Who is the most famous and loved man in the world? Hands down, the most beloved man on the planet is the Bollywood film star, Shahrukh Khan. I know, if you live in the USA, you sadly may have never heard of him, but untold millions adore him.
If you combined Mel Gibson, Al Pacino, Robert De Niro, a rockin´ Fred Astair, and an occasional pinch of the young Jerry Lewis you might get somewhat close to describing Shahrukh Khan or SRK as they call him in India.
It took me awhile to get comfortable with Hindi pop music and Bollywood dance numbers, but that really didn¹t matter because I could not take my eyes off Shahrukh Khan. He has that kind of star quality - when he¹s in the frame, you don¹t see anyone else. His energy and joie de vivre fill up the screen, and your heart.
I had never ever been one of those who fell for movies stars and I wondered what it was that drew me into his magic. One fine morning it hit me like a ray of light SRK is holding the Love Frequency on the planet.
What is it that everyone dreams of, longs for, works for, lives and dies for? Love. We all want to be loved by our families, friends, lovers, and by God.
Shahrukh is living Love - it¹s in his eyes, in every gesture from his hands and body. Love radiates from the treasury of subtle expressions on his sometimes handsome, sometimes ordinary, always wonderful face. He is what every woman wants - the passionate man every guy knows he could be. Brave, crazy, hilarious, tender, vicious, vulnerable, SRK can express multiple layers of human emotion in one smile.
For me, Shahrukh Khan is the greatest living actor in the world today. No one can hold a candle to him, because he is not a manufactured product of tyranny. He is its antithesis - he is all feeling, Love.
In the film DIL SE, Shahrukh becomes consumed by his obsessive love for the innocent mountain girl turned suicide bomber. The musical song & dance numbers in this movie work beautifully to illustrate to depth of emotions felt by Shahrukh and his reluctant elusive beloved. The song TU HI TU has some of the most imaginative choreography I have ever seen, while the words read much like the mystical poetry of the Sufi, Jelaluddin Rumi.
³...you who are the fragrance of my entire existence. It¹s you who are the desire of my beating heart. Touching your fevered body, my breath is set on fire. My heart experiences love, as my pain begins to weep.²
The timeless tradition of union with God through loving God as the Beloved exists in many cultures. In Hinduism it is found in Bhakti Yoga and Tantric practices. Sufi poetry is filled with a virtual wonderland of images of separation from and union with the Beloved, God. The Catholic mystics St. John of the Cross and St. Teresa of Avila both wrote of their ecstatic experiences of reunion with God.
"...O night that has united the Lover with his beloved, transforming the beloved in her Lover. Upon my flowering breast which I kept wholly for him alone, there he lay sleeping, and I caressing him ...I abandoned and forgot myself, laying my face on my Beloved; all things ceased; I went out from myself...
When we are young, we all believe that romantic love will last forever. As we grow older and more experienced, we realize that the institution of marriage is a different energy and often quite distinct from romance.
But in our lives it is romance that we all remember. That moment when we, unaware, let down our defenses and allowed another, our beloved, into our heart and soul, that moment gave us a window, a glimpse into the Heart of our Source.
The memory of that divine nectar and the sweetness of those feelings of Oneness are sometimes all we have to carry us, dodging the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, through this, the valley of the shadow of death.
These transforming feelings of Oneness are what seduce mystics into the hidden world of Silence and the myriad practices that promise the Return of the Beloved.
These same feelings are what draw us all to romantic songs, poetry, and films. When we see these moments of surrender, sacrifice and passionate obsession, we remember the feelings we have lost, feelings we cannot even name, a something that haunts our hearts down the trails of Time our Beloved.
No one can portray all the phases of Love better than SRK. Shahrukh, a Muslim, is happily married to a gorgeous Hindu lady in Mumbai (Bombay). They have two children and SRK, a man who gets up close to the most beautiful women in the world, is infamous for being an absolutely faithful, loving husband. He believes in love. He courted his wife for seven years before her parents would allow the marriage.
In film love scenes, SRK is somehow tantalizingly chaste, and thus all the more erotic. The powerful energies of a tender fire are always building, and never quite come to completion to find release. Even his kisses which are mostly bestowed upon lovely shoulders, arms, and necks - are holding something back, some mystery that makes you want him to reveal more.
In the 2001 film Mohabbatein, SRK plays a music professor at a college. The true love of his life, committed suicide years before, when her father, the head of the college, forbade their relationship. Shahrukh still loves the girl so much that she is always with him; appearing in scenes, she is a kind of spiritual love for him. The theme of the film is the heart wrenching proclaimed victory of love over fear the victory we all hope for.
Shahrukh¹s list of some 50+ films is naturally varied. Because of cultural differences and traditions, some will never be easily appreciated by the western mind. Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, 1995, (The Brave-Hearted Will Take the Bride) became the longest running film in the history of Indian cinema; audiences went to see this film over and over. The film focused on Indians living abroad, in London, and is said to have changed the face of Bollywood. The film reflects the contemporary conflict between an arranged marriage and marriage by choice for love.
If Shahrukh Khan never becomes well known here in the USA, it will be our enormous loss. He is the genius of joy and living imagination, the finest living actor in the world, and more importantly, a light in our dark unraveling times. This self-described (his words) ³short man with dark skin² is a veritable giant among men - and happily for us, currently holds the Love frequency on the planet.
The author is an American living in Charlottesville VA and recently ´discovered´ Shahrukh Khan
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