September 3, 2006


Independence is a word that is open to various interpretations. It is also a word that is used by all alike - young or old, male or female. But more often than not, it is used in a sense that seems to make it one's right - something that is there for the taking without needing to be earned first.

Most countries, today, have a day set out as their Independence Day. Every year this day is celebrated with great pomp and show and an increasing number of people take part in these celebrations, specially the youth. Now, there is nothing wrong with that. In fact, it is a great way to make people aware of the great deeds of the heroes of the war against foreign rule. What is a cause of worry is the absolute absence of these nationalist feelings on the other three hundred and sixty four days of the year.

Independence, for any country, was not won in a day. It was a result of years of strife, struggles and sacrifices. So, now, it is our turn to understand that freedom is not just a right, but also a responsibility both to our past and to our future. The pain that our forefathers suffered to attain freedom and pass it on to us should not be in vain and our sons and their sons to come should be given the same, if not a better, world that was handed to us.

To do that, it needs to be understood that today most of the world is free in the traditional sense. There are no foreign governments deciding what is best for the people and under that guise using the resources of a country for their own good. Yet we are not free. We have people from amongst us who are in positions of Power and use this power to further their own ends, instead of fulfilling the duties their office demands of them. But it’s not right to blame them because they are a part of us, one from among us. What, then, is wrong with the society that as soon as one of us gets into a position of Power he forgets what he was or is supposed to do and can think only of himself and his.

The root of the problem is in how the word freedom is interpreted today. Freedom is used as an excuse for behavior that is not acceptable and should not be acceptable. People do a lot of stuff and if questioned reply with a :

“This is a free country and everyone has a right to do what he wants to, without breaking the law.”

Freedom is not the right to do what you please but the authority to be able to decide for yourself what is best for you and what should be done so that this freedom is long lived. A free society, in the words of the great Rabindra Nath Tagore, would be a place : “ Where the heart is without fear and the head is held high…

1 comment:

Hiren said...

In the movie "Maine Gandhi ko nahin maara", they show that Indians remember Gandhi only during his birth and death anniversaries, not otherwise.

Politics has become a business and most join only for personal ends.

As for deiciding what is best for you, this may help- Make your passion your profession

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