the idea of totally breaking free

Potrait of Adolf Wolfi, taken 1925. Uploader n...

the outsider sits not alone, not in depression; but in this pure restless curiosity. she pokes at the things concealing the hidden. she prods them with a stick she found on her way there. her only determination: she’s going to let whatever happens to happen by itself.

is this the death of common sense? an old voice asks. are you seriously going to let things so loose? haven’t you heard of the dangers? the dangers in a world where labels like hippies and anarchists are derogatory? 

i am a certified schizophrenic [just that i convinced the doctor to give me a chance to probably figure out another way than prescription]. something, i take to pride. because, that probably gives some odd credibility to the craziness i like to have when doing something. i just see my human brain, when charged with language, images, memories, something like a search engine that is having an epileptic fit. it keeps jumping, making random associations, jumps up and down like a pogo stick. for instance, why did i choose to say pogo stick. i’ve never really seen one before or used one at all. movies. maybe, the image from mary poppins i saw when i was six years old. and thus random associations and disassociations pop up in my head.

i approach even blogging with this craziness.

this is something i wrote on this very same blog, that i advertently moved to drafts, only because i felt like it. with what i’ve been saying, what follows makes sense:

So blanking out is a very crucial part of my things-to-do in a day. It is the frequent blank-outs that take me to different worlds or spin me around in the same world where I am now washing dishes and makes me think…

“Rust, grease or oil are not permanent. Lime and vinegar manage to wash it away with a light scrub. Maybe, I should start making my own soap instead of buying all these brands. Maybe, many more things can be made like this at home. Maybe, that would reduce economic strain and would also give me so many nice things to do at home. I should really bring this place down and clean it.” Slowly, I’ll blank out completely, and I’ll have memory of only a few words after hours of work – blue, desire, journey, and lime. These were the words I came back with after making coffee.

I think it is extremely important to let our minds waft in the wind jumping from reality to what may seem unreal. It allows me to freely associate, correlate and understand this world and all that it throws to me. Of course, just sitting blanked out doesn’t help. This same family, my mother, my father, my sister and my partner, write, draw, perform, and make things in this process.

so, yes art, writing, theatre, body, thought, breathing, balance, understanding of society, understanding of self…actually merge into one another. it’s the how part of it that makes life fun.

to be called abnormal is fine. to be asked to become ‘normal’ makes me ask, what is normal? getting up at six. drinking caffeine. going to work at 9. eating lunch at 12. eating supper at 7. sleeping at 11 p.m. ? there is actually no one definition of normal. only things we are used to seeing or sensing vs things we are not used to. the latter confuses, irritates, and questions our already perceived notions of life. why do most people find any mentally challenged child to be weird? Because, they are reluctant to break through that confusion and irritation.

for me breaking free is actually a privileged and cushioned process. i have the money, the house, the family, and the friends circle that support immensely. there have been days of hunger, of depressions, of fights, of crying, of walking out, sometimes even of police. nevertheless, there is support and the lack of societal pressure, whether it is colour, class, caste or religion that decides it. my gender or sexual identity too, with the people that surround me immediately (other than those whose acquaintance could not be diverted or averted, or those whose acquaintance i just accept despite their politics), hasn’t been an issue.

so, what actually is there to protest about personally? i have to ask this now. a small diversion, much needed. i may not protest for myself all the time. i join hands because i see sense, i see energy, i see life there. 

back. breaking free is a personal process. i am my jail. i am my freedom. there are so many things i’ve jailed like my body. it never does what it wants to. once when being part of a play production, i wrote to the director because i saw where i was so totally wrong while on stage. it is that i understand acting and especially performance in theory, maybe even visually. but there is this block that is refusing to translate it to my arms, legs, butt, eyebrows, or anywhere in my body. it was like all this understanding was just circling in my head. after, a month of exploring and repeatedly falling on my face as probably a hopeless performer/entertainer, i managed to identify two problems that my body faces. my body, which is me, a large part of me, does not understand breathing and balance, two very basics function of a moving living thing. i have been trying to unravel this for me more.

and from here i want to ask. how and why do we perceive or understand? breathing and balance are supposed to be instincts. but, in fact, so many of us get it all so wrong. like flying for a bird, a land mammal should in fact know how to walk, how to climb, how to breathe instinctively. we don’t. we all walk differently. and most of us have walks that actually injure our bodies. each of our breathing patterns are different. some take short breaths. other always breathe slowly. some times, for a minute or so, i have forgotten to breathe, especially when i tense up.

all this meandering. writing. going. writing. going. reading. eating. writing. has brought me here.

adolf wölfli. jean dubuffet RAW ART | ART BRUT >>>> OUTSIDER ART

there is no image. there is no form. there is no structure. there is me. there is what i do. there is performance. yes for the public. but no ulterior motive to be placed in galleries, printed in books, quoted in newspapers, or recognized. there is me. there is what i do. and probably the only true public outlet, even that not forcing anyone to read or follow: is this blog.

it is probably not too good to go on and on reading to find names for what it is the outsider does. she merely takes these words, these ideas, allows them to enter her own realm of consciousness, only because she knows it wants to enter. everything is gluttonous to this outsider, floating around. whether it is an idea or a person. she opens out so what is hidden might reveal or go further, making the journey better.


vodka break

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2 Comments on “the idea of totally breaking free”

  1. Venkatesh Chakravarthy says:

    The most important thing in the world is to find your voice so that you can speak out to express yourself; to share your feelings about the self, other and the world with a unique point of view that belongs only to you. In effect communicate. In this scheme of things it does not matter what the world certifies you as. Millions and millions are there who carry the same label. It could either become a burden or a trigger. As you have said, we are our jail and we are our freedom. There are so many people who carry a more comfortable label branded normal as they are. The problem though is that many of them who associate themselves with this category can’t find their voice as it is weighed down either by the education system or other processes of institutionalization or sheerly the effort to sound good that leads one to imitate other voices rather than give body and spirit to one’s own voice. In contrast, you have found your voice. That’s why you write and that’s all that matters. As for breathing or walking it’s not a problem if you give your body a chance to learn yoga. Believe me. It helps.


  2. […] i’ve still been thinking about throwing open the writing process. removing editing, grammar, and backspace out of […]

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