Hazaron Khwaishen Aisi – A Guest post by Sambit Dash

Image: 5 Steps Out of the Rat Race

Hazaron khwahishen aisi

Ke har khwahish pe dum nikle

Bahut nikle mere armaan

Lekin fir bhi kam nikle….

These immortal lines of Ghalib, describe one of the fundamental aspects of our existence – the millions of wishes we possess is life. Right from the moment we acquire knowledge of our being, and it happens very quickly than we might think it to be, we wish for something or the other. A two year old develops what psychology would call as ego boundaries, and among others has wants.

Moral science in school, I wonder if they still have it in the curriculum and if so with what level of effectiveness, taught us to be content. The chapter titled ‘contentment’ portrayed a wealthy never-ever-satisfied person to be suffering whereas the poorer as happier. Did such lesson ever contain the child’s want and wishes?

Rat race
Image: 5 Steps Out of the Rat Race

The real rat-race infested world then made shards of such theories and instilled in the youth the need, the desire, the thousands wishes, each one more important than other.

We are constantly living in a world where not being competitive is looked down upon, is frowned upon. But competition or no competition the sum total of our actions all lead to one single direction in the end and that is achieving maximum possible of the millions of wishes.

Two meals per day, clothes to wear in winter, clean drinking water, school education, a cycle, a mobile phone, a jeans, an iPad, a laptop, a car, a house, vacations abroad, education abroad, any of these could qualify to be a basic need, a wish, for people across all spectrums of life. But then the ladder of it is endless.

As humans will we be ever content? We are probably not designed to be content. Is the whole meaning of life to strive for these? And it is not just about the material wishes. Emotional wishes would far outweigh the list of material wants.

There is no solution to these issues and neither do I intend to seek them. It is meant to cause rumination about what do we intend to do. For as humans it is near impossible to fulfil that many wishes at the end of which one could say – well yes, that is it, I am happy.

Nikalna khuld se aadam ka sunte aye hain lekin

Bahut beaabru ho kar tere kooche se hum nikle

(The disgrace of Adam having to leave paradise (khuld) we have all heard of; Greater was the disgrace with which I exited your streets

A different interpretation for the second line: In the ways of the world, for if we decimate our whole being to attain these million wishes, it is bound not to happen)


This is a Guest post by Sambit Dash. He is a Lecturer at the Dept. of Biochemistry & Genetics, KMC International Center, Manipal, India.

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