Who Will Cry When You Die..
Date: 9/17/2012 2:17:00 AM
Hello friends. Well, this post is in response to a friend's challenge. Hope you like this.
“ When you were born, you cried while the world rejoiced. Live your life in such a way that when you die, the world cries while you rejoice.”
— Ancient Sanskrit saying
Does the gem of wisdom quoted above strike a chord deep within you? Do you feel that life is slipping by so fast that you just might never get the chance to live with the meaning, happiness and joy you know you deserve? If so, there are two options. First, as a machine, cry during difficult times and laugh during good times like our 2nd block neighbor Mrs Anita. It's like there is a whole ocean of tears inside her lachrymal glands. You can see her in every death ceremony in our colony, sobbing and more sobbing. I couldn't remember one thing so well other than her vivid break-down into teary wreckage in every one of those functions.
Well, that was the first option. The second option, is to follow your dreams and be able to give your best shot when it matters the most. Did you just remember Robin Sharma. Well, he ain't a big fella. The Monk who sold his Ferrari had just foreseen the petrol hikes. You guys took him seriously! No, seriously speaking, many people have been inspired by his writings. Who will cry when you die, a very special book by him, will be the guiding light that leads you to a brilliant new way of living.
Okay, enough preaching now. The whole nation cried when Mahatma Gandhi passed away. You know, when Biju Patnaik, adventurer, aviator, businessman and politician, passed into the ages on a fine Thursday morning, in 1997, my father, 40 by then, was stunned. One could see tears of respect, or whatever, in his eyes.
Last month when Rajesh Khanna passed away, my parents listened to his songs for two days non-stop and my father told me stories, with a touch of reverence in his voice, of how he was a great actor and how girls would swoon whenever he came on screen. I was, well, jolted too, for like a minute or so. But I was moved more by his portrayal of life in Anand or Bawarchi than his real death. Kudos to that actor.
In the world of TV, Marilyn Monroe’s death has a bunch of secretaries sniffling in Season two of Mad Men.
I cannot remember a time when the death of any celebrity has made me cry and I really doubt it’s possible. Heath Ledger, Michael Jackson, and other tragic stories did jolt me, but they had me reaching for my phone to check the internet faster than for a box of tissues.
I worry for us sometimes, I really do.
Does my generation have any heroes that we truly admire and worship? We should’ve a tribute column for such greats and while we are extremely passionate about J.K. Rowling or Jerry Pinto or Amitav Ghosh or Sachin Tendulkar or Amitabh Bachchan or Rajnikanth, actual tears for them seem ridiculous.
We don’t know them. We admire them, we aspire to be like them, we love them too (enough to start some pretty awful arguments to defend them), yes. But today the death of a popular figure means a dozen thousands of statuses in facebook followed by some insignificant personal ranting or Rajnikanth jokes. Well, the business fraternity might be moved if a Ratan Tata dies. All of us saw how things unfolded on the death of Steve Jobs (For that matter Apple Inc. is only a company now, the brand, the innovation has taken the back seat, I guess).
It may sound cold hearted or disrespectful, but, no one ain't care enough today. People feel a little bad but then they move on to their own problems. Either it’s because we have become really practical (Hell ‘I didn’t really know this person’) or nobody in recent times has commanded the attention of a nation that way (Stop mocking Anna Hazare).
So, the perspective in which the world sees you is of great matter. And you have to create and maintain such a glorifying perspective that people really shed a tear or two in your death (If you don't like to be lost in oblivion, after death, that is). How, just follow Robin Sharma. And maybe, a best shot is all you can hope for now. A short time in the spotlight, a tribute in a leading daily, candle-lit prayers in front of India Gate, or a special half an hour slot on a TV channel. No heroes last forever.
So much for jostling between inspiration and reality now. While signing off, I will quote Cherie Carter-Scott, “Remember, there are no mistakes, only lessons. Love yourself, trust your choices, and everything is possible”. Who knows, a 100 meter high steel tomb might be erected in your tribute, or your name be etched in history books for years to come! Keep trying, guys!