I’ve been hearing drums today. There’s pomp and fervour. Happy Ganesh Chaturthi. I’m not a religious person. So I really don’t follow anything related to religion, religion as people have made it to be. Religion as such is quite logical and I totally agree with logic. Coming back to to today, Ganesh chaturthi as most of us know was started by Lokmanya Tilak. The aim was to meet and make plans to attain independence. The idols of Lord Ganesha were biodegradable so that the visarjan doesn’t pollute the water bodies and kill marine lives. Unfortunately now the visarjan does exactly the opposite. But a few people have gone back to being eco friendly.
How can we forget our adorable Ganesha. Vakratund, Ekdant, modak and laddu loving. I’ve heard many complaint that the house looks empty after the visarjan. 10 days of having Him home. And then suddenly you’ve to wait for another year. People dance, at the beats of the drums in joy, bringing Him home, they bid Him goodbye in similar spirits. For people who do follow these rituals ,it means a lot to be able to experience this festival. Ganesha the elephant God. Elephants are considered holy because of Him. What are we doing to these gentle giants. Ganesha is sent back after 12 days. An elephant stolen from the forests is enslaved forever and so is his/ her progeny. We see them chanied in zoos, at temples. The mahaot on them with a bullhook. Poking the creature to obey. We see elephants begging on the roads. We take elephant rides at various places. Not being cruel is everyone’s responsibility, irrespective of caste, creed age or religion. We must not be cruel to anyone. Animals are part of this ‘ anyone’, they’re not ‘anything’. I particularly raise the issue of elephant abuse today. Hindus believe in this day, many non Hindus take part in the festival and many others are definitely aware that such a festival exists. To all who believe in Ganesha, don’t ride your God ,don’t enslave and abuse Him. To all who don’t believe in Him, who may follow another religion or may be atheists, don’t abuse sentient beings. If Ganesh chaturthi is holy if elephants are holy, stop being cruel, stop funding their abuse by supporting circuses, rides, begging. Oh by the way how can say this, the cow since time immemorial has been holy. She does not know how important she is to Hindus. But how do we treat the holy cow? Are you looking for answers?
I’m no expert on religion. I may have gone wrong on some religious facts. The aim of this article is not to hurt anyone’s religious sentiments. The aim is just to raise awareness about animal abuse.
As a child, going to the zoo was my best time, because I always loved animals and Sunday would be my chance to spend time with them. But there used to be a strange uneasiness within me whenever I saw the animals, birds and reptiles there. I used to ask , why does the wolf walk to and fro repeatedly, why does the bear seem like it’s sulking, why do the lions , tigers and leopars look so angry, why does the elephant continuously sway his head, is the space provided enough for these animals. I was given vague answers then. But the images of these animals kept me uncomfortable after every visit to the zoo. By the time I was 8years or so, the animals had given me their message. They were prisoners, for no crime committed. All those gestures and expressions were that of pain , suffering, frustration, agony and much more. I stopped visiting any zoo.
Don’t buy that ticket to the zoo.All these souls in the zoo are in mental, emotional and physical pain. They are terribly unhappy. How can we enjoy looking at an innocent prisoner , sentenced to lifetime imprisonment , the crime- they are animals and they can’t defend themselves.We need to teach our children that these living beings belong to the jungles, not to the confinements of the prison, called zoo. The jungles are being destroyed by humans, that’s another story…..
Selfish. The word immediately brings about a negative energy, because of the negative meaning attached to it. Why can’t selfish be a positive adjective. A selfish person,loves herself so much that she won’t let anything or anyone ruin her self respect and peace. She minds her own business and is not interested in other people’s life until they ask for help. She pursues self development and happiness and evolves day after day. She is in congruence with her deep emotions,so recognises her feelings thus deals with them better. She nurtures her mind, body and soul. Her self esteem is high. All this encourages her good physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health. Such a person is good to be around. She will ask no personal questions, pass no criticisms, offer suggestions and help if and when asked for.
They say you can’t pour from an empty cup. A selfish person has so much for herself, she can offer a wealth of hope and help to others and at the same time not allow anyone to take her for granted. What a beautiful balance!
Have you all noticed, a new born child, just wants. She cries for food,cries if she is sleepy, has passed stools or urine, cries if she wants to be held, or if her stomach is hurting.She is absolutely concerned only about herself! Selfish. Innocent. And we all know how much purity and love we feel when we hold a baby.
As we grow, adults teach us to put ourselves last. Listen to parents and teachers, that’s not wrong. What’s wrong is they teach us to not to think about what we want. Keep your parents happy. Keep your siblings happy. The conditioning to have this negative altruism is extended to in-laws and your spouse and then your children.There is nothing bad about keeping your loved ones happy, but not at the cost of your own happiness. You need to be sensitive not just to the needs of others but also to your own. Remember, you cannot pour from an empty cup.
A lot of mental health problems and interpersonal conflicts would not exist if only we all, once again, just like our stage of infancy learn to be selfish in the true sense , just like our Maker sent us to be.
So now selfish can have a new meaning, a new definition. Try to be a little selfish everyday, a little innocent, a little pure, happy and at peace.
Humans , they commit so many crimes against each other, women, animals, children, Nature. Very few get convicted. Judicial systems need proof, which can be tampered with easily. Will there ever be justice, I had always asked.
Today as I moved through the roads, I saw the Sun. He answered.
The Sun rises daily watching over us. He does not require any proof, He is the witness. He shall give justice. For the crimes after sunset? Well, the Sun is forever there, it’s we who turn our backs to Him along with the earth.
A moment is so important. Not the future not the past, just this moment. That look in the eyes of your beloved which encompasses an ocean of love for you is in that one moment. The smile which speaks volumes about a long struggle. That sigh, which could be of relief or an indication of hopelessness, or of a burden carried for too long. That innocent embrace of a child which speaks about the endless trust and attachment she has towards her mother. That paw you feel in your hands and the smell and warmth of your furry buddy. That one second when your dog sees you after one full year, those eyes! That moment whenyour test results come up on your computer screen after a full minute of loading, seeing the good or bad marks is another moment.
We plan for the future, regret our past, but forget these moments, when life is but an amalgam of these very moments. Miss the moments, miss life, you miss living!
We feel so tensed, “When will I get a flat tummy, when will my face get rid of pimples”, moments gone in getting worried when we can easily fill our lives with enriching memorable moments, while exercise, a good diet and skin treatments will eventually get you what you want.
Focussing on each moment can change our lives forever. We can create and experience so many beautiful instances and deep emotions which in turn will become beautiful memories. We will create a blissful cycle by just paying attention to moments, our past and future all settled by just learning to live in the moment.