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Inspiring Women’s Day Message – By Mahatria

Posted by Infinitheism Admin on March 7th, 2014 and filed under Featured, Mahatria Says

Tear off the social checklist.  Expand the definition of your life and stand above the crowd.

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It is better to earn a bad name and live a good life, than to earn a good name and live a bad life.

Somehow, from the beginning, reputation has been put above character in most of your minds.  Character is ‘who you are’ and reputation is ‘what the world thinks of you’.  You have been, time and again, asked to ensure that you earn a good name at school, a good name with your teachers, a good name in your neighbourhood, a good name with your relatives – a good name here, a good name there, a good name everywhere and every time.  Such is the focus on earning a good name that the very first thought for most of you is – ‘what will the world think of me if I do this or don’t do it’, and not ‘what will I become or not become by doing this or not doing it’.  Most of you are ‘other people conscious’.  Your life is not lived through your spectacles, but through others’ spectacles.  ‘How should the world see me?’ – the answer to this question defines the context of your life.  Sometimes, it isn’t necessarily about earning a good name for yourself, but about earning a good name for your family, for your parents – what will the society say if I do this or don’t do it?  In the entire process, most of you become puppets in the hands of the public.  You do things not because you want to do them, not because you are convinced about them, not even because you think they are right, but because they give you scope for enhancing your reputation.  The potential possibility of a good name is very high.  More than your desire for a good name, it is the fear of earning a bad name that drives most of your lives.

Man has been turned against himself by making him ‘other people conscious’.  His main focus is no longer on ‘who he is’ or ‘who he wishes to be’, but on earning ‘goodwill points’ by appearing to be good in the eyes of the world.  Rather than being good, it has become imperative to appear good.  Something within me cries…  asserted.

When you define, you confine.  The average man has been given a definition to live up to.  And sure enough, he has confined himself to this social definition.  A definition for ‘man’, a definition for ‘woman’, a definition for ‘son’, one for ‘daughter’ and another for ‘daughter-in-law’, one for ‘North Indians’ and another for ‘South Indians’, one for ‘Brahmins’ and another for ‘Marwaris’… definitions and more definitions.

Each one of you has been given a social checklist and you are expected to strictly adhere to this checklist.  Your grandparents did, your parents did, so why would you rebel against it – this is the social expectation.  Each of you has been parented to succumb to this social expectation.  Even the slightest deviation from this social checklist will create a social hullabaloo.  You will be branded selfish for your attempt to live beyond this social checklist.  You will become a social outcast for living beyond the confines of your social definition.

Hey Girls, you are born in a culture where it is assumed that women are born for one singular purpose and that is to get married and be the backbone of the family.  It’s not about you living a life beyond tears, but about living to see others smile.  There’s nothing wrong in being expected to live a life that brings a smile to others, but why isn’t there much respect for your tears?  You have to lift yourself by yourself.  Freedom is not given; it is taken.  You live only once as you, and if you miss this chance you will never have another opportunity to be yourself.  Please, please do not miss yourself.  Do not miss this change.  Tear off the social checklist.  Rise above the confines of social definition.  Pathfinders are path breakers.  Expand the definition of your life.  Stand above the crowd.  Live above the average man.  Inspire future generations by the way you live your life.  Let your life be a message to the next generation.  Wake up!

I am not advocating being a rebel without a cause.  I am not talking about being irresponsible with an ‘I don’t care’ attitude.  I am not talking about being apathetic to the feelings and emotions of one’s family.  I am not talking about tearing off a social checklist and in turn living a characterless life.  I am not talking about a ‘me, mine and myself’ – an absolutely selfish – life.

Even the epitome of compassion, Lord Mahavira, professed – ‘Live and let live’, not ‘Let live and live’.  After all, if you yourself don’t know how to live, then how are you going to let others live?  The messiah of love, Jesus Christ, preached – ‘Love thy neighbour as you love thyself’.  Even he put you ahead of your neighbour.  Why?  After all, if you don’t know how to love yourself, then how will you love your neighbour?  How can a beggar help others to become rich?  Which slave can liberate others?  How can you give to this world something that you haven’t first gifted to yourself?  As long as you are striving for the larger good, striving for personal good doesn’t make you selfish.  You have the right to your fight in this planet.  This earth is yours as well.  This life is yours too.  Use it.  Don’t abuse it.

If you do 100 things in life, do 80 things for the sake of the world, for the sake of the happiness of your family, for the sake of your parents’ gratification, for the sake of social fulfilment and for the sake of your environment.  Do at least 20 things in life for your own sake.  Put all the aspects of your life that are of consequence, that can have an effect on your life, into this 20 – like the education you want to pursue, the career you are passionate about, the marriage you wish to settle into, the city you choose to live in.  In all these consequential aspects of life, don’t give in to the confines of social definition.  Write your own definition of life.  Create your own checklist.  Don’t live by a social script.  Write your own script.  In the other 80 inconsequential aspects of life, go with the world, by the world.  If even after you do 80 things for the sake of the world and only 20 things for your own sake, the world still calls you selfish – so be it.  It appears that you live in an unreasonable world.  If in spite of your doing 80 things for them they are still not satisfied, then nothing is anyhow going to satisfy them.  At least, satisfy yourself by doing those 20 things on your terms.

It is better to earn a bad name and live a good life, than to earn a good name and live a bad life.

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