I have always maintained that we, the youth, are the privileged ones in this society. Ingrained as it is in the vicious circle of hierarchy, status and stature, it is both a boon and bane to be in such an exalted position. Let me ask myself the following questions.
What does privilege actually mean?
Of the many words that are at my disposal, I choose to define it with freedom, opportunity, advantage, right, honour and joy.
When did it actually strike me that I am privileged?
Well, the moment a young Indian of about my age, came to beg in front of my car. What separated us were the two inches of steel and a window. As usual I choose to ignore him, with the strong belief that he was part of a racket. My belief might be true, but then again, it is hard to ignore the vast difference that has been strongly established between the two of us and amongst the rich millions residing in the young, urban India and the millions languishing in poverty scattered all across our country.
Aren’t we the privileged ones?
We are young, we have a life where there is no dearth of opportunities, and we also do not lack the intellectual and economical facilities either.
Why is it that I see many of my compatriots unhappy, whinny, lonely and sad? Why is that we complain that so much is wrong with our lives, when on the flip side I wonder how many things could have possibly gone wrong? What more can we ask for at this stage of our lives?
I do not really have possible answers to all these questions and more.
Sometimes, I wonder how much could have been wrong with my life. I could have been born to parents who could have had a perennial financial crunch, or may be could have been born with an irreversible disease or have a cruel accident that could amputate my limbs or arms or take away my life!
The list of such sordid details could just go on and on for pages together without a pause.
Still, I am here, in possibly the best human form that God could have blessed me with, writing this article in a laptop which I really do not require (with the mental computer facilities that I have, a laptop is completely over-the-top), having all the intellectual resources that I can wish for along with a strong financial base which has helped me acquire whatever my heart desired.
Yet, at the end of the day I crave for more. More? I sometimes think, more for what?
I sometimes wonder that are we ever grateful for what we have been given in our lives? We have unending opportunities to excel, dream, envision and to work towards making our dreams a reality. These dreams are of such magnitude which our parents probably could not even dream of having. Still we dare to dream. Why? Well, because we know that we have a sound foundation which can help us realize all our dreams and aspirations.
In comparison to a poor family, we, the privileged do not have to wonder where and when will our next meal come from. We never wait to think before we go and buy our branded clothes. And we definitely don’t think before wasting our time in pursuing useless activities.
What do I wish for from my compatriots?
I wish we all were a bit more grateful. I wish we can be a little indebted to God (for those of us who believe) and to our parents for the life that we are leading today.
I wish we would take our roles as privileged members seriously. I am not asking you all to commit yourselves to charity. But surely we can make the most of what we have and give back to the society as responsible citizens?
It is up to us to make the most of only one lifetime that we have. Even our days as the youth are limited. It is this time that will eventually shape the rest of our lives. Many lives have gone waste in regret.
Let us not make that mistake again.
My humble request to all my friends:
Please remember to be grateful and acknowledge the realities of our lovely life the next time you self- introspect. Remember to say a silent prayer of love and respect the next time you realise that you have everything in life while there is someone who yearns for all that you have.
Please remember to thank your parents; they are the frequent silent, quiet and unacknowledged centres of our lives. They are the hidden blessings in our lives
Let us all realise that there are “exponentially cooler” (a ‘Juno’ term) pursuits to indulge in that will leave us much more satisfied. We all are in the endeavor to make our lives happy and the only way we can do so is to stop spoiling ourselves through nonsensical activities.
Finally, the world has opened its doors for us. For every nameless, faceless person in our country the door has opened irrespective of language, nationality and colour.
Let us take note of that.
Sayan S. Das
[image courtesy: http://india.targetgenx.com/files/2007/09/indian_youth.jpg]
Author’s Note – This article was not written to insinuate any wrong feelings or irk any sensibilities. It was written in good spirits.