Name Sake

April 28, 2010

Name Sake:

One day a joke pops up in my Inbox. It is not uncommon to have a sardarji in a joke. There is high probability that the name of sardarji in a joke will match some one reading this joke. So better stick to one of the two(Santa & Banta) very common names, Santaji. I can assure no parent will ever think of naming their son Santaji or Bantaji and if any few already did, would be either regretting it or would have already changed the name to some thing else.
Anyways, so our very humble Santaji moves to a western country. He is living in a community in which 90% of people are Catholic Christian. Santaji moves to this community just at the beginning of lent period. (For those who do not know what “Lent Period” is, this is period followed to recall the events linked with passion of Lord Jesus Christ. This is a 40 days period resembling to days Lord Jesus Christ spend in the desert. People sacrifice various things during this period. Many of them keep fast or some give up meat.) This community decided to give up meat during lent period. Soon after the start of lent period, nice bbq smell spreads all acorss the community. People track the smell into the back yard of our meat loving Santaji. People explain him the importance of lent period and ask him not to eat meat in the community until the lent period is over. Santaji says OK, but soon after couple of days same nice smell, same event repeats again. This continues for more than couple of times. People gets frustrated with Santaji and ask the priest to do something about Santaji. Priest figuers out the only way to explain Santaji is make him understand the chirstian religion and the priest explains Santanji all the good things he can learn from the Christian religion and suggest him to be a part of Christian religion. Santaji agrees and he goes to the church where priest takes a holy water, sprinkles its on Santaji and says “You was born as Sikh, you lived as Sikh, but now you are a Christian, Amen”. Everyone is happy and so is Santaji and returns home.

On the immediate friday evening, entire community experiences the same nice smell of meat, and they all along with priest reach at the backyard of Santaji. They saw Santaji with a holy water, sprinkling it on the chicken tandoori & lamb kabab saying “You was born as a Chicken, You was born as a Lamb, You lived as a Chicken, You lived as a Lamb, but now You are the Potato and You are the Tomatoo, Amen”.

If you think sarcastically, this is hilarious joke and will make anyone laugh. After thinking a bit on it, few questions raised in my mind. I started thinking more deeply over this incident and something kept bothering me. Why a human being needs a name, a identity ? Is it really initial ? What are the consequences of it ?
First time a soul enters into a human body, this has no name or identity, but it is a pure soul. As soon as it enters the body of human being, the nature of human being separates himself from all other living creatures, as a intellectual soul. This is a start of transition of the pure soul. Then every individual is given a name, which we celebrate as naming ceremony. Eventually this name just do not give us a identity but we also start feeling proud and possessive about our name. As soon as a kid is able to tell his name, no one will be surprise if he tells the name in James Bond style. My name is Bond, James Bond.
We belong to some family, who follows a certain religion. Before understanding what this religion thing is, we have already separated us from people belonging to other religions. Once a friend visits to our house (U.S.) and we go to Indian grocery shopping. I drove directly to the “Patel Store”, we do the shopping. As soon as we are back to my house, he asks are you a Gujarati ? I reply to him with a question, what made you think that ? He says because you shopped at “Patel Store”. I asked, from where usually you do Indian grocery? He says “Sabzi Mandi” (a store chain run by a Punjabi guy). He belongs to  north India. BTW, I am not a Gujarati.

Food habits in your family decides what is good food and what is not. You differentiate people eating something which is strange to you and you start criticizing people with different food habits and kind of separate yourself from them. Can any one imagine walking in front of Chinese people apartment(flat) and not making a comment if they are cooking a seafood dinner ?
Many talented and smart individuals are Doctor by profession or earned the Doctorate degree through PhD or as a honorable degree. If a common person like me, do not address these scholars as Dr., they most likely will be offended. Me not addressing them as a Dr., will take their degree away ? But that degree has come to them along with a huge ego.

We recently moved to new apartment. First call to my parents in India, and guess what are their question?  First question, how is the community? 2nd, any Indian in the community? 3rd, any Marathi family? If someone comes to know that I am from Maharashtra and speaks Marathi, it won’t be a surprise if a person comes with very cheerful smile to me and asks … “tumhi punyachey ka ?”

See the transition the pure soul has gone through and all because of we trying to give us some identity. We have separated our self from others, we have unknowingly formed groups.
My emphasis on sardarji’s name before the joke will now make some sense.

All the clothes or furniture are made out of same thread or wood. But we give them a identity, call them a chair or sofa. This is required in one sense else there will be a huge mess and confusion all over, but they all are eventually a thread or a wood.

Why do we have so much ego, ego on something which is given to you by someone and which will last only till your last breath? What right do we have to blame some other religion? Imagine you taking birth in the family which follows a religion you are blaming right now. Do you think any religion or holy books teaches bad acts? Why do we criticize someone due to their food habits? What if your family follows the same food habit ?

Many of us call our self religious person and do visit a form of Temple. How we worship God? By doing various rituals, by keeping fast, by chanting, by praying, etc … Do you think God needs all these things? Is it making God happy? How many of us really knows what God wants from us? Read the holy books (any religion) and you will get the answer. You will find the same thing in all … its HUMANITY. All the books teaches us the same thing, how to live a life?Not to be Selfish, Not to be proud or egoist of what we have, No blaming or criticizing any religion or food habits or any individual,  Give more to the society and you will get twice what you gave.

Real worship is, be patient and live a life how God want us to live. To know how? understand the message of God through the religious books and not just visiting temples.

Wish me a good luck to clean up all the clutter I have collected in my mind over all these years. So that I can start my life once again from the same pure soul.

Thanks !!!


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