Saturday, April 26, 2008

Oh! Ye of simple faith!

Mary (name changed) a distant cousin of mine is 29 and still unmarried for various reasons like fussy parents and unsuccessful attempts to get her married to a boy working in Kerala.

Today her parents are desperate. They realize that they have delayed too long. They are unable to get her a suitable groom due to her age despite their best efforts and several advertisements in newspapers and registrations in matrimonial websites like Kerala Matrimony. In their desperation they turn to another aunt of mine in Bangalore for some comical err I mean spiritual relief from their dilemmas. This aunty lets call her Aunt Dogoody (AD) sets up an exclusive prayer meeting for Mary at this Catholic (but not endorsed by Church) Prayer Centre at Bangalore. While the prayer meeting was going, this is the phone conversation that took place between Mary's parents in Kottayam, Kerala and my aunt in Bangalore.

Uncle: What is happening? Has the prayer started?
AD: Oh yes....the lady here has seen a vision.
Uncle: *gasp* Really? What did she see?
AD: Your daughter, happily married to someone by this year end!
Uncle: Really! Who is the guy?
AD: She says it was not very clear. We need to convene Friday for another prayer session.
Uncle (in awe): Oh!!
AD: Please send Rs 500/- towards the next prayer session.
Uncle: Sure! I will send the money to you today itself.
AD: Make sure it reaches before next Friday or we will not be able to hold the prayer meeting and the vision may fade!

Next week:

Aunty: Hello Valsa, has the prayer started?
AD: Yes, it has. The lady is getting the vision again.
Aunty: What does she see?
AD: She says he will be between 29 and 35 and of medium height.
Aunty: That sounds good. Anything else?
AD : shhh!
Aunty (whispering): Ok!

The following week:

AD: The lady with the vision says that there is a thadasam (impediment) in your daughters marriage prospects!
Uncle: Aiyyo!
AD: She will be going into a meditating session tonight, to find an answer for the same.
Uncle: *gulp* Ok! Anything we can do?
AD: Yes you can give a donation. These people don't charge anything you know for their services.
Uncle: Sure!! I will send you a cheque right away! How much?
AD: M it Rs. 5000/- You can afford it besides it is for a good cause.
Uncle: Sure!!!

The next week:

AD: The lady with the vision says that she has prayed and removed the thadasam in your girls future.
Uncle: Thank god!! What should we do next?
AD: She suggests Kerala Matrimony!
Uncle: Oh!


thomas said...

Maybe the lady and the aunty could have squeezed another 10000 bucks by suggesting a perfect boy for the girl if they themselves had searched in Kerala Matrimony and passed the profile to uncle. AD could have said that the lady had a vision of a boy living in so & so place and give some description so that the uncle will be yet again flabbergasted when he finds out whatever the lady told about the boy was true. Ente oru budhiye!!!

silverine said...

Thomas: LOL!! You are a genius!! Actually AD herself is very gullible! When it comes to superstitions I have seen scientists and mathematicians take leave of their senses!

Sreejith Panickar said...

Remove thadassam and go to Kerala matrimony! March! :)

Good one S!

mathew said...

stothram stothram...
I get visions...
sthothram stothram...rum..rum...

oh wait...i get it..

"Mary had a little lamb"

oh yeah..She will marry a shepherd!!

Abhi said...

Get some money pumped into the pockets of a broker, or even better get the gal to read ad's of They are quite hilarious but at the same time they get the point across. So it might help get your COUSIN married off!

silverine said...

Sreejith: Thank you!

Mathew: :)

Abhi: They had already done all that you see!

രാജ് said...

off topic:

poomanam - പൂമണം.

I was always thinking this name means smell (manam) of a flower (poo).

Philip said...

I'd have been laughing my head off it didn't affect me so much. I'm constantly amazed at how gullible people become in matters involving religion. I guess it's not religion that makes them's just that some people are like that.

g-man said...

ah...apparently some fraud (read as astrologer) has asked my ma to start er...searching by the time i turn 24, and that i'd have at least 3 kids :| after reading this, i wonder what sorta *donation* she gave him.

oh, and are your parents still in touch with this aunt dogoody?

skar said...

You know, if all this went on behind Mary's back, and if she's a rational girl, I just suspect that if she were to find out about all this, Mary might turn into 'Bloody Mary' :p

And in response to this:
When it comes to superstitions I have seen scientists and mathematicians take leave of their senses!
See this:


Mind Curry said... can totally relate to this..i have been seeing the same things here in my family..its funny how the relatives and part of the society ("well-wishers") and the new age brokers aka the "matrimonial consultants", become scavengers and leeches in such situations (i am not talking about AD here, but another lot). as parents, when it comes to the m-word for their children, they are worried, gullible, frustrated, and ready to do anything. and thats exactly what the "well-wishers" capitalize on.

i dont know when our people will realize that times have changes, and today the younger lot need a lot more in terms of compatibility and mutual understanding, than just family names you cant pronounce.

like karthik said, just imagine Mary's plight and the kind of mental agony (probably) she has to go through knowing that there are largescale ceremonies going on her behalf. crazy..

Deepti said...

I can almost relate to this situation ....
since I have touched the golden age group mark , my relatives have declared various thadasams ( including a hidden boyfriend:P) and have suggested various visions to my dad... absolutely ROFL :D

Anonymous said...

I know a girl whose astrologer said as per her jathakam, it is bad for her future FIL(Read it as he will die soon). The honest people doesn't want to knowingly put any FIL's life into jeopardy. The astrologer has a pariharam also. Look out for a guy whose father is no longer alive, and do some poojas Bingo!

Anonymous said...

whats all this silverine ... how can u make fun of parents desperate to get their daughters married? che che che! too bad!

btw ... i guess, parents can get really desperate with daughters of marriageable age. have u ever seen the astrology programs in asianet/surya tv? majority of the questions are abt marriage!

Usha said...

thank goodness, AD just stopped at that! for there are quite a few ADs around who would get started with their loong lists of 'parihaarakriyas' at this point! and Mary should be thanking her stars that she wasn't born a hindu. she just saved herself from the dangerous cult known as astrologers!

ToOothlEss WOndeR! said...

LOL that video is nothing short of HILARIOUS!
daddy boy's favourite show.

Jiby said...

loved the title :)!

prayer centres are indeed a fruitful profession...i have an uncle and aunt who lost everything in stock markets and other businesses...became charismatic preachers and are now doing well.

like usha said, the next stop for your uncle and aunt should be astrologers!

Anonymous said...

There's a lot to be said about these 'visions', and unfortunately, none of what needs to be said are good.

It was P.T. Barnum who said that people WANT to be fooled. That is the basic secret behind the success of magic, hypnosis, etc.

It also explains how the 'seers' like the lady mentioned in the article or Sai Baba continue to have believers... they will stick on even if they get proof of deceit...

Things are changing for the better... People are getting more sensible... but I wonder how much change we can actually expect... People NEED something to believe in. Somehow, the premise of knowing your future; and subsequently being in control of your fate... is very alluring.

Girl With Big Eyes said...


It's unfortunate that the prayer lady didn't foresee the 'thadasams' about to happen in her life. I hope uncle and aunty created some 'thadasams' for her for embezzeling them!

kochuthresiamma p .j said...

:-))). excellent piece.
people become gullible when desperate, and people exploit the gullibility of the desperate.that's the way of the world.
but visions? not all visions are received for a price. i've known cases where visions translate into reality-sometimes it's scary.
grey areas in human knowledge

silverine said...

Raj: And thats why i put up that trivia! :)

Philip: I would be laughing too if I was not so frustrated trying to talk people out of this!

G-man: Aunt Dogoody keeps in touch with everyone whether they want it or not :p

Karthik: Poor Mary is thoroughly demoralized as she is aware of the going ons!

MC: You are right. Any thing and everything is fair game for making money! In this case it is the girls age that people are cashing in on! And the poor girl is going through a lot of mental agony!

Deepti: LOL! Thank God it is only a BF and not a couple of kids too!

Kavi:I know several people who bribe the astrologer. Apparently it is a more thriving business then pure astrology! :p

TW: Watch the entire series! You will luv it! :)

Sandeep: You are right! I wonder if tomorrow we will have astrologers helping people divorce! Anything and everything is fair game for a few extra bucks :p

Usha: Thank God indeed that we don't have astrologers!!!

Jiby: Thank you! :) Prayer Centers and Prayer Meetings are also big businesses here in Blr!

Hammy: Well said! I guess that’s what it is! The premise of knowing your future; and subsequently being in control of your fate.

Girl with big eyes: LOL!! What can they do? No one takes action as they don’t want the world to know that they were made fools by some crafty old lady! :)

Kochuthresiamma: You are right about the grey areas of human knowledge. I remember that post of yours about the Scorpion. I have had similar experiences too!

Anonymous said...

whoa! the poor things.
why not leave the girl alone now??

Jina said...

hehe..i hope they atleast gave one tenth of it as a prayer offering..
probably they should start some kind of hedge fubd to finance these motives..

Anonymous said...

Good writeup. Just one comment, religion bashing is kind of a fad, especially in this media driven world, for the simple reason, that atleast some of the organised religions like the Church are or rather have-become, soft-targets. Am sure you have more creativity than having to walk through that beaten track, and moreover today, it would be very redundant to do that, as lot of guys and/in the media are already doing that. Hope we understand sometime before its too late, that it is iniquities such as corruption, violence & overall decadence, and not the Church that would be humanity's nemesis. Sure that this might not be the place for such a comment on a serious note, but I hope & believe a blog is a forum for diverse comments, and you take in the right sense.

silverine said...

Anon: You call this religion? Sad! I do take your comment in the right spirit, but I think you need to read up on what the Church is all about. And it is not this dear. Such acts only degrade religion, whether it is Xianity, or any other religion. Reg fads, I am a blogger. So I don't have to subscribe to fads. I write what I see! Blogging is your platform to break away from fads and write without worrying about such labels.

Peace! :)