Saturday, 27 September 2008

Mind Speaks - Do you love your life and of those around?

Mind Speaks - Do you love your life and of those around?

I haven’t come to the Mind Speaks section of my English blog for some time. It is not that my mind was not speaking or stopped speaking. It is due to the fact that it was speaking too much elsewhere that it didn’t get an opportunity to pass by this side. It was wearing a different language cap and expressing it thoughts and moods without any holds as it arrived.

Life has been never easy for me. 20 plus years in UAE and still wanting to explore and experience more of this beautiful country, culture and values. Each day brings out a joy of learning a thing new, irrespective of which side I get up, who double parks in front of my car, and who speeds and misses hitting my car while travelling between work and home. The country is growing in pace and volume and along with it the diverse culture and style. Even during the holy month of Ramadan, I witnessed women dressing scantly, people smoking discreetly, which a few years down the lane I could have never even imagined or seen. Several times I did ask myself, why public has a tendency to violate rules and values when they clearly know that these are not to be violated during this period to give respect to the religion and numerous people who follow it. May be I will be labelled crazy, if I discuss such things frequently. But, how can I resist expressing myself. No, never, I will never keep my thoughts within.

Continuing, the moods and thoughts to travel freely, I would like to mention about the online competition for children TALENT SHARE 2008 which I am organising for children during this Ramadan. Thoughts, sparks, flash or whatever you call them, a piece of paper and a pen or pencil I carry around, leads to several things in my life. Luckily, I am constantly tuning my mind to the positive aspects of whatever I see and experience. All those sparks are leading to constructive and creative cause for betterment of the society around me. It may be participation in the Have Your Say programme of Dubai Municipality, Suggestion programmes of Dubai RTA, or Have Your Say programme of Department of Transportation Abu Dhabi, or assisting someone with guidance on education or job. Several of these small sparks are being diligently printed in paper and submitted across systematically. As the number increases, the probability of acceptance in terms of Quality and Value are also increasing and feel very contended at the end of each day – a day well utilised. A selfless thanks giving to this country and the world around.

During my journey so far with the progress of TALENT SHARE 2008, I have received support from several unknown sources. Faces whom I have never met, or even never personally communicated and have come forward and expressed their share of experience related with it. The idea behind this came to me also as a spark. It happened on one evening, when a small child of 7 years old was brought to my home for assistance to develop an attitude for mathematics. A casual talk with the child and his parent made me realize the brilliance of this little boy who is being really put into test by his parents. Children these days are being forced upon to learn several talents at a younger age whether or not they are interested or have an affinity for them. Because, parents, or a relative or a friends child, or someone else is learning them and doing well, it becomes a necessity for many children to follow suite. Talks with several parents on the way across this programme I realised that many are not aware of what their child has naturally in him. Where is the time? Or, I have not seen him doing this or that? These were the answers about children from some of the parents. However, this was not the case with everyone. There were some who did find time to makes sure to sit with them, observe them, identify their liking and nurture them accordingly. I am with this group.

The influx of financial gains for participation in several talent shows have made it almost statutory for parents to teach their children with dance, music, or cricket. It is now almost a reality that you do not get to see anyone saying that oh, my child is good at painting or good at writing stories. Everything is in short from the childhood days. At the very young age which the child starts going to his play school and the tuition classes following it, he is given a mobile and there starts his membership in SMS (Short Minded Society) life style. Everything he sees and express is short. If this is the state now, I really wonder what it will be in a short time, when we will cease to see any stories, novels or poems? The electronic gaming devices have totally ruled out children from sharing their thought process to be expressed through their coloring or sketching medium.

It was all these thoughts and fears and also the liking for non-performing arts that made me work on such an initiative to identify and nurture those little ones who has it in them to take us to an entirely different world. It doesn’t mean that I don’t like performing arts and games. These days, I am excited like an expectant parent with a big belly in the good old days. I do not know whether there will be one healthy child, or many from this. As the traditional doctor with his experience carefully examines and declares that the patient has been well taken care during the various stages and child inside is showing a healthy movement, and declares to the parent, be confident, it is going to be a safe and successful delivery. I am sure you all will be keen to see the result too.

Birth obviously brings me to the topic of death. Recent times, I have gone through emotional stress due to the loss of two close ones in my life. Both death due to cancer. Sometimes, we think, an accidental death is much easier than to have this dreaded disease and die a slow death. It is not the fear of dying, but the agony of seeing them suffering with pain and trauma. Aspects related to these deaths surfaced harsh realities in life. In both the cases, the people around them ignored them with timely assistance and support to their family. As the person on death bed was fighting with the pain, he was also suffering from added mental trauma of what will happen to his immediate family once the inevitable happens. No assistance from any side and the poor souls departed leaving several tasks incomplete. At this point arrives our social crusaders. Let me be positive here too. At least after the death, their eyes opened! May be they will see it from the heaven, if one such thing exists.

Heaven reminded me of speeding and hell. Due to several requirements, I have to travel between Abu Dhabi and Dubai several times during each week. Each drive through Abu Dhabi Dubai highway is becoming a come back to life and normalcy. Drivers are too erratic and every time, I miss an opportunity from being hit from the back or the side, I feel, these drivers do not love to live for self. I am extremely sure they do not love public to live safe too.

Wish you all a safe and happy Eid holidays,

Ramesh Menon

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