Conversation between Dream and Happiness!

Dream: I don’t want to be hidden! Let me free!

Happiness: If anyone let you free, then I will come!

Dream: Why? What’s the connection between you and me?

Happiness: I am feeling surprised! Do you not really know what the connection between us is?

Dream: To be candid, my answer is ‘no’. I only know that I live in people’s minds. They desire for me…aspire for me….I’m the light which guides them to go ahead in their ways of life. They want to fulfill me.

Happiness: Yes, that’s the point. What’ll be the result if they fulfill their dreams? Do you not think so that they will get happiness?

Dream: Oh! Yeah! I got the point what is the connection between you and me!

Happiness: Yes. People always want to be happy. They can do anything for that. In this way, is there anyone who does not want to be a dreamer? Sometimes a dreamer is a happy person because she or he has a dream which leads her or him to live for something. If anyone has no dream in life, I think she or he is dead.

Dream: Okay. I have a question. What will be the result if anyone is not able to fulfill his or dream? Breaking of dreams is one of the worst parts in human’s life.

Happiness: I agree with you. Sometimes reality makes people to postpone their dreams. They do not want to do that. However, they are compelled to do because of sacrificing for other, or family. There is no scope for them to accomplish their dreams in a fruitful way. I think they become unhappy, but sacrificing for other is a good thing. They can be happy by reminding that I am doing it for the sake of one’s smile which I want to see. They can pacify their pain of breaking their dreams in that way.

Dream: Yes, it is a matter of not to be selfish. It is so important in this world because people are unhappy as they are selfish and self-centered. However, one has to try his or her best to fulfill their dreams and desire. If they don’t, they can give condolence their own selves by telling that ‘Okay, I tried my best to do that, but I never give up my hope of fulfilling my dreams.’

Happiness: Definitely! Thus we both can make this world happier with a smile in everyone’s face!

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Ethnic Discrimination in Nepal

In the autobiography Vasti or Growing up Untouchables in India, by Vasant Moon, he vividly portrays a peculiar discrimination between the Dalits and the Brahmans. Moon has created this literary work with an obvious imagery that intrigue our minds and hearts when we read the novel. Since the similar kinds of trends exist in some societies in Nepal, I could clearly speculate what was going on in the Mahar community, how the life styles of Mahars were, what sort of deprivation and suppression they had to overcome, and how they struggled for their rights and finally achieved them.

In Nepal, there exists an ethnical hierarchical system. The most predominant ethnic groups are Brahmans, Chhetris, and Newars. Among them, Brahman is supposed to be the “most privileged” ethnic group, thereafter Chhetris followed by Newars. Newars are called indigenous groups. In the past, Brahmans were usually involved in religious activities like reciting Vedas, worshipping Gods and Goddesses, whereas Chhetris were mostly engaged in political sectors. On the contrary, Newars were very active in trade and business and were the predominant inhabitants of the capital city, Kathmandu.

Still now, in some remote parts of Nepal, Chettris and Newars are not allowed to worship in the temples where Brahmans perform their religious rituals. They cannot use the same water taps as Brahmans do not eat and drink anything touched by Newars and Chhetris. Besides, inter-ethnic marriage is strictly prohibited. For example, if a Newar girl gets married to a Brahman boy, she gets a standard of a servant in the house and never can practice her own right. In some of the extreme cases, girls may be beaten to death.

It would be very surprising for some people that within Brahmans also, there are “Upadhya Brahman” and “Jaisi Brahman.” “Upadhya Brahmans” are accordingly superior to “Jaisi Brahmans.” If an Upadhya Brahman boy gets married to a Jaisi Brahman girl or vice versa, the caste of the Upadhya Brahman drop to Jaisi Brahman, then they cannot experience the rights like high respects in temples, which they used to practice before. The similar is the case with Chhetris and Brahmans.

I wonder why people discriminate among themselves. We all are humans. We all live under the same roof of the open sky and have red blood. Therefore, I do not get any sense in the trend of discrimination among human beings, thus it should be eradicated.

I, You and They on “Dead My Old Fine Hopes”

Haiku are also known as Hakku and Haiki in Japanese poetic styles.  It is believed that Haiku were first written in the mid 17th century. The ancient Haiku poems included 17 syllables dividing into three lines of five or seven syllables in each poem (Miner 570). In other words, the ancient as well as modern Haiku now consist of 5-5-2-5 syllables comprising four lines poem, and 5-7-5 syllables as three lines format. Miner, the author of Pound, Haiku and the Image, anticipates that Japanese people are fond of flora and fauna; therefore, the four seasons and other natural elements are used as metaphors to express the mood of the poem (570). Furthermore, the persons inexperienced to Japanese language will get a hard time to understand the Haiku, so most of the Haiku are translated in English so that people whole over the world can comprehend the essence of the poems (571).

Today I would like to present my analyses on the Haiku “Dead My Old Fines Hopes” in 1st, 2nd and 3rd persons’ point of views in a particular situation.

I have lost all my aspirations to live happily with my husband. My hope to achieve love from him is not alive like before, and my circumstances abducted me to dream further. Therefore, now all my desires lack interest. However, deep in my heart I know this is not my long term bad luck. As the dried trees bloom again in spring, my hopes and dreams to live happily with my husband will be fresh and I will find my correct way to get through my difficulties.

Daughter! You tried very hard to get good grades. You studied all night, but you have failed. You dreamed of becoming an architect, but gradually your drawing is losing its life. They are no more vivid as before. However, your will shine again in the next term because this is not the end.  As exams are like a season that comes again and again, and your hard work will be recognized which will build your dream once again.

They pray most of the time and wish for peace in their country. Sometimes their wishes do not become a reality; instead the results are drastically opposite. Then they lose all their hope. Their dreams to live with harmony become dry or fade away. Nevertheless, deep inside their heart they know that wars are not for lifetime; it is like a coldness of winter night which will vanish as the summer approaches. Similarly, their dreams for living in serenity will come true with the time.

Miner, Earl. “Pound, Haiku and the Image.” The Hudson Review Vol. 9 (1957): 570-84. Web. 26 May 2011.

 http://www.jstor.org/stable/4621630?seq=1

The Heaven at School

In the second chapter of Growing Up Untouchable in India, Vasant Moon talks about how his teachers’ kind and non-discriminative manner toward him had affected Brahman children to respect him and provided a healthy, equally competitive atmosphere in the school. To describe his teachers, Moon says, “They had compassion for Mahar boys. They never treated me scornfully.”

Before I read this book, I had no idea of different castes in India or its neighboring countries. I knew there was a great gap between the poor and rich, but I didn’t knew some groups of people were titled as untouchables, were considered dirty by birth, hold low worth and value in society’s opinion, and inherited poverty, life in slums, and disgusting jobs from their parents. However, it was interesting for me to learn there were teachers in the author’s personal history that had great impact on him and, beside teaching science, thought their students one of the main important lessons of life: Be a human and respect other humans.

I had a bit similar experience about educational atmosphere dominating the schools I studied in Iran. Despite many hardships Afghan refugees struggled with, there was a positive point about their life in Iran. We, the children, could use the advantage of a free and relatively good-quality education as Iranian citizens did. In the period of time my siblings and I went to school, enrolment in public schools was free for Afghan refugees who had Refugee’s Identification Card.  Although in the society all Iranians didn’t have a kind and respectful attitude toward Afghan refugees, at school everything was fair. I never experienced discrimination because of my nationality, and I really appreciate all my teachers, principles, and management teams of all four schools I attended in Iran for their humanitarian behavior. I got the same education and care as my Iranian classmates did, and I compete freely with them in all the fields such as sience, art, sport and other extra curriculum activities. Whenever I entered a competition as the representative of my school, the teachers and the headmaster completely supported and encouraged me to try and win. They felt proud of me when I won without considering my nationality. In addition, the rules were clear enough that nobody had the right to insult us or misbehave with us at school because of our nationality.

The author’s experience prove the importance of education and the significant effect of teachers’ attitudes and ideologies on shaping students’ characters and socializing them as decent citizens of tomorrow. I hope one they, all the bitter darkness that cause pain, discrimination, and violation of rights in our societies would be eradicated with the brightness of education.

Who Is Happy and When?

            Happiness can be defined in many ways.  Generally, it is the feeling that we get when we are satisfied and when our minds are in peace.  We can also be happy when we are not disappointed, worried, irritated or when we do not have any other negative feelings like that. 

            Being happy depends on the individual and the situation.  Therefore, it varies according to person to person.  For example, when I planned to come to AUW, one of my friends asked me if I could manage being in the hostel – out of parents – for a long time, a year or two, continuously.  Of course, this is difficult to me, yet her question is reasonable because I went to see my parents once in a fort night in spite of the fact that my boarding house was located just a small distance from my house.   Of course I enjoy being in hostel and with friends and I enjoy that well.  However I am not happy when I don’t get to see my parents and siblings.  So I sometimes went home when I felt like going home.  Moreover, I used to talk to my parents all most daily when I was in the hostel.  All these reasons made my friend ask me that question.  I replied that I would maximum try to be happy, enjoy well and learn more about the other cultures and etc.  On the other hand, there was a girl in my hostel, who was not even willing to go home even for long vacations!  Why was that? Every one wondered.  Some days later we got to know that she was not happy with her parents and her parents were not happy keeping her stay at home, and that is the reason behind why she had came to the hostel.

            Therefore being happy or not depends on us, the way we look and things.  For example, some optimistic people will really be happy when they see others being happy. However, some pessimistic peoples will surely not feel happy, and perhaps will be annoyed, when they see others being happy, when they see others improving in business and when they see others being healthy and wealthy.

            Therefore, being happy is totally depended on how we think of other things and try to cope even with bad situations.  Therefore, let us all try to make our lives happy and enjoy the life.

Dreams, Happiness and Health

        The definition of happiness differs from one person to other. The thing that makes me happy may not make others happy. It depends on ones taste.  For me, accomplishing my tasks , preparing myself  for  my goal, and dedicating myself for my parents brings me happiness. Actually, I believe the other name of happiness is satisfaction. I have seen lots of people who have everything including money, higher position in the society and reputation, but still they are not happy. I think, the only reason for not being happy is their dissatisfaction. Correspondingly, dreams are also varies from person to person. Planning for my future is my dream.

       I think that Dreams and happiness are closely related to each other. In the poem “Dreams”, Langstone Hughes compared life and dream with a bird and its wings respectively. When bird has wings it can fly, but when it does not have it can’t. Similarly, dreams works as winks in human life. Dream motivates human to move forward to fulfill his goals. Without dreams no changes come in their life. People lose their interest to live and lead their life without any excitement. On the other hand, by fulfilling their dreams people acquire satisfaction and happiness.

         His other poem clarifies this idea more clearly. In the poem “Dream Deferred” the poet shows the consequences of ignoring dreams. According to this poem, when one ignores his dreams for a long time, they became dry. They no longer remain fresh; in other words, they lose liveliness. As time goes dreams become burden in their life. At any time, they forfeit from their dreams and by compromising with their life, they try to be happy. However, dreams never die. They only hide somewhere in their hearts.

          Happiness is also interconnected with health. There is an old saying that “A healthy mind lives in a healthy body”.  Scientifically, it is proved that a happy person can have a good health. According thing the article “Health and Happiness”, laughing loudly that brings tear is good for heart (2). That article also mentioned that smiling alleviates the pressure upon human mind and makes them feel easy (6).

           Lastly, it is clear that how dreams, happiness and health are indispensible element in our life. Therefore, don’t let your dreams go because if you have dreams you will learn to live.

Untouchables are More Lucky than General People

It seems that untouchables have very miserable conditions. They don’t have any right to touch the belongings of upper class people. If they touch anything, it becomes impure. It was true before 21st century. However, in the modern India, people’s ideas are changing. Upper caste people don’t have any problem to touch lower class people, who are also known as schedule caste or untouchables in our state.

Now, on the contrary, many people want to be in lower caste to get the facilities that the government is provided only to them. Some people also try to make a fake caste certificate of schedule cast or schedule tribe. Today, we can see that many untouchable people are making better money than Brahmans.

Read the folowing fictitious autobiography of a modern untouchable woman of India. After reading it, it will clear that how privileged they are.

I am very lucky that I am an untouchable girl. As my caste is schedule caste (SC), I got many privileges since birth. When I was a child, I got free immunizing injection for different diseases. Moreover, in the school, I got free education with mid-day meal. As that was governmental school, teachers were not sincere enough. Still, I achieved good marks in the 10th standard due to my perseverance. Then, I had an economic problem to continue my higher education. My parents were very poor, so they couldn’t able to give money for my education. Therefore, some older people advised me to get married. However, my parents want me to continue my studies, so they told me to appear in an exam which provides full scholarship for education. Fortunately, I was able to get admission in the city college by the help of the scholarship, which was only for SC students. After completing my intermediate in the city college, I bought a form of All India Engineering Entrance Exam, which was not much costly for schedule caste students. After that I passed the exam in the SC reservation quota in which 30 % seats are reserved for schedule cast and schedule tribe students. One of my friends’ marks is more than mine, but she did not get admission because she was in general category. After completing my four years engineering studies, I became an engineer. Then, I got married with a wealthy person. Now, I am living a happy and prosperous life. This is possible because of the cast through which I got lots of facilities.

My Postponed Dream

While reading the poem, “My Family” by Garrison Keillor, I was deeply touched by the line, “Of dreams postponed and finally lost”. I read this line aloud time and again to understand the underlying pain in this line. I could picture an old man lamenting upon his decision in the past to set aside his dream and settle down before fulfilling his dream. Once we choose to push back our dreams, we can hardly get back to it in the future and often times it is lost. This is similar to the lost dream of John, the old man, in the poem.

While talking about postponed dreams, I remember the time right after my grade ten. I had around three months break before I could go to a higher secondary school. I thought about preserving all the memories of my grandmother, who used to share about her life before I was born. I thought of writing a biography about her, and I used to spend a lot of time listening to her past life. For me, her stories were very unique and I could clearly see the places, pictures, and events in front of my eyes as she used to describe them to me. So one day, I sat down to begin writing about her. I tore many pages and spent five whole hours trying to begin writing about her. Today, I regret for what I did after writing the first page spending five hours on it. I just pushed my notebook aside and thought I would continue it later. Time went on. I never opened the notebook or tried to continue writing. Now, I have forgotten many details of the stories she told me then. In addition, she is ninety-six year old and she has hard time remembering her past life. Even if she remembers, she mixes up one with the other. Thus, I thought that the poet was indirectly referring to me in that very line telling about postponed dreams.

However, after reading the poem, “A Dream Deferred” by Langston Hughes, a spark of enlightenment ran inside me. I realized that our unfulfilled dreams are stored in our subconscious and they always seek outlet. This also alarmed me not to repress my dream for a longer period of time as it may explode someday. Thus, I plan to fulfill my dream that I had postponed many years back.

Growing Up Untouchable in India

In the chapters “Fearless” and “Callousness and Clouds” of the novel Growing Up Untouchable in India, gender discrimination was implied. Indeed, as a boy, Vasant Moon was sent to school and oriented to achieve valuable goals such as a saheb (11). He was also the recipient of thorough care and attention. In contrast, his mother possessed nothing for herself. For instance, the decision to marry lay in her father’s hand, and all her father’s properties also lay in her brother’s hand, Laxman. The definition of the inequality between genders seemed to absorb so deeply in Moon’s community that many girls didn’t have chances to go to school because they were anticipated being wives. For example, at the age of 16, his mother was considered to be old and somehow a leftover, which would be rotten unless it was used soon. Therefore, her father, without taking into account of his daughter’s real happiness, approved of her marriage with an affluent drunkard. Besides, like other girls, his mother was raised as a beautiful flower in a garden; indeed, she said no curses or did no household chores. However, after that, she was sold for a stranger and considered as a non-living object. In fact, everyday, his husband, Waman, would savor his diversion by beating her; moreover, he was so indifferent to her cries and insists that he sustained forcing her children to drink alcohol. What a ruthless husband and father!

Furthermore, the two chapters didn’t describe Moon’s attitude towards his father. Did he awe him? Did he dislike him? Or was he afraid of him? What did he think when witnessing her father beating his miserable mother? What did he think when being forced to drink alcohol? I think that this curiosity might be satisfied according a scene in the novel: Moon and his sister went out to beg (22). His love to his mother was infinite, so he could sacrifice his reputation and shame to reduce his mother’s pressure. What a good son! Therefore, how could he express his animosity towards a person who exploited his beloved mother while that person was his father?

Clarification

                 Reading Vesant Moon’s autibiography “Growing Up Untouchable in India”, my classmates became confused and most of them asked about my religion “Hinduism”. Most of them asked me why I support this religion which creates inequality among people. They are surprised, how gods can teach people not to touch someone who are poor and work in lower professions? All these questions made me upset, and I think, it is high time to make clear all the confusions. Personally, I also never thought before about this bad practice of my religion, but one of my friends has made the fact clear to me. I want to discuss this briefly here.               

                You know that the Hinduism is the most ancient religion among all the religions. The Hindus worship many gods and goddesses of various powers, and this practice has been going on from the very beginning of the creation. In fact, it is true that the Hinduism follows only one god Lord “Krishna” of all powers jointly. There are many mythologies of Hinduism named “Ramayana” and “Mahayvarat” which are written by some people from different religious beliefs actually, these are not our main religious messages from gods. The mention of caste system is found only in those mythologies. The four casts of my religion are Brahmans, Khatrio, Baisha, and Shudro. The Brahmans are highly respected, and provided all facilities. The lowest cast is “Shudro” who are considered untouchables. They have to live in extreme poverty and their professions are fishing, carrying dead bodies, scavanture, stitching shoes, cleaning the garbage. Most of the Hindus start discriminating from this mythological belief which are not actually true, and are not based on the principle of the god.

                The only holy book of the Hindus is “Srimadvagabad Gita” which is received directly from the god, and written by Lord “Krishna”. In that holy book, there is no mention of untouchability, and inequality is totally absent there. The massage of our god is to keep away people from conflicts, and everyone should have to be considered equal to make the world peaceful. Our god never supports inequality.

                Our god is not biased, but people are biased. A group of people creates this discrimination for their self –advantages; they dominate and use these lower caste people for their own purposes, and want to persuade other people not to touch them which create inequality in the society.

                It is a matter of sorrow that this discrimination is supported by educated people, and still now, these superstitions are alive in our Hinduism. I am surprised why any Hindu never researched about this truth that the principles of Hinduism never support caste system.  

                To sum up, it is obvious that people are responsible for this kind of discrimination, not the god.