Thursday, December 13, 2007

There Is Darkness Everywhere....

"Friends and Comrades, the light has gone out of our lives and there is darkness everywhere". - so goes the beginning of the address delivered by Jawaharlal Nehru on Jan 30th 1948, after the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi.

Closer to home, the events of the last few months have cast an ominous gloom across the face of the country. Unceasing price and toll hikes amidst allegations of one sided agreements, gross financial mismanagement by government agencies,
allegations of manipulations in the judiciary, the almost total failure on the part of the Executive to actually "govern" the nation, public demonstrations against social injustices and their subsequent clampdowns, etc. have darkened the soul of the nation. To top it off, the regime in Bolehland has just arrested P. Udhayakumar and 4 others under the ISA for an initial period of 6 months. Indeed, there seems to be darkness everywhere.

Interestingly, today's scripture reading from the Gospel of
John 1:6-9, verse 8 says, "He was not the light, but came to bear witness to the light", which is taking about the prophet John, who came and prepared the way for the Christ.

That Light once came some 2000 years ago in a small obscure village in the Middle East. Its next coming will be when all things come to pass at the End of Time, sometime in the future. In the meantime, we are called to both contemplate and act - like John.

Author and prominent American civil rights leader Eldridge Cleaver said in 1968, that "If you are not a part of the solution you are a part of the problem". While novelist Edith Wharton, once wrote, "There are two ways to spread happiness; either be the light who shines it or be the mirror who reflects it".

As we continue this journey of Advent, waiting for the True Light to come illuminate our lives,
may the examples of John, the voice shouting in the desert, and Gandhi, who brought an entire empire down almost single handedly by mobilizing his people through a campaign of "civil disobedience", inspire us to do likewise here. Maybe then, we can truly appreciate the illumination that Christmas brings. And not just be content with being mere decorative lights on the Christmas tree!