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My today’s Article has a link with my earlier post ‘No honor in honor killing’, not as full, but in part connected to my preamble. Most of my Gujarati Readers might have read ‘Zaverchand Kalidas Meghani’ who was honored with the title of ‘Rashtriya Shaayar’ (National Poet) by Mahatma Gandhi. His popular works are many, but I want to represent here one of his poems, perhaps very little known to people, that has impressed me great. It is just a tragic folk-song (લોકગીત), based on an English song “Fair flowers in the valley”. It can be sung very emotionally and effectively. Its refrain (Burden line) is as “Vanaraa-maa.n Gal Raataa.n Phooladaa.n” – “વનરામાંગલરાતાંફૂલડાં”.
Let us have the brief summary of this folk-song for my purpose to justify the title of this post and also enter my subject. It is a song on a married but barren (childless) woman who goes to a temple to worship the deity by observing the fast of Ekadashi (11th day of lunar fortnight) with a hope of blessings to have a child in her lap. While on her way in greenery all around, there have blossomed plenty of red colored flowers. Amidst these flowers, an aborted fetus (a fully developed child of womb), as if it is alive, appears before her eyes.
It is the same helpless child that was killed by this woman when she had become a virgin mother just to preserve her honor in the society. The child reminds her that cursed day when she had committed the capital sin of killing it. The God had already favored her with the gift of a child to play in her lap, but she had deliberately lost it. Here is the tragedy of a woman who had kicked her fortune of motherhood, and now she longs a child born to her.
My efforts in this some lengthy preface will be over with the tragic and satiric words of the child as “I am swinging in the lap of Jashoda Maa (Nursing mother of Lord Krishna), but, there are the flames of fire in your lap. How can I take my rebirth and be your child again? Don’t you remember the day when you had cruelly strangled me by twisting my neck with your left hand and covering your eyes with right palm?”
Now, I presume that my Readers would have understood what I go for in this Article.
It is said that to err is human. Such sayings of wisdom are nothing but just as the tools for consoling our minds. In psychological term, we can define such arguments as defense mechanism. Let us examine two words ‘Error’ and ‘Blunder’. They look like having same meanings, but they are different. Error is committed unknowingly and innocently, but blunder is backed by strong intension and sometimes hasty thoughtlessness for doing so. What it may be, but such actions committed blindly ignoring their future impacts on life are unforgivable.
Now, whether to forgive or not is the secondary matter, but the blunderer or sinner has to pay a great price sooner or later. Offspring, wealth, opportunity, power etc. are such blessings from the God which are expected to be enjoyed or utilized with restraint. These blessings may prove to be the causes of our ethical downfall and lead us to proudness. A shallow minded person with all such blessings may go astray and become tyrant. I have included offspring in my above statement owing to my thinking that the offspring is the future of the parents and it is upon them how to build or shape own future.
Generally, some wealthy people enjoy their golden time of good days of their prosperity. It is the time for them not merely to buy leisure and comforts, but to maintain wisdom also. They should try to be helpful to needy and poor people. A Swedish proverb is as “Shared joy is a double joy; shared sorrow is half sorrow.” Wealth is not such a permanent boon that may remain with the particular family for generations to come. Sometimes during one’s own lifetime, the situation takes turn in such a way when today’s multimillionaire may become a mendicant (penniless) tomorrow. – (કૌનજાનેકિસઘડી, વક્તકાબદલેમિજાજ!) – Nobody knows when the time changes its mood!
In such miserable situation, the person repents for the lost wealth and starts longing to have it again; and, if bad luck is there, the fellow has to long on life long for the same. Thus, the lost fortune is like those things which never come back; the spent arrow, the spoken word and the lost opportunity. Sometimes, ‘earning money’ is easy, but ‘to digest it’ is difficult. An unworthy man gets a lot of wealth all of a sudden by chance or luck, but he wastes the wealth so prodigally that he has to come back to his original state within the lapse of a very few years and repent. – (અબપછતાયેહોતક્યા, જબચીડિયાંચૂગગઈખેત!) – It is meaningless to repent after the birds have picked and eaten grains of corn with their beaks in the farm. “A balanced life is the only key to preserve the prosperity for a long time”, somebody has said and it is true.
Every object has three dimensions; but for a man, in literary term, the time is his fourth dimension. This dimension is invisible but it is always with the man. It depends on how this dimension, the time, is utilized for progression or degression. William George Plunkett has quoted, “You will never have any more time than you have today.” Our life is like a game of cricket where the batsman has to strike the ball with time judgement and, same way, we have to utilize the time with vision and action in our life. We should also bear it very well in our minds that the only vision without action is like daydreams and the only action without vision is also like nightmares. Opportunity is such iron which is red with heat and the hammer should be there at your hand reach. Without wasting a single moment, you have to hit to the hot iron timely to bring your intended shape. Mind well that opportunity never knocks twice at your door. Moreover, they never bear any fixed values stamped upon them. One should also recognize the opportunities as they, sometimes, come open-faced and, sometimes, disguised.
As in above all, the power to rule is also an opportunity. This power is a strong weapon but equally risky and dangerous also for the user. You might possess the power as a ruler, an administrator or in any other status; whatever, it should be used for the benefits of the rightful and entitled to. History witnesses that whoever has oppressed others has to pay a terrible price and get ruined at long last. A poet has said, “Where are the kings and where the rest? / They have gone with all their pomp and show!” How appropriate these lines for those people of powers are who have at long last been compelled to live a common life without any office and sometimes forced for banishment or hanged to death under court trials or public revolutions!
Our life as a human itself is an opportunity bestowed upon us from God. We have to pass through this world only once. We should do good that we can and should show kindness to human being that we also can as we are not going to pass this way again. Our life is perishable with no any surety of surviving for certain years. Our temptations and efforts to gather the whole world within our arms or under our feet are futile just as a hen tries to gather her chicks, wandering here and there, under her wings.
– Valibhai Musa
Dtd.: May 07, 2008