I know you’d be wondering: Why ‘backward’ Humra is talking of love when the Valentine’s Day is weeks ahead! Well, I’m provoked enough to write on love, as it comes in the shadow of a news report of a young adult killing herself in the Capital, because her parents had throttled the strains of love in her life.
Ironical as it may sound, in the maddening craze for the upcoming Valentine’s Day, here’s this budding affair getting ruthlessly trampled by parents themselves.
Why are parents crushing love in the harshest possible ways? Why don’t they accept the fact that young adults have their very own hearts well tucked at one end of their fragile chests? Why don’t they realise that for many amongst us emotional wants could be more crucial than, say, daily bread ? Why don’t we introduce ‘Love’ as a subject in one of the outreach programmes for parents, because emotions related to love seem little understood by all those controlling powers in the interiors of our homes ?
All that hue and cry that parents throttle babies before or just after birth ought to take a backseat , as parents are killing the very wants of their adult children…and with that turning into killers of children! Yet these killings more often than not get pushed under the carpet in many middle-class and upper-class families.
Those children left alive are forced into arranged marriages, which seems nothing short of an ‘arrangement’ coming in the garb of marriage. Great if the bandobast of the arranged marriages works out, but if it doesn’t then there’s no one out there to rescue you of its complicated multi-layered folds.
Now for the double whammy. There can nothing more traumatic than to be sitting in a hopeless marriage with a nasty husband hovering around. Adding to the trauma, no one from the family or clan coming to your rescue.
Why do not we introduce romantic poetry and prose as part of the syllabi at the high school level? Why don’t we talk about love in all its colours and glory
These are no fairy tales, but ground realities of today, with a heap of ironies around. After all, the same mass of flesh cum bones that the parents manage to produce amidst painful pangs is frequently treated with the callousness and disdain of the severest sorts. As if they ‘own’ their offspring and that they can control them to such an extent that there would come about a day when they’re told whom they should marry and live with and continue doing so despite the shadow of torture inflicted on a daily basis.
There is something disgusting as to how a several parents bundle off their adult children into marriages. Have you read those obnoxious matrimonial advertisements which highlight the characters to be ‘sold off’ in a marriage — markets are displayed to such an extent that they seem to be a herd of cattle to be auctioned? And after those torturous seeing-viewing-approval sessions, the fact is that more and more marriages are turning sour. Discorces have gone a higher graph. And similarly higher are the unhappy married lot who do not have the required nerves or resources to get out of those beemaru marriages!
Perhaps, some level of remedy from this mess lies in the basic crux: Don’t kill love. If one is blessed enough to find love clasp it with all you have got all year long, but the sad reality is that only a few manage to find love and the sadder aspect is that the first love — which carries with it innocence and raw passion — is invariably crushed by the parents.
Thereafter, after the first love is crushed, the following so called love affairs are compromises if not contrived little affairs along a heap of manifold majbooris !
That first love, where the two pairs of eyes meet and mate from the depths of the heart and from within the folds of the very soul, is the ultimate one! There are little considerations of caste and creed and no emphasis on wants — financial or sexual. Simply speaking, it is an enormous heap of emotions interplaying with an array of feelings. Yet, the emoptions are trampled upon, killed almost instantly or rather too systematically.
Why do parents turn so ruthless and barbaric? Why is love looked upon as some sort of a devilish thing? After all, it is not to be confused with lust or sexual perversions. To quote this particular line from Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s novel, Memories of my Melancholy Whores, ‘Sex is the consolation one has for not finding enough love is drilled into heads it could make a considerable difference at the end’ . Make the young read and re-read this line. And if they grasp the beautiful sentiment carried in those words , there could be a dip in the horrifying cases of rapes and molestations and whatever other perversions taking place day after day. Also, why don’t we begin to hold academic lectures on something as beautifully fragile as ‘love’?
Why don’t we include romantic poetry and prose as part of the syllabi at the high school level? Why don’t we talk about love with all its splendid hues and glory …and also of our first love? I would again repeat, don’t let go of your first love. Its beautiful and so very innocent.Your first love alone reigns supreme, those memories clasping you forever…in all those hours of loneliness and sorrow. Also, if you let go of your first love, there is no guarantee of finding love ever again in your life. My first love was sabotaged when I was 16. I was much too naïve and more of a simpleton to go rebelling and with that, lost it forever . And since then I haven’t been able to find love again. This, when I’m 60 now!
The heart is mysteriously different from the other organs in our bodies. The heart has its own ways. Nobody can foretell ‘who’ and ‘why’ and ‘when’ it gets attracted to. It hates compulsions and detests barriers coming in way. It craves for azaadi (independence)! Let it wander about freely, without curbs in its ways.
Leaving you with this verse of Iqbal, which seems nothing short of a plea along the strain that do consider leaving the heart to wander around …
Acchha hai dil ke saath paasbaan-e-aql/ lekin kabhi kabhi isey tanha bhi chor de (Its good that the heart can be accompanied by the guise of reason /But every once in a while it must be left on its own too.’