I happened to get this for a table topic in my toastmaster club and everyone believed that I gave a good impromptu speech. No, Its a prepared speech ..I was prepared for it and it reflected in the way I quoted about my absence from home during this festival.
Festivals are marked occasion to relax, remember and rejuvenate for the uphill journey ahead. Life as always been a struggle , science says the fittest survive, Gods say the “Committed ..” escapes from life. While science leads to survival, spirituality seems to pave way for escape. There starts the difference between both these way of lives. What ever way you chose, you need a place to relax,remember and rejuvenate irrespective of whether there is a milestone associated with it.
But lets look at how we celebrate festivals in these days.
1. When you are the lead member of the family, you are stressed months before the festival planning to meet the material needs associated with it.Though you take that joy in seeing that new dress adorning your loved ones skin , your skin bears excessive sweat than it can handle to make that happen.
2. Earlier point was a observation but this one is an experience. Festivals are better celebrated with families and hence all those who have migrated for breads ,move back to their homes. In the process there is congestion,conflict and the opportunists use it to make their breads. People fight it out for berths virtually and really. Thanks to indian railways the fight starts 90 days before the festivals. We start worrying about the festival 3 months before it. Compare that with my childhood memories, where I counted down the 30 days before Diwali with immense joy.
3.Each and every festival have been designed well for the extended family members to get together and exchange wells and wishes. Today we belie them by thronging together in the little space which has more strangers than known faces[Malls..]. The noise in the ambiance even disturbs the conversation and often redirects the conversation to petty things with those known faces. When I compare it with my childhood memories, I dont think we are travelling ahead in the road of progress.
4. What ever we had, festivals were occasions to count our joys on it, but today when the media influences as with illusionary ads to make more sales out of festival days, we increase our debt counts when we count on material joy. As a result every festival leads to short term joy and long term EMIs.
Reflecting on the above facts, what resonates within me is that sad truth is we as a society are mislead and we have forgot the essence of festivals. Thats a prime reason why I refused to travel home on this auspicious day. For my parents its going to be a festival whenever I am at home. I have experienced it during my month long break at home last year.
We cant change the global calendars, but we can adjust our individual schedules and still discover the essence of festival and enjoy the joy it brings. EN-JOY — enhanced joy! but why are we diminishing it in the name of celebrating it.???