By Vijay Darda
We all begin the festival of light Deepavali that symbolises the victory of light over darkness. What is the real message of this festival? If you turn the pages of mythological texts, you will find many tales about Dhanteras festival, but the most significant is the story of Dhanwantari, one of the 14 gems that came out of the sea churning. He came out with the urn of nectar. Dhanwantari is considered as Vishnu’s incarnation and he is considered a doctor of the Gods. He started the tradition of Ayurveda. That’s why Dhanwantari Jayanti is also celebrated on this day.
So it directly means that the most important message of Dhanteras is that we keep good health, keep our surroundings clean and healthy. Our elders have said that ‘first happiness is being healthy, and second happiness is having money at home’. That is, if you are healthy then you are happy. The value of money is only after health. But the reality of the present time is different. Money has assumed the topmost position while health has slid to the bottom. I was just reading a health report a few days ago. The report made me feel worried. You will be surprised to know that more than 50 per cent of the young women in India are not completely healthy. They suffer from anemia i.e. lack of blood. Just imagine that when the mother is not healthy, how can we imagine the next generation to be healthy?
Smoking and other intoxicants have taken the form of fashion among the youths. The youths are becoming weak and apathetic. Owing to outdoor eating habit, a large section has fallen prey to obesity. Physical activity has almost come to an end. Earlier there used to be a gym in every lane and street. Now the gymnasiums have disappeared. The playgrounds have vanished. Games for children have now become mostly computer games. What I mean to say is that the country’s leadership is least worried about youth’s health. If the youth of the country is not healthy then how will the country become healthy? It is very important for the country to be healthy to move along the path of development. Only when you are healthy will you be able to work hard to get wealth and win glory! Hard work is necessary in order to earn something in life, but competition should not be at the cost of your health! So make a resolve this Dhanteras to improve your health and motivate your next generation to stay healthy.
In our culture, good values, good education, generosity and philanthropy have also been considered as virtues of a great person. Such people find respect in society i.e., all these qualities are wealth for us. Good education helps us to collect material resources. When we are liberal and show benevolence, more and more people join us. If a group of good people is with you then this is not less than any money. Life gets better. One of the greatest things is satisfaction! Unfortunately, the quality of satisfaction is becoming rare. There is a race to get ahead of each other. I respect the competition. This quality should also be in all but the competition should not be blind and uncontrollable. There should also be a sense of satisfaction.
If the person has a sense of satisfaction then it will help him to be happy. Just a few days back I was reading the World Happiness Report 2018 of the Sustainable Development Solutions Network. Do you know that India is ranked 133th among 156 countries in terms of happiness? Compared with last year’s report, it has been reported that we have gone down 11 points. Surprisingly, Pakistan, China and Sri Lanka are ahead of us and the prosperity of these countries has improved. Let me inform you that Norway was considered to be the happiest country and ranked first in the world, but now this place has been taken by the little country called Finland. We should strive with full strength for attaining this kind of prosperity. At the personal level, we should try to create an environment around us which can speed up development, but there should also be space for humanity. When we become better human beings, we will be able to fight darkness and we will be able to spread light.
Vijay Darda has been the chief visionary and driving force behind Lokmat, a leading multi-platform media company. He is a recipient of several prestigious awards including the Feroze Gandhi Memorial Award for excellence in journalism in 1990-91.
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