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Love Aaj aur Kal

Then, women would not dare to even utter aloud the names of their men
Now, men and women alike call each other yaar.
Then, to call a man friend, let alone boyfriend, meant inviting whispered gossips and inquisitive stares on to oneself.
Now, not having a boyfriend makes one look like a naani, or a celibate.
Then, love was expressed with letters, sent tied on a pigeon’s neck or with a willing lad’s help.
Now, love communicates through Facebook, Whatsapp, SMS and Hangout.
Then, the only physical contact lovers had was through a pair of roving eyes that surreptitiously devoured their partner’s beauty.
Now, hugs and kisses are nothing but ‘vegan options’; lovers love to try ‘non-veg’ as soon as they can get their hands on it.
Then, love meant a once in a lifetime experience, that stayed with you even if it broke midway.
Now, everything happens fast—food, love, break-up and new love.
Then, love was divine, yes, but family, honor and trust featured higher up on the priority scoreboard.
Now, love comes first, everything else can be looked into later.

Seems quite a cynical view of love, isn’t it? I am not trying to be cynical here though, just wondering aloud how our perception of love has changed with generations. And to be fair, it is not the concept or the intention of love as such that has changed. What has changed is the outlook, impacted by changes in lifestyle, in technology and in levels of exposure. You do find old-world love stories today, but only very rarely. As rare as rebellious love stories were in previous generations.

Today’s generation wants everything fast and furiously. It seems to have no time to be soft and gentle. It’s possible that this is happening because of the uninhibited exposure the current generation has to knowledge which the previous generations accessed only after they reached their twenties. This is probably part of our natural evolution. Except, love seems to be losing the serenity and bliss that used to be associated with it. Nowadays, love is described as ‘hot’, ‘spicy’, ‘romantic’ and ‘sexy’. I do agree that these are an integral part of love, but love itself is really something much more than these.

Love is not something that can be had ‘on the go’; it is something for which one has to take time to stand and deliver. In today’s world a lot of people openly come out with confessions of love, but only a few of them harbor the determination to give their all to that love. The rest are, at best, trying out their luck—if it clicks, good, otherwise they move on to greener pastures. The few who sign up to stand and deliver, however, are the ones who are still keeping the glow of true love alive. And it is through their love stories that the divinity of love will continue to flourish.

By Yamini Vijendran

Yamini draws material for her stories and poems from the world around her. When she is not converting her experiences into stories or poems, Yamini reads, plays with her toddler, and fools around in her laboratory, that is, the kitchen.

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