I was sitting at a Psychiatry consultant's place, waiting for him to get free. Azaan was audible in the air. A middle aged patient came out with his mother. The woman wanted to say her prayers, and decided to do so while sitting on a chair, so the two of them sat beside me in the lawn.
I turned and saw him smiling at me. "Hi" I smiled back.
"Let's introduce each other using fictitious names." He said, beaming and excited.
"Umm, okay." I said, a little taken by surprise.
"I am Toori."
"I am Jamal."
"Jamal." He mulled over my fictitious name.
"So what did Dr. H say about you?"
"*laughter* I have no idea. I wasn't even listening. My mother would know."
"Do you think there is anything wrong with you?"
"Well, Jamal, I think there is a little something wrong with everybody." I was all too glad to hear him say that, and nodded in agreement.
"Except for one person who is impeccable." He continued.
"And who is that?"
"He is, She is... umm... the Universe... ummm"
"God?" I suggested.
"Well, yeah, you can call him God."
"Do you think you or anyone can communicate with him?"
"I don't know. I have a friend in New Jersey who says he tells him Punjabi jokes! *laughter*"
"Do you believe him?"
"Well, I believe whatever people tell me."
"So what do you do when different people tell you conflicting things?"
"Umm, yeah, that is a problem." he smiled helplessly.
I asked him if he was married and had children. He was and he had.
Then he raised his hand towards me, "Can I?"
"I am sorry?"
"Can I shake your hand?"
"Oh, of course." I stood up and shook hands with him. "It was nice to meet you."
His mother was done with her prayer by then. She flashed me an embarrassed smile and I watched them go away, amused and reflective.
"It did not seem to Plato any insult to philosophy that it should be transformed into literature, realized as drama, and beautified with style; nor any derogation to its dignity that it should apply itself, even intelligibly, to living problems of morality and the state."