To me, Patriotism means being true to the world you live in and doing what is best for maintaining peace and harmony around. You don’t have to salute a flag to show your loyalty to it – you have to live for the ideals it stands for. You can be a patriotic Indian, by being non-violent in every aspect of your life, being broadminded about all religions, encouraging art and literature and being a good host. You could live anywhere in the world you live, you owe your loyalty to the law of the land and its culture. Holding a birth certificate or a citizenship does not geographically confine your patriotism to one land. True Patriotism is following the moral, ethical and legal norms of society and pledging your loyalty to mankind.
What is power? In the movie Schindler’s List, Schindler describes it beautifully when he says that ‘power’ is when you don’t shoot your victim, in spite of having the authority – Not when you do. The ability to act with force – is how the word is defined; this force could be exerted on others or on oneself. I think the most powerful are those that ‘act with force’ on themselves. Power is also self determination; free-will-to choose the life you want. Exerting power over someone else is exploitative. We find this happening around us-in the family, socially and at work. Since power is in a way, energy-there is more negative and destructive energy than the positive and constructive kind. I would like to quote some interesting examples of power –
- I exert my power by trying to stay positive
- When you go on a critical patient call, you are basically God. You have the power to save someone.
- Women are already powerful from the moment we’re born.
- The best use for power is to show understanding and compassion.
- The more I resist cynicism and meanness, the more powerful I am.
- It’s powerful to have a small tribe of really honest friends.
- People exercising their power collectively, that’s something powerful.
‘Prayer is the raising up of our minds and hearts to God, either to praise Him, or to thank Him, or to beg His grace, and therefore it is divided into Prayer of Praise, Prayer of Thanksgiving., and Prayer of Petition’ – what a lovely definition! I would put prayer of thanksgiving as the highest form. And devotion is the essence of prayer. I am thankful to my grandmother for introducing me to the strength that lies in praying. She taught me active praying which is doing my bit and seeking God’s grace in making it happen. Passive praying is that which makes you sit and wait for things to happen as a result of it. As the Pope said, ‘pray any way you like, so long as you do pray. You can pray the way your mother taught you’. The best prayer is one of surrender. As Krishna says in the Gita, do your duty to the best of your ability and leave the rest to Him.