It’s kind of a strange combination and now if I think hard about it, it seems a bit ironic. Coming from a country like India which is known as a ‘Country of Festivals’, I often find myself in isolated situations. Festivals come in as a way of getting together, being happy and at the same time looking back at the history and cherishing it. Well that’s textbook stuff, I know.
If anyone come up to me and ask me “When did my association with festivals start??” I find it hard to answer, and if someone comes up to me and ask me now “When did my disassociation with festivals start??” I may have an answer to that.
Thinking too much has always been my problem but that’s the thing which keeps me going. It was a different situation when I was in school. I use to wait for festivals not because I wanted to celebrate them; the simple reason was I wanted a day off. There are many people around me with some strong beliefs and I respect them for that, but if I look at the wider picture we all need to believe something or the other. Its human tendency.
I love my country like all of us but the beliefs I have no way match the billion people’s wavelength. To start off with I’m a straight atheist so I tend to have my say in a different way.
It was in my 8th grade, I was maybe 13 that I actually found the amount of relevance festivals had with me. That time around i used to be like everything else, I did most of the things my friends did because it was necessary for me to be in that group. And it was about me making a point what my friends can do, I can too. And actually I was pretty good at it. I burst the maximum number of crackers, flew the maximum kites and the colors and all you could possibly imagine, it was a good feeling. But I knew it won’t last long. Because I was beginning to realize a lot of things and these things were nowhere near to what I wanted.
Eventually one such year came I thought of giving it(the festivals) a skip and it actually took a lot of people by surprise including my parents. And I didn’t miss one thing. That was the time I realized that not celebrating the festivals was not a big deal, it didn’t affect me nor the isolation was bad now it was just another day in the calendar for me.
Since then I haven’t looked back and people around me seem to have gotten use to the fact that I’m not made for celebrating festivals. This is a good thing. But I must also confess I go dancing like a lost head during the last day of Ganesh Chaturthi. That’s more of letting myself out than actually celebrating the festival but yeah it does count.
It’s not that I don’t value the festivals or I hate them. NO not at all.
Millions of people celebrate them, be happy because of them so it definitely has unparalleled importance in their lives and it undoubtedly has immense value, a value which is way beyond me or my thinking or my beliefs.
I do get a good feeling when I see people getting happy; celebrating; being together it’s just that I rather not be in the driver’s seat during these days.
This comes in during the Festival of Lights “Diwali” and I couldn’t get a better chance to make this blog.
Happy Diwali and a prosperous new year to you all; I’ll be watching you and the world celebrate from the back seat. 🙂
– Ravi Sadrani