Conflicting prayers…

…and you wondered why they aren’t being answered!
Conflicting prayers…

Our star reporter had a very hectic week so much so that hewas almost laid up with indigestion. Now of course one might question why ahectic week should give indigestion to a guy. You see the star reporter wasbusy for nearly a fortnight covering events related to unceasing rains andhailstorms in the valley. While at it he had occasion to (purely in theinterest of duty!) partake of the offerings of traditional roadside charitablecommunity kitchens or langars, (called sus-rus in the local lingo!). Peoplehave lately started organizing these langars to appease the Lord and convinceHim to stop the rains and keep the river-embankments intact no matter how weakthey are because of course like everyone else our engineers and contractorsaren't exactly infallible. Well at least this is what our reporter thought thelangars were for though as circumstances ultimately proved he was rather offthe mark which can be attributed to his naiveté. For star reporter that he ishe is definitely naïve or else why should he have posed such a silly questionas he did while gobbling down a delicious concoction at one of these sus-ruslangars.

"Who is being fed at these sus-rus langars?" he asked theamiable old man as he proffered his plate for a second helping.

"Anybody and everybody! There is no distinction for we areall His creation," the old man said with a smile.

"I thought this must be about feeding the poor," the starreporter said.

"But why?!" the old man said with an amused expression.

"Because those poor hungry souls would pray real ferventlyfor you!"

The old man laughed and said, "And what will that achieve?!If the Lord would hear their prayers why then would they be poor and starvingin the first place?!"

After this informative conversation our star reporter wenton a binge tour as he covered most of the sus-rus langars that had been laidout in various parts of the city. This gave him a mighty indigestion and almostgot him transferred to the food page of the newspaper because his report readmore like a recipe than a news report. Chastised by the editor the newsreporter decided to pursue another angle of the story. In fact to mollify theeditor he resolved to come up with a real scoop.

Manipulating his numerous contacts, of which he hadcultivated many (which is what had made him a star reporter in the firstplace!) he managed to gain access to the highest office of them all, thepersonal section of the Lord himself! Now don't ask me how he managed that! Theideal journalist that he is, he never reveals his sources or contacts for thatmatter. 

Up there he contacted various desks (manned by angels ofcourse!) and was ultimately directed to a room with an 'H.A' board affixedoutside. 'H.A' turned out to be the Head Angel and not Head Assistant as he hadthought which did not matter though for practically  it boiled down to the same thing.

"Sir," he addressed the Head Angel squinting his eyesagainst the radiance emanating from him, "What became of the prayers and thesus-rus offerings?"

"Depends," the venerable angel said in a mellifluous voice.

"On what?" the reporter asked.

"What the majority of prayers and offerings are for?"

"Why! They must all be asking for a relief from the rainsand a respite from floods!" the surprised reporter said.

"Don't be so sure!" the venerable agent said in a laconicvoice. "It is obvious that you haven't done your homework properly. Come let meshow you." He switched on the CCTV, clicked on Planet Earth and then zoomed inon Kashmir and then further on a particular sus-rus langar! It was the samelangar where the reporter had asked the silly question about whether it wasmeant to feed the poor. The old man was mumbling some prayers beneath hisbreath as he ladled out the concoction. The Head Angel clicked a button and thebeneath-the-breath prayers became audible. The old man, it turned out, wasasking the Lord to intensify the floods and prevail upon the authorities toallot plots at some alternate site. He had already registered his household asthree households as he wanted three plots for his two sons and a daughter too!

Then the Head angel focused on another group. Here it was asenior engineer who was humbly handing out the filled plates to the gatheredpeople. "Lord I have got to pay for that new flat in Mumbai so let the floodspull down some buildings and wash away the embankments and bridges in myassigned area so that I can get my share from the contractors!" the engineerwas beseeching the Lord in his heart of hearts.

He zoomed in on another one of these gatherings and therethe head honcho was praying for the floods because he wanted to build a line ofshops adjacent to his house! This was followed by other zoom-ins and of coursethere were a few places where the people were actually praying for a respitefrom the rains and the floods…

"We have to consider every prayer you see…" the Head Angelsaid with a shrug.

The star reporter could only mumble in amazement, "And Ithought the prayers were going unanswered…"

(Truth is mostly unpalatable…but truth cannot be ignored!Here we serve the truth, seasoned with salt and pepper and a dash of sauce(iness!). You can record your burps, belches and indigestion, if any, atsnp_ajazbaba@yahoo.com)

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