Tuesday, 18 November 2008

Pledge and prayers

Last couple of day, media is covering the shoot out by two students on a fellow student in Gudgaon and his death on the spot. Indeed, it is shocking news for Indian Society as we were hearing such incidents happened in US, Germany, Finland etc. previously. Now we have experienced what would have happened to the parents of the unfortunate students who died in Virginia Tech tragedy.

Is it a side effect of world becoming a global village? And is it just a tip of an iceberg?
This reminded me my school days. Ours was the Girls' school. So there was too less physical fighting and there was jealousy, misunderstanding, and quarrels among the students but not hatred as such. The atmosphere was quite cultured and teachers were as parents. Truly, school was a second home.

The best thing was that our school day used to begin with various prayers and a pledge which used to make the surrounding happy and tranquilized.

In the beginning, there used to be Vande Mataram (Bow to the Motherland), our national song. Then praising the Goddess Saraswati (As she is the Goddess of knowledge and education and as she possesses the power of speech, wisdom and learning).

या कुन्देन्दु- तुषारहार- धवला या शुभ्र- वस्त्रावृता या वीणावरदण्डमन्डितकरा या श्वेतपद्मासना या ब्रह्माच्युत- शंकर- प्रभृतिभिर्देवैः सदा वन्दिता सा मां पातु सरस्वती भगवती निःशेषजाड्यापहा १

[The Goddess Saraswati, who is fair as a Jasmine flower, the moon or a snow flake, who is dressed in white and whose hands are adorned by Veena (The Musical Instrument), who is seated in a white lotus, to whom (even) Lord Brahma, Lord Vishnu and Lord Mahesh etc. Gods pray, and who removes the dumbness thoroughly (by showering knowledge) may protect me.]
Then after 2-3 such small prayers in Sanskrit and Marathi, we used to take pledge which used be on first page of every text book.


India is my country. All Indians are my brothers and sisters.
I love my country, and I am proud of its rich and varied heritage. I shall always strive to be worthy of it. I shall give my parents, teachers and all elders respect, and treat everyone with courtesy. To my country and my people, I pledge my devotion. In their well-being and prosperity alone lies my happiness.
Once I applied for the post of a translator in a big MNC and a project head over there asked me to write some lines in Devnagri Unicode font and send it via email as a sample.
Initially I was confused as what to write. Then I wrote the lines below from the pledge, reading which he was very happy.



भारत मेरा देश है । सारे भारतीय मेरे बान्धव है ।
At the end of the school day, we used sing the national Anthem “Jan Gan Man” loudly. Especially, we used to enjoy last line “Jay hey, Jay hey, Jay hey, Jay Jay Jay Jay hey”. Since after the last “Hey” we used be free birds.
(At around, Independence Day or republic day, if the Media person catches me in the public place and asks me to recite the national song or an anthem, I’m sure that I could recite it fully and confidently.)

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