I am returning home back in the village after a year. I see a neighbor. Our eyes meet. But I tend to ignore him, unintentionally though.
My introverted nature freezes my body, my morality and my urge. My shyness stops me from touching his feet or greeting him with “Namaste”, even though I try my best to be humble with him.
My friends and brothers are very frank in this case. They greet even a passerby with a smile.
“Hariom's elder son has become egoistic after he got featured in newspapers!” My neighbors would backbite me.
I don't complain. They are right. I should behave cultured. I am raised that way after all.
But my introversion, ah —
Sometimes, it comes out as a boon for me, like it did that day.
I was casually taking a stroll in the complex of the Shiv Mandir, to ease out my frustration.
A voice, in a calm and balanced tone, called out my name.
I veered and joined Sadhu Baba (Saint of the Shiv Mandir) in a discussion he was having with some intellectual heads of the village committee.
“Beta, young people like you are the future of our nation. I personally have great faith in your words and actions. You chose a path less travelled. But I am concerned for the rest of our youths. They are on the wrong track. They are becoming plastic Hindus after blindly following a staunch ideology. Our politicians have weaponized Sanatan Dharma that's causing a great deal of damage to its originality. At this point of time, we badly need the concept of Gurukul to be revived so that we could teach our children what exactly is Hinduism, our culture, rites, rightful behavior and importance of mental health. If that's possible for you, can you please write something on this matter? And talk to MP as well to seek support. I would be forever indebted to you.” He told me, with a trust reflecting in his eyes.
I am neither an authority, nor a bureaucrat. Neither rich nor powerful. Just a mediocre author, that too not even a bestseller.
Yet his trust upon me and my power of words — proves it all. Yes, the pen is always stronger than the sword.
~ Pravin Gupta