There is definitely something about the spirit of Christmas that puts you on a launching pedestal of festivity, a lively restlessness in the freezing cold and an upstart emotion that waits earnestly for a new year and a new beginning. Every time, during this time of the year we all look forward with a new hope, a new faith, a new expectation that coming year would be better than the year going by and that we all will emerge a better person with the world becoming a better place to live in. Of course, at the same time, it also remains the time of reflection of the events that happened and affected us during the foregoing year.
Although no year can be called totally good or totally bad as all years offers us mixed events. At one time they takes us to the heights of enjoyment and at other times pulls us down to the dales of sadness. The year 2014 in the same way presented us with a complex diversity of events. While at home, the nation sprung into action with a new verve of energy with the election of Narendra Modi to the post of premiership, on the other hand we saw some of the worst attacks on humanity in the form of brutal killings by the terrorists of Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, the unjustified killing of 2,100 Palestinians and 71 Israelites in the Israel-Hamas conflict and the Russian aggression in Ukraine. At one end, the threat of Ebola virus kept the world in confusion, on the other hand, the floods in Kashmir wreaked havoc in the subcontinent. We all witnessed the tragic death of Phil Hughes on field and at home the recent barbaric killings in Assam. But as we were closing on the year, a shocking incident occurred in our neighborhood in the form of the Peshawar Attacks.
The attacks that shook the entire world, brought before us a stunning example of the fact that a snake given birth and brought up in your backyard to bite your neighbor, nevertheless bites you in the end. The cold blooded Taliban attack on innocent school children was a rude wakeup call for the state of Pakistan, that hitherto were so happily harboring and feeding them, in their “obsessed to the sickening” quest for strategic depth against its alleged “enemies”.
But at the same time it was heartening to see the prompt and massive outpouring of sympathy and commiserative brotherly emotion from none other than the common people of Pakistan’s biggest “antagonist” India. An emotion which was equally matched in its acknowledgment and reception by the common people of Pakistan, was both historic and unexpected. In the wake of crisis, a surprising new trend emerged. Of people of younger generation of both the countries, tired of the burden of history forcefully imposed on them, wanting to move forward in a new direction that politicians have so far failed to achieve. Of course the haters on both the sides did their bit, but their usual trash of propaganda was more than overwhelmed and overshadowed by spirited quest of people wanting to come together and fight the scourge of terrorism.
The gruesome murder of 140 children was not the first of its kind in the history and unfortunately wont be the last either, but it did in its wake had a profound influence of changing of hearts on the both sides of the border. Probably for the first time in the bloodied relationship of the two countries, the common population realized that cutting across barriers, religions and nationalities, they all are but humans, full of errors and flaws, divided by ideologies and opinions but nevertheless bonded eternally by the fragile thread of humanity. May God give strength to this delicate relation.
An year brings with it so many emotions and feelings that as you sit down to write you quickly loose count of words and thoughts. Numerous events that make up an year comes before the eyes, stops and waits to get registered and then vanish as quickly as they come. As time slips, the memory fades and the year goes off taking in its bosom some happy, some sad, some curious and some surprising reflections. At the end of every year the painful and terrible frailty of human condition strikes us in face. Every time, we are awfully reminded that it is we who are subject to time, nature and circumstances and not the other way round. The more we try to push the limits of our human confines, more harshly the Providence cuts us back to our own.
But hope and will has kept alive the race of humans for billions of years and so it will be in the coming year and years to come. Without a slightest sign of fatigue, we again lodge our boats into unknown waters of 2015, keeping our spirits high, learning from our mistakes and wishing too see a new world full of happiness, justice and co-existence, a world that we all desire and have wished sometimes in our dreams. Happy New Year!!