Ganesh Chaturthi in September, signaled the commencement of the festive season this year – Navratri, Durga Puja and Dassera in October; Diwali in November, Christmas In December leading to the NEW YEAR EVE, ushering in 2013. Surely a time to celebrate, rejoices, splurge and indulge oneself. Time of disappointment, regret and despair to take a back seat. Time to revel and surrender to the infectious mood of exuberance and celebration.
Now, maybe its age finally catching up with me or my destiny nudging me, but I must confess that lately I’ve often started viewing routine occurrences from an altogether different perspective. Not necessarily cynical, but enough for some to label me a killjoy, at times.
Now let me confide my feelings about celebrations. While accepting the fact that it’s perfectly normal and natural to celebrate our festivals with pomp and gaiety, I question our behaviour an attitude during the rest of the year. Do we follow the path and lead our lives according to the teaching of those whose festivals we celebrate with such reverence and sincerely – Lord Ganesh, Shri Ram, Jesus Christ! Forget the high funda philosophies or regimens taught by erudite followers – what about their most basic teaching – “Refrain from performing any action, whether verbal or physical, that hurts and harms another being”. We’ve also been hearing this moral advice, right from our childhood, from our parents, elders and at school. Even the Father of our Nation – Gandhiji – propagates the concept of ‘AHIMSA’.
Just imagine, if mankind sincerely adopted and lived by this very fundamental counsel. This planet would overnight become free of all the gruesome and horrific atrocities which have become part of our daily diet delivered by the media, day in and day out – bomb blasts, terrorist attacks, rapes, murders, kidnapping etc. I think if even for one day we get no news of crimes, heaped by mankind on mankind – NOW THAT WOULD REALLY BE NEWS!
Has mankind reached its nadir? What’s the cause of these inane acts? Have we become a bunch of benighted fools hurtling towards our own destruction? Do we not realize that with a certainty, the perpetrators of such actions cause definite and maximum damage to themselves first, whereas the victim may or may not be harmed or hurt?
Now it is obvious that no negative action can be performed without a negative thought having first arisen in the mind. And it is a scientifically proven fact that the human brain responds to negative thoughts by triggering a release to toxic chemicals that flood our physical system, without our even consciously realizing it, causing stress, illness, anxiety, fear, culminating in utter misery. Conversely, a positive wholesome action, resulting from the generation of a noble or pious thought, result in serenity, calm, tranquility and greatly contributes to our general well-being. I’m sure everyone has experienced this at some time of other. Cases of stress related ills like hypertension and cardiac problems evident in increasing numbers at a young age is the direct result of the aggressive behaviour in youth today.
Forget about SWARGLOK and NARAKLOK, JANNAT and JAHANUM, HEAVEN and HELL – after you depart. You get your just desserts here and now – your rewards and punishment is definite and immediate. Then why do we foolishly continue to live our lives filled with hatred, animosity, vengeance, anger, jealousy etc?
“HAPPINESS IS NOT A DESTINATION, IT IS A METHOD OF LIFE” - said Burton Hills.
Let’s decide to celebrate in the true spirit of celebration from this festive season. CHEERS!
Wishing you a HAPPY & PROSPEROUS DIWALI and A HAPPY NEW YEAR!