Every blade in the field,
Every leaf in the forest,
Lays down its life in its season,
As beautifully as it was taken up
– Henry David Thoreau
Great men and women, seers, lords, scholars and Kings have wasted their lives away in finding the answer to this simple question of DEATH. For most of us its a topic of fear, of sentiments so strong that we wish to turn away from it even in talk. For some its an idea that summarizes the need of philosophy, or perhaps defines the need for it. Whatever beast, creature, man, soul or angel it may be, it surely is the most authoritative word that prevails in the world.
Few days ago, we lost a very dear member of our family. He was probably too early to die for his age, or perhaps wasn’t. It feels a lot of pain when someone so dear, so special, so paternal goes away in a swish of time’s wand. Isn’t it? It does. Tears come down your eyes the instant you remember them. I think tears come when we specially think about exceptionally good memories or qualities about that person. How they made us feel? How they treated us? How we looked up at them? How their personality was? All these things. Perhaps we may not cry, but remember. Make an epitaph in our hearts itself, to immortalize them or their qualities in us for the rest of our lives.
Jayantibhai Radhanpura (Bhaiji), my grandfather’s elder brother, was one such person. He perhaps lived his share of struggles, hard work, pain in his life. But, till the last few days till he was able, he lived a life so cherished, so loved by him that the very thought of it inspires me. He loved life so much! His day would start at 5 am and would pass through a rigidly maintained schedule that existed since decades, with Temple, School, Cinema, Social Work, Jewelry Showroom in his curricula. It would not be right to glorify him in a posthumous note, but he did justify the essence of life, if not the other saintly teachings. He was a reformist. A person of ideals, of strength, a soft core but a hard shell.
As i helped the family, in his last rites, i thought, that he did almost all he desired in his life. People may have their opinions about his nature, and perhaps they may be right to their rights, but he indeed taught me and all those who loved him, the importance and value of WILL POWER. As a saint was giving out a eulogy, it seemed only fair not to listen it and compare every loss of dear one to the act of remembering GOD or following a GURU. I was instead smiling while many was sad, perhaps it was inappropriate, but I was smiling on watching a 2-year-old kid playing about with his mother’s dull colored sari, with his toy, spelling syllables of joy, of excitement. And I had an epiphany that perhaps, that’s what Bhaiji would have liked.. For all to smile on remembering him.
Well, Death.. It remains a mystery for me, a distant idea that I wish to evade presently, only to smile at it and pass on. But I liked this somewhere written on it…
“We shall be in the midst of some great work, when the tools shall drop from our relaxing fingers, and we shall work no more; we shall be planning some mighty project — house, business, society, book — when in one shattering moment all our thoughts shall perish. Life shall seem strong in us when we shall find that it is done. . . ”
and I added,
Till then lets LIVE.