Duryodhan walked in with a haughty gait in the palace built by Pandavas. Inwardly, seething at the opulence. He screeched to an awkward stop to what he perceived to be a body of water with in the palace. He skirted it carefully and proceeded. Congratulating himself for having averted a definite catastrophe . Splash!!! To his utter shock and embarrassment he fell into a body of water which appeared to be a mosaic floor.
‘Virtual reality was once the dream of science fiction. But the internet was alsoonce a dream, and so were computers and smartphones. The future is coming’. Said Mark zuckerberg.
I looked at her.Her whole body was filled with joy. A smile touched my face.
I watched her as she ran after our child coaxing it to eat some food. ‘Come here you naughty little darling. You need to sit in a place and eat your food properly. Or it will all go inside a devil’s tummy’.I lounged on the sofa indulging in everyday drama. I am sure, my child must have giggled and hid.
My wife entered the drawing room. ‘Now where are you? Where are you hiding? This is no times to play games.’ Her tone was stern. It looked like my daughter would get a good scolding if, caught.‘There, there’ I told my wife. Just be easy on her’. She turned to me immediately. ‘ you really are indulging her’. You will spoil her. And then she suddenly asked, ‘are you hiding her?’
‘Good lord, no!’ I said.‘You know’ said my wife, ‘I told her I will not put her to bed and sleep next to her if, she doesn’t complete her homework.’ And do you know what her reply was?’
‘No, ‘ what did she say?’‘I will not drink my milk if, you don’t put me to sleep.’I laughed. ‘You find it funny?’‘No, no. Not at all. I tried to suppress my mirth.‘Well, my wife continued ‘that’s not all. I asked her if, she was blackmailing me. And she says ‘aren’t you doing the same with me?’Now, I openly laughed and escaped from my wife’s wrath by diving into the bathroom.
I sauntered back fresh.To find her busy playing with our child and she hadn’t had her food.I walked in into the study to find her talking and showing a few kathak steps. She said she was planning to enroll our child in kathak.
I watched her in disbelief.This wasn’t the reason why I had got the VR glasses. The VR glass was meant to cope up with the pain of loss. The loss of our only child.But, this, now, I realised wasn’t working. My precious soul mate had lost the difference between reality and virtual reality. And this loss will be too unbearable.
‘Can I have the virtual reality glasses back?‘No..no!’ She balked. Holding on desperately to the glasses. Wait! I shouted and grabbed the VR glasses off her and threw them from my veranda. I threw away my wife’s virtual world. I Threw away this animated surreal version of our child.
Tears streamed down my face as I watched her sleep a sedated sleep. What a fool I was! I cradled her cursing myself for indulging in virtual reality. Pain and pleasure are part of life. We should face both with equal courage. Not, escape reality with illusionary virtual world.Maya Jaal, web of illusion. Goddess Maya lures us and we lose our sense of identity. Our scriptures as old as earth perhaps warns us against it. Yet, weak, we indulge.
I woke up next day, to find my wife in the balcony. I knew, intelligent as she was, she too was pondering.I went to her. And hugged her.
‘Let’s clone. She said. She was still with science.
‘ Let’s adopt; to adapt’ I said. We needed to accept reality and return to normalcy.
Tomorrow we are going to orphanage. To adopt. To reality
If we were to face such a situation in our lives, what would we choose?
Reality or Virtual Reality?
Reality is painful. There’s no escape from it. It can crush us and break us. But is Virtual reality the answer? Yes it is an answer for entertainment. Watch Black Panther with the VR glasses. Have your virtual destination holidays with the Virtual Reality. But be careful how much entry you give to Virtual Reality into your life…