The Deep Dive

Seeking the Real, the Excellent and the Delightful

Dig deeper in your pocket August 29, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — samthambu @ 6:01 pm

by Samuel Thambusamy

Read closely the lyrics of the Song Ka-ching  

We live in a greedy little world–
That teaches every little boy and girl
To earn as much as they can possibly–
Then turn around and
Spend it foolishly
Weve created us a credit card mess
We spend the money we dont possess
Our religion is to go and blow it all
So its shoppin every sunday at the mall

All we ever want is more
A lot more than we had before
So take me to the nearest store

[chorus:]
Can you hear it ring
It makes you wanna sing
Its such a beautiful thing–ka-ching!
Lots of diamond rings
The happiness it brings
Youll live like a king
With lots of money and things

When youre broke go and get a loan
Take out another mortgage on your home
Consolidate so you can afford
To go and spend some more when
You get bored

All we ever want is more
A lot more than we had before
So take me to the nearest store

[repeat chorus]

Lets swing
Dig deeper in your pocket
Oh, yeah, ha
Come on I know youve got it
Dig deeper in your wallet
Oh

All we ever want is more
A lot more than we had before
So take me to the nearest store

[repeat chorus]

Can you hear it ring
It makes you wanna sing
Youll live like a king
With lots of money and things
Ka-ching!

Questions for group discussion

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1) What is this song all about? Would you agree with the song?

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2) Why do people go for bigger things – better things – branded things? What do you think is the logic behind shopping spree/spending spree?

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3)

“All we ever want is more
A lot more than we had before”
 It’s only human to want more. Comment!

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4) We buy things that we don’t need. With the money we do not have to impress people who don’t care. Comment!

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5) How important is “shopping” in today’s world? To what extent can you blame “advertisements”, “discount offers”, and “availablity, affordablity and accessiblity of goods and services” ?

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6) Jesus said, ”Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; A man’s life does not consist in the abundance of possessions” ( Lk 12: 15). Comment! 

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 7) Godliness with contentment is great gain (I Tim 6:6). Living in a  “I-shop-therefore-I-am” world, how do we build contentment into our lives?  What are the challenges that we are likely to face in a consumer world?

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First Take: Modhi Vilayadu (2009) August 14, 2009

Filed under: Discourse of Desire,Film,Human Condition,Identity — samthambu @ 1:54 am

Modhi Vilayadu

Modhi Vilayadu (2009) narrates the story of Uday Vasudev and his tryst with (borrowed) identity.

The film raises the question: What if you have lived a lie all your life?

In the film, you get to meet Uday, Rajan Vasudev, Chanakya and Eswari and begin to feel sad for them. Why?

You feel sad for

  • Uday (for the lie he lived)
  •  Rajan Vasudev (for the life he lived)
  • Chanakya (for the false life he loved)
  • Madan (for the life he never lived)
  • Eswari(for the lie she believed) 

People (mis)spell LIFE as: I (Rajan Vasudev) , IF (Madan) , LIE (Chanakya)

Life has to be spelt as LIFE! A fact that Uday painfully learns.

How do we face the truth about ourselves? Remember, truth comes in different shades: the truth, the real truth and nothing but the truth! How do we let go ‘borrowed’ identity? How do we let go ‘false’ identity? And most importantly, How do we get to be ourselves? How do we live our lives – in all its fullness?

Do we need to really fight it out? Or is there someone who will help us?

 

Death has triumphed over the tabloid press July 12, 2009

Filed under: Thinkspace — samthambu @ 6:29 pm

Thinkspace1

” Go now, you papparazi… you know where he is… but you can’t reach him now… yeah! death has triumped over the tabloid press “

 

Should love be a guessing game? May 27, 2009

Filed under: Life in General,Music Videos,Relationships,Themes — samthambu @ 6:19 pm

Commentary on the song Poker Face ( by Lady Gaga)

lady-gaga

Lyrics and Video

We all seek meaningful relationships. Sadly, relationships (and friendships) have become a (poker)game. It is awful to enter into relationships purely by ‘luck’ and ‘intution’. And then, we keep the other person guessing. We love to keep it that way. We don’t want to reveal our ‘real’ face and ‘real’ intentions. we play the game of love with the poker face.

Sadly, we get see relationships through a hurt perspective. Pain colours our vision. Makes us shrink on the inside. Makes us withhold ourselves. We want to enter into a meaningful relationship and yet we want to withold ourselves. We don’t confess our love because we know it one big bluff. We like to have it as ‘game’and keep everyone guessing. We deny ourselves of true love, for what is love if it isnt real, excellent and delightful. When we deceive others we deceive ourselves too.

The hurts and aches (of failed love) we carry is addictive. We enter relationships wanting it to be ‘rough’. We honestly believe, “when it’s love if it’s not rough it isn’t fun, fun”. The more we deny ourselves love, the more we hurt ourselves. And the more we hurt ourselves, we lose the ability to love. It’s a vicious circle.

The poker face is no help at all. Love is self-giving. Of course, you become vulnerable within the relationship but if its a relationship of trust you find love, you find a new you (a me-in-relationship). There’s a lot of difference between ‘life’ and ‘play’. A poker face is of no help if you are seeking love – that is real, excellent and delightful.

Conversations

1) What is this song about?
2) Why do people rely on ‘luck’ , ‘intuition’ and ‘manipulation’ to enter into relationships?
3) “And baby when it’s love if it’s not rough it isn’t fun, fun”. Do you agree with this! Why?
4) “No he can’t read my poker face”. Can this deception lead to self deception? Why?
5) What did you (dis)like about the song? Why?

 

Forgiveness March 29, 2009

Filed under: Forgiveness,Themes — samthambu @ 5:42 pm

Reservation Road (2007)

Popular culture feeds on our instinct for anger and revenge. We struggle within to ‘get even’ at perceived injustice. Particularly, if there is a great sense of loss.

How do we deal with perceived ‘injustice’ and feelings of ‘getting even’. The religious message – ‘to forgive’ runs contrary to the therapeutic suggestions offerred by most psychologists. Is ‘letting go’ (expressing) one’s anger and ‘getting even’ a good thing to do?

Reservation Road (2007) is a fascinating film and it takes us through a journey of self exploration and self-evaluation of ‘what we believe in’, ‘what we say’, ‘what we do’ and ‘what we feel’ about perceived injustice and dealing with our natural instincts for anger and getting even.

  1. What is forgiveness?
  2. Why do we forgive?
  3. What does it take to forgive?
  4. Why is it difficult to forgive?
  5. Can a transcendent resolution help us?

The film gets us thinking about the making and breaking of human relationships. WATCH IT!

I found this interesting article on Reservation Road: What Would Ethan Do?: Notes on Revenge

Other helpful links

 

There’s more to life than a crush – crash and crutches January 14, 2009

Filed under: Life in General — samthambu @ 5:44 pm

sab

You have spent more time on the tree than on solid ground

There’s more to you than this obsession

– Tom Fairchild in Sabrina (1995)

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Sabrina (1995) is the story of Sabrina Fairchild, the daughter of the Larrabee family chauffeur.The Larrabees are wealthy and own a family business. While she was growing up, Sabrina Fairchild (played by Julia Ormond) spends more time perched in a tree, not just watching the Larrabee family but dreaming of David Larrabee falling in love with her (the crush).

For most of her life Sabrina was invisible behind the branches and spending her life lost in her fantasy. For the Larrabees (most importantly for David), Sabrina is just a daughter of the chauffeur.

As she is heart broken when her dream shatters into a thousand pieces (the crash), Tom Fairchild (her father) tells her (and us): ” You have spent more time on the tree than on solid ground”. How Insightful and perceptive! We follow our dreams, even if they are unrealistic. We are lost in our fantasy and we forget to live. It’s easy to get lost in a fantasy. But, when we come down crashing it hurts and we get broken inside. Tom Fairchild’s words come to us as the voice of truth. We must let go our fantasy and get on in life. There’s more to life than our fantasies. There’s more to us than our obsessions.

Sabrina finds life as she let’s go her fantasy and moves to Paris where she learns precious life-lessons standing on solid ground. Interestingly, the ordinary Sabrina returns to the Larrabee estate as a mature person.

sabrina

Questions for reflection

1) why is it easy to be lost in the dream world? Why is it difficult to let go our obsessions even if they hurt us?
2) What does it take to realize that there’s more to life than our obsession? Is there value then in our crash-landing experiences?

3) It hurts to let go our obsessions, and more so if we have lived with them for a long time. We look for answers in the familiar and the immediate. Is an escape to somewhere a solution? What do you think Paris did for Sabrina?

4) Tom Fairchild becomes the voice of truth to Sabrina. Truth hurts. When we become the voice of truth, we are often ruthless and we end of truthless. Tom Fairchild is gentle, compassionate and respectful. How do you think this helped Sabrina in her transformation?

 

Love in Action August 22, 2008

Filed under: bible study — samthambu @ 1:02 am

Bible study prepared by Samuel Thambusamy

You have heard people say, “Love your neighbors and hate your enemies.” But I tell you to love your enemies and pray for anyone who mistreats you. Then you will be acting like your Father in heaven. He makes the sun rise on both good and bad people. And he sends rain for the ones who do right and for the ones who do wrong. If you love only those people who love you, will God reward you for that? Even tax collectors love their friends. If you greet only your friends, what’s so great about that? Don’t even unbelievers do that? But you must always act like your Father in heaven. (Mat 5:43-48 CEV)

Questions for further reflection

1) What is this passage about?
2) How do people deal with their enemies in your context/s? What do you think about them?

3) Why do you think God makes the sun rise on both good and bad people, sends rain for the ones who do right and for the ones who do wrong etc? What does this tell you about God?

4) Is loving the enemy possible? What are the stories in your context/s? 

5) What does it mean to love your enemy? What do you think about Jesus’ teaching? Why do you think Jesus wants his disciples to love their enemies and pray for those who mistreat them? What are the challenges in loving our enemies and praying for those who mistreat us? How do we respond to these challenges?

6) Even Tax collectors love their friends. People who don’t believe in God greet their friends! Why are we expected to be different from them? Why do we have to transcend ordinary expressions of love within our cultural tradition and social location?

7) (Mentally) prepare a list of those you perceive to be your enemies! Spend some time praying for them.

8) What is God telling us through the passage? What are you going to do in response to God’s Word?