Republic Day India

A Letter To My Grandma on Republic Day

India,

26th January’ 2012.

 Dearest Grandma,

Hope that this mail of mine finds you in good health. I was surprised, excited, moved and lost in wonder when I saw the guard at the office bring me your letter. Then as I started reading the letter, I could see those hands of yours that have got old serving wo/mankind inching letter by letter to communicate a message of love so genuine and true. I felt a strange sense of complete and immense bliss surround me.

Isn’t life blissful at times Grandma?

I was at Haryana and Punjab recently. Went to Kurukshetra, Panipat and a Commando training place (which was actually the ruins of a huge, really huge fort). If History would come into picture, there is a strange chapter to which these “supposedly” great places get connected to-WARS!

I began to wonder and wondering led to pondering in the place I was wandering. I think its easier to be in war than to live in peace. Its so easy! Yeah, yeah isn’t it easier to train the finger to pull a trigger of a gun and kill than to train it to play the guitar and create music so sweet. Isn’t it easier to kill rather than to save the dying? Isn’t it easier to steal rather than work hard for that one meal and eat it with dignity? Then the pride and the way warriors are showered with praise all ultimately touches rock bottom when I realize that all this barbaric rush to severe the head of one’s own species is all because we never try for the better option of peace; may be because the better options are never the easier options. We always stick to the easier one; the one that needs nothing to be given from our end even if it takes something out of our neighbour. So primitive and so grounded aren’t we?!

Look around. The world is tattered. Children are crying with no one to comfort them. People, human beings, who suffer in silence due to oppression, corruption, violence, abuse, poverty, crime, suppression and what not? Look at them! Don’t we see hands that lift up tenderly to be held, hands that need someone to touch them and help them out; out of that hell they see on a beautiful earth that the great one(s?!) above gave us? Aren’t they worth enjoying God’s love? Aren’t they just like you and me who need food, water, strength and love? Aren’t they made in our own image somewhere? How can I neglect them? Why should I let them suffer? What should I fear to help them? What would stop me?

My battle field is the whole world and to wherever it can be extended. I must conquer not to establish power yet to make conquerors out of the conquered. No weapon is more powerful than love; and thats all I have at hand. No army is more powerful than an army devoted to bring in peace. No man or woman is left unconquerable with love. Many have tried to conquer the world otherwise through violence and have proved repeatedly to be fools who at the end of the day cannot take what they cannot carry. A war centered on violence only aggravates the curse of hatred. How wonderful it would be if we have the choice to love one another and are removed of the chance to hate? How nice it would be to smile and greet and touch and make a difference in the life of everyone we meet? How nice it would be?

Isn’t it ironic that I write all these as I watch the troops of the Indian military march with pride? Watch helplessly the way we are preparing for war as we talk of peace; watch the brutality with which weapons are made; watch how justice, liberty, equality and fraternity that our sovereign, socialist, democratic republic promised in its preamble has been curtailed than promoted. Can’t this Republic Day be a time when love is born? Can’t these battles stop and a new war for love begin to convince the people who have lost hope and faith that there is still a reason to live and a reason to die, to die with a smile knowing for sure that the world is a wonderful place to live in and the one’s they leave behind would be safe and fine? How peaceful and blissful the world would become if only it were showered with love. Can’t people be passionate to love rather than hate? Even though its easier to die than to live… Miles to go before I sleep.

With lots of love, Your Grandson,

AFD

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