“Become like Mukesh Ambani, who owns an empire, built an expensive home…. Katrina Kaif is spending ₹50 lakh to dye her hair correctly…. Need a Denim Jeans like what…. Khan wore to be with your colleagues….” These are the instructions our children and youth receive from the media and at times from elders too.
We provide them with biryani, chicken and sweets 5 times a week, because the sponsor wants it that way (respecting the intention of the donor). A movie whenever there is free time and a free day. Multinational companies walk into our homes in the name of charity to train our children to eat pizzas, burgers with coke. A dress at hand whenever a child loses them, because our stores are full of them. A new ball when there is little problem with a stitch. A computer class every day. We want the best for them when it comes to food, dress, recreation, facilities and infrastructure. Who says you are wrong? I too feel that they deserve it because they have no one but us. We are ready to beg, borrow and work hard to get them these.
“Happy Birthday, you are 18. You are an adult. You need to pass out into the world to begin your journey alone…”. But my boy/girl is used to biryani, chicken and sweets 5 times a week. A movie whenever he/she is free. Pizza huts and burger shops are inviting because I have learnt it that way. The Jeans shops and attractive T-shirts are what he needs to wear to cope with. Mobile phones and laptops can’t be ruled out in this list. The partying world expects them for every salary hike to sprint from roti-sabji toburger-coke and further towards cheese-champagne and happy hour. That is what they call status.
We have provided them the best. But are we teaching them to manage without? We teach them in our homes to excel one better than the other. But are we teaching our children to live in harmony as husband and wife in life? The tempting urban show-biz life style sometimes challenges our children to appear smarter; don’t be sure if they are walking around hungry for days together. Let them learn the story of Dhirubhai Ambani before reading about Mukesh. Are we preparing them for life?
Fr. Thomas Aquinas