The past is like a coffin buried deep in the earth — you know its location, you know what it contains; but you can never make it come to life for it’s eternally dead. What one can hold on to are the remnants of a bygone era… memories, habits, experiences, photographs; they are like dots in game required to complete a picture.
One such dot was a practice my father started when I was around 6 years old. He would subscribe to this magazine which would be delivered to our doorsteps every month. At that time, the English used in their writings was too difficult for me to make sense of; I would just sift through the pages, look at the pictures and imagine what it would be like to live the lives of people that had been profiled.
We still get that magazine for my father doesn’t want to cancel the subscription. And that stands as one of the dots that connects me to my past — a life full of innocence, laughter, tears and the desire to grow up as soon as possible.
While going through this month’s issue, I came across Horace’s lyrical phrase: Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori, which means ‘It is sweet and fitting to die for your country’. The Roman poet’s intention was to urge his fellow men to develop martial prowess and tell them that war is glorious, heroic and sweet.
I have never fought for my country and I fervently pray that such a situation might never arise when weaklings like me are summoned for such a call of duty. But I do believe we are all in a war, not the ones with tanks and guns, but one that we get into every day from the moment we open our eyes.
1) I fight with myself every morning when I don’t feel like going to work out of sheer lethargy.
2) I fight to wake up early and attend the driving classes that I have started taking since two weeks.
3) I fight to not say the words and be judgemental when people behave in a manner they shouldn’t.
4) I fight to keep going when many a times life makes absolutely no sense at all.
Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori… Horace was correct, the war is glorious and heroic; but it all depends on which war you choose to get into, because not everything is worth fighting for. But the one that is worth it all… how sweet indeed!
Bubbles of wisdom: