The solitary walk — the one that signifies that it’s over, not life but just a single day from a bunch of many more to come — the walk where the moon convinces you that it is the only brightest thing that can make you see the way ahead as a gust of wind pushes you back on your tracks… The walk which leads to a question and then many more… the answers to which you know will solve all mysteries: “Was my day worth it? Did I tear someone down or did my words or actions build them up? If I die today will I be proud of how I lived? Did I merely breathe, did I just try to survive or did I truly live out the minutes the way I would have wanted them to?”
These questions were raised after a phone call that started (and thankfully ended) a very unpleasant episode. It happened some days ago, August 10 to be exact, a day when all of us (Indians) were celebrating Raksha Bandhan (http://www.raksha-bandhan.com/). My sister and I gave a parcel of rakhis for our cousins to a person, who in turn gave it someone who was supposed to deliver them to specific location. But that didn’t happen. Even with a grace period of 20 days, the package wasn’t delivered to my youngest cousin. Since he happens to be a little monkey he called us up to complain and after which he also proceeded to cry. This got a certain elder very angry and the person called up another and proceeded to scream at them. The one who got screamed at called up the person who messed it up in the first place and yelled at the latter. In the end, a single phone call started this “scandal”, which made me question…
What is the point of celebrating an occasion, which is all about loving relationships, when we are busy choking each other to death? I get it; you shop for expensive and pretty things, pack it lovingly and with care so that it travels thousands of miles safely. You do it because you love those people and it’s infuriating when things don’t happen the way you had imagined. But isn’t that normal? What isn’t normal is when life is a bed of roses, where there is no sorrow, frustration, guilt, anger… Life without all of this is not normal. Because reality check: Life doesn’t roll the way we would want it to.
I remember how frustrated I was when my very good friend had sent a Christmas package from Spain a couple of years ago. It was stuck at customs for more than 20 days. It was so frustrating because I couldn’t do anything about; the customs’ office was in another city, so I couldn’t go there personally either. My friend was spazzing out because the presents were very very special, I was spazzing too because I genuinely believed that the package was lost forever. But what I did not do was snap at people or find someone who could be my punching bag for the moment. Though I was very tempted to.
It’s one thing to get angry; but to get angry and let it out on a person who least deserves it is plain CRUEL. What can be more important? Messed up human beings or the things you buy for them? Please don’t say things, because I will really punch you.
So of course, Raksha Bandhan wasn’t cool at all. Everybody ended up hurting each other — I said some things, not angry but judgemental words, that I shouldn’t have — and it’s not like after the outbursts the package was delivered, because it wasn’t. In this world, where the best things come with a hefty price tag, compassion, grace and love can look like cheap presents. But it’s usually these cheap presents that one remembers the most.
Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.
It’s human to stand in a crowd, but it’s divine to stand alone… It’s easier to give into the righteous anger, one that can also be termed as temporary madness, than chose the hard path and forgive. Let go because to hold on is not a always a wise idea. Get out because to give in can not only mean broken hearts but also broken people… Because standing alone, all alone, can really be worth it in the end.