I have been watching the television a lot lately, mainly because anything productive was not coming out of me. As I was surfing through the channels I came across a reality show in which couples had to live with their in-laws before marriage, get to know them, learn about their culture and everything that would make them better Son-in-law or Daughter-in-law. In the episode, a man who wanted his fiancé to meet his parents asked her to dress up. He came to pick her up from her parent’s house and when he saw her he was bit taken aback. He had asked her to wear the traditional Indian wear and she was in the most casual dress one could ever wear. As he requested her to wear what he wanted, she threw up a fight. It might look completely normal when we see from a perspective of the girl but brings an all together different light when the thought process of a boy is taken in to consideration.
Parents of nobody ever think ill of their children. No matter how much they grow up but for a parent they will always be their little child, the one they have spent their time and energy to make them someone they want them to be. No parent will ever want any harm to befall on their children and would never want them to make an outcaste, someone who is not a part of the society. So they feed their kids with values, with basic necessities of dealing with people so that they don’t lack at any place. These values form the basis of everything the child perceives. Sometimes the things he/she learns by themself, helps him overcome something troubling him/her and sometimes he may remember how his parents dealt with a similar situation. The importance of what a parent teaches is not measurable. It stays with us at every part of life.
I, being born in an Indian family have always observed how my parents dealt with situations and people. The first thing they always did was to be polite because they always believe in seeing the reason behind something rather than raising their voice. But sometimes some don’t hear the polite, so they become the rudest person I have ever known. This is very fabric of adaptation that we as living beings have always taken very keen interest in. Studies conducted have shown life to evolve from Amoeba and as a single celled organism Amoeba needed to reproduce so that it may survive. It did and it did very simple and beautiful. It created parts of itself and created another being. Similar were the other levels of evolution. Fish came out of water to inhabit the land, so came the land animals. Then the sky had to be conquered, so came the birds. But then, someone had to maintain harmony among others, so more intelligent forms of life evolved. Home Sapiens came into existence or the more popular Humans as we all know. Adaptation was always the very essence of evolution. But evolution never meant starting from something new, it was creating something better of the already available. Do you see – the already available. Yes, that’s the thing that helps evolution function.
The programme I was watching had a twist of turn and the girl revolted against the decision his to – be husband had made for her. She cited the many modern laws in practice and told that this kind of thing is a thing of past. I was taken aback. Why would someone discard something that has been existing far longer than the lifetime of a single person, something that took a long time to come into shape, something that was infused with lives of the many who sacrificed themselves for the larger good they saw.
Culture is the basic identity of a human being, more than any other living being.
Humans during the evolutionary process have realised that living together is much safer and better than living alone and when we live together, we live as a single unit. Much like the cells of Amoeba, who when divided creates different but same organism. As humans came together and spread, they imbibed many things owing to the very ability to adapt. Some grew very tall, some grew very short, some developed a different skin tone, some were fast runners, some were heavy lifters.
But all of them were the same.
The circumstances, the environment, the situations made them what they became. But a man is nothing if he forgets his roots. If one day we decide, the only living thing that can live on this planet will be us, then apocalypse will come, nothing will remain. Similar is the case with culture. Kingdoms, many great Nations have fallen just because they thought of themselves more suitable than any other. But no civilisation ever flourished if they couldn’t adapt or in some form or other forgot their roots or started identifying themselves as other civilisations. Think this of if one day an elephant starts thinking itself of a dog, how will you take it out for a walk and the amount of you know what it would produce. You’ll be soaked in it. Or if someday you decide you want to be a bird or a Pizza(those things are addictive), God knows what may become. Possibilities here are unlimited.
Modernity in the name of imitation is a preposterous concoction because then you won’t remain original.
We live in a world of globalization, everything and anything is accessible to anyone who has the resources to get it. Ideas, things, people, money and cultures travel. Maybe not faster than light(because then how else will you be reading this) but it does travel at a pace which some may confuse as something better or something more likely to be ‘in fashion’. One must take pride in what they are because they have travelled a road to come where they are. It may not be a long distance but the fact that they kept moving is much greater than not moving at all or moving backwards. We can only appreciate the greatness of where we are only if we keep our roots in mind because no matter how humble roots were, they still are the strongest. But one should never let one’s pride blind him because once a great tree was a seed and once a now CEO of an organization started from the bottom. The example of Raavan is best suited here. Raavan was a pure genius. He was a scholar, an astronomer, a mathematician, an administrator, a warrior, a scientist, he had mastered the highest levels of meditation. But the only thing that killed him was his ego.
Pride can very easily turn into ego. The difference is hairline.
I take pride(notice pride) in wearing the traditional attire which has been laid down by my culture because that’s my very identity. I do sometimes wear what the dress code for a certain place demands but that doesn’t mean I would any day want to give away my identity for a new one. And why should I. There must be reason why we or for that matter any of us are the way we are. And it is perfectly fine if we don’t understand it right now but it will reveal itself to us one day. If some kind of attire brings happiness to the faces that mean a lot to us then the purpose is fulfilled.
Respect is subjective.
Respect for someone maybe touching feet of his elders or not honking unnecessarily when a person infront of you is as helpless as you are or maybe letting someone enter before you or maybe standing up when you speak to someone standing while you are sitting or listening to someone before you speak. Possibilities here as well are unlimited. But respecting the one’s and other’s culture is the most important of all because if it was not for respect, mutual coexistence would have never been possible.
Later in the episode, the girl decided to wear Sari and she looked beautiful more than ever.
The question I want to put up here is, what is your notion for respect. Mine is realising the presence of a living being in a surrounding around me. I may interact with you or maybe not but I still respect you until you do respect me and my presence and if you don’t, Then I have learnt a thing or two from my parents as well with a tinge of the globalized culture.
I know five languages.