An apple a day keeps the doctor away”. This statement could probably be generalized for other fruits as well. The salubrious nature of fresh fruits, rich in vitamins and minerals is already too well known. But when the same fruit (particularly grapes) is fermented, losing its natural colour and flavor, the end product is a drink for feeling high.
But when regularly consumed could actually leave you high and dry. During fermentation, the yeast reacts with the sugars and breaks down into alcohol. It’s all about transformation, first from grapes to wine and then from addiction to rehabilitation. What does alcohol do that its intake becomes so alluring? It basically slows down the nervous system, lowers the inhibitions and affects the ability to make judgments. It takes us into a trance like state, giving a sense of unbridled joy and complete liberation. While some drink for societal needs and status symbol others (usually youths) drink for fun and merry. When it creates such a liberating and sociable atmosphere, why these campaigns against the good old alcohol? Where we do not stop promoting the goodness of fermented milk (yoghurt), there is a hale bulla about fermented barley and grapes. Alcohol is not abusive or harmful by tendency. In fact limited amount of red wine taken with food helps the French people to keep the cholesterol level in control despite their high calorie cuisine. But unlike yoghurt, alcohol needs to be consumed within specified limits. It is the unrestrained and regular consumption that soils the sport. Alcohol enters our system like devil coming in sheep skin. The initial excitement of intoxication paves way for regular drinking and without realizing there lays another prey of it. A new civilization is now growing at the door steps of clubs and lounges. And the prime characteristic of this civilization is alcohol or more pleasantly said “drinks”. Never before was man more dependent on anything than he is now on alcohol. Today to shake your leg you need a drink, to converse with a friend you need a drink and to feel alive you again need a drink. Young men and women, in shimmering outfits, dancing to deafening music are looking for relaxation in the darkness, under those neon lights with one drink after another. And these juveniles make such ignorant bargains that they settle for hangovers instead of sleep.
Vomiting, headaches, acidity and hangovers, are common consequences of unchecked drinking.
Severe hangovers could last for 48 hours or more. The following morning the sufferer makes a resolution to stay away from the damned bottle. But despite the suffering and the resolution, there we are, basking in the cradles of this new-fangled civilization. All self control begins to wane in front of this charmer. The moment alcohol goes down the throat; it affects every part of your body and mind, paralyzing your rationality. Your sobriety and senses desert you, the tongue goes unleashed and the social norms are jeopardized. This is why drinking is still a taboo in eastern society. Risk of road accidents, unsafe and regretful sex, verbal duels and violence run high under the spell of alcohol. This is not all. The burden on our liver is immense. It takes about an hour for the liver to remove one unit of alcohol from our blood. Regular drinking can be fatal for the liver, damaging it permanently. We are quite aware of the harm we cause and the pressure we exert on the body by drinking yet we go for it by all means. This addictive tendency makes alcohol a threat to reckon with. In the present times, alcohol is assuming ubiquity for all occasions, emotions and society. While the blithe youth gulp peg after peg for enjoyment, the depressed hearts find equal solace in it. The gradual increase of alcohol in the body numbs the mind making us forget all pain and problems. But naïve that we are, we fail to understand that alcohol does not solve the problem; it only temporarily blinds us to it. And in our illusion of liberation, we even lose our precious time on hangovers instead of concentrating on the issue at hand. Drinking is no treatment for crestfallenness. In fact research shows that regular drinking could lead to permanent depression. The drinking culture is not parochial to the high end society. The lower strata are equally under its clasp. Violent wife abuse by sloshed husbands is an everyday ritual for numerous households all over. This is a sign of disintegrated mind and body
“Life is like an autumn leaf, its hold is frail, its date is brief.”
Why should we add to life’s brevity and uncertainty by surrendering to alcohol. Lounging, clubbing, drinking… none is wrong. The fallacy is in our dependency on it. To celebrate life, we turn mindless, lose our senses and create a fake world. And further to handle the blows of the real world, we again dip ourselves in the Bloody Mary. When we start wrong, how can the end be right. We are looking for happiness in the flimsy world of glitz and glamour. Every night your quivering heart takes you to the pub, your craving body gulps a drink and the mind drifts to nothingness. And the morning brings with it a pounding headache. Being tipsy is not being happy or relaxed. We also seek the wrong source to tackle the troubles of life. Our discretion and decision is so flawed that sooner than later, the remedy (drinking) itself becomes the disease. Alcohol is neither a taboo nor poison. But it does not take long for its magic to turn into sorcery. There are beautiful and lasting magical things within you and around you that can transform the surreal into real. Trust in the fountainhead of joy within you and the bottle of wine could be spared.