreams a long time ago.
I drifted out. I now made my way back to my own room, the progress suddenly being hindered by the sight of Saala Freshie’s room. I glided in.
Saala Freshie had one hand down his pants and the other on his chest. Though his limbs weren’t in motion at the time, I guessed he must have gone to sleep while in the posture. I realised now that I wasn’t breathing either, as the usual stinky brick of air, the product of his sweat glands, that pummelled my nasal cavity whenever I had the misfortune of visiting his room, was veritable by its absence. I left Saala Freshie at his disposure and emerged out.
I was back in my room now. I looked at Srinu’s face, expressionless, save the dribble of saliva that now ran down his chin. I wondered what he dreamt about. Movies? Home? Chicks? Booze? Why don’t I find out already?
I never had attempted it, nor read any texts for the same, but I decided to act upon my intuition anyway. I dove headfirst into his brain.
“AE ANTE AMALA PARO! AE ANTE AAHA PARO!”
The volume was incredible, but the sight more than that.
Srinu was clothed in a checked shirt and lungi and was dancing on a train, with a hoarde of Gultis assisting behind him, one of whom I recognised as a CSE Gulti who lived on the ground floor. The maiden, however, repeatedly changed. From Aishwarya to Kajol to some chick in the insti* to some other South Indian actress chick, the females changed at least a dozen times before I had enough.
Enough with the frivolity, I thought. Why should someone be wasting his reveries thinking about matters of such insignificance? So much good would come from channelizing one’s thoughts towards the righteous path. It was therefore that I volunteered to give his mind some training in Yogic practises.
And I fired right away. I showed Srinu the Lotus position, the Shayanasana, the Mayur Aasana. He matched me with every step. I was proud of him for being the perseverant disciple. I then sat on my knees to show him the last of the Aasanas that I knew.
“Srinu, listen carefully child, for this shall be thy last Aasana, and is of utmost importance too. This is called the PawanMukt Aasana.”
“Y’all right’a Gurudyeva. Show me-a.”
I knotted my arms and legs. Srinu followed suit.
“Excellent Vatsa! Thou have mastered this art!”
“Thank ye Gurudyeva, thank ye! Byee di way, uuwhat yiz yits purpose-ra?”
“This position, my child, is used for expelling bodily winds out of the system…”
“Gurudyeva, I think, yit yiz working!”
“No, my child! NO! STO..”
“Yit feels nice-raa…” Srinu’s voice was lost as I found myself travelling through the air out of his psyche, out of the air, out of the astral plane, and into my body. The first thing I discerned was the presence of a pungent, sickly, stagnant stink that roiled my insides. I made a retching action, and simultaneously felt as if all the life had been drained out of me. I keeled over and passed out.
I woke up to Srinu shaking me awake.
“Wyake up man! MA tomorrow! Gotta mugg!”
He appeared baffled when I glared at him.