Sunset boulevard | We must celebrate life, not death | punjab$regional-takes | Hindustan Times
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Sunset boulevard | We must celebrate life, not death

Though the ideas of life and death are poles apart, yet these must co-exist according to the laws of nature. Most important thing of all is life and planning it right by assembling good thoughts, ideas and concepts for living it fully is the only priority one should have; understanding what creates a great life, the only wisdom.

punjab Updated: Apr 16, 2017 12:11 IST
Col DS Cheema (retd)
(HT Representative Image)

Though the ideas of life and death are poles apart, yet these must co-exist according to the laws of nature. Most important thing of all is life and planning it right by assembling good thoughts, ideas and concepts for living it fully is the only priority one should have; understanding what creates a great life, the only wisdom. Having realised the frailty of human species, wise men of all ages have always maintained that we are fortunate to have received this unique and wonderful gift and must make full use of this opportunity to make a sense of it.

A perfect life is a theoretical concept; yet it is still worth celebrating with all its imperfections. Religion and science, faith and argument, nature and fate, inevitable twins of pleasure and pain etc represent different forms of our understanding of nature which is the sources of life. We do things in a particular manner because of many factors including our personality traits and the environment in which we operate but one important consideration is the misconception that there is enough time to do what we want to do with our lives. Suppose you are told that you have only so much time to live (which many unfortunate people with terminal diseases learn from the doctor). Would you do routine things differently? I believe you would chalk out a time-bound plan to make the most of the limited and as such very precious time. But if you are asked ‘how’ you will do it, you will not be very clear.

Learning the ‘how’ is the mystery we all keep exploring throughout our life spans. But, one thing is certain, we must not postpone our best life; we must not wait till we are dying to really start living. If you love life, in all likelihood it will love you back even more. We must forgive ourselves for our past failures, continue hoping that our best is yet to come and keep working to get that. Seek the company of young and spirited people and let the courage of harnessing adversity never fade.

Immortality is an absurd idea and so is the celebration of anyone’s death. Is it possible for those who loved a person and shared a very close personal bond with him/her to suddenly snap that bond just because the person said goodbye to the world after a particular number of years? Children know their parents without the human failings and respect and look up to them, celebrating their birthdays and marriage anniversaries etc and wish them well. At the time when the angle of death visited them, perhaps they were getting ready to learn to live a good life; unfortunately, the time ran out before they knew it. Perhaps, the person sent for by the Creator was in the process of acknowledging all of himself- the good, the bad and even the ugly but life did not give him a chance to do so. Perhaps, the person was trying to grasp the reality that he had to die one day so that he could finally start to really live. Should the living ones not see such persons off gracefully to the grave yard? I am a great admirer of Khushwant Singh, but I, for once, disagree when he suggests that death of those above 70 years should be celebrated. What is there to celebrate? Pain, suffering and misery?

Albert Hubbard was of the view that every person is a fool for at least five minutes in a day and wisdom demands that one should work towards not letting this period expand. Celebration of life when one is not in the ‘zone of foolishness’ period is the best a person can do to leap into the quality of life one deserves.