“Poetry as a pain-killer” by Dr. Jernail Singh Anand from India

Επιμέλεια: Εύα Πετροπούλου Λιανού


[In lighter vein]

Life is a medley of joy, sorrow and grief. We look for pain killers, even for momentary relief. – Anand

I am not talking of painkillers like Saridon, which offer relief when we experience headache. I am rather talking of the headache which turns into a real pain, and refuses to go, in spite of taking pain-killers.  Pain is more pervasive than we think. Human life is full of pain. If we say, it is full of joys or sorrows, it would be better if we say, with Thomas Hardy, that it is a saga of suffering with occasional episodes of happiness. Joys come into our life only to build a bridge of hope between man and ultimate despair. We get a feeling the spell of misfortunes can be broken, and tomorrow, there may be sunshine.


When the pain is too much, we take to smoking. It is a great pain reliever. In the offices, there is so much stress. We turn to evening parties, drinks, and dances, to relieve our nerves. If this does not serve our purpose, let us move further, and take some drugs too. Fighting with the wife, and kids, too relieves a little bit of pain. Dreaming releases our pent up emotions, and brings back our equilibrium. Take diazepam 0.5 or 0.10 if things worsen.

Wife asks too many questions. Go where there are no questions. With a bit of money, you can buy some moments of peace.

Work is also a pain-killer. Passions and obsessions kill pain. And dreaming too. Those living in slums and suffering the pangs of penury kill their pain by dreaming of big money, big cars and one day rising on the social ladder like the angry young man films.

Love is also a pain-killer. At home, you forget all the pain in the lap of your partner. If it is a beloved, all the better. But, if it goes amiss, it makes life hell.

Sometimes you want to go to the hills. It can prove to be analgesic. You may want to meet a friend. The toxicity of your mind will be relieved.

Finally, poetry reading and writing too act as painkillers. How relieved you are after you have safely conducted all your pain over to the paper, or a reader has taken pains to gulp down all the pain of your poem. One wonders how this pain becomes a pain-killer too. When I write poetry, it serves like a pain killer. Balance and peace return to my turbulent nerves. And this anacin when goes straight into the head of a reader, again serves to silence his nerves.

Literature, it appears, is the greatest pain-killer devised by man. Libraries like chemist’s shops offer you the pain-killer you ask for. It can be ‘Macbeth’. It can be ‘Lustus’. Yes, it can be any book of your choice. ‘War and Peace’, ‘Hints for Self-Culture’, to name a few potent drugs. These pain-killers have certain side-effects. You become oblivious of your enviros. You stop listening to the calls of your wife. You are in a trance. After you have taken the pill in different doses over a period of time, you return to normal human behaviour. 

Author: Dr. Jernail Singh Anand is Founder President  of The International Academy of Ethics, a think-tank of Poets, Philosophers, Thinkers, Scientists and Social Scientists.  He is Professor Emeritus with the European Institute of the Roma Studies, Belgrade and Honorary Member of the Serbian Writers Association. Dr. Anand has authored 150 books which include 9 epics which are considered  world classics. He has innovated the theory of Bio-text in critical theory. The Univ. of Neyshabur, Iran has conducted a Research Project on his Poetry comparing it with Iranian Poets, under Dr. Roghayeh Farsi. His works have been translated into 20 world languages.

Contact: [email protected]


universityofethics.org/ethicsacademy.co.in worldliterature.in