Purple sand

Most things are conventional. Every day I wake up knowing the sun will rise in the east. When do the lines between what we know and what we believe get blurred? I constantly see people apologising for their imagination like it’s a bad thing. We believe when we see, and yet when we see something, if we can’t believe it, we say, “I thought I saw….no it can’t be.” We see what we want to see, we don’t believe everything we see. Seeing is nothing without believing, but you don’t need to see to believe. How else could you know that emotions exist, how else would you recognise tastes and scents?

As a kid, I believed in what I wanted and lost trust in what I had. With it, I took whatever I had for granted. I never thought about what life would be without my happiness until I was older, I thought I was destined for certain things, believing to me was a superpower. In my imagination everything existed, there was nothing that was impossible. It was an intoxicating feeling.

The first poem I ever recited still sticks with me, ‘Bubbles‘ by L. Nicholson. It was a simple poem about a kid who blows a bubble after school and describes the bubble as follows:

Into my bubble
I looked and found
A Shining land
That was rainbow round.

It looked like a world
Meant for no one but fairies.
They’d keep little farms there
With cows, chicks, and dairies.
Woods where the pixies
Could picnic for pleasure,
And hide near the rainbows
Their crocks of strange treasure.

Countries were marked there
Plain as could be;
Green for the country,
Blue for the sea.
Purple for heather,
Sunshine like gold,
Bubble-land weather
Could never be cold.

We grow up being told to depart from our imaginary friends, depart from fairytales always having to face the real world. I love how scientists talk about facts, proofs and equations, without realising that whatever was invented came from a deep sense of imagination. You imagined an easier life one where you didn’t have to climb stairs if the stairs moved, or that we could go to space if we so wished.

We deny our imagination and treat it like a secret. I think it comes from a place of fear. We’re afraid our imagination might not be validated. We curb our creativity instead of using it. Even today I made logical assumptions, I strike out things from my list of possibilities based on logic. I am wired to think that way. But I have no qualms believing that numbers make a lot of sense. Numbers make everything okay, my worth, my entire life is defined by numbers.

‘Belief’ is such a misunderstood concept. Having faith is not stupid, having none is. It’s not easy to keep your faith. The world is built to make you lose faith. We want to believe things as they appear, if we believe in appearances then we’d all get hurt. I’ve never understood how some of the most logical people, keep getting hurt by other people. We see what we want to see, not what we ought to. We lose faith where we should place faith and keep too much faith where we ought not to.

All my life I flittered in and out of reality, trusting and not trusting. In kindergarten, we were asked to colour a picture of a beach and I coloured the sand purple. I was reprimanded because I was not able to make the right colour associations in my head. Other kids coloured the sand golden and the water blue. Personally, I loved my purple sand, in my ‘Bubble-land’ that’s what I saw. Out of curiosity, I wondered if there was really a beach that had purple sand. I am proud to say, there is!

The Pfeiffer Beach, Big Sur, California has purple sand to name one, because of the high concentration of Garnet in the sand. It even has a logical and scientific explanation. My kindergarten teachers were not wrong, but neither was I. Perhaps we should let kids colour pineapples pink, and do what they want, either they’ll accept the world when they see it or make the world match that picture.

Every time we correct our imagination, we lose a little more of our acceptance, we become a little more intolerant and a little more difficult to live with. There is a twist at the end of that poem:

And then came a bee
All furry and fat.
Before I could think
What he would be at
My beautiful bubble
He brushed with his wing,
And all that was left
Was a little damp ring.

How many more bubbles will we burst?


3 thoughts on “Purple sand

  1. Poonacha PG says:

    Every day I wake up hoping that Sun rises! Keep busting bubbles in interesting ways as you have done beautifuly in this post. Keep writing more.


  2. parikhitdutta says:

    I wonder why do we contain imagination, coercing others to conform to facts! You are right when you say any fact now was a piece of imagination at one time! Who would have known we’d fly if not for the Wilbur brothers. Who knew 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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