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Gordon's D-Zone Arcive (2006-2014)

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

A True Meaning of Christmas

Today, getting out of bed was quite a struggle with the cold weather and my sore throat which is getting worse. Before Christmas Eve, I wanted to write a few lines on the true meaning of Christmas but as I read over the net for inspiration, I didn't seem to get any.

Honestly, I don't find this season to be that joyous any more. As a child, I might have looked forward to a present or two, but now it's getting hard to ignore that Christmas has lost its significance and it can revive a few painful memories. Like the one time I realized that the charity telethons that aired during this time considered people (or children) like me who had physical impairments as 'less fortunate' people in need of 'charity'. It was a blow to a part of me that still revolts on hearing those words uttered over and over again.

Christmas of 2003 was particularly full of this stuff - especially if you switched on local TV. Even if by then I should have grown in my resilience, such messages of being charitable to disabled people made me feel small and inferior. And it still does drive me nuts.

So I know, to a certain extent, what it feels like to be at the 'receiving end' of these telethons. At least, I know that being talked down in that way does not exactly help build a positive self-image.

Apart from that, I wonder why year after year, people seem to gain a sense of satisfaction with giving money to what they consider 'less fortunate' people without even bothering to ask themselves - why is their a need to collect money? Oftentimes, even the most poor among us are not poor out of irresponsibility or simple misfortune, but due to a society that excludes them (or us) from accessing equal opportunities, better deals in education and generally, leaving society unchanged. And such a status quo also leaves poverty and injustice unchanged.

This is a sad story, but it's true. It doesn't matter if you have all the good intentions in the world. If society or the world fails to give you an opportunity, you're screwed! I don't want to end this post on a negative note. Even if I know that after Christmas and New Year are over, we'll return to reading about war and poverty in the world. Or doing things as we used to do.

On the other hand, a part of me still hopes that there'll be a real change in my life and in that of others. Even a little transformation that helps us realize that we can make a difference not just by using words to pay lip-service to the Christmas spirit but becoming truly involved in creating a better world where everyone - in spite of our differences - truly has a place to shine.