“Beta, you will surely become an engineer,” says the father who himself is an engineer. And he is saying those words to his newborn son.
What the heck! My mind screams.
Out of the 60,000 babies born in a day in India, the fate of almost 59,000 babies are sealed right at the moment of birth. They are either stamped as engineers or doctors by their over-enthusiastic parents and relatives. I must say, that if they wish their sons or daughters to become only engineers or doctors, then there would only be computers, machines and hospitals all over the country instead of food to eat, water to drink or bathe, books to refer, sports activities to energize and music to entertain. All your senses will soon turn numb without their necessary requirements. Though engineers upgrade the world and doctors save lives, our very own existence depends on other people who might not even know what ‘engineering’ or ‘medicine’ means.
We wouldn’t be having A.R.Rahman, MS Randhawa, Sachin Tendulkar or Amish Tripathi if their parents wanted them to be engineers or doctors. You wouldn’t even have known their names. They might have been some unknown Rahman or Sachin from a well-developed city or NRIs settled in abroad. Their parents inculcated and encouraged their talents, instead of pushing them to earn a B.E or MBBS degree.
Nowadays, extra-curricular activities and talents are seen as something that will destruct a child’s progress in studies. A child who is talented is looked down by his or her own parents and relatives. They probably think that the child might over-indulge in his/her talents and deviate from their main aim i.e., to become an engineer or doctor. Talents and other skills have earned a different meaning in India nowadays. They are stereotyped as accompaniments for a child whose prime goal is to take up engineering or medicine.
There is also societal pressure. Parents feel ashamed to tell that their child is a sportsperson or a musician. They feel proud in ranting that their child is an engineer or a doctor. The true potential of a child is suppressed just because of the stereotyped wishes of his/her family. And there is also the question of, “Who will marry my son who is an author?” or “Who will marry my daughter who is an athlete?” At this point, I must remind you that Amish Tripathi, Ravinder Singh, Jhumpa Lahiri, Sachin Tendulkar, Sania Mirza, A.R.Rahman and M.S.Dhoni are all married. They are full time sportspersons, authors and musicians and yet they live a happy life with their family. I firmly believe that each and every person has a soulmate in their life. You need not be an engineer or a doctor to get married. You need not be an engineer or doctor to prove your worth, to prove your place in the society or to prove your existence.
People think that being an engineer or doctor is the only means of income for a family. But that is not true. There is required reward for each and every profession in the world. We must learn to live happily with whatever we get. Even as a cricketer, magician or an author, you can earn enough. Your personal satisfaction is important rather than the number of zeroes in your salary.
You live only once and you have to live that one life in the happiest way possible. What’s the use of living a forced life? What’s the use of being in a job that drives you to boredom?
To all the Indian families, instead of telling that my son or daughter will become a doctor, try telling that he or she will become an artist. There will be genuine happiness on your child’s face. And to all the young people out there, don’t feel ashamed to tell that you are a singer or a football player. You have your own identity in this world. Be what you wish and be happy with that. 🙂