What’s the entire fuss about travel and why should Indians in particular need to travel?
I could have gone more specific about why should Indian women travel, but before I do that, it’s only fair that we realize why it’s crucial for Indians as a whole to travel. Indians are a whole different species from the rest of the world. We are mostly geeks with specks (though cooler members are on a rise), dedicated, focused and loyal kinds. While all these are favorable traits to any second person, but these are not favorable for the making of open minded Indian. We Indians in the process of achieving perfection through books and living life by the rules passed on to us by our late generations, miss out on many smaller things worth many memories and restrict our own worldly evolution. Below I have listed how:
- Respect and restraint: We, since our childhood are told to be obedient to the elders, at school, to the teachers. In the process, when we grow up even a slightest act to practice your own will against parents, elders, and bosses is doubted and in many a cases considered a rebellion. Our actions are considered so extreme that the people on the other side take it on their ego to prove us wrong. Parents shun our varied different than usual actions, love marriages are still considered an act of rebellion, bosses withheld our promotion and appraisals, society calls us weird. Not so much for the younger generation but for our older peeps, it’s crucial that they travel to see different cultures and countries, to see how differently the things function and that there can be more than one (ideal) ways to live a fulfilling and wholesome life.
- Best friends and storytelling: Books have been our best friends, if not they have been made forced friends that we are insisted to hang out with. I remember kids exchanging comics, Asterix, Chacha Chaudhary and the sorts but I could never get down to reading. Not much of a reader, I found stories not in the reading but in witnessing them relived via the narratives at the very place where the school history chapters were created.
If we are to teach our kids about life and prepare them for the bright future, than what a better way than to let them learn in the real environment, amidst the real world? Forcing them to follow a pattern of tests and exams, asking them to be disciplined, does train them to act in an expected manner for the mass evil of today called corporates, but snatches away from them the sense of wonder and curiosity. Simply put, it kills their potential to create marvels.
If books are for learning than a mile traveled teaches you much more in a more interesting manner than a thick book ever can.
- Cocoon and comfort: Most of us are passionate about our religions, the place we stay in, our hometowns, our homes and the way we grow up. We are so protected and comfortable in our four walls that more than often we deny the existence of anything worthwhile outside of it. And if by chance we do make an effort to peep outside the encircled comfort zone, we very obliviously label it as “Wrong”. Live-in couples, LGBT, citizens against the government, women wearing hot pants in India, kissing in public, drinking/smoking in front of parents, the list goes on. How do we decide what’s right and what’s not. Who and when did we become the custodian of somebody else’s life? And in the garb of a custodian, when did we become controllers? Till we don’t step in other people’s shoes, how can we be fair in our judgment of right and wrong? And to step in other people’s shoes, we got to go out to meet them and live them.
Definition of Traveler: The one who steps in other people shoes in hope to steal a peep their lives.
Definition of Indian stupid: The one who judges right from wrong without actually living in the other side of the world.
- Giving up the damn dream for the dream life: That’s how Indians, predominantly Hindus define an ideal life. Hindus define an ideal life to exist in four phases or ashrams “Brahmacharya” or the Student Stage, “Grihastha” or the Householder Stage, “Vanaprastha” or the Hermit Stage and “Sannyasa” or the Wandering Ascetic Stage. Without defying phases’ role in ancient India; these phases should be shuffled immediately if we are to resurrect our rotting, hyper confused society.
Note: These ashrams are predominantly designed for the male with not much relevance to females. Women ended up playing vital role in each one of them as the primary role of women in ancient India was nothing more than of a loyal and devoted daughter, wife and mother without no actual acknowledgement of her individual existence.
We study and then work and then get married. We work tirelessly to live the dream in our older years. What’s interesting is that by the time we reach that stage, we forget all about it. Fun is morphed into discipline, curiosity is transformed into the simplified routine and dreams cave away. Our lives become lifeless and we die frustrated and exhausted. For a more wholesome, fulfilling and happy life, shuffle these phases to suit the times:
- 1st Brahmacharya: Be a student but don’t restrict learnings just to books. Be curious, question, ask and explore.
- 2nd Vanaprastha + Sannyasa: Go to the wild, live, adventure, have faith, survive and if it happens (which it most certainly will) fall in love.
- 3rd Grihastha: Spend the rest of your life with the loved one, making love and babies. Hope to change the world for good and bring world peace. Make the things you are passionate about into the real jobs. This is the time to open that beach shack, retire to the hillside villa and relish olives from the owned organic orchard while sipping wine/tea with the beloved.
Life is too short to live for the career! We will be silly to be spending it just to sit on top of the corporate ladder. Go out, be bit crazy and work towards your ideal life.
Start traveling now before it’s too late.