There is a time in our lives, from about four years to a long twenty-three years, when we need to school ourselves for a better life. These formative years are crammed with the history of the world, the sciences of it all, and the trying in vain to figure out the plus and minuses of the equation of life.
But nothing really prepares you for the reality that one faces when we leave the safety of our colleges and homes and try to stand on our own feet. Reality shows are not like the ones we see on TV where we practice to be perfect. In the real world, there are no practice sessions and no re-runs, only lights, camera, action and you are ON.
Every day we read in the newspapers about children committing suicide because the teacher has scolded them. Who is to blame? The teacher or the child? The teacher gets arrested and the child is no longer alive to answer the question.
Messiahs are crying themselves hoarse trying to make the world a better place. “Be kind and loving. Be Sympathetic and Understanding– treat everyone with love and respect…” are their daily chants!– but they all seem to fall on deaf ears. We have eyes that do not see, ears that do not hear and hearts that neither feel nor understand. We only want to see that our friends and family are okay and everyone else can be doomed for all we care!
We don’t learn these lessons in school because we are so busy trying to prepare ourselves for our FUTURE which has to have a high profile job, lots of money and a quick climb up the corporate ladder because it’s the IN thing, and if you have other ideas of trying to create an awareness of the poverty in our minds, then you are branded.
We need to teach our children, that tears and smiles are part of life, twists and turns of fate need to be handled with courage. If we do scold them, it’s not because we hate them, but because they need to know what not to do. Sometimes we do pull authority on them, but I guess it’s allowed if it gives them a better perspective on the issue. But if anything and everything is misconstrued as pulling rank on them, then it’s time for different strategies.
All kinds of children make the world, right from the lovable ones to the rascals and the juvenile delinquents who really need help because of the circumstances they exist in. If as parents and teachers we try to understand this generation and help them overcome their fears and their sometimes nonsensical attitudes by just giving them the larger picture, it would help.
What do you know of the fears that your youngest child is facing? Is it loneliness? Boredom? Or just plain laziness? Or is it something really serious? By going to their level to haul them out of their difficulties would go a long way in keeping their sanity. Just put yourself in their place and see what they feel.
We need to give them a strong foundation in religion- teach them tolerance of other religions and that God never asked them to take their lives or that of others for any reason. Teach them that they are loved and needed and never mind if they don’t make it to engineering college or IT Companies. They can still check out oceanography or environmental science or even teaching. Maybe even a rap singer!!! And still be a better person!!
Maybe the older generation also needs to learn tolerance. What may seem like nonsense might be very dear to the children, and by making fun of it or looking down on it, we might just be giving way to defiance. Wheels within wheels would best describe it. And so the battle goes on.
So we really need to explore a media to tackle this major problem. It’s a very fine line between arrogance and a condescending attitude, the LOC is difficult to define. It’s safer to sit on the fence I guess???
Armed with high funda degrees, and oozing self-confidence, we still need to walk with our feet on the ground. We have many icons to look up to, but we prefer the Osamas of the world. Satan probably never seemed so alluring!
But I really wish there is a solution to this problem. I guess it lies within each of us. And we each need to address it. Until then, the battle lines will be drawn leaving room for regret and that unexplained sadness……
It takes a virus to contaminate the world, a contagion to make us sit up and notice the writing on the wall. Something from somewhere has unleashed itself on the peoples of the world, moving from person to person with a slight touch of the hand, invisible, but deadly.
While technology drove people apart, emotions like love, understanding, and feelings, were expressed, not from the heart, but through emojis, that spoke louder than words. But nothing can replace a tear, a flash of understanding, or even a smile that lights up a room.
The virus was on a tourist visa, a world tour, causing, fear, death, and the complete breakdown of life. Forced lockdowns, depleted economy, clueless governments, taking brave decisions to somehow overcome a seemingly insurmountable “Thing”!
What began as a search for a cure for a disease, ended up bigger than the disease.
Every person on earth is now face to face with destiny, no clue when and where it will end, but, in the process, one can look inward to find time to repair lost relationships, discover new things about ourselves, find compassion, release the need to be and do and achieve, and make millions, and buy things. Because, this virus cannot be deleted, neither can the world be exchanged, nor can it be taken apart. Because, at the end of the day, money cannot give you life, money cannot buy you food when there’s a lockdown, titles don’t allow you to pull rank, rich and poor, old and young are all susceptible to it.
It’s a great leveler.
Maybe it’s time to look for the omniscient One, for He is everything, good and bad, within and without.
SEPTEMBER 2023 AUTHOR OF THE MONTH at Spillwords.com
Vidya Venkataramanan is a homemaker whose dual passions are writing and exploring the finer nuances of self-realisation through philosophy and spirituality. After finishing her post-graduation in English Literature, she opted to get married and be a stay at home mom to her only daughter. While juggling the various duties of wife and mother, her first love, writing, was never far from her mind. She indulged this passion by writing short stories and a huge treasure trove of poems. Many of her poems have been published on various online forums apart from a book of published poems, co-authored by 2 like-minded poets. Apart from her passion for writing, she also nurtures her spiritual side by practising reikii and meditation.