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|I am a retired banker who is interested in study of human relations and human behavior. I am an excellent trainer in soft skills and banking related subjects.
I am also interested in literature and religion. I am free lance speaker on religion and personality development subjects.
BEYOND MOTHER’S DAY
Now that the mothers’ Day euphoria is over and most people would have forgotten that such a day was celebrated, let us evaluate the behavior of Indians and the relevance of this day in the Indian ethos. In India, a lot of importance is given to social relations, particularly kinship relations. Each relation is separately named unlike the practice in some western cultures where a large number of relations are clubbed under the terms uncle and aunt. Mother enjoys the top most position in this hierarchy. Even our rivers and deities are called MAAN that is MOTHER. Our scriptures describe mother as the first teacher often equating her with God. Despite widespread consumerism, even today, looking after the old parents is the rule rather than an exception. We often say that the debt of mother’s milk can never be repaid. For most of us in India, every day is Mothers’ Day.
And what was the hula boo about? Like all things ‘phoren’ we lapped this American concept, should we say, like hot cakes! And the cacophony is increasing by every passing year. May be in western cultures it is needed because the children leave their parents at the age of eighteen or so…. Probably they hardly interfere with each other’s life thereafter. So, they need to show to the mother their love and “I care for you” feeling. Although history of celebration of this day is not very relevant for our discussion, I am given to understand that even in America the celebrations were not meant for ordinary mothers in the beginning. (I am open for correction on this) The day was started under the orders of US President after the war in 1914 to show concern of the grateful nation for the mothers who had lost their sons in the war. It was a gesture of gratitude and assurance that we are here to understand your loss and miseries and we, too, care for you.
And the whole thing has been converted into crass commercial one day wonder. Advertisements for discount in jewelry and other gifts abound in the newspapers and magazines and electronic media. This includes discount on medical checkups. What a pity! Something which came as a right only a few years ago and should have continued as such, is being presented as benevolence to mothers who gave birth to these very children and loved them unconditionally for at least 18-20 years when the kids decided to spin off, leaving the poor mother all alone by herself! Can mother’s love be repaid by such gimmicks?
I was amused to see some observations by a cross section of people. A sixty year old said “seeing my children pamper their mother with gifts, I also felt like doing same to my mother and took lunch with her”. What after that “one day queen” status? The old lady is condemned to eat alone for 364 days of the year! A life of total isolation! Should we not be ashamed of ourselves for boasting that we cared for our mother on MOTHER’S DAY?
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