Nov 7, 2009

We and our approach to our religion

I recently had two instances which set me thinking... 1) A community gathering in Dubai for Diwali and 2) A note by Jayant, as to why we go to the Temple.

The Community gathering got me thinking on the speeech by a senior member about the accomplishments of the Bhatia's and how we struggled from our Thatta days, and how the older generations made sacrifices and so on.. Very interesting hearing, however information that a lot of us know about. It is necessary I realize that we have to understand our roots, where we came from, where we are today and where we will be in the next generation.

That was not what got me thinking. What go me thinking was a comment that the people of today's generation are not seen in temples. The Youth are not doing the same that their parents and forefathers did? We do not see that many of our community members as we see from other communities.

Are we really not? As I think in retrospect and link this to Jayant's note, I have one question.... What have we done as a community to preach our religion and our belief in Hinduism to our children? What have our elders done to instill the importance of going to the temple on a regular basis? Why are we so scared to talk freely about our religion and why are our elders not willing to listen to a good debate?

 I may be wrong here, but I believe that it is as much the responsibility of our elders to enforce this into the younger generation so as to have this as part of our routine. Coming to the Temple these days is not for a meeting with God, but more as a chore should be done. I have wondered often.. Why do we see the South Indians coming every week? Why do we see the gurudwaras and the masjids being frequented by their respective communities, week after week. Are we ashamed to go to our place of worship? Or is it simply that we have no time? Or simply cannot make it?

There would be innumerable reasons on this, however the fact remains that we have ourselves to blame, be it the elders, be it the youngsters, or the new generations. It has to be a collective effort spanning across all generations and all have to contribute. The elders need to organize events where the youth come together and meet, have open discussion, debates and the key features on events (more on this on the next post). We as a community that is controlled and dominated by a few select group of houses, need to come out of or cliched viewes and have to learn to change. We need to be more aggressive and open minded to accept change as it comes.

If the change comes with the support of the elders, the community benefits.. If through the youngsters, it may start a revolution.. The worry is if it does not.. Like the Parsis, we too are headed for extinction.