Philosophical Essay Challenge

Philosophical Essay Challenge

Feel free to participate

The literati mafia

This week, the Literati Mafia hosts a unique philosophical essay challenge. The theme is depravity. You can draw inspiration from the T in TULIP if you’re a hardcore Calvinist, but please focus only the depravity part! We don’t want a sermon! We want a reflective essay that examines depravity. You can write about low-lives and layabouts; self-righteous hypocrites; religion and God; atheism or anything else which gives you inspiration. Hell, you can draw inspiration from the image and the song too. But please don’t preach and instead spend time reflecting on depravity, if it exists and why it does if you say it does. Feel free to throw in metaphors, allusions, and poetic sentences, but please remember that we’re looking for an essay and not flash fiction, poetry or storytelling. The word count is 800 words or less.

What you need to do to participate is simple:

1. Write your…

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A villanelle for the forsaken – Nitin Lalit Murali


What’s memory but a reverb of whispered pasts?
On ashen, sordid ground, I take root; here I stand –
Expecting withered trees to clasp; some dew that lasts –

With such fierce passion we plant or forsake our masts –
Fly flags on fruitful, fertile, or dead, barren land –
When memory’s but a reverb of whispered pasts –

Oh, how I long for love that changes, holds me fast –
Through strife, fear, test, ache and pain – an aesthetic hand –
Expecting withered trees to clasp; some dew that lasts –

Hope tosses, shuns me, puts sick bones in breaking casts –
And songs become a dirge with sounds from banished bands –
What’s memory but a reverb of whispered pasts?

Perhaps the answer’s in the wind, truth left unasked –
Perhaps I hope to see and must accept what’s planned –
Expecting withered trees to clasp; some…

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Life finds provenance and meets Death cradling Grief – Nitin Lalit Murali


‘Will things get better Ma?’ I’d ask her, once a fractured identity, found its cast of maternal iron and grit, determined to see the boy through shoves that split ears open – red drops of anguish finding an emotionally ramshackled Gethsemane – though he was too young to pray, to plead and to say sorrowfully, ‘If it’s your will, take this cup,’ and desperate to see him uphold integrity and become the antithesis of the man, who – when she had an early hysterectomy because blood and nearing death finds its provenance in sorrow and ashes: the grime of you’ll never be good enough as a wife, lover and a person – beat the boy on the way to the hospital for leaving a textbook in school. ‘God! God! You and your mother chant! Where is your God!’ He screamed trying to smash his face against the car’s dashboard. ‘You’ll…

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Introducing Nitin Lalit Murali – Room 101



I live in a room that’s both my last meal on Death Row and the Gas Chamber. When it’s the former, I embrace this illusion we call ‘free will’ and enjoy a sumptuous meal according to my desires, but I’m soon dragged away by the guards of tyranny, and a brutal genocidal force, and I’m strapped in the chamber, my fear echoing, my heartbeat an odd time signature that you can use in a Math Rock song, and I’m soon left writhing with apparitions surrounding me, threatening to engulf and envelop me, and as foam drips from my mouth, and my irises disappear, I’m slowly fading, clutching to pillars of delusion that only seemingly held me. Delilah defeats Samson thoroughly here, because he’s denied his strength even after he’s tortured, and his eyes are gouged out. This room’s both pleasure and pain. The unmitigated dark pleasure of the ebb and…

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