Sunday, August 16, 2015

How and why I changed my rant mode to an optimistic one on this Independence day!

Today didn’t start out like all the other independence days I’ve celebrated in the past. I usually have such positive energy and love for India that these days are extra special to me, and all the issues take a back seat on this day. But not today.

I read this article about 25,000 farmers seeking the president’s permission to hang themselves on the independence day. I went numb for an hour or two. Ironically, little children would be singing ‘Jai Jawaan, Jai Kisaan’ and ‘Mere Desh ki Dharti Sona Ugle’ somewhere today. I didn’t have the energy to put up a beautiful picture and wish anyone a happy independence day after that.

I was getting angrier with each forward message and post I came across. Not with the people, of course. Just because of a sense of disappointment and helplessness. I kept thinking about rapes, politics, injustice towards women, and women being unfair to men in retaliation. The baseless fights and abuses you see on social media just because someone voiced an opinion. Brainless movies termed successful because they are in the ‘100 crore category’, and black money moving in different businesses. Actors, politicians and babas being placed on pedestals, while soldiers and other hardworking people being disrespected. Numerous bans for the most insane reasons, scams, fights for religions, and prejudice against anything that is remotely different from the age-old rules carved in stone.

Also when adults ‘have to’ follow the rules or terms dictated by family, society, government, or by the ‘wise’, misinterpreting cultures and religions since generations. Add a bunch of more rules for the children, and they are well on their way for the same kind of life. Oh, and God forbid if someone tries to rebel or just go on an unconventional path. Each person around them would try their best to pull them down and tear them to pieces, bit by bit.

I am sorry. I didn’t want to tread on this path again. I know we can introspect and debate on each and every issue I mentioned here. However, I started writing this just because my thoughts changed its course later. I came across some ‘out of the box’ videos and pictures in different genres. If one was funny and witty, the other was a brilliant satire. One was inspirational, and one portrayed the landscape of the country. Videos that would immediately demand respect and admiration.

Then I came across this beautiful video. It touched my heart. And it brought out many aspects of me. It called out to the dancer in me, and reminded me how beautifully the most complicated things can be expressed in the simplest of ways. It touched the patriot in me, and I just fell in love with my Tiranga even more (if that was even possible). It revived that naïve, vulnerable human in me, who still thinks anything is possible, and that I can still hope in the potential we all have. It took me back to a simpler time and made me believe once more that any work done by us in any way at all will gradually change the picture.

Please watch this video. And more importantly, feel it. The art, the words, the sentiment, the pride, and the promise.

This is the reason I am writing here. We are all angry. We know what the issues are. We know what the solutions can be. Some are not in our hands, but instead of feeling helpless, let’s focus on the ones which are. Let’s try and make this world better in our own simple ways. I found a video I connected with. Maybe you can find a video you relate to. Not just a video. Maybe an article, book, picture, movie, incident, or an experience. Whatever touches us and makes us feel optimistic about our future.

Let’s start by not letting people throw flags on the streets tomorrow, and maybe deciding on a good deed for the day. Won’t it be better than ranting and being sarcastic towards the people who are blissfully ignorant or enthusiastic today?

Happy Independence Day!

This article is written by Krishna Raval Maithel. Follow her on Twitter here.