“…and so I tried to commit suicide.” He said. Hesitating a bit and then re-organising his thoughts he continued, “ it was not as if I was weak or depressed and neither I thought myself to be unsuccessful that I thought of taking this step, but over the past few months I had lost the vitality of life. All my mornings were no less than mourning ; following the same old routine from home to office and then again office to home. Friends I had indeed in plenty but had no one with whom I could share myself…” and then he was silent, perhaps lost in a myriad of thoughts reflecting right from his childhood days and whizzing past so fast, that it all appeared to be a fallacy. However one could see that he was clinging to no particular moment, as he had accepted loneliness, a fact of his life, and was too tired to search for a reason behind. Javed, who just turned forty-four a few weeks back, lived in Newada, a small middle-class dominated area in East Delhi.
Together as we join our hands, today, to celebrate Universal Brotherhood Day we recall the spirit of the young undaunted Indian who undertook a two month long journey to Chicago to herald before the world the deep spiritual renaissance residing within Bharat Mata; on 11th September, indeed at the Parliament of Religions, 1893. A crowd of seven thousand gave Vivekanand, a standing ovation and a prolonged applause, when he had uttered merely five words! “Sisters and brothers of America!” Such was the intense vibration of these words that they embodied, the echo of the rishis, the voice of Ramkrishna himself. The voice became the voice of youth in years that followed and today as we rekindle the spirit of dedication, devotion and discipline in our lives, be it in any field, in turn we are reverberating Vivekanand, one of the greatest saint the world has ever produced.
In America again, our story travels 108 years after and this time it was New York city. The September 11 attacks, 9/11 were a series of four coordinated terrorist attacks by the Islamic terrorist group al-Qaeda on the United States on the morning of Tuesday, September 11, 2001. The destruction of the World Trade Centre and of the nearby infrastructure claimed 2,996 lives- Universal terrorism indeed! Wonder how the picture changes universally, just within a century! I use the word century intentionally, so as to discard the beliefs/dis beliefs arising of the numerical 108. “Thousands of lives were ended by evil, despicable acts of terror” said the then President, George W. Bush at a national address, eight hours later. The world watched with disbelief how such an act can even be propelled and conspired, in short, they knew not of humanity being lost!
Global War Against Terrorism
Years that followed witnessed a deep anger and resentment in the voice of the people across the whole world. While the moderates desired round table talks, mutual peace co-operation, booking the guilty to justice, pressing for embargos and condemnation, the extremists reverberated, vendetta! The Global War Against Terrorism was launched and Operation Enduring Freedom was implemented in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Horn of Africa including Syria and Iraq. Since then numerous wars have been waged and numerous success has also been received- the biggest being of course the assassination of Bin Laden, the mastermind behind 9/11 attacks. But again victory and vendetta acted against each other. How? Follow what King Asoka said after the war at Kalinga, “If this is victory then what is defeat?” A similar remorse dawned this time too. A report titled Body Count put together by Physicians for Social Responsibility, Physicians for Global Survival and the Nobel Peace Prize-winning International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW) concluded that 106,000–170,000 civilians have been killed as a result of the fighting in Afghanistan at the hands of all parties to the conflict. (Wikepedia)
A moment for Javed
Javed was now certain and determined ever than before to end his life. He had no family or any relatives whom he considered close therefore, had no guilt of leaving any dependent. The only guilt he had, just two days after it was Leela’s birthday. Leela was his landlord’s ten years old daughter, with whom he had a close kinship. He wondered how it would ruin her birthday and the utter shock that would grip her as well as the Khanekars, for he had been their tenant for past 25 years! Anyway he focused his mind on his resolution and urged forward to close the window. As he was closing the window he saw a wonderful evening; children playing in the park, birds chirping from the tree over the park, the sanguine sky- all seemed so natural! He stood there for a moment, relishing the sight, but for a moment with a new perspective, a hope! The thought of suicide evaporated from his mind in that one moment…
One moment indeed it took the great Asoka king to renounce war and adopt peaceful methodology; one moment did the spell bound audience took to enthusiastically respond to the revolution Swami Vivekanand had begun from mere five words; for just one moment humanity was lost in the 9/11 attacks; in just one moment did Javed earned back his entire life; in just one moment of rage and vendetta we often act foolish in our day to day lives and for the sake of this moment let us all embrace the spirit of brotherhood and humanity- indeed a celebration of life!
By:Harsh Vardhan Bisht