Atheism, Avatars and Aliens


Atheism seems to be high on people radar this week. I have lots of hits on my blog with that tag. I was watching this silly Alien encounters documentary last night because I was done thinking for the day and they were talking about how Aliens are creating our bodies to house our souls. Now, when you put it that way, it sounds kind of funny. But if you think about it this has been our concept of religion from the very beginning.

We can find this concept of bodies as clothing all over religious texts from any era and any culture. Xipe Totec is one of the gods of South America who typifies the Avatar idea.

I’m sure you have heard lots of people express their “disbelief” in reincarnation. JJ was one, he said he didn’t believe that there was only one person out there for you with whom you are destined to journey though many lifetimes with. But when you think about the idea of an Avatar, to my mind it’s not any more far fetched than the idea of Schrodinger’s Cat.

Personally, I’m going to stick to my Atheistic ideals and say I just don’t know. I think what is more audacious is to pretend that you might. When I watch that video what came to mind is not the right or wrong of any of these ideas, but the limits of our perspective. The universe is vast and we might just be too small to understand.

However, if our bodies are like clothing for the soul, then the Vedic times were like Paris Fashion Week. I imagined, for a minute, a conversation on another plane of existence going like this:

“Hey! How’s it going? Didn’t we meet at Shiva’s party a few incarnations back?”

“Yeah! Right….ummmm, sorry, I’m terrible with names….”

“Sita. Well, at least it was then. And you were?”

“Radha.”

“Yeah, Hi. Oh right! You were wearing that cute little cow girl outfit! That sort of fashionable stuff never looks good on me, but you rocked it.”

“Thanks. I kind of like your classic look. But, wow! Ganesh went a little over the top, didn’t he?”

“Yeah, and did you see that little blue-black outfit Krishna was wearing? My god…”

*sigh*. “I thought he was kind of hot in that.”

“Did you go to Jesus’ party the other incarnation?”

“No, I missed that one.”

“Well, you didn’t miss much. He’s a nice guy and all, but it was a little stuffy. I was hoping there was going to be good food, but apparently he’s on this fad diet. All he served was bread and wine and he threw the party at his dad’s house, how cheesy is that?”

“He’s always had daddy issues.”

“Hey, did you hear about the party Quetzalcoatl is throwing down in South America tonight? I hear they got a place on the beach and the weather is supposed to be beautiful. You should come.”

“Oooo, that sounds great. I haven’t been out for a while. I’ve had to catch up on some course work these last few incarnations. I have a class in Detachment and I’m really struggling with it.”

“Oh, I have this great book called Shortcut to Nirvana. It really helped me when I took Detachment. I’ll lend it to you.” Smile….”by the way what were those snacks you bright to Shiva’s party? They was SOOOO tasty!”

“Ha ha. The ganja probably made it taste better.”

“Yeah, he always has good shit.”

“They were Paneer rolls.”

“I don’t suppose you would share the recipe with me?”

“Oh, sure.”

Paneer Cigar Rolls

  • For the wrapper
  • 2 cups all purpose flour (or use wheat flour)
  • 1 tbsp ghee/oil (optional)
  • Salt to taste
  • For the Stuffing
  • 1 cup crumbled paneer
  • 1/4 cup approx of v finely chopped red onions
  • 1-2 green chillies, chopped finely (or as per taste)
  • 1-2 cloves of garlic, finely minced (or as per taste)
  • 1/4 cup fresh mozzarella, crumbled (or use grated mozzarella)
  • 1/4 cup tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 1 inch ginger, peeled and grated
  • 1-2 drops of rice vinegar (or use regular – optional)
  • Few sprigs of cilantro, chopped
  • Salt to taste (little since wrapper also has salt)
Add all the ingredients for the wrapper together in a bowl.  Add enough water to make it into a pliable dough. Knead well until smooth.
Meanwhile prepare the filling. On a stove top in 1 tsp oil, add all the ingredients together except the cheese. Saute until soft. You can do a taste test and change the seasoning according to your taste.
Remove from heat and add fresh mozzarella along with cilantro. I find that adding the fresh ones make this so much more tastier. But regular grated one will work just fine. Toss until well mixed. Take the dough (divide into two or  three smaller pieces) and roll it out into a large rectangle. Cut them into smaller rectangles. As you can see, I have not been very precise. Trust me, it doesn’t really matter. Makes it look rustic and home made 😉 But if you have more patient than I am (read it as – “not as lazy as moi”) then use your scales and cut out propah rectangles! The thickness should be medium – not too thin nor too thick (too thin will break after u fill it up with stuffing, too thick will not make a crunchy snack, but will be more soft). Take one piece. Add the stuffing in shorter end of the rectangle making sure to leave few inches near the edges.
Roll it twice, bring the edges of the filling together (this is to prevent the filling from seeping out during frying) and then continue rolling until you reach the end. You can use a beaten egg or water mixed with flour mixture to bind the dough. I applied flour water mixture at the end and continued rolling till it resembled a cigar roll.
Now fry these up in hot oil until crisp and reddish brown and serve with Maggi ketchup.
Recipe source: Chef In You
 
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