Laree Chooti and Existentialism

The song 'Laree Chooti' is the rage these days, and the charm of the song lies in it's catchy tune and it's reflective lyrics... making it a treat not just for an average teenager, but also to a thoughtful mind, because of it's philosophical implications. Here i'll mention some of them which i felt... obviously, this is an instance of 'creative interpretation', arising from the interaction of the song and my subjectivity, and does not in any way claim objectivity of analysis.

Kya huwa jo laree chooti
Jeevan ki gaadi luuti
Khwab hai to mujhko na jaga
Zindagi ek pal mein saali
Yun palat gayi hamaari
Jhuth hai to mujhko na bata

Translation:[I translated it as i felt appropriate.]

So what if i missed the bus?
Or if the train of my life is robbed?
If i am living a dream, do not wake me up
It took just a moment…
For my damned life to become topsy-turvy
If this is a lie, don't bother to tell me

The most obvious thing is, of course, the attitude of indifference to the apparent loses of life... the song sees life as unpredictable and transitory... there is also mention of fate in the next stanza... if this life is to last for a finite period, and the end result is annihilation for all of us, then what do these loses matter?

I also see this song as one of the responses to the existential dilemmas... the question of authenticity and inauthenticity raised by Heidegger and of 'bad faith' (self-deception) raised by Sartre. Authenticity and Inauthenticity are two modes of Dasein ('Being there'). Authenticity represents the choice of self, when you yourself decide what you want to be. Inauthenticity is its opposite, when you let others define who you are or when you work to fit in the definitions prepared by other people. 'Bad faith' involves not being true to oneself and attempting to elude responsibilty by making different excuses. For example, a person may believe in an unalterable fate decreed by an omnipotent God and that his life is already determined. This is an attempt to escape from the sense of responsibilty. Sartre calls it 'bad faith' or 'self-deception'.

This song, however, boldly confronts these philosophers, and says, "So what if i am deceiving myself? So what if i am living an inauthentic life? So what if i am guilty of self-deception? If i am living a happy and satisfied life in the state of 'bad faith', what does it matters to you? If i am living my life as a dream, then let it be, let me live in this dream... i do not want a reality which will only bring me anguish, despair and nausea! If my life is a lie, it makes no difference to me!"

I don't think this is a response which Sartre can morally condemn... an existentialist may disapprove of it, but he cannot show this attitude to be ethically wrong... this is one of the biggest limitations of existentialism... it cannot prove the superiority of an enlightened life to an ignorant one. Sartre indicated in his philosophical masterpiece 'Being and Nothingness' that he will write a book on existential ethics, but he never did... perhaps because existential ethics is not possible at all.

And it is precisely this aspect of the song which makes it enjoyable for me. :)

Comments

Moti Bhains said…
"and says, "So what if i am deceiving myself? So what if i am living an inauthentic life? So what if i am guilty of self-deception? If i am living a happy and satisfied life in the state of 'bad faith', what does it matters to you? If i am living my life as a dream, then let it be, let me live in this dream... i do not want a reality which will only bring me anguish, despair and nausea! If my life is a lie, it makes no difference to me!""

I doubt even the lyricist thought about the song in that sense. I listen to a lot of Pakistani music. I was never a huge fan of Laree Chootee but your take on the big picture totally made me go back and give it another listen.

PS. I'm in love with most of your posts already.
Awais said…
Thank you so much! :) Glad you like my blog.