Friday, July 6, 2012

What have we become?

As I stood at the bakery savouring the cake and cold drink a woman came and silently  requested the shopkeeper for some tea. My eyes went towards a frail figure and I could see a not so aged woman in shabby clothes with a shaved head, almost heartbroken as the shopkeeper inhumanly signaled her for money. She begged again and he denied again. The expression on her face was something even a thousand words cant explain and her silence spoke loudly of rejection...rejection by family,by loved ones, by society. She silently turned back leaving me with a thousand questions running through my mind. Why couldn't I go ahead and pay for her tea when I really wanted to do so...what stopped me? Suddenly the cake seemed tasteless..I could feel her hunger and still worse I could feel the pain of her hurt...badly. But even then why couldn't I just extend a caring hand? Why did I think so much rather than just tell the guy to hand over a glass of tea to her and that I would pay for it? Who was more inhuman, the shopkeeper who wanted money from someone who didn't have or I who had but still couldn't give?
I come to realise that in this race of reaching the top of the ladder, somewhere down there we are becoming less and less human. We have reached a phase where we think a thousand time before giving but not once before expecting or asking. We have come to a phase where we "educated lot" fail to read faces. We have come to a phase where we analyze but fail to understand and empathize.
 I asked the shopkeeper about the lady and he said she is mentally challenged. The "mentally challenged lady" then just silently walked around and out of some sense of humanity started picking up all the cigarette packets and waste papers lying around and put them in the waste bin. To my astonishment the area around the shop was lot cleaner than the rest of the area nearby since this so called "mentally challenged" lady does her bit of picking up the litter created by the same people who reject her everyday and disposes it off  in the waste bin ... and to think that the shopkeeper called her "mad" !!!
   I was almost in tears as I walked out of the shop, determined to do my bit...for the lady at-least ... at-least till I could. We are lucky to have had lot more that what we need, its time we understood that.
 Question is who is the one who needs help? Is it her or us? The answer is both need help. She needs our help...people like her need at least a feeding hand if not a caring hand. And we need a guiding hand...a hand to take us back to our human remind us of the pleasure in grow as humans...
       May god give me the strength to hold a hand that needs support, to give a smile to a face that has forgotten to smile, to heal a heart wounded with time, to stand by a lonely soul to give company.May we grow into a world where we would be proud of what we have become and not where we would have to sadly question "What have we become?".


theBlackNoise said...

Time does play weird games with I offered a packet of biscuit to the poor lady I had referred to in my blog. She smiled back and said in almost impeccable English "This is too sweet, I cant eat it. You give me anything else I will eat it". I was shocked for a moment. Went back to the shop and exchanged teh "sweet" biscuit with a "salty" one. She heartily accepted it and said a "Thanks" with a smile on her face.It made my day but also made realize that time does play some weird games...But still I am happy that today I was less hesitant :)

Abhi said...

Love your thought and your act!! we need more of such people.

I remember feeling something like that and offering a very old man to have Vada Pao.. he never asked for money!!

Guess we need more people coming forward in understanding that we still are human even if we work with computers... and the world is still the same as before..

all we can do as individuals is just take that small effort in at least brining a smile on at least one person's face..

Abhi said...

why have you stopped writing dude?? Please start asap..