The diminishing social fabric
By: Bilal Ahmad Khanday
We, as humans are primarily social beings and our existence is fundamentally dependent on our society.If we cease to be social, we will soon perish. Everyone among us, irrespective of our status, is alive because of our social bonding with others and once we somehow disintegrate from this bonding, whatever the cause be, our existence will come to a naught.
With the advent of science and technology and the subsequent usage of modern facilities and gadgets, these social connections are diminishing day by day. Not only this, but our familial relations are also getting hampered with every passing day. And the problem is more compounded by the onslaught of the material rat race which, generally, does not bother for ways and means and, many a times, also trespasses even the familial and social fabric. Also, the unchallenged and ‘unethical’ individualism quite often tramples over these mutual bonds which render our relations and interconnectedness prone to disintegration sooner or later.
With the result, our society encounters new checks and challenges with every passing day and if these issues aren’t addressed, on war footing basis, the day will not be far when our social fabric would disintegrate into ashes and then it will be our ‘destined’ fall.
Yesterday, while walking to my home in the evening, I greeted a person, probably in his late seventies, of our locality. To which he replied in his sober and soft tune and asked me, where I was posted and how was my mother doing now after brief illness? I gently replied and once he realised that I would pay a patient ear to his suggestions rather advices he continued… “You know Bilal; life has brought me to a stage where I have finally realised that neither I have succeeded in this life nor have I sent anything for the life hereafter. Throughout my life, since my youth, I have worked tirelessly, sweat and blood, in order to make both ends meet for my family as I was the eldest of my siblings.” While he was narrating his story, I was thinking why was he so pessimistic as all of his three children are well settled and he himself lives a good life. But he kept on, “You know, undoubtedly all my children are employees and well settled but still what is in my hand and what have I achieved. They are grossly busy in their lives with their families and hardly anyone among them listens to me anymore. Believe me, I am just a living entity now and no one asks me what I want and neither seeks my opinion in any matter these days. And, you know, I am watching all this happen every single day…” While he was narrating his harsh experiences, tears were trickling down through his swollen eyes and over his wrinkled cheeks.
Though I tried to console him in the best possible way I could, but perhaps I failed to comprehend the intensity of his pain which I believe, no one could have. And then Mu’azzin from a local masjid called for Maghrib prayers, and we bid each other goodbye.
This is not just a story of a single person rather it is the story of almost all of our parents and grandparents who have nourished and brought us up with their sweat and blood. The story speaks volumes about our collective socio-ethical standards.But we must not forget the historical golden rule that‘what goes around, comes around.